Monday, December 28, 2015

A hand sewn surprise...

corset top::wrap skirt

Hi there.  I am so excited to share the secret hand sewing project that took up many mornings in December.  I let my oldest (who is home from college) sleep in each morning while I quietly stitched this special surprise.  The skirt is made from two layers of mid weight organic fabric in plum and is soft and warm and super comfortable.  The shirt is made from two layers as well.  The bottom layer is mid-weight organic black knit and the top layer of fabric was a much loved but totally falling apart concert t-shirt from Lollapalooza 2007.  It was tucked away as a keepsake but stopped being wearable 2 or 3 years ago.  I snuck it out of her closet, mustered my courage, and cut it up hoping the project would turn out the way I planned.   It came out better than expected, fits her perfectly, and she absolutely adores it.  I love the process of sewing by hand and I really love the visible stitch work.  I have also made myself a long black skirt and was given a kit for the polka dot factory dress which I will start in a week or two.  I feel as though I've been on a creative walkabout with hand sewing.  I dove into these 1st projects with intention and a deadline, but now, with a few pieces under my belt, I'm ready to slow down a bit and integrate sewing into my creative process.  I'm looking forward to getting back to painting, finishing up some knitting and starting a new hand sewn project in the new year.  But, for the next few days, I am just hanging out and enjoying the company of my oldest before taking her back to school next weekend.  Wishing you all a peaceful end to the year full of beauty in all its forms.


Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Oh, the weather outside is frightful...

{holiday prep}

The weather outside is frightfully warm is more like it.  It's 60 degrees right now and severe thunderstorms are expected in the area tonight.  It feels like a California Christmas, which isn't a bad thing, just a bit disconcerting.  People in Michigan don't usually do last minute holiday shopping in Birkenstocks but I actually had mine on today.  It's been a busy couple of weeks with lots of secret sewing (which i will share after x-mss...shhh!), a last minute visit with two special friends, choir concerts, baking, cooking and wrapping.  I'm closing the Etsy shop until the new year and sending you warm wishes for a quiet end to 2015 filled with love and good will.


Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Hello, it's me...

MMuseumm (unexpectedly crowded)
looking up in Cortland Alley (gorgeous in the rain)
 Sara Berman's Closet (with random garbage)

Get it?  Honestly, I had not that heard that Adele song before Thanksgiving but then it kind of took over our road trip (in a good-laugh-out-loud-bonding-moment-kind-of-way).  We hosted a cast party for 60 Teenagers the night before we headed to Maryland to celebrate the holiday with C's parents. The days leading up to the trip and the days after we returned were crazy busy which is why I haven't been in this space much recently.  But, there is some good stuff going on here so I wanted to pop in to share a few things.  First, my oldest completed her 1st trimester of college and is home thru the new good to have her home for a bit.  Second I am taking on the challenge of making slow fashion even slower and hand stitching some clothing with two friends (more on that later.)  The third thing involves going to see Maira Kalman speak the week before Thanksgiving at the Michigan Theater.  She was authentic, witty and insightful and when she mentioned this installation she created in a NY alley, I felt compelled to see it in person, in the alley.  So....I mentioned my crazy idea to C, took swift action and altered our travel plans slightly. We headed up to NY from MD and saw Sara Berman's closet, Mmuseumm, stopped in to Purl Soho, ate at The Meatball Shop, visited The Drama Book Shop and (right across the street) Muji, saw Something Rotten the 1st night and then wandered around Bleeker St the next morning, stopping in at Bantam Bagels(for my Mom), Murray's Cheese Shop(for me) and an amazing Patisserie(for everyone) before heading to Pittsburg for a night and then heading home the next day.  It's amazing how much goodness you can squeeze into just under 24 hrs in New York.  The traffic was terrible on that Sunday and I don't think we will ever drive in holiday traffic again but I'm glad we did it this time.  Totally worth it.  So grateful for my husband's lovely family, my open to anything husband, my funny and fun road trip companions and to the amazing city of New York which lives up to the hype every time I visit.  So much to be thankful for and am trying to keep it all in my mind and heart.  We all need to find a light in the dark these days and spending time with loved ones and working with my hands is where I'm finding comfort.  Where is your light coming from this season?

