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Monday, February 04, 2008

childhood memories

The colors are posted for the February TIF challenge. Blues, charcoal, beige and ochre/rust. The concept is an early childhood memory.

I am thinking of many things. I can remember being dressed while I was pretending to be asleep while on the red vinyl banquets somewhere. I think they were in our living room. My sister pointed out uncharitably that I was pretending to be asleep.

There is another rather scarey memory of being on the floor of the shower in that first house next door to my grandmother's. The shower was the right color of gray. Not sure I want to interpret that memory, though.

Another memory of being short enough to walk under the dining room table and see everyone's knees. My aunt bends down to talk to me about the dolly I am carrying and asks her name. I answer but she can't understand what I am saying and asks again. I repeat and then she says, "Charlotte is a pretty name!" The doll's name was not Charlotte, I remember being disappointed she couldn't understand me. Her name was Charlemagne. She was one of those cloth bodied dolls with molded head, arms and legs. She had wildly tangled hair and she said, "Mmmmaaaa!" when you tipped her over and back up again.

Fun memory of me small enough to be bathing in the sink in the kitchen. Looking out the window to the busy road in front of our little house. Each room was built from scratch by my grandfather and added to the first part. I remember my favorite dinner when I was a kid. Mom would panfry ground beef and sliced potatoes. Then she'd make a gravy for the beef and serve it over the potatoes. I prefered the crunchiest bits the best ... potato chips were available in bags but my family sure didn't buy them.

Maybe I should do some sketching.

07:40 Posted in Take It Further | Permalink | Comments (2)

Friday, January 25, 2008

on time and under budget

The design challenge is finished. The subject was someone we looked up to and/or a color palette. I chose to combine them and created this small Valentine from items on hand. The heart is one of several polymer clay hearts I made several years ago from scraps of other clay projects. The cheesecloth was painted for a swap of ATCs.

My grandma was a make-do kind of person. She always wore an apron with pockets full of things she picked up as she was cleaning around the house. There were always pins and needles in the shoulder area, handy for when she did the mending. She was a gentle woman, quiet in face of a tyrant and steadfast in her love of babies and children. She had no time for vanity, rolled her stockings down to her ankle if she felt like it, and let us kids comb and style her hair any which we wanted while she took an afternoon nap. So many happy hours spent with her. She taught me to crochet before I was old enough to be trusted with such a pointy metal object. Her crocheting consisted mostly of huge granny square tablecloths of cotton cord done with a size 7 needle. Simple and done with the garish multicolored DMC crochet cotton. She crocheted in the evening and I swear she ripped as much as she stitched some nights. Finishing wasn't always important, I think she just liked to keep busy.

I was fiddling around and sewing and ripping and realized that this piece could also be part of a Valentine swap. This amazing realization allowed me to finish this easily, grabbing things out of the scraps jar and moving forward quickly. I didn't have to make this the ONE perfect piece and two others. It's just number one in the year long Take it Further challenge and it's just number one in the mini beaded squares and it's going to be swapped. Three projects at once. My life is going pretty darn smooth this month.

On top of that, I am going to print the photo and use it as a Valentine's day card to family members along with the Christmas letter that I didn't have time to mail out last month. All is good.

Thanks to Sharon for suggesting the themes - looking forward to the next challenge.

07:00 Posted in Take It Further | Permalink | Comments (4)

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

the frogging begins

After looking at the piece on screen, I decided to just rip out the couching around the heart. Good decision. I like it that part much better now. I'll be looking at the bugle beads closely today. Not sure I like them. I have made the decision to stop and start my bead thread often so that I can be selective on the rip-pit part of this project.

06:25 Posted in Take It Further | Permalink | Comments (2)

Monday, January 07, 2008

wobbly beginning

I can see more that I want to when I look at things this enlarged....I need to run a thread through all the beads to pull them into line around the clay piece.

08:14 Posted in Take It Further | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, January 06, 2008


Here is the printed color card from the Take it Further Challenge shown with the items from my stash that I will use to create a beaded square. Surprisingly I had more purple stuff that worked than Green! In a sense I'm also doing a bit of a tribute to someone I looked up to - my gram would have had safety pins and ribbons and bits of things in her apron pocket on any given day. She picked things up as she went and sorted them out (or not...) later.

The center color is not really pink but lavendar. I tried taking a photo of the beads out of the plastic tubes, but those photos aren't even as color correct as this one seems to me on my monitor. I edited out one tube as being too red violet instead of blue violet. The heart shaped piece has some other colors worked into it - it's a polymer clay piece I made from scraps and so it really belongs in here, too.

I have enough to cover a huge area... so more editing will happen as I go along. The reason I'm working small - other than the obvious one of being able to finish in a month is also that there is a another challenge that this fits into - crossing off two items on my list with one project. Is that wrong?

17:40 Posted in Take It Further | Permalink | Comments (1)

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