Travel Dummy

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She’s crafty! She’s just my type! January 6, 2010

Filed under: Craft Fiend — Angela @ 7:30 am
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A little Beastie Boys on a bright and sunny (if you’re in Southern California like me!!) Wednesday morning is sometimes just what the Doctor ordered!

The cold/flu/allergies/H1N1/psychosomatic nonsense that has plagued me for the past few days has given me some much-needed relief…for the time being. Yay!

One of my challenges for the new year is to feed that insatiable kid in me who never got to participate in arts n’ crafts during summer camp. Thats because I never went to summer camp to experience all the outdoorsy-s’mores roasting-ghost stories and sleeping bags that smell like feet goodness. I have to tell you, I’m a little bit bitter about it and to this day wonder what life changing events may have occurred if I had. I could have been the first woman president…I could have won the Nobel Peace Prize…I could not still be living with my parents…

In all sincerity, I feel as though creating gives you a kind of satisfaction that you can’t find anywhere else. Not to mention that feeding your creativity opens up your mind to be creative in all things; It helps you to problem solve, communicate more effectively, relate to a wide range of people. The arts are an important function in socialization as well as fundamentally important to every culture I have ever studied.

Alright…I said this blog wasnt going to be used as a soap box and I meant it.

Once a week my Wednesday challenge is to create something. Watercolor, music, video, any suggestions you might have! The point is to give my right brain a little excercise…hes getting pretty lethargic over there and considering Jenny Craig.

This may not be all that exciting for the men out there, since many of the projects I have planned are, well, girly. My advice to you? Suggest something! I said this was supposed to be a challenge…so challenge me!

For Christmas, Devo (my husband), had promised to buy me the adorable-and-I-cant-live-without-it wallet I had been eyeing in the mall. Unfortunately, he travels for work and arrived home three days before Christmas. Of course, by then the wallet had sold out.

Determined not to take out my vengeance on him for not planning ahead and buying it before he left, I decided to buck up and reproduce that glorious wallet myself.

I went to Target and found a simple hard case wallet (almost the size of a clutch) covered in a shiny faux yellow leather with a good metal clasp.

Then it was off to the fabric store.

When it comes to choosing fabrics there are two things to keep in mind. First should be something for inspiration. I was looking for a ‘character’ to create a theme for the project. The point is to find something clearly defined and around 1/3 the size of the front of your wallet after you cut it out. Examples would be a cartoon character, your favorite flower or a wiener dog. Fabric featuring a fun and bright peacock (about the size of a baseball) was one of my top picks, but in the end I found the holy grail…Our Lady of Guadalupe.

Next I needed a second fabric as a kind of backing for my character, to make it stand out and add a little bit of dimension. The key here is contrast without being too harsh. My ‘Lady’ fabric is pretty colorful and detailed, so I looked for fabric that was more abstract with deeper tones. Make sure the backing fabric also has clearly defined images, like large flowers or circles, you will need clean lines to cut along.

Speaking of cutting…lets do some shall we?

Carefully cut out your character. For me, it was a bit of a challenge since the image is repeated and overlaps itself. Just find what looks good to you (and make sure it is no larger than 1/3 the size of the front of your wallet!) and cut! Repeat with your second piece of fabric, though this piece should be larger than your character since it is going behind it and you probably want to be able to see it. It’s ok if this piece wraps around the back or down the sides of your wallet…thats what scissors are for.

Step 5 – Lay your backing fabric down on the wallet and trace around it. Why? That pleather has been treated and will most likely not hold glue…you gotta sand that sucker! So after you do the tracing, give the parts that will have glue a little sanding with fine sand paper…it just needs a little! Please don’t rip your wallet to shreds!

Alright! Glue glue glue! Glue your little heart out! After you get your backing fabric down, you most likely wont need to do anymore sanding. The fabric glue will stick to other fabric silly! Bits of my ‘Lady’ were off of the backing fabric, so I had to sand a little bit more before she could be glued on.

Last step! Puff paint…yes…puff paint…dont judge me (you can also use generic fabric paint, just make sure it comes in a squeezable container). The edges of the fabric tend to fray, get hard, snag on things or just look unsightly. Follow the edge of the fabric of your character with whatever color puff paint you desire to hold the edges down and give it that little bit of pop it needs.

(pre puff paint, photo of finished product tomorrow!)

And DONE!

All in all…about 30 minutes from start to finish. Easy as pie…1/2 the cost of the one in the mall…one of a kind and totally made by me!

Now if only I had money to put in it….