Thursday, June 22, 2017

Do you see what I see???

I was at Hobby Lobby and saw this sign.

There is nothing I like about it except the off came everything!


I think many people will look at something, but not see it disassembled.  My eye does that immediately!

Next, I had Kerry print this tiny palette with his 3D printer.  I painted the paint colors, distressed the white plastic and cut up old paint brushes to give it a true dimensional look.


One of the antique shops sells cut up license plates.  You can buy any letter and make up your own word.  I used the screws that were in "ahoy" to screw these in place.  And now I have this cute sign!


Finally, this is going to be my "vision board" for this next year.  I want to buy an r-pod travel trailer and this will be its name.  One of my life long goals was that when I retired I would travel around the country stopping to do genealogy research.  Time to focus on reaching that goal!!  In the meantime, how fun is this sign!!  

If you saw the original sign in a store, could you see what I saw???

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

How do you store your copics?

We have a 3D printer and this past week - it got a workout!  I have one of the copic black bags, but I do not like the little "basket" inserts that go in it.  So I got the egg carton light grid and after doing research and not liking much of what I saw out there, asked Kerry if he could create something with his printer.  He came up with some corner posts that I E6000'd to the grid and made a rack like this

(did you know that e6000 was a verb?  LOL!)

I figure out of the 300+ markers copic makes,  I really only need about 150 for now and that left  some space at the end of my bag.  

The corner posts look like this with little "rests" for the grid to position just above.  Worked out perfectly!  I used some tiny fabric clips that I found in the sewing department at Walmart to hold them together until the E6000 dried.

I needed something to put in the space at the end, so I had Kerry print a couple of boxes.   Yes, the 3D printer will print custom sized boxes.   This first one was too high as I can't get my fingers around the ink pads, so he made a shorter one next.

 Then I had him make dividers for the boxes so stuff wouldn't move around.    The dividers are E6000'd in place.  It all fits nicely down into the bag with room on the ends for my texture cloths and light templates.  This is looking down into the bag.

When I'm coloring, the bag will sit on it's sides and the boxes will come out and rest on the top.  In the left box are my square copics (I do a lot of airbrushing and use these colors the most) and my Momento Ink pads.  On the right are a variety of spritz and dropper bottles filled with blending solution and my white opaque copic paint.  In the tiny slots on the top - that's where I put my extra nibs for the markers.  I tested it out this afternoon and I'm pretty happy with it.  I love that we could use the 3D printer in the art room!  There was even space for my microns pens in the lower right hand slots.

This morning, I picked fresh strawberries out of my back yard.....

Those berries inspired me to use some of these copics because they are such berry-licious colors!  LOL!!!    I used Jenn Dove's tutorial to make this card.

I decided to do some more practice coloring.  Sometimes I think you need to repeat the same thing until you get it like you like!

But then, you need to make a card with your practice coloring!  Made this one for someone very dear to me who's having a birthday tomorrow!

I hope she likes it berry much!  

I am loving my "new-to-me" copic storage.  Now that the markers are organized and not falling all over the place I might actually use them!!!

Once again the 3D printer has amazed me with what it can do!  Kerry is now printing corners and center posts for some of my friends so they can do the same thing!

Monday, April 24, 2017

Sterling Silver Jewelry

While we were in Israel, I made a decision that it's time to start downsizing.  But I want to use up as much of my "products" as I can before I do that.  So this is going to be the summer that I play hard.  And you ask yourself, "can she play harder than she already does???"  LOL!!!

So Monday mornings are my "never ending watercolor class" and Monday afternoons will be jewelry making  time with my sisters.  We had a fun afternoon and I managed to make 1 pair of earrings.

Sterling silver ovals soldered together, swarovski crystals, turquoise beads.   I did the soldering/polishing last week.   I had to ask I too old to solder?  I didn't get the top on tight on the can (using a large butane type torch that they use to solder pipes) and a gigantic flame popped up from the leaking gas and just about scared me to death!  Fortunately, the house is still standing!!!  And yes, I do have 2 large fire extinguishers out in the garage where I've set up my jewelry making stations.

I made these to go with a necklace that I had made several years ago.  But I no longer liked the necklace, so I altered it - here's what it looks like now:

That center piece is at least 15 years old - a sterling silver Paula Best charm.  I always loved her stamps and when I came across this charm, I knew it was mine!

