Monday, October 28, 2013

Cabaret du Monde...

Thank you Miss Lilla.  I am overwhelmed with the beauty of this book you have created.
Miss Lilla is Just Lilla on her blog.  I never refer to her as Just Lilla due to the amazing works of art she is always creating and sharing with all of us.  Her talents are many and very varied.  This book is dreamy!!!

The book as viewed from the back.  Don't you just have to peak inside?  I did!

There are pages and pages of French ephemera and little tags and labels and delicious papers.  Add vintage lace bits to the top and bottom of the cover and you have a divine treasure handmade by Miss Lilla herself.

This is the envelope Miss Lilla stitched around the edges to contain the beautiful French ephemera book "Cabaret du Monde".  I was very ecstatic to receive this and I am truly grateful.  Please visit Miss Lilla and her shop to see what amazing things she offers.  Miss Lilla also teaches at art venues which I have yet to be able to Art and Soul in Portland.  Her YouTube videos show how she creates many things and listening to her and the wild exotic birds that surround her home in Hawaii is a treat indeed.
Miss Lilla I am humbled by your gift of such beauty.  Thank you deeply.
Our weather turned cold and we are having soft rain falling.  The trees are denuding as the leaves drift downward awaiting raking and picking up.  Today is a lazy day for me and I am quite relishing my lack of energy to be productive.  Last evening we had a visitor.  Hearing of the impending rain Mr. C and I quickly brought in the patio furniture cushions and sunbrella.  We set them downstairs awaiting storage containment.  Later last evening in the dark we were watching our favorite program and something darted past my eyes.  "What was that" I shrieked.  Mr. C hadn't seen it as he was tending the fireplace.  We happened to be in the kitchen a short time later to eat a bite of dinner.  Oh how I screamed...just like it was Halloween!  A good sized black bat flew around the kitchen and all through the house.  We opened the french doors in both the kitchen and great room.  I gathered my full head of long hair under my sweatshirt hood and kept screaming each time he flew near me.  I finally saw him fly out the doors and ran over to shut them tight.  Mr. C closed the others as I yelled.  Not ten minutes later I was relaxed and let my hair down only to scream again as the bat flew right past me.  Up went the hair and Mr. C told me to exit the room and stop screaming.  I ran to the master bedroom and closed the double doors.  No bat with me.  Mr. C kept searching but never found him again.  I stayed behind closed doors all night.  Upon Mr. C inspecting every room this morning and declaring no bat I came out.  Why do I scream?  Out of sheer fright and the perception that my sound is my sonar and keeps them from landing on me.  I always scream when critters jump, fly, slither, or any other method of motion towards me.  We think the bat must have been in the closed sunbrella and came in with it. And my daughter had called me last week because she was afraid of four little bees in her house.  My bat trumps her bees!
Have a wonderfully creative week my friends.  Happy Halloween and BOO-tiful bliss to you...

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Nature, Halloween, Gifts...

Our day trip Sunday was not the best.  Up at 4:30 am too early with not enough sleep.  No sooner had we begun the twisty winding road and I got motion sick...really sick!  We stopped for me to walk around in fresh air.  Lots of roads and curves and unknown territory and we were getting closer to meeting up with the car club group.  Oops...where did he come from?!!  Mr. C got a speeding ticket and I felt really bad for him.  He was only going 73 mph and had just passed a truck in a passing lane.  DRAT!  The day never got any better and we skipped the two wineries and paid for lunch to make the long drive home.  Thankfully we came home via less horrible roads.  I went to bed and lost the rest of the day.  On our way home we stopped at our favorite bird sanctuary and enjoyed the peaceful surroundings. Nature and Fall in glorious splendor.

Here are my Halloween "Pretty Witches" I received in Kimberly's ArtJoyStuff swap.   These are fabulous. Thank you to (L to R) Michelle, Kimberly, Carolyn, Sylvia, Kimberly.  These are displayed with my table decorations.  I adore them.

I received very happy mail.  I commented on Becky Shander's  blog post about beach finds and she offered to share hers with me since I don't live near the beach.  How very generous.  This is how she cleverly packaged my treasures.

These shells and tiny driftwood pieces are beautiful.  They truly mean so much coming from a dear creative soul and friend.  I have never met Becky however I feel very close to her and her muse.  Thank you dear.

