Thursday, September 30, 2010

Evidence of my Worker Bee Way

I have been Hard at Work, though not Reporting. My White Exploration ended up with a bit of color in it--I just could not make all that white work for me!! But the color is light---more tints than anything--And the Whites and Ivories are the real star here. The Sizing ended up a Small, which is a Bummer as it narrows who can wear it! But it is Beautiful, and all that I
hoped---I have been calling it Miss Havisham.

This neck warmer is the next in "Finally Completed". You know I am just terrible at Finishing. I will hire a seamstress someday, and she can make sense of it! But this is sort of a nod to The Ascot--It has a Brown Linen Backing and snaps for closure.

I have a few more pieces to show but My Internet is on and off and on again Today. I love Rainy Days, but Today is Dreadful Weather. It's Rainy, and so Humid, and not even Cool. It's just Sticky and Grey out.

I am onto the next project---I endeavor to be more careful with my measurements. I try to Eyeball everything. I mean---it's a thrill when it works out, but so frustrating when it doesn't! That Miss Havisham is going to have to go to a very Skinny Necked Home! Argh....


Saturday, September 25, 2010

Saturday Musings

You are pretty much looking at my day Right There--- Glass, Pins, and Tea. And I am not complaining. I have been doing a ton of freelance work this week, and although I am Lucky enough to have jobs that are flexible and artistic and fun, I am glad to be home in my studio today.

When I Slump down in my Chair and Look up, this is my view. These Windows are completely ineffective against Heat, Cold and Mosquitos, but Boy are they Pretty. The Building Owners were going to replace them this summer and I was so sad, but Financing fell through and Voila! We get to keep these windows. Remind me how much I love them when my Tea is Icing Over in the Pot this Winter. You think I'm Kidding---

This is the Thread side of Work today. This guy is an exploration in White---It's all shades of cream and white and ivories. I may put a little color in, Just a Blush though. As for the Glass, I am going into the Shop on Tuesday, doing a line of Terrariums for a Client, odd sized things, so we will do a bit of Experimentation, which is costly and Ridiculous but Oh-so-Fun!

I don't know if I miss Glass very much, I have really been enjoying working with softer more forgiving materials recently. And I am working on a film, which is a whole other Brain Space to be in. But I think I am A Phaseual Artist---Phasing from one Medium to another, depending on the project. I see so many artists try to make every project out of the material they are the most familiar with---and it's incredibly limiting in my view. A project will tell you what it needs to be made out of. Metal or Glass of Chiffon or Film. It just lets you know. And ignoring it Kind of Stunts You, and The Project, No? And I think it happens because of Ego. When you have spent so much time learning a medium, it takes guts to start at the beginning of another Medium---or to do it badly. But I think great discoveries and connections are made in that Head Space.

Woah---I got heavy. Sorry.

Saturday Morning.

Have some Tea---Enjoy the last warm Days.


Sunday, September 19, 2010

Knowing when to Stop and Smell the Roses, and Knowing when there is No Stopping

Today we took Some Time Away from all of our day to day. You get to the point sometimes when you realize you haven't left the House Together Alone in Weeks. So we took our Bikes and trekked across town to Shofuso, the Japanese House and Garden, It is quite Aways Away from us, but with The Peuge and Stella, we ended up circling the entire city today!

This is the inside of the house. It is so clean and simple and beautiful. Those screens which seem to Glow with The Shadows of Water Cascading, are actually painted by a Master Japanese artist, Hiroshi Senju. When I heard about the screen paintings, I kind of cringed, but they are absoloutly ethereal, and give the house such a magical feeling. I can't say as I have ever seen such a simple, effective, well placed, piece of art anywhere.

Of course there was a Japanese Garden and beautiful Koi!! I did not touch the color in this photo at all. They are such Prehistoric, Mythical looking creatures, we spent a good hour or so watching them. It was so quiet and gentle there---I made a note to remember what I liked about this place so I can incorporate it into my home someday....

And I continue to Work. And Wind. And Coil and Design. I am beginning to like what I am making very much. I seem to go through phases where I hate what it looks like. Working wih glass has taught me to see things through to the end. So much of working with glass is seeing things through to the end, and there is no stopping once you have started a piece. Doing that has been the very best discipline Lesson I ever did Get.

So--My Amazing Man has just made a beautiful Pork Loin stuffed with Apricots and Goat Cheese (I kid you not---he really did!) so I must eat that and then--back to work. No stopping.


Friday, September 17, 2010

TEA --- for the most part....

