Saturday, January 31, 2009

Twenty Five Random Things About Myself

I was tagged with this meme on Facebook, but I thought I would also post it here. If you are reading this, consider yourself tagged!

The directions are quite simple: Post 25 random facts about yourself, and tell everybody who reads it they are 'tagged' and should also post the Random 25 about themselves on their blog.

1. I was born in Alaska.

2. My mother was a showgirl in Las Vegas before getting married.

3. I received my first pay check at the age of six, when I appeared as a "child of Dogpatch" with Peter Palmer and Julie Newmar in the St. Louis Municipal Opera Company's production of "Li'l Abner" in St. Louis Missouri.

4. I attended boarding school from first to eleventh grade.

5. I single-handedly got our dress and hair requirements changed at my school when I was in the seventh grade. It's a long story, but involved a Greyhound bus ride and the state police from three states.

6. For a brief period in the mid 1970's I was quite sure I was really David Bowie. Or maybe just Ziggie Stardust. Whichever, I was quite sure I was fabulous.

7. I was a singer in the group "Ruby Suckle and Her Scarlett Nipples" (I was the nipple on the stage left side). We did a lot of gigs until Bette Midler stole our trashy flashy nostalgia rock and rock act. Just kidding. Sorta.

8. I hated musical theatre because I thought it was brain dead tripe for the bourgeois. I changed my mind during grad school, and since have either directed or appeared in over 100 musicals.

9. I was in the original Off-Broadway revival of "Jack, or the Submission" playing Jack in the nude for over one hour. I was also panned royally by the magazine After Dark. I canceled my subscription.

10. During the time I directed high school plays, I was lucky enough to work with some of the most talented high school students anywhere.

11. I became a quilt artist by complete accident - and when I made my first quilt it wasn't really meant to be a quilt. I had never heard of art quilts and thought that quilt was an old fashioned name for 'bedspread.'

12. I appeared on the closing season of HGTV's "Simply Quilts."

13. I used to be 100% against gay marriage - and now am 110% in favor of it.

14. I used to be liberal politically - now I'm uber-Liberal.

15. Of all the places I've traveled, Paris is my all-time favorite.

16. Other than my spouse, all my best friends live in other states - and I miss them terribly.

17. I'm addicted to trashy novels about serial killers.

18. If I could do any play in the world it would be a stage version of the film "Valley of the Dolls" using a gender bending cast.

19. I've become more discrete about my political and religious allegiances.

20. I am with my dog almost every minute of the day.

21. My favorite food is sushi.

22. My favorite colors are purple, gold, and black.

23. I skipped two grades in grade school

24. I got married on Christmas eve.

25. My goal in life is to spend what is left of my life making art, making theatre, making a home, and making love.

I figure my parents had so much to do with my successes (and failures! LOL) in life, that I decided to post their photos and the beginning and end of this post.

Enjoy your weekend!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Snow, Appointments, Cell Phones and a New Mini-Theatre

What a long day! We woke up here in New Haven to over five inches of snow. That isn't really that much snow - but in this city it brings everything to a standstill! All the schools were closed and everything else either ran late or was canceled. Except for my dental appointment, which I decided to trudge through the snow to get to, rather than attempt to drive there. I must admit, one of the terrific things about living in the city is the ability to actually walk when driving seems impossible!

Of course, as the day wore on, the snow stopped and temperature raised just enough to cause deep puddles everywhere and turned all the snow into inches of icy slush. ych. After I took the dog for his final walk tonight, my shoes, socks, pants, everything, was soaked. So, I took it all and put it through the washing machine. It wasn't until I put things into the dryer that I found my cell phone which I carry in my pants when I'm out walking. It's not happy. Not at all. I'm going to hope that it can dry out and will work tomorrow, but I have a pretty fair idea that instead of staying warm and making art I'll be out buying a new cell phone. Well, maybe I'll get a cooler one this time - I've never been happy with the camera on my phone. LOL

This is a pretty large sized mini-theatre that I worked on today. I'm not crazy about it, and it will probably be dismantled for parts. However, one part of it really turned me on. I love the top pale pale green color with the metallic gold accents. I'm thinking perhaps a very pale and gold theatre might be next up. I tend to work in dark and more saturated jewel tones...but there is something about this very light look that is appealing to me. Maybe it's just because it's so dark and gray and gloomy outdoors these days!

I think I will now go straighten up my studio a bit and get ready for "Damages" ... it's always fun to see what kind of mischief Glenn Close gets into each week!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

When Accessorizing ...

with gilded gloves, gilded purse, gilded jacket trim, and gilded hair, do you think that gilding your front teeth is going that extra mile or going a mile too far? If you can't see image clearly, click on photo for larger image.

Yesterday I joined a toy theatre swap on

a new group I just joined (If you're also a Marie Antoinette fan, and make art using her image, click on the above image and look around!)

I worked yesterday afternoon and evening and finished up some detail this morning on my entry for the swap. I had fun - it's a little smaller than I usually work - approximately 10" tall - and my big clumsy fingers have a little trouble working around those teensy tiny folded paper fan circles. Again, I used a Tom Tierney paper doll as the character image.

