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Tom's Shoes with a Dash of Bling

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Toms1

"Imagination rules the world." -- Napoleon


My first pair of Tom's Shoes.  They are super comfey and perfect for summer.  I opted for a cheerful, cherry red with an eye toward adding a dash of bling.  But with such a perfect blank slate, where do you start?!

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Toms with Iron decals
I like the look of these iron on decals I made with Tulip Photo Transfer Paper.  I scanned some vintage Victorian paper scraps and trimmed away the excess paper.  Cute, but not quite the look I wanted.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Toms with embroidery?

Embroidery would be an excellent option.  A few French knots here and there with a running stitch along the toe band  would add a nautical feel to the shoes.  Still, it wasn't quite the look I wanted.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Toms with bling

I had loved the sequin styles at the store, but didn't want that much bling.  I decided to walk the line between polka dots and flashy using white seqins glued into place with Aleene's Jewel-It Embellishing Glue.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Toms with bling
To get started squeeze a dot of glue where you want it to go and place a sequin onto it.  I used the back of a ball head pin to push the sequin firmly into the glue.  It will squish around the edges which is okay as the glue dries clear.  Bigger blobs I scrapped away with the tip of the pin. 

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Toms with Beads in a Bottle
For just a bit more bling I used Tulip's Beads in a Bottle in Silver on the heel.  

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Toms Finished Look
I'm pleased with the finished product.  My shoes now have a simple, clean, graphic style with just enough bling to get a gal through the day.  

•Note - Allow the glue to dry for a full 24 hours before wearing your newly embellished shoes.   I know it will be a challenge, but this will insure that the sequins stay securely attached.


©2012 Kate Blackman Lindsay and Kate
"Why not go out on a limb?  Isn't that where the fruit is?" --  Frank Scully

I took a break from the studio for a little mother and daugther time.  Sweet Pea and I went to see The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. A sweet film set in a gorgeous locale.  Much of the film revolves around the idea of embracing change, accepting it as a bonus rather than a negative.  How do you embrace change?  Do you accept it or let it run right over you?

I used to be fearless. I would buy a plane ticket to Europe that morning and be gone that evening, not to return for 7 months.  I jumped head first into business, walking the streets of Manhattan selling my designs door-to-door.  I cold called galleries.  I was fierce, fearless and loved the rush that came from the unknown.  I embraced change.

Where did that woman go?! 

I'm older these days, but not necessarily wiser. Yes, caution is a good thing, but it can strangle one.  I am set to go on vacation in a bit and I'm having the hardest time planning my itinerary.  I mean seriously, does a vacation really need this much planning?  I'm driving so I may have the freedom to wander at will, but I can't go without having rooms secured.  My younger self slept in empty train cars if need be.  

A few years back a friend sold her house and put everything she owned into storage.  She was rolling the dice to join the Peace Corps.  At 50+ years old she took off on the adventure of a life time.  These days she lives in Thailand teaching elementary school.  I admire her courage.  She kept thinking she was crazy, but once she was accepted and stationed, everything clicked into place for her.  In a sense, she's home as her heart is where it needs to be.

I'm not saying I'm unhappy, but yes, I'm a bit restless.  As my daughter matures and settles into her own life, I finally have time to focus on myself.  Let me tell you, it's a very scary prospect indeed.  Do I return to remnants of my younger self or is there a new role for me to play?

The pic is of my friend Kate and me in our last year of high school.  I look at thw face of my younger self and see the mischief.  Maybe a vacation will help me dig through the layers and find my courage to once again jump off the high dive and embrace change.  


"To Mom" Box

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer To Mother Box

"Creativity is just connecting things." -- Steve Jobs

Mother's Day I got to thinking about Mom and created this box in her honor.  I wanted a container to collect the bits of paper by which I remember her - little notes and cards she wrote me, photographs of her, etc.  I kept thinking of a box she made with bits of Dresden papers that she used for her make-up.  I wish I had saved it despite its ragged appearance, if only to have freshened it up with a new collage.  Hindsight is always 20/20, as Mom would say.  

