Saturday, December 8, 2012


Angel Fabric Collage - By Mary Maki Rae 2012(c)

To off set some of these Gray Winter days recently - I've been delightfully envoled in several sewing projects.
This beautiful Angel has emerged from one of the piles of Decorative Fabics bestowed upon me from Angeline (my daughter) that she had saved from past commissions for her Sewing. 
(It was about like the results of 50 shopping trips in one day-! So much to choose from-!)
Here's the Angel on a Tea Cosy

Another Angel and a Evening Bag
For more see:Here

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

"Flora Dora" Admired in the UK

Many Thanks "Modflowers" for the Beautiful Feature of my Prints on your Sparkling - Refreshing Blog-!!
Take a Look Here -! (type Mary Maki Rae in the search box)
Also see Her Shop on Etsy - a Fresh look at 60's and 70's Floral Designs on Fabric here.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Blue & White Serenity

"Blue & White Serenity" - Acrylic 12"x12" By Mary Maki Rae 2012(c)
Upon returning home it felt so delightfully refreshing to paint this Blue & White China Coffee Pot - unto a subtle Light-blue and Lavender textured background.
The last of the Bright Orange - Yellow - and Magenta flowers of Summer complemented the blues so well-!
An unusual "round" Pear shares space with some small sweet mandarine Oranges.

Here's one of My Garden Muses back again - this time as a Cosy - I thought she looked so pretty with this painting.
 See: Etsy

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Winter Dreams Revisited

The Travel Tote worked out so well on my Trip - I found that I really enjoyed the Texture and Fall Colors of the Fabric.
So once home - I thought a smaller Shoulder-type Tote would be nice to have for this Season - for every-day shopping etc.
Cutting & laying out the Fabric

Here's the Tote side with the Tab - on which I thought a perfect spot for a Cameo pin (as I've sewn velcro underneath for the closure)
Along with the Tote - a small bag - Just the right size for a few cosmetics.
I've used Ribbon for the Closure because I like bows - But velcro and a Pearl Button again - would work perfect too.

 The small Bag Open.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Sweet & Savory Salad

"For Your Notes & Quotes" Mannequin
By Mary Maki Rae -2010(c)
1 Cup or more Cabbage - Cut into 2" very thin strips
1 Red Apple - chopped
Small Red or Orange Pepper-chopped
2 Green Onions - sliced fine
4-5 Dried Apricots - chopped
1 Celery Stalk - sliced fine
1/2 Cup Cucumber - thin slices
Sprinkled on Top:
Salted Sunflower Seeds
1/2 Cup Sour Cream
1/2 Cup Good Mayonnaise
Juice of 1 Lemon
2 tsp. Sugar
1 tsp. Italian Spices
(Plus some on top)
(NOTE: This Recipe would make a Delicious "Chicken Salad" with
Sliced Strips of Baked Chicken 
Breast Meat on Top.)
Marinate Chicken white meat in:
Balsimatic Vinager
Good Olive Oil
Italian Spices
Salt & Pepper
for Two Hours.
Bake in 425 degree Oven for 30 Minutes
then turn Oven to 375 degrees
and baked for 45 minutes more.
(Let rest for 15 minutes)
Method here via Robert
For More About French Man & Woman Mannaquins See Here.

Monday, September 24, 2012

"Summer Garden Girl"

"Summer Garden Girl" 12"x18" Mary Maki Rae - 2012(c)
We had a second spell of "Summer Weather" - Craved a Coolness  -Calmness - and this painting emerged.
A bright - youthful - Garden Girl with her arrangment of some of this seasons Flowers.

"Summer Blue Pitcher" 12"x12"  Mary Maki Rae 2012(c)
A Blue Pitcher filled with Ice Tea - something to serve on warm Summer days or Evenings.  This scene seems so like the sweet coolness of an early Summer morning - so soothing. . .
Try this for Lemon Tea:
3 tsp. Orange-Pekoe Tea
1 tsp. Dried Lemon Verbena
1/2 tsp Minced dried Lemon Peel or Zest
2 Sprigs Lemon Thyme with Blossoms

(For more information about the Paintings see here.)

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Sea Change Painting

"Sea Change" Finished - Mary Maki Rae 2012(c)
Enjoyed the way some pure - pristine - white worked as an antidote for lots of stripes & pattern & balanced the Sailboat perfectly-!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

A Sea Change

"Summer Stripes & Flowers" -Mary Maki Rae 2012(c)
I have to admit that I've always been smitten - design-wise - by stripes-!  They inspired this painting actually - which is almost completed.  Using some bright vivid summer stripes as a starting point on the round table - I then painted in two boldly striped pottery vases (recalling a favorite Moroccan theme.)  They hold some Zinnias - Geraniums - Cosmos and Bellflowers that are finally in bloom now - after the longest - coolest - rainyest Spring ever-!
To cool the scene - perhaps I'll paint in a pristine white dish with fresh Strawberries - to balance that little sprig poking out of the blue vessel.
I was so amazed recently to discover these stunning examples of fabrics with stripes - arranged under a vintage Indian dhurry - Most Inspiring-! (see images below.)

