Monday, June 28, 2010

Features, Coastal Charm and Irises

I had a great big fun weekend in Wisconsin with my family. While I was gone I found out my Flock, Divided painting was featured on These Creative Juices! Thanks, Beckie! All the entries were amazing so I'm very honored.

I also wanted to let everyone know that over at Coastal Charm there is a giveaway promoting awareness of the oil spill and its effects on the Gulf Coast and a free Jimmy Buffet concert as well. Hooray for Parrotheads!

In other news, I have a new quilt in the works with these fabrics...
and I'm finalizing a couple projects this week... I've got some stain and varnish on my trunk and I finished up my crochet flowers. Hopefully I'll be able to post those later this week. In the meantime, I was able to sneak over to the beautiful garden of a family friend, Rosemary, this weekend and have some pics to share...

I just love irises (did you notice there are irises in a bunch of those fabrics)... hope you enjoyed these!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Mirror salvage

I think I need to check myself into thrift-a-holics anonymous. Do they have that out there?

So aannnyyyway, I went to my favorite thrift store, again, and found this mirror for $9.50. Really? OK! The frame is all wood, no plastic and nicely built. Mirror in perfect condition. Done!

And you all know that I am redoing my kitchen... I also recently discovered that Hobby Lobby had tons of lovely rooster and farmhouse themed things on clearance and thought, "Hey, farmhouse theme works... I've already got some pretty pigs up so why not..."

First, I spray painted the mirror black all over. After it dried I used the candle rubbing technique to prep it for distressing later. Then I sprayed it with "Claret Wine" from Rustoleums American Accents... whatever - dark red. After that coat dried I lightly brushed on some antique gold acrylic paint with a foam brush and then wiped some off. Pulled out some fine grade sand paper and scuffed it up a bit... mind you, all, this is my first attempt at distressing anything...

But after I had distressed my mirror I was looking at it and it just needed something...

Now, originally, I bought this rooster hook to hang on the wall as a place to keep our keys. But just then... stroke of genius!

And the mirror helps to open up the whole room!

Now I'm off to enjoy a long, craft-free weekend...
OK, well I might take some crochet with me... :)
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Wednesday, June 23, 2010

A baby grasshopper made my day...

I visit my grandmother once a week and every time I pull into the driveway I think, "Darn! I forgot the camera AGAIN!" When I got there this week it had just rained and the lighting was great for macro shots. I figured I'd just take a few with my cell phone for the heck of it and...

Look at those drops of water! And the baby grasshopper or cricket or whatever it is! I can not believe that I got this kind of detail with my cell phone! I've been playing around with the pic and am pretty sure I can blow it up to a 16"x20" and still get perfect detail and definition... which is exactly what I plan on doing with it. I'm thinking it'll go great in that craft room. Here's a couple more...
I like how there is a vine restraining the tiger lily in back from opening fully.
In other news, I've just been painting and attempting my first distressed finish for a project in the kitchen and sanding and varnishing that chest/trunk I bought last week.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Flock, Divided

A couple weeks ago I ran across a very inspirational post about painting at Make The Best of Things. I love to paint, but don't get to do it as often as I like. I was already picking out paint colors for my kitchen/dining room and thinking I'd probably need some new art for my new walls anyway so...

It started out with 2 blank 24"x30" canvases and a sketch. (Ignore the doodle flower at the top of the page... you can only imagine what my notebooks looked like in high school...)

The great thing is that I got to choose all the colors so it would fit into the room perfectly. I'm not done redesigning the room so I'll just give you this cropped version of it hanging on my freshly painted walls.

I took it outside for a photo shoot because the lighting is not so great in my dining room.Overall it turned out really close to how I envisioned it. A little darker than I planned, maybe, and I had trouble giving the birds as much depth as I wanted because they were so dark... I guess in my imaginings they were black birds or the silhouettes of birds...
I struggled to come up with a title... it's a flock of birds, in a tree... but one is separated by the divide in canvas... Is the divide created or imagined? Or is it there at all? Does the lone bird see the divide or does it assume it is one with the flock? How come I painted this and I can't answer these questions? I guess this was paint therapy. Much cheaper than prozac.

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Sunday, June 20, 2010

A little inspiration and a recent quilt

Most of you know that I recently redesigned my craft room into a more inspiring space. What you probably don't know is that I was inspired to do so after stumbling across the latest copy of a magazine called "Where Women Create." The entire magazine is dedicated to nothing but the creative spaces of women. Page after page of the most beautiful art, sewing, scrapbooking, crafting spaces you have ever seen and each is totally unique. And I just found out that one of the women that was featured in that issue also has a wonderful blog called My Dessert Cottage and she hosts an annual blog party where women can link up images of their spaces.

It was too late for me to participate, but it's not too late for you to see some incredible design rooms. Just click on the button above and all of the links are listed in the right hand column. Tons of inspiration...
And I also wanted to share one of my most recent quilts. I finished it right before I started this blog. It is my first bargello quilt.
Here's a picture of it before it was quilted. This was also the first quilt I made in which not all of the fabrics were new. There are a couple pairs of my old jeans in here as well as one of my husbands old work shirts and several non-cotton fabrics that my sister-in-law brought me from when she lived in China.

In these next couple photos you can see some of my quilting along the border. There is a similar daisy chain pattern that I quilted a couple times into the middle of the quilt, but it was too difficult to pick up with the camera. You can also see the logos from my husband's work shirts...