Christmas in July

WHAT?!? I know, nobody is ready to think about Christmas yet, but if you want your product or gifts to be ready for the holidays, you have to start early. Starting in May, I began developing my idea for mini, single-use ornament looms and they are now ready!

Above and below are samples that I designed. You can totally make these your own heirloom ornaments to keep or give as gifts or you can give the kit to your crafty friends. Paint them or leave them raw, back them with felt, fabric paper, etc., embellish with sequins, beads, puffy paint, embroidery and/or crochet, drill a small hole(s) to hang beads, tassels, etc. Limitless possibilities, really. They are also a great way to use all those yarn scraps!!

Blue_Green_comboI have two kits available in my Etsy store:

Full set includes: 4 mini looms, tiny beater, warp string, 2 tapestry needles (straight and bent tip), felt backing and glue.

Basic kit

The individual set includes: 1 mini loom, tiny beater, warp string, 2 tapestry needles (straight and bent tip).

single set

I will also be releasing a larger version of the tree. Instead of a wreath, you can weave a unique decoration for your door.

Of course, as a pet lover, I had to work up some dog and cat ornaments. I will also be making larger versions of these that can be used as wall hangings to honor or memorialize a pet. You can even drill a small hole to hang their tag!!

Dog_catloom

Also, in the works are a butterfly, a monkey and a nursery set (sun, moon and stars). So much work to be done still, but I think you are really going to like these. Follow me in Instagram @casamarengostudio for updates and design ideas

So much going on in the studio…

that it looks like this is going to another mostly picture post. I’m trying to make work for my Etsy shop, so I’ve been pretty busy and not much time to blog, so photos with captions it is.

First up, I’ve been making many necklaces, both tassel and woven. I am also working on some bracelets, but don’t have a photo to post just yet since they aren’t quite finished.

 

Next up is clothing using a combination of weaving and sewing. I’m still working on a vest and camisole in this same yardage, then moving to a black palette.

 

This is a linen cross back apron commissioned by a friend some time ago and I finally finished it. I have one just like it and I love it!

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And, last, but not least, I found time to do a study for a painting for my Jazz Series. This one is based on Thelonious Monk’s “Well, You Needn’t.” I think it would also make a great tapestry, but that would  be challenging and perhaps drive me over the edge, lol!

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More to come soon!

 

Have a great day everybody!

WIP and misc.

Fabric_1Making fabric on my Saori loom for crop tops and vests. Mostly cotton and silk yarn with a small amount of wool, linen and acetate yarns.

 

Feltcoasters_WIPFelt coasters. Rust dyed, handpainted and embroidered.

 

Spinning_kalesaladMaking purse insets with yarn I hand spun from a hand pulled roving by atapestryofgrace. It is a combination of hand dyed wool, bamboo and flax. I’m a beginner, but I think it came out okay as an art yarn. I think it looks like kale salad.

 

And, lastly, here is my new box tape loom made by Janet of HandyWomanShop. I think it is quite beautiful. I am reading a book on tape looms which is more fascinating than it sounds. It’s filled with the history of tape looms including great photos. I also learned where the term “red tape” likely comes from.

Okay, that’s it for today, folks!

Woven pockets

Here are two, not so great photos, of what I’m working on at the moment. The chambray peasant skirt with soari woven pockets is something I am developing for my Etsy shop. I love this skirt. It is super comfortable and very cool for summer. The only problem with this one is that the weave on the pockets is too thick for the chambray, so back to the loom. I am going to try weaving the pocket out of linen or cottolin. Maybe even some recycled sari silk.

The linen “elephant” pants are something I made for myself. They are kind of like very loose bloomers. I work at home, so comfort comes first. The pockets are woven out of strips of linen and wool roving with a cotton warp. I really like them, but I had to alter the the pattern I had adapted from an existing pattern. It had the crotch hanging very low. Kind of like the old M.C. Hammer pants. Not a good look or at all comfortable. These were a little more labor intensive, so not sure if I will have them in the shop or not.

I also am working on some slow stitch and block printed pockets. Will post pictures when they are done. If any of you sewists out there are interested in one-of-a-kind pockets for your sewing project(s), contact me: val@casamarengo.com.

Have a great day everybody!

 

 

Saori weaving

saoriclassSpent a lovely morning at Laura Roveda’s Saori Studio LA  where I got to try out this lovely saori loom. I had a feeling that I was going to really like it and I did. Sadly, it’s out of my budget at the moment, but definitely something to save up for.

SAORI WX-60 Loom

I can easily do free weaving on this and being an abstract painter, this is right up my alley . I plan on producing pieces for bags, pillows and whatever else I can come up with for my Etsy store. Here are a couple of things I made already using my rigid heddle loom. The top two pieces are linen with handwoven wool insets. The bottom piece is linen with felting and sashiko stitching. The yellow cross body bag has grey linen on the backside and the closure and strap are still to be added.

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I really need to finish up some of these half finished projects and photograph them, so I can put them in my store. Slow going, but having so much fun!

 

Weekend work

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This weekend was filled with various projects. Some fun and one not so much. First on the list was rebuilding my graphic design website. My former host company went out of business without notice, so I woke up one day to find I had no email or website. What a headache! And, of course, they were unreachable, so I signed up with a new host and now have a website again. It still needs tweaking and I have to write the About section, but it’s off to a good start. I am looking for a few new clients, so if you or somebody you know needs some graphic design, please send them my way. Thanks.

Of course, I had to work on some fun stuff. Here is a picture of some boro strips I am working on to add to the cuffs of a blouse I made. I love boro!

boro

And, lastly I am playing around with frame loom weaving. I haven’t yet tackled the new rigid heddle loom I purchased about a month ago. It’s a bit intimidating, so I think I am going to register for a class. Here are two pieces I am working on now. Working on these is a bit like figuring out one of my abstract paintings.

The one on the left is 100% wool and recycled sari silk and is on a 12’x16″ frame loom that I made. The one on the right is recycled silk, raffia, wool, tea bags and I will be inserting some painted paper strips. This is a on a small lap loom. It is so relaxing and really fun. If you’ve never tried it, give it a whirl.

Okay, that’s it for now. Gotta get back to the graphic design salt mines. Have a great day everybody!