Sunday, September 23, 2007

The Barn Sale

Since my trip to Wyoming is going to take a while to write out, I'm opting for sharing a shorter jaunt instead. Yesterday was The Barn Sale that has been advertised on a little flier hanging on my fridge for several months now. Being so freshly back and not quite into the normal routine, since what is normal changed right before I left with school just starting, I almost forgot. Luckily I spotted it amongst the stuff and loaded up my nine-year-old and headed off.

Since it was a long ways out on a road we rarely take, even just driving out to the place was an adventure for us. Once we arrived there was no mistaking we were there--cars were parked clear out onto the road. Yay! We don't have these types of events around here often (or maybe I'm just ignorant!), so we were excited!

The first booth had a beautiful box of little silk flower parts that was so colorful. They were in the shade, which made for that nicely saturated light that really pops colors. Unfortunately I didn't check the pic before moving on and didn't know it was out of focus until I downloaded it from the camera. Note to self--don't do this again! But the colors were lovely and the little flowers in the middle--mine. Oh yeah. They had a whole stack of vintage travel postcards for only 25 cents each! I managed to only buy $7 worth. At some point I want to get back to my travelling Louisa project and these were perfect, although the assistant got a bit bored once her pulled pork sample ran out.

Thanks to Junebug (509-990-4558) for allowing me to take these images and for the deal on the postcards!

The next booth used a lot of natural flowers and grasses to accent their wares, and I'd like to thank Jennifer Henry at the Trellis for allowing me to photograph her wares. I love her casually elegant style.

This adorable little yellow cabinet was from Two Women. She also had a a ring that the assistant was salivating over, but was not rewarded with. A bit spendy to end up lost in a nine-year-old's room. We'll check St. vinny's 50% off day instead. ;-)

Across the way was another shopping find. Ribbons. Not like I need more, but I bought some anyway. I mean really, who could resist this? Maybe my husband, but not two girls with cash! This vendor from Sandpoint also had a gorgeous variety of handmade cards, journals and tag-like cards all embellished with authentic glass glitter. The colors were so sweet, like petit fours on paper. If you want to see more visit Barbara.

So many goodies! We saw some lovely charms, an adorable doll tea set, bunches of old patterns, lovely linens. It was hard to not want to buy stuff, stuff and more stuff. But being the owner of already too much stuff, I really was thoughtful in my purchases, instead of succumbing to the greedy part of the brain (now do you suppose that's left brain or right brain? Hmmm...).

A number of the next booths showcased more outdoorsy wares, so our next stop was at a lovely little booth with the nicest displays and who sells at Etsy.

There were so many cool displays and lots of fun goodies we saw while just strolling around.

One of my favorite booths was owned by a lady whose daughter is one of my art students (and very talented I might add!). Suzie Q's (208-765-8460) is a local store that has a great mix of vintage with a few new things here and there, along with some handmade wares.
One of the customers had a sweet little dog conveniently for sale, but this mom has a heart of stone for these types of temptations, which is good, because the assistant does not! Love this heart vase. And it would be so fun to live in one of those places where you could actually have a chandelier and stand outside on a stone patio with flowers all around. But, here in Idaho--not likely. Although I'm sure it would entertain the dog.

In the end I made it through without too much monetary damage, but having had a bunch of fun. Just going and taking photos was a blast. On the way we followed the road out further and saw some new sights. The assistant came up with a great regional joke on the way home (saying the name of the town "Chilco" as a sneeze) and I'm sure I'm fated to hear it for the rest of her childhood until it becomes family lore. And really, that's the best part of the day.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Here's a great word: hendiadys

Main Entry: hen·di·a·dys
Pronunciation: hen-'dI-&-d&s
Function: noun
Etymology: Late Latin hendiadys, hendiadyoin, modification of Greek hen dia dyoin, literally, one through two
: the expression of an idea by the use of usually two independent words connected by and (as nice and warm) instead of the usual combination of independent word and its modifier (as nicely warm)

I still need to share my trip, but that's going to take a longer post than I currently have energy for. However, one of the things I picked up on my trip was an Edward Gorey book. (It was only $2 at the silent auction held the last night of the workshop.) I used to watch Mystery on PBS almost religiously and of course anyone faimliar with that show (I don't even know if it's still on now) knows Edward Gorey's opening credits. So for $2 I couldn't resist. It really takes a dry and somewhat twisted sense of humor to appreciate, so I'm not sure what that says about me (!), but we had some silly chuckles this evening with parts of it.

