The Dreamer embroidery framing is finally finished. Goodness gracious that was a process. I tried a couple different frames, different styles of matting, glass and acrylic glazing…I finally came up with this simple silver frame that has enough depth it could be used in a shadowbox manner. I found fantastic 8-ply heavyweight archival matting that is perfect. So no matter how hard I try…I cannot seem to get my Dreamer fiber painting to have a crisp photo for Etsy. The detail photos are all crisp, the color perfect, and I am happy with them but the framed one will not translate to a crisp photo. The actual photo in my computer is perfect and needed little editing. So I am posting the photo here for a reference for potential patrons. Click on the photo to be taken to the actual Snappy Tatter listing. Enjoy!
There have been changes here at home where we welcome late spring weather, graciously. Jay has been avidly gardening a large 30′ x 30′ plot on our half acre. I have been working on a smaller flower garden and have plans to prune the overgrown honeysuckle and lilac. It is amazing how different everything looks compared to when we purchased this house and land last year around this time! The lawn is actually a green lawn! We spend a lot of times in the mountains and have purchased a small camper so we can make overnight stays comfortable.
Adorable, right? This photo is from Mosquito Flat Reservoir.
Another change in Snappy Tatter-land was the re-working of one of my Couture designs. As you know, my Couture work is one-of-a-kind, wearable, fiber art that takes hours and days to design and create. Sometimes, something I have created just doesn’t sit right with me. That is true of Flyaway Butterfly Gala. I did not like the way the center butterfly sat. It didn’t look attractive to me and I felt I could do better. So I dismantled it some time ago with the intention of reworking that center piece. FINALLY, I got to it with everything that has been going on in the last couple of years. Yes, it can take me that long to get to something now. Between moving, living, my neurological condition, and the things that make up daily life, it took me time to get back to Flyaway. But, I am grateful I did. I love what developed so much more than what it was. By now I have more butterfly patterns under my wing (so to speak) so I chose Gloria to take up the space of the butterfly I did not prefer. She is 3-D, which I love, and is a magnificent crescendo in this modern display of natural delights.
The previous version of Flyaway
The new version of Flyaway Butterfly Gala
I love this so much more!!! In the new version of Flyaway, a Vivien Butterfly tags along at the bottom giving the bib necklace a better “plunge” look and the extra PIXIE butterfly was added at the top to attach around the neck, mirroring the other side. Instead of stabilizing the work with trimmed and sealed organza on the backside, I added flesh tone rings where stability was needed. The butterflies are more transparent and look bolder. Flyaway is available in my Etsy shop in the J Kohr Couture for sale section! I would love to hear what you have to say about the Flyaway transformation. Please feel free to comment below!
Thanks everyone for stopping into Snappy Tatter-land. Feel free to use coupon code “LOVELACE” for free domestic shipping…it’s still active for a limited time!
Spring has sprung in Snappy Tatter-land. After an exceptionally cold winter here in western Pennsylvania by blooming Daffodils and crocuses are a welcome sight. There have been many changes in the Kohr household over the past few months which have pulled me away from Snappy Tatter-land more than I want. Today I thought I would showcase a few of the Etsy shop listings that are spring themed in honor of the beautiful bright blue day outside. Enjoy!
~Petite Summer Gala~
~Hot Pink Frilly Fleur~
~Diana Butterfly Stickpin~
available in 35 different colors and several styles of beading…
I have been wanting to create this design for some time now. I thought I would take the time to share how something like this develops from the spark in the brain to the clicking of the shuttles to complete fruition. I enjoy making the Gala designs immensely. Quite possibly more than any other jewelry designing…maybe. The Gala Couture are bib or statement necklaces intended to be a tribute to a time of year, a season, a sense of something. In this case, it is a tribute to my beloved butterflies; PIXIE, Vivien, Sara, Daphne and Emma. The idea was butterflies flowing around your throat in a release, turning this way and that. A flow. And a delicate invasion frozen in time. The idea was in my head. The trick is to get it to my shuttles.
