Thursday, January 31, 2008

Shop Update Today!

I'm very excited about my Etsy shop update today. I have been working on some Flapper hats and boas. I love these Flapper hats. They are so much fun to make and even more fun to wear. Every time I made a hat and tried it on I kept thinking that I needed a boa to go with it to look like a true Flapper girl, so I made a boa. Now I'm going to make some more boas to go with some more hats that I will make.

I also plan to make some newborn, infant and child size Flapper hats as well.

I keep thinking that with all these pretty hats, I need to have a Flapper tea party where everyone wears a Flapper hat and boa. Wouldn't that be fun?

Every time I put on one of the hats and boas, I want to do the Charleston and say "Boop Boop a Doo!". Ohh, we'd have to do that at the tea party too!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Etsy Shop Update Tomorrow

I've been busily making flapper hats and each one is so much fun. I just had to try them all on and when I did, I had the distinct feeling that I needed a feather boa. Here is a sample of what's to come in the shop.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Flapper Hats

Thank you so much for your wonderful comments on my paper embroidery projects. Blaze asked me how I keep the paper from crinkling. The answer is that with paper embroidery you use cardstock and then it doesn't crinkle. I went to Hobby Lobby and bought a package of white cardstock in the scrapbooking department. I also bought a pack of 50 cardstock weight blank bookmarks to make the bookmark patterns with. These are so much fun to make. I have a couple more that I will post pictures of as soon as I can get them taken.

Last night I started thinking about Flapper hats. There is a wonderful website that has lovely flapper hats and she has been so generous in sharing her crochet patterns. There are also some Out West Hats that she has made and included the patterns with those as well. These are also fun and easy to make. You can use the Caron Simply Soft yarn, which is so yummy to work with, or you can use any worsted weight yarn.

Eddie found out on Wednesday that he has pleurisy. He has been in alot of pain off and on for about two weeks. I'm glad we found out what it is, but I hope he gets better really soon. The doctor seemed to think an antibiotic wouldn't help but that he could take pain medicine and high dosages of Ibuprofen and let it run its course. We're watching it to make sure it doesn't get worse. He's had a low grade fever off and on with it and I'm really concerned about that. Whenever I hear someone has a fever, it makes me think there is an infection somewhere. I'm going to call the doctor today and see if we need to be concerned about it and whether she thinks he might need an antibiotic. Sometimes I get so frustrated with doctors. Why is it that sometimes I feel like we almost have to diagnose ourselves and tell the doctors what is wrong instead of the other way around? Please keep us in your prayers.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

More Paper Embroidery

Last night I made two more paper embroidery goodies. I really enjoy this form of embroidery. It's very relaxing and I can do it while watching TV or listening to music.

First, is a cute field mouse:

Next, is a Christmas ornament that I'm going to make into a Christmas card:

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Paper Embroidery

I have recently discovered paper embroidery. I had seen it a few times, but I hadn't been able to find too much about it either online or in the craft stores. Once I did an Amazon search, I found several books that look promising. I also found a great website that has lots of information on how to get started and also has some free patterns.

It's really alot of fun. This is what I worked on this weekend, and last night I made some Christmas ornament cards. I'll take photos and share those soon.

I discovered that you don't have to have a fancy punching tool or a mat. What I've been using is one of those thumb tacks with a little holder on the end (they come either in clear, silver, or different colors) and you can find them in any office supply store or school supply section at Walmart, etc. I think I may have bought mine at Staples. For the mat I'm using a mouse pad, and it's been working great so far. And I'm using one strand of DMC embroidery floss, except on the large circle above, I used two strands because it just looked better.

I bought some bookmark patterns and I can't wait to see how those turn out.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

The Story of Miss Trilby Wragge

Today I spent some time retyping the article that I got from the Demopolis Public Library into a more readable form. As I was typing, I was trying to think of how I could post this story and I decided that it was too long to put in a regular post on my blog, plus I wanted the story to be accessible easily. The story is just too good to only be read once in a blog entry.

