Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Wordless Wednesday

Taken from my front porch last night.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Tiny Surprise


If you've followed my blog, you may recall my fondness for succulents. I love the wide variety of color and texture and their ease of care, but most people who grow them don't grow them for their flowers, which are few and far between. So I was surprised to see this charming little daisy-like flower on one of the plants.



It was on a plant in a pot of plants that I was trying to root and apparently they are rooting just fine.




You can see from this pictures that it is a mish-mash of plants, none of them very attractive right now and yet this little flower did its best to spruce things up.





In this container of more established plants you can see a larger version of that same plant on the far right.




Here's a close-up of it looking a lot like pipe organs to me with their hollowed out tips. I have never had one of these bloom before and wonder why the scraggly little new one did. One of those mysteries of nature, but I will take what I can get.

We're having very hot weather here in the North East and I am so grateful for my AC. I do any gardening or walking early in the morning before it gets too steamy, but hey, it's summer and before we know it we'll be complaining about the snow.

Happy Summer!




Saturday, July 23, 2016

Tapestries

Last week several members of the CT Surface Design Association were invited to the studio of Helena Hernmark, world famous tapestry weaver. Go to her website to read all about her. Her studio in Ridgefield, CT is set among eighteen acres of bucolic countryside. I had been to a lecture given by her last year and was anticipating seeing her studio. Well, it was breathtaking and my pictures don't do it justice.


One whole wall of her three story high studio is covered wth the big cubbies filled with yarn from floor to ceiling. Note the ladder that allows her to reach to top cubbies. It was impossible for my camera to see the while thing.



Another  view of part of the wall with two of her larger looms. Most of her work is done for site specific installations. You can see one of hers on her website that is over 41 feet long that was installed on a curved wall. Her pieces sell for the many, many thousands of dollars and seeing them up close and personal, I can see why.





Two of her work tables with selected yarns and a view of one of her smaller looms in the distance.




Most of her work is representational. This is a small work at the end of her studio. 



Another of her "smaller" works, small being may three feet by five feet.


A view through the screen at the rear door of the studio.



After spending about an hour and a half in the studio with her explaining how she works, showing us
some of her smaller pieces and answering many questions, she asked if we would like to see the house.Wow! An extra treat! She and her late husband were born in Sweden and the house is Swedish modern, lost of blond wood in floors and trim with large windows and skylights. A very beautiful, livable home. All the rooms had gorgeous rugs woven by her.

The tapestry above was made for their dining room, but now it resides above the well-worn and loved leather couch. Her late husband, Niels Different, was the designer of high end office chairs that are amazingly comfortable. She had several throughout the house and studio and we sampled quite a few.

It was a delightful afternoon that was very inspiring. Several of the women in the group are weavers. I am not, but it didn't keep me from appreciating what I saw.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Saturday, July 9, 2016

The Rockettes at Macy's Fireworks

I've mentioned before that my great niece is a Rockette. She was chosen to dance before the Macy's fireworks display on the 4th. I loved the dance and thought it looked so complicated. She is the first one on the left when they start and the last one on the right when it ends. They are doing one of the numbers from the summer show, Welcome to New York.
Enjoy!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kmwp7Vlslk8

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Midnight City

Yet another challenge to do for FANE (Fiber Artists of the North East). This one has to be a building and the rules are as follows"
Your piece for our Skyline Exhibit is due at the August meeting also.  Again, here are the guidelines:
    1. Width between 14” and 18”
    2. Height between 36” and 60”
    3. Building may be realistic or abstract
   4. No background
    5. Needs to hang with one nail
    6. Needs to have fiber, does not need to be quilted or have 3 layers, would be nice to have some stitching.

I have done a series of city quilts and most of them are quite large and squarish. This one had to be tall and skinny so I used one of the smaller city quilts that I had made as a guide and just made it much taller.

All of my city quilts had an insane amount of piecing and quilting. I decided to go a little easier on myself and not do all the piecing, but fuse instead. I'm not sure how much time that saved because I had to fuse all those little windows down. It did make for easier quilting, altho I did a lot of quilting, because I didn't have to deal with quilting around all those seams. 

