Baby’s First Art

My little Liv loves to paint. Drawing too, but painting is always a bit more exciting.

It all started in December last year, a few days after Christmas. She was 9 months old then. I wanted to have our first painting experiment for some time already, but that day was like made for it. It was snowing all day long and we couldn’t get outside. So in the late afternoon/evening we were getting bored at home and that’s when I finally decided to try it out with her.

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I put out big papers (actually 2 layers to protect the floor) on the floor. And made our own edible paints.

That joy in her face :-)
That joy in her face :-)

The recipe?

1 cup of flour
1 cup of water
food colouring

Liv had to try the paint with all her senses… Touch, of course. Taste.

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One of my all-time favourite pictures :-)

Sound. Of the bowls, banging them together.

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I usually mix the flour and water in a big bowl and divide it then into 3 smaller bowls, where I add the food colouring. I have found 3 bowls to be the ideal number so she has something to mix and choose from, but not to get too overwhelmed with too many choices.

After our first experiment I tried to put her into our bathtub to paint just right before bath-time in the evening. That way it would be easier to clean anything that gets painted on and also her. She was soooo dirty after the first time. :-) Had to paint with her whole body.

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Ever since, she is painting in our bathtub.

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Starting out pretty clean… to get all messy like this…

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And she loves painting. She loved it from our first attempt. And nowadays she even knows where the painting-stuff is and she asks rather regularly to paint. And as a new addition, she loves to clean the bath tub herself after painting. :-)

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I have a new appreciation for (post)modern art. I really do. Suddenly I find all kinds of perfection in wet paint running down, spluttered paint around… and such.

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That Girl and Her Motorbikes

My little girl just LOVES motorbikes. In any form you can find. Whether it is a real one on the street- which she automatically wants to sit on- or a picture of a motorbike in a book or a magazine or anywhere else, a tiny motorbike for kids to sit on or an even tinier toy motorbike… Anything there is, really.

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Guess what. We were at a store last time and there were just a few lego-boxes they had. Which one did my daughter choose? Of course one where there was a Duplo-Spiderman, who had -what?- a Motorcycle. Where it not ridiculously expensive taking in consideration that it was just the spiderman and his motorcycle in the box, I would have bought if for her.

That face when she sits on a motorbike... :-)
That face when she sits on a motorbike… :-)

If we are going somewhere and she gets a bit whiny- the best thing that helps is start looking for motorbikes around us. She always gets excited for that.

She just nows from an early age what’s good. ;-)

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Does anybody else have a kid with funny/awesome obsessions? :-)

Art Nouveau Corset… kind of…

I’d like to continue in the mood of historical clothes for another moment and share something else I’ve made some time ago. In a time when I was still young, thin and beautiful, haha…

Fate smiled upon me and for a few days I got a true original Art Nouveau Corset into my hands… and was able to take it home with me. I love historical clothing. It is one of my passions. So to be able to hold- and take home!- a piece was… awesome. Anyway. While I had it, I drafted its pattern, and tried to reconstruct it later. Of course, with alterations to fit it to my body. And this is what came out.

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I chose a classic look for my corset. I used white cotton, though it had a little bit of stretch, so it must have had something added. As an embellishment I took a dark brown lace, bias tape for the hems, and lacing.

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I was so happy how it turned out. Like the nice, clean look and the contrasting details…

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Fun fact. The whole corset was actually meant to be exactly reverse. It had garters instead of straps. After I made my pattern and returned the original corset it took a little while until I sat down to make my corset. I have NO idea why I turned it the other way round… Somehow I remembered it that way… And I realized what I was doing only later, once I was already almost finished. So I just went with it. How silly of me. But it works this way just as well :-)

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I am actually preparing to make another- Victorian- corset soon… Hopefully I won’t be delaying it for too long because of other projects, so you might read about that some time soon. I wish I could post other corsets I’ve made… for example a nice gothic underbust corset I’ve made for a friend. But she never gave me those promised photos of her in it… :-/

Regency style Spencer (jacket)

Part of that Empire-slash-Regency-slash-Jane-Austen-inspired-outfit I made for my friend was also a Spencer. A spencer is a short, fitted jacket worn by women around 1790-1820.

