Category: WIP

fragments : small stitched compositions

stitch experiments

I’ve been experimenting with small compositions – making marks and texture with thread, exploring, observing and maybe expanding my vocabulary of stitches. Some are organic feeling marks – spilling out of the botanical things I’ve been working on and some  mix with and echo the meandering stitches of mends and intricate darning I find in garments.  I’m paying attention to my impulses and habits and challenging them – looking for the rules I’ve made for myself but am not always conscious of – the musts and can’ts that get in the way of being truly expressive.  I’m asking myself to be responsive and un-self-conscious – to pick up a thread and follow it.

stitch experiments

stitch experiments

stitch experiment #1

stitch experiment #2

stitch experiment #3

And P. S – regarding tiny rag dolls – thanks for your feedback and the pattern making is well underway – it will be available in the next week or two!

fragments : stitch expeiments

botanical experiments

royal cone flower

This big pink flower woke me up last night. It’s one of the new botanical experiments I’ve been working on and it was finished but I didn’t love it- something wasn’t right. The original stem and roots felt too delicate, too fussy for the flower and out of balance – that idea would not leave me alone. My subconscious must have been working on it for me and  last night I woke up abruptly knowing exactly what it needed – a bulb, a more substantial stem and very simple leaves.   I love the bulb!  More botanical experiments soon – there are all sorts of strange new species on my work table.

Have a lovely weekend,

ann

stitched botanical


stitched botanical

stitched seedpod

stitched seedpod

pixie toadstools and mr. cups

mr. cups

mr. cups

Meet Mr. Cups! My new helper – I found him upstate last weekend in a fabulously junky junk shop – he makes a very cheery pin holder. I love the way his details are painted – I looked him up and found out he was made in Japan in the forties and there is a Mrs. – I’m on the look out.  He helped me make lots of mini toadstools – pixie size fungi made from Japaanese garment fragments (from lovely Sri Threads). They are made with the little mushroom sewing pattern – it scales up and down well – I printed the templates at 50% for these little guys.

textile toadstools

the little mushroom sewing pattern

two blue toadstools

toadstool detail

They were fun to make in a batch and easy to travel with – just a little bag of scraps and a few supplies – a good summer project. I also added a little extra height to the top for a couple – tracing the template and adding about another 1/2 inch to the top for a pointier cap.

textile toadstools

toadstools moss

indigo owl toadstool

All nine pixie mushrooms will be in the shop next Tuesday 6/7  (1 pm-ish NY time) along with some other new things I’m working on including the large indigo toadstool and the dastardly fellow lurking in the background above.

* You can sign up here if you’d like an email when new things are in the shop.

I’m looking for a helper

I’m looking for a helper (this is a huge scary leap for me) and I wonder if you know anybody that might be interested in working with me. The ideal person probably has  their own little enterprise or those sorts of aspirations – the experience here could help with that, they have a flexible schedule, are located close to Brooklyn, NY ( I’m in Park Slope) and  they wouldn’t mind working with me in my very small but lovely place that  can get extra cramped and chaotic when big wholesale orders are moving through. Most importantly of all they have very, very clever hands – sewing experience would be wonderful but I’m willing to teach that to some one who just has a magic touch. The hours would be small and sporadic at first with the goal of moving to one day a week and on from there. The pay would also be small to begin but with room to grow if things work out.
If you know someone who might be interested please share this with them. If you’re interested yourself please message me here or email me at ann@annwoodhandmade.com with studio help as the subject line.

I’m looking for a helper  (this is a huge scary leap for me) and I wonder if you know anybody that might be interested in working with me. The ideal person probably has  their own little enterprise or those sorts of aspirations – the experience here could help with that, they have a flexible schedule, are located close to Brooklyn, NY ( I’m in Park Slope) and  they wouldn’t mind working with me in my very small but lovely place that  can get extra cramped and chaotic when big wholesale orders are moving through. Most importantly of all they have very, very clever hands – sewing experience would be wonderful but I’m willing to teach that to some one who just has a magic touch. The hours would be small and sporadic at first with the goal of moving to one day a week and on from there. The pay would also be small to begin but with room to grow if things work out.

