Sunday, September 13, 2009

Car 54 where are you?

Back on July 28th & 31, I blogged about a project that I was starting. On the 31st, I gave you an idea of the process that I go through to accomplish the task. Today, I want to share with you the finished project "Car 54".

The idea for this project came to me after I finished the baby quilt of the Semi Truck (See the blogged dated April 6th & 21st). You see, I am the only girl in my family which has 3 boy. So for years, I've endured conversations about cars!!!! I know, it's a guy thing, but even conversations on where to get a cardboard liner for a 1952 Chevy while we where having breakfast is a bit much. So after doing the Semi Truck quilt, I decided to do one more special quilt.

My brother George is a Macomb County Deputy Sheriff and has a 1952 Chevy Styleline Deluxe that he's restored to be a reproduction of a 1952 Sheriff Patrol Car and also a D.A.R.E. car.
As you can see, he has his own collectors card which is 2.5" x 3.5" and my source of inspiration.

I scanned the card and printed out an 8.5" x 11" color copy

After making this copy, I took my 54" width roll of paper and drew out a 44"x 35" rectangle on it. I taped that to my dining room wall and put the color copy on the opaque projector and displayed it on the paper taped to the wall. I then traced the image.

After tracing the image onto the large paper, I now have to retrace each section onto tracing paper to make the patterns. Don't ask how many pieces as I didn't bother to count, as I didn't want to be overwhelmed by numbers.
You have to start with the back ground and work your way up from there. I try to give texture and detail. I wish you could see the real thing. The steering wheel is black vinyl, the seat cover is corduroy, the body of the car is satin to give it it's shine, and a thin plastic for the windows. I used gabardine for the uniform pants, vinyl for the shoes, silver lame' and silver dance fabric for the chrome as well as gold satin for the lettering. If you feel the uniform shirt, it is cotton and the pockets, pocket flaps and shirt cuff as individual pieces ans his tie is like a silk tie. The red lights and spot lights are dance fabric and iridescent sheer. I used calico's for the sky, hills and ground and a marbled black for the ground.
Back in July, my family got together for breakfast and I decided to surprise my brother with what I had at that point of the process. "All these years of car talk, glass pack mufflers, intake manifold, card board trunk liners, drag racing, demolition derby's, Indy 500, Dayton 500. I decided if you guys can build cars, well, so can I and from the ground up mind you. Here's my problem, when I'm done with it, where do I park it?" "Park what?" he answered. With that, I reached next to me and brought up the folded quilt. "This"! I replied as I unfolded it.

I got him!!!! I got him good. He was speechless and tears started to well up in his eyes.
It took a few more weeks to finish as I had other things to attend to, but now it's complete and ready to be parked anywhere he chooses.

I included this picture of me standing next to it so you get an idea just how big it is. A far cry from 2.5" x 3.5". I have no idea how many hours I've invested in it. When it's a labor of love, time doesn't matter. I guess all that car talk paid off over the years, especially when I can use my talents to give back.

The Time Machine . Confessions of a computer game junkie

I have found a 21 century Time Machine. It's a computer, as it sucks time away from you. Once you've logged on ans completed all that you wanted to do, you come to realize just how much time you've spent on the thing.
I must confess that I've become a computer game junkie. I have 2 farms, one on Farm Town and one on Farmville and I also live in an apartment on Yoville. That is, I did have these things. As of today and the conviction on God, I've turned all 3 off. To some of you, you may think I've lost my mind and to others, you will understand the conviction of God in you own lives.
When it gets to a point that you are adjusting your schedule at home to harvest a crop or work in a factory, then life has become sad. I found myself working on virtual reality places for hours and for what.....more money, experience points, the next level. How sad it's truly become for me. I'd go to bed late and get up to get ready and hurry out the door for work. I no longer took the time to sit and read the word of God and do my devotions in the morning because I had been up way to late the night before.
I've been asking God for more of Him and less of me. For more of Him and less of the things of this world. I can no long let the things of this world take precedent over what God has for my life. I'll still be on Facebook and still do my e-mail, but will no longer sit for wasted, empty hours to play games. These are my convictions and I just want my neighbors on those games to have a fully understanding as to why I'm no longer their neighbor.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

How many heads does it take???????

As I've mentioned in past blogs, I work in an alteration shop called "The Sewing Room". Over the years there, I have had my challenges with different projects that customers have come in with. Let me just say, that I've just completed one, that so far has put my creative thinking to the test.

