Sunday, December 30, 2012

Dec Snowpeople, Christmas Angels and Elves!

The Dec ATC session in Bishan Library was on the theme "Gifts". Lots of ideas for this!  A pity we decided to go China last-minute, and had to miss the ATC session.

Well, the first set I did was a gift box on each ATC, wrapped with metallic and cotton threads (employing what we did in Nov session!), and tied with printed ribbons.

The second set was a mini-book folded from a piece of rubber-stamped paper, and filled with cut-out gifts and quotes on gifts.

The third set was a Shugi-Bukuro ATC, scaled down from an actual one. Japanese would give cash gift (called Oshugi) for occasions like weddings, birthdays and anniversaries, in these special envelope cards, You can put the cash gift into a small paper pocket and insert it into the beautifully decorated envelope, embellished with mizuhiki cords twisted and tied into a decorative knot.

For the movable doll-ATC swap I hosted, Maryann Arnold's (USA) package came with lots of goodies! 4 beautiful gals, ribbons, sparking stars, lots of labels, and a face!

Riitta Rautio (Finland)'s ATCs arrived fast. Riitta did a pair of Finnish girls for me previously (Jul 2011). Glad to meet her in this swap again!
Kimmie Leeco (USA) did very different movable dolls.  Aren't they awesome!?!  

I have swapped with Kayenderes Green (Canada) previously (Jun 2011 and Jun 2012). Again, we did another swap. Kayenderes' works made me see things in a new light, a different way of making up the dolls. 4 flower doll ATCs, a fabric house ATC, ... 

and a beaded wooden needle case which she did herself, in exchange for tatting shuttles I'm sending her.

Flower Doll, Miss Racheline L. (The Petal L Missy Series - 18 of 26) ATCs, 1 die-cut flowers with wrapped string, pair of tatted butterflies ATC "Garden Made of Threads", a pair of tatting shuttles, some tatted flowers and butterflies. 

For the Nov doll-ATC swap, I did snowmen and snowwomen. Made good use of my die-cuts again!
This pair of snowman and snowwoman went to Kayenderes for the Nov swap.

And from Kayenderes, a pair of real cute snow people.

I don't do a lot of button fairies, but this button fairy Christmas elf swap is certainly an interesting one. One is going to Kim Miles (USA) and another to Sue Cox (USA). Sue has swapped a springtime button fairy with me in May 2011.
I managed to finish these Christmas angel fabric flat dolls before I went on the 2-week trip to Taiwan and China in mid-Dec. The dolls were cut from printed cotton.  I added some cut hollies & berries, and sewed on some sequins and tiny tatted poinsettia; the wings were done with ribbons. Quite pleased with my first ever fabric flat dolls! They flied to Kim Miles (USA), Constance Peterson (USA) and Judaline Zozaya (USA).
Will show what my swap partners did for the 2 Christmas swaps soon!

Happy New Year to all!!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Oct and Nov Swaps

Problem with my maid again - stealing SIM cards and incurring a few hundreds dollars of phone bills!  Now into the 8th week without a maid and trying to train the children to be a bit more independent, but tough going.  I have to cut back on crafting and computer time too to do more household chores :(  Nevertheless, I still try to do something. 

During the ATC sessions we had in Bishan Library the past 2 months, we did simple activities yet they could developed into pretty complex works. For Oct session, we did rubbing or frottage. I tried my pencilbrush for the first time, it worked real great, producing smooth pencil rubbing in record time. 

The theme for Oct was "Windows and Doors". I used windows and shaker boxes to create the snowmen and heart cards. 

Vicki used stained glass effect to create the butterfly, while Valerie used images from Alice in Wonderland to illustrate this Turkish proverb "A small key opens big doors." .  And this was my pencilbrush rubbing.

For Nov ATC session, we used strings to wrap around all sort of paper shapes. Using my nesting star die-cuts to cut the shapes made them look neat and cool, and a bit different from the usual geometric circles and squares. I did a very simple one with flowers too! 

The theme for Nov was "Masks". Loved this theme, and I did some homework on Chinese opera masks to make these informative ATCs. The mask on the front was that of Bao Zheng, done by building up paper cutting layers. Bao Zheng (or Bao Gong) was the semi-legendary fearless and impartial judge of the Song Dynasty. His mask is mainly black, symbolizing honesty and firmness, an impartial and selfless personality. 

