Who is Orange Sink?

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Rice Lake, WI, United States
My home town is Rice Lake, a small town in northern Wisconsin. I own Red House Wool Studio~ an in-home wool and rug hooking business. I enjoy collecting and decorating with antiques and primitives. Orange Sink Blog is a journal of my interests and ramblings about life. Cathy Greschner

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Monday, December 31, 2012

Eye Candy!! Lisa's Home at Christmas!

You may recall earlier this year I introduced you to my friend Lisa.  She began hooking in March of this year and already has at least 5 rugs she has completed and is working on the 6th.  She is an avid collector of antiques and primitives.  I thought you might enjoy a few photos of her home all decorated for Christmas!  
It was my first visit to her home and I'll tell you I had to keep pinching myself that I wasn't dreaming!
It was so beautiful.  So many great pieces and all lovingly  displayed!  She has a true love for primitive and especially hand crafted things!
You will see some of her rugs ( some my designs.... I am so humbled she likes my designs!) displayed throughout her home.  
In the photo above is her very first rug!  I love how she has displayed it!
Enjoy the tour!!!

The horse rug is Lisa's 5th rug.  She has to bind it yet!  She's learned that's her least favorite part of rug hooking!  LOL!  We can all relate to that right?

Is that tulips I see in that old firkin?  An ode to Spring!   Gotta love that!!

A Santa that fell off the shelf and broke.  She kept the pieces  and displayed  in a stoneware bowl. He has such a wonderful face!

I love how she displayed her Feather Tree Rug!  She hooked this from one of my kits that I designed.

Here she is!!  The talented and sweetest friend you could ever ask for!  I'd like to thank-you Lisa for letting me take and post photos of your home on my blog!   I think touring homes is one of all  bloggers most favorite things to do!  Don't you agree?

An Arnett Santa!  Don't you love the basket and lantern!  Lisa added them to this Santa!  Perfect!

Ticking Pillows all stacked up in the bedroom!  So cozy! And I love that burlap bow on the tree!

                                  A child's antique wheelbarrow filled with fresh greens!

I love the tin backsplash!  In fact I love her whole kitchen.  Lisa's hubby does all the carpentry in her house.  Do you think she'd let me borrow him  for awhile?  LOL!

The Christmas tree was displayed in a large wooden wheelbarrow!  So cool!!
It has the original stenciled writing on the side.

A yard of red wool is displayed on a blanket crane behind a Stein Angel.  I wonder how long it will be before she hooks that wool into one of her rugs?!!  LOL!!
Under the angel you will get a glimpse of one of Lisa's stitched pieces.  Yes!  She is a stitcher also!  I will try to get some photos of some of her work for a future post!

I'll leave you with a photo of the queen of the house!  This is little Tess, the rat terrier.  Believe me when I say she rules the roost!  She gets the run of the house while another rat terrier and a black lab get to reside in the downstairs.  She is really the sweetest little thing!  I think she has her Momma wrapped around her little paw!
Happy New Year to all my friends in blogland!
Welcome to the new readers I see are hopping on board!
The new year promises to be filled with new adventures and hopefully some new patterns for us all to hook!
Hope you enjoyed the tour!
Until next year.......

Cathy G

Friday, December 28, 2012

Resolve To Decorate With Less

I spent almost the entire day yesterday clearing everything off the mantel and shelves and wall!  A clean slate!  It felt sooooo good!  Mr. O Sink can't figure out why it takes me so long to rearrange ONE wall ( hang a set of deer horns on the wall and he's good to go) LOL!    Seriously... it takes time.  Thought.  Standing back and taking a ton of photos!   Is that how the professionals do it? Have you discovered when looking at photographs of a space that things stand out that you don't see when looking at it in person?   Why is that?!!  Drives me crazy!
Yesterday blogger friend Kelley commented that she could see a huge hooked rug hung over the fireplace.  Wow! What a great idea!   Thank-you Kelley!!
I proceeded to find the biggest hooked rug in the house (actually one of Jill's she's letting me borrow) and hung it over the mantel!  From there things seemed to fall into place.
The French Urn rug was not big enough for what I am envisioning for this space! 


