Sunday, March 17, 2013

Altered Couture returns

 I'm sure you've all had an experience watching an event- a sports event, a play, a concert, a show of some sort...and you think to yourself, "Oh how I wish I was up there/in there/doing that!"  Well, in the audience at the Altered Couture Fashion Show in 2011 with my friend Brigid, I thought just that. Making fashions out of recycled items? Helloooo! That's my gig!
 You can see my posts about the show here and here. I met Susan Perrine that evening. Thank you to Susie (and to facebook) who told me about this year's show.  And the theme this year couldn't be a better fit: Packaging.

So here I am with my supplies: about 15 jute coffee sacks, and about a dozen plastic coffee bags.  I'm holding an empty cup, having just come from Coffee By Design (I can't go down Washington Ave in Portland without grabbing a cuppa). I had to submit this photo to the show organizer. Now I've got 9 days to finish my fashion item before I hit the runway on Thursday, April 4th. My plan is just to keep a caffeine buzz going all week. Rebel blend by Coffee by Design.  Drop me a word of encouragement here and tell me YOUR favorite brew.

Monday, January 7, 2013

When the urge to craft becomes URGENT

During my holiday crafting frenzy I picked up an issue of MaryJanes Farm Magazine and wanted to make the wreath on the cover.  Classic Kate: putting down the umpteen things she *should* be doing and instead following a crafting urge that immediately seems vital and important.  The ingredients were what attracted me: recycled stuff used in a unique way.  Unique, you ask? How unique is it if you are following something on a magazine cover? You've got me there.  I rarely come up with anything new myself but try to give ample credit to all sources.

 I knew I had lots of coffee sacks. (Thanks Paul from Bohemian Coffee Roasters) A request for the necessary "Box frame" to just three of my flower growing/wreath making friends yielded not one but TWO of the frames I needed. (Thanks Betsy Steen and Leslie Anderson).

  I added some wire to make the openings smaller.

Then stripped the coffee sacks and started loopin' and pokin' it in and around. MaryJane's Magazine people had offered very little in the way of instructions so I made it up.

 I thought it needed a bow, but I wanted to keep the "look" rustic and funky.


 A walk with my dog through the craft supplies store known as East Bowdoinham farmland yielded what I wanted...

                      Rusty metal!

I got out my tin snips.
 It was just pliable enough to bend with a gloved hand. FYI, my tetanus shot is up to date.
                                                   Now that's what I was going for.

What's a wreath without berries? Hooray for the button collection I found at the B.of O.  Hot glue and wire turned them into berries.  ( I lost patience after just a few. See urgency noted above)

The seemingly complete wreath hung on my door through the days leading up to Christmas. Then Santa brought me the perfect centerpiece, a small bird made by  the supertalented Steve Ciembroniewicz: school principal by day, artist and crafter by night. Santa must have shopped at Steve's family's "Dos Pollitos" booth at the Bowdoinham Holiday Festival craft fair. Smartypants Santa.
                                                Happy New Year and Happy Recycling.