Wednesday, 24 December 2008
The stockings are all hung up and even Jazzy wont be missing out.
We just had a really big storm, but no damage was done. Just lots of thunder and lightening.
On my way home from work today I was listening to a CD with lots of Christmas songs. I always have abit of a chuckle to myself about singing along to songs such as White Christmas and Let it Snow, when its a humid hot summers day outside. I love all those songs though. I especially like Judy Garland singing "Have yourself a Merry Little Christmas" and all the songs off the Bing Crosby "White Christmas" album. Those are all the songs my mum used to play when we were growing up. There's also some good Australian Christmas songs like "Six White Boomers" and "Aussie Jingle Bells".
We are having Christmas dinner at our house tomorrow and my Mum and Step-Dad are coming over.
Dylan is very excited and was worried that Santa wouldn't be able to come when we were having the storm. But all is well now and he has been assured that Santa and the elves are currently packing the sleigh.
Merry Christmas to you all. Hope you have a wonderful, safe and happy time with family and friends.
I'll enjoy looking at all those photos on blogs of White Christmas's from around the world.
All the best. Take care.
Sunday, 21 December 2008
I got some lovely presents for my birthday. One of them was a Keith Urban concert DVD. I went to Keith's concert in Brisbane earlier in the year with Donna, one of my friends, and it was one of the best concerts I have been to. So I watched this in the morning and got to relive the memories. He has some beautiful songs.
Then we went to Byron Bay for my birthday and looked around the many interesting shops. I bought a book (that wont surprise anyone) and also a beautiful ceramic green mug with the "OM" symbol on it.
We then went to the Crystal Castle and had lunch. It isn't an actual castle. They have beautiful gardens, a labyrinth, cafe, bookshop, crystal and jewellery shop and a Buddha walk with lots of statues. There are also amazing giant pieces of quartz, rose quartz and amethys scattered throughout the gardens. My friend Donna and I enjoyed taking many photos of the various statues, the view and the beautiful flowers in the garden. See the mosaic of photos I took in the post below.
Friday, 19 December 2008
Here's to another year of Blogging, creative pursuits and keeping in touch with new and old friends!!!
Looking forward to the weekend. I was supposed to be working but it is my birthday on Saturday. I'm going to be 44. Also Duncan's work Christmas party is on that night. So I wanted to enjoy myself and not have to work. We will probably be going out to lunch somewhere on Saturday. I also bought myself a few books for my birthday and I have managed to not open the package yet although I was very tempted.
Saturday, 13 December 2008
We have a shop bought tree that we got a few years ago that looks fairly life like. It's the biggest tree I've ever had and nearly reaches the roof with the big star at the top. Lots of our baubles were old looking so I have started each year building up a supply of new baubles. Also I like how different ones, like the one above, will have a little story to go along with how we got it.
I really love the green and the pink ones. They have a real Indian look about them. I think there was also a blue one the same colour as the blue bell one above. I think I will have to go back to the shop and get the blue one - might even get some more so I have two of each. They are just so lovely. By the way - there's no colour co-ordination on our tree. Its a real mix and match of coloured tinsel and various coloured baubles - but I love it that way.
Sunday, 7 December 2008
I have been sick of hearing all the bad reviews over the last few weeks since it came out. Also I think they went abit overboard in criticising Nicole Kidman. I think she is a great actress. I also read a blog (I forget which one now) that went on and on about how bad they thought the movie was and picking everything to pieces. I do respect other peoples opinions but I think its abit much the way some people go on. Of course not everyone is going to like the movie, or any movie in that case. But I think it's enough just to say they didn't like the movie. So many people seem to just look for negatives. You could sit back and just pick everything to pieces in life as nothing is ever going to be perfect or exactly how you would do something yourself.
Anyway, enough of that....just expressing my opinion.
I've got a busy week this week - my son's school Christmas concert is on and a few Christmas parties to go to. Christmas is a nice time of the year. My son, Dylan, is 7 and is still wrapped up in the magic of Santa. I did a little surprise for him the other night. We were watching The Polar Express and in a commercial I snuck out of the room without him realising what I was doing. At the end of the movie when he went to bed there was a big red round bell on his bed with a note that said - "This is a spare bell from the sleigh for your Christmas Tree, Love Santa." He loved it so much, he was abit too excited to go to bed. If you haven't seen the movie - the boy in the movie gets a bell from Santa's sleigh for Christmas. Anyway Dylan has been telling everyone about it. Its fun doing little things like this - I hope it is something he will remember.