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The one I made was out of green manchester with a brown ribbon, cute green flower-y lining, beautiful buttons and a wide neckline.

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I used parts of a spencer-pattern out of Janet Arnold’s Patterns of Fashion 1, Englishwomen’s dresses and their construction c.1660-1860, but not the whole, because it did not quite match my design. So the rest I adjusted and improvised and made my own.

The lining.
The lining.

Empire Dress… with a modern twist

Since I wrote in the beginning of this blog, that I sew also historical clothes, I thought I might catch up with that part a bit. At least those few that I have (good) pictures of.

A friend of mine loves Jane Austen and the Empire-era. Well, so do I, but that’s another story. One day she asked me to make her an empire dress, which I was more than happy about. Also, since I had the opportunity to study the details of an empire dress in a deposit of a museum while writing an analysis of this era for university, I was glad I could apply my new-gained expertise on them.

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One new-gained and applied knowledge I used right away in the design of the dress, was that the actual historical versions of the dresses had often one skirt and more than one top you could attach to it. This way they wouldn’t have to have a thousand different dresses (you have probably no idea how much fabric would go into one such… and also where would one store so many big dresses), but they also had more variety in what they wore. Smart, I’d say.

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So, in my design for my friend, I made her a dress with 3 different tops, that she could attach to the skirt, depending on what she wanted at the moment. One was a sleevles top with buttons in the front. The second was with short sleeves with hidden closing in the back. The third one was a greek-style top out of a different -green- fabric with 3/4 sleeves and a V-neck.

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It was her wish to make the dress short. And to make it wearable in our modern world. So I did. I hope.

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The dress was out of this beautiful flower-y cotton with lining inside the tops and the green top was out of a very nice and soft viscose, if I remember correctly.

The pattern was inspired by real empire dresses, out of Janet Arnold’s Patterns of Fashion 1, Englishwomen’s dresses and their construction c 1660-1860. But I had to modify them to my friend’s size and to our design.

To the first and second top you could attach a thin white chiffon into the neckline.

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Father’s Day Gift a.k.a. Footsteps

Ok, I know Father’s Day has been a while ago. But since I have taken those pictures back then only so I could post on it- if I ever started that blog I was thinking so long about- I thought it would be the right time to use them.

Liv has made a gift for her dad for last Father’s Day. With a little bit of help from me. Oh. Or was it her dad’s birthday? Actually I am not really sure right now. But since they are near to each other, it gets somewhat blurry there. And it doesn’t really matter. It was a gift to her dad anyway, and that’s the important part.

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So, we took this really nice, really really sooooft green t-shirt. I painted my sweet daughter’s feet black. And together we made those footprints on the shirt. Started actually on the place of the heart ;-) so that the most vivid footprint would be there (how symbolic is THAT… though not really intended :-) and making the other ones after, so that they would fade away at the bottom and top.

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The result was great. Super easy. Super fast. Super cute. I think. And Liv even enjoyed doing it. :-) Didn’t enjoy the washing of her feet after, though.

Dragonfly Mobile

For some reason (I don’t really know why) I wanted to make a seperate post on our dragonfly mobile. It is actually the first I’ve made and it still hangs over our bed.

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It is made out of wooden sticks, which I collected outside, tied together by a cord. I printed out some dragonflies I liked on normal paper, Each two times. Then I glued them together, with a cardboard inbetween. I actually wanted to laminate them before hanging. But then I was too impatient, didn’t want to wait until I got to go to the city centre to have it done. And we don’t have a laminating machine at home. So I just skipped that part.

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I hung them for Liv over the bed, thinking originally it could get her attention for some time on early mornings when she would wake up and I still wanted to sleep. :-) (We sleep together in one big bed we’ve made ourselves.. I might make a post about that one day, since I’m rather proud of it… it was one of my better ideas in our appartement :-) But many times I’ve caught myself watching them myself while breastfeeding or just lying on the bed, how they would float around in the stream of air, sometimes I don’t know where from. ;-)

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