Saturday, December 26, 2009

Beady-eyed Wild Strangers Call at My Door

Ah, the holidays when friends and strangers drop in from all over.  Check this pair out who have learned to beg at the back door.  Too charming for our own (or theirs) good.  They have learned to eat cat food and pose in the door just like the cat and be wistful, outside looking in.
Beware, they are a danger to your pets, and don't encourage their visits (alas) by leaving the food out.  Sooo tempting and way cunning, very hard to resist, but resist we must.  They are omnivorous and opportunistic and can become dangerous.  

Friday, December 18, 2009

Smokie and The Ball

Smokie is an Australian Shepherd who just never gets quite enough to do.  One cool autumn day we walked with him and his person down to the beach and found a nice tennis ball to toss.  For some reason, dogs really like to jump into the cold, cold water and get the ball.  They like to bring it back and shake the water all over their people.  What gets me about this picture is the relationship between the nose and the ball.  Nose points directly at ball, the rest of the dog follows.  Focus is pinpointed and alert.  We can learn good things from dogs.  Thanks, Smokie!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Outsider Artist's Landscape - Ultimate Found Object Art

Every time I head out to I-90 toward the mountains for a hike, I pass this house and have said many times that I must get a camera and record the marvels there.  Having grown up and traveled along country roads in the deep American South, I am familiar with yard art, bottle trees, and the bricoleur landscape architect.  I am fondly fascinated by such unrestricted self expression on a large scale, irrespective of neighbors' wishes, zoning laws, or other peoples' definitions of beauty or sanity.  It is, well, inspiring.  It tells me beauty and fascination are free for the taking, if you rummage around what others discard. 

So today, with nothing in my way, I made an "art date" with myself, found a parking spot on that busy street, and without making to much of a show, snapped a few shots.  I had scripted a response if the owner took umbrage, I would say how much I admire the art work and sense of unrestricted freedom expressed there.  Definitely sincere about that, but I was relieved to escape notice.  One doesn't want to tread upon the sensibilities of an enraged artist, after all.

What is so fine about this particular installation is, it sits right smack-dab in the middle of Seattle, yet it is definitely a bit of the grand tradition I first saw in the South.  And it reminds me of the many Southern Black People who also share a lineage of Native Americans, like my friend Dave, who is just about 50/50 African American and Cherokee.

So, at last I have been able to take this project off the back burner and run with the inspiration I have found.  First the research must begin on yard art, outsider art, and roadside fantasies.  And Amazon was just the place to browse the books.  I found 4 good titles (will add them to the blog later) there and ordered them used and in good condition.  Very economical.  All in the spirit, you might say, of getting the best out of what comes to hand.

These shots were tinkered-with, as for once Seattle was enjoying a very bright bluebird, er, make that bowerbird, day and I just shot it with my little sketchbook camera.  What I really hope to do is to achieve the deeply textured, unaffected, assembled but uncontrived, richly fascinating approach this artist has to the use text, paint, chains, locks, baby buggies, old tires, plastic bags, bottles, red berries, string, wood, pine cones, rope, bottle caps, milk jugs, tires, exhausted light bulbs, and anything that comes to hand in our consumption-oriented, throw-away urban environment.  How fine the inspiration of an unfettered mind!

And this inspiration reminds me of one of my favorite paragraphs by an American writer, Ernest Hemingway:  "If you serve time for society, democracy, and the other things quite young, and declining any further enlistment make yourself responsible only to yourself, you exchange the pleasant, comfortable stench of comrades for something you can never feel in any other way than by yourself. That something I cannot define completely but the feeling comes ... when, on the sea, you are alone with it and know that this Gulf Stream you are living with, knowing, learning about, and loving, has moved, as it moves, since before man, and that it has gone by the shoreline of that long, beautiful, unhappy island since before Columbus sighted it and that the things you find out about it, and those that have always lived in it are permanent and of value because that stream will flow, as it had flowed, after the Indians, after the Spaniards, after the British, after the Americans and after all the Cubans and all the systems of government, the richness, the poverty, martyrdom, the sacrifice and the venality and the cruelty are all one as the high-piled scow of garbage, bright-colored, white-flecked, ill-smelling, now tilted on its side, spills off its load into the blue water, turning it a pale green to a depth of four or five fathoms as the load spreads across the surface, the sinkable part going down and the flotsam of palm-fronds, corks, bottles, and used electric light-globes, seasoned with an occasional condom or a deep floating corset, the torn leaves of a student's exercise book, a well-inflated dog, the occasional rat, the no-longer distinguished cat; all this well shepherded by the boats of the garbage pickers who pluck their prizes with long poles, as interested, as intelligent, and as accurate as historians; they have the viewpoint; the stream with no visible flow, takes fives loads of this a day when things are going well in La Habana and in ten miles along the coast it is as clear and blue and unimpressed as it was ever before the tug hauled out the scow; and the palm-fronds of our victories, the worn light-bulbs of our discoveries and the empty condoms of our great loves float with no significance against the one single lasting thing -- the stream."

