Saturday, August 29, 2009

Things to look at

I'm not in a writing mood lately.
But I do feel like showing you some of the lovely things I picked up in New York.
Hope you won't mind this rather "quiet" post.

Back issue of Selvedge magazine

Hildy from the Lima Collection

Babycakes recipe book

Linen from B&J

Liberty fat quarters from Purl

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Random roundup

This post got me thinking about favourite songs. Sheesh, it would take me forever to whittle a list down to my desert island must-haves, but I thought it would be fun to see what comes out off the top of my head. Of course if you asked me tomorrow, I'd have a totally different list. Consider this a completely random roundup:

1. River Man, Nick Drake
2. Burning Down The House, Talking Heads
3. Spelunking, Laura Veirs
4. Heartbeat, David Sylvian
5. Never Had No One Ever, The Smiths
6. God, John Lennon
7. Digital, Joy Division
8. When the Levee Breaks, Led Zeppelin
9. Emily, Joanna Newsom
10. Turn You Inside-Out, REM
11. Brothers Gonna Work It Out, Public Enemy
12. He Doesn't Know Why, Fleet Foxes
13. All The Love, Kate Bush
14. Eye No, Prince
15. Kooks, David Bowie
16. Company In My Back, Wilco
17. Give It Up, Talk Talk
18. Across the Universe, The Beatles
19. Oh Well, Okay, Elliott Smith
20. Refuge Of The Roads, Joni Mitchell
21. Black Dove, Tori Amos

Hmm, pretty nostalgia-heavy there, grandma...

I limited myself to one song per artist, though really, many of them could fill up the list by themselves (I could EASILY have all Smiths songs for instance, to my DH's chagrin). And I left off classical music, French artists, and guilty pleasures, all of which take up a good chunk of my ear space too.


What are some of your favourite songs?

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Souvenir yarn

Thank you for your encouraging words following my last post. I've dusted off my sketchbook and have been drawing again. It feels good.

But fear not, there is still lots of yarn in my world. I was on a fibre mission in NYC, looking for speckled skeins of Koigu KPPPM. In soft, sun-faded, beachy colours. I have been collecting some of this stuff over the years, and wanted to buy up enough to finally make a Barn Raising Quilt.

Mission accomplished.

I started making some squares.

I'm totally hooked.

Thursday, August 6, 2009


One of the main reasons why we love NYC so much is all the great opportunities to see art. It seems like every time we go, there's always a major show I'm dying to see. This time it was Francis Bacon at the Met, and James Ensor at MoMA. There were smaller shows too, Fashioning Felt at the Cooper-Hewitt, and Ray Johnson at Richard L. Feigen & Company (if you don't know Ray Johnson, you should see "How to Draw a Bunny" a fantastic documentary on him). Another fun thing we always do is take a ramble in the art gallery district in Chelsea. You can pick up a free directory of all the galleries and the work they feature. It makes for a great, free afternoon, and we get to see what's happening right now in the NY art scene.

One of my favourite pieces was at MoMA, an art installation called "Measuring the Universe", by Roman Ondak:




"Over the course of the exhibition, attendants mark Museum visitors' heights, first names, and date of the measurement on the gallery walls. Beginning as an empty white space, over time the gallery gradually accumulates the traces of thousands of people."

This short video shows the artist explaining the ideas behind his work.



I couldn't resist being measured up for posterity. I was excited to participate in this lovely piece. I can now officially say that I'm in the Museum of Modern Art. Maybe not in the way that I had imagined, when I dreamed of one day becoming a famous artist...

I always come back from NYC feeling nourished creatively. Art-making seems more fluid there, more intrinsic to everyday life. I find it difficult maintaining my artistic drive while stuck in my 9 to 5, but I really feel a deep need to spend more time making art. Maybe even at the expense of other things like knitting. I haven't talked about this here before, but my ambition in life has always been to work as a serious artist. But apart from studying fine art in university, and showing/selling a few pieces here and there, I haven't found the courage yet to really make it happen. I find it scary.

I think my love of NYC is a way to keep that little creative flame alive.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Puddles are fun...

...when you have new rubber boots!

So the weatherman was right, we did get crazy storms pretty much every day we were in NYC. But we didn't care. It was actually quite romantic, huddling under an umbrella, arm in arm, taking frequent refuge in some cozy cafe. We had such a lovely time!

And oh, how nice it is to be home again. Wouldn't you know it, the sun has finally come out.

In the next couple of days, I'll show you some of what we did, and the treasures we found. For now, I have piles of laundry to contend with.