Saturday, November 26, 2011


All that is left is the...

Poor Lonely Sewing Machine  Mind you we can see the beautiful floor now.

All clearly labelled not to move (six guys having fun...hard to get them to focus).

Easy to feed them though...21 donuts some Double Doubles, Hot Chocolate and Coffee, three and a half Extra Large Pizzas and lots of Pepsi.

All that is left is the dining room table, two chairs, a stool and my sewing chair (I have a project to finish), the office and....
 and one bewildered Sundae.  Buddy is still hiding in the bedroom.

I will sweep up all the dust gorillas tomorrow, I am too tired now.

It is delightful to listen to the cats play with their little balls in the completely empty living room and in the almost empty studio.

You know, cats are like children playing with the empty toy boxes.....lots of expensive kitty toys have been unearthed but she is now playing with an empty coffee creamer......rattle, rattle, clackety, clackety......sure echoes in here now.Posted by Picasa

Friday, November 25, 2011

See I told you so......

There really is a sewing machine back there.....and yes that really is a rain barrel

inside the door thawing out!  It is now ready to dump but we need a big strong person to move it. We will get the same guy that brought it in.

I had that table empty again, but it is starting to collect stuff again, I didn't fold it down quick enough.  

Large troupe of people coming tomorrow to move boxes and some furniture, wish us luck, they are all volunteers.

Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

I'm in the bag....almost!

It has been a struggle to save my working materials from the over zealous movers, but I am on the home stretch here, the two sides of the bag are done, now I just have to construct it. 

I am planning a zipper closure and an elaborate interior with a zipper section and a few pockets, all trimmed in either gold or silver thread......if I can get my thread and my machine to agree with each other.  I will be using ties for a shoulder strap, just knotting them so there is some adjustment room.

I will be fusing some heavy duty Pellon to the back of these panels to give them stability.  A dragon's hoard weighs a lot.  It is a good thing that my patron wants a museum piece art bag, she is little and will quickly tire carrying this bag, especially if she puts anything in it!!! lol

The dragon is a real sweetie.....she is snuggled down in her hoard and dreaming of laying an egg.  I just stuffed and needle sculpted her this evening.  All she needs is two little red Swarovsky crystals in her nostrils and some tooth whitener.   Any ideas???  Acrylic paint maybe??

There are clear silver-lined seed beads on the ceiling of the cave on the right side, although they do not show in the picture.  I did this to highlight the light comeing in from the cave opening.  I am hoping they will catch the light when the bag is moved.

To balance off the skeleton there are three tiny silver crosses in the mix.  Dragons will collect anything shiny, and defend their hoard very fiercely.  Young dragons have difficulty telling rhinestones from real diamonds, but they get better at it as they mature.

It has been a nice break from packing to work on this bag.  It sort of growing on me.....but then so do warts.
Hugs to all,
Posted by Picasa

Moving update for those of you who are helping... spirit that is!!

The up side of all this is I get to fondle my stash as I pack, albeit very quickly.

Remember the bookshelves filled with boxes?  Those boxes went and new ones are piled up, and the cases are labeled for placement.  All this stuff is going on the 26th when DH's largest Bible Study group are bringing their pick up trucks (living in a rural community is nice, almost everyone has a truck!) and helping with a major move.

Remember that closet that was emptied, well it is getting full to overflowing again, but it sure is nice to have a place to put the packed boxes.  Anyone want an antique Singer hem marker? The rubber bulb is still soft, and there is even chalk in it.  If nothing else it will be a conversation piece...along with my antique ironing board. lol

There were two large bookcases here in this wall, they went last week and we are using the space for packed boxes.  We have rounded up all the plants except this one and are caring for them on an antique ironing board in the living room.  They will be moved on the final day.

The living room is packed and and all the furniture is stacked to go.  Our living room suite is a piece of cake to move, it is sectional and made of rattan.....light as a feather.  The cushions are heavier than any one piece of the furniture.

This is the last unpacked studio section.  I need it as I am rushing to finish a commission piece before everything is in boxes and gone to our new home where I will not be able to find anything for quite a while.
I had better get to this soon, as everyone keeps piling things into this area (I won't dare show you what is on the other side of this table.....there is even a 55 gallon drum rain barrel brought in off the patio to thaw so we can empty it for moving!) 

This table has actually been cleared twice now.  It's as if people are rounding up stuff and herding it into a pile for me to deal with, it makes for a strange assortment of stuff in boxes when you are trying to pack like with like.  There will be some surprises at the other end. 

If I can get it clear again I will fold it up and lean it up against a wall.....that'll fix 'em.......or will they just start burying my sewing machine??  Believe it or not my trusty Husky is set up on the far side of that mountain of stuff in the picture.  Honest!

I will post about the progress on the bag.

