january makes

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It’s been more than a year since my last papercut portrait. They are somewhat time-consuming and hard on the hand, but I absolutely love the result. I swiped a favourite pic off Rhea’s instagram feed and made this as a birthday gift for her. The one I made for the Guy was three colours (not including the background); this one is four. I like the extra detail that the fourth tone allows.

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The Guy and I leave notes to each other daily, as we keep very different circadian cycles. We’ve nearly filled an 80 page sketchbook, so I made another to have ready. Unlike the Christmas journals which were case bound, this one employs coptic stitch. I really enjoy book binding; it combines my loves of paper and sewing, and the finished product is tactile, useful, and beautiful. Can’t wait to start using this.

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And of course, there was sewing. Inspired by this tutorial, I made a chess set for a favourite soon-to-be-9 yr old. I bought the bottle caps on ebay, and drew the icons with an ultra fine sharpie before sealing them with polymer medium. I made small and medium-sized drawstring bags; one for the bottle caps, another to hold the whole shebang, folded up.

There was a lot more gift-making in January, but reveals will have to wait until the recipients open them. And there was a big fat shirt-making fail, but I’ll post those pictures another day, hopefully when I actually have success with garment-fitting.

dan blocker to the pier

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About to be swamped

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My girlfriend A and I took a little break from beach hiking while she went and got married. We were back at it this past weekend, hiking from Dan Blocker Beach to Malibu Pier. The tide was rising, which was not ideal. But we didn’t want to wait another week so we went anyway. It meant a lot of rock scrambling, and some unsuccessful wave dodging.

Some folk who live beachside on the Malibu coast strongly discourage ‘trespassers’. But it’s our legal right to traverse the beach/rocks up to the high tide line, and even higher if it is unsafe closer to the water. Which it kinda was, in a few places.

We happened upon a baby sealion up on the rocks, who we hope was OK. No mama in sight, but it didn’t look injured, as far as we could tell. We clambered on, getting wet up to our crotches. How we laughed.

lap duvet

Lap duvet

Lap Duvet

I finally handed over the last Christmas gift yesterday, a simple whole cloth quilt made of a couple of yards each of soft swiss dot cotton and a linen/cotton blend. Bamboo batting is sandwiched between; quilting is simple bar tacks. It’s just right for covering the lap while knitting and watching tv.

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Or, it seems, for their little Lucy to lie on.

walkabout malibu to mexico

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Untitled Untitled Inspired by this book, my girlfriend and I spent a second day walking the coast, over rocks and tidepools, under soaring bluffs, along empty sandy stretches between point and pier, past stinky seals lounging in the warm winter sun. Counting our blessings with every sandpiper, every anemone.

not much to show for all my elving

I’d been planning a blog reveal of the handmade Christmas gifts, but the photos are crap. Hastily taken, unstyled, out of focus. I’m a bit bummed, actually. I knew I needed to allocate time and attention to the photography, but I just didn’t.

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These are the best shots, and they are hardly blog-worthy. A little pinny for Cali (aged 2) and some garments to wear under it, or separately, depending on the weather. As for the rest, you’ll just have to believe me.

All the toddlers got clothes, and many of the women got lavender sachets. Two loved ones received handmade journals. And for The Guy and me, I made some stadium cushions, so our bums can be comfy when we go to the Bowl or Theatricum.

I really enjoyed the making; I spread it out over many weeks and didn’t stress too much about it. And, as always happens, the process fired me up for yet more sewing and crafting. I loved the bookbinding projects, and see many more in my future.

I’m thinking of taking on the Colette Pattern of the Month, even though January’s pattern, the Violet shirt, isn’t really my style, and fitting patterns to my unique body shape drives me crazy.

What about you? Did the holidays leave you creatively exhausted, or energized? What projects do you have coming up? Inspire me!

happy new year

Hello 2015

Tidal zen garden #beach #hiking #newyearsday #walkaboutmalibutomexico

#beach #hiking #cormorants #newyearsday

#foundart #beach #hiking #newyearsday

Goodbye 2014

“Sometimes things don’t go, after all,
from bad to worse. Some years, muscadel
faces down frost; green thrives; the crops don’t fail.
Sometimes a man aims high, and all goes well.

A people sometimes will step back from war,
elect an honest man, decide they care
enough, that they can’t leave some stranger poor.
Some men become what they were born for.

Sometimes our best intentions do not go
amiss; sometimes we do as we meant to.
The sun will sometimes melt a field of sorrow
that seemed hard frozen; may it happen for you.”

~ Sheenagn Pugh

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