CappuccinoandArtJournal

Mostly postal but art and other things of interest too.
Come and visit.

Thursday, April 30, 2020

And Here We Are....

Well, best intensions aside, I haven't been keeping up with posting more frequently. Like many of you, I am struggling with the world situation we have found ourselves in.
I try to keep a positive attitude but there are days....

What's helping me?

I've been working on a Corona Collage Journal for the 30 days in April. I've always found tearing and cutting and arranging and pasting a comforting thing to be doing and it still is.
And, since the shelter-in-place law has been extended for ANOTHER 31 DAYS I guess I will be working on the May version of the corona collage journal. Art is my way of dealing with things.

Looking for beauty is another way I deal....


And, I am finding cooking quite comforting. As you can see, I have been doing a whole lot of cooking and my husband is very pleased.
Usually I am complaining that cooking takes too much time but I seem to suddenly have a lot more time than I used to....

Sometimes you've just got to get OUT.
A drive along the CA coast pretty close to SF was very soothing...

In San Francisco, when you get an actual warm day, you better go for it. It is almost always too cold to sit outside but last week we hit 75 degrees and had lunch out in the garden.
So fun.

Speaking of the garden, it has been giving me great pleasure. Watching buds form and flowers and blossoms bloom and everything coming to life......
Life goes on.

Friends have been giving me pleasure too. My little city front "porch" had two special deliveries today.....this first one from my pal Pam (on IG @dogearedjournals).....still warm scones and homemade lemon curd and a tiny little wonderful book she made. What a great start to the day.

Later, my neighbor dropped off a bag of zucchini flowers from the farmers market. What a terrific treat and I am making my special Greek recipe with them...

We have been driving around SF once a week on the nearly empty streets. Spotted this mailman and we had to STOP so I could jump out and take a photo. Luckily there is no traffic. We also drove down Lombard Street The World's Crookedest Street (ahem) a number of times. It is never without cars and tourists and we took adventure of it now...very fun.

Yes, I have been sending out mail...slowly.....and cleaning my studio....even more slowly.....I found an old 8x10 photo of flowers and folded it in half to make an envelope. Kind of a fun idea. I can see  using different photos and making more of these...

I hope you are all staying well and safe out there.
Remember to keep six feet away and wear your masks (which are hopefully arty).
We will get through this.
And maybe we are all learning things somehow.....

So, I continue to glue things in my glue book...
cook and drink a little wine...and make a few things and write a few letters and do a bit of slow stitching...
Sometimes I just lie on the couch.
That's OK too.
Please check in and tell me how you are all doing. And WHAT you are doing?
I miss everyone.
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Friday, March 27, 2020

Working on Finding My Muse Again

These are strange times, aren't they? Things keep changing day by day. So much to take in.
And, I am having trouble keeping my spirts up as I bet a lot of you are as well.
I started gathering things together to get inspired to make things.
It kinda works.

My bank closed. The streetcars have sopped running. The parking lots by the ocean are closed.
Strange times.

I am organizing pages for various altered books.....These photos fit perfectly with the book pages...

I just stop to appreciate the beauty in the old and worn....like this.

These book pages are exactly the size of vintage postcards...
I KNOW I will be going to Paris again....may as well make a Paris book..


Have you been getting these notices? For two days people are going around and taping these to front doors.
I've never seen anything like this before.

Since we aren't supposed to go out, I started putting my outgoing mail  clipped to my front gate and my wonderful mail man takes them.
Every day Jose, my mailman, delivers mail and smiles and waves to everyone.
An everyday hero.

I have really been enjoying Roxanne Evans Stout's  book Dancing on Raindrops. Such beautiful photos in her book...so peaceful and comforting...

Marie Kondo Lovers may want to avert their eyes and not look at this next photo.

After looking at Roxanne's book several mornings with my coffee I decided to CLEAN MY STUDIO. Go figure.
I am inspired by the beauty in the book and also I am having a rough time feeling really creative.
I have made a huge mess and things are going to get worse before they get better.
My biggest problem is lack of storage space....I took everything off my work table and put it on the floor....but now what?
to be continued....

I am always trying to find beauty in every day life, now more than ever.


