Monday, May 9, 2016

A Shot Of Gudrun

I didn't think anything could get me excited to rug hook again, until I bought this pretty top from the Gudrun Sjoden catalog.  I'm a big fan of her "everything".  Each new season I think "no more Gudrun" and then she comes out with a new line of artful clothes made from organic cotton in places to create a sense of economic sustainability, and I'm a goner.  Casual dressing fits my lifestyle.... mostly jeans...but I do like to add art and color.  Here's a shot of my newly hooked bag and my Gudrun blouse (you can only see a bit of that... but sleeveless and wonderful!).

I made another one of these little pouches that I call my "Midnight Garden" bags for the library gift shop.  It's displayed with one of my shawls.  A gorgeous teal in a silk/cotton blend.

Here's a couple of closer shots of the above bag.

It's funny how one simple thing can jump start a creative process (for me anyway).  With the blouse, I also ordered Gudrun's new book.  Oh my gosh!  It's big, colorful, and full of inspiration.  Plus it tells the story of her 40 years in business.

Aside from all this hooking and weaving, I'm gardening up a storm.  I think I'm going to add one more hellebore to my front garden, and  call it a wrap.


Friday, April 29, 2016

Time to Create & Time to Rest

This is what it looks like today from the upstairs bedroom window.

A bit out of focus, and shooting through the window and screen, but I never grow tired of this view.  Lush with rain and spring.  Peonies are just beginning to open, so lots of sweet smelling bouquets.  The black locust is blooming now (white flowers of front view) and just smell heavenly.  Keeping the windows open!!

I'm resting this week, as the past month has been busy, and I've worked hard.  Ended well with my husbands show, my sale, and good friends visiting.

I was part of a sweet little spring bizarre on Sunday at Tea Bar and Bites Cafe.  Lots of fun creative types, and lovely friends.  Great way to spend a pretty Sunday.  I sold shawls, and let go of some "gently used " hooked bags and pillows.  Had a few second thoughts on selling things I'd worked hard on, but such fun to move on to friends!

Here's the lovely Valerie!  She snagged up a bag before I was barely unpacked, and by the end of the show was the proud owner of a new shawl.  I was the lucky one, as I was able to acquire two of her gorgeous crocheted bracelets.  I haven't photographed those, but will share next time.

I was able to get in some knitting during the sale, and finished my "shortie" socks.  This is a soft, but vibrant, merino super wash I picked up at the fiber fest in Texas.  It's called "Vintage" and I just love the colors!

Since these are done, I can get back to my never ending log cabin scrappy throw.  Three more blocks to outline in the joining color, stitch together, done!

I feel creatively drained right now, so lots of gardening, reading, and knitting.  Although..... feeling the pull of rug hooking again.  I may draw something up before the day is over.  Another bag maybe????


Friday, April 15, 2016

Spring Magic

It feels really magical around our house this time of year.  Everything is big, wild, and green!

I feel like that sense of magic carries over into my life and creativity.

I'm just loving building papermache teacups!  I will be part of a spring sale in a couple of weeks, and I've decided to add several of these.  Using up recycled paper to make these little cuties is great fun!

I like to make them look a bit grungy and old, then tie natty looking ribbon on the handles.

Last weekend I went to Texas and met up with my friend Mary.  We attended the Dallas Fiber Fest and had a great time lusting over all the hand dyed yarns!  I thought I'd never make another pair of socks, but couldn't resist this pretty yarn.  It has a real vintage feel.  Making more of a shorty sock for spring.  Much quicker knit!  All the colors in this picture inspire me!

Another magical piece of my picture is my little cabin dollhouse created by Gooseberry Creek Designs.  I've added a bit of spring to the porch.  The rug is a little punch needle brooch I made several years ago, and the sheep is a winter Saturday project my friend Tammy and I cooked up.

And the downstairs is looking cosy too.

Still painting away in my Jane LaFazzio watercolor and mixed media journaling class.  This past week we were to choose a subject, and draw it using different methods.... creating a journal page.  I chose to draw some of my jewelry.

Hope you're feeling a sense of magic this spring.......


Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Making Stuff

Very busy time right now.  All fun and creative!  I've been sidetracked by a new little lovely, paper mache tea cups.  On Easter while others were painting eggs, I had my hands in flour and water making paste.  These are my first two cuties.

I used an Ann Wood pattern that you can find here.  I have three more put together just waiting for paper mache and paint.  I'm kind of obsessed with these.

