Monday, November 29, 2010

Hooking Clutches and Pottery Lust

Hope your Thanksgiving holiday was fabulous!  We did have a wonderful time, and am missing family members who had to hit the highways yesterday to return home.  I didn't create much (except meals) over the past few days, so thought I'd share with you my newest Christmas clutch I finished a week or so ago.
Also, you might notice that the clutch is sitting on the doll-sized granny square quilt that I finally crocheted together.

Now, I really must take a moment to show you my current pottery obsession, work by Julie Whitemore.
I purchased this darling fox cup and tiny cottage bowl from her a few weeks ago.  I just adore her work!  I need more pottery like a hole in the head, but artist made pottery is one of my most favorite things, and Julie's is absolutely charming!  It's almost impossible to nab a piece on her Etsy store without a prior order.  I ordered the foxy cup, and was lucky enough to catch the little bowl before some other lucky fan popped in ahead of me.  Here's another closeup of the tiny bowl....
 Isn't it just the sweetest little thing?  Check out her blog, and you'll be transported into a Beatrix Potter wonderland of pottery.

I'm currently working on a pastel of the most beautiful owl.  I haven't touched it for over a week... so I really must get back at it, and today is mostly reserved for drawing and errands, plus work at the library children's store this afternoon into evening.  Thought a bit (but only a bit) about getting out some Christmas... but enjoying my home picked up and uncluttered from Thanksgiving.  Also, haven't been out blog visiting in awhile, but will drop by soon.  Hope your week is wonderfully productive and stress free....

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Pattern and Color.... Can't Get Enough!

I've been hooking, crocheting, knitting, and a little bit of this and that for the past few days.  I'm in one of my nesting/inspirational modes.  That's when I look around the house with a critical eye to see what needs some changing, rearranging, and just plain "put it out of sight now!"

I'm completely inspired by Scandinavian art and in particular, the world of Gudrun Sjoden's line of fabrics, clothes, and homey stuff.  I took a peek around and decided to add a little folky arty color and pattern wherever I could.  After a trip to the fabric store I came home with these two vibrant and bold prints......
I'm using these to line a couple of shelves in the dining room wood and glass door hutch.  I'm taking out the fussy china and glass stuff that I rarely use, and adding pretty pottery and my Mom's fabulous Ukrainian eggs. Mom was quite well known for her gorgeous eggs here, and also her home in the Kansas City area.  Her use of color and design was vibrant and intricate... she sold and displayed in art shows for years.  I did a post of some of her eggs a couple of years ago, and will again.  The patterns and colors of fabric and folk art eggs breathed new life into the old dark hutch.  My next project is to finish crocheting granny squares and get those turned into a throw for the couch.  The colors are dreamy!  Photo when finished. 

I've been hooking my baby clutches, and finished this one.....

This mini clutch has a special home to go to at Christmas.

I'm really having fun with this one still in progress....

This little birdie also has a Christmas home waiting for it.  I'll post again when it's finished.

Well, need to get things gathered up and head out to drawing class.  I'm working on a pencil portrait of our little Iris (cat, not child, thank goodness).  I'm really challenged by this one... more difficult than old Albert.  More on that later.  Hope you're feeling inspired as well and living your bliss!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Christmas Clutches and Forcing an Indoor Garden

I've been trying to hook some for Christmas.  If you hook, you may find the dilemma of wanting to hook something for everyone, but not the time to get it all done.  Of course.... you may be someone who plans ahead, gets things done and put away, possibly even wrapped.  Oh, I so do envy your diligence!  The above is one of, maybe..... five, little hooked clutches I'm hoping to gift to friends.  This is the front and back of my first completed clutch, and another is just about done with construction.  I hooked this one with someone special in mind.... hence the colors, coffee cup, and bluebirds of happiness.  I really like making something small like this.  Done fairly quick (if I stay with it, and don't get lured by my drawing pad) and not a huge hooking commitment involved.

Today I spent the morning outside emptying flower pots, washing them out, and readying things to be put to bed for the season.  I volunteer at our Library Center gift chop, Between Friends, and I found this great book there about a month ago.  I thought, "How perfect to help uplift myself from the end of the gardening season blues!"
forcing, etc by Katherine Whiteside..... an autographed copy for only $4.00!  We sell gently used books in the gift shop, so I am constantly bringing books home.  This one was a real find for me.  The photos by Richard Felber are fabulous!  It's a "how to" book on forcing just about anything indoors.  At the moment I'm trying to force acorns.  I have them in a little bowl in my kitchen window with some rocks and water.  The book says it takes about a month.  I'm almost at three weeks and nothing yet.  Has anyone tried this with success?  In the book, these really cute little stems have popped up and look darling in the dish with rocks and shells.  Today I separated out my amaryllis bulbs, repotted, and stored in the garage for the next couple of months.  Katherine says that they're really best to bring in after Christmas.... first of January.  So, that's the plan.  Anyway, this book is great to just look at, and there's all kinds of things she's forced to bloom besides the standard paperwhites and hyacinths.  I particularly like the forced stems and branches.  It's a great way to bring some of your garden indoors for the winter.

Hope things are going well in your world, and all survived Halloween in one piece.  Off now to finished my second little Christmas Clutch.