… true happiness rests on discovering and pursuing an absorbing errand that satisfies your need for expression and keeps your focus “outside” yourself. — Janna Malamud Smith, from an absorbing errand I began reading an absorbing errand on an airplane. I was headed to visit my family, fresh off of an intense year of trying to… Continue reading an absorbing errand
Sizing It Up!
What does Knox Gelatin have to do with handmade paper? Well, it’s all about sizing. I created this handmade paper during a wonderful and intensive indigo-dyeing workshop with Mary Hark at Women’s Studio Workshop several summers ago. We made paper, then dyed it with indigo. We also dyed fabric with indigo, using Japanese Shibori techniques.… Continue reading Sizing It Up!
Remember the raccoon family that was living in my neighbors’ roof? Look who has taken over the space now! Momma squirrel and her adorable babies. They have been frolicking all week, and I feel happy and sad watching them. They are seriously cute, and a joy to watch. I know how destructive it is to… Continue reading New Neighbors
There has been quite a bit of buzz on the neighborhood Yahoo group about raccoon activity in the area lately. Nestled smack in between both lovely Victorian-era Green-Wood Cemetery and equally beautiful Prospect Park in Brooklyn, we are no strangers to urban wildlife. (Let me tell you about the evening that I took the trash… Continue reading Noisy Neighbors
Tiny Houses Part II
I was visiting friends on Long Island this summer. They live near Fire Island National Seashore and Wertheim National Wildlife Refuge. Their verdant yard is a wonderland for living things of all sorts. The plants and visiting wildlife change with the seasons. Some of the creatures build structures, and they are absolute works of art.… Continue reading Tiny Houses Part II
Tiny Houses Part I
No, I am not talking about my Brooklyn apartment! I am talking about the amazing abodes created by the wild Monk Parakeets in Brooklyn! This particular spot near Brooklyn College has some elaborate nests. A friend and I took an evening summer walk awhile back — hoping to spot fireflies (we did) — and found ourselves nearby,… Continue reading Tiny Houses Part I
When I sit down to write or to create a work of art, one of my rituals is to have a mug of coffee or tea at hand. The mug matters — a lot. It must be beautiful, and it must feel just right in my hand. It is even better if the mug has a… Continue reading Mug Shots
Where the Heart Beats
“So it is with the places preparing to teach us. It’s only when the heart begins to beat wildly and without pattern—when it begins to realize its boundlessness—that its newly adamant pulse bangs on the walls of its cage and is bruised by its enclosure… To feel the heart pound is only the beginning. Next is to feel the hurt—the tearing of the psyche—the prelude of entry into the place one has always feared. One fears that place because of being drawn to it, loving it, and wanting to be taught by it. Without the need to be taught, who would feel the psyche rip? Without the bruise, who would know where the walls are?” — Kay Larson, Where the Heart Beats: John Cage, Zen Buddhism, and the Inner Life of Artists
I was sitting in my reading nook by the bedroom window. I had just finished Orla Kiely’s terrific book called Pattern. I was diving into Chronicle Book’s In Pattern: Marimekko. It was a frigid day, but the sky was blue and the sun was streaming in. I turned to look for my two feline muses:… Continue reading Mod Muses
I have recently discovered the pleasures of Pinterest, and have been busy creating boards with all kinds of designs and designers that inspire me — especially pattern and textile design. I also keep old school scrapbooks that I call “inspiration books” where I paste colors, quotes and images that make my creative juices flow. One day… Continue reading Retro Reflections