Monday, October 31, 2011

A 'Cuff' Prototype

This is my first punchneedle cuff bracelet.  I made this prototype to fit my very small wrist - more will follow in sizes that most people can actually wear.

I've never used punchneedle in this way - but by the time I finished I could actually say "it worked"!  That isn't always the case, and when it does it rates an extra square of chocolate as a reward *smile*.

I began the design by punching to the dimensions necessary for the bracelet.  After punching I added decorative fiber.  Once the punching was finished I added a shank button and created a thin cord to use as a loop closure.  I attached that to the back and then secured felt to the back of the bracelet.  Last step - stitch around the edges of the felt and punchneedle.

I'm hoping for a little more decorative fiber and brighter colors with some of the upcoming bracelets.  Also I'd like to add a few beads or other adornments.  Guess its back to searching through my 'stash of stuff' (*smile*). 

"Beauty is whatever gives joy". - Edna St. Vincnet Millay

Friday, October 28, 2011

Fall Giveaway

Being surrounded by the beauty that is this fall -- I'm going to 'fall back' to an earlier creation and offer it as a giveway.  This artist book, "Tugging at Nature" is in an accordion style and is made primarily of fabric and chock full of forest images.  

So here you go -- if you'd like your name to be put into the hat please respond to this posting.  I'll draw a name next week, Thursday the 3rd of November, and then pop this little bit of autumn into the mail

I thank each and everyone of you for sharing this journey with me -- and love the opportunity to give back a bit.

"If you stand still outside you can hear it...Winter's footsteps the sound of falling leaves". - Takayuki Ikkaku

Monday, October 24, 2011

Punched Pendants

What a fun time I've been having!  Making these punched pundants involves choosing threads; choosing charms or center pieces; punching the design; adding the trim; placing the punched piece into the metal frame; adding ribbon.  Sort of like following a favorite recipe.

I've loved choosing the colors.  I started with the ribbons and then matched the threads and center piece. 

I am gathering a very nice collection of these simple pendants -- ready to be displayed in public come December.

"Think left and think right and think low and think high.  Oh, the thinks you can think up if only you try!" - Dr. Seuss

Thursday, October 20, 2011

"Enchanted Adornments"

I recently discovered this book - and just had to share it with you.  "Enchanted Adornments" by Cynthia Thornton is an absolutely enchanting book.

Basically its a 'how-to' book -- in that Cynthia shows us how to make beautiful mixed-media jewelery.  The techniques she teaches and features include metal clay, wire, resin and more.  There are lovely pictures of the jewelry and wonderful instructions but...

...there is a story line throughout the book -- where our heroine is on a trip visiting magical mythical creatures and for each one she must make a piece of jewelry.  The stories of her travels and the lovely creatures she meets along the way are wonderfully illustrated. 

This is a book that one can curl up with - let the imagination travel with the artist and thoroughly enjoy faraway pretend worlds!

"Life's enchanted cup sparkles near the brim". - Lord Byron

Monday, October 17, 2011

Our Special Visitor

Have you ever seen a white squirrel before?  I hadn't until we moved to this area - in fact I didn't even know that there existed such a beautiful creature.  There are several tales of how this breed came to be in the area  - the one that seems to hold people's interest the most is that someone from a circus brought them to town.  I sort of like the idea that a few of these intrepid critters might have escaped from the confines of a circus side show and made their home here in these hills.

We don't regularly feed the birds - but we do have this clay tray where we place left over cereal or crackers or even some nuts - as you can see this character is dining in style.

I can't tell the difference between one or the other so I'm not sure exactly how many we have here in our yard.  I do know that there is one that visits our front yard, right outside the front door, every evening.  He loves to play in the moss, looking for seeds, acorns, etc.  We also have a very small pond there and I'm sure he stops by for a drink. I try to stay discreetly in the background so that he'll continue to come back each evening.

"The world is mud-luscious and puddle-wonderful." - e. e. cummings

Thursday, October 13, 2011

A Charming Leaf Pocket

The latest, and perhaps last pocket.  This design was driven by the leaf charms that I recently discovered.  Such perfect little metal leaves - they definitely needed a home.

This design also seems to be a fitting ending to summer.  My mind and creations will soon be drawn inside - to warm colors and quiet days.

"Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower." - Albert Camus

Monday, October 10, 2011

Last Flowers of Summer

As the days shorten, the air cools and leaves begin to turn - I've found two late bloomers to share with you.

We drove up to Linville, NC to a native plants nursery high in the hills.  While walking through their greenhouses I spotted two spots of color.  They were very brave in their stance - given that it gets a lot cooler up there than it does here.  I love the idea that these two plants wanted to share their color just a little while longer.

"Flowers... are a proud assertion that a ray of beauty outvalues all the utilities of the world". - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Tree of Life Heart

I celebrate trees in this most recent heart.  Here in the mountains of western North Carolina we are surrounded by trees.  Sometimes I almost feel smothered by them - especially during summer when it is impossible to see further into the woods than a few feet due to the dense vegetation.  There is green everywhere

I love to touch the bark of trees, thinking of the years and years that an individual tree has stood in this forest.  The years go by one by one and the trees stand strong - almost like silent witnesses.  What have they seen through the years, what stories could they tell me?

"A tree growing out of the ground is as wonderful today as it ever was. It does not need to adopt new and startling methods". - Robert Henri

Monday, October 3, 2011

Pendants Preview

This pile of pendants-to-be is sitting on my worktable.  It is so tempting to put everything else aside to work on creating squares and circles.  These pendants in antique gold, silver and copper are waiting for punchneedle designs.  Each one will be hung on a ribbon - ready to adorn.  The pendants came from Linda at Woolen Whimsies who is a wonderful mentor to both punchneedle and rug hooking enthusiasts.

Quite a long time ago I found another pendant form at a local store and tried my hand at filling its center.  The pendants are only an inch and a quarter by an inch and a quarter which doesn't give much room to roam but each one will be a short journey and a new adventure for me. 

"Success in life is founded upon attention to the small things rather than to the large things; to the every day things nearest to us rather than to the things that are remote and uncommon". - Booker T. Washington


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