Sunday, April 28, 2013


Inspired by Lynn Hranach’s comment last month about gardens and weeds, I love to watch as my gardens went from scraggly to full blown lushness.

 Each morning as I open the curtains I watched the garden burst into spring, as my friend Beth Drobny (the master gardener and owner of the “Dirty Hoe”) says with a naughty chuckle “some of those plants shoot up thru the dirt like men parts quivering with anticipation!!!” ((reworded for public use.hee heee hee))

 The spot for this month was small and I wanted just the right thing to fit.

I have been itching to weave wire and after a few attempts to get the warp and weft balanced I created a wee basket/bird nest of copper wire.
I added small chips of amethyst as a ledge as well as for color and the stones legends say it adds serenity and calmness to a person wearing it. It also is supposed to prevent drunkenness. (I will check with Lynn Later about that one)

 I then added glass leaves, pink pearls and a art glass bead from Unicorn beads which I used as the egg for the nest. I choose that bead because of  the possibilities I could see while gazing into the surface of the egg.

That is my wish for the piece to be full of hope and endless possibilities for
 Lynn Hranach this year.

  Cheers Peg


For several months I’ve been inspired to use these little paper flowers.  I believe they are mulberry paper, and not the kind of thing that I usually find in my travels or surround myself with.  I bought them several years ago, and re-discovered them in a drawer.  (I find it very happy and convenient to find serious inspiration by rummaging through my own drawers!)  

This month’s spot was the perfect opportunity to stack several of these, stitch them together, and top them with a handmade bead whose origin I’ve forgotten.  And to be honest, one of the best things about my project this month was that it took very little time, and was not an experimental struggle!  I’m going to miss my little blossom.  I hope it’s snug as a bug with Marilyn!
Nancy Strahle


Yes, plant your seeds, then BLOOM where your planted!  

This is for Nancy, enjoy this wonderful Spring! 

 From Marilynn


The full moon is here!!  And it arrived early as far as I can tell!  I have been entrenched in making jewelry for the Camano Arts Studio Tour and have hardly come up for air.  You are all invited to come up!  The information can be found through my or through the Camano Arts Association website .  I would love to see you!!

The project for this month has been in the works for a while.  I too did research and found that this is the month for planting, seeds and all the good things that Peg told us about.  And this full moon is also called the pink moon.  So in trying to do something that fit with the moon names and knowing that Beth loves gardening and plants....I came up with “Strawberry Fields Forever!”
The strawberries are sort of pinkish/red, they have seeds on them, and Beth loves gardening!  The slight little snafu is that all the berries didn’t ripen yet so there is only one in the spot now....but with more to come!
The berry is felted and then bead embroidered!  Fun to make!!  If only we could eat it too!


Hi Peg, here's a little picture I made for the April 'Little Alters' project. This one is going to Kimberly.

When I received the sweet packet you sent recently with the seeds enclosed I was instantly inspired. You mentioned that this month's moon is known by two names: the Pink Moon and the Seed Moon.
I then thought I'd make a picture of a newly planted seed as it progressed from germination to full bloom. Love, Lou



I love the smell of fresh cut grass and new bark (lumber too!).  I love spring, sunshine, flowers, and the promise of warm days to come.  I plant new things every year and watch them grow.  I quite literally check things almost every day to see even the most miniscule fraction of growth.  My husband laughs at me when I make him look at the tiniest first tomato that is barely the size of a 1mm pearl.

I recently used Polymer clay for the first time and decided to try something again this month.  Somehow, I couldn’t keep my flowers small enough, they wanted to be big and be worn instead of hiding inside their little shadow box all of the time so I had to design my box to “hold” two small flowers that could be easily removed.

I wanted fresh grass, blue skies, and a puffy cloud.  The cloud, seemingly ever present here in April (and most of the rest of the year), is the reason we have so much green and so many beautiful flowers and trees.  I used a two-step process for making my lawn.  I cut tiny little pieces of grass from my clay and baked them.  Then I hand planted each individual blade, approximately 50, with tiny tweezers and then baked again to complete the process.  Cut to shape and it sits neatly in front of my hand painted sky with glittery cloud.  This grassy foreground then acts as a stand to keep my flowers standing up.  Tucked behind each flower is a sterling silver earring wire so they can be picked from their perch in the grass and worn.  They seemed lonely to me and I wanted a pendant to match.  Wouldn’t fit in the box so it is just a little added bonus.  The flowers were made with Polymer clay and just before baking I hand painted the leaves with powdered pigments to add a pearlescent shine.

