Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Funny little things ...

I am drawn to making little creatures - soft toys made out of upcycled or end of the line fabric remnants. A baby on the way, more time with my kids and time on my hands for my favourite thing - making treasures ... well as you can see, I have lots of fun with these childish creations. Above is a book I picked up last week from Minerva, a great bookshop for textile lovers located in the city on Cuba Street. I figure buying a book now and then is cheaper than workshops and I just need to sell a one or two creations to earn the cost of the book. Our budget demands this kind of logic - helps with my buyers guilt remorse. The puppy I made above was from a pair of 99c gardening gloves from the Warehouse. I cannot find those archival white cloth gloves that we use at the gallery. Anyone have any ideas?

These three creatures are my boys creations with some help from mum in the construction. We made them from old wool blankets, some of which I dyed last summer at India Flints workshop. I am trying to encourage the boys to design and draw a lot these days. I tend to make things intuitively which is fine but want the boys to start thinking early about design process. What textures, colours and form they desire and most importantly, get them thinking "why?" they want things to look the way they do. What feeling do they wish to evoke in their creations and afterwards to critique their work - have they achieved what they set out to do. Of course they are boys and would rather be skateboarding or playing games, but when they show even a glimmer of interest, I milk it for all its worth. And these are their results. If they sell these, they can have the money which adds further incentive. I don't care if they never become artists, I just want them to have those skills early. When I was a kid, my mum bought me bare wooden shelves and let me paint them, she purchased pot plants that I chose and let me decorate my own bedroom. That and creative license to dress how I wanted really boosted my own personal sense of style and confidence that drives me even to this day.

This little cutie doll was a gift from my three year old friend Phoenix for our new baby. It's made from leftover felt/knitting that's been ecodyed and sewn with her mums handspun thread. The legs are made from handspun silk twine. It is my favourite handmade thing recently - I adore its simplicity. The big buttons may have come from Spotlight.

These two pink fella's were created from a glove and bits of old jerseys. Cleverly sewn together to form these cuddle monsters by my friend Cleo. I made enough money selling my cupcake pincushions at Pataka's mid-year craft market to purchase them, having loved her toys for over a year now. As soon as I made enough money, I ran across and nabbed these two handmade lovelies of her stall for my new baby. These were my first purchases for baby 'Knuckles'. Um, not very practical but definitely desirable. The fresias on the windowsill came from our garden and are a hint of the spring season that is finally making an appearance. Roll on warmer weather is all I can say.

And here is my own little cuddle monster - Marcus who made himself a nice 'bed' with his blanket in the sun. He likes to set up these little nests, arranging his toys and himself. I remember doing this as a kid.

This funny monster is called "Pukana" which is the challenge a Maori makes when he is doing a war dance. He opens his eyes big and grimaces with his tongue out. I made him for Marcus.

And these sock creatures were inspired by a book I got from the library in Porirua called "Stupid Sock Creatures". I found some old rugby socks in St Vincents De Paul Op Shop in Johnsonville and threw in a kiwi twist. I love the big juju lips - totally Polynesian-flavours.

1 comment:

ArtPropelled said...

Oh the last 2 are just the bees knees!