Thursday, April 29, 2010

Double Check

I like to always check out an idea twice. This time I really needed to do that. This purse frame needed an accurate, attention to detail way of handling. Lo and behold! My method proved to work and wasn't just first time luck. Yeah!
This wonderful fabric was given to me many, many years ago by my darling niece. The fabric is a combination of figured velvet and tapestry. I made a purse many years ago from part of the piece and then I just saved this spare piece. It was just to beautiful to just throw away. It wasn't a very big piece but with a little creative manipulation, I was able to cut this purse out.

The lining is silk which changes from sage green and orange. Such beautiful silk and the hand that I purchased at FIDM. The price was really quite good and I purchased 2 yards. That will give me enough for quite a few purses.
I feel that this method of making frame purses turned out well.

Help! I am Being Held Hostage

Do you see this angelic being. They paint pictures of paintings of these "pure" looking cats. The epitome of pureness and goodness is the white cat.
Well, I am here to tell you that this one owns the house and bosses me around. Right now she is on my lap and meowing and telling me that it is time to feed her.
Yesterday, she sent me to the store because she didn't like the food that I bought for her on Saturday. I mean, she is insistent. If I don't do what she wants, she nags, touches me with her untrimmed nails, and gets me going her way.
I can't trim her nails because when I try, she uses her laser eyes and threatens my very life. I am not kidding. I have to find her very sound asleep. Then I quietly get the nail clippers and move in for one nail.
She is getting fat. I am guilty of overfeeding my cat. When I can't listen anymore, I have closed the french doors on her so that she would stop jumping up on me or the cutting table or the sewing machine. Sometimes she will take the thread out of the sewing machine to get my attention.
Such beauty, such disregard for my tender feelings.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

This is a Clutch!

From my past business experience, I knew a family that supplied the industry with luggage handles, strap parts and various other things. My friends also had some handbag parts. When I called to see if he had any magnetic closers. They asked me to come and see what they had left over. I told my darling niece and since she was coming to visit me soon, she said "Oh, wait for me and we can go together". And that is what we did. They gave me lots of wonderful parts for purses. One of the parts that they gave me was a clutch bag frame. I had never used this type of purse frame.
I went into research mode and learned that there is a tool that is customarily needed. Although, a lot of people on my google search, do not use a crimping tool. I went an ordered one from a Etsy site. Then, I waited.
Since, I knew nothing about using a tool, it took me a while to get an idea how to do it. Since they gave me quite a few frames, I didn't panic when it took me one mangled frame to figure out how to make it look presentable. I won't bore you with all the crazy ways I finally got there except to say that one of the ways is to hold tongue in a certain way. If you hold your tongue, then the swear words are not audible.

The fabric was purchased at FIDM (favorite fabric store of ALL time). Both the Grosgrain and the satin. The really notable addition are the beads of Carnelian. This took quite a while to work on but now I know how to do it again.
If you are interested in how the frame is "worked", just ask. I found that on the Internet people, for a charge, will give you the secrets. I feel that information is for everyone.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

When an Orchid Blooms....

When one of my three Orchids blooms, I feel like the world is O.K. and I have a clue from the inner circle. I get almost giddy. It takes me a whole year of remembering to water, to water correctly and to feed and when to feed. And then, (a little drum roll) the sun comes up and I get to see something truly spectacular.

Monday, April 19, 2010

My Vision Quest

The idea for this purse came to me as whole. The idea was given to me in a flash. The parts were all there. It was one of those moments when I was sure I was swimming in the stream of creative consciousness.
I had bought this fabric and the lining at FIDM the Saturday before, I had ordered the silk bolo ties about a month previous (but they were on back order). the handles were purchased on a whim. When I received the bolo ties, I opened the small package and just admired them. Then lightening hit and I started pulling things out and there it was, a completed idea in my brain.
But like all lightening flashes, it took a long time to go through the cinders. It took a daily effort to make this into reality. Much hand sewing, which I do not enjoy, went into this. I basted every step of the way.
I wove the bolo ties and silk cord into the fabric and in order for the ties not to pull out, I sewed each and knotted each underneath. Then there was interlining to deal with and secure. On and on and on.
The fabric is silk and mohair and wool. The inside is lined with rust Satin with three pockets. The handles are wood wrapped with twine.
The purse measures 8 3/4" x 14", not counting the handles

Saturday, April 17, 2010

My Quest

The Supervisor came back. He wanted to know why I hadn't finished. While he was busy examining the project, with out his knowing, I photographed him . I think that this shows what a demanding person he can be. But soft and loving as well.