So, I decided to make a blog just for the Trilby story with a link to it from all of my other blogs. You can also access it by clicking on "The Story of Miss Trilby Wragge" on my sidebar of this blog. There is also a link to it from my other blogs. the only thing I couldn't figure out was how to put into the Trilby blog the links to my other blogs. Every time I tried to upload it, I got an error message from Blogger about it. I don't know if something has changed in the html format or what, but rather than frustrate myself trying to do it, I decided it wasn't that important at this time to go from Trilby back to my Evelyn Rose blog. Most people will probably go to the Evelyn Rose blog first and then link to Trilby. Maybe. I don't know. I'll just see how it goes.

While I was browsing around in my pictures I found several pictures of my dolls that I had taken awhile back. I had forgotten I had the pictures. I'd like to share those with you. I love all kinds of dolls and pictures of them too.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Trilby Wragge

This is a picture of the original Trilby Wragge doll that my friend and I took on our visit to the Bluff Hall Mansion in Demopolis, Alabama about 2 years ago.

I have found a wonderful treasure. It's the most intriguing story of the doll I've been telling you about named Trilby Wragge. I took a chance and did a Google search for "Trilby Wragge Demopolis, Alabama" and found a listing of articles housed in the Demopolis Public Library from the Bluff Hall Mansion. One of the articles is titled The Story of Miss Dotie Vaughan and Miss Trilby Wragge, from Campbell Long. I emailed the librarian there and she scanned the documents and sent them to me in an email as pdf documents.

Since I can't figure out how to put a link to a pdf document in my blog post, I'm going to retype the articles and just put a link to them in Word or something similar. Or I may just post the whole thing in its entirety on my blog. It's such a charming story and I see so many possibilities for dioramas. I can't wait to read the articles and jot down some ideas.

So, until my next post, I'll leave you looking forward to this story.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Art and Doll Musings

I think I have been under a huge misconception about art. The misconception being that I thought I could actually produce art and that it was easy. In the beginning, before I started painting or creating any type of art, I would look at an art piece and think to myself, "That doesn't look hard. I could do that. How hard can it be?" Well, after several oil painting, drawing, and watercolor classes, I have come to the conclusion that producing art is definitely not easy. In fact, it's downright hard. Alot harder than I thought it would be.

At first it was fun, sort of. The very first thing I did was take a life drawing class. I'm not sorry at all that I took it, but after awhile I began to see patterns in the way I produced my drawings. And they were definitely not what my art teacher wanted. After awhile, I started to despise going to class because I couldn't draw the way I wanted to. Another thing I really didn't like about my life drawing class was that we had alot of 20 to 30 second quick sketches. The idea being that we are not supposed to think about it. Just do it. Well, I guess I'm too much of a perfectionist, obessesive compulsive or whatever you want to call it, because I cannot work that way. About the time I was really getting into my sketch, the teacher would stop us and have us start another one. It stressed me to no end, but I did learn alot in that class. I learned that I love contour drawing, not gesture. For some reason, I couldn't get the hang of gesture. Or at least not the way my teacher wanted me to.

After I took life drawing I and II, I decided that I wanted to take some oil painting classes. I took it with a friend, which made it more fun, but she eventually stopped taking class. I was constantly comparing my work to others' paintings and, in my opinion, always falling short. I kept wondering what the heck I was doing in there because I would never be as good as the others. Their paintings always looked so professional and uniform and mine always looked like a big blob of nothing to me. I also realize that we are all probably our own worst critics and that art is in the eye of the beholder.

Later on, I decided to take some watercolor classes. Well, I guess watercolor is not for me because watercolor does what it wants to do and then I can't deal with not having control of what it's doing.

I'm not really a perfectionist in other areas. I guess I just stress when I'm making art because I want it to be just right. And by doing that, it takes the fun and joy out of doing it. Then it just becomes a stressful thing to do that I eventually don't want to do anymore. I wish I could just be like a child and have fun with art. Now I do like coloring mandalas because there is a pattern to them and I can just color away and not worry about it being great art. It's just something fun, relaxing, and enjoyable to do.

Well, I have been having some fun lately. I have been seeing these cute wood dolls that several people have shown on their blogs.

These pictures came from an Etsy shop, but I've seen them on blogs too. This particular seller describes these wood dolls this way, and I love the description:

Put her in your pocket, by your bedside, in your lunch box or anywhere you need a little extra love and luck! She is the perfect talisman (taliswoman?) for people on the go.

