Friday, 31 December 2010

Bower bird brained

For a little while now I've been frustrated at the lack of space for me to come up with some creative ideas that I am finding interesting or satisfying. Now my physical space is always fairly cluttered and that doesn't generally bother me. I 'spose it's like my head crammed full of stuff and usually I like it that way. But recently my head has been over full and anyone who knows me would probably say that it is exactly like my house- FULL. Tim is quite a bower bird, actually he sees himself as a magpie but truly he is a bowerbird
bringing home all sorts of bits and pieces and scattering them about the place hoping to please me with their interestingness or prettiness. Chicky Babe has found an old "No Junk Mail" sign and posted it on the back door it now says "No Junk Mail Please!"
Anyway my head has been too full but I've been concentrating on trying to find some quiet in my head. I've been reading a couple of books about creativity. One is called The Confident Creative the other is 'The Artists Way' the second is a little 'new agey' but when you get past some of the excessive bits it has some great exercises to help 'unblock'.
So over the last couple of days I've started to play with some ideas for making jewellery combining my love of textiles and natural,recycled and found objects.

This one is hand stitched sari silk and recycled beads from old pearl necklaces.
Tim and I went walking along the beach yesterday looking for driftwood, pebbles and sea glass but unfortunately it is not really beach weather at the moment being summer or s(B)ummer. as Anki so rightly calls it. Beach weather to me is winter when the sea throws up so many beautiful bits of flotsam and jetsam.
Although I didn't find anything really interesting to work with I found a few bits and pieces to start playing with and practicing skills for when I do find something worthwhile and I got more exercise than I realized along the way!
Crochet pebbles as brooches or pendents- I'm just playing with the technique at the moment using the threads that I have on hand but I will experiment a little more with different threads and colours.

And then when I find some decent driftwood some of these...

This is very much a WIP! and a way of playing with ideas before they get lost in the clutter!

Wednesday, 29 December 2010

A so that was christmas...

I had two Christmas dinners at my place this year so the last two weeks have been a bit of a blur. There was the flurry of Christmas tidying which left us all worn out. Check out the look on poor Pablo's face.

I was going to print some tea towels for friends and family for Christmas this year but ran into a spot of bother with the inking of the print plate, so I abandoned that as a last cause. I have since had some advice from a friend who has done quite a bit of printmaking on fabric and she gave me some tips so I've put it on the back burner for now and will explore this technique later. So as I did not get the tea towels done I had to shop- ick! And I foolishly decided to make cloth serviettes for Anki with crocheted edges - 2 days before seeing her. I started out with a sensible number, 6. Then I thought what if she wants to use them as a Christmas thing being red and white and quite christmasy although not limited to Christmas. I reasoned that she would need at least 12 in that case. So at 4:30 on the morning before I was going to her place for a pre Christmas catchup I conceded defeat at 10. I did the 11th while sipping tea and enjoying cherry cake on her delightful deck but sadly the 12th has eluded me. (I still owe you one Anki and I will get there!) I was going to do a tablecloth like this one I am doing for myself too but that would have been pure lunacy in less than two days!
Christmas eve Tim decided to spoil the family with a new TV for Christmas. He had had a little bonus and as is in keeping with his generous nature he has shared it with us. The TV seemed smallish in the shop but it appears enormous in my little house! Scale is everything.

And even at almost 18 one can still play with the box! (I hope she never loses this playful streak!)
Here are some photos of things that took my fancy at Christmas time.
 Rays of light falling on the christmas tree...
 Reflections in the baubles...
The light falling on this lone blue chair. ( It really must have taken my fancy because I took several photos of this chair at different times.)
 Crisp folds in presents remind me of my grandfather. I was eight when he died but I remember he used to be in charge of the present wrapping. Not only at Christmas but I remember Christmas most vividly as when we returned from the northern territory he showed me how to create these lovely neat folds and every time I wrap a gift I think of him.
I read Anki's post and it made me think, I used to love Christmas too for a number of reasons- starting with our not being invited to share Christmas with my Dad's sisters on the first Christmas following Dad's death, although this had been the tradition for years before, my separation - and the muddle of working out of how to share the kids and my sister living far enough away to make it tricky, I have kind of come to fall out of love with it. At least when the kids were little I went to elaborate lengths to create magic for them I didn't have time to think about how I felt about it. I also think I used to get quite melancholic thinking well there goes another year and I'm still single, I haven't done x, y or z. This year has been much better but I am determined to try to fall in love with it again and start to create some new traditions that bring me joy.
This holiday I have decided to make an effort to make some stuff as that brings me joy too. On boxing day I started with this.

I've seen examples here and there on the net and remembered that I had an old case stashed on top of my wardrobe. It is not fancy yet, I will get round to lining it to make it pretty like the others I've seen but I needed to make sure it was functional first and that I had the right stuff in the case lid and in the boxes stashed within the body of the case. It is dedicated to my art journal, drawing, painting and printmaking and the like.
I've taken step by step photos so I will make a tutorial of how I did it at a later date.

PS. I really should have removed the post Christmas wine bottles off the table before making tutorial shots!

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Car update.

'Tis not the transmission as we had feared it could be. It is just something to do with the fuel getting into the engine or something of the like and it won't be scaringly expensive!
Thanks Christmas fairy!

Monday, 13 December 2010

My christmas wish...

I want a new car.
Well I want a car that goes.
A brand new one would be really nice but if mine would go that would be good. I decided to do a spot of christmas shopping yesterday on my way to pick up Chicky Babe from a sleep over. On the way to drop her home before continuing my shopping the car lurched and then the power ebbed. I told tim off for mucking about. It wasn't him. It made a couple of weird noises and then it stopped.
So since I've been a really good girl this year maybe santa will bring me a new car....
just putting it out there, maybe a nice lotto win.
I just bought myself a new bed which I thought was a HUGE extravagance. I wish I'd done it earlier, but I am as usual on the bottom of my spending list. The new one has no springs poking into me and I woke the last two mornings since I've had it without a huge back ache! MAGIC! The bed has a 10 year warranty so at $1890 it works out to be something ridiculous like 30c a night. I've decided I must be slightly crazy to have waited so long.
But the car is a really big expense. I was going to wait until my home loan came of it's fixed rate thingo (I set it when it was going up and up fearful that it would go up to 19% as it did in the eighties. I fixed it at almost 8% for 5 years while the kids were at high school thinking that at least I knew it was manageable on my income. Then it started to fall...and fall...and fall down to about 3%. I got a letter saying it will go onto the variable rate next month and I noticed that the amount I will have to pay is almost $100 less- enough for a car loan maybe. Now I have to decide what type of car to get. I've been looking at a GETZ. They are small compact but quite roomy inside still and run on the smell of an oily rag.
PS: I also wish for world peace.

Monday, 6 December 2010

Is this an aardvark?

Anki's little girl wants an aardvark for christmas. I read it in her blog and the very next day I found this fellow. I thought he was an aardvark
the lady in the shop thought he was a Kangaroo.

And for no reason at all - other than they looked like a funny face. 
Here are my eggs that I had for breakfast yesterday.