Friday, 27 December 2013

Focus on life–week 52–saying goodbye

Do you have a dining room table?  Do you eat at it regularly or is it just covered in flotsam and jetsam?

For shame!

focus on life 52

A photograph to kiss it all goodbye! I just can’t stand it anymore. We eat at a kitchen table.  It’s cozy for the three of us, but works just fine. This dining table has moved around to several places but now it just needs to be gone from the space entirely.  I normally would have kept the tree decorated another week at least but I got the itch this morning that that table needed to be gone. So I’m packing up all the ornaments early so I can assess and reorganize the storage space in the basement to see if I can make use of this table down there or pass it on to someone else. 

When I decided to get a fake tree, I went way fake with white, but now a few years on it seems to be yellowing in areas and “baby boy Rufus boy” kitten decided that chewing the bulbs seemed like a fun idea.  I watched him jump back, after electrocuting himself I presume, and walked over to discover that the crunch was him busting the glass.  Then he went back for another shock.
chewed bulb

He decided to do it again this morning.  I think this tree may have to go goodbye too now.
Well friends, it’s been 52 weeks of photos lead by Sally Russick from the Studio Sublime with the focus on life series.  I’m going to go ahead and sign up for the 2014 edition too.  If you would like to join in the fun, register here.

I hope all those who celebrate had a wonderful Christmas, we sure did!  Averleigh asked Santa for a cupcake.  For weeks this was the only thing she wanted. It had to be real so she could eat it, she added one day.  It really should be pink she added another day…. Santa came through! Sad part was Santa didn’t get it from a bakery we know and it wasn’t exactly moist and didn’t get eaten.  Never mind though, there was enough other great parts to the day it wasn’t a let down for her.

the Christmas cupcake

And with that, goodbye 2013.  Hope you all have a very happy new year… oh wait, before we get to that there is a boxing day sale in my A Polymer Penchant etsy shop I should mention.  The sale is actually Canada wide, 20% off with coupon code BOXINGDAY.  You can see a selection from all the participating shops right here.

boxing day cover

Ok, now really – Goodbye!

Saturday, 21 December 2013

focus on life–week 51- togetherness

Do you keep a lot of photos on display in your home?  I’m pretty awful about printing photos so there aren’t too many about. 

focus on life 51

This frame sits by the phone on our main floor.  I love these people.  All dear friends, whom I get to see and enjoy with varying frequency.  The greatest thing about true friendship is that those gaps don’t matter.  If it’s weeks, months or years the togetherness is what counts.

This focus on life series from Sally at the Studio Sublime has been another kind of virtual togetherness that has been such a privilege and pleasure.  You can register for 2014 and enjoy a year long journey in photography.  I’m going to decide before the 28th if I will be taking part again in 2014.  One the one hand a year has a certain completeness and it is always nice to make way for other new things.  On the other, it was a heck of a lot of fun so why not keep going… (and maybe just skip the weeks that just don’t happen and be at peace with that).

I’m thinking I will have another post before the 25th so I’ll save my Happy Christmas wishing for the moment.

Happy Solstice!


Friday, 13 December 2013

focus on life–week 50- a pop of red

Down to the last few photos for the focus on life series from Sally Russick of the Studio Sublime and she’s all set! This week, I went in search of a pop of red, as Sally puts it: “pops of red grab your attention and add such interest to a photo”.

The Christmas tree seemed like an easy target.  I have approximately 1 zillion ornaments, not that many of them are red.  I like to have a bit of a different tree – but I was not in charge of the tree this year. 

head of decorating

I was allowed to hang the garland and few others, but mostly Averleigh chose what to put on the tree and where.  With a kitten in the house I opted for the full complement of unbreakable ornaments and kept the precious ones hidden away.  I explained that the bottom branches were to be filled with the big bells – the cats hate the sound.  The rest was up to her and indeed a little red made its way onto the tree.

Of course the tree was still inspected by all the felines.  Ya know, there are a lot of hilarious dog shaming pictures out there and Roxy seemingly baited me into creating one of my own.  Little problem though.  Cats have NO shame!

focus on life

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

focus on life–week 49- add a little sparkle

While I was skiving I also missed out on joining in on Erin Prais-Hintz’s 4th Annual Challenge of Color.  I really need to spend some more time with the Colourlovers site to have a full appreciation.  At first blush, I found it a bit cumbersome but I was in the throws of craft fair season so my patience may have been a bit lacking.

