Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Comfortably Numb

Shortly after I received half a pound of beautiful, hand-painted wool from Superhooker in a swap, I nearly cut off my finger with a steak knife. Of course, it had to be one of my index fingers. *sigh* Needless to say, I wasn't spinning anything for a while.

I'm 3.5 months healed, but I still have some loss of sensation in the finger...and a wicked scar. The doctors said that the ~1 cm wide, ~2 cm deep wound hadn't severed the nerves (WOW!), so I've got that going for me. I may, eventually, regain all of the feeling in that finger. I'm so used to it now, though, that I rarely notice the numbness anymore.

Yesterday, I decided to end the stand-off with my spindle, and started pre-drafting some of that gorgeous fiber. Yay! My finger still remembers how to draft! Back to spinning just in time for the Michigan Fiber Festival this weekend in Allegan.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Pretty As A Peacock

Beth8144 and I danced together in the Invite Your Partner 16: Summertime Swing swap on Craftster.org, and we agreed to swap dolls. She loves peacocks, so, naturally, she received an elf with a peacock-inspired costume.

The doll was from my own hand-drawn pattern, similar to Ghilie's poppet, but much taller and thinner. I try to mix up pattern pieces so that no two dolls are exactly the same shape. Similarly, the patterns for the clothes are tailored to each doll individually. Her outfit consists of an under-robe, a skirt, a bustle, a corset and slippers.

The under-robe is black lace and has a ribbon belt. That same lace is used on the lower edge of the corset and is covered with free-motion stitching in a stylized feather motif (that is repeated throughout the costume). The corset is two layers of royal blue and white satin. Blue ribbon is laced through satin loops at the back, and tied above the bustle. The skirt is also royal blue satin, but overlaid with emerald chiffon and quilted in the feather motif and trimmed in vintage lace. Snap closure at the left hip. The bustle is where I went overboard with the Gibbous-styling. A champagne satin base is drowned in chiffon, Chantilly and vintage lace, organza, more satin and peacock feathers. The 'eye feathers' are circles of fabric with burnt edges. The fabric for the slippers was quilted with lace, ribbon, chiffon and organza before being cut and sewn into slippers.

I don't usually like making doll clothes because the seams are so tiny and there is so little room for error. However, I really enjoyed creating the clothes for this doll. I can only attribute it to the freedom of the style I chose to work with. When there are no rules, there are no real mistakes, just artistic decisions. =)