Tuesday, October 30, 2007
I've been moving and sorting and spring cleaning more things around the house, and it's still at that seemingly-endless stage of looking worse before it looks better. So it's good to focus on small beautiful details, while the larger picture is still a tad chaotic.
Monday, October 29, 2007
Sunday, October 28, 2007
The pictures are from a vintage brochure. As scanned, they had age marks and blotches, which is not unexpected. They were printed on a BasicGrey scrapbooking paper which also had marks and blotches (on purpose) and which nicely conveyed age while concealing the scanned pictures' marks. (I use BasicGrey paper a lot, and it was my first thought for printing these).
For those of you who have seen the quirky Australian film The Castle, these are destined for the pool room. He hasn't got one yet, but this is almost enough reason....!
Saturday, October 27, 2007
Friday, October 26, 2007
Thursday, October 25, 2007
Sorry about the light - it's being gloomy right now, so the natural light is limited and I had to resort to overhead lighting and the lamp in the corner.
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
It went well - it was an unexpected gift on a day that wasn't going at all to plan for them, (I didn't know that last bit of information), so a sunny happy quilt out of the blue was (inadvertently) particularly well timed. Good! The weather's just turned a little cooler too, so it will be able to go to work straightaway.
I picked the colour to be close to the blue in the curtains. And because it's purty.
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
This is after. How lovely is that blue paint? Doesn't it just look cheerful and happy? And lighter (even though the first photo was taken with the light on and the second with early morning daylight)?
And this is an example of the new brushed metal handles. What I particularly like, apart from the shape, is the tiny spike on the back - a nice design feature. When screwed onto the drawer or cupboard door, this will stop it rotating. A small, clever innovation.
Monday, October 22, 2007
Subject: wooden dresser, currently stained (to a medium vintage sort of colour) and varnished (as it has been for the last twenty years since I bought it new).
Me: I'm going to paint this for my sewing room
Man: I'm appalled! (also, How could you? and Look at that lovely grain! and But wood is timeless! and so on)
(what is it with men and timber?????)
Pictures to follow...it's getting the same blue as the desk. Yum, I say, unmoved. One more coat to go. And it is a much lighter presence in the room, I have to say, than it was - it's not a large room, so a large dark presence isn't what you want when you're trying to make it airy and light.
Friday, October 19, 2007
I've been culling stuff at home (see earlier discussion about books) and when it's time to put up the Christmas decorations, it will be good to give them the once-over and refine the collection.
I cast my eye over Ikea's assortment - just in store - and wasn't desperately tempted, except by the diode-light-in-felt ones. They were inventive...
Thursday, October 18, 2007
Ah, Christmas is here. Well, so the shops would have us believe. Nothing like a twizzy red bauble to make you start fretting about the Christmas list...
(By the way, I did find some fabric to put in the fabric cupboard. Whew! I could've been worried it would stay empty...)(Nah, that wasn't particularly likely!).
More sewing room photos will come in due course - still getting it organised. Next: the bookcase.
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
The roses fabric is shelf lining. It took one coat of undercoat/primer and two coats of paint - really sucked up the undercoat, but now there's a semigloss surface and it looks much better. Gosh it was fun to contort about painting under shelves...but there's no brown left. The exterior got painted too. It's only a modest op shop find cupboard, but it works.
Now to see if there is any fabric in the house which could be stored in here. Hmmmm. Think I'll find some? Think so...
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
This is going into Australian Country Craft and Decorating, out in a few months' time, so I can only give you a glimpse for now - sorry!
Monday, October 15, 2007
Sunday, October 14, 2007
Paths like this remind me of one of my favourite photographs, W. Eugene Smith's iconic "The Walk to Paradise Garden" (which you can see here ).
Photos will come. The inside of the cupboard was dark, boring brown, and the desk was dark, boring brown. I wanted a happy colour to work on and a light colour to illuminate the interior of the cupboard. I learned, from one of the small tables, that crayon is immensely persistent, and you have to buy another tin of stuff to undercoat it with and stop it bleeding through.
But that blue! It's clear and happy and itself. Lovely.
Looks like the thrifting book mystery was solved - thank you for all the comments. I don't get that paper so I didn't know about the freebies.
I really understand people who can't cull any books. I do. It's not as though I culled a major percentage - oh my goodness no... If in doubt, I kept it, and yet there were some I didn't doubt and really won't miss. One day I'd love to have a library room, floor to ceiling shelves and everything visible and in the one room. With a good reading light or two. And comfy chairs to curl up in, possibly a good deep window seat too. Doesn't that sound appealing? But for now, I'm working on a sewing room, and it's making some progress.
