Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year-!

Our Best Wishes to You and Yours -
May you find Peace - Joy - Adventure
and Many Magical Moments
in the New Year-!

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"Garden Muse" Acrylic - 18" x 24"  by Mary Maki Rae

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Merry Christmas-!



Peace - Joy - Warmth
& Lots of Christmas
Delights to All
This Holiday Season-!

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Painting of Christmas Tree By Mary Maki Rae - 2010 (c)




Sunday, December 12, 2010

Madeleines


"Lady In Blue" Acrylic 18"x24" - By Mary Maki Rae (c)
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I've been re-reading "Swann In Love" from: "Swann's Way" By Marcel Proust recently - enjoying it emmensely.
It made me think of those too. . .too famous "Madeleine" cookies. I've never made them - so I thought I might give them a try for Christmas - as I always make some cookies for sure this time of the year.
Following is a Recipe that I rediscovered in one of my books - It sounds just right- (However - at the moment I don't know quite where to find 24 lemon balm leaves-!)

These little cakes originated long ago in the Lorraine region in France.
As a gala dinner was being prepared for a Duke - the pastry maker stormed off in a huff.  A young girl appretice offered to bake the cookies that her Grandmother had taught her to make.  When they were presented and tasted - the Duke ordered that they be named after - Madeleine-!
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MADELEINES

3 Eggs, plus 1 Egg Yolk
2/3 Cup Superfine Sugar
2 Tablespoons fresh Lemon Juice
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
Pinch of Salt
1-1/4 Cups sifted all-purpose Flour
1/2 Cup (1 stick) unsalted Butter, melted
24 Lemon Balm Leaves

Preheat oven to 375 F. - Spray Madeleine molds with a nonstick spray coating.   Place molds on a baking sheet.

In small bowl of electric mixer - beat Eggs & Egg Yolk with Sugar at high speed until pale & thick. About 5 minutes.

Beat in Lemon Juice -  Vanilla - & Salt.  Using a rubber spatula - gradually fold in Flour until well mixed. Drizzle the Butter over batter & gently fold in.
Cover bowl with plastic wrap & refrigerate the batter for 30 minutes.

Spoon 1 Tablespoon of the batter into each prepared mold.
Do not spread the batter out.  Top each mound of batter with a lemon balm leaf.  Spoon 1 Tablespoon batter over each leaf to cover.

Bake the Madeleins for 20 to 25 minutes - until the edges are lightly browned and a toothpick inserted in the center of one Madelein comes out clean.

Carefully loosen edges of the cookies with a small knife.
Invert them onto a wire rack to cool.  Makes 2 dozen.

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The recipe above is from:
"The Heart of France" - Published by Hearst Books - 2000
(Also check out the Film: "Swann In Love" 1984 R - Starring:
  Jeremy Irons as Charles Swann & Ornella Muti as Odette)
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NOTE: I did make this recipe - The "Cookies" turned out like little lemon pound "Cakes".  Instead of the lemon balm leaves - I used one teaspoon each of minced "Candied Lemon Zest". You could just serve them with Tea to dip in as Monsieur Swan so famously did - Or instead - Serve with a Raspberry Sauce and Whipped Cream ( or a Vanilla Ice Cream with Swirls of Caramel like: "Dulce de Leche"). Following is a Recipe for the Raspberry Sauce.

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 RASPBERRY SAUCE
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1/2 Cup Orange Juice
2 Teaspoons Cornstarch
2 Cups Fresh or Frozen Raspberries
2 Tablespoons Sugar - or to taste
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In a Sauce Pan - whisk together orange juice & corn starch
until cornstarch is dissolved.
Add Raspberries & Cook on low heat -
stirring constantly - until the sauce thickens.
Stir in Sugar & remove from heat.
Serve Warm - at room temperature - or chilled.
If refrigerated - sauce will keep for about two weeks.
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Recipe from: Moosewood Restaurant Book of Desserts 


Sunday, November 28, 2010

LIMITED EDITION

"Autumn Crocuses" An Original Serigraph - 8"x 11" - Mary Maki Rae 2010(c)
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A Vibrant Bouquet of Crocuses and Snow Berries nestled in a Straw Basket.