I'm thinking it's probably finished. I may add a couple of feathers do her headdress and maybe some sparkles on her 'jewels' ... but I always get nervous adding at this point. If I mess it up with something inconsequential, I get really ticked off at myself.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Made some tussie mussies today ...

I wish they weren't called tussie mussies ... that's such a ridiculous sounding name for something. Of course, I guess they're rather ridiculous things anyway. My favorite one turned out to the pink, black and gold Casino de Paris one. It's kinda funny and innocently sexy and romantic. And I really like the vintage beaded fringe that are on the bottom with the silk ribbon streamers.

They all have a lot of vintage crepe paper - which I love - it's as soft as fabric, and silk ribbon, and Dresden scrap, and vintage trims, and vintage and reproduction papers and images, and assorted findings and fun things.

This children's one is sweet, too. The paper is a beautiful reproduction of a children-at-play toille type wallpaper. I found a lovely tiny vintage image of a child and put it in a miniature picture frame. And isn't that tiny swag of gold bullion on the frame wonderful?!

This sweet little Victorian piece has a fun piece of vintage German scrap - strawberries on the vine. Sweeeeeet! And a ton of lovely old vintage crepe papers.

And finally, a Marie Antoinette inspired piece. It's all lavender and pink and gold - and has a gorgeous piece of vintage velvet and metallic trim. The illustration of Marie Antoinette is a Tom Tierney paper doll.

Probably won't be making many more of these for awhile. For some reason, I make such a mess when I start working on these. I think it's smoothing glued paper onto a cone shape, which squeezes gel medium EVERYWHERE!

... and I really want to thank Catherine of A Thousand Clapping Hands for explaining to me the proper way to utilize the image uploader properly on this server! Thank you!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Today's Mini-"Vintage"-Theatre Construction

This little theatre was such fun ... all blue and gold and lavished with lots of Dresden scrap, silk ribbon, reproduction fringe trim, dyed feathers, and vintage images. I think I would like to put in a Marie Antoinette character - if I can find one of her done all in blue and gold, it's definitely going to happen. If not, perhaps a vintage image of an opera singer or cabaret performer who is decked out in sapphire and gold finery.

I keep getting ideas for new mini-theatres - and I really should be getting on with other projects! I have to remember Valentine's Day is just around the corner, and these theatres are not what I sell for that holiday! Perhaps this just isn't going to be a big selling holiday for me. Thank goodness the Christmas season was busy! But I need to get back to trinket boxes and tussie mussies and assemblages and shadow boxes and ...

Can we talk scissors for a moment?

Do we really need all the scissors we have? In my search to find one pair that I wanted to use, I found all these others. Naturally, they're all necessary and used for very specific things.
The blue handled "children's" scissors are kept by the computer so I can quickly cut out any coupons that needed to be printed out. The pair right next to them is an old pair of Ginghers that are in the kitchen and used to cut everything from roasting string to coffee bean bags. I especially like using them to cut paper covered wire 'twisties.' They're a mess. But they work.

Then I have my sewing scissors. The pair of Ginghers with the fabric tied around one finger hole are the ones that I most often use because they're very sharp and I love the way they slice through fabric. The fabric is there to let anybody else know that if they use these scissors on anything other than fabric, they will be tied to a post and lashed. Directly next to them is another pair of Ginghers - this pair gold handled - which are just there until my other sewing scissors become dull and I can move them into the "most sharp and most often used" category. That's when they will get a piece of fabric tied around them. Until then, they just lie there, waiting. Next is a pair of Ginghers pinking shears - I hardly ever use them. Okay. In all honesty, I've NEVER used them. I don't know why I own them. I guess because everybody who sews has pinking shears and I figured I needed them. They're now about 20 years old - and brand new. Next is a smaller pair of Ginghers which I use to cut fabric with any kind of metallic threads running through it. That way I don't dull my "good" scissors too quickly. I like these scissors, but have no idea why I bought such a small pair ... I must have not looked too carefully at the box. And then there's that tiny Victorian bird embroidery scissors which are absolutely useless for anything functional - but they're pretty.

On the bottom row, we have my paper Ginghers. These are scissors which used to be "good" scissors, but once they got dull, the fabric was removed from the handles and they became the paper scissors. Whenever this happens, it's like the Mad Hatter's tea party - everything gets moved down (or up) a slot, and the 'bad' kitchen pair get thrown away when the paper scissors move into the kitchen category. Next we have my Cutter Bee scissors for paper. The ones with tape on the handles are for cutting paper that has any kind of adhesive on it. These get gummed up and I periodically alcohol them clean. The ones with the pink silk ribbon tied are for cutting paper with nothing adhered to it - these are kept pretty clean and sharp. Next is the Honey Bee Cutter scissors. I love these scissors. They're quite cheap - only eleven dollars - but they have the sharpest blades and the teensiest cutting points for cutting into really really tight corners neatly and cleanly. I would use the scissors for everything - but I'm afraid they'll stop making them, so I take care of them. Next a pair of Cutter Bee's that are waiting patiently for the others to dull so they can move into usage.

