Saturday, June 26, 2010

The Kanagawa Wave

Last night, while I was opening my Mozilla Firefox, I was redirected to Mozilla's web-page and faced several options to dress up my browser with 'Personas', the browser's themes. And there was a theme which caught by my eyes. The title is 'Kanagawa Wave'. Here's the captured image of some theme-options.

I seemed to be reminded again of similar images... Then I recalled that it was one of the cross stitch design I've had in my library (..still cross stitch matters on my mind this past few days....).
Here's the preview of the cross stitch design. The wave is on the right.

These wave images stick in my mind because I've also seen similar designs in one book given by my younger brother. It's an interior book Contemporary Eastern by Alice Whately. The wave is applied on a tea set.

Then earlier today I started to browse about it, because it seems that the wave is so popular.. Then I googled 'Kanagawa Wave' on my browser....

So, it is popular...!! Here's the result from Wikipedia.

The Great Wave off Kanagawa (神奈川沖浪裏, Kanagawa Oki Nami Ura, lit. "Under a Wave off Kanagawa") is a famous woodblock print by the Japanese artist Katsushika Hokusai (1760-1849). It was published in 1832 (Edo Period) as the first in Hokusai's series 36 Views of Mount Fuji and is his most famous work. It depicts an enormous wave threatening boats near the Japanese prefecture of Kanagawa. As in all the other prints in the series, Mount Fuji can be seen in the background. While sometimes assumed to be a tsunami, the wave is more likely to be a large okinami. (Japanese "ocean wave".) Like the other prints in the series, it depicts the area around Mount Fuji under particular conditions.

Copies of the print are in many Western collections, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, the British Museum in London, and in Claude Monet's house in Giverny, France.

Like other well known Japanese prints, the Great Wave has been frequently copied using the same techniques, as well as reproduced by photo-mechanical means. These copies are often confused with the authentic original print.

The print is one of the most reproduced artworks in the world, and was one of the subjects of the BBC documentary series, "The Private Life of a Masterpiece", which detailed the fascination surrounding the work in the East and West, its influence, and the artist's insights into a number of different areas, as revealed through the piece.

The print is the subject of episode 93 of the radio series A History of the World in 100 Objects, to be broadcast in September 2010.

The logo for Quiksilver, inc. is derived from the Great Wave.

There we go... No wonder I've been loving the cross stitch design since the first time I saw it, so I kept the file of the design in my folder. I think it's very bold and dramatic image... Could this be my next project? Mmmmmm.. let's check my DMC's stock first...

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Memory of Paris

Since I was an elementary school student, I loved to read very much. I visited several bookstores regularly. My favorite bookstore was Toko Buku Jawa (Jawa bookstore) at Braga Street where I could browse and buy some books. Maybe it's because the bookstore location is near my school at Merdeka Street and also around the corner of my parents offices. Back then, I'd love to read Herge's The Adventures of Tintin, The Adventures of Asterix (by Rene Goscinny & Albert Uderzo), Tanguy & Laverdure (by Jean-Michel Charlier & Albert Uderzo) , and Michel Vaillant (by Jean Graton). It seemed that colored comic books are more interesting to me.

Maybe it was a coincidence that the original version of those books was in French language. And the story settings was France, except Tintin's location setting was Belgium. So at that time, I became acquainted with city names, landmarks, and maps of France and surroundings.

After reading, I used to daydream about those places... what would it be like to go there and experience the adventure of traveling abroad... :-P

When I went to college, I started to have a passion about being able to speak French. But I haven't had a chance to register myself to a French language course because a lot of circumstances (lack of time & money to be precise). But then I managed to get busy learning French after I graduated from college and started to earn my own money by doing several research projects with my professors. The language was quite complicated in writing and pronouncing.. but that didn't stop me from learning.

But still I have never imagined that someday I would be able to travel abroad until I worked on a national transportation survey project at Ministry of Communication and Transportation at 1995. It was a big project and at the end of the project we (me and the whole working team) were given a bonus, not an amount of money but a traveling package... yaay...!!

