Sh-h-h-h Part II

15-02-06 library parking garageOh I forgot to mention that a visit to the main library is an experience in itself. Even the parking garage is a work of art. The front looks like books, even the steps are books and on the side is a huge mural by 15-02-06 library parking garage blocal artist Bob Holloway of the Nelson Art Gallery and local historic figures. I had never noticed before that this picture is a combination of two areas at the gallery: the main hall (large columns and the balconies are Rozzelle Court.)

 

15-02-06 library entranceThe library is the old First 15-02-06 library main hallNational Bank Building. Just the front doors are impressive, but all the architecture is just beautiful and the antiques are great too. I remind myself that these antiques are like Christmas trees; on the lot that 15-02-06 library 3&4beautiful tree looks wonderful, when you get it home you have to cut 6 inches off the bottom just to get 15-02-06 library antiqueit to stand up in the room. These antiques look great in the library but I don’t own a home big enough to house them.

15-02-06 library clockEvery floor of the library has an antique clock, my favorites are the one in the main lobby and then there is a Arts and Craft clock in a meeting room (the room was locked and dark…no picture)

I just love old buildings; someday I am going to just drive around town and take pictures of the architecture in Kansas 15-02-06 building 1bCity. There is so much Art Deco and 15-02-06 building 1Arts and Craftsmen style. Notice some of the buildings of downtown…I thought of the song from Oklahoma when looking at them…”They went and built a skyscraper seven stories high“….and then looks like they add floors to some of these.

15-02-06 building 2aI’ve noticed that since I have been on this quest to be more inspired I have begun to see more. I am grateful my DH likes to go with me and drive.  I think my head is on a swivel (and I would be a hazard on 15-02-06 building 3athe road if I were driving) and I can’t see everything as we drive by and DH is so patient he will even go around the block so I can see again.

Thank you for stopping by to visit, I hope you find time to stitch today or do whatever helps you be creative! ttfn…sue

P.S. My creative block seems to have subsided for now…next week I’ll have a little stitching to share.

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Fritzi Brod, my favorite artist

14-09-02 In the WorkshopI’m still in awe of my new Fritzi Brod picture, In the Workshop;  but let me tell you about Fritzi Brod and how I came to love her artwork.

Bio: Fritzi Schermer Brod was born Prague, Czechoslovakia in 1900. She studies at Lycee in Prague and Kunstgewbeschule in Vienna. Fritzi met Oswald Brod in Austria and came to the United States in 1924 to marry him.

Fritzi attended the School of Art Institute in Chicago. She made a name for herself in the textile arts as a designer of textiles. Her designs were among the first displayed by Marshall Fields. She was part of the Chicago “bohemia” artists. She was a painter (both watercolour and oil), decorative painter, textile painter, printmaker and writer. During WWII she turned her talents into map making for the US government. She wrote 3 books on design: Decorative Designs; 200 Motifs and Designs, and Flowers in Nature and Design. She also illustrated 3 books that were included in sets of pictures to color: Flowers to Color; Birds to Color, and Scenes to Color. She died in Chicago 1952.

14-09-12 Flowers to ColorAnd Flowers to Color is how I came to know Fritzi Brod… When I was about 8 years old, my parents gave me the Flowers to Color box. The box contained a small box of crayons, 32 black and white plates of all the flowers listed in the accompanying booklet Flowers to Color with illustrations by Fritzi Brod. I would never color on these black and white plates but copied them and colored on another page. Over the years the black and white plates were lost but I still have the book.

Years later, my mother and a close family friend, Mr. Reiner were closing up an apartment of his first secretary after her death and there on the wall were three of the flower pictures from the book, Flowers to Color. I recognized them immediately and requested to have them if no one else wanted them. Mr. Reiner asked why I wanted them and I told him 14-09-12 flower picturesabout the coloring box of my childhood. He then informed me that he and his wife had given these pictures to his secretary and they were the original plates from the book. He gave me these pictures, I had them reframed and they have hung in my home ever since.

Mr Reinier had been friends with Fritzi and Oswald Brod for years and he asked me one time if I still had the little Flowers to Color Book and I told him of course, it was one of my treasured positions of childhood. He asked me to bring 14-09-12 den couplesit down to his apartment and of course I did. Mr. Reiner had six original watercolours that Fritzi had given him for his birthday, but due to space could not display them. Each picture is a couple in native 14-09-12 sitting roomCzechoslovakians peasants costumes. Mr. Reiner gave these to me and the accompanying cards describing each. I had these framed and they also hang in my home. I have a couple ads from shows that Fritzi had and these pictures are listed in the show.

