04 September 2014

Another beady giveaway

More cleaning up and clearing out going on.
First up, two heart pendants:
The on on the left is fused, made by, I believe Jeanne Kent, the one on the right is lampworked by, I think, Cheryl Keggan.
Next is a pendant by Kate I-don't-remember-her-last-name - sorry. She used to sell on ebay many, many years ago:

Leave a comment here (or on my facebook page if you are one of my FB friends). The drawing will be sometime this weekend.

More earthquake pictures

I mentioned the little white house that was knocked off its foundation in a previous post, didn't get a picture that time. Today I did:

I thought it was a total teardown, but there was somebody working on it, talking to people explaining how he was going to bring it back to life. I hope you can do it, it looks like it'll need a miracle.

And while I'm already writing ............. L and I decided to walk through downtown Napa after lunch today. There are still roads blocked off - for safety reasons, the Post Office looks the same as before, except this time I saw that both doorways are in very tough shape and that plenty of the beautiful old windows are broken. Plenty of other buildings are also damaged. There is activity almost everywhere. Quite a few of the remaining stores are open again, whether they have windows or a board nailed across the window opening.
What I found really sad, though, (apart, obviously, from the damage to so many beautiful old buildings) is that the downtown, the pedestrian mall was a total ghost town. And not because of earthquake damage. All the stores, except for Kohl's and McCaulou's were boarded up with signs announcing that things were in the process of being re-done. There's supposed to be a big hotel and upscale stores. When I moved to Napa, years ago, downtown was thriving. There were small, independent, interesting stores, little restaurants. They are all gone. I keep hearing rumors about raised rents, people being forced out because these stores don't fit in with somebody's vision. Sad!

01 September 2014

Bangles and charms

This is what I was doing before the earth shook:

All made in an online class with Riki Schumacher via Artful Gathering. A very informative and enjoyable class.
I am still missing one of the other charms I made, need to look for it some more.

I also took two other classes at Artful Gathering that were a great learning experience. Riveting with Keith LoBue and Romancing the Past with Debby Anderson which was full of new and exciting techniques.

29 August 2014

Beady giveaway

As I've written in the last two posts, we were hit by a rather nasty earthquake last Sunday. My studio and my sewing room still are very chaotic. Open shelves are not earthquake proof. There's a lot of stuff on the floor.
All that chaos has made me realize that I have stuff - nice stuff - that I am no longer interested in. Yes, I could try to sell it on ebay or etsy, but that takes much more time than I have at present. And I really doubt the thrift store is interested in my beads. So, I am doing giveaways. I started on Facebook and will now continue here.
Today's giveaway involves smallish lampwork bead sets, lime with teal dots and sky with turquoise dots. I don't remember who the lampworker is who made them. I bought them off ebay years ago (this was before etsy).
So, if you would like to give the beads a new home, please leave a comment here and make sure I can get in touch with you (or check back in 2 days to see if you've won). If you are one of my Facebook friends, you can also leave a comment there, I'll be linking to this post next.
Same rule as always: if you've already won something recently, please give somebody else a chance.
And here are the beads:

Earthquake pictures

Mostly pictures, few words.
I went downtown today, needed to replace a strainer that broke and took a few pictures along the way.
 Wine tasting room, I am guessing that one is not easily fixable. The other side looked pretty bad, too.
 No glass in the art gallery.
 Yarnstore, no window, but open all the same. And very grateful to any customer who came in.
 Salon, no ceiling, closed for business.
Relatively new hotel, red tagged.

 This salon is open, nevermind that the windows are gone. There is a small sign on the glass saying not to lean on it, it's loose.
 Another relatively new building.
Post Office, closed.
 This is why.
 Presbyterian church, stained glass window broken.
 Bail bonds, obviously red-tagged.
Car, anyone?
 St. John's Catholic Church. The school next door seemed to be closed. Couldn't see any obvious damage.
Close-up of the roof.
I did not get a picture of the little house just a block North of the church that was completely rocked off its foundation, leaning off to one side.
There is much, much more damage, but I only took pictures of the damage along the way, didn't go out of my way to find more. The rough estimate for damages is $300 million and that is only for private homes, does not include damage to businesses or financial losses. Over 100 structures are red-tagged, over 200 people ended up in either the hospital or the ER, one of those a heart attack, the other very serious one a teenager - a brick fireplace fell on his pelvis. He has successful surgery and is expected to fully recover - in time.
If anybody feels they would like to help, the Red Cross is an obvious choice. My favorite local charity, though, is the Napa Valley Food Bank. The address on their website is wrong, they have just moved here: 1766 Industrial Way, Napa, CA 94558.