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer To Mother Box
I'm pleases with the result.  I used an inexpensive box I found at JoAnn Fabrics, sanded it and gave it several licks of gesso, followed by acrylic paint. I used my zippy new Westcott paper trimmer to accurately cut the larger patterened papers.  My inability to cut a straight line has been cured! I've been doomed since kindergarten when I received my first "Needs Improvement" for scissor skills. All I did was measure the size I needed, line up the paper with rulers on the trimmer and cut.  Magic! Dresden foil papers trim the box while single motifs were added to the lid.  The buttons and ribbons are from my bottomless stash.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer To Mother Box
Not to let a surface go unfinished, I had to embellish the interior of the box.  The base is a silk that I fused to a piece of cardboard.  It's lightly padded and has a lovely sheen as you open the box.  The inner lid has a Japanese paper for the base and is collaged with Dresden reproduction scraps along with a few gold foil paper butterflies.

I'm now addicted to this process and have nearly completed another box with 2 more in line.  I wonder if this is the sign of a new series starting to work its way out of my head.....

paper love!

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer scrapping
"Joy is the feeling of grinning inside." -- Melba Colgrove

Where have I been this last week?  Buried in my studio.  Well, okay, only part of the time as I had meetings to attend, final exams to give, and of course Mother's Day and Sweet Pea's birthday to celebrate, but yes, by and large I've been in the studio cutting bits of paper.  

I am in love with Dresden scrap papers, many of which are vintage or inspired by the Victorian era. They remind me of Gam and Mom who had their own stash. They remind me of an era that seems simpler though I know it wasn't.  In my studio I can forget about jury duty, NATO summits, layoffs and all the other negativity that swirls in the air. 

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Scrapping To MotherThis combination is from the lid of a box I am finishing up.  I love the contrast of the gold against that strawberry red!

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Scrapping Photo mattboard
Nothing escapes a bit of decoration.  Some leftover matt boards from another project made a perfect blank slate for collaging.  The photo is of me at 24 with Sweet Pea at 3.  Hard to believe that she is now the same age as me in the photo. Good grief, where does the time go?!

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Scrapping Card

Of course if one is scrapping, one must make a card... or two or three....

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Scrapping card 2

It seemed only natural that I should have a butterfly version after having painted a 3 foot fiberglass butterfly for the exhibition Magic Garden.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Scrapping butterfly with glitter

I used a true glass glitter with a silver content that will tarnish slightly over time.  I learned that glass glitter is just that - glass.  I was scooting excess off of my table with the side of my hand and scratched it badly.  I now use a large jelly roll tray with a paper lining.  The paper can then be rolled into a funnel to pour the glitter back into the jar.  No more torn up palms!

I've also fallen in love with glue dots.  They are ingenious!  Press one onto the paper, place a sequin - no muss, no fuss!  This is certainly faster than stitching them one by one into place as I am prone to do with my art.

Love: Penguin Book Covers by Jillian Tamaki

©2011 Jillian Tamaki cover Emma

"Wanted: a needle swift enough to sew this poem into a blanket."
 --  Charles Simic

I'm in love with these embroidered illustrations by illustrator Jillian Tamaki for Penguin Classics. They grace recent releases (fall 2011) of Emma, Black Beauty and The Secret Garden.  This last novel was a favorite of my daughter.   I appreciate how Jillian shows not the whole door to the garden, just the keyhole.  

©2011 Jillian Tamaki cover Black Beauty

©2011 Jillian Tamaki cover Secret Garden

The series has me thinking of my own favorite novels and how I would go about imagining them illustrated and worked in embroidery.  Hmmmm.  

Thank you to Chelsea for turning me to Jillian's gorgeous illustrations and handiwork.

serendipity: Designer Crafts Connection: First Monday - Quick-n-Ez Jewelry

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Bangle

"Words form the thread on which we string our experiences."  -- Aldous Huxley

This is a quick and easy bangle bracelet to create.  Make one or make several. Each takes less than an hour and may be customized to match any outfit you have in mind.  Go glam with metallic threads or keep it colorful and simple as in the case of this example.  I've been living in my raincoat these last few days, so I chose a water theme.

