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Sunday, November 29, 2009

Home Sweet Home

It has been awhile since I have had a true update. The end of the quarter in Lacoste was busy between preparing for Vernissage, packing two months into a suitcase, and making and reworking travel plans. But it all seemed to work out, with only a few bumps along the way. I will update posts for each city we visited with pictures and details of what we did.

After many train rides, airport delays, and running between terminals, I made it back to the USA. My mom was waiting for me, and little did I know my boyfriend Chester was there to surprise me. 10 weeks and 3 days apart, it was good to see him, and then good to see family and friends the next few days. We had a relaxing week and ate good food at Thanksgiving. Tomorrow I start my internship at Printfresh, I am excited to learn and to be involved with a great company gearing up for a big trade show.

Once I post the rest of my travels, I hope to focus more on my work and inspirations, and continue to revamp my blog and who I am as an artist. The best is yet to come!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I am back in the states, happy to see family, some friends, and have been bumming around with this boy I like. Hope to update with all the pictures and stories of my travels in the next few days. Until then enjoy the turkey and good food!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

from lucerne

I might be too full to type. Lara, her mom, and I just had a wonderful Swiss Fondue dinner, and we are stuffed. Lara and I conquered Austria, and now we have seen a little of Switzerland. We spent the afternoon in Zurich, and the night in Lucerne. Tomorrow Lara and her mom continue on a scenic train of Switzerland, and I travel all day to Barcelona where I will stay overnight and leave the next afternoon for the states! I'm looking forward to the holidays, seeing my boy and family, and starting my internship. Its been good Europe! I will have lots of pictures and updates when I get home and rest up a bit!!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

from venice

here we are in venice! we conquered florence and rome in a day each. tonight we part from my mom and jamie, they head to paris, lara and i to vienna. its been great, seen lots of amazing things. i will have lots to share when i am back in the US!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

and we're off!

All packed up, checked out, and ready to go! Cant believe its here. First stop, Avignon to catch a 4:45 am train tomorrow morning to Florence, then Rome, Venice, Vienna, Salzburg, Zurich, Luzerne, Geneva, Barcelona, USA! Oh my goodness, what a list. Should be awesome. Lots of updates to come!!!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Vernissage Complete

Vernissage is over, here is a preview of what my space was like!The last few days here have gone fast. My mom and Jamie are here, we walked to Bonnieux today. I'm sick so that stinks but no time to be sick, I'm too busy! In the morning we pack up, clean up, check out, and on to Avignon for the night before our early morning train to Florence! Probably wont be much time to update until I return to the US, but if I get a chance maybe I'll get to share what we are up to! Until then-- A bientot!

Friday, November 13, 2009

A Good Day

Vernissage has begun! I literally worked until it began, but its set up and I am happy. Today was good for a few reasons:
1. I sold four of my items
2. My mom and Jamie arrived!
3. I got offered the winter internship position I interviewed for last week with Printfresh!!!
4. I am done with work for this quarter! Meaning I am going to go sleep!!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

So close...

We're so close to Vernissage. Our cozy little cave is looking so cute, I have a clothing line strung across the stone with four of my favorite pillowcases hanging from it and all of my other little goodies strewn across the table. I made at least 10 more little coin purses today out of my Brun Textiles, which by the way, Mr Brun will be in attendance Saturday night. Hope he likes what I made from his fabrics!

Everything is made, I just need to finish hang tags and do a presentation for art history. ahhh. its 11:20... lets see how much sleep I get tonight. Tomorrow night I will be free from work and able to enjoy the show and time with my mom!! Wish me luck.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Vernissage Preparations

The preparations for Vernissage have commenced! Today was spent painting walls, relocating spiders, and sweeping up the piles and piles of threads the studio has gathered all quarter. Elise, Allison, and I will be showing our things in the Blue Gallery. Its a great little space on the main stretch and it will be a lot of fun to set it all up tomorrow!
The gallery space was a little dirty... It held an installation in it all quarter, with the window open, so it was full of dirt and mold (gross!). When I say a little dirty I'm kidding, we filled a bucket half way with what we swept up... and we will sweep again tomorrow!
This is how we left the space... Cant wait to see it all finished and filled with great fibers and photography from two of the photo students.The rest of my day has been spent in the library adding some finishing touches to my pillowcases, working on a few more coin purses, and making labels! I had my cards of buttons and supplies all over the room!

