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Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Getting cozy again...

OK, I just could not stand it - I did not like that cozy I made the other day, and thought it could be made better, so I took apart another coffee cup to make a better pattern.  This time, I made it from card stock, and did a couple of variations of it, labelled it, and put it in a baggie to keep - and likely will promptly lose it!

But regardless, I did make a cozy that I like more.  It is closer to the one I made before, the cuppa calavera.

It is wider and comes together in the back more, so better, especially for large hands or extra large cups.  I made it with the same fabrics too.

I made the corseted back again too - I like that it is adjustable in case there is some variation in cups.

Again, the stampings are done with permanent pigment inks - Staz On.

... and it is reversible again...

with the same quotes...

and that cute butterfly fabric.

But I am satisfied that it is made better, with more precise pieces.  Now that is a monkey off my back :)

I just didn't feel the other one was up to par, and did not like sending a subpar item to someone.

Also, this one has a bit more interfacing in it too, so it is a bit thicker - better for protecting against a hot cup.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

... an afternoon of tea and dominoes...

After making the scrabble pendents the other day, I found a little box of miniature dominoes we got one year in a stocking grab bag at our annual Christmas party.  I thought they would be perfect for making pendents and finally pulled them out to play around with.

They were quite smooth on the back, so I took a bit of steel wool and scratched the back up so it would have a bit of tooth to grab onto paint.

I then added two coats of white gesso.  You can see below that it did seem to add a nice coat of texture.

After the gesso dried, I added the colour.  I used iridescent acrylic paint.  Like the second scrabble pendent, I added a medium tone to the entire back, and then added the lighter and deeper tones to the opposite corners.  I set them aside to dry.

While the domino bases were drying, I took the die cut components and trimmed them to fit the domino faces.  I painted them with more pearl acrylic paint.  After they dried, I stamped the tea cups with the flourishes, using a permanent pigment ink - Tsukineko Versafine in this case, I do believe.  I used the ecru base on the lighter cup, with a pearl paint over top, just the pearl paint on the steam flourishes.  On the blue cup, a pearl blue with no cover.  The spoons were a fine pearl silver.

Afterall the components were dried, I painted a coating of Mod Podge over the base of the domino.

I placed the components over the bases, and then carefully sealed them with another couple of layers of Mod Podge.

After the Podge dried to touch, if there was any overhang, I trimmed it off with a sharp blade, and added another layer of podge over the trimmed edges.  Any bare paper fibers would soak up the resin and become translucent, so make sure the paper is covered well.

Finally, I domed liquid UV resin over the faces of the pieces.  I used a toothpick to move the resin to the edges, and pick out some of the bubbles, and matches to heat and pop as many of the bubbles as I could.  This is never perfect, and teeny microscopic bubbles can still bloom when setting under the UV light.

Sometimes you have to just embrace the Wabi Sabi of it all.  There is beauty in imperfection...  But if I wanted to invest more time and effort into it - and risk other problems developing...  I could take a tiny drill bit and drill directly into the bubble, clean it out well, then add a bit more resin until it is level to the surface.  Then add resin to dome over the entire surface - the spot where the bubble was would disappear.  OR, turn the bubble into a decorative component.  Again, drill into the hole and glue a crystal into it for example.

To make it into a pendent, you could drill a hole in the top of the domino or add a bezel.  I glued a small bezel using a 5 minute two-part epoxy.  The domino dots are perfect for helping center the bezel.

I love how small the pendent is - just a bit over an inch long, and not quite 3/4 of an inch wide.

I normally don't go for pinks/oranges, but it is always a good thing to try to step out of a comfort zone creatively.  I actually quite like how this turned out.

... and the resin really does turn the pearl paints into something gorgeous doesn't it?

One thing I did forget when manipulating the parts of this piece is that I stamped then touched the pieces - as I was using a pigment ink on a surface that had acrylic paint on it, I should have been more patient and let the ink have many more minutes to dry first - it was still a bit wet so there was a bit of smearing.  Again, embrace the Wabi Sabi...

I love the second piece - go figure, I love those blues...

The shimmer of the pearl paints is just gorgeous.

Hmmmm - if I add a crystal to where that bubble is over the tip of the spoon, in clear or white, it could become a sugar cube!

Monday, January 26, 2015

A cozy cuppa...

I made a little cup cozy again, similar to a cuppa calavera.  Again though, I did not have a cozy pattern...  I took apart one I had from my morning tea the other day, but I am not thrilled with it.

I like the concept, but the back is a lot further apart.  I may remake it.

What I do like about this one is that it is double sided.

Being caffeinated is definitely important!!!!

And a good cuppa deserves to be cozy!