Saturday, November 22, 2008

At Studio 1408

For the E.A.S.T. - fun times with a demo from Kat!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Kickin' it on the East Side this weekend

Over the next several weeks, there are some awesome events happening in Austin: East Austin Studio Tour, Bouldin Creek Studio Tour, Cherrywood Art Fair, and Blue Genie Art Bazaar (and more, I'm sure - leave 'em in the comments if you want)

First up is the East Austin Studio Tour this weekend. I love studio tours, because you get the chance to visit several artists in one day and get a taste of what they do. This Saturday, I'll be volunteering for a few hours at Studio 1408 (I'd ramble on about how much I love this place, but I think I'm bordering on stalker with them) and reading the schedule of stuff the gals are going to be doing at the studio makes me wish I could stay there all day ... both days. I'm posting the Studio 1408 schedule below (including a repeat of their crazy popular Obamarama screen printing...) , but first I want to mention some other hot spots you'll want to hit - or check out virtually if you aren't in Austin.

Jenifer Nakatsu Arntson - Jen's vinyl bags and wallets are uber cool and crazy kinds of sturdy. I treated myself to one of her wristlets several months ago and freaking love it.

Amy Barber | Sweettooth Bags with special guests Vanessa Crook, Felice House, Hope Perkins and Jennifer Perkins - That's a whole buncha cool for one stop on the tour. Dang!

Arthur Simone - Adrienne clued me in to this artist's work, and it's very cool - layered and all kinds of abstract - interesting stuff.

Adaptive Reuse | Christine Terrell - Christine's stuff is awesome, and she is super sweet. She'll be at Studio 1408 and will have a jewlery demo/project for visitors.

Aly Winningham - Terra Firma Studios - Wow - these mosaics/stain glass are making my mouth water ....

The Amazing Hancock Brothers - I raved about these guys during Maker Faire. I have *got* to find a way to go by their studio this weekend .....

And a few others that look cool (I haven't even been able to go through the whole list yet!)
Bleep Labs
Catherine Hart
Co-Lab A New Media Project Space
Domy Gallery / Bookstore
East End Craft Gallery
Vertallee Letterpress - Mmmm .... letterpress ....

OK - way too many. I've just spent an hour browsing the E.A.S.T. website and I'm only down to the Es .... ack! Be sure to head out this weekend, and if you aren't here in Austin, browse the list of participants and their web sites - there's some amazing stuff in there. Makes me very happy to live in Austin.

Studio 1408 Schedule and Information: (read it all, there is an abundance of rad stuff going on all weekend at Studio 1408)

STUDIO 1408 (#143 on the EAST map) is excited to be part of this year's East Austin Studio Tour.

Kathleen McTee is an artist working with textiles. Her current series incorporates upcycled cloth patterned with screenprinting, dye and obsessive hand stitching, with imagery inspired by the lost roadside landscapes of the American West. During E.A.S.T., she'll demonstrate some of the techniques she teaches in classes at Studio 1408, including screenprinting, stitching and dyeing.

Theresa Noyes is a mixed media artist currently experimenting in 3D. She employs unrefined, raw materials such as seeds, hand-dyed jute, and buckwheat for small sculptures and installation. She will have several example of works in progress at Studio 1408, and an installation at Fisterra Studios (Stop 16).

Christine Terrell makes jewelry and accessories using upcycled decorative tins.

In addition to showcasing our work, we have several dye, print and stitch demos scheduled (see below), as well as D.I.Y. opportunities ongoing throughout the weekend.

To top it all off, OBAMARAMA is BARACK on! Bring a shirt (or skirt, pillowcase, sheet, whatever) to the studio any time before 2pm on Sunday, and have our future president's face printed on it. The screening rodeo starts at 2 sharp, so no stragglers. Pick up your Obama'ed item at the studio by 5 on Sunday. Cost is just $10.

Of course we'll have food and wine so please plan to stop by. Linger if you can, but we understand the desire to see as many studios as possible. (We all decided this morning that the huge downside to being in the show is that you can't go to the other studios. Bummer.)



11:00 am Stamp Making: Learn how to make stamps out of found objects and unusual materials, then create patterns on paper and fabric. Simple techniques, complex results!

2:00 pm Low Water Immersion Dyeing: Fiber-reactive procion dyes are vibrant, colorfast and safe to use. We'll demonstrate how to conserve water while creating brilliant (and subtle) multicolored effects on natural fibers.

3:00 pm Dye Printing: Silkscreens are fabulous for printing with paint on fabric and paper, but even more versatile when used with thickened dyes. Learn how to build layers of transparent color to create complex, sensuous surface designs.


11:00 am Artistic Embroidery: Go beyond the pattern by combining simple image transfer techniques and hand stitching. Easy methods, intricate original works of art.

2:00 pm OBAMARAMA: Change has come to your wardrobe. Bring your own shirt (or pillowcase, banner, tuxedo jacket, onesie, tea cosy) and have it printed with a cool image of the 44th president! Drop off items by Sunday at 2pm, pick them up after 4pm. Watch the printathon in action at 2pm! $10 donation.