27 August 2014

All creative activities have been interrupted for the time being

Napa was hit by an earthquake on Sunday morning, at 3:20 am to be exact. It was a 6.1 magnitude and it scared the wits out of me. Not immediately, I guess I was too shocked to actually be scared until 2 days later when I felt aftershocks for the first time. We did not lose electricity or water, just internet and cable. Not a big deal. There is no structural damage to the house, just cracks, mostly along the edges of sheets of dry wall and a minor amount of roof damage.
The inside of the house, though, was a mess. I went downstairs immediately and straight back upstairs when I saw the amount of broken glass. Put on shoes, came back down and then decided I might as well get dressed and get started on cleaning up. I heard later that quite a few of the people who ended up in the ER had injured themselves by stepping on broken glass. Not me, I did cut two fingers, though, picking up glass. No big deal there, either.
We were lucky, too many others not so much. There were over 200 people who ended up either in the hospital or the ER, one of those a heart attack, another a teenager hosting a sleepover when the brick fireplace fell on his pelvis. He had successful surgery and is expected to fully recover - in time. I think over 70 structures have been red tagged and several mobile homes burnt to the ground when a fire erupted in one of the mobile home parks.
Here is a link to a video somebody took with his drone (with permission) showing the damage to some of the older buildings in downtown Napa:
And here are pictures I took before I dug in and cleaned up the important messes:
The fridge moved several inches forward.


More kitchen mess. The Lagunitas glass survived, a couple others did not.

Around the dog's feeding station.

All the papers that should have been filed years ago in the study. I am now shredding like crazy.
Pictures above the stairs.
My studio.

My lovely organizers fell over and everything ended up dumped into the middle of the room.

Garage. Some of the bookshelves fell over and the stuff on top ended up on L's car.

The forgotten drawer. I found this mess a day later.

 As you can see, mostly a big mess, all of which can be cleaned up in time. L cleaned up the garage, including moving his car back where it belonged. For some reason, and I don't know if it was the bookshelf that moved it backwards or the power of the shaking, it ended up pushed into the garage door where it pushed out a panel. And, to top it all off, a ladder fell on the back end of it. Both of our cars have a few minor scratches and his has a small dent from the ladder. One of the springs on the garage door broke, thankfully, we had two, but it needs to be replaced.
I spent about 4 hours cleaning up and straightening things and then took a break. The glass had to be cleaned up first, the dog sniffs the floor and it just wasn't safe. He (the dog) was good, though, he kept coming downstairs to check and see what we were up to so very early in the morning, but went back to bed without any trouble. 
We're not quite back to normal yet. I simply cannot get myself to just power through what I know I have to do. Cleaning up the studio (okay, I have to admit to having two here. One room for metalsmithing and all the tools and supplies; the other for fabric, yarn, beads etc.) just isn't something I can do in one go. I had cleaned up the metalsmithing studio just a couple of months ago before taking online classes. Everything was neatly (well, almost) sorted and put away in those lovely rolling scrapbooking organizing carts. Thankfully, I labeled most of them and so it should be easy to put stuff back where it belongs. 
L is working on putting spackle on those areas where the plaster fell off in preparation for repainting. The garage is mostly put back together and all the living areas are in good shape. 
We lost a few things in the dining room when the cabinet there opened and things fell. I would have thought the carpet there would protect glasses and cups, but not so. A little bummed out because I lost two Blue Denmark cups I had found on the flea market. Thank goodness, none of my Fiesta was hurt and neither was the Hornsea pottery we bought many, many years ago when we lived in England.
While cleaning up studio No. 2, I came across quite a bit of stuff that is looking for new homes, so there will be giveaways coming. Mostly beady stuff. So, if you're interested, keep an eye out for that. I started on Facebook already, but will move the giveaways here from now on.

20 July 2014

Paperdolls and postcards

One is finished, the other one not just yet.
I came across this tutorial a while ago and thought that quilt would be perfect for my little granddaughter, maybe not just yet (she's 16 months old right now), but eventually. And we all know that if you don't buy a certain fabric when you see it, when you actually want to buy it, it'll be gone.
After overcoming my dislike of drawing, I actually had a lot of fun digging fabrics out of my scrap baskets and making the little clothes.
Doesn't look like much like this, does it?
But, add the clothes and it's a totally different story. Of course, the clothes aren't attached permanently, it's sort of like paper dolls made from fabric and fusible fleece.

And here is my favorite little photo bomber getting into the act:
He looks a little grumpy, must be the weather, it's completely overcast and very muggy today. Makes for crummy pictures.

And here is something else I've been working on:
Postcards from Kaffe.

