We have had a bit of an unusual summer here in our little part of the world (Nova Scotia, Canada). It hasn’t been ‘bad’ at all. In reality, I would say that it has been just about perfect – especially given the fact that most of the rest of North America (Canada included) has experienced extreme heat, drought, and fires. I am not complaining in the least.
When I came to Nova Scotia from the Chicago area over 16 years ago I was pretty much horrified when I saw how few people had air conditioning. I had spent most of my life up until that point tolerating the hot Chicago summers by taking refuge inside my home, stores, or even the car with the a/c whirring. Either that or heading to the park district pool every day that I could. But as I grew up and had more responsibilities such as a job and family, it wasn’t always possible. Though I did spend many a summer day with my dear fiend Cari and our children at the local pools and parks, many hot summer afternoons were spent entertaining the kids inside when the sun got ‘too hot’ or the air ‘too thick’ to enjoy, or the kids needed their naps. I don’t know how we did without it.
But fast forward back to Nova Scotia. By my second full season here, I realized the reason why not many had air conditioning: It wasn’t really necessary. While the summer days were warm, there were only a few days and nights that I would consider ‘hot and sticky.’ I suppose that is one of the advantages of living so close to the ocean. They days were what I would consider ‘warm’ and never really ‘hot’ and the night air cooled to a comfortable, nearly chilly level. Of course, there were exceptions to this pattern, with a couple of evenings being sticky and close, but for the majority of the time, it was very tolerable and pleasant and I came to the realization of why so few relied on artificial means to stay cool. It just wasn’t necessary.
Back to the present . . .
Our summer here is been what I feel is cooler than most. We have also been fortunate enough to have plenty of rain. Last year, our well ran dry a couple of time and we had to really watch the amount of water we used. This year, however, we have had plenty of rain and all the lawns are green and the woods are full and lush. Besides that, I can only remember (so far) one or two days that were considered ‘hot’. I have taken to wearing either 3/4 length sleeves or rolling up long-sleeved shirts and wearing a sweater most of the time. The evenings are very cool and crisp, too. My summer tops and jammies have been barely needed.
With that said, it seems to me like we went from spring right into the autumn season. This seems even more so since when I awake now in the morning, it is still pretty dark outside. I have to look at my calendar to remind myself that it is still the beginning of August and we are not in mid-September. While I don’t mind this at all, I don’t want to rush the seasons, as time passes quickly enough.
Add to this the type of designing that I am working on lately. I showed a Halloween/autumn themed design in my previous post, and I have three more autumn posts in the works right now. Even though I have a good deal of time to complete these patterns in time for the season, I can’t help but feel that I am a bit behind, as usually I am working on autumn and Halloween things in the heat of summer. It takes a bit of thinking to remind myself that I am OK.
The week went by quickly since my last post. I was just thrilled with the response that I received regarding the upcoming pattern that I created for Toletown (http://toletown.com/amember/aff/go/scrollgirl) for one of their two September classes. It seems that I am not the only one who loves autumn and Halloween and I really hope that I can get these other designs completed quickly so others have plenty of time to make them. As a designer, we are always working far ahead of the season we are designing for, and it is easy to think we are on top of things and allow that time to slip away. Then we find ourselves under a lot of pressure or having to wait until the following year to expect a good return on our work. I have been guilty of this many times in the past and have been pretty proud of myself for working things a little differently this year to minimize feeling overloaded. So far, it is going pretty well.
I spent a couple of days in the shop cutting pieces and filling orders this week. My friend and colleague Tracy Moreau asked me to provide the wood pieces for her August Subscription project and I was happy to do so. (You can find her Subscription Program here on her website here: https://tracymoreau.net/paid-membership-info) This months’ special video class features a beautiful set of Icon projects called “A Host of Angels”. If you haven’t checked out her paid membership subscription, please do. She is still offering great classes at no charge on Saturday on her YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/user/TheRenoir63) but the paid classes bring learning from her up to a new level. She is such a lovely, talented and giving artist and I usually stop in on Saturday just to enjoy her class. I learn something new from her every single week, and I enjoy everyone in the process.
The pattern includes the larger plaque and three complimentary ornaments. I am supplying the wood pieces for the ornaments. You can get them here on my website: https://tolepaintingdesigns.com/decorative-painting-supplies/fluted-rectangle-ornaments-wood-kit-3pc/
Needless to say, once Tracy announced things, I was pretty inundated with orders. Not only for these pretty pieces, but also for my own things – mostly Halloween and autumn-themed – as I think most people are starting to think ahead to that season as I am. I really think autumn is a time when so many love to decorate. It has always been one of my busiest times. Maybe with the incredible heat that most are experiencing this year, people are looking forward to it more than ever.
In any case, it kept me pretty busy for a couple of days. I finished cutting and packing and shipping out my orders by Thursday, which left me Friday and the weekend to work on some new things for myself and my followers.
I began working on another new pattern for autumn:
This one is going to be a spooky garland. Instead of using my bevel-cut pieces, I decided to use flat ornaments for a change. I still painted them to look dimensional though, and they are coming along nicely:
I hope to finish up the painting part of this design today and I should be able to show you the finished pieces by next week’s post. I have a movie slated for today while I finish painting and the directions are pretty straight forward and shouldn’t take long to write.
I am also working on a really cool ‘secret project’ that is coming out pretty nice. I can’t wait to show you all and it is taking all the restraint I can muster to not give you a sneak peek. But it will be ‘different’ and ‘fun’ and I hope something that will inspire you all to do something similar and think ‘out of the box.’
But more on that next time. 🙂
Well – that should be about it for now. I hope you all have a wonderfully creative week ahead. It is cool and foggy out here today and the windows are only cracked a bit. While I have shorts on, I may go reach for my sweater for the rest of the day. I am trying to think of a meal that I can have that will be warm and satisfying for dinner.
Thanks for stopping by. I hope you enjoyed seeing my new projects and collaborations. I would love to hear from you what you are making.
Don’t forget you can join my creative group: Let’s Paint (and CREATE!) with Sheila Landry . It is a great place to share your projects, meet other happy, creative people, and stay inspired!
Until next time. . .