Actually I like Kelley's idea of an even bigger rug for over the fireplace!  I think a new hooked geometric might be in order!  Sooooo.... my next rug project I think will be BIG!  The largest I have hooked to date.
So you may be wondering where the French Urn rug ended up.......

I hung it behind a leather love seat on another wall in living room.  Probably not it's final resting place. I think I need bigger here too!   At least it's where I can look at it quite often.    Max likes watching me rearrange but won't move from his favorite spot. As long as I don't move the furniture he's happy!

An open and bare space on the shelf!  It makes me so happy I can hardly stand it!  A swipe with a cleaning rag and WALLA!   I am going to love love this!!!
If you are thinking about doing the less is more thing in your own home..... proceed slowly!  It does take some getting used too!  I tend to want to quickly fill a bare space with something.

Another blogger friend Pamela mentioned in her comment that sometimes the scale of a piece can make a difference when decorating.   Thank-you Pamela!   I tried using larger pieces instead of a number of smaller things in groupings.  I like  the way that works in this space. 

Decorating has never been an easy thing for me!  As much as I study the magazines etc. I sometimes give up thinking I don't have the right things to decorate with.  I think the real problem is that I  have way too MUCH  to decorate with!!  
So..... on to the rest of the house!  
It will be a process......   if you like it so far...... nudge me to keep going......

For fear I lose my resolve!

I would like to post more in the New Year!
How's that for a resolution?

Talk to me!!!

Cathy G

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Is It Just Me?

Whew!  Did everyone survive Christmas?  Ours turned out a little differently than we had planned. Dave's brother Ken ended up having open heart surgery (quadruple bypass) on the 21st.   I am happy to report he did fine and came home from the hospital today.  He is a few years older than Dave and their family has a history of heart problems.  We are keeping him and his family close  in thought and prayer. 

I finished my French Urn Rug yesterday!  The binding is sewn on but I have to hand stitch it down on the back yet.  I couldn't wait to hang it above the fireplace. 

 After looking at my photos I think I need to rethink that wall in the living room.  It's always been a problem to decorate for some reason.  It has undergone many changes over the years and I never really am quite happy with it. There are too many shelves that I can fill up with things.

  Lately I've wanted more of a simple and pared down look.  But...... I have lots and lots of stuff!  Stuff I still like..... some I could part with.  So I am hoping in 2013 I can do a little more downsizing.  Maybe I should have a weekly yard sale here on my blog!  LOL!!   It's a thought.  I bet most of you are in the downsizing mode too!   I actually  dropped two bags full of "stuff" at Goodwill today. 

What about you... do you get in the mood for changes this time of year or is it just me? 

                                     Out with the old..... __ __ __ __ !

                                                         Cathy G


Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Greetings!


A Very Merry Christmas to all my friends near and far!   May your day be filled with wonder and joy!

                                                                               Cathy G

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Inside a Snow Globe

  Click Here to go inside the snow globe!

Ever wonder what it would be like to be inside a snow globe?  I tried it and found to be rather relaxing and magical!    Go ahead.... click the link...... be sure and view it full screen!   Merry merry merry merry.......

                                             Cathy G

Thursday, December 20, 2012

The Newspaper Man

The shovel sits by the garage door awaiting the newspaper man's arrival.  He usually shovels the driveway during his quick break home for lunch.  His task won't be quite as grueling today as the big snow storm is pounding the more southern and central part of Wisconsin.  We'll get enough to shovel perhaps a few times before the day is over. 

As most of my readers know dear hubby .. is the Sports and Outdoor Editor of our weekly newspaper called the Chronotype.  This weekend will mark thirty seven years that Dave has cranked out a seven to nine page section of the paper weekly and now by himself.  He had an assistant who recently took a job at another newspaper. Times being what they are the publishers decided not to hire a new person.

