December 23, 2011 6 comments

Happy Holidays to all

I'm off for about a week - see you soon!

December 19, 2011 2 comments

Happy Christmas

(or holiday celebration of your choice)

In case you haven`t figured it out  already - this will be a non-quilting related post . :)  A teensy how-to follows though, for these and a few other little Christmas decorations I made for my office.

All of my materials are from the dollar store, which means that I`ve spent no more than $2 on any one item. 

 The simplest of course, was the vase of flowers.  The flowers were purchased by individual stem at $1.00 each, the vase was $2 and the sand and vase filler were simply layered in like a parfait.  Easey peasey!

In the first pic, there is a vase of the same size beside the one with the flowers. In it is a little tree in some vase filler. The tree started out like this:

and then I used a utility scissor to cut the plastic pot it was inl; and then cut the bottom of the pot out so that the tree would have a little stand. 

Although the tree was still quite small, it was too tall for my vase, so I used a wire cutter to trim the tree stump, which I then put back in its stand for stability. 

Mes voila!

I used the same simple process for this shorter, rounder vase; as well as come clippings from the Christmas pics in the first materials shot and made this little pretty:

Since these are so quick and easy to make (less than an hour for all three), if you like them, you can whip a couple up for your coffee or sofa table, or even a centerpiece for your kitchen table and still have plenty of time to finish whatever else needs to be done between now and Saturday.

See you Wednesday!
December 16, 2011 10 comments

on my sewing table right now...

This is just a little something I've been playing with on my kitchen table.  "Kitchen table" you ask?  Why yes! Haven't I mentioned that my sewing room currently looks like THIS:

the walls are primed...

that closet door is now primed too...

sadly, there's nothing I can do to make that window bigger...

and we're laying the floor this weekend.  AND THEN, paint, furniture goes back in, fabric goes back in - I'm hoping that shortly after Christmas, I'll be back in business!

December 12, 2011 6 comments

Failure to thrive...

This was a piece I made several months ago. I was experimenting with a number of techniques, (not purposely, mind);I was trying to create the effect of trees in the background, mid-ground and foreground, so, using some of my hand-painted fabric; I quilted it to death, painted over, painted under, quilted some more,  fused on top of,  and I think, did a final layer of paint  - all in an effort to make it look the way I saw it in my head -  and failed utterly.

So I called it "Failure To Thrive" (a play on both words and the utter failure of the piece) and put it away.  I never actually intended to show it to you, though the sharper eyed among you may have spotted it in this post ( like all my failures, I never give up on the - I always try to rescue them, make them over, prove that they can be beautiful despite themselves.)

I'm showing it to you today because it's part of a project I'm working on that will be revealed in the new year. Rayna Gilman is involved... and you can play too.  Pick up her new book or enter here for a chance to win a free copy.

Talk soon!

December 8, 2011 5 comments

and we have lift off!!!!

I finally got my laptop back (it was actually ready 7 days before I was able to pick it up, but due to a miscommunication in house, they kept telling me it wasn't. ARGH.) 

In the meantime, I was working on lots of stuff, but first up, playing with plastic!

Over on And Then We Set It On Fire, this month's technique is fusing plastic. So I played with this technique over the weekend, using grocery bags, dry cleaner wrapping, thickened plastic wadding and bubble wrap. 

Mostly, I just melted stuff together. :) 

I was interested in the types of textures I could get with the different weights of plastic; but because the dry cleaning plastic would have been excessively boring, I first put down two squares as a base,  mixed up some craft paint on top, put another two squares of plastic on that and melted away.

Four layers wasn't enough, but 8 was, and I got some really nice results that were highly coloured, very pliant, and easy to quilt. 

I also tried it with some white grocery bags for a less vibrant result, but in my finished piece, I layered the different kinds of plastics and some of the colours together. 

I also tried putting "stuff' in between the layers: sequins, tiny beads, bits of fabric, plastic mesh and the like - with varied results - I may use those bits and bobs in other pieces in the future:

But often, the result was such a hard mass of plastic, I couldn't imagine using it in any way except possibly, sculpture!

It's not clear from the pic above - but this turned out be a lump of hard plastic that I wouldn't be able to get a needle through. 

In the end, I took some pinks and greens and whites, (and little of the grey with sequins) cut them up, layered them and put them together in a little wall hanging. BSP *LOVES* it and thinks I should work with melted plastic all the time.  It was fun - but that's enough for me. :)