Thursday, May 31, 2007

An Autumn Fairy...

Just wanted to pop in for a minute here to share the pics of another finished fairy...

As you can see in her pic below, Bliss is an Autumn Fairy, complete with wings created from vintage painted images of fall leaves and a pumpkin wand. Bliss will be available alongside the Pumpkin Pixie (pics of Pumpkin and better pics of Bliss coming this weekend) for PFATT Marketplace's Halloween in June celebration.

Before I go, I'd like to introduce you all to a new blogger and fellow Glitter and Grunge Artist, the sweet and talented Jackie Lauger of Fat Jack Originals. You will love Jackie's beautiful papier mache creations!!! Jackie just started blog here recently. Please stop by to welcome her to blogland.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Quick Update

I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend. If you have a loved one whom has served or is serving in the military, thank you so very for his or her service and sacrifice.

Thanks again everyone for all of your comments regarding Lori's fairy. Lori, I meant to ship her out today, but got behind in my day catching up with work stuff after a long holiday weekend, so I promise she'll be headed straight to the post office first thing in the morning. And I'll ship her Priority so she gets to her new home in a hurry! :-)
No new pics of fairies today thanks to my camera issues (and terrible photography skills). I am going to recharge my camera ( and myself for that matter) tonight and try to take some better photos tommorrow!
I had expected to post some pics of a few finished fairies yesterday but we got distracted by a little movie you may have heard of.... Pirates of the Caribbean, At World's End. Whew! The title is almost as long as the movie's 2 hour and 40 minute run time. But still, not quite as long as the line we had to stand in to get into the theater. Thank goodness for the nearby bookstore and the tantalizing issue of Somerset Life that I picked up to read in line. As for the movie itself, I found many scenes in to be visually enchanting, but also, in some scenes, quite horrific. It was more violent then I remember of it's predecessors'. What movies did you see this weekend, if any?
My favorite movies are ones made before 1950. I love the fashion and dialogue and the way actors could covey passion fully clothed. And the hats! Why don't men still wear hats?! Nothing to me, is more attractive than a gentleman with a jaunty derby pulled just at the right angle... like Gary Cooper here...

Okay, well, that is a cowboy hat. But Gary Cooper could have worn a soup pot on his head and still managed to make it look good. My Nana used to sigh over movie starts like Gary Cooper and Jimmy Stewart. She called them "SAH" men ( something about him.....) As I have mentioned before in this blog, I enjoyed nothing better than a night at Nana's watching old movies, sighing over her favorite movie stars.

Some of my favorite old movies....
Stella Dallas... if this movie doesn't make you cry... I am a blubbering fool at the closing scene every time. I love Barbara Stanwyck. She was the most fantastic Actress.

To Each His Own. Another tear jerker. Stock up on the Kleenex.

All About Eve... a gem of a movie. Bette Davis at her best, and most vulnerable.

The Philadelphia Story... Jimmy Stewart and Cary Grant!... sigh

Rebbecca... I have three words for you... Sir Laurence Olivier....based upon Daphne du Maurier’s page devouring mystery. Almost as good as the book.

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington... Jimmy again, directed my favorite, Frank Capra.

I could go on and on. But I need to go to bed! Hope to be back tomorrow with some new fairy pics :-)

Friday, May 25, 2007


Lori's Dream Fairy...
Above, her fairy box, below she stands alongside her sparkly pink wand.

Complete with a polkadot pink pixie hat, butterfly wings and a cupcake liner skirt! Lori, I hope you like her! She'll ship out first thing after the holiday weekend.
I'll be back on Monday to introduce you to a few more completed dolls. I hope everyone has a wonderful, memorable and restful weekend.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

More progress

I am so very grateful to everyone who has stopped by lately to leave so many kind comments. I really do enjoy sharing the process with you. Over the years, I have picked up tips and tricks from amazing doll makers and sculptors, so it is a real pleasure to pass on a bit of what I have learned. For a really fantastic sculpting tutorial , please go and check out the jaw dropping work of Hannie Sarris. If you are a beginning sculptor, I also recommend checking out books by Maureen Carlson, James Carrington and Sue Heaser. Although the latter 3 work in polymer clay, many of their techniques can be applied to working in paper clay and paper mache.
Speaking of clays, a few of you have asked where to purchase paper clay. Here in Arizona I have found it in most crafts stores, but if you buy in bulk, it's much cheaper to purchase directly from
Costuming and creating a place for the fairies to live takes me a few days, but I thought I'd post some pics of my progress.

