At this point I bet you are saying why is she showing us all of these corks and what in the world is that wooden thing in the top photo........................well, we are working on a cork backsplash for our kitchen. Dan created the little wooden jig to hold the corks as he saws them in half (pretty nifty!!) - it's a bit slow going but he is making progress ----------and lest you think we drink a lot (LOL), we have been saving corks for years and years just waiting for the proper project. I will keep you updated.
and another peek into the sketchbook - what's for dinner?
My DH goes to work on Sunday mornings at 5:20 am and I usually just stay in bed until later but this past Sunday I woke up and puttered around in the dark for a while. I like the glow of lamp light rather than overhead spots or fluorescent lights, so I have a lamp on my kitchen counter - I found it in a thrift store and it looks so old fashioned and almost matches some of my thrifted dishes. The yellow-gold glow is so warming and cozy. I use this old tray over my stove - it is easy to clean if anything splatters and one of my favorite things is the little tea timer - it keeps track of three different times so whatever tea you are brewing is perfect.
I then put together an Apple crostada (Barefoot Contessa recipe) - so perfectly yummy for fall
and put some pork country ribs and sauerkraut in the crockpot - good eating once the football games are done.
How was your weekend? I always treasure those quiet early morning moments alone - some coffee or tea and some dreaming and planning..........................
I spent most of this past summer making an applique quilt for a dear friend. I admit I was positively obsessed with working on it and finished it in four months (queen size hand appliqued and hand quilted). She loves tropical flowers and has one of my orchid paintings
so I went with that idea - I found some great applique patterns in the book Color-Blend Applique by Jane Townswick. I enlarged the patterns and tweaked them - some a little and some a lot. I hand appliqued the fabrics and used my technique for hand dyeing ribbon to add dimension to the orchid block. Her room is done is grays so I was able to find several shades that worked well together. I had to be very careful piecing both the front and back as I began to run very low on the grays, pink, and lavender, and knew I could not find more locally. I hand quilted the applique blocks enhancing the design and then used straight lines with 90 degree angles to define the blocks and to coordinate the borders.
I was very pleased with this quilt and am enthused to go back and finish a Baltimore Album quilt that I started 15-20 years ago. When I lived in Jacksonville, I purchased a couple of Elly Sienkiwicz's books and also purchased enough backing fabric to make a quilt. I have made about 12 blocks over the years (they still need finishing touches) and have plans for more SO I think 2014 will be the year to finish it - I should have almost all the supplies: backing, reds, greens, hand dyed solids so it's just down to finalizing the final block patterns and getting going - stay tuned for further updates!
"Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall"
- F. Scott Fitzgerald
It's not exactly crisp here in south Florida but it has definitely cooled off and the light has changed dramatically. I have a few little fall corners in my house.
I love The Art of Abundance - whenever I feel a bit frustrated or my skills or funds don't match up with my expectations, I randomly open the book and find something that reminds me of all the abundance in my life. I haven't blogged much this summer (to be honest, I haven't blogged at all) but it's been a strange year with lots of unexpected expenses and issues. Thankfully things seem to be quieting down now. I have been quilting a lot (I made an applique quilt this summer and will blog about it soon) and there's a new quilt right now being quilted on my ironing board (I discovered that quilting on the ironing board is a really good thing!) and a wall sized crazy quilt is taking shape
so things are definitely happening around here.
And of course, I hope you noticed Mr. Squirrel up there - we had a new squirrel family move into one of the oaks in our backyard - I guess they decided the tree was now tall enough that they would be safe from the neighborhood cats. I have been painting lots of animals and will share some of my techniques in a future post.
I hope you have had a good summer and I look forward to welcoming you back into my studio, my home, and my life.
A watercolor painting of waterlilies - from a photo that I took at McKee Gardens in Vero Beach, Fl and cropped. Spring to me is bright sunny yellows and brilliant greens - hope and anticipation.
I have been a very bad blogger this year - my goal for this year was to draw and to paint at least 3 hours every day and hopefully more - to show up at the easel every day - so with everything else that has to be done, that doesn't leave a lot of time for blogging - but I will try to do a bit better.
Next week I will be attending a watercolor class by http://www.alvarocastagnet.net/, one of my favorite painters. As he is an international painter, I never thought I would have the chance to attend one of his classes but he is doing a Florida swing this year and I was lucky enough to snap a spot.
I will be taking lots of notes and photos and will report back when I return home.
Last year at this time I was taking a watercolor class in which we painted scenes from Venice (the instructor and some of the other students provided reference photos). I was not very happy with the small vignettes that I painted in the class and have wanted to have another go at them so below you can see the before and after
You can see how much looser I am today than last year and my paint is juicier - it's all in the first impression and don't worry about the details. I will have a painting (not this little study) at Art by the Sea at the Vero Beach Museum of Art this coming weekend. I will show you the painting later this week - just framed it today
Hope your day is filled with joy and thanks for stopping by (I am so busy right now painting, planning a new quilt, and working on my drawing skills that I keep forgetting to blog but I will try.......) Chris
I have been painting a lot lately - and I do mean a lot - getting some pieces ready to exhibit - but it's fun to play a bit at the same time
Sometimes you just have to express yourself - and I do that with
paint. This started as an exercise to cover a piece of paper with
paints left on my palette and morphed into an art journal/layout page.
The only bad part about putting so much paint on the page is that it
takes forever to dry and even then, it's a bit sticky.
I created the above project for the http://citycrafter.blogspot.com/2013/01/city-crafter-challenge-blog-week-141.html in which you had to use book pages. I adhered the dictionary pages with bees wax to a cover cut from an old book, then painted over them with more bees wax. Then I added a vintage bridge table marker and layered on lots of Prima leaves, velvet flowers, and lace; 7gypsies and Heidi Swapp tapes; real leaf; vintage lace; and a vintage flower ornament; and of course, the photo of my grandmother and two friends - with their hats and dresses, they came right out of Downton Abbey - don't you think?!
Hope you are enjoying the new season of Downton Abbey and have a great day! Chris