If you know someone who might be interested please share this with them. If you’re interested yourself please message me here or email me at ann at annwoodhandmade dot com with “studio help” as the subject line.

ann wood

Filed under WIP

drawing and painting

I used to draw and paint a lot.

merriwether lewismerriwether lewis 2005  (after the Charles Willson Peale portrait)

waterparkwest side water park 2005

junebug film art

illustration for film poster 2005

And  my begining here, this blog, was making marks on paper – the cardboard horse project.

horse8

And then all of a sudden I was sewing. A lot. And as I sewed more and more  the drawing and painting went away.  I miss that kind of work and that kind of expression but even though I feel inspired in that direction  I keep not doing it.  It is very easy not to.  So I’m making it mandatory and  planning a project in the 2 dimensional world  for 2013. I have figured out what it’s going to be, the focus, and I’m excited about it  but I’m still working out the particulars of how I’m going to share it – when I get that figure out I’ll tell you all about it.

thanks

seashell folkseashell folk, off to celebrate

Thanks to everybody who showed up for the shop update yesterday – I’ll be packing everything up this weekend and getting things on their way right after the holiday. I’m working on things for Tuesday’s owl and ship update ( there will be one more songbird too) – here are some things in progress:

pale pink songbird

This is the bodice it’s made from- I bought it years ago and have been using bits of it ever since.

antique pink bodice

A  grey owl – fabrics courtesy of Sri Threads.

sri grey owl

And a pair of turn of the century wool swim bloomers I’m about to turn into an owl.

antique swim bloomers

I got them for next to nothing – the seat is terribly moth eaten. The fabric is wonderful- weight, shade, fading , texture – everything ideal.  Also, in the unlikely category,  technically, I’ve just posted a picture of myself on the internet in a bathing suit.

collection : linings

Almost a year ago I got together a box of linings with plans to make things but not much happened after that. I’ve lately pulled that box out and I’ll be posting progress and  previews of finished pieces here throughout August. They will be available in September. I  love linings and they often end up being my favorite part of a garment.

linings

I’m working on the usual suspects : owls, spiders and songbirds but this collection will have a couple surprises too. I’ve made the most progress on a songbird made from the printed lining of an edwardian bodice.

eye

I spent the weekend with it – stitching, restitching, experimenting and not worrying about progress or efficiency. I’m allowed to do that on the weekends. Pretty vacationey.

songbirdwings

This bird, the layering of this print, reminds me  of tramp art a little bit and I think I’ll experiment  more with that idea.

collection : fortuny

fortuny owl

fortuny owl

A long time ago, way back in 2010 I visited the Fortuny showroom  here in NYC to talk about making some creatures with their exquisite fabrics. There have been fits and starts and interruptions in the process but lately solid progress has been made towards creating a full collection of creatures that will be available  beginning this fall.

fortuny spider

Working with patterns,  large scale patterns,  has challenged how I think about my owls in particular and some interesting things are happening.

fortuny owls in progress

fortuny owl

fortuny perching owl

More progress photos soon as well as information on where and when things will be available.

owl beginnings

I’ve started several new owls  including the two robust grey fellows below. The owl on the left is made from a silvery Fortuny pattern  and the other from marvelous Japanese  textiles courtesy of Sri.

owl beginnings

I have also gathered a little pile of things for another fabric ship and owl captain – a moodier pallet than the last – I love the purplish tones – those are for the ship and the indigos  are  for the little captain. These are all Japanese and again courtesy of Sri.  These are the colors I’ve been most attracted to for weeks now – silver, stone shades, and bits of violets and blues

purplish grey antique japanese textiles

I finished the quilt ship but I haven’t taken it’s official photo yet, this is an instagram shot of the very nearly finished ship and captain.

quilt ship and captain

getting organized

I am. And getting rid of things.  And rearranging. This is my newly appointed button drawer:

button drawer

It was formerly my “drop in anything I don’t know what to do with and then never open again” drawer. I dumped it out and found a tiny hand-full of things  I might actually need someday.  It’s perfect for buttons and much better than searching in a bunch of jars and boxes and bags.  Now that my buttons are all organized and in one place I’ll probably be a millionaire by the end of the week.