Another day in the studio! And the Weather is fine, and I even put on lipstick. My windows are open and the breeze is so nice. The sun will swing around at 2 and it will be unbearable to sit at my worktable, and I will scurry away to the far corners of my studio to sew in the dark.

I am all about the Bullion Stitch today. I think I will attempt to figure out how many coils I make in an hour. I want to branch out, but piling them on top of each other is so satisfying--I cannot stop doing it!

Today I am drinking Coconut Tea. I discovered a wonderful online store called Adagio. I am pretty careful about where I buy my Tea from---I cannot bear bad tea. Most people don't realize this, but the bags that you buy in the supermarket are actually just "Tea Dust"---that is, the Bottom of the Barrel--The Floor Sweepings. Good tea will look like a Leaf when it unfurls in hot water---just like a wet leaf you see on the sidewalk after a Rain Storm.

I used to work in Tea Houses in NYC, and I learned a lot and really refined my tastes. But I never really had to pay for the habit, because the tea was free to drink during work hours. So when I just got back into it---I was appalled at the prices!! But this Adagio place is Awesome because you can buy samples---and it's an ample amount---like 10 cups worth.( I should note in a day of "social networking"--- They aren't paying me anything to say this--I'm just passing on a good thing). And the average price of the sample is $2.00!! I mean--if you start getting fancy (which I did in some cases) a beautiful Yunnan Gold Sample will go for $10 or so---but most of the teas are really inexpensive to try.

If anyone reads this and would like a $5 gift certificate--please feel free to drop your email to me---after you start buying they give you unlimited $5 gift certificates to hand out. And if anyone wants a recommendation for a good starter Tea ---do not hesitate to ask!!! Tea--and especially Green Tea----really makes ones Life Better. It sounds ridiculous, yes it does, but it makes you feel better, and it's the Treat that can take the place of brownies (well Almost...).

Ok---my Sermon is done---

I am starting my day and hope to have a nice bit to show for it at 5 tonight!


Thursday, September 16, 2010

Glorious Weather

Glorious Fall! I am in the studio again today. So many distractions recently--I have many unfinished projects Mewling like Unfed babies all around me. I barely know where to begin. There is a fair amount of shipping to do. I have just armed myself with an entire pot of Lapsang Souchong ( mixed with Vanilla and lavender) so I feel I will make it through. Today I will show you a few pictures, starting with Stella Below(the Bike, not my Friend!).

Isn't she a Beauty? Oh how I love her. I have to admit her seat needs some work. I don't think it was the original and it has a Mind Of it's Own. It's something of a swivel--great when you are visiting the Soda Jerk, not so great when you are navigating Pothole Laden Streets.

I want Giant Pincushions in my studio so I have been finding old frames and mirrors and filling the frames with Giant Pincushions. Eventually I want all my threads hanging on the Hat Pins. I will do it by color and it will look yummy and it will be Oh-so-User Friendly!

As for glass---we are coming up on the Holidays---Yup---time to break out the Blowpipes and get into the shop. I'm actually dying to get in there---I have not blown any glass in months, and there is always the fear that you'll lose your skill. Although in Reality I have found that for some reason my skills get better when I take a long break---I don't understand these Hands of Mine sometimes... So I have to think of beautiful color combinations for the Holidays. Not such a bad job, thinking about color all day.....suggestions are welcome---think of solids with a swirled striped--transparent? Opaque?

That's it from me--
Hope everyone has a Wonderful day---remember to drink your Tea--


Sunday, September 12, 2010

FOOD: Oh the Pate!

Yesterday, a Beautiful Day mind you---We got together with Stella and Ed, My best friend and her Husband, and we made our First Monthly Dinner of Unknown Origins. That isn't very catchey---but--you get the picture. We both like to cook and we realized that we were kind of sick of the same flavors all the time. And we thought that once a month we would get together and try new dishes and new flavors, and make a dinner all together.

So we decided--because really---who is untouched by the Recent Julia Child Resurgence--- to do "Pate en Croute". It was the most arduous, convoluted process I have ever engaged in---and I like complicated process. Last night, after dinner, nestled all snug in our bed---I was pretty sure I heard my heart struggling to beat. That unassuming Loaf of bread pictured above contains a duck skin, with no bones, stuffed with ground veal, ground pork, cubed duck, a cup of pork fat (which we could not find anywhere to buy, so we fried off a lb of bacon to generate), and an ungodly amount of butter. The crust alone contained 12 tablespoons of crisco, and like 4 sticks of butter. I mean---how is there a book called "French Women don't Get Fat"? How is that possible?

