Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Christmas Greetings 2016

Blessings to you and yours this holiday season!

Edwardian Postcards: Grete Reinwald

Hello to all and happy Tuesday!

Prior to the start of the holiday season, I was doing a search on Etsy for Edwardian seasonal postcards featuring children. I happened upon quite a few of one particular little girl who was just beautiful, and wondering who she was, I finally found some that were labeled with her name.

She was Grete Reinwald (May 25, 1902 – May 24, 1983), a famous German child model when she was young, who then went on to become a stage and film actress. She had the sweetest face when she posed for the postcards, so I couldn't resist buying a few, seen below, and will hopefully use them in some future art pieces. I think you will agree that they are so pretty, and you may even already own some postcards with her on them.

You may find additional information about her on the internet, but I found a one-time blog post particularly informative, and you can read it here.

I love these and thought that they will make
some lovely Valentine Day's and spring, or Easter,
greeting cards...

These Christmas cards are stunning, I think.
Of course, I love the sepia-toned variety...

...but the hand-tinted ones,
with just a trace of color,
are also so lovely...

A real collector of post cards probably wants those
of the mint variety, with no writing on the back,
but I am partial to ones where I can see the
postmark and stamp,
not to mention the beautiful handwriting of those
who lived so long ago...

Though in the past I have not been a fan of some of the
Edwardian postcards because I thought the children
looked too "posed" and the coloring too fake,
this season I revised my opinion of some of them,
and treated myself to these few as a Christmas present to myself.

Have you bought anything new lately for your self?
If so, what was it, and how will you use it?

As ever, thanks so much for stopping by to visit.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Christmas outside. Christmas inside.

Hello dear friends. I hope that you are doing well and enjoying the Christmas season. We are taking it easy this year as it was a busy and hectic year with Mr. Perch's leg. As usual, we decorated the inside of the house very minimally, but this year, right after Thanksgiving, we also did the outside in a minimal fashion since I basically had to do it all myself. Below are a few photos that I took last week or so.

We didn't put the lit garlands on the porch railings
this year.
I decided to use garden lights instead,
telling myself KISS: Keep it Simple Stupid!
I'm sure that there are those in the neighborhood
who surely think that I lost it.
I couldn't agree more...

To further antagonize those who never
want to march to a different beat,
we used the excess lighting
around this old primitive tree that we had
up in the attic and just left it on the porch
Do you want to guess if more than one
person has asked me if I needed help
standing up the tree?
I politely reply: "No, thank you."...

We put our old metal snowman from
the fifties by the steps going up to the porch...

I am a person who would father eat live
goldfish than shop on Black Friday.
I have never bought into the argument
that the good sales are only on that day.
Point proven:
Last week I went to Michael's and lots of
stuff was 70% off, and with quite a lot
of stock to boot.
I bought these lovely wooden
"Joy to the World" tags...

...and this nice wire basket,
with the fabric Noel painted in grey...

...although the fabric Noel was originally red, as seen below.
No problem, I just painted the letters grey with cheap
Walmart chalk paint.
At 70% off $19.99, who can go wrong?...

In that drastically reduced stash I also bought this
beige knit stocking, topped with fur,
and coordinating throw pillows, not seen
here, but I use them on the black rockers.
Also the twiggy heart below.
The greenery was also on sale...

Of course, I couldn't resist taking a winter
 photo of the back yard.
Not for any decorating reasons, but because our lawn is
back to being pretty and green,
thanks to our yard crew who did an outstanding job
of reseeding it this fall after we lost practically the whole
thing this summer while the Mister was in the hospital and the
sprinkler system let go...

But the best view of all is Mr. Perch,
for the first time since early August,
standing on his "own two legs" in front of
the fireplace last Friday after we got home
with his new leg...

What a wonderful sight to see!!

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Glimpses: Completing some art projects!

Hello to all! I hope that you're having a great day.

This year we will be having a very quiet Christmas, so I decided to take advantage of that with minimal decorating, and spent these last couple of days completing a few art projects that I had started last month. Here are a few glimpses of what I worked on, though I can't yet share more than this.

I actually worked on four related seasonal collage canvases.
I used some of the stuff I've been collecting for a while,
ribbon, fibers, a vintage key and label holder, and
some old sheet music...

...not to mention the usual vintage photo thrown in.
I love the mom and baby in her coat and hat sitting
on the porch on this cold winter day.

More pretty fibers, old glass buttons,
and a glimpse of another old photo and
a vintage typed letter...

Here are some vintage postage stamps
on top of old ledger paper,
with yet another photo barely peeking

 Yet another photo, this one on top
of a vintage love letter and its envelope.
This letter was actually sent many years ago
to someone one town over from where I live.
And of course, some velvet ribbon and lace...

At some point I will show you the completed versions of these.


Maybe I would be better off creating some Christmas cards this week.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Back in the Day: Children and Their Goat Carts

Hi there! I hope that you are having a great day.

In my collection of vintage photos, I have made it a point to collect old RPPCs (real photo postcards) of children in goat carts. In the 1920s and 1930s photographers traveled not only with ponies, but with cute goats pulling carts that I imagine were used as a sales pitch to get moms and dads to pay them to take photos of their children. The carts were often outfitted with a sign bearing the year the photo was taken, and sometimes with the state that it was taken in. I don't know what made me become so fascinated with these photos, but I have quite a few and decided to finally create something with them.