I’ve also been working on some special caketopper bird orders. This is the world’s tiniest garrison cap (airforce).

world's tiniest garrison cap

And the world’s tiniest boutonniere.

tiny boutonniere

And a very  fancy fascinator for his girl.

fancy fascinator

owl work

A new owl I’m working on:

seaton - progress

Seaton

I named him for a nice man who sold me tires a couple weeks ago.  I’ve  been working on him forever and he’ll finally be finished  tomorrow. He’ll be in the shop on Monday, the 4th with a couple friends.

There were ferocious thunderstorms on Tuesday – this is a photo  (iphone) of a thunderstorm gathering over a little pond upstate.  I wish I had my big camera with me – It was spectacular:

storm

I’m also working on new little boats made from quilt scraps and getting ready for my boat making class at squam next week. You can find the pattern to make your own stitched sailboat here.

quilt boat

And a couple other notes:

* little birds are back in the shop

* thanks for the helpful comments regarding the grey hair situation. I’m interested in hearing about other peoples experience with this. Mine is in a particularly bizarre two tone moment but I’m sticking with it.

good morning

morining 5_23

( I worked late last night and left a big mess)

I’ve got stuff to tell you about and no time to tell it.  I’ll be back later with some important topics:

  • collections- new things I’m working on ( including some pieces for Fortuny)
  • my hair – I’ve decided to let it be grey  ( it always has been  – but I stopped dyeing it in december). I’ve got mixed feelings…..
  • Squam ! Just 2 weeks away!
  • My terrarium.
  • And hula hoops.
Filed under WIP

new garment

I’m not sure exactly what this is.  It is old -my guess would be  depression era – and it’s home made.  The back is shorter than the front  and that  seems intentional, as opposed to a missing piece – I wonder why.

 antique teal jacket

The fabric is spectacular – wonderful teal flannel with a very fine stripe to it and the color variations where it is faded and worn very thin are  shades of soft grayish teal. The little collar is cotton sateen –  a fancy little detail on what seems like a plain everyday type garment.

antique teal  flannel garment - detail

And it had a surprise -when I disassembled  it I found  the lining was  made from  a  perfectly  a preserved printed feed sack .

feed sack lining

teal songbird

I started making a songbird with it this weekend.

work in progress and caption contest results

I’m working on a little group of things – bats and perching owls mostly. I’ll put some of these things in the shop next week – most likely in time for delivery  (in the US)  before Christmas.

bats and owls

pearl gray bat

And The winners  of the first ever ann wood handmade caption contest !

The voter chosen at random ( # generated by random.org) is:

comment # 15 – Geiger. Who is apparently a black cat with a recently replaced hip.
And for a variety of reasons I have decided to award birds to the top 2 vote getters and those winners ( it was very close) are:
7. Lauren
“Now witness, dear friends, as David Blainebird prepares to package himself alive for 6-10 business days! Don’t try this at home!”
and

8. Cari
Darlene had told only her best friend, Eliza, but by the time her mail-order groom was set to arrive, the whole town had heard about it.
Thank you and Happy Holidays to all participants ! (winners – I’ll be in touch for address etc.)

P. S. – Another first ever for me – I’m going to teach a workshop!! (boat making). I’m something beyond excited about this and plan to go on and on about it next week but you can find more info right now here if you like.

Filed under WIP

a new garment

This  antique gown arrived a while ago. I think it’s Edwardian  but it was definitely reworked at some point  – it has fasteners and hardware and repairs that were added later. I guess it has had many lives.

antique lace gown

The peach silk is almost all shattered, it’s torn, stained and many of the seams have let go but the gauze, sheer silk lining and lace are still strong. First I’m making  a bird.

lace bird
Two really – one from each lace and tulle sleeve. And maybe later today a little boat with gauzy sails and little peach silk flags.

*update:

snowflake and ashton
Finished! snowflake and ashton