"Summer Flowers" - An Original Serigraph - 9" x 12" -
And Drawings By Mary Maki Rae - 2010 (c) 
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A Bouquet of Flowers in the same Autumnal Colors as the print above (They were actually screened at the same time) However, this one was designed in the Summer from a gathering of Zinnias - Cosmos - and a wild flower called "Sweet Rocket" - that was so fragrant I wish that I could have captured in a little box to save forever-!  (well - in a sence - I did-!)
For more information click Here
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Monday, November 15, 2010

HIGH FLYER

Oh Joy-! Just sold another "High Flyer" Serigraph & recieved a lovely response back on how pleased she was with it-! (An interesting person who lives in Toronto and had just returned home from Venice-! FUN-!)
(To see the Images & read her Posts on Venice click Here)
(Background Image: Tony Duquette)
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Friday, November 5, 2010

PUZZLED

This Art Puzzle of "Pegasus" the Mytholgical Winged Horse - is an Original Serigraph By Mary Maki Rae - It was Hand-Applied to Wood - then Hand-Cut-Out with a Scroll Saw by Robert Rae into Seventeen Interlocking Peices.
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It's Great as a Timeless Puzzle for Any Age-! (See Etsy for more Info)
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Thursday, October 28, 2010

PICASSO IN SEATTLE

Dora Maar Seated - By Pablo Picasso
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This Exhibit Positively Exceeded All of My Expectations-!

It exemplifies to anyone why Picasso is considered a Genius-!
In each medium - Oil Painting - Lithographs - Sculpture - or Pen & Ink Drawings - there is to be found something to admire - inspire - wonder about - or to learn from-!
Several iconic Masterpieces have been included from each phase of this Master's far-reaching Lifes Work.
All of His Loves are represented - First Wife Olga - Second Wife Jacqueline - Marie-Therse Walter - and Dora Mar - But only one of Francoise Gilot (some say his saddest) a reclining nude with a dark shadow acrossed it.

It's an absolute "must" to experience these Works in person to fully appreciate the textures - colors - and energy contained within them-!

I was especially amazed at how Picasso's Sculpture became so much more compelling seen in three-dimensions and from all angles.
No surprize - that He also had a great eye for invention and proportion here in this Art form as well-!

Reclining Nude - Pablo Picasso
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DON'T MISS IT-!

MASTERPIECES From The MUSEE NATIONAL PICASSO, PARIS
On til January 17, 2011
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Friday, October 22, 2010

The Colette Chairs

Painting - Acrylic on Canvas - 13" x18" By Mary Maki Rae 2010 (c)
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The New Paisley Fabric in a soft fawn color - pictured above - will be installed on just the Backs of A Set of "Colette" Chairs.  The Fronts and Seats will be covered in a warm brown ultra-suede type of Fabric.
Then as a nice decorative touch - Pewter Nailheads will be added along the outside edge the the arched front side of the backs. 
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The first finished chair with a Pillow featuring the Paisley Fabric
I like it's classic camelback silhouette and firtatiously curved front legs.

Two more of the Colette Chairs - One showing the back with Paisley Fabric.
I think they're quite attractively designed - contemporary & elegant.

Something to do with all those leftover pieces of beautiful fabric.





Thursday, October 21, 2010

Persian Garden Tote

Sewing and Painting By Mary Maki Rae - Carved Fox By Robert Rae - 2010(c)
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A New Tote - this time of gray linen - with an insert of small pieces of mostly Paisley Upholstery fabrics stitched together in a geometric pattern.
Leaving this insert open at the top creates a nice convienient pocket to keep your gloves - reading glasses - or book handy.