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Rusty Raveled Renaissance

In olden days when knights of yore wore jeweled tokens of a lady's love, they were finely wrought and such a jewel was more than a treasure; the workmanship and intricacy made it absolutely magical.  And the parts were unique and rare.  See here:

I love the chain suspension and the totally unique and precious sensibility of the thing.  Such jewels began with, say, a rare baroque pearl or gem of a shape that inspired the composition.  They were fantastic, mythical and legendary.  A few left today have individual names, such as "The Canning Jewel."

So, I thought, can one evoke such a thing without gold and gold enameling?

Like, how about a smooshed up abandoned rusty bottle cap and a scrap of text from a scruffy old cigar box, some phony rhinestones and bits of this 'n that?  Not duplicate, mind you, but evoke.

So, here's my take on it, featuring the face of San Juan de Fuca from a very old scruffy cigar box label (cigars from Cuba with an import stamp, branded "Avengers"), steel wire, recycled torn sari ribbons from NorthcuttWilson, fellow Etsian (fair trade, from Nepal), dirty pearls from used up costume jewelry, rust, dust, and silky tatters:

I have made the neckpiece without a clasp, to be tied in the back with a bow, inspired by Schiaparelli's whimsical Circus pieces made in the 50s.  I like the look of a slender neck with a pendant hanging at the clavicle and a bow at the back, so fun and feminine.  And there's an almost infinite supply of rusty, smooshed old bottle caps out there.


Monday, November 30, 2009

Flourish in Tacoma

Carol's shop around the corner in the Proctor District of Tacoma is a delightful little bandbox lined in French provincial printed fabric, with a fine array of artisan jewelry pinned to the walls.  Stepping through her door is like opening a gift.  And, because Carol herself is a fine designer, and because she represents other fine designers, I was absolutely delighted when she consigned some of my work, too.  Lucky me!

When you happen to be in Tacoma, look for this special place on the ridge above Old Towne, at the intersection of Proctor and North 27th Street, at 1901 North 27th.  It's near some interesting historical buildings, including a firehouse from the days of horse-drawn fire wagons.  On weekends, there's a farmers' market on 27th and it is roped off, but that would make a nice shopping situation; you could drop in to Flourish while you're checking the local produce.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Okay, Time to Put Up the Dollies

Bottle Caps of Ancient Times, Unlikely Jewels -- I have been carefully searching the parking lots where the climbers return from their victories and celebrate (Snow Creek Parking Lot is especially fertile) for smooshed and finely weathered bottle caps. Not sure why, but I love them.  For one thing they are a challenge -- no two alike, unpredictable symmetries, gunk, rust and dents, and remnants of logos. 

What I like most to do with these treasures is to do a multi-layered resin inlay using bits of this and that, glass beads, rhinestones, shell, old-old faces from 19th C. encyclopedias, text, paint, crackling schmootz, embossing powders, all to create a jewel from the object the rest of you would think quite humble, but which I consider noble.  Just imagine if you lived in the bronze age and found one of these babies stuck in the dirt.  You would really be ahead of the curve with something more valuable than Scythian gold.  That was then.  Now, you will be behind the curve, as it were! 

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Finished Frida

At last, Frida has been dressed and is ready to debut on Etsy. 

I settled on a rough weave, slubby cotton blue plaid that has a Guatemalan feel for her skirt.  And of course, her tap pants are edged with crocheted lace and embroidered with her monogram in that color of magenta pink she liked for her lips.  The skirt has a hand crocheted lace ruffle salvaged from a pillowcase.  I finished off her huipil with a geometric pattern that I feel is sympathetic, if not authentic. 

