Daily Posts. Colorful Ideas & Inspirations.
Our team of writers brings you daily trend coverage, new products, inspiration, information and fun ideas. With an archive of more than 2,006 articles, you're sure to find something you love. Or if you have a great idea, let us know!
The Maasai are one of the most well known Indigenous people of Africa. Their colorful attire and unique customs highlight their vibrant culture located in Southern Kenya and Northern Tanzania.
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Have you ever wondered as to the symbolism and social meanings behind their vibrantly beadwork?
"The beaded jewelry made by the Maasai women is a tradition from the Maasai tribe, located in Southern Kenya. The Maasai have been creating beaded jewelry for a very long time. It all started long before the first European contact had occurred. At the time, the tribe used natural resources to create their jewelry. Clay, wood, bone, copper and brass are just few of the materials that were used. When trade with Europeans started in the late 19th century, glass beads were suddenly available, and it is with those that the Maasai decided to continue their tradition of beaded jewels....The colors of the jewels are not only chosen because of the beautiful ensembles they make, but also for their symbolic values. Each color has a meaning that is often related to cattle. Cattle are the main food source of the Maasai and they sustain a deep connection with them. " - Discovered.us
I am really impressed that the Maasai Culture still exits in our world today. With their unwavering culturally-rich history, American culture pales in comparison with our ever-changing fashion trends and cultural whims. They definitely have a deeply rooted culture one can't help but be impressed by.
Check out the Maasai on COLOURlovers:
Tie-Dye, a modern textile craft, is something that has been around for ages and will be around for many more moons to come. Always intriguing, always a new spin off the same basic concept, done in a rainbow of hues to monochromatic intrigues. And while we're on the topic, check out the Rainbow Contest over at Instrucables right now (awesome art prizes). All types of submissions are acceptable, so have some fun with it!
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Tie-Dye became popular in the United States of our more modern world in the late 1960's and heavily saturated the 1970's which sort of branded it to the times and people of "Free Love", tripping on Acid and LSD.
"Although shibori and batik techniques were used occasionally in Western fashion before the 1960s, modern psychedelic tie-dying did not become a fad until the late 1960s following the example set by rock stars such as Janis Joplin and John Sebastian (who did his own dyeing)." ~ Wikipedia
Tie-Dye mostly went in to hiding with the outrageously new Neon trends during the 80's and 90's. Then, along with every popular known trend of each era, it was brought back and re-hashed in our Pop Culture of today's fashion sphere.
If you don't know what modern, American Tie-dye is, you might be living under a rock, but here is a great resource on the technique and style if you've never looked it up.
So how did it literally become an American craft to be readily found in stores everywhere - I love this part. Basically, Tie-Dye came about when a company was trying to save it's brand. RIT® dye, at the time was losing momentum with their prime market clientele, older generation females doing home-dying.
"At the time, RIT® dye was starting to lose it's market; primarily older women that dyed home goods." - Dharma Article, Did you Know...?
Without getting in to too much detail on the actual specifics because I think that [ one of my favorite online dye resources ] the Dharma Trading Company impressively covered the textbook attributes of this really well in their article, Did You Know: Is Tie-Dye An American Art Form?
"Artists, opinion leaders, and influencers took to tie-dying almost as if it were a new psychedelic substance. Janis Joplin began wearing tie dye (it was even rumored she wore tie-dye panties) but it was still confined to a small circle of users. The next stop was the fashion industry but they weren't convinced it was anything more then a local fad. About this time, folks heard about a musical gathering that was to take place in rural Woodstock, New York, and it was going to be a big event (understatement of the decade!). Two of the well-known artists in the Village wanted to tie-dye several hundred T-shirts and give them away at the concert. RIT financed the project. Thousands of people showed up at Woodstock from across the country and the tie-dye T-shirts were eye-catching. The idea caught on…big. Joe Cocker, Mama Cass, Janis Joplin all wore tie-dye. Tie-dye became a symbol of antiestablishmentarianism, as no one else could have the same shirt as you even if they used the same colors. It was a statement of being an individual." - Read More... How the Fashion Industry finally took it seriously...
I could quite literally quote this entire article it's so interesting and well written. I'll leave the quotes to that, but how amazing to see how a pretty modern fad became a huge trend over trying to save a brand name product.
In summary, basically the traditional methods, techniques and practices of the tie-dye movement from the 1960's and 70's we know of here in the USA were brought over from African traditional art to save a brand name. Amazing!
