Monday, July 25, 2011

Some Tatting Gifts and A Little Tatting Giveaway

This is the 2nd exchange I received from Kayenderes Green (Canada). Kayenderes always has such cute ideas for her ATCs. Who wouldn't like her "I Love Strawberry" and "I Love Banana" doll ATCs!?!

I sent some thread samples to Kayenderes in our earlier exchange, and she has graciously included another 2 hot and cute mini fabric postcards for me! Thank you for such a lovely package, Kayenderes!!

I had been real busy with tatting gifts for 4 colleagues who are leaving the company this month. 3 rose bookmarks,
plus a tatted floral pendant/pin for Lee Teng as she has been such a great help on my projects, and another piece for myself. Still tatting another leaf bookmark for Benjamin even as I'm writing and posting this :(

After taken a break from the inchies mingle last month, I'm back this month with 2 sets in the Oriental theme. Made good use of all my Chinese name seals I custom-made in China. There are 3 different ones here, I should have another 1 more seal lying somewhere in 1 of the houses. That's the problem with shifting house so many times, I can remember where I kept my things in the very old house, but not the newer places, sigh.

Anyway, the coloured rubbing are done with coloured pencils over old Chinese coins, and the big Chinese characters are cut with die-cuts using silver foil paper, gold origami paper, brown cork, and black foam. The red and white backgrounds are different type of Chinese calligraphy papers.

I was out the whole of last weekend, Saturday to do some Make & Take projects at a craft shop (more about this in my next post), and Sunday to Sentosa Resorts World. We went for the "Voyage de la Vie", Singapore's 1st theatrical circus and the first resident show in Festive Grand, Sentosa RW, featuring an international cast of circus stars from 16 countries.

It was really a mix of everything - some dances with 3 ballads, some doses of magic with more aerobatic feats, all tied loosely in a simple script of a Boy who received a mysterious box which opened up to reveal the mischievous Game Master, who in turn, introduced him to the Lantern Keeper who guided him on a journey through his imagination and where he encountered many extraordinary characters. Moral of the story: It is the Journey and not the Destination which gives life its meaning.

Kristine agreed with me, we preferred "The Lion King" for the music, singing and costumes; the "Vision" for the magic performances, and the circus in Guangzhou for the circus feats, but well it's still a show worth watching especially with the Family Package deal (4 tickets for the price of 2)!

Moving on to the 8th day (15 Jun, Wed) of the China trip, we started at the East Gate of Xiaoqikong.

The first place we came to was the Xiaoqikong Ancient Bridge (小七孔古桥), 25m long, 4m wide and 4m high, built in 1836, is an important bridge linking Libo to Kuangxi. The place here gets its name from this bridge which has 7 holes beneath it. The scenary is most beautiful here.

The road to the left will lead to Kuangzi, some 10km away! Another path to the right leads to the Laya Waterfall (拉雅瀑布).

The Forest on Water (水上森林) was such a fun place to trek through, and the children love playing water gun here. The water was real cold.

Another waterfall, the clear water falling down the green forest was a great sight, especially set against the tree with full bloom.
We had come to the start of the waterfall.

That afternoon, we arrived at Kaili City and stayed at Crown Plaza Hotel.

Here we were at a night market.

I have not forgotten I mentioned a little giveaway! It will be a tatted rose bookmark like those in the photo above. You can choose a pink or blue rose. Fret not if you are not into rose for the gentlemen, I can tat a butterfly to replace the rose if you prefer that. 1 chance for leaving a comment in this post, and a 2nd chance if you leave another comment telling me you are following my blog. I will close the comments by the end of 8 Aug, and the drawing will be on our National Day on 9 August using the random number generator.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Vision - Where Seeing ... Is Just The Beginning

The "O is for Owl" fabric ATCs are done and mailed! I discovered a new way (for me at least) to hand-sew the edges. This formed an irregular outline creating a frame for a picture. I thought it looked a little wild, just right for the bird in the wild!

I finished a few other paper ATCs for Thursday ATC session in the Bishan Library - more doll-ATCs "Shades of Green" (top) and "Shades of Blue" (bottom).

And following the theme "Singapore", I did 2 similar ones in collage.

What I traded - A is for Ant (embroidered fabric) from Valerie, The Vine (pen drawing) from Terence, and Fruitful Trees (watercolour painting) from Laura.

Moses introduced us to Exquisite Corpse. It was cool fun, and we came up with so many hilarious and unimaginable pictures. More pictures on Moses' blog.

Kristine and I spent an exciting Saturday evening at the Esplanade Theatre, at VISION — Where Seeing…is Just the Beginning - starring world-renowned father-daughter illusionists and Asia’s first Elite Diamond Merlin Award recipients (conferred by the International Magicians Society in New York and is equivalent to the Academy Awards for films). Lawrence and Priscilla Khong in a one-of-a-kind magic show, melding magic with theatre and a script. VISION also debuted 19 brand new illusions that were never been seen before, such as the deadly Nam Escape – a new dangerous and difficult stunt involving giant sharpened iron spikes mounted on two mammoth 10 feet (3m) “wheels”.
The dancers and dances were superb, especially in The Goldfish Bowl scene; the props were artistic, especially in A Future World scene. Magic cleverly weaved into the drama; a script which explored past hurts, hidden truths and love. Dramatic effects, entertaining acts. It was a first time for us to watch magic live (except for those little performances for kiddies in parties!), and certainly a thrilling and unforgettable night!

