Tuesday, September 27, 2011

New dog blues

We have a new puppy in our house, and she isn't allowed downstairs where I have my shop. This is a problem because barking drives me batty. I will ask the dog trainer tonight what my solutions might be. I really need to get downstairs and back to work.  Not only the vinyl stuff, but my color theory work, too.  I have been very busy cleaning up dog urine and other fun stuff. You are welcome, kids.

On the other hand, it is good for a dog not to have the complete run of the house, so I have read.  Also she is getting me out walking.  Maybe there's a chance to become "all that" once again!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

My New Colour Theory Blog

Years ago when I first started my Certificate in Visual Design program, the Colour Theory program ignited a passion for the topic of ideal clothing colours for the individual. I had noticed how wonderful Cameron Diaz looked in the movie There's Something About Mary. Also how stunning Julie Andrews looked in her golden yellow suit near the end of The Sound of Music.  How I got compliments on how great I looked when wearing a certain shade of blue, even when I was sick as a dog. Conversely how my manager at Dairy Queen kept on about how sick I looked when I was wearing the orange uniform of that era.

When I was deciding on my colour theory topic I initially thought about the fashion side of colour. My initial lizard-brain said that it was a dumb and frivolous idea. Thankfully I ignored the inner critic and went ahead with it. I decided to ask the question: what makes certain colours ideal for the individual?  That was the focus of my research, and I earned an A+ for my paper, and an endorsement from the prof that she expected to see me on the Fortune 500 list someday!

Life circumstances got me to get my research to a certain point and then shelve it. I intended to revisit the topic someday. I think now might be the time. http://colourinclothing.blogspot.com/

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Designing a simple foldover wallet.

I had advertised different wallet features on the custom section of my website, but hadn't gotten any inquiries. Now that I've got an inquiry, I need to price out some different types of wallets. So I started with a simple foldover wallet design. I am designing the cut file in Adobe Illustrator.

I wanted to have it with a foldover edge all around, so I thought a foldover window might work. It didn't. that type of window might work in a different context, but not this one. Another challenge I had was too many card slots, the middle line where the wallet folds, when loaded with cards, wasn't in the centre. So I reduced the number of card slots. The thread I was using was fraying so I need to change my thread. And so it goes. All sorts of adjustments here and there. I came up with some hidden alignment features on the cut file to make the slots exactly parallel and the same depth. Now the cut file is just about where I want it.

Another example of Patrick Moody's principle: "Often you won't be able to sell what you make -- it's the same with all crafting professions, you have to make a lot of crap before you get to the good stuff. " There are all kinds of folks who would look at the intermediate versions above and leverage it to imply that you should give up your quest, that you are a bad designer, hell, you aren't even worth the air you are breathing! I exaggerate. But I once had a boss just like that.

Finally got an Industrial Sewing Machine

I got an industrial machine to replace my 1948 Singer. The Singer was a good place to start as it could go through several layers of vinyl without getting stuck in needle down as modern domestic sewing machines are prone to do. However, the Singer couldn't backstitch, and turning my work was a pain.

I bought this Yakumo/Chandler TDU N62 walking foot machine from Ferro Concepts, who specialize in lightweight tactical nylon gear. This machine does lockstitch and a longer stitch than I was able to obtain with the Singer. I wonder how many previous owners this machine has had?