This has been quite a little journey to her world, after two biographies, Frida: A Biography of Frida Kahlo, by Hayden Herrera, and Frida Kahlo, an Open Life, by Raquel Tibol, and  the delightful Self Portrait in a Velvet Dress, Frida's Wardrobe.   I believe I may have captured her likeness and something of her presence much more than before; this one is my third Frida doll, and by far my favorite.  She expresses my sense of gratitude to this great woman and her allegria in the face of immense suffering; I found myself hugging her and expressing a wish to soften her losses.

I have turned her head to a 3/4 view as she poses in her self portraits, making for a rather challenging silhouette in such a doll, but I like that little bit of provocation.  She measures 31-1/2 inches, head to toe.

My next read is Dreaming With His Eyes Open, a Life of Diego Rivera, which, from the little peek I have had so far, will round out my view of both Frida and her Dieguito, two magnificent revolutionary artists.  Who knows, I may even be moved to make a Diego bed doll.  Eventually.  I am already thinking of the next Frida.


Friday, October 30, 2009

Frida and Her Huipil

The work on Frida progresses -- I have chosen an exquisite cross-stitched panel of unknown folk origins.  It is most likely Central Asian.  The iconography features concatenated diamonds with rows of swastikas.  Now a word on that symbol -- the name comes from the Sanskrit and it means "auspicious symbol."  It has different connotations depending on whether the running cross runs clockwise or counterclockwise.  Because positive and negative directions run along those registers, I believe this piece speaks of the wholeness of creation.  Never mind the fascist co-opt of that symbol.  Frida despised the fascists with all her considerable passions.  The swastika seems to cross-culturally universal, and it has showed up in diverse places from Buddhist to South American cultures.  The panel may even be Hmong (Miao) of southern China.  But my goal was to evoke Frida's taste for the rich, complex and finely crafted, so while it doesn't fit into the panoply of Mexican regional tradition, it feels right to me.  Her earring is a milagro of a smiling sun, which I think works, because the swastika is also believed to be a symbol of the sun, as well as of an active, creative life.  Next step, draft the pattern for her undergarments -- in all the resources I have seen, nowhere does it mention Frida's underwear, except the tortuous corsets that braced her poor spine.  I expect she either wore none at all or the very best embroidered, appliqued, monogrammed silk.  I think it'll be a camisole and tap pants with lace inserts, and a monogram, of course.  Frida actually monogrammed her own sheets in a Gothic script with black floss.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Flat Frida, a Work in Progress

About once a year, I like to make a Frida Kahlo doll, based on one of her self portraits.  Usually, it's sometime around Dias.  This year, after reading Hererra's biography and Self Portrait in a Velvet Dress, a book presenting her priceless collection of traditional Mexican dress, I feel I have a very close likeness.  As I embroidered the face, I was thinking, "aye, Frida-linda."  She will be a bed doll (a pro-pros, eh?), based on the pattern used in the 1920s.  I haven't decided yet about her dress, but I expect it will be a huipil and a Tejuana-style skirt with lacy white ruffle in good cotton batiste (if I can find it).  Or silk?  Her skirts were often silk and silk velvet.  Sumptuous!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Traveling Gingerbread

Here's a great recipe with a story.  It was given to me by a friend in 1976, written on the back of a campaign letter for Carter/Mondale.  That gives it some vintage cachet, I'd say.  The first time I baked this was one of those Thanksgivings when we went from house to house to see everyone.  That's when it earned its name; a good friend liked it so much, he humbly asked, "is this traveling gingerbread?"  So here it is,

Traveling Gingerbread

Serves 12 - 35 minutes - 350 degrees - 9x12 pan
1/2 c. sugar                      1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 c. butter                     1 tsp. ginger
1 c. dark molasses            1/2 tsp. cloves
2-1/2 c. sifted flour           1/2 tsp. salt
1-1/2 tsp. soda                 1 c. hot water
1 egg, beaten

Cream sugar & butter.  Add beaten egg and molasses (try substituting real maple syrup sometime, yummy yum-yum, but adjust moisture since the syrup is thinner).  Add dry ingredients sifted together.  Add hot water and beat until smooth.  The batter should be very soft.  Pour the batter into a greased and floured pan and bake 35 minutes at 350 degrees.  Cool, cut in squares and top with  whipped cream or frosting.  I like lemon sauce best -- a simple thing of fresh lemon, corn starch and sugar.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Plant Senescence (Autumn Colors)

