Laughing Dog Arts

Friday, December 31, 2010

Anniversary and Tucker

Today is my one year anniversary of this blog. Congratulations to me! It has been a surprisingly joyful ride and I have made some wonderful new friends. Laughing Dog Arts. I began this blog with a dog photo post so I shall make this anniversary post with more dog photos.
My friend Larry was dog sitting his daughter's Great Dane. She had recommended that he bring the big boy out here for a visit because she fondly remembered coming here herself when she was little and thought Tucker would enjoy it. We all enjoyed it. Rocky thought Tucker was a wonderful new friend, Sadie wasn't so sure but she put up with him. Once we got them outside for a walk she discovered that she and Tucker shared a love of chasing the ball. Luckily we had two balls so there was no competition. Tucker really enjoyed being able to be off leash.
I haven't been around such a huge dog in many years. He was such a gentle mellow dog, but let loose when it was appropriate, on the walk. I could have kept him, even if he did practically fill my little house. His back was level with my counter tops. We joked that we could just fill the sink up with water for him to drink out of, but it was true, we could have. It was a fun visit for all of us.

I want to thank each and every one of you who has taken the time to stop by my blog and spend a few moments checking out whatever I had to post about. It has been a joyful journey and I look forward to another year of it. I wish you all a blessed new year and hope you receive all the best that life has to offer.

Be well and remember,
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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Tacky Christmas decorations

Greetings!  I hope you all have experienced a good holiday season so far.  It has been pretty good here and now I am laying low.  Sorry I haven't been visiting your blogs, I'm barely answering my email, just kinda hibernating.  I like this time of year for that reason.  Also I have company, I'm trying not to ignore them by hanging out on the computer.

Today I thought I'd just say hello and show you a picture of one of the tackiest Christmas decorations I have ever seen.  It is made from a beverage can and I believe it came from a box of stuff I bought at a garage sale.  I'm not sure why I held on to it instead of just tossing it into the recycle bin, but now I admit I have become rather fond of this tacky little Christmas caroler.  It is kind of cute, in a weird way.

I will try to get back to more interesting blog posts soon, with something less kitchy. Until then,
Be well.
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Wednesday, December 15, 2010


I finished another beaded heart today.  I went back to the more traditional shaped heart as you can see.  I am finding that I enjoy making these better when I am making them specifically for someone.
Here is a close up of the charm I used, I shall call this the Goddess Heart.
Also I am continuing to make these fabric hearts, which I intend to give as Christmas gifts.  I'm getting a little faster at them, these are #2 and #3, Love and Cherish.  They are rather like a combination of my beaded hearts and my dooleybobbers.  I am still experimenting with the heart shape, but I'm liking the shape of Love.

On "Cherish" I used old lace, some vintage fabric, sequins and beads, with hand embroidery.  There is a little angelina fiber too. When the light catches this one just right, it looks like it has tiny electric lights on it, due to the sequins.
"Love" is using more lace and vintage fabric, a velvet heart with a shell-like green heart on top, beads and hand stitching.  Oh yeah, and a tag from a tea bag, that says something on it.  Maybe you can read it if you click on it.  Okay, I'll tell you, it says "When God made time, He made enough of it."  Celtic saying.

I hope you all are staying safe and warm.  I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for taking time to read some of my posts and to follow along with my artful musings. I appreciate that you do, and especially when you have time to leave a comment.  I wish you all of the best that this season has to offer; generosity, kindness and love.

Be well.
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Sunday, December 12, 2010

Good Mail day!

Susan at Art of Mine recently sent me this wonderful package of hand made gifts.  Okay, she didn't make the Dove chocolates, but she did make the envelopes out of pretty magazine pages, and she made the necklace with the little bird picture on it.
This little fabric book was the most wonderful thing!  She chose the fabric with me in mind, knowing that I am involved with harvesting hay during the summer. 
See that print?  It is so cool.  Luckily that isn't the way I harvest hay, but it makes for a nice picture.

