Sunday, December 26, 2010

Creative Gift Wrapping

How do you wrap a gift card? Gift cards can be a great choice to give to someone who loves to shop, but they sure don't look like much on Christmas morning. So here is what I did for a gal who has a great fondness for turtles. First I did this doodle.From my fabrics, I selected this terrific print but my hand painted blue fabric seemed "too" blue so I overdyed it with a bit of green textile paint to tone it down.After printing the turtle in a few sizes onto a sheet of TAP, they were then transferred to the new fabric.Bubbles and wavy line quilting worked is the finished bag that the gift card was tucked into.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

New addition

New, is #96 on the list of word prompts for The Creative Prompt Project.

This Little Princess, one of the most recent additions to my toy sewing machine collection is roughly 85 years old but looks just like NEW!, which prompted me to draw this.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

I seem to be a little behind

It has been quite a while since I last posted a response to the weekly Creative Prompt Project.
I really need to try to get back on track. Here is my response to word prompt #93, Twinkle
Christmas lights are twinkling everywhere you look these days.

Drum roll please..........

......and the winner is, sbsudbury. Congratulations Sharon, me with your snail mail address and I'll get that card off to you right away.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Love these pencils........still not so crazy about TAP

Been playing with some new (to me) products as of late. I LOVE these Inktense pencils. Use them just like a regular pencil, but when you wet them, the colour blooms and becomes permanent once allowed to dry. If you desire a watercolour effect, allowing the pencil/colour to bleed......then water works great.........BUT if you don't want the colour to run and bleed out in your fabric you may want to try using something else to "wet" the penciled area. Here is a test I did. I first made several circles on a piece of fabric and coloured them using the Inktense pencilsNext I used various "mediums" to wet the areas and see how the pencil would be affected.
I have left these images large so click on them to get a better look. As you can see, there was lots of running with the use of water (and my brush was NOT saturated, I used as little as possible) The other items actually all worked quite well and the only one that significantly changes the hand of the fabric is the Golden Medium. I even washed the finished piece to see how well it would hold it's colour......result? Excellent!
Now......about TAP, Artist Transfer Paper. I thought that I would be able to dampen the TAP and then use those Inktense pencils because they "dissolve" in the water........but even though I worked as gentle as possible, it still rubbed the coating off and you just end up with a, I have found that the TAP works very well when using it with your printer but even though the reviews say you can draw on this stuff, you really can NOT, unless you are using a very fluid medium like ink, paint, or markers. Pencils, crayons, pastels and paintsticks all just scrape the coating off .....I found it quite disappointing.

I did make some cards though. After discovering that I could not do what I had planned with the images printed on TAP, I decided to go ahead and transfer them to fabric and then colour them after. Here are the finished cards.Most of them are spoken for, but this one is up for grabs. If you'd like to find it in your mail box, please leave a comment in this post. I'll announce a winner Sunday.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Seaonal Doodle

I have not been doing much in the way of doodling lately....not real sure why.......but I had an idea that I wanted to try so I decided to do this seasonal doodle to play around with
I scanned the image and placed several onto a page, then printed it onto a sheet of TAP

See those pencils? Oooooooooooooo those are the Inktense pencils that I have been wanting to try.
Some people like to roam the malls.....not me, but I DO so love to browse through aisles and aisles of art supplies. Got these at one of my favouite shops Mercury Art Supply

So in an earlier post, I told you that I was disapointed to find that I could not use pencils on the Tap........the pencil just scraped off the coating........well I think I have found away around that. Check back next week if you'd like to see what I am up to.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Need a "Special" card?

Did you make cards when you were a know for Mom and Dad, Grandma and Grandpa......they always said how much like enjoy having a card made by you. Why did we stop, sure the card shop has a great selection but sometimes you want something a little different, something Special.

I thought why not use the process of making fabric postcards to create a greeting card in the same manner. Those of you who have purchased the book Zentangle Fabric Arts Quilting Embroidery will recognize this design. I took my design and after drawing it onto fabric, I doodled and added colour using ordinary crayons, backed it with a piece of Timtex, did some free motion stitching...........all the same steps as I would for a a bit of beading to make it sparkle.