To install in the box, just glue the back piece “sky” down, slide the grass in, and then place the earrings behind in the grass with their ear wires hidden behind.  Keep your necklace on hand and wear when the mood blooms in your heart.

I hope that Gwen likes my little altar installation and that the color of the flowers are something that will compliment her wardrobe on occasion.

Best wishes to all,


It's alter time again!! 
This month's full moon is known as the seed moon or pink moon. For some reason, I've been struck by the glory of a moon dressed all in pink. See it gets the name pink from the ground phlox that blooms this time of year. And this is one of my absolute favorite times of year to photograph. I love gardens in spring. I grew up playing among the azaleasAndromeda, bluebells and daffodils. 
Sweet Ruthie by Gwen Gyldenege
Clematis by Gwen Gyldenege
Coral Azalea by Gwen Gyldenege
I love the way the earth smells when she's laughing in flowers. Persephone does leave a glorious and fragrant wake as she returns from Hades. There is nothing like the delicious smell of blooming azaleas, Andromeda  and clematis all mingling with rhododendron an the warmth of a sunny spring day or lingering upon every dew drop following a gentle spring rain.

The images you see before you are a several photographs I took in one of my favorite gardens.  If you play in the garden, you'll find magic & faeries among the bright blossoms & rich evergreens or deep underneath the cascading blossoms of the Andromeda bush.
Purple Azalea by Gwen Gyldenege
What I find fascinating is how different the scents are from each of these flowers.  The clematis really smell like chocolate.  The andromeda like a heavy, syrupy honey, and the azaleas are sweet and bright, like a sibling to the summer trumpet vine or the springtime honeysuckle found enveloping every early spring night in Kansas City, Missouri as the days heat wanes and the earth sleeps. I would love to travel the world as spring comes alive in every place just to experience the scents.  What would it be like to be right smack in the desert when all those cactai burst open?  Or how about standing in a Moroccan garden among the roses?  Or sipping your morning espresso beneath an arbor crafted of gardenia? It'd be quite a glorious hedge.  What other amazing scents could you discover?  If only to bottle these and wear them.  I would definitely wear scents of Azalea, Andromeda, or Honeysuckle.  
Andromeda by Gwen Gyldenege.
Tulip tree by Gwen Gyldenege
Andromeda by Gwen Gyldenege
Tulip Tree, Evergreens and Spring Sun by Gwen Gyldenege
Wow, glancing over this post, I love how colorful it is.  And, I realized how truely me it is!  I love it!  Color is a wonderful thing. I lived in a land of grey once and now choose to live in technicolor how ever I possibly can.

Back to the moon. When I began sculpting, I didn't intend her for the Alter project.  After last month, I decided I'd just play a little and if it worked out, great. If not, then I'd have a fun art piece and I would have taught myself to sculpt a face in paper clay.  I've done quite a bit of sculpting with pottery clay, sculpey and fimo, but paper clay seemed too soft.  With inspiration and courage found from classes with Michael DeMengClarissa CallisenPatricia Hedegaard and the Halloween book by Mr. Glitterville, I embarked upon the journey.   
Well, it was a bit soft. But, I just kept playing and out came this magical moon face.  Then, instead of keeping her just a full moon, I decided that I wanted her to represent both the full and the crescent moon.  She could be waxing or waning, depending on which side you observe her.  I gave her a long pointy nose and a very pointy up-tipped chin.  I tried the pressed in eyes like shown in Glitterville, except with mine, I added them with flattened circles of of clay and created eye sockets, just in case I wanted to add a glass eye.

