Sunday, November 21, 2010

Enter the 2011 Hoffman Challenge!

Main Fabric for 2011 Hoffman Challenge - Style H8709 98G Moss Gold

It's that time of year again, when Hoffman releases the main fabric for next year's competition!  Not only is this a competition for some great prizes; but, it's also an opportunity to have your work travel in their international exhibit (whether or not you win) and receive feedback from the judges on how you can improve your skills. 

To view complete details, visit 2011 Hoffman Challenge.  Otherwise, see below for the main ones I use:

Summary of Rules:
1.  Entry Form 
***There is a "Thank You" page that comes up after the form is submitted. Keep this. It needs to be included in the box when you ship your art doll.***

2.  Fees: $15 USA; $25 outside of USA; $10 extra for Judges Comments
***If you pay by check, it must be included in the box when you ship your art doll.***

3.  Your doll must arrive by July 15, 2011.

4.  The first and most important rule is you must use a recognizable amount of the above fabric in your doll.  It also must be an important feature of your work as a whole.  (There are other categories you can enter; but, I will only be covering the rules for art dolls.)

5.  They must have cloth bodies, look like people and have human features.  They can't represent animals. 

6.  The doll and stand combined must fall between 12” and 20” in height.  The stand cannot be larger than 7" in width.  (Please make sure your stand cannot be broken.  You cannot use pre-purchased stands unless they are altered to coordinate with your doll.  They really want the stand to be built into the overall piece of your work.  Also, the stand and all props need to be securely attached to your doll.) 

7.  Dolls chosen for the traveling exhibit cannot be delicately made or specially posed.  They are packed into a container with all of the other dolls and shipped out from place to place.  Wooden dowels are not strong enough to withstand a heavy doll during all of the traveling and handling.  Thicker dowels would work if the dolls are ligthweight.  However, I did receive a tip that break lines work wonders.  They are lightweight and strong.  You do need to cut them because they are long, then secure them to a wooden base. 

8.  Do not add any scent to your doll because people have allergies.  No potpourri, sachets, etc.  Also, if your doll smells like cigarettes, it will automatically be disqualified.  

Checklist When Mailing Your Doll:

1.  Label your doll and stand with your full name and address in a place that can easily be found but cannot be seen by viewers of the traveling exhibit.  The label must be securely attached with glue, sewn or written.   

2.  Do not use styrofoam peanuts.  Use bubble wrap.

3.  Make sure stand and props are securely attached.

4.  Include the "Thank You" page you received after submitting the Entry Form.

5.  If paying by check, make sure to include it in the box.

6.  Want to receive a delivery confirmation? Include an SASE. Otherwise, if you clearly wrote your email address on the entry form, you will receive a confirmation that way.

7. Your art doll must arrive to the following address no later than July 15, 2011.

Julie Breidt, Curator, Hoffman Challenge
1281 East Magnolia, Unit D
PMB #130
Fort Collins, CO 80524

Dolls chosen for the traveling exhibit will be returned to you in late October 2012.  Those not selected for the exhibit will be returned by late September 2011.

Judging is based on originality, creative use of the challenge fabric, visual impact and workmanship.

From Hoffman:
              *  1st Place: $500 cash and $250 in Sulky products
              *  2nd Place: $300 cash and $150 in Sulky products
              *  3rd Place: $150 cash and $75 in Sulky products
              *  Honorable Mention: Hoffman Fabric Award
              *  Curator’s Choice: Hoffman Fabric Award
              *  Best Hand Workmanship: $300
              *  Best Machine Workmanship: $300
              *  Best First Time Entry, Most Humorous, and
                         Best Incorporation of Theme: Hoffman Fabric Award

From Sulky (Best Use of Sulky Category):
              *  1st Place: $1000 in Sulky Products
              *  2nd Place: $500 in Sulky Products
              *  3rd Place: $250 in Sulky Products

Helpful Links:

Where To Buy the Main Fabric:
(Every year, they offer the entire line, plus an option to buy all the fabrics in a bundle at half yard cuts!  Check it out!)
View Prior Entries: Blue Heron Dolls or Buy Jukebox Quilts CD's

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Kitchen Art Dolls with Tutorials

Inspiration is all around.  The best tools to use are often the ones right in front of us.  The ones we so often overlook and don't consider to be inspiring at all.  How wrong we can be.  Take for instance these magnifenct art dolls by Original Art by Griselda who uses a whisk to create her Kitchen Goddess Witches.   

Or, take for instance the historic New England Spoon Dolls.  Traditionally, a face was painted on the back of the spoon and the handle was dressed in cloth.  In today's time, we've become more innovative in our techniques and now add sculpting to create a head, arms, legs, whatever it is we want, using the wooden spoon as a base.  In the end, you can turn any regular, household item into something that no one would ever imagine or even identify as ordinary. 

History of Spoon Dolls can be found at Studio Willich  and Historical Folk Toys. 

Here are more traditional versions.

Or, take, for instance, my favorite - the altered art piece.  There is no ceiling to what you can do.  You are limited by your imagination only.  Take the time to view your world differently and let inspiration soak into your pores.  In time, that creativity will spur into something very unique and these...

Just for fun, there are The Head Chefs by Trend Hunter.  Already to purchase at about $10.00 each at  How cute are these?