I came across the tutorial here and had to try it. I made the number of blocks shown in the tutorial and wanted it just a little bigger. Well, just a little bigger didn't look right, so I added two more rows on the bottom and now it's the right size for a baby quilt.
I knew immediately that I wanted to use Kaffe Fassett fabrics for the front of the postcards and I had several text fabrics, but not enough. With several of the quilt stores within easy driving distance closed, it wasn't all that easy to find more. But I think I have a pretty good selection by now.
And I also have enough blocks made for another one in the size described in the original tutorial.
I am linking up with Randi from i have to say for Show 'n Tell.

26 June 2014

Bodega Bay

Just a quick trip to the ocean yesterday, quick - because we didn't stay long. The wind was a lot fiercer than expected and we weren't dressed for it. So, the usual walk on the cliff or the beach turned into a bit of a drive through tiny settlements along curvy roads and a visit to a small town hardware store.
Sorry, no pictures of the tiny settlements or the curvy roads, just water pictures.

The marine layer hadn't completely retracted, but I got a few shots of blue sky and sparkly water.

25 June 2014

"Lost in Bartlesville" - This was home for 19 years

The video is courtesy of YouTube.
L sent me the link to this last night, brought back quite a few memories. That's where we lived for 19 years when I first moved to the U.S. (it was back to the U.S. for L).
A small town, a good place to raise children. Rush hour didn't last long, it was more like "rush minutes," traffic wasn't bad, ever. The only time there was a problem with traffic was when we had flooding and the Caney cut the town in half. Most people lived on one side of the river, downtown and all the offices (and a lot of people in town worked for a major oil company there.) are on the other side of town. I remember one weekend when our side of town was totally cut off, all the roads leading out of town - in all directions - were flooded. No TV reception, either, I don't remember if the radio worked.
There was nowhere near as much crime as there is here and people were friendly. You couldn't buy alcohol in the grocery store or the drugstore, only in designated liquor stores and not on election day. Yeah, that amuses these days. And I've gotten used to there being a large section for alcohol in the supermarkets. What strikes me as funny now is when the books on nutrition recommend shopping around the edges of the supermarket, that's where, in their opinion, the healthy foods are. Have they ever been in a supermarket in CA? Because that's where the booze is here - on one edge.
Bartlesville is home to the only skyscraper Frank Lloyd Wright ever built, it's the Price Tower, built as a combination office building and bachelor housing. K and I toured it once, very interesting, with furniture designed by FLW, too. Interesting, but not exactly warm and homey.
It was also home to Shin'enkan, a totally unique building designed by Bruce Goff as a bachelor house for Joe D. Price which, unfortunately was burned down in 1996. Can't find a decent link to it.
And there's a big Mozart Festival  every year, with concerts held both inside the Civic Center and outdoors.
Outside of town is Woolaroc, originally a ranch retreat for Frank Phillips, now a combination of wildlife preserve (with buffalo roaming freely) and museum etc. Took my kids there many, many times.
Bartlesville also is where Ree Drummond (of Pioneer Woman fame) grew up and went to the same high schools K attended. Why high schools? Because along the way, the school board decided to split up the two 4-year high schools into a junior high school (grades 9 & 10) and a senior high school (grades 11 & 12) for football reasons.
I recognized just about everything shown in the video, the building where my favorite quilt store was originally, our first bank, the two office towers where L used to work, the train depot, the karate studio where H went, the approach from the West, from Pawhuska. The painted buffalo are a new addition.
When we moved, the town threw us a big farewell party downtown, with entertainment by Tanya Tucker and Glenn Campbell and a big BBQ. No, not really, it was a party to celebrate a big anniversary for Phillips that just happened to coincide with our leaving.

I've just realized that the video does not play on all devices (my iPad doesn't show it), so here is a direct link to it: Lost in Bartlesville.

23 June 2014

Toddler skirts and tops

There's been quite a bit of fun sewing going on here lately, several skirts for the little granddaughter and a couple of tops.
Few words, more pictures:
This was the first one:
Next came this one:
Then, because I had fabric left over from last year, these two:

After that, I decided to write a couple of tutorials, one for a two-layer skirt. 
Obviously, I had to make another skirt for that:
And another one for a 3-layer skirt.
A few days later, I found this tutorial. After getting measurements for my granddaughter (who lives almost 2,000 miles away), I whipped up these two:

And I really mean "whipped up." This top is incredibly fast and easy to make.
I hope all the little skirts and tops fit, always a bit risky when you're doing "long-distance" sewing. But I sure had fun. I think I need a few more granddaughters or honorary granddaughters because the one I have couldn't possible wear all I could whip up.