Then, after bone dry, I began painting. Thank God I'd been through Michael DeMeng's classes where I learned his layering techniques to achieve the most amazing painted surfaces.  It was not easy to grasp how many layers go into a surface to achieve depth.  And, might I add the patience one really needs to have.  I do like the look, but often avoid it because I run out of patience. Well, fortunately, I happened to find an extra dosage bottle of art patience in my medicine cabinet. For this moon alone, I believe there are ~ 7 layers just for the main color.  Then, there are many more layers in the eyes, lips, etc. The nice part about layers is if you don't like the look, paint over and start again. There are actually green, blue, purple, pink, and many other colors in there.   The more I painted her, the more she felt like an Italian clown, part of the Pagliacci or even a marionette. I think my style is beginning to emerge. How lovely!
I couldn't let the moon go up without a rich and colorful night sky behind her. While resting from a minor injury, I picked up my colored pencils. Had such great fun with them on the shrinky-dinks, but haven't found the look I want on paper.  I really like a layered, depth, but didn't know how to create it.  So, off I went in search of tutorials from the great world of bloggers. Not many, but I found one that showed putting red behind blue and blue behind red. Huh. It looked weird on it's own, but I figured it would be interesting to try in my favorite colors - pink and aqua.

I started playing with the colors at hand. I was tickled to see the rich sky colors I could create. Just like so many nights I've tried to photograph, but my camera just won't pick-up.  Oh glory me, this is really exciting. Now, I have a way to create night skies.  I've been dreaming of this. And, all because I sculpted this moon, and just played really, do I know a new way to make a magical scene. LUCKY ME!


Another cycle of the the moon has passed and here we are at the end of April. The looming date of April 15, has passed and we all have passed by TAX DAY.
 This has been a month of deep sadness for all of the  ugliness in Boston and the tragic fires in Texas.  these things effects us all in ways that are hard to express sometimes but deeply felt all the same.
 I am so glad to have my studio  and the plethora of materials in my stash to escape from the sadness and create.

 My yard has been bursting forth with green shoots of all varieties and it seems  a giant carpet of blooms have appeared in the place of just the soil. there is a delightful jumble of color and fragrance delighting me at every turn in the garden. I even love the bright cheerful dandelions making their appearance among the flowers.
 It's the time to think of gardens and planting and dreaming of warm nights and long days and perhaps SUNSHINE!
This month's spot was a small space compared to last month's larger rectangle. I found it  a bit more of a challenge
 But here we go to explore how everyone  was inspired and how everyone enjoyed

 not only that glorious Full Moon which we were able to see but the added bonus
 of a lunar eclipse

Tuesday, April 09, 2013

Storm MOON 11

Good Evening Peg

I have been in Tucson with Mary since March 7. I started my Zentangle on the flight here.

My inspiration was thoughts of Spring and my garden. I am sure the weeds are calling my name...LOL.....they will just have to wait!

Hugs, Lynn

Hi everyone more photos will be added  soon technical difficulties prevent me from adding them at this time .  But as soon as I am able you will see more.
 Here are the rest of Lynn's images of her zentangle


Storm MOON 10

My muse was taking a winter break…  :-(   All month thought of what I wanted to show myself, what message.  Finally I started to think about this very early spring.  What had I seen, what did I hear, any adventures!?!  I did go on a 4 day quilt retreat and that was great, but did get me behind on my alter, oh well!!!  It finally came to me about spring in the Northwest.  I love the cherry blossoms and before the actual first of spring I heard a bird outside my window singing a wonderful song.  So that was my inspiration.  Found fabric with cherry blossoms in my stash and made the birds with bright colors.  I have an Accuquilt Go Cutter so could cut the birds out with that, then sew.  I love ribbons and have many so a bird of many colors and of course had to have a mate.  

Already looking to see what is next and get it started now!

Monday, April 01, 2013

Storm MOON 9

What a quick month March has been.  Just back to work after a week’s vacation, here in Seattle with guest from out of town. But I'm happy to say Lynn Hranac Storm Moon # 3 box B travels to her under the full moon tonight March 27th 2013.

 It's a surprise because you both have seen these lovely pieces of Coral.  Yep! It's from one gathering of folks when we brought gifts to share and you could either open one or take one and of course I took the coral you had opened
 The challenge for me was taking these wonderful pieces of coral and wrapping wire in and around them to create my " Missy Hen"! She loves her family and carefully looks over her eggs. Fancy she is with her cape and That was my inspiration for the Storm Moon # 3.  I looked at Lynn H's box and saw her love of family and wine! hat & tail feather.

The Eggs lined up are simple coral beads & have a great feel to them.

I like her, she fits well in the space! Really like her feet that dangle too!
Happy Storm Moon to ya,
Kimberly Kostal