Sunday, December 30, 2012
Calgary finally got a chinook yesterday - a warm wind that changes the temperature drastically. It went from -23C to -1 in the course of a day. Snowy streets turned to slush *like that*.
It has been plain cold here for most of the month. I really wanted to check out the opening celebrations of the West LRT leg, but it was very cold that day! A ten minute walk to the bus stop froze my legs and I just couldn't go on. It was a real bummer, as that day was also $1.43 admission to the zoo! Brrr!
And speaking of brrr, the flame sensor wasn't working right in our furnace. The repairmen from Fagnan's Furnace noticed that the igniter had also bubbled and was on its way out. Thank goodness we got this fixed! I had to throw comforters over the bird cages while the furnace was off. I really like Fagnan's - we get them to clean our furnace and they're always great.
Then it looked like we weren't going to have a white Christmas - but Old Man Winter didn't forget. The trouble was that the temperature dropped again to a bone chilling -25-27C. With the extra wind, it felt even colder - just running to the super mailbox seemed like an ordeal.
I had lots of good times visiting with old co-workers, friends and family too. I would show you some of these good times, but my smartphone died on December 24th! I was so bummed - I suspect the battery died - and the solutions I found online just didn't work. Poor little smartphone! I had some serious anxiety without it.
"What's the temperature?" my husband asked as we waited for the car to warm up.
"I don't know, I don't have a smartphone!" I wailed.
"What time is it?" he asked another time.
"I don't know, I don't have a smartphone!" I wailed.
And so forth. It's hard to believe how much one can depend on these little devices. Fortunately the Bell store was open on Boxing Day and now I have a sweet Samsung Galaxy 3. It's so big and fast! And everything is at my fingertips again :-)
Sunday, December 9, 2012
Wednesday, December 5, 2012
"Nope! No class tonight."
We celebrated the end of classes by going out to a fashionable Indian restaurant called Tamarind in the northwest. The dishes are really unique and delicious.
Time for another "That's a wrap!" post. Six more credits in the bucket for my BFA. And thank goodness! My house is such a mess. The cleanest place to be is the birdcage :D I thought without studio classes that the house would be neater, but nope. Since every place seemed equally messy, I started with the coffee table where loot from British scrapbook magazines that I get from Billy's News downtown. Let's take a look...
That's a lot of loot from the past four months! Sometimes I buy two or three magazines at a time, depending on how good they are.
These glitter tubes look fun! I think last year there was even glitter watercolours.
This is pretty cool - although it's hard to see - a snowflake embossing folder for a machine like a Cuttlebug or Big Shot!
Hands down, clear rubber stamps are the most popular kind of loot. I was surprised to get some Holly Hobbie stamps in my latest haul. I had a Holly Hobbie doll as a girl.
The best for last...how super cool is this? A mini scoring board? Just the thing to tuck in my kit instead of my big ScorPal!
Tuesday, December 4, 2012
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Prairie Rim Images: This shoot was for the birds
Sunday, October 21, 2012
Wednesday, October 17, 2012
Here's a post that I saved as a draft back in July!
One thing that has always interested me are nice needle tools. It seems a shame to have to make do with cheap plastic bits and bobs. When my great aunt passed away ten years ago, I thought I would find something fun in her old sewing basket. It would seem plastic bits and bobs existed in the 50s too.
Searching online was fruitless. When I did find nice needle tools, they tended to be made from sterling silver and really $$$!
Quite by chance, I found a cool little store called The Stitcher's Muse in Nanaimo. I couldn’t have missed it - because it was conveniently connected to our hotel. It was everything any crafter would want in a store - cozy and packed to the gills with everything for lace tatting to hardanger.
Had I been employed at the time, I would have bought more than the three things below - a magnetic needle holder, a needle case and a mother of pearl embroidery winder. Perhaps it's just as well to have a reason to go again.
Tuesday, October 16, 2012
Just testing out the new official Blogger apply - the unofficial one I used to use had ads. Anyhow, I am alive and hope to reconnect with my online friends!
If there's one thing Muffin loves, it's bread. He'll slice through a bread bag in seconds!
Friday, September 7, 2012
Sunday, August 19, 2012
Sunday, July 29, 2012
Thursday, July 26, 2012
The longest Scarf is the shortest one I have ever made. It's just not working out with me and the Knifty Knitter. The yarn us called Sashay and I bought it on a whim. I thought, with its plaited edges, it would be easy to knit with.
Unfortunately it proved super slow to knit with as I tried to loop it around the pegs. Then I ran into some really tight tension.
Realizing I would grow old with this thing, I alternated one row of Sashay with two rows of regular burgundy yarn. This only mildly improved things. After a foot and a half, defeat was at hand!
Some projects are not meant to be :)
Monday, July 23, 2012
It was so hot I couldn't even bear to read to keep my mind off of it. Sleepless nights abounded. The craftiest thing I could get up to was warping a loom for a new tapestry. It required very little thought and the only decisions to be made was selecting colours.
By good fortune, I also had an eye appointment which was very close to one of Calgary's premier wool shops, Gina Brown's. Thank goodness tapestry wool is inexpensive :-)
Muffin loves fibre arts as much as I do...and I have had trouble keeping him out of the tapestry wool :-)
Thursday, July 12, 2012
Wednesday, June 27, 2012
It's awfully addictive! My old laptop died, so I replaced it with a 7" Samsung Galaxy Tab. It's so easy to draw on, especially with the big red crayon shaped stylus I bought to go with it. I'm screencapping my favourite ones. Naturally, I do draw a few stinkers too.