That brings us to this past weekend, focus on life week 49 of Sally Russick’s wonderful series.  As she suggests: “to keep things cheery we sometimes have to add our own dash of sparkle to brighten our inner glow”

Last week I found some sparkle in an old favourite that is a bit time worn but sparkles none the less.  Its use today is to hold the tea bag once it has done its purpose.  It carries some yellow stains from its original life as an ash tray.  It was the rare guest to my parents home who would smoke, but this lived in the living room for that purpose.  My mum made this mid-seventies and I have loved it for as long as I can remember.  It would sometimes have a pin or needle or two in it if mum darned some socks in that chair, stealing the perfect sized glass paperweight from the same table for the task.

Come to think of it, I’m not too sure how I came to have it?  I know at least one of her pottery pieces is here despite a minor objection, but I think this one came quite freely.

focus on life 49

I’m holding it at a bit of an odd angle but I always saw it this way up.  Like I had come across a dear from behind and viewed through a fisheye lens….not “just a tree”.

Ok, three more to go to wrap up the year ladies!!

focus on life–week 48- giving thanks

I posted this in my brain on November 30th, just trying to catch up on reality.  I swore I wasn’t going to miss a week, but alas I decided that nothing would actually blow up if I did.  So while Thanksgiving may be an recent memory for some, it was a couple of months ago here.  Our tradition  – giving thanks for football on that day.

I took this photo at the start of the 2010 football season, Averleigh would have been just over 3 months and I can tell you that was a 7lbs sleeper since I just gave it away the other day.

focus on life 48

Pretty thankful for my little fan to share it with too!

I’ve got a lot of catching up to do with the whole gang posting over at the Studio Sublime!

Thursday, 28 November 2013

It’s time for a sale!

Hello Friends! A quick post to announce a sale for the weekend, from Black Friday to Cyber Monday – including Small Business Saturday and hey why don’t I have a fancy name Sunday.

black friday at a polymer penchant

I’m going to keep on listing today and tomorrow, so you can find all sorts of goodies in my A Polymer Penchant etsy shop.

You can check out all the great sales and promotions at the Love my Art Jewelry Blog <- (this link will work come midnight).

I hope all my American friends are enjoying a wonderful Thanksgiving.  I am thankful for football!

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

focus on life–week 47- centerpiece

Well focus on life friends I lost a few days.  I didn’t want to get any further into the week without sharing a photo for Sally’s prompt of centerpiece.  I tried to think of a subject that wasn’t Averleigh… but what can I say she just is my sun, at the centre of our lives.  I suppose I’ll have to think of things to help her understand that the world actually does not revolve around her, only child, only grandchild on hubby’s side.  This may be an uphill battle.

Monday we brought some clothes to the consignment store and took a look through the racks, at her request, to find a new puppy shirt to replace the last one that she’s outgrown.  Right at the end of her size section I pulled out a ballet leotard with built in tutu to take a look.  Before I could even read the tag she had it hugged to her, trying to walk to the cash, “I need this for ballet mama, lets go home so I can wear my new dress”.  In that moment as I tried for a glimpse at the price I knew I was going to pay whatever it was – phew $9.


Photo effects do wonders for cleaning up the house! 

Monday, 18 November 2013

Tis the season

Show season that is.  I’ve got two shows down and two more to go for the season.  I doubt at this point another will pop up, but I am available in December.  I’m also planning a sale (more on that at the end of this post) so I’d like to fill up the A Polymer Penchant etsy shop.  Naturally, during this busy time I am trying all sorts of new things.  It’s madness, but in a good way.

The Navan show, this weekend past, is such a nice, small and friendly show.  Most of the vendors are seasoned, but each year there seems to be one or two new ones.  I can’t recall if I did it only two years or three before taking a break, having Averleigh.  This was the second year back and it’s nice to have returning customers and admirers.  It’s always interesting to see what people reach for.  I have a necklace with velvet beads and pretty much every person touches the beads, but I can’t seem to entice anyone to try it one.  Other items that I’m excited about seem to spend the whole day unnoticed.  I had four pieces, brand new, never photographed, sell.  This is great, too bad I can’t show you!