Now I have to go back and add in another photo ... I forgot about this pair of scissors. They were purchased at some shop sale for which I had a 50% off coupon - and I wanted to get the most bang for my buck - so I used it on - what else?! - a new pair of Ginghers! Because I really need them. I was smart and actually left these in the original box so I don't confuse them with the 'next in line' for the Good Scissors position.

Well, I give up. Jon just read this over my shoulder and asked why I didn't add all the scissors that I keep with the gardening tools to cut flowers and open bags of soil and other stuff. I just don't have the energy to gather up all those, nor the inclination to bore you with more scissor discussion.

I wish if I were going to be compulsive obsessive about buying something, it was something more interesting and more attractive than scissors.

Remember My Previous Post About Altered Body Parts...

... being the latest in altered art?


Just click here to find something more terrifying than my previous post about altered body parts as art.

Somebody owes somebody a huge apology!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Before I Check Out of Here for the Day ....

How do you store YOUR Tupperware?
Is your Tupperware storage this fanciful and delightful?
Do you allow your child to play with food on the floor?
Did your mother have pink and turquoise and robin's egg blue Tupperware?
When you are packing food into Tupperware, do you wear crepe paper clothing?
The questions simply go on and on and on and ....

Today's Work is Just a Mere Whimsy

I love this striking little black, white and silver trinket box. It's a papier mache box covered with vintage and contemporary papers, painted wooden findings, vintage feathers and floral trims, ribbons, and wonderful contemporary eyelash fringe. The little beads around the top of the lid are antique black jet beads...I just love them, and don't have many left. I'll have to keep my eye out for another broken jet bead necklace so I can get a new stash! The dusting of white German glass glitter on the flower embellishment is the perfect extra sparkle!

This box is only 4" and makes a perfect hiding place for treasures - or a particularly lovely gift box for - oh, say - a diamond ring! I put this in my Etsy shop, if you're interested in it.

Take a look at this wonderful shadowbox

Isn't this just enchanting?! It's from this wonderful French blog. (If you click on it, it will grow, however if you go to the site and click on the photo, you get a very large zoom image, so you can get a really good look!) I was originally directed there by Ulla, who posted a gorgeous reliquary from the same site. Because my French is rudimentary at best, I'm not completely sure what the site is dedicated to - but it has some wonderful and varied photos. Take a few moments and browse around!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Oh, those neat drawers!

One drawer with nothing but glitter and leafing - one with nothing but micro beads (can you tell which colors I really really like?) and Twinkling H20's - and one drawer that, after neatening up my Tim Holtz alcohol inks, has left me with enough room to get a lot more colors and textures of German glass glitter! I love that large 'shard' glitter! That's the best thing about re-organization and cleaning up - afterwards there's always room for shopping!

Tell the truth ... you didn't think it was possible

Okay, after that mess I had made, I took one whole day (and it did take the whole day and part of the evening as well!) and cleaned, straightened, organized and neatened up my studio. I can't believe I actually got absolutely everything in a drawer, cupboard, storage drawer and that there is nothing sitting around. I'm amazed there was space for everything.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

The Ultimate in Altered Art?

altered live human heads
do you think it will become all the rage?

Now back to organizing and straightening and cleaning up the studio. I've made such an incredible mess over the past two weeks, I have no place to work. I have to completely organize this space again in order to continue working. I don't know how I got it in such a disaster - it's very post-war Dresden right now. I have some good ideas I want to work on, so I'm hoping it's only going to be one day of cleaning. Yes. Yes, mother. It is that bad.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Small Memories of Paris

Yesterday the framer called to let me know that the silhouettes we had cut the last time we were in Paris were matted and framed. Though we have been in Montmartre many times, we have never had any of the sidewalk artists sketch or paint (or, in this case, cut) our portraits. But we were having a particularly nice day, and there weren't too many tourists that day, and the time was right. So we decided to have silhouettes cut, since no matter how old we got and how creased and wrinkled, chances were our silhouettes would remain fairly much the same. I'm not a big fan of having a lot of pictures of myself around - though I would certainly go along with having a Dorian Grey style portrait somewhere in the attic! I don't know why the artists didn't make the two heads more the same scale - but they are what they are! And, as Jon said, when you commission a piece of art for fifty dollars, you get what you pay for. Actually, the images are quite accurate. My hair was longer (I'm on the left), but there was only so much black paper. Jon's hair is also curlier and a bit wilder that it shows here. But, nonetheless, the profiles are quite good. We had it framed in a beautiful crosshatch gilded frame with a sable velvet mat. It looks quite properly Parisienne! I would have prefered the matting the artist put the pieces in were not baby blue - but there was no choice!

When we got it home, I took these two very very small pieces of jewelry that I had purchased at a small flea market in Giverny several years ago, and put them behind the framing paper on the back of the frame. The first one is a fantastically small - not even a full inch from beak to tail - gold peacock pin (brooch seems too large a word for it!) with several blue and green glass 'gems' set into it. I was just enchanted with it. Speaking of enchanting, the other small piece is also not even a full inch from top to bottom. It's another pin; a golden crescent, with twining foliage and a cloisonne-style enameled leaf and bloom on it.