It's interesting, when you start trying to reimagine your home, how difficult it can sometimes be - you're used to things where they are and used as they are. Some of the 'working' time has been just sitting in the room, and thinking about how it could work, and what's needed. I know some people who move stuff around in their house regularly, but that's not really how this house works.
But then, having sat, and mulled, and let your mind wander around with possibilities, you have those lovely Aha! moments that let you see things afresh.
Friday, October 12, 2007
Does someone know why there is a copy of this book (usually this edition) - Prey, by Michael Crichton - in EVERY op-shop (Goodwill/Oxfam etc) shop I go into? Guaranteed. Even ones that aren't adjacent, but hours apart. Did they print gazillions? Does every reader hate it enough to toss in five seconds (I haven't read much of his work, but I remember The Andromeda Strain being good....)????
I started noticing months ago. Last week an op shop had FIVE copies of this edition, all in a row, and a separate copy of a different edition. I catch myself looking for it now, along the op shop bookshelves, and pretty much every time, there it is. However madly popular a book has been (and I don't recollect this one barnstorming the bestseller lists, although I might not have been paying attention at the right time) there is no other title I can think of that has appeared so consistently.
It's a mystery!
Thursday, October 11, 2007
I was talking with friends today about our books - we're all readers and have houses furnished with bookshelves. I asked them if they ever culled their books - they recoiled! Books are memories made visible, memories to consult - no, they don't cull.
There are many books in this house. Most I can't/won't cull. But looking over the shelves, I see a few - not many, but some - that I could now send on their way and not especially miss, or so I think. When I've moved house, the removalists are always astonished at the number of books here - apparently many more than most (subtext: normal!) people. I find a fairly bookless house unnerving - but then, I've always been a reader. It's genetic....
So in spring cleaning and imposing that order on the house, some books will go. But most are like those clouds, part of an ever-changing landscape of memory and imagination, part of where I've been and where I am and where I'm going, too precious to part with.
Wednesday, October 10, 2007
Tuesday, October 09, 2007
Still working on the quilt. It's amazing how much faster the unpieced borders of a frame/medallion quilt are, as opposed to when you reach an outer row of ninepatches which are 3inch finished... Hmmm, that slows you down rather a lot. I'm using fabrics from Uptown, FreshCut and Chez Moi, along with bits and pieces from some other 'modern' ranges as well as some hand dyes, and it's looking busy but happy. It will be interesting to photograph it and see how it looks, if a photo clarifies its structure.
I had an email today from a lady who made a quilt based on one of my designs that was in a magazine within the last year. It was great to see how she'd taken it and made it her own. I always hope that my designs do that, rather than demanding slavish imitation. It's lovely when someone takes the time to show you the quilt they've made.
Unrelated factoid. Today I read that the Arnott's biscuit (cookie) factory makes five million Tim Tams a day. Someone's scoffing them at an astounding rate of knots (or maybe the export market's bigger than I had guessed). Five million. Yikes. Every four days they make enough for every man, woman and child in the country to eat one.
Monday, October 08, 2007
Most of today was taken up with another quilt, which is still in progress. I used to garden a lot more than I do now - the quilting's kinda taken over.....
Sunday, October 07, 2007
Saturday, October 06, 2007
Friday, October 05, 2007
Ah well, can't be said I never put pics of myself on the blog (hey Isabelle, if the photo from last week made you think I was younger than you'd guessed (it was a flattering angle!) I've no idea what this will make you think?!!).
To be published in Recycled Threads in Australian Country Threads magazine in a few months - can't show you all of this till after that.
Thursday, October 04, 2007
This will be published in APQ (Australian Patchwork & Quilting magazine) in a few months, so I can't show you a proper pic till that's happened.
Wednesday, October 03, 2007
There is either text or an initial on each block, and vintage green buttons sewed onto every intersection.
I know it's busy, but I like it that way - it's honest in relation to the original vintage blocks.
My quilt is a family tree of a kind, with initials of people and in embroidery (redwork) the enduring qualities of our family, such as laughter and affection. The second-last picture is the completed quilt.
It was fun to play within parameters set by others and see what arose from it.
The challenge quilts go on tour for two years throughout Australia, so it was nice to document this before it travels off.
I called it, The More Things Change: Family Tree
It is an original design.