It’s been over a month since I’ve posted here on Polymer Clay Etc. and so much has happened. All good, exciting and fun. You might have seen these images and heard all this before on Facebook etc. but this is for my friends who aren’t on those other social media sites.
First of all I had a private Pen and Ink workshop with Mary Jane Reinhart and she created a great bracelet that day. You should see the work she’s doing now, fabulous! Plus she’s so much fun, I love having her in the Studio.
I was over the moon when I received the newest addition of Belle Armoire Jewelry magazine, just before I left town for a retreat.
Laurie Prophater wrote a wonderful article about a challenge she proposed to Meisha Barbee, Julie Eakes and me when they were all staying at my house and playing at Studio 215 while Meisha was teaching. (Read about the fun we had here.) I’m thrilled to be published along with these talented women. Thank you Laurie for thinking of such a enjoyable project.
Next I met up with several claying friends in Denver, Syndee Holt, Julie Eakes, Meisha Barbee, Libby Mills, and Emily Levine, we had a great time. Crazy but oh so much fun!
Then it was on to the retreat where we exchanged bowls. 25 incredible bowls came home with me and this exchange started me on my bird obsession. I posted about my bird bowls and my larger bird wall piece here.
I came home with many wonderful things from an auction we have every year and I purchased some lovely pieces from my friends to sell at Studio 215 with more to come. I can wait to share some of them with you. I’ll be posting them on my Studio 215 blog and on my Studio 215 Facebook page. If you’d like to see what I’m up to at the Studio, sign up to receive a notice each time I post, my newsletter, and like my Facebook page.
I can be found on Instagram , Twitter, and Tumbr too. Whew.
Last week I was featured by Cynthia Tinapple on Polymer Clay Daily and that is always treat and a compliment. Thank you Cynthia.
I was featured with my newest face that I created for the auction at the retreat. I was flattered that there was many bids on it.
I made this cool graphic using an app called Canva. My friend Meredith Arnold shared this with me and I can’t stop using it. Very cool, thanks Meredith.
Here’s another graphic made with Canva showing off my newest bird weed pot prototypes that I worked on while on retreat. I hope to get more of these done showcasing different critters and characters. I’m smiling and that is always my goal, to create things that make me smile.
The beginning of September brought more laughter and fun at Studio 215 when several of my favorite people came to take a Profile Face cane class with me. We had a great time for sure.
Dottie, Kathryn, Barbara, AnnaMarie, Majel, and Mary Jane are new converts to polymer and I believe they aren’t getting away without clay sticking in they brains. They’re having as much fun as I did with I first started, but they’re lucky to have others to share the experience. Thanks, ya’ll are making me so happy to see you having so much fun and making such cool things.
Then to top it all off, Kathryn Obidzinski has been my apprentice for several months now and before I went on retreat she started a palette knife polymer clay self portrait. I think she created a wonderful piece. I know she had fun, learned a lot and I hope I can reel her in to explore polymer clay a bit more.
I’m spending the rest of the day prepping for the Houston Polymer Clay Guild’s Lone Star Retreat. I’ll be teaching along with Randee Ketzel and Sarah Shriver. Next month it’s Sandy Camp in San Diego. Just too much fun!!!
Thanks for stopping in, Alice
I was so happy that my “Alice in Wonderland” tea set was featured on Polymer Clay Daily in the beginning of this month. But I was upset with myself that I haven’t finished it. I’d been working on it since before Christmas, but I bought my Studio and have been busy with all that brings with it.
Thanks to Cynthia Tinapple and PCD I’ve finished most of the characters. It will always be a work in progress I think. but here’s a look at it as it is now. I hope you enjoy it and get a smile or two.
You can see the tea set in person at Alice Stroppel’s Studio 215 in Sebring FL .
you can get more information about Studio 215, classes and items for sale at the Studio’s blog. while you’re there, sign up for my newsletter, you’ll be the first to know what classes are being offered and what exciting instructors are coming to teach.
I’ve been looking forward to this week for about six months. The four of us, Julie Eakes, Meisha Barbee, and Laurie Prophater planned to meet at my home studio and just sit and clay for a week. Then Studio 215 happened and the timing was right for one of this talented group of artists to teach a class at my new studio. Polyform Products provided Premo clay and we were set. Thank you Iris Weiss and Polyform Products
Meisha said yes and taught a full house this past week-end and Julie and Laurie have agreed to teach in the future. Happily that means another trip to Florida.
In the photo above you see us in my studio at home claying away. We didn’t leave the house that day.
But it was on to Studio 215 the next day to get ready for Meisha’s workshop.
