Thursday, May 31, 2007

The six year old just said:

"Hey L, do you want to play forces of good and evil? Do you want to be the good guy or the girl?"

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Out Skirts (and "Project" Friday)

Another shot from the alpaca farm, taken by MK. Here I'm petting the ginormous Anatolian shepherd (I think he liked me) in my moss colored paisley skirt. I whipped up several of these skirts last year (or was it the year before?) and varied each slightly. Based on a simple 7 panel skirt that I custom designed at a pattern making workshop three years ago, I inserted godets into each seam to give the skirt a little flippy swing. The fabric was a great deal, it was given to me free in a pile of remnants donated to a thrift shop my sister's mother-in-law runs. I prefer skirts over shorts in the warm weather because they are more flattering and easier to fit. I generally pair them with a basic t-shirt and flip-flops or sandals for a casual, everyday look. Thursday night I just put together this little A-line skirt from only 1 yd of fabric. The yardage dictated the length of the skirt so to preserve some modesty, I bound the hem with self bias so more length wouldn't be lost. (Left: fabric view close up. I love the butterflies and silver outlines. Right: whole skirt view, t-shirt is tucked under so you can see the whole garment.)

Last Friday the children and I made fuzzy felt balls with our alpaca fiber. Some of the wool I dyed with food coloring and silly me, I didn't wear rubber gloves. Fortunately, most of the color washed off before the big fat Greek wedding I was proud to serve in as a bridesmaid the next day. (More on the Greek wedding when I've got some pics to show.)

Yesterday, Chinese scroll painting was our project, and the results were beautiful. I will see if I can scan them in on dad's scanner to post.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Cloudy with a chance of alpacas

DAFI alpaca farm field trip, planned and arranged by yours truly, was today. The only day in the ten day forecast with rain expected (at the time I checked yesterday), but thanks be to God, the clouds didn't burst until well after our picnic lunch at Oregon Ridge after the trip. I'm not sure it was a good thing for me to go there or not, because now I really, really want to raise alpacas more than ever. I invited my mom along, since she shares this interest and she asked lots of good questions and took notes. The children absolutely loved this trip, and not just mine, but all of the 23 children who came from our home school group! We even got to take home some fiber to make into felt (that will be our project for Friday). Enjoy the pics of my munchkins feeding some of the animals.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Oh happy day

Yay, I'm about 99% recovered from the gunky ickiness and I'm starting to get things back in order. I'm extremely pleased with the weather, something people take for granted when it's nice like this, I suppose, but thanks be to God, for the month of May! I love the pink flowering trees and green foliage. K planted sugar snap peas, L sowed pink and purple flower seeds and a few lettuces from last year's that went to seed have come up in just the right spot in our garden this week. I finished the first of several summer sun dresses for a new client and she was ecstatic to see how well it fit and felt on her. I'm making at least two more for her!

Tomorrow, mom and I will visit the BSO symphony show house. It's been an annual tradition for us since about 1990, I think. I may post my reactions or inspirations on that later. This weekend is also the big annual Sheep and Wool Festival. I'll be missing it this year, but I've got friends going who will surely tell me all about it and let me pet the gorgeous yarns they purchase there.

Oh, and girlfriends, thanks for the long chats this week it helped a lot. (You know who you are.)

5-17-2007 A word about the showhouse.

This year's showhouse was the most cohesive of all the ones I remember having gone to. There were several rooms using a black and white color scheme, Asian influences, and soothing palette . I would say my most favorite room was The Master Bedroom, flooded with sunlight from it's many windows and decorated in colors of celedon, chocolate and accents of red, which was unexpected yet just right for this room. A close second was the Family Game Room. It was filled with so many fun ideas, I can't begin to list them here. My least favorite was the "Out of Africa" office for her. It lacked pizazz and the designer was in there defending her design and "color" choices to all who entered and would listen. There were some interesting aspects to the design but overall I found it dull and uninspired.

Every year I come away with a few practical ideas that may or may not be incorporated into my life. Sometimes it takes me years to actually carry out an inspiration. For instance, several years ago I saw a table treatment I liked and it gave me an idea for one I could use on my outside table with an umbrella. I cut out the fabric, but didn't sew it up until a week ago. This year's innovative idea that I liked, but probably won't use, was wood panel covered with faux embossed leather leaned against the walls of a covered porch. Beautiful wall sconces were then installed to the panels which hid the cords and wires. A great lighting solution for a temporary living arrangement or for those who don't want to mess with wiring inside the walls.