I woke up to this on my birthday. My husband is the best. He planted a lilac tree in the yard years ago just because I love lilacs so much. The tree squeezes out about two bouquets every year around my birthday.
They make me so happy.
And, so do all the lovely folks who sent me cards and letters and surprises and emails for my birthday.
Thank you all very much.
There are loads of free or reduced online classes going on. Anyone taking any?
What are you all doing to get through this? Feeling creative? Or wanting to lay down on the couch?
I am cooking a lot and cleaning.
I guess that gives me some sense of control.

Stay safe and sane, everyone.

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Thursday, March 19, 2020

Locked Down but Not Locked Out

Who is that sassy girl?
I love this envelope made by my pal Missy Millie....seeing her in my mailbox really cheered me up, especially since I can't really go out.....
She had the wrong zip code so it took a while to get to me but get to me it did...

Well, this was sure a surprise....life as we know it isn't the same....San Francisco is  locked down and rumor has it, things may get worse. So far I have only gone out for food and I am going stir crazy, even with the multitude of projects I have to work on....
So, what am I doing?

Drinking a lot of tea. I love the Smith Tea Company in Portland and treated myself to a new box. This is turmeric tea and pretty good. Just look at that tea bag -- so pretty. You KNOW I will have to do something with that tea bag....I love their Meadow Tea too....I'm just sayin' incase you are browsing their website for some tea you might like....

Besides drinking tea (and some wine) I have been reading books. I don't like to recommend books because we all have wildly different tastes in books (& movies...I hated Parasite and everyone else loved it) but I really, really enjoyed this book. And, you might too. And if you're really lucky, your library may be opened so you can get it from the library. It is a feel good-book and I need to feel better!

Happily I have a BIG stash of arty/crafty/mixed media/textile books and I have had ample time to sit and page through them and get ideas for projects. I hope you have some good books in your stash too.

This charming sewn folder was inside the Sassy Girl envelope (above).

All the way from OZ and my birthday buddy Vizma.
(Happy Birthday Aries pal!)

A delightful birthday surprise from my Portland buddy Miss Polly. My birthday is next week but what the heck....I opened it early. The PDXCC has their own pencil cases!
I really think the SF Correspondence Co-Op needs our own too.

I actually SET UP my unused sewing machine and I tried stitching on paper but the thread jammed. Or something. Now I am VERY cranky and I can't even ask anyone to come over and help me.
Damn.

When the walls start closing in, at least I can go out on my deck for some fresh air and some Meyer lemons....

And, I can go out in the garden and smell the jasmine vines. They are all blooming like crazy and small so good. I also have been watching the little buds come to life. Nature is such a balm.

This plant is old and has lots of beautiful flowers.....

Lilacs!!!
My favorite flowers and I actually have some blooming. They don't seem to do well here in San Francisco but my old lilac bush squeezes out a few every year right around my birthday.
I have lots of projects -- altered books, gelli printing, hand sewing and embroidery, etc -- but I only seem to want to sit and read. I guess I am trying to get used to the new and hopefully temporary reality.
I love Instagram and have been trolling through IG for inspiration. There is some wonderful art on there and lots of good mail ideas. You can sign up and make your account totally locked up (like SF!) and private but then you can see some great stuff. I can recommend some beautiful feeds if there is any interest.

So, I was thinking....
Maybe we could ALL make something "together"? want to try? I was thinking  Altered Altoid Tins or maybe Pocket Books....
Do you all have an Altoid tin? Some double stick tape? Gel Medium?
Want to play?
Clear those cookies and comment below if you do and I will try to set something up. It would be kind of fun to all work on the same basic project....I wish you could all come over but we know that can't happen right now.

Tell me what you think. And, tell me how you are all doing out there...How are YOU coping with things? Are you all under the Shelter In Place rule??
Stay safe and take care of yourselves.
And do something nice for someone else.

Remember,
ART SAVES LIVES

Sunday, March 15, 2020

We Are In This Together

Hello friends,
I have been thinking of you all and hoping everyone is doing ok. These are difficult and trying times, aren't they?
The situation seems to change every day. San Francisco is locked up -- museums, libraries, concert halls, schools,  etc are all closed. Supermarket shelves are empty.
People are anxious.
If we were to try to be kind, stop hoarding and share what we have, things would be better.
Kindness goes a long way.