Posted by Picasa

Sunday, November 13, 2011

On the move again........

We are pacing in readiness for our move...supposed to be Dec. 31, but our landlord has not settled the 30 months left on our lease.  We don't want to go till that is done.  It is difficult to hire a mover saying "I'll gladly pay you Thursday for a move you do today."  Especially if you are not sure you will get enough to pay the bill!

My husband had his Bible Study buddies over on Friday (Remembrance Day...and remember what friends are for day!) and they moved a LOT of stuff.

Picture this cupboard (tilt your head a bit and squint) full to the top with the orange boxes pictured below.  My button stash and my upholstery fabric stash.
I filled this up to the top again today in readiness for the next moving day. All larger boxes with fabric and my yarn stash in them.  I emptied a cabinet that we are going to use in the dining room in the new place.  These two bookshelves will go to when we move the office, they are the back wall for it.

Two bookshelves just like these and the boxes of all the books that were packed solidly in them went to the new place, and three boxes of books went to my Art Quilting group.  I spent the day with them as my DH did not want me around annoying the young fellows who were moving.  (i.e. mud on floors, breakage, putting stuff in the wrong place at our new home......etc.)  I managed to forward three boxes of books to friends this way, had to bring very few home again.

On the way home we stopped at the new place, and I did have to spend an hour with a very nice fellow moving boxes to their proper place so that the heavy furniture can be placed exactly the first time.  I do not want to have to play Chinese Puzzle with boxes and heavy furniture when I get there.  I planned out on graph paper exactly where everything is to go.  We only want to schlepp the furniture around once.

Notice the ties are all big boxes!  More empty boxes a table to be sorted and a willing to help cat.  We are finding a multitude of cat toys behind and under stuff.  The cat is happy.  (This morning while I was on the loo he brought me a little orange ball and we played fetch for a looong time.  He had me captured on the throne and at his mercy, and he brought the ball right back to my feet every time.....he has no off button!) 
I also swept up enough cat hair to make another cat!  I am going to have to find a way to keep stuff from creeping or being played under the rolling bins.  I might just leave the wheels off after the move.
And yes I do feel a bit topsy-turvy.......guess where they put stuff that was on the furniture that I did not want moved yet...yep, you're right...on the nearest flat surface.  And yes I had to go and get some stuff for the commission I am doing (has to be done before Christmas) and bring it back!  Lots of packing yet to do.

But I refuse to whinge about the small stuff, those guys worked very hard and I am sooo grateful.  They were using two vans and two pick-up trucks and they made two trips each fuelled only by two boxes of donuts!  Next time I will have Pizza for them, but I wasn't there.  Remember...I had been sent away for the day!

One of our friends hid a big box of ties (rose boxes from the flower shop, 1' x 1' x 4') on me.  He is always teasing me that I have too much stash, only that is not what he calls it.  I noticed right away and remarked about it.  I had found in the garage, but was not going to let on.  Today I told him that if he touched that tie box in the garage I would tear his arm off and stick the wet end in his ear!We had a good laugh.

I have finished packing for today, but I must admit that it is lovely to go through it all and fondle it a bit while repacking it.

Tired but satisfied sigh,

Dianne Leatherdale Johnson
Posted by Picasa

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Continuation of previous post.

That dainty little green gem beside the mushroom is the most luxurious and beautiful ground cover.  You can practically hear it grow and the mature leaves are 2" across until........insert eerie music here.......about the middle of July it lays flat in the centre and looks ugly and goes to seed  making a tri-zillion seeds that sprout at the least provocation everywhere in your yard that the wind has seen fit to take them.   You will never get rid of it...never.....Roundup was made for this is Round Leaf Mallow!  Beware!
I harvested the Horseradish and the beets, not leaving that for the demolition crew!  I made the most wicked hot Horseradish/beet relish!  Wonderful stuff.  I made a gallon of it....and now am giving it away to people who are not afraid of it...surprisingly many are! I also brought in all the carrots, froze a bunch and gave away some, and kept the wonky ones to eat fresh.......aren't carrots fun to grow??  I bet nice Victorian ladies were not allowed to harvest them! lol
I did not get all the Horseradish roots out, and have delightful fantasies of giant Horseradish leaves bursting up through the floor of the 40 million dollar building the CU is going to build on this spot!  hehehe
I have pretty much stopped new work for Manitoba Art Expo at The Downs in November and am concentrating on a commission I have to have done for Christmas.
We are addressing the packing issue even though we have not been notified of a settlement of our lease, and since our lawyer put a caveat on the title it cannot be transferred until we are satisfied to our 'mutual agreement' as it says in our lease.  We cannot even look for a new location which will accommodate our business, our home and our two cats until we know what the settlement will be.  I hate this waiting, we were supposed to hear on September 16, but nothing yet.
Do you remember this picture?  This is what I had just two short years ago:
Stacked to the ceiling and fifteen feet deep to the patio doors!  Now I get to do it all over again.  I am going to be packing it all myself and hope to do a better job; like with like, good labels and not a jar of buttons in each and every box like the last guy did. (He did it as a joke, I laughed until I started finding a bag of beads in every other box.  It took me forever to sort out my new studio.)  I have only three different styles of boxes...two kinds of nail boxes from a pallet making company, and big chick transport boxes from a local poultry company. 
All boxes will be closed for stacking and be well labelled.  One type of  nail box, with the flaps up, will fit into the other nail box with the flaps open as well.  Just like those fruit cases.  Makes a box and a half tall if I need it but is closed for stacking. I have packed eight this way already.  I have loooots of boxes!  I also kept eight rose boxes from the flower shop in which I moved my was I really expecting to have to move again?  DH saved them in the attic.....good man.
I am contemplating hiring myself out as a professional packer!
Please remember us nomads in your prayers.
Love to all....