Because of being side tracked by tea cups, I haven't done a whole lot in my sketchbook this week.  Below is an exercise I did using my Tombow pen.  tricky....

I've finished up several shawls over the past month or so.  Two are at our library gift shop, Between Friends, and these two I'm holding onto for a sale later in the month.

I'm currently using a gorgeous Noro solo yarn that's a cotton/silk blend.  Lightweight and perfect for spring and summer!


Thursday, March 24, 2016

Painting My Spring

Well..... It's that time.  Gardening and spring cleaning.  Actually, I'm painting instead.  Although, I spent 3 hours in the garden on 3 different days over the past week and am paying for it.  Allergies for the first time ever!  So surprising and aggravating!  Spring cleaning is some sort of myth from the 50's, but I do love to throw open all the windows!  But I digress from the purpose of my post, painting......  I'm continuing with Jane Lafazzio's art class, and loving it.  This six weeks we're continuing to journal with our sketchbook and watercolors, only adding in some mixed media.  So far we have been planning pages with items from nature, then expanding with the designs.  I've done three pages this week.

I've been plucking things from around the yard for inspiration.

Also really enjoying Danny Gregory's book, Everyday Matters.

I took it to heart, and while we were on a little trip to Crystal Bridges I did a quick sketch of my jewelry for the day,  and one of a section of this fabulous art museum, built as giant pods resting on the water.

Everyday does matter!

And here's my guy outside 21C on his very special birthday!

I also enrolled in Jane's Cereal Box Journaling class.  I won't go into all that, other than it's creating journals with a watercolor surface from boxes, such as cereal, crackers, etc.  I made one to use when I'm out art journaling with friends.

These are all pages done while out and sketching.  The heart with the flip pages was done, again at Crystal Bridges, just the other night.  Was so lucky to attend a talk with artist, Faith Ringgold.  Her quilt, created for Maya Angelou, currently resides at the museum.  Such a treat!


Saturday, February 20, 2016

Snowdrop Love

I'm a bit of a Galanthophile....  In other words I'm a lover of snowdrops.

It's that very short, but very sweet time of year, and my snowdrops are in bloom!

I only have five clumps of these lovelies, but have been transplanting from this mother plant and hope to have many more.  This little plant has been in this spot, most likely, somewhere between 30-50 years.  I'm just guessing by the age of our house.  Our house is actually 87 years old, but was moved through a creek bed about 50 years ago to it's current home on our little shady hill. We've been  here only 13 of it's many years.

I've used snowdrops in my hooking.........

I made this little pillow last winter.  I especially had fun with color on this project.

I painted this little snowdrop with a vase of flowers in my sketchbook.

This was a fun session last summer out sketching at B2 coffee bar with my art girls Tammy and Mary.  Nice memory.

My most recent snowdrop .....

This was a watercolor sketchbook assignment on flowers from Jane LaFazios class I'm currently taking.

Snowdrops are so tiny and delicate.  I also just love the green and white.  And I admire the way they can poke up their little heads during the worst cold and snowy weather, but still survive.  There's lots of varieties of these beauties, and some collectors pay literally thousands of dollars for just a bulb or 2.  Sort of like the tulip mania hundreds of years ago in the Netherlands.  I'm going to keep transplanting these darlings, and hopefully someday, be able to enjoy my own little snowdrop field right outside my kitchen window!


Friday, February 5, 2016

Keeping Up The Color

The first week of February is when I pick up something to force bloom inside.  I've still got winter in my bones, but can't help myself from adding just a wee bit of spring in my home.

I like to watch the blooms slowly appear.  These tulip buds were completely unopened when I purchased them up at the grocery on Tuesday, but becoming more gorgeous everyday.

I also cut a few limbs of forsythia..... those are my favorites to watch!  The tiny yellow flowers are so sweet, but it will be at least a week before they start to show.

February also means pinks and reds.  I ordered this beautiful Noro Silk Garden Solo yarn and made these two shawls for the library gift shop.

I love them curled up next to my hooked snowdrop pillow.  I have clumps of snowdrops just starting to sprout outside.  Sooo looking forward to their little white heads!

I've been painting my little green flea market metal teapot for Jane LaFazio's class.  This first is continuous ink line to paper.  No pencil or picking up the pen until done.

Then I played around with my first effort that I really didn't like.  Instead of trashing it, I added some design and a bit of washi tape for interest.  Sort of dressed the poor thing up a bit.

