Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Arts & Crafts

Long time no write! How ya'll doing?

Yes, I've been stitching but more about that in a bit. Along with stitching I've been haunting thrift stores for supplies for future projects. On one of those outings I saw this sweet frame. Admittedly I'm not really about the "sweet" or the "precious". I was more about the shape and how it resembled a tombstone. Don't you see the goth potential here?

So I bought it, for like a $1, brought it home and stitched up CHS Phoebe Brown. The frame was way too large for little Phoebe so I ran across a frame at T. J. Maxx and it's just the right size, that would be the needlework piece to your left in the picture below:

The needlework on the right is CHS Hannah Skinner. I can't decide if it can be fit to the frame or if I need to go in search of another frame. There's a close up below:

Yes, I chipped it while trying to make Hannah fit, so it's already in need of a touch up.

Although after seeing what Kim did with her copper paint and antique patina, I'm wondering if this frame might be worthy of a do-over. I think the black paint stain made it more tombstoney, but that verdigris would look all mossy and more graveyard like don't ya think?

Here's a close up of Phoebe. I'm debating aging this frame. $4 at T. J. Maxx can't beat that price.

Felt Scrabble tiles? No, I've been playing around with an idea for a banner. Maybe I'll have a finished picture of that later this week. Right now I'm debating to pink or not to pink? With the pinking shears that is.
I have a crazy long list of projects I want to work on and complete and every day my list gets a little longer. I really need some time management skilz because right now I'm making lists more than doing anything productive.

Here's the high schooler:

He was so thrilled to be starting school, can you tell? The spousal unit and I are excited that he didn't burst into flames when the sun touched his skin. He spent his vacation in the Land of XBOX but now that he's gone back to school I worry that the world will be overrun with zombies. I'm 100% sure that his dedication to the Land of XBOX kept us all safe these last eight weeks or so.

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Hot Hot Hot!

Even though I was born and raised in the south this summer has just about done me in. A house built of ice in the Artic Circle is looking mighty good these days. I didn't know the air could get so thick!

I thought I would have a finish to show you all, I even tweeted that I had a finish, only to have to be a takerbacker when I realized I missed the whole bottom band of the sampler and forgot to do the background fill in work on two bands. YIKES! I reckon I was ready to be done with that project!

There really isn't much going around these parts at the moment. I'm doing lots of stitching because it's too hot to do anything else. I should be cleaning but we need to paint and I want to rearrange furniture and pictures on the walls and I've been looking at various albums where people show their stitching and home decor and I really want to know why one person can hang a picture on a wall and stick some knick knacks around it and it looks awesome and I swear I could hang the exact same picture, have similiar knick knacks and it look like a pile of junk? I have been searching for my inner style and I have concluded that it just doesn't exist.

I mean people can have old peeling paint furniture in their homes and it looks awesome, I have the same furniture in my house and it just makes me look, oh, how do I put this, poor. It has no style, makes no statement other than "this person can't afford new furniture or a bucket of paint". The same piece in someone else's home is charming. How do they do that?

Speaking of decorating I saw these:

desire to inspire - desiretoinspire.net - Flickr finds - embroidery hoops

Then became obsessed with this particular picture:

fabric hoop bulletin board Flickr - Photo Sharing!

Went in search of a tutorial and found one here:

DIY: Embroidery Hoop Corkboard or here:

sweet jessie: Put a Cork in it

I thought these were just the coolest thing. Perfect bulletin board for someone who loves needle, thread, hoop. So I put these on my list for making in the not too distant future. I want a couple for the kitchen and a couple to go over my workspace in my bedroom. Yes, I'm aware that people have been using fabric prints in hoops as wall decor for a while now but it didn't really make sense to me(back to the old they can do it and it look cool, I do it and it looks dumb) but the bulletin board twist sucked me in. It all made sense. Something useful and pretty.

I've also been thinking a lot about my mermaid stitching. I've stitched quite a few with more to go, I have several Heaven and Earth Designs mermaids from various artists along with more primitive mermaids and the Mirabila mermaids to all mix in together. I started wondering, if I lived in a log cabin in Idaho would I still hang my mermaids, would they be relevant to that life style? I decided that yes they would.

