Sunday, December 28, 2008

Grunge and Sweetness, or ...

... rather sweetness and grunge. I think the sweetest gift of Christmas was some quality time with the newest little ‘H’, my nephew ‘A’. This photo was taken at lunch while he slept all snuggled in and I battled the brussels sprouts. Why do mother’s think those small green stinky vege are a traditional part of Christmas? I must say everything else was delicious and of course I ate too much.
I kept last years resolution, 12 months without hair dye (actually I lasted 13) umm, perhaps I should not mention hair when I have the frizz happening above :). So I will boldly state this years resolution - to drop three dress sizes. Other aspects of my health have been my focus for many years and medication took its toll, but I have stayed the same size all 2008 so I am sure that with a little work I can remove some of the excess.
I am not sure I will ever be able to sit like the sweet angel to the left (my niece) but I would like to be able to keep up with her as she plays her games and runs around the garden.
This was the third notebook I made and I experimented with some new colours - I like the green with my usual "grunge" and rust tones. I cut and covered all six covers, applied several paint washes and some stamping then worked on one book at a time.
This book was not meant to have webbing spray on it's corners, a certain ginger purr-baby decided to jump on my lap as I was spraying the back ground of the other two - luckily only the corner was effected and I decided it added to the texture. I can convince myself of almost anything.
After I made the note books I found one more of the tin signs I used as the focal point of each book. "spirit" started out red, the others were shades of cream and white to begin with.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

A time of Peace and Good Will to all...

If this is a time of peace and goodwill how come I have been dragged out of bed stuffed into this silly hat and been told not to blink. How is a boy not to blink with that glaring in his face?
Oh sorry, I have just been reminded this is not about me, it is about others. Jesus was born to save and heal others so Christmas is a time where we give to others and spread peace and goodwill in His name.

So, thank you for all the kindness and care you have shown Mum and I over the past year. I really do wish you all peace and safety for 2009 (and that every doggy should have unlimited bones).


>>> (licks)

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Gorgeous Gifts

It was my birthday earlier in the week and I have been blessed with gifts for seven days straight. I thought I would share the hand made ones here. The address book above has as much detail on the back and inside as it does on the front, layers of tecture and colour and images all blended perfectly. A stunning gift from my wonderful friend Dawn. I love it soooo much I am going to use it - and have already put all my addresses in.
More goodies from Dawn, including a DJ Petit postcard just to remind me we are going to Melbourne for a retreat in March! Don't you just love the clay dangle?
I was thrilled to receive a beautiful parcel from Dotee too, including my very own birdie with a little Dotee Chick to tuck in the pocket behind her wing. Beautiful, and I am in awe of the time and skill in placing so many tiny embellishments just to.

Despite the kitch 70's look to this photograph this is a very cute Dotee Christmas bug - love it.
Genevieve made me this little treasure with a diorama on the inside, a wonderful mystery muse gift.
Now I must be off to finish wrapping Christmas Presents, and tidy up a little, but first a nap...

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Smiles, Joys and Gratefulness

The 'view' as I leave my room and walk to any other area in my little house. Fish (yes,that is his name) in the bowl, art by Natalie, Misty and I, a lone kangaroo paw in my favourite vase (an old milk bottle) and a light shade I still love after five years of looking at it.
Homemade gifts ready to wrap.
Sunshine and sun scented sheets as summer finally arrives in Western Australia.
The sunlight filtered through the native garden, the rather intense looking Phantom as he enjoys the space and the leaves on the lawn.
The delicious fruit salad chilling as I type.
This knobbly native flower in my back yard.
No more stitches; I had a nasty little melanoma removed just over two weeks ago and my wonderful Doctor had to take WIDE margins. It is so good not to itch, and I am so blessed Geoff was on the ball and picked this up.

The geranium blooming behind washing drying in the sun.
Planning a birthday gift for a special seven year old, to be.

The faded roses against decking stump.
Knowing there are five more sleeps until the school year ends and I can catch up; house work, friends, garden, cleaning and -yes - school work.
Archer's delight when he managed to roll the treat out of his ball, the pile of mulch (a gift from my parents) and the hibiscus (a gift from a friend) in bloom.

Cuddles with my handsome nephew.

