Ships Ahoy!

Ann Wood Pattern Ships in Progress!

Here is our first fleet of Ann Wood boats in progress.  (Dont forget to drool over Ann's stuffed owls while you are visiting her blog!)  I will post some more process photos so you can see our version of it.  These have been painted but are awaiting mast and yard construction.  This was a great family project and it can be done in a weekend or you can stretch it out for a couple months like we did.  Since we made so many to start, we did one step at a time with the entire fleet, so it took a little longer.  Most of the ships you can see here are the original pattern blown up 100% or so.  I do like the bigger size for the amount of time these take to make.  You might as well make big ones because I think they will be easier to see hanging from the ceiling too! 

Above you can see some of our small and large patterns cut out of cereal boxes and a few actually taped together and ready to be paper mached.  I don't think we have any photos of the paper mache day since we all did it and had really sticky fingers!  I just use a mix of flour and water and few drops of white glue for paper mache.  We tore up small pieces of newspaper and just basically followed Ann's directions and did two layers on each.  Let me see if I can find a photo of them all mached.....nope....

Painted inside and out.

I started the draft of this post way back when but was waiting to finish it since I was giving a few ships to friends as gifts and wanted it to be a big surprise for them.  They most likely would not have seen this blog post anyhow but wanted to be on the safe side!  These ships were so fun to construct and Ann Woods work is so inspiring.  I can't wait to try making my own ship design and creating an even bigger, more beefy one, to hang with these.  Check hers out and you will see what I mean.  Ann also does amazing things with cardboard and fabric and her work has been featured in severl magazines worldwide. 
I will post some more process photos and tell ya about what we did:
One side of Jasper's ship with mast inserted.

The other side of Jasper's Ship.

The inside of Jasper's ship.  I love his style!

In all, we made 4 small ships and 5 large ones.  We will keep and hang the 4 we made for ourselves and gift the others.  We have given three small ones away so far and they have been well received!  I will show you here:
Here is the one we made for our friend Steffen for his birthday.  You can kinda see the fabric here.  It has octopus, ship wrecks, seals, fish, seaweed and coral.  This is the other side of the sail:
I used cheese cloth to line the back!  The sail pattern does not call for it to be lined but I got this wild hair and wanted to see if I could make it work.  It looked great and it didn't add a lot of heft, bulk, or stiffness to the sail so that was good.  You can see the detail here of how we painted most of them with thin paint so the newsprint would show thru like Ann's.  Also you can see a little detail of how the sail is hand sewn to the yard.  Sewing the sail to the yard really makes you feel like your ship is coming together!
Here are two sails in progress for two ships.  These each went to Maurisa for her birthday and Julie for her 40th birthday!  I used an old indian paisley spread that had lots of various stains and holes.  I really like the reds, greens, and yellows in the fabric.  I did not line these sails because I liked the gauzey feel of the fabric just the way it was.  Here is Julie's finished ship below:

These ships have string attached so you can hang them from the ceiling.  Also, you might notice the buttons attached to the ends and sides.  I used shell buttons on these and they are meant to be decorative and to use for attaching your sails strings to.  I followed Ann's lead and left all my strings long and dangley.  Love it!

And on this sail I used some contrasting but complimentary fabric to make patches on the sail.  As if the sail had gotten holes while sailing the high seas and needed to be repaired!

We have not finished out own four ships!  I wanted to get the gifts done first so we will be working on ours soon.  I will post more as they get finished.  Please check out Ann's blog and website to get inspired to create these!  And let me know if you, a. come across any more ship patterns, and b. make any of your own!  I will leave you with a group picture of all our ships, with their masts attached, awaiting sails.