So, the next year (February 1996) I went to Gold Coast, Australia. Waaaw the first time going abroad made us quite nervous.. but we were having a good time.

The next year, we got the 2nd phase of the project, also at Ministry of Communication and Transportation. So we were beginning to wonder if we could get another bonus at the end of the project. And we were lucky to be able to bargain for it, and we decided that we want to explore Europe this time.....

So, this was August 1997, and I finally stepped on the romantic land, PARIS....

The Eiffel Tower is a must to visit and photograph, off course. Unfortunately at that time we were still using a conventional camera with negative films. Oh yeah, we were worried about the result of the photographs we took, is it in a proper lighting, did we pose our best smile.. etc. Not the same as the instant result of digital camera nowadays.

The adventures that we've been through that time could take hundreds of pages... The time was too short to explore the countries; France, Swiss, Germany, and Netherlands. But all I can say now that the memories still remain...

So, back to my other passion, the cross stitch, those memories caused a side effect to my preference on the cross stitch design. I always love to see all those designs about the Eiffel Tower. Feels like I want to express the memories which stored in my mind. And I can't help to love these designs.

This Maria Diaz design was from The World of Cross Stitching

This one was designed by Karen Brittan and published on Cross Stitch Crazy

And this is another Maria Diaz design, Sunset Over Paris, on Cross Stitch Gold

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Birthday Gift for Puput

This past few days I've been working on another birthday gift for one of my daughter's BFFs. Her name is Putri Nareswari a.k.a Puput. Her birthday is on June 20. Since I have made several framed cross stitch, this time I'd like to make something different.

So I searched on my "library" and found this lovely pattern.

It's from July 2005 edition of Cross Stitch Collection Magazine. It was designed by Maria Diaz for kitchen set. So I began to stitch the lid cover. I was thinking of using this lid cover for a jam pot filled with candies.

I washed the used jam pot and bought a bag of candies. Fortunately I had almost all colors of thread needed. Only the 746 DMC (cream) that I didn't have in stock. So I switched it with the 3823 thread. I used a local fabric instead of Aida since the local one was a lot flexible to be tied (I thought..). Unfortunately I can't find a proper ribbon for the fabric edge. So I used the available red ribbons that sold at a small shop nearby my office.

And this is how the stitches ends in the candy jar lid.

I used a strawberry charm next to the tag to make it prettier... :-)

But I was thinking that the fabric is way too wide for the jar, so we couldn't see what inside it clearly.... :-(

Friday, June 04, 2010

Birthday Gifts

Earlier this year, I've made several birthday gifts for my daughters' classmates. Last year I was succeeded in making those cats from Margaret Sherry's "Coffee and Cuddles". This year I was thinking of making a similar theme. Since I haven't found another Margaret Sherry's designs back then, I made these Wordsworth designs.

The first was for Riri's birthday at January 25. I made "If You Need A Friend" cross stitch.

The second was for Bila's birthday at February 27. I made "You Mean so Much to Me" cross stitch.

Downloading Cross-Stitch Charts

I've been downloading online magazine-files on the internet these past few days.. Well, there isn't many cross-stitch magazines I can find there, but there's a few with cute and colorful designs at "". So, I'm satisfied with that so far..

I wasn't really intended to search for these cross-stitch charts at first. I just needed to enrich my preliminary research with a few facts and figures. And that led me to several file-sharing sites on the internet. Then I figured out that there were few people who (maybe) have the same hobby with me and shared their source of cross-stitch... Bless them, LOL...

There's a set of designs that catch my attention, it's the Margaret Sherry's "Culinary Cats" from February 2010 Edition of CrossStitcher Magazine. They are adorable and goes with my "Coffee and Cuddles" I have made some time ago. So I'm thinking of making them when I have spare time...

Here's previews of the charts..

And here's the magazines I've downloaded so far, the February (#222), March (#223), and April (#224) edition of CrossStitcher.

Hmmmmm... is uploading or downloading this kind of files against the copyrights?