Thursday, 31 December 2015

home


Cook and Ratatouille are besotted with this dainty lass, who arrived here last week thanks to friend M; Ratty claims to be in love as well, although I suspect he enjoys his biscuits even more than he does gazing at the girl! It does mean there's a lot less cooking going on than required, however as there are so many beings here these days, more and more chip in to lend a hand at whatever needs doing, so nobody's hungry if that's what you're worried about.


in between christmas and the new year´s celebrations a small box-like package arrived from Grace of Windthread, amongst other things it contained this small shelter made from a tiny gourd! Our Frowning Frog quickly jumped in and although his expression might suggest otherwise, he says he's very happy with the swinging contraption; for the time being it's hanging in the OldBirdKing's bedroom, perhaps we'll move it outdoors once the nights get warmer and he can sit there star-gazing.
As can be seen, many have gathered in OBK's room, not just for the photo-shoot, they just love being close to him, so I have laid quilts and blankets on the floor and now many of those who choose so can sleep close to him.

notice the teeny tiny dog next to Patch?

I call this one HOME
- it started out as a walk with the dog and then became something else, as is often the case - 


the double glass frame measures 21x26cm

wishing you all the best for 2016


Thursday, 24 December 2015

From wandering in the woods & to pondering in the mind



As I look back and see my younger me, I have a few regrets, for example:
Why didn’t she just grab what was in front of her and take that particular risk?
I would now, why not then? there isn't an answer......fffffffast forward............

They say with age wisdom grows, I’m not so sure about that. What I do know is I am more grateful for what is:
From a solitary state of being in the studio, albeit surrounded by small – dare I say magical – beings, to mundane office-life full of other folks, with their own stories, desires and needs;
from days filled with chores and walks with Django, tea with close friends to long nights full of reading, love-making and sleep.






Fortunately, life these days makes more sense than it ever has.



happy holidays where ever and with whomever you are 



the magnificent Paul McCartney in London 2015 'Maybe I'm amazed' as am I!

Saturday, 12 December 2015

fullness of life

early Saturday morning an owl's nesting box ready for inspection from the BirdWatch Folks; it faces south east away from prevailing winds and incoming rain! We can see it from one of the kitchen windows and hopefully we'll see owls flying in and out this coming year; it's placed on the right where the two big trunks separate just above the ivy-line, as it's painted dark green it is a difficult thing to see in this particular photograph 
Margaritifera auricularia

or as we say in Dutch: rivier mossel, roughly translates as river clam

why have I never properly noticed them before? certainly not enough to want to bring them back home; perhaps because there were so many lying about as I wandered into the fields this morning, where my presence chased away a flock of Canada geese, and as they flew up I saw all these empty shells along the canal's edge.
The insides are so pretty with their rainbow-shine: pearlescent



Maybe the colours reminded me of the latest dye-result, this T-shirt I dyed as a present for N. it's his birthday today, we'll be popping over later.
 there's avocado peel, red and yellow onion skins, coins and washers clamped, plus tea bags and a very much diluted walnut residu all in the magic mix here, fixed with a drop of vinegar and washed with coconut hand soap, to make it smell nice!

 as the days are really falling in on themselves, day becomes night all too soon, as can be seen in the photo below, where the window pane appears to be black and it's barely past 5 p.m.
this small journey I call MoonDog is also a present, this one's a going-away gift for our external coach who will be leaving us next week; images taken against a dark and a light background, so you get a better idea of the actual colours, or so I hope....

MoonDog 2015
appr. 9x23cm

the 'black' block is actually dark grey linen


meanwhile, a christmas tree of sorts has arrived in the OBK's kitchen; went for lunch at a friend's  yesterday and came back home with this bonsai glass bead tree; added a few baubles of our own, hey ho the happy season is upon us! at last, they sigh..............

Sunday, 6 December 2015

say yes to the dress


dress finally out of the dye pots; after the first dip I decided the lower half needed more umpf, as I wasn't happy with the hem part and the middle, which is a bit too 'heavy' in comparison with the rest.....and so back into the dye pot overnight.




as I still wasn't satisfied with the waist, I added a textile paint print with the 'rolling pin-branch' and now it has more depth/life








small cloth path, a landscape
knowing you would like to see me wearing the dress: tada!
you can't tell from the photo, but I've kept my trousers on here and that works, so I could wear it as a dress ánd as a longish kind of shirt-dress, so it could be worn almost all year round


detail of a small cloth, with ragged patches which have been stitched on to try and achieve an integrated look; the dog was first drawn with a marker in one go (scary) and sewn with just one thread as the marker also offers definition, just to see how and if this works

Saturday, 5 December 2015

a love song













 a completely hand-sewn cotton dress, 'tis in fact 'the Curlew dress' from the Merchant & Mills workbook I bought on holiday in Edinburgh last summer; it went from being pure white all-over to mauve waves at the bottom of the sleeves and the hems of the actual dress part after a night of having been partially plunged into the aluminium pan with avocado-peels, and I think an old walnut remnant plus coin-clamps, the clamps are all still in place around the neckline which is itself still submerged, so there's no telling what that looks like for the moment.
The Curlew dress is as I type, further developing in two pots: the lower half is now dipped in the copper pot, with apple twigs plus tea/onion fluids......I want to add depth to the first stains....this is all very exciting for me, I can hardly wait to take the dress out and let it reveal it's true colours. I'm hoping for what I like to call a landscape feel, and wearing it I will be walking in my self-created earth inspired attire. 

I couldn't be creating like this if I hadn't met the man I am now married to, as I wouldn't be living here with my own personal space, the studio.
I sometimes ask him 'oh my, what would you do if we hadn't met?'

'look for you' he says

so this song is for him







Sunday, 22 November 2015

goodness



 another small strip, there are quite a few now, to me this one resembles a path, so for now that will be it's name; sometimes people say things to me that instantly hit a nerve, stuff that seems so obvious I wonder why I hadn't thought of saying this to my self; recently my coach in the office said a really nice thing to me, she said I am capable of looking at myself with love; now that is a big deal to me.....and I have been mulling it over ever since, I try to see if I feel it and weigh the thought in my mind. 
I do, feel it that is and more importantly, I also try to look at others with this same attitude: one of love.....
not easy after the attacks in Paris last weekend, however I do believe that looking with a sense of love at another person is the only way out of violence, of any kind, 'cos there is lots of that around
fortunately we have a Dog, who makes me step away from too grandiose ideas about self and a walk in the woods with His happy-go-lucky presence brings me back down to earth

as November becomes colder (finally) the wood burner glows orange, offering comfort to all the studio's occupants and heat for the dye pot (apple and tea)

mrs. Simpson, meanwhile is busy in the OldBirdKing's kitchen, making stew with the help from a small blue Owl - he's on the plate on the stove - mind you don't burn yourself small blue Owl!
the tiny kittens aren't really helping, however the geese seem to enjoy their playful presence and so mrs. Simpson doesn't mind either


another remark that got stuck inside my mind, wasn't directed specifically at me, it was made by Grace in a post a long while back, so I couldn't say where; she mentioned how suddenly she had realised, in the making of a cloth, what Jude had meant when she said how basting two pieces of fabric together make them as one, and this occurred in this cloth on the right in the pic above, where the grey square meets the tiny strip next to it and they have merged in this sense together with the grey linen backing cloth.
the black dog isn't truly black, just an outline with specks, will have to think of something else in the next cloth!

this year's small Autumn cloth is finished, below you can see it hanging beside last year's
this one is a lot busier: reflecting my state of mind perhaps?
this weekend has been the first in a long while I had Nothing planned, so two whole glorious days of having to do nothing...just being here: