Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Jellyfish experiment

Finally I am back to serious working after playing and experimenting for months.
I have seen recently a Youtube video by Yulia Badian showing how to make a jellyfish and it made me to try it out. I bought a little pack of Leicester locks years ago at a Creative Fibre area meeting from Helen Kinsella and thought I could use some of it for that. So I laid them out in a circle as the instruction said and covered the middle with a thin layer of white wool. I don't know which wool it is, some of my stash. I try to remember if I bought some more Lincoln in Germany, it behaves a bit like that.


I laid  a pattern with some linen yarn in


and then sprinkeled some soapy water on after covering in a net and started rubbing




it felted quite quickly and was stuck to the net already when I started to pull that off


then I rolled it briefly in bubble wrap


and found out after opening that the locks started to felt together. Hmm that what not was I wanted and I tried to pull them apart a bit. Then I just rubbed the middle to shrink it a bit and in the end after rinsing I put it on top of a ballon for drying.



Billy the cat looks a bit skeptical. We will see who everything is after drying and what I can do with it. I have to work more with locks to find out how to use them and not get them felted to themselves too much.

Sunday, 3 April 2016

End of Summer

Truly summer has ended, last night the clocks were switched back to normal time. The weather is still amazing, hot and sunny with temperatures in the high twenties. The kids hardly left the pool yesterday and played in it until dark.
What a busy summer it was!
After the annual Art Trail I prepared work for a little pop-up gallery in which I showed my work together with 4 other Kerikeri artist friends very successfully. And I had work in 3 more galleries which also sold quite a lot of it.
So I had to slow down the last week, everything had become too exhausting and my body doesn't like that, hopefully more rest and a double up of medication will fix it.
I'd like to focus for a while on the knitting machine again to make some new garments for the coming colder weather. How it looks we will not travel to Europe this winter, the idea of another housesitter nightmare is not very tempting beside of all the madness all over the world. I'm sad not to see my son, but they live their own live anyway and we are not really part of it anymore, hardly hear anything from there and I wonder sometimes about being welcome at all, which is wrong of course. Life is busy for everybody and worklife in Germany is very demanding.
Well I am looking forward to cosy time at the fire in some month, not so much the mess of the firewood and lighting the fire in the morning, and lots of time to do new experiments.

Summer impressions :

a stall at the market in November


Fun painting with granddaugther
a little trip to Kerikeri wetlands

more experimenting on the knitting machine


a trip with the dog to Wharau Beach

finished my felted seascape

Pohutukawa flowers just before Christmas

Christmas party at the Carriage House

The hydrangeas gave us their annual great display 

Merry Christmas!
More flowers 

Billy likes the sun

and Girlie loves her ball

made more scarves
and another felted picture

Got my own car!

just before opening the gallery

The spring wallhanging at its final place at the customers house

Happy Birthday Storm!


First autumn flowers

finally finished the 'Persimmon Patch'

this little green bag was sold very quickly

wonderful pots given to us from friends who moved away

Work in progress

Easter at Taupo Bay

Housewarming party at my daughters new place

Saturday, 31 October 2015

2nd Kerikeri Art Trail

Last weekend we had the second art trail in Kerikeri. A lot of people prepared for month and it has been great again. This was my display under the carport





Lovely visitors and lovely comments and even some sales. It has been a wonderful exhausting weekend. Thank you to every one who was involved.

As a preview for things to come all the participants had a exhibition in Kings Gallery in Kerikeri, amazing all the different work!

oh I loved him so much!







Now it is packed away again and makes room for fresh ideas and makings !

Last day of October

A long time has passed since my last post. I had the feeling there is nothing to talk about. In fact, I haven't been very well for a long time. I realize now after I threw out the cholesterol lowering medication how much I was limited by that. Slowly I start to think clearly again and I get some motivation back. I am sure the docs will not be pleased about me stopping the medication, but I feel so much better. I know it would be much better to loose some weight too, then I could possibly get rid of the blood pressure medication too...
Enough about that.

