Friday, May 31, 2013

stars rushing in

At some point soon, there will be stars on (or is it "in") the firmament.

I am really going to have to restrain myself here.

And suddenly I have a craving for further pieces of black and white!

Dye day tomorrow...

happy friday!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

morning gloom

The racket of power equipment started with coffee this morning. The electric company has been prowling the neighborhood pruning and lopping trees that overhand or otherwise threaten the power lines which are still archaically strung from poles in this old neighborhood.

That tree on our next door neighbors front lawn has been leaning pretty much like that for a long time. When it does fall it's going to sweep down poles, wires, transformers and all.  Still, I'm happy they did not cut it down but merely manicured the front side..ridiculous if you know any geometry at all.

I went back to minding my own business only to run into a little resistance at the work table. Oh well, the light wasn't yet really optimal for hand stitching.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013


Having a day off in the middle of the week is such a treat I don't mind giving up Saturday nights. We went to see Star Trek Into Darkness today. I could take or leave 3D but it was great fun-
love having all my buttons pushed.

I have given up watching movie trailers and reading reviews so I won't spoil it for anyone. Let's just say if you have ever been a fan, you'll love it.

Earlier today I settled on some changes for Firmament. I'll be basting away all these pins tomorrow and starting a few applique experiments for the skyful of stars I've imagined.

 One of the coolest things on my new phone is Droid Sky View.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

the Royals

Now, that's what I was looking for.

(washed and dry)

the Creatives

 I've been following Mad Men again and thinking about how the executives talk about the "creatives" as if they were a herd of witless critters that needed to be whipped into some kind of frenzy to lay eggs or artwork.

The suits seem to have no appreciation for the people make something out of nothing.

I spent the morning playing God -bringing eyes, teeth and tongues to the blind and toothless. A few wings too.

Now, there's a garden and a pool to tend.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Memorial Day

This weekend I felt the turning of the Great Wheel.

The Moon was ablaze with messages and blessings.  I remembered that it's been a full year since we lost Karma. Today I went in the pool for the first time this year, but no lifeguard stood watch .

We all noted that this is the first Memorial Day without Pop, who was a WW2 vet who served in the Navy in the Pacific aboard the destroyer escort USS Braine. We all still struggle with the loss but I've realized how strongly his  influence will remain with all of us. More than just memories persist. Poppy is there in the decisions that we make, in the way we face the world and how we all make the best of each situation with an abundance of caution.

My two best friends have both been waiting a long time for important things - a place of her own for one, and a job for the other. They both got what they needed! And my son Colin has finished an important creative project.

It has NOT been business as usual in my life these past few days.


I named the image "fails" but I should take it back. Just because they didn't hold the intensity of color seen here, in the wet, doesn't mean they didn't turn out to be beautiful in a delicate way.

Thinking though a solution and have a few new pieces stewing right now and will see what tomorrow brings.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

like I need another diversion....

Hate me later.

While I was looking for something else (ain't it always that way on the web?) I found this in the Chrome Apps store. I'm not sure if it works from within other browsers.  These very quick sketches were made (with a mouse) and Mr. doob's Harmony..

(and if you know of a free web app that makes something that looks like index cards laid out on a table top, let me know)

Friday, May 24, 2013

taken under

I'm writing again and seem to get my best work done while I'm sleeping. Of course, there's no scribe taking notes for me. Dreams can be sketchy at best.
Pictures linger longer than words or ideas.

There is a setting with water everywhere. A town eaten by a reservoir and a brook with a bridge where there are only rumors of trolls.

This series will follow the text as it uncoils across the paper. If I never finish the book, or get it published, I'll have these.

