Sunday, April 11, 2010

Little pieces of color and joy

With spring-like weather finally here, my energy level has skyrocketed and I am busy, busy, busy.  I thought I would share a few scenes around my house since I can't share much of what I have been creating in my studio. There are so many events coming up in the next month or so, and all the projects need to get done now - both ScrapGal and the Sampler will be having blog hops, I scheduled tutorials for theirs and my blogs already, I have a painting that will be exhibited in a gallery exhibition for Cinco de Mayo, Gecko Galz is having a competition for Mother's Day projects, and there are a couple of DT calls that I am thinking of entering, Right now it is early early Sunday morning, I am drinking coffee, and have a load of laundry in already. Lots to do today!
One of my goals this year was to finish a queen size quilt for our bed - I had pieced most of the quilt in the summer of 2004 just before we were hit with 2 hurricanes in September. I packed it away. I got it out in February of this year, finished the piecing, and began quilting - I finished it in late March, washed it, and now it is on our bed. Another goal accomplished!
For some relaxation and meditation, I am on and off knitting this free range Tuscan Olive wrap from a pattern by Jane Thornley. She writes out a general pattern but then in true free range style, you do a bit of this and a bit of that,  and don't really stress over it. It's hard to tell the true colors in this photo but they are soft olives, deep greens, and golds and rusts. I am 2/3rds finished with the wrap.
My next knitting project will be a scarf or shawl that looks like a huge leaf - frond, also a Jane Thornley pattern. I am collecting variations of greens and yellows with which to do it.
This is my sewing corner in my studio. Right now there is no sewing happening but I have some fabrics to make a couple of summer tops and a sundress. Notice my girl scout badge sash and my inspiration board.
And finally, a layout - with all the things I have to do, I just decided to do something I wanted to do. I had this scrap of watercolor paper on my table, I painted it with some of the watercolor mixtures on my palette, softly stamped on it for texture, and the colors made me think of terra cotta and of southern Europe so I remembered some old photos of when Brian went to Europe when he was in high school and found this one when he was in Italy. Hambly rub ons and a transparency, Pink Paislee alphas (I think I like their funkiness better than the uniformity of Thickers). I did this whole layout in less than an hour which is incredible for me - I am a very slow scrapper - I start thinking about a layout, play with some photos, papers and elements, let it sit, then put it together, and then if it doesn't feel quite right, it usually it sits for a couple of days or even a week until suddenly the right thing occurs to me, and I finally glue it all together, etc. Occasionally Hana moves elements around if it sits out too long. LOL! Sometimes I even dream the solution to a technical or embellishment problem.
I thought I would mention a couple of books that I just finished reading - Dreamwatcher by Elizabeth Knox - loved it and I am now reading the sequel Dreamquake. Sort of fantasy/steam punk about an alternative place (possibly New Zealand or Australia) in 1902 where people share dreams - very cool idea - and how evil people try to use the shared dreams for their own political ends.  I also read a very cool medieval Noir mystery called Veil of Lies by Jeri Westerson - I will get the sequel at the library this next week - it is Serpent in the Thorns. The mysteries are sort of a Sam Spade type investigator in 1384 London - the good looking dame, murders, bad guys, and money. Very cool and clever! I just got Help by Katherine Stockett and the new one by Robert Crais from the bookstore so I have to read them quickly so I can take them back - we are allowed to borrow books to read from the store. Have you read any good books lately? I always like suggestions and finding new authors to read.
This was going to be a short post but I have been chattering on. I need to check on my laundry and get going for the day. Thanks for reading and have a super week. I really appreciate your stopping by to read my ramblings, and your comments always make my day!


Anonymous said...

Love your photo's, it's like being in your house for a moment! Your layout is awesome, I hardly work that way myself. I'm like you, thinking layouts over, taking time etc.... I hope your day will bring whatever you want from it, beginning with JOY!

McMGrad89 said...

Beautiful quilt, Chris. Makes me want to break out my sewing machine. I also love the colors in your Tuscan scarf. Hope the rest of your day is wonderful.


Passing Fancies said...

Thanks so much for sharing your morning ramblings. I will have to look into the Veil of Lies. It sounds like my kind of book. The quilt is beautiful and the yarn for the shawl should make a beautiful leaf.

deana said...

That quilt is beautiful... yay for finishing it & accomplishing that goal! Loving the new LO, too! That's so funny that Hana moves your things around! Your sewing area is beautiful! Sadly, I couldn't tell you where my Girl Scout sash is. Probably gone forever!

Have a great week! :-)

Georgia Visacri said...

oooooooh,I loooove that banner, Chris, so pretty! Great photos, here we're thanking God that Autumn has come finally and the weather is getting colder, finally!!!
Love visitng your blog!!

Hanneke said...

Love that quilt, it's gorgeous!!! love to see what you are working on, can't wait to see those scrafs!!!
Love the LO as well!!!

I am a book addict as well, just finshed Nicci Gerard, The winter house (I believe that is the English title) it's a great book if you love English/Irish country novels wich I do!! I also love Meave Binchy she wrote The house on Tara road one of my fave books!!!
i am going to check your books!!!

have a great week!!

Bekka said...

You weren't kidding about your energy level, were you? :) I can't wait to see how all these projects turn out. That quilt and scrapbook page are amazing, btw! Yay Spring!

Julie Tucker-Wolek said...

wowwwwwwwwwww!! u have been busy!! i loveeeeeeeeeeeeeeee the inspo board and that quilt....wowwwwwwwwww..I love it!!! Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhh and I keep forgetting....I met a woman at CHA that had the most beautiful knitted scarf...she sent me the instructions...and I need to get a copy off to U and bekka! :):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):)

Jamie Dougherty (jaylynn) said...

Oh My I hope some of your energy rubs off on me lOL!! The quilt is GORGEOUS!!! I LOVE quilts my grandmother made them..... And the books sounds interesting I'll have to look it up. I hope you have a good Monday <3


Tammy said...

Oh my goodness....i just found your blog. What a beautiful job you did on this quilt....Love it!
I made my boys one out of all the quilts I made them when they were younger. It is a timely process that is for sure. I love your yarn will make a beautiful scarf with those pretties. I can't wait to see what else you have on your crafts.

Cassie said...

Your quilt is amazing!!!!
Can't wait to see your scarf...sounds intriguing!!