The other set of ATCs I did was inspired by a tutorial I came across recently. It was a basic face with different coloured parts, for one to mix and match freely to compose the face. The same parts were used (or some parts not used) to create these 3 totally different looks! I feel like I'm back in my childhood days!

I managed to swap a few more cards this time: From top left clockwise, Lion (torn paper) from Jessica Chua, Yearning #2/6 (Mulit-media) from Valerie Ho, Vase paper-cutting from Moses, Kimono Lady from Jennifer Lum, Monkey from Vicki Quek and Faces of Flowers from Selina.

My Oct and Nov swaps were sent out to Debbie earlier in the month. Going from top to bottom and left to right -
Oct swaps: (1) What's under the Bed? ATC, (2) Oriental inchies with stamped Chinese words, choice inchies with tatted flowers and 2-word encouragement phases. 

Nov swaps: (1) Winter time ATC with snowman outside the window (shaker box with mica flakes & glitter), extra ATCs for Debbie (Prayer flag ATC and School Days), (2) Winter outwear inchies, (3) College choice inchies (batik), (4) Glitter inchies (snowflakes), (5) Holiday Baking inchies (ginerbread men), (6) Choice inchies (holly with tatted berries).   

For the Oct doll swaps, I did a pirate girl for Lynette McNamara (New Zealand). 

My Jack Sparrow paper doll from Phyllis Boggs (USA) arrived too - very nicely coloured and those colourful beads on the yarn hair really stood out!

The ATC-doll for Oct were on flowers, I enjoyed creating these and almost couldn't stop!  A pair of these went to Phyllis Boggs (USA),  one is going to Kayenderes Green, a couple was swapped out in the Nov ATC session in Bishan Library, while 3 will be swapped in the Movable Doll ATC swap I'm currently hosting. 

For the movable doll ATC swap, the first cards from Sarah Pharr (USA) came in.  I have kept the theme open, just that it has be jointed with movable parts. What would the rest be doing?

I spent some time tatting these too. What are they? Can you guess? Eyes! To go on crochet dolls my pal, Betsy, is doing. She must be crocheting up a storm!

Monday, October 29, 2012

October Happenings

Oct is the month of examinations in Singapore.  Not that I'm sitting for any exams, my 3 children are.  I can't afford to take leave to stay at home, so I could only do some last minute revision with them (especially with Kristine) on weekends and evenings.  This year was worse without a maid :(  But we managed!!  And Joey come in top for Sec 1 in her school!  

I didn't find time to blog too often, but here's an update.

For the Prayer Flag-ATC swap, we have Bonnie Jean Larsen's (USA) flag of Love...
and Dina Greer's (USA) 3 different flags.  Bonnie also sent a very chic and artistic piece with her name, while Dina sent extra hand-drawn and painted cards.  The kokopelli is so cute!  

(A kokopelli is also known as a fertility god, prankster, healer and story teller,usually depicted as a humpbacked flute player, often with feathers or antenna -like protrusions on his head.)

The swap was completed and ATCs sent out to participants in mid-Oct.  Thank you for playing, Bonnie, Dina and Sarah!

For the Inchies-onexone group swaps, Debbie House is back on track from her house shifting, and we have received the Jun, Jul and Aug swaps.  Plus the 6 inchies missing from the Heart pocket-ATC from Debbie herself, and 4 choice inchies from the May swap (bottom right black card): Muffin from Marjorie Grace, You Take The Cake by Lynn Lipchak, Cheeky from Brooke G and the last one with button and ribbon from Polly.

For the Alphabet inchies (Jun-Aug):
Q, V, X - from Marjorie Grace
R, S, W - from Sandra Hanson
T, Y - from Polly
U, Z - from Debbie House

Rinchies (choice) for Jun swap:  Bird from Debbie H, Heart from Barb P, USA Flag from Marjorie Grace and Flower from Polly.

More May swaps: 
(Top left black card above)  Oriental inchies - 2 from Polly, 1 Japanese from Debbie H, 1 Japanese from Marjorie Grace.

(Top right black card above) Stamped images inchies: Striped cat & deer from Polly, Cat from Lynn Lipchak, Nest of eggs from Debbie H.