I'm my best when surrounded by color and art.  Looking forward to Jane's next class that combines sketch booking and water color in a mixed medium format.  Practicing flowers right now.....  more later.

Happy Weekend!

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Making Things And Finding A Sparkle

Gorgeous day in the Ozarks!  Woke up to four deer in the yard and a groundhog on the brush pile.  Signs of a great day.

I got a bit ambitious this morning and finished my new Valentine's scarlet flirty ribbon shawl.  It's another fabulous Noro color in the cozy but lightweight silk/mohair blend.  Love this color!

I'm trying to decide whether to keep this beauty or take it to our wonderful library gift shop to sell.  Our gift shop, Between Friends, is just the best.  Money made from purchases go back to the library, plus there's no tax.  Win Win!

Having a blast in Jane LaFazios sketchbook and watercolor class.  I worked a bit with plants last week.

I picked some raggedy winter rose hips and rosemary.  Lots of improvement could be made, but I'll leave it alone for now.

Had a lovely evening of food, wine, and friends with my art group last week.  We took over the back room of Tea Bar and Bites and did some sketching and watercolor.

I did this little teapot.  Kind of sweet.

A good friend recently said "everyone's life needs a sparkle".  Well.... My sparkle came in an acquisition I made several months ago of a handmade primitive cabin (as in doll house).

My reason for wanting a doll house is rather long, and goes way back to childhood memories.  I'd lately seen several fabulous antique ones on Ebay, Etsy, and Instagram......but hugely expensive!  Then I found this one (well one like it but a different color) on Etsy made by the awesome company Gooseberry Creek Designs.  It's completely hand built, hand carved, with custom paint job and wonderfully distressed.  I just adore it!

Gooseberry also makes furniture.  Yesterday I received some new pieces.

I made a couple of little wool sheep to add some livestock.  I also added two little punch needle rugs that add just the perfect primitive touch.

The folks at Gooseberry (which I believe is just Candy and her husband) custom make all of it, and sign and date everything.  I'm getting ready to make my own little hand painted dishes out of clay.  It is my sparkle!

I'll end with this little gift sent to me by my friend Mary.  If you're a knitter or crocheter, I think you'll find this article very interesting!

Health Benefits Of Knitting

Have a lovely weekend.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Back Again

Hello!  It's been awhile, and to be honest, I thought I was done with blogging.  It seemed a bit like homework, and I've became enamored with Instagram that's so quick and easy.  Well..... it is quick and easy, and I see some of you out there and many others whose work I enjoy and find inspiring.  But, you just don't get the personal touch as you do with your blogger buddies.  Instagram is kind of Blogger's lazy sibling.  Lot's of pretty pictures, but no substance.  I still have been visiting blogs, and suddenly missed it all.  I missed the creative aspect of the writing, commenting, and layout that you just don't get with Instagram.  So..... enough said.  I'm hoping to become a bit more regular with my blogging, and a better visitor and commentor.  So Happy New Year! (ps..... still instagraming at dulcy stewart).

I'm very excited to have recently started an on-line watercolor journaling class with Jane LaFazio.  I'm working in my sketchbook, and trying to work fast without too much detail.  Here's a couple of my first tries.

This was ok, but struggled with the apple.  My past work with pastels made me want to blend and smoosh around.  It all ended a bit muddy.  So I played a bit more with the apple.

A bit faster, less smooshing.

My current goal (at least while taking this class) is to paint a bit everyday.  I really like Jane's free and fun style.  Plus her teaching on-line is very thorough, and even though the class seems large, she comments back on everyone's work.  Also, all of us comment to each other, so it's a nice little art community!

I've been using up shawl scrap yarn on a new knitting project.  Doing a log cabin pattern, and loving the blocks.  I'm hoping to have enough yarn to get nine blocks done.  Currently at seven.

They're just so gorgeous and fun to work with!  Great Noro Silk Garden yarn.

Speaking of shawls, this is my newest...... made for a friend who is gifting it.  We collaborated a bit on yarn and ribbon.  Fun way to work!

I don't have anything on the rug hooking frame at the moment.  I had a rug show for the month of December, and in preparation I put a few on painted canvas.  I've done this before, and really like the effect.  Here's one that I especially like.

Makes hanging easy if it's not a floor piece, and I like the addition of color.

So.... I think that's a bit of a catch up for now.  Hope all is well with you, and cozy and warm.
Stay safe!