The flowers that bloom in the spring, tra la…

I’ve been working on a birthday card for my oldest granddaughter, who will be 7 next week and it has proved something of a challenge. Unfortunately, because her parents are divorced and she lives 350 miles away, we hardly ever see her and her brother. In fact it’s been over a year since we saw them and they never phone, so we’ve lost touch and I no longer know what sort of things she likes.  It used to be all Disney princesses, so my cards reflected that:-

For my granddaughter's fourth birthday,  a Little  Mermaid card based on a Disney colouring page.
For my granddaughter’s fourth birthday, a Little Mermaid card based on a Disney colouring page.
My granddaughter loves the Disney princesses and Cinderella is her current favourite.
My five year old granddaughter loves the Disney princesses and Cinderella is her current favourite.
An early one, for my granddaughter
An early Zentangle nameplate, for her sixth birthday.

I’ve decided on another Zentangle because, even though I won’t have the pleasure of seeing her receive it, I will have had the pleasure of drawing it and hoping one day she will know how much love went into every line. Oh dear, getting maudlin’, time to move on.

Anyway, while we were in Crete a little while ago, I saw these in a shop and I’m going to copy be inspired by one. If you click on the pictures, you will see that they are sort of tangled. Very nice too.

I was a bit sneaky taking the picture in case they didn't like it, so the angle is not good but...
I was a bit sneaky taking the picture in case they didn’t like it, so the angle is not good but…
Can you see what to notice in the bottom of the window says? Don't you just love it?
Can you see what the notice in the bottom of the window says? Don’t you just love it?
20150508_112548
No matter what I did, I couldn’t escape the reflection on the glass.
My first one, about the size of an ATC.
My first one, about the size of an ATC.

I did the little one above little one while we were there for Konstantina, our hostess at the apartments, as a little thank you and, although you can tell it was a bit rushed, I felt it was OK as a first attempt. However, (isn’t there ALWAYS a “however”?) it’s proving harder than I thought. Here are my two first attempts at a bigger version, both unfinished, clearly, and I will complete them but I’m hoping they, and I, improve, or it”ll be back to Disney! I do, as a fallback idea, have a digital stamp of Tinkerbell and I might print that off, colour it prettily and tangle the background and frame.

Whereas this one is virtually tangled and ready to colour.
Whereas this one is virtually tangled and ready to colour.
I decided to colour this one before tangling and I'm going to have to quieten the skin tone down a bit.
I decided to colour this one before tangling and I’m going to have to quieten the skin tone down a bit.

In fact, I’m not doing very well at all, partly because I’m rushing and, therefore doing a pretty slap happy job.

Euthanasia is the kindest thing for this one, I feel.
Euthanasia is the kindest thing for this one, I feel.

This is the second one with colour and that background is just terrible, sloppy and far too dark. Doh! Still, while ever I have paper, I can start again.

 

Moving on:

So, why the title regarding flowers and spring and tra la? I’m glad you asked. The thing is, it is late Spring/early Summer here and the flowers are indeed blooming and the sun is shining and yet it is chilly. Glorious sun but with cool, not to say perishing cold, breezes. So each day I look out of the window and smile, sing a momentary tra la, glance at the summer wear in the wardrobe and then I put my cardigan on, and my woolly socks and I decide today is still not the day to go out and draw in the back garden. I’ll let you know if it gets above about 15 degrees.

We went to a little craft fair at a place called Worsborough Mill the other day. It’s a renovated 17th century flour mill and still produces flour you can buy and use to make bread etc. And very nice it is too – both the Mill and the flour itself. The craft fair was a small, local affair with only a couple of dozen stalls, including two or three selling hand made cards. And guess what. There were some tangled cards, very pretty and I’m hoping to “borrow” one or two ideas. (If I can remember them.) The lady and I had a little chat about Zentangle but she had customers, so I moved on.  Good to find there are other tanglers  in South Yorkshire as well as the few I already know.

By the time you read this, I’m hoping that a very nice man will have been to the house and put a new floor down in the spare bedroom.study/office/craftroom. (He’s due on Saturday.) At that point I may be a very happy bunny. Not will be, may be. Because, once the room is fit to be inhabited, it has to be re-stocked with all the bits, pieces and assorted gubbins that currently grace the other spare bedroom. (And my bedroom, and the dining room, and the sitting room.)

