Thursday, February 27, 2014

On The Road Again...

Hello Dear Blog Readers!

The bags are packed...

The supplies are gathered...

Rainboots are ready...

And I'm on the road again for one more Artful Journey...sadly, it will be the last journey to be held for a long time to come...


By the time this post is published I will already be on the road, heading toward Los Gatos, to spend some time in the old town before checking in at the retreat. I want to be sure to visit a favorite spot...


...And peek at the baby chicks that are always on sale at the local hardware store...and maybe stop by a special store, Vintages, to get inspired...


Then I'll check in to the retreat for some rest and relaxation...


...before the festivities begin with dinner for all...


I hope to have a little time for a few posts on my Facebook page, but I'll be sure to share how this last journey turned out and the new book I'll come home with, so be sure to stay tuned!


NOTE: many of the photos shared here were from my first year at the retreat and some of these images are being used to create a special little book to be donated for raising funds for the Presentation Center. I'm sure someone would like to have some photos of the beautiful grounds of the Presentation Center as a keepsake of An Artful Journey.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

My Donation for An Artful Journey

Hello Dear Blog Readers!
One week from today I will hit the road to head to An Artful Journey Retreat, held at the Presentation Center located in Santa Cruz.

At previous retreats, there has been an auction to raise funds for the Presentation Center and I have donated some of my handmade goods for these fundraisers. Of course I am donating again this year, and though I am hoping to donate more than one item, there is a special item I'm donating - one of my 'Shabby Scrap' Journals, aka "Remains of the Day" Journal...


Last summer, I shared this photo of this book in progress, which I actually began about two years ago! I got re-inspired to complete this book with some mixed media stitched pages and I FINALLY stitched the signatures in place about two weeks ago.

The colophon for the book will be made as a book marker and I might add a button to the ribbon tie, but other than those little details, I'd say this book is finished! To celebrate, I'm sharing a few peeks at some of the pages of this mixed media art book.

NOTE: many of these images were shot before the signatures were sewn to allow some decent views of the pages before stitching:














I just love how this book turned out and I am happy to donate it for a worthy cause!

Now that this book is finished, I'm even more excited to complete the other journal I began in tandem with this one...of course, I'll share that here on the blog so be sure to stay tuned!


Curious about colophons? Want to learn how to create your own 'shabby scraps' journal? Here are some links to get you informed, inspired and started:

Definition of Colophon on Wikipedia
'Remains of the Day' journal inspiration on Flickr and Pinterest
'Remains of the Day'/Shabby Scraps book tutorial provided by Mary Ann Moss

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Prayer Flags for An Artful Journey

Hello Dear Blog Readers,
I hope you all enjoyed a wonderful weekend with loved ones or making time to do something you love, since it was also a holiday weekend for President's Day.

I spent some wonderful time with my dear boyfriend, having breakfast out, visiting our favorite farmers market and making space for some of our favorite past times. For my dear boyfriend, it's gardening...

Some of the plants that survived the move with some newly planted ones...

 I can't wait to see how these seeds begin to sprout!

For me, it's being creative or finishing creative projects, whatever they might be! This weekend, however, I was completing some prayer flags* to send to An Artful Journey Retreat.

Here are some early peeks at my prayer flags in process:



I've been sharing peeks at some of my flags in progress on my Facebook page which has been a lot of fun! But I want to share the completed pics here with you, dear blog readers.

First, the 'flower flag' completed with some hand embroidery, something I've been wanting to do more of lately, especially after reading this blog post from one of my favorite bloggers and instructor I learned from at Artful Journey 2011:

These cut shapes were some of MANY fabric scraps I found among my grandmothers stash - I'm so glad I could find a way to use these long abandoned scraps!

Then, a 'patchwork flag' I made using some fabric scraps cut by my grandmother for one her many quilting projects:


I'm glad I was able to find a project for these scraps since I'm not much of a quilter, but I was happy to add some hand embroidery, something my grandmother taught me at an early age:


Finally, this 'romantic-styled' flag started with vintage scraps from a scrap-filled jar found at a flea market, scraps that have been used for other book projects I've shared here...