Find more in:The World of Interiors - May 2012

Saturday, August 18, 2012

The Magic of Matelasse

Art in Background By Mary Maki Rae (c) 2012
We've just finished the new upholstery on this Elegant Vintage Bench for clients.
The Fabric: A soft Red Matelasse - intricately woven in a subtle floral pattern.
This material proved to be so flexible and as easy to the hand - as to the eye-!  A real pleasure to work with.

We decided to just fold the Fabric under at the edges next to the wood frame.
Then finish with French Nails - leaving a precisely measured space between each one.
The results were most pleasing - Simple and Elegant-!

I thought the "Tambourine" Print (c)2012
would look so beautiful with this piece-!
(more info See:here)
For more about Matelasse & more sample of the type of fabric See my post from 2009 below:

Images of Matelasse fabric samples from:
"World of Interiors" - June-2009

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Stuffed Mushrooms & Tomatoes

The Chef Doll with another Recipe (c)2012
12-16 Large Fresh Plump Mushrooms
Or Three Large Tomatoes
16-20 Fresh Shrimp, Sauted in Butter
8-oz Pkg. Cream Cheese, (Remove Pkg. from fridge
1/2 hour before - to soften)
Parmesan Cheese,finely grated
Mini Peppers, finely chopped
Green Onions, finely chopped
Orange Zest, finely chopped
Mushroom stems, finely chopped
Parmesan Cheese, finely grated

1. Lightly saute shrimp in butter - set aside.
2. Remove stems from mushrooms and finely chop.
3. Chop finely: mini peppers, green onions, and orange zest
And grate the Parmesan cheese.
4. Mix all of the above together in a bowl
with softened cream cheese.
5. Fill each mushroom and tomato with the cream cheese
mixture - Top with one or two shrimp & Parmesan cheese.
6. Place on large baking sheet or skillet and
Bake for 20 Minutes in 350 oven.
(We served the stuffed mushrooms with Baked Ham
and Green Salad & ate some for Hors d' Oeuves
before dinner too-!)
Lettuce of your choice
A lot of chopped fresh Basil
Mini Pepper (Yellow & Orange) Sliced in rounds.
Cherry Tomatoes
Black Olives
Pepper Jack Cheese, grated.

1/2 Cup Good Mayonnaise
1/2 Sour Cream
2-3 Tbls. Apple Cider Vinegar
3 Tbls. Freshly Squeezed Orange Juice
2 Tbls. Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice
Fresh Basil, chopped mixed in
and on Top for Decoration.
(maybe some Sugar, if needed)

Friday, July 20, 2012

Two More Chairs & A Pillow

Two Doves admire a Pillow for Priscilla -
By Mary Maki Rae (c) 2012

Completed more slipcovers for Two more Chairs-
Sewn from a contrasting fabric of a warm check pattern -
So soft to the touch - much like a sweater.
Also used the same fabric for a flange surrounding
the custom-shaped pillow shown above.
The Two Chairs shown together -
The arms presented the challenge of fitting the skirt
around them - But liked the way the pleats softly evolved -
falling in a nice neat way.

Close up of the Pillow
Enjoyed the way the two fabrics worked together -
along with an Embroidered Silk Fragment -
piping and decorative gimp.

More Projects on the way. . . . .
In the meantime - some "Fun Figure Sculptures
(By R. Rae and painted by Me)
Hoping for some more Summer weather-!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012


At last - some real Summer Weather-!
So happy to have some of those Sunny 70-80 degree -
breezy days back-!
(Sculpture By Robert )- (c)2012
A New Painting - "At the Beach" - still working on it -
more additions soon-!
Mary Maki Rae - (c) 2012

Saturday, June 9, 2012

The Parsons Chairs

Priscilla's Paisley Fabric - With The  Spring Day Lilly Muse
Painting By Mary Maki Rae (c)2012
Have been working on a New Sewing Project consisting so far of - Slipcovers for a Set of Six Parsons Chairs for Clients.
The Fabric is beautiful-! Inspiring a Tailored - Elegant "Look".
Here's a look of results so far. . . .

All Images above are of the First Completed Chair -
"Alicia" Scupture holding the Threads & Buttons -
5Ft.x 24" Base - By Robert Rae (c) 2012
Now back to Work on the remaining five-!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

