Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Pet Parade Party

Today is the Pet Parade Party, sponsored by Katillac Shack. Dusty thinks this is a grand idea ... but he has absolutely no - as in none, zero, zilch, nada, zip, NO - interest in wearing any kind of clothing whatsoever. He won't even stand for a scarf. I suppose I should be glad - I would probably be one of those people who have different coats for every day of the week for the dog! Frankly, I just think he's convinced that any type of attire whatsoever would detract from his matinee idol profile!

If he did wear clothing, I suppose it would have to be a safari jacket and a pith helmet ... he does love exploring - especially the first snowfall of the year, which he considers quite the grand adventure. When the snow gets over a foot deep, and he can no longer traverse it, he gets a little less enamored with the whole thing. I understand the feeling completely.
Dusty also loves to chase squirrels ... and would happily yap at the bottom of a tree for hours, trying to coax one down to play. Though some dogs love to eat squirrels, I'm quite sure that Dusty would have no idea what to do with a squirrel if he actually captured one...probably the same as happened when he finally cornered a cat: a quick sit down and whining because he was completely confused by the change of scenario! However, when my sister sent him a squashed squirrel furry toy, he loved it! He still won't really "play" with it. But, he enjoys laying next to it and licking it. I'm not sure, but I think he believes it's his baby. Silly boy! How could he have delivered a baby?! We had him fixed.

But mostly, he just enjoys sprawling out on pillows and cushions and playing the Lord of the Manor. Which, admittedly, he is. He completely rules this roost!
This video of "Design Gives Back: Pet Scarf Project" has raised several thousand dollars for the Northland Pet Pantry. Enjoy the video - and then visit The Katillac Shack and find the many people who are taking their pets for a stroll down the Red Carpet for the Pet Parade Party!

And, of course, as always, after you've made your round and become inspired, go make something beautiful!

¸.•´¸.•*´¨) ¸.•*´¨)
(¸.•´ (¸.•´♥ Tristan ♥

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Do They Still Call Wednesdays Hump Day?

It's been a busy two days - so much to do, so little time! I don't like deadlines. They're necessary evils - but I don't like them. How much nicer to curl up in a window sill and read! ... or, better yet, curl up in a window sill and be read to!
I'm about three quarters along with the first circus project. It's reached that stage which is always scary for me. I can see where it's going - or where it's supposed to go - but it's just not there yet! I know that the final embellishments and finishing touches will make it complete. But for now, I'm just not completely enthusiastic about it yet. But it's too be finished by I'm working up my enthusiasm to - hopefully - make it fabulous! Don't look at the studio mess in which I work ... all that mess is really a figment of your imagination.
Speaking of paper arts - and fabulous! I just bought this wonderful little kit from Ulla, who not only has a marvelous blog (click link), but is also a teacher at Castle in the Air. If you've never been to this amazing website, be sure to grab your credit card and go shopping...wonderful, wonderful supplies! The charming little Halloween mask vendor candy box is available at her Etsy shop via pdf tutorial and image downloads. She has lots of other wonderful little downloadable projects and tutorials. And so reasonable! - my little kit - including all the wonderful vintage images - was only $10!

When my little mask vendor candy box is completed, I hope that I can display it in some place as enchanting as this Parisienne antique shop. It looks like a home, doesn't it?! (Well, not like MY home, but somebody-more-fabulous-than-I-am's home!) From the exquisite doors and wall panels to the lavish tiles to the fantastic chandelier to the romantic benches, I could easily call this vignette home!
Of course, that would mean that I couldn't use these grand Napolean III curule velvet tapestry arm chairs. Maybe I could just store these beauties in a room off the main hallways and only bring them out when I need something to take along when seeing an outside production of a Shakespeare play.

Now this rare 1750 gilded rococo Chippendale mirror would fit right into that lovely blue Parisienne room ... and would reflect it all so that it would seem all the more enchanting!Excuse me for a moment. I have to run off to my dining room and have a little nosh before continuing this post ...
Well that was revitalizing. While I was having a small bite, Sandra called to let me know about a wonderful poem she found. I hope after reading it, you will be dashing off to make something beautiful!


Even in these hostile times,

I sort of prefer those people

others consider


Those who,

during the meeting,

doodle in the margins,

inking out long-stemmed daisies

with words rising up

out of the stamens.

Watch how they're

not really ruffled

when referred to

as loafing.

Their tenacity

at not being

too insistent-

now that's a feat.

A mouse could run off

with their crumbs

and they wouldn't flip out,

call in a search party,

order a fatwa.

I imagine they know already

that plot is simply

what it is

-mostly a distraction-

that what matters

hasn't happened yet,

the realm of the possible,

which sometimes

doesn't occur.

While others strategize,

organize coalitions,

they fiddle with a grass blade,

inspecting its shape.

When they speak up,

it's to ask

some loll-about question

already drifting

right out of the room.

Copyright (c) 2009 Jeff Hardin All rights reserved

from Southern Poetry Review


¸.•´¸.•*´¨) ¸.•*´¨)
(¸.•´ (¸.•´♥ Tristan ♥

Monday, September 21, 2009

A Short Excursion Around Bloglandia

Today I thought I would take you on a little tour of blogs that always have something wonderful to see - sometimes it's historical, sometimes it's art, sometimes it's fashion and/or design. But, no matter what it is, it's entertaining.

I thought this collection of handmade paper shoes, found at Rebecca Rose Designs, were delightful. Made for a tea and luncheon, I thought this kind of dedication to favors deserved a nod of recognition! It sounds like something as ridiculous as I would do! Visit her blog and read about the day that inspired these slippers.

Isn't this delicate ribbon embroidery work exquisite! The Queen of Dreamsz at Dream Kingdom found these awesome examples of fine handwork from the 1920's by the Boué Soeurs. This is a two part post - be sure to click the link and see more of these vintage treasures, and learn all about the Sisters Boué

There is always something fabulous at Beaux Mondes Designs. I just loved his "Age of Aquariums" post. And I fell in love with this huge freestanding looks like an enormous faery tale under water to me. Not to mention, look at that remarkable ceiling! Be sure to visit to see a plethora of fanastic aquariums.
Also at Beaux Mondes Designs, you will find a post about the Venice Carnivale with many many photos of the outrageous and fabulous costumes and masks. Be sure to visit!

I'm sorry that I can't remember where I found this wonderful creation. If it was on your blog, please let me know so that I can credit you! I thought this sculpture was quite the groovy piece of work. It looked like a sculpture created in the late 1960's, probably now ensconced in some museum of contemporary art. I think it looks like an amazing vision of a 23rd century city.
So, I quite enjoyed finding out that it was constructed from a toy which we were somehow deprived as children. Why didn't I know about Astrolite?! This was made in 1969, and though I was just a tad too old at the time, I bet I would have played with this in secret without letting my friends know that I was being totally uncool by playing with toys!

And, now for a complete change of pace! There is a wonderful collection of white and black Halloween accessories over at Owl Sorts.
These are just two of the lovely creations that owner Jenny B. Harris has assembled ... I love the way black and white make Halloween decorations, not only eerie, but surprisingly glamorous!

One of my favorite stops is always at author Elena Maria Vidal's Tea at Trianon. She always has fascinating tales and tidbits about everybody's favorite queen. Well, my favorite, anyway! This week she created another post about the customs involved in court dress and the etiquette involved. I thought this gown was nothing short of magnificent.
Then, through a link in her post, I discovered Catherine Delors at Versailles and more. There I found even more facts and trivia about dressing at court of Versailles. And these pictures just amazed me! Look at the length of that train! Even more exciting was this male court costume ... there never seems to be as much in the way of the men's clothing as women's at exhibits, even though at the time the men dressed every bit as fancifully. If you're an aficionado of all things Versailles and Marie Antoinette, you'll want to go to both sites and read these fascinating posts.

I thought that Lisa Kettel at Faerie Enchantment really out did her recycling self with this elegant royal cuff - created from a used baseball! If you're familiar with Lisa work, or her book Altered Art Circus, you know that she always has something creative and adorable up her talented sleeve! Visit her and get your day's dose of magical pretend for the day!Well, I'm off to make more rounds. I hope you visit some of my favorite spots in blogland - be sure to leave an hello! You know how we all appreciate hearing from readers!

I'm going to leave you with this photo, courtesy of Susi.A. Her blog always has something that is vintage and bizarre and fabulous. My Spanish isn't that great, so I don't always know what she's saying - but I can still relate to the photos! It's not as if I need a caption to tell what's going on in this image!
I hope you enjoyed our little tour together today! ... and that you traveled to a few new blogs and got inspired by what you saw.

Now, go make something beautiful!
¸.•´¸.•*´¨) ¸.•*´¨)
(¸.•´ (¸.•´♥ Tristan ♥

Friday, September 18, 2009

Shall we shop? (dum dum dum) On a bright cloud of music ...

