Saturday, 12 January 2013

These wings were made to fly - Sunday Stampers Challenge #239 and Anything But a Card Challenge #10

Hello Again! I'm back.

Following a brief "sabbatical" - I was actually sewing my poor little fingers to the bone for my proper job (Maisie Moonshine's Handmade Crafts Emporium) making stock for the Christmas Craft Fair season. (Which went very well - thank you very much for asking.) I have now returned to my craft room to play nice again.

I've been following Hels' blog even though I haven't had the time to join in - although I did complete a project for the snow challenge (but forgot to post it - duh) and started one for Noel (now a UFO (un-finished object) to be completed some time before Christmas rolls round again - only 346 sleeps till Christmas!) and as usual have been wowed by her amazing creativity - if I can be an eighth as productive as Hels in 2013 I'll be a happy crafter!

Any road up - to the chase... As usual I've gone a little bit off piste with my project, using Hels' challenge as a jumping off point. I like to pick up the challenge as early as I can on Sunday - too often this is not long after midnight as that ol' devil called insomnia comes a callin'. Then I'll let the challenge wander round  my mind for a couple of days and then with a sort of plan and a mental picture of what I want the finished project to look like I'll head to the craft room (must think of a better name for it) and start to play.

Tragically Mr Mojo appeared to have left the building - I think because I've got out of the habit of paper crafting whilst I've been spending every waking hour stitching. After much umming and ahhing, head scratching and discarded ideas this project started life as a mixed media piece; a stamped and collaged background, a Crafty Individuals butterfly stamp (recent purchase) on fabric which I intended to colour in with Distress Markers - but oh yes I haven't got any - and I don't want the look Copics would give me - so - project stalled.

BUT thank heavens for the bedside notebook! 03:15 DING! inspiration... The lyrics of the Little Mix song Wings popped in to my head "These wings are made to fly". Which got me to thinking about the freedom of flight, both physical and spiritual and how wonderful it would be to be able to strap on a set of wings and JUST SOAR...

So here are my "things that can fly" - a set of mechanical wings on a harness which can be taken on and off as required - because these wings were made to fly...

The back view

some detailed shots

The steampunk mechanical wings stamp was perfect for this project!

The deets...

Tiny Harlequin background stamp - unknown
Woodgrain stamp - Kaisercraft
Wings - Kanban - Insignia
Tiny alpha stamps - unknown
Distress Ink - Tea Dye for ageing dictionary paper, Gathered Twigs for woodgrain and harlequin stamp
Staz-on Jet Black for wings and text
Dress form 
Tim Holtz Alterations sewing room BigZ die
Greyboard, Kraft cardstock, dictionary pages,acetate, quilters batting, rusty tin wire, beads

How it was made

1. Die cut 7 dress form shapes from greyboard, 2 from Kraft cardstock (only one shown) and just the body from quilters batting

2. Laminate the layers together using quick drying glue, pay attention to the edges, especially on the stand, 7 layers makes the piece able to stand un-supported.

3. Stamp the two pieces of Kraft with the woodgrain stamp and heat set using a heat tool, then glue to the front and back of the greyboard stack. Place under a heavy weight and leave to dry. (I put it under a stack of magazines and left it whilst I did the school run) When dry colour the grey edges with Promarker in a matching brown.

4. Glue the batting in place on the front of the dress form. I wanted this to give the dress form a softer shape at the front, but I think another layer or thicker polyester wadding would have worked better. Allow to dry whilst you move on to the next stage.

5. Tear some strips from dictionary paper then tear again into random shapes - not too large or small, then use an ink blending tool to apply Tea Dye Distress Ink. I used differing amounts of pressure and ink to produce a varied depth of colour. Over stamp a few of the pieces with the harlequin stamp using Gathered Twigs distress Ink. Heat set (use a pokey tool to stop the pieces blowing away!)

I used matte medium to decopatch my dictionary pages over the body of the dress form. Leave to dry (I used my heat tool to speed up the process as the batting gets quite wet) (Sorry was a bit messy and forgot to take a pic of this bit)

6. Stamp the wings on to acetate with Jet Black Staz-on and cut out leaving a 1cm border all around, cut up the middle of the wings to create two separate wings. Using a Crop-a-dile punch a small hole in the unstamped border at the centre top of each wing. You can just see this on the detail shot of the back above.

7. Stamp words on to fabric - I used Staz-on then cut out and fray the edges

8. I made the harness from rusty tin wire, simply bent into a U shape with three beads threaded onto the bottom curve which goes across the chest. I placed the U to the front of the dress form then folded the "arms" of the U over the shoulders of the dress form. I then threaded the wings on to the wire at the back twisted the wire, trimmed and then curled the wire ends up using round nosed pliers.

9. Finally glue on the words using dots of fabric glue and there you have it!

Oh by the way - to give you an idea of scale this piece is 15.5cm tall.

See you again soon


  1. Thanks for joining in the "Things with wings" challenge at Anything but A Card this time round! What an awesome dressform! Love that you showed how to make it!

  2. Gorgeousness indeedily, sorry I am late visiting ... been a tad preoccupied with all the goodies at CHA lol Thanks for joining in with the Sunday Stamper x

  3. This is so beyond fabulous!!!! :) Thanks for joining us at Anything But a Card! :) :) :)

  4. This is such a wonderfully fun and inspirational piece! Your step by step directions are great! Thanks so much for joining us at Anything But a Card!

    LOVE the acronym UFO! I will be using that one in the future!!

  5. Sorry I'm late visiting but just wanted to say I love what you've done with this dress form! Your tutorial is great too. Thanks for joining the challenge at Anything But A Card.

  6. I envy your patience at building up that body form ,

    Your finished piece is lovely,


Thanks for sharing your happy thoughts. Maisie Moonshine x

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