Friday, October 30, 2015

Quilled Iqra Tutorial

Quilled Iqra by A Crafty Arab

After finishing my Quilled Khatam, I got started on a new project, a Quilled Iqra.

Iqra is the Arabic word for Read and it is written in the middle of the canvas, right to left and stuffed with beige beehive quilling. Scroll quilling and coils decorate around Iqra.

I started with a recyled canvas I picked up earlier this year. The original canvas had a quote about Friendship and a huge, hidious flower.

I got my embossing heat gun, warmed up the canvas behind the flower a little bit and peeled it off. I then used acrylic paints to cover the front and sides white and the back beige.

After a few days, and a few coats, I covered the canvas with parts from an old book of my father's that I picked up a few years ago.

I then painted Iqra on the strips of Arabic font with brown acrylic.

After a few more days and coats, I outlined the Arabic letters in brown quilling stripes.

I knew I wanted the letters to stand out more then just adding paper stripes inside, so I taught myself the beehive method of quilling and filled the letters.
Quilled Iqra by A Crafty Arab

Quilled Iqra by A Crafty Arab

I almost made it to the end before I started to second guess myself. I tried the peach color strip instead of continuing with the beige beehive filling. But after I placed the canvas across the room for perspective, and asked some online advice, I decided to stick with my original concept drawing that I had planned.  Goes to show that you need to be open to other ideas along the process!
Quilled Iqra by A Crafty Arab

Once all the biege beehive quilling stripes had been filled, including the tiny, itsy, bitsy, ones below the first alif, I started filling in the outside design, including adding tight coils to the ends of the scrolled quilling strips.
Quilled Iqra by A Crafty Arab
If you are local, come see it live at the Homemade Harvest!

Be sure to check out the hashtag #CraftyArabwip on Instagram to follow along on my next work in progress.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Lebanese Lentil Soup

This evening my past mother's groups had our annual Soup Social reunion. The Soup Social was one of the best attended events when the group was active and a few brilliant members have decided to continue it.

A Soup Social is held in a home (thanks D!) and everyone is to bring a homemade soup. If you are not able to bring a soup, breads and desserts are encouraged as alternates.

We had 10 different types of soups, including the Lebanese Lentil Soup I brought, homemade rosemary bread, olive bread, crackers, french bread, and a dessert table covered with chocolate eclairs, homemade gingerbread cake, and so many other goodies I'm getting full just thinking about them again.

I found the Lebanese Lentil Soup recipe here after I met Amanda at the Arab Festival last August. Her food demos were so full of goodness, I knew when I got the invite for the event that I would go straight to her website to look for a fall, warms your bones, soup. It was there that I found this Lebanese Lentil Soup.

Just in case it looks intimidating, here is the entire process in four easy steps:

1. Rinse the lentils and rice and place them in a stock pot with 2 cups of the vegetable stock. Bring to  a boil then reduce to a simmer and cover.

2. Drizzle a layer of oil in a pan and add the rest of the ingredients EXCEPT the 6 remaining cups of vegetable stock and lemon juice. We'll put them in later.
Mix everything together for a few minutes until your saute vegetables are soft and look like this.

3. Pour what is in the pan to the pot and once the vegetable stock has been reduced down, add the remaining 6 cups.  Continue to simmer for 35-40 minutes, or until lentils are tender.

4. Add lemon juice and enjoy your Lebanese Lentil Soup.

Here are all the lovely ladies that brought the yummy food. And a cutie pie that brought the entertainment.
See you next year!

Friday, October 9, 2015

Quilled Khatam Tutorial

I recently found out that I'll be teaching beginner quilling again at Women's Wellness Weekend on Camp Orkila.

Woohoo! It's like Eid and Eid rolled into one!

Quilling is an art form that involves taking strips of paper, coiling it on a tool, and shaping it into various forms. Be sure to check out more of my quilled art from past posts.

I can't wait for this healthy island retreat that allows me to zip line, walk on the beach, mediate, practice 7am pajama yoga and my favorite: read, read, read for a weekend surrounded by only women.

