God Meets Us in Our Weakest Weak

Red flowers 12 x 12

Recently I shared something in a small group that revealed a weakness in myself. Not only did it allow the listeners to hear a personal struggle of mine but also to witness the struggle in my body as I shared it. I felt vulnerable. Exposed. Weaker still.

The discussion time came to a close and we moved on. Later, I nervously wondered if perhaps the sharing was too costly. But then God spoke to my doubts, “I love that in your weakness, you allow me to show My strength. I love you in that.” Immediately I felt strengthened in my weakness and the strength I gained was His.

I suppose we all pick and choose what we share and just how much we allow others to really see us. Of course, we need to use wisdom but that’s not my point here. Someone referred to intimacy as “in-to-me-see.” Do we hide and cover our weaknesses when speaking up would benefit another? Do we back off when adding to the conversation would bring hard won wisdom to the table? Please know I’m not talking about that pseudo self-deprecation that’s so popular! That cost nothing! It’s just a laugh. No one is fooled into thinking you really let your guard down. It’s when we empty ourselves of our weakness that God fills us up with His strength.

 

“My grace is enough; it’s all you need.
My strength comes into its own in your weakness.

Once I heard that, I was glad to let it happen. I quit focusing on the handicap and began appreciating the gift. It was a case of Christ’s strength moving in on my weakness.” – 2 Corinthians 12:9 The Message 

 

You see, it’s when we are all played out, that God’s strength comes into play. For your strongest strength is far weaker than His strength in your weakest weak.

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Hand Painted Tote With Flower Pin

I’ve really enjoyed the process of painting fabric and then turning that fabric into little functional pieces of art! Yesterday I made this cute Graphic Tote and embellished it with a detachable flower pin.

This tote is in my Etsy Shop for $40. If you message me, I’ll give you the code for free shipping on this item.

graphic tote collage

This hand-painted tote bag is lined and embellished with a hand-made, hand painted muslin flower with black leather petals. It is made from heavy cotton in ivory and lined with a cotton turquoise print fabric. It has a large and deep pocket on front side.
* tote measures 13″ tall and 11 1/2″ across
* hand painted with fabric paint (spot clean if needed)
* hand made “flower” pin that is detachable so you can wear it on a cute shirt or jacket lapel (do not launder)
* flower pin has a felt backing and I find it best attached with a large safety pin which is included
* shoulder straps have a drop of 9 1/2″
Uses:
* book bag
* market bag
* Bible study bag
* carry-all

muslin and leather bloom

I made this Bloom Brooch or flower pin by:

  • Tearing strips of muslin  – I had to sew two strips to connect them and make one very long strip (I used my machine but of course you could hand sew.)
  • Then I painted the muslin strip with watercolor (black to coordinate with the tote).
  • Next I twisted and rolled the muslin adding dabs of hot glue as I went.
  • I cut two petals out of black leather and glued those to the back side
  • I added a felt circle and a small rectangular tab on top of the circle (hot glue again) The tab allows it to be pinned a bit easier.

I like to use my Bloom Brooches in a variety of ways: on bags, totes, clutches, tops, lapels and even belts! I don’t pin it to the belts; I use the tab and slide it on to my belt.

This is a one of a kind tote bag with Bloom Brooch embellishment. I kinda love it!

Don’t forget, if you are interested in purchasing it, message me here, on fb or on IG and I’ll give you the coupon code to save $5 on shipping.

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Hand Painted Art Bag

Hand Painted with Free Motion Stitching – One of a kind art bag!

hand painted art bag I titled this “hand painted art bag” although this cute zippered pouch can be used for many things!

  • clutch
  • make-up bag
  • hand bag organizer
  • carry- all!

the details:

  • fabric is sturdy painter’s drop cloth
  • paint is fabric paint
  • lined with all cotton fabric
  • zipper is a heavy duty metal teeth zipper
  • pouch measures approx. 10 x 7
  • detailed with free motion stitching
  • spot clean only

painted and fms art bag

This is my original art designed bag. I cut the fabric, painted it, added free motion stitching for more texture and interest and sewed it on my machine. It’s quite the process!
I’m working to develop a line of unique, hand painted art bags and while I’m in process of perfecting and streamlining my design process, I’m offering my first bags at a lower price point.
You can purchase this hand painted art bag for $20 including shipping! (within the contiguous U.S.)

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Weekly Mash-Up

A Bit of My Week In Review 

a beautiful story of the human spirit, creativity and love 

Since learning how to do free motion stitching (embroidery), I’ve gotten very interested in fiber art. This week I came across an article that moved me to tears.

excerpted from article: “This is the story of Judith and Joyce Scott; how they were torn apart, the pain of separation and how their undeniable bond and eventual reunion healed life-long wounds and, against all the odds, sparked the emergence of a extraordinary talent. A talent that would see one of them become a world-renowned fiber artist.”

a little bunny love 

I admit I do love a bit of whimsy and my lovely little grand-girl is sparking even more of the whimsical in my art and sewing! Using free motion stitching, I created a little bunny for Wrynnie. The backside is made of a cotton bandanna style print fabric in pink. I detailed the features with watercolor as this little piece is more of an art doll than something to be played with. However, I’ve got sweet little stuffies in the works that she can handle and love on!

bunny

such a character

My sewing machine has been working overtime for the past couple of weeks! I’m working on all kinds of things that are a mash-up of fabric, paint and art stitching. This week I took on a commission for several of my chARacTer dolls. Here are a few that are in process. I still need to trim/shape and sew the backs to these pieces.

free motion faces

what love is 

Our weekly women’s Bible study is in full swing and I’m so enjoying our study by Kelly Minter, What Love Is – The Letters of 1, 2, 3 John. This particular line made an impact on me, “…John writes so we can know that we know Jesus–not so we can doubt that we know Jesus.” 

on the run

I started running regularly again this week and one of my habits is to snap a picture of what I see on my run. This week I stopped on the path for this purple thistle. Just look at that color!

thistle

a clay in the life 

Here’s a thistle (and dragonfly) I made from air dry clay. I’m taking a clay class with artist, Alissa Millsap. She’s so talented! Click on her name to view her facebook page, Ella & Ruby’s.

thistle and dragonfly

Thanks for stopping by and reading a bit about my week! Have a great one!