I also had a wonderful mix of “older” pieces ie not made in the last month, sell.  Like this one

This picture was also used in the advertisement for my show in two weeks – Baz’ART.  I think I will have to make another incarnation or two, maybe with just a single bloom and some wire work. 

I’ve been working on my wire working skills for some time now and I was excited to get moving and finally try some things I’ve had for a year, some longer.  Yes, it was high time to try Liver of Sulfur, my butane torch, and my tumbler.

Here is the pile of copper clasps and what not I worked up, all ready in the garage with my LOS, my handy (stolen) Spiderman container, some fresh water and baking soda. 

photo 1

I used a kettle to warm (not boil!) my water and a couple of drops went in and then I started adding the copper.
photo 2

Hmm that’s funny, the 20g pieces were turning black right away but the 16g weren’t.  I wouln’t think the gauge would make a difference, only that there is more surface area. Oh, wait a sec, they are where I had hammered… The proverbial penny was dropping.  That damn wire wasn’t bare copper at all, it must have been coated!!

photo 3

I rinsed and dried and, a bit deflated, decided that I would not bother to clean the few that did oxidize at that moment.  They are just waiting for me still.  I had a good giggle at myself since I do have a fresh pound of 16g ready to go, I just thought I would “use up” the small coil I had.  Sure enough in small letters it says”non-tarnish”.  I moved on and filled that butane torch at long last.  I had mixed success balling some copper.  I moved on again, looking for something to work out and loaded up the tumbler with all my special non-tarnish clasps and success! I’m very happy with how they turned out in the end.

Now a creative person should never complain about all the ideas, all the things that just want doing right now.  BUT at some point a creative person, who endeavours to sell their creations, should apply some of that same creativity to marketing.  Working on that.  The lovely ladies at Love my art jewelry know a thing or two about just that.

Love My Art Jewelry Black Friday Sale

The wheels are turning on just what I will offer, but I went ahead and joined in for the event.  Now, it’s time to plan and organize.  (I think I can, I think I can…)

Friday, 15 November 2013

focus on life–week 46–reflect

Ok we are now entering the point where soon we will be counting down those final weeks, some of the busiest of the year to be sure.  I so hope I can make it the whole way!  I’m not sure what I will do without Sally’s thoughtful weekly prompts and all of you to share it with. I’m reflecting already and I haven’t even gotten to the point where I tell you this weeks prompt – reflect!

This morning I wrote my post for the art charm swap and auction in support of Beads of Courage.  Since it was really meant to be about the art charm I made, I was a bit abrupt when I said:

My child started her life in hospital and the first time I held her we were skin-to-skin and overtop was a handmade quilt.  I’ve experienced arts in medicine – it is important.

focus on life week 46

Today that quilt sits in a little wooden cradle.  That cradle was made for me by my dad when I was about 3 or so and always held the same baby doll.  Averleigh plays with that doll at my parents house now but oddly doesn’t show much interest in the cradle at home.  But our special quilt sits at the ready.  It seems that every baby born into the NICU gets one, I didn’t get to pick it myself since I was in recovery at the time.  It breaks my heart to think of those who are left with only the quilt.  It also hurts to think of all the small ones who are collecting beads of courage one by one. I know how lucky we are.

Art charm swap and auction in support of beads of courage

Last year I stumbled upon Jennifer Cameron’s art charm swap in aid of the Beads of Courage program.  As that swap went on it was clear the amount of work involved in receiving, swapping, triple-checking, shipping, photographing, auctioning and more shipping that Jennifer undertakes with this event.   Last year all this effort brought in $600 for the cause and this year, the goal is $1000!  So the most important link is the one right HERE for the auctions where you can join in on the fun and bid for your very own charm.

In the course of this hop you will likely hear a lot about Beads of Courage, here is their mission from their website:
Our Mission: We are growing every day, providing innovative, arts-in-medicine supportive care programs for children coping with serious illness, their families and the health care providers who care for them. Beads of Courage, Inc. is an approved public charity under I.R.S. Code Section 501(c)(3), based in Tucson, Arizona.