I don't really have any use for these treasures ... but I would never sell them nor give them away (at last not thus far!). I do, however, like the idea of somebody getting this frame many years from now, and deciding to take out the silhouettes and putting their own art in the frame - and discovering the two precious beauties hidden inside. I know they're there - and if I ever really want them, it will be easy to retrieve them. But I like that they're in there - creating a bit of an 'enchanted' mystery for the next owner!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

The Day of the Dead Ham Shrine

I finished up my first ham can this morning. I like the way it looks. The colors look pretty garish in the photo - but they're quite nice in person. The skull tree is covered with ultra fine German glass glitter and is quite glamourous looking. The milagros used will protect one (or heal one) from harm to the arm, house, leg, foot, and car. The miniature crepe paper flowers are really wonderful - but one would have to be insane to try to make a lot of them. They seem to be quite time consuming - and cover very little area. The cross is quite a lovely piece of silver with the long extensions of the cross wrapped in pale gold/yellow silk thread. I think the only way you can really see some of the detail is by clicking on the photo and enlarging.

Well, that was fun! I am going to make two more. Then I'll have to go back to making mini theatres ... unless I decide I must have more ham salad this week - then I'll have to buy more cans!

Snow, Snow, and More Snow!

This morning Dusty barked me awake to a world of (more) snow! Even though I would prefer to have my first cup of coffee of the day before venturing forth into the wintry wonderland, when Dusty says it's time to go, well, he means it's time to go. But it's not so bad. Wooster Square in the snow is really lovely. If you don't know about Wooster Square (or, as I call it, my front yard), there is a wonderful little piece about it here.

One of the nice things about a Sunday morning snowstorm is that there aren't that many people going to Sunday morning mass - God's loss is our gain in this case! Usually, on Sunday morning, the entire square is parked up with cars; on snowy Sundays, however, there are far fewer, and it's nice to see the snow coming down on St. Joseph's bell tower without a bazillion cars ruining the view. The bell tower used to ring every hour ... but, alas, it's gone the way of the 21st century, and now only plays prerecorded bell chimes on the hour. My least favorite - though it is kinda funny - are the days when it plays a medley of "The Sound of Music" tunes.

On the way back in from our walk, I realized how really sad and lonely my Eiffel Tower in our courtyard looks in the snow, without morning glories growing all over it! In fact, what looks so romantic in the summer, in the snow looks exactly like what it is: a three foot wire totally inadequate representation. Oh well. It will be pretty again in four months!

I realized in my photos, the snow did odd things. In the photo of St. Joseph's, the snow flakes look like falling stars or meteors - and in the courtyard they look like bird droppings.

Time for my first cup of the day!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Today's Work Included a Mini-Parisienne Show Girl Mini-Theatre

This was such fun! I love this piece - I remember how disappointed I was by the Folies Bergeres Paris when when we were there (not Moulin Rouge though! - even the iconic red windmill is still there!). This is what I wanted the Folies to be - red and gilt with sexy black accents and over-the-top decoration. Alas, now it's all mirrors and light shows and just looks like another over-produced Vegas act. Oh, well. Anyway.

This piece, which again starts out as papier mache, uses antique sheet music, vintage and reproduction papers, Dresden scrap, gold silk ribbon wrapped around the columns, French millinery netting, rhinestones, miniature crepe paper flowers, jet beading, feathers and assorted findings.

The lovely showgirl is a reproduction of a vintage piece that I purchased a long time ago from Altered Pages - a terrific resource for vintage images, as well as other goodies to make stuff out of! I ended up bracing her with teensy tiny dowels so that she can stand upright on her own. I get a kick out of her pose - I'm not sure if she's displaying her lavishly feathered costume, the theatre, or her own - um - assets. Whichever, she's definitely quite proud! If you click on the image (as with all the images on my blog), it will open a larger image which makes it easier to see.

I think I spent too much time today running around and shopping for little elements that I needed to get as much stuff accomplished as I would like. I had hoped to get all the characters finished for all the other theatres I built this week. I only have three or four more mini-theatres to construct, and then I must get to work on trinket boxes, as they're always a popular selling item for me around Valentines Day.

I have some ideas for some teeny tiny two inch square trinket boxes which should be a lot of fun to put together - or else drive me up the wall! We shall see!

Beginning of the Ham Can Shrine

Well, I'm not going to get this finished today - but it's fun! So far I've covered the piece with papers, and miniature crepe paper flowers, and a lovely print of Our Lady of Guadalupe, and trimmed out the piece in vintage crepe paper pleats.

Tomorrow it will probably get its alter of skulls and marigolds - and probably a big cross. Even though I like Day of the Dead celebrations because I love the idea of communing with deceased loved ones - and I love the skulls and flowers and crepe paper streamers and banners and all, I do have to remember that it is a religious holiday and that a cross or two wouldn't be out of place!

Friday, January 16, 2009

So Painting Your Living Room White Is the Easiest, Eh?

