Tuesday, August 22, 2017

HOT OFF MY NEEDLES-FINITO

Hi Everyone!

It's been a few weeks since my last post and I've been a busy girl.  I've been creating art and knitting my fingers to the bone <grin>.   That's right, my Wips (works in progress) are whittling down and soon I'll be forced to work on the Summer KAL (Knit A Long) Zadie Sweater.  It's been so hot here that the thought of working on a sweater makes me sweat, so I put it aside to work on some smaller projects.

For the life of me, I can NOT remember where this yarn was purchased; so bad about taking the wrapper off yarns when knitting and forgetting where I put them for safe <wink wink> keeping. Before my BFF Bonnie came down a few weeks ago, while doing the mad dash knitting pile clean up I came across a WIP and knew that needed to be finished.  The Drop Stitch Scarf.



Oh my, the colors and texture of yarn was just so pretty.  Don't you agree?  Stunning changes in color and texture made my heart sing as I was knitting along.  Oh did I mention I had to look up how to do the Drop Stitch pattern again on You Tube?!?  Here it is if you are interested in trying the Drop Stitch scarf.  This yarn was perfect for the Drop Stitch pattern, believe me I knit it several different ways before coming up with this pattern.

Next I was on Craftsy.com (have I mentioned how much I LOVE Crafsy.com?) and found a few patterns/kits I wanted to try for Fall/Winter.  This one is called the Leaf Press Shawl  and it is just so pretty, loving the stripes and leaf pattern. I couldn't help myself.  Look for a post when this scarf/shawl is done!


This kit is called  Concerto Cowl .  This is my finished Concerto Cowl that is hot off my needles and it will not be my last one either, I can already see it in other colorways. It knits up very fast and is a fun pattern to knit and will be nice and warm for my next trip to NY in October.



Oh AND I finished my Cable Knit Blanket last week!!! I'm definitely on a knitting roll!!!  This is called Violet's Cable Knit Blanket.   I LOVVVVEEE it !   I knit it up in Big Twist yarn color Sky Blue and it is Soooo soft, yet light weight enough as a nice throw over the legs when needed.


My husband has put a claim on it and my daughter has already said she wants one.....good thing this knits up pretty quickly with large needles and once you get the initial rows started, it is easy to follow the pattern without having to read or memorize it.  The only thing you have to keep track of are the rows where cables are inserted.  Easy peasey cables too!  I could knit this one in my sleep. Lol!

Well, that's what I've been up to lately, how about you?  Got some finished projects? Would love to see them.

Bee Creative,
Suzy

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Hi Everyone!

Last week I missed posting on here.  It was that kind of week. It's my husband's annual trip north to Saratoga Springs and the annual visit from my BFF.  BFF Bonnie was coming in town and there was prepping for the big week of art and some housekeeping to be done beforehand between working and getting hubby out the door.  If you know me, you know I'm a procrastinator, last minute kinda gal. But I got it done and was ready for some fun!

Bonnie was here when I arrived home from work on Wednesday afternoon, we caught up, did a little grocery shopping (no, I didn't get to the store beforehand) and I cooked us a nice dinner to start off the visit.  Unfortunately, I had to work on Thursday but that gave Bonnie a chance to rest up.

Let me give you a little back story: Bonnie and I love to paint with watercolors and when we get together we try to get out to paint, sketch and draw, (see our  blog: SketchyGirlz) but this year we decided to try acrylic painting.  I was recently inspired by a painting class where I used acrylics as my medium and shared the experience with Bonnie about the class, she naturally wanted to try acrylic painting.

Another back story: In January I had joined an online site Creative Bug that has loads of crafts (knitting, crochet, cooking, jewelry making, etc.) plus videos how-to's and classes.  You've got to check it out! Yes, it does involve a subscription to join but it is WELL WORTH the cost.  On this site is a class by famed artist Flora Bowley called Intuitive Painting which I really enjoyed and thought it would be the perfect art adventure for Bonnie and I to try when she came down for her annual visit.