14-09-12 card noelMr. Reiner was so pleased that someone enjoyed Fritzi’s art as much as he did that over the years he gave me three Christmas cards Fritzi had sent to him, one is an original. He also gave me 200 Motifs and Designs; a portfolio with design plates Fritzi had sent to him. Mr. Reiner also had three other 14-09-12 200 motifs coverpictures framed in his apartment that have remained in his family and a glass vase with nude etchings that is signed by Fritzi.

In the late 90’s I spent a great deal of time researching Fritzi Brod and even was in contact with Rose Brod (Rose was the second wife of Oswald Brod). She gave me permission to reproduce any of Fritzi’s designs in any media I so chose. I never had the opportunity to meet Rose Brod but we corresponded for many years. I have a 3 inch notebook on Fritzi Brod and her art work; it contains all the press releases I have found over the years and pictures of all the works I have ever found on the internet and elsewhere. I also have copies of all the books Fritzi wrote or illustrated. Fritzi Brod is a true inspiration to me, I love her work, even the ones that are baroque and yes, even her nudes. I would love to find more of the flower watercolours, especially the tulips. And of course I would love to find pictures like the ones Mr. Reiner had.

So, you can see why a few weeks ago I was speechless when a Fritzi Brod arrived at my house. What a gift …

Thank you for stopping by, I hope you find time to stitch today! ttfn…sue

Oh my gosh…Thank you

I had a blog all ready to post about cording BUT I have to show you what arrived at my house last week. The UPS man arrived and I am still speechless when I look up and see this picture…

14-09-02 In the Workshop

I hung this immediately in my office so I see it everyday; I also have a nail in my stitching nest to hang it there too. I want this to be an inspiration to me to complete some of the designs I have in various stages of completion. This is a lithograph titled “In the Workshop” by Fritzi Brod. I have loved this artist since I was a little girl and have several of her originals in my home. I have always loved this picture too and a dear friend sent this to me. As soon as I finish the roll ups I will write all about Fritzi Brod.

14-09-01 In the workshop wall

Right now I am still speechless. Very few things leave me speechless and almost in tears, but this gift did both. All I can say is: Thank you so much.

ttfn…sue

Sidetracked…A present & Value of Gray study

I am still stitching on the flowers for Mom & Me. Hope to have it finished this week-end.

But this week I got a bit sidetracked.

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My DH brought this find to me this week. He found it in the basement; I think it must have been in the tools and craft drawers from my uncle.  It must have been a pin at one time but the pin-back is missing. I also have a bracelet similar to this that my uncle gave me several years ago. And I also have 2-3 thimbles with this petit OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERApoint. I tried researching these but the best I could find is that they were made in the 1940-50 in West Germany or Austria. None of mine has a marking that I can see but all are backed in brass. Doesn’t matter, I like them and just wish I knew more about them. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAnyone out there who knows about this jewelry I would love to hear from you. Hummmmm, do I feel another collection blooming?

And I worked more on my Values of Gray study. I have all the written work completed; I have begun to make computer pages of my samples and I have my paint samples made. I haven’t decided if I am just going to market the book with designs or whether to teach it online and share my samples too.

All my stitched samples are completed (well except for the big project I want to do) and I have had this idea in my head ever since I saw Kurdy Biggs sewing wallet (http://www.threedles.com/06012011/2013/Pangea/Pangea_BagAndWallet.html)….I loved it! And while I was stitching the samples for Shades of Gray I decided to make my own sewing book (but that isn’t the big project).

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASo I have been mulling around my ideas…the other night at 2 AM an idea came to me.  Just as a thought…does everyone get these spurts of inspiration at odd hours or is it just me? These creative outbursts really cut into my sleep and I had to get up to draw a rough OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAsketch of the ideas. Next morning I drew them on the computer and then made up this small paper mock up. Now I am measuring needlework and thinking about how to construct the book. Any suggestions for sources of books or online helps would be appreciated. I have already decided to make a muslin prototype and think I’ll start this soon.

Today is opening day for the KC Royals so I see baseball and stitching in my afternoon plan.

Thank you for stopping by this week and I hope you have time to stitch every day! ttfn…sue

Spring has come to my patiio

It has been cold, dark and damp here in the Midwest for most of April and that is both annoying and unusual…But Sunday spring finally arrived in the Midwest, the birds are sing about it and I am finding it difficult to remain inside. And especially since the weatherman said the end of the week is going to be cold (and yes, he used that flake word) and rainy. Imagine May and snow…unheard of. My flowers will not like this and neither will I…at least it will not last long.

