Archive for the handmade Category

Absorb

Posted in constructions, handmade, nature with tags , , , on October 9, 2011 by darcyarts

I wish there was a quicker way for humans to absorb knowledge. Something like plugging in your brain into a main source and choosing material to add to your lineup of knowledge, like adding songs on your iPod.

I want to know everything about mushrooms.

I tuned into a radio show last week and heard the most interesting things about mycelium. I believe one of the people I heard was Paul Stamets. I have just ordered his book Mycelium Running.

Did you know that mushrooms/mycelium were the first plant on the planet earth, that they came from star material? I guess we are all star material, really.

I cant wait to read this book.

I have been somewhat obsessed by mushrooms and have created some fantasy versions in cloth.

Tremendously fun to blend the textures and colors.

Learning everything about this early visitor would be so cool.

The Mayans were into mushrooms. Terence McKenna, too. Aldous Huxley, etc.

Fancy, Punky ‘Shroom

Posted in handmade, projects with tags , , on September 15, 2011 by darcyarts

If the materials are visible I will make something. I have placed cloth that currently fascinates me right on my work table.

Here are my two latest creations:

The Pirate shroom is small and dark.

This is what comes of playing with last year’s Halloween material.

Spider web see-through cloth makes a strange punky mushroom.

The ruffle is made of pink gauzy stuff, soft shiny pink material and purple and black striped jersey.

I am obsessed with making ruffles because they can combine such interesting colors and textures. I love them as a stand in for complex organic shapes.

I think the little mushrooms like these pretty skirts. My mind dances with images of combined cloth. Closets and drawers are full of possibilities.

Girls with Up-Dos

Posted in constructions, design, dolls, dreams, handmade, Mind Power, projects with tags , , , , on September 9, 2011 by darcyarts

Two girls are completely finished now. With all the distractions that have presented themselves over the last few months it took a very long time.

This series of dolls was created as a pleasurable indulgence. They are about play. They were also a project that could allow for some freedom. They do not have to evoke a certain likeness just an approximate one. It is more important that they are evocative but equally important is that I create something a little different.

It was important to work from the simplest cloth doll form. Nothing too fancy or heavily wrought, tweaked over, engineered. I deeply appreciate the cloth doll made from scrap, from available materials, created from nothing much to please a child of times gone by. That history, simplicity, authenticity moves me.

The embroidered faces of my first series of dolls wore out my patience. I create in a ball of fury and, being an Aries, that fury is strong but short-lived. Sitting for a long spell at the same task is very trying for me. ADD? Probably.

There is nothing like that initial flash of an idea and the desire to make it real. It’s delicate. It’s like mist. It rises and disintegrates so quickly.

Gotta get it while it’s hot.

This series of women in their lingerie, inspired by Egon Schiele’s sketches, was meant to be free of marketplace concerns.

Would anybody want them? Are they sellable?

These dolls are about exploring my ability to covey a particular aesthetic. They are about learning to control the language spoken by the materials.

I began using permanent markers, Prismacolor pencils, lips cut from cloth thereby reducing the amount of embroidery on the face.  I like the look of it and allows me to see results more quickly, to add color quickly.

I was not always happy with the way the embroidered lips turned out. Especially on my Mick Jaggers. I kept thinking that the lip thread could catch on something and be pulled out-of-place. Mick’s lips would be in disrepair. Egad.

The bigger the lips the more stitches and layers of thread were required. Hours and hours of stitching. It was growing impractical for production.

Experimental creations keep me hopping. I love the process of discovering of being in the moment not knowing how something will turn out.

It’s exciting.

Hair-dos have always been my favorite part of doing the dolls (after doing the face).

I love cutting shaggy dos but in this series I wanted a form that stood for the up do. I wanted to have a built mass/shape and I’ve added only a few tendrils. It isn’t too heavy.

Some dos on dolls in the first series were top-heavy. Poor Stevie had to have a leg-strengthening operation just to hold his head up.

O course, the beads didn’t help.

The second series of Lingerie Dolls will lead me back to the creation of dolls of women artists. I have the pictures and a list — Georgia O’Keeffe! Yayoi Kusama! Natalia Fabia! Alice Neel! Shall I go on?

