Thursday, December 31, 2009

New Year's Eve

It's New Year's Eve, the moon is full, and I'm starting to think about resolutions for 2010! Some I have already started on, having undertaken a healthy eating and exercise program in November. Already I am feeling so much better!

There are so many things I want to manifest in the new year, including a renewed energy in my artwork.
To me, there is nothing more blissful than spending several hours immersed in a project, unmindful of time going by. I truly love to create pictures and bits of needleart that bring a smile to a viewer's face. That is my bliss.
I hope that the New Year is full of such moments for each and every person who reads this. May you find real happiness in whatever it is that you love to do!
Have a lovely and safe New Year's Eve!


Sunday, December 27, 2009

Holiday Craftiness

We have been in California for the last five days, spending Christmas with our extended family!

The scenery is a far cry from New England's snowy landscape.

I received some very thoughtful, crafty gifts for Christmas!

Today the ladies of the family had a lovely brunch together, followed by a card-making party using Stampin Up products. Tracy demonstrated for us and brought some beautiful samples to inspire us!

We managed to create quite a mess as we worked around the coffee table!

And here we are with our creations!
Back row, l to r: Teka, Barbara, Debbie, Ellie, Emilie, and Kate.
Front row: Our hostess, Becca and me.

Throughout the proceedings, Becca's dog, Abby, supervised and lent support!!
It was such a lovely morning of friendship, laughter and creativity!! 

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Holiday Greetings

I wish every person who reads this post, old friend or new, a very happy holiday season!

"Peace on Earth, Good Will to Men."


Sunday, December 20, 2009

All is Calm..

rush, rush, rush
go, go, go
stress,stress, stress
and then...


We've had a storm, everything is frosted, and the scene is set for Christmas!
 Kids are happy, snowblowers are roaring -
 looks like winter around here!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Pet Portrait Completed!

Today I completed and shipped the dog portrait I've been working on. A big sigh of relief always accompanies a completed order!! This is a beautiful Malamute and she is resting on some snow, so I decided to carry the blue-gray color into the border, with a white inner border.
Here are some closer shots:

Stitching definitely lends itself to pet portraits!!
This piece is entirely stitched by machine.
Hope the owner likes it!!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Here are three more cards created by Janice, also known as "Summer Girl", from Reyn's Nest.
I'm a bit behind in posting them, but the collection, celebrating the 25 days leading up to Christmas,
is beautiful. Thank you so much for these treasures, Janice. I know that everyone who reads
 my blog is enjoying them.

Right now I feel like I'm way behind on my "to do" list!
For one thing, I owe Janice several ATCs!
I did just finish the pet portrait I've been working on, and I
 will photograph it in the morning and post about it.
I have a few little gifts to finish, cards to get out in the morning,
preparations to make for our trip next week, etc., etc.
It's a busy time, but I'm trying to enjoy the season
while buzzing around doing a million errands!!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Felt Brooches

I have always loved to make tiny things, and enjoyed making these Christmas brooches a few years ago.
The Christmas trees are 2" tall!
Fun to make, especially the button snowman and black cat.
After the holidays I plan to make some abstract, fiber art pins, using some of the textural fabrics and embellishments I've been collecting.
For now, back to working on a custom order, with "A Charlie Brown Christmas" on the TV.

Hope everyone is having a not-too-stressful, enjoyable week!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Wearable Arts

This morning I went to a wearable art show in Gloucester, Massachusetts featuring work by a fiber arts friend, Diana Svahn. Diana does beautiful work dyeing silk and cotton fabric, stamping, foiling and sewing her creations into jackets, scarves and sachets. It was a lovely show with great fashions and jewelry, and I enjoyed going with friends and fellow fabric lovers, Barbara, Pam and SooKhim.

Here is Diana with some of her silk jackets.

Here is an Artist Trading card made by my friend Janice, for this 12th day of December!

I love the envelope with presents tucked inside!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Pet Portrait in Progress

I'm working on a custom fabric portrait of a beautiful Malamute.
I've just set it up and have much stitching to do!
Here's what I have so far...

And here is an ATC by my friend Janice for the 11th day of December. Several readers have commented on what a good idea it is to do one for each day of Advent, and how wonderful Janice's work is. I agree!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

On Being Flexible

Last week at this time I was rushing to finish up some fabric artwork for our town's Holiday Stroll. My display was to go in the large window in an empty storefront next to a day spa. I had permission to arrange my display in any way I chose, and I discussed with the owner hanging a drapery in the window and pinning my wall hangings to it.
The afternoon before the Stroll, I packed up everything and set out to hang my work. When I arrived, I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw all the windows painted with elves and snowmen!! The high school studentshad done this throughout the town and had painted "my" windows too! (through a miscommunication).
Although I was disappointed, I went home, sewed loops on the top corners of my pieces, bought suction cups and came back the next morning with my daughter and we hung my work amidst the frolicking elves!!

