Like most projects I do they start with an ideal outcome. An outcome that I do not achieve, not even in the sense of an unideal outcome, more of a man-did-I-fluff-this-up outcome.
Recently I’ve gotten into cutting shapes, patterns, lines etc. into the backs of old t-shirts. Hense my Pinterest page old t-shirts. I tried this one
When everything was said and done, the wings were a little too big, or one could argue that I was too small… but the first option is a little more plausible. It just showed a little more than what I was planning for it to show. However I didn’t want to let all my work go to waste go to waste, so I found a piece of cardboard, used chalk pastel to fill in the feathers, and covered the thing with a crap ton of hairspray (aka fixative for people who are too cheap to buy actual fixative)
You will need…
- one piece of cardboard as the canvas. size depends on how big you make the wings
- one piece of construction paper for the stencil
- an exact knife
- chalk pastel
- Draw the general shape of the wing onto the construction paper. Then start to fill it with feather-like shapes, or to put it more accurately; leaf-like shapes.
- Using the exact knife (under a non-scrapeable surface), cut the feathers out
- Marl the middle of the cardboard canvas and lay the stencil on one half
- Slightly take the stencil down. chalk pastel can get smudged very easily. If you want the feathers to all to be opaque then have at it and start colouring in. however, if you want the wings to fade out and or be translucent in the middle:
- put a heavy layer of pastel around the outer edge of the stencil. Take your finger and first smudge around the edge, then into the centre.
- For the next level of feathers do a medium layer around the top part of the feather and lighter layer at the bottoms. Smudge in focusing more on the top
- When you get down to the last few bottom feather very lightly touch the top part with the pastel, and then smudge that using it for most of the feather.
- Hairspray time. Keeping in mind that the hairspray will most likely cause the cardboard (if it’s weak like mine) to bend try to put weights on the edges. Now have at it! You’ll probably want to do 2-4 layers. The first one or two just being lights spray, whereas 3 and 4 will be heavy.
This is a how-to, for a beginner, for a beginner. Yes, I’m lacking in experience, but I am also lacking in bravado. Again one would probably be wondering how lack of experience and lack of bravado is at all a good thing. Well, it isn’t really, however it is useful in attempting to relate this post to other similar to me. No experience scared to ask for a lower price.
Note: in reference to a bargaining I am not talking about Western-style shops. Please don’t go into Garage and start low balling the cashier on a $20 tank top. Most, okay, all my bargaining experience is from countries in South East Asia.
This is my usual go-to strategy
- Once you see something you like, pay very little attention to it. Once the sale person knows you want something they’ll budge very little on starting price. I find it best to act fairly indifferent towards the desired object. Once you know what you want and are looking at other things in the store.
- Start thinking about how much you’d pay, then mentally convert that into the country’s currency. If you don’t have an already basic currency conversion knowledge for the country you’re in then, well, you should. You really should.
- If anyone asks if they can help you I go with the usual “just looking” This again shows lack of interest and also gives you so more time. Or you could ask pricing for other things in the store
- Finally, when you mentally have everything together point to what you want and begin the negotiation process by asking “how much”. It is always best to look a little surprised when they say the first number, and pretend that it was so high you are willing to walk away
Note: If you really want something and you most likely won’t be able to get it anywhere else, just get it. Even if the price is a bit higher than you wanted.
Note #2: Do not, I repeat do not, get caught up in I-will-not-pay-that-much mode. Like if the pants are, let’s say 100 Thai Baht ($4) and you want to pay 80 Baht ($3.30). It is a 70 cents difference, if you want it, just get it.
Let me just start off by saying: it is more so people in Western society, who have no cultural ties to the history of this ancient art form, that refer to it as “henna” or a “henna tattoo”. I am one of those people. Mehndi is a term that carries much more cultural significant when used.
I look at it as a way of doodling on myself (in a nontoxic way) like I used to when I was younger. By the time a teacher would finish a lesson I’d have my hand and part of my arm covered in multicolour ink marks. Often times an ocean or forest scene, usually a flower here and there, and once I decided to do the American and Canadian flag side by side.
I also look at it as displaying my artwork. This being said trying to draw even and straight lines on your self whilst attempting to squeeze paste out of the $3 tube is not always easy and does not always make for the best results.
(which are all based on my own personal opinion, and therefore might not apply to you)
- try to go with a smaller tube, especially if you are not planning on using it up in the next year to year and a half
- was your hands and do not put lotion on right before applying the paste
- this being said if you have dry hands (like my self) which get even worse in the winter the henna won’t come up as good on dry skin so be careful of that
- Start farthest away from where you will finish. Basically, don’t draw the structure of the design the go in for details. You often or not end up smudging what you already go
- Again this being said if you “sketch” the design out first then going for details that is one way to ge4t around that
The design its self. If you are literally looking to doodle on your self then have at it, but if you are looking to attempt some traditional designs then here a few basic ones
I tend to just pick out aspects of one Pinterest picture and combine it with another. A lot of times the stuff they have on there is simply beyond my capabilities
- A thin line of henna should be dry between 15-30 minutes, this might take over an hour
- when it does dry gently rub/roll it off, into a garbage can that is not made of mesh, totally haven’t made that mistake before, just know that this stuff stains