Thursday, January 26, 2012

three things thursday


It's been fun having my camera with me every day. Mostly, it's the random snaps I love. I've been super super super busy. But I think it's gearing up to be a good month.

Hope you're all doing well, and thank you, Katie and Kat for your sweet comments. :)

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

typography tuesday: various bits

lovely desktop calendar by Rebekka Seale

Found this lovely desktop calendar (yes I know January is almost over, but it's still lovely) on Rebekka Seale's blog. I love the simplicity of her blog's design, and the cheery way she begins every post with "dear reader." It reminds me of a Charlotte Bronte novel. But with beautiful pictures. And minus the tortured romance. :)

January 2012 desktop calendar

For most of the month, my desktop wore this calm, lovely watercolor wallpaper by Oana Befort.

Really love the free fonts collected on this post: (and her sparkle clothespins - what can I say - I love sparkle) :)

And, hopping around the web a few days ago, I found this simple verse exactly when I needed it. From a blog called More Than Sparrows.

And this wonderful site (found via Pair of Pears):
miss you

Saturday, January 21, 2012

stitching saturday: just stitching along

plain white ribbon for hanging

Pretty much all of my Saturday was spent stitching and photographing for the Feeling Stitchy stitchalong post. Before that sounds too much like work, keep in mind that I wore the same leopard-print cuddly bathrobe and pajamas all day, whilst doing this. :)

Ok, putting together tutorials like this is a lot of work, but it's also strangely satisfying, too...

ribbon loops

Maybe it's because one of the things I like best about stitching is that "idea" phase when everything begins coming together. The planning, the brainstorming, then the process of making, these are the things I love best.

Then there's the after-parts - the comments, the emails, the encouraging words and lovely anecdotes about the things I'm working on and the things other people have made. To me, these things are priceless. Maybe that's one of the reasons I've never felt a draw to sell what I make, or put ads on the blogs I contribute to - it just doesn't appeal to me as much as what I already love, what I already do. Plenty of people sell and craft for profit and for their livelihood, and they have my immense respect, but it's not something I feel drawn to.

Mary Thomas Cover
photo courtesy of Barbara Turner

A person I dated for years once joked that I was the best at not making a penny from what I do. I remember feeling hurt and stupid, back then, but now I look back on that quote and see that it just describes who I am. There's nothing essentially bad or good about it - it's just that what motivates me in life is a bit different than what motivates others. Giving has made me happiest in life.

I want to say thank you to everyone who's followed this blog over the years, real friends, virtual friends, and all the real virtual friends, too. Your love and support have anchored me in the most difficult times in my life, and shown me what inspires me and who I want to be. Thank you! :)

Friday, January 6, 2012

three things thursday: I guess I like light leaks

day 1: me
day 2: breakfast
day 5: something I wore

Um, yeah, so far my favorite effect is this glowy - light-leak-y one. :) More pics from the Photo a Day challenge I'm working on...

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Photo a day challenge

not quite a letterbox, but close :)

I’m just gonna be honest - I have tried those 365 day challenges before and I have petered out, every time. It’s embarrassing. But I take photos less and less, and I really want to get back into being a daily photo-taker. So I’m taking on a Photo a Day challenge I found via Pugly Pixel’s blog. I don’t have an iPhone or Instagram, but I think I can discipline myself to take and upload one photo per day for one month. I think.

something i adore

For vintage-y effects, I tried - they're a free online editor with filters + effects. I just hit randomize until I find something that suits my fancy, then upload it to Flickr. I think it'll be a fun way to play around while I hopefully get better... Anyone else out there want to play along? :)

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

typography tuesday

I love this clean, simple To-do list I found on a cute site called A Pair of Pears. Perfect for my ever-growing, daily to-do lists, I think. :)

On the same blog they're doing a sweet monthly series, featuring a history and profile of a new font every month, called The Face of Type. As a stolid Wes Anderson fan, my favorite post so far is naturally Futura. :)

Lately I've been admiring clean blog designs with lots of whitespace, as I tinker around on my own blogs...

Screen shot 2012-01-04 at 9.22.49 PM

I adore the very clean, wonderfully aligned layout on Quill and Fox. You can always tell when a talented designer is doing the blogging.

I'm also admiring a free Blogger template called Simplo.
Screen shot 2012-01-04 at 9.21.11 PM

Speaking of beautiful, cleanly designed blogs, how about:
Screen shot 2012-01-04 at 9.29.20 PM

Sigh. Truly gorgeous.

Monday, January 2, 2012



One of the things I have the hardest time with for the past few years is prioritizing. I don’t think it’s just me - we are all deluged by little bits of information, every second of the day. For example, when I first started the Embroidery group 6 years ago - I started it because 1) there was no Embroidery group on Flickr and 2) it was hard to find photos of embroidery on the internet. Now - do a search on embroidery and you are flooded with results - beautiful stuff, blah stuff, exciting stuff, traditional stuff, artistic stuff, amazing stuff.

I remember the days when I’d comb my 5-6 favorite blogs or photostreams for daily inspiration. Now - I have a shortlist of more than 50, and every day I find new people and new projects. With everything and everyone attracting my attention, and every second new, cool, amazing projects popping up, I’m gonna be totally honest and say I am overwhelmed. I can no longer keep up with everything. I have to choose. I have to prioritize.

Add to that, my real life - again I’ll be totally honest and admit that in previous years I was completely content with staying inside 95% of the day, combing the internet, editing photos, and being very indoorsy. But now that I’ve moved back home, I have loved ones and family that are super-important to me. In the end, if I have to choose between writing another blog post, and hanging out with the people I love, people I love are gonna win, every time.

So, to make a very long story short, I decided that this new year was going to be all about making priorities. Deciding what is most important, and doing that. To help me in this task, I’m making a to-do list I’ll refer to every month. I don’t have to do every single thing on that list - and if anything or anyone more important gets in between me and that list, no big deal. The point is, I’ll be making a concerted effort to do these things because these are the things that really matter to me.

So, here are my monthly resolutions:
1. Create 1 tutorial / pdf download / project - done!
2. Make 1 thing - done
3. Finish 1 thing - January Stitchalong - done
4. Draw 1 thing - done
5. Learn 1 thing - couching - done
6. Give 1 thing away - little pink monster to my niece - done
7. Donate to 1 organization I care about - Holy Cross monastery - done
8. Meet 1 person - I actually met many people! :)
9. Take 1 photo every day - done
10. Write 1 chapter (I’m working on a novel!) :) - wrote 1 scene

At the end of this year I can accomplish 12 things I’m proud of, or 120, if I do each thing! (I’m not even gonna count the photos, hey -maybe next year’s resolution is be better at math ) :)

Sunday, January 1, 2012


Just a few gems from the album I'm scanning for my friend Linda. Is it just me, or does that little girl on the bottom left look just like Saoirse Ronan?