Sunday, August 30, 2009

A tale without words...


from Larissa LaLi


from Krista Steinke


Alice Embroidered Book Brooch from The Little Orchard, Three Blind Mice Wooden Pin from Bright Color Art, Three Little Kittens Copper Journal Necklace from E K Creations, Humpty Dumpty Silver and Porcelain Necklace from Elsie Owl, Quite Contrary Stamped Pendant from The Turtle Dove, Snow White Resin Ring from Delicious Designz


Instructions for illuminated canvas here.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Life is a song

Handpainted Piano by Laura Mostaghel

Life is a song that's for sure. Sometimes a sweet one. Sometimes discordant. Sometimes we can play by ear. Sometimes we need to follow slowly and carefully note after note. And sometimes we just need to close the instrument up, stow away the sheet music, and be quiet for a while.

Yes I'm been quiet - and quite unproductive - this week. But I did manage to put this little web flip book together. Using my photos and verse, I'm made 'Holding On' for the Three Muses challenge this week - Lending A Hand. I think this can also fit this week's Melange 'Abundance' challenge.

Many mixed media artists use sheet music in their work. One of the most inspiring art works that I've seen lately is this seed bead embroidered piece from mixed media artist Peggy Dembice.


It's not difficult to get inspiration for a little decorating with sheet music art. Or, for just a few dollars (yes it's true!), you can purchase these.


Custom Made Paper Rose from Ragnaz Idnar, a Halloween Crown from Vintage Market Place, 25 butterflies from With A Twist.

You don't haved to do anything with sheet music that has great graphics and colors. Just frame it up. This one is from Galleria Designs.


Any post that mentions the piano would have to include my favorite D H Lawrence poem, 'Piano'. This poem always transports me back to my grandmother's lounge room where I sit and listen to her play.

Softly, in the dusk, a woman is singing to me;

Taking me back down the vista of years, till I see

A child sitting under the piano, in the boom of the tingling strings

And pressing the small, poised feet of a mother who smiles as she sings.

In spite of myself, the insidious mastery of song

Betrays me back, till the heart of me weeps to belong

To the old Sunday evenings at home, with winter outside

And hymns in the cosy parlour, the tinkling piano our guide.

So now it is vain for the singer to burst into clamour

With the great black piano appassionato. The glamour

Of childish days is upon me, my manhood is cast

Down in the flood of remembrance, I weep like a child for the past.

ps A couple of sweet songs arrived in the post for me this week. These exquisite tags arrived from Marcie from The Rustic Victorian. Such attention to detail and oh those vintage ribbons! I can see these being quite at home draped over an old bird cage I have. Janice from Papier Valise has sent a little surprise package of goodies for playing with. Lucky me!

And just as special to me are your comments and emails. They are a precious song. I hope your week has been filled with some sweet music moments.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Too busy reading to do a proper blog post...


Once upon a time... from Capucha on Vimeo.

Listen to a story from Capucha, a delightful little French girl and consider visiting the Vimeo link above to donate to the Capucha Project, part of Edurelief's efforts to bring books to children in Mongolia.


A Wonderful Place, a book about breastfeeding from Wonderful Place, Old Library Catalogue from Brm 28, Tote Bag from Pocket Carnival, Glam Glasses from Time Bomb Vintage

Top photograph is the work of the talented Aimee Stewart.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Hookin up

Brisbane's Own Mimsy’s Trailer Trash Tattoo Caravan

Sure, we have vintage caravans here in Australia. Tattooist Mimsy Gleeson's
1959 Qualicraft above is a little cutie. There's even a
Club for vintage caravan owners here. But when it comes to the iconic Airstream, there aren't many about.

These caravans (or trailers) are travelling works of art. Originating in the 1930s in Ohio, USA,
Airstream trailers are easily recognized for their distinctive rounded alumunium bodies. One of my blog friends in the US is an Airstream devotee. An Interior Designer and Artist, Judith Thibaut manages to add class to any interior she tackles - including her Airstream. See more Airstream photos at Judith's flickr site.

If you just want a taste of the Airstream lifestyle, you could holiday at an Airstream Hotel. And not just in the US. If you happen to be heading to South Africa, this fleet of Airstream trailers is positioned on the rooftop of the Grand Daddy Hotel, overlooking Cape Town's Table Mountain and the city below. You can choose from themes such as Love of Lace, Dorothy, and Afro Funk.


Or, just get a little taste of the pink flamingo lifestyle with these.


