I love Inaluxe so much! Their abstract and interesting colored pieces really speak to me. This piece is called "Garden Party." If you think it's easy to come up with complimentary color combos like this and such brilliant placement of shapes, think again!
My daughter loves cats. A multi-colored cat face readily charms most who see it, I would imagine. It would go so well next to my cardboard birdhouse, in a obvious, ironic way.
And finally, "Neon Sorbet." They feel a bit Le Corbusier-ish (when he used color and painted naked) and of course I appreciate the insouciant use of pink. They aren't easy to get hold of and the best place seems to be Inaluxe themselves and also Endemic World in New Zealand, as both places carry larger prints. 8X10 seems minimilastic to me when discussing Inaluxe. Urban Outfitters carries Blossom 3 now as well. Go forth and hang color, Casapinka Readers!
As the terror alert in the middle east increases and Detroit goes bankrupt, I've moved my pink Chinese lantern to the middle of my foyer. Mundane changes like this bring me back to earth and make me feel more in control. Perhaps the world is going crazy but my pink banister and cheerfully decorated house remind me that smiling increases endorphins and loving one's abode can bring about a state of well-being and calmness. Perhaps the need for such banality is even greater for the difficult times in which we live.
The winners for the ebook Cowl Play are Jessica, Girliefriend, Judith, Fussi, and Rachel. If you guys will send me an email where you want your PDF sent, the pattern is yours! Thanks so much for entering and I'll do another giveaway for my next pattern. We're off on a large sailboat around Newport, Rhode Island harbor now, showing our in-laws another part of the Ocean State and helping them recover from a four hour game of Monopoly last night that Junior won (reportedly, without cheating.)
I just published a little e-book of 3 cowl patterns called Cowl Play. I'll have a random drawing for 5 free e-books for those who leave a comment. You have until this Friday, August 2. The name Cowl Play was inpired by what Husband wanted to commit with 15,000 skeins of yarn lying on the bed as I tried out different color combinations. They are good for fair isle beginners and can be done in a nice snuggly slouchy size like this one, above.
or a smaller size that can be made to look quite manly in certain colors. The yarn is definitely something different for me. It is done in Kraemer Perfection, an acrylic wool mix. I learned a lot about synthetic mixes by necessity last Christmas in Dublin. Not many specialty or luxury yarns there at all! Nobody would pay for them.
When the Kraemer yarn is doubled up and has floats in the back (those strings of yarn in fair isle that run behind) it gets the nicest, cushiest feeling and is like no synthetic mix you've ever seen. Trust me - I take this stuff seriously! It also keeps the price point low for using multiple colors and there is no itchiness. Many of these new synthetic mixes are produced in Turkey and they are just a different kettle of fish than those you're used to.
So, while luxury and artisal yarns are still my main love,/addiction, for these cowls I am so happy with the Kraemer Perfection. The large one can be worn many ways although I don't recommend wearing it with a tank top in 90 degee heat!
The 3-book book is quite reasonably priced at $6.50. I hope you'll give them a try!
We got crazy in the kitchen and made this up based on a favorite sandwich . Oh MY. Unbelievable.
Ingredients: 4oz (half a package) cream cheese, 3 bananas, 3 HEAPING tablespoons Nutella, 1/3 cup confectioners (icing) sugar, little Nutella for the base, 1tsp vanilla extract, pie crust of your choice.
Make pie crust and let it cool. Smooth a thin layer of Nutella on the bottom and top with sliced bananas. Mix Nutella, sugar, cream cheese, vanilla together in your pink mixer until well blended. Taste to ensure sourish cream cheese taste is gone - if not add a bit more sugar. Spread mixture on top of bananas and top with sliced bananas and then cover and refrigerate. The bananas kind of turn brown but we ignored that.
A couple of weeks ago I saw a box of 100 postcards of Puffin Book covers. I'm sure the store could hear my brain ticking over, how I was going to plaster my wall with them, how Husband was going to have kittens over it, the usual. It's funny looking at them: We were in Lapland, home of Moomin this last Christmas, and Bubbles got "Black Beauty" for her birthday from a friend and "Watership Down" from Husband. Books are just so timeless, aren't they? I try to use a tablet reader but I always go back to the real thing.
