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The Art

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People ask me how I get my ideas.  I joke and say, “I’m just full of it.”  but the truth of the matter is I “see” possibilities in various common and uncommon items.  One of my best friends once sent me a napkin holder made of wood in the shape of a carved flamingo.  She said, in essence, if I was so good make something of this.  I did.

I looked at the theme of the flamingo and envisioned where flamingos lived.  From there I was able to develop a color palette.  With color as my jumping off point I could now concentrate on the fabric and beads to use.  I drafted a purse pattern and used turquoise velvet as the purse body. I placed the flamingo, sans napkin holder, to the left of center on the front of the purse piece.  I sewed this on.  Once I had my focal point in place I could add details.  I gave the flamingo clouds in the sky using white silk flowers and white beads.  To simulate a hot sun I added a yellow plastic flower shaped button in the sky.  To finish the clouds I tacked white cording in swirling patterns to simulate movement.

Of course flamingos need a place to stand and what better than in a sweet bed of flowers and leaves.  I used large green plastic leafs and hot pink plastic beads.  I sprinkled in a few off white beads for interest and added brown cording as a type of shoreline.

For the purse handle I braided turquoise and coral #2 rattail cording.  The colors matched the color of the velvet and the flamingo which draws the whole piece together.

All my purses are finished at the seam line with beading.  I used crystal beads (6° size)for the bottom and the same size for the top changing the color to purple.  If confused about the different color my rational is this:  My work is an art piece.  The purple acts as a “frame”.  The different color is also in keeping with a tropical theme.

This piece took about 40 hours.  It has a hidden zipper in the top, it is lined, it has an inside and outside pocket.

I gave this to my friend for her birthday.  She was stunned.

Flamingo Purse

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