Friday, September 14, 2012

Torch enamel - fun with fire!

Three weeks ago, I took a class at my local bead shop (Bead Inspirations). I haven't done any beading projects for quite a long time, but I love making jewelry. It's just another great craft that I don't have enough time for. But I have a pendant from Lisbon that is copper enamel with these great details including what looks like fused wire - almost a cloisonné. I should take a photo and amend this post later but right now I'm writing from a hotel room in Olympia WA. It is move-in weekend for Teen Wonder and today is her birthday. I have some work work to do too, but we are going in to Seattle  for fun this afternoon as per her birthday request.

But I digress...

I get the emails from Bead Inspirations regularly even though I haven't been such a regular customer. I haven't ever taking a beading class or metalsmithing either, so even the stuff I've done in the past has all been self taught.  I have always wanted to take a proper class to learn wire-wrapping the right way and expand my skills. A pair of nice earrin gs is such great instant gratification, you know? But last month a different kind of class caught my eye - Torch Enamel! Cool! I did copper enamel as a child at church camp. The craft lady was Hazel, and she was awesome! We did all sorts of things that probably a summer camp couldn't do anymore due to insurance and liability issues. Like using a kiln to fire copper enamel (Hazel did that part for full disclosure, at least most of the time). I didn't
know anything about using a butane torch to fire copper enamel.

The class was terrific! We used pennies as blanks and jumped right into it with thorough but minimal lecture to learn. Very hands on.
Copper enamel class
Cool huh?

I'm attempting to post this using my iPad. First time, and I had to figure out how to get any photos on here. There is probably an easier way, but hopefully I can do this once in awhile for a short post with not too many pix!
And I'm also going to attempt linking to Sarah's Whoop Whoop! Friday party

Saturday, September 8, 2012

T-shirt quilt finish! (finally...)

At long last, I have finished Teen Wonder's T-shirt quilt!
A few weeks ago I was ready to have a nervous breakdown over this thing - It's long so it can cover her dorm bed...and I had a heck of a time basting it. bleh.

But here it is in all it's glory! I'm happy with how it turned out, and Teen Wonder loves it.
The shirts in this quilt were collected over many years.  

The backing is the Polka Dot extra wide backing fabric from Moda - I like it, and it looks great; however, it was less substantial feeling than regular quilting cotton. Maybe partially because I pre-washed it which is a step I do or don't do for the backing depending on whether the front fabrics were pre-washed.  I did a very simple organic (i.e. not marked or straight) "straight" line quilting at 2-4" apart running up the length of the quilt. I mainly want it to hold together and I didn't leave any negative space for fancy quilting (not that I know how to do fancy quilting!). Plus I like that the minimalist approach doesn't distract from the random T-shirt themes and motifs.

Teen Wonder takes off tomorrow with her dad to drive up to Portland. I'll fly up Thursday and move her into her dorm in Olympia next Saturday.

I'm excited for her, but it's starting to dawn on me all the little ways we will miss her here.

I'm linking up to some of the Friday finish parties - it's been quite awhile since I've posted. Busy times for me lately! Please follow these links to find more awesome projects posted by talented people:

Whoop it up with Sarah!

TGIFF is hosted at Quokka Quilts this week!