We had been to Germany again for 3 month. It is always lovely to see son and partner and all the neighbors and friends. It has been unbelievable hot this year, for weeks we had temperatures in the high 30s. In fact is had been too hot to do much, so we didn't do a major trip while we were there this time. We just enjoyed the garden, the nice food (always too good), long warm evenings and all the availability of things. Alex started a major project in the garden, the makeover of the planting at the deck



and I enjoyed felting together with the new young neighbor








We visited our usual favourite places










and enjoyed a last wonderful evening with the kids



before going on our long trip home







Now we are home almost 2 month, We were busy preparing for last weekends 2nd Art Trail, which was lovely again, more about in the next post.

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

less than 5 weeks to go

and then we are off to Germany for 3 month. These 5 weeks will be filled with lots of work. I want to make lots of flowers for the shop in Queenstown, which sells my flowers. Would be good to have enough supply for the 3 month we will be away.
Alex is preparing the garden with lots of mulch to make it almost maintenance free and today he is cleaning the aviaries. We have 6 rainbow lorikeets, which are nectar eaters and very messy birds, but also 12 budgies in a second part, which throw all the seeds around. And of course a bunch of free range chooks beside of dog and cat.

I hope we'll find a good house sitter who is looking after the animals and keeps the house warm and dry. wouldn't it be great to have every year the same person coming, somebody who wants to spend the winter in the north where it is not freezing cold.
And I've got an invitation to exhibit at the Waitakere Mixed Media Art Display and Competition on the 3rd May weekend. So I'll give my wallhangings a little tidy up and will send them together with some other fibre pictures down. It is always nice to show work and maybe something even sells, that would be a nice outcome. So if anybody is in Auckland 15.-17. May, have a look, I am sure there will be many interesting things to see. Would love to go down myself, but it is short before we go away, so we cannot really afford a weekend away.
Everything artwise got a bit on hold after I stepped in a big needle while rushing to the phone. The needle broke and a big piece stayed in my foot. Of course it was weekend. The x-ray in the following Monday confirmed the situation. After the local GP couldn't manage to get it out, and he didn't want to cut deeper; we had to go to Whangarei Hospital were it finally got removed the day after.


It is quite a big cut with several stitches, so I am still struggling a bit with walking after 2 weeks now. At least my foot fits again in a normal shoe and Girlie the dog is happy to have a walk again.


Looking forward to lots of inspiration in Europe for the next Kerikeri Art Trail October 2015 of course. I want to create some new pieces to show, so let's see what the European sun tells me to do.
But of course I will always have poppies!


Friday, 3 April 2015

Happy Easter

Good Friday today - summer was over so quickly but the weather is still good.
I am experimenting a lot at the knitting machine with not much success. The waterfall vests I made last year are not very popular, so I am trying out different things.

I made some cotton/linen tops and was very surprised to sell them all when I had a stall at the market.

It looks like I forgot to take photos of those tops, I have only one detail photo of the pattern of a nice knitted linen coat, which has also sold at that market.


Then I made some experiments with Maori patterns




I like it very much, I am just a  bit reluctant to make more not to upset anybody, because I am not Maori. I wonder if it would be ok when I use them more contemporary and not in traditional colours. And I am still trying to do this pattern as double jacquard on the knitting machine, not successfull yet, but I am not giving up.
It is a bit annoying trying out things and the machine plays up. Is it not the sponge bar, then a needle is crook or something on the carriage is not working.....
The last experiment was a nice tuck stitch with fine white cotton


it looks great at the first glimpse just to find out, that the machine only read the first pattern blocks right and then carries on only knitting half of it. It could be the pattern which is hand drawn on a design sheet, which the machine is struggling to read properly. I had to redraw a whole Mylar sheet which came with the machine, because it was disintegrating. I will try out a different pattern which came also came  the machine and look if that works OK.

Of course I did a little bit of felting too the last weeks, 2 scarves and lots of flowers.





The flowers sell very well in the shop in Queenstown, which has taken on my flowers, I am very grateful for that. It is the only outlet I have at the moment. The indoor room at the local market is still not finished and I've got told, they will use it in winter mainly as a cafe when it is finished with only a handful of craft stalls. We will see if my work will be one of the chosen ones.

How it looks we might not travel to Europe this year again. We had some major repairs here at the house, which took away a lot of the travel funds. And all this plane accidents the last time are worrying too. But I miss my son dearly as I do the rest of the family which has moved to Australia. I guess it is time to concentrate on work, to improve everything.

Have a look how brilliantly Alex is painting the house, certainly a very unique house - we love it!