Facebook Friends Portrait Project

blogOver the past few months I have grown to love drawing on my Android phone. Sketches go quick, are easily edited and it makes for a great boredom buster.

This past week I began drawing of photos I have taken of friends and family. I began with a drawing of my step-brother, Steve, simply because I liked the way his clothes were wrinkled in a particular photo. I continued to drawing my 2 year old daughter and then myself.
stevce

This quickly transformed into a full-blown illustration project with 50+ Facebook friends requesting custom portraits. A full gallery of the project in progress can be found here. If you would like to commission a custom portrait, for very reasonable prices I must say, please visit the shop for more details.

can’t keep me from vintage.

newfebtapeTEXTIn my efforts and time spent creating and crafting, I have neglected to list my recent vintage finds at AMPERSANDxyz on Etsy. Well, until now that is.

Although I consider myself an artist first, and a collector second, I cant help but be drawn to items from the past. And, to be honest, the majority of my shop is made up of retro pieces  It’s hard not to appreciate the design and ingenuity of common household objects or fashion of the generations before.  Some were mass-produced, yes, but each and every item has a great artist (or artists) behind it.

Feel free to visit the shop at AMPERSANDXYZ.etsy.com.

valentine’s day sweet heart felt garland.

DIY1I’m the first to admit that I haven’t been feeling all that festive for holidays this year. Between running an Etsy shop and our house been taken over by the terrible two’s, if there is any sort of celebratory decorating happening, it has to be quick. Today I made a simple hanging heart garland using craft eco-felt and baker’s twine. Once you have all of your supplies in order, it seriously only takes a matter of minutes to add a hint of romance to any of your household spaces.
STEP1-suppliesYou will need:
one piece of scrap paper, any weight.
a thin sharpie marker
scissors
scotch tape
sheets or scraps of wool felt, various colors
contrasting bakers twine (I used a black/natural twine I got from KNOT & BOW)
a large sewing/embroidery needle

step2-cutoutYou could go ahead and free-style your felt hearts if you desire, or make a simple template like I did. Just like you might remember from some sort of grade school craft assignment, fold your paper in half and draw one half of a heart shape against the folded edge. After drawing two types of hearts, I chose to go with the more stretched out heart look. I made my hearts approximately 4 inches square. Cut paper heart out.

step3-cuttout3
Layer your sheets of felt in a neat stack and scotch tape your paper heart to the top sheet. Cut out using very sharp scissors, making sure to firmly hold stack of felt in place. There is no science to this step, you will have some wonky looking heart on the bottom of your stack. Simply shape that one (or two) separately, using your scissors. It doesn’t have to be perfect. This is just a time saver, believe it or not.

step4-sewTake your time and thread your baker’s twine through the eye of your needle. Keep in mind, your chosen needle’s eye has to be quite large for this to work. I bought a standard package of embroidery needles and used the largest one. Then, hand sew a running stitch along the center of all of your felt hearts, alternating in colors. This last step really flies by, so it would be almost effortless to make a super long strand of this garland.
When you have sewn all of your felt cut-outs, make sure you leave a good amount of twine on either end to tie a small bow or for hanging.
step-done
As I mentioned above, if you are looking for a great place to find baker’s twine, KNOT & BOW on Etsy has some pretty good deals from time to time. Eco-felt can be found at any craft supply store or at shops such as Felt For Less on Etsy. This project cost me about $2.50 in supplies and only 15 minutes of a very much needed toddler-naptime.