Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Winter days and chickadees

It’s been a while. Sometimes the mundane things I do and the rhythm of my days seem to be not so interesting and I put off writing. I’m sure your days develop in much the same way if you’re at home as I am. I take my time getting up and getting breakfast before starting the wash, maybe starting supper, and sometimes running a quick errand (which I did this morning) or heading to the studio a quick errand. 

Chilli is simmering for supper and at lunch I threw together a small blueberry rhubarb crumble. I use a Becel, whole wheat flour, a little coconut palm sugar, cinnamon, oats and a dash of maple syrup, all done ad lib.

It’s partly sunny although a bit cold and blustery today.  I’m opting to work inside and perhaps do a little rowing downstairs later.

After lunch I headed back to the studio and  I finished a few little free motion details on the chickadees and cut one away from the background cotton. Before it gets stitched onto the piece, I will paint the edge to match the feather colours.

I’m going to use the 2 different sizes of my snowflake screens (my own design) to print on Some snowflakes. I did the first layer in a turquoise color.

Next I’ll do some larger white ones. Also, I have this stamp made with glue and cardboard that I’ll use to print winter branches.

When I’m finished my painting and stitching, I’ll row and then I can return to the studio where I’ll sip some tea while doing some hand work. I’m enjoying having my rocker there in the corner.

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Stitching chickadees

Hubby and I both saw a doctor yesterday and were prescribed prednisone and antibiotics. We contracted a nasty respiratory virus at about the same time and suffered the exact same symptoms which have dragged on and on. Talk about togetherness!
Today, although coughing lots which is a good thing, our energy is up and we’re feeling better. Thank goodness!

It’s a damp day, a prelude to the snow coming in later tonight and tomorrow. Definitely a good time for the studio. 

Finally, I finished all the stitching on the birches. The blue berries actually belong to a wildflower found in our wooded areas called the Blue Bead Lily.

It needs only the backing and binding which are ready to go. Yippee!

I was happy to move onto the chickadees that I so love, beginning by using coloured pencils to add some base colour. It gives me something to follow when I’m stitching as well as providing a background colour that could show behind my stitching rather than white. I brush on a thin coat of fabric medium.

I back it with a layer of stiff interfacing and once it’s dry and ironed, it’s ready to stitch.

I’m not concerned about any of the background wrinkles as these will be trimmed away and the chickadees will be applied to another piece of work. These are only a few inches in size and require a little more  attention and slower free motion movement than most of my pieces. It’s important for me to adhere to my time limits also for my back. I feel happy at this point; I’ve gotten a good start.

When it’s time to rest, I put my feet up and pull out my knitting.  The latest is one of my favourite hat patterns with Noro yarn.

Thursday, January 2, 2020

Back to some artwork

I took a little blog and fiber art break over the holidays, letting my time simply roll out doing what I felt like at the time. Getting in some real rest,  And, we were away for 4 days over Christmas spending time with my daughter and family. A 3 year old at Christmas is a joy to watch and play with! I’m not sure who was having more fun. Ollie or grampy!

We played and relaxed and didn’t even cook a turkey. I had baked a ham to take over with us and with little Ollie’s help,  made scalloped potatoes. We had some frozen lobster left over from Christmas Eve and my son and wife from Lunenburg came with a veggie lasagna. It was so different form traditional dinners but the main part was how nice it was to be together and enjoy a potluck type meal. Oh and my dil also brought an almond tart! Yummy!
We went out for walks each day under a dusting of snow on the trail near their home.

Since coming back home we’ve been relaxing, cooking easy meals, going for walks each day, and I’m happy to say, avoiding too many sweets.
Hubby moved a chair into my studio where I could sit doing hand work while watching shows on Brit Box tv. I’m now awaiting the arrival of a Roku stick which will enable me to stream Brit Box on my non smart tv in the living room. I live all those English mysteries.

I also did some regular sewing, finishing the baby quilt  for my daughter who’s expecting in 3 months.

I’ve got it 3/4 quilted, deciding to do it on my regular machine, straight stitching in the grid.. I like it’s simplicity.

I’m thinking of highlighting using a perle  cotton utility stitch.

I tied up some lose ends (literally) finishing 2 baby sweaters and a shawl.

Today, I returned to my studio finishing the free motion details on my birches and berries. When I’m working on fiber art pieces I sit at the machine that looks out the window while listening to classical music.

I’m so excited! I got it sandwiched with the batting and the backing and plan to lightly quilt it around the trees and the berries. I’m in the home stretch.

It was sunny outside the studio windows today. I’ve been out every day but not today as I wanted to get this done. The amaryllis in full bloom on my windowsill is so colourful against backdrop of  the snow outside. 

 I don’t know about you; I haven’t made resolutions for some years, often choosing a word of the year instead. I hadn’t really thought about it this year when the word center or spirals came to mind. I seem to be in a constant state of flux with my health; it’s a challenge trying to keep a balance. Sometimes I feel the circle or spiral expands when things are going well and if not, I retreat back to the center. My only plans for this year are to let this process unfold, not being hard on myself when I need to rest as I once would have done. We could be gentler with our selves and each other.