Stitch Niche: Pour some wine, sit on a comfy couch and try your hand at embroidery. We'll have fabric, some instructions, design ideas and plenty of needles loaded up and ready to go.

Stamp Making: One time-honored design device is the humble stamp. This hands-on demo will allow you to not only make your own stamps using various materials and techniques, but will get you thinking about mark-making and the nature of pattern and texture.
Design Your Own Earrings: Or just play around with hundreds (thousands?) of punched metal circles that will be spread out on a table. All the circles are 1" or smaller and have been punched from decorative containers, so there will be lots of color and even some recognizable images. Design your own earrings (to be assembled and mailed to you later) or just sit and be awed by the sheer craziness of it all.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Such a lovely way to spend a Saturday

I've been busy lately (what, the lack of blog posts hadn't clued you in already?) so I was very happy to have the opportunity to take a break this weekend and get my craft on with the lovely Future Craft Collective gals. I signed up for their Advent Calendar class as soon as I saw the new schedule, and was very excited to join in. I have a wee obsession with Advent calendars. We have several, and I'm always on the look out for more. I've also always wanted to make one, but have never taken the plunge. That's right, among all the Advent calendars we have, not a single one was made by me. Insanity!

I had to leave the class a little early on Saturday, so my calendar isn't complete yet. I'll share pictures when it is, but until then, check out these pics from the class (perhaps if I hadn't been so chatty and snappy with my camera I would have gotten closer to finishing the project .... )

Bernadette and Kathie were awesome teachers - just the right amount of guidance and room for a free-for-all.
The students were fantastic. I couldn't believe so many of us could fit in the space and make stuff so easily. It was supremely harmonious! I also got to spend some much-needed time with my pal, Jamie, whom I hadn't seen in waaaay too long.

It was great to see the different forms each person's calendar took. Some were beautifully traditional, and others were perfectly unique (complete with a He-Man Father Christmas!) It was so much fun to watch us all start with piles of scraps and pieces of burlap and transform them into special family heirlooms.

Aside from the crafting, there was also loads of fabulous conversation. Bernadette and Kathie asked all kinds of thoughtful questions about making the holidays a time of family togetherness and of simple pleasures. There was discussion on how - if at all - we discuss things like Santa Clause with our kids. Having these great conversations made working on the projects so much more enjoyable and meaningful.

If you're in Austin, you *must* get yourself over to the Future Craft Collective headquarters and get in on one of their classes. I can't recommend them enough!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Free Embroidery Pattern from Nini Makes

I am really loving this sweet Christmas Tree Family pattern from Nini Makes. I don't have any Christmas tea towels, and I think I'll be stitching this one up so I can use it this year. I commented on her post and just received the PDF by email and it is *adorable*. She's also got a great giveaway with this post so be sure to check it out!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Get yer stitch on!

You know how much I love embroidery. Quite honestly, learning hand embroidery was the thing that kicked me into crafty high gear and - as geeky as it sounds - really changed my life. Getting to teach embroidery is one of my greatest pleasures. I've had some awesome students, and we always have a blast in class. If you'd like to get your stitch on with me, I'm teaching a class next Tuesday night (November 11) from 6:30 - 10:00 PM. You can enroll through the Stitch Lab web site. I'll be adding more classes soon, so be sure to sign up for the Stitch Lab newsletter, too.

Here's some other stuff to tempt you:

Up! Up! Upcycle - and WIN!

Want this snazzy Singer "Curvy" sewing machine? Would you like to have a project of yours featured in CRAFT:10 magazine?

All you have to do is snap some pix of party decorations you've made from "upcycled" materials (or things you already have in your house) and upload them to the Flickr group called 'The Upcyclist Party Contest.'

Three runners up will get a Singer rolling machine case and a 1-year subscription to CRAFT magazine!

Read more over on the CRAFT blog!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Unyielding Hope

So. Very. Happy.

Monday, November 3, 2008

A fabulous four-letter word: VOTE!

Oy! You are sick of election news, huh? I don't blame you - it can get to be rather mind-numbing. But we're so close. Soooooooo close!

This weekend, I received a package from some of my rad Portland pals, Sarah and Josh. They recently held an Obama screen printing party, inspired by the on the Studio 1408 gals had a couple of months ago. I was over-the-top excited to receive some Sarah/Josh printed Obama goodies this weekend. They sent t-shirts and a gorgeous print on paper, and I was even lucky enough to score a fantastic Obama gocco postcard from Susan. Happy day! Happy day! Thank you, Sarah and Josh. I'll be wearing my shirt as I make "get out the vote" calls from election HQ here in Austin tomrrow!

Also, regardless of who you're voting for .... another Portland pal of mine, Lee, has an awesome giveaway over on her blog today. She's put together a great little zine of sorts with a fun knitting pattern, a RAD apalaca applique pattern, a stencil and some mac-n-cheese tips (does this sound like the perfect zine, or what, folks?). You can snag a free copy if you leave a comment on her post and show you've voted. Spread the word!

And - if you haven't already - be sure to vote tomorrow. Don't wake up Wednesday morning wishing things were different.