The final step was simply to stitch it to the front of a blank card (I got a pack of blanks cards with envelopes at the "Dollar" store)........I think this is perfect for those occasions where you are specifically asked to bring best wishes only

Monday, November 22, 2010

Still TAPping

In an earlier post, I spoke about a product known as TAP (Artist Transfer Paper). Although there were some things I did not like about it, I know I will find many uses for it. Recently I took one of my feather designs, drew it directly onto fabric and coloured it using ordinary crayons. I quite liked the way it turned out and decided to use the TAP to duplicate this one.So I scanned the original and then printed a couple of the images onto a sheet of TAP. Cut one out and transferred that image onto fabric using a hot iron.The original is on the right and the TAPped version is on the left, finished as a postcard. I must admit this was kinda cool!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Lino Cutting

I am still playing with feathers. I wanted to create a stamp of one of my feather designs, so I broke out my lino cutting tools. Here you see the stamp as I began the cutting process. The lino block I am using is 4 x 6 inches in size.
The finished stamp with textile paint applied. Instead of "stamping" onto the fabric, I laid the fabric (a sheer) on top of the wet stamp and rolled a brayer over it.With just a little more refinement to the cutting, I think this is going to work quite wellHope you are not tiring of feathers, because I have many more to show over the next little while.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Do you Tap?

This post is going to be about a product known as TAP .....Transfer Artist Paper, but first I want to tell you about Heather Ordover. Heather has a site called Craftlit a podcast for crafters who love books. She recently contacted me to let me know that she had in fact mentioned me in one of these podcasts, Cool! She just had so many wonderful things to say about what can be found here on my blog that I think she may have actually made me blush, so when you get a chance please go on over and check her just may find yourself tuning in to listen to Heather as you happily while away the time working on your current projects.

So........Tap. Have you heard of this stuff? Have you, do you, use it? I have been wanting to get my hands on this for a long time and was so excited to find it last month, that I bought a couple of packages. I am going to reserve judgment as I go along using it in various ways. I will tell you what I like about it and why I am also quite disappointed with it.
First of all what is it?...... well it is a paper that has a coating on one side. You can put it through your printer, you can draw and paint directly on it and then, using an iron you can "transfer" your image onto all sorts of surfaces, fabric, glass, wood, metal, paper...etc .......but I really only care about using it with fabric at this point.I must tell you that it is a kind of expensive medium to play with as 5 sheets at 12.95 plus 13% tax means that they are costing me nearly $3/sheet so you can bet I'll be using every inch of this stuff.The first thing I did was try to draw directly onto this and found out very quickly(to my great disappointment) that a pencil or crayon dragged across this paper just causes it to "scrape" the coating off.........not real happy as it was one of the things I wanted this stuff for. So the next thing I did was run a sheet through the printer. I created some text for a label and a couple of feathers to experiment with. The results going through the printer were good. Nice sharp, clear text, but when it is ironed onto fabric (as in this label) you still see the "edges" where it was cut from the paper and it is a little stiff........I thought it was not suppose to change the hand of the fabric much....well trust me it does! It softens a little after washing but I honestly did not find this really much better than the T shirt transfer papers that are out there. I left this photo as a large file so if you click on it, you can see what I mean.okay, so then, I went on to using some markers, inks and paints. I printed these quickly drawn feather outlines onto the TAP and then went over the lines with a sharpie marker. The marker glided over the paper fairly well but the coating will gum up your marker in a very short time. Next I got playing with paints. The yellow and orange feather was created using Setacolour transparent paints straight from the bottle.........with the green feather, I decided to really test the paper. I brushed a clear gel over the entire surface and then went in with all purpose inks, added more marker here and there and let it all dry.

Once the green one was completely dry, I went back in and scraped away some of the colour........this actually proved to be quite interesting. I cut the pieces out fairly close to the image and have saved every scrap of the paper for later use. I WILL use it somehow.Finally you see the images after they have been ironed to fabric. I have to say that the images really do transfer beautifully.I can see where this stuff would be great for collage work, but I was not impressed with it on a plain solid fabric. (as in that quilt label) Also, you should know that if you plan to do any micro-stippling on this stuff, you will need to be prepared to get lots of little Tap Dandruff on you.
I will continue to play with this product and post the results.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

