i think i, a person trying to make a living at making things, forget sometimes. i forget that crafting used to be about discovery and problem solving and the sheer joy of making things.
this is not to say that i don't love what i make to sell, because i absolutely do. but its well worn territory for me. pick the fabrics, put them together in a way that is pleasing to the eye and start stitching. hunt for vintage baubles, deconstruct and reconstruct. i know how to do these things. i do them every single day. even when i have a new idea, its still almost always a variation on a previous idea. i am good at it but occasionally i really do feel like a one woman sweat shop and want to make something different.
all the crafty people i know spend a good portion of time admiring other people's work. there's a list long enough to wrap around my house of people i have craft crushes on. looking at their work inspires me - even if its entirely different from my own work. the love of process, the respect for their chosen materials - these are the things that get me excited.
ann wood and betz white have been on my craft crush list forever. ann wood's plush sculptures are the things of dreams. so detailed, so delicate and lovely. and betz's cupcake pincushions just make me happy. i have one that i've used forever. i've given them as gifts and everyone loves them. so, when betz post this project a lightbulb went off. i thought about ann wood's spiders and how great the two would look combined. my favorite project of 2010 was born, a gift for kateri.
i sat down with my supplies and had at it. and it was completely fun.
first, let's talk about the spider. i knew i couldn't even approach the awesomeness of ann wood's work but they were definitely my inspiration. even if i could do it, i wouldn't. i am VERY SENSITIVE to the issue of copying and originality. i've seen people whose work i admire enormously hurt deeply. i've had some experience with this issue first hand. its disheartening. but i digress, yoyos are not plush spider sculptures. i was going to have to put my thinking cap on. after some fiddling and drawing, i finally cut the body pieces out of a beaded vintage glove. the legs were more problematic. legs usually are. so after trying a couple of different things, i went for the simplest option. the head was an afterthought and the bead came from kateri's stash of vintage glass beads.
the spiderweb was fun and easy. i did spend a great deal of time sorting through doilies at my favorite antique store to find the perfect one though. i attached the spider to the web by simply bending the legs around the lace.
i spent just as long as it took to make it admiring it. i was so pleased with myself. and so happy that i'd taken the time out of packing boxes, party prep and life in general to make something. just because.
there needs to be more of this in 2011 for me. i need to remember that making things is fun, not just work and that challenging yourself is ALWAYS a good thing.
we should all always be this happy when we finish a project!