Thursday, 27 November 2008
Wednesday, 26 November 2008
I was so excited when I received this book in the mail. I purchased it from The Thread Studio and it cost a fair bit. So I was abit worried when I ordered it. In the past I have ordered some books from various places and been disappointed because the content hasn't lived up to my expectations. But this book definately exceeds my expectations.
This book is so comprehensive and inspirational. In the introduction it mentions that "241 stitches are clearly described and illustrated ....exploring the possibilities of contemporary embroidery. The author has also done extensive research on the embroideries of other countries, bringing to light new stitches and unusual variations of traditional stitches."
The sections of the book cover - Starting to Stitch, The Stitches - Flat stitches, looped stitches, chained stitches, knotted stitches, couching and laid work, and Creating with stitches.
When explaining stitches she gives comprehensive directions, easy to follow diagrams, lots of variations, ideas and examples of work. I really liked how she talks about the background of the stitches, the country they came from and various little snippets of stories relating to them. She writes in a casual way that is easy to read and follow.
I particularly enjoyed the story about her search for a Tuareg nomad blouse from Niger, which she had once seen a photo of and her duplication of the stitches.
The Creating with Stitches section is really inspiring and gives lots of ideas for creating your own contemporary designs. Some of the chapters, Building Borders spontaneously and Embroidering flower shapes, both give many ideas for combining stitches in different ways with lots of illustrations.
As you can tell, I love this book. It makes me excited and full of inspirational ideas just looking through it. When I first got it, one of my first thoughts was that there was a lifetime of learning in the book. It is a great reference book to have for embroiderers of any level.
Tuesday, 25 November 2008
I can't believe it is nearly the end of November. I've been busy working the last few weeks also I have a bad cold at the moment. But atleast I have 4 days off work so I can spend some time doing my online class lessons and TIF. I've done alittle bit more of my October TIF piece which you can see in the photo above.
Last week I got some great books/mags in the mail that I want to show. I was supposed to leave them unopened till my birthday in December. I only lasted one day though, and couldn't resist opening the package.
Also I have a book that I want to review. Its an embroidery book that I was blown away with when I received it - its jam packed full of wonderful embroidery and inspirational ideas. But you will have to wait till tomorrow for the review - hopefully I've got you feeling curious. See you then.
Saturday, 8 November 2008
There are some very talented people in the class so it is going to be interesting to see their class work. I think my favourites are the first photo (the red/orange one) and also the yellow/green one. It doesn't look as bright in real life.
Wednesday, 5 November 2008
Monday, 3 November 2008
Tuesday, 28 October 2008
I can see that this will be a useful technique to keep in mind to add to my work.This is the one I'm going to use in my October TIF piece. It is going to be used to represent my workspace at the moment, where all my colours are mixed all in together and its pretty messy. I'm going to position this either in the bottom left hand corner or the middle of the piece. I'm then going to have strips of various colours of material radiating out from it. On the coloured strips I'm going to add colour co-ordinated emboidery as well as attaching colour co-ordinated buttons, beads etc if I think it needs it as I go along.
Things have got busy this week. I'm organising my son's 7th birthday party for this Friday after school. It's going to be a Halloween themed birthday party, so I've been busy getting everything ready. Also my online Jane La Fazio class starts this week as well. So I know that this wont be finished by the end of the month, but I'm going to try to get it finished early in the month.
Thursday, 23 October 2008
Wednesday, 22 October 2008
Wednesday, 8 October 2008
We've been away on holidays at Mackay and Airlie Beach in North Queensland. This photo was taken on a daytrip we took on a boat through the Whitsunday Islands. We went snorkelling, walked up to the Hills Inlet lookout and swam at Whitehaven Beach. It was a wonderful day.
There were two of these statues at the enterance to our Balinese style resort at Airlie Beach.
This was the view from our Bedroom and loungeroom. The photo really doesn't do it justice. The water was a beautiful blue/green colour.
