A blog about my interests, which include crazy quilting and various and assorted other artsy pursuits and sometimes known to contain mumblings of a random nature.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Octopus....or.....dragon?


Well. My dragon has mutated. For some reason I managed to mis-read the pattern and have ended up with his head looking more like an octopus. Ooops!

Methinks there's some 'frogs' in my future on this one!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Cuff bracelet


Here, as promised, is a picture of the beautiful cuff bracelet that Arlee sent me. She knows my favourite colours are blue/purple and hers is most definitely orange. I think maybe she blended the two together in the hope that she can convince me I should like orange? Maybe it was a happy accident?

Either way, I love it! And, yes, I'm beginning to like orange!!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Thank you

Look at what came in the mail today from my friend Arlee. After what happened yesterday, I was so happy to have something else to think about and this was a great diversion! Arlee always sends me a box full of inspiration and this was certainly packed full of eye candy and fun treats. The picture above shows just some of the little bits of fabrics and embellishments.

This picture (above) shows some more...there's a package of texture plates, some totally decadent embroidery floss (in blue...my fave). The 'shoe' has a notepad inside. There's buttons, and, see those little red hearts?...they're textured!
This is the best of the best...there's a wonderful box (in the upper left corner) that appears to be made of bamboo. There's one of the robot ornaments that were in Arlee's floral store at Christmas (I had fallen in total like with hers and she obviously knew it!); there's coffee (yum); and a piece of fabric that is printed with one of her designs (the heart). There's one of those lovely books (which will be turned into an art journal) AND that wonderful round glass bottle/ornie that is absolutely beautiful.

I'm wearing the pretty cuff she made for me and forgot to take it off for a picture...I'll do that tomorrow. Thank you SO much Arlee...you and the powers-that-be aligned to bring me something special when I needed it most.

Another big thank you needs to go out to all of you that have left such uplifting comments, both here and privately, about our loss of Odin. It's so nice to know people care and it helped so much to read them all. Thank you.

Most of you know that he has had an ongoing problem with glaucoma and had lost one eye last January. He had another bout of it in his remaining eye last October. We managed to get it under control and have kept it that way until this week. We got up Tuesday morning to find he had totally gone blind. The decision was made to put him to sleep so he would no longer be in pain. We loved him, but couldn't keep him with us. He's in a better place - we have to believe that.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

R.I.P.


Odin
October 2005 - January 26, 2010

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Dragon has arms (sort of)

Today I wrestled the curved needle into some form of submission and stitched his legs on. Once I got the hang of the needle it went fairly well. I don't care for the size of my stitches using that needle, but I'm not about to start over!

His arms in this picture are pinned on and I'm debating whether I like them where they are. I'm wondering about moving them a little further up, but then...if I do that....will he overbalance when his head goes on?

Oh yeah....and I wonder....do dragons wear bandaids? I moved his foot a little and one of the seams popped a little. A dab of Fray Check and some strategically placed paint will cover the problem I think. Lesson learned....make sure the feet are curved correctly earlier in the process! My fault...not Amy's.

PS...don't forget to tell me what you think his name should be. Scroll down to the previous post and cast your vote!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Legs...of the dragon sort


Well, after much putzing (no swearing though, believe it or not!) I have his legs stuffed and pinned on! Now I just have to figure out how to sew them on...not too sure where exactly I am supposed to be stitching. Amy suggested the use of a curved needle...yipes...something else I've never tried! Can't say this isn't a learning 'curve' (pun intended).

At least he seems somewhat balanced at this point and hopefully he won't topple onto his nose once his arms and head are added.

He has also given me some names he might like, but that's not settled yet. So far he likes Zhao, Ellyllon, Moatia, and Fintan. Anybody care to cast a vote??

Thursday, January 21, 2010

A dragon is emerging!


Sorry about the awful looking background in the photo - it was either that or taken on my worktable which is a HUGE mess!!

He has his wire armature inside and the wire is attached for his wings. Now he's being stuffed. I made the wire armatures for his arms and legs and it remains to be seen just how they will fit. Stay tuned for the next bit of progress.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Progress of a dragon-ish sort

Would you believe this lump of fabric will be a dragon? Doesn't look very scary does it? Aren't dragons supposed to be just a little bit scary?? Hmm. Methinks this one has a ways to go!

