Saturday, May 28, 2011

Late Spring

Friends have commented on the lack of postings...guess I got busy at work and didn't do much craft work for awhile. Several older projects need some updating: still have not finished my most recent doll (he needs moccasins) and a slight mishap occurred. Nor sure how it happened (I suspect kittens) but he was knocked down from the bookshelf and a dog ate most of the coyote claws. Have found brass and glass beads all over the living room too, so I'll have to buy more claws and restring.

My wonderful dress arrived and sadly didn't fit at all...because it was made back in Oklahoma there were no fittings; in retrospect we should have made one from a cheap cotton first rather than the nice wool. I read on the internet several posting about how this pattern line tends to run a size small but that didn't help soothe my sad feelings. My friend Tracy doesn't seem worried and thinks its a simple matter to open the seams and insert gussets but I am suspicious and think the project is a complete bust. I'm guessing we buy new fabric and try again...maybe the other dress could be sold to help some of the cost, bummer.

I made a few things during the spring break to give away as prizes to my students who got the highest score on each exam. These included a pen wrapped in gourd stitch, a black suede bag with a university logo medallion, and another rosette that needs to be finished into a necklace (the student agreed to wait). Another student is expecting a child so I offered to make a lizard amulet bag for the umbilical cord, guess that should be next as the due date is approaching.

A friend asked me to decorate a pipe stem for the red stone bear effigy bowl he is carving. I had hoped to learn enough quill work to wrap the stem, but that skill seems too far away and I don't think its appropriate to experiment on a pipe I bought some lovely white suede from Wandering Bull ( and wrapped the stem, then gourd stitched the ends in a rainbow pattern with 11/0 translucent seed beads. Next I added strips of white suede with small brass sequins, white horse hair scalp locks with red and brass beads, and am now wrapping 3 hawk feathers which belong to my friend in gourd stitch with 11/0 French luster beads. Hope to be done over the long holiday weekend but have papers to grade and a test to write as well.

My next big project will be to make beaded hide covers for the large Gladstone bags that I bought on Ebay...think I may do the first using a Lakota/Cheyenne tipi possibles bag motiff (simple thin lines of beadwork) rather than the full beadwork of a smaller doctor's bag. The bags are so much larger than I had expected and the task seemed overwhelming but this seems like a nice solution and is still in keeping with the idea of a nice bag. I need to go hide shopping; am considering pig suede this time as its generally thinner and I can place it in a large rectangular quilting frame which keeps all the lines straight. Lane or lazy stitch is said to be easy but I find it to be quite challenging and prefer single needle running stitch instead! But maybe with some luck I can make something happen...intended recipient is my friend Tracy who made my dress (we are trying to work out trades as compensation). Summer isn't the best time for big projects as there are lots of other things to do but it is nice to have something I can pick up from time to time so this may be it (and I will be happy to move the large Gladstone's out of my office).