And I love these little wooden Kokeshi dolls:

Last night I bought some little wooden people at Michaels to make some wooden women and some Kokeshi dolls. I printed off a few pictures from the Internet to get some ideas.

I've always had an interest in dolls and cloth dollmaking. Here are a few pictures of some dolls I have made and their outfits.

I also have an interest in the Miss Columbia doll.

There is a very interesting story that goes along with her.

Yesterday I found several pictoral variations of this doll on the Internet. In fact, one friend of mine and I have made several dolls that are loosely based on the Miss Columbia doll that we call Trilby Wragge. Trilby Wragged is fashioned from the original Trilby Wragge doll that is housed in the Bluff Hall mansion in Demoplis, Alabama. The story behind this doll is very charming and unique too.

The story goes that back sometime in the turn of the last century there was a doll named Trilby Wragge that lived in Bluff Hall. Her story is that she was well known for travel to sick children. Every time a little girl in Demopolis was sick, Trilby would take her trunk of clothes and stay with the little girl until she was better. Once the little girl was feeling better Trilby would go back to Bluff Hall, but the little girl had to return her with another piece of clothing to add to her wardrobe. Naturally, Trilby had the largest wardrobe of anyone in the county.

We think that Trilby was also fashioned or patterned after the Miss Columbia doll since they have alot of similarities in their features. I found some pictures on the Internet yesterday of several dolls fashioned after Miss Columbia. The ones my friend and I made are around 18" tall. Here is her website with some of the ones she and her mother made that she has for sale.

The ones I found yesterday range in size from 29" to 33".

I guess when I started this post this morning, I didn't really know where it was going. I know that producing fine art, or any kind of painting or drawing is a very hard thing for me because I'm just too worried about it coming out right to really let loose and let the creativity flow.

I think I've decided that I really love other forms of art, such as quilting, dollmaking and things like that. I also love embroidery and sewing. There are all kinds of ways to express ourselves and all types of mediums to do it. We don't have to paint to be artists. We can express ourselves any way we please. Now, that I think about it, I think that's the answer to the freedom in art. Do what you want and what makes you happy. Do the things that make your creativity flow, no matter what they are.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Rough Weekend

We had a rough weekend. Eddie has been having severe pain on his left side near his rib cage since Friday. He was fine Thursday night when he went to bed, but woke up with the pain Friday morning. He thought maybe he had laid on it wrong or something, but since it's lasted this long and been this severe, I just don't know.

He wasn't thrilled about going to the doctor, but I finally convinced him to go and see about it. Heck, I was thinking he should go to the emergency room, but he wouldn't go. To me, someone who's doubled over moaning in pain should go somewhere, but what do I know? Anyway, I think he's mostly going to the doctor just to appease me, but whatever the reason, I'm glad he's there. He had to go to the VA clinic for something else today anyway, and I figured while he's there he might as well see the medical doctor. The only problem is that since he doesn't have an appointment, he'll probably have to sit there all afternoon while they fit him in. Something else, he wasn't happy about. I really think he's tired of the pain and ready to see what's causing it; he just wasn't going to admit it to me. I just hope they can figure out what it is, or at least order some kind of x-ray or scan or something, so we'll know what we are dealing with.

I found this on Youtube today and I think it's just lovely. It's called Music Box Dancer.

Thursday, January 10, 2008


Now that I am aging ... at least not that fast. Well, yes, I probably am, but I don't feel old. I have to admit that I am beginning to feel more free in my actions and about not caring what other people think. The ironic thing about freedom in aging is that you are free for a little while, but then you lose your freedom when you get to the point that you can't care for yourself anymore and then have to have someone to help you.

At any rate, I love the following story about aging. My cousin (who is in her 60's) sent it to me. I love its theme and the freedom of it all. I'm 55, but I've learned alot along the way. I just don't care that much what people think anymore. I do to a point, but then after that it's just not worth worrying about. Now, I know why so many older folks are cranky. They have put up with alot of stuff all of their lives and now they have decided they are not going to do it anymore.

Old Age, I decided, is a gift.