"Joie De Vivre" & The Chef Doll

Chef Doll - 24" Fabric - Original Sculpted Head
By Robert Rae - 2012(c)
Robert has sculpted more than a dozen of these charming character heads.
At one time - I started to paint them and make Hats for them - the one shown above - I envisioned as a Cook. 
He sat in our kitchen on a shelf in our China Buffet for too long - so I decided it was time to start working on a Chef costume for him.
This is the first one of a group that I've completed so far.
Maybe that's a cup of Tea or maybe Hot Chocolate in one of the demitasse cups that I enjoy collecting - they're so perfectly doll sized-!
Speaking of Chefs - I have been reading a charming and engaging book entitled - "Joie de Vivre" written by the reknown restaurateur Robert Arbor.
He sucessfully maintaines several French-Style restaurants here in the U.S. - But his Summers are spent in the French Countryside where he and his family reside in an unpretentous - typical stone manor house.
The charm of the book is it's minute to minute discriptions of what daily life is like in France today - the Food - the Meals - the Shopping at their local markets - and the socializing with family and friends.
(All is presented so simply and accessable-!)
I didn't know that the French do not Bake their Bread or Pastry - All is purchased from Professionals with shops daily - this one fact in it's self explains why their life necessitates a lot of "Going to Market"-!
Many many more unknown facts about French life are reveiled in the book - too many to list here.
By the time one has finished the book - you feel as though you have really spent the most intimate and peaceful weekend in the French Countryside with a great deal of their "Joie de Vivre"-!
(Because the author is a Chef - there are included in the book - many delicious - yet simple recipes you will want to try-!)
THE BOOK: "Joie De Vivre" Simple French Style for Everyday Living
By Robert Arbor & Katherine Whitesides - Simon & Schuster Pub.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Spring Green

"Girl in Green Hat" 18"x18" - Mary Maki Rae 2012 (c)
Working on a "Girl in the Green Hat Theme" painting.
Inspired by Spring - warmer weather - and the colors in my "Two Parrots" painting (see below). I think it needs some texture and more details - maybe try a larger canvas-!)
Always feel in the mood a lighter color palette this time of year - in my paintings as well as my environment.

"Two Parrots in the Garden" 16"x16" Mary Maki Rae (c)

Monday, March 26, 2012

Spring . . . .

Watercolor Drawing - Mary Maki Rae 2012 (c)
A Spring Bouquet of Narcissus - Tulips - Grape Hyacinths - and those lovely tall Candelabra Primroses.  All arranged in a Blue & White China Shoe Vase that I love so well.
(I enjoy these Watercolor Drawings - this one - fresh - soft - and so evocative of Spring-!)  (Small Jewel-like - perfect for small - intimate spaces and rooms.)

Thinking about what seeds to start and what to plant this Spring in all my "Garden Places" (All small - but an Artist will always find space for more Flowers for more Inspiration-!)  Right now the green spikes of Hyacinths - Day Lillies - Lupine - and Rudbeckia are popping up jubilantly in spite of a very cool Spring this year -!

Wishing you a Happy Spring-!
(for more about Watercolor Drawings
See here.)

Spring is like a perhaps hand
(which comes carefully
out of Nowhere)arranging
a window, into which people look(while
people stare
arranging and changing placing
carefully there a strange
thing and a known thing here)and

changing everything carefully

spring is like a perhaps
Hand in a window
(carefully to
and fro moving New and
Old things, while
people stare carefully
moving a perhaps
fraction of flower here placing
an inch of air there)and

without breaking anything.

Poem By E.E. Cummings

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Soft & Sultry

"Soft & Sultry" 18" x 24" Mary Maki Rae 2012 (c)
Soft-colored - early Spring Tulips inspired this Bouquet.
Their white-lined edges are echoed in the design of the coffee pot- cum vase and the fanciful cup.
The mood seemed warm and sensuous - then suddenly -  as the Sun resided - it became sultry and mysterious.
Really enjoy the brightly-hued Oranges - how they float in the delicate crystal dish - and how they offer a touch of Zest and liveliness to the scene-!

 A Recipe for Orange Zest follows - We make it often - for it's delicious flavor.

Simmer in One Quart of Water for Six minutes:
the peeled zests of Four Oranges.
(Grapefruit or Lemons work great too)

Drain - Rinse in Cold Water & set aside.

Bring One cup of white organic Sugar & 1/3 Cup of Water 
to a Simmer in a sauce pan.
When Sugar has dissolved - Cover pan & boil a few moments more.

Remove from heat - Stir in the Orange peel - Let steep for One hour.
Pour into clean jar with the juice - Cover & Refrigerate.

(We use the Zest as a Flavoring as you would Vanilla or Almond -
It's Great in Oatmeal and Shortbread Cookies - 
Mufffins - Carrot Cake - Strawberry Short Cake -
Fruit Salad and Dressing.
Absolutely endless possibilities-!)


Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Flower Haven

"Flower Haven" Acrylic - Mary Maki Rae 2012 (c)
I rather love the dreamy - peaceful feeling in this painting.

From the Garden - on a pristine Summer morning - she has gathered a bountiful collection of flowers - and arranged them temporarily in found containers.
Someone has made coffee and offered her a cup - (or will it be a cup of herb tea-?)
Seems it's time for a break - to chat and to think about the bouquets she will create from these little treasures to bring some life and sparkle to her home-!
(The soft-colored palette of this painting inspired the Doves as well - they make the most gentle and soothing of companions.)

Oh Joy-!  Time to start planning this year's Garden-!