February 29, 2012 14 comments

WIP Wednesday

So, you'll remember on Monday, I had drawn out my trees on paper.  Since I was out of Steam-a-Seam, I actually used that paper as my template for my trees.  I did so by brushing thinned out craft glue onto the fabric, laying my paper template over top and cutting it out.  Which meant I had fabric with paper glued onto it when I was done.

And so later that day, BSP called out from the bathroom: "Honey, there's a tree in the sink. Should I wash my hands in the kitchen?" :)

After I had carefully dried out my fabric trees, I even more carefully sewed them down to my base.  (Those tiny little branches were VERY fiddly.)

The next layer is composed of two more trees... which I once again drew out on tracing paper...

referencing my original sketch of focal point, land and water.

Come by on Friday to see the finished product!
February 27, 2012 4 comments

White tree's done - now what?

This is actually a multi-layered piece, so finishing this cream tree was just the beginning!  

After the tree was quilted, I had to plan out the next layer, so....

I used some tracing paper to sketch out the first layer - my focal point of cream tree; a blue line for the water and a purple line for the earth.  

The next layer consists of more trees. I drew them on a separate piece of paper, so that I could lay it over the original one and know where they were in relation to the focal point tree, the water and ground. 

Which when layered together look like this:

To see what it looks like in fabric, come back on Wednesday!
February 24, 2012 8 comments


I'm really glad it's Friday!  With everything that's been going on my blogging routine has been all out of whack - I'm glad to get back to some normalcy finally!

So, when I left you I had begun the background quilting on this piece, and have since finished the background quilting. .

And then I added the focal point of the piece - this white tree. As you can see, it's not showing up well -  I'm hoping that quilting it with these copper and gold threads will make it pop.

Stay tuned... and have a great weekend!

February 22, 2012 10 comments

Liebster Award

I've been awarded the Liebster Blog Award!

“Liebster” is a German word meaning dearestbeloved or favorite, and the Liebster Award is given by bloggers to other bloggers - intended to showcase exceptional up-and-coming blogs with 200 or fewer followers. There is no evaluation committee or formal award process for the Liebster; but it's lovelier because  it's recognition from a peer.  Like the SAG awards!
I want to thank MR at Quilt Matters for the recognition. Please check out HER blog, which has already received the Liebster Award;  MR is a prolific blogger and quilter who writes enthusiastically and engagingly about quilting and all of her many quilting related projects!
The rules for the Liebster Award are:
  1. Show thanks to the blogger who gave you the award by linking back to them.
  2. Reveal your top five picks and let them know by leaving a comment on their blog.
  3. Post the award on your blog.
  4. Bask in the love from some of the most supportive people on the internet—other writers and artists.
  5. And best of all – have fun and spread the karma.
So, my nominees for the Liebster Award in alphabetical order are:

  1. Beth at Sew Sew Art  Beth has a wonderful blog full of tutorials, art and surface design and quilts.
  2. Elaine at La Belle Helene, is a textile artist who makes beautiful, delicate knitted works of art,  crochets, felts, hand dyes yarn and makes incredible sculptures
  3. Frauke at Quilthexle`s World. Frauke makes quilts and art and beautiful hand-dyed fabric  and has a quirky sense of humour that comes through in all that she does. 
  4. Mary at The Inside Stori. Mary is a textile artist,  teacher  and has a lovely, real time process blog.  and finally;
  5. Sandra Scott at Sandra Scott Textile Artist. Sandra is an infrequent blogger, but is worth the wait, as her textile work is beautiful, personal and meaningful; and she also offers workshops in a variety of fiber related genres.  
I highly recommend that you check them all out!


And here is where I am with my work right now...

Partially quilted!  Stay tuned...
February 21, 2012 1 comments


The winner of the draw for Jennifer Chiaverini's latest book Sonoma Rose is...  ::drumroll::

Jody, of Come Tarry With Me!  Jody, please contact me with your snail mail address and I'll make sure the publisher sends you your prize!

and this is a new background for another Game of Thrones inspired piece I'm working on.

See you tomorrow for more progress!
February 20, 2012 7 comments

Experiment done!

