October 29, 2008


Well, winter is undeniably here. At least for today. Until now I've been walking around in sandals due to some ingrown toenails that won't allow me to put on any shoes that I own. But last night it snowed - no real accumulation but the wind was nasty, the ground was wet and I felt it was time to investigate my boots. I found a pair that is one size larger than my shoe size - to accommodate thick socks. I ended up wearing them all day. Too hot. I am still refusing to wear a winter coat. This is way too soon to give in to winter this soon. And the temperature is going up starting tomorrow. I hate this seesaw temp already. What a wimp.
I neglected to show you the necklace I bought from Jane Wynn when she was in Toronto last week.

I just love her work.

October 25, 2008

A New Sewing Machine

I bought myself a gift last week - online so it was just delivered today.
I had a basic, simple sewing machine that managed to strip me of any confidence in the sewing department. Constantly the bobbin would jam up and I was forced to dismantle the whole business and start all over again. I couldn't figure out how to replace the shuttle cock (is that what it's called?) and I could have used 3 more hands. Now, I don't even sew so why I'm obsessed with having a decent machine is beyond me. Except that I might use it in mixed media ventures. This new machine is computerized. Meaning that you can dial in a stitch or other such functions too advanced for me to grasp at this point. It came with a dvd which is heads above the stupid stick diagrams that are supposed to clarify each point. I've just spent 2 hours trying to figure out how to use the needle threader. I didn't find it that 'easy' as the voice on the dvd insists. Of course I'm watching horror movies at the same time.
So far so good. No jamming of bobbins. I need to try it out more extensively so I shall try it on one of my fabric boxes. A good project as the temperature starts to fall and the rain and wind make walking outdoors most unpleasant.

October 23, 2008

Back to Normal

After such a lovely weekend of leaving the mundane behind and foraging through my creative debris, I was rudely dragged into an unexpected assault on my girls' bathroom (the girls being the cats). I went out for lunch on the waterfront. It was pretty chilly with that everpresent obnoxious wind but the rough waters still had the power to calm and sooth the nerves. My outing was well-timed as the management had posted a notice that water would be shut down in the building for repairs. When I got home there was a printed form from the management office citing why they entered the apartment. It's supposed to hang on the doorknob but, of course, it was lying on the floor. The handwriting was illegible. "Investigating" was the only word I could make out. Investigating leon? That's what it looked like but I don't know a leon. I followed a trail of plaster pieces and all of them led into the girls' bathroom. Half the ceiling is gone. What a creepy mess. Apparently there's a leak. I have visions of millions of silverfish diving into the apartment through such a welcoming exit. Waaaaah.....

October 20, 2008

Jane Wynn workshop

What a lovely weekend we had - Carmi having orgainized a 2 day workshop given by Jane Wynn. Jane is a mixed media artist with a gentle way of leading us through metal techniques that can be applied to assemblage and jewellery pieces. Needless to say I managed to NOT grasp the art of creating a bezel by bending wire into the desired shape. How come everyone else managed to create some really lovely pieces...I did, however, get carried away with the blow torch. It turns out that I love fire and the way it changes the metal. I couldn't stop firing for the full 2 days. We were using brass and copper. I was terrified of the drill press with dremel attached. I had big problems in the past - getting so spooked by the vibration when the drill bit hit the metal that I would let go and the metal would go spinning around the kitchen (where I do my work). The drill press stabilizes the drill and despite this feature, I'm still nervous of the vibration. Yuck. Maybe I saved myself some money by not buying a press. It's so heavy that I couldn't lift it anyway. But I did pick up a blow torch today and I'm waiting for my tripod to arrive (from ebay where the cost of the product is less than the shipping fee). Can't wait to start firing. Here are some examples of the variations of the impact of heat on metal:

Well these look a bit dark and small. It seems I'm now having trouble with the camera!