She created the yo yo and embellished it with beads and golden paint. I love the Inspire charm.
The bird pendant is lovely, so shiny and sweet.  I haven't taken it off since it arrived.  She told me how she made it and I wrote down the product but I have forgotten the name.  Good thing I wrote it down.
I love this tag that she made.  The photo doesn't do it justice, it is very subtly shiny and so pretty.  The whole fabric book was full of tags like these, she said it was a Christmas tag book.
See this beautiful coat?  She also gave it to me.  She bought it years ago but it no longer fit her and she thought it would fit me and it does!  What lovely colors!  It was purchased in England from a place that raised the sheep that were sheared to make the yarn and wholly created right there!

The generosity was rather overwhelming and much appreciated.  Susan has a lovely blog, Art of Mine, and shows some of the beautifully crafted things she creates.  What is amazing to me is that I know she has problems with her eye sight, and yet she can make these lovely items that require her to endure the discomfort of eye strain, but she is dedicated enough that she works around that problem as best she can.  Thank you so much, Susan!  I am honored to receive these gifts from your heart and hands.

Here on the farm we are making sure that the animals are all on high ground due to the flood watch we are currently on.  It has been raining and very warm, we call this type of storm the Pineapple Express, it comes over from Hawaii way rather than the storms that come down from Alaska bringing snow and cold.  It is 53 degrees Fahrenheit outside now at 7:30pm.  That's about what it was last summer here.  There is water running everywhere, bubbling up out of the ground, dripping off every twig and branch.  I hope you all are staying safe and warm, I know there are bad blizzards in the midwest part of the country.
Be well.
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Monday, December 6, 2010

Finished projects

Yay!  I finished the queen size quilt!   My back is protesting a bit but at least I have that project off my table.  Now I have to package it up and mail it off.  I'm pretty sure my sister doesn't read my blog so I am safe to post this photo of it.  She originally said she wanted it to be yellow, brown and green and maybe some cactus designs on it.  I added some purple to the mix and stitched a cactus shape in the border.She likes Southwest themes.

This latest beaded heart is rather a Southwest theme color wise and with the little lizard charm.  I tried a new heart shape but I think I like the fatter more traditional shaped heart better.  What do you think?
And here is the latest Dooleybobber #10 finished.  This one is less abstract than past ones.  I thank Mary for giving me the idea to put the heron into this one.  It needed a bit of a focal point once I finished the rest of the embellishment.

It looks a bit dinosaurish, do you agree?
I've been trying to get this posted for days but kept getting distracted.  Sorry for the disjointed post.  I know everyone is getting so busy with Christmas coming up and I am no exception.  Trying to get some gifts made and I still need to do cards!  Hope you all are staying sane!  Keep warm.
Be well.
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Monday, November 29, 2010


For years I was more focused on creating wearable items than I was on creating wall art.  I sold hundreds of garments, mostly vests and jackets but also coats.  Once I learned how to create these faux chenille items I really had fun.  Okay, maybe fun isn't quite the right word.  It was fun when they sold, that's for sure.  In fact, the woman who worked at the boutique where I sold these, (The Real Mother Goose) was one of my best customers.  She bought 3 of them!  They are really gorgeous garments, they feel like a fur coat, only better because no animals were killed to make them! 

 They are constructed of up to 6 layers of fabric, mainly rayons and cottons.
I stitch rows (and rows and rows and rows) of half inch wide channels.
Then I slash the fabric between the stitching, leaving only the base fabric uncut.   I then construct the garment and put it through the washer and drier, that fluffs up the cut edges and creates the furry look.

I haven't made any of these in a couple of years but I still have these left overs that I am showing you today.  Mostly they are too big for me to wear.  I have considered putting them into my Etsy shop but hesitate because people really should try them on and feel them to get a good idea of the luxurious texture and fine construction.  So here they sit, hanging around the studio. 

I will show some other garments I have hanging around another time.  Until then, 
Be well.