This is the amazing surprise she created and gifted to me.  With my love of needle and thread and sewing and how she put together this tiny collage I am truly smitten.  Becky you have made my heart sing with joy and love.  Thank you beyond words.  If you are not familiar with Becky's art just get a copy of the latest Somerset Handcrafted magazine.  Her sweet simple necklaces are on the cover.  The cover!!!
A new week is rushing along.  I am so far behind I really must re-prioritize my to do list.  I have not forgotten the thank you's I owe and have yet to accomplish.  I did take a day last Saturday to go down the hill and visit with my sister and my niece.  I had not seen my niece for about a decade.  Megan you looked beautiful and I very much enjoyed our visit.  Marie and Meg and I tried a new place for lunch and it was delicious.  Gave us lots of time to chat and catch up.  I am blessed to have such a wonderful sister and niece.
Where was I?  Oh yes, more than behind...yet here I sit at my computer posting my blog.  Well, you see I feel blogging is very important and I enjoy it very much so for me it is not time wasted.  That's my story!
This is our last of perfect weather.  Colder temps are on their way.  Winter is sneaking in on the remains of Fall.  Safe and Happy Halloween celebrations this weekend.
Christmas creating is in full swing on the blogs I follow.  Here not so much.  I will catch up...I will...I will...
Blissful days and nights to all...

Friday, October 18, 2013

Sewing Mitered Borders...

For as many years as I have been sewing I never learned so many things.  I am wanting to finish a project and will share it in the future (when it is completed).  I purchased my fabric.  Then I began to think about how it would look.  I decided to really put thought and effort into my finished project and not just do a Q & D (Quick and Dirty) finish.  Sew...  I decided to do a trial run with test fabrics.  Here is a panel I bought just because it was cute.  I selected a couple of coordinating fabrics from my extensive stash.  I like the look. Then I YouTubed a solution to my method.

Aha...the mitered border corner.  Thank you to YouTube and Fons & Porter for this excellent method. Very easy to follow.  I also learned that my Nook Color ereader works as a tablet and allowed me to watch the video right at my sewing machine as opposed to running back and forth to the computer office room to view the old desktop.  You see I am not current with anything remotely i...iPod, iPhone, iPad.  I keep begging but Mr. C knows I am not technical.  Mr. C is old school and that is just fine with me.  Okay enough pity party...

Here is my trial piece.  It could become a pillow top...or a small wall hanging...or a cheerful tote...or...
I realize you get what you pay for.  This panel was purchased from "table yardage" that is not on the bolt and therefore less expensive.  The actual panel square is not square!  The panel ends at the striped border.  I adjusted for the out-of-square by cutting precisely 1 inch of striped border all the way around.  For a test piece this works.  However I would not use this in a fine project.  Just a note of caution...

Here is my added floral and red border that I strip pieced and then finished in a mitered corner.  I am very pleased with my results.  After doing the four corners I believe I am ready to tackle my real project.  Even Mr. C was impressed with the miters.
Falling into Autumn Bliss weather continues as the leaves are all shades of glorious colors and falling fast.
This weekend we are taking a road day trip which should be lots of viewing and enjoying Fall and friends.
Projects are awaiting my participation.  I don't understand why they don't finish themselves after I have gotten everything out and ready.  Where are those studio elves?
I have the smell of cloves in my studio and the aroma is pure JOY!  I will also share why soon.
Welcome to my new followers and Grateful Thanks to my faithful followers.  Your comments keep me motivated.  Creative Bliss and Happy Hearts...

Monday, October 14, 2013

Preparation Is Key...

Here is another Market Bag that I recently sewed.  I felt I needed to have an Autumn colored bag to brighten my shopping chores.  I was also making a Market Bag for Sisty for her upcoming birthday.

Most projects need lots of preparation.  Painting a room is one that comes to mind.  Clear the room, clean the walls and woodwork, mask everything with paper and tape, etcetera until you finally get to the painting.  I find sewing is also something that requires lots of prep work.  My projects always go much smoother and come out much nicer when I take the time to prep.

After all the cutting and pressing and labeling I sit at my trusty machine and sew.  When I have items that can be "daisy-chained" that is what I do.  It saves on thread and makes the process a lot quicker.  Just sew a seam on one item and keep sewing until all like pieces are completed for that step.  These are pockets.

I really like the process of selecting coordinating fabrics from my stash.  I have lined this with muslin.  This combination really says Autumn.  This is the bag I made for Sisty.  Her birthday is in November.  I included a large side pocket and this one has pockets on both front and back.  I also put pockets inside.  One can never have too many places to organize coupons, glasses, wallet, small food items and such.  The large side pocket holds a wine bottle or a stalk of celery or ???