In a year where I have had more anti-biotics than in the last dozen combined, and faced more issues than in the last five. In a year where the fur-babies have all had their turn to be ill and the rain has fallen to the point where I wondered about buying a boat. In a year where I have never ever felt 'caught up' there has been much to be grateful for. Too much for one post, so today I am sharing just some of the things which have brought me smiles, moments of joy and made me grateful this very day...

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Decisions and a Sale

Earlier in the year I planned to sell my jewellery at some local markets before Christmas. Various health issues and time contraints mean that is not going to happen - and I almost feel a sense of relief, I don't think it was meant to be. I really did feel bound to create 'for the market' each time I sat in the cave.

And yet I am finding it hard to create with a bag full of trinkets sitting homeless beside me. Today I have begun listing items on my etsy - so far all are at the bargain price of $10US - and I can already feel the call to create returning. I now have the desk space and the motivation and with holidays just around the corner I will have time too -yippee!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Starting Christmas ...

Some time ago I asked my friend Dotee if she could make me some faces for Dotee Dolls, very kindly she did so (If you want some pop to her Etsy where she has whole kits for sale). After spending quite some time picking fabrics I started to stitch, planning on making these as a mobile for a friend.
Somehow they began to get a festive feel and now these Christmas Dotees will be given as very special ornaments to brighten a tree at Christmas, and perhaps for the rest of the year too.
I recently bought a cat tunnel, thinking Harvey (who is indoors all day) would like it. Poor Harvey has hardly been allowed in, Charles has adopted the tunnel - complete with its catnip sprinkles and has even managed to move it with him from room to room.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Journey's end

Just over 18 months ago (after attending the Artistic Journey art retreat in Fremantle) I was asked to join seven Australian and six American artists in a journey that was to take 18months; an altered book round robin. I can't say enough about the kindness and talent of this group of ladies - each month has brought a new set of pages to drool over, and a new challenge as I sought inspiration from themes I would never have considered.
The section above is a sneak peak (just under 1/8th) of the pages I did for Marie in her book Urban Debris. I was the last one to work in this amazing book and it is on its merry way to her now.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

The village is....

WooHoo! I finally finished the houses to swap at Creative Soul Retreat in March. I laughed at Janet's comment on an earlier posting - that by the end I would be a master builder; I am not sure about that, but by the end I was definitely on a roll and anything on my desk was fair game to become building materials.
And here is Archer smelling scrumptious (please tell me you did not just sniff the screen), after his visit to the Grooming Gallery on Monday.

Sunday, October 26, 2008


Antique bisque doll head earrings
Archer: Are you in there?

Hi everyone, time has flown since I last blogged and so much has happened good and bad.

I have been sick, and truly the list sounds like the Lament of Job, my foot continues to be an issue, a winter cold, conjunctivitis, mouth ulcers and more - just when I though I had escaped winter without being sick. So there was not much art completed at all.
These earrings have been sitting waiting to be constructed for ages, it is nice to finally have them finished and dangling merrily.

I thought you might like these pictures I managed to capture during a game of hide and seek, often the pace is too fast as the game is combined with chasey in the furry world and I get pictures that are a blur.

Last week my new nephew was born - he is smoochalicious and i am besotted already! While he was arriving my Mum had my niece to stay and we had a giggle playing hide and seek -it was nice to be a participant.

Work has been difficult. I have to be careful what I say, but essentially for the first time in my life I had to raise a concern about some abuse I was experiencing. The decision about how to handle that was taken out of my hands and some interesting decisions were made which ultimately left me feeling unsafe at home as well.

More houses for the Creative Soul Retreat village.

Now I am feeling almost 100%, the dark cloud that has come as I battled situations and sickness is lifting and I can enjoy the outdoors as summer saunters in with the help of daylight savings! Long afternoons in the garden are coming, furries all coming to pester and chase the weeds as I pull them. Early evenings on the deck with a cup of tea or a glass of red and all while unconstrained by jumpers, jeans and joggers (OK, I couldn't resist the j's).

Harvey: At last she recognises my Indian roots - dahl on nahn bread.
I just checked I have well over 200 blog posts to catch up on so there will be a nice night or two browsing for inspiration and catching up as well.

