Saturday, June 3, 2017

Layered lace T-shirt

I came across the cream colored Free People long sleeved t-shirt with the lace inserts in the sleeves and bodice at my favorite T.J. Maxx store. I am always drawn to the Free People clothing line and I couldn't pass up this cute top at such a great price with all the detail work. Unfortunately, I didn't try it on until I arrived back at the cottage. I have to say I was not thrilled with the length. It seemed awkward, it was not short enough to show off a fit midriff and was not a flattering length but I liked the design and color so I went into my overflowing art studio and began pulling out and digging through my stash of unusual and mostly vintage laces, trims, and doilies. There were several potential finds set aside and then to my delight I finally discovered in the pile on the floor in front of me the perfect cream colored sheer embroidered dresser scarf from the 50's! 

I centered and laid the dresser scarf next to the bottom hem of the new t-shirt and chose to cut out of the center of the scarf a slice just an inch and a half wider than the width of the t-shirt.
Then I cut that piece in two but not in half, that would be too boring for me. I chose to make the front panel considerably shorter than the back so I cut approximately one-third the length for the front and the longer piece was for the back. I liked that the hem on each was already finished in a darling scallop design so all I had to do was turn over the side seams twice and do a quick straight stitch down the sides and then I attached the two pieces to the front and back of the t-shirt with a simple zig zag stitch. I left the sides slits open for ease and fit. 
Originally I was going to use the two scalloped end pieces of the scarf on the bottom of the sleeves folded in a french cuff design and attached to each sleeve  but changed my mind as the length of the sleeves was already very long and I have a tendency to shove up my sleeves when wearing little t-shirts while creating, especially in clay one of my favorite mediums.


When shopping or going through your closet to select a top to embellish, keep in mind that a cream colored t-shirt is going to be easier to find a matching lace for embellishing it, rather than a colored one unless the colored one has white or cream lace inserts already.

Thrift stores and Etsy are both good places to find vintage laces and a scalloped edge one like the one used here would be best.

It's always a good idea to launder your t-shirt and the lace you will be using before cutting and sewing them together.

What you will need

a cute t-shirt

a lace dresser scarf or doily

thread to match the color of the t-shirt

straight pins

sewing needle




Place the lace scarf along the edge of the hem of the t-shirt and cut approximately 1 1/2'' wider on each side than the t-shirt width.

Carefully fold 1/2'' and iron the sides over twice and then stitch it down evenly along the outside edges. 

Then attach the shorter rectangle of lace to the front of the t-shirt by hand or with a zig-zag stitch with your machine.
Then attach the longer rectangle to the back of the t-shirt.

A photo included as a visual for cutting lace scarf.

Grateful to have it included in the latest issue of 

Altered Couture Magazine!


Saturday, May 20, 2017

Latte for two, please!

This pair of lovelies came about as a way of teaching a dear woman who has always admired my ceramic designs and didn't believe she could be a creative artist herself, just how super easy-peasy it was to create a sweet little rose shape using an old t-shirt ripped and dipped in clay slip.
Of course, being me I felt the need to add to the embellishing of the cup shape with a snippet of delicate cotton lace and a tiny sculpted leaf. The lesson took all of 15 minutes and was a big smiling success!

I begin with creating the basic cup shape knowing I would need it to have a base wide enough to place the vintage lace and tiny t-shirt flower with a leaf so that each will all attach easily and won't slip off while it is still wet clay, that way it all becomes one when it dries completely.
Then I cut the snippet of lace to the perfect size to fit the base without overlapping the ends and then dip it in slip and manipulate the clay throughout the lace and attach it carefully to the base matching up the two ends and tucking the top edge of lace in carefully along the base of the cup.
I've created the flowers on each of the vases using on old ripped cotton t-shirt snippet approximately 1 inch wide by 5 inches long and have also dipped it in slip and have simply twirled it around the tip of my forefinger and dropped it in place on the base of the mug.  The little leaf was created by hand with a small piece of clay rolled flat and using craft scissors to cut a leaf shape with zigzag along the edges of the clay then with a dull pencil pulled a line down the center  of the leaf and carefully attached it to the classic latte cup shape and tucked into the side of the flower.
It is touched up and dried completely before putting it into a kiln firing at 1200 degrees. The fabrics burn out at this temperature but you are left with the clay design that coated them and when it comes out of its first firing you can then chose your favorite colors of glazes to be added to make it beautiful and waterproof and it is fired a final time.

