Good Weekend!

What a great weekend - very productive and we got to eat fabulous food! We went out to dinner Saturday night at York Street (www.yorkstreetdallas.com ) - our absolutely favorite restuarant of all time...very expensive and worth every penny! It was our Valentine's Dinner (we couldn't get a reservation for last weekend...) but we will wait for that place any day.
I also got a lot done in the studio - mostly moving stuff around...but I did finish the leaf to send off to the art tree tomorrow...It is, of course, called "Serenity Leaf" because I used up more of the Serenity Series black and white strips of fabric. I think they are breeding in the basket I keep them in. Maybe I should just finish sewing them all together and cut them into columns and just sew them down and get rid of them once and for all...they are never-ending!! But certainly convenient for small projects and challenges.
Dave was kind enough to take some of his time on Saturday and build me another shelf unit to hold my dyes and paints - I think they look great, and it's quite obvious I really never have to go shopping again (or at least for a very long time!) - between what I've bought for myself and what people have given me from cleaning out their closets or from garage and estate sales I have quite a lot to choose from!
I was so inspired about how nice the new shelves looked, I straightened up the fabric and fiber shelves, too - although there is still a lot of work left to do on those...(you can't see the piles waiting to be put away in these pictures, clever me...) again - I really have no excuses - there is very little I could possible need in either area!
Yes, indeed, I'm a very fortunate woman!


Coping Skills

I left my coffee in the car; I coped by buying the largest vanilla latte in our coffee shop. Everybody and their dog wants to meet with my boss (he's in Santa Fe this week); I coped by copying him on my email replies to them (he's very good about checking email). My pc was running really slowly; I coped by running a spyware and virus scan. The work today was really tedious; I coped by thinking about the leaf I'll be submitting for The Tree Project (http://www.internationalfibercollaborative.com/ - right hand side of page… what a great project!
You've still got time to participate…come on! Join in!



It's amazing what a good photo editing software can do…This is what happened when I made kaleidoscope shots from one of my pictures of a cobblestone/brick street in Scotland.. How cool is this?...I could make a quilt without ever lifting a needle!


Comfy Chairs...

The Twelve by Twelve group (http://www.twelveby12.org/ ) is very inspiring - the 12 members take turns coming up with a theme and then they have a month to create a 12"x12" piece based on how the theme inspires them. Most recently, the theme was "Chairs". When I went to the online gallery to see all of them, imagine my delight when I saw Diane Hock's piece…she, too, had a comfy blue chair! I instantly saw in it our old blue comfy recliner - Dave bought it for me before I had even decided that we were a serious thing…I happened to see the chairs on sale in the paper and mentioned that I had always wanted a platform rocker that was comfortable. A few days later, he's saying, "your chair will be here on Tuesday" All I could think was "Huh??"… what I said was "hmmm…well…it'll have to live at your house because my little house doesn't have the room" and then thinking "and that way, if we break up, I don't have to figure out how to haul that chair to your house!" Well - after more than 14 years, it was time for the chair to go - it was a good chair for the time we had it - my Mom loved it and used it exclusively when she visited. The dog adored it (and if dogs remembered that kind of thing, would probably still miss it). Our friends used to fight over who got to sit in it when there were more than two of them in the house. And it was always called "The Comfy Chair" and someone would always do a riff on the Monty Python inquisition sketch… And it looked so sad sitting on the side of our driveway before someone in a truck came and rescued it. So - Diane's piece inspired me to include our comfy chair on one of the silk pieces I'm currently working on…I think it will be a nice reminder…I hope it went to a good home.


New toys...

Ok - I've done my part to stimulate the economy. I now own every color permanent marker that Sharpie makes (and one pack made by Bic)... aren't these colors fantastic??? and I love how they look on silk fabric...isn't that the ultimate? Like drawing on your clothes!
We'll see just how permanent they are tonight...I sampled all of them on a piece of silk fabric last night and tonight I'll iron it to be sure it's set and then handwash it to see if any comes out...what ever the result, I'll just practice embroidery stitches on it, and before you know it - Art!
sigh....I love coloring....
p.s. Today, my Mom would have been 92. - Happy Birthday, Mama - I miss you.


