Sunday, December 30, 2018

A small gift

During a day at the National Gallery of Art I was enjoying 
seeing many  trees like this surrounding 
the center fountain in the rotunda.

 Seeing all the decorations there and then 
at our daughter and son-in-law's (Vicky and Alan Fogg) home,
I found an acrylic painting I had created,
 probably 50 years ago.
 That made me think of the many gifts I used to make
when our children and their cousins were small.
Thinking of the three tiny great-grandchildren we now have 
there is one great granddaughter, now two years old.
 So, I thought she might be the one I could make something simple for.
Found this small soft knit dress that was cotton 
but it needed a bit of decorating. 
 These fictional butterflies have been machine embroidered 
and are pinned on styrofoam and drying. 
(I always boil away the stabilizer I use 
when embroidering on the sewing machine)
 Sewing them on to a knit fabric is not an easy trick. 
I did not want to put a stiff non-woven fabric on the inside 
of the dress so used lots of paper, inside, during the sewing of the butterflies. 
This then took tweezers to pull out all the bits of paper. 
No child wants bits of paper inside their clothing 
and their Mother does not want bits of paper in the laundry.
So I hope it works, fits, and wears well.
This tree with gifts was at the Fogg's home 
where we spent the day having lots of fun, much gift opening,
 and wonderful holiday meals. 
Their home has festive (not Festivus) decorations in every room.

To end the year in humor or humour since this
Aphorism came from a grand daughter (Hayley Adams) 
who had found a box of these aphorisms in London.

From Anton Chekov (1860 - 1904)
"Any idiot can face a crisis.
It is this day-to-day living that wears you out."

Have a creative 2019

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Note Cards and Autumn Colors on Election Day 2018

Today it is raining and has been raining all day, this election day, 2018.
 Many of the autumn leaves seem to brighter against the gray sky.
Spring Valley, DC
near 49th Street, NW

 I've been working on some note cards
and often repeat designs.....
Above black thread is embroidered on white tulle.....

and reversing the design, white thread embroidered on 
a dark striped fabric on this second card.
Butterfly embroidered on tulle flying over a magazine garden.
A lot of driving around in the rain this morning and 
at the same time enjoying the colors ........
 Eventually pulling into the Palisades Field House to vote 
and then leaving to do more errands.
More embroidery on a notecard...........
here an iris on a hand painted silk fabric. 
 Gold thread zinnias on a darker blue cotton. 
Difficult combination kind of swallows the embroidery.
Finally at home and the view from my office.....
We do have  a lot of wires above ground in the District. 
I could PhotoShop them out but then it wouldn't be the view I have.
 A red embroidered bird stands by itself on a striped paper.
 A special card with an embroidered view of the winged lion 
of Saint Mark's on its blue background, flanked by columns.
To be seen guarding many important places in Venice. 

This is the  end of a rainy day, colored leaves, and 
the notecards created for the past month.
This foreign money is a preview of upcoming projects
Keep posted.

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Fictional Fantasy from beginnings to end.

It has been a while since I have added to my blog.
This, below, is one reason why.

Looking at these two fabrics, I thought they ought to blend into 
? something?
And, might make a different background for some embroidery.
 At the same time I had been looking at three fabrics I liked and 
wanted to use but didn't want to cut them up.
 So after staring at these printed materials for a while (I am slow) 
I thought, instead of cutting them up I would take some of their
designs and reinterpret them into embroidered images to use someway?
 Actually this was a lot of fun.....designs were interesting 
to recreate into various colors and change sizes at the same time.
So I made a lot of these separate embroideries not knowing 
where they were to go or if they would fit into anything.
 I kept making them, just enjoying the process.
 Thinking I was wasting a lot of time and effort I began 
to lay them out on some designs on paper, 
trying to find some way to connect them.
 I spent time looking at each of them on that fabric 
I wanted to use as a background.
 Thinking of some way to connect these images
 that did not seem to connect I started drawing several ideas on paper.
Finally ended up with a tree or vine or scroll shape. 
 Not wanting to take away from those muted colors  
I chose a grayed green to kind of blend into the background.
 Trying that bird, that sort of stood out, on the background 
I wanted to see how it looked on those leaves.....not good.
 Started laying out these embroideries to make some kind 
of sense on the double background I did many rearrangements.
I eliminated quite a few of the embroideries 
that did not fit either for their color or too much of the same thing.
 Over several weeks of rearranging I finally decided this was a fantasy.
 To me, fantasies seem to have no connection with reality and this surely didn't.
I was not looking for a correct composition. Why Not?
At this point I had not sewn down the scroll or any of the images, 
just kept playing with them but finally decided I had to stop. I was
never going to get to the perfect arrangement, so just started to sew. 
Below is the final in a picture I took. 
I am now ready to have my photographer take some photos of this 
Fictional Fantasy.


Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Heavenly Bodies at the Cloisters, continued......

Continuing with the Heavenly Bodies:  
Fashion and the Catholic Imagination exhibit 
that began in the Metropolitan Museum, 
these images were taken at the Cloisters. 
We traveled on the Subway to the last stop
on the A line at the north tip of Manhattan. 

The modern pieces with monastic influence 
were displayed at the Met Cloisters.
 This part of the exhibit was much less crowded 
but just as unusual and interesting, 
yet in a totally different atmosphere.
 I am sorry again that I did not write down the names 
of the contemporary designers who contributed so much to this show.
Again trying to find the references for the modern designers, 
there were several draped gowns, some very simple 
and other extremely seamed with unusual lines. 

The glass cases reflected exterior lights. 
 In one of the courtyards were these two capes high above our heads.

 This easy reference for the model is on the far wall. 
I could not stand back far enough to catch the whole body.

 A view of front and back of this heavy sparkling coat dress.
 Some of us who have done a lot of sewing were fascinated 
with the hook and eye closures in place of seams on this black dress
 A lovely silk wedding dress
 And another, quite different in an adjoining room.
Both were delicate and simple in design. 
 Another draped gown with a jeweled sword piercing 
the embroidered heart that flows into blood red silk.
 A dress covered with wheat designs.
 The next room seemed to be dedicated to Hieronymus Bosch.
 As so many of the designs were taken from Bosch's  works.....
 Either The Garden of Good and Evil or 
The Garden of Earthly Delights.
Each outfit had shoes and leggings matching the gowns 
 To end this visit to the Cloisters was this mass of irises 
and one of the garden courtyards.