primitive pals newsletter
022 image
© 1998 Maria Pahls
primitive pals #022
© Copyright 1997 Maria Pahls
Published to the internet
by arrangement with Homespun Peddler.

Fence Post
the fence post
(editor's letter)

dear friends,
thank you for visiting the seed pod at homespun peddler. be sure to look around this site because it contains all kinds of primitive art, newsletters and information.

primitively yours,
maria pahls
drop a line
miscellaneous letters sent in by readers
dian c wrote in about her current projects & thoughts:

"Kate's medieval broom seller is very evocative. It occurs to me that it would be fun and interesting to do a set of primitive fairy tale characters. After all, most of the Grimm's collection of tales come from the early middle ages, and deal with peasants. Those peasants lived pretty primitive lives, and would make great dolls -- especially the wizened little old ladies!

As for what I'm working on, I found some cloth at our one-and-only fabric shop that looks like mini-burlap. It's beige with some darker flecks, and is a rather open weave. I made a couple of primitive dolls with torn fabric for hair and now I'm going to distress some of this stuff to make shifts for them. I think that it might be good for a Father Xmas's toy sack too.

I was rooting around through a bunch of stuff in my storage area the other day, and found a head which I made about five years ago and never used for anything. It is supposed to be Baba Yaga, the Russian witch, and it has straggly hair strewn with dried leaves and seed pods. I think that my next project is going to be finishing the old gal. I can see her with a tattered old gown and apron,and maybe a necklace of wooden beads and bones. "

brenda sent in this question:

"Does anyone receive a catalog "The Country House"? They do a lot of primitives and I was wondering if anyone has ideas on how to achieve the look of some of the dolls and stuff in their catalog. For instance, I have a pattern for a pillow I would like to make and the picture shows the pillow looking really dirty not just tea stained,but does not explain how to get that look. I looks like it has been used and used and never washed. The Country House has this look on their items and I want to know how to get it. Got any ideas? Also, on some of their dolls the hair is made from yarn or something and then perhaps tea dyed? It looks like they just used three strands of yard or perhaps sheep's wool.

lynne wanted me to post the irish names that i am painting on the signs, she thought some might make interesting doll names:
        cloidhna, niamh, sinead,
        keeva, imelda, dolores,
        bridie, noleen, fionnuala
to name a few.

primitive ponderings
questions asked by readers, then replied upon in later issues.

distressing fabrics (caryn's question "aging & distressing fabrics" from #21)

" worked at a big Melborne theatre co. for a couple of years & in that time saw some truly beautiful costumes made & many "broken down". Les Miserables was in town once & the costume maintenance happened in my department's laundry. Guess who loitered a lot ? Some replacement costumes were made they all went through a gray dye, regardless of color. That gave them unity. Cheese graters were used, wire brushes, steel wool, shoe polish brushed on, spray paint on hems always ragged. Buttons hanging off on strong, dangling thread. Sometimes, threads sewn on to good fabric. Ripped areas always had a patch of other fabric showing underneath. And dye over dye over dye. A very important point about breaking down is WHERE it occurs, elbows, knees, front of jackets cuffs etc... but not places like backs of pants legs, tops of arms, where it wouldn't normally occur. It always hurt to see a beautifully made period costume go through the works to come out 100 years old, but that's theater."

"Sometimes I use wood stain to get dark streaks on something, (like a doll that was supposed to look like she'd been playing in the mud) I used a cotton swab and streaked the stain on where I wanted it."-lynne

crackle problems(rosalee's question issue 21)

"There is another crackle product on the market in the states (don't know about its availability in Australia) called Fragile Crackle (made by Anita's), which I have used on fabric. It's a two-step process which is applied AFTER all the paint is applied. (I use it on cloth faces and hands which have had a hardening finish applied first, then the coloring is applied.) Anyway, after whatever paint coat you want is dry, you apply a thinn-ish coat of the 1st solution. Let it dry and then apply a coat of the 2nd solution. After it dries (and you won't really see any crackling), apply some sort of antiquing medium to make the cracks visible. It comes out with a much finer crackling than the typical stuff--rather weblike in character. Don't make the coats too thin or it won't crackle. Its only drawback that I see is that it leaves a rather shiny finish. This can be minimized quite a bit with VERY fine sandpaper, but it won't be a completely matte finish. I haven't tried it on fabric that is painted without the hardening finish. Hope this is helpful. I tried it today over plain painted fabric that had no other surface application, and it seemed to work fine. So perhaps this will solve the problems of flaking off."-Nancy
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tips & techniques
highlights of tips sent in by readers

new airport bomb detection devices that x-ray your baggage can damage the film in your camera and film that is unexposed, (all brands all speeds) after just one pass thru. the film can become lined or streaked or appear grainy. ask that your film bags be searched by hand. older machines cause damage too, but you need to pass through the film about 4 times to see the damage.
source: "Design/ wellness newsletter "
burlap sack
mail order resources section
american reflections primitive patterns
508 haines neck road
salem,new jersey 08079
(609) 769-4120
Book Wormie   book reviews
books of interest
humble spirits
by tamara vandergraff of indygo junction.
a mix of primitive and funk inspired by vintage halloween decorations and her cat!
usa phone (913) 341-5559.
spider web
web sites of members & other sites of interest
the country house:
poetry and verses to use for samplers etc.
My life is like the summer rose
That opens to the morning sky,
But ere the shades of evening close
Is scattered on the ground--to die.
Richard Henry Wilde (1789-1847): My Life is like the Summer Rose.

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