Consumer Protection

Sigh....sometimes I think my govt goes a tad too far in protecting me...if you haven't heard there is a new Consumer Protection Act: Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) and here is a link to a pdf that (in lawyer speak) answers some questions... http://cpsc.gov/about/cpsia/smbus/sbguide.pdf To quote from the cover page of the document: Guidance on the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) for Small Businesses, Resellers, Crafters and Charities The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) is a sweeping new law that impacts a broad spectrum of our economy. From manufacturers of toys to the kids that play with them, everyone is affected in some way ‐‐ even those who make and donate products to hospitals and charities. There are new rules to be understood and adopted for everyone from the largest global manufacturer to the crafter working in the family workshop to the mom‐and‐pop shop on the corner. Indeed, all children’s products including toys, books, child care articles and clothing are covered in different ways by this law, and there are different rules for different products. Although the information here does not speak to every aspect of the law, it does address some of the more frequently asked questions that many small manufacturers, shop owners and consignment/thrift store owners have asked about the CPSIA. This could and will have significant impact for those who make anything for children under the age of 12 that might be purchased by the public (when they start making purchases again...) or handled by the public . Beware knee-jerk legislation - it could have unknown ripple effects because no one stops to think of the consequences of their actions. I'm glad I make art for grown-ups.


Creative Blog (Someone Else's...)

I laughed out loud today, reading Calamity Kim's blog...http://calamitykim.typepad.com/
which led me to type "knitted tree" into Google images...try it. An amazing number of people have spent their time knitting for trees...and other things.
- which included this picture from Kudzu Planet:
how fun is that? But really....are they just tired of making scarves and afghans?


Art Show Thursday

The Dallas Area Fibert Artists Members Show 2009 had it's opening reception last night - and, really - I was blown away with how talented we are as a group...
Here I am with my two pieces - it was kinda scary having them in such a public venue...
You've seen the doll to the right before in an earlier post - it's the same one I had entered in the University's show.
The piece on the left over my head is called Serenity River...
It's a beautiful venue and I'm really proud I got to participate. It will be up for the rest of the month.
It was cool to see my friends, as well - here's Lu (left) with one of her pieces.. .
and Deborah (right) with one of hers (you can also see her work in Quilting Arts magazine)...
Michelle withdrew her piece to rework it, but it will be seen in the Dallas Quilt Show in March...
and Connie had lots of pieces in the show, but I failed to get a picture of her with any of them!
So - I feel encouraged to be a part of this group and need to finish up some pieces in the studio so I can enter more shows (a personal goal...).


Space Issues

How is it that I have cleaned the studio three times now and I still took out 2 leafbag-sized bags of trash this weekend? That's the problem with mixed media - you are reluctant to let go of anything…wait! I can use that piece of cardboard!!! Really? Is that why it was sitting on that shelf for over a year?
Sigh….I'm looking forward to just walking into my studio and working on a project. Did I really used to do this in a 10-foot-square room??? I have a lot more square footage than that now (happens when you take over the attic) and I still don't have room for everything. I need more space! Of course, I totally occupy whatever space I'm given, so this is not a new issue for me. It's just that my art interests have expanded and likewise the need for more supplies.

I was thinking that this means I need to give up my loom. My Precious…a LeClerc loom named "Fanny" (they named it, not me) - made about the time I was born. A four-harness counterbalance that has the rounded edges of church pews. She was innovative for her time because when folded (it folds from the back, even when warped), it will fit through a standard door (please note, we have never had standard doors and Fanny has always insisted on being dismantled to be moved). She retails now for around $2500 - it's still a very popular loom because it's made for volume. Dave (bless his heart) bought it for me (for $750 and included the bench) not long after we got married - and hauled it all home from Wichita Falls in the trailor. I love the loom probably just shy of how much I love him and then the dog….so - Fanny stays (all 47" inches square of her). She now has her own little nook in the studio (where my computer used to be - it's been moved to the guest room). So another solution to the space issue must be found….hmmm….do we really need two cars in the garage?.....