Thursday, June 19, 2008


We took the most incredible boat trip yesterday. We left Cutler Harbor in the fog aboard the Barbara Frost and headed out to sea 9 miles to Machias Seal Island. The island is being claimed by both the US and Canada, but the sweet little atlantic puffins, the razorbills, and the common murre's that call it home in the summer months don't care who owns it as long as they can stay long enough to raise their young. Which is usually from now till the middle of August. We've taken boat trips to see the puffins before, but this one was different in that we could actually get into a blind on the island and see them 2 feet away!!! I'm not a birder like my friend Loel is, but this was exciting!!! And as we talked about over a glass of wine at the end of the day, it's nice to have friends who have different passions and will draw you into their world. They've done their share of art galleries with me and mostly enjoyed it, but at the least endured it. As long time friends will.

This photo was taken on the main street in Lubec, where the sun rises first in the country. Well, maybe Eastport makes that claim, but this is a close second. The lupine are at their peak and just beautiful. One of my favorite wildflowers for sure.

This little guy settled right down to check us out!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

You'd think since I'm retired now I'd have lots of time to post all the new and interesting things I'm doing/learning. The truth is I'm learning to move, think and 'do' more slowly, not on screech anymore. There's no need to rush through everything. And it feels good. I have been doing some quilt related things which I'll post about tomorrow, but for now let me just say, LIFE IS GOOD!! The Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens fair in June with my best friend Gretchen who is equally as gray/white as I am:

Drinks by the shore in Camden Harbor. I could do this every evening and will when we move closer next year. Maybe. Drink, that is.
And yesterday, a books signing for the book we (Frayed Edges) have several projects in. It's a lovely book, full of wonderful ideas and photographs on new things to try. This is Sarah behind the table laden with many autographed books. Sarah is smiling extra big because that's her pomegranate piece featured on the cover! It was also an added bonus to hang around in a quilt shop for several hours surrounded by all that inspiration. It reminded me of my own beginning, in a small but fabulous quilt store called Quilt Array in Hallowell, Me. I was a mother with small children and I wanted to do something like get a job, but Deana, who owned the shop, couldn't afford to pay me so I volunteered and to reciprocate she passed on commissions and teaching gigs to me. Hours to be creative. Surrounded by fabric which at the time was $3.99 a yard.

So, it's all good. The summer, the garden, the projects. Trips, though we aren't wandering far from home. Gas you know. But we are taking a trip downeast this week to Machias Seal Island to see puffins up close. I'll take pictures.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

And it Continues...

One thing I noticed about Natasha's studio is that there was a little bit of everything there. Works in progress. Works for sale. Supplies to make more things: paints, dyes, yarns, toothbrushes, (toothbrushes??) groups of this and that. Groupings, that would be key.

Baskets of yarns.

Boxes of rocks.

I took a workshop with Natasha several years ago, maybe even 10 years, and I remember her journals. Places where she keeps pictures from magazines or books that have some sort of meaning or will be used as fodder for ideas. I immediately started my own and now have a good dozen on my shelf. It's fun to look back on them, but how much more fun would it be to have it in front of you for instant inspiration?

I came home with so many ideas for my own new studio. Someday.

Frayed Edges Goes on a Field Trip

'Tis the season, right? When I was in Boston last week, having a wonderful, extended retirement party, the school buses just kept rolling in with hundreds of kids , HUNDREDS, enjoying the spring day and not being in school. So, in keeping with this particular rite of spring, Hannah arranged for us to go visit the studio of artist Natasha Kempers-Cullen.

We drove up to this. The door to her studio. And I knew we were in for a treat. Even before I saw these:

...or these incredible, irresistible, (at least for an artist and lover of color) "garden girls":

...and a closeup:

She uses wood frames that she's hand painted and from them hangs all sorts of found (saved) items. I'm pretty sure she hasn't thrown anything away since 1972. Whimsical garden art. She has empty spools wrapped with metallic foil, bells, beads, slinkees and golf tees of all colors for hair, too, too many things to mention. Needless to say, I was jazzed before I even got through the beautiful yellow door. Please check out her website for an address and if you're in Maine this summer on vacation, this is a MUST STOP studio.

Here is a little taste of the inside for you. This is just one little corner of her studio with Kate in the middle.

She has books and bead jewelry and art from friends everywhere! So much to see. More tomorrow.