We think they are turning colors, but what is really happening is that the chlorophyll that makes them green begins to recede, whilst the leaf base develops a "cork layer" that closes its venous system and gradually disconnects it from the tree.  The color you see is the tree's natural leaf color, minus the chlorophyll that masks it during the growing season and helps to nourish the tree.  The saturated colors create a bittersweet mood for me, a confusion of excitement, anticipation and nostalgia.  They are so bright on a cloudy day next to gray Puget Sound that they enter your eyes like sunshine, and scatter light in dreary places.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Home for the Holidays

Here's one of my doll assemblages, based on the mummies of Guanajuato.  All decked out for Dias de los Muertos and visited by a happy moth.  Ingredients:  a piece of a desert-wracked rusty metal sign with the most delicious peeling yellow paint, an old t-shirt (the moth), feathers, acrylic paint, paper flowers, paper clay, an old religious medal that turned up in a box of old buttons, tea dyed muslin, black taffeta.  And what pleases me very much, he has been adopted just in time for the holiday by a real fan of spooky art in Walnut Creek, CA.  I had just about given up, thinking well, folks won't understand how cute, funny, ironic and beautiful this doll is, they just get creeped out and think I must be some sort of an axe murderer or something.  But no, not at all, at least one discriminating collector understands.  Thank you, Lady X, you have restored my faith, may you have the most wonderful, juicy, spooky, hilarious happy Halloween and Dias, and even though it was a bit hard to let my friends El Guanajuatotito y Polillo go, I know they go to a good home.  Happy, happy.  And, warning to all who take up doll making, you do get attached to these characters as they take shape in your hands; I'll miss El G y P for sure.  Adios!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Secrets of Tomb 10A at Boston Museum of Fine Arts

Go here, and see an exciting show that proves the immense value of ancient artifacts is not intrinsic, as in treasure, but as in the record of lives lived 4,000 years ago, that still preserves a sense of their bustling vitality.  It's time travel.  This show was mounted from artifacts already in the collection, languishing in storage, but now brought to light.  Beautifully carved scenes of daily life and ordinary people, in which the ancient craftsman showed great care and delight, seem to repopulate a long lost past.  You can easily imagine the Nile, quite as busy with commerce and travel as any modern waterway.  All the more touching to understand that the inhabitants of this rifled tomb were a regional governor and his wife, persons of some wealth, but not of exalted divine royal lineages.  Of the body so carefully prepared for eternity, all that is left is a head.  It is humbling to look into the face of a person 4,000 years old.  Curators say it is not possible to know whether the head is that of the governor or the lady, but what would you guess from the features still faintly youthful and gracile?  You can compare this face to the carved features of votive statues from the tomb and make a guess.  And, to read between the lines, wouldn't it be mere justice to send these lovely people and things home, where their ka(s) can find them?  In a real sense, provenance of these antiquities always goes back to an original robbery, doesn't it?

Monday, October 19, 2009

Virtual Tour of Casa Azul

If you will explore the Museu de Frida Kahlo, Casa Azul, link to the right, there is a wonderful virtual tour of the house where Frida was born, lived and died.  Frida fans, enjoy!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Self Portrait in a Velvet Dress

I have this wonderful book after waiting for for two years.  Frida's personal wardrobe was sealed in a dressing room after her death and was to remain sealed until 50 years after the death of Diego Rivera, in 2007.  Now the room has been opened and the exciting work of curatorship and restoration has progressed to reveal these incredible garments.  Frida wore the native dress of her land, but also wore garments from China and Guatemala.  And she had some marvelous shoes, handwoven and embroidered handbags, and brilliant ribbons for her headdress.  It's especially exciting to compare, for instance, the Tehuana headress she actually wore to the one she painted in "Diego in My Thoughts," and see just how masterful a painter she was.  As Diego had said, "you are the only one who has painted the life of a woman from inside," yet her clothing, still scented with her cigarettes and perfume when found, vividly brings her to life, so much so that I dreamed of Frida one night after sitting up late pouring over this sumptuous treat of a book.  It's a fine companion to the biographies written by the contributors.  Recommended reading.  And now, I shall don my huipil!  A mujer doesn't have to wait until Dias de los Muertos to enjoy such comfort and luxury.  [Amazon has the best price:]

