Thursday, January 31, 2008

Window of Forgotten Souls

This is a window I did for our store Folie a Deux. I previously posted about my fascination with old pictures and sadness that they would end up in some pile at a garage sale, antique store or Ebay. I intentionally blurred the images used here to show that they were a faded memory.


Wednesday, January 30, 2008

And one more time....

Maddie lifting her dress so it wouldn't get wet. She wasn't happy with me. I didn't want her to where her shoes for some shots. Other side is called "It's All Relative". In the picture is my great maternal grandparents and sitting is my great great grandmother. I don't think they would appreciate me making them look like a nice family of elves.

I wish I had more time to create and a studio in an old barn. Now that is my heaven.

More altered book pages

I did this as, I said below, a few years ago & now I see that I spelled "can not" wrong! $*(*#&$). Oh, que sera sera. I just noticed it now.

Pages from an altered book

Here are some
pages out of
an altered book that I did a few years ago.
Maddie is the queen of the fairies and I cut her ears a tad bit pointed. I look back at my work and it's not pink and frilly. I would like to be pink and frilly but it just never seems to go there. I see other sites that have lovely light bright pink fun stuff and mine veers off to somewhere a bit darker and a bit quirky/odd. This spring I am going to try and just be a bit different. Challenge myself. I am throwing the gauntlet down. I love pink, soft grays and taupes so why aren't they more in my art?

Tuesday, January 29, 2008


Sometimes when I am faced with a project I will have a total mind shut down. Then there are other times that I work at my best when I am under pressure. It's slowly coming around to the later. Last night Gretchen and I worked on pieces for our upcoming show. This is one that I did. I think our show is going to be called "Bezerk and other Myths". Will post more pictures another time.

The Princess with far away eyes

That is what Madeleine calls this pose.

The Darling Diva.....Madeleine

Maddie looking dramatic. My girl loves to pose for the camera. Whenever she sees me take out a camera, she strikes a pose. She says when she grows up she wants to be a model, chef and a doctor. All three. Isn't it wonderful to have dreams. When I was her age I saw the Singing Nun and from that point on I wanted to be one. There were many a days that I walked around with a pillow case on my head as my habit. Needless to say, I never fulfilled that dream but I still have a fascination with nuns, cathecism and Catholicism.

Sunday, January 27, 2008


Many months ago I had bought these fabrics and a wonderful apron pattern. I was so antsy to begin. Well, I got home, opened up the pattern only to have just 2 actual patterns (of the pockets) and the rest instructions. That dampened my enthusiasm. I just wanted to lay all the pieces and start cutting away. No major thinking just lay and cut. Needless to say I put it away for another day.
A few days ago I visited Cindy's Queen of Tarte blog and she had made these incredible aprons. That was it, I was going to pull out that pattern and my fabric and begin again. Seeing her aprons was just the push and inspiration I needed. So I blew off the dust of my sewing machine, got the fabric out then the pattern. Oh, yeah....the pattern. I put it away again. I have to find me a no thinking pattern. The pattern I got is called "Absolutely Apron" and it's adorable. But not for right now. So off to the store tomorrow to look for another pattern because I must have cute aprons. Thanks Cindy!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Pink cupcakes

Buttercake cupcakes. Yum. My favorite. I was in the mood to bake today. Since Valentine's is around the corner I tinted the frosting a pale petal pink.
My oldest daughter Elisabeth has an upcoming Valentine's day cupcake contest at her work. She's asked me to bake some. I think I will make these. This month's issue of Country Living has one's that are beautifully decorated using some tinseled wire and a vintage Valentine picture. I may use that as an inspiration.

Under construction....

Working on my header & new picture. Arrrghhhhh.....want the picture to stretch the length of the header. I'll keep trying.

565 Broadway Tacoma

Spanish stairs of the Elks lodge
The Elks Lodge

This is my favorite building in Tacoma. It is the old Elks building. As a teenager my husband Ron use to work there as a bus boy/dishwasher. In it's day it was a grand facility with a pool, ballroom and a theatre. Cotillons, weddings and every other major social event was held here.

It has been vacant now for many years and the person who bought it in the 70's or ?? hated the Tacoma city counsel so much that he was going to just demolish it out of spite. Fotunately the city took him to court and stopped him. We had all hoped that the Mcmenamin brothers ( were going to purchase & refurbish it as they had done with many other properties but a Portland group bought it. There is still some hope that they will be collaborating on the revival of the grand old Elks lodge.

Jennifer Lanne

Here are some Jennifer Lanne paintings on my dining room wall. The urn painting is about 3 1/2 feet square. See to purchase her paintings and so much more.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Newly painted dining room

I decided to take my branch ceiling down. I do miss it but wanted a change. Painted the walls same color as in the living room, Cocoa and Whip for the trim in Devine paints. I also decided to paint the china hutch, dining room table & chairs. I replaced the knobs on the hutch with some vintage crystal door knobs I picked up in an antique store. Hung an old chandelier that I got from a friend and am very happy with the results. For a year at least. I LOVE to paint. That first swoosh of the paint brush on the wall gives me such a thrill. I am already thinking about what the next color is going to be. Something grayish....maybe.