I have mentioned the scrap-filled jar before and it does seem like the scraps are endless! But I am finding ways to use them, whether in a book or a prayer flag, like this one:

 Adding embellishment to the scraps of lace, cheesecloth and torn tea-dyed muslin strips

I began to incorporate my rusty hand embroidery skills as I crafted these prayer flags...


And the hand sewing brought some restful relaxation and meditation...


Now, these flags will go out in the mail so they can hang in the dining hall for all Artful Journey attendees to view and a lucky few will go home with a string of them, as happens each year at the retreat...

A string of prayer flags from last years retreat - I just loved the flag made with ribbon!
 
There are other things I'm making for the retreat, but I'll share those items in my next post, so be sure to stay tuned for more creative goodness!

Or stop by and like my Facebook page for sneak peeks at my Projects in Process!


* - Curious about prayer flags? Here are some links to get you informed, inspired and started:
Enjoy and get creative!

Friday, February 14, 2014

A Knitting PiP Completed!

Hello Dear Blog Readers!
I just wanted to share one of my knitting projects in process, which is finally completed, with mere inches to spare, no less...

This photo, and the following photos, were shot using my iPad while in the knitting shop; it was night-time when I was working on this project so the lighting is not the best!

I posted this photo last year for Sunday Snippets, but never got around to explaining what was happening with this kerchief project. However, if you look closely at the photo, it should pretty much tell the story:

A limited amount of yarn before I could complete the kerchief with the other kerchief tie to be knitted!

I have come close to running out of yarn on this kerchief pattern before, but there were a few yards of yarn left over when that kerchief was completed.

Here is how I managed to finish my kerchief with mere inches to spare:

I knew there was a possibility I would not have enough yarn to knit two kerchief ties, so I thought of a way to finish knitting the kerchief that would allow me to still 'tie' the kerchief to stay on my head.

I thought of making an eyelet hole for the one tie I had, for the tie to pass through so I could secure the kerchief to my head with a little knot. I had just enough yarn to do this, and there were only 5 inches of yarn left when I finished knitting:


Knitted to the end with just 5 inches of yarn left!

 An eyelet hole big enough to pass my kerchief tie through...


My kerchief tie is now knotted so it will stay on my head as I go about my day...


Me, being silly as I model my newly finished head kerchief!

I crack myself up! ;)

I hope you are enjoying a fun-filled Valentine's Day today, no matter if you are partnered or not!

Pucca - my favorite animation character!

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Sunday Snippets...

Hello Dear Blog Readers!
It's Sunday Snippets - A peek at my week in pictures...








The highlight of my week:
Tinniegirl, the creator of Sunday Snippets, has returned to her blog this week! Be sure to stop by and say hello!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Creative Tidbits...

Hello Dear Blog Readers!
There is creativity brewing, literally as well as figuratively, around here so let me share a few peeks at what I've been up to in the past week...

In the Studio:
Adding furniture to my art supply organization...

...and trying to hang my collage banner over the window...

In sewing:
Prepping fabrics for washing so they don't fray and tangle up...

...adjusting the elastic to new pajamas...

...and making prayer flags for the Artful Journey Retreat...

In food:
A simple salad with rosemary almonds and olive bread with herb goat cheese - YUM!

Blueberry muffins for my honey who loves blueberries!


And Other Projects:
Re-dyeing a jacket in a different color...


Pressing flowers for future use in...something!

And there will be time spent getting things together for my upcoming workshop at LA Valley College taking place on Saturday...if I get enough sign-ups!

I am also looking into another venue for teaching some of my book making workshops. I'll report back when I have some news about that, so be sure to stay tuned!

PS: many expired items in my Etsy shop are now back on the shelves for sale, so stop by to check out what's available!