Monday, March 23, 2009

Birthday Banner

I've been wanting to make an English version of the Birthday banner, so a couple of weekends ago I put this together for my boyfriend's dad and brother. (The monkey had a little talk bubble in the finished version with the honoree's name.) One of the 10,000 things I love about felt is how quickly you can put things together, the bubble-gum cheery colors, and its fluffy, spongy feeling under your fingertips.

I didn't want to add backs or do a thing more than was absolutely necessary, so I just used mini clothespins to attach the squares to some fuzzy yarn. And masking-taped it to the wall. That's about my level of inspiration right now. But all in all, it was fun.

I'm still not 100% - but after talking to a few people who have gone through the same thing, I've realized you never really get over the death of a parent. It will always be hard. Among acquaintances, I avoid talking about him just because I don't want to be overcome and embarrass someone with my emotions. Everything reminds me of him and the strangest things make me cry - for instance the word "chicharron" since it was one of the last words I heard from him. He died one week before his birthday, so, after his funeral we threw him a birthday party. I know he would have appreciated that. Except he would have preferred there be scratch-offs. :)

I'm getting really excited seeing the buds on the trees and little green shoots poking out of the soil. It's still cold, but at least there's this feeling of excitement, something to look forward to. Springtime in Texas is so different from springtime in NY - it's nowhere near as cold, but the world does get very drab and gray each winter. It's one of the few times it rains all year. And Spring just bursts all over you - the air is so warm, almost tropical, and you just feel like everything is possible. In New York, it's more about sun, tulips, and sodden downpours. I can't wait for warmer weather. Bring on the Spring!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

DMC Thread Project, continued...

So, believe it or not, I am still happily at work on my personal DMC thread project. I collected all the images online, assigned them color names, and meticulously put them in order (because the Alphabetical sort option in Flickr wasn't smart enough to sort the 300's and 3000's separately). Since I was lucky enough to be gifted an entire collection of Presencia embroidery floss, I also annotated each DMC floss color with its Presencia equivalent. I started annotating with Anchor equivalents but that's ongoing because I don't have any Anchor floss, anyway, so there's no real rush.

Yes, people, this is how I entertain myself.

The next, and (in my mind) most fun part of the whole project has been arranging all the colors into "color families", as determined by DMC. I love reading the color names, and wondering who exactly sat down with a pile of 400+ floss skeins and named them all. Aside from getting a little bored with the heaps of browns (whoa - so many!), I am almost done creating "color families."

Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't there something rather delicious about seeing all these colors sitting next to each other, surrounded by a generous dose of whitespace? I've always been in love with the Flickr layout, but this color swatch project is sending me over the moon...

My color families so far:
DMC Reds, Corals, Pinks
DMC Purples
DMC Blues
DMC Turquoise, Teal, Aquamarine
DMC Greens
DMC Peach, Orange, Brown
DMC Grays and Black

Also, there are certain shades I gravitate to, over and over again.
My favorites are:
Sky Blue
Teal and Sea Greens
Gray Greens
Peach, Terra Cotta, Rosewood
Grays and Black

What about you? Are there any colors you're drawn to? Feel free to illustrate with links to my color swatches! :)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Repetition and order


I have always found tremendous comfort in organizing and arranging things. Whenever things are really difficult for me, or I'm going through an emotional time, I always find myself engaging in huge, repetitive projects. For example, I might do a 1000 piece puzzle. Or, start a 60,000 stitch embroidery piece. Sometimes, just buying the embroidery floss and arranging each skein on its own plastic card comforts me. (By the way, lately, I have done all of the above.) :)


Recently, I've been creating a Flickr set of DMC floss color swatches. I've never found a site that has the floss colors arranged to my liking, in a way that I can easily search and see every color at once. So, in my spare time, I've found the images and used 2-3 different charts to add color names. I originally had the intention of scanning all my own floss, but I had to stop myself. Knowing my personality, sometimes I have to stop myself from tasks that are too Herculean and weird. :)

What about you? Do any of you out there have odd quirks that bring you comfort?