I use just about everything but fabric to create the faerie's clothing. All of the fairies you met in the last post will have cupcake liner skirts, and hats and wings fashioned from paper. To give the fairy skirt some stability, I glue several layers of the cupcake liners together.

I then cut out the center of the skirt so that I can form it around the doll.

I have a fantastic clip art CD from Lunagirl that is choc full of fantastic vintage images like this pretty butterfly. I used my photo editing tool on my computer to create a mirror image of the wings, so that when cut, the can be glued together back to back, making the fairy's butterfly wings visable from all sides. When the doll calls for it, I'll substitute sheet music or scraps from a favorite poem for the butterfly wings. After the wings are cut and shaped, I'll apply several layers of a matte finish sealant, and then sugar them liberally with a mixture of glass glitter and mica flakes for a magic sparkle.

My sweet neighbor Tracey is always kind enough to save her soap boxes for me so that the fairies will have a place to live. Not only do the soap boxes provide a sturdy base, but they often will retain the lovely aroma of the soaps that once nestled within. If I run out of soap boxes, I'll use old business card boxes, wooden jewelry boxes, whatever I can find that fits! Since most fairies are very fussy about decor, I'll go through my stack of papers, clippings and ephemera until I find a fitting theme.

To create the glittery letters for the top of the fairy box, I print out whatever word I am going to use in a storybook gray-scale font and fill in with this silvery glitter glue. After the glitter glue dries, I painstakingly cut out each letter and apply to the top of the fairy box. It can be a tedious process, but I think the results are worth it.

Check back in on Friday for the final steps and to see a few of the fairies completed and ready to fly off to their new homes.

For those of you who love it as I do, have great fun watching the season finale of Lost tomorrow night!!!!

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Progress, announcements...and a sort of tutorial

Been busily crafting away here.. but wanted to show you what I have so far in fairyland :-)...
To make the fairies, I start with a 1 inch Styrofoam ball. Before I start sculpting with the clay, I sculpt the ball itself with my hands and by indenting with the barrel of a smooth paintbrush...

After shaping, I cover the ball with a thin layer of paper clay, smoothing as I work with water. Facial features come next. Think of the forehead as a rectangle, the nose as a triangle, and the cheeks lips and chin as varying sizes of balls. Features are then applied to the face with a paintbrush and water.
Next comes the hands. Roll a ball of paper clay into a log...
And flatten one end into a paddle shape...The paddle shape end is then cut and shaped into fingers and smoothed with a paintbrush and water.
Legs start as logs too, with the ends gently shaped into shoes. At this point, one could pull the end of the foot into a curly point, like a pixie boot.

Now tiny holes are inserted into the ends of the arms and feet for wiring into the armature. But in the meanwhile, this little lady needs a neck and breastplate.

To make the breastplate, I cut out a circle of rolled clay, and attach it to a log which is shaped, again with water and a paintbrush, to create the neck. I then let her rest and dry a bit over the barrel of a smooth paintbrush.

To make the armature, I used 18 gauge floral wire, cut into appropriate lengths, inserting ends into the arms, legs and breast plates to form the body shape. The armature is then padded out with foil and wrapped in white floral paper tape.

And like the Lays potato chips... I can't stop at just one, sooooooooo........

As you can see, most have a hairstyle, sculpted out of the paper clay, but I also like the old fashioned look of painted on hair, so I leave one bald for the time being. To add strength, all of these figures are gessoed before being painted.

And speaking of paint....

All painted and lined up in a row, these funny little gals remind me of those old bathing beauties photos. Like these ones

I'll be getting these little one's costumed and finished up today. Then onto the boxes. And then I have to get to work on my 2007 fall line! Lori can you see your fairy in there? Calamity Kim, can you spot the beginnings of your Red Riding Hood? Another one of these fairies will be finished to carry some encouragement to a family that has a lot going on right now. Another might become a cupcake fairy, still another, a Harvest time fairy... which reminds me.....