So. What I've been working on the past couple of day is the base for the first circus themed mini-theatre project. My goal is two fold: to keep it colorful and playful while still retaining a vintage look; and, getting a circus feel to it without using a lot of actual circus images. I'm having fun - though I really must get the proverbial nose to the proverbial grindstone and finish this one up - I still have two more to go! However, this one is the piece which is helping me work out the infrastructure glitches. This piece will be approximately 20" x 40"+-, which is large for me! The next two should go more smoothly. I do like the colors.

Speaking of color! Wow - I just love the colors used on this embroidery! It is Bokja. It is an old Turkish description of embellished velvet coverings of treasured items for special occasions, notably the embroidered dowry of a bride. I have seen small scarves created of embroidered velvet - but never anything so large and lavish as these used as upholstery. I think it would be so cheerful to live with one of these - what a seat by a window in a breakfast nook, huh?! I first found these via Agnetta at the Swedish blog wabi & sabi , and then searched for the website for Bokja where there are many other items, including pillows, ottomans and tables.

Isn't this an awesome shot of the Eiffel Tower? The photographer must have crowed when he developed THAT remarkable shot.
Of course, there are no mysterious and enticing little stair cases under the Eiffel Tower - nor shops, beyond the Eiffel Tower souvenir spots. But if there were, I know they'd look just like this!

And once you made your way up the staircase to the beckoning door, it would be this jewel box of a shop! Doesn't everything make you want to want to scream, "charge it!"? So many intriguing and lovely things - and displayed so alluringly!

This wonderful shop is the Saint Ouen Paris Market. I'm not sure which I want more - that fab art deco mannequin/bust - or the huge glass display dome! Oh, well - since I'm not going to own either of them for real, I think I'll just take them both!
I also believe that I could find a space for this early 19th century Baccarat chandelier. I'm thinking it would make a gorgeous and witty statement in the bathroom - perhaps over the jacuzzi. Of course, that would mean that I would have to install a jacuzzi. Of course, that would mean that I would have to enlarge the bathroom. Perhaps I'll just enjoy the fixture here.
Isn't this just the best?! Another early 19th century French piece. A child's miniature marionette theatre. I particularly like the returns (the decorated scenery on either side of the proscenium that keeps the audience from seeing backstage) ... they look as if they're either painted or actually have tapestries applied. And the puppets are just enchanting ... I can envision a marionette play full of Spanish soldiers!

I've always been more of a doorbell than a doorknocker guy. I've never found the clang from a doorknocker satisfying - it always sounds like something's breaking to me. However, I might change my mind if I could have this delightful antique French rooster to have guests clang upon arrival. Who am I kidding? If I had this doorknocker in New Haven, it would last one week before it was ripped off. One of the downsides of city life. The beautiful stuff has to remain INdoors.

Of course, not all the great shops are in Paris. Take a look in the window of this fabulous shop in Zurich! Isn't that Robin's Egg Blue roadster the cat's pegnoir?!
I hope my short little post brightened your day a bit. It's a lovely autumnal day here, and, with luck, you're enjoying the same!

I'm going to leave you with my new favorite line from "True Blood" ...

Now, go make something beautiful!
¸.•´¸.•*´¨) ¸.•*´¨)
(¸.•´ (¸.•´♥ Tristan ♥

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

It's Multi-Media Wednesday! Put On Your Fantasy Hat!

Today I've got some goodies for you to watch ... I save video clips and slide shows of things I find either interesting or deliciously fun and entertaining. Usually my posts get so long that I can't ask people to read everything, look at all the photos, AND watch video. So, I've saved this post for some of my favorites!

On MMCA - Mixed Media Collage Artists - there is a different featured artist every month. This month we are featuring Claudia Roulier. I'm just fascinated with her work ... especially that evocative black bird assemblage! Enjoy the slide show - and if you would like to see more, and to read her artist statement, you will find her very spiffy website here and her blog by clicking here.

Host unlimited photos at for FREE!

For those of us "of a certain age," Nina Hagen is an icon from our wild and crazy youth. Nina was an East German singer who was granted permission to leave the country because she - and her music - as well as her parents were very well-known East German critics. She became a pop singer early in her career, but went on to form several punk rock bands, and then came full circle.

This is a clip of Nina's outrageous, irreverant, and completely captivating version of Over the Rainbow, as sung at a Swedish pop concert in 1985. What a performer.

After hearing that, I"m sure you'll be as surprised as I was to find out that in her childhood in East Berlin, Ms. Hagen was considered an operatic child prodigy. And that her study of opera has never stopped! Here is her rendition of the famous Habanera from Carmen. It's difficult to believe that it's the same singer, isn't it! This clip is from a classical music concert in Tokyo.