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Morning light-

(a tiny objects piece in the works and the 1st snowfall)

Snow is still falling as I write and there are over 11 inches on the ground.  It is double what was expected, which has altered plans and cancelled events, but everything is illuminated and it is gorgeous.  Hello winter.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Water, water everywhere...

Being There


part of a work in progress

There are many things I love to paint but water is at the top of the list :)

Don't you love it...

when every day is soup day? 
Minestrone for the 1st part of the week and Winter Squash Bisque going into the weekend.

Warm wishes for a lovely weekend :)

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Dress No. 2

All of my projects over the past week have been like naughty children.  They begged for my attention and then played me. I spent the better part of Saturday getting kicked around by the Brioche Stitch.  I seriously cast on for this sweater four times.  Each time I thought I had the stitch figured out I would cast on 161 stitches and work a dozen rows but it never looked right.  Over and over it just wasn't right.  So I took a deep breath and tucked the pattern away for winter knitting.  Sometimes you just have to step away from the needles.  Then I moved on to Dress No. 2 which I wish I loved more.  I mean, I like it OK I just don't love it.  The fabric is blue and oatmeal tiny houndstooth check and its really  beautiful but it will take days for my eyes to recover from looking at it constantly and close up.  The neck line is lower than I like, the sleeves tuned out pretty well but could be taken in a bit more and it just looks a little too finished (but i put in sleeves!). I think with tights and tall boots Dress No. 2 will get a lot of wear over the next couple of months :)

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Pre Holiday SALE

Greetings from a day that does not feel at all like November!  Wearing a sleeveless sweater and sandals on this 72 degree day, I just delivered a bunch of work to Gallery 117 for their upcoming Holiday show.  And on the way home I decided to run a pre holiday sale in my Etsy shop.   If you are up for a little pre holiday gift getting or if you've had your eye on a special piece this is the time to save a little dough.  From now thru Friday November 20th all work is marked at 20% off the original price :)

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

A rare evening post....

Talking Blocks 9, 10, 11 & 12
all 4"x4"

The Long Winter
19.25 "x 19.25" 

Everlasting Everything 
13.25" x 13.25"

A rare evening post to say that I am still here, painting, teaching knitting, cooking, celebrating and enjoying all that this beautiful season has to offer.  I am working with a muted color palleted these days and experimented with framing my new work in white and am really loving the look.  These new works (and a few others) are going to The Ann Arbor Art Center's 117 Gallery for their special holiday shop event.  If your anywhere near Ann Arbor consider this an invitation to stop by the opening, say hello and take in lots of great new art in many forms.  

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Dress No.1

Dress No.1 is done and I'm smitten.  I left the pockets off and added an asymmetrical pleat on the front and three pleats on each side to create a 'ballon' type shape instead of an A-line shape and added some stitch work.   It fits perfectly, hangs beautifully and was pretty easy to make once I got the sizing right (the pattern sizing is very generous).  I have a few loose ends to finish up around here before I can start Dress No.2 but I already have it cut out and ready to go :)

happy almost weekend!

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

when we are all heard...

a new series in the works 
some small
some big
 all washed in the colors i am loving right now

Monday, September 28, 2015

Ah, yes, Instagram...

new lil' night swimmers 
(shown w/Night Swimmer No. 18)

I know I'm late to the party but I was looking for a way to change things up and a friend mentioned Instagram.  More photos, less words....I think I'm going to like it.  I'm going to post images and new work here and there for the next few weeks and see how it goes.  This place feels like home but it might be fun to travel down a new road to see where it leads...if you are on instagram you can follow me here.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Art Prize Is On People...


