URL: http://api.my.yahoo.com/rss/ping Parameter(s): u= HTTP method: GET Mama's Doodles: January 2007


For optimal viewing pleasure...

...please stand 10 feet away from this artwork.

I'm soooooo happy with this idea, I could just lick it! It's another modern-ish creation, but will fit in so nicely in the space I envisioned it for. (it's gonna take two to hang it, so it's just hanging out by this wall for now!)

As I mentioned some time ago, I was looking for pics of words and letters to spell out my last name, and create an art wall full of cool sayings. This is the bottom half of the montage I did of our name. Of course, in effort to preserve some level of anonymity, I'm not going to show the whole thing (although those of you who email with me, can probably solve the rest of the last-name-puzzle!!) All the letters are in different shades of red, but each is very different. The color ties in nicely with my great room colors.

It looks SO COOL. Aside from the fact that after visiting Hobby Lobby today and finding the professional framers on lunch - I decided that just..maybe..I could tackle the matting and framing myself. Therefore, aside from the fact that it looks like a MONKEY may have cut the mat - it looks freaking great!!! I'm trying to convince my perfectionist self - that unless you get close, you'll never notice the mat imperfections. {But, I'll bet that folks will get close admiring how utterly cool it is - and therefore, I'll probably take it in and have those professional folks cut me a new mat!}

It also appears that the same monkey painted my mop boards, although I assure you that was berfore my (er, I mean the monkey's) time in this house!!

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My twins: pillows

As I mentioned in my other post, I have a lot of ideas that continue to overwhelm me in my little crafty studio. The other day, trying to decide what to tackle - I just started making these. And, they. were. not. on. the. list.

I originally visioned them for Kenzie's room, tossed on the bed, but I'm not clear if that's where they will end up (especially as she's napping right now, and I can't go toss them about her bed to see if they look good). I think they'll be cute in there. Or, maybe somewhere else. We'll see.

They turned our really cool and pretty darned modern, for someone who doesn't have a terribly modern home. I see so many visions of modernism on other blogs though & I guess it's catching. They are also very difficult to photograph for some reason. I tried to catch a good shot, but didn't manage it in the crazy amount of pictures (of pillows, for cripes sakes!!) that I took.

They still need to be hand-stitched closed. But, my poor right hand is feeling crippled. When I was pregnant with Kenzie, during the very late stages of pregnancy - I suffered from carpal tunnel syndrome. It woke me up and kept me up at night. Once I shed the baby, it mostly went away. However, every so often it seems to come back although - it might not be that at all. It could just be a weird injury, that pops back up with various insults. It's an odd stabbing pain with any sudden moments of my wrist region. Let me tell you - stuffing these pillows was pAiNfUlL. I doubt I should further aggravate the situation with hand-stitching - so these may remain pinned closed until the pain subsides. It usually takes a few days, and then it's back to normal. The timing just figures...just as I get my crafty inclinations back!

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Getting my Craft on

I have actually been quite busy in my little craft studio lately. I had accumulated quite a stack of things needing repairs. There's nothing like repairs that makes you feel productive and efficient. I have also altered some t-shirts that were too small on my husband -- & they became mine. I also started a skirt that is officially the first thing I've ever made for MYSELF. I made up my own pattern too, so if it doesn't turn out well - it may officially be the last. :)

After a bit of organizing, I hope to get moving on some projects. I have a journal of SO many ideas that sometimes it's terribly overwhelming for me. Not to mention flickr favorites, and clippings saved over at Bloglines. I just don't know where to start...

I am however, planning to participate in this group over at flickr. Probably not this month -- but I hope to jump in on the theme next month. What a great title. Get Your Craft On.

And, in spirit of the group, I feel like I most definitely should....

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Calling all photographers!

I've got this zany idea for an art in my dining room. I've got a big empty wall and I'd like to fill it with framed photo montages of single pictures. Each single picture will be a WORD and it will be combined with other words to make cute sayings -- Perhaps you've heard of Darwin Bell and his sign language series (he can be found on flickr). This isn't a terribly original idea, so don't give me credit! But, it would be very costly to fill a wall with ready-made art, and there's something fullfilling in collecting it myself (even though I'm asking - or begging, rather - for help).

I'd like to start off with the following sayings:
Home is where the Art is
You are what you eat
Nothing happens until I make it happen
Everyday is a new creation
(...oh, and there many others...)

I'd also like to spell our last name out in single letters. Flickr has a vast collection of letters - but after searching for a good long while, I just can't find the words I need (that print out in nice decent sizes).