We need art and beauty more than ever in our lives. Put on some beautiful music. Make a pot of tea. Sit down and write a letter to someone you love.

I am very lucky I know...I have loads of art supplies and a studio to work in.  No small children who are locked out of school. Many small and large businesses are suffering and people who cannot afford to miss paychecks are out of work. My heart goes out to them.

I cancelled two trips already and was feeling a little sorry for myself until I started thinking about the folks who are really suffering. Those who are sick and those who are out of work. Now I am trying to think of ways to help out.

What are you going to do?
I am going to try to be calm and live my life and wash my hands a lot. Make a lot of art so I will actually have something to show for this time period. I am still seeing friends one on one. Being isolated isn't good for the soul.
When I heard the SF Public Library was closing, I raced down to get a big pile of books to read
since I'll have more time at home. I may take an online art class. Work outside in my garden. Do some embroidery and slow stitching.
Make some Irish soda bread and cookies and deliver them to my neighbors.

It wouldn't hurt to work on cleaning up my studio a bit either.

I don't hoard and I hope I can find simple things like milk and vegetables.
I am happy to have a supply of Peets coffee and some gin, just in case things keep on getting worse.

Keep your sense of humor. Look for beauty. Find the grace notes. Help each other.

I thought I would try to post on the blog more to keep in touch with you all. I think a lot of us are feeling a little lonely these days. 
I would really like to invite everyone over to my house for a nice meal.

Let's keep in touch, ok?
By the way, if you have trouble commenting in the blog, just clear your cookies -- clear history -- and you should be able too.
I need to hear back from you friends.
Stay stay out there.

ART SAVES LIVES!

Thursday, February 6, 2020

Making

Happy 2020!!!
Ok, a little bit late but it is still early in the year. And, a long time since I've posted. But I do post regularly on Instagram....
Of course I am busy making things.....like these fun gusseted folders made from old legal files I picked up at ScrapSF and covered with pretty paper.

They are very handy to pack up with letter writing supplies to take to a SF Correspondence Co-op Meeting or to a cafe on the chance you might want to make some mail....

I put a bunch of velum packets inside to organize things.....and they look good too. I find these folders really useful -- I had a Christmas one with all my Christmas supplies supplies (cards, stickers, stamps etc) so when I had a few minutes I could grab it and write a card. And I have some for putting travel ephemera in for each country I may visit on an upcoming trip. All ready and waiting when I want to make a travel journal.
Speaking of travel, I have plane tickets to Beijing.....and, given the circumstances, it sure doesn't look like I will be going....

Made some little pocket folders from the Cavallini Sale postcards I had sitting around...

...and I gave them to the pals I stood in line at Cavallini with as a little souvenir.....

I collect pressed souvenir pennies. Any of you want to trade pressed pennies with me???
Just let me know. I'd especially like some from New York City but anywhere would do...
Of course there is cappuccino.....and Happy Lunar New Year to all who celebrate. The BIG Lunar NY Parade is this Saturday here in San Francisco and if you are looking for
fire cracker wrappers to collage that is where you want to look (down)....

Made my 2020 datebooks. Old school. I like pen and paper.....I had a Japanese theme going on but I'm not sure I will be going to Japan this spring with all the chaos going on....we'll see...

That didn't stop me from working on an altered passport from Japan....
work in process....

Here's one of those gusseted file folders at a SF Correspondent  Co-Op meeting in action....and Italian pouches with mail art supplies made my my pal Dori.

I've been making ephemera packs too....


I'm not sure what I will do with them...trade them? Sell them? 

I'm having a love affair with fabric scraps......These beauties and that gorgeous pin cushion came from ScrapSF. No, I really can't sew but I am determined to hand stitch a fabric book or two so stay tuned...

See? There is a seat at my table just waiting for you. Who is coming over? We could have tea....or coffee.....and I almost always have something around that I baked. And, we could make things....
I was happy to have the holidays over with and a brand new year but it is zipping by so incredibly quickly.....How can it be February already?
And, what are you all doing and making?
Let me know...and also let me know if you want to trade pressed pennies....or ephemera?
HAPPY 2020!!!!!
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