Monday, March 3, 2008

The Harsh Reality of Motherhood

We had a lovely day yesterday. A good lunch cooked for us. The children got to play with their cousins. A lovely walk in the park. Very nice :)

Although she had complained of tummy ache since the morning Minxie seemed okay in herself, ate a good lunch and played with her little cousin very happily.

She went to bed last night and was sound asleep in minutes.

However, it was down to earth with a bump for this Mummy when, at 10.30 last night I heard her coughing - lots. I soon realised it wasn't normal coughing and rushed upstairs to find the poor little poppet sitting up in bed with sick EVERYWHERE!!!!

I shouted to Moogsdad to help (very loudly - as he'd decided to have an early night 'cos he was tired) and between us we got her sorted.

Big Hat's off to you lovely Mums who don't have a sleepy man to shout at at such times of crisis!!!

I then had her in bed with me all night. No more sick thank goodness but some nasty stuff to clean up at the other end!!!!

It struck me during my nocturnal musings that this is what motherhood is really about.

This is when the unconditional love bit really kicks in.

When you have to clean up horrendous substances that would normally have you running for the hills.

When you lie awake the whole night watching the little fidget next to you for early signs of the next onslaught.

When you have two loads of laundry to show for one night's nursing:

(It's also the bit they don't tell you about when your biological alarm clock is ringing loudly!!!)

At least hanging all that laundry out made me notice some loveliness happening in the garden.

While Minx has lain on the sofa nagging me as she's starving, bored, thirsty, Minx etc etc. I have got on and broken a mental block.

I have an order for a cushion for a little girl who adores her Grandma's bassett hound. I was given a selection of photocopied photos of the lovely pup in question but have put this off for over two weeks as the inspiration just was not happening.

Knowing that my plans for library/post office/charity shops had to be shelved for today forced me to face up to getting this b**ger done!!!

I was undecided about how to do the picture - applique? stitchery? fabric painting? I bogged myself down with worrying about having to go and buy dressmaker's carbon paper, bassett coloured fabric paints etc etc etc......

As I'm housebound today my choices have been limited and I've had to use what I've got.

Once I'd thought it all through it went pretty well. In fact, I thought you might like to see the whole process.

How about a 'How to Fabric Paint a Bassett Hound Tutorial'? Yes?

Ok then.

How to Fabric Paint a Bassett Hound Tutorial by Moogsmum

1. Cut out your photocopied bassett hound picture. Either stick the cut out picture to a piece of white paper or photocopy again (but set the copier to a lighter tone or it'll come out far too dark)

2. Using a dark pencil mark the main lines/folds/white bits/dark bits on the photocopy

3.Turn the picture over and using a soft dark pencil scribble over the back of the whole picture, making sure all the lines are covered.

4. Iron a piece of freezer paper onto the back of the fabric you are using. This awesome paper helps to keep the fabric flat and firm whilst painting - also prevents the paints 'bleeding'.

5. Place the dog picture face up on top of your piece of fabric.

6. Using a pencil trace along all of the lines on the picture - this then transfers a pencil outline to your fabric - like this:

7. If necessary go over any lines that are not clear enough by drawing over them lightly on the fabric using a pencil.

8. Now it's a matter of colouring in. I started by filling in all the white bits first - think 'Painting by Numbers' here.

9. All the white bits done.

10. Now fill in the brown bits.

I didn't have brown fabric paint but mixed my own. If you mix the three primary colours you will get brown - by altering quantities of each primary you can achieve a huge range of different browns.
I didn't have primary colours (!!) but by mixing an olive green and a plum coloured paint I eventually got the colour I wanted.

11. Now to add some shading.

I mixed a little black with the brown for the dark bits and for the light bits I added a little brown to a good amount of white. By adding water you can achieve a nice translucent wash that will add the shading and highlights without covering the main colour.

This is where all those extra lines that you traced really do help. Use the lines to show you where to shade and highlight.

Don't load your brush with a lot of wet wash - fill your brush with the wash but then dab it on a tissue until the brush is drier - this gives much lighter brush strokes and helps to get the fur looking fur-like!