Rain, Rain Here to Stay

Summer's gone.  Sometimes we squeeze out a few, rare, brilliant October days in Western Washington, but today is not the day.  Fat rain drums on the roof, gurgles in the downspouts and drips from the eaves.  Yesterday was like that, tomorrow will be like that. All this comes to us on prevailing southwesterlies saturated as they pass over the Pacific, then drop their cargo to rise over the crest of the Cascades.  Somewhere up there, it's snow, but down here, my driveway runneth over.  It's the Pineapple Express. 'Think I'll go brew up some soup.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

It's Jewelry Making Time Again ...

I've revived a dainty rose bead (real petals used) necklace, and put it up on Etsy.  Very girly, totally unique and affordable as well. 

Time to give the dollies a rest and play with some of my favorite jewelry parts, which are begging to become something more.  Like this curious etched piece that I made in a Keith LoBue class ---

It's "Mr. Wind" blowing up a storm, image from a very old Bell Telephone brochure, patinated to the natural verdigris color, in jeweler's bronze.  (River rock not included.)  So, it's off to new adventures in my workroom.  For me, jewelry is always adventurous and filled with interest and story telling.  It will be fun to see how Mr. Wind ends up, and I'll keep you posted.

Scale:  4.5 cm x 2.5; 20ga.

PS:  I like the rock, too.  Looks like an asteroid at this scale, doesn't it?  Both these picks enlarge if you click them, and then the rock is full of craters!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


 The treasures are going home.  Check the History Buff link on the right for more news.  This is a very happy outcome.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

The Schoolmarm is on Etsy Now

Check my Etsy gadget below and visit my little shop of ghostly characters.  They're seeing their favorite holiday just around the corner, where the veil between their world and ours gets thin.

Friday, October 9, 2009

The Louvre Is In the Wrong

It is time for great institutions to cease purchasing stolen goods.  If collectors refused items without legal provenance, it would do much to defeat the tomb robbers, wouldn't it?  I for one would like to see the artifacts of this great civilization repatriated, to a home where their ka(s) can rest.  Surely, out of context, they are only treasure, when in truth, they are so much more than that.  Wouldn't it be wonderful if the Louvre and the Berlin Museum returned these to their home?  Imagine Nefertiti's beauty at home again.  Imagine the joy of that return.  Imagine the joy of the return of the noble dead to the land of their birth.  I wonder if we shouldn't see any Egyptian artifact outside of Egypt as contraband, even if archaeologists of other countries acquired them.  And another thing!  Did you know that when Napoleon went into Egypt, his soldiers made potshots at the face of the Sphinx, that plundered mummies were taken away, and it became a fad of the elite and they would have unwrapping parties, that the ground remains of their bodies became a nostrum, as though the beautiful mystery of their true lives could heal the ill so greedy for life.  No such travesty could heal anything.  Repatriation could, though.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Another Ghostly Figure

A mere shadow of her former self, yet somehow happier (she's kicking up her heels to show the giddy stockings that match the hornet), the Ghostly Schoolmarm.  She haunts the Museum of Antiquities and Dry Goods Emporium and discusses ancient history with the mummies but is also very happy to have free access to the dry goods as well; she can be a bit of a poltergeist, but it's retail therapy in the afterlife where things are free.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Taking a Break on the Rocks

While a bit of summer still lingers and the skies are still blue and dry, I am going over to beautiful Leavenworth, Washington into Icicle Canyon for a spot of mellow rock climbing to end the season.  You'll see the white streaks on the granite buttress, where many climbers have swept aside the lichen following a line of bolts.  Easy routes up to 5.8 in beautiful surroundings, with shady places under fragrant Ponderosa pines, and then off to town for dinner at South, a very nice restaurant featuring the foods of South America.   Try the "Plata Cubana" featuring fried plaintains.  Yummy!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Madwoman from Mendota

One more barn burning and off she went, escorted by the Sheriff to Mendota, in restraints because she just couldn't keep her hands off the matches and kerosene.  The judge asked her why she did these things, and she replied, she loves to stare into the flames.  Smoke gets in your eyes.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Mummy's Wrath 2.5

Lars the mummy snatcher has collected more contraband; a small cat was prepared in the 2nd millenium to accompany a royal queen upon her journey to the afterlife.  Never, never separate a cat from her queen, or there will surely be a serious karmic debt to pay!  Especially when kitty didn't get the full 9 lives.  As if the queen's displeasure wasn't enough.  Imagine how a wrathful cat mummy might take revenge ... 
And here's a portrait of that smirking disturber of the dead, that wretch, that erstwhile archaeologist, Lars.   

