Friday, July 23, 2010

When a tutorial goes wrong, go shopping!

I started yesterday morning full of hope. After a brief nap in my computer chair (sad, but true), and a shower to shock me awake, I decided to get some fabric painting in before the sun and humidity took over. I planned to do a resist, but it turned into a mess.

Supplies needed (from lower left):
Plastic to cover patio table
Fabric (old sheets and part of a blouse are shown)
Masking tape (low tack)
Small plastic cup
Measuring cup
More fabric
Plastic container for mixing

Before I begin, I want to clarify that this technique takes FLOUR. Cheap, not wheat, not made for bread machines FLOUR. I thought that's what I had, so I proceeded ahead. Full speed in fact. I even stuck my finger in to taste it. It didn't taste like flour, but it had been in the craft room for a long time, and I'm not a baker.

So I blindly began by placing a cup of "flour" in the container and added a cup of water. The idea is to mix equal parts "flour" and water.

Mix well. Get those lumps out. Since when did "flour" turn brown when you add water?

Tape your fabric to the plastic. You can stick newspapers under the plastic for added cushion, if you think you need it.

I didn't use the newspapers, which is probably a good thing.

The "flour" and water mixture was too thin, so I added more "flour." Should have known at that time things were not going well, but I persisted. Messed with the mix until I got the consistency I thought I needed, then

poured a bead of the mix across the fabric and proceeded to squeegee the mixture onto the fabric. Of course, I had a mess, the mix wouldn't spread, wouldn't squeegee, and began lumping and hardening as soon as it hit the fabric. Not sure what to do, I dribbled the mixture onto the fabric until it was all gone. I finally decided it acted like plaster of paris, not flour. So, I did the best thing I could do. I set the whole globby mess in the sun and allowed it to dry. I'm still not sure what was in that bag I thought was "flour," but it made a fun mess!

Bleubeard and I cleaned everything up, including the goo that had dribbled all over everything, including my feet and legs, which I did not clean.

About the time I had the mess cleaned up outside, I got a phone call. By this time it was nearly 10 am. It was my friend Kathy and she was on her way to my place. I jumped in the shower for the second time in about three hours and got the plaster goo off my legs and feet.

I failed to take photos of Kathy opening her birthday gift (her birthday was April 11, and I've forgotten her gift twice since then) and other shots of us at my house. Of course, Kathy wanted to go to our favorite scrapbook/stamping/ephemera store, Mrs. O'Leary's. It is well known around the country because Joanie, the owner, attends all the shows and always has a booth, too.

Here is Kathy pointing to some rabbits and other goodies that made up an Alice in Wonder Land arrangement. There was also Alice paper from Graphic 45, which Kathy has tucked under her arm.

Here she is buying even more of the Alice papers, while everyone else is hustling about around her. I spent most of my time in the "Mark Down" room, my favorite place to shop. Needless to say, I bought some fabric ink and dye reinkers. Much needed and will be useful for a fabric project I have planned. And what could be better than to get seven reinkers for $5.00 (about 3.28 pounds or 3.89 Euros)?

While Kathy picked out the last of her papers, I picked up the book all my British friends have been raving about: Tim's Compendium of Curiosities. I only had a chance to glance at the first few pages before Kathy was ready to go.
When we got to the car, she showed me the BIRD CAGE and BIRD die she bought, too. I about flipped out. I love that die and now I will have someone less than 100 miles (~161 Km) away who can make them for me. YEA!!!

Next it was off to eat lunch. I remember Anne (Liverpool Lou) making a comment about buffets. Yes, we call them Buh feh (not buff etts). And this place was an all you can eat place, as you can see by Kathy's plates. She sure looks happy here.

And only mildly irritated as I wanted one final picture before we left the restaurant.

Of course, I got so engrossed in the picture taking process, I failed to notice the people staring in the background!

Finally it was off to Sam's, the discount membership club where Kathy buys her toilet paper and other supplies. Here we were drawn to these whirling wind catchers.

Of course, these were being "blown" around by motors, which were "sold separately" and "batteries not included."

Although the day started rather badly, I think Kathy more than made up for it in the end. And tomorrow I will have FLOUR, so will be able to start my tutorial in time for Monday's post, Although I got a bit derailed by some unknown substance which was obviously not flour, I plan to do something dye-wise with the fabric that has the non-"flour" on it. After all, playing is half the fun and learning by experimenting is the other half. Of course, having YOU laugh and shake your head at my antics figures in there, too! Have a great day, laughing and preparing for the weekend. Hope you have time to play and experiment, too.

Bleubeard has gotten so little press lately, I thought it was time for him to find some much needed like-minded friends. He always feels so slighted when he doesn't get to be in the studio like his British and American WOYWW art cat friends. So, a bit off the beaten path, but here's a blog written by Batu Khan, a Birman Cat from Australia. I don't believe I've had an Australian blog featured before and I'm pretty excited about this one, because Batu is the talented writer of this blog. If you have no idea what a Birman cat is, there are web site links posted on Batu's sidebar that will help you understand and identify the breed. For those of you who are cat lovers, The Adventures of Batu Khan is for you. Just remember to take your sweater, because it's cold "down under" these days. For those of you who are not cat lovers, you can always check your cupboards for flour!