I just had to snap a shot of this drawing exhibit on the wall as we walked along the passage way to the Esplanade. It summarized well what we have in Singapore - Makan, everywhere also got!

Continuing to the 7th day of our China trip (14 Jun, Tue), we set out for a 6-hour drive out of Guiyang to Libo County (荔波县), located in the remote southeastern corner of the prefecture, on the border with Guangxi. Zhangjiang National Park, including the famous scenic areas Daqikong (大七孔) and Xiaoqikong (小七孔), comprises typical, abundant and concentrated virgin forests, fame for its beautiful mountains, clear rivers, deep valleys, excellant waterfalls, peaceful lakes and extraordinary caves.

Along the way to Daqikong, we passed the Guan Yin Mountain (观音峰).

The natural statue of the Goddess Guan Yin is located at the end of the top cliff (above our heads on the photo below).

Here we are at the start of the Daqikong (大七孔) . We took a short boat ride to save some leg work.

This is the Natural Bridge (天生桥). The "bridge" is 73m high, 15m thick and 22m wide, is above the tall hole in the photo below.

We stayed a night in Sanli Hotel. A number of beautifully craved wooden chairs befitting for the Emperor lined the front lobby.

And a trip to the eating street (小吃街) at night. Families would go down for the Chinese bayberry sweet soup (杨梅汤) or a beer and perhaps some fried pork ribs and peanuts. Simple enjoyment!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

I Love These Books!

After I sent out my 3 little books for the swap, I worked to make another set for myself. They are at least 90% similar to the Book 2 and 3 sent in for the Little Book swap.

This is the new book cut out using the QuicKutz's Sugarplum dies for the cover and inserts. To re-cap, thin oriental papers lie between cardstock, the papers and cards perked up with colour from different types of ink pads, and tatted flowers adjorned the pages. The other book, the fabric one, measuring about 5" by 4" in size. Words stamped on, laces and tatted motifs added.

The little books for the swap came back - 3 of them!! All so lovely! Thank you, Barbara, Sabine and Sue, for your fabulous creations, and Lenna too, for organising the swap!

(1) From #16 - Barbara DeLisle (USA) - A book of "Ovals", the red little one on the bottom left corner of the above photo - it's barely 1 1/2" x 1 1/8"! 15 words with corresponding pictures, just like a pictorial dictionary, complete with a yellow bookmarker! Barbara received my QuicKutz Sugarplum book.

(2) From #32 - Sabine Schneider (Germany) - A fabric accordion book- canvas painted with acrylic, and sanded down. Came wrapped with a most interesting German paper napkin. Sabine received my fabric book.

(3) From #33 - Sue Emmerson (Australia) - A tag book on "Friends". Came in a machined-sewed paper envelope.7 tags in all, full of Victorian graphics, quotes, ribbons and laces! Sue received my 3" by 3" book.

I finished my "P is for Penguin" fabric ATCs, and is now working to wrap up the sewing of my "O" ATCs.

Cute penguins! Martha Ess' little critter designs are sweet, just can't tat enough of them!

More on the China trip. Moving on to the 5th day (12 Jun, Sun), DH's colleague and his family drove us on a three-hour journey west from Guiyang to the Huangguoshu Waterfall (黄国树大瀑布). It is one of the biggest falls in China, reaching 74m high and spanning 81m in width.

According to local legend, in ancient times, the sky suddenly cracked open, causing part of the Milky Way to smash to pieces on the ground. The largest piece hung on the verge of a cliff and became the Huangguoshu Waterfalls, which, in the process of crashing down the cliff, broke into several dozen cascades. When the Milky Way fell, numerous stars came down with it, which were converted into stone forests, crystal-clear pools, bridges and caves. Water pours down the cliff into the Xiniu Pool sending up great spray and as sunlight is diffracted through the drops of water, glorious rainbows are produced. There is a natural cave behind the waterfall, 40m above Xiniu Pool, which regretfully, we didn't trek up due to time constraint. Around Huangguoshu are 18 smaller falls and 30 karst caves. Scenery is spectacular.

A long escalator (where I were pointing) will also bring tourists up & down to the waterfall area.

The other stop at the Tian Xian Landscape (天星景) was most interesting.

The Shu Sheng Bu (数生步) consists of steps of stone, each stone with a date starting from 1st Jan all the way to 31 Dec.

Here's the place (Gao's Mansion) where Pigsy of the Journey to the West, wanted to take a bride, and where he finally me the Buddhist monk Xuanzang.

On the 6th day (13 Jun, Mon), DH went back to his factory for a meeting. We went along to visit his office. It is big with numerous yards.

Then, it was a lunch with his big boss and the various deparment heads, together with 2 new Zealand guests, in a VIP room of a posh seafood restaurant (雅园大海螺海鲜酒楼) located at 南明区四方河路 within 山水黔城. It was more grand than any function I have attended.

We spent the rest of the day walking the Yang Ming Flowers and Birds Market and more streets at 市西路.

There are a number of stores selling Chinese herbs like this one here.

This last photo was at 市西路, taken in the evening (by the way, the sky was only dark at 8pm during this season). This area is just like Hong Kong's Women Street, selling clothings, towels, umbrellas, shoes, ...and lots of cross-stitch stores too! The walk was cut short when DH was informed last minute of a dinner appointment with the New Zealand guests. We left, but would be back another day!