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Sunday, November 21, 2010

Nasturtiums in the snow

We haven't even had a hard frost here in NW Oregon but now we have snow. I still have nasturtiums growing and so went out and picked some this morning. By afternoon it began to snow, as the forecasters have been predicting for several days now.
It's barely cold enough for the snow to stick, so it is melting pretty quickly, but everything is covered, including my bamboo. It is always so pretty, to see the branches bend down with the weight of the snow. They always bounce back.
Hope you all are snug in your homes.  I just came in from feeding the llamas and playing with the dogs in the snow.  Sadie definitely loves the snow!  She played and played, biting the snow, chasing snowballs, making snowdogangels, and generally having a good time.  Rocky just dug in a spot, I think he could hear a mouse under the snow.  The llamas watched us, wondering what the big deal was. I think I shall throw another log on the fire.  I'm sticking close to the stove today, doing hand stitching on some fabric hearts as I listen to the radio.
The sheer heart above I created from a vintage napkin I picked up at a garage sale.  I will embellish it next.  The one below is the first one I have made.  These could be fun Christmas gifts.  Maybe not this orange one, but it's a start.

 Be well.
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Thursday, November 18, 2010

Quilting the monster

I have finally bitten the bullet and begun to quilt the queen size quilt.  I'm not a talented quilter, I'm just getting 'er done as best I can.  This is a quilt that is destined to be used, not hung on a wall and viewed, so I decided to quilt it myself rather than taking it to a professional.
The above photo shows the gold flowered backing material that I used.  I used it because I had it and it was big enough.   There is also a solid dark green that is part of the backing.  The green is part linen so is rather heavy.  Notice the blue gloves next to the sewing machine?  Those are gardening gloves that I cut the fingertips off of the first finger and the thumb.  They really help me to move the quilt around under the needle.  I'm doing a free motion squared off meander stitch.  My shoulders are feeling fatigued this evening after getting though maybe a third of the stitching.  I decided not to push it, there really is no hurry.

Instead I moved on to some more gentle hand stitching on my latest dooleybobber. It is inspired by a picture from the November issue of National Geographic showing a wetlands.  It is rather larger than previous dooleybobbers so is taking longer.
Mary over at Fox On The Run Meanderings gave me this Scotty Froggy blog award. It is for Creativity and Fun.  Lets see, who can I nominate for it?  I think I shall nominate Olivia over at 4 Rooms and the Moon.  She has a nice blog, creates some fun art so it seems appropriate. Go take a peek at her work if you have a moment, tell her Jan sent you.  Thanks Mary, for the award!

Another thing I have neglected to post about is my inclusion into the Beautiful Bald Babies club!  
Ces over at Ces and Her Dishes started the club to honor breast cancer awareness month and any friends who have battled cancer.  If you click on the link it will take you to her post where she talks about the club and why she started it.  There is also a great picture that she drew with all the founding members included.  She is quite a talent.  Can you find me in her picture?

Hope you are all ready for the weekend and that you have a good one.
Be well.
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Friday, November 12, 2010


Thank you to all who entered my giveaway.  I with I could gift each and every one of you with a beaded heart.   Your reasons for wanting this heart were varied and sometimes amusing but always gratifying.  I couldn't decide so I resorted to asking Chainsaw Man to pick a number and he chose 17 which means Susan of  Art of Mine is the winner.  Then, to make up for my changing of the rules, I decided to give a second heart away and again, had Chainsaw Man pick another number, which was 13 and so the second heart goes to Gabie of  I didn't count the comments from people who have already received hearts from me.  I will gift these hearts and then I will begin making some for sale since I have had a few requests.  I'll let you know when that happens.  I shall let Susan choose to have a special heart made just for her in her choice of colors and charms.

I am quite honored that you all were so eager to receive one of my pieces of art.  Thanks for playing along.

On a different subject, and in order to have a couple photos, here is where the situation with Charlie and my new dog Sadie stands.  Charlie is adjusting.  He didn't flee growling when Sadie laid down this close.  Progress!!

Cute Charlie paws.

Be well. 
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