Thrilled to share the creative fun in Somerset Home Magazine!


Friday, March 17, 2017

Sea glass inspired necklaces

Inspired by the little seaside town where I live 

and the ever-changing colors of the sky and ocean 

these tumbled glass beauties were created

 by mixing and matching a variety of natural materials

with bright beautiful shades of blues and greens.

I wanted to create multilayered multifaceted pieces

that can be layered or worn alone

and are perfect for that statement pop of color.

Grateful to have them included in the latest Jewelry Affaire Magazine!


Friday, February 17, 2017

Treasured vintage button collection

I pulled out my button box and gathered together over 50 

of my all time favorite vintage gold toned buttons.

A wide piece of elastic was the perfect base to attach them to. 

I cut it to fit my wrist and dyed it to match.

Some of my treasured collection of vintage gold tone buttons

that have been hidden away for so long are brought out and

 all lovingly hand sewn onto a piece of wide elastic 

that I dyed to match.

I love it!   

Who says you can't have your cake and eat it too!

I couldn't seem to stop with just one!

Grateful to have it included in the latest issue of 

Jewelry Affaire!


Sunday, January 8, 2017

Fun with succulents!

My local Anthropologie hosted a little workshop on how to create 

headbands using succulents.

Bits of lace used as a base, glue guns and lots of little 

succulent bits were strewn across the tables.

Julie, from House of Sunshine, was giving us suggestions 

on how to create our pieces.


We were surrounded by beautifully displayed inspiration 

and provided with light refreshments.

 Here is my completed little number displayed as a hat band

and on a bed of greenery

and as a headband.

 And as a necklace in Somerset's Belle Armoire Jewelry! 

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

My latest masterpiece in clay,

Inspired by black and white photographs of a beautiful old statues

 and amazing masses of flowers at a cemetery in Paris.

I've created this vase using heavy cotton fabric dipped in slip 

and artfully sculpted to create the massive flowers 

embellishing the top.

This is just how my imagination works...

I'm feeling blessed and thrilled with the result just out of firing 

and thrilled to have it featured in Somerset Home Magazine!


Saturday, September 17, 2016

Fishnet with seashells pitcher

This lovely came about when a girlfriend gifted me 

with something new to experiment with.

A cotton steaming cloth that made me think of fish netting.

I dipped it in slip and draped it across a pitcher shape

then added some of my seashell pieces to attach it here and there.

Because the netting was a rather tight weave

 I had to blow out some of the clay 

so it would show off the pattern and design.

Continuing the asymmetrical composition on the opposite side 

with my seashell creations.

YaY, another successful experiment!

Monday, June 20, 2016

Power tools and puree marbles

in combination used for embellishing my redwood fence

It began when my neighbor gifted me with a handful of golden colored marbles 

and I thought they would be perfect for creating a sea star for the sun to shine through.

So I  pulled out my pink (I wish, just kidding) power drill and went for it!

But it didn't quite read the way I expected and after drilling 15 holes there is no going 

back so I decided to make a ceramic sea star to be next to it 

hoping you would get the idea. 

And of course you can't have just one ceramic shell, 

so I made several and a seahorse too!

with tiny blue puree marbles confiscated from the same neighbor and used as bubbles.

This is the fun view that I have of it from my kitchen 

window with the sun shining through.



Saturday, May 14, 2016

Latest lovelies out of firing

Ceramic vases embellished with handmade mushroom corals.

I was experimenting with turquoise glazes 

and chose to add a luster glaze in the final firing.

The tall peach colored vase is a wedding gift 

for the neighbor's daughter

 and the tall turquoise vase will be auctioned off at a local 

event held here in town called "A Taste for Charity". 

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Analogous Color Mixing

on a simple square plate using egg shapes 

because Easter is just around the corner.

Numbering and mixing the color on the left

with the color on the right

and having a new color as shown in the middle.

warm colors before firing

 cool colors before firing

and adding specks by flicking a purple glaze 

with the toothbrush over the top becauseI like the look.

Happy Easter!

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Latest sewing project

is a canvas tote with a Ralph Lauren paisley pocket 

and blue cord detailing.

It was one of those wonderful canvas bags 

that comes with the company's logo printed on the front

that my neighbor was giving away.

 I chose to cover the logo with a great big pocket

and a little embellishing.

Perfect for toting your favorite magazines in!

Grateful to have it published in Greencraft Magazine!