Because time is what it is, because my desire fires and cools, because I see the creative process as beautiful ponies on a slowly turning carousel, I wait until a pretty one comes back around and then I jump on.

I dream of getting to get to them all eventually.

The Robyn Hitchcock doll is still up there — large, capable, exciting, shaking his silvery locks, twitching a little under the influence of his next musical move. ♥♥♥.

Shroomin’

Posted in constructions, cute, design, handmade with tags , on September 3, 2011 by darcyarts

DarcyArts has a new mushroom. This one has a striped candy print top, pink and white striped stem and a red-striped, fringed edge.

It’s only about five inches tall.  Cute fits in five inch packages sometimes.

Slow Dolls

Posted in dolls, handmade with tags , , , on August 31, 2011 by darcyarts

It seems like the right time to cop to the fact that I have been slowed in the last few months by sickness. My blogging has suffered and my doll production, too. We (my doctors and I) are still in the process of identifying the invasive bug and I am resigned to this go, stop, sit, rest, sleep routine in place of my usual plow through eight hours work shifts here at DarcyArts.

It has been four days since I took the last pill in my latest round of antibiotics and I am starting to feel human again. The last two days have been good and I have been productive.

This new model doll came out a thinner, winsome Mae West, dressed in an Empire gown. Her facial expression is oddly reflective of how I have been feeling. I don’t take down time easily though I recognize the spiritual need to roll with it in the most graceful way.

Everything is a process which will teach us something. I know I’ve got quite a few miles on my odometer. I’m not complaining. It’s been a swell bunch of trips.

Soon after entering this life I was laid low by tuberculosis. Luckily, after a lengthy treatment, I joined my grandparents for a bit more isolation from siblings and started drinking in the joys of life. Sunshine, the sweet near-constant light of southern California, a loving, empathetic flock of grannies and grandpas, apple trees ans music, music playing everywhere. That’s the long way to say it’s my lungs again.

Tuberculosis,  reoccurred? Pneumonia? Some strange bacteria that is reluctant to let go? Or the Big C. They are all on the table at this point. Now  we journey through this spotty forest until we see the next field of light.

I’m making inventory for DarcyArts as I can. I’ve got eight donut bodies stitched up.

Today I am strong. The bad-ass antibiotic helped a bit and now that it is pretty much out of my system I’m engaged and full of ideas.

[Dang, the classical station is playing  O Fortuna, Carmina Burana. What’s up with that?]

I’m still obsessed/entranced by fanciful mushrooms and will make them as I can. I will definitely indulge my desire. I thought I was being fanciful until I put the phrase “beautiful mushrooms” into Google. Maybe not.

 

 

 

 

Black Alien Squid

Posted in cute, dolls, gardening, handmade, plush critters, projects with tags , , on August 18, 2011 by darcyarts

This morning was spent cleaning up my harvested catnip.

I started a series of Black Alien Squid catnip toys early this year and haven’t got back to them yet. Here are a few photos. I need to be schooled on how to shoot black! Frank is taking a digital photo class. He will be able to teach me.

The little strips of stripes are amusing.

Can I rock that adornment? Later.

The squid on the left in the group photos looks a little guilty.

What did you do?

Homemade Journal

Posted in constructions, handmade, projects, writing with tags , , , on August 17, 2011 by darcyarts


Even though I write this blog and tell tales of my doings I must have a paper journal in which I confess my sad and silliest thoughts.

I had halfway convinced myself to cough up the dough for a fancy store-bought leather bound  journal from Barnes and Noble but my rebellious, DIY-or-bust spirit kicked in and I pledged to make my own.

First I folded and drilled holes in the paper pages, stitched them tightly. Then I stitched the leather pieces together.

Lastly, I glued the leather to the cardboard cover pages and left them pressed under my heaviest dictionary fore 24 hours.

Viola.

It was easy and clean. I used material from an old coat from the 60s or 70s that I bought years ago at The Attic for a couple of bucks.

I was feeling these colors and looking forward to the feel of the leather whenever I use the book.

I’ve nearly filled my last paper journal with the weave of joy, love and occasional concerns that make up my days.

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I’m hoping to make mushroom tops out of that cute pink and brown polka dot cloth. Stay tuned.