As you all are probably getting tired of hearing about, since we combined households with one of our sons we got the best end of this deal! Now my patio & yard is looking to others how I envisioned it all along…like a patio and garden to enjoy. This week-end our son opened the patio, planted flowers and vegies, and built me a fountain for the patio. He used my Grandmother’s old wash tub and watering can…too cute and I love a fountain…water is so calming and so-o-o relaxing.

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And today Lucy (she’s in the picture) and I are taking full advantage of outdoor work space. I have flowers, fountain and sun to keep me distracted…no I have been working (computer in picture too), but it is hard.

And I am thinking about an outdoor siesta followed by sipping & stitching. Hope you all are having a spring moment too …

Thank you for stopping by and I hope you have time to stitch today!
ttfn…sue

IFTG: It’s Friday, thank God

I think that phase is suppose to be TGIF ( Thank God it is Friday) but mine means where has the week gone. Have no pictures to share with you, unless you would like me to take one of my messy desk; I don’t ever seem to be able to keep this clear very often.

I’ve done stitches for a new stitch guide for a teacher/designer and I have tweaked a couple others that needed tweaking. Yes teachers/designers do correct their instructions…well at least the few I do stitch graphs for do. BUT, remember some designer/teachers print in large quantities to get a printing discount and so it may take a few classes to see those changes.

I am getting close to printing one of those projects and I have had a guild and 6 people check over the project and I know there are still going to be mistakes. We all read what we want to read or what we think is there. Sometimes errors are small a two for a to, a miss numbering, or just a typo no one sees until you get the final project.  Even with “spell and grammar checker” there are mistakes…please be patient with us… we try to get it right.

That said…I think if you move an incorrect instruction or stitch diagram (numbering is wrong or stitch placement is incorrect) from one teaching piece to another without correcting is not fair to the student/ purchaser.  I do know this happens AND it is my pet peeve. (I know I am too close to this too)

Okay, this was just going to be “I’m sorry I don’t have more to say” post for the week not a soapbox stand.  So, after I post this I’m off to First Fridays at the antique shops in the west bottoms (http://www.westbottoms.com/) for inspiration and finds I can’t live without. 

I have stitched this week and maybe next week will show this project…

Thank you for stopping by and I hope you have time to stitch today!

ttfn…sue

Week-endwithout stitching ;-(

Friday since stitching was out (eye was watering and didn’t want to strain eye on computer or stitching), husband was home, and the weather was beautiful; we decided to take the afternoon off and go looking. My eye was watering but I could see and what a better distraction than shopping.

Kansas City’s West Bottoms have become a mecca for antique shops and spook houses. First noticed these antique shops while taking grandson to work at spook houses this fall…Yes, I had an awful looking character living with me. (sudu note: forgot to include picture, added couple hours later)The hours were awful, the pay lousy but he had fun and a ride home on late nights…a few nights were 3 AM L.  BUT my husband and I didn’t hear him come home and garage door is below master bedroom…Scary. But that is over and never to happen again…and I digress.

The antique shops are only open on First Friday week ends (http://www.kansascity.com/2012/01/05/3355042/antique-shop-is-opening-friday.html). First Friday in the Crossroads happen the 1st week end of the month; Kansas City artists have their openings and shows (http://www.kccrossroads.org/); it draws a large crowd to downtown. So off we headed to look, 1st stop Restoration Emporium the newest addition to the West Bottoms. And of course we were not 12 feet in the door when we found handle for our antique Fire King pans we’ve been looking for to replace our makeshift one. Then DH found 3 pans he could not live without. After touring about three of these establishments, I told DH you know your old when the antique shops are selling things you remember having, using or still have nd are using.

We also found a man who makes furniture…I think I have a couple projects for him…You can see him on this website: http://kcjewel.wordpress.com/2012/01/06/first-first-friday-2012/.

Then my DDH suggested we drive to Parkville, Mo, it’s just over the river and down the road a bit. There is a shop I have wanted to go see for a long time. I agreed without hesitation…OH MY, a great place…I could still be there! Eye Candy everywhere! Florilegium (http://florilegium.com/index.htm ) I will be going back! Notice the Paternayan; they had a good supply in hanks. Gretchen, the owner dyes her own ribbons and they were beautiful! I was in this store two hours and DH had wandered the entire shopping area 8-10 shops and even decided where we should eat. I brought up the website last night and oooh-ed & aaah-ed again for a long time. I will be going back!

Saturday I found these at Pier 1…bought the sudu. I feel a new collection beginning. Also managed a trip to LNS…if I can’t stitch I can look and pick up threads for later. Tonight I think I might try to stitch…eye still a bit watery but I THINK I need a stitching fix. You know stitching is addicting and you crave it when you’re not doing it!

That’s how I spent my week-end…if I can’t stitch I shop!

Hope everyone has time to stitch today!  ttfn…sue