Sunday, November 20, 2016

A Menagerie of Information

I have a lot of pictures and information to share today.

I love to try new things and share my experiences with everyone. Since my birthday month is this month, I'm supposed to flip my colors for the Red Hatters, and wear a lavender hat with pink clothes.  Since I was attending a Christmas party with my mother, I decided to look for a lavender Santa hat.  I saw a super cute red and white striped hat that was about 5 feet long but alas it was the wrong color.  I looked at Hobby Lobby and Michael's, and came up empty for a lavender Santa hat, so I decided to try my hand at making one for the party.  I got all my materials, some super soft fleece, a yard's worth, and some trim and a pom pom for the end.  I was sad that I didn't see pink trim, BUT the pom pom has some pink strands in it.

For anyone that wants to try this I'll go through the steps I took.  It really was easy even though my apartment is so small I can't get to my grandmother's sewing machine and had to do this by hand.  First measure your head, then fold the material in half and measure, making sure there is a few inches left so you can make a cuff and to account for making the seams by sewing, then cut diagonally to make a cone shape, making sure the fold is the end you're not cutting, then you only have one seam to sew.

Once it's cut and you sew the seam cuff it and then add your trim.  I had feathery trim and a pompom for mine as you saw in the first picture.  Because my feathery trim was thin I sewed it around the hat several times to make a thicker edge. I first sewed it to the cuff, and then for the additional wraps I tacked here and there, the feather trim to the feather trim.

I wore it to the party with mom yesterday, and a few ppl asked about my hat, so that was nice.  When I got home, I found I was fighting an anxiety attack since the Christmas party is a rather large party, but I was fortunate that it didn't advance to a full blown one, so that made me happy.  I had thought about piling it on top and pinning with some Christmas pins which would have been cute, but I draped it sort of like a scarf instead, which was also cute.  It was an awful lot of fun to make my own hat for the event and I may try my hand at doing some more later.

On to our next bits of information.  I've used different types of mediums for information on my blog in the past.  Recently, I decided I might like to try water colors and markers.  I didn't find markers......but I DID find gel pens.  The set I found was a set of 200, which was 100 colors, and then 100 refills.  I saw several sets like this, but ordered the least expensive one I found, that came with the refills.  They came beautifully packaged and I will be coloring with them soon to show you how things turn out, though I may also try to find a marker set later on to still try that medium.

AS you can see, they came in a protective box, and like the Artist's Choice pencil set I got they fold out.  There was also an Artist's choice gel pen set, which I may try at some future date so I can critique that for you, but for now, this will suffice.  The Artist's Choice set was slightly less than this one, but for a few dollars extra you got refills, so I went with this set instead.

I had also thought about trying REAL water colors, and since I'm not an accomplished artist with knowledge of all types of mediums I decided against a set that had tubes and mixing palettes.  Instead I went with a set that had cakes, and came with 36 colors, This gives a fairly broad set of colors, and I'm sure I can play with this and see if I can blend or mix colors.......though that makes me nervous.  Since my niece is still only 4, nearly going on 5, and I don't know what she might decide to be in her life besides a princess....which I fully support, I think I might get some sets I saw in Michaels that were relatively cheap for me, my sister, mother and her to use at my mother's house while we still get to have playdates each week.  We have only a year....well, less, to do this unless we can manage it on a weekend, and it will be precious times that we will all miss, since it's fun to spend time playing with her, but also to play with my mom and sister, and see them each week also, and to see how they grow in understanding and play along with my niece, as her understanding of the world grows and changes also.  Her earlier art shows growth so clearly, and how it changes shows her understanding of the world and the people in it.  We've been so fortunate to have such a wonderful, unspoiled, empathetic and unselfish little girl.  Much credit goes to her mother and father and all the other people in her life who've helped her grow.  I only wish I was closer to my nephews so I could see them grow and change as I can with her too.

I will, of course, add pictures of things as I try these new mediums, but I also wanted to share an accidental find.  I had thought I was adding a coloring book for my birthday to round out my order and save on shipping, but when it came, it was a surprise.  Little cards that came in a little box.  I think they feel a little "waxy" so the only medium I think may work on them, may very well be the gel pens, though I may try others to see how that works and share this with you also.  I think this is a very cute thing, as I can pop them into a card or envelope to friends or family just to say, I love you and am thinking of you each day.  These came in a little box, about 3 or so inches high and perhaps an inch and a half thick, and I think about 4 inches wide.  I'd have to measure to see, but you'll see them directly.

Last, but certainly not least is the first example of Millie Marotta's fourth book, Curious Creatures, in which, she also lists the animals in the back in the order they appear in the book.  Once again the art is beautiful and whimsical, and of course, I began with the first page.  This is a picture of flying fish, and I did enjoy coloring this.  I look forward to more art from her, though for the new mediums I think I may try other books for the moment so I can also review them for you here.

I hope you enjoyed all that I've shared today as much as I've enjoyed sharing with you, and as always, I look forward to what you share with me also....until then, ENJOY, and remember, there is no wrong way to appraoch your coloring thereapy, whether for stress relief or simply for enjoyment!