Saturday, January 29, 2011

2011 Calendar Challenge

I have decided to participate in a monthly challenge this year. I became very inspired by Jill's Calendar Challenge posts and am happy to see that it is continuing in 2011. This is the link to The Kathryn Wheel where you can find out more and sign up, and there is a Flickr group too.
This is my base spread for January. I am using a spiral-bound pad of watercolour pages that I got for a few dollars sometime last year. It is quite a wide area when open, but that means I have a bit more room to play : each page is 23cm x 30cm and the calendar squares I have made are 4x4 cm. I decided to play with paint for this month. My fav colour is purple, and I overstamped that with yellow acrylic and a swirly stamp. I wanted the feel to be bright and cheerful - January is our summer holiday month in New Zealand. The labels for the days I have used this time are from a 2010 calendar and each has the translation in Maori below.We have spent a lot of time around water this month, so the beach babes also seemed appropriate.Tune in again on 1st Feb, and you will see the finished spread for January, and my next base for February. ...there is still time for you to join in too.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

2011 Art Journal

I woke early the other morning with 'creative brain'. I am NOT a morning person, so waking at 5am and having to get up at 5.30 is not a habit of mine! I was thinking about what I wanted to do creatively this year, and was thinking of all the lovely stitchy ideas I have, but also kept coming back to the idea of another art journal. I have this one which is a good place to try out new techniques or do arty stuff in like this and this, but I quite like the idea of having something else there more like an informal diary to jot thoughts down in - a memory of a day perhaps - remembering what was said or how I felt - or just to capture some lyrics or a quote I've heard and liked.
I want something pretty - collagey - papery - but also some stitch. So I went to my cupboard and found this photo album that I bought cheap a year or so ago. A few sheets of decent paper inside - attached by string to the spine. I chopped the string, and cut lots more watercolour paper so I now have 3 decent-sized signatures. When they are finished I will only have to drill one more set of holes and be able to use the existing holes in the spine to rebind it. I changed the cover to look like me - remembering to Be Present this year. I have had fun with these pages so far, with glue and stitch using colours, patterns and images I like.With space for writing thoughts, adding more images or other embellishments. A place to play.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The To-Do List

At the beginning of January I had only 3 things on my to-do list...the list is longer now.
1. Gran's 100th birthday present - 1/2 way week until deadline
2. Needlecase - have found a really cool idea here which is making me want to start this soon
3. I have succumbed to making another art journal...tune in for more tomorrow.4."Mixed Media Melange" online workshop - begins 28/1 (can't wait) - more tempting pic's of what we will be doing here
5. Complete "Simply Delicious" quilt - I now have a deadline for this - our local club has an annual show day ("Tote and Glote") which I will aim for - Saturday 7th May. We always have a speaker there and this year are lucky enough to have Yvonne Brown. Her work is lovely, so I am sure she will be a treat. If you have access to back issues of Quilting Arts magazine, check her out in Winter 2005 : Issue 20. And that leads me naturally to
6. Celtic Cutwork Workshop with Yvonne Brown on Monday 9th May. Hoping I will get to do this one. Click here to go to examples in the gallery on her website.

Some blog love to keep you occupied until tomorrow :-)
This post reminded me that making a book for trying out new techniques will probably make it onto my To-Do List before the end of the year!
Cas Holmes -- gorgeous work. She has a book out which I can't wait to see "The Found Object in Textile Art"
Beautiful books made by Jill Taylor here and also here in the style of Frances Pickering
Thanks to Lisa for this link to Terri Stigmiller on Flickr and in turn to her art quilt website
See you again soon

Sunday, January 23, 2011

This and That

GluingStitchingWatching movies and DVD's Enjoyed reading both of these books while on holidayand am now re-reading/dipping into this great book by Chris Cozen in anticipation of the "MIxed Media Melange" online workshop I am taking which starts at the end of the week....can't wait.
Enjoying the colours and designs of Kristen Chursinoff's flickr images and her blog- beautiful stitched flowers.
How about you?

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Care to join me?

I am SUPER excited - have just signed up for the latest online workshop offered by Julie Prichard and Chris Cozen : "Mixed Media Melange". This post/video will tell you all about it....this image is what got me hooked and the video explaining it all sold it.
Special discounted price available if you buy before January 27th. Care to join me?

Monday, January 17, 2011

Be Present

Have started stitching Gran's birthday present....I am trying to live in the moment - making the most of "now" opportunities - this post made me smile -the author is thinking similar thoughts to me. This year my mantra is to "BE PRESENT". To enjoy my kids while they are still young - to enjoy the sun - to take the opportunity to visit my friend even though I said I would clean the windows today....have you chosen a word or mantra for the year? Previous words of mine have been "Gratitude", "Patience" and "Action"
I have been adding layers to this journal page for a few days...the main image is a card "Pleasure" by Anahata Joy Katkin - love her work and happy with the way the page turned out.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Looking back - Looking forward

2010 seems very far away in some ways. Thought I would try a mosaic of what I achieved creatively last year (you can create one for yourself from your flickr photos here )
And now I am thinking about what I want to create in 2011. I am thinking this year might be more fabric-focussed than last, but so far I only have 3 definite things on my must-do list
1. My lovely Gran turns 100 in February so I have to make something for her
2. I really want to make myself a needlecase
3. I want to complete my "Simply Delicious" applique quilt that is currently at the sashing stage
There is loads of inspiration out there if you go blog-hopping...
For embroidery stitches, I will be looking at the blogs of Sarah Whittle and some joggles guides
I got Kaffe Fassett's lovely Quilt Romance book as part of my Christmas present....this combined with Alissa's lovely quilt blog might inspire some quilts this year.
And although I am thinking mainly stitchy/fabricy things, I might just have to keep doing a bit of art journalling this year - inspired by iHanna's blog posts on journals here and here
Ro Bruhn is creating some gorgeous colourful pages
Both Julie Fei-Fan Balzer and Traci Bautista are hosting year-long art journalling inspirations
And I would love to try these new free ideas from the Kemshalls - Laura using photocopies as a base for sketchbook pages and you can still incorporate fabric & stitch with their applique bookwrap
AND - I am toying with the idea of participating in some challenges this promises I will do these, but you might like a look
Dress Up 2011
The Artful Bag Challenge
I have always admired Michelle Ward and her monthly Crusades
Think that is more than enough to be going on with!!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Holiday Highlights

Happy New Year everyone.We are back from our 'best ever" sun-filled holiday up North and I am feeling relaxed and happy. We had lovely family times, lots of sunny days on beaches and on or in the sea, and heaps of wonderful memories to keep close. A fav I really want to remember - the whole family in the car singing Daniel Powter's "Next Plane Home" (click here to see the song on YouTube) together at the top of our lungs. Will share in my next post where I am headed creatively this year, but for now I am breathing, smiling, and taking things slow while the kids are still on holiday. Wishing you all a Happy & Creative 2011.
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