I love the way the snowman is looking at my picture of the snow scene with the little boy!


"Carmelina" is looking down on a little elf!

This poor elf is the victim of condensation dripping down the window!
My floral hanging wasn't affected.

Things don't always turn out the way we expect them to, but there can be laughs in being flexible!

Here are my friend Janice's Advent ATCs for December 8, 9 and 10.
Click on the photo to view them close up.

I love every one of them!!

Monday, December 7, 2009


Yesterday we woke up to a very pretty snowfall. I love it when all the tree limbs are frosted with snow!

Our porch, which has windows on three sides, was surrounded by frosty trees.
A very pretty morning!

Meanwhile, here are my friend Janice's Advent ATCs for yesterday and today. Each one is so distinctive, while the whole collection is so harmonious in color and design. I just love them!

Saturday, December 5, 2009


I finally finished this fabric picture, and I named the lady Carmelina, after my paternal grandmother who came over to this country from Italy in the early 1900's. It is made almost entirely from fabric painted with transparent Setacolor paints, then stitched by machine.
This picture was part of my display at the Holiday Stroll put on by my hometown today. Despite the blustery weather and a bit of rain, there was a good turnout and it was wonderful to see local artists coming together to show their work. There were performing artists, dancers and terrific band groups from our local high school. Businesses along the main street gave out hot cider and treats for passersby. A group of artists displayed work in a temporary gallery, a space lent to us by a generous landlord with an unrented store. We painted the walls, which were then hung with beautiful paintings and quilts.
My fabric pieces were hung in the window of a restaurant attached to a wonderful salon and spa, and other artists were likewise represented in other shop windows.
A great day, and I hope it will become an annual event!

Here is the 5th card in the Advent series by my friend Janice. Beautiful!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Advent ATC - Day 4

December 4 and another ATC from my friend Janice. As always - beautifully detailed, stamped and accented. What a treasure!
I finally have some work of my own, photographed and ready to put on my blog - hopefully tomorrow!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Another Advent ATC

Here is my friend Janice's ATC for December 3rd! I love the little pocket for the number 3!
Every card Janice makes has different techniques, and they all look fabulous together in my album!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

December Already!

I wish I could say that I made these ATCs, but the artist is my friend Janice from Reyn's Nest, who is making a series of Artist Trading cards for Advent - 25 cards leading up to Christmas, and an extra set for me!! I am so lucky!!
These are for the first two days and I will post one each day as the month goes on.
Thank you, thank you, Janice!
I am still in the process of preparing work for my exhibit on Saturday, and also trying to winterize my blog header, but not having much luck with it tonight! Hopefully I'll do better in the morning and will have a new photo behind the title. I cannot remember how I did it on my other blog. Any tips from my blogger friends?

Monday, November 30, 2009

Getting Ready!

My husband Bill, who wakes up earlier than I do, took this picture of the beautiful dawn sky for me. A lovely gift first thing in the morning!

Today I am readying some fabric and paper artwork for a display at the Holiday Stroll in my town, which will be taking place this Saturday. I have a large storefront window to use for my work, and I think I am going to pin the pieces on a pretty drapery that will hang in the window. My job now is to put borders on these pieces and add details where I feel they need them. I could offer some for sale if I want to, but suddenly they feel like my children!! Is that strange? I have sold artwork before, but unexpectedly have reservations about "letting go"! Hmmm.... Any thoughts from readers about this feeling?

This is the last day of Art Every Day Month. It has been a pleasure to participate in it. I've met and received comments from some extremely talented artists as a result of it, and I want to thank Leah Piken Kolidas of Creative Every Day for organizing and facilitating this adventure. I've really loved it!!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Lipstick Kitty


I had an empty lipstick tube and got the idea of a little kitty tucked inside who would twirl up and pop out when the tube is twisted!
I totally removed the lipstick, and cleaned out the tube, inside and out with alcohol. I then made a skinny cat body out of rolled up and glued felt, measuring first to make sure it would fit inside the tube when twisted down, and cut ear shapes on top. "Rhinestone"eyes were glued on with jewelry glue and a little nose embroidered. Finally, a tiny seed bead necklace was securely stitched on. I used hot glue to secure the bottom of the cat body inside the tube, and added some stick-on ribbon to the outside.
Making this little whimsy was so fun, and the recipient got a big kick out of it!!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!!