I know I tend to go on and on about my love of all things French. But, just look at these exquisite antique copies of French translations of English books. Don't you think the bindings and illustrations are just beautiful?!

If you're a fan of Broadway songs, you are probably already familiar with YouTube favorite MissBroadwayDork. This young woman has been entertaining us for years on YouTube with her buttery smooth renditions of Broadway hits and misses. This particular song does sound like many of her other entries. I loved what she wrote about recording it: If the thought of a fat girl singing a sexual song disgusts you, don't watch?
It was another one of those I couldn't sleep so I'll sing a song about orgasming nights. I'll probably regret putting this up in the morning but it's all systems go right now. A re-do of one of the earlier songs I put up on youtube. I didn't realize the audio on my new camera was so poor compared to my old one so sorry about that. Next time I'll use the mic. Enjoy the outtake at the end. Beware the spit.

Anyway I can't wait for the movie.
If you enjoy it and would like to hear her sing some of the most lyrical Broadway songs ever, just do a YouTube search for MissBroadwayDork. Frankly, why Susan Boyle is an international hit and this talented and charming lady is completely unknown (outside of her YouTube fans) is beyond me.

Okay, put on your fantasy cap AND your enchantment glasses!

Made in 1898, G.A. Smith's 'Santa Claus' is a film of considerable technical ambition and accomplishment for its period. It uses pioneering visual effects in its depiction of a visit from St. Nicholas.

A former magic lanternist and hypnotist, Smith was one of the first British film-makers to make extensive use of special effects to create fantastical scenes. It comes as little surprise that Smith corresponded with the French pioneer Georges Méliès at about this time, as the two men shared a common goal in terms of creating an authentic cinema of illusion.

Imagine! 1898!! Fantastic!

As long as we're taking a stroll through the imagination of the past...can you imagine a song today about "Sweet Marijuana" being used in a main stream film?! Although the song is sung by the throaty-voiced Gertrude Michael, my favorite moment comes at 0:23 with the giggle by the blonde cutie. This is the fabulous Toby Wing (a starlet who was a cross between Mae West and Jean Harlow), a featured players in many films with her own star on the Walk of Fame, and all but forgotten today. This is from the movie, "Murder at the Vanities." If this song was in a popular main stream movie today, there would be an outcry of the destruction of Western civilization! I guess they had more of a sense of humor in 1934.

Is there any fantasy as fun and provocative as the Fantasy Woman? Here are two fantasy women who can sing, dance, and look damn fine doing it! Why? Because they're both women.

Of course, if Raquel and Cher weren't your style, you could always just switch the channel ... because on another network we had ...

Well, enough fantasies from the far and recent past. I'm going to leave you with two fantasies to look forward to! I can't wait for either of them!

By the way, this is the new film which includes the song MissBroadwayDork sings above!
(I find it very disconcerting when YouTube cancels imbedding on a video and you have to post a link instead. Disconcerting? Nah. Infuriating! LOL But it's worth the click!)

Now that you've had your fantasy hats on, and hopefully you've been inspired by art, music, video and film, put on your creative hats and go make something beautiful!
¸.•´¸.•*´¨) ¸.•*´¨)
(¸.•´ (¸.•´♥ Tristan ♥

Friday, September 11, 2009

Has it really been a whole week?!

Indeed, it has been almost a week since I've posted ... where does the time go? So many things to share this time ... hope you don't wear out on me before I'm through! Why don't you get yourself a nice cup of tea (or coffee) and linger awhile, do a little reading, and follow some links!

First - and most importantly - I have to show you the exquisite new piece of art I acquired from Ingrid Mida of Fashion Is My Muse!!!! I love it so much! It's almost impossible to see in a photo - but it's a superimposed image over a lovely toile print which has been embroidered and beaded. It is so delicate and charming and the handwork is nothing short of remarkable. Please visit Ingrid's website here - and be prepared to ooh and aah!
Want to go shopping? These photos of the Paris shop, Maison Objet, were posted on Paris Apartment - and I've already placed this on my list of places to visit when in Paris. Wouldn't this be a delicious way to spend an hour ... or two(!)? If you're a fan of all things Parisienne, you owe it to yourself to check out this wonderful - and informative! - blog.

The Paris Apartment blog is also where I discovered this awesome needlepoint whimsy. Yes - I wrote needlepoint! I think it's so witty and beautiful - and even though I'm not at all a fan of dead animals on the wall, I would so love to own it!I have received two lovely awards from lovely bloggers! The first is Circle of Friends from Shell at Swan of Dreamers. Shell has the most charming blog, which is always filled with inspirational words and words of kindness and respect. She stated that so many people gave awards that specifically targeted women, she was going to pass this on to three of her male blogger friends. I'm going to continue that tradition by passing it on to three of my favorite male bloggers. And they are ...

