A New Love

December 10, 2009

I think that I have truly fallen in love with printmaking. I fear that if I don’t get this under control, I may begin to hand stamp my lovely children. My poor husband leaves for work this week with white walls in the bedroom, and the poor man is coming home to a decorative stenciled border that I just couldn’t get enough of

I have played with freezer paper stencils in the past to reuse some of the children’s stained shirts, but this level of using fabric painting, hand carved stencils, and experimenting with creating my own lino-block stamps is all new ground. The possibilities seem endless as to what can be done, and how much can be enhanced with printmaking.

A very good friend of mine recently bought her first home, and as I was trying to think of what to get her for Christmas, I thought of how difficult it has been for her this past year, living away from her home town, in a place that she loves, but that has never truly been home.


I thought of her roots, living all her life in Boston, when I made this tree. The roots that she will always have, and the new ones that she will create now living in New Hampshire.


I thought of her friends, who I know love her and miss her (as do I), when I made her stationary to call her own. The letters that she will write, and the time honored tradition of a personal note, that can be enjoyed.


I thought of her home, and it’s need for storage and care when I made her this bag. I thought of her beach gear being stored in the summer, or her hats and mittens in winter. Hanging from a hook at her front door, as a reminder that she is making this house her home.

What fun it was to combine so many different mediums to create a special gift for a special friend.


I love the way that fabric, paint and embroidery can combine.


Or the texture that can be added to an ordinary piece of paper


Or the way that colors can blend into fabric.

Combining so many different things together makes me feel as though there are endless possibilities for the same design, or project, or piece to be made differently each time. The more I learn about new mediums, techniques or ways of crafting, the more I feel a little bit more in control of how I can approach anything that I choose to create.

Yep, the possibilities are endless

{ 50 comments… read them below or add one }

Brooke December 10, 2009 at 5:02 pm

Beautiful and thoughtful stuff, Heather. Your friend will surely appreciate everything!

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kerry December 10, 2009 at 5:14 pm

All soooo lovely! Your friend is going to be absolutely delighted with her gift!

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Meryl December 10, 2009 at 5:30 pm

These are so lovely Heather–particularly the stationary. Are you basically just carving your own stamps? I tried that once, but found I don't really have the patience yet. Maybe someday I will!

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Kelly December 10, 2009 at 5:48 pm

those are all beautiful! great job!

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vanessa December 10, 2009 at 6:07 pm

heather, you are so amazingly thoughtful and creative.
your friends are blessed to have you in their world.

be well!

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Stephanie December 10, 2009 at 6:13 pm

I love mixing art mediums. It's so great to know how to sew or knit, or paint or draw… but mixing it together is so fun and you're right the possibilities are endless!

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Chelsea December 10, 2009 at 6:14 pm

these are absolutely stunning, Heather. And there is so much love and thought in them. Such a true and thorough gift. +Chelsea

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Ann December 10, 2009 at 6:24 pm

Oh! my you have been busy and such wonderful ideas for gifts. Your friends will surely appreciate these gifts.

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HRobinson December 10, 2009 at 6:40 pm

Wow…you have been busy!!! I love the things that you have printed. I'm especially in love with the stationary. Are those stamps that you purchased, or did you make them. I have been wanted to make a very linear block print out of one of my daughters drawings but am stuck. I've tried several things but haven't had any luck yet. Love to hear how you made those.

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lorena December 10, 2009 at 7:40 pm

beautiful! i esp love the tree w/the embroidery! i have an obsession with trees!

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sowabisabi December 10, 2009 at 7:49 pm

really beautiful gifts…the tree theme is so fitting for someone who has moved. Being grounded in a new space can be difficult.

I love the idea of print making too. I met a really great print maker this summer at a show Jenny Pope. Her prints have a ecological message. You might be inspired by her work….http://www.jpopstudios.com/
blessings~

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Nina - Tabiboo December 10, 2009 at 7:57 pm

So beautiful and thoughtful – gifts straight from the heart. There is not one thing I could say I like the most as they are all wonderful.

take care and have a lovely day,

Nina xx

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Andrea December 10, 2009 at 8:01 pm

These are beautiful…I have a friend who recently moved and I've been trying to think of a good housewarming present for her; I may have to steal one or two of these ideas!