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DIY Graphic Print Tank Top

Last week I picked up a pack of Tulip Fabric Paint at my local Michael’s store. I decided on a 4 pack in “Neutral” because I’m into gold at the moment. It was $8.99 but my 40% off coupon made it $5.39.

The first project I tried it on was a cute little zippered pouch I made. I used my favorite inexpensive and sturdy fabric – painter’s drop cloth! I lined it with a cotton lining in a pink bandanna print fabric and voila – I have a sweet little make-up bag, art bag, or anything bag! Best of all – it’s one of a kind. Ya gotta dig that, right?!

My "anything bag" - zippered pouch with lining, free motion stitching and paint

My “anything bag” – zippered pouch with lining, free motion stitching and fabric paint

Now for the plain Jane Target tank turned gold graphic tank –

fabric paint on tank

 

I simply followed the directions on the packaging and free-handed a flower shape then used a small round brush to letter “hello.”

My supplies: Tulip Fabric Paint (gold), 2 flat art brushes (one smaller), small round art brush for the lettering, tank (pre-washed), small jar of water (you may need to thin your paint as you go), old rag for cleaning brush if necessary, cardboard to place inside tank top

Here I am modeling my new gold graphic tank.

hello

hello

Since I did not start with a new tank, mine has been washed several times and the Tulip Fabric Paint directions say to pre-wash your fabric before painting. I’m hoping it washes well post-paint! We’ll see.

What do you think? Have you ever used fabric paint on clothing? If not, give it a try!

My zippered pouches with free motion stitching and art work just might be going in my Etsy Shop. :)

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A Little Stitching, A Little Paint and A Little Bird!

A few things I’ve been up to lately –

I’ve recently discovered free motion stitching and I’m having so much fun with it! Below is one of my chARacTer Dolls made from drop cloth. I added the details using free motion stitching and watercolor. I made several of these last week and for this one I added a little pocket that might hold a handwritten note – perhaps a special Bible verse or inspirational word. We have an owl couple living in one of our tall pine trees and occasionally a feather floats to the ground. I tucked one of the owl feathers in the pocket for this photograph.

details: made from canvas dropcloth, black thread, pink embroidery thread and watercolor, filled with polyfill,  back side left unadorned

measures: 9 1/2″ x 4″

This is an art piece and, like art, it’s meant to be displayed and enjoyed. It is not washable unless you want to fade out the watercolor.

I’m offering it for $23 including shipping within the contiguous U.S.

I am my beloved and He is mine.

I am my beloved and He is mine.

Here’s a shot as I was in process on “Beloved.”

free motion stitching

free motion stitching

Below is a chARacTer Doll I made for my granddaughter!

Naps? Nope

Naps? Nope

Yes! Three weeks ago my baby girl had a baby girl!

Wryn

Wryn Eloise – Wryn is pronounced like “wren” the bird. We also call her “Wrynnie. (one week)

 

Look at those delicious tiny toes! I am so in love with this little darlin’!

I see lots of little handmade and handcrafted items in the future from Mimmie to Wrynnie with love.

 

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Fun With Air Dry Clay

Lately I’ve been experimenting with clay. I started first with a brand of air dry clay I picked up from Michael’s. It’s called Polyform Model Air (air dry modeling clay).

I made these.

clay Then I painted them gold.

clay woman painted goldclay bird - goldAround Valentine’s Day, I made a little heart from the clay and once it was dry, I used a Sharpie to draw flower designs.You can see the clay heart here.

On Leap Day, I began “Elements of Clay,” an online class offered by Jeanne Oliver and taught by Alissa Millsap. She’s so talented and I’m happy to learn all I can from her teaching on using air dry clay.

Here are a few projects I’ve made from the class using an air dry clay called PAPERCLAY. I like it better than the clay I tried first. It seems to be easier to smooth the lumps and bumps out of the clay.

butterfly paperclayI tried this project first because I love working with paper. I used vintage hymn pages for the wings. The butterfly sits on its legs – there are 6 underneath made from wire like the antennae.

Feeling a little more experienced after the butterfly, I made a dragonfly with a wire loop on the back so I can hang it on a wall. I love it!

thistle flower and dragonflyAnother project from the class is the thistle flower you see in the vase. This was so fun and I may make a few more to add to my milk glass vase.

Yesterday I was cruising the Anthropologie site and saw this which inspired me to make a little trinket dish.

trinket dish with elephant paperclayI had this tiny elephant in my jewelry box so I used what I had! However, that giraffe!!! I may give that a whirl with clay for a larger dish. I painted my scalloped-style edges with bright gold paint and then gave the center a little wash of the gold. You can see my stamped design in the center. It says, “Hey girl!” I just stamped it when the clay was still wet. So fun!

By the way, the Elements of Clay class is open to anyone. There is a purchase price payable via PayPal and you have lifetime access as long as Jeanne Oliver runs her site.

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