No kids, no husband, no computers. Pure bliss and rejuvenation for 50 hours, give or take.

Last year, I made earrings to show my students. This year I decide to make a quilled khatam art piece. I took photos while making it this week and have turned in into a tutorial for you below.

Be sure to sign up to join me in class!

Quilled Khatam Tutorial by A Crafty Arab

Quilling strips
Quilling sizer on cork
Quilling tool
2 square pieces of cardstock
Shadow frame
Quilled Khatam Tutorial by A Crafty Arab

Start by removing the glass from your frame and taking out the product sheet. Glue the 2 square pieces of cardstock onto each other, but offset, and then glue the eight pointed star, also known as a khatam, that you made in the middle of the product sheet. This gives you a visual and allows time to adjust anything before the glue sets.

Quilled Khatam Tutorial by A Crafty Arab

Take one white quilling strip and glue it down on its edge all around the khatam. I used the tip of my tweezers to help make the inside corners bend.
Quilled Khatam Tutorial by A Crafty Arab

This is what the khatam will look like once it is outlined with the white quilled strip. I had to use more then one to go all the way around, but blended the edges.
Quilled Khatam Tutorial by A Crafty Arab

Set aside your outlined khatam and use your quilling tool to start making coils. I used this quilling sizer to get my coils even because I knew I wanted my design to be symmetrical all over. I used 12 inch precut strips and flowers. Some were cut in half and then quarters.
Quilled Khatam Tutorial by A Crafty Arab

This is when the fun happens and the outlined khatam gets filled in. I have to admit when I originally started, the design I drew out had the middle more free formed.  I also know I wanted to add 3D flowers, but couldn't decide on which ones, so I made three different ones.
Quilled Khatam Tutorial by A Crafty Arab

I finally made up my mind about the central flower and made three more just like it. I then started filling in the design and a pattern emerged that I then followed. Once the four colored pieces anchored themselves the white pieces started going into the rest of the design. I then started playing around with smaller white circles to mimic the smaller blue circles in the middle of the flowers.

When all the major pieces had gone in, I no longer needed my sizer and flipped my tool over to the other side to use the pins on my cork. I also decided to cut out my khatam as the product paper from the frame started to bulge around the edges. This also makes it easier to see on the cork.
Quilled Khatam Tutorial by A Crafty Arab

I used the pins to shift the middle of my loose coils and started gluing them down that way. I also added white mini S coils around the perimeter of the flowers. To fill in the gaps around the white pieces, I added mini white diamond shapes and more mini circles.
Quilled Khatam Tutorial by A Crafty Arab

I turned the piece over once it dried and added coils that had been rejected in the earlier design to the back. This will give the piece more depth in the shadow frame. And it gives you an insight into the ugly underbelly of quilling and pins...
Quilled Khatam Tutorial by A Crafty Arab

Once the back coils dry, add glue and place your quilled khatam in the frame.

Press down on it for awhile to make sure the glue holds. Wait till the next day to open the flowers to help avoid shifting while the glue is setting. I took this side show to show you how cool the quilled khatam looks raised in the frame, especially since our Ikea frame also had an outline mat that added another layer.
Quilled Khatam Tutorial by A Crafty Arab

Place your glass on your frame and hang it up on your wall.

Or leave the glass at home and bring it to Women's Wellness Weekend to show your students what this texture looks like up close, like I'll be doing.

See you there!
Quilled Khatam Tutorial by A Crafty Arab

Monday, October 5, 2015

A Crafty Arab Knolling

Knolling is big right now all over social media.

Knolling is the process of placing similar items in parallel or 90 degree angles and taking a photo.

I thought it might be fun to try and gathered items from my studio.

The result is a mixture of crafts from past 30 Day Ramadan Crafty Challenges and some of my products.

And Big Bird, because without him, there would be no me. All in yellow, just like my living room.
A Crafty Arab Knolling
Although I took this photo back in July, I wasn't able to post it due to my 30 Day Ramadan Crafty Challenge.

What would you put in your knolling photo?
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