18 thoughtful remarks:

Seth said...

I am still wondering what the "flour" really was - LOL! Glad you were able to salvage the day.

Healing Woman said...

I think you made an excellent recovery after having company for so many days. You sound like you are now back to your old arttistic self! So what if there are a few mishaps along the way.

Halle said...

Oh my...what a mess that must have been. I'm so surprised with how organized you are that it wasn't labeled. I have a mystery container in my pantry as well. It's either flour or pancake mix. :)
Shopping looked like fun.

Liverpool Lou (Anne) said...

hahahahahahahahahahaha it's a good job I didn't have a mouthful of tea when I read this 'cos it would coming out of my nose now I'm sure. I'm still chuckling now :-) I love the way your carried on even when you had a sneaky suspicion that something wasn't quite right. Sounds like it was plaster of paris! I keep on chuckling all the while writing this so thank you for blogging about your failures and not just the things that turn out well as I suspect some do! Great bargain with the re-inkers. The expression on Kathy's face in that last pic says it all.
Please email me your address as I'd like to send you a little something
in code here - anneevo46atgooglemaildotcom I've heard it fools spammers.
Anne xx

Liverpool Lou (Anne) said...

PS am off food shopping now - yuk - at Asda which is now part of the Walmart company.
Anne xx

Joanie Hoffman said...

ohh, this was a fun posting!
off to look at Batu Khan...
see you on Monday!

Cindy McMath said...

Elizabeth, look on the bright side - at least you didn't try to bake anything with the "flour" - yuck! Wonder what it was and I hope you threw the rest out.

Reminds me of the time a friend mistook cinnamon for cocoa - cinnamon and peanut butter are NOT as good as cocoa and peanut butter!

What a fun day you had with Kathy - Mrs. O'Leary's looks like a fantastic place to go.

Cindy :)

Batu said...

Hey thanks for featuring me on your blog!!! I am very excited to be featured! Sorry my post at the moment is a sad one - but be sure to come back for my Pyschic Sunday where I send out an affirmation for the day!!!

~*~Patty Szymkowicz said...

sorry to laugh but you really had me in suspense Elizabeth ... the "flour" substance shall remain a mystery I guess ... hoping you didn't add water with the "taste" you took heehee

Mrs O'Leary's looks fab, you have quite a lot of fun shopping spots in your neck of the woods!

Thinking the lady in the background of your photo is wondering WHY is she taking a picture of me LOL
Happy Friday, hope yours is cooler than ours here in VA ... feels like 105+ ugh!

Tracy Evans said...

Loved your post, and wow wow wow that shop looks absolutely amazing. Love the sound of the Alice ornaments. I have just purchased the Graphic 45 papers, they are yummy. Wish we had shops like that near me, I would spend all my money there. You have made me smile tonight, Tracy Evans x

Terri Kahrs said...

Happy Friday, Elizabeth! And it looks like it came in just the nick of time for you after your very busy week. Hmmmm . . . . STILL not sure what the floury substance was?!? I must say, I've gotta give you credit for trying to carry the experiment all the way through to completion. You're a better woman than I!!!! Have a wonderful weekend! Hugs, Terri xoxox

Patti said...

you've just got to find out what the bogus flour really is! please!
I love your sense of adventure and am glad you took the time, materials and effort - even if it was a trial run!

Mar said...

too sad the project didn't perform well for you
but i had to laugh out loud when i noticed right as you were pointing them out
the people in the backgrpund at the lunch
too funny
a good day in the end though!

Lynn said...

Popping in to say hi. Been so busy lately. All you do looks so interesting and makes me wonder if and when I will be able to get back to art making. Your friend is lovely.

Julia Dunnit said...

Glad you only tasted the 'flour' the once E!! How funny - I wonder what part of us it is that makes us persist even when the feeling that it'snot right starts to grow..? I have grinned through your post - and good lord gal, I could easily have sent you die cuts - just ask away. A day with Kathy sounds good tome - she seems to know how to shop. Great bargain re-inkers.

FlipSyde said...

1. Tidy cat litter buckets (once emptied - although very expensive and I am sad to see them emptied) are The Most Useful things ever. I chucked when I glimpsed yours in a picture.
2. My daughter was just nattering on about how we should go to Sam's because according to her: 'mom, what you are not seeing is the big picture. do you understand how cheap sharpies are there?'
So, were the sharpies that cheap?
Im sorry about your weird NotFlour.

Diane said...

So I wonder what that mysterious "flour" was--do you? Well, I hope you can show us the tutorial on Monday--I'm anxious to see the results!

Steph said...

oooh I have to catch up....hmmm "flour" which turned brown upon mixing?? I'm glad your day ended well, and I can't wait for the flour tut!!! Big Big hugs from meee....