Sunday, November 16, 2008

Touchable Things

I made a couple of Inchies in September (wow, was it really a couple of months ago...seems like yesterday) for Ellen Hutson's "Inchie Inklings Challenge." The theme was 3-D Inchies...This challenge was alot of fun, and I actually had tons of ideas. I ended up making 2 inchies. Peter thought they were cute...which is sweet, because he never really comments on the cards we make, but these were worthy of his close-up examination; how sweet is that?

Anyways, the first was made using the Itty Bitty Lavender stamp. I found this neat product called "Flower Soft" ( at my LSS. It comes in a variety of soft colors, but when I saw the lavender, I knew I just had to use in on my Lockhart stamp.

To use it, just apply glue to paper, and sprinkle the product on...let dry, then fluff it up a bit (kind of like you do with Fun
Flock). I also decided to make some mini lavender stems for my daughter's doll. This was done by dipping small pieces of floral wire in glue, then pressing the Flower Soft on glued area.

The second inchie was done by stamping a Lockhart IB butterfly on vellum. I colored it with colored pencils, covered the image with versamark, then mixed glitter and clear embossing power together, and heated it. The result was sort of opalescent; kind of neat. Background paper is Ariel from Memory Box. I first stamped the sentiment on the paper, but messed up, so covered it with sentiment stamped on vellum. Sentiment is from PTI's Mixed Messages. I wanted more sparkles, so I applied glue and crystal glitter to the edges of the inchie...Then I glued the little butterfly on the paper so that it looked like her path was one of the swirls on the DP.

And for some more Touchable Things...
Ziggy's school had an Open House, and we got to check out some of his classes. The school recently opened a new permanent exhibit, which I absolutely love. It is called "Sensory Safari" and is a room filled with taxidermied wildlife for the students to touch. With each animal is a printed and brailled description of facts pertaining to that animal (as well as an audio description, which can be listened to on headphones).

Here are Ziggy and Peter checking out one of the animals:
I am so excited about this exhibit...when Ziggy was young, I had no way of showing him what wild or exotic animals looked like. Most children can watch a video, check photos on the internet, find a picture in a book, or even go to the zoo to see these animals. But blind children have no way to do this. I used to try to give him a sense of what these animals were like by using small toys. I would also "make" exotic animals by describing an animal based on known animals' parts (like a giraffe has neck kind of like a horse, but much longer...a lion's paws are like the cat's paws but 7 times as large). I know it seems like a trivial thing; there are other issues to worry about. But to not have this basic knowledge or exposure to nature is just one more thing that sets these kids apart as different. And it bugs me...

When Ziggy was 6 years old, we got to visit a sensory safari at a conference for the blind. I cried tears of joy to see him finally touch a lion...and it was quite a sight to see him with one hand in his mouth, and the other in a bear's mouth, comparing teeth! I hoped that it wouldn't be the only time in his life that he would see these things, though.

So now, he's 15, and gets to see the animals again. But not just the one time! The exhibit is there permanently..and not just for him, but for the other young blind students at the school. And that warms my heart...

These are some touchable things I love to look at.

1 comment:

Keri Lee Sereika said...

The inchies are beautiful Diana!!! And your story about your son SEEING the animals with his own fingers is so sweet and touching....I have never stopped to think about how you would have to "show" a blind person what an animal looks like! You did a great job!