The back page of the Sports section is devoted to things pertaining to the outdoors with many of his nature photos gracing that page week after week. It's quite like an almanac with things like the Fishing-Hunting Table with Solunar Times and Lunar Times. 
Each week enclosed in a black box with white print there appears a few paragraphs entitled simply "Journal".... my favorite part of the entire paper.
Thoughts and keen observation of often over looked and taken for granted things in nature are noted in this journal.
The author.... has never signed his name to this mysterious journal.
Many over the years have come to know who pens it though  ..... an unmistakable style, with reverence for earth and the seasons of change identify the newspaper man as the writer.    
Here's this weeks journal:

Cathy G

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

A Sip of Nog!

(pattern by www.apieceofworkdesigns.com)

Again we wait here in northern Wisconsin for another snow storm to hit that's brewing in the west.  It's scheduled to hit here sometime tomorrow.   So today I had my Mom out shopping and to an appointment.   I stopped at the DMV and renewed my drivers license.  I don't know why I kept putting it off.  It bothers me and really that's just stupid I know.  The licence were expiring on Dec.22nd so I knew I had better get there this week.
Anyway..... they took my 34.00 and handed me a temporary paper that stands as my license until the real one arrives in the mail.  My mug shot didn't turn out too bad,  looking a little more wrinkled and mature since the last photo in 2004.  Eight years in between renewals seems like a long time.  My weight has actually gone down a few pounds since then too.  So the license renewal experience today wasn't totally depressing. 
Then we shopped for groceries.  Too bad I can't say the same for that experience!  I splurged a little and bought a carton of egg nog.  I've been eyeing and lusting after it during the last few trips to the market but today I caved.  Christmas just wouldn't be Christmas until a sip of the heavenly nog meets lips!

I have a couple of finishes to show you!  The wool applique in the photo above is a recent finish by Jill Holmes,  my partner here in the studio.  I LOVE the simple pine bough design with crazy quilt background!  Are'nt the  red birds striking!  Jill decided to finish this piece to be a wall hanging.... but it would make a darling pillow don't you think?  We have the pattern available here in the studio for local customers.

(pattern by Buttermilk Basin)

I finished my "Holiday Wishes" wool applique on cotton background.  I made it into a little pillow.   Gold tinsel garland around the edge adds a bit of sparkle.  I really need to practice my stitching..... so that is a goal of mine for the new year!
Are you thinking ahead to the new year yet?  I'm trying really  hard to live out the last few days in this year and enjoy them.  It's hard to find Joy sometimes as we endure the news around the world.... but I am determined to stay busy and keep my hands creating.  For in that I find joy...... and perhaps in a little sip of the nog!
Cathy G

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Healing and Ways to Help

Dear friends,
If you have been struggling with broken hearts and grief for the victims from Sandy Hook School this past week please join me as we find a path together to heal and help our families who have lost so much.
The days here have been dark and raining a constant drizzle on the nice snowfall we received last weekend.   So somber but in a sense so appropriate.  The heavens must weep tears of sorrow for babies so innocent and the precious teachers for whom evil violence were no match. 
Need I go on about Christmas being changed forever for these families.... the presents that no doubt had already been purchased... ..... my mind can't even begin to go there.
Healing from deep wounds and loss is a process.  It takes time most of all but the process has a beginning. There are steps  that help the mind and heart begin to mend. 
Our dear blogging friend and fellow rug hooker Sarah Mcnamara from Paisley Rug Hooking Studio has links to specific funds set up to help victims families with needs to cope on her blog. 
It's a good way to help and begin our own healing processes.
Lighting a remembrance candle has been a source of comfort for me in dealing with my distraught. 
One small flame united with many others around the world creates a powerful energy source from which all can draw strength. I find that enormously comforting. 
No matter your faith, beliefs or walk in life you can join in the process.
Our nation and world has deep and serious problems to deal with.  We all want to do what we can to make things better for  future generations on this planet.   Perhaps the sacrifice of the most innocent and seemingly helpless among us will pave the way for great changes. One can only pray and have hopes that something of greatness and good will evolve.
Blessings this day and days to come dear readers. 
Thank-you for your kind comments and continued support of one another.

