Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Altered Postcards and other cards

vintage images
on transparencies
or matte paper
scrap book papers especially K&Company and Tim Holz
printed tissue paper
Jet Black ink
Distress Ink
Color Box pigment ink
Acrylic matte medium
needle and thread

Friday, January 26, 2007

"She looks for wool and flax
And works with her hands in delight."

Proverbs 31:13

A dear friend just gave me this darling spinning wheel. It is 25 inches tall. I am guessing that it is maple. It looks almost operational. But I think it is too small for practical spinning. I have a very practical wheel, a Ashford that I have used for 30 years!

I hope to spin, knit, or weave at least a bit this weekend. It has been cold enough, for once, to wear my hand knitted socks. They are a comfort and help the whole body stay warmer!

So I opened some boxes to feast my eyes on my stash of handspun and commercial yarn and some beautiful hand-dyed wool that I would enjoy spinning on a winter's evening by a crackling fire. I know I don't have time for much of this kind of craft, no sock knitting marathons for me, but an occasional hour spent in something "impractical" can be very resting! I am going to start with a few rounds a day to finish one of these pairs of socks.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

"Give ear to my prayer O God...
My heart is in anguish...
Cast your burden upon the LORD, and He will sustain You..." Psalm 55

I feel an over-riding sense of loneliness that I can't explain here, loss, pain, sadness. I find myself going back contenually/daily to The Psalms. When I feel whiny and sad there has usually been some unbalence in my life, sometimes unavoidable, sometimes a genuine reason for sadness. I need to pray and listen first to God. Then check my lists: spiritual, physical, additional.
Here they are again

Spiritual Realities:

Relationship with God based on grace through Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross

Daily communion with God through prayer and meditation on Bible

Spiritual food- Bible study, slightly different from the above

Life in a community of other Christians

Physical Realities: (These have impact on mental and spiritual health but may be suspended in times of extreme need: crisis, persecution, war, famine. God’s grace, in these times is sufficient!)

Food (hopefully healthy)

Adequate sleep/rest

Meaningful work


I want to add an Additional Reality for some people or maybe for all:

Creativity- I believe that the desire to create is God given and stems from being made in His image. Maybe this fits under the topic of Meaningful Work.

Disclaimer: I would be lying if I implied that I do all the above faithfully every day! But I notice the lack and it affects my attitude and can result in a downward spiral until I change some priorities!

I hate the thought of a whining blog. I do journal like that sometimes and then look back and say, "Oh, it wasn't that bad. See, I was upset over nothing!"

I wrote this several days ago. Is this whining? "In the struggle to make a living as a single mom, and make art on a daily to weekly basis sometimes the house and even the people of my family are slighted! I have been able to just barely justify the time spent on art because I am bringing in some money on ebay, teaching classes, and local sales. But honestly, at times I feel that this lonely existence is easier because of the temporary high that comes with creating! "

And now I have a "new" rabbit trail to follow: Lime and violet sock marathon 2007. Of course I don't really want to marathon knit, my carple tunnels throb at the very thought, but it has been inspiring to see that so many young women are knitting! I am inspired to get out the sock yarn, take a photo or two and set some goals to finish those pairs of socks!

But getting the old house in order first should be reeeally come first. Zachary, my 18 year old son has just moved back in and I am glad he is here. Another reason to work on the house! More people, more stuff!

Friday, January 19, 2007

I just finished these two new ACEO's and one 5 inch square, small art quilt. I have enjoyed the contemplative activity of hand sewing the embellishments on these quilts!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Seeing Red!

Saturday, January 13, 2007

What is on my work table?
Altered garden journal

Button bracelet /necklace
Tiny quilt squares
Embroidery floss beads, and ribbons
Bali batik fabric
Shells, seed pods, bark, rocks
Coffee fabric

Flowers from my dear daughter

The Ever Useful, Better Than google or wicipedia, Random House Dictionary

Mollie Katzen's Sunlight Cafe cookbook to inspire me to cook and eat more healthy this year

This little art quilt book is almost 5 inches square and has 144 individually decorated pages. It was difficult to say "decorated" because when I was in art classes in college in the '70s it was forbiden to decorate anything. Stark, large, abstract, and shocking were de rigueur. That is why I was more at home in weaving and jewelry making though even there I went out of my way to be original and avoided merely functional and tranditional craftsmanship! I am not technically an "outsider" artist but have always felt like an outsider! Even when I hope for exceptance, as an artist I must please myself first.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Here are my most recent tiny art quilts. They are 2 1/2 x 3 1/2 inches, ACEO sized! They will be on ebay. I enjoyed the hand-work.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Who loves his garden still
his Eden keeps.
Perennial pleasures plants,
and wholesome harvest reaps.

Amos Bronson Alcott

Don't you start thinking about gardens about this time of year? I use to read seed cataloges like novels, carrying them around for weeks! I'm working on an altered garden journal which I will show pages of.

I am also thinking of quilts. Several UFOs (unfinished objects) are calling me. They are mostly small art quilts that I need to bind and put the hanging sleeve on. And I have a wildflower applique quilt that I want to hand quilt.

When I was young the process was paramont. But at this stage in my life completion is more important (than it was). When my children
were small it was the process: thoughtfully choosing the next two tiny triangles to match and carefully handstitch together. The goal was to finish an eight inch square made of 32 light and dark triangles of graded shades of a variety of prints, then do the next, while watching play or bath time. The last thing I was thinking of was making a queen sized quilt! (I did make one but only because my grandmother came and helped me quilt the last 10 inches all around.) For the past 4 years I have explored free-motion quilting and embroidery with my sewing machine, raw edge applique, and dying and painting on fabric.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

I keep going back to a blog I found last week (thanks Annie). The blog is Juju Loves Polka Dots and features the musings, inspirations, and art of Juju Vail. I love her small watercolor paintings! She reviews and recomends several quilt books and talks about what she enjoys about hand sewing. The links on her website are varied and intresting.

I have been looking at a stack of fabric and the colors of these spools of cotton string. When I saw this book cover my ideas sort of jelled! This is just the beginning, no stitching yet. Will it be a small quilt or a quilted purse? I haven't decided yet.