While Mr. Perch was still in the hospital recovering from his surgery this past summer, I brought along some previously-started work to complete the hand sewing on while he was watching TV or dozing off. On a previous blog post I think I shared a few photos of the materials that I was going to use on this one, but here are some photos of the piece that I completed, which was actually a large-form "snippet roll". I am showing single sections of it here because it is a rather long piece. Since it was a summer project, I wanted to use the garden colors of pinks and greens.

The hanger was made of sari silk.
At the top of the doily
 I used a vintage metal
"something" that I had owned
for a while...

I used laces, vintage buttons,
cheese cloth, moiré ribbon...

...velvet, various trims and

...crocheted pieces...

...rick rack and a crocheted hanky...

...collaged with various fabrics onto
5-inch wide burlap ribbon.


It was good therapy and brought a smile to
my face during a time this summer
that was not always so happy.
Art therapy is what I think they call it!

Many thanks for coming by.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Fused: Double Exposure Video and Photo Blender

Good morning!

The other day while fiddling around with some Microsoft apps, I downloaded another free one. It is "Fused: Double Exposure Video and Photo Blender". You use it to merge two photos, almost so it looks like overlays, and you can then use it to blend the images together. They have backgrounds to choose from, or you can upgrade for a fee and purchase even more. But I decided to use my own background and diddled around a little just for fun.

Since winter is on the horizon, I decided to use the following two images, both of which I have shared with you previously.

I used this one for the background...

...and this one for the foreground...

This is the blend.
The words and frame were added with the KVADPhoto+
app that I talked about the other day.
Kind of pretty and was fast to do!...

Enjoy the season,
whatever it is!

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

A Birthday Card for a Friend

Good evening!

I did have a spark of creativity, though not much time, in October when I created a birthday card for our friend across the street. He is a big Harley fan, and he and his wife belong to a local bike club. I couldn't resist using this old photo that I had in my collection. Obviously I couldn't use any lace on this baby!

I love this old photo.
I wonder where these folks were going?

The papers and embellishment
were from Bo Bunny,
one of my favorite paper companies.
The rick rack is vintage stuff that
I bought on eBay a while ago...

I used a couple of rubber stamps.
I have so many, and rarely use them anymore.
And of course, while in the full swing of all of the
election hype,
I had to use a quote from Abe Lincoln.
They just don't make presidents like him anymore!...

The card was hand delivered all the way across the street,
so no address was needed!...

One of these days I think that I'll start making cards
and saving them to give to people instead of always
buying them.

Have a wonderful evening!

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

I'm back! Who can figure? And with a pretty Zygote cactus!

Hello dear friends! I know that it has been awhile, but lately things have been keeping me busy (please refer to my last post), and I simply have not had the time to post to this blog. I have missed you all.

Aside from other issues, one of the biggest hurdles to my posting has been that right before we were told that Mr. Perch would need surgery, I ordered a new computer. Since my last one was a Dell laptop that was probably almost 12 years old (it ran on Windows XP, if that tells you anything!), and served me quite well, I decided that I would buy another one. Though I have gotten used to Apple with my iPad and iPhone, I did not purchase a Mac mainly due to the cost factor. I probably would have kept my trusty old laptop till death, but Windows XP is no longer supported by many of the programs that I use, so I decided to quit while I was ahead and before my computer crashed altogether. So of course, the new laptop arrived about three days before Hubby went into the hospital and I have had about as much time to connect it, never mind get used to it, as I have had to each chocolate covered bon-bons while watching soap operas all day. So, I've been picking away at it slowly and now feel a little bit of a comfort level. Windows 10 is nice but it is so very much different than XP was. It was almost like having to learn how to work a computer all over again. Then, it wouldn't recognize the scanner on my printer, so I am now going to be using a scanning app. I'll see how it shakes out.

I got a little stressed out when it wouldn't accept my Canon Rebel camera's software either, but then realized that Microsoft 10 recognizes most cameras anyway, and the editing software, though basic, is nicer than what I had before. I don't get that involved with editing anyway on this simple little blog.

But the best part is that it appears that I can just hook up my iPhone to it and upload the photos just as I would my regular camera. I started to do this yesterday, but canceled out when I realized that I have over 3300 photos on my phone, and certainly didn't want them all on my new hard drive. I guess it's time to weed them out!

So here I am, finally able to take some photos, upload them to my sweet new computer and put them on my blog. What a joy this finally is!

Because the gardening season is well behind us, I needed some flower power and my first foray into this new endeavor had to be with a few photos of a new Zygote Cactus that I bought in our little grocery store the other day. You may recall photos in previous posts of the big coral-colored one that I have had for many years, but this is such a pretty little white one.

These were taken with my Rebel,
lazily taken in the auto-focus mode.
It was just beginning to bloom when I bought it.
I love the shocking pink center...

The nice thing (or difficult thing to get used to, depending on how you look at it) about Windows 10 is that there are many apps available that will help you with photo editing.

I edited the photo below by washing out the color a bit
 with the Windows 10
photo app built into the system,
but framed it with a free app that I downloaded
called KVADPhoto+.
I did quite a bit of research before I chose
this one as it seemed quite good.
Framing is only a small portion of
what this app is able to do.
Time will tell as I play around with it
a little more...

As to an update on the Mister, we are in the middle of his being fitted for his prosthesis. It is quite a process, but he should be "up on two legs" again just after Thanksgiving! It would be fair to say that we are both really looking forward to the day!!!