Friday, February 26, 2010

Hearts, houses and hookin'...

"Muse" up in Napa Valley sent me a note..."send more heart pins, only one left!" So I got to work last night and hooked up these little hearts. Now to turn them into pins and send them on their way.
And I finally finished the house on the right and need to fill in the other one. I think these will be small wall pieces, but I sort of like them together!
Monday night we had our monthly meeting of the Creative Females at Anne's home. Maren brought her new style of quilting called the "Tile" technique. I got to see all of her completed squares and they are gorgeous!
Close up of one of her quilt squares.
Love Katie's completed. She made it using her "left-overs"..what great colors!
Annie, who is off to Portland gave us a show of her hooked pieces that she plans to sell. All food and kitchen related, bright and cheerful, there are about three or four more!

Carol brought her knitting...and has been busy playing a lot of Bridge!
Penny shared a new piece of her "Circle" series....12" squares-hooked "paintings"!
Anne S. is taking lots of jewelry classes and shared this fun enameled heart necklace she made.
Our cookie exchange was a big hit. We made cookies to share and included the recipe for everyone to take home. I made peanut butter bars from Joy of Cooking-rich, but yummie.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Hooking and spinning..

New owl that I just finished up last night. My son thought he looked a little angry.
Saturday was the perfect day for a drive over to Solvang to the Art Clinic for Syd's" Spin-in."
Several new spinners tried their hand on the 3 wheels available to try out. I already know how to spin but my wheel from the 1970's hasn't been working lately so I brought it over for help.
Luckily Syd's husband, Earl was there and he fixed my wheel for me. I am so happy to be able to use it again. There is nothing quite like handspun wool to work with and the act of spinning is so meditative and has that feeling of an ancient connection that goes way back in time.
Draft horses taking folks for a ride just outside the studio.
Artists and spinners at work with Earl in the background fixing my wheel. Thank you, Earl!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Wool gathering

Just had to show you these little wool acorn charms with faces before I mailed them off to the Artfest Charm Swap. I spent last night stitching and gluing while watching the Olympics. We each had to make 25 charms and the organizer will put them onto a necklace for us. I couldn't resist because the charm swap we did at Artfiberfest a few years ago resulted in this cool necklace that is hanging in my art studio.
Fiber charm swap from ARtfiberfest..
Yesterday I headed down to Ventura for Annie's wool giveaway and sale. She is moving to Portland, OR and needed to clear out her storage locker filled with wool. On the way I decided to stop in at The Treasure Hunt fabric store and see if they had any felt beads. No beads but lots of beautiful new fabric! Hard to visit a fabric store without buying at least something! I got a few fat quarters, some wool felt squares, one bag of wool roving and I was on my way.
Only some of the Kaffee Fassett fabric they have. When Kaffee was here last year he said this store had the best selection of his fabric he had ever seen, even more than he had at home!
Some fresh new Spring colors....I had to buy a little of the squirrel fabric on the left....
On down to Annie's locker, a room full of wool...she had two large trash bags of felted sweaters for me to take home. I filled another bag with wool for hooking and the other hookers also filled bags to take home. I resisted the handwoven wool above...but found lots of other fun things to work with.
Just a little of Annie's wool stash....good for dyeing..
A few of us hookers at the, Pepa, Barbara, and Fran. Annie took our picture.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Trip to No. California

I had a great four day weekend driving up to No. California to visit friends and relatives. The hills of the great central valley were green from all the rain we've been having and the wild flowers are starting to come up. Lupine, mustard and a few poppies added color to the verdant hillsides along Hiway 101. I went straight to my aunt and uncles home for some great conversation and catching up and then off we went for a delicious dinner at Cappilini's with my cousin, Laurie and her husband David. The next morning we went to the San Mateo Farmers Market. So fun to see the different things they have that we don't in Santa Barbara. Lots of beautiful flowers, fresh vegetables along with fresh baked goods froma French bakery in Burlingame. We grabbed a few goodies for our breakfast enjoyed in the garden outside before heading back up to my aunt and uncles.
Beautiful fresh vegies....
Vine ripened tomatoes...
They even had a few cupcakes!
On Saturday we drove over to Woodside and had a fun lunch at Buck's, one of my relatives favorite spots. It is covered from floor to ceiling with crazy statues and all manner of odd things.