Friday, April 16, 2010

When In Doubt-Photograph

My nose has been to the grindstone and plumbers. In between sewing and worrying about whether I can wash dishes, I hadn't look up to see my Queen Elizabeth rose. Yesterday, when the plumber finally arrived, I felt relaxed enough to look out the window. I looked and wondered when had all this beauty occurred? I went out to look and really was blown away.
I believe that our rains came at the perfect time for the roses in Los Angeles. I had noticed the roses on my walk but not in my own backyard. That is so telling about life. The are many sayings about "your own backyard" and I guess they are all true.

I may also be making headway on my new project as well as being able to wash dishes.
All is well.

Monday, April 12, 2010

My Supervisor/Inspector

Here he is. The Inspector finally showed up to see if I can proceed with the design. I had called hours before but you know how important "Inspectors" are. It took a while to explain what I had in mind. Also, it took a little charm on my part but I can now proceed.
That's a load of my mind and off my table!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

My Handsome Panther

This is Chester. He is very hard to photograph. This cat tree is right by the door and when I come into the house, I sing Stevie Wonder's song "Isn't She Beautiful" but change the words for my handsome Chester. This boy is affectionate and sweet but still has a very wild side (as All panthers do).
He has one very special trick. He asks me to toss a milk ring for him and then he brings it back for me to do it again. He keeps playing for about five minutes and then walks away with out a backward glance. He also, to be completely honest, gets jealous when I talk to Penelope. He will run over her or tease her.
If I could ever photograph his whole body, you would be able to see how sleek he is, just like panther.
He is a sweetie pie.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Good Days

I think that I work at night when I am asleep because this little "Tea Dance Purse" came together in a very few days. Usually days go by while I progress very slowly. Last week, I even called myself a turtle sewer. this thought was occasioned by the purse with the Lapis Lazuli turtle.
I found this wonderful purse frame on the Internet about two years ago. Then the chain was on another site on ebay advertised this as an antique chain. When I received the chain and found that the it was a perfect match in color and design. Wow. somethings are ordained.
When my Darling Niece came down last week for the Renoir exhibit and her birthday, she brought me this wonderful parcel of silk squares. Among all of these pieces was this glorious embroidered sage green silk and the ling of butter cream taffeta silk. Sometimes everything comes together.
And that makes my life easy. Or the fact that it was for my Darling Niece made it easy!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

The Red GrosGrain Purse

When I was in my teens, I was fascinated by the Egyptians and how they went about living. The clothes, makeup and jewelry all drew my attention. I would read about the gems that they used and why certain stones were used. The one that was described so romantically as "the color of the night sky with stars shining" is the one that I knew I had to see. That stone was Lapis Lazuli. I was instantly attracted to it when I finally saw it. There was an exhibit of Tutakaman's tomb artifacts in San Francisco in the early, early sixties. I made sure that I saw it. In fact I saw it twice. It was wonderful and pervasive. I walked around with black eyeliner in the Egyptian style for a while.
Finally, when I started to work for my uncle, who was a jeweler, I was able to touch Lapis Lazuli. This only increased my admiration. It feels soft and human to the touch. Very wonderful.
When I started this purse, I thought that the messenger style purse would display the fabric to it best. But then, as I was sewing, I realized that more was needed. Lapis Lazuli came to mind and I put a piece on the fabric and it was "a deal". The Lapis goes around on the other side. The Lapis Lazulit Turtle with Sterling Silver backing was made by my uncle, Patrick Dennis Sieler. Whatever he touched, became beautiful. And this Turtle is no exception.
The inside is lined with Royal Blue Satin, with pockets for keys, cell phone and pens or glasses. I liked to have a little organization to my purse. The handle is braided cotton on silver colored rings.
The fabric is Cotton made in the Gros Grain tradition, heavy thread with the color applied by thin thread. Definitely rugged but colorful.
The purse measures 14 1/2" x 9".