I was at Quilt Market in Houston, I wasn't really, but I almost feel like a little bit of me was........why?
Well, you see, I have been fortunate enough to have been involved with the creation of a book called Zentangle Fabric Arts, Quilting and Embroidery published by Suzanne McNeill of Design Originals. I am delighted to be one of the guest artists/designers
The book has just been released this week and is available on her site Design Originals as well as
Here is Suzanne at Quilt Market in Houston last week promoting the new book. (open to my pages) :-)
These photos were sent to me by Linda M Poole , Author, Artist, Instructor, Quilter and Fabric Designer. Linda was attending Quilt Market and snapped these for me. Thanks Linda I am so excited to see them
I did a design exclusively for the book (see those postcards in the background?) and Suzanne has also featured a close up shot of my quilt "Graffiti"

In Suzanne's post today, she even has included a link so you can check it out on YouTube

I have not seen the book yet but there is one on it's way........I can hardly wait till it arrives!!!!
Thank you Suzanne.........It has been a great experience.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Paper Towel as Fabric

Whenever I play with paint, I keep the paper towels used in clean up. I always think I will use them in some way. Yesterday I decided to create a paper/fabric postcard using one of these pieces and a recently purchased stamp.
This gorgeous stamp was purchased from the fun ladies at the Colouricious booth during the Toronto Creative Festival. visit their website to see the amazing array of fabulous hand carved blocks they have available.
I began with this paper towel
To the stamp, I applied textile paint with a sponge and just began randomly placing the stamp, pressing lightly in some areas and harder in others.A mat with a 4 x 6 opening helped decide what part of the printed paper towel I wanted to use
Finished postcard and close up. I simply stitched a tight little stipple to enhance the appearance of layered leaves

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Playing with Colour

Lately, I have been experimenting with adding colour to black fabric. My original plan was to discharge the black and then add colour back in................this stuff will not discharge. It is good quality quilters cotton but for some reason it does not want to discharge. I've tried discharge paste, gel bleach, and even hairdressing streaking solution.........nothing worked. So I began playing with paints and not having a lot of success. The best result I have had so far is by painting a motif onto the fabric using an opaque white, once dry I added colour by using Tsukineko all purpose inks applied with those Fantastix applicators.
I don't generally like those applicators but on this black fabric I don't need to be precise (don't have to stay inside the lines)I plan to add some thread work to see if I can get a little more colour "POP"
Below is a postcard that is on it's way to a friend who will soon be celebrating her 80th birthday, I had to send it out a little early because she is jetting off to cool is that?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Wicked Cool!!!

I received a fabulous surprise in my mailbox this week from Mary over at Quilt Hollow. I had not won a giveaway or anything, she sent this to me "just because" .........isn't that the BEST!!
The whimsical print even has a poem and some real cute little ratties on it.....Fantastic!Well, I gotta tell you that this little bag has the most cool closure I have ever seen. This is a "Snap Happy" pattern from Stitchin' Sisters, go check them out.
Have you seen these before? The secret is that a metal measuring tape is used to make the bag "snap"closed........I think this is absolutely brilliant!!!!!

I LOVE this so much, I had to make one for a friend..... I am sure I'll make plenty more of them.
I don't actually have the pattern but my years working in the garment industry has left me with some fairly good pattern making skills.I made a slightly larger one using coffee themed prints......I included a little pocket inside that is just the right size to hold one of those prepaid coffee cards. I think these make great "just because" gifts.

Thanks again Mary...........I always say.........Quilt bloggers ARE the best!

I just found out that the patterns for these bags are available at The Marsh Store (one of my personal favourite spots) so if you are in this area, why not drop by and pick one (or more) up.........make one for yourself and a few to have ready for friends and family.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Seasonal Doodle

Wanting to get a postcard ready for our guild exchange this week, I came across a cute pumpkin fabric and was inspired to do a little doodling.

I did this one quickly in my sketchbook
and then repeated a similar one directly onto a piece of my painted fabric to create this card.
Do you participate in postcard exchanges with a quilt guild or fibre-art group? You just never know what will show up in your mailbox

Sunday, October 10, 2010


Look what was hiding under that blue paint.
Now I ask you........why on earth would someone have felt the need to paint this in the first place?This is the natural wood, no stain or varnish, I have simply used a little Lemon Oil to bring back it's beauty. You can see some of the wonderful grain here and the great decal on this piece.
You just never know what you might find under painted furniture........sometimes the paint is covering something nasty, it can be a gamble and a lot of work......this one was well worth the effort.
Copyright Jill Buckley