Shared Adventures in the Crafty Blogiverse!


Just messing around with one of the images of "first tulip"! A kind of bouquet, if you will, to two lovely women, Antoinette and Betsy, who have taken time recently to write me and share the results of their own personal new adventures inspired by projects shared here on Gingerbreadsnowflakes.

What especially pleased me is that the projects that provided inspiration are near and dear to my heart, (and as is usually the case with me, not so much "mainstream" popular.)

Punched tin and wheat Crafts

That would be of course, wheat straw and punched tin!

Getting 35,000 hits on my "Dying Eggs with Koolaid" post in a single month can be heady stuff! But receiving lovely e-mails like the ones that contained the images below - that can make my whole month!!!

Virgin de Guadalupe in recycled tin can frame

Image used with permission from Antoinette ("Gourd" on flickr)

Antoinette happened upon the "punched tin" frame I constructed from tin cans to emulate the stunning frames, nichos, and sconces created by tinsmiths living and working in northern New Mexico during the early 1800's. They were forced by living in relative isolation to use whatever materials they could salvage - in many cases that was oil drums which they cleaned and turned into beautiful objects of religious or household art.

It is difficult to find images that are not copyrighted that portray the style of the period. So when I saw this image pop up in my e-mail I nearly fainted! Because Antoinette has lived her life in New Mexico, her punched tin frame (constructed from tin cans BTW) perfectly reflects the designs of the period.


Image used with permission from Antoinette

Apparently, once Antoinette began "punching tin" she could not stop and one thing lead to another and she signed up for a class taught by G-T Stained Glass and Tin Works at UNM (my alma mater) in Albuquerque NM. This is the mirror she completed in class!!! And by this time she had only been "punching tin" using the "nail and hammer" method for a month or so.


Image used with permission from Antoinette

Having been settled by Spaniards several centuries prior, the whole of northern New Mexico during the 1800's was still deeply rooted in Catholicism and much of the tin work was designed to be used for religious purposes in churches or on home altars. A little frame similar to this one could certainly have been hung in many homes. A series of them could be used to display the stations of the cross on church walls.

I am pretty certain that Antoinette has become enchanted! Punched tin has indeed cast it's spell! You can see some of her other smaller creations here on Flickr.

Betsy's Dalas and Straw

Image by Betsy

Betsy wrote me a little comment on the "Merry Christmas" post in which I shared the image of the "Scandinavian Shop" where I took my children to purchase Christmas tree ornaments every July 25th! Betsy's childhood included visits to the shop too!!!

I sent her a little note of appreciation for sharing and she replied by saying: "You're welcome Pam!  Thank you for your wonderful blog.  I always look forward to your next entry.  About a year ago your blog inspired me to begin learning wheat weaving.  Since then I've been having lots of fun making wheat & straw ornaments and felt birds & dala horses (also inspired by gingerbreadsnowflakes).  I attached pictures so you can see some of them.  My next project is to learn to make straw goats."

The Dala I understand!!! Everyone, it seems falls in love with Dalas! And birds!

But wheat and straw? It is hard for me to understand why so few craft artists fall under the spell of wheat! So finding someone who actually has fallen under that spell, and fallen under that spell as a result of one of my posts - well it just makes my heart happy!

And just look at her circular straw ornaments! I can not do it! Not well. That's why I mainly stick to house blessings and harvest brooms! The circular ornaments look so easy - but they are not!!! At least for me!

I had to create a little "jig" to make even the simplest circular straw ornament (sharing that little jig and how to make the ornament from cardboard later this month).

But Betsy sure seems to have figured it out! Brilliantly!

Betsy's straw horse

Image by Betsy

And look at this! OMG! Love this straw horse to pieces! Betsy! Now you have inspired me! Must make one!!! Maybe ten! Any chance you would teach me?

So! What do you think? Don't both of these crafty women deserve a great big hug?

Thank you Betsy! Thank you Antoinette! Thank you for sharing and thereby enriching and further inspiring my own experience in crafting with wheat and punched tin.

Hi Pam, Is that wheat weaver

Hi Pam,

Is that wheat weaver you mentioned in the Seattle area? I know there is one that has a booth at the Yulefest every year, and I've also seen her at the Swedish Cultural Center in Seattle.

Ohhhhhh, I so love that wheat horse!

Yes indeed she is from the

Yes indeed she is from the Seattle area!  Olympia in fact.  She is part of the collective shop in Poulsbo, WA and that is where we ran into her work.  But the deer were purchased from her at the Scandinavian Faire in Portland.  That was when we had the opportunity to meet her.  Her name is Jean Whipple and her company name is "Woven Traditions".  I am sure this is the same artist in Yulefest.  There just aren't too many around.  And she is the most wonderful person.  A real treat to meet her.  She unfortunately does not have an online shop.

I have not been a follower of

I have not been a follower of your blog for very long, but I truly love it. I have never done any wheat weaving. I am originally from Kansas and had grown up seeing wheat weavings. My husband and I got one for our wedding. Over the years my husband and children have given me many. I have them all grouped in an arrangement on our entryway wall. I love them so much. they remind me of Kansas where I have not lived for 30 years. The only problem I have with them is keeping them dusted. lol.

TerriSue,  thank you so much

TerriSue,  thank you so much for sharing!  I envy you having a collection of wheat weavings.  I have only found one wheat artist while here in the PNW and while I love what she does, she does not make the really complicated pieces.

During one episode of "Midsommer Mysteries" (one of the most beautifully photographed of the British murder mystery series) a scene was filmed in a bakery and the shelves were set off with the most intricate and stunning weavings.  If there were any clues to be found during that segment, they were lost on me because i had my attention firmly planted on the weavings in the background!!!! :-)

So - have you ever thought of taking up the craft? Wonderful wheat is available from Blackbeards!

My sister in law does wheat

My sister in law does wheat weavings and so much more.Are we not fortunate to know so many talented people? I count my blessings.

Mee too Denise.  Blessed. I

Mee too Denise.  Blessed.

I don't like that I can not sit and craft with people I meet through my blog but I do love that I can get to know them and what they do and that I can actually share experiences with so many people I would never otherwise know.  Know you feel the same.

Actually the wheat weaving is

Actually the wheat weaving is how I found your blog. Then I found we have other things in common.

Thank you Kathleen!  I am

Thank you Kathleen!  I am very pleased to know you found me through wheat weaving. Especially since I thought this side of me was virtually invisible!!!