It all started when a local dentist office ( Timothy D. Rodney, DDS & ASSOC.) had a project request. I had already left work for the day, so my boss called and asked me to watch a YouTube clip and see what I thought, as she hadn't committed to the job yet. So to my computer I went and found the clip and said "Is she nuts?" I then decided to give it a second look and was formulating ideas in my head, but still couldn't figure out what to do for the foundation. So I asked my hubby to watch the clip and see what he thought. He had a profound reaction.."Turn of the clip and walk away from the computer. Don't even think about it!" Sound words of wisdom, so I followed them and informed the boss that it was beyond me and I would not tackle the project. She in turn, called the dentist office and let them know we would not take on the job and made a few suggestions that might help them out.
So, on with the normal work routine, or so we thought.

Our contact from the dentist office called and asked if we might not reconsider the request and that she had some ideas and could she come over and lets brain storm. Well, we could, but there was still no commitment at this point. Might I add here, that the contact from the dentist office is a very friendly and enthusiastic person. She came with a rough sketch and some notes on a pad of paper. I was apprehensive to say the least. A challenge is a challenge, but the time frame was less then I desired.

So here we stood, brain storming as customers came in and the boss was busy helping with fittings. "Well, couldn't you do this? Or what about that? Couldn't you use this? Back and forth we went. "Come on, you can do it!" I don't know what made me say it...."Kellie(she's the boss) what do you think?" "It's up to you, what do you think?" I inhaled and slowly exhaled.
"What would it take to start?"asked the customer. Before I could even really think about it, I said...."$200 to start, but it could go up from there, as I've never really done this before." Needless to say, she was elated and we worked out a supply list for her to pick up. This was on Friday, August 28 and she promised to have the supplies to me on Tuesday September 1. Mind you, the mascot head needed to be done and ready for pickup on September 5.
I headed home after work, wondering what I had just gotten myself into. I watched and re watched the Yo Tube clip and then Googled "Mascot Heads" to see what I could find, what I could learn and formulated a plan. Now, all I needed was the supplies so I could get started.

Can you say "things don't always go as planned!" I thought the supplies would be coming in when the shop opened at 10 am, but that arrival time would be at 3:15 pm. So, we loaded up my car and I headed home to start. I had previously pulled a costume pattern from my archives and started to work on the characters hand. Away I went re drawing the pattern to fit an adult hand, cutting the foam and fabric and starting the sewing process. Just to make one hand, both sides of the foam had to be covered, first with the outside fabric and then with the inside fabric. Each hand has a top and bottom. In other words, I was making an over sized glove (almost like Mickey Mouse with 3 fingers and a thumb). I finished one before I went to bed and was quite happy with the results, but realized that it was to tight for my husbands hand so I would have to remake it.
Wednesday morning, I happily went to work on remaking the hand bigger and our contact from the dentist office dropped off the bike helmet we needed for the inside of the head. She was pleased with the hand and agreed that it needed to be bigger and took the smaller one with her to show them at the office. I was working right along when Kellie came into work and asked why the hand only had 3 fingers and a thumb, when the picture clearly had a normal hand?

I was thinking "Character" and hadn't paid attention to the picture. To play it safe, we called the dentist office and asked. I'm sure you know the it like the picture. I was having fun with the hands, I hadn't even gotten to the head.

The reason I titled this blog " How many heads does it take?", is because, I didn't have all the answers or formulated ideas and if it hadn't been for the brain storming amongst my co-workers, I'd still be racking my brains. Liliam was a big help and Kellie's input was great (even though she can be quite KNIT PICKY, which is a good thing) Funny thing is, all 3 of us would have a idea as how to do something and most of the time it was the same idea with 3 different approaches.
This is what the head looked like Friday morning.

I was able to use the discarded hands to make the ears and nose and we spray painted foam red and shaped it like a bowl, attach it to the head and stuff it with fiber fill. We glued a scrap of foam for the lip and put black fabric in the mouth to see out of, but people couldn't see in.
Needless to say, we had 3 opinions for the hair and had to have the dentist make the final decision. At which time, he changed the hair color to blond instead of like the picture.
Liliam and I worked very hard to get the job done on Friday before we left work. I love the results. I'm only sad that I wont be there when the dentist picks it up. It will be in the Romeo Peach Festival Parade on Labor Day.

I'd really like to thank Kellie & Liliam for all their input and working with me through this project

So what do you think? Not to shabby! Will I ever do another one.....well, differently not tomorrow, but at least I know what it entails and that more time is needed so as not to be to stressed out.
Maybe I should have taken some Laughing Gas, at least I would have been happy through the stress.