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Lars, Jasper, and Patent Medicines: The Mummy's Wrath II

From the far flung remote and dessicating sands of the Gobi Desert a new mummy arrives for the Museum, drawing throngs of the curious in Kenosha.  It's another ambitious project of erstwhile archaeologist Lars Olafson.  Lars, not one to miss a profitable opportunity, and Jasper Elkhorn, purveyor of nostrums and anodynes, not one to miss good publicity, have struck a deal and plastered the famous remains with advertising.  Neither gentleman being known for his subtlety, each has missed just how misdirected and annoying their pioneering efforts at advertising may be.  It is enough to raise the dead.  The Kenosha Museum of Antiquities and Dry Goods Emporium will soon regret this new project:  he stirs -- first Lars, then Jasper, then Kenosha, then, well, the world.  BWAAhaHA.

The Mummy's Wrath

The royal lady Nefer-nefer.  It wasn't that they married her off to her bucktoothed brother, it wasn't the ancient thieves who interrupted the royal repose and made off with her funerary riches, it wasn't those 2,500 years in an obscure pit in the the Valley of Queens, no.  It wasn't that dratted Lars Olafson, self-styled archaeologist, disturber of the dead, who shipped her, not first class, but as freight, mind you, freight, and the side trips as misplaced luggage to Abu Dhabi and Dubai, oh no.  It was the trip on the rattling train to the museum in Kenosha.  Kenosha!  Ptah knows, a girl has her limits.  That was the straw that broke the camel's back.  She stirs, and she is, to put it mildly, peeved.  Kenosha will know the horror of royal disfavor!  And she hasn't entirely forgotten that wretch, Lars, either.


Halloween is coming, and that means it's time for things that go bump in the night.

Stay tuned for the continuing story of Lars Olafson and his misguided efforts to collect antiquities and make a buck or two at the Kenosha Museum of Antiquities and Dry Goods Emporium.  Soon Kenosha will pay the price of his greed and poor taste.


Monday, August 17, 2009

On a Roll!

Another dollie, another day -- I'm just in a doll making mood; as I said, once they start to take shape you have to keep moving because, well, I'm not quite sure why. Here's another, right on the work bench, Ms. Witch dressed for a date with the full moon.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Doll Fever!

When the WiP is a doll and he or she begins to acquire a bit of life, and then becomes a "personage," well, then it's too hard to stop. It's a bit like birth and one doesn't want the labor to last too long -- so here he is. NOSFERATU! Fresh from my workbench before posing the beauty shot -- what's not to love?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Autumnal Work in Progress

Enough of those handsome, broody young vampires! What I want is a real deal, thoroughly ka-reepy NOSFERATU, the classic threatening, suck-your-blood and leave-your-dry-husk flapping in the wind-type vampire. Something German Expressionism, Vlad-the-Impaler, spine-chilling as the leaves begin to fall ... So, what better than a doll and assemblage of all my evocative odds and ends? A page of text in Serbian, a bit of dusty velvet, tarnished brocade, blood-red silk, perhaps a palatial casket with cast iron fittings for those bright afternoons. Bwaahahaa!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Vini, Vidi, Vici

It's yard sale time on a sunny Sunday in Seattle, and boyohboy did I ever score! A page from Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper, dated 1883, some strange magnifying spectacles that work like a hinged pince nez; a saccharine cherub plucking a harp; a shuttle for mending fishing nets and superscore of scores -- an 1885 autograph book kept by Miss Lily of Abilene, Kansas.

The autograph has a lot of old timey stickers of all kinds, but I especially like the Union soldier (General Sherman) with roses. An interesting touch for memorabilia from Kansas in 1886; the memories then would not have been old ones.

And, the handwriting, so fine, most of it written in ink with a steel point pen.

Now these treasures need to rest awhile before they reincarnate in a tasty bit of assemblage.