My child started her life in hospital and the first time I held her we were skin-to-skin and overtop was a handmade quilt.  I’ve experienced arts in medicine – it is important.

a little love
With a theme of love this year I toyed with several ideas as usual.  Thinking on the loves in my life, the ideas all got a little too personal.  I mean, an inside joke is no fun if you aren’t on the inside right? So despite trying to escape the universal heart I somehow ended up right back there.  I thought of young love and carving your initials in a tree… but what initials to use? I found some branch beads in my stash and knew that I had to try and carve them.  I pulled out the wood burner I had bought some time ago and never tried.  A little testing on some tongue depressors and off I went to carve the word “LOVE”. 

and the back

While the branch bead itself is a decent size I couldn’t have just that.  My little tree got a canopy in the form of a polymer rondelle I had made already (inspired by an artichoke originally).  Fortunately I still had more of that cane I had started from raw so created a little leaf to swing from the branch.  It’s more suggestive than realistic I’d say.

It’s wonderful to receive charms from the group and I’m excited to read more about the ones I’ve received.  I’m going to share a bit of a teaser picture of them since I’d really like it if you took a closer look at them during the auction instead :) Oh, and I added this years to last.

photo (34)

Enjoy the LOVE tour! Thank you to all involved!

Jen Cameron:
Toltec Jewels:
Vanessa Gilkes:
Caroline Dewison:
Lesley Watt:
Susan Kennedy:
Nancy Dale :
Alicia Marinache:
Cassi Paslick:
Alenka Obid:
Renetha Stanziano:
Shelley Graham Turner:
Monique Urquhart:
Shai Williams:
Lennis Carter:
Cheri Reed:
Moriah Betterly:
Perri Jackson:
Mallory Hoffman:
Ginger Bishop:
Jean Peter:
Linda Florian:
Patricia Pulliam:
Karin Grosset Grange:
Julie Bowen:
Susan Delaney:
Emma Todd:
Carolyn Chenault :
Terri Del Signore:
Cory Tompkins:
Cheryl (Lee) Koopman:
Lori Bowring Michaud:
Andrea Glick:
Jacqueline Carlson:
Michelle McCarthy:
Charlene Bausinger Jacka:
Kristi Bowman:

Saturday, 9 November 2013

Focus on life–week 45- industrial photography

This week Sally Russick had a great prompt for us of Industrial Photography.  I did as she suggested and googled to see just what it was all about.  What a treat that was! 

focus on life week 45

I let the industry come to me with these ear muffs I ordered to protect my hearing while hammering wire.  I tried them out for the first time this morning and it’s just perfect to be in my own little cone of silence while making a whole bunch of noise.  Hubby has strongly suggested that I not be at the garage workbench hammering away at night if we want to keep nice neighbours. I was going to try some more interesting angles on the pictures but this kept happening.


Rufus would come flying in to try and dive beneath the packing paper or attack my lens cap which hangs off the side of the camera.  So for ultimate safety I put it all away.

It’s my little industry of just me day –busily preparing for the next show of the season. 

I’m sure my friends found some more interesting industry in their surrounds:

Friday, 1 November 2013

focus on life–week 44- saints, souls and sugar skulls

photo (33)

It was great that Halloween fell on a day I don’t work this year.  Averleigh and I were able to join friends for trick or treating in the mall. What a zoo, but so so fun.  The rain poured down in the evening so we only went to a few houses but still, more fun.

The real scare for me is that I have my first craft show of the season Sunday and the things still undone at this point is pretty scary!  It’s too bad that even though I thought i left enough time some supplies I ordered won’t arrive until after the show so it’s a bit of a rethink mode tonight. So off I run!

Saturday, 26 October 2013

focus on life–week 43–in the shadows

Friday was the deadline for the art charms to arrive for the 2013 Art Charm Swap hosted by Jennifer Cameron of Glass Addictions.  I was relieved that my charms arrived early, almost a week before the deadline – go me! November 15th will bring a blog hop to show off the charms created and to kick off the auctions in support of Beads of Courage.  Last year, I also participated, and received some wonderful charms and more importantly the auction raised $600!
When I saw Sally’s prompt of “in the shadows” for this week I knew a teaser pic in silhouette would be perfect.  Then all week I forgot to take the picture!   So my iphone snap tonight is not exactly what I had in mind, it gives away even less. 

photo (32)

I have been distracted by another idea.  I think it started with the making of these very charms. During the creative process (which I’m trying not to give away yet) I somehow created these.

photo 2

This got me to thinking that a tongue depressor just might make the perfect earring “card”.  Today I finally brought the idea to fruition with a little cutting and drilling.

