Thursday, 30 December 2010

The penultimate day

and the penultimate month of squares. What will I do with myself on Sunday?!

So the first row or 2 I was away in Oxford - there is a vintage fabric piece from the market, bought quite a long length of it, receipts, tags my dad had saved for me( what a great word, that is), bits from my visit to Heloise (thank you ;) & gallery flyers. It's dark , but next to the heart 3rd row down is from the day I finally, FINALLY free machine embroidered a piece of fabric that I wanted to use to make cuffs. ..without the whole thing either being dragged down the feed dogs or a whole reel worth of cotton ending up on the underside. I stitched, stitched some more & the machine kept going & altho I was thinking where do I go now ? it was just so freeing, WONDERFUL! I will practice of course - it looks like a 2 yr olds stitching but now it's worth me reading the '64 free machine design'  articles! Then I discovered after all this time that I already had a darning foot, read every word of the instuctions (for the first time) turned the dial to 'vibrator'  (!?)  & stitched the flower. Well. My eyes are now open. It was quite a moment for me.

The rest are all the usual suspects, the last piece is slathered in acrylic wax, my substiute for encaustic, well, till the little pot runs out ;)

It's rather old news now but I did love my doormat full of snow, the grubby lumps carefully smoothed out by the youngest when asked. I'll take a rubbing or 2 when it's dried out. We've gone to moist air & grey skys but we did have moon filled starry nights for such a long time.

Hope you all had as wonderful a Christmas or holiday time with family & friends as I did, or just a bit of peace & quiet & that those who had to work make it up to themselves somehow.

Tomorrow may bring December's squares if I can finish pinning them all up in time!

Friday, 24 December 2010

This is what Christmas is all about

Family. & trust.

Our boys snow boarding in the field at the back of the house - how lucky are we?

That's all I need for my Christmas.

Hoping & wishing that you all get what you need. With love x

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Happy Christmas, Happy Holidays!

Happy Christmas, Happy Holidays!

Love & Hugs,



Wednesday, 8 December 2010

A snow day off work!

We had a wonderful walk into the Cuillins at the weekend, lots of snow in the hills & just about ok driving to get there. They all had a wonderful time sliding down & trudging up over & over again while I watched, enjoyed my extended family 'playing' together & froze my buns off sitting on the snow ;)  I did make an angel, going back to my own childhood & delighted in laying there watching the tiny clouds in an otherwise clear blue sky....for about 3 minutes, tops.

youngest, middlest, the gf, me, the 'dil', eldest.

It was a strange contrasty light with the end of the Cuillin Ridge between us & the sun.

                                                                   Walking on into the Glen

An ice sculpture

& a helping hand ( he had to be pulled out when walking on a thin bit of ice for heavens sake!)

It was truly a winter wonderland here today. I enjoyed my first snow day off work yesterday - the snow had come around here overnight but the eldest & 'dil' just managed to start & finish their journey back to Edinbro after 2 extra days stuck here. The gf can't get back to near Glasgow tho & my DH bravely tried to get the youngest out of the village (up a steep hill) so he could get a bus to school but it was too slippery. Bring back the wonderful (expensive!) Landrover! So we're still a housefull & I'm trying not to be too distracted! I'm happy to bundle up, enjoy the snow while waiting to see if my last craft fair will be on this Saturday. It's out of our hands so we might as well eat mince pies!

& in the garden

I made a couple of brooches as Christmas presents for the 'dil' & the gf, a bit bigger than the ones I started to make for last years craft fairs.

And finally, a month of squares. I was 2 months behind & now I'm only 1 month behind - these are October's squares. In gathering them together, thinking I had lots to make to catch up, I'd find a little pile on my desk hiding under pieces of paper strewn about, or a small pile of them in a little bag for safe keeping, so I wasn't as behind as I thought. Hopefully I'll come across some  for November, tiny collections of bits & pieces of the day tidied into a little square or a piece of an experiment cut away for adding to my squares pile ready to find at a later date. When I empty my pockets I find papers or plastic stuffed in there - I'm always thinking This could be for a square! but take a little longer to assemble them into one place, ready to photograph. It's taught me such dicipline, making these squares, well, & showing them here in an organised fashion & I'll have such a collection by the end of the year, something to be proud of. I'm thinking already of what to do regularly next year, something like a collage a week, something for the studio. I'd like to work thru all my wonderful books & actually make that collage or hanging that I'm always saying I will get round to one day, giving it my own personal spin, of course.

We'll see.

I've shown the top 2 lines already. The 3rd are all the usual suspects except the 'braille' one, not sure if you can see that I've painted a pill packet & highlighted the braille dots. The last 2 strips are the usual again, including a bird stamp used for a Christmas card & the multicolored bear is similar to the sweet 16 birthday card for the youngest. The last 2 squares are the start of my trip to Oxford.

Friday, 3 December 2010

Another craft fair cancelled

due to sheets of ice about the place, but it's beginning to thaw today. I took these yesterday when the stream by us froze over.

I tried to print out some pics of ice to make some photo cards for the craft fair (before it was cancelled) but I'm obviously not using the right paper as they totally loose the wonderful punch you can see on the screen. I've been successful before using Matt heavyweight but not with the ice. Any ideas? Glossy photopaper perhaps?

Ben Sgritheal looking lovely in the sunset.

Not often you see a frozen high tide line.

We've reached the time of year when there's only 1 1/2 hours of sunlight (if it's out at all, of course) in the house & garden. I'm lucky enough to see it across the bay & it only lasts a couple of months or so before it's high enough to peep over the hills at the back mid Januarry, but I'm keen to be here on a sunny day, at lunch time so I can feel what sun there is in my home.This is one of the deer fence posts at the back of the garden (protecting the fields behind the house) showing the level of the sun on the left hand hill at 12.30 pm.

So, I'm up on stock (& down on cash!) due to the cancellations but at least I'll be around on Sat while my eldest & 'dil' are here, getting thru from Edinbro yesterday despite the weather, here for their early Christmas visit. The middlest & youngest are raging at the fact there is no snow here & feet of it everywhere else causing chaos! So, I'm still making one or 2 things as I have the opportunity to keep the table of the last craft fair for a week without haviing to be there. If people can get out of their homes, it should be good.

Some pics of the kind of collage which I started to make last year when I saw  Di Wells on Talking Threads. She used tissue paper, I used thicker paper that I already had with some fine chiffon type fabric. I love stitching thru paper with fabric, you can actually hear it...or maybe that's the poor blunted needle?!  I  like to make my garden work for me too ;) I'm pretty keen on this use what you have ethos, I was already one to use what you're about to throw away, anyway! This year, as last year I have only bought in the silver spray paint for my decorations tree & some inexpensive notebooks. Last year I completely covered them with fabric or paper, very labor intensive, this year I made a square or oblong to attach to the book. (I am still making squares, they're just for sale! )I will search out some more sketchbook like notebooks for next year. These are all stocking filler recession busting prices, something for everyone!

I quite like the reflections, they remind me of digital layers!

Decorations blowing in the breeze

Last but not least, last week I received Lorna's 'everyone's a winner' gift of a day of the dead atc. Scary, but I love it! Thanks so much, you must have had a sewing frenzy!