Monday, April 30, 2007

First Bouquet of Spring

...nothing more to say.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

G Street Fabrics

Yes, for all my quilting friends who understand the quickening of the heartbeat as you get close to a fabric store, you'll certainly understand how I felt as I approached, for the first time, G Street Fabrics. I thought for sure I'd come out with bags and bags, but as it turned out I had two little pieces in hand. I think I'm liking and using my hand painted/ hand dyed fabrics these days, so commercial fabrics are taking a back seat. For now. Anyway, it was nice to finally get to see firsthand this huge landmark outside of Washington.

And since we had a whole day to play before our flight left at 9:30pm, we spent a big part of the day at the National Arboretum. The sun was shining and the azaleas were in bloom, and there was REAL GREEN GRASS that needed to be cut! Lovely place.



Dogwood. Oh my.

Monday, April 23, 2007

McManus/Flatvoll Wedding

Spring in Virginia surrounded by family and extended family can only mean one! And to make this one even more special the groom and his family are from Norway. There were a lot of people who came a very long way to participate in this momentous event. And several of them wore traditional dress:

These are called bunads. Your bunad shows what part of Norway you identify yourself with. There are hundreds of different bunads, each district, valley or town has its own, some in several varieties (colours). One of these ladies is in blue and the other is in green. There are many appropriate times to wear a bunad, one being a wedding. Considering it was a very hot day, these women not only handled it with grace, but danced up a storm at the reception.

Love it!

The bride and groom , though, wore traditional american wedding attire and were stunning.

And of course there were cute kids at this wedding. Keilly, Bridget, Seamus and Ella are all sporting their new tattoos:

Two hearts. What a great idea.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

This is the beginning of my project proposal for the new Lark book on embellishing with beads, coming out next year (?) My Frayed Edges group was asked to submit ideas and all of us had at least one of them accepted, some 2 or 3! I've started out with hand painted fabrics and in the end will use lots of beautiful fibers and beads to top it off. Actually, it's done and ready to be mailed off, just waiting to share at our next meeting before it goes.

On another note: series. I've never done one. I'm thinking about it. Everyone says you learn a lot from doing a series, but I flunked perserverence in grammar school. I didn't even know what it meant then. I'd like to think I have more staying power in these adult years. And I think I'll choose a subject that's not about blue. Stretch a little out of my comfort zone.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Little Persian Rug

Twenty years ago my mother was creating beautiful hooked rugs. At least that's what I always called them, but I think the correct term is punched needle rugs or sheared punch needle rugs. She sometimes used commercial patterns, but there are several we collaborated on, me being the designer and her making the actual rugs. Traditional quilt patterns lend themselves very well to hooked rugs. Nearly seventeen years ago she was diagnosed with alzheimers, and it will be 2 years this October that she's been gone. Physically. When she was losing some of her motor skills my dad and I were grasping at straws, trying to keep her 'present'. So I contacted one of her old instructors and we put together this Little Persian Rug kit. Needless to say, it was an exercise in frustration for her. She couldn't make her mind tell her hands where to go. The kit has been in the back of my closet for years, and now I'd like to give it to someone who will make this beautiful little rug and send me a picture of it completed. Yours for free. If you're not interested, maybe you know someone who would be. Size: 2'x4'; 100% wool. Please just leave a comment saying you're interested or you can email me.

Monday, April 16, 2007

I've just finished reading The Poet of Tolstoy Park by Sonny Brewer. It was given to me by my sister, Maureen, who is in a reading group and this was one of their choices. I was in a group once, but I didn't feel like I was carrying my weight: I'd rather listen to what others had to say, unless of course I felt very strongly about something. At first I felt awful about not contributing, but then I didn't care; after all, it's not about me. And in that frame of mind, this book echoes that feeling for me. It's the fictional story of Henry Stuart, (a real life character), who moves through life trying to "perfect the soul awarded him". A philosopher poet. There are lots of little tidbits to chew on at quiet times during the day, like "the more we think we know the more we think we matter. We become obsessed with our own cleverness...and with a constant desire to prove that we matter." If someone else read this book, I'm sure there'd be a different part that spoke to them. It was hard to hold in mind the fact that this was a work of fiction, and I finished it shaking my head in awe that Sonny Brewer (or anyone) could write something so real? Heavy? Poignant? Deep? I guess it's no different than creating a piece of art and people saying how did you do that?!
Speaking of art, that's my direction for today. That and finding a pair of red shoes to go with a new red skirt for a wedding this weekend. The art part will be easier, believe me.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Wildlife Everywhere

Home from our mini vacation in Florida with lots of new birds to add to my lifelist:

Little Blue Heron
what a gorgeous beak.

Sand Hill Cranes
never even looked both ways before crossing the street and walked right in front of us. Guess this is their neighborhood.

and the roseate spoonbill, Great White Egrets, little ones too.
And then there were some other characters along the Myacca River:

It was a great trip.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Leaving it all behind

Tomorrow we leave this:

taken moments ago. I'd say that's a good 12 inches on that granite block that was naked this time yesterday morning. No chance of seeing the sun today. But TOMORROW!!! We trade it all in for this:

Walking the beach in Florida for a long weekend. Ahhh, warm sand, warm water, perfect timing.

And just so you know I've been staying on task, here's a picture of fibers I'm using in my top secret project.

Not so secret, really. Just an excuse to NOT say this is as far as I've gotten!