Jul swaps:
(Bottom left black card above) Happy - Dog & Rooster by Debbie H, Bride by Polly, Winnie The Pooh by C. Robin.

(Bottom right black card above) Inchies (choice) - Postcard/flowers and Rabbit book (in envelope) from Polly, Dream from Brooke G, Truck number plate from Marjorie Grace.

(Photo below) Inchies (choice) for Aug swap: Flower from Katherine, Halloween from Marjorie Grace, Clock from Polly, and Double from Brooke G.

We also swapped ATCs - Fused fibers (Bird) from Debbie H for Jun swap, Lavender fairy from Polly and Eat Cake inchies on ATC from Lynn Lipchak, both for Aug swaps.

I did some gifts for colleagues - 2 tatted bookmarks (my favourite oak leaf/acorn and zinnia patterns again) and a birthday card done with all die-cuts (birthday greetings from a few of us signed at the back of the flowers and butterflies).
I have just sent this pair of Flower doll-ATCs to Phyllis Boggs (USA) for Oct swap.
Think I have forgotten to show this Birthday ATC I did for Marja Maas (The Netherlands), whose birthday falls on 8 Oct.

Mid-Oct, I taught 2 big tatting classes at HCI to JC1 students, 25 students in all.  Very, very tiring, but a great sense of satisfaction. 5 of them were still struggling at the end of the class, but a good number of them were able to tat rings and chains and went on to simple motifs. 

I'll end again with this last flower arrangement Kristine did in school - her best scored arrangement.
And oh, Joey just managed to learn cycling this weekend!

Monday, October 8, 2012

October Green Paper Collage Challenge

Here's my last minute ATC entry for The Green Paper Collage Challenge for October - "To A Special Lady", with tatted coloured flowers and leaves against the black-and-white collaged pictures. 

I have received Sarah Pharr's (USA) ATCs for the prayer flag-ATC swap I'm hosting.  Don't you feel energised just looking at them?

I have done more ATCs but haven't taken the photo yet, so that's all for now!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

What I Did This Whole Month!

Our annual ATC exhibition came to a close earlier Sep, and we ended it with an international ATC swap on the theme "I Am Hungry".  We balloted for our cards. I got these 3: McDonald (collage) from KESagers (USA), Don't Go Hungry - Teach Yourself to Cook from Ruth Kearney-Mawer (Australia) and I Am Hungry from Ali Breman (The Netherlands). 

Some swaps among ourselves during the ATC session on 13 Sep: "School Days" - "C" for Candle by Melissa and School Days (colour pencil dwg) by Geok Lan.   The last 2 ATCs are "I Am Hungry "(Iris-folding glass aquarium with cat watching) by Jennifer Lum and "Autumn" by Vicki Quek.

My school days ATCs: "Mark Thy Books" with embossed background, pages taken from a very old story book, die-cut paperstock in the shapes of clips. "Know Your Formulas" - all cut with die cuts, and I got my boy to write some Maths and Science formulas for me!   

I'm so pleased with these scarecrow paper dolls. The head and grass are cut with die-cuts, while the rest of the dolls are hand-cut and painted with water-soluable crayons.  One of them went to Phyllis Boggs in USA for the Sep Art Doll swap.

I like these scarecrows so much so that I decided to make another pair, this time small enough to go onto the ATCs.  Cute, right!?!

I have also sent out my Aug and Sep Inchies-onexone swaps to the host, Debbie House. Included in the Aug swaps are (1) Fairies in the Wood (collage) ATC, 

(2) ATC with inchies - (own choice): Lily Pond, with tatted dragonfly inchie (can't seem to do enough of these!), 

(3) 4 Inchies (own choice): "Lucky", (4) Y and Z inchies: Y is for Yellow, Z is for Zeros. 

And the Sep swaps: (1) Zoo theme ATC: Flamingo, (2) 4 Inchies (own choice): "Bloom", (3) 4 Inchies - One Each - Zentangle, Zetti, Graffiti, Geometric. 

Included as gifts for Debbie are Raggedy Ann doll-ATC and Olivia Notes (with tatted treble clef) - top right-hand corner.
I did more prayer flag ATCs with tatted motifs!

Ok, I'm ending off with another flower arrangement by my girl, Kristine, from her school flower arrangement class.  This scored the best for her so far!