I was first concerned about the sizing and shape of the selected butterflies and how they should connect to one another as well as the overall shape of the design. I looked through my current work to find various representations of each and made simplistic outlines of them on paper. After copying the b-flies and cutting out the shapes, I manipulated them on paper until I came out with this concept:
Thread sizing is written beside the b-flies along with color. I wanted the heaviest shade at the bottom with a gentle gradient to silver/white at the top. Black, charcoal, silver and white were the chosen shades. Chic, neutral and sophisticated. No beading was tatted into the actual b-flies, I wanted them to steal the show! Now that I have a map, it’s down to tatting. Hours of tatting.
My sizing was off a little but I was pleased with the result.Here is the collection, initially after a few more hours of sewing in ends, adding Hematite beading to all the bodies and making antennae. On the left it is shown with my favorite tools; tapestry and quilting needles, needle threader, a tiny crochet hook, exceptionally sharp Ghinger embroidery scissors and my wooden awl for pulling picots into shape and flattening knots inside a flat velour lined box that allows me to store works in progress away from curious kitties.
The design lacked stability and I was concerned that the necklace would not lay properly without something anchoring the design in place. I don’t want my patrons to have to fix or play with my work to get it right. It should be easily worn. So I decided to add sheer black organdy to the back of the larger b-flies. This became a task all in itself. I traced the shape of the b-flies on paper and used the paper shape to cut out the organdy. Next I needed to tack the organdy in order to sew it straight to the b-flies in the right shape so they would not go askew. I wanted them to fly away not create chaos. I used a bright yellow floss so it could be removed easily when I was finished and there would be no question that it was the tacking thread. After hand sewing the organdy to specific points that not only anchored the b-flies, was undetectable and added a few more Hematite beads, I trimmed it very…VERY carefully around the outside edge. I wanted it to show through Emma at the bottom and both Daphne b-flies without showing through the picots. I decided to create a plunge in the organdy in the middle of the b-flies.
After all of this work I realized that my Gala was not long enough on one side to create the shape I wanted and there were a few points that seemed a bit bare. The design was unbalanced and was heavy on one side. In come the PIXIES! I worked three more wee PIXIE Butterflies into the design, added beads and antennae as I secured them to the design. And the work is not over! Next I created two silver organdy bands for the necklace. While the glue was setting inside the ribbon ends, I flipped the Gala over and added an anti-fray compound to all edges of the black organdy. I straightened, trimmed and molded the antennae and made sure there are no weaknesses. I pulled picots and wings into shape adding a small amount of an invisible fluid here and there for moderate stiffness to retain the shape of the design. I went over the work about three times in this manner molding the Gala into the effect I wanted. Voila!
A labor of love, this one of a kind creation was well worth the time. The total length is about 15″ including the plunge with a 2″ extender to make it easy to adjust. I am seen wearing it above with a plunging blouse and below with a black corset top. I am particularly small (4’11”) and after seeing this on my best friend who has a wider chest and neck, I think this will be well suited for anyone larger than me…which is pretty much everyone. The width and length of the actual butterflies is 5.75″ x 6.5″ respectively. The wingspan at the bottom of Emma is 3.5″. A true statement piece I am very happy with the end result of my idea. There will be more Butterfly Galas as Abagail and Sophie were not included in this one. If you have any questions visit the official Etsy listing for all the specs: Flyaway on Etsy
I hope you enjoyed this peak into my creative process. Thanks for listening!
Seems like lately I just can’t keep up with myself. I have a basket of tatted bits that need to be made into something. I have two new Couture pieces that need listed and I would like to Blog about. I have been working on lots of little butterfly jewelry. I would like to make myself a large cuff bracelet. I would like to start a new Fiber Art design that will begin with embroidery and eventually be a framed work. I have a list of design ideas to execute as long as my arm. I need to get the latest e-Newsletter out. And outside of Etsy there is groceries, laundry, vacuuming, shopping for our vacation and taxes. Oh CRAP! Taxes. Something I vow to do early every year and still only get to at the end of March. Oh well.
So while I get my act together. Here are a few pics of wee butterfly jewelry that is coming soon to my Etsy Shop, Snappy Tatter. All are listed or will be listed within the next few days.
PIXIE Ring Pendant
Tiny Gold PIXIE Earrings with Swarovski
Small silver PIXIE earrings with Sterling beads
Small white PIXIE earrings with purple pearls
3-D Vivien Stickpin with crystal
Red and black Vivien Stickpin with crystal
Vivien's fluttering profile
And don’t forget the Diana Butterfly Stickpin contest continues until 3/9. If you haven’t yet entered, visit this post for all the ways to get your entries: Diana Stickpin Give-Away Leave a comment on the post that you would like to be entered. Here is a photo of Sweet Diana resting on my blouse.