Another view of the other side with pocket.  These are good sized bags and very sturdy.  I put a separate bottom sturdy piece that is covered in vinyl cloth and removable for cleaning...just in case the milk drips.  I have fun coordinating my clothes with my Market Bag when I go shopping.  My friend makes similar bags and sells them for $20 each.   These are a lot of fabric and even more time in cutting and preparation and sewing.  Her customers are truly getting a bargain I feel.  Yes, one can buy market bags for 99 cents and up but they are terribly generic and boring and not very sturdy.  I prefer to be unique and create my own.  I also think they make extremely nice gifts.  Please tell me your thoughts...
We had a sprinkle of rain but nothing measurable.  Gorgeous Autumn weather continues.
Thank you to my newest followers.  I appreciate each and every follower.  I read every comment and truly look forward to them.  Mr. C says I am addicted and I say that is not a bad thing.  Blogging opens my world and connects me with such talented and creative and generous souls.  I am very grateful.
Now where did I put all those lists I actually wrote out?  I really should get busy.  I am so far behind on so many things.  I owe some very serious thank yous to some wonderful gifts I have received lately.  Please know I have not forgotten each of you.  I am working on these this week.
My daughter invited us to her First Halloween Party and listening to her plans it will be epic!  We won't be able to attend but I am certain I will hear squeals of delight and horror from 500 miles away.  I am so thankful she is enjoying life and living it fully.  My granddaughters will be helping her and enjoying also.
May you be enjoying BOO-tiful days and Creative ways...

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Brother Sister Family Time...

Family time is so important.  Especially as we are in our sunset years.  Living miles apart makes the visiting less frequent.  So this past nine days we spent time catching up.  Photo above is Cousin Nancy (far left) who drove from Bishop CA to visit and spend three days.  Next to Nancy is Joanne (Sisty) who is Mr. C's sister.  She and her husband Tom (far right) live in Arkansas.  Mr. C is in the blue denims.   Sisty and Mr. C are 18 months apart.

Sisty loves to garden and is very involved in her local garden club.  So we took her and Tom to my favorite place.  High Hand Nursery just down the hill an hour from us.  We had a lovely lunch in the Conservatory and then toured the grounds and shops.  You can check out the link I included.

Here we are enjoying Fall colors on a drive to Truckee and South Lake Tahoe.  The weather was spectacular.  Another day of just spending quality time together.

This is a view of Truckee Donner Lake.  Breathtaking!  There was fresh snow on the higher mountains.

Here is my favorite photo at High Hand.  Mr. C didn't know I took this photo which are my favorite kinds.  I prefer the natural shots to the staged ones.

Here are brother and sister along with her husband as they reminisce over family photos.  You know the old black and whites with very stern faces.  Sisty is the family historian.  Mr. C isn't much into any of this.
We had a good visit and are thankful to have been able to spend quality time together.  Did I mention that we all like to eat?  We did a lot of eating and enjoying family, friends and food.
I missed blogging and tried to stay up with a very few I follow and leave comments on.  Now I shall have to get caught up without going backwards.
Fall is in full leaves raining down mode.  We skim the pond constantly to keep the oak leaves out as they get wet and sink to the bottom and create "black tea" which is nasty smelling and ruins the water clarity and properties.  We took our annual Fall Colors drive through the area and saw beautiful trees, vines and bushes. Everything from greens to yellows, oranges, reds and burgundy.
I am seeing lots of Christmas encroaching on Halloween and Thanksgiving.  I feel very unprepared for the holiday season.  My to do lists are sitting undone.  I made out the lists which was a good step for me however I feel overwhelmed with doing nothing towards them.  This week I think I shall rest and create. Happy Hearts are Creative Hearts and Creative Hearts are Happy Hearts.  My Heart will be Happy!
Blissful Creating to All...

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Tools, Material, Technique...

Mr. C knows what a fabulous studio and cutting table I have...after all he built it for me.  He also knows where most of my tools are stored as he needs to borrow them from time to time for his workshop projects. (You do know I hide my good scissors!)  Yesterday he said to me, "I need you to cut me some gaskets."  Okay then.  He hands me a roll of gasket "material".  Now this is not fabric material like you sew with.  It is a papery kind of material.  I got out my tools and listened for my instructions.  The very first thing he said was, "I haven't seen these scissors before!"  Oops...busted.  I thought real fast and said, "Honey, you always say you have to have the proper tools to do the job with."  "These scissors are the proper tool to cut gaskets with."  Then he reads the name on the scissors..."T!m Holtz" and knows I am hopeless about buying scissors.

I traced around the parts and cut them out.  My new scissors cut like butta!  Mr. C is liking my skills at cutting gaskets.

Many trips back and forth to the "Toybox" workshop and we have gotten the holes just right.  Using his Dremel we enlarged and sanded the holes as my hole punches weren't exactly the correct size.  You can see I also used my Fiskars Micro-tip scissors as they are easy to get into a tight spot and I am familiar with them. Now Mr. C can continue with his project.  I haven't revealed it yet.  It is a massive project and will take time.  I will show progress soon.  Thankfully I have a cutting table and tools that are versatile and able to keep everyone happy and busy with projects.
Somehow my days are very busy and I haven't gotten much done home-wise.  Sewing and glittering and gluing have taken a back seat.  I have many projects awaiting my attention.  Soon...I promise myself.
Falling into Autumn is in full colorful leaves falling mode here.  Cooler weather and we had some rain.  I hope each of you are able to enjoy your surroundings and revel in the magic of Nature.
Happy Creative Hearts...