I am so blessed this year to be a part of PFATT, where we will be celebrating Halloween in June! One of the little fairies above and the little pumpkin pixie below (when she's finished, of course) will be available for sale during the celebration! I'll have another giveaway for that as well!

Also coming up this fall, I am excited to announce that I will be participating in the fabulous A Cottage Boutique show in Northern California. What an honor it will be to be in the same show as the likes of Stacy French and Christine LeFever. The promoter, and folk artist extraordinaire, Kerry Howard-Schmidt of Paper Moon Gallery, does a fantastic job of promoting this show. We'll even have an ad in Mary Engelbreit's Home Companion magazine. I am soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo nervous! If you are in the area please consider stopping by and checking us out.

Well I best get back to the workshop! Those little fairies are calling out for some party dresses, hats and, of course, wings!!! Check back in with me on Tuesday for more pictures and updates. Have a beautiful and blessed Sunday!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

I love Saturday mornings, especially after an intense work week. . Today has been so pleasantly lazy. I slept in, enjoyed 2 cups of french roast with cream and sugar, leisurely flipped through the latest issues of Country Living and Country Home Magazines, then spent two hours cleaning and organizing a weeks worth of accumulated clutter.

To my happy surprise, despite my infrequent visits to blogland lately, two sweet ladies, Bella Enchanted and Patti of Treasure Barn tagged me to share 7 random facts and habits about myself. I think I am kind of boring, but here's a few anyhow...

1. I am a magazine junkie. I probably have over 500 copies of Romantic Home, ME's Home Companion, Country Living, Dollhouse Miniatures, Polymer Cafe among others collecting dust in my laundry room. And I can'

2. I am a huge LOST fan. We have recorded almost every episode and we analyze them to pieces!

3. I am a recovering hypochondriac. I don't imagine myself to be ill, but I do have a great fear of becoming ill, and therefore, can't even pass the heath and medical section of the bookstore without breaking into a cold sweat. Ironically, I work as a program manager for a large non profit that deals with the very health issues that most scare me!

4. I also have a great fear of flying, but I love to travel so much, that I fly anyway (usually assisted by a glass of white wine).

5. My job requires me to travel statewide. So I spend a lot of time behind the wheel. There have been many weeks where I have logged 2000 miles in 6 days. Therefore, I love my XM Satellite radio. I highly recommend it to anyone of you who have to travel extensively or have a long commute.

6. I could give up all foods except for bread, cheese and chocolate. Oooh, and maybe mashed potatoes.

7.When I can't sleep at night, reruns of TV shows, such as, I Love Lucy and Rosanne, seem to soothe me right to sleep. It must be the domesticity of them?

My turn to do some tagging!!!!

Hi Ladies! If you don't mind sharing, feel free to consider yourself tagged to list 7 random facts about yourselves in one of your blog posts.

Now for something wonderful!!!

I was so fortunate to be able to obtain this lovely corsage from Kim at Ragged Roses through her Esty shop. Isn't the packaging sweet? She even included an extra gift. What a treat is was to find this treasure in my mailbox at the end of a long workday!

Well I am off to begin work on the giveaway fairy for Lori. I'll be back soon with pictures of my progress. Happy Saturday Everyone, and I wish you all a most beautiful Mother's Day.

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

And the winner is........

Lori of Faerie Window!!!!! Lori, when you are ready, let me know how you want your fairy to look and I will hopefully get her finished by the end of next week. I am so excited to make a custom fairy for you!!!!
I plan to take pictures of my progress so you can all see how they are made.
Thanks again to everyone who left a comment. If you didn't win this time, don't worry, I'll have another giveaway for my 50th blog post (only 15 posts away!!!!)
I'll be back tomorrow with some updates! Have a great evening all :-)

Monday, May 7, 2007

Winner will be announced tommorrow!

Hi everyone! Thanks to everybody who left such sweet comments!!! Tomorrow night,( by 8pm pacific time) I will announce the winner from tonight's giveaway for a custom fairy. If you haven't already done so, you have until 11:59pm (pacific time again :-) ) tonight to enter by leaving a comment on the last blog post!