YSL Guy at Let Them Eat Cupcakes
Mo Mad Dog at Mo Mad Dog Stoneskin
Rupert Alistair at Classic Movies Digest

Guys, please take the award below and pass it on!

The next award is the Premio Meme Award - isn't it pretty?! I was awarded this by Michele of Michele Lynch Art.
Michelle creates fabulous steam punk jewelry ... check out her Youtube clip below - and when you see that wonderful Paris piece at around :33, remember my birthday is May LOL.

Okay, this award requires that I write seven things about myself that you probably don't know. So, here goes...
1. I was born in Alaska.
2. My mother was a Las Vegas showgirl before she became a wife and mother and Republican.
3. I had planned on being a dancer, but when my left foot was almost cut off by a lawn mower when was 13, I had to change career goals.
4. Seeing "Hair" on Broadway when I was in 7th grade changed my life forever.
5. My first appearance Off-Broadway in 1971 was in the nude.
6. I am very very active politically.
7. When I'm angry I swear, curse and cuss like a drunken sailor on leave.

And now I have to pass it on to seven others ... so, I'm awarding the Premio Meme Award to
Elena Maria Vidal of Tea at Trianon
Sandy of Sandy's Creepy Creations
gypsylulu of Gypsylulu Delights
David Toms of Savoir Faire
Marilyn of As Seen Through My Eyes
Catherine of A Thousand Clapping Hands
Tales From an OC Cottage
Please grab the above Premio Award and pass it on! And, folks, if you aren't familiar with these diverse and enchanting blogs, you should take some time and visit. They run the gamut of interests - from history to artists to interior design - but all are terrific people with much to share.

I have no idea why I love this photo - it's not as if haircuts (*making the sign of the cross to ward off evil*) interest me. But this photo just makes me smile. The barbers are so intent - and the customers so cheerful.

I mentioned my year-off birthday a few photos back ... well, if anybody has the inclination, I would just love to own this rare 1905 Mills Brothers of Chicago Double Dewey Slot Machine. Isn't it magical!? I'm not even interested in gambling - but I'm very interested in designing a room around this enormous machine!

Jon found this photo and said if we ever get married again (not in this lifetime, say I!), this is the wedding cake we should have. I must admit that the white chocolate frosting looks like a sheet of white silk tossed over a cake! And I do love those roses just scattered over it. But another wedding. Um. I don't think so.
I have always loved Daniel Merriam's work ... and just recently ran across his website - which is as bewitching as his work. If you're not familiar with his view of the world, please take a long and lingering visit there!

Speaking of art that invites opening your mind, while blog hopping, I came across this little jewel of a piece of art. It's an ATC (Artist Trading Card / 2 1/2" x 3 1/2") titled "Wound." It is by artist Jillian Schneider of Bohemiart. This piece just really spoke to me. You can see more of her work in her Etsy shop here and at her blog.

I finally figured out my nonstop problems with electrical appliances this summer. I am quite positive that I've been cursed by the one and only original Cobra Woman, Maria Montez. Since May we have had break down: air conditioner, refrigerator, dishwasher, oven, vacuum cleaner, computer, Bose sound system, and security code box for the front door. Damn you, Maria! What did I ever do to you?! And, as we just remodeled and replaced everything about three years ago, everything is juuuuuuuust past warranty. Can you hear me growl, Maria, can you?!

This charming 19th century French pique asiette jewel box is a real treasure, isn' it?! I love that, just as altered art and mixed media artists do today, 19th century folk artists found ways to use their broken and damaged bits and bobs of china. I also find it interesting, even though the antique dealer swore it was 19th century French, there is a piece on the front with "Home Sweet Home" written in English!
I'm leaving you today with this lovely Paris apartment ... I'm not absolutely wild about everything in the room - but, oh!, those gorgeous architectural features! Wouldn't you love to live with that fabulous moulding and raised panel doors and crown mouldings and ... and ... ? I would just adore having that painting over the doorway! What a surprise detail! Sigh. I bet that darned Maria Montez hasn't cursed all their appliances!
Okay, I'm off to do arty things ... mostly background work. I have to gesso some canvases to prep for collages, and put the second layer of paper on the backing of the first circus project, and do the final embellishments on three mixed media fabric collages. So, more grunt work than making art ... but it has to be done!

Now - YOU go make something beautiful! ... and show me the results!
¸.•´¸.•*´¨) ¸.•*´¨)
(¸.•´ (¸.•´♥ Tristan ♥