Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Hark! The herald angels sing ...

Hark! The herald angels sing:
"Glory to the newborn King
Peace on earth and mercy mild
God and sinners reconciled"
Joyful, all ye nations rise
Join the triumph of the skies
With the angelic host proclaim:
"Christ is born in Bethlehem"
Hark! The herald angels sing
"Glory to the newborn King!"

Wishing you a wonderful Christmas time!


Friday, December 19, 2008

Hommage à Jude ...

Yesterday night, I sat down in the middle of xmaspreps and started this "Hommage à Jude", a kind of what-if-project, using some of my favourite scraps (and the Jacaranda haze-thread!) which Paula sent me recently.

I needed a break, slipping out of that Mrs-Santa-costume, and I needed to do some stitching again:

I wanted to know what it felt like to be stitching like Jude ... and I do now realize that you can really get addicted to filling the fabric with those running stitches - it reminds me of weaving - taking you further and further, stiffening the cloth and at the same time shaping and re-shaping the surface ... Through the slow process of stitching, you come to care about the material in a new way.

And I enjoyed the fraying of the fabric, giving the piece a worn and kind of weary expression. Of course my thoughts went to Jude as I chose the dotted fabrics - which I had asked Paula for when swapping. While adding french knots for the illusion of more dots, I thought of Sara, who is frequently using them on her pieces of work.

I'm pleased with this sublime and still worked-upon look and will certainly return to this piece and probably integrate it with other special scraps ... next year.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Look - another one!

Surprise! Yesterday I rushed into the local post office with my late Christmas mail and was friendly greeted by my favourite post man - he had digged out some new "treasures" for me, among them another embroidered stamp!
No, I'm not aiming to present new stamps every week - but I was so surprised I had to show you!
(For those who haven't read the earlier postings, I just want to point out that this is an officially valid, "ready-to-use" Austrian stamp, but machine embroidered and thus made out of fabric!)

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The hard-working Mrs Santa ...

Christmas cards (embellished, of course), embroidered mittens, beaded stars ...

I'm sorry for not posting very often lately - but Mrs Santa is busy these days ... I've heard there'll be a life beyond Christmas as well ... Looking forward to this calm and peaceful new year, when I'll keep my (yearly) vowes to start crafting for Christmas during summer holidays - at the latest!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Sharing the joy ...

I think I made someone very happy this weekend. My daughter Emily (she's 10) and I had an afternoon on our own, so we planned to have a bit of fun in my studio, just the two of us.

And then I decided to let her try out my embellisher ... She has a little "travel-sewing machine" of her own, but she's never been working on the embellisher till now. She asked what would happen if she made something wrong. I said: The worst that could happen is that a needle or a couple of them would break - but I have enough spare needles, and they are not that expensive.

So she boldly stepped on the gas and had so much fun! Her cheeks went rosy with excitement, she whirled through my stash, went back to the machine - and we both had a great time! And this is what she did:

The crocodile is ment to be a bookmark - I've already told her, that if I could make a wish for Christmas, I'd love to have that one ...
(By the way: not a single needle was broken. Next, I'll let my son (he's 13) try it out ...)

"Christmas tree, very pretty ... " - Whatiffing 51-59, Xmas-trees

So I've done some more Whatiffings, this time there are Xmas trees (green wool) punched to a grey woolen cloth, embellished with fabric, yarn, ribbons and lace ...

See the Santa up right? I'm especially proud of that - it's a simple xmas gift ribbon, embellished on, of course.

Friday, December 5, 2008

When I wish upon a star ...

This is a felted star I did some time ago - and I'm making some more now, for Christmas. It's wet felted with natural white roving over a metal wire, then embellished with some glass beads.


Yesterday was 'kind of Xmas to me - I received a wonderful parcel from Paula, filled with the most gorgeous small scale printed cotton and silk fabrics, colourful embroidery threads and glass beads ... and even one of Paula's fantastic 'skitches'!

I was so happy and inspired - and today I rushed to the post office with my mail swap for her!

I must admit I just love getting mail - especially this kind of surprise parcels! And I think it's a lovely idea to swap goodies from your stash with someone who appreciates similar things ... making yourself and somebody else double happy, both enjoying the gathering and packing as well as the receiving and exploring of the gift - well, if this isn't Xmas!

And it's sensible recycling and resource consciousness par excellence, isn't it? (And it keeps the post men busy!) I love it! Anyone else out there wanting to swap with me?

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Angels welcome ...

Two embellished angels - and a star - consisting of wool roving, fabric, lace and yarn scraps, some paper and silvery (metal) net - the faces are free motion machine embroidered.

A friend of mine used to have a shop with the sign "Angels welcome" above her shop entrance - I think I could use such a sign above my door, too, in order to attract some angels - or at least some good fairy who could give me a helping hand with those Xmas preparations ...

Somehow, Christmas always seems to arrive so quickly and sudden, as if these holidays were just popping up unexpectedly out of the winter dark ...

I'm torn between the wish to spend a calm and contemplative Advent season with my kids, having all the time in the world for crafting, baking cookies, reading, playing, leaving on long winter walks, snuggling up with a cup of tea at the fire place -

and on the other hand writing thoughtful cards and letters, finding or even better: making very personal gifts with beautiful wrappings for the family and the big bunch of dear friends.

I just want to do both - my problem is that time moves on so very fast and although I consider myself hard-working, I suppose I'm a bit disorganized ...

Maybe it's just vanity wanting to make it all - and make it good! Guess I should give that a thought, too ...

Concentrate. Keep it plain and simple. Stay cool. (That's what you wanted to say, wasn't it?)

Monday, December 1, 2008

A wonderful Christmas time ...

Look what I've got! This is an advent calendar for me from my 10-year old daughter Emily! It's filled not only with my favourite chocolate treats, but also with very personal letters and small messages ...

I'm a very lucky mum to receive such a loving gift!

Here are some more calendars, which I received from two friends of mine - they will lighten up my day every morning until Christmas day ...

I think it's a wonderful thing to receive such a calendar gift, even if I'm not really a kid anymore - I enjoy it just as much and appreciate it maybe even more now! I wonder what's in it ...?