Thanks to the French General, I now know why it's always so difficult to pick out a color white when needed. Here are some of the different color whites available...
Winter Whites



Paper Whites
Swiss Coffee
Jersey White
Sugar Cane
Natural Vanilla
Aged Plaster
Sugar Mountain
Attic lace
Calla Lilly
Hidden White
Brittle White
Sleeping White
Dreamy White Wings
Under Skirt
Whipped Cream
Crafted White
Centurian Cream
Grandma’s Pearl
Antique Alabaster
Winter Linen
Faded Vellum
Vintage Cream laced with Coco
Evening Gardenia

Vintage Gardenia

Polar Frost

Grandma's Wedding Gown

Once White

Valentino White

Wishbone White

Swan White

Shadows of White
Satin Marshmallow
White Cotton
Unbleached Domestic
Brocante Blanc
Brocante White
French Flea
Perfect Patina
French Vanilla
Unbleached Flour
Monk’s White
Grey Dawn
Antique Pearl
Snowflake Fallen
Cream Lustre
Memere’s White
Weathered White
Well Worn White
Antique Paper
Withering Whites
Crème Brulee
Treasured Taupe
Sugar Bisque
Antique Ecru
Oyster Linen
Dusty Dogwood
Sophisticated Alabaster
Delicate Lace
Not Quite White
Heirloom White
Dreamy White
Sweet Cream
Snow Falling on Cedars
Winter White
Tattered White
Tea White
Blush White
Rich Cream
Dreamy Antique White
Ironstone White
Barnwood White
Moonlight White
Lily of the Valley White
Hydrangea White
Magnolia White
Syringa White
White Beach
Snow Drift

Winter Flurries

White Filigree

Pristine Pales

Feather Pillow

Vintage Feathers

Plume d'hiver (Winter Feather)

Snow Feathers
Vintage Bridal White
Late Winter Sky
Linen White
Calla Lily White
Lilac White
Aged White
Cottage White
Bliss White
Timeless White
Linen and Lace
Classic Pearl
Prime White
Worn White
Rusty White
Snow Dust
Frosted Heirloom
Snowy Antiquity
Vintage Vanilla
Snowy Owl
Raw Sugar
Lily of the Valley
Tchaikovsky White

Ophelia White

Arsenic White

Chardonnay White

Chateau White 

Quill Pen White

Gossamer White
Snow White
Vanilla White
Bois d’hiver (Winterwood)
Moonsoft White
Forgotten White
Victorian White
Washed White
Modest White
Aged Alabaster
Sleeping Beauty
Grandma’s Wedding Dress
Vintage White
Orchid White
Frothed Milk
Silent White
Irish Lace
Antique Lace White
Porcelain White
Antique Porcelain
Vanilla Cream
Antique Lace
Old Lace and Cream
Linen Pearl
Sand Dollar
White Coral
Linen Closet
Vintage White Extraordinaire
Sunday White
Best White
Ancient Rime
Ice Queen
Winter Mist
White Pearl
Faded Parchment
Pale Linen
Bleached Bone
Lace White
Churned Butter
Fresh Cream
Ivory Snow
Antique Cream
Fresh Linen
Midnight Pearl
Devonshire White
White Chocolate
Night Snow
Pretty Attic White
Snow Angel
Snow Maiden
Snow Cone
First Snow
White Cream
Heirloom White
Vanilla Cream
La Vanille Bourbon
French Vanilla
Crème de la Lune
Lune de Miel
Meringue Lustre
Vanilla Essence
Antique White Wash
Vintage White Milk Paint
Celestial White
Wishbone White
Winter Ice Capades
Dragonfly White Wing
Crème Brulee
Milk Glass
Vintage White
French General White
Victorian White
Swiss Dot
Olde Whyte
Prayer White
Elegance and Love Mother’s Bracelet
Vintage Ivory Cream
Honored White
Enduring White
Seasoned White
Abalone Flesh
Ocean’s Froth
Mid-Winter’s Dandelion
Grandmother’s Linens
Warm White
Blanche Ancienne
Moonstone Dreaming
Vintage Ivory
Vintage Parchment
Widower’s Lace
Vintage Vanilla Cream
Aged White
Baiser d’Albatre (Alabaster Kiss)
Muted Ivory
Misty Memory White
Aged Ivory
Antique Bone
Creamy Pearl
Achromatic Beauty
Lily White
Latte White
Milky Snow
Sister Winter Charm
Memory Collector Charm
Frosty Pearl
Vanilla Cream
Fresh Cream
Mother of Pearl
Mermaid Pearls
Princess Pearl
Vanilla Frost
Dusted White
Forgotten Linen
Aged Linen
Ashen White
Soft White




Paper White


White Mist

Snow Dew
Antique Chalk
Rouen White
Escaliers de Montmartre (Stairs of Montmartre)

Montmarte Blanc

Esprit Blanc
Fantome (Ghost White)
Grand White
Aged White
Elegant White
Refined White
Belle Fleur
Graceful White
Celestial Cloud
Victorian Dream
Snowy, Snowy Night
Blanche Neige (Snow White)
Coquille (Shell)
Perennial Ivory
Perpetual Pearl
Lunar White
Moonshadow White
Nightshade White
Tea-Stained White
Tea-Leaf White
Vanilla Sugar
Tea Wash White
Old Lace
Ice White
Pearl White
Atmosphere White
Jersey Cream
Jersey Milk
First Day of School White
New Notebook White
The Color of Love
Timeworn White
Revival White
Feather Down White
Bleached Muslin White
Mother of Pearl White
Vanilla Ice Cream White
Buttercream Frosting White
Moon Glow
Button Box White
Stone Mountain White
Alfredo White
Confectioner’s Sugar
Waxen White
Tumbled Sea Glass



