Monday, February 22, 2016

Color Dolly: Fabric Card In-Process Photos

"Eternity is in love with the productions of time.

~ William Blake

This is a photo post with comments, and a continuation of my last post where I introduce my fabric art project for Color Dolly and Dolly Art Gallery at

Just click back one post here, and take a look if you haven't seen the first one yet. It is called: How To Make a Fabric Card: Color Dolly.

Believe it or not this is where the fun was for me. 

I had no idea where I was headed but each turn gave me an exhilarating idea, or a challenge that moved me up another level in creativity. 

Photo collage #1 - I begin

The brown fabric is a wood floor, and the cream is the wall to Dolly's bedroom. Remember, the card is only 5" X 9", so I had to scale down the stool to make room for Dolly. I put a pleat in the middle then quilted and embellished it. Notice the start of the mask.  I used Elmer's-type glue (sparingly and gently) on everything. While one side dried, I began the treasure chest. It was like a paint-by-numbers, except here, it was cut and paste. 

Photo collage #2

Teddy bear is from Best In Show and works nicely, and I quilted it as well. The monkey's head, face, and body are all made from 1" vintage fabric samples from a brochure I found in my grandmother's sewing stool (ca.1954) three years before I was born. 

Three of Jasmine's bandannas were used for the chest including the plaid bottom and the cute frog (you can see him in the photo of the finished treasure chest). 

The baseball cap came from my old jeans, in four small gores, plus the cap bill, where I added thin cardboard underneath and bent it a little, to mimic a real baseball cap. The ballet shoes I crafted from satin that also came from my grandmother's fabric card. 

Photo collage #3
Here you can see where it gets messy! 

Clockwise, in the top two photos you can see Jasmine's bandannas. In the lower left photo are two of the scissors I used the most. The small ones are called "snips" and are used by professional seamstresses in the industry. They are for close clips to get a clean finish. The black handled scissors were my mothers and are quite old, however, they were very sharp, so I used them a lot (with a bundle of gentleness) as it is unwise to use large tools on such small projects. Keep your scissors sharp! 

Photo collage #4

I crafted Dolly first, and although it was very difficult, I've never been more challenged mentally, or felt more exhilarated emotionally. It was amazing how it all started falling into place. 

I quilted her, then cut her out (sounds painful doesn't it!) then placed her beside the stool. This is when it got exciting because I had to move her close to the inside and when I did, her feet fit exactly in line with the stool! It was spine-tingling. 

I added her lovely gold collar (the ribbon came from Hobby Lobby), and you will see it just added so much to the project. 

The last frame is where I try the mask (which is actually Suzanne, Dolly's mom) on her, and it fit perfect. It is so cute! But, I had to leave all up to the imagination and place the mask separately on the card so we could be able to see Dolly's beautiful face. 

You will see where I started on her dress. The ribbon I adorned it with (along with the jester's hat) came from a rainbow of ribbons I saved from a beautifully wrapped gift. (do you save stuff like that?) I'm not a hoarder, but I save useful and beautiful things. It pays! 

Photo collage #5

Here I'm trying to figure out where I want everything. 

I added a metal hook to the top of her dress so her mom could hook it to her collar if she wanted to. She's so cute either way, but with the dress on, it would've covered up most of Dolly's body, and her cute legs with those bows!  I felt like I was playing with my Barbie dolls, I was having so much fun. 

As you can see in frame two the dress is on the stool, and Dolly with only bows on her feet.  She's so adorable, and a tad risque in an innocent kind of way! 

That idea for the ankle bows came from a floor ad in an old Traditional Home magazine, which was on a stool in my bathroom. I was going to take a photo of it to post here, but was in hospital in December and the EMS put Bo in the bathroom while they loaded me in the ambulance and he tore it to shreds! Poor Bo. It was a ballerina in fish-net hose in stilettos, standing in first-position with tulle bows around her ankles. I wish you could've seen it...I really wish you could have seen the bathroom when I got home (mattress explosion). 

Lesson: when an idea hits you, don't hesitate to act, you may miss an opportunity. Haha! That's Bo's fifteen minutes of fame. OK, back to Dolly...

In frame three you can see that I'm putting together her jester's hat.  I had this idea in my head ever since I thought of the mask idea.  I had to cut that 5/8" ribbon way down, stitch it, then twist the colorful ribbon and stitch it down.  I added a "make-believe" bell with my gold thread, then glued the hat behind Dolly's head so her head would show.  

Adding the jester's hat and adding the baby peacock feather to Suzanne's mask was another spine tingling moment, because not only did they match in color, they balanced each other out on the card.  I was ecstatic at the results. Every step seemed to have a surprise in it.  Oh, and I actually knew the peacock the feather came from, his name was Sam.  He belonged to friends I used to house-sit for. He's been gone a long time, but he's not forgotten here! The animal kingdom does it once again. 

The feather didn't do well laying flat, so I propped it up by gluing a cotton ball behind the mask. That worked well in giving a 3D effect, and also served us well in shipping to Canada! 

Photo collage #6
This is my favorite set of photos. 

In frame one, Dolly has on her cute ankle bows. Look at that pose! In frame two she has her dress on. The third frame shows the dress laying on the stool. Can you see how Dolly's arm rests across the top of the stool?  I did not plan that, it fit perfect like a puzzle piece. It still blows my mind. I think Dolly looks just like Audrey Hepburn in one of her big hats! What do you think?

The last frame is a close-up of the mask. Suzanne's lips are plastic and came from a Christmas window decoration.  They are so small...I think I should get an award for cutting those out, it's amazing, I did it first try. I used my fingernail scissors. Well, it was my second try. The fabric lips I tried fell apart they were so small, so I had to go to Plan B.  Her hair is from Best In Show and is of 5 parts, cut to shape, and then I snipped the edges like a razor cut for it to look like hair actually does.  Doesn't she look great?    

So now you know how I went from this:
To this!

Special Thank You:
I would like to give a shout-out to Stephanie at Observer Supply who helped me with browsing for masks and jester hats, photocopying size and scale. She is friendly, smart, and professional, and I couldn't have done this project without her help. 
Thank you Stephanie!
Observer Supply
Gadsden, AL

Bo and I love Dolly and appreciate all she does to promote pawsome love and compassion. Be sure and download her coloring book for your kids (or yourself). Her website is chock-full of pet stories. At Tao of Dolly the animal kingdom rules!

Dolly is also on these social networking sites:
Pinterest, G+TwitterInstagram, and Facebook
But her site is amazing all by itself. You can see all of her latest social posts just while you're there from one place. 

I hope you enjoyed my project. It was pure joy to me! 

See you next time!

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