Monday, February 28, 2011

Misty's Cloud

I don't make plushies too often, especially not ones like this, but it was awfully fun! This little guy is a mean storm cloud with a lightning bolt. He's based on a mural a friend's husband did for their nursery. I just made the flat illustration into 3 dimensions, complete with nubby protrusions all the way around. He should be fun for little hands to hold or for adults to admire.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Little Kimono Jacket

 My sister Amanda gave me a beautiful skein of bamboo and wool blend yarn. I used my new yarn swift and baller to wind it up into a ball, then proceeded to design and make this little jacket. I used blanket binding on the diagonal edges.
As you can see it could be worn open or crossed. I haven't added any ties, frogs, or buttons because I'm not sure which to chose. I think when I see a little body in there it will make more sense what to do. Meanwhile, I'm happy with it as is. It's very soft and I've already washed and dried it. I'm hoping it should fit her at about 6 mo. It's also very airy, so it doesn't have to be more than slightly cool for this to be comfortable.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Outfitting the Closet

The closet in the baby's room has built in shelves that aren't quite triangular or square. They are 16 x 16 x 14 x 6 inches--a very awkward trapezoidal shape. Using upholstery fabric given to me by Laura of Butter along with some scraps I already had, I made custom fabric bins. The bins are different heights depending on the shelf. Each is lined and has a cardboard reinforced bottom.
I thought the fabrics were all very pretty and extremely sturdy. All of the bottoms, interior and exterior are a chocolate brown velvet. While the walls aren't reinforced, once the bins are in place and being used they should stand up just fine. I'm very pleased with how these came out. Now, I won't have any wasted space because of the odd size and despite my being a very poor seamstress and mathematician these actually came out looking good!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Preparing the Layette

When January arrived I had finished making items for the fall shows and just barely finished my Christmas present projects. Finally, it was time to start making things for the baby. She's due in just four weeks now. The layette sleeper is my most accomplished item so far. I based the pattern on a sleeper I had received as a gift for her. It took a bit of thinking, but I figured out how to put an elastic in hem binding and weave that through the bottom so it stays stretchy. The top has an envelope opening at the shoulders. Designing just the right shape for the bodice pieces so it would fold correctly was a bit of a challenge too. I added a top stitch to the sleeves so they wouldn't be so plain and the body, below the bodice, is worked in a stitch that stretches both directions - more like a knit garment. (Go here to see Lena in her outfit!)

Prior to starting the sleeper, I made this little set. I needed to feel like I was making progress, so I whipped up a little hat and matching booties. Having never made booties before and designing as I went the first one was a little slow, but the second was done in a flash. These are all made from a super soft bamboo/wool blend that's very silky feeling. The mary-jane style booties have a loop closure over the button. 

Then, I made a little blanket. It's just the right size to fit over an infant carrier, a perfect little square with two ruffled edges. I ran the stripes in random combinations of four colors: pink, cream, mint blue, and light teal blue. It's very soft and light, completely breathable. 

I have more to do. I'm working on a little bonnet to go with the sleeper and I have many more ideas. More hats and booties are needed for sure. Meanwhile, my husband has been working on the baby's room. Here's a peak at the color we picked out. It probably won't show up correctly here, so I'll just tell you it's called beeswax and it's a soft yellow, not too brown or green or too pale. It's sunny and happy.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

"NEST" featuring Michael Mazurek and Jesse Morgan Barnett, Curated by Anne Lawrence

Featuring Michael Mazurek and Jesse Morgan Barnett
at Bows and Arrows
February 19-March 23, 2011

Dallas, TX, February 2, 2011 -- Bows and Arrows presents “Nest” featuring Michael Mazurek and Jesse Morgan Barnett, curated by Anne Lawrence, opening Saturday, February 19, 2011, 6-9 p.m. The exhibition will include site-specific installations by each artist.

“Nest” centers on the question how do artists respond to having a child? While feminist and conceptual artist Mary Kelly’s seminal “Post-Partum Documents” tracked the evidence of the child with forensic precision creating a subtle narrative of the mother’s relationship with the growing child, Mazurek and Barnett, both fathers, are each known for their elaborate constructions and installations; thus turning away from the processes of the body towards the process of making and building.

By changing the physical space of the room, they are reordering the spatial experience. New parents, like other animals, are hit with a powerful urge to create a safe place for the birth and infancy of their offspring. This need to “nest” goes beyond cleaning clutter and nursery decorating often giving way to a process of self-reflection and evaluation of the pre-child state. There is a need to put the house in order, literally and metaphorically.

After the birth of his first child, Mazurek was motivated to make a dramatic change. Quitting his full-time job he enrolled in graduate school, first in architecture, then fine arts. Mazurek’s work has shown a strong inclination toward building and construction evolving into complex, even chaotic, structures of ever increasing size, with strong references to architecture and theatrical stage-setting. Mazurek stated, “I returned to art and chose this path very specifically due to the birth of my daughter. The clarity of that moment still amazes me. She put everything in perspective, practically immediately.”

Barnett’s work bridges photography, video, installation, and performance. In this exhibition he will present a video and sound-piece laced with a fetal heartbeat along with a site-specific installation. As he explained just a few days before the birth of his son in mid-January, “Coping with both biological and artistic creativity occurring at the same time is challenging and stimulating.”

Mazurek and Barnett will both receive their Master of Fine Arts from University of Texas at Arlington in 2011. Lawrence is expecting her first child sometime in early March. The image on the postcard is of her sonogram taken January 25. Bows and Arrows is located at 1925 Greenville Avenue, Dallas Texas 75206. Open Wednesday–Saturday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. The exhibition will be on view February 19-March 23, 2011.


Bows and Arrows is part floral emporium, part art gallery, and part craft bazaar run by Alicia and Adam Rico. Voted Best Florist for 2011 by D Home Magazine, they are currently using the space next to the shop as an alternative art annex.

Bows and Arrows
1925 Greenville Avenue, Dallas Texas 75206
Open Wednesday–Saturday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m.

P.S. That's me! This is my last curatorial project before our baby is due in early March.