Niveous (a term for snowy white)

Polished Pearl




Pearl Troca
Vintage Snow
Classic Candescent
Heirloom Ivory
Misty White

Snow White

Winter White

Early Morning White

Aged White

Granny's White

After White
Vintage Lace
French Canvas
Wedding Veil
Snow Moon
Fleur de sel
Aunt Tilda's Macramé
Chihuahuan Desert (home of White Sands National Monument)
Saint-Benoît-du-Lac (a type of beautiful ivory-colored cheese)
Bakelite Domino
Mourning Dove
Days Gone By
Frosted Window
Improved With Age
Opaque Dreams
Clouds of Romance
Relic of Winter
Tattered Lace
Aunty Anita
Misty Moon White
Misty Morning White
Antique Linen
Porch White



Picket Fence

Bone China


White Chocolate
Pearly White
Bygone White
Dusty Miller
Aged Bisque

Faint Moonglow

Angel's Wing

Lamb's Wool

Morning Dew
White Bisque
Yesterday’s Snowfall
Chantilly Lace White
Something Old
Seashell White
Shades of White
Eternal White
Almond White
Nana’s Linens
Cherished White
Reine Blanche
Nostalgic Whites
Crème de la Crème
Almost Pearl
Of A Certain Age
Soft Glow
Winter Lily
White Chocolate
Mothers Pearl
Love Letter
Remember White
Antique Dreams White
Dainty Lace White
Classic White
Heirloom White
Erode Blanc (Weathered White)
Oublie Blanc (Forgotten White)
Moonlight Sonata
Crystal Snow
Angel Cake
Queen Anne’s Lace
White Mocha
Satin Ivory
Lovely Bone
Carte Blanche
Victorian Lady

Victorian Silk


Crinoline White

Tea Cup White

Victorian Tea

Edwardian White


Shabby Elegance
Marshmallow White
Grandmere’s White
Feather Down White
Attic Treasure White
Silky White
Elegant White
Frosted Mirror White
Vintage Moonlight
Toasted Almond
Angel’s Breath White
Picket Fence


White Lilacs

White Rose

White Wash White
Warm Milk

Sugar Cube

Snow White Dove

Star Dust

Fairy Blossoms

Paper Whites
Yesteryear’s White
White of Long Ago
Winter Wonderland
Beachy Sand White
Chantilly Cream
Sweet Meringue
Satincream White
Oyster White
Antique Linen White
Crème Fraiche
Pear Sorbet
Winter's Snow

White Sugar

Blushing Bride White
Cherished Pearl
Beloved Pearl
Hidden in the Drawer Pearl
Pearl Memoirs
Forgotten Pearl
Tatted White
Vanilla White
Wool White
Yesterday’s White
Aged Page
Innocent White
Bridal’s Breath
Bridal’s Veil
Moonlit White
Creamy Filling

I just love that there are that many different color whites!

Midnight In the Forest Mini-Theatre

I finally completed the woodland theatre ... now it just needs a sprite of some sort to move in and make this his neighborhood of choice!

I'm finding this piece particularly hard to photograph, because there is so much clear glass glitter and gold leaf flakes, causing too much reflection for a good photo. I love the vintage man-in-the-moon image and it was fun working with the moss and branches and natural elements.

If I were a doll-maker, which I am decidedly not and have no desire to be!, I would make a Titania swinging in her bower of flowers for this theatre. Maybe I can make an articulated paper-doll of Titania for it!

I think when I return from my errands, I'm going to give one of those ham cans a piece of my mind! - or my imagination, anyway!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Is There Anything I Won't Alter?

I guess the answer would have to be NO.

Today I was making ham salad (yes, I use those cheap canned hams to make ham salad. Don't laugh at me; be amused, please).

Suddenly, I had a quick vision of what might be, and I quickly dug through the garbage to dig out the ham cans and ran them through the dishwasher.

Voila! I think they're going to be absolutely perfect for Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) retablos/shrines. I'm thinking backgrounds of Our Lady of Guadalupe inside the arch with lots of flowers and skulls and crepe paper and milagros. I'm not sure if I'll be able to find the traditional marigolds in miniature artifical flowers. If not, I'll have to make do with other flowers.

Jon was laughing when he saw I was going to make art out of ham cans. He found this much funnier than when I use round bread crumb containers for mini-theatre structures.

I often wonder how I can do so much work with garbage - and yet still buy enough art supplies and vintage findings to support a small Third World country!

I'm sure I'm not the only one out there who makes stuff out of garbage. What's the wierdest thing you've ever made art from?

