Friday, April 30, 2010

Cherry Blossoms for Spring!

I just wanted to update my blog for those of you who actually follow me, and I thought I would write about my current favorite things: cherry blossoms! I got the inspiration for this collection from my furniture painting adventures, and my interest in Sumi-e brush painting. I wasn't sure how this would translate into acrylic paint, as this style relies heavily on watercolor and saturation of the paper to create desired effects. I tried it first on my favorite piece of furniture, seen here with pretty good results.

So, next I thought: "Why not paint a pillow? I mean, canvas is just cotton covered in gesso, right? is can't be that different than just painting on a canvas. And behold, my hand painted pillows were born. The first one I tried was a bamboo design, red on black like my signature furniture design. I wanted to do Cherry blossoms next, but I didn't want to do black again, so I picked a heavyweight cotton broadcloth in white to paint it on instead. The result is below:

Turned out pretty great, I think! This has been my most popular pillow by far, and I have sent these to the store I sell in in Pittsburgh and Chicago, so with luck I will sell many more.

Since these have been so popular, I wanted to expand the line with a third pillow, and it gave me an opportunity to use the frog closures I had recently acquired as well. I saw a similar design to this one on line, and took my inspiration from that. A piece of remnant cloth, in metallic charcoal polyester, provided the background for the two sides of the Cherry blossom layer, which I painted, then cut in half (that was a stressful moment, I can assure you!) finished the edges, and hand sewed the frog closures on both sides. I attached the two layers together before sewing back to front, and voila! It turned out perfectly, and I am very proud of it!
Check out both pillows and my Etsy shop here! If you like them, make sure to let me know!

18in Pair of Cherry Blossom pillows:

12x20 Cherry Blossom pillow with Frog Closures:

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