Monday, May 19, 2014

Designing

I have arrived to the point in my life when the existing patterns are not enough.
It's like with writing, if the book you want to read doesn't exist, you must write it - if the pattern I want to use in my craft doesn't exist, I must design it.

I have got a very good fiber craft education, and design was part of that. I know how to design.
My designs might not be the best in the world, but it really doesn't matter much what the rest of the world thinks, as I know what I need and want, and with several print on demand companies on the internet, I can get what I want - or give myself what I want...

Still... There is the doubt. Worries. Fear gnawing at my confidence and courage.
What if what I do isn't good?
What if it's not good enough?
What if... what if no-one else likes what I do?
I should be able to create something other people like, so I could get a little bit more income, to be able to afford what I want? What if no-one wants to buy my designs, and... If it doesn't generate income, it's useless, worthless, in vain...

And - at the same time I KNOW I'm good enough. I KNOW I like what I do. I would buy it. Spoonflower was created to give people the possibility to get the fabrics they wanted but didn't exist.

A couple of hours later:
Grr... I just can't get it to work! Something, somewhere is crooked enough to make the pattern not repeat properly! Dang!

Later that night:
A second effort to get it right. This time I actually straightened my spoon up and made it more symmetrical, so it was easier to work with. And I followed my husband's advice, and made the pattern in a grid, and I also checked that the horizontal line was straight, but for some weird reason I didn't bother checking the vertical line! And it wasn't... two pixels off. :-Z
Bah.
I'll continue tomorrow. New day, new effort. Even if I'll be late for the contest, I'll be able to produce my first pattern to Spoonflower and it is good.

Day after: This is it:
vivianna_autumn

Monday, March 24, 2014

Pillows and Cushions

I have 676 pins on my Pillows and Cushions board.
That's almost 2 pillows a day, if I chose to make them...
But what would I do with them?

Monday, February 24, 2014

Linen Closet

I love linen closets.

Pottery Barn linen

I have been at Pinterest, looking at antique linens, and I'm filled with serenity. There is something very soothing, almost meditative in old linens... carefully prepared with thin, thin thread, embroidered and crocheted - or which ever way one chooses to make the lace... The tightly woven linens and cottons, smooth surfaces... I can feel how fresh linen feels against my skin in bed...
Ah!


And then I realized a couple of things.
1) I know how to make these. I can make these things. I can make lace in several different ways, crochet, knit, tatting, bobbin lace, sewn lace, richelieu, whitework... macramé, teneriffa, this way and that way.  I can embroider. I can sew the sheets and all... I don't need vintage or antique linens, I can make my own! The only problem I see is that they don't weave linen this tight any more... but I can weave... and I can spin. Fine, smooth yarn and thread. I can make my own linen of this quality!
2) As I love these things, there are others who do, too... and might be prepared to pay for the work! And as this is special work, requires high level of craftsmanship and experience and all that, and the materials are relatively cheap I could ask quite a lot for doing this to people...
Would you buy a set of linens with YOUR monogram? Made for YOUR wedding, YOUR marriage, YOUR new home and life with your husband and future children? Get family heirlooms made especially for you?
How much would you pay?

Antique linen from French Garden Home

Friday, December 06, 2013

Hyvää itsenäisyyspäivää, Suomi!

Today Finland celebrates Her 96th birthday.

I was playing a little with color palette creators etc.

A photo I manipulated: Aurora Fennica


DeGraeve Color Palette Generator gives these colors:
Color Hunter gives this palette:

Google image search: visually similar images:

Colourlover's Photocopa gives me this:
And this is the color palette I chose from the photo:

Copaso gave me this from the Finnish flag blue:

And here are the color palettes; Blend or Analogous palette; Complementary colors; Triad; Tetrad and Split Complimentary. (No wonder the lime green seems to go well with the Finnish colors :-D)


 And here are images from Flickr as given by TinEye Labs Multicolr Search

Here's TinEye Labs Color Extraction:
 Big Huge Labs' Color Palette Generator

Chip It! by Sherwin-Williams
And here are the Color Scheme Designer 3's suggestions:






And here Adobe Kuler's Color schemes

And finally this is what ColRD Image DNA chose for me:
and this is what I chose:

Here's CSS Drive: image to colors palette generator:


Here's results from Pictaculous' color palette generator:
as you can see, Pictaculous picks a couple of color palettes from Kuler and a couple from ColourLovers, to suggest you possible color combinations.

Per Bang's Color Scheme Generator gives many possible schemes, here's only some of them:






His RGB tool is really fun to play with:

It gives several color scheme suggestions. This is just one of them...