They say you should draw every day, and I'm definitely doing it :-) Check out this public album as I add more items to it by clicking on the duck.
|From Draw Something|
Monday, June 18, 2012
Here it is, available from my Artfire shop! More pictures can be seen at that link too. There's lots of room to customize the card, so I hope to make some more samples. Stickers, hand lettering...so much potential for customization here.
A lot of effort went into designing this card - the best designs often do look effortless, but it took about 20 hours from idea to blogging :-)
Here is the original concept art. I'm not great at drawing on the computer, so I still do everything the old fashioned way. I used CorelDraw's colour picker to go from there.
Then there was much testing! As you can see, it's easy to, hehe, flip things the wrong way :-) Each piece had to be tested to make sure the size was right and that it would all line up according to plan. The colour in the final card also got a huge boost - the original colours were too light.
All in all, this was a fun card to make, and I hope others will enjoy making it and making it special for a birthday boy.
Wednesday, June 13, 2012
Harbour, Nanaimo, British Columbia, a photo by Calzephyr on Flickr.
Sunday, June 3, 2012
Tuesday, May 22, 2012
Saturday, May 12, 2012
Monday, April 23, 2012
And summer is practically here (at the moment). Time to turn off the furnace and open the windows, at least until it snows in May :D
I wrote my final English exam on Friday - where we had to draw a little storyboard as an answer - and then after work I was off to Bubblegum Sass's house where I met her new little person, our friend Craft Quotient and some new people! It was great to see people outside of work and school - especially when I haven't seen them in months. Here are the cute little favours that Sarah made:
Monday, April 16, 2012
Saturday, April 14, 2012
January 5, 2012 ::: Golden Acrylic ::: 8x10"
Friday, April 6, 2012
Thursday, March 22, 2012
Crit today :) The assignment was to design an object for society on the move. I made a four piece set that includes a pillow hat, neck warmer, neck pouch and fingerless gloves. Everyone seemed to enjoy it, especially trying on the hat :)
Monday, March 19, 2012
Sunday, March 4, 2012
|It stands about 5' tall and is made from recycled or biodegradable items. The entire crate is wrapped in jute and sisal, with apple and cherry tree branches tied to it. I tried making a god's eye to hang in the centre, but it turned out miserably, so a bunch of dried flax stems turned it into more of a doll. With some seed bells and millet sprays on top, I hoped that there would be a flock of birds at it by the time my class came out for the critique. No such luck...but it would have been cool! Everyone seemed to like it, so that made me happy. Sometimes it's hard to tell how something will go over.|
Saturday, February 18, 2012
At a local stationary store I found initial ones, but the font used was Papyrus, which, like Comic Sans, is considered a terribly overused font. Online searching fared better and I found a place called Seasons Creations which did not want an arm and a leg for Canadian shipping.
The seal is just the cutest little thing. The instructions were easy to follow - moisten the seal on an ice cube or cold water and light the wick and hold at a 45 degree angle to get wax flowing. It was hard to guess how much wax would be too much or too little, but a spot about half the size of a penny did the trick.
I think next time I will use cold water instead of an ice cube. When it came time to stamp, the seal was stuck to it! But it was handy to put the wick out. Now I can't wait - just imagine all the ACEOs and whatnot I can send out bearing my own purple pony seal!
Tuesday, February 14, 2012
Sunday, February 12, 2012
On a whim I bought the four book eBook bundle at Christmas time and started reading when I came down with a wicked cold last month. It was a good thing too, because I could literally not stop reading. I probably would have taken a day off just to finish it. I was expecting a typical, cliched fantasy saga, so I was amazed that it is more about political intrigue, mystery and deception instead.
To be honest, I didn't think there was anything exceptional about Martin's writing style. In fact there is something flat and repetitive about it - I noticed certain word pairs used over and over again which always kinds of grates on me. His descriptions of meals are always insanely detailed. But there is still some great craft going on as he divides the saga by the view points of different characters which allows parts of the story to be revealed in a very cunning way. It lets him avoid going the route of the info dump so common in science fiction and fantasy. And the cliffhangers! Wow!
I almost feel that describing any little part of the book would give away too many spoilers. It would be hard to condense the thick tomes, but basically the peace of the Seven Kingdoms is threatened in many ways and finally comes undone as characters are executed, kidnapped or accused of crimes. In the second book, A Clash of Kings, focuses on the conflicts between the many who declare themselves king of all the realm. There were some very exciting action scenes in the sequel and now I can't wait to get started on the third one, but I really do need a break from the series! Martin is unflinching in his depictions of medieval life and after a while all the killing and maiming and destruction does become onerous. I could almost pick up a romance novel before getting around to the third one.
Friday, January 27, 2012
Monday, January 23, 2012
Thursday, January 19, 2012
Today was really fun. After a brief meeting, I headed to Fabricland to buy supplies for the first homework project in my fibre class.
We have to take a garment and transform it into something new. After much negotiating, my husband gave me one of his old sweaters. He looooves his sweaters and once he found out I would be cutting one up, my selection dwindled :) I'm going to be making a stuffed animal out of the sweater. Stay tuned!!
Sunday, January 1, 2012
|The activities are pretty free-form and a variety of genres and techniques are represented, which must have been hard to do. Beads, wire, collage, stamping and mark making are just some of the things to be explored. Sometimes it's easier to just have an "assignment" to try instead of thinking up something on your own. The inclusion of personal and family history was interesting to me because I took several unsuccessful stabs at genealogy a long time ago. This book will definitely keep crafty types busy all year long!|