I just saw this post networked on FB and feel like I just announced that next Monday  I'm going to rob a bank while naked (but face painted), armed with a squirt gun full of gin and assisted by my Barbary ape, Ace, who is an excellent driver but not yet housebroken.

dye days continued

I started a new piece on the design wall this morning and found myself actually rooting through my stash for a specific color....and not finding it! (If you could imagine)

The weather is spectacular and the dye deck was waiting so I put up about 20 pieces but plan to let them brew overnight. I'm really hopeful that the tasty looking chocolate in the bottom right corner holds true!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

storm stitching

After we got home from a trivia victory at Italian Pie, I stayed up to catch the season finale of Chicago Fire. Earlier, the weather dude and the online map promised that the swarm of thunderstorms sweeping across the state would miss us.
They goofed - a boom of distant thunder got me up out of the stitching chair to check windows.

I went down to the dyedeck to check on what might need to be brought inside and wondered if they were wrong...the almost full moon was brilliant and the sky clear.

 There was another distant boom of thunder and, while I watched,  the moon was obscured by a lace curtain of clouds and an opening volley of heavy drops spattered across the tent top. I quickly turned out all the containers onto the deck boards and let everything take the blessing..big laundry session coming up.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

a day away from the chair

The mailbox garden is at its peak.
The peonies burst open and disintegrate within days in the Georgia heat. This year I'll be digging cuttings and sharing them around. The fringy paler mutant below will be cut to come inside..the rains made them top heavy.

Meanwhile, out on the burning dyedeck, many cloths came under the spell while I listened to a day game on the radio and gave m'self some minor heat stroke. The pool is still too cold to be a remedy or relief.

Some errands, a nap and then out for dinner at the trivia joint which has become a regular, fun thing.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

a rondo of consequences

....and an overflowing cast of characters.

This story is unfolding but the other one is broken, boxed in, and has no anchor. I'll have to dwell on that from a cave I think.

While I was out on the deck trying to read a lady cardinal flew down and tried to pull a shiny one off my ankle beads  and the blue tailed lizards were looking at me making those naughty moves with their heads. Lizard lust.

Monday, May 20, 2013

new work space

The top six inches of the water is entirely hospitable...dip any deeper and numbness overtakes you. Still the plan is to get in on Wednesday, do the annual perimeter scrub and then enjoy the ballgame on the radio.

I'm not one for basking but I hauled this family heirloom down onto the deck with the intention of making it my outdoor office. It needs some patching and the binding replaces..not high on my list of gottas. The embroidery you can see used to be along the bottom of a pair of bell bottoms. This is vintage denim sewn over a heavy king sized blanket and backed with a tacky printed sheet. It's seen many a picnic and party.

I got some reading done out there today and put pen to paper for the first time in months and fell into the reverie almost immediately. Better than drugs.

Speaking of did you like Madmen last night? I always knew that was how it got done.

further good intentions

I had to grow the base of this piece since the story seems to have legs. No planning here, just plucking bits from the scrap basket and working them into the parade. It's Back in the Saddle Monday. Time for some reading and maybe some writing. At least we won't be cooking anything today...too many tasty leftovers.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

storm driven

"Good Intentions will bite you on the butt if you don't keep moving"

Saturday night the thunder and lightning were so fierce I was finally impressed. 
The house thrummed with sub aural vibrations and the room strobed with blue light like all of five-O was parked in the driveway. My phone kept shrieking some kind of weather alert. NO SHIT!  We did not get a lick of sleep until dawn but got up and forged ahead with a grossly complicated recipe for chicken/eggplant Parmesan. It turned out delicious and I am bone bone weary.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

they come creepin'

I've been getting little mental sticky notes and postcards from the Ether about the unfinished writing. Why these come in the form of needlework is beyond me because I can't be in that very walled off place of writing while I am pulling and snipping thread in the studio. I'm not making the connection.

Writing is an all or nothing proposition for me so what is all this stuff? Have all my hands-on work been an effort to keep me out of my own head?

 I went to the library for the first time in months today and took away a stack of fiction - "The Cat's Table" by Michael Ondaatje,  "At the Mouth of the River of Bees" Kij Johnson, "Rasputin's Bastards" by David Nickle and another batch that got left in the back seat of the car because, after reading the first chapters, I know I won't finish them. I'll give any book at least that.