We had read that it was a lengthy process, so we started at 2:00 and ate at 9:30. Lengthy does not even begin to cover it!! The Guys went for pizza around 5:00. When it finally came out--I hate to say it--but it was heavy. And kind of painful to eat. It was like an incredibly fancy, dry, port-flavored meatloaf wrapped in a fairly tasty crust. Someone actually mentioned that it needed ketchup. It needed sauce, or something. For sure. I read somewhere that someone sliced it and fried it up (you are supposed to serve it cold---we were too hungry and tired to do that-) and said that made it better. I can't imagine adding frying to the process. All in all it was
fun to make, but I don't believe I would ever make it again. However---

We also made a Lemon and Fresh Raspberry Dacquoise---and let me tell you---it was AMAZING!!! You make round flats of delicious meringue, and layer it with Lemon whip creme, and raspberry whip creme. The lemon sauce that you make for it is like a Tangy sticky Bit o Heaven!!! I had little faith that it would cut when we got to the cutting---but it cut pretty well, and woah---it was great.

I would say our first foray into Unknown Culinary Terrain was successful for what we bit off. It was a very fun day, and now we have started something that I have always wanted to do. I think next month will be Pho Soup, which will be fantastic.

For today? Drinking lots of Tea, doing a bit of sewing, and eating lots of healthy things that may or may not stop the Heart Attack I got myself involved in yesterday!!

Til Later


Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Starting Off

So I am starting this blog to go with my new Life, which is actually an old Life, but I am now taking it all very seriously. I am an Artist, I have done many things over the years, from Film to Glassblowing. I have always Sewn--I am fascinated by Threads and Fabrics and really any Raw Material that comes my way. I can Weld Steel, and I can cast glass, I can make Paper, and Cook.
I recently had a Birthday---well 5 months ago I did---and it was one of those birthdays where you find yourself saying--"Oh MY". It ended up being wonderful, because myself and my best friend (and I mean Best Friend--I mean the way the term was when it originated--we have been best friends since we were in the Fourth Grade---she is my sister and my pal and just the best thing EVER!) sat down and confronted all of it. We were turning 38, and you know what you see when you turn 38? I'll tell you what you see when you turn 38---you see 40. And for me, it just seemed like it was time to get a move on in all things.

I have been very lucky in this life to find good people and to have Hands that can adapt and learn. I am grateful for this. So grateful! But it all leaves you feeling a bit like a Soggy Cracker if you don't do anything with these gifts.

So on this birthday back in April--we made a pact to stop Hedging and Avoiding and Excusing.
And Just Get On With it. I have spent a lot of time over the years making excuses for not moving forward. But when you see 40 looming out there, you realize how precious time is, you find Yourself asking Yourself do I actually want my life to go by as One Big Excuse? "Oh Sorry About That Guys, that was just my Life that Went by you---I'm not sure anyone noticed, did it Bump you on the way by? It was a big Muddle, and I couldn't quite find the Handle, but I did a good job, and you can see I tried...." Bleh bleh Bleh.

So I started to take my Art seriously. I am working on a Documentary, and I started with a line of Embroidered Accessories--and I am avoiding the thought of "Does the world need another Embroidered Acessory?" Because asking that question is contrary to what my Life is About these days. It's about DOING.

I have a Big Wonderful Cat: Below you will find a draft of a picture of my Cat as an Indian God--the quality is lousy, but you get where I am going. He is 5 feet long from nose to tail tip. We adopted him almost four years ago, and like most Insane cat people--we think he is Very Gifted. I am Safe to write this because? I also have a Wonderful Man in my Life, so I am not a crazy cat woman. He is also Gifted. And, as luck would have it, Funny and Kind.

I also gave up Coffee and went back to Tea---I spent 4 years as a Tea Afficiando in NYC, and almost got into the Tea Business for real. It is a fascinating thing, tea is. Giving up coffee after 25 years was very sad, but part of the Pact was to change Lifestyle---so I quit Coffee, bought a bike (a Stella bright Yellow, very happy bike), started going to the gym, and make every effort not to cause myself any more Debt in this Life.

Other goals are to have a show of some sort in the near future, and to finally get a place way out of the city, while still having a place IN the city to visit, so we don't get kooky and start eating plaster off the walls in some Bucolic Country setting.

So that's it---I am very excited about this Blog, and about my work, and all these new Goals. If anyone hears me making Excuses (if anyone ever reads this) Please feel free to Gently point me in the right direction!! For now I am off to see a man about a horse---have a Lovely day---