I love creating new patterns. I always have at least a dozen ideas in my head for new things to make. Over the years I have learned to write things down when I have a new idea that I want to implement. That way when I am a bit 'dry' or looking for something new to make and can't really think of the perfect project, I can look back on my list and it will at least point me in a direction and get things rolling.
Sometimes the ideas don't look so great later on. I look back on them and say to myself, "What was I thinking?" and it goes by the wayside. But many times what is on my list gives me at least a springboard to move ahead.
After taking several weeks off to move, I noticed my list of new project that I want to do is longer than ever. Even though I was focused on other things, it didn't stop the ideas from flowing and in some ways, I found that I thought of new things at an even quicker pace. Maybe it was because I was going through and organizing all of my supplies and seeing all the cool things I have for designing. That is always inspirational. It was like going to my own private craft show. It really got me excited about the new things I am going to make.
While I am certainly not finished organizing (that will be an ongoing project) I knew it was time to get back to drawing and creating. Otherwise the seasons will just keep passing me by and I will have an even longer list for 'next year'. By then, who knows how many new designs I will have that I want to create?
So I had to begin somewhere. But where to you start when looking at such a variety of options. I find that sometimes having 'too many' things to do can actually be a hindrance, as it can be overwhelming and stifle me altogether. I had to just jump in and draw.
Lately, I have had wonderful success with my bevel cut two piece ornaments and plaques. I found that this type of ornament is not only attractive, but something that is rather unique. Most ornaments that are available for painters are laser cut now and the bevel cut center of each piece gives an attractive self-framing effect. I like cutting them, too, which is really important, I think. After cutting many for Lynne Andrews' 12 Days of Christmas pattern that I have been making, I created some other simple shapes using the same process. I find though that unless I offer a design to make on them, they seem to be sluggish in sales. While I have a few designers that I am working with on these types of ornaments, I felt that I wanted to do some things myself with them. After all – that is why I drew them up in the first place.
One of my favorites are these little beehive ornaments that I created. (SLDPK132 Beehive Bevel-Cut Ornaments (3 ornaments)):
Like my other ornaments of this type, they are two-piece and the center is cut on a slight bevel so when they are replaced back into the outside frame of the ornament, they sit slightly back:
The result is a nice, framing effect, as the center is simply glued into place.
I like to think that this type of painting surface has become something that people are associating with me. I haven't seen it done by other large manufacturers and it seems to be quickly becoming my 'trade mark'. It is nice to have something like this to offer.
For the past several days, I have been working on using these little beehive ornaments, and I also made a larger plaque surface as well (which will be posted on the site soon.) I have been showing you small 'teasers' of what I was doing with them, and the response has been very positive.
Initially, I was going to make two separate patterns – one for the larger plaque and the other for the six ornament sayings – but while I was creating them, I decided that since they are all so similar, I will offer everything in one pattern packet. That way everyone can have both projects in one place.
I nearly finished painting them all yesterday, but I am still not quite done:
I still have the grassy areas and flowers to do on all the hives, as well as the small bee charms added to the bottom of each ornament. I think they will make a lovely set.
I plan on offering what I will call a "Super Combo Kit" for all the pieces that I used to create the set. It will consist of the large plaque, six ornaments, all the charms (the six small bee charms as well as the large bee charm for the plaque) and finally, the stencils that I used to create the background. I decided to make the stencils optional, and the line work for the background design will be included in the pattern for those who don't want to invest in stencils. This is my first time making my own stencils and I was happy with how they came out. But I still don't want to force others to have to use them if they don't want.
So that is where I am today. I need to finish up the flowers for all the hives and then get to creating the pattern packet. I hope to have everything up on the site by the weekend.
I am really pleased and excited about this project. It has opened me up to many new ideas and ways to create. I just can't wait until you see what I have in store for you all next! But that is for another blog . . .
Thank you all who have given me such wonderful and positive feedback on this project. It really does help to encourage me to do more for you all. I am happy that you all like what I do.
Hopefully, I will have "Finished" pictures ready for you all tomorrow. Until then . . . Have a great Thursday!
-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs (http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com) Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"