I stitch what I love, what inspires me, what makes me dream while stitching, kind of like a good book. Part of the reason I enjoy reproduction samplers is thinking about what the original stitcher was thinking when she mapped out her sampler or chose the colors. I'm getting ready to start Emma Lerch from the Scarlet Letter and I've been thinking a lot about her funky pink house and what made her stitch her house that color. I mean a pink house in today's Florida isn't unheard of but Emma was in Pennsylvania in 1830 and it's possible that the peachy rose color was as close to stone or brick that she could find but I like thinking that she reached for that color for no other reason than it made her happy. Maybe she was from a somber household where her world was mostly gray and dark and choosing the pink for the house was her way of rebelling.

Yes, once I again I show you, the reader, that I have no life.

In other news we watched Kick Ass last night. I love that movie. We saw it at the movie house and I couldn't wait to get it when it came out on DVD. Fun, fun, fun.

I'm listening to the Tale of Halcyon Crane(Wendy Webb) at the moment and reading The Girl Who Chased the Moon(Sarah Addison Allen). On my nook I'm reading Patriot Witch by CC Finlay.

If you're looking for a very different way to prepare summer squash last night for supper I made:

Summer squash enchiladas Homesick Texan

I used Ancho Chiles because that's what I could find at Publix without having to make a trip to the Tienda. Very spicy and very good. I think adding some sweet corn to the filling would be a nice addition. If you can't find the dried peppers I had considered making it with canned enchilada sauce as the base and working from there. I wasn't sure it would work but that was my option if I couldn't find the ancho chiles. This was a very filling vegetarian meal.

Yesterday I was channel surfing and came across the Duggars at Pinnacle Mountian State Park in Little Rock. I almost cried. We spent a lot of time at that park when we lived in Arkansas. Sure the mountian is only 1,100 feet but we climbed it often, spent a lot of time there with the boys and I climbed it when I was eight months pregnant with my now 14 year old.

I started thinking about the girl I used to be. I am an outdoorsy girl not be confused with athletic. I love being outside. I'd rather sit under a tree and read a book or stitch than just about anything. I love hiking and walking through the woods(in Florida that can be dangerous as we have scary poisionous snakes-not a lot of woodsy hiking for me at the moment). I think that's why gyms just don't do it for me. If I'm going to walk I want to experience the outside, the woods, the sights, the activity outdoors. It's been too hot to be outside much this summer. I miss it and I miss the girl I used to be. The girl who went hiking on weekends. The girl who kept a backpack ready to go with water and energy bars(usually bite size Snickers--we're talking 16 years ago). I miss my crunchy granola inner hippie. Somewhere along the line I became one of those people that just, I don't know, exists. I've been reflecting a lot on where I was 20 years ago and where I am now, physically more than anything but I plan to get back to walking because I want to feel good. I'll never be skinny and that's not really my goal. I just want to be healthy. I want to reclaim my inner outdoorsy chick and I hate that I'm such a wimp that sitting outside reading a book is just the worst thing I could think of doing these days much walking in the heat. It's been bad this summer.

I also have been reading more and more about growing my own food and learning more about canning and living off the grid. You know, so I can stick it to "the man".

A few things I'm going to focus on over the next few months:

Walking more, period, getting over myself and the heat and just doing it.

Getting back to more whole foods eating.

Learning how to make biscuits, why didn't I let my Mamaw teach me? Because back then I was going to grow up and have a chef. (This would be in my Harlequin Romance phase, I so bought into that dream!)

Simplify things around the house. We toss out stuff every so often but we still have a lot crap that serves no purpose. Then again there are boxes in the garage that might just hold some treasures I've forgotten about. Never know until I start digging through them.

Work more on my sewing skilz. I really want to work on sewing clothes. Why didn't I let my aunt teach me to sew back in the day? (Because I was going to live in France and wear couture) I didn't see the creativity in sewing clothes, it seemed so practical, so functional. Now as I read sewing blogs and see what people do with patterns or how they make their own patterns and how they use fabric with the pattern. I so get it.

Work on my quilting/piecing skilz. I'm dying to make a quilt like this:

Wild Geese Quilt-Along « Bloomin’ Workshop

My Paintbox squares Oh, Fransson!: How to Make Paintbox Blocks got put on hold when I went to my mom's and I decided I'm going to make a few more blocks and then turn them into a table runner.

This has turned in to quite the long rambling post so I'll end here. Keep your fingers crossed I get those final stitches in A Haunting Mermaid soon. I want to move her out of the WIP pile into the finished pile.

Stay cool!