Tuesday, December 28, 2010


If your going to give something handmade you need to think long and hard about the recipient. My niece has been subject to a lot of crafty things from me over the years - bags, tags, quilts. I have no idea if she likes them or not - but I take the chance she will.

This Christmas is no exception. My niece is really into horses and I started with getting her books, but wanted to add something different. I still have an old Girls Annual I received one year for Christmas (very British) - with a picture on the cover I thought was perfect for my "idea".

It was easy enough to scan the cover and print on to fabric. I added backing using my favorite product - Steam a Seam...And after a root through all my material I just happened to find the right fabric that matched.
Which was a good thing because my pal Beth was able to supply me with the perfect horse ribbon to go with the pillow (the colours really match better then the lighting shows).
In case you are interested in such things, here is the back.
So there you have it. I've decided if my niece does not like it, I'm keeping it for myself! I'll let you know if it comes back from Canada with me (LOL). Jewels
UPDATE: My niece thought her pillow was wonderful!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Happy Holidays To You!

Well hubby, Miss Gwendonline and I are heading to Canada in a few short hours. Can't wait to see the family and catch up on how everyone is doing. We are grateful for another chance to be together.
Boxing Day we will head out and see how our cottage has survived the weather since the end of November. We expect to do some digging out. It will be a bittersweet Christmas without Gryphon this year and I expect a few tears - but we will certainly celebrate all he meant to us.
Meanwhile, I'll be on and off the grid until the New Year. I look forward to checking in on all of you but don't expect to post much myself. Wishing you all a safe and happy holiday where ever you may be. See you on the other side! Jewels

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Lucky Me!

This week we had our last Guild meeting of the year. A Christmas dinner at a local restaurant. Thanks to everyone who brought donations for the Midland Community Diaper Bank – they were thrilled to receive them yesterday.
I was the very lucky recipient of a lovely little wall hanging from my gal pal Carol. She is so talented.
And here I is my December Vintage Tag from her – how cute!
A couple of the ladies also added to my “stash” for collaging. Some old cookbooks and these wonderful vintage magazines.
Some wonderful graphics.
And equally hilarious advertisements. For us today – can you imagine this was taken seriously? Though I have to say, hubby might occasionally describe me this way - wonder if Lydia E Pinkham's Vegetable Compound would help (LOL). Cheers, Jewels

Monday, December 13, 2010

Baby it's COLD

Well it finally happened – it REALLY snowed here at Maple Hill. About the same time as last year . All our schools were closed today and we hit a balmy 7 F at noon (the wind chill made it more like -10). Yikes!
But it actually got sunny out…
So I braved the outdoors with many layers and took some snaps of my garden. I could hear the branches "cracking" as they swayed in the wind. It is that kind of cold where the snow is actually hard on top. Ice was everywhere. Sure looks a lot different to a few weeks ago…

All of my buddies agree - time to get indoors - brrrrr Meanwhile, had a little time to finish my December Vintage Tag for exchange tomorrow.
I love this print – she is very sweet.
I used a combination of old lace (some from a wedding dress), old sheet music (paper) and some “newer” fabrics. I actually applied some of the things I’ve learned over the last few months on vintage collaging…
I made this mini wall hanging a few years back – it actually hangs on my inspiration board all year long. The dimensions are…3x4” and the hanger is 4” (I finally found a supplier for hand crafted wire – I bought a table top “hanger” that is really sweet that I need to make a mini quilt for).
Hope you and yours are cozy and warm. Cheers. Jewels

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Dance Card

What IS it about this time of year? This weekend my dance card is completely full...

It begins tomorrow with an early Christmas present - The Geek Squad are coming to install wireless at our house (HURRAH). How on earth did we last this long without it. The sad thing is we can "hook up" two items in the house to this new technology. Hubby and I were hard pressed to think of anything else besides our TV - we are such neanderthals when it comes to this kinda stuff. Anyway, no more putzing with my work laptop every time I want to use it from home - it will be so nice.
Saturday's agenda:
9 - 11 Hubby is at Barnes and Noble drumming up donations for the Imagination Library. I'm obligated (OBLIGATED I say) to go there and spend money (LOL) for a good cause.
11- Late afternoon - Lunch party then off to purchase items for charity baskets
7 - ? Party (drinking kind)

Sunday agenda:
AM - Domestic Engineering (i.e. do week's worth of house stuff including groceries in 4 hours)
Afternoon - Baby Shower at Friends (both Hubby and I are attending - may be drinking but not sure - will probably take something to be on the safe side)
PM - Collapse in time for beginning of work week
Sadly there is not much time to squeeze in "crafty" things - though of course there is a lot to be done before Christmas!

Hope your weekend is fun (but not as hectic). Cheers. Jewels

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Is It A Sin

Mary's December Challenge came together pretty quick. We had to use 3 elements (as always) including this melancholy young lady.I happened to be flipping through some things and found this sheet music which I thought reflected her mood - who knows what she is thinking about?
Anyway, Mary is starting a "Collage Club" in 2011 which looks like a lot of fun. I know I've learned a lot these last few months and made some new friends along the way (who, unlike hubby, get my "art" - LOL). Check it out. Jewels

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Weekend Pics

Well I'm certainly behind on EVERYTHING! Hard to believe a week ago I had my feet up in front of a lovely wood fire enjoying a nice glass of wine (sigh). I love this pic taken in the village - all the ducks were frantically moving around (thinking we had food) but this one fella seems to be standing still - alone in a crowd.
The weather was not horrible - but not great either. Only one day with real sun.

