Saturday 2 February 2008

Life Book page, Handcrafts & EDM #22 - Draw piece of clothing

I have taken an interest in Life Books (Art Journals) of late so I've been busy browsing blogs for inspiration. Here is one of my first attempts featuring my batik, wrap-around skirt which I bought around 20 years ago! I guess this might also cover one of my EDM challenges (#22 - Draw a piece of clothing). I have always loved wrap-around skirts and this was a steadfast favourite. I love anything in batik design and the colours just drew me in. My skirt is a little faded and thread-bare in places from so much washing but I do still wear it, mainly around the house. I felt it deserved a place of note in my Life Book. Do you have an item of clothing that you just would not, could not, throw away? For me, I think it's this skirt. Maybe I will recycle it into a cushion or maybe it will remain the way it is but I know that I could not throw it away.

One of my first art journal attempts

Close up of Batik Wrap skirt - Pigma Micron .03 pen & Watercolour crayons on cardstock

A couple of days ago, I handsewed blind hems on two pairs of my sister's work pants. I remembered that my High School Homecraft teacher, Mrs Savage, would constantly remind us to pick up ONLY a single thread from the weave of the material. I smiled to myself to think that a memory over 30 years old would pop into my head like that. My teacher would also say that every sewn garment should be as neat on the inside as it is on the outside and that is another thing that has remained with me. Even when I learned fabric craft, I would carefully 'V' cut the curved edges to avoid bulk when the pieces were glued together. My friend would tell me repeatedly that it was unnecessary for me to do that but I did it anyway. lol My Homecraft classes have certainly served me well over the years and, looking through the family albums recently, I came across so many pics of my family wearing clothes that I had sewn for them. I would sew my own clothes, my kids' clothes, my Mum's clothes, my sister's clothes and her kids' clothes. I was quite the knitter too in those days. I would knit or crochet numerous layettes for my babies while I was pregnant with each of them. I can't speak for everyone but, nowadays, the majority of young girls don't seem interested in learning these skills which I think is kinda sad. Since art came into my life, I don't sew as much as I used to but I do feel a sense of pride that I learned these age-old crafts.

Hems to be sewed

Matching outfits for Brad and Michelle made by me

Beau in the knitted jacket and bonnet set I knitted. It also had matching bootees.


  1. Serena: I certainly hope things are getting more positive for you this year ...!!!!! I LOVE your skirt and the journal page of it!! What a great sketch you did of the design and wrap!!!!

  2. Hi Serena,
    Im glad that things have settled down and you and your family are looking forward to a better rest of the year. I really enjoyed looking through your posts you have the most beautiful wildlife paintings that I have ever seen. The realism is breathtaking to say the least. I also enjoyed your sewing, knitting and graphite you are a very talented lady. God bless

  3. This is my favourite piece of clothing, an orange and purple flowy skirt (I don't wear it that often though because I am afraid that I would wreck it)
    I have a few sarongs that I wear when its hot out, they are so easy to put on and do come in so many bright colours. (doesn't get hot enough really to wear them here)
    Sewing is great skill to have! I meet so many people that don't know even a basic stitch its actually sad. :/ I think its something everyone should know how to do. It comes in really handy when seams rip and can save so many clothes from being thrown out.

  4. Serena, I love the Life Journal idea it lends unique insight into our daily lives that is enjoyable to look back on over the years. I try to scrap book as much as possible when I can.

    Your sewing reminds me a lot of all the things my mom made while I was growing up.

    Beautiful baby! Looks very happy.

  5. hi serena i just looked and read abour sewing i took homec too i graduated 1977 . i made my boyfriend a 3 piece suit he wore it once it took me a month to do i was 17 .when my 2 boys were babies i made out fits ,i took them to the studio for pictures and now they are 17 and 18 i still can not throw the 2 things i made them out .,i hope to shadow box frame them with the clothes and pic together . i love your tribute drawing of heath his family would love it too ,i love your eagle the most love gina

  6. Good job Serena, I will watch for many more posts with excerpts from your art journal. I enjoyed seeing what crafts you have done and continue to do. Much like myself, I've tried about everything I think, at least once...Keep going you're doing great, Ro

  7. You certainly have many talents! I love the pattern of the Batik Wrap skirt. I also started art journaling at the beginning of the year and I'm having so much fun with it.

  8. Serena, I do hope things are getting better. Sorry to hear about your daughter and niece. Your journal pages are wonderful, you have so many terrific ideas! I like your goals chart too and the idea of putting it up where you will see it daily. Terrific goals, I'm sure you will achieve them all.

  9. Wow this is really interesting Serena i love the concept and love what you have done.. i was thinking of doing a similar thing for my boys for a while now .. you have inspired me to get one with it :)

  10. Hi Serena,
    My Mum is a dress-maker & used to make all my outfits growing up. I don't think I owned a t-shirt or jeans till I was a teenager!
    That's a wonderful talent to have :) I can only do 'repairs!


  11. Oh I love the skirt. I too have some favorite pieces of clothing that I just refuse to get rid of. Like your skirt, they are torn and faded but they just have to many memories. Someday when I am gone, my family will look and wonder what the heck I was thinking. :)


  12. Serena, this is a great and beautiful beginning to your art journal. Are you going to post some more later? My, you *really* love that sarong! :)
    Well, I learn something new about your from this post. You can sew and knit! You are just unbelievably super talented! :D

  13. Thank you, Lin ~ :)

    Thanks for dropping by, Pamyla ~ :)

    Your skirt is lovely, Jennifer! Is it made from cheesecloth fabric? Orange and pink make a nice combination. :)

    Thanks, Boyd! I think it's great that you scrapbook when you can. I'm enjoying the art journaling so much....I just have fun with it without pressures. Anything goes. :)

    Gina, that's great that you sew too. Something else we have in common. Thanks for your kind comments. :)

    Thanks, Ro. Your encouragement means a lot to me. :)

    Thanks, Ella. Yay, great to hear you have started art journaling too. I hope you will post some to your blog also. :)

    Thank you, Ann. I appreciate the positive feedback. :)

    Good for you, Belinda! I think doing a journal for your sons is a great idea. :)

    Thanks Maria. I never owned a pair of jeans until I was a teen either. :)

    Thanks, Becky. Isn't it funny how certain items of clothing can mean so much....I think some of it is the memories we attach to them. :)

    Thanks, Luci. Yes, I think I will post the occasional journal pages. I enjoy the more personal, no pressure aspect of them. You are quite the knitter yourself. :)

  14. Wow, Serena, I don't know if you'll see these older comments, but your art journal pages are gorgeous! I'd love to see more if you do them.