Phantom: Can't a bloke have a bit of privacy while he cleans.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

My friend got married and I got rust

so we're both happy. K married a farmer with a shiny new tractor, clean new ute and lots of modern stuff (I had to put that in because F will probably read this). On the farm there is also lots of beautiful rust and F has quickly become an expert at bringing special pieces in and asking K if I would like them. I do. I hear the neighbours have joined the fun and are contributing as well. These two lots are the result of our last two visits - the shearing combs are for a design I have had in my head for almost a year, the rest could become anything, or I might just keep looking at the stash, enjoying the colours and textures.
The pin above has an old rusty lid as it's base and is my comment on landmines. If you would like to buy it drop by my Etsy store.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Art and more..

These little houses are the first 7 of 45 I am making for a swap as part of Creative Soul Retreat in March next year. I think perhaps I am nuts, but they will look fantastic when we all have 45 in different styles, sizes and shapes. the backgrounds are all the same, torn vintage papers, and they will all be coated in shellac, as for the in between - whatever is on my desk.
This Tassel Secrets Doll is a step out for me - working in pinks and some purples. She will be available on my Etsy in the next day or so.

This needle felted ATC and the one below were so fun to make, and a great way to use the tiny fabric scraps on my desk. The 'River' tassel doll was a commission and is (I think) hanging in her new home.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Thank you

I don't like those crutches I don't, what if my tail gets caught?

Thank you so much to everyone who sent mails and left comments over the past week. It has not been an easy time, however my foot is healing, and some work issues are being resolved. I have been so blessed by your kindness and checking in online has been a joy.
This beautiful ATC came from Genevieve, a West Aussie who surprised me by sending the ATC while generously sharing her stash of a fibre I particularly liked. Thanks Gen.
These three ATC's are all stunning, all different, and all one-of-a-kind they are the results of a swap with Debbi.
Debbi has her beautiful work published in almost every issue of Somerset Studio and I was so thrilled to be able to swap with her. Debbi is another West Aussie.

While my foot healed I stayed out of the art cave and read a stack of books, Harvey, however, maintained his rituals and spent part of each day watching the birds through the window, while keeping the arm of my chair warm.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

One of these things is not like the other ...

I am sitting here feeling very sad and sorry for myself so decided to blog and in doing so, knowing I tend to find the positive as I write, that perhaps I may lift my spirits.

Last night I intended to do a little work in garden and then walk Archer, I did not make it past the bottom step. Well actually I did, but I made with a CRASH as I turned my ankle and landed on my bottom. Positive note: I could have landed on Archer - his end would have been instant, my sorry long, like the piece of string.

Twine actually; as waves of nausea crashed over me I had the presence of mind to grab a piece of twine and tie it to Archer's collar. I lacked the presence of mind to tie the other end to anything. As I sat calling vainly for help (my neighbours were all walking their dogs) Archer ran up and down the road thinking he was being chased by Charles who was in fact chasing the end of the string....For anyone new here Archer is my little dog and Charles the cat. The string was about 20 meters long; blue and yellow stripes. It is good to have the full picture.

Eventually I crawled up the stairs and called Mum. Off to the hospital we went, the nurse said, "It's broken", the man in brown said, "I'm the cleaner". When I asked if he did feet as mine were rather dirty he confessed he was in fact the doctor, then he said, "It's broken". The x-ray technician was called in from home, and was happy about that?!?. She said, "It's not broken".

The Cleaner/Doctor said, "It still could be. See your doctor." Off we went for crutches - lots for people 5'2" and below or 5'10" and above. I am 5'7" and a quarter. Needing something for the night we took the small ones. It was not successful. I could write another chapter about that, but as I have now written rather a lot and have found a little smile I will leave you to deal with the rest of your day. Iam wondering if this deserves a mid week gin and tonic?

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Bits and Pieces

I made the notebooks above using some of my scrap paint backgrounds and my Zutter (current favourite tool) for the binding. Quick easy and satisfying.
The bag on my left is a "Just because ..." gift from my friend Ky and her Mum. It is a bag which folds down into a pocket on the front and is one of a collection they have made for the Animal Protection Society fundraiser. I am so blessed to have received this, and in a work week that has had some particularly difficult times it was especially nice to come home to. The dollies there will appear listed in my Etsy just as soon as I get time.

This wonderful copper (and you know how much I love copper) collage is my INKrediblyRt Mystery Muse gift from Vanessa. I keep running my fingers over that embossed background.
I couldn't resist this picture of Phantom and Harvey - but I get the impression Harvey wishes I had :)
I am hoping the shame of having a blog photo up revealing my dirty windows might also make me clean them...I will let you know how I go w ith that one.
Enjoy the weekend.