Posted by Picasa

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Life boggleing news!

We are having to move.....!!  Sept 1 we were informed that our building had been sold to the Steinbach Credit Union for demolition and we were to be out by Dec 31!

We had just put five  yards of soil into the yard in preparation for more raised perennial beds.  Shovelled some of it myself!

The Morning Glory has bloomed in all it s luxuriousness,

and finally, at this late stage in my life I have Shaggy Mane mushrooms blooming in my own yard!  They are

This one is a tad over ripe.

going to a new post as Blogger will not let me continue here!  :(
Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Working like a beaver...fibre collage.

I am having way too much fun with Paverpol and ties. 

Crescent moon with navy moleskin painted with Paverpol wrapped around a stretched canvas.  Ties and upholstery fabric is unpainted......then beady, beady, beady!! 

 Carnelian, Lapis Lazuli and shell leaves along with various sizes of seed beads.

A Walk In The Forrest.  Polyester dress fabric (originally a sage green) painted with Paverpol which changes the colour to what it would look like wet; gallery wrapped around stretched canvas.

It really is straight, honest....I don't have a tripod.....


Raw silk, birch bark, lichen, sari silk waste and some rat tail.  The delicate botanical elements have been protected with Paverpol.  This was the very reason I investigated the product in the first place.   Works wonderfully, but it is all experimentation and a steep learning curve.   My Crap Quota expands!

I am frantically working toward Manitoba Art Expo in November.  I want to have a lot of new work there this year.

Check it out:

Back to the salt mines......


Posted by Picasa
This was just picked in our garden two days ago.  This picture was taken this afternoon
This is Manitoba, Canada.  This is October.  This is amazing!

Dianne who is very happy today and going to gaze at this some more.
Posted by Picasa

Monday, September 26, 2011

Stacking Up

Just had to join Seth Apter on his Altered Page blog.  Thank you Wen for the link.
Here is my purposeful, hard working stack:

Posted by PicasaI ended up with a whole lot of flat unwrinkled leather, and a bag full of little schnibbles that I just can't bear to throw away.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Back in my studio

I am uninjured....for the moment, touch wood....and back in my studio.

I really like the wrapped canvas technique, and have done a quick study in blues with some mystery fibre for the background that mottled very nicely under the Paverpol, and a lovely flowered tie and two swatches of upholstery fabric.  These work up quite quickly and I need more pieces for a sale in November.

I was planning a lot more bling, but the shell leaves seemed to make enough of a statement.
I am progressing slowly but surely on the dragon side of my bag. the cave come out very well, and I am now amassing the hoard for the dragon to sleep on.  I have some nice bits of skeleton to include in the pile.  After all, even nice dragons do eat people sometimes.

DH is getting a little bit owly about my oozing on to the dining room table.  I can't say as I blame him, it is not as if I don't have enough room in my studio.....I really must do a clean up day.
Back to my beady - beady - beading.......

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Garden Disaster -- self inflicted!

Oh dearie me!!!    I got the bright idea of fertilizing through the water in my planters.....did a quick mental calculation of gallons to tablespoons of Miracle Gro and put it in the water.    Bad move!  I badly burnt the roots.  Must seriously rethink calculations...maybe with a pencil.
I quickly watered from the top very thoroughly and flushed out the reservoirs to dilute the fertilizer.  A week later I have lost all the beans, probably the cucumbers (will have to give them some time).
Bin #1 The yellow Zucchini are still struggling but have promising new growth.
Bin #2  Beans are toast.  Green Zucchini  looking iffy, always were, only one harvested to date.  Sweet 100 tomato severely damaged but tips are reviving.
Bin #3  Heritage tomatoes, Ukrainian Purple and Black from Tula are flourishing - good old fashioned varieties are very sturdy.
Bin #4  Cucumbers looking bad, Bush Beefsteak and Primo Red tomatoes seriously damaged.  I think I have helped cure the blossom end rot in these two with some crushed egg shells run through the blender.  This adds Calcium.