These were just some of the beautiful samples Meisha had on display, forgive the photography, I’m responsible.
Below are the finished piece created by a very talented group of students.
Everyone had a great time, learned a lot and went home ready to explore these skills a bit more. Just take a look at these happy faces. Meisha is an excellent teacher, everyone agreed.
Can you tell that we laughed quite a bit? I just loved having everyone here.
I’m happy to say that I now have work for purchase at Studio 215 from Meisha, Julie, and Laurie. Here are just a few samples. I don’t think they’ll last long.
The next day found Julie, Meisha and me at the Ringling Museum of Art. We toured Ca’d’Zan the mansion and the museum and then jumped over to St. Armands Key to put our feet in the sand. Laurie had left us by then and we missed her smiling face.
We had a great time but we weren’t very popular on Facebook when Julie posted this picture. (notice the people in bathing suits in the back ground) Cold times up north…sorry guys.
Thanks to everyone for making this a happy week at Studio 215 and beyond.
And when the princess opened the door the frog came in, and slept upon her pillow as before, till the morning broke. And the third night he did the same. But when the princess awoke on the following morning she was astonished to see, instead of the frog, a handsome prince, gazing on her with the most beautiful eyes she had ever seen and standing at the head of her bed.
He told her that he had been enchanted by a spiteful fairy, who had changed him into a frog; and that he had been fated so to abide till some princess should take him out of the spring, and let him eat from her plate, and sleep upon her bed for three nights.
‘You,’ said the prince, ‘have broken his cruel charm, and now I have nothing to wish for but that you should go with me into my father’s kingdom, where I will marry you, and love you as long as you live.’
The Frog Prince
With Valentines Day coming up, I couldn’t resist making a frog prince to sell at Studio 215. He’s just waiting for his princess to take him home.
There are still spaces available in Meisha Barbee’s workshop. It’s going to be so much fun, leave me a message here in the comment section if you want to secure your place and I’ll get back to you .
I have a lot to do this week. I’m very excited to tell you that I am going to Sandy Camp in California next month. I’m going to be doing a demo. Thanks so much to the San Diego Polymer Clay guild and Nancy Ulrich for letting me join everyone this year.
I’m very excited to get to spend some time with my buddy Meisha Barbee. After all she’s kind of responsible for me deciding that the Stroppel Cane was worth sharing. Remember our collaboration featured on Polymer Clay Daily? Fun!
I’m spending some time making girlfriend bracelets to take along with me plus some other goodies.
But in-between I’m using scrap to create some fun pieces. Jainnie Jenkins named them Scappy girls. Love that, thanks Jainne.
The hair and clothes are mostly from scraps. I textured them, cured them, then stained the whole piece. Mounted it on mat board and then framed them.
So many ideas too little time.
I have a big silver project I’m working on too this month and it doesn’t even include this pile of silver I brought home after a thrift shop adventure that put me into overload. *g*.
Wish me luck!
If you’re going to be at Sandy Camp, see you there.
I wanted to see what would happen when I cleaned the pitcher with silver polish. I really didn’t think there would be a problem. After all polymer is plastic and pretty sturdy.
It worked perfectly. The only thing I needed to do was use an old toothbrush to get the polish off the edge of the polymer. But hey, there was 50% less silver to polish! Fist pump.
The next thing I needed to address was the silver plate coming off the bottom. Since this is for me, I could have left it and no one would have ever noticed, but I believe you should finish every piece to the best of your ability. Just think about all the people that might see it someday. (yes I mean after I’m dead)
Plus the bottom was peeling pretty badly and I’m afraid it would have continued to peel. So I decided to add a border and cover the bottom.
I really didn’t like this, too busy, so I ended up with this extruded purple band.
But I never like to waste anything so on to the bottom the first try went. Still busy, but not seen but by a few. (me)
The plus is that it has sealed the bottom and will keep it from continuing to peel.
So now I can put my flowers back in it and enjoy. But first I need to sign it, you know, so all those people who will see it some day will wondered who the heck was Alice Stroppel. hehehe.
I’ve been away on retreat and experimented with several things while I was away. I’ll post more about that as I finish up another project I’m working on, I’m excited about it.
Before I left on my retreat I picked up this silver plated pitcher at a thrift store. The inside has lost some of it’s finish but I think it could be polished up and still used. However, I already have a silver pitcher along with several other so I’m dedicating this one to flowers.
I covered parts of it with polymer clay leaving quite a bit of silver showing. I really like it and will be looking for more silver to pair with polymer.
A couple of years ago my husband asked me what I wanted for my birthday. I couldn’t think of a thing, then an idea came to me. I told him I would love flowers at least once a month and they didn’t have to be expensive.
So now at least once a month, sometimes more, I have a pretty bouquet of flowers to brighten my day. He doesn’t ever have to worry about a birthday present again. I feel loved and special. Win – Win!
Now a I have a dedicated vase just for my special flowers.
I can’t decide if I want to add more clay, I love the way the silver shines through. I decided to give it a day or two of looking at it from every angle and then make up my mind.
Can wait until you can see what I’m working on now…always fun.
Some of these charms are made with my Stroppel 2 cane. Here’s the how to!
Just like the white rabbit, Oh dear, Oh dear, I’m late, I’m late. And like Alice, I don’t quite know which door to open first.
I’m going on retreat and just finished the charms for the charm exchange, finishing up the brown bag exchange gift, figuring out what to donate for the auction and washing clothes. Whew!
The stressful part is trying to stay under the 50lb bag limit. Packing, weighing, taking important stuff out and then putting it back in again and leaving out some clothes. I figure I’ll just wear the same thing over and over. Better that than leaving out important polymer clay stuff…..
I was very happy to see that my rabbit and I were featured on Polymer Clay Daily today. Cynthia is spot on today, I feel just like the other Alice running around in wonderland. But I actually feel like Alice more often than not, after all I am Alice. *Grin*
I hope today finds everyone having a Wonderland kind of day. Just stay off the roads if you are. hehe
A reclaimed table finds new life in my house. It started out as a wobbly table made from solid oak but with a few years and coats of red paint under in it’s history. I brought it home and almost ave up on fixing the wobble, but fortunately my husband, who is not a wood guy, saved the day and came to the rescue for both me and the table.
I spray painted teal over the red and then sanded a bit here and there. Let her dry and then I was ready to start. I’ve been doing large pieces to frame and hang on the wall and thought why not give furniture a try.
This is the same technique I use for my smaller pieces of wall art too, I call it cane mapping. Laying out a map and filling it with clay.
I started with a smaller table and it worked pretty well so I decided to give this larger one a go. It’s 28″ H 29″ L 18″W.
I start out by making a paper pattern of the top and draw my design on the paper. Then I place the pattern under a large piece of glass and just start laying clay.
Once I have a good deal completed I bake it and then move on to the next part of the pattern. I end up with several large puzzle pieces that I then glue onto the table top. If I work on too large a piece I tend to rest my hand on on drop something on the part that was finished and have to redo parts of it, Baking in pieces helps to preserve the work I’ve already completed.
I use Liquid Fusion clear urethane adhesive. It dries fairly quickly, but takes 24 hours to completely dry. When I was finish with all the pieces for the top, I glued them together right on the wood.
Then I exuded a matching teal round snake from the edge. I baked it in four sections in roughly the same shape as the edge of the table. I use Premo because it’s flexible and it was easy to apply. However, to make sure it stayed in place, I taped it all around and left it until morning.
I don’t add a finish to the top, if I could stand to do it, I might sand and buff it. But until I get myself a do-boy…well…it will just get pretty with age and develop it’s own patina. I feel this way… it’s plastic…water won’t hurt it…you can wash it with a damp rag. The only thing I will do it make sure to use a coaster for hot beverages. I know the bracelets that I made years ago and wear often have this wonderful feel to them. So I say use it what’s the worse that can happen?
Thanks for all the wonderful words of encouragement, the likes, the shares, on Facebook and thank you in advance for any comments left here. On to the next project!!!
Follow me on Facebook if you want. https://www.facebook.com/alice.stroppel
I’ve been having so much fun on Facebook with this project. I posted pictures of the first part of the project featuring six of my girls with the tag line, “Bet you can’t figure out what this is going to be”. So many of you had great guesses and wonderful compliments, I thank you so much for playing along because it made it that much easier for me to continue working on it until it was finished.
As I continued to work and post pictures you continued to guess.
It kept getting taller and taller. ……..
……until I finally finished it and here is the big reveal…TADA…It’s a table.
I found two base metal lamps at my local thrift store and combined pieces from each to create this crazy table. It’s very sturdy and well weighted. You might even classify this project a found object project.
I have a couple more lamps that I bought but they don’t come apart so I’ll see how they work out in the oven.
By the way, I bake in a full size oven that I have in my studio and it was easy to bake this table because is was in pieces. The next ones will be a challenge I think.
I cover a bit of each piece with clay and then bake it so I won’t mess up what I’ve just done. when it’s cool, I add more clay and bake again. I can do this as many times as I want and bake for as long as I want because I have calibrated my oven and I know that it is always on the correct temperature.
So what’s your next big project?