Sunday, November 25, 2007

Duct Tape Dress Form Preview

Since we'll be doing duct-tape dress forms early next year, I thought you might appreciate this preview from Wild Onion Studio.

Here's another one from Threads Magazine.


Tuesday, November 13, 2007


These are notes from our October Stamp-Making evening...

Your kit contains…

2 DICK BLICK soap erasers
1 3 x 4 piece Soft Kut printing plate from Dick Blick
1 3 x 4 piece EZ Cut printing plate from Dick Blick
1 4 x 6 piece Richeson’s Easy-to-Cut linoleum
2 sheets Darice self-adhesive fun foam
Foam core board to support the foam


  • The first three items can be carved with an X-Acto knife. Linoleum, being thinner, requires linoleum cutting tools. Self-adhesive foam is fun and “instant gratification”—cut shapes with scissors and stick them to the foam core board. We learned that EZ Cut is fragile, and designs shouldn't be too complex. Soft Kut is delightfully easy to work with.
  • Eraser Carving: Make the first cut up and down. Make the second cut at an angle to the first cut, touching the bottom of the first cut but not passing through, as if the first cut is a wall. Passing through the “wall” too much will weaken the stamp.
  • E6000 adhesive can be used to mount stamps to Plexiglas or wood. But we learned that EZ Cut doens't glue well with this stuff.
  • Really quick stamps: Glue string or found objects to a substrate (even cardboard works for short-life stamps). Let it dry and you’re ready to print.
  • Apply paint or thickened dye to your stamps with a brayer, spread the dye onto a smooth surface and tap the stamp to it, or use a foam brush as a stamp pad (pat the surface of the stamp with the brush).
  • You can cut simple shapes from compressed sponge and stamp with that. It will expand when it gets wet.
  • An iron will often transfer photocopied images to a rubber block.

November 2007 Newsletter

There are a few schedule changes—in particular we are NOT meeting at the Menasha library in November or December. Please read carefully and save this newsletter. Have a happy, creative holiday season!

Recap of October Meeting (October 25, 2007)
We carved stamps! It was fun, sometimes messy, and we learned a lot. Check the blog for process and material notes.

Announcements and Reminders
It’s time for our December party meeting on Thursday December 13th at 6:30 p.m. in Gulliver’s restaurant in Neenah (just off the Breezewood exit from 41). We’ll also have a white elephant gift exchange. Julie will reserve a table for us—it’s time to RSVP! Call Julie by December 10th. Out of courtesy, please call her with a yes or a no, so she knows she’s heard from everyone. Don’t forget “A Finishing Odyssey,” our challenge for 2007. The goal is to show “substantial progress” at the party!

There was a request at the October meeting to move the party back to Katy’s house—it really was a ton of fun in 2005. Unfortunately, I’m scheduled for a business trip that week, and if I make it back for the party, it will be just by the hair of my chinny-chin-chin. So Gulliver’s it is!
It’s time for dues. Please bring your $10 to the holiday party. I’ll deputize someone to collect dues if I’m stuck in Oklahoma. Otherwise, please mail it to me or bring it in January. Our dues support mailing the newsletter and provides a small donation to the library in appreciation of the meeting space.

November Meeting (Thursday November 29, 2007)
CHANGE! We are NOT meeting at the Menasha library this month. Instead, we’ll take a “field trip” to the Oshkosh Public Library (106 Washington Avenue), where Jennifer Chiaverini will give a book talk at 7:00 pm in the Lower Level Meeting Room. Jennifer is a national quilt fiction author known for the Elm Creek Quilts series. She was recently featured in Quilters Newsletter. Tickets are required, but you can get them for free from the First Floor Information Desk at the library. Please contact Michele if this poses a problem for you; since she works at the library she may be able to help out. The Lakeside Quilters will also host a quilt show at the library all day on Thursday. See the library website for more information:

Upcoming meetings
With the November schedule change, we’ve rearranged our plans. We’ll do foiling in January, and watch the make-your-own dressform video in February. In March, Katy’s mom, Marilyn, will visit the group and lead us in some right brain drawing activities to teach us to access the “automatic artist” in each of us. We’re still interested in an “art stuff” swap meet, but the date is in flux right now.

January Meeting (Thursday January 31, 2008)
If you have foiling supplies, please bring your own foil and adhesive. If not, you can share Katy’s stuff—please bring a dollar. Other supplies:
  • Fabric. You can foil just about any smooth fabric that can stand the heat of an iron. Once foiled, the fabric is delicate, so it should be the last step in your embellishment repertoire.
  • Stamps! Bring chunky foam stamps, and especially bring some of the stamps you made last month.
  • A foam paint brush and a Styrofoam plate, yogurt lid, etc. to hold the liquid adhesive
  • An old toothbrush to gently clean your stamps
  • Bo-Nash powder—if you have it, bring it. Otherwise, we’ll share.
  • Fusible web. Bring any type you have; they all give different results. Heat-n-Bond usually does NOT work, but we can still experiment.
  • We will need a couple of irons and SMOOTH ironing surfaces.

Upcoming Events
November 29, 2007: November meeting, 7:00.
December, 13, 2007 (Thursday): Holiday party at Gulliver’s in Neenah.
January 31, 2008: January meeting, 6:30. Foiling
February 28, 2008: February meeting, 6:30. “Clone Yourself A Dressform Double”
March 27, 2008: March Meeting, 6:30. Drawing on the right side of the brain.

Conversations with Cloth meets the last Thursday of each month at 6:30 at the Menasha Public Library.