Black and White Pierrot Mini Theatre

Last night I started working on a small black and white theatre which might display a Pierrot or Pirouette paper doll puppet. I had planned on it being tiny, but the more I started playing with the black and white papers and trims and beads and feathers, I decided it really needed to be a larger theatre. So it grew into this 16" display theatre. I took a detail photo of the balcony, because I think the Dresden scrap 'railing' and and the antique jet beading trim are especially lovely. I found the black button that is in the middle of the back wall at an antique shop years ago and it's finally found a home. It's multi-faceted and looks like a big jet bead - though I don't believe it is. I think this is going to be a really pretty mini vintage theatre. Jon asked me if I was going to put a "splash of red" on it and I said that I hadn't planned on it. However, the idea of a black and white and red piece intrigues me, so I'm sure there is going to be one of them this year!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Today's Mini-"Vintage"-Theatre Construction

I was going to work on doing an out-doors-y sort of woodland faery theatre piece.

But, it just seemed to get fancier and fancier as I went along, and it turned out a tad too royal for a forest scene.

I think maybe it's going to require a Marie Antoinette character inside it ...

I used papier mache (as usual) for the basic structure, and added vintage and handmade papers, a beautiful piece of antique brass filigree, an Anna Griffin crown embellishment, glass fringe in the shape of leaves, crepe paper, silk ribbon (for the bunting) and paper-and-ribbon covered dowels for the columns. As I look at it more and more, I think that maybe I'll need to add something to the facing of the balcony to add to the rhinestones. They're looking a little lonely there by themselves.

I guess now I'll need to see if I can get that natural forest-y stage structure started!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

What a discovery! Hand printed and bound paper theatre book!

This gorgeous book, hand printed and hand bound by Wendy Addison is a real treasure. As she states on her blog, ""Notebook for an Imaginary Life"- That is the sub-title for my book. For the past twelve years I have been drawing in my Theatre of Dreams notebooks, keeping track of ideas before they evaporate, making notes for future projects and drawing things I love. I also wrote a poem years ago about the making of an imaginary life, and the poem and the illustrations have come together to make a book!
I am piecing it together carefully and will complete a limited artist's edition of 350 copies. This book will be hand assembled and hand bound here at my studio in Port Costa, and will include collage, letterpress and a unique drawing on the flyleaf of each copy. Your copy will be signed, numbered and inscribed to you."

More information - and pictures of this gotta-have - can be found here. Be sure to check out the rest of her site which has pictures of her wonderful creations and finds and stuff. Everything here is well worth the time!

Beginning of a New "Vintage" Theatre

This is the framework of a new theatre piece. It's 9" tall thus far, but I may put a wider base on it, which would make it 1/2" - 3/4" taller.

I've used papier mache, vintage and handmade papers, lots of Dresden scrap to create the balcony area architecture, vintage crepe paper for the ruffled valance, a pretty cut out from an old ad for the framed detail on the top, and a nice piece of twisted cord in the corner of the floor and the wall. There is also quite a bit of shiny clear glitter used - and the 'floor' of the balcony area is covered with German glass glitter.

I have an order coming from Birds of a Feather for ruffled crepe paper. But I didn't have any this morning, so I gathered this crepe paper myself. I don't think I'll do that again ... it took almost 1/2 hour to gather just a tiny length to go under the balcony! Sometimes, starting completely from scratch just isn't worth it!

Now, I think I'll leave this to sit on a studio shelf for a while and begin work on another stage. I like to be able to see the little stages for a while before I decide what kind of characters, scenery, and/or decorations they call out for to be completed. It also gives them a good long time to dry hard and sturdy. I remember once I couldn't wait to get going and the whole thing collapsed because I hadn't given the infrastructure time to cure. I learned my lesson! Sometimes haste really does create the proverbial! I'm thinking this one is going to require some regal characters, so perhaps I should think about doing a faery woodland theatre next and keep myself on my toes!

Wolf and Little Red

Wolf and Little Red
Originally uploaded by salutor
We all know that I love fabric and faery tales and black-and-white - and this fabric by salutor certainly fits the bill for me!

But the thing that I'm most excited about is the company that actually prints this fabric ... it is Spoonflower. And they print fabric of YOUR designs for only $18 yard. Okay. So $18 yard for cotton quilting quality fabric isn't that inexpensive - but! of your own designs! How intriguing is that?!

I could have fabric made of all my favorite images! I could have quilt fabric made with photos of all my art quilts printed on it! I could recreate fabric that I loved which is no longer produced!

Some of the pictures of some of the fabrics they've done are just wonderful.

I think this is going to be a very valuable resource for those of us who like to do things from scratch!

Click on the picture to go to more photos!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Fairy Tea Time Toy Theatre Shadow Box Assemblage

I get so excited when I find another charming miniature theatre created from vintage materials and a 21st century aesthetic! You can see more of her work here. It doesn't say how large it is, but it looks to be fairly small ... perhaps in the 6-8" square area. I might be completely off, of course. It's something I've been accused of being before, and probably will again!

Usually, my taste in furniture goes to the extremes - either I lust after gorgeous period Regency pieces or I crave the clean simplicity of contemporary/modern austerity.

However, this fabulous pair of period deco chairs from Sweden really floats my boat! The curved wooden armrests and the gorgeous ultra-suede new upholstery make them look both comfy and stylish.