My not so little brother...

My not so little brother, Brian, is in the army. He's not just in the army, hes being trained and getting an education at West Point, THE army academy. I forget how awesome that is sometimes, and because no one else in my huge family, besides my grandfathers, has served its hard for me to grasp my mind around that. He has decided to dedicate his life to his country, and I am reminded of that today, being that it is Veterans day in America. (apparently you can turn to ESPN to see West Point marching around campus) Just wanted to say thanks to him and the many others. He has been transformed, literally as you will see, into a soldier, and I am proud to call him my little brother.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Making Progress

This has been my home for the last eight weeks. Olivier Haute. Our cozy little stone home with an amazing view. Only a few days left to cuddle in our loft and crochet in bed. Oh the French life.
I still have some work to do, mostly finishing touches, but I got my labels made, just have to do the labeling! I free motioned a border on great printmaking paper I brought with me. I was afraid I wouldnt use it for anything, but I found a way.
Also, went to the train station in Apt again today... I have a train to Barcelona! woo hoo. I will spend the 23rd traveling from Luzern, Switzerland to Geneva to Montpellier, France, and finally to Barcelona! I will spend the night there, hope to see some friends, and then its off to America for me. Things are working out little by little...

Monday, November 9, 2009


I get to see familiar faces on Friday! My mom and Jamie will be here for our Vernissage and I'm excited! Crazy to think that I still have three more countries to visit! And crazy to think that this was eight weeks ago!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Im gonna miss...

I'm gonna miss this. I look out into the valley many times a day, and it doesnt matter how many times I have seen it before, I am always amazed at where I am. I love looking out at Southern France and enjoying its beauty. I'm going to miss that when I leave one week from now for Italy, Austria, Switzerland, Barcelona, and then the States. What an adventure. So thankful for this adventure.As much as I am going to miss Europe, I am excited to see these fools in January, and this boy on Thanksgiving.La vie est belle.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

It'll be ok

I finished my pillowcases. I think there are 18. Did I go overboard? Its ok, I really like them. Theyre so French, and I like how my collection of fabrics, ribbons, and buttons from my trips didnt seem like they would go together, but I think I made it work! Now I will just be spending my last few days making little bags and coin purses and finishing some journals. No big deal, I can do it.

Also, Lara and I made the decision to buy train tickets from Venice to Vienna since the Eurail spots were filled, and it is only costing us a little more than what our sleeper reservation fees would have been, so its ok, and we're going to Vienna and we will meet Laras mom there! Now I just have to figure out my way back to Barcelona... one thing at a time.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Ah Stress!

Today was one of those days. It started off alright.. went to the Musee de la Lavande and learned everything you would ever want to know about Lavender. Did you know there are two types? And pure lavender is only grown in Provence? Well now you know.
We saw machines like these. They used to distill lavender essence, and alcohol. Yum.
And Lara thought it would be fun to be a child again. Seems shes too old for that. Sad.
Then this afternoon we worked out all our trains we need for our European adventure starting next Sunday. I went to the train station in Apt all ready with my list, only to find out that we cant get half of the trains we want! Ahhhhhh! So here I am, not sure what to do. I got my mom and Jamie a ticket from Paris to Avignon, but I have to try to mail it to them before they leave the US on Thursday so they can use it! Then our overnight next Sunday to Florence is full, so we have to spend a night in Avignon to leave at 445 in the morning and lose some of our time there. Then, they werent able to book any trains that are just in Italy and just in Austria or Switzerland since they arent their train companies. So we can hope we can get on those when we get there! Ahhhhh. Then I got my mom back to Paris from Venice, if we get there, and Lara and her mom from Geneva to Paris, if Lara and I can get an overnight from Venice to Vienna to meet her mom! AHHHH! oh, and I dont know how I'll get back to Barcelona. But you know. It will work out. It just will.

Then I realized how little time we have left here and how much work I need to do, and its been a little overwhelming. So pray I can do it all and things work out for our travels. Either way, we'll be in Europe, so we cant complain. And this time next week all of our work will be done, hung up, and we will be drinking some wine and selling some artwork. La vie est belle, right!?