I drove to Grand Rapids, MI earlier this week to hang my work along with over 1500 other artists in a city wide celebration of art.  Art in office buildings, cafes, bars and retail shops and windows.  Sculptures and installations inside museums and outside in public plazas.  Art everywhere for everyone for just a few days. If you are anywhere near  the west side of the state I invite you to stop in and cast a vote in person. If you are not close enough to attend the event in person, you can cast a vote on line here: # is 61470.  I am so excited to be a part of this enormously vibrant, public, gorgeous effort to spread the idea that art starts conversations, nourishes the soul and is for everyone.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

So this happened...

(Shortly before it became official)

I am still trying to wrap my head around the fact that my 1st born child is now out in the world for reals.  The photo above was taken a bit before the president welcomed the class of 2019 in the sweltering heat.  Phoebe, Chuck and I had a great dinner the evening before, talked for hours and the next morning the move in went pretty smoothly (despite near 100 degree temps and a tricky laptop issue).  I am so excited to see this smart, strong and passionate young woman start her own journey. My role in her life is shifting and that is a big change.  I held it together while we were at school, but today, when we arrived home and I walked by her room, I lost it.  A wave of emotions washed over me as I begin to process this separation.  The boys go back to school Tuesday and there is lots of cleaning and organizing to do around here so I think I'm going to take a week or two to pull myself together, get back to work in the studio and think about what I want this blog to look like going forward.  See you back here in just a bit...

Friday, August 21, 2015

garden to table...

Sharing some beauty at the end of an ugly week.  Earlier this week I received a text from my bank asking about a rapid series of charges that emptied my bank account. My card was not lost or stolen but apparently someone skimmed my card # and wiped me out.  Thankfully, I was alerted quickly, called the bank, shut down the card and the disputed amount was put back into my account while an official investigation takes place over 60-90 days.  My new card will have a chip in it which will make it more difficult to skim but the whole thing just really wrecked a perfectly good week.  I spent much too much time thinking about the person that stole the number and the person who bought the counterfeit card and decided that I need to let it go. Posting the garden's goodness while enjoying the tomato salad in the middle for lunch as I type seemed like a good way to wrap things up.  A mole has taken out all the bush and climbing beans but everything else is in pretty good shape although things are looking a bit unkempt.  Late summer shabby is ok in the garden because two weeks from today we drive our oldest to college and we are squeezing in all kinds of quality family time.  All three of my kiddos start school after Labor Day and this year in particular it feels like a gift. Happy weekend.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Mo chairs...

Garden Party
20"x20"x1.5" framed

Did I tell you I planted a cutting garden this year?  I did (and it actually does look a little something like this) and if you lived closer I would invite you to sit and chat among the flowers and the monarch butterflies and the honeybees.  But since you don't live closer (and I don't actually have chairs in my flower bed) I will just say a quick hello and tell you that my vegetable and flower garden are bursting with color and yumminess and I can barely keep up with the zucchini and tomatoes.  And I will wish you a happy last month of summer and ask what beautiful and edible things you have coming up in your garden right now?

Saturday, August 1, 2015

A summer surprise...

This showed up in my inbox the other day and completely blew my mind...I had no idea my work was being used for the flyer!  I finished 'The Invitation' the week before I saw the call for art for the 'Chairs' and really felt the piece was destined for the show.  I was so happy when it  was juried into the show and happily sent the piece off to Northern California.  When this showed up in my inbox Wednesday night I was truly and completely caught off guard.  I wish I could attend the opening but having just been there a few weeks ago that is not ion the cards but it promises to be a fabulous show starring my new favorite subject :)  Surprises rock.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Two works in progress...