(If any bits of shading or highlighting don't look quite right don't worry. You can paint over them with white or brown again and redo them once this has dried.)

12. Now mix a light yellowish brown for the iris of the eyes - I added a little yellow ochre to the brown paint that I used for the fur. Add a black pupil in each eye and the most important bit - a little white dot in each eye.

Paint the nose with black fabric paint. thin the paint with water for the lighter bits. Add a little white highlight with a dry brush.

Like almost any painting he is best viewed from a bit of a distance but the overall effect does, thankfully, resemble a bassett hound!!

There are bits I could have done more to but I wanted to quit while I was ahead!

Now it's just a matter of making him into a pink girlie cushion!!!!!

The fabric painting thing isn't as scary as it looks. If you get the initial tracing down okay it's just like playing at colouring in!!!!

I'd better go and iron him now to set the paint.

Hope you enjoyed that very very long post ;-)



Marie said...

{{{HUGS}}} to poor Minxie. Poorly little people has got to be the least fun thing in the world. I hate it when mine are sick.

Loving the basset hound. If I tried that it would probably look more like a basset coloured cow! LOL


Lucy Locket-Pocket said...

That tutorial is fab - you're obviously not as daft as you sound on the phone!!!!!!

Sorry to hear about little Minxy - hope she is felling much better and driving you bonkers!

me xxxx

Gina said...

That is one fantastic Bassett hound and a fabulous tutorial.
Lots of love to little Minx - funny... exactly the same thoughts were going through my head last week as I held the hand of my "baby" all through the night, having spent the previous night cleaning stuff up at home. No one tells you about that part of motherhood!

weirdbunny said...

I used to have a big basset hound softie as a child that I used to drag around the house pretending he was real.

artisbliss said...

Poor Minx and poor you. I totally sympathize with the entire situation, and understand completely the lying awake waiting for the next round to begin. Been there, done that many times.

Lovely dog even if it did take a bit of doing to get him going. Heaven knows I'm no painter and would make a complete hash of a puppy.

Jane said...

Poor you and poor Minx but they do usually recover very quickly thankfully, I dread mine being ill.
Love the Bassett Hound tutorial you are a talented artist. Jane x

Suzie Sews said...

Oh poor little poppet...and poor Mommy!!!
Love the painting...

marit said...

Poor Minx- I hope she recovers quickly! No, they never tell us about that part when we become parents...funny thing though it is quickly forgotten!
What a great tutorial on the basset hound! He looks so real! You're a tealented lady!
Take car:-)

syko kajsa said...

Poor you! Two weeks ago I was there, little E was sick about 10 times until 3.30 in the morning. Not fun. Then it was big sis turn. And mine...

Great work with the basset!

Stephanie Pettengell said...

So sorry about Minx, hope she soon feels better and doesn't share it!
The tutorial is brilliant and the finished hound is just sooooo good.

Ali said...

Hope Minx is feeling better today (and your washing machine has survived!).

Tutorials - they make things seem so easy, so straightforward. But I know my limitations and beautifully 'coloured in' bassett hounds are far far over the boundaries of possible. Just lucky there are clever folks like you to make them!

Angela said...

Poor Minx and poor you.Any mum understands where you are coming from.I guess thats why we have Mothers Day-for all the things we do that no one else [except other parents] wants to know about or understands.
Brillint tutorial a gorgeous Basset please post a picture of the finished cushion.

Kitty said...

Awwww, poor Minx ... it's not that long since she had that other sicky thing is it? Poor love. You're right - we wouldn't normally go near someone else's yukky bits and pieces would we? But one's child ... well, there's no question.

That tutorial was fabtastic - my mum uses freezer paper a lot in her quilting - I've never used it before. You are a clever thing.

Take care - xx

Katy said...

Thank you, I DID enjoy that very very long post. The rather upsetting minx/sick episode was nicely forgotten by the time the basset hound was finished!
I am afraid if I tried to paint a basset hound, it wouldn't look like that, it wouldn't look like a basset hound at all, and would probably give a little girl nightmares.

French Knots said...

...and don't let him near anything red or pink, we don't want another road kill incident!
Hope the Minx is on the mend, sick does get everywhere doesn't it?!

Kaz said...

