Sunday, June 14, 2009

Let there be light!

Some days are more illuminating than others.
Today it one of those days.
I have nice ceiling fans with light kits. They provide a nice about of light, but there are areas. One such area is my ironing station. a while ago I covered a banquet table with canvas and batting (thanks Sharon
It is awesome having a 30 x 60 space rather than a small ironing board -- well you can imagine!
The light however could be better. Where I stand the light is behind me and I cast a shadow on the surface.
What to do?
I looked for track fixtures that plug in, I've seen them on line, but not in stores.
Then it dawned on me. I have a half dozen clip lights that I used in my studio in Miami now living in a box.
Today I took a simple and inexpensive ceiling hook, installed above the dark area and voila, LIGHT!
There are four lights illuminating the ironing surface, my cutting table and each end of my HandiQuilter.
Another trip to the hardware store and I will have more light on my drafting table, serger and sewing machine.
Can't wait!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

What the...

Are you as amazed as I at the lack of vision and myopic nature of corporate business today? In the wake of the financial crisis it seems that too many are scrambling to keep up just because the NEWS says things are bad.
I was in Krogers this morning: my local grocery store, a chain from Cincinnati, Ohio. I have been a Kroger Shopper for many years when I lived in Memphis. Now in Somerville I have found this store to be great. Wonderful selections, whole food section, quality bakery and florist, great customer service.
That is until recently...
Walmart moved in less than a mile away. In the past couple of week I have noticed changes. Things that appear as if Kroger is competing with Walmart.
What is absurd is the idea that they are on equal enough footing to compete. Walmart is the huge discount store that competes with NO ONE. They bully vendors into lower and lower prices so their profit margins are high. Not to mention pushing out competitors. Krogers remains a large grocer whos focus has always been providing the local communities with food stuffs and sundry items.
Now they seem bent on matching the prices and quality of the big retailer and are sacrificing the customer in the process.
I will spend a few cents more to have the quality I desire and the customer service I expect.
So don't sell yourself short -- too many do that and then you are left with only one alternative...
Shopping at Walmart!

Monday, June 8, 2009

The Kemshalls are a brilliant mother and daughter team who create great art, specializing in fiber, write books and have an on line degree programme. I have just enrolled in their class on Patchwork and Quilting for City and Guilds.

One of the first assignments is a paper about colour.

I love colour -- of course I am an artist!

I am fascinated by how colours interact with each other. So I have taken a piece I did a couple of years ago and photographed it on several different backgrounds.

Primarily made up of blue and green fabrics with orange threads I wondered how would it appear is different settings?

On white (top picture)

On soft Blue and tan print (second)

On a blue, green and tan batik (third)

And finally on a soft red and cream check (last)

How do you perceive them differently? Some backgrounds blend into the quilt more while others stand out and detract. Interesting which does what!

The implications are interesting... what colour have you painted and does it really set off your art, that rug?

Friday, June 5, 2009

Trees are an important part of modern living. We use them for shade, for protection, to beautify. We cut them down for timber as well as for paper -- even if we are doing this less and "being green".
I have been on a mission to eradicate junk mail from my mail box: those extra catalogues I receive after ordering one thing two years ago, or mail still coming for the previous owners. Not only saving trees, but also company resources...
I have been amazed at the difficulties associated with getting off a mailing list. I have contacted AT&T a dozen times to get off their mailing list after firing them as a phone carrier and Internet provider eight months ago.. Perhaps this last call dealing with a supervisor will have done the trick.
Funny that I left because of not feeling appreciated as a customer and when I communicated I don't want their mail they don't seem to care or perhaps are not competent to do so. Maybe the confirmation code for cancellation will mean something. YA THINK?!
More paper is coming from the insurance companies and medical labs. I just opened an envelope from the insurance company with four sheets of paper. Each page was a separate "Explanation of Benefits from two providers on the same date. Three of those pages contained a single line from the same provider. (Did I mention everything else on the page was identical?)
That provider happens to be a lab that creates a different customer ID for every transaction. That seems logical doesn't it?
So perhaps in an effort to heal our Medical System's problems we will address the billing and paper trail. Or perhaps just eliminate the insurance companies all together... that would save some trees!