Video Tutorial: Create Your Own Tie-Dye in Seamless Lite (to Janis Joplin)
Feel free to use this exact technique to practice and get the hang of it! :)
Templates You Can Tie-Dye Yourself - Show me what you've got!
Do you have a favorite template that works for tie-dye? Please share!
Explore Tie-Dye on COLOURlovers:
Kate Powell is an enigma in not only the student art world, but in art itself. Her alluring artwork is highly captivating using a mix of black and white in pencil with a touch of color and collage work.
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Kate's acheivements while daunting, are still quite motivating. You can read about her academic background achievements here in an article by Student Art Guide. According to this article-interview, Kate embraced considerable inspiration from contemporary, up-coming artists such as Marco Mazzoni, Meghan Howland and Gabriel Moreno.
Enjoy this magnificent collection of Kate's beautiful illustrative artwork. Her idea's incorporate beautiful human expression mixed with nature.
A lot has happened this month already. This week I am going to keep it short and sweet as we have the holiday weekend ahead. This week I'll cover our last survey and a discussion about doing a tribute project for Sunmeadow's family. Thoughts and opinions needed on both subjects.
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Community Survey #3: Results Report
In looking at the last survey responses, it's fun to see how COLOURlovers use the site in different ways be that from your desktop or laptop or mobile device.
We had about a 107 entrants to the survey, double what we've had before - Thanks to everyone who got involved. I will be skipping a survey this week in leu of the Easter weekend and the Moo contest.
I will be accepting open suggestions for the next survey which will be based on Groups. Anything and everything Groups related. So suggest away!
The Sunmeadow Project: A Tribute & Family Gift
As a dark cloud shrouded the COLOURlovers community with the sad news that one of our dearest members had passed away, the mass of ways to show our love, life celebrations and tribute to dear Sunmeadow as a wonderful artist and person, have been happening all over the site. It's touching to see everyone surround her passing with such compassion and devotion.
Suggestions have been coming my way to put together a physical tribute for her family. The best suggestion came from, Penina of the COLOURlovers on Spoonflower Group - a book (possibly a Blurb-style book).
This book would include her works of art on COLOURlovers, but I also thought it might be nice to also include notes of tribute from her fellow community members and closest friends on COLOURlovers as her father had expressed an interest in being able to come back and read through all the wonderful things members had to say about her.
The COLOURlovers Team is in support of a project we could gift to her family as a colorful piece of Sunmeadows artistic expression on COLOURlovers.com.
Will any other members in addition to Penina, be willing to assist in organizing this project? With over 6,000 palettes, 10,000 colors and close to 800 templates it will be quite the undertaking to filter through what to include and in what order.
I am also up for alternate suggestions for a tribute piece. A quilt has crossed my mind, but I think a book would certainly be able to fully encompass all her beautiful works and messages of love and support by members. Thoughts?
Sunmeadow was such an intensely defined COLOURlover that the reality of her loss was so great to many who knew her well and even to those who did not. Let's give the gift that Sun gave us, to her family to cherish and treasure as well.
*Sunmeadows wonderful works of art and account will remain online.
Group Tributes List to Sunmeadow
*Please let me know if I missed any.
Happy Friday COLOURlovers! Today we are going to do something a little different for Community Day. First up, we have an awesome template challenge we've organized with one of our wonderful craft authors, Tonia Davenport, who comes over from CreateMixedMedia.com.
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Secondly, each week I am going to feature the first of many community surveys. They are only going to be between 3-5 questions to help us understand what you lovers would like to see on the blog, on community posts, contests, you name it. Let's just call it a quick raise of hands on some topics. I'll promise to keep them short. In turn, we'll give one participant at random selection, a COLOURlovers T-Shirt each week.
This week's survey topic: What do you want Community Day to be about?
I can guess all day long what you guys would appreciate being featured on Community Day, but why not ask you? So let's show a raise of hands...and remember, one person will win a t-shirt!
CreateMixedMedia Template Contest
The challenge is for you to design some numbered templates - a pattern design. These will be showcased for the first week of April, days 1 through 7.
- We will need a template for numbers: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7 - That's SEVEN WINNERS!
- You may include graphics within the template as long as the number you chose is legible (see how it will preview on createmixedmedia.com below).
- The theme to base your design on is "April Fools Day" and "April Showers" - combined or singly.
