Saturday, August 16, 2008

Purse for Children's Dramatic Play or Treasure Collecting

My daughters love to carry little purses to carry their "treasures" in...whether it be little rocks or a feather they find outside, or felt gnomes and needlefelted acorns.

This past week, while recovering from surgery, I had plenty of time to embroider this little clutch (or purse...whatever you prefer to call it).

Although this one is for sale in my Etsy shop (see the link to the right), the girls both asked if I could make one for them.

My thought is that as we go on our nature walks, that the girls can carry the purse (it has a cotton yarn handle that is long enough to fit over the girls' shoulders), and place their little treasures inside...a smooth acorn, a beautiful fall leaf, a magical stone.

The felt used for the purse is 100% wool, with the leaf being a plant-dyed wool felt. There is no comparison, in my opinion, between 100% all-natural wool felt and synthetic wool. Wool felt is superior in quality and provides a richer sensory input.

The purse closes with a standard snap, making it easy for children and adults alike to use it.

It is hand-embroidered with tiny blanket-stitches (about 7-8 per inch), so it is sturdy and will hold the items placed in it. It is meant to be an heirloom piece that a child can pass along to her children.

The cover design is a sage-green leaf that has a chain-stitch design on and around it. There are tiny yellow dots made with embroidery floss around the leaf on the pumpkin-color orange felt.

The size of the purse is 4 1/2" wide by 3" high.

It was a joy to embroider this purse...and now I'm ready to begin to make 2 for each of the girls so we're ready for our autumn nature walks.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Interactive Art

This is an interactive ACEO (Art Cards Editions Originals) that I made yesterday. I've been tossing around the idea of how children can interact with art more, and thought of this idea.

My daughters have enjoyed making and trading ATCs. Both have Sensory Integration Dysfunction, and have a strong need to touch and feel things so their bodies receive the input that is needed.

So...this card combines that need to touch and interact with art. I could tell that it is JUST what they needed when both came into my room and asked me to make one for them.

I let them choose their background colors (one chose 2 colors of pink - a light color for the front and a darker one for the back; and the other chose blue for the front and red for the back).

ATCs have been a wonderful, sensory learning tool for the girls, and such a great way for them to learn about art.

This new card - with the panda finger puppet that they can remove and play with - just takes the cards to a new level for the girls who love imaginary play and puppets.

Now a little about the card...the finger puppet and the card itself are all hand-embroidered. The panda is attached to the card by velcro so it can easily come off and be used...and then placed back on the card for a safe place to call "home." The bamboo leaves are sewn onto the felt card.

The card and puppet are made with 100% wool felt. Cotton floss is used to blanket-stitch the puppet as well as the card together.

If you'd like this panda ACEO, check out my Etsy shop. A link is to the right.

Update: Oh my! The panda ACEO sold already and I just listed it a couple of hours ago. It looks like I'll make another one. (It was fun to make. Now I have a good excuse to take a break from housework and do some embroidery this afternoon.)

If you would like a panda ACEO, please email me at or visit my Etsy shop at where you can send me a message as well. I have a variety of colors of wool felt so perhaps there is another color you would like for the background and backing of the card. Just let me know.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Embroidered Henny Penny Taking a Stroll

I've been enjoying making textile artist trading cards (ATCs) recently. This is the most recent one. The size of Henny Penny Taking a Stroll is 2 1/2" x 3 1/2" - so the pieces and stitching are actually quite small.

What I like about ATCs - especially these textile ones - is that it is a great way to use fabric and embroidery floss that you have right on hand. There's no need to go out and purchase anything.

With the economy in a challenging state right now...with gas and food prices so is nice to be able to still create pieces without spending a lot of money.

The other aspect of ATCs that I enjoy is that as a mom who homeschools, my daughters are able to see a variety of different artistic styles from creative women throughout the world. They are able to touch these little works of art that come in the mail...something they can't do when they visit an art museum where you simply cannot touch the art.

Having daughters who both have sensory issues (sensory integration dysfunction), ATCs are a wonderful way for them to touch, feel, and get that sensory input they need - while at the same time being inspired by art created by such a diversity of artists. It's one aspect of art education that the girls truly enjoy.