Sunday, April 28, 2019

A Crisis in the Borderlands and a Response That Makes Me Proud

Over the past two weeks the Border Patrol has dropped off more than 2000 asylum seekers here in Las Cruces, New Mexico, and more are arriving every day. Our community's response has been pretty incredible. These weary folks have been given food, shelter, fresh sets of clothes and shoes, a place to bathe, and a safe place to rest until the next part of their journey begins. Las Crucens are donating food, toiletries, money, and time to help out. Today we met some people who are raffling off art to raise money to help local churches and organizations with expenses.
You can buy some tickets to help our community's humanitarian response, even if you live far from this crisis in the borderlands. Please share this story with everyone who might help. 

FRI, MAY 3 AT 5 PM
Raven Art Studio, 300 N. Main Street

Sunday, April 21, 2019

Happy Easter


I tried my hand at natural-dyed Easter eggs, and these are my first  attempts. While not exactly perfect, they do please me. Here are the steps:

1. Take eggs, warm from the nest. 

2. Rinse them off, then poke holes in each end and blow gently to get the insides out.

3. Wrap them tightly in old pantyhose with tiny leaves and flowers pressed up against their sides. 

4. Simmer the wrapped eggs in a pan filled with onion skins and water. I'm going to use some of this onion skin dye to color some handspun yarn. Such a rich color!

For some much clearer directions and some stunning examples, please visit the Made By Barb blog post, Easter Eggs Printed With Botanicals.

Monday, February 25, 2019

Frugality Can Be Oddly Satisfying: A Confession

Use it up
Wear it out
Make it do, or
Do without

That slogan has always been my mantra. I grew up thinking that it was a New England saying, but just found this information: [The saying was] coined by the War Advertising Council during World War II to promote the dual need to conserve scarce resources and to help keep prices down by not generating excess demand.

Whatever the source, the sentiment has always made sense to my frugal New England soul. I hope you can understand that because I am about to tell you... 


I made covers for old potholders today. 

Yep, that seems odd even to me. But it was also strangely satisfying to take those raggedy old things and make them into something much better while using bits of fabric from the scrap bag. 

I first spent some time researching what materials I would need to make new potholders but decided that if I did make new ones, I would still have the old ones to throw out and I am all about reducing waste these days. 

You'll suspect that my life is a quiet one, but I keep peeking in the potholder drawer now, admiring my handiwork and feeling quite delighted.  So that's my confession. You can fix up your old potholders, too. Just don't tell anyone who gave you the idea. 


Old, raggedy, discolored

Joyful colors from the scrapbag--the potholders now match a quilt, a dress, a lampshade, and some curtains

Sunday, February 24, 2019

Sweaters for Refugee Babies

These sweaters, hats, and mittens will go to the Salaam Cultural Museum in Seattle, Washington to start their journey to a Syrian refugee camp in Jordan. I wish for warmth and safety for the little children who will wear them. 









Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Embellishing the Van Gogh Bathroom

As I have mentioned before, I have a small rustic bathroom designed around a Van Gogh shower curtain from Cafe Press. Over the Christmas holidays I had a special morning out with my son for some leisurely shopping and lunch. Along the way, I picked up a used copy of Van Gogh's Van Goghs from our much-beloved local bookstore, Coas Books.

I've been carefully removing prints from the book. After painting and refurbishing old picture frames and putting everything together, I had 14 new pictures to hang in the tiny bathroom. I also moved in a couple of larger prints from other parts of the house and got some help with the ladder work from my ever-obliging husband.

How much art can a tiny space hold? See what you think of the results. I've already spotted some space for a few more pictures...






The reflected shower curtain makes it hard to show this print of Cafe Terrace

The shower curtain that started it all


Detail: Postcard from my friend, Helen; and Vince Mints container from my sister

To the left of the sink...

... and to the right of the sink

Mexican metal bird hanger displaying necklaces--almost all made my sister

View in the mirror