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Pretty Pillows

I have decided to make pretty pillowcases with the fabrics, buttons, and trims I have collected while here in France. I am making 16 total, both travel size and standard pillow size, and have 11 done so far! Ive been sewing, sewing, sewing but they look really nice, I'm excited! It will be nice to see how people react to them when they are shown at our Vernissage next Friday and Saturday. Cant believe we only have one more week to go! All of a sudden time went so fast. It has been so great though. I have really grown as an artist and a person. Wouldnt trade it for the world. And I have so much yet to see!!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


I was almost that person that gets left from the trip because they oversleep. Im not sure if my alarm went off at 5:17 am or not, but I heard Caitlin knock on my door at 6:07 and somehow made it, dressed to impress, down to the cafe at 6:11. Not sure how it happened, but we were off to Avignon to catch the TGV to Lyon. We were lucky enough to be able to visit Prelle's silk weaving studio after we had visited their beautiful showroom in Paris. It was an incredible experience, and I have beautiful pictures of their amazing woven silks if you are interested in seeing them, but we cant have them floating around the internet so people dont copy what this company has been doing since 1752.

We were first taken into their hand weaving studio, where they have many large Jacquard looms dating back to 1807 and tons and tons of bobbins. We were shown by a master weaver how they weave these patterns that take 2 years to complete following a binary code pattern that you can see hanging above the loom. It is AMAZING how beautiful these fabrics are, and how fast Sebastian can weave!
These weights are hung on all the threads to keep the tension! crazy.After the hand weaving studio we were taken into the computer room where they showed us the programs they use to do all the math that goes into the weavings. They take weavings from their archives, scan them in, figure out the color, repeat, and all of the elements needed to recreate them. Then they are able to calculate how many kilos of each color silk they need, how long it will take to thread the warps, and how long it will take to hand weave them. Pretty impressive. We were also shown where they keep their archives, and then we were shown some of their most impressive works and some very old recreations that are from the 1800s. All were so beautiful, and if you are interested in seeing pictures of the fabrics themselves let me know!Next was downstairs to the factory part where they have crazy computerized looms that can weave an inch an hour and have 18,000 warps threaded through them! It can take 3-6 months just to prepare the loom to begin weaving! There were also some crazy machines that wind the bobbins, which you need hundreds of to weave each color.

After Prelle we had the whole afternoon to explore and enjoy Lyon. We got lunch and sat down for awhile, then I just walked around, shopped a little, and got some sweet pictures. We saw what looked like the Eiffel tower and Notre Dame, all the way from Lyon! Went to a great trim store and got some ribbon, the lady gave me two extra meters, think she liked me. They had a crazy wall of embroidery floss!There were some interesting sites in Lyon as well... like this window display in a store that sold fur coats. Its a scary bear, with a scary bear in its hand, holding some fur coats?
And outside the train station was this sign... apparently you cant take your Christmas tree skateboarding... sad.Anyways, it wound up being a great day after my not waking up on time incident. I'm glad I made it!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

We are made of love

Times really ticking away, and fall continues to move in each day. Today was all about working and making. Im making some pillowcases with the fabrics I have collected while in France, and some have free motioned sayings on them... Tomorrow we leave at 6 am for Lyon and our visit to Prelle's silk weaving factory. Should be a fun and packed day. Then its working non stop till next Wednesday when we pack up the sewing machines and can no longer work, just set up for our Vernissage!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Crunch time

Less than two weeks left in Lacoste and I've got lots to do! Its one of those days where you just want to sit inside and drink something warm but its the last thing I should be doing! Gotta work work work these next couple days. Wednesday we are taking a day trip to Lyon to see Prelle's silk weaving factory, other than that I will be sewing and crocheting my days and nights away! One thing I have accomplished this quarter is my decision to focus on studio production. I was having a hard time deciding whether to focus my portfolio on that or fine art fibers, but I think Ive realized studio production is for me. So thats good! I'm just working on functional things until I figure out more what my niche will be. Well, back to work!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

the art of crochet

Ive been crocheting for hours and this is what I've made so far... a few coin purse type bags. Lets see what this week brings!