I am CLOSE to being, probably for the first time in my life, the person I have always wanted to be. Oh, not my body! I sometime despair over my body, the wrinkles, the baggy eyes, and the sagging butt. And often I am taken aback by that old person that lives in my mirror (who looks a little like my mother!) but I don't agonize over those things for long.

I would never trade my amazing friends or family or my comfortable, memory-filled life for less gray hair or a flatter belly. As I age, I'm becoming more kind to myself and less critical of myself. I'm becoming my own friend. I don't chide myself for eating that extra cookie or for not making my bed or for buying that silly cement gecko that I didn't need, but looks so avant-garde on my patio. (I am entitled to a treat, to be messy, to be extravagant.)

I have already seen too many people leave this world too soon before they understood the great freedom that comes with aging.

Whose business is it if I choose to read or play on the computer until 4 AM (and sleep until noon IF I ever do)?

I will dance with myself to those wonderful tunes of the 50's, 60 & 70's, and if I wish to weep over a lost love ...

...I will.

I will walk the beach in a swim suit that is stretched over a bulging body and will dive into the waves with abandon if I choose to, despite the pitying glances from the
jet set.
They, too, will age.

I know I will sometimes be forgetful. But there again, some of life is just as well forgotten.. And I will remember the important things.

Sure, over the years my heart has been broken. How can your heart not break when you lose a loved one or when a child suffers or even when somebody's beloved pet gets hit by a car? But broken hearts are what give us strength and understanding and compassion.

A heart never broken is so pristine and sterile that it will never know the joy of being imperfect.

I am so blessed to have already lived long enough to have my hair turning gray and to have my youthful laughs be forever etched into deep grooves on my face. So many have never laughed and so many have died before their hair could turn silver.

As you get older, it is easier to be positive. You care less about what other people think.

I don't question myself anymore. I've even earned the right to be wrong...(if I ever am... )!

So, to answer your question, I like getting old. It's setting me free. I like the person I am becoming. I am not going to live forever, but while I am still here, I will not waste time lamenting what could have been or worrying about what will be.

And I shall eat dessert every single day. (If I feel like it)

Monday, January 07, 2008

Music Reading Class

It's with a heavy heart that I write that I will not be able to take the music reading class like I had hoped. My boss will not approve it saying that it's too many days in the week to be away from work, and that it is not close enough to the lunch time hour to be able to let me take it as my lunch. The class meets on Monday, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 9:00 a.m. to 9:50 a.m. My original plan was to use my lunch hour for the class and then eat a quick sandwich or something at my desk to make up for it.

Well, no matter. There is quite a bit of information on the Internet for learning to read music. Plus, I found a new copy of an older edition of the textbook that is being used for the class at at about 1/5th the price that our campus bookstore was asking for it. So, I'm thinking that between that and online resources, maybe I can learn some music reading. It's not necessary to be able to read music to play the hammered dulcimer, but it's a tool to help. Anyway, this is how the chips have fallen, so I'll just find a different way to learn.

Just for fun, I looked up "reading music" on and found this short video, which really says most of it in a nutshell.

Also, this is the hammered dulcimer that I'm saving my money to buy. It's a beautiful instrument. For a beginner like me, it's plenty good enough. If nothing else, I'll learn to play by ear and from memory. I can peck out a tune. My dad did it for years playing the banjo, guitar, and mandolin. He could also play a mean harmonica until his emphysema. Hopefully, he passed on some of his musical ability down to me.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Happy New Year!

Last night was fairly uneventful as New Years Eve goes. I was sick with a sore throat and cold and didn't get to go to our friends house to ring the new year in. Eddie did go, though, and I stayed home. I just didn't want to infect anyone.

So, what I did was watched the movie O Brother, Where are Thou for about he 10th time and after that I settled in and did some reading. Right now I'm reading the book Scarlett, which was written several years back as the sequel to Gone With the Wind. Now there is a new book out that is the authorized sequel titled Rhett Butler's People. This book has been authorized as a sequel by the Margaret Mitchell family, whereas I guess the first sequel, Scarlett, must not have been. I'm really enjoying it, though, and it sure seems to reflect Scarlett's basic selfish personally just like in the first book. So far, she's spending most of her time trying to get Rhett back in spite of the fact that he's no longer interested. She's convinced that he still is, so I think it will be interesting to see how the story ends.