Holiday decor is down and packed away. While we were at it, I measured my santon figures (Provencal Nativity characters) to find out they are #2 size. Marcel Carbonel have six different scales of figures from the average figure being 15 cm down to the smallest being on average 2.5 cm. I bought these figures when the wonderful knitting shop in Corning went out of business. Then, I bought more when we visited Nantucket the following summer.
I am thinking of starting collections for Kitty and Alex (and my nieces)--giving them a figure each year...so by the time they are out of college, they will have lovely sets for their own mantlepieces.
So what to start with? An angel? or the big masterblaster, Jesus Mary Joseph--and then add so they have the core figures to start with. I should buy for price and see if ebay is a resource worth supporting.
I've learned a lot his holiday season about holiday traditions, holiday decor and the things that make me thrilled. Krampus, Pere Fouchette, Piet Zwarte, and others....the traditions of the Erzgebirge Mountains with nutcrackers, angels, smokers, arched candle holders, and more. I have also realized that despite my dislike of Christmas, I love the traditions and the imagery....intellectually. I think there is work here for next year to pursue and possibly license (?). Hangar work has changed out and is close to done. See here>>
Am working with King Arthur Bread flour using the dough hook on my mixer versus a bread machine to find out what type of results I can get. I made two types of pizza dough yesterday...one with traditional King Arthur (as I did over Christmas with a different yeast) and then with King Arthur bread flour. Same new yeast. One was a pancake the other was perfect. I made two thick foccaccia type loaves which I cut in half and made a type of deep dish pizza for dinner last night with all the leftovers on top. Every slice was consumed. Nary a crumb was left. We will see what happens today. This is a low effort and fun activity which can yield something to eat ( even a flop).
I am starting the Eustace Tilley illustrations this weekend. Here's what Wikipedia says about Eustace Tilley under their New Yorker entry:
The magazine's first cover illustration, of a dandy peering at a butterfly through a monocle, was drawn by Rea Irvin, the magazine's first art editor. The gentleman on the original cover is referred to as "Eustace Tilley," a character created for The New Yorker by Corey Ford. Eustace Tilley was the hero of a series entitled "The Making of a Magazine," which began on the inside front cover of the August 8 issue that first summer. He was a younger man than the figure of the original cover. His top hat was of a newer style, without the curved brim. He wore a morning coat and striped trousers. Ford borrowed Eustace Tilley's last name from an aunt—he had always found it vaguely humorous. "Eustace" was selected for euphony, although Ford may have borrowed the name from Eustace Taylor, his fraternity brother from Delta Kappa Epsilon at Columbia College of Columbia University.
Tilley was always busy, and in illustrations by Johann Bull, always poised. He might be in Mexico, supervising the vast farms that grew the cactus for binding the magazine's pages together. The Punctuation Farm, where commas were grown in profusion, because Ross had developed a love of them, was naturally in a more fertile region. Tilley might be inspecting the Initial Department, where letters were sent to be capitalized. Or he might be superintending the Emphasis Department, where letters were placed in a vise and forced sideways, for the creation of italics. He would jump to the Sargasso Sea, where by insulting squids he got ink for the printing presses, which were powered by a horse turning a pole. It was told how in the great paper shortage of 1882 he had saved the magazine by getting society matrons to contribute their finery. Thereafter dresses were made at a special factory and girls employed to wear them out, after which the cloth was used for manufacturing paper. Raoul Fleischmann, who had moved into the offices to protect his venture with Ross, gathered the Tilley series into a promotion booklet. Later, Ross took a listing for Eustace Tilley in the Manhattan telephone directory.
The character has become a kind of mascot for The New Yorker, frequently appearing in its pages and on promotional materials. Traditionally, Rea Irvin's original Tilley cover illustration is reused every year on the issue closest to the anniversary date of February 21, though on several occasions a newly drawn variation has been substituted.
Cute, eh? Lots of ideas here... More later.