Unfortunately, at $7,000 for the pair, they won't be coming to live with us in New Haven.
These and other wonderful pieces can be seen at "Pieces" - the online catalog of a fabulous shop located in Georgia.

The Queen of the Sea!

The Queen of the Sea!
Originally uploaded by Lisa Kettell
I love making ATC's - and ACEO's as well, of course.

Well, this one just knocks me out. It's made by Lisa Kettel and the details and design are awesome ... remember! ATC's are only 2.5 x 3.5 inches!

I may have to come up with a miniature ATC theatre now - I'm both inspired and challenged! I'm not sure I can actually work on a card that small - but a small matchbox might be interesting and fun to fill with both performers and scenery! I think it's the awning style marquee on Lisa's that really makes it all work so well!


Be sure to click on the picture and see the larger version!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

We spent a lovely afternoon watching Ingrid Bergman in Henrik Ibsen's Hedda Gabler. I had never seen it before - and, frankly, didn't think that Ingrid was going to be strong enough to play Hedda; she always seems a bit timid and wary in her roles. And, of course, Hedda is a real warrior in a corset!

Well, she is wonderful. Very distant and cold - and passionate when required. The screenplay is quite good. It's been edited to be used as a BBC television play. But they didn't cut that much from it - and, luckily, didn't add anything. I've never had much patience with people who try to "write" classic writers. It never works for me.

The costumes and settings in this were also quite nice - not as elaborate as the BBC movies created now (this was made in the early 1960's) - but still beautiful. There were many wonderful details in the set decoration, especially the desk and it's assorted pens, papers, ink wells, notebooks, ledgers, etc.

If you have never seen Hedda Gabler, I would recommend Cherry Jones' version over this one. However, if you're an Ibsen fan, and enjoy seeing different versions, this is definitely a good choice for a snowy wintery Sunday afternoon!
I started pulling out my vintage ribbons and trims and papers and my Dresden scrap and fringes and everything else that would fit on my work table. I made this little Victorian trinket box out of a small papier mache box. This is the first piece of 2009 stuff for the Open Studios art space open houses. We're having a debate here about whether the wooden legs and the wooden knob on top need more done to them. I, of course, always believe that more is more and more is good.

What do you think? Should I keep piling on stuff, or leave it as is?

Here is Dusty, enjoying the first big snow storm of 2009. It had only just started snowing, so he was still able to get around fairly the morning, he was unable to do much more than do rabbit-like leaps through the snow to get from one place to another.

He loves it.

Of course, he also likes being snuggled up cozily on his own throne of pillows and staying worm. He finds it quite easy to boss us around from this position. And he has no problem letting us know what he it a toy, a treat, or to inform us that somewhere on earth a squirrel has breathed and that he heard it and that he needed to let us know that he was protecting us from it.
I found this chair/litter/sled/sleigh/amazing thing on the wonderful blog A Thousand Clapping Hands.

There is much to love about this piece - the creamy tufted upholstery; the lovely shade of green; the detailed and lush painting; the exquisite dare-I-say-perfect silhouette; but most of, the utilitarian pupose!

Yes, indeed, some lucky person in Russia got to sit in this and get pushed across the ice and over the snow, keeping all bundled up and cozy in the confines of all that lavish (what looks like) silk brocade fabric!

Perhaps I'm finding this most attractive today because it would be wonderful to have Jon push me across the drifts in Wooster Square in this while I walk Dusty.

Who am I kidding? I would be pushing Dusty around in it. Without question, he's the most royal thing that lives at 293! And he never lets us forget it for a moment!

Maybe I'll have to made do with watching "Doctor Zhivago" this afternoon.

This morning, while I was walking Dusty, I became aware of all this wonderful textural vegetation that had dried and was lying under and in and on top of the snow. I was especially fascinated by the incredible range of tones they were. Unlike flowers, that have very subtle color variations, these range from the palest ecru to dark red/brown.

I'm trying to come up with something to do with them. They're so beautiful - but I'm not really into gathering a bunch of them and sticking them in a bowl. I want to do more than that. LOL I'm sure that I'm hardly the first - or the millionth - person to realize the beauty of these, and there has been art for days created from them. But I've never seen any. Does anybody reading do anything interesting with these?

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Gay Training Camp?

I couldn't resist.

Is it possible for there to be any other caption for this photo?

The third dancer has great technique - but that fourth fella knows how to work for the camera, doesn't he?

It was well below freezing this morning when I took Dusty for his walk. But this picture got me chuckling and I warmed to memories of taking tap class as a child.

I'm embarrassed to admit, I don't think we were as good as this group of future Hullabaloo dancers obviously are!

Friday, January 9, 2009

As I tided up the studio and started putting some of my papers and stuffs away, I found a holiday card that I didn't get around to sending to anybody yet!

Now I have to decide whether this is to be sent out as a Happy 2009 greeting - or if it's the beginning of my card stash to send for the holidays at the end of the year!

I do like that piece of French ribbon that is on the card ... I wish I had more of it. But, I bought it at an estate sale, and alas!, there is no more to be had!