This was taken from our balcony looking down at one of the pools. There were 3 pools and a spa. It was very relaxing and we had a great time. We went swimming most days and managed to work up abit of a tan.
We've been home a few days, so have been unpacking and doing all the washing. I didn't do the September TIF Challenge. I have an idea of what I want to do though. I will get started on the October TIF challenge though and try to fit in September.
Thursday, 25 September 2008
I got these materials from Joggles.com. There were so many others I could have ordered but had to control myself. I love green. The brown one on the left reminds me of the Basic Grey papers which I love. That one and the paisley one make me want to make some exotic Indian inspired piece.
Running behind with TIF but will post my initial thoughts for September soon.
Thursday, 11 September 2008
This is one book I have been interested in getting but I ended up getting it out from my local library. It starts off with the basics and then has a gallery of lots of designs, explaining how they are done. Then the last section has various projects. The designs in the book are all very modern, interesting and are great inspiration to explore your own ideas. I haven't tried Crewel before so I'll have to have a go. But this one is also good for exploring ideas for other types of embroidery as well.
I also found this book "Stitches for Embroidery" at my local library and it turned out to be abit of a surprise. I'd like to buy this book to have as a reference book. The first part has a stitch sampler of the 20 stitches that are used in the book followed by the directions for doing each stitch. The next sections explore Lines, Texture, Filling Shapes, Leaves and Foliage, Round Flowers, Flower Spikes, Flower Impressions, Stems Trunks and Branches, Trees, Sky, Water, Buildings, Stitch patterns, Patterns from Nature, Getting it all together and Designs. I haven't had time to sit down and have a really good read of this yet but it explores many ideas for expressing these various ideas with stitch. It looks like a book I'll be able to learn alot from.
Thursday, 4 September 2008
Tuesday, 2 September 2008
I'm excited that spring is here. This is a photo from the table we ate lunch at yesterday at one of my favourite cafes. It's where my husband and I got married and had our reception 7 1/2 years ago. My husband took the photo on his phone so the quality isn't the best. Also it was a little bit windy so we chose a table in abit of a sheltered spot. My lunch was absolutely beautiful - Linguine pasta with roasted pumpkin, feta, pine nuts, rocket, spanish onions with a pesto sauce through it. I'm not supposed to be eating pasta on my diet but sometimes you just have to bend the rules. I was so full afterwards anyway that I didn't eat any dinner. So it all balances out in the end.
Yesterday, the new Joggles online classes were announced. It's always exciting going in and checking them all out. I think I will be doing Jane LaFazio's new class - Mixed Media with paper and cloth, starting at the end of October. I've done 2 other online classes with Jane and I really enjoyed them, I'm sure this is going to be just as wonderful. I can also highly recommend any of Susan Sorrell's and Sharon Boggon's classes too.
I've made some progress with my August TIF - Balance piece. I want to do some more before posting another photo, maybe I'll post a photo this afternoon.
Also the September TIF challenge was posted by Sharon yesterday. The topic this time around is "Lists". I have absolutely no idea what I will do, this is going to take abit of thinking.
Wednesday, 27 August 2008
Monday, 18 August 2008
Sunday, 17 August 2008
I managed to do some more of my challenge piece this weekend. In this photo I have used some paisley designs as a pattern so I could get my outside shape. The designs on these look great, but I'm going to come up with my own design for the inside. It's a chance for me to explore some new embroidery stitches or do some known ones in a different way. Once I do the Shisha mirrors, I'll be filling in the rest of the paisley shape with embroidery.
In my last post I mentioned that I was going to do some paisley designs as a different interpretation of the ying/yang symbol. I know you are probably thinking that this doesn't look exactly like the ying/yang symbol, but the ying/yang symbol is expressing perfect balance. With this piece I'm not trying to do that. I'm trying to express the image of their being a balance in managing to juggle endless priorities and being able to do 10 things at once and even though the balance may not be perfection - maybe it doesn't have to be and it is still okay.
I'll keep you updated on my progress....shisha mirrors should arrive this week, so I should have more to show next weekend.
Monday, 11 August 2008
I've skipped the July TIF Challenge for the moment but I know what I want to do. Hopefully I'll finish August quickly and go back to do July.