It has Pantone Matching System... The background color is your color, so you can see how closely the Pantone shade comes to it.


and Wiki Colors name list... And a lot of other stuff. Really wonderful!


And I love the gradient tool, too :-D (I took the Finnish flag colors; dark blue and white)


I think the Colourcode is a bit hard to use, but if you are ok with a "close enough" color, you'll get nice suggestions for color palette.

Colorsontheweb has a nice color scheme generator, as well.


And here's some advice on how you can pick colors and create your own palette from a photo with the help of a picture processing program. I use Paint Shop Pro 8.
First I decrease the amount of colors in the picture to 256 colors.
Then I decreate it to 16 colors.
Then I increase it to all the possible colors and pixelate it.

Monday, December 02, 2013

How to organize boards at Pinterest?

It is best if you don't allow your boards to grow over 1000 pins. Up to 2000 is somewhat manageable, bigger boards than that become very difficult to navigate, it takes ages and the oldest pins might not even show. So - what to do?

Go to a big board you want to divide into smaller ones.
This is my "Bake, bake a little cake..."

Decide which pins you wish to move, and click on the edit pen in the upper right corner:


You will see something like this:

When you click on the little arrow in the end of the Board name square, (marked with red arrow in my picture, not on-line)  up pops something like this:

The current board is highlighted with red. You can choose any of your boards, or create a new board.
You do that by simply writing the name of the new board in "Create New Board" square. (Again, marked with a red arrow in my picture here, not on-line.)


I am going to move all my cake decoration ideas and pictures to a new board, to make my cake recipe board easier to handle, so I name the new board "Decorated cakes". After I have written the name in the square, I click on "Create", and Pinterest creates the new board.

Then I just click the "save changes" button below the picture:

And it's done!

This way I can edit the pins, add more information, change the URL (if I want to pin something that has no URL associated, or if I want to upload pictures straight from my computer, or if someone asks me to change the URL) etc.

If I want to organize pins, I move the pin from one board to another - it doesn't matter which - and then back to the board where I want it to be. The pin will now appear as last pinned, the first on the board. Unfortunately that's the only way - as for now - to arrange the pins. We hope Pinterest will make this easier. :-)

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Following a "pin"

Today I had a fascinating experience.


Someone I follow pinned something I had made. (I made all the images with my bucketlist, though it's not a bucket list, it's more of a list of talents and interests and wishlist. Also, the photo I used was stolen, from materiae, at Deviant Art, and I don't give her/him any credit, because I didn't think people would repin it.)
Anyway, I found this pin. And she hadn't pinned it from me...

Only two people pinned it from me. One has no repins, the other has 1

That one has 10 repins.

Five has no repins

One has 1 repin, and that has no repins.

One has 2 repins, which have no repins

One has 1 repin, which has 2 repins, of which neither has repins

One has 1 repin, which has 5 repins, of which
- three has no repins,
- one has one repin, which has no repins,
- one has 4 repins, of which
--- one has one repin, which has no repins,
--- two has no repins
--- one has one repin, (in the middle of recipes... rather odd, actually... a lot of cake recipes, and then in the middle "I want to be a dollmaker!". Which probably explains why it has no repins :-D]

One has 5 repins,
of which two had no repins,
one had one repin, which had one repin, which had no repins
one had two repins, of which both had one repin. This is one of them, and this the other. Of the two repins, one had none, the other had two, but neither of those had any repins.

The last one had 11 repins... and it was on the board with over 25.000 pins... it took me three days to wade it through :-D I'm stupid :-D Or stubborn. Practically the same ;-)

Seven of them had no repins,
one had one repin, which didn't exist... had it been removed?
one had one repin, which had no repins,
one had four repins, of which 3 had none but one had three :-D, of which two had no repins and one had two repins. One of those had none, the other had one, which had two,  of which neither had any.
one had two repins, of which one had one repin, which didn't have a repin, but the other had 17 repins... huh!

Of those 17, seven had no repins.
One of them had one repin, which had none.
One had two repins, and neither of them had any.
One had three repins, but none of them had any repins.
The next one had three repins also, one of them had three repins, and one of them had one repin, which didn't have any repins.
One had one repin, which had three repins, but none of them had any repins.
One had four repins, of which one had none, one had four repins, of which three had none and one had one repin, which had one repin, which had none.  One had two repins, of which one had none, and the other had one, which was the one whom the one I saw had pinned hers. She and 19 others! 20 repins!
- and the last one had one repin, which didn't have any repins.
One had one repin, which didn't have any repins, which was a pity, because the lady has only one board, but over 8000 pins... that means they are all on the same board, which makes it almost as bad to go through as the 25.000 pins board.
One had one repin,which didn't have any repins.
One had one repin, which had seven repins,of which four had no repins;
one had one repin, which had no repins,
one had two repins, of which one had one repin, which had no repins; and the other two repins, of which one had one repin and the other 21... and now I'm all messed up this, because this is the same pin I saw earlier...
and the last one had four repins, of which two had none, one had one, and another had one, but neither had any repins.