Cathy G

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

A Room With a View

This is the view from a window in my studio today.  It faces the wood pile so I can see exactly how much wood is left as opposed to how much winter is left!!  So far so good!  LOL!
It's a pretty view.   I'm not much of a winter person even though I was born in December.  Three days before Christmas.  Yup..... usually no one notices the old gal turned another year older with all the fuss about Christmas and all!   That's okay... focus on the reason for the season!!
 Did you notice I decorated the little wool feather tree I made and showed a couple of posts back?  

I added some little red berries and pine cones to the ends of the branches.  A little vintage cardinal adds a bright red pop to the white birch bark base.  
We are teaching a class to make your own wool feather tree here in the studio on Sat. January 12th, 2013
It promises to be a fun filled class with good company, a healthy lunch( because we know you all will be on diets right after the Holidays ( wink...) and the latest on what's happening at the Red House  in the new year!
So if you are local and would like to sign up or would like more information as to price etc. please email me using the email button in the upper left hand corner of the blog.

I have been working on a little Holiday Wishes applique and embroidery piece.  The pattern is a Buttermilk Basin design.  We sell the patterns here in the studio.

I'm not that good at embroidery even though I love it.... you may recall some of my past attempts at the feather stitch......! I just can't seem to get the hang of it!!  This little piece is supposed to have some feather stitching but I may opt for a simpler cross stitch.  
It would be nice to get this done before Christmas!
How is your Holiday prep coming along?
 Hope you are way ahead of the game and enjoying all those decorations and beautifully decorated homes I've been spying out there on the blogs!
It's a most wonderful time of the year!!

Cathy G

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Red and Green and Precious

A winter storm today is turning our world outside sparkly white and crispy cold!
In stark contrast
the wood fire is burning fire red and turning our inside world toasty and warm.
The comforting colors of red and green seem to pop out at me.
Precious tiny red vintage hand knit mittens (with no thumbs!) are displayed on a tiny hand sewn quilt made by a precious friend.

Red and green, the colors of Christmas.
Warm the heart.
Please my eye.

Even Max likes red and green!


Cathy G

Monday, December 3, 2012

What's White and Cream and Wooley All Over?

A White Wool Feather Tree of course!  Made by my own two hands!   This past weekend Jill, my partner in crime LOL! from North Woods Wool got together in the studio and figured out how to construct a wool feather tree!  We didn't have to start from scratch however as we had a kit that I had won in a blog give-away a year or so ago!  Many of you know Joanne from Snippets and Scraps of my Mind blog. Well let me tell you what a sweetheart she is!  When I won the feather tree kit from her blog I actually didn't think it would take me a whole year to put it together!  Ah... but then again..... I should have known.  It takes me longer to do everything these days than I think.

Well, Joanne has been an angel about answering questions and helping me to the point where I feel comfortable that I can teach a class in constructing your very own tree!  So those blog readers who live near me...... I'd like to let you know we will be having a class here in the studio right after Christmas.  We decided these trees are so dang cute you will want to leave them out right through Valentines Day.  Tiny little hearts for decorations..... how sweet would that be?

So you can email me or give me a call to let me know if you would like to get on the list for the class. We will let you know particulars at that time!

Another thing I'd like to let local readers know is that the Studio will be open this Saturday from 10:00 til 4:00.  Jill and I will be here to help with your wooley needs and perhaps get you started on a project or help with a gift. 

I think I've pulled a dozen loops on my French Urn Pattern since I last wrote.  My Mom is doing really well after her cataract surgery and has an appointment with the eye surgeon again this week.
If you are experiencing this rainy, dreary, awful depressing ( sorry but it's true!) weather where you live...my suggestion is to make yourself a wonderful cup of hot mocha latte' coffee and stir with an amaretto stick.... light a candle..... and nestle in your favorite chair.  Perhaps with a fur friend or two.
Keeps the dark thoughts at bay and nurtures the soul for 
the long winter ahead!
Cathy G