Thursday, July 19, 2007

My Collage Revealed!

My Bits & Pieces Swap partner, Linda, recieved her collage from me the very same day I recived mine! How perfect is THAT?? I'm so pleased that SHE was pleased with it and so happy that it is as much "her" as the collage she made for me is "me."

So now I get to show you what I made! Of course you could cruise on over to Lilly Cottage yourself and check it out, but I will show it to you here, as well. I had such fun making it. Linda told me some things she liked and I poked about on her blog to see her shoppe, her creations, her tastes and that sort of thing. I decided to do my collage on fabric, which Linda was thrilled about, and though I have done some altered art on fabric, this was the first time I've attempted it on such a small scale. I was a bit intimidated by the whole thing since this was my first swap and all; what if what I made (horror of horrors!) looked like a kindergartner made it (no offense, Emily!), or like some kind of odd home ec project? I knew the pallate I wanted to work with and some of the elements I wanted to include but couldn't really "see" the finished project in my mind's eye AT ALL. And that worried me. But I had to do it; it was a commitment I made; it was a challenge I'd accepted! So I dove in.

The most exciting thing about this swap for me was that I GREW from it. Sounds cheesy, I know, bloggety pals! But it's true. Perhaps some of you who have participated in swaps know what I mean. The experience is truly comparable to having to write a paper for a literature class (I was an English lit. major in college) that was basically going to account for most of my grade. The prospect is daunting. The "thesis" is not always well-defined as you approach the paper. You might have some basic ideas of where it's going to go, but the way to get there is not carved out, well-lit or mapped out in any way. It's a scary feeling! But you plunge in. You go for it. And after a while of wrestling and working in and with the information (or the fabric and other elements in this case), there begins to be a substance of sorts. And from that substance a form begins to emerge - still not what you are striving for, still not complete. But there is an exhilaration at that point; it's a vista from which you can view where you're headed. You begin to glimpse what your thesis will be or what the "theme" of your project is. And then the next, work, work...but now the way is clearer and the work is more joyful. And before you know it you have come out on top and you look down to see what you have written, created or done. THAT is what I love about writing; that is now what I love about altered art.

So here's an explanation of each square, top to bottom, left to right:
1) Vintage image of lady drinking tea printed on fabric/hand-embroidered to collage base
2) Hand-embroidered rose I stitched using a vintage pattern
3) Harrison Fischer image of lady with scarf printed on fabric/stitched on
4) "L" for Linda of course! Tiny spool with the same pink floss I used for the L on it and stitched to the collage!
5) My favorite (not vintage) pink ticking with rhinestone button sewn on top
6) A pink ballgown on a dress form hand-embroidered (my pattern)
7) A corner of my very favorite ever vintage pink roses hankie!
8) A cupcake because Linda likes them! Hand-beaded "sprinkles" and silver "cupcake liner" and pearl "flame"
9) A bit of fabric I love with two little girls in a garden (Linda and I, of COURSE!)
10) Another Harrison Fischer image of lady in pink
11) Applique from my favorite Rachel Ashwell fabric
12) Another lovely Harrison Fischer image
Miscellaneous elements: buttons, miniature crocheted doilies, vintage pink rick-rack, dark pink velvet ribbon, ribbon rose, rhinestones, vintage lace, pink "frou frou" trim on the bottom and pink velvet "brocade" trim for the hanger

And this is the package I wrapped for her! THIS was fun, as well. We talked about how we both love those chubby little birds in the old Disney films (you know...the ones that are always sewing, picking up capes and the like...always very happy and VERY fat!), but birds didn't make it into the collage. So I found a wood bird shape and covered it with some lovely "shabby sweet" bits of vintage cards I've collected. Then I poked a hole in it (o.k. James did!) and then wired a whole bunch of beads, pearls, etc. and "curled" them around my finger. The "ribbon is of course my favorite Rachel Ashwell fabric again and that's an ivory rose I pulled apart and strung the ribbon through. I spent an entire evening after putting the kids to bed just wrapping this up. SUCH a treat! Maybe I should give up sewing and crafting and just wrap gifts. I DO SO love it!


Heather ~ Pretty Petals said...

I just can't get over how beautiful this is!!! OH what a lucky girl to recieve this!! I love every square.... I was trying to pick a favorite but I just can't..they are all too pretty.

Great job! Heather

Ele at A Bit of Pink Heaven said...

Your bits and pieces collage is AMAZING. You put so much work into it and it shows. WOW!