Happy Valentine’s Day!

This is your first look at my new scarf, Star Sapphire, which features red parrot tulips. Even though I faithfully photograph tulips each Spring, I’ve struggled with a lack of interest in using them in scarf designs. Parrot tulips, however, are my #1 favorite for their wild and wooly ways.

Thanks to Pantone’s announcement of Viva Magenta as its color of the year, I’ve taken the plunge. Red tulips en masse. In this design, I’ve also incorporated some of the work I’ve been doing this winter-creating repeating designs I can marry to oversized florals.

Star Sapphire will be ordered this week. I can’t wait to see it in chiffon!
First Tulip is also new this Spring and was one of my first repeating designs. I created a tulip silhouette for the background. Also, in this scarf you can see the use of Adobe Fresco, which offers various brushes and media selections. I alternate between Fresco and Photoshop to achieve painterly effects, I always enjoyed painting by hand with acrylics on canvas, and now… First Tulip is in stock.

Honestly,creating repeating designs somewhat offends my personal artistic bent. My software preference for Photoshop, is its ability to allow me to work in the continuous tones of floral photography. It also has some features for creating repeating designs. It’s a bit awkward, and truthfully, I’ve been somewhat resistant to learning. I think as a feature, it gives some “structure” to certain of the large florals as in the repeating blue diamonds of Star Sapphire.

I chose the name “Star Sapphire” remembering my years of visiting the Janet Annenberg Hooker Hall of Rocks and Minerals at The National Museum of Natural History in Washington DC. That second-floor exhibit was hands-down, my favorite place to visit, and the colors of different star sapphires- blue with a white star or magenta with a white star, were more exciting to me than the much more famous resident of the Smithsonian, the Hope Diamond. What can I say? Color first.

Where did Valentine’s Day come from anyway?

I always like reading up on the history of this day. Each year I find something new. Pretty much the definition consistently flows from love and good feelings for others. This year, I’d like to back that up to love of self. If we really love ourselves, that love overflows naturally to others. I remember this from when my kids were little, we always took time to make cards for them to bring to school. I always put some kind of chocolates out in the morning as a surprise. Chocolate. A time honored token of love.

This year on Christmas one of the desserts brought by my darling Tonya, was a plate of all kinds of chocolates.

What IS it about chocolate? That delicious feeling of well being when you bite into a good chocolate. Food and Wine Magazine offers some suggestions. I haven’t tried them but two chocolates pictured here were to die for…Home made fudge from my sister Frances ( all gone), and Van Otis Truffles from my son in North Andover MA. Not too shabby neither. Buy some for yourself now!

Larry and I have been planning a trip south to Savannah for a music festival the end of March. We’ll spill over to Florida briefly, to visit some friends and soak up a little warm. If you CAN’T head south, you can watch…Here’s a little help.. there’s no denying the benefits of “warm” in getting those loving feelings activated. This video might help you get there.

We’re returning to the most amazing Sunken Gardens of St. Petersburg. Which has a very interesting history. The original four acres were part of a shallow lake, 10’ below sea level, bought by a plumber/gardener and his wife in 1903 who drained it and soon began filling it with tropical plants. Over time it was built up and much later gifted to the town. And, the gardens are home to some fantabulous pale orange flamingos featured on one of my scarves.

My takeaway for this year Valentine’s Day, is Jump! Live life to its fullest. I love this video of a favorite dance song by the Pointer Sisters. The video pairs the music with some shots of track and field. How it resonates! Still remembering my first son, Aaron’s crazy success as a high school senior who taught himself to high jump, winning the state championship in decathlon, then onto captain UNCONN’s Division One Track and Field team. Let’s all jump into a new year with exciting new possibilities.

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