On Crafts

When I say copy cat in craft I do not mean, look up craft get items on list, make craft.  I mean I saw a mirror in pottery barn catalog and felt that it was in reach for me to copy it with minimal items that come cheap.  I love to make things, cards, scrapbook layouts, paintings, cakes, cookies, favors and so on.  I love seeing something in the store and saying I could make that!  The one thing that really gets me going though is making something that no one knows that I made it, they think it was purchased.  They say where did you get this? Well those that know me say "please tell me you made this?…. how!".  

So when I go about something I really want, (and typically cannot afford)  I start to deconstruct.  For instance recently I saw this huge round labyrinth  (see pic)  
it was in an art store and it was $4000.  I love this, I love the idea, I love that its art, and I love that myself and my kids will allow their eyes to follow the pattern to go through the maze.  $4000.  will not be happening though.  So I determined that I will be making this one at some point, keep posted it will happen-- promise.  
Deconstructing it though, so it was hung quite high so I never got to touch it but I could tell that the medium was not perfect and appeared to be left natural it had words or letters -- this thing is paper mache.  Now I love it even more because its a very obtainable material and something so simple made into something so seemingly complex.  It is largely round and with paper mache in my experience you need some sort of a form to start and so this thing was not flush against the wall but sort of a bowl shape but flatter. I think  what can stay but will act as a form? plastic wrap - no, foil - no 
cheap paper plates … hmmm, okay if I glue the paper plates into a large bowl type shape and allow to dry and then add a thin layer of paper mache allow to dry again this may be a decent set up.   

I have not done any of this yet but this is where the thought process begins.  I will typically think about things over and over again for months before beginning.  Possibly even test it out on a small scale so as not to waste time.   Of course I leave a lot to the process but eventually it just simply turns out, and the constant thinking gets me excited and committed to the project.  

So for making something you like in a store.  1. Make sure its feasible, if it is particularly ornate wood working and you have no power tools and have never tried wood working before you have to consider that.  If its a cheap medium like paper and glue, go for it what have you got to loose? 2.  Take a picture if you can, your brain can skew things and this could turn out wonderful but if you really want to copy as close to the original try and get a picture of the item you are duplicating.  3.  Deconstruction, this is the thing that you have to really stare at your item say we are considering look at what makes up the item and from what things the artist used or what can be used to construct it.  Then I consider where to get these items.  Typically you can break down something you see in a catalog to its  bare essentials and reconstruct it with found items in your house or in thrift, or craft stores.  For example my mirror again, It looks simple wood and mirrors right?   Okay so I found cheep piece of luan and painted it with brown paint and used a wood graining tool, then added the square mirrors that were incredibly cheep and since my wood was thin I screwed it right to the wall but behind the mirror square.  Done! easy, fast, cool looking in my room.  4.  Be proud of what you make, there were times I have made things for family members and teachers that I get ashamed about because I made it but then I will come to the persons house and see it proudly being hung as something I created for them and realize "you know that was actually really nice, what was I so embarrassed about"  well art or crafting is like wearing you heart on you sleeve you creativity poured out in an item for all to see.  Be proud of it.  Besides if you copied it from somewhere its being sold your already ahead because others are paying someone for it.  

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