from the lake

Inspired by an idea I saw on Pin­ter­est a while ago — using white ink on dark rocks — I paint­ed these a few days ago. I found the stones by Lake Huron in the summer. 

This one is inspired by the bar­na­cles I saw in Hong Kong on the rocks by the seashore. The stone has some fos­silized corals in it.

 

This one has a tiny shell embed­ded in it :D

 

I paint­ed the out­line with white acrylic and a tiny Chi­nese cal­lig­ra­phy brush, and then coloured inside the shapes with fine tip markers.

On a sep­a­rate note, today Toron­to saw the first offi­cial snow­fall of the sea­son! It was the feath­ery kind of snow too and it stayed on the branch­es for a while. The red berry bush I showed you the oth­er day looked gor­geous cov­ered in snow, but I left my cam­era at home! Oh well… maybe it will snow again tomorrow…

Hap­py Thurs­day, everyone!

 

awesome finds for Christmas crafting

Today and tomor­row are Inter­na­tion­al Buy Noth­ing Days. I thought it would be a good day to share with you my giant pile of crafty Christ­mas gift ideas, so instead of buy­ing, we’d be mak­ing! :D I’m obvi­ous­ly biased but, Make Some­thing Day is even bet­ter than Buy Noth­ing Day!

 

Home­made glit­ter for all your dec­o­rat­ing needs! How-to on Say Yes to Hobo­ken.

 

Bet­ter than the ordi­nary microwave wheat bags — a mon­ster wheat bag to relieve aches and stress AND to pro­vide com­ic relief! How about that? Instruc­tion on Desert Bus Crafter.

 

Aren’t these beau­ti­ful? Made from the glass peb­bles found at the dol­lar store. Love the wire work. Step-by-step instruc­tion here.

 

Sim­i­lar kind of glass-like pen­dant, but made with TP rolls! From Mega Crafty.

 

Squeeze n’ sniff pump­kin pie, stuffed with pump­kin pie spice! How Bril­liant! Pat­tern on Craft is Cool.

 

I love how it’s named — a cro­cheted hug! Reminds me of how hood­ies are called “bun­ny hugs” in Saskatchewan :D A clever design of a scarf sewn into a sweater by Plan­et June. 

 

Nev­er knew that this kind of shirts is called a Dol­man tee. But this will be a present for myself  :D How-to on Trash to Cou­ture.

 

Also from Plant June — shrink plas­tic rings!

 

The sweet­est felt flow­ers from Straw­ber­ry Chic, would make an awe­some brooch!

 

Cud­dly robots for the kids! Pat­tern and how-to on Ric Rac. 

 

Nail pol­ish + 1″ pin + ring blank = an awe­some ring! The mag­ic for­mu­la of craft! I love the infi­nite pos­si­bil­i­ties for the inside of the ring — like mak­ing a mini col­lage with found objects! Which makes it an excel­lent idea for a hol­i­day craft­ing get-togeth­er :D How-to on We Heart This.

 

And now, a good, sol­id, prac­ti­cal gift. For ear buds or coins! Instruc­tion on Dog Under My Desk.

 

And what about some hand-dyed yarn for the fel­low crafter? Maiya Knits intro­duces a rather unique way to per­ma­nent­ly dye wool using Kool Aid! Must try!

 

Now one thing I will buy is the work of oth­er artists / arti­sans. Michelle Made Me has some bril­liant pat­terns for sale (very afford­able!) for mak­ing orna­ments with the sim­plest every­day house­hold recy­cled mate­ri­als — like TP rolls! I love the intri­ca­cy of this this­tle orna­ment, espe­cial­ly know­ing that it’s made of  the hum­ble loo roll!

 

Also love the egg car­ton folk!

 

Hap­py crafting!

 

 

 

deep fall

 

Took these pho­tos today out­side of the build­ing where I have most of my class­es. There was a giant pile of leaves…

And these berries, which look like the wolf­ber­ries in Chi­nese soups. But I don’t think these are wolf­ber­ries. They come from the cen­tre of pink flowers…

 

And then the flow­ers dry up…

Hap­py Fri­day, everyone!

november movember

Can’t believe it’s almost the end of November! 

Mike’s been fundrais­ing for Movem­ber, and last night while video-chat­ting with my sis­ter and my par­ents on Google+ I noticed a new mus­tache fea­ture! XD (It’s kind of a face recog­ni­tion thing where the mus­tache fol­lows the per­son­’s face on the screen.)

So the screen shot above is me with a fake ‘stache and Mike with a real ‘stache. There are even dif­fer­ent kinds of mustache…

 

FUN! :D Do give it a try if you use Google+!

