December 02, 2013

Felt beret

My attempt to do felt for the first time appeared to be not that bad. This technique is very simple and fast, unlike other crafts I did and do, weaving on a loom, for instance..

Felt is quite a unique technique. It's like a fabric sculpturing process. Easy and fast above all!
Great and quick to do to suprise anyone. You need a raw real wool. That's all! Here is the hat - berett I made in couple of hours this weekend.

Pieces of colorful wool are layered, shaped, watered,washed, rolled and dried.

November 08, 2013

Fast and easy weaving tools!

Weaving doesn't have to be complicated and elaborate work as done on regular weaving loom. It can be easy and very quick. You just have to craft stores or some thrift stores and look for unusual items with loads of short rods or almo
st like needles sticking out from some frames. That's also called a loom!

If you want to do something interesting, different and fast - that's tool for you. Since I always look for something new, I tried it, well actualy my daughter tried it first, since she's so handy and fast, she made her a hat in one afternoon and then I continued to make this little bag (no sewing involved)on a round loom and my daughter made this little hexagonal rug on hexagonal loom with differnt technique. Still easy and fun, recomended for everyone to try!

Circular loom: This weaving looks more like a knitting but it's so much easier and you need only one needle to work with directly on the loom loop. This bag was done in one day and I just attached the button at the end. There is no sewing of the edges!
Tool needed to "knit" on the loom

This is what I used to make this little purse

Hexagonal loom: Produce weaving just like on the regular loom, not that dense but qith thicker wool, better density. Work is zig-zag type, One direction done first and than continue going trough "warp up and down. It could posibly make bigger bags, rugs etc.. Great old tool found in thrift store without instructions. You can find anything on teh internet now, even the old instructions and tools from the fifties!

Starting with weft

Completed on the loom frame

Taking woven cloth of the loom

October 09, 2013

Handwoven Tunic Top

Thi is birthday present and it took couple of short weekends to design and make. It's all handwoven from bamboo and silk and wool on four shaft loom. It became suprisingly sensational present, abow all the others (except sister's wall sized octopus card).
Although need some alteration at the end but not much

Opening was diferently done then my dress, so it can open and it is attached with button. For the waft
I have used only two viscose/bamboo types of threads and for weft I have displayed what I have used

August 29, 2013

Summer Crafts - Handwoven silk Dress, Small Cross Bag, Saint Earings

It was a busy summer for me. It was inspirational, more fun.. I still didn't finish them all, but I'm close.. So here they are

It took few weekends to finish this weaving, and more to come up with a design for this dress. But it's finally here!

It's woven in one piece with opening in the middle
With my new four shaft loom, I had a need to test it and make some clothing with nice threads - silk, pastel colours, patterns. Not completely successful weaving, some of the warps were to thin at the end and broke, so I lost in size of the woven cloth.. For long time I was brainstorming how to make the best possible cloth piece/s from that, My original idea was the dress.

Blue fabric insert

Side leather detail
I have used some great silk and cotton threads and few leather strips.

Weaving my first dress, from warping to finalizing was exciting project and attempt. Design was made on the go, as usual, during weaving and it changed from the first idea to final weft. Only steady was measuring the length of the dress and counting yarns. Some warp threads broke at the edge and I was forced to redesign dress. From plain strait I was forced to widen it with an insert aside with matching fabric so that I can fit dress to my proportions.
Weaving the dress from warping, testing to neck opening and pattern

Threads/yarns used for the dress (orange is missing - all used up) and my own hand made shutles made from Dolar store sticks 
My idea of letting some wefts unwoven realised well at the end - opening large enough for head

Bag: I had some leftover woven material, done earlier that I wanted to use for small purse. Having so much trouble with my sewing machines (I guess they couldn't take anymore my heavy leather/fur woven fabric), I was finally happy with a result.

Earrings:I got recently an wooden hand made wrist band with Orthodox Christian Saints from Serbia, that I turned into an interesting earrings.

Saint George killing the dragon

I believe it's some female Saint


June 16, 2013

Woven bag - new loom family project

This weekend, me and my youngest daughter were testing my new four shaft loom. Thank to Hilary, who warped the loom and set it up for us already, the project was easy.
So the tester Mila was ready and produced quite interesting wool checker designed fabric. I thought it might be great to turn it into some easy and modern bag, by adding few leather parts over.
Check it out!

New four shaft loom tested by my daughter

Shafts created the pattern
  Four shaft loom gives you more options with designing patterns and shapes in your fabric.

After finishing weaving, I started turning it into a bag.

Process of creating something from treads is quite amazing!

And finally the bag is here, after attaching few pieces of green and beige leather to create height of bag. Small length of the woven fabric gave me two option : to cut the fabric and create two small bags or keep it as it is and because of the difficult size, try to enlengthen the bag with some leather. So it turned out this way:

One loom, and little imagination...Easy and fun family craft!

It's a long way for me to learn and experiment on this loom. It has much more options in creating patterns and designs on the woven fabric. There are some great books to learn all this as I already explored it last year when I got my first two shaft loom. This is huge improvement!
Getting to library!

