Sunday, November 27, 2011

The Long Weekend is About to End

It is Sunday after being home for four days and I am already blue about the weekend being over. I love being at home. I  should have been a housewife like my mom, but it was not meant to be--not in this era. So whenever I am home for more than the customary two days it is really hard to go back to work.

Yesterday, realizing that I have been at a plateau in my weight loss for 3 weeks now, I decided I'd better get my rear out there and take a walk. I had the perfect plan, jewelry store (to get a new watch band and a new watch battery), walk and on the way back stop at the CVS for a couple of things. Well while waiting for the watchband I started browsing at the white gold and diamond earrings. I tried on a pair. I really liked them and they are 60% off until Christmas Eve. I thought my 50th birthday is coming up and my mom asked me what I wanted... mmmmm... Fabric/Art Supplies or earrings? They gave me my watch--I forgot to pay for it-- and I asked them to hold the earrings. Luckily I came to my senses a block and a half away and called them to say I forgot to pay, I'll stop back within the hour and after I went back to pay I told them not to hold the earrings. Fabric or jewelry? Am I nuts? A big gift certificate for fabric is way better than overpriced earrings!

Okay, so I am on my way back. I even walked an extra 10 minutes outbound to make up for the stop at the CVS. What happens across the street from the CVS? I fell! I did not see the big rock until my foot stepped on it and down I went. What a laugh for all of the people driving on the street--a major thoroughfare in NE Philadelphia. An older man coming towards me insisted that I file an incident report in the nursing home that I fell in front of. Actually, sitting there waiting and having a chance to clean the wounds made me feel better. Then I almost poked my eye out at the CVS, and broke a front tooth with a butter knife making my lunch. It was klutz day for me!

Not too much on the creative front, but TOMA and I went to Chestnut Hill on Friday and walked up and down Germantown Avenue. I saw so many pretty things and got lots of creative ideas. We will see what I get done today.

I hope you also had a long weekend and it was a good one!

Baci e abbracci.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Trying to Post More Often

I completed a clutch so I thought I would show it to you. It is the Keyka Lou Easy Envelope Clutch, and it was easy, very easy. I did not understand part of the pattern and emailed Michelle, the designer, and she responded right away. The pattern is on sale for $5 (regularly $7) and can be downloaded immediately. Don't we wish everything we order on-line came that quickly? I think these little clutches would make great gifts. I saw the clutch on Malka Dubrawsky's blog stitch and dye. She quilted a couple of them and they came out really cute.

I love the rooster fabric. I know I recently purchased it, but cannot remember where.

The other thing I did over the weekend is a couple of blocks for my fall quilt. I did my second liberated star from Gwen Martson's book Liberated Quilting II. The first one was from another book of hers and Freddy Moran's, but the strips of fabric I had were too narrow and I did not like the result. I was able to purchase a few 1/4 yard cuts of some of the same fabric in the quilt over the weekend so it was easier to make the star.

Okay, gotta go pack my breakfast for tomorrow--ugh!

Baci e abbracci.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Hi there...

I have not posted for a while... obviously and feel bad about it. I have not been happy with my work of late. I have been working on a quilt and pretty pleased with that, but my drawings (when even enthused enough to create any) have been disappointing.

I attended the Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show on Friday night and was wowed by the talent and quality. The work was amazing. There were a few booths that were selling apparel made of wool felt and silk chiffon. The craftsperson wet-felted the wool right into the chiffon. It was very interesting for scarves and flowing vests. Three minutes of research on Google and I found out that it is referred to as Nuno Felt, a Japanese method. The scarves have a great drape and I would image lots of warmth as both wool and silk are fibers that retain warmth. If I can convince my friend to do it with me I may give it a whirl.

Here is the list of people whose work who most inspired me:
and Leni Hoch, who does not have a website but her scarves are beautiful and if I had not just purchased 2 books from Amazon, I would have purchased a scarf from her.

One of the above quilters as well as a couple of other craft people use photos of microbiology and aerial maps as their inspiration. A fellow staff person also uses microbiology in her work which I also saw for the first time on Friday, so I thought why not. I am always looking for something to make me want to draw, so I again used trusty Google and came up with some interesting photos to draw from.

The other issue with my work is that I always battle whether to use black ink outlines in my drawings. My husband usually likes a watercolor without the black lines, but I am partial to them and feel that there just isn't the "pop" in the painting without them.

I also have recently experienced my Carbon Ink bleeding with the application of watercolor. Really nerve racking! I guess I am back to Micron Pens if I want to paint over my lines. I just really wear down the tips quickly--before they run out of ink. I also enjoy using fountain pens. The alternative is using dip pens and waterproof ink.

Lastly, I received a 40% off my entire purchase coupon from Blick Art supplies, who I use for 90% of my purchases. I had 30 days to decide on what I wanted and it was an "in-store use only" coupon. That was good because they did not stock a couple of the big ticket items that I planned to purchase and would have had to order them, which I declined. I ended up with a box each of Fabriano note cards and envelopes (see flowers below) which take watercolors beautifully; set B of Dr. Ph. Martin's concentrated watercolors, and a Sennelier travel box of 14 1/2 pans of watercolor (used in both paintings below). Fun little spree...

Not finished yet

My new travel set of watercolors--my first professional quality set. Used them with my new brushes from Italy--very nice--definite difference from the Cotman brushes I have

New note card on Fabriano--the Carbon ink bled so I used my Pentel ink brush to cover the bleeding. I've had it for a while, but cannot control it well. I liked it and will practice with it.

My fall quilt on the design wall--string blocks from the class I took and wonky log cabin blocks that will border the string blocks, then one more border of sashing

Freesia channeling me--always sleepy or sleeping

Baci e abbracci