photo 4
This is a great start but not entirely what I had in mind.  I thought since I already had the holes drilled I would dip them in some paint and hang to dry, to look a little like paint stir sticks.  I looked around the room and thought, hmmm dangling sticks of paint where a kitten explores is probably not the best part of this idea.

photo 3

I decided that alcohol ink and a toothbrush would provide just the right amount of decoration.  Here you see them in part of a cold air return that just happened to be on a clearance table next to the PVC pipe when I was picking some up to act as table risers.  It was a show display serendipity!  They also stand on edge quite nicely as the posts allow them to rest at a perfectly tilted angle.  For transport, they also arrange tidily in a cigar box.  I’m also very happy with how these studs are all coming together, this is a new product I will be featuring at Handmade Harvest next Sunday.

photo 1

Now I suppose it’s time to start thinking of Halloween.  I wonder if the other “in the shadows” photos will help more with that eerie leaning.  Head on over to the studio sublime to see them all.

Sunday, 20 October 2013

How long does it take you to make that?

I’ve just updated my show calendar, which has it’s own page here on the blog.  I am going to have to do a bit more fiddling to make the layout right, but for now I’m frustrated with the tool and have to move on.  I was a little disappointed that not all the shows I wanted to take part in would have me, but I’m excited to be part of two new to me shows and two returning goodies.

I’ve always loved craft shows.  I love going and I love taking part.  I’ve been working on new product, complete redesign of my booth, new packaging, new signage and the list goes on and on.  I can’t wait to see it all come together, since right now everything is either still an idea or somewhere on the road to done. I fully expect to still be tweaking all kinds of things right up to the last minute as that’s just the way I am.

Last night I was working on some new post earrings, that will be debuting at Handmade Harvest.  I had to move some things around to have just enough space to work.  One tray in particular has about twenty or so pendants that the final layer of sealant is curing on.  I was trying to remember if it had been 72 hours yet when I realized it would be wise to just write down the time I finish at!  Such an easy solution.  Of course my next thought is these aren’t really done.  You see they have this little void in the centre that I want to add a little sparkle and resin to.  That means these “done” pieces will have about another three steps and five more days before they are really done.  I had a flashback to a wonderful sign I saw at the Pottery show one year.  It was two pages long - regular 12 pt font! I stood there and read through and it detailed, and I mean detailed, from start “I dug the clay out of the ground” to “I set up this table full of mugs”.

Back to my tray of pendants, I started trying to count out steps on my fingers, what to call a step, hmm, lets see…

-I found the vintage button - I made a mould - I conditioned the polymer – I moulded and then further hand shaped and sculpted – first cure – I added a base colour – I added three layers of metal paint to sections - I custom mixed more polymer – textured it – sculpted it as a bezel to the first piece – second cure – I colourized (3-5 layers) – I highlighted – I sealed three layers…and more to come.

So lets call that fourteen steps, but some of those are really multiple steps, each with different amounts of time doing and lots more time waiting.  This is why it is so hard to answer that favourite question of craft show attendees: “How long did it take you to make that?”  It’s a fair question! One I sometimes answer with a smile and a hmmm, then tell them something else entirely about the piece or the process.  Mostly because what the heck time shall I count.  These pendants have been a work in progress for about two months now and they aren’t done in my mind yet.  

Really I take the question as an invitation to chat about my work, so please, don’t stop asking it! Just know, I’m not being intentionally vague or flippant if I say 2 months!

Here is where I should be showing you these pendants I’m going on and on about, but they ain’t done so instead

rufus studio kitty

Rufus has not learned yet that a good studio kitty should stay off the worktable and keep his hair to himself!

Friday, 18 October 2013

focus on life–week 42–all in a day

“Let’s focus on 24 hours and see what goes on during your day!”

This week’s prompt from Sally at the Studio Sublime had me a bit stumped.  The first thing that popped into my head was all the waiting 24 hours for things to dry in my studio at the moment.  There are so many projects at various stages of wait, it’s starting to drive me a bit insane.  But this is what happens when you bust out all manner of mixed media.  Everything needs a good cure, then seal and wait, seal and wait, seal and ….. Yup, pretty boring picture I couldn’t bring myself to take.

