Saturday, December 27, 2008

look what I made

Hello there! Back from Christmas escapades. Hope you all had a wonderful time of much eating and drinking and giving and receiving. All worked out well here; my father managed to get out with his snow tires and come to pick us up. Whew! But more on that when I have a chance to put together a longer post. This is just a quickie about bird garlands.
I gave in to my holiday craft craving sparingly this year, and really only made one thing, well, two of the same thing: these felt bird garlands. I spent a solid day blanket stitching at the beginning of the snow-in, and would likely have kept going in an obsessive way, but that I fortuitously ran out of felt.

They were fun, and extremely easy. I do not know how to sew; anyone at all could make these, but I think they are very adorable! I wanted to post pics before, but the recipients (mom and Alexandra) would have seen them here. Here are the individual birds before stringing:

You may remember I was tempted to make round felt garlands I'd found at Anna Maria Horner's blog, but I restrained myself, and the felt, it was just sitting there in a stack, and one blustery night I found myself cutting out bird shapes. I used the colorful embroidery thread I bought at a Mayan market in Chiapas last spring and had so far not done anything with. I wish I'd bought much more of it. The colors are so ludicrously beautiful!
(I did not buy all of this; this is the stash at the market; I plundered it for maybe ten balls of yarn. I want more!)

Along with buttons mostly from my grandmother's button tin, and some little scraps of patterned fabric I buy from time to time despite the fact that I do not and cannot sew, and I was ready to go.

I plan to make myself one (or two) too, because they looked so cute hanging in my writing room (pic above). I'll have to acquire some more felt first! Perhaps I'll make them while watching the "Pushing Daisies" DVD Jim gave me -- color all around! I'm also keen to watch the other DVD Jim gave me, which is this:
It's called Baraka, which means "blessing" in many different languages, and it's a non-narrative exploration of. . . well, I haven't seen it yet, but I think it's a visual exploration of the world, of humanity in all its many faces, and of the planet too. Religious ceremonies, death camps, everyday scenes, extraordinary scenes, filmed at 152 locations around the world. Cool. Can't wait to see it, though it would be best on my parents' new giganto HD TV, not our own ancient thing.

Anyway, I'll be back with pictures of food and family, icicles and presents, soon. Hope you are all well!


Granny Smith said...

Your bird garlands are irresistible! I'm so glad that you made it out to your family celebration. The snow here in Port Townsend is melting slowly. Hope the same is happening in Portland and vicinity.

Anonymous said...

the bird garland is FABULOUS! DANG! if only our package wasn't sitting in the post'd be amazed how serendipitously things worked out! :D
glad to know pop made it with snow tires. ei yi yi. he's a valiant and remarkable man. i look forward to making another taylor holiday toast. best to you and jimbo!

Shelli (srjohannes) said...

You are "sew" talented. I can barely sew on a button and you just threw this together? Happy Holidays1

Stephanie Perkins said...

YAY!!! I'm so happy and relieved you made it to your parents' house for the holidays. Phew phew phew.

Okay. Question. Did you attach the birdie wings with fabric glue? I don't see any stitches, but I want to make sure in case, by way of late-Christmas miracle, I obtain oodles of free time and make my OWN bird garlands. Because I totally want to. Yours are beautiful!

Hip-hip-huzzah for the Pie Maker and colorful television! (RIP, Ned and Chuck. May you live to see the big screen.)

Laini Taylor said...

Stephanie, the wings are sewn on, but just with a few stitches of regular thread around the edges, so you can't really see it; then the same thread to sew on the button eye, and it's done pretty quickly.

Alexandra Saperstein said...

I am the extremely lucky owner of one of these two garlands and just want to say it is just unbelievable. Anthropologie has nothing on Laini! Laini should open up her own store with her own designs and misc other items sprouted from her teeny tiny but prolifically creative genius brain. The store could just be called Laini and sell all sorts of stuff! I will even donate to you free of charge my image to be plastered onto life size mannequin like cut-outs of myself with my arm outstretched to greet people as they enter the store. You could have peppermint shortbread cookies and Oreo truffles out as snacks while people walk about and pennies in the bottoms of tulips vases and even Lochness For Dummies books.

Jaime Temairik said...

Dudette, those garlands are so lovely. I can't believe the colors and how sweet they are all together. You must stop saying you 'can't' sew because, clearly, you can! I wonder if you will make a felt pie garland next...

Lexi said...

Garlands=cutest things ever!

lizardek said...

For someone who claims she can't and doesn't sew, just the impulse to MAKE those bird garlands is pretty good, and that they are SO. DARN. CUTE - WOW! This non-sewer salutes you.

Laini Taylor said...

Ah, gee thanks, everybody. I guess I don't consider blanket-stitch "sewing" and believe me when I say I can't sew! I learned blanket stitch from an online step-by-step, and there was a learning curve! Truly, if I could make these, anybody could!

Deva Fagan said...

I have to come out of lurkdom to say that those garlands are absolutely gorgeous. I went out and got some felt myself after you first posted about the garlands (though I am envious of the glorious colors you found). Now I am thinking perhaps I should try something more interesting than just circles. The birds are adorable! Hmm. Perhaps I will try fishies!

Reading your blog is such an inspiration! Thank you for sharing your passion for life and beauty with the rest of us.

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