Curious.com and more…

I’m excited to now be teaching online at Curious.com. I hope you will check out my videos there and look around, there is so much to learn! New videos coming soon!

I’m working on a new dye technique – Here is a teaser but there’s more to come…

Hay Roll

Hay Roll

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off

Moving and a little free motion

I moved my studio and have been trying to get back into the swing of things. I had a painted whole cloth that I actually started quilting ages ago but put away because I was unhappy with the quilting. After the studio move I decided, rather than moving that piece from cupboard to cabinet many time over, I would cut it apart – part it out! So here is a little bit of that whole cloth, salvaged and free motion quilted… I’m trying to get comfortable working/playing in my new (smaller and much less private) space. Sometimes we just have to sit down at the quilting (or sewing ) machine and move on.

About this piece – As I said it is a portion of a larger hand painted piece. It is really free motion quilted which means I didn’t mark it. It has wool batting which quilts beautifully. I just started with one flower and filled in every space for a tight and balanced design. Oh, I’m feeling better already!

getting groove quilting

Posted in artists, My Art, painted fabric, Quilting, studio | Comments Off

“New” studio and bobbin storage

I’m in the process of moving my studio. Though I dream of building a studio above our garage that isn’t in the cards for now. I’m going from a large space with a utility sink to a smaller room and it’s a major change but there is something I won’t be changing – The way I store my large quilting bobbins. It’s not fancy but it works well for me and the drawer is directly next to me when I sit at the quilting machine. Here is what I did – Using a foil or other stiff cardboard roll (paper towel rolls are not stiff enough and are too big in diameter), slice it in half lengthwise and hot glue craft foam or cardboard to each end (I used 1/4″ thick craft foam). Glue the ends on so that they makes “feet” and when placed in the drawer it won’t roll over.

bobbin holder

bobbins in drawer

Looking down into the drawer.

Do you have a clever (and cheap) studio storage solution? I’d like to hear it.

 

 

Posted in News, Quilting, studio, Tutorials | Comments Off

Titling an Art Quilt

Giving an art quilt a title is often a challenge for me and this one was no different. I asked the guys here to tell me what they saw when they looked at it and for any title ideas. Each shared his thoughts and ideas and though it was fun to hear what the piece “said” to them, their ideas were nothing like what the piece meant to me. So after much deliberation (probably too much) I have dubbed this little piece “Drift”.

Drift

Drift

About the construction – It started as a painted whole cloth center with a bit of painted fusible, then using free motion quilting I stitched a “net” design and attached the piece on top of a black background. Next I cut up a old painted canvas that I had used under my hand painted fabric as a drop cloth (It was perfect!). I attached three pieces to the whole cloth using artist gel medium and continued the stitching across the canvas, this time using black thread.

I quilted in the border and added the painted gauze with more quilting and thread play. It is mounted to a black canvas that I cropped out of this photo because there was too much grey glare. I rarely mount art quilts on canvas but this was going to a exhibition where it was required (though I decided not to enter). To my surprise I like it on the canvas very much… trouble is I would like quilts to be recognized as art on their own and attaching them to a canvas just seems wrong. Have you ever mounted an art quilt to a canvas, if so tell us about it. I’ll write more about mounting small art quilts on canvas another time. For now I’m off to Quilt and Paint Away! A

Posted in My Art, painted fabric, Quilting | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Supporting Artists

I see amazing art every day, and I wish I could buy every piece that I love but, of course that’s not possible. Every once in a while, though, I do treat myself to a special piece. For a long time I have been drooling over these small, gorgeous, mixed media landscapes, by artist Doria Anne Goocher.

Doria was kind enough to host a SAQA meeting in her home recently, where I finally decided to purchase some of her art. The piece contains a variety of beautiful fabrics and papers as well as quilting stitches. It is mounted in a perfect mat and frame. After the meeting Doria reminder me that about 15 years ago (maybe longer) she took my miniature landscape art quilt class! Sadly, I can not take any credit for her talent.

doria g scape

This photo doesn’t do it justice.

To learn more about Doria and her art I hope you will visit her website Designs by Doria When you see artwork that speaks to you, I hope you’ll buy it and feel great for supporting an artist.

Posted in artists | Tagged , , , | Comments Off

Doggy play day!