So - If you're also a person who loves to tote your camera about - and wouldn't mind aiming to capture words for me, than please do. They can be from signs, graffiti, clothing, etc. They just need to be a good clear shot, that looks like it belongs on art. If I collect what I'm looking for, and you've assisted me - I'd be more than happy to supply the whole saying to you for your own artwork creation! Or, better yet - I could start a flickr group of images we can all print out.

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Banner make-over

I've been having immense difficulties loading my Doodle banner to my shop at Etsy. It kept coming out squashed, or blurry, or only half of it showed up.... Finally, frustrated - I began perusing the forums for help. I noticed Colorfiesta holding a sale. Banners for $2.75 to celebrate her one year Etsy-versary! The only problem was that the sale had ended the previous day. I asked her for a quote on help for my banner, and this lovely, kind soul extended the sale rate to me. And, then she made me this:

I think it's so cool that she used my own work to design the banner from. All I did was direct her to my flickr photos. I WISH had the kind of creative mind that knew how to do this. I'm now begging her to help me with my blog. I really want to switch to Beta, and clean things up around here....but I'm a bit paranoid to do it without someone with computer smarts holding my hand!

If you're looking for banner assistance -- I'd certainly highly recommend Colorfiesta.

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Garage Sale

Is it bad to use Etsy as a garage sale? I'm sifting through piles of handmade stuff and I'm going to list a few things over at Etsy from my stash. I've already put one of my log-cabin pillow covers up for sale...and who knows what else I might decide to toss in there. You might remember it? It was made for my entry way, but ended up too country and too red for my liking. I actually made two - and then mailed one pillow off to Sandrine of Didine when she exclaimed she liked it. That poor entry still has an empty bench. I've got the itch to try freezer paper stencil birds on some better matching pillows for it. Hopefully, I'll get to that this week, now that the tutu frenzy is over. Heck, I've got the itch to try freezer paper stencils on everything!! And, after a lengthy hunt, I've finally obtained the freezer paper. It was an elusive little resource, I'll tell ya!

Speaking of tutus - I also dropped two of my new tutus into the Etsy shop. They are the perfect valentine gift for sweet little girls, in my humble opinion. Now, what to get my own daughter (who already has tutu many tutu's??) Hmnn.....

Why does it feel so shameful to plug my own Etsy shop on my own blog?



Tutu difficult to photograph!

I have a good photographer friend, whom I may beg to take some photos for me. I am having such trouble taking photos of these babies. Before I got "serious" :) I would just dangle them out of a tree in my backyard. Now, aside from the trees being skeletal and leafless - I'd like to take some better pictures.

I'm shooting these just for documentation purposes. (so I know what I mail away). These are the only decent photos out of the bunch (showing only part of the collection), and let me just say, I feel rather ridiculous moving pictures/art so I can use the wall space. Ironing and hanging fabric on the wall, so I can use it as a backdrop (um, that was a BAD idea. Nothing good came of it!) Moving chairs around to less cluttery parts of the house, etc. Washing walls, as the photographs were reflecting dust on the walls! Not to mention getting peeved with my toddler who was tossing cars and shadows about my shooting area, standing in front of the camera, dragging from my leg, and wrapping her arms around my neck in the middle of pictures. What a silly and frustrating task!

I'd like to find a really good manikin bust. And some really cool hangers, maybe the old-fashioned iron fancy kind. Those would be really good props to have, for these and clothing items. But, still - my lighting and backdrop would be inferior to that of my friend. Since I'm making each tutu unique - I can hardly ask him to take a picture of every single one. So, I really want to figure out how to do this myself.

I tried everything: doorways, nails in walls, doorknobs, chairs, plant-stands, everything but the child - which would be the obvious choice...but then. I'd. be. really. frustrated. She's a spry little thing. :) And, it wouldn't be any fun for her.


These are tutus that I designed with Valentine's Day in mind. Great for the holiday, and still girly and every-day worthy:

These are actually my favorites. I love the dainty little flowers nestled in the skirts. Ironically, they also photograph the worst!

Please fess up any photography wisdoms you might have!



Doodle Factory

I'm up to my eyeballs in tutus. Given almost a whole day of Daddy:to:Kenzie craft time yesterday - I've been making tutus to satisfy an order for a shop in California. I've also made a few spares to plop neatly into my Etsy shop, which has been depleted of tutus.

