Sunday, July 28, 2013


Summertime is slower and quieter and hotter than any other time of the year. A bit more heavy. A bit less energetic. But nevertheless creativity strikes here and there. My granddaughters left the TV and PC be still and off yesterday and got hold of all my painting gear. For hours they played with the hues, listening to music from the radio and thinking about the vacation in Rome they came back from a week ago, trying to put their feelings on canvas.

And the second best thing? They cleaned up everything after it! :-)

Monday, July 22, 2013

Those shoes are made for walking

Just came off the sewing machine. No fancy words are necessary - it is just pretty.


Back with pocket

Fine quality cotton, leather scraps, doily, adornment made, I think, from strong cardboard painted with acrylics and glued on, textured cotton lining with one Velcro closed pocket, handles with a thin leather strip, magnetic closure, key swivel 
15" x 12" (38cm x 30cm)

Actually this doily was one of many in an old large table cloth, crocheted with very thin cotton yarn. The woman at the flea market had taken it carefully apart to sell the individual pieces - a pity really!


"Kneeling in the keeping room where she usually went to talk-think it was clear why Baby Suggs was so starved for color. There wasn't any except for two orange squares in a quilt that made the absence shout. The walls of the room were slate-colored, the floor earth-brown, the wooden dresser the color of itself, curtains white, and the dominating feature, the quilt over an iron cot, was made up of scraps of blue serge, black, brown and gray wool - the full range of the dark and the muted that thrift and modesty allowed. In that sober field, two patches of orange look wild - like life in the raw."

From Toni Morrison's novel "Beloved", set in the country side of Ohio, some years after the Civil War. A haunting read.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Two patches of ORANGE in the absence of color

"... like life in the raw..."

What triggered this little painting? Any guess? Do you know? Just for some fun - but the first one to come up with the right answer might get a little present.

Thursday, July 18, 2013


When we think of the button as an item of necessity, as a fastener, we will find that it was used way back in the early time of mankind history. Since human began to cover their bodies, some sort of material was used to connect two pieces of clothing, to guarantee freedom of movement, and to prevent the garment from slipping off the skin. The creativity of those early people in terms of materials, forms and techniques to achieve closure and connection had no limits. Bone and stone and wood, snails, shells, clams, herringbone, animal teeth, and seeds of fruit and trees, all were used to fit two pieces of fur, leather or woven cloth together.

In Roman and Byzantine time those closures became, besides their practicality, more and more decorative.

The first buttons somehow as we know them today originated in France in the 13th century. They spread to Italy and throughout Europe. Many paintings of those times give us a good insight into the forms and materials of the buttons and their importance in fashion. They increasingly symbolized social status and button mills sprang up. The designs became often very ornamental and buttons were commissioned to be made of precious material, like silver, gold, coral, amber, pearls and gemstones, even diamonds, to adorn the costumes and to express wealth and power. And coin buttons were in the 18th century still accepted as payment.

Gradually, many different materials were added, which enriched the panorama of the diverse world of the button: mother-of-pearl, ivory, nut, horn, brass, clay, and finally polyester. In the 19th century the manufacture of buttons was industrialized, the button factories were established and began to flourish, and machines took mostly over the handy craft.

Till today the chosen material, natural or synthetic, is an equal part to the design and is closely associated with the button production. There are exotic substances, like the resin corozo, obtained from the nut of the tagua palm which is native to South America and leads to fine modern buttons. There is mother-of-pearl, coconut, glass, amber, plum and cherry pits, finds from the beach, leather, eucalyptus seeds. The later by the way, when they get a bit warm, release their wonderful oily scent. There are buttons created from metals and plastic, buttons covered with fabric and lace and silk. There are buttons for special needs, like professional clothing for army and police uniforms, for restaurant and hospital personnel outfits, etc.
And we should not forget about the buttons who are really small pieces of art, intricately carved or masterly painted little gems, each one individually crafted. 

BUTTONS, millions of buttons and trillions of buttons came and went, and are still here, in all colors, shapes and materials we can think of, buttons with holes and with shanks, buttons in all sizes. Today the most common materials used in button making are hard plastic, seashell, metals and wood.

