From the Studio


I’ve decided to rename my weekly studio post because Wednesdays are now a pretty busy day for me between work and a physical therapy session right afterwards. So, instead of limiting my post to being published just on Wednesdays, I’m expanding my vision to include other weekdays as well. In other words, I can post when I have free time during the week instead of trying to cram it into a half hour before bedtime on a full day!

For the most part, I’ve always been much more comfortable with having specified days or times for when I do certain things. The Capricorn part of me is soothed by structure and schedule and knowing what to do next. That said, there is a part of me that craves just flowing along with the ever changing tides of my life. I’m trying to develop that side of me a lot more these days. It requires more of an openness and an intuitive sense of what I need for balance.

I finally completed my free-form bracelet. I’m sorry to say that I was in such a hurry to mail it that I completely forgot to take a picture of it! Oh dear. Well, all went well with its finishing. I created a variation of a bead and loop clasp where I built up around the loops with peyote stitch so that the “holes” actually became part of the bracelet’s structure. I attached 2 coppery pearls as part of the clasp.

As I observe the unfolding beauty of Spring around me, I am being inspired to create a new free-form bracelet in a color palette that will reflect all of the budding and blooming going on. I love this part of the process, the choosing of harmonious colors and the laying out of the selected beads on my tray to see how they look next to each other. I’m thinking of delicate spring greens and tree bark browns and grays with a sprinkling of forsythia yellow, hyacinth purple and white along with azalea purply-pink.

What do you think of my color palette so far?


I finished my second Ripple scarf, the one knit in the pink/peach colorway. As I have grown accustomed to having something on my needles now (and loving it!), I just started a pair of sweet, cotton candy pink baby socks for my granddaughter, Ella. Made with a simple eyelet pattern (yes, yarn overs!), they are knitting up pretty fast.

I purchased the 2 Jane Thornley patterns that I wrote about last week, the “Come Spring” vest and the “Knit a Beach” vest. I’ve decided to start with the spring vest. Jane suggests using a gorgeous silk/wool blend yarn from La Lana. I like the colorway she has chosen, especially wonderful for this time of year – apple green, pine, teal and brown. The back panel of the vest is worked up in a hand dyed ribbon yarn blending all of those colors. Time to go yarn shopping!


Last Saturday I spent a lovely Art Day with 2 dear friends. I worked on the next 2 pages in my art journal, cutting out magazine images into “inchies”, that is, one inch squares. I glued them onto my purple/brown painted pages in a grid pattern and then brushed and wiped a light, muted blue green over the images so they would blend into the page better.


The next day I collected a bunch of tape rolls – electrical, paint and some sort of grid tape – from all over the house. I cut and placed tape pieces on my next 2 pages in a random design and then sanded, gessoed and sanded some more. Green blue paint was gently wiped over and then sanded.

This was a very interesting and fun way to create a background!

I’m learning that art journal pages can be created with a wide variety of materials that you can find around the house.

The ordinary arts we practice everyday at home are of more importance to the soul than their simplicity might suggest.

~Thomas Moore

5 comments on “From the Studio

  1. judysheart says:

    Karen.. I love the colors of all your beads at the top.. what eye candy… Ella is so lucky to have a grandmother that loves her so much and with such creativity. Your knitting is amazing and your beading. I love how your journal pages came out. It’s fun being messy!!! Your camera really captured the colors beautifully.

  2. artandtea says:

    Thanks Judy! I was trying to capture the colors of a New England springtime. I am finding that I love to have a number of projects in different mediums going at once. It’s so much fun!!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. doras_explorations says:

    Wow, you sure have been productive, Karen ! I’m looking forward to seeing your next free-form bracelet develop. Your color palette sounds wonderful, spring-like without the usual “Easter pastels” ….
    I love your journal pages, especially the ‘inchies’………they remind me of my shoe box full of polymer clay inchies…….the poor things are looking for a project to be part of!
    That’s fantastic how you can work on several things at once. I’m trying to decide if I should post another cane tutorial on my blog or if I should make something to enter in the “Black and White Challenge” on Polymer Cafe Magazine….I’m not very good at working on more than one thing at a time, so I agonize over what I should do first…As a result, I do nothing, LOL
    Gonna be a gorgeous day tomorrow, enjoy it !

  4. LB says:

    Haha. That happened to me on the last beaded Einstein sheepdog I made. I was in such a hurry to mail it to my customer that I forgot to take a pic! So, I mentioned it to my customer, and she took some great photos of it for me! ๐Ÿ˜€

  5. artandtea says:

    Thanks Dora! I’m not sure why but I have become much more productive since returning to full-time work! lol It’s probably because of the limited time element so therefore I tend to structure my time much better than I used to.

    I’m really enjoying creating my art journal pages. It’s so laid back and I think that’s one of the things that I like best about it. I bet your polyclay inchies would look great in a journal. Hmmm, you just gave me any idea! lol I have some tiles left over from Klay Karma, too.

    That “black and white challenge” sounds like fun. Perhaps you can post a tutorial about how you created your challenge piece, killing 2 birds, so to speak. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Great idea, LB! I’ll ask her if someone can take some photos of her wearing the bracelet.

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