These are early morning shots. You can kinda tell how windy and cold it was (nothing compared to some of our friends in Europe though).
The reflection in the harbour was wonderful.

This old shed used to contain all the equipment for the volunteer firefighters who lived on our road. It sits across the road from our place. Unfortunately there was a terrible fire in the village while we were there - the pub burnt down early one morning -very sad. The current owners had only just taken it over. Fortunately they escaped - but the building was pretty much destroyed and it was a local landmark...the good news is they do plan to rebuild.
In the village all the boats were pulled out of the water for the winter. The building up in the right hand corner - that's the village library I often talk about.
Well we will be back at Christmas - can't wait ( the canoe has now taken up residence in our living room for the rest of the winter as we do not have another building large enough to house it LOL). Cheers. Jewels

Monday, November 22, 2010

+Hanging On+

It was an unusually warm day (pushing 60 degrees) here at Maple Hill today. Hard to believe we are past the middle of November and well into the Christmas count down.
I'm rather pleased with a geranium I decided to bring in before the frost hit.
It really is hanging on and promises to have more blooms - a really lovely splash of red in my (ahem) art studio. But alas the forecast is for a significant drop in temperature before the week is out....

...and probably some of this!

To all my American friends - have a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving! Cheers, Jewels

Saturday, November 20, 2010

+Art Found?

A while back I picked up two old framed prints at a local consignment store – I actually looked at them, left, and came back again.
I paid a whopping $12 for the pair. There was just something I liked about them.

I have this one hanging in my art room (maybe I’ll start calling it my “studio” to give me more legitimacy as an AR_TIST, LOL). With all the vintage collage I’ve been doing I wondered if I could find them online in a format I could use. The artist name, Gerda Wegener, was easy to find and sure enough – there they were, with dozens more of her work.
It felt like I hit the jackpot finding all these lovely new images. Actually, if you Google Costume Parisiens you will find all sorts of wonderful pictures.
Ms. Wegener is also an interesting character. A little bit of background from Wikipedia:
Gerda Gottlieb Wegener Porta (15 March 1886 - 28 July 1940) was a Danish illustrator and painter.
Originally from the provinces and the daughter of a clergyman, she moved to
Copenhagen to pursue her education at the Royal Art Academy, and married fellow artist Einar Wegener (1882–1931) in 1904. After moving to Paris in 1912, she found much success both as a painter and illustrating for Vogue, La Vie Parisienne, Fantasio, and many other magazines. As she found fame in Paris, Gerda also developed a following in her home country. She held exhibitions at Ole Haslunds gallery in Copenhagen at regular intervals. Her career relied on a phenomenal talent but perhaps even more so on her notorious diligence, and the advantages her unusual marriage brought her. (Warning – if you do Google Ms. Wegener you will also find some of her more “erotic” works of art – just letting you know.)

And by the way, those two prints. Well based on the little research I did I think I did very well for my small investment. Apparently they are probably worth a bit more – where is Antiques Road Show when I need them! Still not enough to retire though…. Enjoy, Jewels.

P.S. Note to my Collage Class friends – this is the result of my current addiction – it once was my Dining Room table – how about you?

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Evening Song

Lesson 3 from Mary's class that I am taking is all about the use of pattern. It can be overwhelming and I must admit at first I went way overboard on this one.
I finally scaled back and came up with a pretty good 8 1/4 by 6 1/2 wall hanging just in time for Christmas. It uses old and new items - all paper but the ribbon.I'm really flexing my creative muscles these days - and get lots of encouragement from folks like Lenna (go check her wonderful stuff - thanks my friend). The classes have been really great - you really have to be a putz to mess up. If you want to see more check out some samples that Mary posted (I blush to say I am one of them). Enjoy, Jewels.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Thank You

In life it is important to say "thanks", at least in my opinion (must be the Canadian in me, LOL). Someone - a stranger really - who I have met in Blogland - did something really nice for me. She does not know me at all. Does not live any where near me. Only socializes through the comments we leave in each other's "hood"....but she did this thing for me anyway.
So I felt it was important to say thank you properly. I made a little gift that is now in the post and on its way. I hope she likes it - seems to fit her sunny personality. I'll let you know.
And remember - say thanks every chance you get - to family, to friends, and to those folks who may be strangers, but deserve it. Honestly, it will make you feel great to! +Jewels+

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Tag Exchange

If you have been tracking with me on my Vintage Tag Book then you will know that my best blog pal, Carol aka Fun Old Hag, is who I am trading with. She is a very talented lady and a wonderful quilter.
Last night at our Guild meeting I recieved more of her pieces of art.
As always they are lovely.

I particularly like the one with Carol's Aunt Leah - you can find out more about Carol's Family at her second blog (she's busy!) Pieces of the Past.

Thanks my friend!