Friday, February 29, 2008

Too slow...

Ack! This is what I get for being a procrastinator! So what would you do if you realized that you had taken so long to make something for someone that they made one for themselves (and that their technical skill in doing so far exceeded yours)? And that you probably don't have the time or the mojo to make something else for them? Now multiply that by about 3. Arrgggg....

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Happy Thoughts, part II

I enjoy trolling for treasures at thrift shops and yard sales. You just never know what you will find, although "I'll know it when I see it" is a rather dangerous shopping motto if one wants an uncluttered home. In the end, I take my fair share of stuff to the thrift shop too, which seems a bit silly. But my tastes change, and thrifting is inexpensive entertainment at least. In thinking of my finds over the years... the glowing olive green 50's cocktail dress (yep, still have it) the red leather Italian shoes (don't get jealous, they're flats) and the somewhat Asian looking set of flower shaped bowls (just right for ice-cream) one thing stood out as THE find...

... the 1940 edition of The Oxford Book of English Verse. I found this at the church thrift shop sometime in my teens. When I got it home I went through it page by page and read whatever looked interesting for as long as it looked interesting. There are poets in here who are probably not read anymore. A couple of the ones I marked: Sir John Suckling (Out upon it, I have loved/ three whole days together!/ And am like to love three more,/ if it prove fair weather./ Time shall moult away his wings/ Ere he shall discover/ In the whole wide world again/ such a constant lover.) and Edward Thurlow (Dark, deep and cold the current flows/ Unto the sea where no wind blows,/ Seeking the land which no one knows.)

More recently I have found some wonderful children's story and song books. The vintage illustrations are so sweet. Above is an illustration for an excerpt of David Copperfield. Start 'em young!

Last, one of my current favorites. I can't say I would be sorry if winter ended soon, but if it doesn't at least I can look forward to wearing this :)

Friday, February 22, 2008

Happy Thoughts, part 1

Soule Mama recently posted 10 of her happy thoughts that help to drive the February funk away. I thought I'd play along.

Happy thought number 1 - Matchy-matchyness.

I love it when things match. I have to refrain from making myself too matchy-matchy, which is easy when you get crafting. Look! Some leftover fabric... now I can make a matching headband for my dress (okay, I got past that sometime in high school, but the temptation lingers). Critics of matchy-matchyness must confess that I am much less extreme than this. However, we were able to get some matchy harmony going on when we moved into the our new place and I found it very satisfying. First the guest room...

left of guest bed

right of guest bed
I love that this room is a little cool and therefore very calm. I love the play between the amber finished furniture, the tan comforter and the sepia/engraved/hand tinted prints from Mr. M's grandmother. Don't you love how photography lets you edit a room? Let's just pretend that this room isn't normally besieged with laundry and half finished craft projects. I'm afraid that the overall elegance of the place is going to take even more of a hit when my new exercise bike arrives, but there is nowhere else for it to go. Sigh.
Next on the matchy-matchy front, the bedroom. Here we managed to gather together most of our darkest furniture (our furniture being an eclectic assortment of gifts, heirlooms, hand-me-downs and thrift shop finds). I have a little mahogany bookshelf at my bedside, and above it hangs a mobile that reminds me of the love story in Ursula K. Le Guin's The Dispossessed...

In that novel she uses a circle motif in such a beautiful, and maybe even profound way.

my dresser top

Looking at these pictures, it's interesting to see how much has changed, even since I took these, but that is as is should be. The space we live in can say so much about us, and they should grow with us. I even find myself a bit hesitant to say too much about the things I see in these pictures. Seeing these everyday things as pictures seems unexpectedly intimate.

My next big challenge here will be to get some decor going in the living room/office/studio/dining room/kitchen area. It is so nice and open (here is what it looked like when we moved in), but matchy-matchyness is clearly not an option and I need to find a way to harmonize all the different things going on in the space.
Can't wait for that sunshine to return.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008


Thoughts of a sad friend far away. Silver buds on the branches. Bag of valentine goodies from people at bible study. Relentless drizzle. Nothing much in the PO box. Load of laundry. Cup of hot tea. Lunch of leftover corn chowder. Talk with best friend. Rotate laundry. Fold. Sudden sunshine. Walk on the beach... lots of life going on, but somehow not much blog fodder...

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Inspiration: Coastal Forest

Spent some time last weekend hiking. Wouldn't you just love a coloryway based on either of these pictures?