Thursday, July 24, 2008

Dotee Dolls

Dotee - Fairy Theme
Originally uploaded by Pictures by Ann
I had never heard of Dotee Dolls until recently. The concept is from a woman who lives in Australia. Since she started making these and posting a tutorial about how to make them, they seem to be popping up everywhere I look. So...I thought I'd try my hand at them.

This doll was made for a woman who lives in North Carolina who is participating in a Dotee Doll - Fairy Theme Swap on Swap-bot. I sent this one to her, and I will be receiving a Fairy Dotee Doll from another woman.

Swap-Bot is a great way to connect with others throughout the world. Currently, I'm hosting four swaps on Swap-Bot. See the links to the right if you'd like to be a part of the swap.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Learning the Color Wheel

I signed up for an artist trading card (ATC) swap on Swap-Bot that focused on insects. As a result, I made some extra ladybug cards in the process since the favorite insect around here is the ladybug.

Both Sophia and Olivia were adopted from China, and the ladybug has a special meaning to families who are adopting from China. (The Chinese adoption myth is that ladybugs are a sign of good luck and it is said if you see a ladybug your referral will be coming very soon.)

As I was thinking about what to do, I thought it would be fun to make ladybugs in different colors. The ATCs ended up being two-part. The cover, as shown in the picture, is of two ladybugs.

The top level of the card has a door that opens to reveal what happens if the two ladybugs collide.

The girls LOVED these cards. It was a good review of primary and secondary colors for my daughters. It's visual. And it's something that they can immediately remember when asked, "What color does red and blue make?"

More information about the ladybug series - including how they were made are on my Flickr site at .

This site - at - has some more information about the significance of the ladybug to those in the Chinese adoption community as well as information about how the ladybug is considered to be good luck in many other cultures.

There are many cultures that believe if you are to kill a ladybug then it will bring sadness and bad luck. There are those that believe the ladybugs give good luck when you have one land on you or if you catch one.

This site - at
- has information about legends about ladybugs around the world as well as how to say the word "ladybug" in different languages.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Artist Trading Cards

I've been working on Artist Trading Cards recently which has been so much fun. This is my first embroidered card. There are went to Australia for a swap for fantasy creatures (for Flickr's ATC Beginners group); and the other one went to my oldest daughter who loves unicorns.

This card is embroidered, and is the standard ATC size (2 1/2" x 3 1/2"). The unicorn pattern is a free one that I found on the internet. Thought it was a cute one.

Other cards I've done include collage and needlefelted. Visit and look under "ATC Cards - Available and Traded" for what I've made so far.

If you trade cards, there are generally always some available. I've been making cards weekly so new ones are always being added.

Having two daughters who I homeschool, I'm always looking at things from an educational standpoint. ATCs are great in terms of learning about a variety of things.

The most obvious benefit is creating art and seeing art made by various artists. Both Sophia and Olivia are learning more about collage and how to combine different elements to make them work together in a eye-pleasing collage. They see such a wide range of artistic styles by looking at the cards I've received.

ATCs are an excellent way to learn about geography - U.S. and world. I've sent and received cards from many different states as well as countries (including Finland, U.K., Switzerland, Germany, and Australia).

They're a great way to connect with others who you would never connect with otherwise. I've met other women who homeschool, have children with special needs (both my daughters have special needs), have visited or live in countries I've been to, who live in the same state as I do, or enjoy the same types of crafts.

Off to make some more cards now!