Saturday, November 28, 2009

Beaded Tower Book

If  by any stretch of impossibility, you are a fibre artist and haven’t connected with Maggie Grey in the UK, you need to do so. She has a number of books in print and they are all unusual techniques and fabulous inspiration. or on her blog,

With the purchase of her book “Textile Translations”, published by D4Daisy there are on-line lessons offered for an extra project. 

I started this one last spring and had a lot of fun with it. The faces and “head dresses” draped around them are wet paper, applied to Timtex, and then painted over with gesso. From there I inked, painted and dyed until I was satisfied with the shading. I was unable to make the technique offered by Maggie Grey work….probably because our inks are not the same as those produced in the UK. But with a little bit of experimentation and a great amount of serendipity, the project came to life.

The best part was the beading. I sat with my husband watching TV and started beading. It went well. I beaded evening after evening, going from one piece to another. I would do something to one piece and then decide the other needed more and then….well, you get the picture.

I had originally planned to have fabric pages with the verses applied with Steam A Seam Lite, a fusible stabilizer which works with fabric or paper, but the fabric didn’t work as intended so I switched to decorative papers. These worked well. They are stitched together, and then “bound” to the cover so that they ruffle nicely when the book is standing. I’m quite happy with the way it turned out.

As always, the next one will be the best one, but I sure had fun playing with this one!

Yoga - Another Form of Well Being

I have taken yoga classes in the past, but this fall I have been going to a class once per week with a very good friend of mine. It’s called “Gentle Yoga” and is exactly that. A lot of stretches and concentrating on breathing, but not a lot of the traditional “asanas” or strength building exercises. We have discovered ligaments we didn’t know existed, and joints that don’t bend the way they used to, but it’s fun and each time we stretch a little further, we feel a sense of accomplishment.  Refer to this website for poses and benefits of doing really does help:

But what I wanted to share with you is my granddaughters’ reaction to my participation in this class. The two of them, age 11 and 6 had been visiting their father in Winnipeg for the past two weeks. Dad was escorting them home on their flight back to their mother, and my husband was going to pick them up. I couldn’t come along as the vehicle won’t hold five people and a lot of luggage, so I went to my yoga class instead.

This one I can do!!  And the following web site is a good one for practicing at home.

When the girls got in the vehicle the youngest one asked Grandpa “Where’s Grandma?” He said “At her yoga class.” She looked confused and grandpa asked if she knew what yoga is. The oldest girl suddenly burst out laughing and said “Grandma is at YOGA?????!!!!! That’s hilarious.” Of course everyone in the vehicle, Grandpa, Dad, and both girls had a great laugh over that. Now I ask you, what is so funny about a 62 year old Grandma doing yoga??? Could it be that the two men couldn’t begin to fold themselves into those positions OR stretch themselves in the twists? And the girls obviously need to have their preconceived notions changed…..I believe I’ll be handling a class of young people’s yoga next time they visit… will be their payment before we get to any sewing with grandma!

Most definitely NOT Grandma!