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Mary YDP December 10, 2009 at 8:19 pm

Awesome friend! I fell in love with printmaking in college, and my professor (adviser too) is now a longtime friend and a stand-in grandpa to my children. He laughed at me when his valentine came potato stamped, his response was "starting them early? What color and vibrancy of their designs. Very honest!" He's a true artist, and sees the art of children as the most honest.

I am so glad you are finding your artist self in so many mediums!

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Amy December 10, 2009 at 8:20 pm

Gorgeous. I LOVE the stationery.

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Tonya December 10, 2009 at 8:21 pm

Heather what sweet sweet gifts. So thoughtful are you and so very talented.
My dear friend is a printer – she carves her stamps – I blogged about her recently.
Warm wishes.

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Maeghan December 10, 2009 at 8:25 pm

What amazing gifts from the heart. I love sinking my teeth into new passions. Its very similar to my new passion for crocheting. Love it! Have so many projects started!

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Lisa December 10, 2009 at 9:10 pm

Beautiful – you have a very lucky friend. I love the thought and effort that goes into everything you make – makes it all the more special.

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Nancy December 10, 2009 at 9:31 pm

Everything is just so beautiful, each and every item. The stationery in particular is just incredible.

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jessica December 10, 2009 at 9:32 pm

Print making is such fun–those gifts are wonderful!

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AdirondackMama December 10, 2009 at 9:44 pm

WOW! That is one lucky friend. The whole lot of it just screams thought and love.

Hugs, Julia

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Gypsy Forest December 11, 2009 at 12:30 am

You never cease to amaze me! These are truly stunning! I am sure this dear friend of yours will a-d-o-r-e each of these lovely handmade treasures……

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cathleen December 10, 2009 at 5:43 pm

Oh, my goodness, Heather. This is exquisite. All of it! Totally beautiful.

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lina December 11, 2009 at 12:52 am

I love these Heather, simple and beautiful. A lucky friend indeed. As an aside, I usually read your blog via bloglines but have missed out on quite a few posts it seems as it's not updating your feed?

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Adrie December 11, 2009 at 1:00 am

Haha! Maybe your boys would *like* being stamped, you never know! So beautiful – lucky friend!

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Audra December 11, 2009 at 1:00 am

What a beautiful set of gifts! There truly is nothing like handmade to make a new or old house feel like a home. I haven't tried print making but it sounds like something my kids and I would really enjoy. By the way, FlyLady has transformed our home over the past 3 years as well. It is a great and workable system. Thanks for the encouragement and thoughts on home!

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Arianne December 11, 2009 at 1:06 am

Wow! your friend is so LUCKY to recieve those gorgeous gifts. I think a tutorial or maybe a link on how you made those stencils is in order. They truly are beautiful gifts.

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nicola December 11, 2009 at 1:42 am

absolutely beautiful. just my style. you sending my way? teasing! i am curious how you backed the embroidery, though. i just finished my first piece, it looks like a beginner did it, but i am giving it anyway. i am choosing to frame it, but i thought about backing it and couldn't find clear instructions!
nicola
http://whichname.blogspot.com

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quirkygranolagirl December 11, 2009 at 3:09 am

Those are lovely gifts for your friend. You did a wonderful job.

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renee December 11, 2009 at 4:01 am

I really love your tree! Great colors… I feel like I get a good sense of your style every time I see more glimpses of your fabric collection.

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lily boot December 11, 2009 at 9:25 am

Heather, this post really touched my heart. At the moment, I am in a position so similar to your friend. I'm about to leave a small city where I have lived for most of my life. I am related to so much of it – my family, my friends, my child and myself are enmeshed in so many of the suburbs and landmarks and streets. I know how the sun slants in a particular month at a particular time of day. I know what is around each corner. And now I have to leave and start again somewhere else where none of the above exists. Just writing this makes the tears well in my eyes. But, I have to look to the next few weeks with enthusiasm and hope and it is the special things you have described that I must seek in order to create a new home for myself and my family. You have taken such care and created such loveliness – your friend will certainly feel loved. (and I totally agree about the addictiveness of printing – I have that same book and haven't had a chance to play with it – maybe in my new home, the opportunity will come :-))

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Francesca December 11, 2009 at 9:47 am

Totally beautiful, Heather, all of it. And I'm sure you could even make your kids look even more beautiful (if that's possible) if you were to hand stamp them:)! I would love to know how you did that fabric painting, and the stationary. I'm so looking forward to seeing the future possibilities of your wonderful printmaking.