1. The Mod Shop 2. Birdie 1 3. Crafty Guys 4. BA Kid Again 5. Blitz Knitz 6. Lush Punk

And no, not a flamingo, but a little winged poppet for Melange's 'Flight' Challenge and for the Three Muses Challenge. A miniature quilt titled 'She could not see what all the fuss was about' - photo transfer, embroidery, detachable felt bear.

Monday, August 17, 2009


Want free high quality art prints? Head on over to Feed Your Soul. Each month artists are invited to participate and to contribute a print which is totally free and available for download. This project is coordinated by Jen Wallace of Indie Fixx to help art lovers feed their souls with art in these recessionary times and to help artists promote their work. The prints offered are continually updated so check back often. Below are some of the artists who have contributed so far.

1. Victoria Usova 2. Melody Seal 3. Flossy Particles 4. Gemma Correll 5. Valentina Ramos 6. Shira Sela 7. Elsa Mora 8. Mandy Sutcliffe 9. Ryan Berkley

Want free poems already printed into tiny books? Visit Poems For All! Meant for scattering around town – ‘on buses, trains, cabs, in restrooms, bars, left along with the tip; stuffed into a stranger's back pocket. Whatever. Wherever. A project of the 24th street irregular press, which cranks them out to be taken by the handful and scattered like seeds by those who want to see poetry grow in a barren cultural landscape’. You can submit your poems, or opt to receive some in the mail for the cost of the postage. I didn’t have US stamps but had some left over US currency from an overseas trip so sent a dollar and received a bunch. Here's a current one, The Artists's Duty by Kenneth Patchen.


Want a little movie? Maybe it's about freeing ourselves. Finding where we belong. Who we belong with. Accepting our own unique beauty. Thriving.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Quotes Poems Love


Once again the Melange Team had me fossicking among older art works of mine for this week's challenge - an artwork incorporating a quote. Featuring Frida Kahlo and a quote from her - Feet, why do I need them if I have wings to fly, this is a real 'mixed media' piece using inks, watercolors, acrylics, and paper tole.

And this poem I had to share. I think Frida would have liked it too. Love after Love by Derek Walcott discovered via Maureen’s blog, Sanctuaries, Dreams and Shadows.

The time will come
when, with elation
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror,
and each will smile at the other's welcome,

and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.

featuring photographs from Krista Gabbard, Meytav, Itzemill, Feast of Fun, Woordenaar, Angry Lambie1, White Sleeve, Margarita Spain, J Macias, Miss Estrada, Mad House, Slyderma.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

More Alice in Wonderland Magic


Gorgeous pics from Niqi Segers.

The teapot below would be right at home at Niqi's tea arty! I just had to share with you these pics of the teapot I made for a swap with Del from DELicious Designz. You might recall the post where I showed you the hokey pokey bangle that Del sent to me. Del collects teapots and she asked if I could make an Alice in Wonderland one for her – instead of my usual anatomical stuff. I’m so pleased she pushed me out of my comfort zone and asked. Here is the teapot – an upcycled white porcelain number – decorated with transfers (linking to the Melange transfer challenge) that I made and red porcelain paint. It was then baked in my oven. I'm so pleased that Del loves her teapot!


It's easy to love the Alice in Wonderland story. I think it reminds us that we won’t always find logic in the situations that we encounter….that life can be irrational….and sometimes a bit of a joke - both good and bad!

I'm besotted by this fabulous 'Alice' underwater photography from Elena Kalis.


And to continue the fantastical underwater theme, some film from the iconic Busby Berkeley with music by Magnetic Fields.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Dancin too fast

The weekly challenge to the mixed media artists by the Melange Team this week is ‘archetype’. This quote from Clarisa Pinkola Estes (and the poem by Anne Sexton below) fed into my response to the challenge. The great healer archetype carries wisdom, goodness, knowing, caregiving, and all the other things associated with a healer. So, it is good to be generous and kind and helpful like the great healer archetype. But only to a point. Beyond that, it exerts a hindering influence on our lives. The “heal everything, fix everything” compulsion is a major entrapment….While archetypes may emanate through us for short periods of time….nobody can emanate an archetype continuously….they are ideals not achievable by humans, and not meant to be….one must learn to say “Halt” and “Stop the music,” and of course mean it. So those who are tired, temporarily sick of the world, who are afraid to take time off, afraid to stop, wake up already! Lay a blanket over the banging gong that cries for you to infinitely help this, help that, help this other thing. It will be there to uncover again, if you wish it so, when you come back. If we do not go home (soul home) when it is time, we lose our focus….I advocate using those methods that require no props, no special location, and that can be accomplished as easily in a minute as in a day. This means using one’s mind to summon the soul-self. In a state of solitude we can assess on a continuing basis: habitat, work, creative life, family, mate, children, mother/father, sexuality, spiritual life, and so on. The measurement used in assessment is simple: What needs less? And: What needs more? Over time, as you practice, you will find yourself designing your own queries to soul. Sometimes you may have only one question. Other times you maybe have none whatsoever and just wish to rest on the rock near the soul, breathing together.

