Thursday, February 16, 2012

making baby mobiles: new wood mobiles in the Etsy shop

 I've had the constant aroma of sawdust on my clothes, in my hair and practically all over the house.  I started making one of my wood baby mobiles last month for a custom order and realized that it is the perfect combination of everything I love to do.  I really enjoy being out in the garage - my woodshop - shaping wood, sanding it and bringing out the natural beauty of the wood grain.  And then I bring all my pieces into the studio where I sort through my growing collection of fabric and paper to piece together the perfect combination of colors and prints.  It's a lot like quilting, without the time-consuming process of actually sewing a quilt.  (I still have my Christmas Quilt sitting on my work table patiently waiting to be completed!)  Once I've made my final selections the real fun begins - decoupage!  It's just like arts and crafts hour in school.  Glob on the Mod Podge and watch how the fabric or paper magically seems to become one with the wood block.  After this step I get a little impatient.  I hate waiting for the Mod Podge and then the varnish to dry.  I'm always extremely anxious to start stringing all the pieces together to see how it comes together.

While in the middle of waiting, I was brainstorming new mobile designs and I decided to try adding some of my drawings to the mobiles.  Naturally, my first try at this included my flying animals.  This mobile still has a few decoupaged blocks to add color.

I especially love using fabrics designed by Heather Bailey, Amy Butler, Erin McMoris and Anna Maria Horner.  You'll find that I use a lot of orange prints.  I'm all over the orange.  Every once and awhile I try to put together a color palette with pinks because I know nurseries for baby girls tend to lean in this direction.  But I'll take oranges and greens any day.

But the mobile I'm very excited about is one I just finished last night.  This is my "Pacific Blue" mobile with drawings of kelp and sea turtles.  The starfish are decoupaged with fabric, but I've hand painted some detail to make them look like starfish. 

And now that I've figured out a way to put my drawings on wood, I'm anxious to continue experimenting.  I like how you still see the wood grain through the solid color.  I think my next mobile will be more girly with a collection of all the different kinds of flowers I've drawn in my sketchbook.  I'm on a roll now.  I love the smell of sawdust and Mod Podge in the morning!

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