Thursday, February 19, 2009


I'm working on ideas for the second workshop that I will be doing at my local library. The first workshop is another variation of Painted, Textured Journal Pages. The second workshop is how to put those pages into signatures and bind them into a book.

I'm basing my information on what I learned in Traci Bautista's class that I took and a wonderful book by Alisa Golden, Painted Paper.

I have been making a sample spine by rug hooking bright colorful yarns. I'll add painted tags, bells, ribbons and what ever else suits my fancy.

As I was wandering around the studio looking for something (I have no idea what) I found my recent book by Jan Beaney & Jean Littlejohn called, Grids to Stitch.

They have a series of pamphlets type books, that aren't cheap, that cover a number of different interesting topics. You can probably find some good condition, used ones on I have no stock in Amazon. I wish I did. Anyway, picking up the book meant a good sit down to look at it again and that meant another cup of good tea.

The pictures above this entry, are some from the book that shows grids. A grid is dictionary defined as "a network of evenly spaced horizontal and vertical lines, a set of crisscrossing bars, or a placement of squares formed within horizontal and vertical lines". Does your hair hurt yet?

If you haven't tried the soluble fabric that is out in the market these days, get yourself off to the nearest sewing supply store and pick up a roll Aquabond. That's what I use. I'm thinking about experimenting with my soluble fabric, making a grid as a sample for a spine of a book. Now, here's a BIG TIP, pay attention. Before you start soaking off your aquabond when you are done with your completed piece, get a jar or container with a good tight lid so you can pour the goopy water into the jar. This can be used at any time as a thin soluble film that can be placed on top of all materials to help them stick more firmly together.

The grid pictures above, taken from the book, were ideas taken from jewelry pieces. Grab your camera this week and look for grid ideas. Make a folder in your computer and save these ideas or draw them out in your ideas journal. Nature has some wonderful grids.

One of the pictures above is a grid of bottlecaps wired together.

Now, the most fascinating for me was the chapter on darning. Yes, DARNING. That's what our grandmothers did with socks, right? Well, surprise, surprise, darning is actually a very ancient technique. It's a way to mimic the warp and weft material of a garment, in some cases to be mended. Take a look at the picture of the figures. Here darning was used to actually "paint" or create the clothing of the figures. How cool is that?

While you are at your craft or sewing store, wander up and down the isles looking for things that could be considered a "net" or mesh or plastic mesh. Anything that has a grid can be used to create a darning effect. And it sure will make a great spine for a book or decorative element in your artwork. Heck even glue it down and paint over it for texture.

A while back I did some 12 x 12 pieces of woven yarns, beading strips, tinsel, etc. the picture is at the top of the page. At the time my mind set was that this was a weaving piece but now I see that changing the size of the dimensions it can be a darned piece for a spine and a darn good one. lol

sigh, ok it was a LITTLE joke. A darn good one. Sorry, I just can't help myself sometimes.

I think if I did the pin weaving again and used it for a spine I would use the Aquabond technique.

I was staring at that one picture of the figures with the darned clothes and thinking wouldn't that be a neat story quilt? And, along the lines of a story......... all of us have our little "dramas" in our life. Human beings can react so strangely to other human beings, especially our immediate family. I haven't created my Medicine Cards yet so I just opened the Sacred Path book to a page, after my meditation time. I got the Great Smoking Mirror card. Interesting card. It covers a lot of things but one of the issues is to see if you can stand in the other person's moccasins for a moment. Then look back at yourself and see just exactly what you have been making that person feel through your actions. The end result is to remember COMPASSION for others, without destroying the Sacred Space of the Self.

You can look at people with compassion without draining your own energy or resources. It's all that worrying, anger and frustration that we have towards them that expends our energy and it doesn't help that person at all.

So like the grid, we are all interconnected. Let's try to remember to be more compassionate and then BE MORE COMPASSIONATE. The ideas of blame, shame and regret have no place in the present moment.

Create in JOY, today!

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