Armed with video instruction we took a "walk about", taking photos for inspiration and then interpreted the images for the painting process.
 I will not spoil the process for you, but let's say it was WAY out of our comfort zones and took multiple times of viewing the videos to be able to paint in such an abstract way. Bonnie is a realistic painter and I am too pretty much, although I have a more intuitive paint style than her.  She likes to know what the END result is going to be, where I'm more of a go with the flow/intuitive painter. Nothing wrong with either style. Flora's process is very intuitive and somewhat abstract (at least for this lesson) in the fact that this process doesn't really involve a great deal of realism.

Suzy BEFORE: Half way thru process. 
With that said, we dove in and just tried to go with the flow, at times it was easy and at times it was downright hard.


Throughout the process when we would doubt our abilities, we just repeated Flora's mantra "we are awesome for trying this" and we would say out loud what we LIKED about our painting.
Bonnie BEFORE Half Way thru process




Half-way thru the process I think we both wanted to call it quits but we pressed on.  As you can see the half way point was mostly abstract and way out of our comfort zones.







It WAS fun and it WAS challenging and we both were pleased at the final product and we both said we would try it again and are planning another painting using this method.  
AFTER: Bonnie's Final Painting 

AFTER: Suzy's Final Painting
  So all in all, a very successful art adventure was had by the Sketchy Girlz.  Tell us what you think. We'd love to hear your comments. Oh and be nice!

Bee Creative!
Suzy

Thursday, July 27, 2017

WEEK 2 ICAD

Hi Everyone!

Week 2 of the Index Card A Day challenge is posted and up on 30 Days in April ICAD.  Just click on the sidebar and you'll be able to view Day1-7 and Day 8-14.

Let me know what you think! Have a great week.

Bee Creative,
Suzy

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Veggie Tale

BreesMimi Design Studio (BMDS)

Hi Everyone!

It's hard for me to remember a time when I didn't eat veggies, even when I was little there wasn't much in the veggie department I wouldn't eat.  But when my husband and I met some forty plus years ago, he wasn't a fan of vegetables, in fact the only veggies he ate were corn, tomatoes and onions.   He told me the story about how much he disliked peas and how he put them down the heat register in the floor to hide them!  Many years later his father discovered the dry, hard peas when he investigated a strange rattling sound..... coming from the heat register.  We still laugh about that one.
Watercolor sketching veggies

SO how did I get him to willingly eat veggies?!?  The answer was to smother the vegetables in cheese sauce.  Yep, I lured  umm, introduce him to veggies smothered with cheese and gradually weaned him from the sauce. He's a big veggie lover now, with the exception of beets.  Okay, I can live with that, because I Do have one vegetable I won't eat. Brussel sprouts.  Ewww! Gag. Enough said.

But why all this talk about veggies?





 I've been painting veggies for an online class with on of my favorite artist, Tracy Fletcher King.  Having fun with the sketching and water color.
Finished watercolor of fruit & veggies.
Here's a few of my favorite veggies/fruits, in case you can't make out what they are: eggplant, pears, apples, carrot and zucchini. 

Sometimes a process will inspire other things like the Index Cards below.



Hope you find some delicious inspiration today!  

Bee Creative,
Suzy

Thursday, July 20, 2017

30 DAYS IN APRIL REVEAL

Hi Everyone!

Please join me for the reveal of Index Card A Day (ICAD) 30 Days in April.  This is the third  ICAD challenge I've completed in the last several years.  My first challenge was with Daisy Yellow's 60 Day Challenge!  Sixty days was a bit ambitious for a first timer so I scaled it back to 30 days as a personal challenge each year. Thirty days once a year works as a great starting point for the new year or whenever I feel I need a kick start in creativity.  If you've never heard of an ICAD challenge, please go over to Daisy Yellow Blog to see how this challenge works.  It's so much fun!

Meanwhile join me for the weekly reveal of my personal challenge on Thursdays. Just click on the side bar 30 Days in April ICAD and you'll see what I created each day and a glimpse into the "how" I made each card and the thought process behind it.  Enjoy!


I'd love to hear if you are interested in this process...please leave a comment so I know you've stopped by.  Have a great week!

Bee Creative,
Suzy

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

A Yarn Tale

Hi Everyone!