While I was sitting out there reading it dawned on me that my Verifiers, my Fact Checkers have checked out and  I am free to run amok.

a gift from the slideshow

My laptop is set to display a slideshow of images from the hard drive when it's left alone for a few minutes. I'm often taken by surprise by some of the images.

This piece "Shell Vapors" is the only piece of my work we have hanging in the whole house and it's not a quilt. It is stitched fiber but the cloth has been permanently mounted to a canvas with acrylic medium and glue.

The dark gray area had a thin layer of batting and no backing at all. I just stopped without getting carried away for once. I was experimenting with a mounting technique I called mummy making and this one was at hand and waiting and fit the 36 inch canvas that had been hanging around for years.

Friday, May 17, 2013

oddities abound

I somehow found my way to Don Kenn's work this morning and feel compelled to make something...odd.
So what else is new?


I just finished setting up a page for the Karma series on

Does anyone have any experience there?
What are your impressions. All comments welcome...

Thursday, May 16, 2013

more ironing

Everyone who believes in reincarnation seems to have been Joan of Arc, Cleopatra or Josephine Baker. Me, I was surely a laundress somewhere - but a Palace laundress, mind you.

Spent the morning ironing these beauties - doing my photographic best here but pictures still fall short.

I'm sure professional photographers know the trick of showing iridescence, like on a peacock's tail, but I have not figured it out yet.  Bits of these are available over at the Store.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

rockin' the punk, punk, punk

To keep the retail therapy to a minimum I ducked into Mike's Crapola Emporium and bought a few hanks of plain white DMC floss, one hank of white Perle and ran out the door ignoring the 50% sale signs everywhere.

I hand painted them  with procion MX..a pesky business that would have been better with q-tips - but since DMCs variegated colors are so pricey, I'm hooked on making my own now

I love the sound that the needle makes ...punk, punk, punk, punk.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

can't stay away from the dyedeck

Just a little fast fun while waiting for string to dry.

Tod reminded me that I wanted to try dyeing my own embroidery floss. I also have a large cone of mystery string about the weight of Perle cotton - it might be Tencel; and a small ball of sugar and cream cotton...they all got the treatment but   are strung out all over the deck drying. Nothing much to look at right now but next time I'll think through just how to do it without NOT getting a bunch nasty wet knot in stuff.

Interesting how inspiration blooms just when you make a committment that takes you away from the studio. Is that creative procrastination?

The threads were pretty yucky..

Monday, May 13, 2013

alien skins

Why bother with taking pictures of the wet stuff when they look like this DRY! I can't wait to iron this batch tomorrow. Inspiration flying. I had forgotten how much I like all this faux texture. I should have noticed that there was almost none in my stash.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Mothers Day

I told the boys not to fuss about Mother's day but I'm glad they ignored me. There were gifts, flowers and a trip to get my fishing license so I can legally drown worms in the sunshine at Lake Lanier.

It's been  years since I've been there and at a mere 40 minute ride away, it will be a fine substitute for the beach.
The fishing is just an excuse.

The weather was beautiful today and I was gifted with a large bag of vintage towels and dinner napkins - dye lovers everyone one of them.  I was thinking about the lilacs I used to cut from the wild up in NY. My mother always loved them.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

big blues

Even the commercial prints took the dye well. I should have cooled and warmed two of these just a little more but the summer is long and there's lots more white cloth..

I have another project that is pressing and will have to set aside this hands on stuff for a small ton of administrative work, starting with updating my main website. The biggest chore will be re-shooting all of my major pieces..sweat pours just thinking about it.

the Buggy Oatmeal brigade

Remember these from yesterday? After a rush of strong pure colors these are a complex and delicate breath of fresh air.  The blues are in the dryer and I'll get them ironed and up on the wall in a little while.