And there's a bracelet to match.

Here's all 3 pieces.  I think I'm happy with them now.  All .925 sterling silver so don't bother to ask how much I have in it!  It's not what you spend on an item, it's how much you love it!!!  This one will not go on etsy, it's for me.  :)

We're making jewelry out in my garage which is finished, air conditioned and I even have heat out there if/when we need it.  I've set up a glass cutting station, a grinding station, a drilling place and now a torching space.  If you have ever worked with sterling silver you know that you have to clean the silver, add the flux, solder, quench and dip in pickling.  That takes up a lot of space in itself.  But I also know I need to get back to making dichroic glass pendants to put on some of the necklaces I'm working on.  That requires glass cutting, grinding, polishing, then into the kiln to fuse the glass and I normally have to repeat that process at least twice to get it just right!

So stay tuned as I hope to blog some of the things we are making out in the garage this summer.

If you are local, and you want to come make jewelry with us, just get ahold of me and we'll see how much space we have.  I think it's going to be a really fun summer!!!  Are you ready to play???

Friday, April 7, 2017

The last night

I cannot believe that this is our last night.  The time has simply flown by.  I do believe that this has been the best adventure of my life and I'm so happy we did this!!


Today was our day at the art market.  I didn't buy much, but I had the best time looking.  There are so many talented people here and the market is the best place to find them.  I liked the clef notes and the stars in this booth:


There were 2 glass blowers today


The style seems to be very long, very dangly earrings.  Of course I was looking for short.  LOL!


Interesting glass designs.  At first I thought they were wind chimes, but there's nothing to chime.  They are just decorative.


These birds are made out of very tiny mesh that's been painted.  They fluttered in the breeze - really cool!


Giant necklaces seemed to be "in" as well.  I would never wear this, but I liked it well enough to take a picture of it!  Notice yet another fabric shop in the background?  This is a pedestrian street and the artists set up tables in the street to seek their designs.  The stores on both sides were open.


I fell in love with these dichroic glass pieces.  She did not have the layer of clear glass on top and I think I like that.


This gall had stitched her silk paining into linen and made table runners and pillows out of them.  So clever!


It was absolutely jam packed!


More dichroic earrings.  I am definitely going to fire up the kiln and try to make these when I get home!


One booth had wire sculptures and we both thought this one looked like our brother!


Streamlined, smooth, flat seemed to be what a lot of designers had today.


I liked this gal's designs as well


Pretty sure these were enamel of some type.  Also found a gal who had melted friendly plastic onto glass.  She didn't want me taking photos....but I did like her work.


We are still here all day tomorrow.  We have a cab to the airport at 8 pm.  Our flight leaves at 12:15 am.  We get in to Boston at 4 am, then to Denver around noon on Sunday.  I think we cross 9 time zones.  Our flight from Tel Aviv to Boston is about 13 hours long.  Pray for a safe flight for us.  This truly has been the vacation of a lifetime.  We've met so many new people, made new friends, been "adopted" by a couple of families, and will have stories to share for years to come!  Shabbat has started here and tomorrow, most places will be closed so we will spend the day on the beach.  May you have a peaceful, happy, content Shabbat!

Shabbat Shalom from Tel Aviv!

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

The last place is the best place

Today, we moved into our last apartment.  It is incredible.  Right on the ocean!  Wonderful view, clean, well furnished, and we have a cleaning service if we want it!


After we got settled in, I took a walk and saw some unique things - at least I think they were unique!  How often do you see a horse drawn cart moving stuff?  Tel Aviv is an extremely modern city....but obviously has some antiquated ways about it.


I certainly did not come here to find a bar covered with American license plates....but it's here!!!


Nachalet Binyaman is an interesting street.  But the farther you walk down it, the more interesting it becomes.  Almost every shop is a fabric shop.  But nothing related to quilting!  This is a dress market...and these are dressier fabrics.  Many imported from Europe.


I tried hard to find a "seam" in their dress and there were none.  Not sure if they stitched the knitting into the front panel, or if this was more of a tube.  But I did like the design.


A lot of the shops had samples of formals in the windows.  If you need lace, this is the place to find it.