Thursday I was already having a day I’d rather do over when Averleigh decided to celebrate finishing lunch Greek style.  Awesome. She screamed and screamed and while I thought it was mostly over the loss of the prized eat-every-meal-off-of plate it was at least in part because it landed square on her toe nail.  I didn’t realize it was really hurting until that night when the nail bed was purple.  Poor love.

Twenty four hours later, there I was in the kitchen grabbing lunch and thought, heck, that is the picture isn’t it.  I walked over to the dustpan I had left the pieces in (along with all the cat hair and crumbs) and assessed the situation

focus on life week 42

I thought of when we first found it, her reaction was “Where’s Daisy?” Daisy Duck is such an awful character, I was a bit bummed when she got so attached to her.  So it would be routine for lunchtime to include some story about where Daisy may be since she wasn’t with the others.  I bet that will just be my memory and not hers.  I will clean and tuck away these bits for something, someday. 

The metal plate in the background was MY plate it has an elephant that is practically worn away for good, you can just see it when tilted a certain way in the light.  Averleigh is quite pleased with how this one can spin around and around on the table.  No comment.

Hope to see some finer days from my friends below, hey they can’t all be beauties

Saturday, 12 October 2013

focus on life–week 41–connections

Here we are week 41 and I know October will be gone in a blink of an eye, always the case as I ready for shows.  This weekend is Canadian Thanksgiving and when Sally Russick of the Studio Sublime had us thinking on connections in all manner of ways, well, the timing was perfect.

photo (31)

For starters, this arrived!! The Missing Link by Cindy Wimmer, is all about connections.  It’s very exciting to receive a beautiful book directly from the author with her sweet message inside, (another great connection.) I keep running through it just looking at the beautiful pictures, I haven’t started to read through proper yet.  Of course I’m most attracted to the ones with higher difficulty which shouldn’t really be the starting point, but then again I sometimes do things the hard way.

Friday night brought the celebration of a connection earlier in the courthouse.  (I stole this picture from my dear friend’s facebook).  This has been a while coming in idea, but only about two weeks ago did I receive a text, would we be available to celebrate? To which I replied “where else would I be” as there are some things that are just not to be missed!

wedding van

This morning was a third birthday party for a special guy, and we gathered at the local pumpkin patch/berry farm/petting zoo etc to celebrate some more.  After a wagon ride, magic show, pizza, cake, presents and general fun the party was wrapping up but with the gorgeous weather we stayed on a bit.  Averleigh had decided she didn’t mind waiting in line she wanted to have her face painted.  This child has always fought the idea of a comb or basically anything you would touch her face and hair with so I had some doubts.  We waited probably about 45min to an hour in line, hubby and I trading off, before it was her turn.  The artist asked what she would like and set to work, moving briskly and without much direction.  It seems all the children just new when to close their eyes and she moved their heads where they needed to be.  Until…


PINK KITTY!  That’s what she asked for and I think it turned out pretty good.  She wondered if there would be a tail for her, I suggested we could just pretend.  She sure did get a kick out of this connection to being a kitty herself.

All these connections I am so thankful for this thanksgiving.

Friday, 4 October 2013

focus on life–week 40–give us a smile!

Thanks all for your sweet comments on last week’s post, it’s wonderful to have such encouragement.  With a big smile on my face we headed out Sunday with the mission of apple picking at the orchard just down the way.  I’ve lived in the area my whole life and I’ve never been!  While apples were never the top fruit in our house, hubby and Averleigh are big fans.

Looking through the shots I could have shared many with wide smiles in what was a perfect sunny, warm fall day.  I kept returning to this one though, it proves a long held belief.  You don’t need to see a person’s mouth to know they are smiling.  It’s all there in the eyes. Who would doubt that apple hides a wide grin?


Now if only I could have had a little more light on those beautiful eyes I would be really happy.  I found the speckled light the apple trees made a bit of a challenge.  It’s hard to complain about shade when you are taking pictures amongst trees, but I wish some in the bunch I took like the one below had more sun in the right spots!


It’s a fun learning process, this photography.  Soon I think it will be time to have some instruction.  While I can read all sorts of things on the subject, I think there is much that could be learned in person. 
Thanks to Sally Russick of the Studio Sublime for bringing this little lesson to us each week!

Saturday, 28 September 2013

focus on life–week 39–your best shot

Geez Sally, no pressure!  This week we are challenged to get snap happy and come up with a best shot.  I wasn’t sure what I wanted to take a bunch of pictures of, but all week I knew what I should take a bunch of.

