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Zentangle Inspired Chair by Blanche Nicols

Zentangle Inspired Chair by Blanche Nichols

“You can get help from teachers, but you are going to have to learn a lot by yourself, sitting alone in a room.”  Dr. Seuss

This post is a tribute to a couple of First Chair Awards.  The first is a nod to my grandson, Jack.  I’ve been pushing him to practice his trumpet more at home in the afternoons.  Since he is living with us right now, this involves the sacrifice of the entire family’s ear drums in addition to the nagging from me.  He got confirmation of the value in these solitary moments with his trumpet when he achieved First Chair status for the first time this week.  If you have ever known anyone in band, this is no small accomplishment.  Jack was absolutely beaming with excitement when he got off the bus.  Good job, my buddy!

The second First Chair Award goes to my student, Blanche Nichols.  Blanche embraced Zentangle after taking a basic class from me some time back.  She bravely decided to tangle an upholstered chair.  Blanche had sent photos early in the project and I hadn’t heard from her in several months.  I was thinking about Blanche and her chair when lo and behold, I get this note (shared with her permission):


Finished at last.  My son says it’s his heirloom.  I love the outcome.  I tried not to use all of my favorite zentangles more than once.  It was hard to try to use all different ones, but it pushed me to the next level.  On a whole they are all different.  

Many thanks for all the photos and tutorials from CZT’s posts.  What an inspiration when one sees all the beautiful works of their art, how they used it.  Especially when I took your class and saw the zentangled Fashionista Girl on the tote bag.  Totally hooked.

Even better, she shared some images of her very amazing First Chair project.  I hope you are inspired, as I am, by Blanche and her wonderful chair.  Enjoy!



Tangled Toms

Easter Fun Facts

Americans spend approximately 2 billion dollars on Easter candy each year.

Each Easter, approximately ninety million chocolate Easter bunnies are sold in the U. S.

For more Easter trivia and tons of other interesting tidbits visit Critical Thinking

Finding a few Easter gifts that are not candy can be a real challenge.  There are those mandatory treats that MUST arrive at my house on Easter morning.  First and foremost is the biggest hollow chocolate bunny to be found for Katrina.  She nibbles a little on Easter and then puts it in the freezer to snack on throughout the year.  This has been going on since she was a little kid, disgusting, but true.  For Kristi it’s all about the Peeps.  She’s a bit of a purist – only the yellow chicks will do.  These days she doesn’t eat very many, but I found a three pack of chocolate dipped Peeps.  We’ll see how she likes them.  To be on the safe side, I visited the Just Born website and ordered her a T-shirt and Peep socks.  She loves wearing crazy socks with her scrubs, so these will be a hit.  My new son-in-law, Jacob, loves all things sour.  Big bags of Sour Patch bunnies will be waiting for him.  Kim loves that old classic, Reese’s Peanut Butter eggs.  Robin’s Egg Whoppers run a close second for him as well.

Jack just loves it all – he’s the easiest.  No searching high and low for exactly the right bunny for him.  A basket full of sugar makes him happy.  Throw in a few Wimpy Kid things and he’s good to go.   Maggie, however, flirted with disaster this year and almost ended up with an empty basket.

After playing board games for a while last night, both kids announced quite loudly that they would be going to bed since the Easter Bunny would be coming soon.  Maggie tiptoed back into the family room and tells us “Just so we’re clear, I don’t believe in the Easter Bunny anymore, but I don’t want Jack to know.”  Ah the sophistication of being 12 years old.  “Do you remember what I told Katrina?” I ask.  “OH!  ‘If you don’t believe, you don’t receive.’  I BELIEVE!!”

Months ago, I bought a pair of white Toms to tangle for a class.  I got her size, since she has been pestering her Mom for a pair for quite some time. They were always intended to be her Easter gift.  She has been eyeballing those shoes, lusting after them.  She even advised me that purple ink would be the very best look for the tangles.  I’m sure those Tangled Toms were uppermost in her mind when she ditched her 12-year old arrogance and became a believer again, at least for this year.

About Tangling the Toms: I just used the stitching on the shoes as my string – it lends itself very well to section off the shoe.  The purple ink was done with a Sakura Identi-Pen.  The ink is waterproof, good for fabric and the pen has two points.  Shading was accomplished with a Fabrico dual marker in #181 cool gray.  The brush end works really well for shading on fabric.

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