Friday, 29 January 2010

Reasons to be cheerful - its the weekend

Tonight when I left work it was light enough (well only just) to take a picture or two. And its almost light when I go out in the morning so things are getting better!
Above and below is our local "Michaelangelo" which I drive past on the way to work. I love painted buildings and this always makes me smile - its so incongruous in the middle of a little suburb.

Popped into a charity shop and spotted a sale of childrens collectible books - ooh lovely. I had to buy this one but was disappointed when I got home and tried to peel the price stickers off only for them to ruin the cover. Why do they put the stickers on the front cover like that? Anyway I still love the picture - perhaps a little tea staining will help the bright white patch!

Arrived home to find my copy of Selvedge had arrived. This is a wonderful read and I read it from cover to cover and keep them all. Even the adverts are textile related in some way. Pure eye candy all wrapped around with fabulous insight, history, creativity etc etc

Hoping to pull in something creative this weekend.

Hope you all have a good time!

Love Wend

Friday, 22 January 2010

Fun and Games

Well I must say a huge "Thank you" to you all for your comments throughout this week following my post about THE FORM last weekend. I have felt thoroughly hugged and that was just what I needed! Not one of you knows me but you all picked me up and gave me a gentle shove in the right direction and for that I've been both warmed and humbled. It's not been an easy week but I'm standing up straight again and you'll be relieved to know that THE FORM was sent in yesterday!

I also have to thank Joanne of "Things (handmade) for the lovely corsage above, which she sent to me as a thank you for my commnet on her blog.

So having sent in THE FORM I was pleased to end the working week early and had today off (Flexi time is a boon!).

Not wanting to waste this treat I planned each hour with CHORES that needed doing until 3 when I allowed myself to play a little. I got out my newly thrifted Snakes and Ladders board to photograph and remembered some others picked up last year.

It was fascinating to look at them together.

I think this must be the oldest with its very scary looking snakes.

This one (by SPEARS games) has a real 50s look to it (if anyone knows better please let me know!) with very cutsie children.

This one reminds me very much of the one I played with as a child...

But this one intrigued me with its very clear messages of right and wrong. There are very positive images at the bottom of the ladder - see square 37 where the little boy is studying with the top of the ladder at square 86 showing him getting prizes from his teacher whereas the the snakes have, at their mouths, naughty children - a girl pulling the cat's tail who is seen crying at the bottom of the snake because the cat has run off, and the boy using his catapult at 74 slides down to 49 because he is in trouble for breaking a window. But the girl washing dishes at 13 climbs the ladder and gets a trip to the circus at 31 for her trouble.

At 45 the girl who can't do her sums slides down to 9 where she sits with a dunce's hat (not an expression you hear now)

Does anyone remember these from your childhood?

Looking forward to a more relaxing weekend.

Hope yours is good.

Love Wend

Sunday, 17 January 2010

Health warning - seriously self indulgent post

Feel free to ignore this post folks but I need to get something off my chest.

I've been in a corner licking my wounds this week.

I have to apply for a job at the grade below that which I have been doing for the last 18 months. I feel degraded and de-graded and utterly dispensible.

I'm lucky to have a job

I'm lucky to have a job

I'm lucky to have a job

I keep telling myself this. I also keep telling myself that they are lucky to have me.

I've told them I will do the higher grade job for the lower pay - just to hang on to my sanity. And they would like me to do that - but I "still have to apply".

But today I must complete an application form to compete against others on the same team (of 6) as 2 of us will be out of a job.

And why am I doing this on a Sunday? - so that the application doesn't impact on "business as usual".

I wrote that this morning before I thought "No, I must go to an indoor car boot". I hadn't indoor booted before (I'm a March to November outdoor booter!)

And I probably won't do it again. I felt as if I needed scrubbing down with a yard brush afterwards. This was not a nice car boot.

Displacement obviously.

I counted my blankets (Ebay free listing day called) - stopped counting at 25 due to guilt. How many blankets do I need I asked Gorgeous Girl. 6! came the answer - 2 for each bed and 2 to snuggle under. Hmm - double it I thought... And I took pictures ready for listing and comforted myself with images of my eiderdowns.

But the form waited.

What did I buy at the boot? 3 large bags of interesting looking stamps. Those who read this blog know my affinity with stamps.

Came home - ripped bags open.

Only to find I'd been duped into buying bags of first and second class everyday queens head definitive stamps. Marvellous.

