Friday, August 13, 2010

First Gallery Showing

About a month ago, I was invited by my friend Patricia Anders (who by the way is an incredible artist-you should follow her blog!) to participate in an invitation-only gallery show on altered shoes. It seemed like fun so I said yes. I've never done a gallery show before, so I guess this is a bit of a milestone for me. It also means I can cross one more thing off my "40 things before I'm 40" list!

I've just finished and packed up my pair of shoes for shipping to California. As you can see, they are full of details that are really "me".

The right shoe is called "Avril" which is "April" in French. (That's a nod to my Canadian heritage.) Avril has a bit of a sour look on her wee face. Guess she doesn't like getting her feet wet!

The pincushion is made from a piece of butter coloured velvet I had on hand that married perfectly with a vintage crochet doily from my stash of bits. I added a locket (from Papier Valise) with a tiny tag, pinned on with this oddly shaped safety pin that I saved from a piece of clothing I'd bought ages ago.

The focal point of the shoe is this gorgeous old button. I chose it both because it's a flower (which is what April/Avril reminds me of-it is spring, after all!) and because it had this wonderful naturally occurring patina on it. This button came from my stash, but it was one gifted to me by my friend Helen. A few years ago she gave me 15 lbs. (yes, you read right!) of vintage buttons in return for a private class, which I taught at her farm.

To finish it off, I added some soft cream ribbon and the letter "a" which is a rub-on. I took a small brush and carefully painted several coats of matter medium over top of it to seal and protect it. A few pretty pins and it was finished!

The left shoe is "Rose", which means "pink" in French. She's just little.

The pincushion for Rose is made from a scrap of a vintage crazy quilt. I can't remember where in my travels I picked it up, but I've been keeping it safe for the perfect project. Rose also has a locket (again, Papier Valise) which is held on with a tiny pin safety pin.

The focal point of this shoe is a cluster of antique buttons and a lovely length of that old rayon ribbon I love so much. The thread in the mother of pearl button is original. I love when buttons have the old threads in them-it makes them that much more special.

Rose also has her initial on the toe. The shoes were purchased for a pittance at a thrift store, but it took me about 2 weeks to find exactly the kind I was looking for. I think I hit at least 4 stores in 3 cities to find them. Persistence pays off!
So later this afternoon, I will pop up to the Post Office where the ladies get no end of amusement over the weird and wonderful things I ask them to mail for me. I have these shoes and the altered folder from yesterday's post to go out today.
Oh and the show? It's going to be at the Ten Women Galleries
at Venice Beach in early September. I'll be posting more info, as it becomes available. Both shoes will be available for purchase at the gallery.


Misti Ko said...

Those are really lovely. When I first looked at them, I wondered what the letters meant - not "L"eft and "R"ight. I loved reading your descriptions of everything that went into them. Beautiful.

Tricia said...

L you did a beautiful job with these shoes!! great post and I just discovered I don't have your link!! how in the world did that happen

Bettyann said...

oh so lovely..thanks for sharing your art with us..

Pilar said...

I do not think I can write a comment on your blog without using the verb, "love." The folks at the exhibit are going to love these shoes! In fact, they should be guarded because I know more than one peep will want them for their very own! I know I would be tempted. ; D Bravo, girlfriend! You did a wonderful job!