Above is my assemblage piece. A textile curtain hangs in front of a hollow glass vessel that contains a single candle. The red fabric, hand embroidered with shoes, a photo of three generations of women, and a quote from the Anne Sexton poem ‘The Red Shoes’, acts as a curtain hiding the solitary candle inside - the place of rest and contemplation that is necessary for all of us who often dance out of control, trying to do too much, trying to be too much.


1. Perfect Mixed Media Original on Canvas by Marstrand 2. Snow White Mirror Mirror Original Watercolor by Darling Woods 3. The Nymphs Print from Restless Things 4 The Red Boots Original Watercolour from Geritom 71

I stand in the ring
In the dead city
And tie on the red shoes…
They are not mine.
They are my mother’s.
Her mother’s before.
Handed down like an heirloom
But hidden like shameful letters.
The house and the street where they belong
Are hidden and all the women, too,
Are hidden…
All those girls
Who wore the red shoes,
Each boarded a train that would not stop.
Stations flew by like suitors and would not stop.
They all danced like trout on the hook
They were played with.
They tore off their ears like safety pins.
Their arms fell off them and became hats
Their heads rolled off and sang down the street.
And their feet---oh God, their feet in the market place---
Their feet, those two beetles, ran from the corner
And then danced forth as if they were proud.
Surely, people exclaimed,
Surely they are mechanical. Otherwise…But the feet went on.
The feet could not stop.
They were wound up like a cobra that sees you.
They were elastic pulling itself in two.
They were islands during an earthquake.
They were ships colliding and going down.
Never mind you and me.
They could not listen.
They could not stop.
What they did was the death dance.
What they did would do them in...
(The Red Shoes by Anne Sexton)

Friday, August 7, 2009

Party Time!

Come on in for a little treat. It’s been a taxing week for some. We deserve a Marie Antoinette moment. So let’s put on the music. A new dress. A few pretties. A fetching hat. Maybe a jacket, shirt, cravat.

via Craft Zine

from Batty Azac

from Hey Sailor

from Bonheur

from Machete n Sons

Do have a glass of champagne. There’s plenty more where that came from.


And a chocolate or two. I’ve place a couple of hundred on the plate. If there are less in your pic well somebody’s had more than their share.


And for a no cal treat, try wearing one of the jewel temptations from Sticky Kitten. I was lucky enough to win one of these yummy cake necklaces.


So, as we head into the weekend, a universal question to ponder. The Etsy DUST Team has a monthly swap and my partner for July was Del from DELicious Designz. I’ve posted Del a special surprise item but it hasn’t arrived yet - will put some pics up when it does. But I know that Del has sent me this resin bangle that I’ve been checking out in her store for awhile. It poses a question I think worth pondering -


What if the hokey pokey is what it’s all?

Monday, August 3, 2009

Capelets Take Flight



I've been working on a new project. Hiding away click click clicking with the crochet hook. Writing down what I've done. Typing it out. Printing it up. Click click clicking again to refine. And on and on it went. Prototypes of girls' capelets were produced and refined and the patterns recorded. Until at last those patterns are finished and just right! Two PDF crochet patterns for girls capelets. Whimsical Wishes for 2 to 6 year olds is modelled in the top photos by a couple of little treasures. Flights of Fancy for 8 to 12 year olds is below it. I haven't nabbed a live model for this one yet tho must confess I've been wearing it myself.

You know I don't usually feature my own art work on here but I have to say that those PDF patterns are for sale in my Etsy store!

To celebrate I'm giving away three copies of each pattern. Leave a comment if you want one. Leave a comment even if you don't! I'll do a random no generation on Saturday 8th.

This video shows how I feel (substitute crochet hook for knitting needles) after crocheting a pile of these capelets.

....and the winners are....nos 1, 2, 3 etc...yes everybody who left a comment up to today has won one of the patterns! I'll email you over the next day or so to finalise.