Wednesday, December 17, 2014

#198: K.I.S.S.

I really admired the beautiful linoleum cuts that our Diva posted on her website.  The shoes were oh-so-cute, and the other tile she created made the most wonderful patterns when turned and repeated on her surface.  That girl is so talented, and I have to wonder when does she have time and energy to churn out all this stuff??  I think that until I remember that when I was her age, I seemed to have boundless energy too.  Time has, um....passed... But Laura's work reminded me of some work I did years ago that fit this K.I.S.S.  (Keep It Simple, Silly - or Stupid if you're an American politician - I digress...) theme.

Back in the "Olden Days", I took a college art class where the final was to make a linoleum cut and use it to create a project for a good chunk of our grade.  Many of my classmates had done beautiful and intricate carvings of scenes or people, and they were using them with multiple colors of ink or specialized Japanese art paper or some such spectacular application.  Although I draw fairly well, I just couldn't get that linoleum to cooperate, and wasn't very good at the carving.  I managed to carve a simple, single leaf on a block about 5"x7", I believe.

But, like every good former Girl Scout of my day, I had a sewing machine and knew how to use it!    I bought some very simple unbleached muslin (really cheap on my student budget, and also easy to sew.)  I made a long gathered skirt and a really easy blouse with an elastic neckline and super simple raglan sleeves.  I got some brown printing ink and made a border at the bottom of the skirt and put some leaves down the length of the sleeves. I completed the outfit with my best hippy-dippy raw leather lace-up belt. 

Well!  I showed up in class on finals day wearing my new duds and was the hit of the season.  The teacher, with mouth open and eyebrows raised way high, gave me an instant A+.

For my response to the challenge, and having been reminded of that leaf carving, I did a single something-like-a-leaf.  I took inspiration from a leaf in the pattern of my bedding with fluted edges and round thingys down the center.  Here is my version.

On other fronts, the Square One group is using Indy-Rella this week.  Much of the work that's been posted on FB is incredibly lovely, but mine...something weird happened and I just had to go with it.  Oh well:

So thank you for dropping by today.  I enjoy all your comments and am grateful for your input.  To see all the Diva Challenge responses, use the link at the right margin of my screen.

Happy Holidays, everyone, and stop back next year for the next round of challenges.  God Bless!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

#197 Arukas - Welcome Back Diva - Update 12/11

Updated to add a bit more I've done.  I rarely do this, but I am so happy with the new Arukas I just finished, so I just had to share!

Also, I posted another Gneiss on Square One.  It is a busy, busy design - sometimes I get carried away...

Our Diva, Laura Harms, has been occupied with her family for the last month. Welcome back!  Her little cutie pie had his surgery and appears, by what Laura has posted, to be doing just fine.  Hugs and best wishes to Artoo! 

My life is scheduled down to the minute with all I have to do before Christmas, so I will just post what I have done and leave it at that this time.  I may go in later and add some other things I'm working on, but...maybe not...

So here is my attempt at Arukas:


Thanks for checking in with me - I'll write more next time!

Thursday, December 4, 2014

#s 195 and 196 - Catching up: Transformed Tangles and Dolls

Oh boy, we just passed Thanksgiving and I'm already behind schedule!  I worked on the challenge for last week, but didn't have time to post anything.

See, I was busy cranking out that annual feast thing.  Let me say right now, I made the best, most perfect gravy of my life!!  That is saying something because I'm a pretty decent cook (and old - I've been doing this quite a while).  I also made a new version of the sweet potato thing.  I have never been a fan of that marshmallow topped dish that everybody (except my youngest daughter) seems to crave.  I like mine baked and topped with brown sugar and butter.  Simple and straightforward.  My new husband, however, begged for the whipped ones with the topping.  Enter the new gold standard...I whipped them with butter and brown sugar, then topped them with an absolutely perfect golden tipped meringue.  Jealous yet?  The rest of the dinner was lovely, and I've been recovering and cleaning up ever since.

Now that tree box (two, actually) sits waiting for assembly.  Tomorrow... [Tuesday update - trees up and lit, ornaments in the boxes still - no sense rushing into these things... ]

...Thursday update:  tree decorated!  Now, let's see, cards to address, 20 dozen or so cookies to bake, pack and mail, hubby's costume to sew (for the 16th!!) for our Venetian Carnivale theme wine dinner (I know, that should be later, but they didn't ask me - it's the big Holiday bash and they got tired of tuxedos and sequined gowns, I guess)...  Plus, I'm going to squeeze in a class with a local CZT - Zentangle in the Round.  Can't wait - I need a push in that direction, as my tins of round tiles are just sitting there getting lonely.   Is it January yet?

You might begin to see why I am already playing catchup and am so late with this post probably three people will even see it.  Oh well.

For Challenge #195, we were to take a familiar tangle and transform it either from grid to free-form, from border to grid, from a loose and meandering to structured grid, etc.  I managed two tiles!  The first is MI2 squeezed into a diamond shaped grid, and the second is Fungees cut off at the waist, so to speak, and packed in a divided box full of  a patchwork of other tangles. Of the two, my favorite part is the bow-tie corners in the MI2 grid.  It just happened all by itself!

MI2 in formal wear!

A box full of Fungees packed in fancy paper.


For Challenge #196, the theme is dolls.  I always admire the beautifully costumed dolls that others collect and I enjoyed my own dolls as a child.  When I was in my later grade school years, the Barbie Doll was introduced, and I didn't get many of the expensive outfits for my Barbie (with a black !!! ponytail - no, they have not always been blonde).  I sewed my own outfits with little tiny stitches, adding ruffles, snap closures, gathered skirts and skinny shoulder straps.  My favorite iteration of dolls, however, has always been paper dolls.  Disney paper dolls were not only of the movie princesses, but also Annette Funicello and the other Mouskateers.  There were also dolls of Grace Kelly, Ginger Rogers and the gang from Sound of Music.  FUN!

So here is my (one lonely little) response tile to the latest challenge.  My original intention was to add a little color in the design, but I got going on all the patterns and just forgot about it.  It's a Zentangle thing, I guess:
Cut on the dotted line...

For the Square One focus, ING was the thing, with shading.  Here is the one I posted on Facebook for that "One".  Somebody did some fabulous 3D looking pearls on top of Hurry last week, and now half of the group is popping pearls all over the place. So fun to draw, and now I need to go that extra step and learn how to do the water drops.  

Thank you for stopping by to view my post this week and I do read and appreciate all your comments.