The second piece is called "The Nursery Frieze" and features little hippo-like animals running by saying various words that create a nonsensical rhythm, with every fourth word rhyming. I got quite a kick out of it, but my nine-year-old was mystified. The fourteenth word is hendiadys. Now you know that there is a word for this linguistical phenomenon. Go forth and use it in your conversation somewhere today. I dare you!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

I'm off!

Off to see the wizard, the wonderful wizard of...

Oops, wrong trip. I'm off to Wyoming for an art workshop with my mommy. And to the best of my knowledge it will not involve any tin men, scarecrows or cowardly lions. Just acrylics, watercolors or oils, depending on what I decide to participate in. The non-objective expressionist meets landscape and portrait professionals. Should be interesting.

See you next week!

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Free Motion Stitching

I spent today working on some art projects of the hands-on variety. Exercising the creative brain parts was a nice change of pace. I've really not spent much time in that mode this summer, although I had big plans to work on all kind of projects.

Today's piece was a fabric postcard for a friend. It started with several layers of various fabrics tacked together with a couple ribbon sections. My attempt to draw the FME design on was really a non-productive exercise: my sewing machine has an LED-type light that is going out (giving a nice strobe light effect--ever sew in a disco?) so I have a lamp that I shine strategically into the sewing space to lessen the effect, which essentially erased my light-colored chalk lines. Consequently it was even more free free-motion, that's for sure! If you've never tried FME, I recommend it--very (dare I say it?) freeing. Ha, ha, ha! Okay, bad Rin, I know. But it is quite fun. I highly recommend a darning foot, also. In all my years of sewing I've never stitched a finger, but it would be awfully easy to do while doing FME without a foot. (Of course I don't bother to put my projects in a hoop, which probably adds to the danger of footless sewing.) If you've tried FME and are frustrated by it, I would encourage you to give it a bit more practice. If you can get into a rhythm, everything starts to flow so nicely. After finishing up all the FME sections I took my heat gun and burnt off the layers of chiffon and some of the netting, to go back to my bottom layer. I really should have taken pictures before and after the burning because it made a dramatic difference on the piece. I'm very happy with it and now have to send it off.

Here is another fabric postcard I made recently and finished up today. It needed a little more color, so I pulled out my water-soluble wax crayons (a favorite toy), colored, then brushed on some water for some soft accent coloring. Free motion stiching and burning fabric also played a part here. (The burning thing could get a little addictive--I might finally understand my husband's desire to have a burn pile twice a year. The first year we lived in town [we're both country kids] he burnt the lawn in the spring. I told him that city folk just mow it--lol!) It will also be sent off to another home.

And finally, here's a little reject from a swap I participated in with some other artists in the Christian Paper Artist Yahoo group. We made pages for a Fruit of the Spirit book; my page was joy. Knowing the Lord always gives me a deep-seated feeling of joy; I am not an Eeyore (sp?) Christian. Even in the hardest of times I feel joy deep within. How to express joy on a piece of paper came easily to me--color. Every idea I had for how to approach this topic involved bursts of color. In the last year I've begun to realize that a large portion of my art falls into the category of non-objective expressionism and I find that I frequently want to express emotions with colors. Words and letterforms have always fascinated me, so this depiction of joy worked for me. And I had fun playing with my brush pen that gives such fun lines--sort of a French feeling.

What makes you joyful? What expresses joy to you? How would you depict joy? I would love to know (feel free to leave a comment. I moderate my comments, so it won't come up right away, but I check in frequently). I really would like to hear from people on this topic, because I'm trying to expand my interpretations and understanding of what I see in art. I'm not sure I'm explaining myself well, so here's an example: there are many paintings that I encounter that I dismiss as simple sentimentality, but I'm starting to wonder if I am missing something in the interpretation because of my personality. I'm not highly sentimental, so if I looked deeper would I see that the painting really says something bigger about love (for instance)? So, in that mode, I would really enjoy hearing how other people would depict an abstract concept like joy. BTW, this little page was a reject because I stitched it the wrong from the wrong side and then tried to cover the resulting ugliness with a satin stitch, which effectively made a cutout of the fragile sheet music on the back. The rest were stitched correctly and sent off. I can't wait to get the book.