So this morning I sat down in my studio, with the camera, tripod, and remote. (also with pimples, grey roots and I could keep going but I’m gonna keep just sucking it up).  I really wanted to have a picture of myself “at work” for my A Polymer Penchant etsy shop about page.  I’ve noticed how much I like seeing that little picture when I am browsing.

I took 192 photos.  The last little bunch actually had some shots I really liked but in adjusting the height of the camera I ended up with it refocusing on the foreground so the ones I like best were all too blurry to call soft focus.


Here is the “are you kidding me?” shot, half way getting up from my chair is in focus, not the 30 shots I just took sitting in it.  Damn.

I think I’ve decided I like this one best, it looks the friendliest to me


Or maybe this one that has the best light of the bunch and is a little bit odd, candid.


Or this one that I sort of like because it’s the wider shot so you can see more of the junk  supplies, nah, junk of the space.  Although I look a little irked perhaps.


And last of the final four, it’s not that different from the first one.  Except it is kind of overwhelming with STUFF. I should perhaps crop this one closer.


After almost no pictures of me on the blog, it feels weird to put up a whole bunch, but really I do think it is so nice to get to see everyone’s face online.  So one of these will have to be it, will have to be my best, flaws and all.  I’d love to have you weigh in!

More best shots at the Studio Sublime

Saturday, 21 September 2013

focus on life–week 38–a quiet moment

Earlier this week I looked up to a shocking scene.

focus on life quiet moment

Franklin and Roxy have each had their turn on focus on life posts before, but this deserved another go.  I don’t think I have ever seen them share a chair.  [Pardon the mess of the other chair, in the frame, it’s time for it to go so naturally it’s in the middle of the room].  Closer inspection revealed they managed to not actually touch.  The arrival of kitty number three has the normally quiet natured Roxy on edge.  Poor twelve pound girl is scared silly of the bouncy little boy who is a quarter her size.  That blue mat on the chair gets a spray of a calming pheromone spray, which seems to be helping. 

Good grief right? I know, I know, it’s all sounding very dull crazy cat lady.  But in a quiet moment a cat will always come find me for a snuggle and a lap full of happy purring cat is a beautifully relaxing thing.  They are worth their diva-ness.

Head on over to Sally’s the Studio Sublime to check out what everyone is up to.

Sunday, 15 September 2013

focus on life–week 37–in motion

Hmm, having my last post late had me almost miss this one entirely! Back on track next week.

This week Sally Russick of the Studio Sublime suggested we “stretch those creative muscles and capture things in motion.”  I grabbed my iPhone and used one of the camera apps to try and shoot a slow shutter (same one we used way back) with my left hand while painting with my right.  I’m not very good at that.

focus on life motion

I suppose this shot works as a sneak peek too since I may actually produce something for the ABS monthly challenge.  I have just a small selection of the Swellegant line that I have been meaning to try again.  My first experiment I was less than thrilled with, so I am hoping that this one turns out better.  This time I did actually read the instructions.

Lets have a spin around the group shall we?

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Almonte is flirting with me

 I had hoped to complete a piece of jewelry inspired by Ottawa to share for the Challenge of Travel, and I shared my lame excuses here.  That idea is still a good one and I think I will reboot and refresh it in time for Winterlude – which is usually in February but I swear it’s related, this is not just procrastination.

I wrote a bit about Almonte just the other day, as I was drawn to see all the goodies at Fibrefest.  I was actually in Almonte a few weeks ago with my parents and Averleigh to see a new shop Hello Yellow.  I had been planning a trip to check it out and get mum a birthday present.  I could just imagine giving it to her and explaining where I had found wonderful thing x only for her to say, “hey I wanted to go too”. So instead we made a day of it.

Here is where I show you a picture of the very thing we found.  Oops.

Here instead is a picture I stole for owner Emily’s blog where you can just make out another similar gorgeous glass pear shaped terrarium up on the shelf right where the eaves trough would go on that second home shaped shelf (the one in the background).  Ok you can barely make it out, but see all the other cool stuff, just trust me – it’s awesome.

I was also going to stop in at the Tin Barn Market but as luck would have it we were there on a Monday when they are closed.  I took a card and knew it wouldn’t be long before I was back.