Sewing one product over and over has given me some thinking time. I've been perplexed as to what to call my products, as well as how to include my blog names. I didn't want to change everything and run the risk of not being able to secure web addresses, etc. My original blog, is my Kenzie's doodles blog. Doodle, as I've mentioned before is one of her zillions of nicknames - but it was the first, given to her by her Nana. Then, catching on to the crafty blog phenomenon, I started Mama's doodles. Then came a flickr account, followed by an Etsy shop. My names weren't fabulous, but it's what I used without giving forethought to what I wished it to become.

So, back to sewing....I really enjoy making these tutus. I'm an artistic soul, and never thought my main contribution to the art world would be, um, tutus. But, it is what is is! I have poured my heart into these tutus this past weekend and just love how they are turning out. They are all different. I guess I'm injecting my artistic license into my tutu endeavors. I really like that they are unique and different from one another. Just as each little gal wearing them {futuristically} is unique and different, themselves. I don't know how long I can continue to produce them this way - but I can honestly say that I haven't generated any "repeats" just yet.

Now, back to my "names." Happily sewing along, I looked at my doorway - with finished products hanging from it. And down at the pile of sewn tutus, still needing sashes..and then at the piles of sashes, and not to mention the buckets of flower petals (all of which were disassembled from flower stems by by partner in crime - my husband. Gotta love a man who'll sit in front of the TV and mindless take apart flowers for you!!! He's the best.) Anyway, this production line got me to giggling about my factory approach. "It's a Tutu factory in here!" I thought to myself.

Moments later it hit me. Doodle factory. That's it. Kind of cheesy, but that's what I'll be tagging everything with once I can figure out how. It's all encompassing of each of my blogs, stays true to their original names... It makes sense given my origins, and I like it. I make lots of different things, and fortunately, the name will easily apply to everything. And, happily - a quick (very quick, mind you) search of the net - didn't manifest any direct results for companies who've already claimed the title. Phew.

So, it's official - Doodle Factory, it is...

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Quilts for the Kims

Quilts for the Kims
Originally uploaded by mama's doodles.
This is my quilt square done for Sabine Kim, 7 mo.

I've probably mentioned a time or two that I have a Masters in Counseling and my professional life has been devoted to working with kids. This is one of many short stories I have in a resource cabinet - designed to open discussion about grief and loss. I've always thought it a touching point of view.

My quilt square depicts this short story and I will send the story along with it:

"In the bottom of an old pond lived some grubs who could not understand why none of their group ever came back after crawling up the lily stems to the top of the water. They promised each other that the next one who was called to make the upward climb would return and tell what had happened to him. Soon one of them felt an urgent impulse to seek the surface; he rested himself on the top of a lily pad and went through a glorious transformation which made him a dragonfly with beautiful wings. In vain he tried to keep his promise. Flying back and forth over the pond, he peered down at his friends below. Then he realized that even if they could see him they would not recognize such a radiant creature as one of their number.

The fact that we cannot see our friends or communicate with them after the transformation which we call death is no proof that they cease to exist."

by Walter Dudley Cavert
Remember Now
© 1944, 1971

Excuse my poor photo. It's night-time, I had to use the flash, and this is too big to fit on my scanner. The block is mostly pink, but I used blue and green for the Lily stems and pond. I included round flowers in the background - to represent the circle of life & there is one flower to represent each family member.



Flailing about a bit...

I'm having a wee bit of trouble getting back into the creative swing. During our Christmas and Advent preparations, I spent every spare second with those tasks and blogging them on my daughter's (lifebook) blog. Let me tell ya, that drained every last creative juice I had. Well, that...and my part-time day job...parenting full-time... painting a bunch of rooms (while my husband was on vacation to help!)...shopping...decorating...holidays, etc. Ah, what am I whining about? It was a great, great family time. We should all be so lucky as to have a wonderful life that fills us up so much that we have no time to be creative.

Today, however, I've finally pulled out some fabric and started cutting. It felt good. Really good! I've got nothing to show for it..but hey, it was refreshing!

I've also got another flattering negotiation going on. My tutus will be traveling to Santa Monica soon to be offered in a store by the beach. Darn it, if I can't live by the beach any longer - at least the stuff I make can!! Can't wait to get it all squared away and solid, and then I'll share more. It's amazing to me how these things just keep finding little 'ole me. I've still got an interview with a boutique to prepare for as well. Let the creativity overwhelm me... {please}.

Picked this up at Old School Acres . The Statcounter Fairy tells me you're there & I could use a little cheerleading....