This window was simply stunning!


This shop was 2 stories of nothing but lace and trims.  I think you could find anything in here!  And it's just one of numerous trim shops.


This is a walking neighborhood - no cars allowed.  I loved how they hung panels between the buildings to provide shade.


I walked about 2 miles to get to "ARTA" - the largest art store in Tel Aviv.  It was worth the walk and I had a great time just looking at stuff.  I can't take back I stuck to solids.  Found a couple of rather funky brushes.  This first one is about 1/2" in diameter, very thick hairs, and cut on an angle.


This one had a photo above it showing what to do with it.  I can't wait to try it out!  The clerk was so cute as she didn't think I should be spending as much money as I was.  She wanted to know if I painted as a job and when I said, no - just for fun - I think she was a bit shocked!


These are "Arta" brushes - made here in Israel.  I didn't have the heart to tell the clerk that these are less than half what I'd pay for them at home - and red sable brushes at that.


'The Carmel market was open and it is always so interesting.  Today I saw a guy hawking a veg-o-matic or something similar


It was very busy.  


It's very Americanized here in Tel Aviv.  Outside the market, I found "Cheers"!  LOL!


Found a place close by with a view for dinner.  They closed the Main Street as there is supposed to be some kind of night time marathon.  We're back in the room, it's dark, and we still haven't seen the runners go by.


This is an amazing city.  Some places are so modern, chic, upscale and others are like a 3rd world country.  Traffic is the same as any huge city center....yet the beach seems to slow things down.  On our first trip, we didn't even spend a day here.  On our second trip, I think we were in the hotel for 4 hours and then left to go to the airport.  It's so nice to get to spend some time here and explore the city on foot.  But I have to say, our apartment here is probably the best apartment we've ever had.  A perfect place in a perfect place.  :)

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

The beach or the mountains...if you had to pick

In 1971, our parents moved from the flat lands of central Indiana to the mountains of Colorado.  I think most people "blamed" dad.  They thought he was the one who wanted to move.  But it was mom.  She often said that she either wanted to live on the ocean or in the mountains....and they picked the mountains.  Dad was an amazing guy because he allowed her to do what she wanted most.  I often wonder how our lives would have been different if they had picked the ocean.  And what ocean they would have picked.  So while we live in the mountains, this week, we are enjoying the beaches of Tel Aviv.

Last night was a spectacular sunset.  You can see how calm the water was and the sun radiated through the evening haze (ok, dust from the winds blowing in the desert around here!)


I lived close to the beaches in San Diego for almost 10 years and I really do miss it.  But I remember how dirty the water was, murky, and there was seaweed in the water and washed up on the beach.  Not here.  I do think this is the cleanest beach I have ever been to.  Even the sand is clean.  Not a trace of seaweed  anywhere.


More than a hundred sail boards in the sea today.  Slight breeze, about 85 degrees.  I zoomed in to get a few close up.  These are sails on surfboards.  We sat and watched them come in to the harbor.  I don't know how they lifted these....some were more that twice the height of the kid on them.  And they were out to sea all day.  Would take a lot of muscle power to ride one of these!


When mom said she wanted to live by the ocean, I don't think she meant one as active and populated as this.  I think something more like the shore cliffs in Portland or Washington.  But this was nice today.


Lots of volleyball and paddle ball being played. And nice that we could sit and watch.  


You can walk out pretty far here and it doesn't get deep at all.  The rock barriers create the sand bars and you can literally see from the color of the water where you can walk and how far.  But there are very few sea shells here.  


This morning we started out the day with a walk down Dizengoff street.  It is a rather fun street filled with coffee shops, outdoor eateries, boutiques and little shops.  The fountains are under repair and I was disappointed, but we have seen them on prior trips.  It will take a full year for them to be modernized.  And I just wonder if all this construction is to coincide with the new high speed train that will go from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in 28 minutes - it's supposed to be finished in 2018.  And I'm already planning my next trip to come back and ride the train.

So, while I live in the foothills in Colorado, this week, I am relaxing on the beaches in Tel Aviv while we walk the streets, explore the shops, continue our great food adventure which never seems to end.   Pretty sure I'm over my craving for pita and hummus!  LOL!!!