Thank goodness it's T.G.I.F.F.T. on Smallworks!

Thank-Goodness-it's-Friday-Favorites-Time! Aren't you excited?

Okay -- you may be thinking I'm serving up extra "so-whatness" today, but after I showed my favorite magazine and my favorite design project ever, I decided we should give it a catchy name and continue showing a few favorite things. And since favorite and Friday provide some automatic alliteration, how could I resist?

Let's start with my favorite piece from this (the small-works-in-wool) particular body of work, shall we? I'll show you my favorite piece ever. It's an early one and pre-dates my photographer, so the slide I have was taken by a photo student and isn't lit well.

Sock Monkey Wisdom

Collection of Cami Kearle and Mandi Brown, 2005, 7.75" x 8.75"

Why is this my favorite?

Well, it has a Barbie shoe in it, for one thing, and I figured out that you can stitch through a Barbie shoe if you need to. But I think the main reason is that it was so gosh-darn hard to make, I really bonded with it.

(Did you know you can bond with things just because they're really hard and make you want to scream and beat them with a 2 x 4 sometimes? Are you a parent?)*

*Fine print: Small Works does not advocate the use of screaming or 2 x 4's in childrearing. Parents are, however, entitled to any "feelings" they may experience as a result of frustration.

I made this piece for a show in Taos, NM called "Arte de Descartes", in which all the art had to be made from at least 98% recycled materials. This was difficult for me because in the fine details on my pieces, I use a very dense commercial felt, but I wasn't allowed to use much of it at all here. The next problem was that, although I love the green sweater it's built on, it felted to be about 1/4" thick. Then I had the swell idea of layering a piece of Russ's grandpa's marvelous black & white check hunting shirt on top (also thick), before I got to the pink background for the image. It took me a solid week to do the pink stitching in the background, and I had to use pliers to pull the needle through.

The next problem was that this piece became what my then art-school daughter taught me to call "an ugly baby." I remember phoning her and saying, "HELP! I already have 2 weeks into this thing and she is just so UGLY I don't know if I can stand it!" My daughter very calmly explained to me that I had an ugly baby. "You can't really stop feeding it," she said. "For one thing, you want to see what it grows up to be."

So I kept feeding it, including a Barbie shoe and some really swell vintage beads and words and buttons, and it became my favorite piece ever.

I also love what it says -- I have three daughters, and I want them swinging from all the trees they can find in this world. No branch too high, no feat too dangerous to attempt. Even in a skirt.

This piece is owned by two of my favorite people in the world. Icing on the cake.

So I guess the moral of that story is, no matter how ugly your children are, keep feeding them. We all want to see what they're going to become when they grow up.

Since we're on the topic of favorites -- good thing I don't drink, because I'd be an alcoholic. Actually, I am an alcoholic but my addictions are to pretty much everything I do and consume except alcohol. For instance, I always order the same things at restaurants. Why mess with success? And if I start liking a certain candy, buy stock in it because sales are going up. And if there's a TV show I like, we're watching them ALL. And yes, I take pleasure in doing these things in private and yes, I would lie cheat and steal to indulge my addictions if I had to and yes, I get the shakes when I haven't had my fix for awhile. See? Alcoholic.

Anyway, here is one of my current addictions. That's the great thing about being an alcoholic for EVERYTHING -- you can change your addiction whenever you get tired of it. And it doesn't usually impair your driving.

Except in this case your driving may be impaired by struggling to find the bag and then open it on the way home from the grocery store. If you like licorice, this is pretty tasty and has a marvelous texture with exactly the right amount of squishiness. And although I am a candy connoisseur, I won't bore you with descriptions of its bouquet or its delicate hint of wood tones or grassy highlights or whatever . . .

Just get some. I've already got my bags for this weekend.

Happy Friday!

(if anyone tries the peach flavor, will you let me know how it is? I have a hard time breaking out of my rut to try new things, as in "ALWAYS shaken, NEVER stirred." They're called rules.)


Cami said...

She is our favorite too :-) You are welcome to come visit her ANYTIME and get a new picture. We feel so honored to own your favorite. Mandi also loves that her piece is on the top of the blog. YOUR stuff is so great and the owl piece is so fun. If you are inspired to branch into the realm of animals I might have to commission a turtle :-) We miss you -- come play in the sun! Love to all!

P.S. That is good licorice!

Pam said...

Now you have me seriously craving licorice, and be damned if I'm going out in 43 degree heat to get it.Gosh..what will I do.Even the car door handle burns.

susan m hinckley said...

To Cami -- a turtle piece? What a great idea! Don't know why I hadn't thought of it before now. I'll definitely keep it in mind.

To Pam -- I'd feel more sorry for you if I weren't dreaming of a little heat right now. I love reading your blog because it reminds me that it is summer somewhere! Stay cool :) We're dreaming of 43 degrees here (a different 43, to be sure) I've long been intrigued by the Australian licorices I see at the store. Are they really good?

susan m hinckley said...

Another thought occurs to me on the turtle idea -- I've always loved the Eric Carle story about the turtle whose shell became so big and grand he could no longer move. Keep your home light and easy to carry -- that could make a really nice piece. More turtle thoughts to come . . .

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