Friday, July 27, 2007

Plant Cans

So as I mentioned in my last post Nate and I have this giant outdoor patio space at our new apartment. Most of the apartments I have lived in in the past have had just a small balcony that barely had enough space for my potted plants or no outdoor space at all. The new place has very little actual dirt that I could plant things in but lots of space for pots. So I'm kind of going overboard with potting up cuttings from friends plants or pieces I've pinched off succulents as I walk around the neighborhood. The only problem is what to plant all these things in. I'm trying to get away from having so many ugly plastic pots but terracotta pots are spendy and kind of boring.

A few months ago I went to this store called pot-ted in Attwater village right next to India Sweets and Spices. Pot-ted is a very expensive exterior decorating store. It has lots of really cute succulents and cacti in really interesting containers that they charge ridiculous amounts of money for. They were using all sorts of old found objects at plant pots: tea cups, bowls, ceramic elephants. The only problem with these things is getting a drainage hole drilled in the bottom without cracking the thing. Too scary for me. The items that seemed most promising as future plant pots were the metal containers. They had all these antique coffee cans, cookie tins and even a metal crayola crayon box. These you could easily just pound a few holes in with a nail for drainage.

A few weeks later as I was walking around a Chinese grocery store I was noticing all the cool looking cans of vegetables, seafood and meat that had the labels just printed directly onto the can instead of a glued on paper label. It took me lot of searching but I finally found a giant can of Australian corned beef that had an interesting label and would be large enough for this cactus that I bought when I was in San Francisco and happened to stumble across the
Botanical Gardens cactus and succulent show.

Nate and I have been eating a lot of sweet potato/corn beef hash lately and I think I'm still going to have to throw out most of the corn beef. It would have been better to use left over cans of things that I would eat anyway but I'm not normally a huge fan of canned meats.

I ended up buying this can of Korean salmon for this project as well as a can of Japanese crab meat. I didn't realized how many bones they put in canned salmon. It's kind of gross. I planted this succulents that I got from one of my coworkers in it. hopefully it will grow and end up filling the can. I still haven't come up with a way to use the crab meat yet but it has a very cute can that I'm sure one of my plants would be very happy in it.

Oh, here is a picture of the drainage holes that I hammered into the can. It seems to work pretty well.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Pillow Covers Finally

Nate and my new apartment is pretty tiny at least on the inside. But we have a huge patio with really nice landscaping that our landlord put in. We pretty much turned the patio into an outdoor living room that makes our apartment seem much larger. For an outdoor couch we bought a outdoor lounge chair from ikea an pushed it up against the wall with some giant throw pillows Nate already had, which of course were also from ikea, to make a makeshift couch.

It was pretty comfortable and looked pretty good except the pillows were getting kind of filthy from being outside all the time. Nate kept bugging me to make pillow cases so that we could take them off and wash them when they got dirty. This was odd since he rarely encourages me to take on large sewing projects that will mean scraps of fabric all over the floor and pins potentially lost in the carpet for him to step on.

Anyway, here is the finished product. Patchwork, screen printed and embroidered pillow cases.

And close ups of each one.

I like the gnome one, but it doesn't really match the others. I may end up making a different pillow case for that pillow and keep the gnome one as an extra.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Flock of Flamingos

I finally got my pictures of the flamingo mobile I made for the "found item mobile/windchime swap." I spent a good amount of time working on this mobile. I really like making them but it gets kind of tedious cutting out the birds with an exacto knife. Having to do that with the swap deadline looming made me not enjoy making this mobile as much as a should have. Despite that I really like how it ended up turning out.

As usual photos of my mobiles never really do them justice. It's so hard to get all three birds in the same frame. Here are a few attempts.