You can see more of my city quilts by going to the "Geometric Quilts" at the top of this blog.


"Midnight City" It really is squared off at the bottom. It is just coming out from the wall.  Details below. It measures 17 x 47. All of my previous city quilts have used only my hand dyed fabrics, but for this one I also used some commercial prints. I quilted it onto batting with no backing and then fused it onto Peltex, a very stiff interfacing that I use when I make fabric postcards. It will keep it rigid and will keep that little building at the top nice and straight. I went around the edges with a button hole stitch in silver thread.


I quilted it with silver metallic thread and it sparkles under the light.



City Lights. Made for a "Grey Plus One" challenge a few years ago. It measures 17" x 24".


You can see all the piecing and quilting here.


So that's one more thing to be taken of my list of things to do. My next project is for my FiberWorks group. The theme is "At the Library" and I am totally bereft of ideas. It is due in September.

It's been a long time since I've had any fiber art to share, so I'm linking up with Off the Wall Friday.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Hooray for the red, white and blue!

I had a little gathering (18 people) at my house to celebrate the Fourth. There was a plethera of red, white and blue worn by the guests and in my decor. Friends brought appetizers and I provided the main course and wine and Claire brought dessert. It was an absolutely perfect weather evening and everyone was able to eat outside on the deck.




Appetizers in the dining room.


Love that shirt!





Even the sunset cooperated. A perfect ending to the day.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Behold the Moon

Yesterday a small group from Woman's Club went to the Hammond Museum and Japanese Stroll Garden in North Salem, NY. Our purpose, as part of the Environmental group of the club, was to see the gardens with a docent. It was beautiful day, even though heavy rain was predicted. The gardens are lovely, but the highlight of my day was the art exhibit in the gallery, Behold the Moon.

This year is the 50th anniversary of Moon Viewing in the garden, an ancient tradition in which people eat, drink, listen to music and write poetry, while viewing the moon, thus the theme of the show. I will show you just a few of the art pieces. It was a fabulous exhibit and I would recommend going to see it if you live anywhere nearby.


This handsome moon face hanging from a tori gate was out in the fields.



There were several large round moons, like the one on the sign, hanging around the top of the room. They looked to be made of ceramic or metal and they were quite beautiful. You can see one up on the wall on the right side of the sign.



There were two similar pieces by this artist, Isle Schreiber-Noll. This is My Moon I. It is mixed media on a linen drop cloth. It was fiber art to me and you can see what looks like stitching on the next detail, but it is paint.








There were several pieces on this wall by Harry White. He uses collage of plant parts and found paper. I liked the way they were matted.




This very large stunning piece that wrapped around the wall was by Carla Goldberg.  Her lengthy title is: I Dreamed I Was a Fish Swimming Among the Reeds Looking Up at the Winter Moon.
She uses resin, ink, and enamel paint on acrylic panels.



Detail of the piece above. It was quite amazing in person. It seemed to glow from within.

All of our trips seem to end in with lunch. This time we ate at Luc's, a charming French restaurant in Ridgefield, CT. We sat outside on their small patio, surrounded by planters of bright red geraniums. The food and wine were delicious and as usual I ate too much, but it was worth the calories.

A pretty garden, a fabulous art exhibit, a scrumptious lunch with friends.....a perfect summer day!

Sunday, June 19, 2016

New Thimble

I have a large thimble collection. My late husband and I would seek out antique shops when on a road trip and I was very involved for several years. I have many books and even belonged to the Thimble Society. Yes, there is a club for everything. I would always buy them on my foreign trips after my husband died, but they were mostly inexpensive souvenirs. I haven't bought one in quite awhile, but when I saw this one in a little village in Spain, I knew it had to come home wth me.

I was intrigued by the many stork nests that we saw on the pinnacles of buildings. The nests weighed up to 100 pounds and they were very impressive and now I have a stork thimble.

Front

Back

 My major garden chores are finally finished, but if you are a gardener they are never truly done.
There's always upkeep and something new to add, but at least it's not eating up so much time.
I have finally gotten back to my studio and I am sewing. Nothing to show yet, but when I do I'll come back and show you.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016