::new works in progress::

Hi there!  It's been quite a while since I've been here.  In fact outside of moving (which has happened a few times since I started this blog!) I think this is the longest I have gone without posting.  I would say I've missed it but actually the past few weeks have just flown by and I'm having trouble wrapping my head around the fact that August is at the doorstep.  Summer is in full swing here but camps, classes and concerts are over and we have a few weeks to relax and sink into a mix of lazy days, home projects and off to college shopping.   The garden is overflowing with zucchini and the 1st tomatoes have turned so there is sure to be plenty of good, fresh food and al fresco dining on the newly completed patio (yay!!!).  There is also time for playing games, binge watching Parks and Recreation and painting.  The photos above are two larger pieces I started this week.  They are 20" and 18" square pieces and my new Iwatani torch is so awesome for fusing paintings this size....why did I wait so long to try a torch?!? I hope summer is treating you well!!!

Monday, July 6, 2015

It's not always sink or swim...

Floating Under The Summer Sky

Sometimes it's OK to just stop, be still, and take it all in.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

talking blocks and a wild hare...

Talking Block No. 6
(i do)

Talking Block No.7
(be still)

Talking Block No. 8
(nature lover)

Wild Hare No. 7

I've been spending lots of time in the studio this week but the garden needs some serious tending.  The weeds are going crazy with all the rain and I need to get in there, clean things up, sew a few new seeds and put down a bit more coffee chaff.  The strawberries are all done, the blackberries are almost ready, the zucchini, pole beans and peppers are getting bigger.  The carrots, beets, kale and herbs are looking good and a few tomatoes are appearing.  Something ate much of the spinach and cabbages but left the rest of the lettuces alone and with the moderate temps they are continuing to grow.  I love having a garden but do not love weeding.  How about you...what's coming up in your garden?

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Magical realism...

Foggy Notion

Wild Blue Yonder

A few more magical dwellings for those who like to color outside the lines :)

Monday, June 22, 2015

City Blocks...

City Block No.2, No.3, No.4, No.5

Inspired by my trip to San Francisco or the 1st day of summer...maybe a little of both!

Celebrating 20 Years...

Chuck and I spent all of last week in Northern California celebrating 20 years of marriage.  The six years before our wedding (and our 1st two years of marriage) were spent in that gorgeous place. We had a really lovely time looking back and looking forward as we soaked up the sun, sampled new wines and enjoyed unbelievably yummy food.  Another milestone in this year :)

Thursday, June 11, 2015

It's all over and all just beginning...

mistake rib scarf::night swimmer::otherwise engaged No.1

Phoebe's high school graduation is over, the big dinner has passed, the relatives have all headed home and it's feeling just a bit too quiet here today.  The boys both finish up today and then the five of us will have a special dinner to celebrate the end of the school year followed by game night.  I have a feeling summer is going to pass a bit too quickly for all of us.  And then a big new beginning as we send Miss P off to much to process.  

Friday, June 5, 2015

the (new) object of my affection...

Near And Far

Games We Play

Everyone Is Welcome

A new subject with so much to say.
 Just finished these up :)

Happy Weekend!

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

The BIG picture (finally finished)...

Smoke Signals
31" x 62"

The smoke signal is one of the oldest forms of long distance communication. These visual messages billow across the sky carrying news, warning of danger, communicating joy and calls to gather. I am so happy to finally share this extra large two panel painting which has been a work in progress for a year and a half.  I completed it last month and I'm super excited to tell you that is has been chosen to be a part of Art Prize 2015!  Smoke Signals will be on Display here September 23- October 11th and if you are anywhere near Grand Rapids, MI I highly recommend checking out this family friendly, citywide art filled event. A city full of art and thousands of people taking it all and talking about it!!!

Monday, June 1, 2015

Someday Soon...

Someday Soon

I have a few new pieces to share over the next few days.  
I think this one speaks for itself.


Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Monday, May 18, 2015

just started...

new work on my new easel 
(thank you phoebe!)

I started this piece at 5:30 am yesterday and while it still has a long way to go I like the quiet energy it carries.  Many more layers of wax, oil stick and ephemera will be added and things will be covered and uncovered but it's heading in the right direction.   .