Embroidery



Enjoying warmth of little loved ones snuggling close while we watch the drama unfold out on the Kansas prairie. Right now, I'm just finishing up the second disk of Disneys' Little House on the Prairie, with the most interested and empathetic bunch of children I know. So entirely captivated by the struggles and challenges of the early settlers life on the frontier, there was (almost) no couch cushion squabbling. And let me tell you, that is a rare thing indeed. This wonder love affair and curiosity about early settlers was sparked last summer when we followed a group of three families out on the Montana plains in the PBS series Frontier House.
Stepping back in time to a simpler life, inspired me to finish up this little embroidery project I've been working on. And thrust forward on a burst of enthusiasm, that is notoriously linked to completing smaller tasks, I am tentatively investigating the possibility of designing that sweater I spoke about earlier. With the help of  one of the great masters and advocates of 'winging it", none other than the Elizabeth Zimmerman, oh how I love her bravery. So inspiring!
One of my favorite finds while thrifting or yard saleing, are the vintage and antique books.
Getting the Most Out of Life -an Anthology from Readers Digest, is one of the more beautiful of the books that I own. I keep it on the shelf next to my sewing machine along with a picture of my great grandmother and a little painting of a mushroom and ladybug done by my grandma, to inspire and motivate me in all my creative endeavors.
For today I'll share an excerpt I read when I first held this treasure and cracked open the yellowed pages to peer inside.

Wishing you a Wonder Filled Week, Enjoy your Monday!



Three Days to See
by Helen Keller

           "...I have often thought it would be a blessing if each human being were stricken blind and deaf for a few days at some time during his early adult life. Darkness would make him more appreciative of sight; silence would teach him the joys of sound.Now and then I have tested my seeing friends to discover what they see. Recently I was visited by a very good friend who had just returned from a long walk in the woods, and I asked her what she had observed. "Nothing in particular," she replied.
How was it possible, I asked myself, to walk for an hour through the woods and see nothing worthy of note? I who cannot see find hundreds of things to interest me through mere touch. I feel the delicate symmetry of a leaf. I pass my hands lovingly about the smooth skin of a silver birch, or the rough, shaggy bark of a pine. In spring I touch the branches of trees hopefully in search of a bud, the first sign of awakening Nature after her winter's sleep. I feel the delightful, velvety texture of a flower, and discover its remarkable convolutions; and something of the miracle of Nature is revealed to me. Occasionally, if I am very fortunate, I place my hand gently on a small tree and feel the happy quiver of a bird in full song. I am delighted to have the cool waters of a brook rush through my open fingers. To me a lush carpet of pine needles or spongy grass is more welcome than the most luxurious Persian rug. To me the pageant of seasons is a thrilling and unending drama, the action of which streams through my finger tips.
At times my heart cries out with longing to see all these things. If I can get so much pleasure from mere touch, how much more beauty must be revealed by sight. And I have imagined what I should most like to see if I were given the use of my eyes, say, for just three days.  "  

this moment

{this moment} inspired by soulemama
A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.

knitting handspun

Freshly cast on the needles, my very favorite handspun multicolored fiber. I just love these colors!
I actually started out spinning this on my maple and redwood drop spindle (made by my love)  and finished up on my spinning wheel (also made by him :) he's really the greatest.
 This spinning wheel of mine you know I love it so much I'm actually designing my next tattoo to include it (but that is an entirely different post.)
I decided that instead of layering more sweaters to fend off the chill, what I could really use was a cowl. Like most all of my projects, ahem, I thought I would just wing it. I measured about where I thought the loop should end so that I could wrap it twice, grabbed some circular needles, knitted up a gauge swatch, did some quick math, and I'm on my way. All of  this was at about 9:30 last night, yeah, well when inspiration hits...whadda ya gonna do?
 
 
 

 
 
 
 (crate -o- handspun awaiting enough bravery to "wing" a sweater)
soon
 
 
 currently on the wheel- alpaca fiber from mother's day. I've already spun the white that I will be plying with this chocolate. I love a good two tone yarn. I'm planning on knitting this into a little capelet. Winter knitting is really the best.
 

Works in progress

Okay folks here goes. Ever get that feeling at the end of the day, like "Hey, I didn't do anything awesome today, or even anything remotely close to something creatively expressive?
Yeah, well I had one of those...um...years.
So, even though I can browse through all of my photos of projects, creations, and moments of last year. I can also at the same time go ...meh...
And I realized why.

 While  everything I made I loved, (whether it turned out the way I had envisioned it or not) and while some projects were extremely challenging (remember Halloween?)
I have yet to create the things that have been swirling around in my imagination for the last 13 or so years, in the background of my life.
So.
This year I'm bringing that background, behind the scenes soundtrack, forward.

Starting with this little gal Clover.












 
  
Designing and creating my own fabric doll has been a dream of mine for a few years.
When my girls were younger I made each of them their own doll, using patterns from other designers.
The dolls are cute but lack a style that would rival that plastic blonde that seems to still dominate the doll scene. So here is my first prototype, I decided to instead of making a bunch of heads and parts, to just make up a whole doll, one at a time until I have the exact pattern and look that I am envisioning.
This way the girls will have dolls to play with now, and I will have a visual reminder of the progression of my work. 
 I'm off now to make this girl some clothes, I'm thinking something lacey and fun!
 
Happy Monday!
 


A happy new year

Welcoming in 2013 with a great burst of sunshine this morning. I'm going to take it as a sign of good things to come in this new year.
Yarno and I enjoyed soaking up the sun and the surprising bright blue clear skies as well.

After so many cloudy, grey, rain soaked days I am declaring this walkin' weather!
Let's bundle up head outdoors and we'll just ignore the frost :) 
I wish you a wonderful magical new year!

This moment

{this moment} inspired by soulemama


A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.
 

Walking and riding

Enjoying a brisk walk outside in between the rain storms,  my thoughts turn to the contrast of our lives these days and the delicate balance of life in this season.
 





 (photo by Liora)
 
The sky stays grey on our walks around the neighborhood now, and the cold wind on our cheeks and in our lungs is exhilarating and refreshing. Returning home, outerwear is quickly ditched by the door, with the bustle of everyone rushing for a spot by the fire, I move through the kitchen with dinner preparations and holiday music playing in the background. The warmth of returning home is just as sweet and refreshing.
Yes, this is a most wonderful time of the year.

This moment

this moment} inspired by soulemama

A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.