On another subject entirely, anyone who is interested in embroidery (and particularly those of us in Canada) might want to check out this site in Calgary. I haven't purchased anything from her, but I thought it was nice to discover that we can get some supplies here!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Fabric....of the dragonish sort


I just finished risking life and limb at the local fabric shop. They're having a members 50% off sale (plus they are going to be closing the store the end of March) so...the place was absolutely packed and was a complete and total zoo. I battled my way through the madding crowd (whilst poor long suffering husband waited in the car...his own fault because he was warned) and finally found something that spoke 'dragon' to me.

His main body will be the patterned, with the gold being his tummy, and the orange-y sheer his wings. I also picked up a piece of black sheer which is another alternative for wings. The pattern arrived in the mail yesterday so now I'm good to go. Can't wait to get started! If you want to see what I'm doing, you can check it out on Amy's blog.

I also picked up enough fabric to create myself a long overdue housecoat, along with a stash of thread and another small piece of dupioni silk (my treat to myself every time there's a big sale - otherwise I can't afford it).

Now I'm off to dream of dragons!

EDITED TO ADD: Tristan is having a wonderful giveaway on his blog to commemorate his 300th follower and his 200th post. He's giving away some pretty exciting stuff so pop on over and have a look, and while you're there, why not become a follower too?

Friday, January 15, 2010

Weaving...and....bargello??

Now what do you think I might be making with this? It's mind-numbingly boring, that's for sure!

As for the bargello part of this post. The owner of this site is doing 365 days of bargello needlepoint samples! Count em...Three Hundred and Sixty Five!!! I used to do bargello many moons ago when it was first popular and now it looks as though it might be making a comeback. I suppose I should be regretting getting rid of all my books on the subject!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Final 2 journal pages for Camille

Above are the final two pages I completed today for Camille's journal. On the left is my 'Matisse' which I journaled over... "In Tahiti I painted whilst I mourned the loss of my Great Romance". To the right is a dimensional page I made which is closed using two pieces of ribbon. Below is the page opened up for you to see.
The words there say: " I made tapa cloth and then I danced the tamure under the fetias (stars), wearing my grass skirt and my black pearls with a hibiscus tiare (flower) in my hair". You can see the miniature tapa cloth, some hibiscus flowers (deconstructed paper roses!), and her string of black pearls. The whole thing is mounted on a piece of 'stuff' that looks rather like grass to signify her dancing skirt. The 'cover' of this part is a piece of wrapping paper with a map of the world (to represent her travels). Hope you like it Robyn!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

More on Camille

Today I finished working on her cape. I found the green sort-of iridescent ribbon in my stash (which tied in nicely with the green in her paper skirt and the wrap on her leg). Then I added the beaded fringe and found some metal 'thingies' from the hardware store in my stash to complete the trim.
This is page 3 of the journal. The background has a local map and then some pictures of local attractions. Common Grounds is our favourite coffee shop and all the dolls end up visiting there before they travel on.

Page 1 of the journal is the 'Matisse' painting I showed you earlier, which I will be adding a journal entry to. Page 2 is coming along nicely and I'm pretty pleased with it so far (you'll have to wait to see it though!).

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

More pics of Camille

This is what I've added to Robyns doll, Camille. In my research about Tahiti, I discovered that they are famous for their black pearls, so Camille got a black pearl necklace given to her by her long lost sweetie. She wears it every day, hoping he will come back. Black pearls are the jewels of the sea, symbols of purity and perfection.

She also got puffy sleeves to match her gorgeous crocheted top, trimmed with green to go with her leg wrap. Now I'm working on adding some goodies to her cape.
She now has a piece of tapa cloth too (another craft that is popular in Tahiti). The base was a piece of my rusted fabric.

Manula, mauni'uru & nana. (Tahitian for 'To your health, thank you & goodbye').

Monday, January 11, 2010

An artist I'm not!!

