Monday, August 27, 2007

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?

Well, lunch actually.
Last May, MaryJane Butters, (organic farmer, author, craftswoman, pioneer, purveyor of yummy pre-packaged organic foods, mother of the Farmgirl Connection), held a contest in conjunction with the release of her new book. Titled MaryJane's Stitching Room, it is full of wonderful, homely projects that touch the farmgirl in all of us and make us want to create something with our own two hands.
The contest was to create a pinkeep- from anything; a bucket, a vase, a book, a thimble- anything.
I was at my sister's house in Cincinnati when I found out about the contest. On a whim, I said I would have to see what I could come up with. You have to understand that farmgirls are some of the most lovely, imaginative, creative women out there, and the thought of making something to rival them is very intimidating.
I took a little jaunt to the local Smith and Hawken shop nearby and purchased a size 1/2 rose pot. I also journeyed to Sur la Table and Pier 1 for little items that could be turned into pinkeeps.
I had absolutely no idea what I was doing. None.
I sat and I thought and thought and thought. I started small, making a pinkeep in a thimble. Easy-peasy. Then a wooden spoon, a wooden spool of thread and a tiny tart tin.
Then came my bright idea!
Grabbing things from various boxes, I began creating this:

The leaves and bulb are made from hand-painted silk ribbon. Hand-painted because it was all the same color- the taupey-pink of the petals.
The pot is filled with flax seed for weight, sealed and then filled with a wad of pure wool from a friend in Washington state. The bulb is stuffed with wool as well.
The stem is a double-pointed knitting needle that had warped over time. A little snap helped it bend a bit more. It is wrapped in green silk ribbon and topped with a tiny glass bottle that I use for dollhouse miniatures.
The petals are wrapped around the bottle and tiny seed beads have been glued in the center.
All of the edges of the leaves and petals are hand-rolled. No wire, just a lot of glue and patience.
All of the ribbon pieces are hand-stitched because I was afraid my sewing machine would shred it to bits.
A little ruched chocolate brown grosgrain ribbon for dirt and -VOILA!! A fantasy flower pinkeeper.
Are you bored yet?
Throwing caution to the wind, I entered this one in the contest. And waited and watched as creative, fabulous pinkeepers popped up in the gallery along with mine.
The day of the announcement came and went with no news from the farm. They were still deciding and having a very difficult time of it. (I could understand. I was very glad I did not have to choose!)
And then, at last! The list of winners was posted. I could not wait to see which of our farmgirls had won! I was on pins and needles. ha ha.
I was at my other sister's house when the winners were announced. (I have wonderful sisters who let me come visit them and invade their territory every now-and-then.)
At the very top, listed under Best of Show was me. I could not speak. Or write or breathe. Holy cow!!! Thank you very much.
So, MaryJane is coming to my house for lunch and a day of crafting with her daughter, son-in-law and granddaughter. I have so much to do to get ready for them. Cleaning, organizing, planning a menu, and I do not have very long in which to accomplish all I want to have done.
But, I don't think I really need to worry. MaryJane is not one of those people who would want you to make a fuss over her. She is lovely and sweet and humble. And just having her here, eating a nice lunch, chatting with my friends and creating things together is more than I could have ever asked for.
Still- MARYJANE IS COMING TO MY HOUSE!! hee hee hee.

Stop by and visit the Farmgirl Connection at . The pinkeeper gallery is still up so you can view all of the entries and be awed by the talent this wonderful group of women possess.


Beemoosie said...

How WONDERFUL!!! Congrats~I LOVE the pinkeep! and have a lovely time. I can't wait to read all about it!

GardenGoose said...

congratulations once again! I know that you will have an absolutely wonderful day!

Catherine said...

Oh Karin, that's so cool! Your pinkeep is definitely worthy of its's so neat! And you are SO creative. Have a wonderful time with MaryJane and company!!

The Feathered Nest said...

Hey sweetie!!! I am so glad you finally posted about this amazing wonderful contest you won!!!!!! I love your entry and so understand why you won, simply because you deserved to! It's hard for moma's to toot their own horn but earned it! xxoo, Dawn

Bright Meadow Farms said...

Congratulations! That flower is just gorgeous, can't believe how realistic it is - you have amazing talent.

And Mary Jane herself! Coming to visit! Wow!

Brainiac's Daughter said...

I'm going to try my darnedest to be there! You've earned it!