Seated beside the tote is "Mr. Fox" - a World Traveler - here at home - in his Custom-made Silk Jacket - Vest - and Elegantly tied Cravat.
He seems to me to be reminiscing about his many travels abroad.
Close Up of the Pocket - It reminds me of a small abstract "Persian Garden"
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Saturday, October 2, 2010

Garden Muse Fabric Collage

Fabric Collage - 18" x20" By Mary Maki Rae -2010 (c)
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What a Joy to surround this Dreamy Summer Garden Muse with the many pieces of mostly neutral-colored Florals - Velvets - and Silks that I've saved from other projects.
These in turn are over-layed with woven fabric trims - intricate laces - silk ribbons and mother-of-pearl vintage Buttons.
Then atop all - Hand Embroidered Decorative Stitches.
The finished piece could become a Decorative Pillow - or begining section of a quilt - or even a part of "just the right" upholstered piece of Furniture (chair or settee) - I haven't decidied which yet.

Fabric Tote & Painting - By Mary Maki Rae - 2010 (c)

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The Technique used in the Fabric Collage shown above - translated well into the Decorative and Practical Fabric Tote Bag. To me the Collage looks like a little boat or whimsical Hat ready to set off on a trip somewhere.



This type of Ticking is great to use for Sewing up a Sampler of your Favorite Decorative Stitches - to always have on hand - It provides a nice guideline-!

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Monday, September 6, 2010

Butterfly Collector

Paintings by Mary Maki Rae - Acrylic 2010 (c)
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She looks like an English Rose to me - immersed in her serene world of Flower Gardens and Butterflies.  While finishing this painting - I realized that it related so much to the charming book that I had been reading on English Decor.  She seemed to fit right in - whether a Town House or English Cottage-! Strange. . . . 
What I really enjoyed about the book were the houses of Artists - which were decorated with a twist of genuine eccentricity.  The ones that contained an honest expression of their individuality-!  They seemed less conscious of Trends and Fashion and exuded an air of coziness -  warmth - and whimsy-!
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A carefree mix of styles & furnishings - 19th Century French Table - to Modern Flower  Lamps. (Really enjoy that Dusty Lavender Wall-!)
 Beautifully done Pink Walls with a Red Mantle. 
The Fireplace tiles replaced by Plates and broken china.
The Hutch displays a Glorious Collection of China.
Find the Swan Teapot inherited from the owners Grandmother.
 The walls of this kitchen painted a Pink Lime wash. The Mantle a jolly red - One chair Lavender the others white-!
A Spare Bedroom used to display fine French Antique Linens
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THE BOOK:"Perfect English" By Ros Byan Shaw - Ryland Peters & Small - 2007
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Did you have a nice holiday-?
Summer seems over - Fall will be here soon.
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"As clay anchors a tree in light and wind
May your outer life grow from peace within."
             -from a poem by John O' Donohue

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

SUMMER COOL

"Summer Cool" Acrylic Painting-28"x 35" By Mary Maki Rae - 2010 (c)
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Our last spell of 90 degree weather might have inspired the "cool pastel" color palette for this painting.  I'm trying to decide - a Book or a Fan for her to hold. Both could come in handy during these temperatures - No-?  This is one way to stay cool - stationed before a Fan with a Good Book. . . Here's one that I've recently enjoyed-!
This charming memoir is about the kind of life experience most of us would "dream about".  It's kind of similar to "Under the Tuscan Sun" but from a man's point of view. I guess that's what made it different and interesting to me.

The story is about a man - knowing nothing of gardening - who buys a historic hunting lodge named Villa Massei in Marsa Macinaia.  The Villa is in need of a suitable Garden - one that will reflect and enhance it's noble heritage.

The book encompasses the author's very beginning reading about Gardening - the visiting of actual Gardens for inspiration - and the meeting of knowledgeable older and wiser Gardeners for priceless suggestions and encouragement.
I admired the author's ideas for a more formal - Romanesque  plan for his Garden. An approach based on living hedges and rows of trees in geometric formations. Not too many flowers - instead many flowering fruit trees and Lemon trees - So refreshing-! Each section unfolding into the next - some becoming like "secret rooms" - so much more interesting then to see it " all at once"-!
I think these Garden ideas - adapted on a much smaller scale - and done tastefully - could be magical - dream-like - bordering on surrealism.
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THE BOOK: "A Garden In Lucca" By Paul Gervais -Hyperion, N.Y.-2000
His philosophy quoted from the book: "The Garden - the highest expression of civility - implies the love of Nature. It symbolizes the will to shape it - tame it - as culture makes sense of Life's raw materials.
Said Francis Bacon: "The Garden offers the purest of human pleasures".
(I would add to that Art and Music as well-!)
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Monday, July 5, 2010

Mythical Seahorse

I really enjoy the Sea Horse that I've just finished painting a lightly textured Swedish Gray-!  I can't tell you how many hours Robert spent carving the Original.(very, very many-!) This is one of a few that He cast from the Original.(After many more hours of building a special mold.)
The Cast medium is like Hydrostone - but much lighter weight-wise.