When I left you on Wednesday, I was thinking that I had made a BIG mistake with those acrylic paint additions. The paint was too heavy, it obscured what I had done previously (which was sort of dreamy and pretty) and I wasn't sure I'd be able to quilt leaves on top of it in any meaningful way.   

The paint was already dry, but I decided to try taking it up anyway with some rubbing alcohol on one of my boring green parfait dyed failures, and mes voila! A lovely mop up cloth that I really, really like! But that's not all, I actually finished the experiment...

Check it out!  It looks almost the same, just a little deeper, which is what I was going for.

And so then I worked on my quilting to see if I could make leaves in a way that doesn't make my trees look like lollipops.

First I tried to do what I think of as a standard kind of "leaf" shape.  It wasn't bad, all in all I think it'll be a fairly successful foreground if I were going to do a forest type thing.

And then I tried a more abstract sort of leaf - not really a leaf, but more the suggestion of a leaf.

I liked that much better, and I think it'll look good I think as a kind of background leaf - if I wanted another tree in the foreground to stand out more, for instance, this would be a good choice.

And then I tried this kind of pine-needly kind of evergreen sort of thing - which really - I mean this isn't a tree that exists anywhere in nature (lol), but this needle shape will be great for a future evergreen - and was really the most successful of the three, in my opinion.

So, this little journeyman piece had two purposes - to try and conquer the lollipop tree and to figure out what leaves work best. I like all of the leaves for their various purposes, and the lollipop effect was somewhat diminished, so all in all, a good experiment.  More to come in future, never fear! I still have THIS one to quilt!

Don't forget about the giveaway - you can still enter until 11:00 p.m. tonight - I'll announce the winner tomorrow.

'Til then,
February 19, 2012 3 comments


A couple of weeks ago I was over at Andrea Harris' blog, "Millions of Thoughts" and won some cool stickers to give Jezebel a make over!

Now all I need is a nice orange Buddha to set it off - I don't think my purple and gold Buddha is fitting so nicely in my current sewing room decor!

And hey, don't forget about the giveaway!
February 18, 2012 6 comments

A Rare Saturday Post...

I'm doing a Saturday post because I want to remind you all of the giveaway.  I don't have anything to say really, so check out this video I made instead:

and don't forget to check out the giveaway!

If you want to see it bigger - it's on You Tube as well.  (I couldn't make it embed for some reason).

February 17, 2012 27 comments


ETA: Okay my chickens, giveaway's over.  Thanks for playing!

I was contacted by Jennifer Chiavernini's publisher last week who asked whether I'd be willing to do a give away of her latest book, Sonoma Rose.

For you, anything!  All kidding aside, when I read the advance copy, I couldn't believe that I had been missing out on this series.  I'm not quite done the book, but I am REALLY enjoying it. Although it's part of a series, I haven't read any of them before and am still able to read it as a stand-alone book. Ms. Chiavernini's writing is very readable, and the story really pulls you in.

"Sonoma Rose picks up at the climax of The Quilter's Homecoming, when Rosa Diaz Barclay flees from her abusive husband with her four children and her childhood sweetheart, Lars Jorgensen. On the run from her husband, his mob associates, and the federal agents investigating his crimes, Rosa and Lars make their way north, first to San Francisco where they seek medical care for two of the children who suffer from a mysterious ailment that has already claimed the lives of four of their brothers and sisters, and then on to Sonoma County, where they find work and sanctuary at an idyllic vineyard and winery struggling to stay afloat despite the constraints of Prohibition.

Rosa Diaz Barclay endured years of her husband's abuse, but one day Rosa realizes it is time to leave. Taking her four children and a few precious family keepsakes, Rosa flees, only to receive some unexpected help from her first love: Lars Jorgensen. Together the two set out to make a new future for themselves in the wine country of Sonoma Valley in Chiaverini's emotionally compelling tale."

                                                                                               from Jennifer Chiaverini's site

If you'd like to win a copy of this book, please leave a comment here up until Monday, February 21st at 11:00 p.m. and I'll announce the winner on Tuesday.  The publisher will send the book directly to you.  And if you'd like TWO chances to win, then go on over to Chris Daly's blog at Dye Candy and enter over there!

Chris is a talented fiber artist and purveyor of wonderful hand-dyed fabrics!Take some time to look around while you're over there - and if you're here from Chris' blog; welcome!