After my purse was full of fresh old buttons from Fibrefest, and short on funds, I got in the car and thought hey – Tin Barn Market time! Pop that address into google maps and decided I could certainly get back out and walk the 400m.  Ah yes small town.  I spotted something I loved within 3 feet of the door.  The price was fair and it was a bit on the big side so I left it right where it stood as I explored the rest of the store.  All manner of excellent things but my money was already spoken for so I walked back to the front and just then a pair of women came in and I made space for them to enter.  They immediately spotted this same loveliness.  I stood quietly, waiting, surely they will just look a little and move on – there’s lots more to see! Nope they picked it up walked to the cash, bought it, then straight back out the door! Ah man.

Oh Almonte you tease!

I rationalized I had already spent enough on the day, and those vultures savvy shoppers must have already seen it as they didn’t look at another thing.  Who me bitter?

Today brought some great news! I have been accepted to the Handmade Harvest Holiday show, November 3rd.  I see you Almonte trying to redeem yourself.  This is a two day show with different vendors each day.  I will be there will my goodies on the Sunday.  That leaves me the Saturday to go check out all the other handmade goodness, or perhaps while the others are distracted, slip back into the Tin Barn Market.  Either way, I hope Almonte will show me some love!

Perhaps this little video will give you a taste of the show

Monday, 9 September 2013

focus on life–week 36–in two

Let’s pretend for a moment it’s Saturday and I’m sharing with you this week’s focus on life m’ok?  Sally Russick of the Studio Sublime prompted us to look for things in pairs, as they are everywhere in our lives. 

I instantly knew what picture I wanted to share and I walked past the scene going in and out of the house all week long thinking: “hmm, I should tidy a bit before taking the picture…” That never came to be.

A couple of years ago I bought an ikea cd tower, used, for next to nothing and installed it my tiny foyer to hold all of Averleigh’s shoes (and hats and mittens and so on).  I love that there are spots that she can reach and spots she can’t.  It has been a perfect solution for us to the assortment of little things by the door.  I think I can probably eek out another year or so of the footwear fitting in the little shelves. On the side there are two pink puppy dog tail hooks for her to hang her jacket and hat.  Pairs of shoes, a pair of hooks, yup right on theme.

Although the real theme of the week is that I seem to be perpetually in two minds about so many things.  I like to think I enjoy doing lots of research and weighing all options to make informed decisions.  At times though it seems that I get stuck in that indecision without even realizing it is indecision.  Then there are all the times of being in two minds about what I am doing and what I should be doing.  That’s been part of the quiet around here.

Sunday I decided to head out to Almonte, a small town about an hour away to see the sights at Fibrefest.  I hadn’t planned on going but a Saturday night chat with my mum about the day she and dad had spent there, well, I couldn’t miss out.  With a head cold starting up, I grabbed a coffee and hit the road – all by myself ! – to explore.

button booth

A whole arena of all things fibre and buttons, buttons – buttons! This collage is just one of several booths of button sellers.  It must have been a full hour that I spent combing over all these gorgeous buttons.  At one point a card I had sitting up to take a few buttons from was nabbed by another shopper, lets say about 50 years my senior, I didn’t kick up a fuss.  When the card came back my way, sure enough the only three removed from it were the ones I was after.  I decided she had great taste, and at that moment started pulling them off and keeping track of the price with my phone so I wouldn’t miss out again. 

I walked away with a great many and my favourite, the most expensive button I have ever bought, was indeed made in two pieces, how fitting.


I wonder what other twos are cropping up

It seems blogger is not cooperating today, maybe the links will come up later...

Sunday, 1 September 2013

Second Annual Challenge of Travel–Staycation edition

Hello folks!  I’ve been so looking forward to creating something oh so very Ottawa for this wonderful challenge put on by Erin Prais-Hintz.  I found some great inspiration and my execution fell so short of what I had in mind I just can’t show you yet.

I’d start by telling you all about Ottawa.  I was born here, and I’ve never left.  I just moved from little bit further east when it was my own home we settled into.  I’m not done with this idea though, I am going to save all the details for when I post a completed piece I can be proud of.

Would you like a little tease?

staycation teaser

inspiration teaser

So for the moment, I will be off to enjoy everyone else’s staycation views and inspiration while I figure out how to stop forcing it and let something good come about.

get the InLinkz code