This Seahorse was designed to hang on a wall (its flat on the back) and I think would look great in a Kitchen - Sun Room - or Bath.  Or outside under a covered area like a Loggia - Porch - Sun Deck - or on a Fence near a Garden.
His saddle also provides a little shelf on top for a found Shell or Candle.
Seahorse Sculpture by Robert W. Rae - 2010 (c)
(For more information see: Etsy)

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Some Pillows for Fenella

To be made from: A silk Fabric with an Embroidery-like Vine Pattern - and a Shimmering Gold Effect
And a Velvet Blue Striped Fabric with an extremely Soft - Luxurious Feel for the Sofa Pillows
Inspired recently by Flower Bouquets of Stargazers & Roses given to me by Robert - and those Gorgeous Foxgloves growing outdoors and of course the beautiful lines of Fenella's Chippendale Chairs.  I enjoy the Blues - Lavenders - and Pink Color Range.  I think a whole room like this with lots of White would be so soothing-! Well - must get back to work on those Pillows-!
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Paintings - Acrylic - 18"x24" & 12"x12" - By Mary Maki Rae (c) 2010
Our Mr. Fix It with Fenella's Pillows - Finished-!  Mary Maki Rae 2010
The fourth Pillow -Sewn from Fenella's French Style Tapestry Fabric
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Monday, June 7, 2010

Fenella's Chairs

The Fabric to Upholster a Set of Eight Vintage Chippendale Chairs
Painting By Mary Maki Rae - Acrylic 24"x 24" - 2010(c)
"Peacock Vine" - A Beautiful Teal Blue Moire - with a Woven Lattice Pattern formed of Small Flowers and a Leafy Vine.
Two of The Set of Eight Chippendale Style Chairs Finished-!
A Cup of English Tea Anyone-?
Fenella's Chairs - Happily Home - at her Dining Table 
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Saturday, June 5, 2010

Home Again

So Happy to Return Home and to find the Foxgloves in Full Bloom - so Tall & Stately - Radiant against a Beautiful Emerald Green - When in Nevada - Really missed that Northwest GREEN-!
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Beginning a New Project - More soon.......

Friday, May 21, 2010

Blue & White Decor #3

 
This Image from Carolyne Roehm's latest book seems to me the very essence of Spring. Her approach to the "Blue & White" classic color combination is exquisite - probably definitive-!
I have three or four different books on this "Blue & White" decorating theme - and this one really makes it All Fresh once again-!
Every page is an Absolute Delight-!
Following are just a few more of the beautiful Images contained in this book:
THE BOOK: "A Passion for Blue and White" - By Carolyne Roehm - Broadway Books N.Y. - 2008 - It's Great-! Buy it-!
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 "My French Muse in Tri-Cornered Hat" - 18"x18" Acrylic By Mary Maki Rae-2010
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ANOTHER "BLUE & WHITE" BRIGHT IDEA:
An Image of the Blue & White Striped Curtain Treatment of a Pair of Windows in Min Hogg's (founder of "The World of Interiors" Magazine) sitting room.
The Curtains were made of Awning Cotton from Turkey - where it was once to be seen above most shops.
The Windows became the most striking feature in the room - although it's filled to the brim with lovely things - "none expensive" - she says - the Art being in the Presentation-!
 The Curtains are not sewn - but draped over a rod and clipped. Then the center loop is brought up & clipped with a Tassle. (See drawing above)  Remember that you will need a woven striped fabric because the reverse side also shows.
IMAGES: "The World of Interiors" Magazine - April-1995
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