Giant carved fish sculpture outside Buck's...
We managed to connect with an old family friend, Christopher Richard, who is the curator of aquatic biology at the Oakland Museum of California. He brought his friend Nelia over and we had a great reunion after many years. Our mothers were best friends and we spent many days playing together when we were little. This is Chris, my cousin Laurie, and Uncle Dicko and me.
We spent the whole day together and after lots of hugs headed back to Laurie and Davids for dinner and watched the DVD "Across the Universe". Monday morning I had to head for home, but not before checking out some fun shops in Palo Alto. I enjoyed a show at the Modernbook Gallery and had a delicious Mayan mocha from the Coupa Cafe and headed on down the road
for home.
I took a little detour so I could visit Cambria, one of my favorite places and stopped in to check out "Birds of a Feather" a wonderful little shop with antiques, ribbon, books, cards and many other one of a kind treasures. While there I spotted some felt hearts from Charlotte Lyons and Marny Cardin's lovely french knot creations.
Inside "Birds of a Feather"...
Charlotte's hearts!
I got a warm cup of Chai latte to go and was home in 2 hours in time for dinner with my boys!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Hearts around the house...

One of my favorites, a small heart painting by Syd McCutcheion.
hearts and other things on my kitchen bulletin board...
heart rocks and a coral heart from Bali...
heart art from Justin many years ago....
heart box from Jason and glass heart
Wishing you a wonderful Valentine's Day weekend.
I'm off on a trip to visit relatives in the Bay area, see you next week!

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Flower garland

Making a little flower garland has been on my art "to do" list for quite a while. I finally made one and may put it up in my kitchen window. I think maybe three or four would be even better. I used hand cut felt and silk flowers on a red linen string. It makes the house feel like Spring is here. And it did yesterday...but right now it is cold and snow is starting to fall...definitely a day for some hot chocolate.

Sunday, February 07, 2010


Hooked another heart just for fun...close up ...and...
the whole funky shape.
Today the cats are enjoying a nap in the warm sunshine on the couch top while the boys watch the Super Bowl.

Saturday, February 06, 2010


One of the wonderful things about the internet is finding creative spirits whose work you love.
Elizabeth Armstrong in Melbourne, Australia is one of those fiber artists who makes the most incredible felt pieces and also teaches workshops in her home studio. We just completed our second art trade and she made me this lovely piece. I just had to share it with you! She dyes her own wool and makes all kinds of things with it. Of course she tucked in a bunch of other fun stuff-roving, yarn, a journel, hand dyed silk fiber to play with...I'm a lucky girl!
And look what sweet Marie Thayer sent me! A hand quilted "tea cup cozy"! She even stitched a secret message on the inside and named it "Dream time". Marie always leaves me the nicest comments and that makes my day!
In addition to blogland there is Facebook. I found Magaly Ohika there and fell in love with her art. I had to order a few things from her Etsy shop including this print and the funny cat below. She also tucks in a few surprises to make you smile.

Charlotte Lyons is an artist, author and teacher that Pam Garrison introduced us to at Artfiberfest last year. So fun to be with, she and Pam kept us laughing until the wee hours of the morning. She will be teaching this Spring at the Mary Englebreit workshops-wish I was going, but Syd and Sukey will be giving us a full report. We did some fun trades through the mail including this great little fiber collage piece. I love how she used a canvas to make a sort of shadow box.
Colleen knows that I love hearts and gave me this cool folk art piece from India. I love the little angel on the bottom..
And somehow Syd found this vintage paper doll set for me, probably as old as I am!
It is dangerous and delightful to have a friend who owns a bakery! Especially if it is the Solvang Bakery...Susan Halme generously filled a gift box with 3 boxes of treats that she knew I would love. I managed to send some along with Jason to take to his college friends so I wouldn't eat everything! They happily devoured what came their way.

Syd added a new gnome to the vintage ones that she had already given me. Hand carved- they are only inches tall and have little felt clothing.

My boys came through and made me hand made birthday cards. After I picked up Justin from school I headed off to Goleta Beach for a walk while he worked on homework. I couldn't resist adding two new Yarn tags to the tree there. Today when I went for a slightly rainy walk someone had tucked some flowers into one of the tags!
And as I headed out for my walk I heard this man say, "There's a seal in the men's bathroom!" Well, I had to take a look and yes, there was a large sea lion heading into the men's bathroom. The Sea Mammel Rescue Squad was called and they netted him and took him off to feed and bring him back to health. A little excitement on the waterfront!
So now back to major house cleaning. The boys are having some friends over for Super Bowl and with house construction and all I got a little lazy. At least now I can actually walk around in my Art Room!
And just want to say Thank YOU! for all the nice Birthday Wishes...I appreciate each and every one !!!