Tried to work on form. Failed miserably.

Tried to make a nice meal but it fell off the dish into the back of the oven. Not good.

And still the form waits...

Off to hurl myself on that rather inviting pile of eiderdowns and beat the hell out of them.

Sorry guys - normally don't do the self indulgent thing on my blog but today I needed to. Feel free to give me a cyber kick up the backside.

Hope you had a good weekend

Love Wend

Saturday, 9 January 2010

Last week gorgeous girl and I went to "The Beetroot Tree" at Draycott in Derbyshire on my birthday. Most of the time it isn't cool to come to galleries with me but because it was my birthday I got to choose!

The glass work is by Gill Hobson and I liked these impressive large pieces (some) mounted on stone plinths. Not to sound too morbid I thought they'd make delightful headstones!

Loving the ceramics by Karen Shapley whose work is inspired by the rituals of tea.

Her pieces often include fabrics or vintage spoons, sugar tongs etc...

I also liked the work of Judith Williamson who clearly gets through a lot of biscuits and chocolates to release the tins to make delightful pieces like this!

And closer - see that giveaway "Fox's" name on one of the petals?

After lunch we went to the Djanogly gallery in Nottingham to see this ...

This was a slightly crazy set up where you breathed at your peril for fear the arrangements would fall . All the exhibits seemed to be made up of the pieces from the cupboard under the stairs balanced against each other. As life's now back to normal after all the festivities I set up my own arrangement as I was cleaning today : - hoover, polish, mop, bucket and window cleaner but it all collapsed as I ran for the camera! But is it art?

It's still snowing and I had to laugh at this in one of the housey magazines - suggesting we fill a pair of gloves with some greenery and hang it up on the gate as a nice welcome gesture for guests. I'd love to know if anyone tried it. I didn't think shoving some hastily grabbed vegetation into my old gardening gloves frozen rigid would have the same effect as a pair of beautiful fairisles!

It is very, very cold here and although the snow looks lovely it has not been fun defrosting hte car at 7.30 each morning. The last couple of mornings I've not been able to unlock the drivers door or the passenger door, but surprise surprise, I could open the boot. I looked at gorgeous girl and she looked at me, her face blank, clearly not realising what was coming next. Right, I said, I'm going in. So in I went head first into the hatchback. Not my most elegant entry! Needless to say yesterday I insisted on GG going in first.

Hope the snow isn't putting you in inelegant poses!

Love Wend

Tuesday, 5 January 2010

Sleaford's hidden gems

Following the "more art" resolution Sunday saw a run out to Sleaford, home of The Hub, National Centre for Craft and Design

The exhibition showing was "Out of the Ordinary: Spectacular Craft" which had previously run at the V&A. Unfortunately I didn't get many decent pictures. So frustrating when I see all these things I want to share with you.

I was intrigued by the work of Susan Cullis which included this step ladder with what appeared to be paint rings on it. They were in fact pieces of inlaid mother of pearl and the effect was amazing. There was also what appeared to be a paint spattered dust sheet screwed up in the corner of the gallery. Again on peering closely I could see that each paint spot had been carefully embroidered. Weird and surprisingly beautiful.

A walk around the town revealed more beauty in the form of these railings which are ageing in a very gorgeous fashion. I loved this little corner too with the railings, overhanging windows, the fish shop sign and the reflected light on the window in the background and in the water below...

To get some relief from the pain in my ears due to the intense cold I recalled there was something worth seeing in the church (The church of St Denys - remind me to check what he did to deserve being canonised!). I'm a huge fan of stained glass and the effects cast by the light pouring through it.

I love this lady in green - just beautiful...

This amazing window is a recent addition in memory of a local lady. How wonderful to have something so enduring in your honour.

Then I saw the lovely William Morris window with its oranges and lemons -

just fabulous!

Hoping you're not snowed in!

Love Wend

Sunday, 3 January 2010

2010 - More art

2010 resolution number 1 - more art...

started with two exhibitions at

David Hockney : including some of his Californian swimming pool paintings. I love this moment frozen in time entitled SPLASH...

and Frances Stark, an American lady new to me, whose art seemed to match her name although I liked this idea of phones which have the semblance of people...

and had to smile that she had taken this a step further with life sized dresses

They smack a little of desperation on the dance floor don't they? Would you like my number? Call me! Call me!

Resolution 2 - more cerebral and less cynical?

Love Wend