Good luck!
February 14, 2012 11 comments

Okay, so bear with me...

As you know, my word of the year this year is "intention" and part of that is that I'm no longer going to be making things just to make them (with the exception of my work for And Then We Set It On Fire, although I'll try to incorporate that work into what I'm doing for "real" as well); but I also need to do what I call "journeyman" work, stuff that doesn't really have a purpose other than to help me improve upon something I'm having trouble with.

And you know what I currently have the most trouble with, don't you?  THOSE DAMN LOLLIPOP TREES!!!!!  lol  Why is that every time I try to do foliage I end up with lollipop trees?  (Rhetorical question).  Anyway...

You may remember this piece from back when I was doing the fugitive media experiments - this one was from the charcoal on fabric session and I decided to get away from the lollipop shape by building it up with acrylic paint.

Well, as you can see, all that happened as a result of that little experiment, was that I ended up with a deeper, more highlighted lollipop shape:
and I liked it better BEFORE I began fussing with it.  Oy.

See what happened next on Monday.  'Cuz on Friday, I'm doing a giveaway  in tandem with Chris Daly at Dye Candy two chances to win!  Until then...

February 13, 2012 6 comments

Happy Monday!

Remember I told you that I had wrecked my prior ironing pad with my transfer painted work in November and I had to make a new one?  I finally did. :)  It was pretty simple: I used a piece of the melamine boards I had cut for the tables (which meant it was the same width as the tables - perfect!), covered it with 3 or 4 layers of batting, a layer of insul-bright and this strippy-stripey blue/green/yellow striped fabric and I had a new pad! (I've used it already for transfer paint work and it's perfect. No heat getting through that sucker!)

I also made...

New covers for my sewing machines (much simpler than the other ones); a new cover for my mini-ironing board (same method as above) - I use this one for sewing clothes; and a little pin cushion/snips holder/thread catcher. 

I wasn't sure whether I would actually use it so I didn't make the thread-catcher of my dreams (mostly 'cuz I didn't have any); but I actually use it a LOT.  Who knew?

February 10, 2012 31 comments

Winter Is Coming

My little transfer paint piece is complete. I've been reading Game of Thrones and my head is filled with images of that magical realism world; the kind of place where supernatural happenings and creatures blend seamlessly with the "real" world.

The Weirwood trees are white I know, but this one is in shadow, at dusk, in late autumn.

And it can both hear you and see you.

Process here and here, how to do transfer painting here
February 8, 2012 10 comments

WIP Wednesday

When I left you on Monday, I had just finished fusing my cuts of transfer painted fabric to my batting.  As you may know, my usual practice is to happily throw stuff at a piece and be pleased with the result at the end, which was fine when my goal was to just "try" different techniques.  But this year, I have chosen as my word of the year "intention" and so have decided to not start a piece without know what it is I'm trying to accomplish, before I cut a thread. 
February 6, 2012 8 comments

This is where I began:

Remember back in November when I was teaching transfer paints at And Then We Set It On Fire? This was one of my experiments.

I always liked it and thought it would make for a great, moody, sort of atmospheric background.  But I couldn't leave it alone, so....

I cut out an interesting shape and laid it on fusible batting....

And then I selected several more pieces of  transfer painted fabric that I had made during that period of time and cut them to the shapes I wanted to make the background I saw.  And then I fused 'em.

What next?  Find out on Wednesday!

February 3, 2012 7 comments

Playing with paint...

I was working on something I'm going to show you sometime this month, and had some leftover paint, so I decided to paint some fabric with it.

I really like this one! (approximately 30 x 30, silk twill.) And then I did this one: 

February 1, 2012 14 comments

Shattered Sky

First 2012 Finish!

This little lovely (48 x 40") all cotton, is the end result of my experiments with the prior "unhappy living together birthday blocks" ...

Which were then cut into slices and incorporated with other strips of coordinating fabric from my stash. I tested a lot of different fabrics, found the right ones and then laid them out (on my new design wall. Love it!!!!)

Normally, I would have stopped there and quilted it, but because I was working with Rayna Gillman's technique (through And Then We Set It On Fire), I added the slashed inserts.  Totally not my thing, but I really like it just the same. Hope you do too. 

But now I'm on to some of my own work.  Looking forward to showing you the process!