I don't understand why people are so hesitant to paint or they take forever deciding on the right color. It's just paint. If you don't like it, paint it again. I have friends that take WEEKS before they decide on a color. I just can't imagine. I think I have about 5 of my layers of paint on our walls on top of the previous owners various experiments. Our home is built in 40s and we may be the 3rd owners of this home. I will have to research that.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Good night Madeleine..Your mother has gone YouTube crazy!!!

Here is a picture of my little darling Madeleine. This was taken in 2002. She is going to be 10 this year. Time truly flies.

Couldn't sleep so decided to look up some of my favorite artists on Utube. And needless to say was very happy that I decided to share some of them with you! Ha. They are wonderful artists and hope you do take a listen. The french artist Charles Trenet doing "Boum" below, did a song a song called La Mer in 1946. Most of us know this version by Bobby Darrin "Somewhere, Under the Sea" he did in the 60's.

The video clip of the 1928 movie "The Passion of Joan of Arc" is my favorite silent movie. The music on the DVD is Richard Einhorn's "Voices of Light", unbelievably beautiful music. I remember one night seeing this amazing movie on TV by accident. I was mesmerized, moved and in awe of a movie that was made over 77 years ago (it's now 80 years old). It truly is a feast for the eyes and soul.

Lisa Gerrard.....OMG. If you have never heard of her please listen. You probably have but didn't know who it was. She did a song in the "Gladiator". I can't remember the name of it's the song that is playing as he's dying and seeing his wife and child again. I was a blithering blob during that scene and what made it so powerful was her song. "Now We Are Free", that's it. She got her start in the band "Dead Can Dance". If you have not listened to them, it really really is worth the time.

Sam Phillips. She is married to Tbone Burnett and I think produces her albums. I love listening to her when I am working on some art project. It's a tie between "Martini's and Bikini's" and her 2004 album "Boot and a Shoe" as my favorites.

And last but not least, Madeleine Peyroux. I would love to see her perform live. She is American despite her french name and singing quite a bit in french. She has a Billie Holiday kind of voice.

So that is it. I really hope that you take the time to take a listen. I don't think you will be sorry. I will try to refrain from finding anymore clips for awhile. What fun that was!

Charles! Can't believe I found this video of him. Love this music!

Madeleine Peyroux

Lisa Gerrard beautiful haunting lovely

Lisa Gerrard...another favorite

Love Sam Phillips

Speaking of old movies...Joan of Arc 1928

Monday, January 21, 2008

Hello Sailor!

Doesn't she look a little like Shelley Winters in her prime? Maybe from the movie "The Night of the Hunter" with Robert Mitchum and one of the Gish sisters. Get them mixed up. There is nothing like a good old movie.

Yummmmy...Red Velvet Cupcakes

For Gretchen's art gallery opening last month I made some Red Velvet cupcakes. I love making cupcakes. Actually, I just love cooking. Especially for people that love to eat and love food.
I took a buttercream decorating class yesterday in Seattle. Tobey Rodriquez, owner of Sugarcakes gave the class in Sugarcake's kitchen. It was me and one other girl so we got Tobey all to ourselves. Well, I am a spaz rose maker. I really need to practice! Tobey is a wonderful instructor. I learned a few tricks of the trade and I can pipe a decent border.
I have a coworker who fell in love with my cupcakes and asked me to do them for her wedding. That is in May so I am getting in all the professional decorating training I can. I will probably just do it as in the picture and rely on the staging to boost the simple decortation of the cupcakes. I don't know. We'll see how good I can get with those roses.

New Project

My friend Gretchen owns the new art gallery in downtown Tacoma, "The Lark Gallery". Next month we are collaborating on a show. One of the subjects of our project is the head above. I made his features a bit bird like as he is going to be our Icarus. I took a photo of one a dolls head she had and tweeked his eyes, ears and mouth in PS. I am not sure if he looks wicked or naive.
He's going to be on a canvas that is about 4x4 and we managed to make a bit of progress today. We gave him his wings and used beeswax to adhere them to the canvas. We hand dyed each feather and attached it. It's not quite there yet, but it will be. I am now looking through all my vintage pictures to pick the right feet. I think we settled on one. It's the feet of a little boy in stockings & balloon pants. I will keep looking just in case I find something better.
I love working with Gretchen as her imagination is so dramatic and lively whereas mine can be a bit tame. She dares to be drastic and I lean towards the safe side so together we make a great pair. I at times pull her in and most times she makes me stretch. I need that.
I would also say that G is fearless. She isn't afraid to put her expressions, imagination and creations out there. I am always worried that it's not good enough or I see all the faults in my work and the first one to point them all out.
This is our second time working together. The first time we did three canvases and lo and behold they sold. And for a very pretty penny too. I was shocked. A realtor came in my shop "Folie a Deux" and bought all three and a few assemblages that I made. That was an exciting day to have sold that many pieces of art at one time.
So next month when we are done with all of them I will be sure to post some of them.