While I was tracking the movements of this picture, I went through a LOT of pictures of amazing dolls... (A LOT - one board had over twentyfive THOUSAND pictures of dolls! Mostly art dolls and ball jointed dolls... 25.000!) and I get a bad conscience...

My first contact with ball jointed dolls was with Marina's Snow White. She was made 2006, so I assume that was when I found out about these dolls. I remember being so enchanted, by the detailed beauty of these dolls, their clothes, everything. Later I found out that she actually did some metalwork for the dolls too, silversmithing, like crowns, and was even more amazed.
It was 6-7 years ago.
I have been searching for information on how to do the dolls, I have been studying and looking at more inspiring images of other dollmakers, tutorials, making processes... but what I have not done, and what gives me really bad conscience when I look at these pictures of dolls, is that I haven't made a doll yet.
 I have all the necessary knowledge and skills. All I need is the material and practical know-how on how to apply my knowledge and skills on materials and actually produce a real doll.
I'm an idiot :-D

My biggest problems are:
a) I can't afford putting that much work on something that is most likely not going to produce any income.
b) I'm too old to play with (and make) dolls, so I can't waste the time and materials needed on making dolls.
I AM an idiot. :-D

Because right now I'm not putting ANY work on ANYTHING (much). Nothing I do produces any income. (I'm living on benefits due to health problems.) It would be better to put the time and effort I waste on the internet in actually MAKING SOMETHING.
No-one is ever too old to do things they like.
I WANT to learn how to make BJDs, I WANT a BJD of my own. I can't afford buying one, (and the ones available are not totally to my liking either) but I am able to make me one. 
The problem here is that I am a GOOD craftswoman and artist. If I ever manage to produce a doll, it will be of good quality and beautiful, and if someone would buy a doll like that, it will costs a lot of money. It simply is so that I can't afford my own work! It's like the Irish lace makers in the 18th and 19th century. Lacemakers and embroiderers couldn't afford their own work either. It's really, really sick.
I really need to get over these sick attitudes and ideas I'm harboring.

I CAN and WILL value myself enough to give myself a BJD.
I WILL love myself enough to give myself the time and materials to potter and play so that I will learn how to make BJDs. 
I CAN and WILL value my husband enough to give him a hand tailored wardrobe of his own design. (And it will be magnificent!)

I also see my ideas being realized by someone else, and every now and then I get this stinge of "my ideas are running dry!" - but - I'm not doing anything! So why shouldn't the Muse go to someone else who appreciates Her gifts? :-D

Besides. Ideas are not copyrightable. Ideas are not unique. Ideas are not property. Every person's interpretation of an idea is different.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

One block down, 29 to go...

I'm really, really disappointed and disheartened right now.

Firstly, I had a real fight with the pattern, because the pattern I found on-line didn't match. I had to redraw it. That took a day.

I cut the first pieces, did my first try on English paper piecing, and sewing curved seams. Perfect. But it took two days, because I was procrastinating... So - I used about 3 hours the first day to baste the pieces for the first square (36 pieces), and 2 hours to sew them together, remove the papers and iron it.

I made the paper pieces of ordinary copiator paper, and it works very nicely.
I baste with thread and needle and just sew through all layers, and when I'm done, I remove that thread easily.

So. This morning I started with chlorining the lightest piece of fabric of the second color. Ok, that takes a little bit more explaining. I bought pre-dyed cheap sheets, and bleached 3/4 of it with chlorine. Or I asked my husband to do it. One of the colors went perfectly, the other one didn't. So I have tried to fix it, first by trying to get the lighter middle color darker with food dye, then I decided to lighten the lightest with another chlorine wash. And it's still not good enough.
And I could cry.

Now I need to decide if I shall go on with the project, with part of the fabrics (about 1/4 or less) not "perfect", with the idea of that "done is better than perfect", or will I scrap the project, because I don't have enough time, and it's stupid to waste all that time to make something that won't be good.

*sigh*

Well... my husband says it's ok.
And I know my family appreciates crafts, and one will be able to see the craftmansship, and it will be a good quilt, even when it won't be as pretty as I wanted it to be.

But right now I just want to cry and burn everything and never go out and meet anyone ever again.

And I'm still loving the a-hole, who betrayed me, rejected me and abandoned me. :´(

But I am surprised to find out how easy paper-piecing is.