The Leopard Is ON the Wall

9 09 2008


Leopard on the Wall

Leopard on the Wall

 Ok, admit it. I know you missed me Labor Day weekend. But, I was busy painting this sleeping leopard on the wall of Devon and Taylor’s bedroom. 

It was definitely my most ambitious painting project, ever. My previous foray into painting with acrylics was 15 years ago with a classic Mickey on the wall of one of my bathrooms…a considerably simpler adventure with only 4 colors and no shading. But you know what I say, no guts, no glory!

I admit, I didn’t draw it freehand. I projected a photo on the wall to trace the shape and the relative sizes and locations of some of the spots. But the shading is all mine, well as good as I could get it. 

It took me about 27 hours over the 3-day weekend. And the 8-year olds took turns helping with the tree bark.



Africa Jacket Update

17 03 2007

Africa Sweatshirt Jacket Front View

In my original post on this topic I promised to post photos. This is a jacket that I made using a sweatshirt, fabric that I purchased in Africa and at home, and machine-stitched crazy quilting techniques. If you would like more information about this, leave a comment below. My blog software will ask you for your email address, and I’ll get back to you.  

From the back:

 Africa Sweatshirt Jacket Back View

Detail of button decorations and lining:

 Africa Sweatshirt Jacket Detail 1

Additional detail:

 Africa Jacket Detail 2

The DAD mark:

 DAD label

An Africa Jacket of My Very Own

12 02 2007

Hoorah! Woohoo! On Saturday, I completed an Africa Jacket for my very own use. If you recall, I made jackets for my nieces using some materials I bought while visitng Africa. They looked so cute that I determined to make one for myself. Plus, I decided it was another opportunity to work out the design kinks. Taylor taught me to widen the sleeves somewhat…the sleeves of sweatshirts taper off more significantly than a normal jacket. Plus, I wanted to experiement with lining to hid all the seems of the decorative stitching.
So I set to work, and voila! I now have my own lined jacket! I also set parameters for myself with this one. I decided not to splurge on additional trims, but to challenge my creativity a little more and use what I already had at home. Those little baubles add up even though a half yard here and a quarter yard there don’t seem like a lot when you’re asking the store clerk to measure it out.

But I must say, I’m pleased with the results. It’s not quite as dramatic as Devon’s and Taylor’s jackets, but it will do. Rather than lots of shiny gold trim, I used antique buttons to add some sparkle and texture. Plus, I wanted to create some kind of closure that wouldn’t involve making buttonholes. And, that turned out alright as well.

So I’m wearing my jacket now as I write. And I promise to add a photo asap.

Africa Jackets

16 01 2007

Africa Jacket 2Africa Jacket 1

I just finished these “Africa Jacket” projects for my 7 year old nieces. I need to maintain my status as the “coolest Aunt Denise in the whole wide world.” It started out as a birthday present, evolved to a Christmas present, and ended up a “happy winter” present when I realized there was no way I’d be done by December 25.

But, alas, they are done! I was inspired by a display I saw in my local library last October. Someone had disassembled a sweatshirt and stitched patches on it in a crazy quilt style and then reassembled it into a jacket. I couldn’t see much of the jacket itself. It was folded in a display case. But the accompanying description didn’t make it sound like an impossible project. So I started the journey of the Africa Jackets.

I had purchased a few fabrics at the airport in Zambia, being attracted by their rich and vibrant colors and bold patterns.  Even though I don’t think the fabrics were made in Africa, they sure reminded me of it! Then I was Christmas shopping in a local store and found the fabrics with the “Big 5” animals and knew that I just had to put this together.

And voila! Pictured are 2 same, but different jackets for my nieces, Devon and Taylor. The elephants, lions, cheetahs, leopards, rhinos, zebras, giraffes scamper all over the front and back and the fuzzy leopard print material makes wearing them a multi-dimensional experience. I love them so much, I think I’ll make a jacket for myself.  Let me know what you think!

Original No Guts post.