Monday, March 17, 2008
I'd like to talk about the process I go through in making an arch. If you just stopped by to see the arch, scroll on down to the bottom.
On Sunday morning the new challenge is posted for the week. I anxiously await logging in on sundays see what the challenge is. Occasionally, I just run with it right then on Sunday, but more often I sit with it. Sometimes I sit with it for so long the next sunday rolls around and I don't ever get to it. I'm working on that.
Today is Monday and my arch is finished before bedtime, not too bad. I looked up Celtic in the dictionary, did a google search, and basically thought about the theme. I came up with a few things that really appeal to me about Ireland- thatched cottages, waterford crystal, irish lace and linens, green, and the Quiet Man. Those are the bigs things I had in my mind. I also thought about irish eyes smiling, luck, guiness, potatos, family, and history.
All the things in the photo above were auditioned for the arch. They stayed around on the table all day trying to get in on the final cut. They didn't make it. Any one of the items would work with the theme, but none fit the collage. I had it all laid out with a few of those things...blah! Not the right thing, so I started over. Sometimes I need to just start fresh, because my first thoughts or ideas don't work.
I spied a sparkly green piece of felt on the table. Now that just might work. I tried out quite a few pieces of lace and finally picked up that great big one that is on the base now. It just arrived here from treasure hunting this week and hadn't even made it to the basket of good lace yet. Now we were getting somewhere. It is really old and I'm sure a fine irish lady made it a long time ago. I wove in a bit of green velvet ribbon that reminds me of Scarlet O'Hara's green velvet dress. Don't laugh, she was Irish.
So I kept thinking about family ties to Ireland. I pulled out some stock photo things that you see in the pic and they were too paper to go with my fabric theme. Then I remembered this little baby pin that I got in a jar of broken jewelry last fall. She is perfect and the round shape goes with all these crystal buttons to represent Waterford. But now I need a word. What kind of word I don't know. So I peek at all my word stamps on the wall...nothing. I go to my closet where all the Stampin Up stamps are and there is the word...Blessed. It's perfect and it fits and it's how I feel today. My arches are becoming very personal and emotional and a sort of art jounal with few words. Even if nobody else sees that, I know it and it works for me. So I stamp my word with my new green staz-on pad onto some vintage seam binding.
Really we should stop here to discuss my addiction to vintage lace and seam binding. It's getting scary how much I have, but on days like today I'm so glad I have it all. I think about adding it to my etsy shop, but I'm too greedy. I may need all of it someday. Okay, so back to the arch...
Now it feels just a little too hard, not quite finished. I remember a wonderful box of flowers I just received in the mail from May who is one of our lead fiskateers. There is a beautiful little stack of green flowers that aren't put away yet either. I think having things out on the table is a theme, too. Maybe I need all this mess. So, this perfect little green flower that reminds me of a 4 leaf clover and luck makes the cut. And one last thing a beautiful old pearl head pin. It reminds me of pearls and ladies having tea and it just works somehow to tie in The Quiet Man. The last step in the process is to stitch all the elements down by hand with invisible thread. This was actually the fastest part of the whole process.
So without further ado here is the final arch which has only one thing stamped on it, no other ink, and is all fabric, buttons, and lace.