I listed all the great books that helped me to learn some of the basic processes of weaving and working with looms. I also have in mind to create couple of new pages on this blog to help people with weaving and other crafting projects. At least some basic stuff!

June 04, 2013

How to make your own Dress form - "Dummy"

I am currently busy with discovering my new Serger sewing machine so all my crafting is on standby until I become confident enough to start sewing my bags etc onthe new machine. One bag is in already in my head, for too long now. Hopefully I'll be able to show it soon.
Meantime, I had in mind also other sewing and weaving and came up with a necessity of having my own Dress-form or how they call it usually Dummy (complimentary!). This is actually really great thing to have if you're making stuff for your or anyone else often, and it's so fun to make, not only for kids, believe me...
So I found more than few instructions on Internet, some of them vintage, some new.. Base is to wrap your torso with some sturdy tape, few times, that you later cut from the back, fill with stuffing and attach to some stand (optional). It's good to have some hard tape, that way "dummy" doesn't bend in.

Vintage way

Tape way: 

Updated Materials and Supplies:

In addition to the pallet wrap, plastic wrap or film,
String or elastic for waist
Permanent marking pen
Tape: masking or artist’s tape -what you have handy
Strapping tape (reinforced mailing tape) is helpful
A ruler

A wrapping buddy
T-shirt way:
1. Cut off the sleeves of your oversized t-shirt.

2. Put on your t-shirt.

3. Get somebody to start taping you up with the duct tape. You want the extra length to the t-shirt, not the extra width so feel free to cut away some of the excess t-shirt at the sides - or carefully fold it against your skin so it's trapped under the tape in an even and neat way.

4. Be careful not to tape too tight as you want to be able to breathe still! You want to tape from below the hips and right up to the neckline.

5. Once your body shape is all taped up get your friend to cut the t-shirt carefully off you at the back!

7. You can make a neck for your mannequin by taking a piece of fabric and stuffing it with stuffing or old fabric to make a ball. Place this ball up from the bottom of your mannequin into the neck hole and hold it there in place whilst your friend duct tapes over the top of it to attach it to the main body of your mannequin.

8. Next turn your mannequin shell upside down and begin stuffing it. You can use toy stuffing, old pillows, fabric scraps, old clothes. Be careful not to stretch the shape of your mannequin by over-stuffing and don't under-stuff! Try to get a good solid shape.

9. Once you're done with the stuffing then duct tape over the bottom of your mannequin to complete it.

10. Now you need to think about making a stand.

March 30, 2013

Funky Clutch Purse

It's new and fancy, but at same time funky... I just happened to have these beautiful handles and piece of my woven fabric cut from previous sewing, and here it is, another one from my woven collection:

Front and back are different, not only because front has the orange tie but also because the weaving is differently done, with a different leather and wool.

It was not easy to place those metal parts of the handles and attach them to the edge of bag. My sewing machine was just too simple for that task. So i will make some final gluing to mask uneven sewing.

One orange pocket has been attached at the inner side. I usually like bags with many compartments and [pockets, because  it's so much easier to organise all the stuff I usually take with me. This time I was modest, because it should be the bag for special occasions, not just an ordinary everyday bag.

It;s still big enough to place many things inside!

This is before I attached the orange "clutch" tie. It gives some accent to the bag and is necessary to make it close.
Just few more final touches  (if possible) with my sewing machine and is ready to go... vacation, what else!

February 04, 2013

One Chic Purse

It's made from, again, all recycled leather and fur and from the woven fabric I made last month on my loom.
It's a special bag, made for my big girl's special day!

I wanted it to look chic and unusual. The idea came from the toy house, my daughters loved to play with, who looked like a mushroom.
There was another piece of woven fabric dedicated to this creation but somehow when I started to design it, these other pieces worked better together.
The most difficult part was adjusting of the top to the bottom so it covers partially the bag, but still easily slide to open. Because of that I attached at the last minute little swirly "pull" part. Inside, it has two pockets and this outer woven part is actually pocket too, to fit anything in a size of a phone or bigger player device.

I don't have a pattern and I didn't draw one while making this bag, so it's hard to explain how I made it in details, but it was made in one day (night).

few more parts remain from this to use in next crafts
Since I had more problems than usual with my sewing machine and broke couple of needles while sewing this bag, I'll probably have to find some solution soon to fix it or find another one that can saw the leather without any complications!

January 14, 2013

Woven girls purse

From my long woven leather/wool "fabric", I created this cute purse.


I went for trapezoid shape, wider at the bottom

From the part of fabric I made earlier on my loom, I made few things and still have some to make.
While I was weaving I had in my head few projects: a hats and bags, so I made few visual "separations" for easier cutting of this fabric. It's important to know that these types of weaving (with thick wool or leather parts) are not easy to cut without losing few treads! I just learned that and had some problems fixing it. Once you lose treads inside of the woven material, it's almost impossible to recover it.

Some accents: a fur outside pocket I just attached on 

I used fancy fabric for inside pockets and lining.