Speak­ing of Novem­ber, I cel­e­brat­ed my birth­day last week. Mike made me a cake :D

 

… and he got me a plush lla­ma! (the chick­en noo­dle soup was just ran­dom­ly thrown in there for the photo…)

I’ve been want­i­ng a plush lla­ma for a long time! Mike’s the best :D

A cou­ple more weeks and we’re into Decem­ber! I usu­al­ly start Christ­mas craft­ing around Octo­ber, but have been too busy with school this year. I can’t wait till the semes­ter ends in the sec­ond week of Decem­ber — I’ll be doing noth­ing but craft­ing, drink­ing tea and eat­ing Tof­fifee. Mmm. 

Have you start­ed Christ­mas craft­ing yet? 

Wish­ing you a hap­py Wednesday!

 

 

 

river stone

I was inspired by the long chain neck­laces that a friend always wears. So while down on Queen Street West for a school project last week, I quick­ly stopped by my favourite bead store to look at their stone pendants. 

I bought this one because it remind­ed me of Nia­gara Falls — the emer­ald green algae under­neath, the rocks on the cliff, the gush of waters roar­ing down.

 

It’s drilled through the mid­dle length­wise so I put a piece of wire through, made a dou­ble-loop at the top for the chain and a coil at the bot­tom to secure it. Not sure if that makes sense… my brain’s kind of fried after a day of writ­ing… here’s the back of it so you can see what I mean…

 

I also did­n’t have one long chain so I linked two togeth­er, like so…

 

Ta-da!

 

Makes me hap­py to look at it because it reminds me of water, and the won­ders of cre­ation. It’s the small things that help me get through crunch time >_<

Hope you’re hav­ing a good weekend!

 

 

weekend wonders

These pic­tures are from last week­end in Nia­gara Falls, I final­ly get around to post­ing them! :D

 

Saw the sun­rise as we began our journey…

 

Had to imme­di­ate­ly go to work­shops when we got there (I was there for an art ther­a­py con­fer­ence, you can see my work from the work­shop­s here and here). Sneaked a peek at the falls from the hotel win­dow at break.

 

Night out on the town. Mike calls it “Canada’s lit­tle Las Vegas”. We had fun being tourists :D

 

We went to the wax muse­ums. Here I am in the Boule­vard of Bro­ken Dreams (paint­ing by Got­tfried Hel­nwein), a ver­sion of Edward Hop­per’s Nighthawks.

 

At the Dinosaur Mini Golf (we did­n’t golf, just took pic­tures with the rap­tors — they’re rap­tors, right?). Could­n’t help but think of this when I saw them. XD

 

Final­ly went out for a stroll on Sat­ur­day after­noon. You can see a bit of a rain­bow in this one :D

 

Rain­bow! I thought this pic­ture looks like a vin­tage post­card. It was tak­en with the Zumi, as with all the oth­er pic­tures that don’t like Polaroid­s in this post. (except with the wax muse­um one. The muse­ums were too dark for the Zumi, so I took it with my pink point & shoot.)

 

And as we walked clos­er to the Horse­shoe Falls we saw the dou­ble rain­bows! :D That was def­i­nite­ly the high­light of the trip!

 

I could just watch the water falling over the edge all day. My cam­era could­n’t cap­ture this but just before it falls, the water isn’t very deep and I could see all the bril­liant emer­ald-colour algae on the rocks under­neath the water. The water was so crys­tal clear. It was such a beau­ti­ful sight.

 

And to top it off, Sat­ur­day was the open­ing night of the fes­ti­val of lights in Nia­gara Falls — fire­works! :D 

 

And we drove home under the glo­ri­ous orange sunset. 

The week­end away was real­ly a won­der­ful gift. Though I had to rush to get lots of school work done before I left it was total­ly worth it. I’ve been to Nia­gara Falls a cou­ple of times when I was a kid but I nev­er real­ly appre­ci­at­ed the gush­ing waters as much as I did this time. I just found it so mov­ing and I’m not quite sure why. I sup­pose one’s per­spec­tives change as one ages, and maybe I’ll find out why I’m so moved by it next time I visit.

Hope you’ve had a love­ly week­end, and wish­ing you a great start to the new week ahead!

 


 

moon flowers

Anoth­er piece I made at the con­fer­ence on the week­end. From a work­shop on the art of prac­tic­ing grat­i­tude. We were to make a grat­i­tude scroll or wall-hang­ing that reflects the peo­ple, events or things we’re thank­ful for. 

So this is what I made, moon flow­ers. The moon­light that nour­ish­es the flow­ers dur­ing dark times.

 

I took this pic­ture in the hotel lob­by, with the faux antique wall.