I'm working on the journal for Camille, the latest art doll in the Coolaberation,and her 'story' included the fact that she learned to paint in the style of Matisse. Well, by no stretch of the imagination can it ever be said that I'm a painter, but I did my best! The bottom picture is the actual painting by Matisse (View of Collioure,1906). Above that is my very pitiful attempt! (Yes, you are allowed to laugh now).

I still haven't decided if I'll collage over the top and call it a day.

Friday, January 08, 2010

Not the brightest pickle in the barrel

This is one of those sagas where you are free to laugh and mutter such things as 'stupid idiot' under your breath (or right out loud if you are so inclined). I won't be the least bit offended.

Setting: A new bed frame. You know the kind...all metal and sporting casters on the bottom. A metal can on the floor beside DH's side of the bed which holds his loose change. MA (me) in bed first.

Plot: Bed has walked across the floor and is now snuggled up to aforementioned metal can. Any movement in said bed causes metal can to rattle most alarmingly. MA, in the bed, could not move without triggering the rattle.

So....MA, being of not so sound mind and quite obviously lacking in wits, decided that...instead of getting OUT of bed and moving it...it would be a brilliant idea to perform some sort of contortion act and leap upwards IN the bed whilst simultaneously yanking said bed sideways.

Not one of the brightest moves of my life.

Ending: Back now comes complete with pain patch; shares have been purchased in the pain pill company and DH has ample reason to mock me.

Curtain closed.
(You may laugh now)

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Erosion and storage

Now how's that for a title?

There are two things I wanted to mention here that I thought you might find interesting...

1. The Erosion Bundle Project. I know this was supposed to begin Jan. 1 and I'm a bit late starting but I simply haven't had time to get mine ready yet. The idea is that you make up a bundle of 'things' (paper, fabric, rusty bits, yarn...whatever), wrap them in fabric and then put them outside in the weather from now until April 15 when you retrieve the bundle(s) and then create art with the pieces. You have until Aug. 1st to complete an art piece with your bundled items. You can hang your bundle outside or bury it if you prefer. You can get more information either at the Erosion Bundle Project site or you can go here to read about a previous project. I think it sounds like fun and is something I would love to take part in. Let me know if you decide you're doing it too!

and....

2. I stumbled on this and thought it was a tremendous idea for those of us short on storage space. It would be a great storage system for a small studio!

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Wanna see Shudayra?

Yvonne is the latest to work on my Shudayra and if you want to see what she added, check out her blog here. I'm so excited about the coolaberation because all the artists involved have been adding such great details to all the dolls.

I feel as though January is slipping away on me, and it's only the 5th. Today we had to get groceries which is always a royal pain. On the bright side though, I got to Michaels and Chapters! I need to make two or three pairs of felted slippers and #2 son has requested a scarf, so I came home with yarn. Paperclay too (this time the 'real' stuff, not the second rate junk from the dollar store). Can't wait to have a play with it to see how it acts!

Monday, January 04, 2010

Of dragons and dreams

I don't think I've ever mentioned that I like dragons. I don't know exactly why I like dragons, but I do. You can just imagine how surprised (and totally honoured) I was when Amy asked me to be a tester on her latest pattern for...are you ready?.....a dragon!! My studio NEEDS a resident dragon and I can't wait to play with this pattern. Amy blogs at An Li Na Designs and has posted lots of pictures of her prototype. Please have a look here and you'll see what I'm excited about! Be sure to scroll down to see more pictures. She has generously allowed me to talk about my dragon here, so stay tuned for updates!

I'm planning to write a list (oh, horrors!) of my dreams for this year, seal them in an envelope which I will open the beginning of 2011. I wonder just how many of them I might manage to make come true? Anybody want to join me just for the fun of it?

Right now I'm totally frustrated because I have several projects I'm so anxious to start working on and, of course, my 'tricky' finger has decided to act up again. For some reason it decides to undergo a massive peel prefaced by turning all hard. Right now it's done the peel part and is just dry and tender. It happens every couple of months & is extremely sore and makes me pretty much at a standstill for any needlework, which drives me completely stircrazy. I have tried every cream/lotion/antibiotic and nothing seems to help or cure it. Sigh. I know, do I have a little cheese to go along with that whine?