I will return soon with new posts about the creation of my latest Couture, a Butterfly Gala called Flutter and a choker made of tatted leaves called Garland.
A gallery of work that will be going to the Keystone Summit show this week. I will be there Tuesday 12/6 and Friday 12/9 from 10 am till at least 2:30. My Etsy Shop will be back online this coming weekend after everything is wrapped up. This gallery is not everything that will be at my show, just the things I had a chance to snap a picture of this past weekend while working my tail off to prepare!
Adjustable Cocktail Rings!
Bracelets and Cuffs.
25% Off Cocktail Rings…
Barrettes and Sterling Bobby Pins
A few earrings…there are many many more
Necklaces, Statement Necklaces, Couture and Pendants
A partial display of necklaces on top of my sewing table…just figuring out which display pieces will need to travel with me.
Vivien Stick Pin…
Diana Stick Pin…
Pink ribbon Pendant…
A new Rosette Barrette.
Dainty Flake Sterling Bobby Pin…
Dainty Flake Brooch…
And a new Snowball ornament…
You can contact me at email@example.com if you have any questions or requests.
My love affair with small boxes continues to evolve as I explore the endless ways to embellish them. I have tons of fabrics to choose from, 3 styles of metal boxes, literally hundreds of threads, thousands of beads, crystals, shell, pearls, Sterling and glass, and mountains of ideas.
I usually begin by creating tatted elements that go together but in the case of this rectangular box I began with the fabric and embroidery.
The Poetry of the Garden
Crewel is one of my favorite forms of embroidery. I learned from a nationally renowned teacher when I was a member of the Embroiderer’s Guild of America. Not only do I like that the style is less rigid than other forms of embroidery but there is flexibility in the fabric and thread choices and endless styles of stitches to choose from. I basically used a free style of satin and long and short stitch for this design. I very faintly drew with a pencil a light design of the stems and where the flower and buds would go. I find if I don’t do this I will work right off the area I am limited to or will not make use of my space as well as I could have. A piece I am designing right now is less sketched out…we will see where that goes.
The stem was worked first, not only in the chartreuse I had chosen but a warm gray to tone down the green and make the stem recede more and add dimension. The leaves are mainly satin stitched and I tried to keep in mind that the light is coming from the upper left corner. So colors on the surfaces of leaves, buds and flowers needed to be brighter on the edges that face this direction. I use a horizontal long and short stitch for the buds allowing me to wrap the deeper colors around the bottom and light on top.
I like the natural greens and spicy flowers on the buttery colored fabric. The grays match the warm poetic writing in the background and I don’t actually know what it says. I didn’t stop to read the fabric. I liked the appearance and nostalgic feel.
The large blossom is several shades from pale peach to orange, rust and brick. I kept adding stitches, painting the flower into the fabric. The floss gives a wonderful sheen and like most crewel-work the entire garden is raised and has a lot of visual texture.
And how to finish my work? With sweet little 3-D PIXIE butterflies, of course! I chose a nice dark turquoise for contrast and stitched the little tatted buggers to be flitting around the garden. Ahhhh…the poetry of it all. Edged in matching satin cord that is doubled and fully lined with Victorian red felt this 4 1/4″ x 3 1/8″ hinged box was finished. I haggled through a few days trying to decide the name and finally it came to me…The Poetry of the Garden. Find this treasure and many others in my Etsy shop, Snappy Tatter
But not very far! I decided to move my applique items (flowers, butterflies, dragonflies, and snowflakes) over to my new shop JJBeads http://jjbeads.etsy.com. I felt they were better suited to an atmosphere filled with beads, buttons and ribbon. I wanted to make room in my Snappy Tatter shop for more jewelry and fiber art categories. I am hoping everyone who visits JJBeads feels my tatted and crocheted applique fit right in. In the meantime, a few of my butterflies on Snappy Tatter are now on clearance at 50% off! Stop by and check them out if you need applique.
Emma in Berry
Other designs not seen here are Diana who is a 3-D Stick Pin, Daphne who has become a pendant and Abagail who embellishes a metal box under “Gallery of Fiber Art Boxes 2011” to the left.