- Seven different winners will get a $25 gift code at the NorthLightShop (applied at checkout).
- Winners will be chosen by CreateMixedMedia.
CreateMixedMedia.com does an artistic feature on their homepage showcasing the days of the month, coordinated one week at a time - see below.
You will have from today (March 2nd) until Wednesday, March 21st to submit designs in the comments of this post.
Love is most often associated with the color red. Be that by conditioning of incessant advertising or that we are drawn to it by nature. Secondary to red is of course pink, in almost any level of saturation.
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Red is one of those colors that possesses the strongest Ying and Yang of its theoretical definitions. Between love and hate, rebirth and death, the human relationship in any combination, could literally be summed up in the meaning of the color Red. Pink has what I would describe as a temperamental scale, more based on softness versus loudness than the extreme left or right end of the spectrum.
"Red is the color of fire and blood, so it is associated with energy, war, danger, strength, power, determination as well as passion, desire, and love." - paper-leaf.com // COLOR THEORY poster freebie
As we know, colors can generate a wide variety of emotions. Red might be the most diverse and along with pink, a tag-along little sister, many other colors in tow can lend a visual message of love a great big pop!
Falling in Love by Etsy artist, DJEMBE & CANVAS
"Cranes represent longevity and grace. The flocks ascend our champagne symphony, where love is blessed upon those who simply believe." - posted by artist at the listing
The artist gave us a wonderfully light feeling with this palette and the birds adding further motion. I also like how the painting balances the realities of "love" with a little bit of darkness in the bottom right corner. What do you think of this palette and representation of falling in love?
So many great things have happened on COLOURlovers in 2011, but one major, behind the scenes project that only a very small portion of members have been aware of was a quilt project straight from the heart of the Group: COLOURlovers on Spoonflower.
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Group administrator, leader and very involved COLOURlover, Penina, wanted her group to be something more than just a group of people who loved the idea of fabric. So one fine day back in July 2011, after coordinating ideas to make a digital quilt from the group member creations, she had the thought, “What’s stopping us from making a real quilt?!”
Penina wanted this quilt project to have purpose and to involve as many group members as possible. This also meant that the final piece would need to have a good home at a single location; so who would get the quilt?
Gift wrapping has taken on a whole new life in recent years. It almost seems like it has become a competition to see who can be more genius at the art of gift giving.
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If this display of craftiness won't get you in the mood to dig around your house for things you can turn in to beautifully embellished gifts, I don't know what could. Here we give you a fabulous collective to top, tie and cover your gifts in an eye-devouring display!
Covering: Wrap It Or Bag It
Receiving a gift wrapped in anything other than ordinary wrapping paper can be intriguing and a lot of fun. There are many ways to creatively get the proper packaging for a gift. Crafters seem to be conquering the feat of the "gift card" gift. Anywhere from creating fancy hand-made envelopes to putting one in a handmade snow globe - there are some fun ways to tackle making it look cute.
Mini Envelopes | Word Search Wrapping Paper | Stamped Kraft Paper | Lace Covered Kraft Paper | Stenciling | Fabric Covered Gifts | Newspaper Gift Bags | Embroidered Fabric Gift Bags | Egg Carton Gift Box | Patterned Pillow Boxes (or up-cycled toilet paper rolls)
The possibilities and ideas are endless! Fabric covered gifts could potentially go to the seamstress or crafter to reuse (the whole gift with gift idea here). Lace and dollies are being used plenty as embellishments in many variations. Embroidered fabric gift bags would be perfect for children to reuse or store the gift that came in it. Did you run out of gift bags and wrapping paper? No big deal, dig out some Kraft paper or newspaper and create your own gift bag! Lastly, pillow boxes and up-cycling toilet paper and paper towel rolls are trending massively right now.
However you wrap it up, make sure you embellish it fantastically too!
To celebrate Earth Day today we have, Tiffany Threadgould of RePlayground.com and Terracycle.net, here to teach us how to re-purpose an old t-shirt to make these adorable flower pins. Tiffany just launched her first book, ReMake It! (by Sterling Publishing). It's super adorable and is a pretty fun book to have on hand whether you have kids or you just love to re-purpose. We'll be doing a giveaway for 3 of these books at the tail end of the tutorial with a BONUS PRIZE, so stay tuned!