To get started you need the following:

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Bangle supplies


wood bangle bracelet - I used one from DIY Bangles that is 1/4" x 3" with a flat exterior shape.

#3 perle cotton  - I chose 4 colors of DMC Perle Cotton in 798, 943, 955, 966

1 large eye needle 




Undo the first skein of floss and cut an 18" length of thread.  If you are right handed, place the tail ontop of the bracelet with the tail facing to the left and held securely by your left hand.  If you are left handed follow these instructions in reverse beginning with the tail facing to the right and held by your right hand.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Bangle directions

With the tail securely held, proceed to wrap from right to left over the tail pulling firmly as you go.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Bangle directions

Continue wrapping until you have covered a desired amount.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Bangle directions
Thread your needle with the remainder and tuck it under the portion you have wrapped.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Bangle directions
Pull the needle through and trim away excess thread.  Trim away any tail that may still be seen.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Bangle directions

Proceed to the next color repeating the same procedure, beginning with cutting an 18" length of thread.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Bangle directions
Continue working in the same manner with each color in sequence.  

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Bangle directions
I worked a 4 color repeat 4 times.  I didn't concern myself with each wrapped section being equal in length, though you can certainly measure by counting wraps or using a ruler.   

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Bangle
Keep for yourself or gift as a gift.  This bodascious bangle bracelet is a colorful delight.  

For more jewelry ideas, checkout the work in the Designer Crafts Connection webring wherever you see this logo.

Each blog in the hop is written by a designer associated with the Craft and Hobby Assocition.  We each have unique styles, so be sure to hop through to see what each is doing with this month's theme of Quick-n-Ez Jewelry.

Yarn Bombing: Rogers Park Is Blooming

©2012 Mary K. Lawrie - Rogers Park Is Blooming!

"Many things grow in the garden that were never sown there."  --  Thomas Fuller

Our proposal has been accepted!  Mary Lawrie and I will be leading a community yarn bombing along sections of Howard Street and Clark Street in the Rogers Park neighborhood of Chicago. There was another successful yarn bombing along Howard Street last year that has brought positive attention to this business district, an area with a number of empty store fronts and vacant lots.  Our proposal follows up on last year's success, expanding upon it with the metaphor of the tenacious wildflower.  Here is our introduction:

Rogers Park is blooming!  Flowers fill fences surrounding parks and empty lots along Howard Street between Sheridan and Ridge.  Like a wildflower taking root in disrupted soil, breaking through a crack in the sidewalk, this project is to emphasize that what may be considered an eyesore is actually the blank slate of potential.   The project may be contained to Howard Street or with the assistance of volunteers it can “grow” to multiple sites, thus creating a flower hunt throughout Rogers Park.

To be certain that such an undertaking could be accomplished within a specific time frame, Mary and I swatched a variety of flowers, timing ourselves as we went.  

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Assorted Flowers

As you can see, some are knit while others are crocheted, afterall, not every flower is exactly the same! We've been experimenting further and I will post those experiments with instructions over the course of the next few months.  If you have patterns you wish to share or know of free patterns available online, please comment and share with others.  

With the addition of Clark Street, we've been asked to continue the flower theme, but give it a Day of the Dead twist as many in the area are Mexican and the installation goes up in October.  So yes, there will be a focus on crocheted marigolds and dancing skeletons, but we hope to add more.

I am just so excited!  While the workshops will be taking place in Rogers Park, anyone may be involved.   We will get things started, make a large percentage of the flowers, teach workshops and oversee the final installation, but we plan to have weekly gatherings of crocheters and knitters.   Our workshops will also involve local children and seniors.  Stay tuned for updates.  You can also like my Facebook page or follow me on Twitter and receive updates that way.