I wanted to do something other than a flimsy poster frame since I doubted it would withstand the wear and tear of Junior and sister. Now, I'm not the first person to have this idea but after a careful web search, most people who tried this only framed about half of them because of the large size. After careful consideration and advice from the lovely people at Utrecht art store, I bought a huge white foam board - 40X60 inches! They advised this very strong double sided tape as well. How I wish I'd discovered this earlier. It's like cement! They then showed me how I could frame it with customized canvas stretchers so the foam board edge would be covered. You can see above I've done a few rows.
What's neat is that Husband and I had some of the same books growing up! Do you recognize any?
I completed another couple of rows yesterday as you can see above. I now have just three rows left, unless I decide to include some of the horizontal ones. It's pretty tedious work but fun as well. I think the hard part will be cutting the foam board as I'm not too sure how to do this smoothly. The consensus in the Casapinka household is to hang it on the bottom stairs as everyone seems to love looking at them. I'll show you the final project when it's framed and hung up.
Rhonda Fargnoli and Charlie de Weese recently launched their yarn company Coastal Colours, which makes its stunning colors out of plant based dyes. They actually grow many of the plants themselves, and for those who know anything about dyeing fiber, to achieve such resonant colors using botanical extracts is very difficult. Artists and chemists, these two. I've wanted to meet Rhonda for a while, since she gives many classes at Rhode Island School of Design, which is down the road from me. I did, however, think it best to show up to their trunk show without Junior who is deep into his armpit farting stage.
Unfortunately, some well-meaning woman at DSW recently informed him (in a tête a tête among the high heels) that if he got his hand wet it would greatly enhance the tone emitting from his armpit. You can see why I wanted to go alone, which is why on Sunday I dropped the kiddos with Husband at work and went with no entourage.
I just love the elegant packaging that Rhonda and Charlie use, which consists of seashells they found on the beach and old sailing charts from when Charlie used to sail up and down the Pacific coast. The type of ephemera that goes right onto one's bulletin or inspiration board. And the Coastal Colours pair, Charlie and Rhonda? Fun, engaging, utterly charming. I really am glad I didn't challenge them with Junior's rendition of Beethoven's Fifth, piped in Dolby surround sound from under his arm, though. Thanks for that, Husband!
After hemming and hawing for way too long, since there were many types and colors of yarns, I bought two blue skeins of flax, but it's going to be difficult to remove them from the ceramic bowl and actually knit something. It softens up quite a lot after a wash as I could see from the sample, so I'm thinking about knitting a hat or gloves, but then again, they seem to be crying out to be made into some sort of necklace. That said, I could just leave them sitting in on the mantel: Decorative fiber is second nature to me, as we know!
I'm on the final design for my knitting book but it's just so hot I can't hold all of that merino. I've thus turned to small swatches of fair isle, using scrap yarn (of which I have virtually none, ahem.)
Just when I think I can't stand a swatch, some other weird color is added, I sleep on it and the next morning I see it differently.
Stranded knitting, intarsia and fair isle will always be my first love since that was what people did when I learned to knit back in the 1980s. It was in New Zealand and nobody that I saw did lace and cables.
In fact, and forgive me if I've mentioned this, the first sweater I knitted had an intarsia typography design. With all the hopefulness of a sixteen year old knitter making her first sweater, I started the chart at the wrong end. It came out like this: TINK DNAH. Great if you have a giant mirror around but otherwise among the most frustrating knitting moments in history.
Take a quart of strawberries and slice off the leaves.
Place them in a sauce pan with 3/4 cups of sugar and 1/3 cup of corn starch.
Crush them with a potato masher, then stir constantly with a wire wisk over medium high until boiling. Once boiling, leave for 30 more seconds then remove and allow to cool. Sugar, strawberries and corn starch is all you need!
Bake your pie shell while the mixture cools. It is such a pretty red color but no artificial food coloring and no gross gelatin stuff. When cooled, put the mixture into the pie shell and cover with sliced strawberries. Add freshly whipped cream if you like.