T-Shirt Scrap Flower Pin
- washable marker or pencil
- fabric scissors
- twist tie
- button with two holes
- pin back or safety pin
Use one T-shirt to make a single color flower, or mix it up and use strips from a few different shirts for a flower with different colors.
1. Measure and cut ¾-inch wide strips from the bottom of a T-shirt. From those strips, cut eight 8-inch long pieces.
2. Pull on the ends of each strip and stretch them until their edges curl. Snip three holes into each strip—one in the middle and two more, each ½ inch from the ends. Be careful not to cut across the whole strip, just to make small holes.
3. Slip the ends of the twist tie through a button, and pull it through so it is snug across the front of the button. Twist the ends of the twist tie together tightly until they are completely twisted at the back of the button.
4. Thread the end of the twist tie through the hole at the center of one of the T-shirt strips. Then, thread the twist tie through the holes on the ends of the T-shirt strip. Repeat this for all the rest of the strips
5. Holding the T-shirt strips and button together, untwist the twist tie ends. Insert them through the holes in pin back or wrap them around the safety pin (whichever pin you decide to use). Adjust the twist tie until the flower and pin are held firmly in place on the pin back. Remake a whole bouquet of flower pins and grow a garden on your shirt!
More About The Author
Tiffany Threadgould is a design junkie who gives scrap materials a second life. She's the head of design atTerraCycle, a company that collects and creates products from waste. She also keeps up her own green biz,RePlayGround, where you can find ReMake It recycling kits and oodles of DIY projects. Tiffany thinks that garbage has feelings too and can sometimes be found talking to her pile of junk at her design studio in Brooklyn, N.Y.
Tiffany was so kind to send us three (3) books to give to you! We are going to do another random pick from the user comments on this one. So if you'd like a cool copy of ReMake It! You must do the following:
Leave a comment telling us what your favorite art/craft style is be that a link out to your most favorite craft blogger(s) or just list your top 1-5+ most favorite things to work with be that modge podge, sewing, quilting, re-purposing, scrapbooking (traditional or digital), card making, painting, etc. The sky is the limit in the craft world!
Bonus Prize is a $25 Gift Card at COLOURlovers partner, Spoonflower.com.
I will be posting this article on the COLOURlovers Facebook wall. All you have to do is:
- 1) LIKE the COLOURlovers Facebook Page
- 2) SHARE the article on your facebook wall
- 3) Leave a comment on the article I posted on our fb wall which should include your COLOURlovers USERNAME.
We will be conducting a random drawing from the facebook post commentary. As long as you followed the steps, you will be included.
If you have already LIKED our facebook page, then that step is done. You won't be able to see the SHARE or COMMENT on the COLOURlovers facebook wall until you have LIKED our page.
I've posted THIS (the above image shows what it will look like) blog article to our facebook wall. Re-Post it to your wall by clicking the link on it, SHARE (see red arrows in the image). And then make a COMMENT letting me know you shared it, and let me know your username on COLOURlovers. The facebook contest is ONLY for the $25 at Spoonflower.com. If you want the book you must ALSO comment on the blog post here.
You may play and qualify for BOTH prizes (ReMake It! book AND the $25 at Spoonflower.com). The contest will run from today, April 22nd, 2011, until Thursday, April 28th with winners announced Friday, April 29th, 2011. You must be a COLOURlovers user to qualify for either prize. So register if you need to!
What an amazing opportunity for you! One of our great partners, Spoonflower.com is joining forces with Michael Miller Fabrics to find their next license designer for the Michael Miller Fabrics' line. This is an opportunity of a lifetime! Check the full details on projectselvage.com. CONTEST ENDS MARCH 24th
There will be 10 finalists not to mention an ultimate WINNER. Finalists get some great goodies!
- * $100 Spoonflower Credit
- * 10-yards of Michael Miller Fabric (chosen by finalist)
While you might be sitting there thinking, well I don't have design software at my fingertips, actually, you do...and for free to boot. If you don't already know about it, COLOURlovers.com has it's very own Seamless Pattern maker on hand, on site. Just go to Create > Pattern > Design a Pattern (see below image).
While you are probably going to find it a tough competition if you've never used this type of design tool before, this is an opportunity for COLOURlovers who already create some pretty fantastic work with this tool to utilize their talents and maybe win big. Do make sure you read the rules to enter throughly.
We would love to see any design you submit, so please by all means post it in the comments. Good Luck!
If you don't plan on submitting anything, please feel free to post your own Michael Miller inspirations related to the contest.