I cannot see how it is all going to go back into such a tiny space. The room will need to be a bloody Tardis to accommodate it all.

And it will be mainly me doing it, so that I know where things are. That’s the theory and, like all theories, it has its weaknesses, because I know, in spite of all the best intentions, I will get so far and sigh a big sigh and just stuff it in anywhere and promise myself to sort it out properly later. Much later. He’s coming on Saturday and I have to have the room workable by lunchtime Monday because it’s…. DIVA DAY and I have to be able to have a go at the Challenge. I mean, get the priorities right – tidy craft room/ Diva Challenge, which do you think will come first?

LATER:

Well the floor is done and looks lovely. That particular Diva Day has come and gone. So, can you guess what progress had been made on re-stocking the craft room/study/office? Correct – absolutely none, zilch, zero. I’d ordered a new desk/workstation, you see, so there was no point in putting anything else back until that was in place. Actually, the dining room, which is much bigger, is turning into my craft room and I’m wondering if the loved one can be persuaded to keep it that way…

Did you notice this bag? I bought the material to make it years ago and it went into the "one day..." cupboard. My friend didn't know what to get me for my birthday so i gave her the fabric and said - a craft bag please. Good innit?
Did you notice this bag? I bought the material to make it years ago and it went into the “one day…” cupboard. My friend didn’t know what to get me for my birthday so i gave her the fabric and said – a craft bag please. Good innit?
Once a pleasant dining room, this chaotic scene will one day revert to order. But probably not soon.
Once a pleasant dining room, this chaotic scene will one day revert to order. But probably not soon.

Of course, we’ll have to eat off the floor, but then again, there’s a clean, new floor upstairs.

LATER STILL:

The new desk has arrived; is built; is in place and we’ve rearranged all the other furniture in the room to accommodate it and it looks rather nice. (Except the various woods don’t match – we have dark walnut desk, blond drawers, tatty old pine desk that I couldn’t throw away because we might need extra space and different coloured pine bookshelves.) And I’m gradually bringing things back in, going through them and trying to be sensible about throwing things away. The stress is starting to tell on me though. I keep having to stop to do some tangling to calm me down. I told you it was going to be a long job, didn’t I?

And Diva Day has arrived. The challenge? Anything to do with beads in honour of the Beads of Courage – Details here http://www.beadsofcourage.ca/ . Coincidentally, one of my closest friends has just become a grandmother, 18 weeks earlier than expected. There was some doubt as to whether the baby would be born OK but he was and, at 2lbs 15 oz, he’s doing OK. But he has a long haul in front of him just to get to the age when he ought to have been born, so my beads of courage are for him over the coming months. (And for Artoo, as always.)

The main colours I saw on Laura's photos of the run seemed to be turquoise and purple so that's what I used.
The main colours I saw on Laura’s photos of the run seemed to be turquoise and purple so that’s what I used.
Initially, I was going to leave it without colour but then again...
Initially, I was going to leave it without colour but then again…

 

 

 

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14 thoughts on “The flowers that bloom in the spring, tra la…

  1. So many beautiful things in your post! Love your diva tile. I need to do a bit of research before I get started!

  2. I’m really impressed by all the art you get done even with your house upside down. We’ve lived through two kitchen renovations. Having everything all over can be very discombobulating. (Good idea giving your friend your unfinished sewing project to finish for your birthday.) Love your beads—-both versions. I feel like I can pick them up and roll them around in my hand.

  3. Your Beads of courage tile is gorgeous, I love the way it shines. Lovely card(s) for your granddaughter, she will be pleased with it, now or later in life!!!!!

  4. Hello M!! It’s been a long time since I last visited your blog – so glad to see all your art once again ❤ I love your challenge beads – very dreamy colours! I like how fluid both 'chains' look.. Sending lots of prayers over to little Gabriel.. 🙂 Take care!

  5. Oh, dear girl, I know just what you mean about being away from your grandchildren. My granddaughter lives some 1700 driving miles away, and I don’t see her much any more. She will be 15 this month, and I miss her terribly. You have inspired me to tangle something for her. I have done some paintings of her before, but maybe I can tangle one. I love your interpretations of the fabulous artwork you saw on your trip. How wonderful! Your Diva Challenge beads are so lovely, and like you, I think color for this challenge is the way to go. Yours are so glowing and shiny looking – excellent! Thanks for a great post!

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