Monday, August 27, 2012

      After a few years away from designing I am proud to present a brand new pattern
With Love From Skeelhaven!

      Paisley Praise is named for one of the 8 fabrics used to create her gorgeous Renaissance style dress with bell sleeves.  Her wings are made of tattered cotton “feathers” on poseable wire. Paisley is kneeling with her arms out stretched and eyes closed giving thanks for all her blessings.  A variation, Lady Paisley, can be made with no wings, posed seated with her hands in her lap. Step by step instructions are included for needlesculpting and face painting techniques, in addition to creating this lovely doll body and costume. While kneeling, Paisley measures approximately 12” in tall.
     Paisley Praise will become available in September at Cloth Doll Patterns , Dollmakers Journey and Joggles .   This will also be my first PDF pattern, and will be for sale at Doll Street and Craftsy, so we’ll see how sales go there and if that does well I may update and convert more patterns for PDF versions!
      I made a variation of the pattern without wings and called her "Lady Paisley." Her photo is below. 

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Discount on Workshops!

Faerie Couture

To celebrate my favorite on line doll club being 15 years old in 2012 and continuing under new ownership I want to give back a little!  So I am offering $15 off  each of my currently running online classes at Doll Street. These include: Faerie Couture, Fanciful Fairy Wings, Handling Hands, Hey Doll Face, Lady Zen and the Queen of Hearts, photos below.    The discount code is DS15yearanniv, and the classes are self paced so you don'tr have to rush to keep up.  This discount is only available thru October 1st.  Usually these Doll Street discounts are only 10% and only offered to Doll Street members so this really is a big deal if you have been wishing to take any of my workshops!

Fanciful Fairy Wings
Handling Hands
Handling Hands
Hey Doll Face
Lady Zen
Queen of Hearts
Queen of Hearts

Thursday, August 16, 2012

More Garden

 So, here is the north garden, and the back hoe named Edward, blocking the pond area view.  The front row of blocks will be complete, it was left open to get in equipment such as the tiller, but you can see the shape of the walk better from this view. There is about 7 1/2 feet of garden on the outside edge of each walk, and on the east end it goes into the flagstone patio around the goldfish pond.

In the back, beyond the 17 foot red brick fire ring is the main east garden.  A lot of plants are in pots here waiting to be watered as the sprinkler doesn't reach them on their six foot spiral stands.  The gazebo in the back was designed by Craig and of course, he built it, too.  There is an arched foot bridge that crosses a mini creek connecting a series of waterfalls to a 5 by 12-ish pond, with more fish right up against the gazebo. There are a couple benches around the pond shaded by the large maple.

I love little details in my garden! I have a fairy door and mini trees and shrubs as well as plants that don't grown above an inch tall.  Here you can see a fae dancing in one of those areas.  She is about six inches tall.

Elf boy is a larger statue, about 15 inches tall and sits near the stairs to the rear entrance to the large bed shown above.  He faces the gazebo and the morning sun. 

This view is the side of the same bed looking south.  The hydrangea blocks the view of the waterfalls  from here.  You may have noticed the yard slopes down, and so the rear of the garden appears raised.  See my little bunny friend?  I do get live bunnies in the yard but try to prevent them from getting into the garden and eating my goodies.  The deer like to come in too.  They ate all my tulip heads and or bulbs this year and a year ago all my rose blooms.  This year they have eaten all the leaves off my hostas.  Bambi may be beautiful and hoof prints in the garden may be fun to find but not when they have dug up all my new spring bulbs or irises.  Grrrrrrrrrrrr...  Still, I think the garden came out okay this year.  I just need to get that north garden planted again and finish the walls. 

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Garden Photos

This WAS my north garden before it was destroyed.  I pieced together photos for a panoramic view, which seems to bow out here but really is a straight line until you getcto the maple tree at left, and then it curves around the 10 by 5 foot pond at the corner of the house. But I'm sure you get the idea. The paths are flagstone in this photo and weeds adore them. (My back... not so much.)  I'll use the flagstone as stepping stones within the larger bed sections here and out back in the larger garden beds, as well as around this pond.  I'm looking foreard to seeing this garden looking lush again but I know it's going to take another 3 to 5 years before it fills in nicely again. Sigh. Needless to say, I am looking for some plant trades...

The Garden

So I promised pics of the garden in the spring. Well, How about late summer?

We recently destroyed, and by that I mean completely removed almost all plant life and the rotted landscape timbers to be replaced with more permanent objects.  Between the drive and the 36 foot long bed, as well as wrapping around the large maple and pond area that connect at the corner to the back of the house, we placed stacking bricks. Theses are the kind that the top one hasa little lip in the back so it never gets pushed out of place while it rests on the one below.  Now maybe less people will hit it with their cars if they are more concerned about their car being damaged. (?)

Next, the 12 feet of flower beds needed the walkways rebuilt.  Someone gave us a load of white bricks, which is really where the whole project started.  So Craig designed a new path layout (with my approval, of course!) and laid the bricks in a herringbone design.  Way cool! Didn't he do an absolutely gorgeous job?! That man of mine can do anything! The L shape on the right will be mirrored  "down" in this pic so there will be two entrances into the garden from the drive. There is also an arbor with an entrance at each end.  You can see the rose arbor at the top left.  It struggled through all the heat this summer but is doing well, finally and coming back.  The climbing Peace rose on the opposite side was just transplanted so it will need some time to catch up. 

My job was to work on the raised beds up against the house.  They are 4 feet deep and we wanted something that wouldn't rot or droop again when critters burrowed holes, so he used 4" wide cinder blocks.  Once the walls were built I got to be in charge of making them look good.  So I hand covered them with concrete to make the walls look like they were built out of real stones.  Later, when it's completely sculpted I will color the stones randomly with a variety of acid dyes so it looks like the stones were just like the other ones we're found and collected on the property.

So, you must think I'm crazy, right?  Actually it was fun! I did a base layer, which you can see on  the upper wall.  It is thin and flat and simply has the lines for the morter carved in so I know where rocks will be.  When it has cured I come back and slap on handfulls of wet cement (while wearing gloves, I learned the hard way!) and then it's all pretty much sculpting.  It's not as delicate as sculpting a face, and since it's a rock, who's to say I did it wrong?  The darker faux stones above were still were when I took this photo, in case you are wondering.