Sometimes it is good to just create something for fun – no rules and no deadlines! So I grabbed a greeting card my youngest (adult) son designed years ago and used it to make a pattern for a little art quilt. Today I’ll post the first three steps and when it is finished I’ll post it again.

I used a piece of my hand painted sky fabric for the background.

slobbery prior to stitching

Fused no stitching (At this stage it looks like a polar bear to me)

I draw outlines on a piece of Sulky Super Solvy water soluble stabilizer and used KK 2000 temp spray adhesive. Then I free motioned sketched stitch the details.

slobbery prior to pastel

Stitched before wax pastel

Then using Caran d’ Ache water-soluble wax pastels, a paint brush and water, I added some highlights and shadows. I think I may hit the eye reflection with a dot of white textile or acrylic for a bit more spark.
slobbery dog fin
My son says it’s better than his original, I like it just as much!

Posted in Humor, My Art, painted fabric, Quilting, Tutorials, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Watercolor washed rubbing…

You may have read on one of my earlier posts that we have leaves stamped into our patios and that I have used them as inspiration for some of my art.
Below are the steps to creating what will be a small art quilt OR a piece that could be incorporated into a larger piece. I used a piece of Pima cotton, watercolor (actually Jacquard Textile paints, thinned), water-soluble wax pastel, and bit of painted gauze.

step one
First lay the fabric on top of the imprint, hold securely or tape, and rub with the wax pastel almost parallel with the surface.

step 2

Next heat set it using a hot iron.

rubbing3

Using thinned textile paint, “wash” the paint color over the design.

rubbing4

I was trying to add more depth with the dark but did too much.

rubbing5

rubbing6

Luckily it dried much lighter and presented me with an opportunity to try and alter it by adding another layer – this time using painted gauze.

rubbing7

The gauze covered some of the dark areas and brought in another element and textured layer.

rubbing8 rubbing9

Because I’m pretty sure I’m going to quilt my pieces I like to add dots when painting the background, giving me something to quilt around.

I’m pleased with this piece and will post it again when it is finished.

rubbing top fin

I hope this gives you some ideas to try and I would love to see what you come up with!

Posted in Garden and Nature, My Art, painted fabric, Quilting, Tutorials | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Comfortable pedal placement…

I finally discovered a set up for my sewing machine pedal, that is comfortable to me and wanted to share it in case it would help any of you. I know there are no-slip pads (I have one) and other ways to set the sewing machine pedal, like wearing heeled shoes or turning the pedal around but none of these worked for me and after hours of machine quilting I would have a very sore knee, even the next day.

Finally I placed a piece of 1” thick packing foam up against the back end of the pedal, extending it past the length of my foot (it’s kind of a cross between Styrofoam & foam rubber, it has a little give but mostly firm support). I can move my foot up and down on it and my entire foot is supported on the foam and pedal. I can quilt (and sew) for hours now and there is no strain on my leg or knee.

Easy on my knee pedal setup

Easy on my knee pedal setup

The box is only there because my patchwork of carpets overlaps in that area but it too keeps the pedal in place. I do keep my other foot slightly elevated which helps keep my back and hips straight.

Disclaimer – Though this has worked for me, I give no guarantee that it will for anyone else.

Posted in Quilting | Tagged , , | Comments Off

And onward I go…

I have received my “not accepted” notice so I can share this now.

Dwell is a landscape
Of ancient land and buried fossils,
Of old cave homes or modern cliff mansions,
Of winds and nature propelling progressive discoveries.

dwell overall

Dwell
42″ x 30″

dwell fossil detail

Dwell
Back quilting detail

I enjoyed the challenges of creating this art quilt and I am very happy with the completed piece. It started as a hand painted whole cloth, it also has some painted fusing, hand stitching and a great amount of free-motion machine sketching and quilting (see detail of the fossils). It was fun to try to paint binding fabric that would work well AND succeed! It measures 30″ high by 42″ wide and will be for sale.

Dwell detail

Dwell detail

 

Posted in My Art, painted fabric, Quilting | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Batik scape

It is rare that I would create a land or waterscape using only commercial fabric but in this case I have my reasons which some day I hope to share. The biggest challenge for me is using a sky I didn’t paint. For now here is the work in progress…anthology scape

It is hand appliqued using my original technique. Next I’ll finish the waterline and then add a couple peninsulas and a border.

Posted in My Art, Quilting | Comments Off