A few weeks ago on a Saturday morning, I was perusing my favorite online site for knitting patterns and looking for knitting stores in my area.  My neighbor who is visiting from PA and I thought we would take a ride up to the next county where there was supposed to be a yarn store, unfortunately, after 35 minutes driving up the busiest road with some fairly crazy drivers we found the store closed. OUT OF BUSINESS (apparently for some time since another business had taken its place).  We were both very disappointed that the information was neither updated on the knitting site nor on GOOGLE Maps. Just goes to show, perhaps we should have called before making the trip.  But do not fear, for we did find a new vintage/junk store which provided us with entertainment for several hours and the Back up Plan B, included lunch. It was all good.

So back to my tale of the knitting store....later on the knitting site again I found a contact person and sent a note asking if the group that met at the yarn store still met, I received a prompt reply that a group met during the day.  Unfortunately, I'm still working and not able to meet up in the day, but after a few emails back and forth we decided to meet in the evening and she offered to contact some of the other ladies in the group and post our evening group online. Well, I am happy to report that we have a nice group of knitters meeting once a week at a local restaurant/coffee shop.

This was my first time "knitting in public" (other than a hospital room or lobby) and I was a bit concerned about chatting and knitting at the same time which apparently is a common issue among knitters, especially if you are working on anything that requires concentration (pattern or stitch changes).  Currently I've been working on a knit a long (KAL) sweater project and at a point in the pattern where there was going to be a significant change, concentration was required so the sweater wasn't a good candidate to take along to knitting group.  My Go To project (in between knitting projects) are baby hats (knitted for local hospitals). With knitting group in mind,  I started the ribbing on the baby hat so during the group meeting all I needed to do was basically stockinette stitch and some decreases to finish the hat that night.

Baby Hat for Hospital
 After knitting half a dozen baby hats in the last two weeks, I pretty much am burned out on them and looking for something else "fun & easy" to do in group knitting.  Dish cloths are fun and easy knitting and Michael's had a sale on Sugar & Cream cotton yarn yesterday!  I started my first dish cloth after watching this video from VeryPink Knits on You Tube last night.  Look out! I might be hooked on knitting dish cloths now.

My First Knitted Dish Cloth WiP
Simple and easy and fun to knit!  The dish cloth is another good Go To between projects.  Dish cloths are re-usable and an Eco-friendly alternative to sponges and paper towels and really, who can have enough dish cloths???  Look at those ridges, perfect for scrubbing things! Give it a go and see if you don't agree and actually enjoy the process.

Bee Creative!
Suzy

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

A Little Over It

Hello Everyone!

Happy Summer!  It's been a little over a year since my last post. Once again I managed to fall off the blog-O-sphere after trying to re-establish the SketchyGirlz blog with my best friend last year. It just was a bit overwhelming (to both of us) trying to keep up with two blogs, working full time and creating art. That's how it happened....Now, it is time for a fresh start once again.

How is your summer going?  Are you working on anything new?  Living in south Florida, the average temperature each day is in the 90's so it may seem a bit strange to know that knitting is one of my hobbies.  Most people think of knitting as a winter activity but because of the warmer hot temperatures here, it becomes a summer activity for me.  I enjoy looking for knitting patterns and taking classes online during the summer months and have several knitting projects going.  In the knitting world, these are called WIPs or Works in Progress. My latest WIPs are a sweater knit-a-long (KAL), a few baby hats (charity donation) and finishing up a cabled pattern blanket (almost done with that project!). Any knitters out there that can identify with the WIPs?  I'd love to hear from you.
The Knit-A-Long (KAL) is where you join a group of knitters for a specific project during a period of time.  The KAL is new to me, my first one!  I'll talk more about it in an upcoming post.

On the ART palette are several works that have been completed and another ICAD project (Index Card A Day) which I'll be sharing with you soon.  Each year I challenge myself to do the ICAD for 30 days.  You can see my previous works by clicking on the side bar. Meanwhile here's a glimpse of the recent challenge and I'll be posting more in the coming weeks.

My daughter and family visited recently and we had a great night out at "Painting With A Twist". This was a totally new experience for me, painting in a group setting where everyone paints the same design and it was SO much fun!  We painted a beach scene and every single painting was different! Fun seeing what everyone was doing and how they interpreted the theme.  I'd definitely do it again and would encourage everyone to try it at least once!  Take a group of friends and enjoy the evening painting and having a blast.

Let me know what summer projects you've been working on!  I'd love to hear from you.

Bee Creative,
Suzy