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Lindsay Young December 11, 2009 at 3:45 am

these are all so beautiful! I'm really banking on the fact that (come January) I will have some time/funds to (perhaps?) get together and hopefully learn from you! Gorgeous work.

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Hannah December 11, 2009 at 11:34 am

Wow – you've really put a lot of effort in. Your friend is very lucky!

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Valarie December 11, 2009 at 2:56 pm

What beautiful gifts for your friend living far away. You are making me fall in love with print making too, especially yours. Who couldn't love this variation on a theme. Here's to you and your friend.

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kaylovesvintage December 11, 2009 at 3:20 pm

I love that tree

print making..love to see more

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Shivayamama December 11, 2009 at 3:34 pm

Thank you so much Francesca! The fabric painting I did with a freezer stencil, and then I used a green paint, combined it with a a white paint (to lighten part of it), and then mixed it in the center, but left a ring of the darker green on the outside. Then I just dipped it in, and got the variegation. After it was dried, I added a layer of brown for the stem.

The stationary was a cool block stamp that comes with five designs (one on five of the six sides). iIused a variegated stamp pad with four colors, and then just pressed into the part of the card that I wanted the design to come out of. I am beginning to use lino-blocks and better quality paint to do this as well, but the stamps really do a nice job too :)

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perches December 11, 2009 at 4:41 pm

So beautiful! Your friend will be gifted with so much love and loveliness.

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samthehamsmom December 11, 2009 at 6:38 pm

Heather, I love the tree…so thoughtfully put together! Great job as usual~

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5orangepotatoes December 11, 2009 at 7:25 pm

So GORGEOUS Heather!!!!!!!!! Your friend will love these wonderful gifts.

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Shivayamama December 11, 2009 at 8:45 pm

Thank you so much! Have a wonderful weekend

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Shivayamama December 11, 2009 at 9:39 pm

Thank you so much! I hope that you have a wonderful weekend

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Shivayamama December 11, 2009 at 3:47 pm

Thanks Arianee! Thanks for the idea of the tutorial, I think that I will do that next week.
Heather Fontenot
” target=”_blank”>http://www.shivayanaturals.com
” target=”_blank”>http://www.rhythmofthehome.com
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Julia December 12, 2009 at 2:47 am

lovely!

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larissa December 12, 2009 at 3:48 am

What beautiful gifts. Love how you put so much thought behind each one. but the embroidery – with all of your perfect hand stitches – is my favorite.

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Shivayamama December 11, 2009 at 9:09 pm

Hi Lina,

I have no idea why, but it looks like about 10 days ago, they stopped being able to use the feed address for our old ” target=”_blank”>http://www.shivayanaturals.blogpost.com address
You do have to resubscribe, using the new feed for just ” target=”_blank”>http://www.shivayanaturals.com
I apologize. If you visit my blog, there is a shivaya blog feed for bloglines in the side bar.

Thanks!
Heather
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Amber December 12, 2009 at 4:35 am

So beautiful!

She is going to just love them all.

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geek+nerd December 12, 2009 at 1:30 pm

What wonderful intentions you've put into these gifts for your friends. She and I made the opposite move! I came from New Hampshire and moved to Boston. Her story reminds me of my own challenges this fall. I do love my new apartment, and we are making it our home, but boy do I miss New Hampshire! It's such a special place, I am sure that she will fall in love with it.

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Lisa Q December 12, 2009 at 1:38 pm

what a wonderful gift. I love the tree embroidery piece, the stationary and the bag…I guess that's everything! you are a wonderful, thoughtful friend.

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Jennifer December 13, 2009 at 4:20 am

What a lovely gift; she must be a very special friend! I have a similar love affair with printmaking, but I generally reserve it (simply because of time right now…) to our Christmas print every year. A few years ago I bought a print Gocco home riso and I have loved it, but it is getting harder, and more expensive, to get the supplies. Recently (like within the last month or so), Paper Source introduced a home letterpress machine that I am drooling over. You can take a peek here: http://www.paper-source.com/cgi-bin/paper/item/Le

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