We all love buttons, don't we? I get hunting instincts while visiting the flea markets, and I have no shame asking older people: "Do you have a jar or box full of buttons you saved through your life and you don't need anymore?" Sometimes I get lucky!

Many of those old and not so old buttons I use. Two years ago I found a box full of mother-of-pearl buttons at the flea-market in Yafo, there were hundreds of them inside, half of them were broken, but I had still enough to enjoy. I have been using them extensively on pouches, bags, lavender hearts, even pillows, and they are almost gone now. I have to go searching again...  But others I don't use, I just keep them and I love spilling them out of their container, looking at them closely, trying to imagine their earlier life, making up stories in my mind.

How do you feel about buttons? Do you love them? Do you feel connected to them through your clothing and through history? Are you collecting them? If you look at a button, can you tell from which material it is made? If it is old or new? Even antique? Do you have buttons to spare? :-)

All the information gathered from different sources at the Internet.

Sunday, July 14, 2013


The caper bushes are blooming in abundance and beautifully here now. Capers  are the buds of the plants, before the flower opens. Capparis spinosa, the perennial prickly plant is native to the Levant and to parts of Asia. Here they are growing wild, but they are cultivated in many countries. Their name is tsalaf kozani צלף קוצני in Hebrew and al-kabara in Arabic.

There are large and small buds, the smaller buds are considered more delicately tasty. After they are harvested  they are pickled in vinegar, which will bring out their tangy pungent intensive flavor. The buds are picked by hand, and I can tell from experience that this is not an easy task, you get pricked quite a lot. This makes the capers you buy quite pricey, although I have read that the cultivated shrubs are less thorny.

Many recipes with caper exist and a lot can be found on the Internet. I remember one (which is not a Jewish dish) that is called "Koenigsberger Klopse". Those are meatballs in a white sauce with caper. They are served with potatoes cooked in salt water. This recipe has its own recognition on Wikipedia.

I love the white flowers with the purple stamen and how the green buds, just before they open have purple tips. Driving home to our village I can see the bushes on the road side. They really make my heart sing, especially now, when the summer is hot and not many flowering plants are left.

Those were photographed by my husband at Mount Avital in the North during our outing last weekend.

Saturday, July 13, 2013


I made another holiday bag. Our son takes his fiance to Berlin, which he explored and fell in love with two years ago by himself. Now he wants to let her too feel the pulse of this dramatic city, show her around, and be with her on an adventure of the heart - ten days on a row of pleasure.

The city on the river Spree, which was divided by a wall for several decades, is today not only the political seat of the German government, it has also one of the most important cultural scenes in Germany. Theater, music, art and history are provided in endless museums, galleries and institutions. Nature is lovely in Berlin with plenty of parks and lakes. Food is delicious and international as well as local, the humor of the people known, and the markets a joy to visit.

So my bag for my soon to be daughter-in-law is vivid and lively, like a wonderful carefree summer day in this never sleeping metropolis.

Front and back. All cotton. Zippered pocket outside, Velcro closed pocket inside on the lining, key swivel, magnet closure, adjustable strap, leather and feather adornment. The lovely red doily I found last week at the flea market in downtown Haifa, it adds a lot of pizzazz.

Thursday, July 11, 2013


Not very creative, but easy and fun to make.

20" x 20" - best quality cotton, zipper on the back. 
Front quilted on a fleece base - white pillow case inside from the yellow/blue Swede.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013


They came to visit me.
Out of the blue.
Where did they come from? 
I have no clue!

I love the green faces. 
What do they mean?
It is quite a naughty green. 
And those outfits - outrageous really!

But the men smile kindly and  have sexy noses.  
They brought me roses.
So I invited them to stay for a while.

Sunday, July 7, 2013


A little pouch, new shoes, a strange small painting. :-)

Thursday, July 4, 2013


I found pretty boxes for my coasters. I painted eight sets of six and they are all different. They got two protective coats of shiny varnish. I glued felt circles and squares underneath so they won't scratch any furniture. Actually I made only one set of squares, because I like the circles much more.

They are the best playthings!

 They make very lovely gifts for the holidays and I will sell them gladly! :-)