Here’s detail of the flowers…

 

I cro­cheted the cen­tre of it. The pho­to does­n’t real­ly cap­ture it but there’s actu­al­ly a tinge of red in the cen­tre of the fab­ric leaves, which goes real­ly well with the yel­low yarn I found. Did­n’t bring my hooks, but the fab­ric leaves came with stems. I removed the stem and bent it :D 

 

It kept snag­ging the yarn, but it worked for the most part. Just kind of inter­est­ing for me to real­ize how attached I am to cro­chet­ing and how the idea of cro­chet­ing just comes up almost auto­mat­i­cal­ly even when I’m just try­ing to paint. That tells me that I need to put an extra hook in my pen­cil case from now on so I can have it wher­ev­er I go, just in case I stum­ble across some­thing I can cro­chet! :D

And then here’s the moonlight…

 

I do think it was inspired part­ly by the night scene in Plants vs Zom­bies… I love the tiny mush­room that gen­er­ates light! :D

And the pol­ka dot feath­ers I found in the pile of col­lage materials…

Mak­ing things togeth­er with oth­er peo­ple is such a won­der­ful, ener­giz­ing expe­ri­ence. Did­n’t real­ize how much I missed it until I went to this work­shop, where mate­ri­als were just piled on the table and every­one work­ing hap­pi­ly along­side one anoth­er, shar­ing glue, scis­sors, laugh­ter, stories. 

I’m def­i­nite­ly grate­ful for this experience.

Have a hap­py Thurs­day, everyone!

 

the unapologetic seagull

I went to an art ther­a­py con­fer­ence in Nia­gara Falls this week­end. In one of the work­shops I attend­ed, we were to cre­ate an ani­mal to rep­re­sent our­selves as an infant, ado­les­cent, adult, and elder.

I most con­nect­ed with the ani­mal that rep­re­sent­ed what I hope to be as an elder. It was an unapolo­getic seag­ull. I sup­pose that image of the seag­ull came to mind because I came across many of these birds when I arrived in Nia­gara Falls.

Here is my Plas­ticine seag­ull, I took a pic­ture of it when I got back to my hotel room. She’s rather small; her body is about the size of my thumb.

 

The wingspan…

 

The next day I attend­ed a work­shop about the art of prac­tic­ing grat­i­tude, in which I came across the quote: today I’m hap­pi­er than a bird with a fry. So then lat­er on when I con­tem­plat­ed what to put on the com­mu­ni­ty mur­al (a large piece of can­vas placed in the main area of the con­fer­ence, every­one was invit­ed to add to it) I imme­di­ate­ly thought of the quote, and my unapolo­getic seag­ull. This was my con­tri­bu­tion to the mural.

 

Lat­er on Mike and I were walk­ing along the falls and we saw a seag­ull stand­ing on the rail­ing, look­ing like he’s enjoy­ing him­self (or her­self?) and not one bit con­cerned despite peo­ple get­ting close to it to take pic­tures of it. They do have a kind of dig­ni­fied expres­sion, don’t they?

 

Then after I came home I down­load the pho­tos from the mem­o­ry card, and real­ized that I cap­tured an image of a seag­ull emerg­ing from the mist of the Horse­shoe Falls.

 

Nev­er real­ly paid much atten­tion to seag­ulls before. But I quite like the idea of the unapolo­getic seag­ull. The exer­cise of cre­at­ing an ani­mal to rep­re­sent dif­fer­ent life stages is also an inter­est­ing way of reflect­ing on the past and envi­sion­ing the future. Per­haps an idea for an art project or journaling?

More art and pho­tos to come!

Have a hap­py Tues­day! :D

 

 

this week’s awesome finds

What a fab­u­lous idea, draw­ing on rocks with white ink! Reminds me of the leaf draw­ings. Anoth­er project I can use my sil­ver pen for :D From Paint Cut Paste.

 

An air plant grown in a round lamp­shade! Now I must find out where air plants are sold. From Design Dreams Japan.

 

Mon­ster pud­ding cups! The faces are drawn on the inside of plas­tic cups with melt­ed white and dark choco­late. Find the rest of the recipe on the Zui Blog! :D

 

Pat­tern for a super pret­ty lace top on Made by Rae. I’m rac­ing to the fab­ric store as soon as the semes­ter is over!

 

One of those real­ly sim­ple but super bril­liant idea — stamps made with bot­tle caps and foam stick­ers! From Mama Jenn.

 

One of the vis­i­tors to my blog point­ed me to the pea shoot­er cro­chet pat­tern on Rav­el­ry — it’s free! (Thanks Anna! :D) Pat­tern from What we did on our holy days.

 

Also found this sewing pat­tern for sale on Etsy for the pea shoot­er, the sun flower, and the wall-nut! Love the wall-nut. So plushy.

 

Spot­ted this beau­ti­ful macrame owl pat­tern via That Artist Woman, who made it into a love­ly neck­lace. I kind of envi­sion it being a long neck­lace, won­der­ing what kind of thread I should use so the owl will be more stiff and hold its shape… and I love how it’s hold­ing onto a twig! 

 

Fan­tas­tic Mr.Fox has got to be one of my favourite movies, and so I was so excit­ed to see the Kristof­fer­son and Ash cus­tomes! So awe­some! From Check­out Girl (great blog too! Must read through the past entries when I can find time).

 

I’m head­ing to Nia­gara Falls this week­end! Look­ing for­ward to writ­ing a point-and-shoot post when I come back! :D Have a love­ly week­end everyone!