"Cornucopia" Stitched Wallhanging 2006
As I reflect upon all the many things I am thankful for, I must include the wonderful friends and lovely people I have come to know through my blog. The world seems so much warmer as I communicate with artists and crafters and lovers of beauty and nature from all over the world.
My self confidence as an artist has become so much stronger due to the positive, supportive comments of people whom I have never met, but who have taken a moment to respond to my thoughts and artwork with a kind word.
So, as we celebrate the feast of Thanksgiving here in America, I'm sending out my thanks to everyone who stops by to read this, and to wish you a blessed "thanksgiving" of your own!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

AED Day 21 - Cats, Cats, Cats!

I walked into my living room today, where my husband was relaxing with a sandwich and the newspaper. Guess who was sitting at full attention, waiting for a morsel to fall unnoticed, to be gobbled up in an instant!
I haven't produced any new artwork lately, but I have been involved in the world of art in a different way. A newly formed arts council in my town is planning a Holiday Stroll in December. I'm part of a group which is scoping out shop windows in the downtown area where local artists can display their work during the stroll. I'm excited that I will be able to have a space for my own work - a great opportunity to be in contact, as an artist, with people in my own community!
I thought it would be fun to use this post to share a few cats from my collection of 'little cats'. I have purchased some when traveling, and some have been given to me by my husband and daughter.

The one on the left was brought home to me just last night by my husband who returned from a business trip to Thailand. On the upper right is a jade cat which he had brought from Hong Kong and on the upper left is a cat from the Czech Republic. My daughter Kate brought the black painted cat on the left in the middle row from Mexico, and the one on the right in the same row from New York City.
Others have been purchased in Quebec, Maine, New York and Massachusetts.
They live in different spots in my house, but after this 'photo shoot' I think I'll give them new locations. All the better to enjoy my little guys with a fresh point of view!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

AED Day 17 - Winter Thoughts

I feel like I'm going through a bit of a creative dry spell, so I'm posting a picture of a Fall-ish bouquet which I made some time ago.
It is fused fabric and cut from some decorator scraps I had lying around.
Today was a lovely day here - nice and sunny and a bit chilly.
Seems like the trees have lost most of their leaves, and that is a bit sad, but I actually like this transition to winter. I love the lacy effect of the bare branches of trees crisscrossing each other against a muted sky. I feel like nature is resting, pausing to replenish itself before its resurgence in Spring. Winter can be dreary and bleak, but snow is so visually beautiful and inspiring, I look forward to it. Of course it can be inconvenient, but I'd rather deal with some snow than have no change of seasons at all! For me, each season has its own special beauty.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

AED Day 15 -Halfway Point

It is Day 15 of the Art Every Day Month challenge, and this is what I'm working on today. It is a fabric portrait of a young woman and I'm still in the process of designing it even as I begin sewing. That is how I usually work - with a rough, unfinished sketch which develops as I go along in the project.
It poured rain here most of the day yesterday, but there are signs of clearing today. I'm looking out my porch window at more leaves that need to be raked, but today is a day for inside work, reading the Sunday paper and sewing.
Hope everyone who reads this is having a great day!

Friday, November 13, 2009

AED Day 13 - Fabric Art

Here is my bit of fabric art for the day - a simple landscape made from scraps of hand painted fabric and a bit of machine stitching, mounted on some pretty scrapbooking card stock. I may add some stitching around the edge but this is it for now!
Hope everyone has a lovely weekend!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

AED Day 12 - Family Portrait

My art for today is this cut paper "portrait" done while I was watching reruns of Project Runway (my secret addiction) last night. I loved juxtaposing this sophisticated lady with her playful cat! I know so many people whose pets are companions, children, and definitely family! (including me!)
Although it is done in cut paper, I'm posting it here for AED and will also put it on my other blog, Paper Perks.
Hope everyone who is participating in Art Every Day Month is enjoying it as much as I am.
Thanks Leah!!

Monday, November 9, 2009

AED Day 9 - Work in Progress

This wall hanging was buried in my "unfinished works"drawer until I pulled it out last week. I couldn't seem to get the colors right in this photo, but it has a lot of lavender-to-fuschia coloring and many shades of green. The entire piece is fused in place, so now I have to decide how I will finish off all the raw edges. Satin stitch? Straight stitch? Hand embroidery? And I do want to add beading to this one, as well as other embellishments. I want the finished result to sparkle!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Sunday Scenes

Kristy has found a sunny spot.

A hand pieced quilt is in process.

The back porch still has colorful views.

The Christmas cactus is blooming beautifully.

Quiet moments on a Sunday.