Mind you this is today's harvest:
- Left hand vertical row is Primo Red with an example of the blossom end rot.
- Top three rows are Ukrainian Purple, only two on the left show some small blossom end rot.  No calcium treatment in this bin.  Very tasty almost paste like variety.
- Four examples of Black from Tula tomatoes.  Ugly yes, and these are not the ugliest, but super sweet, juicy and delicious.
- Big bunch of Sweet 100 tomatoes from a plant that might not recover from its overdose. They are soooo good that they are like eating candy.
- Four Bush Beefsteak tomatoes.  They do not seem to thrive in planters, they are small.
- Last hand full of salvaged beans.

DH said there was one plum left on the tree so I went to look....wonder of wonders I picked another 18 plums.  They hide, and one of the most productive branches is almost on the ground.  I am going to try to train it up a bit.  We got a total of 29 plums in this its third year. Hum!  There were only 3 last year and if I calculate a bit I get a 866% increase, therefore next year we should get 25,133.43 plums!

I have visions of Plum Jam, Plum Pudding, Plum Dumplings, preserved Plums, pickled Plums, Plum juice, and maybe even a little something for Simple Simon.....

I was going to take a picture, they were large and very plump and purple with green hints, but DH and I had desert last night and this is all that is left:
I think we even swallowed some pits!

In case you were ever wondering, this is what is under the table that I use to take the pictures:
Must dust....most embarrassing.....

Posted by Picasa

Friday, August 19, 2011

This n That & Then Some

Well, this toe is proving to be taking just as long to heal as the last one.  I think you have to keep it absolutely immobile and stay off it for a few that time the toe will be real good but the rest of me will be immobile!  So I am munching Tylenol 3's and keeping on truckin'!

This is how I finished the back on Riverbend 1:

I covered a piece of cardboard with fabric then painted Paverpol on it, but the moisture caused it to buckle!
I will have to cover the cardboard with masking tape first.  But it is still a nice finish and it is ready to hang.

Did some harvesting in the garden and some rummaging in the fridge and have made up a batch of beet borscht.  Only once in 43 years have I ever made it so perfectly like my Baba's that upon smelling and tasting it I felt like she was standing right beside me......wonderful feeling.  But it is always good unless you make a glaring error like forgetting the beets or something! 

We will have this tonight for supper, along with some cheese biscuits fresh out of the oven.   Now I just have to figure out how to get the cheese into the biscuits!
I have never done that before.....Kitchen Kemistry is so much fun!

Almost as much fun as Studio Alchemy.......

Posted by PicasaThis is the start of my Dragon's cave...It is getting deeper and deeper.....oooohhh scary!

DH is home...time to make buscuits!

Monday, August 8, 2011

The Perils of Pauline (read Dianne)

Well I've gone and done it again!  Really done it!  Sunday morning I was hurrying to get dressed for a 100 mile trip to see my sister (who has not phone just now, so I couldn't cancel) and I kicked my cane again.....

Popped some Tylenol 3's and off we went for the day.  Sis has a new friend, a cowboy....he and I had a wonderful time talking horses.....DH and Sister went for a walk!!   Now, knowing my background there is certainly some irony in her getting a cowboy and me getting a florist!!
We visited some friends out that way too and got back to Steinbach around eight and stopped by the hospital as I was thinking that maybe I did more than break a toe, lots of pain up in my foot.  Got it x-rayed and sure enough there is a diagonal fracture in the long (relatively speaking) bone.  The nice doctor told me there was nothing they could do for it, which I knew, and that the only cure was to live long enough for it to heal!  Very encouraging fellow!  Three to six weeks.  He scolded me for not keeping it elevated and on ice.
I am still trying to figure out how to elevate a toe and ice it......
I asked him if there was a remedy for my Croc Foot problem.  That confused him for a bit until he took a second look.     hehehehe
Posted by Picasa

Thursday, August 4, 2011

I had a visual that just had to be made.  I managed it in just three days.  There was some overnight drying time involved with the Paverpol.

This is gallery wrapped on a stretched canvas then painted with two coats of Paverpol which makes the fabric look wet.  Dark fabric gets very dark, so I lightened it up with coloured pencil...need to do a bit more.

The background fabric is a thrift store find and the river is men's ties...fancy that.  The centre square is an upholstery sample.  A stone bead, and glass beads are the embellishments, the line along the river is actually a picot edge.
Where do you think I should sign this piece?

Posted by Picasa

Pageviews last month