Wow that is a lovely dog painting! Can't wait to see the finished cushion.

Hugs to the Minx, I hope she's feeling better now and you're still awake after the disturbed night.

dottydesigns said...

Poor baby, not fun for anyone, but yes thats the good and the bad bits about being a mummy. that bassett is fab too. Clever you.

Anonymous said...

Your poor little Minx hope she has recovered by now.Look forward to seeing finished basset hound cushion.Interesting tutorial thanks for sharing your know how.

Bethany Hissong said...

I'm sorry you had such a hard night. What would we do without mothers?!! You are obviously a great one. I hate when my children have the flu...poor things.

You are such a good painter. I actually read all of the steps and was very impressed with the final product! That way of transferring with pencil on the back of a drawing works for so many different things. Hope your night tonight is peaceful and everyone feels better!

Michaela said...

Poorly children and sleepy husbands don't mix. My husband once staggered out of bed to complain about the noise I was making whilst I was dodging between both kids who were throwing up. Whilst carrying endless loads of washing downstairs in the dark (so he could sleep) I fell and made even more noise. He complained again then went back to bed. And we're still married (although I very nearly killed him that night!)

Hope your little one is better and that she doesn't share it with all of you!

Julie said...

Glad Minx is making a good recovery (bored, hungry and nagging = recovery I think). A nasty experience for both of you. I well remember cleaning up my stepdaughter after a nighttime episode of projectile vomitting. Great fun! She blamed me for giving her pop and sweets! She was probably right lol

Your tutorial is fantastic and the basset has come out really well.
BTW you have lovely nails - how do you keep them so lovely with such a busy life?

Leanne said...

Poor Minx I hope she is feeling better - womitting (as we call it it this house is the pits). I am impressed with that Bassett Hound and done so well in a sleep deprived state - you are very clever. Looking forward to seeing the completed pillow.

the vicious chicken said...

Oh no - poor Minxie, and poor you! I do hope she's feeling better now (and that the vomiting is most definitely finished with...)

And that Bassett is amazing! You clever thing, you. And I disagree about it looking better from afar - he looks super in that close up of his face :o)

Monkee Maker said...

Oh yeah, I second that emotion about single Mums (& Dads) who have no one to help with the vomiting. (Obviously after reading the previous comments I extend that to Michaela too). RGH was always handy with a spatula for those unfortunate times ....

Brilliant tute, MM, thanks. And yes, you make it look easy .... in the same way that questions on Who Wants To Be a Millionaire can be easy .... if you know them!


Leigh said...

I am so sorry Minx is feeling poorly! I hope all is much better now.

Love your tute!

Lina said...

Poor Minx. Poor you. Fabulous painting, very impressive talent you have there!

Jon and Wendy said...

Awwww, I am washing the covers on my couch right now due to my little munchkins sick. Poor little dears don't know what is happening to them. My baby (who is 3) says (in a grunty voice), "Mom, mom, I don't look so good." I think she means "feel" but cute anyway.
Fabulous artistry by the way. I love your blog.

Blossom said...

hope Miss Minx is doing better.

your bassett is wonderful!!!!

Jodie said...

He is so cute - you have the sad bassett eyes down perfectly.

julie said...

poor minx - hope she's feeling better. You're definitely right about it bringing home what being a mum is all about! Your Bassett is brilliant - well done for working through the mental block and coming up with a winner!

Ally said...

Clever Girl. Wow what a Basset Hound, really enjoyed the tutorial, even made little (big) old me think about trying some fabric painting! I know, you have just fallen off your chair and are now madly reaching for the phone to call my little sis! But don't worry I am surrounded by paperwork here and have loads to do when I have finished. Your garden looks lovely with it all springing to life and that is really what I should be doing with any free time I have.

Hope Minx much better now and no one else has come down with it.

Yr Big (imaginary) Sis Ally x


I hope the Minx is now feeling a lot better. Having a sickness bug is no fun whatsoever. I remember what my mum had to contend with, with us as kids, she would leave a potty by the bed, but 9 times out of 10 we would miss it! Aah, the bassett hound is lovely, you are very clever, and to transfer it to a cushion, even cleverer still. x