Category Archives: Art

Looking Up, Birds, and Winners

Things are looking up around here, for one reason, we are finally having our ancient furnace, it’s in the attic, replaced. We haven’t used it in several years and though we don’t have horribly cold winters, I’m cold if it’s below 75° and the hands don’t work well with they’re chilly. Space heaters have helped but our old kitty and I are ready for the warmth!

You may remember the cut collage bird I made a while ago using my daughter’s (dry) wet palette papers (mostly). The green wing needed help so I used some of my painted papers. I like it better now and it will probably end up on a notecard.

I started celebrating my birthday early; my (adult) kids surprised me with this box of Aurifil thread. It’s so pretty I haven’t even opened the plastic wrap yet!

I’m working on a project for a private class I’ve been asked to teach. I’m planning on including a stamp in the project so I’ve cut more rubber stamps and one is a little hummingbird. I decided to use this stamp in another project made especially for this giveaway announcement post.

I filmed some of the free-motion quilting for this hummingbird project but haven’t had time to edit it yet. Here are some images of the process and the almost finished piece. I haven’t decided exactly how I’ll finish it for hanging.

The photos are taken with my phone so sorry they’re not the best.

I started with a piece of Timtex cut to about 6″ x 7″ and “mop-up” painted paper towels I’ve been saving.

I placed a whole piece (one ply) of paper towel over the Timtex and tore other paper towel up then arranged it in an abstract floral design.

I set that aside and used black textile paint for the hummingbird on a piece of silk organza. Stamping outline stamps on silk organza is a hit or miss… without stabilizer organza wiggles! I knew I’d be quilting over it so it was no big deal that it didn’t turn out the best.

So that the hummer would be about where I wanted it, I center and laid the organza on top of the paper towel pieces and placed silk pins at the tip of the wing, tail, and the beak. Then I removed the Timtex/paper towel piece and dabbed paint on the stamp, lined up the silk pins with the stamp and laid the organza on top, and sort of burnished it with a little piece of parchment. Hindsight – press organza to freezer paper and then stamp down onto the fabric as usual. Sorry if that is difficult to understand, I think I’ll have to video it if I do it again.

I let the paint dry for a few minutes, then clipped the organza to the Timtex so I could free-motion quilt, starting with the hummingbird. Below is the free-motion quilting finished.

I put black felt behind it and didn’t like it at all so changed to blue (it’s actually more turquoise than it looks in photo). I tried to straighten and trim up the organza but since I’m still not sure where this is going I left it longer on the side. This felt didn’t look good without the organza over it (too bright).

I added a little embroidery around the edge of the Timtex with French knots at each corner. I think I want to add more. I’ll take better photos when it is finished.

Now the sweepstakes/`giveaway – I’d like to thank all who commented and because only two of you entered the hummingbird notecard set giveaway, I have decided to give Joy and Karen each a set of Hummingbird notecards. Whether you keep them or give them away, I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoyed making them. Please email your mailing address to me (even if you have in the past).

Pumpkin Two Ways

First, in case you didn’t catch it, I had the date wrong for the Oct hummingbird notecard set giveaway. It will be announced next post, Oct. 27, rather than the 25th. I’ll still close entry on the 23rd.

In an early post about printing fabric on brown paper bags I shared a painted and embroidered pumpkin done on one of the background fabrics. Here is the demonstration video. It was a fun project, maybe it’s just this time of year, but I really enjoyed sitting and stitching by hand. Do you do hand needlework and if you do, is there a time of day, month, and/or year you are most in the mood for it?

After embroidering one big leaf I wasn’t happy with it so I ripped it out. I finished everything and left the leaves in an outline. It wasn’t working for me, so I had to decide outline, or embroider, or paint them. After a little consultation with my artist daughter, we decided painted leaves would go best with the painted pumpkins. I think we were right!

Hummingbird Cards and Giveaway

I’m happy to say a great group of enthusiastic students worked on their own hummingbird notecards in my class, at Visions Art Museum, this past Sunday. Here are some of their works in progress. I thank them for allowing me to share…

In keeping with the hummingbird theme the giveaway for October is one set of four fabric/fiber hummingbird notecards. They will be new, not ones that I have posted anywhere. Here are examples of some of my original hummingbird notecards.

If you haven’t already, you may want to subscribe to my blog email list so you won’t miss the giveaway winner announcement.

Rules and how to enter

Sweepstakes/giveaway begins October 6, 2021 and ends at 9pm (Pacific Time) Oct. 23, 2021. You must live in the US only (no international entries). One entry per person.

Leave a comment that you would like to win the hummingbird notecard set, and include your first and last name (or last initial).

I’ll use a random drawer and announce the winner/s on my October 25 blog post. Winner/s will email me their mailing information and I will mail the ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­hummingbird notecard set ASAP. If I don’t hear from the winner within five days of drawing date, I will run another random draw. Good luck!

Brown Paper Bonus

A little glitch has caused my Printed, Painted Background Fabric video, that I mentioned in my previous post, to be delayed. In the video I will demonstrate how I achieved these fabrics and papers. Here are a few ways I’m using the backgrounds. I call them backgrounds but they aren’t only that.

Hand embroidered stylized hummingbird.
I think this is calling for free motion quilting.
I cut a stencil for the flowers. It’s hard to see but there is part of an unryu paper vase, this piece will be collaged, I think I’ll add some embroidery to the flowers too.
I thought I wanted a purple pumpkin but embroidered the body lines using orange floss so changed the plan. I will be posting a second video for how I painted this work in progress (wip) pumpkin.

This final piece is the brown paper bonus – it had been used to print/paint the trees trunks above. This piece is still a wip and is on a canvas, the moon is a painted coffee filter, and the large rock isn’t glued down yet. It is titled She Rocked Beneath the Full Moon. In honor of the rock climbing women I know.

the large rock and the cliff were from the same piece of brown paper.

I hope these pieces piqued your curiosity and that I’ll be able to actually share a video next time. Maybe you’ll have ideas for pieces that could be made with the printed, painted fabric and the paper too.

Falling into October

For the past few days the temperatures here have been around 90°F, we don’t have AC but my studio stays cool. Today looks to be finally cooling off a bit.

The coming of fall had me working on another Stir Crazy Member Challenge for Visions Art Museum, which will be published for members the first week in October. VAM offer so much inspiration and because we have had to spend more time in our homes, they have added a great deal to their online menu. I have “attended” wonderful artist’s talks with shows of their work, as well as, Q&A after. The online quilt shows are fun to go through at your own pace. VAM is changing their name to address better what they are about – it will become VMOTA/Visions Museum of Textile Art. I think it is a great museum to support. I’m not paid to create these challenges, and as far as I know none of the other artist are either.

When I make the video public, I’ll share it in an October post, until then here is a sneak peek of the project.

I’m also scheduled to teach at Visions on October 3rd. My first live class in some time (We were planning to hold this class before you-know-what struck). Hopefully enough people will sign-up to make the class happen. Masked and distancing, we’ll be using fabric, fiber, and a little paint to make a set of hummingbird note cards. They were so much fun to design and I love that the makers can make them their own as they construct each of their cards.

Example – fabric & fiber Hummingbird notecard

Our old house kitty, Kona, has finally figured out that she can come and go “outside,” into her little resort. During the daytime it’s attached to my studio and now I can stay in the studio playing/working instead of stopping to take her out onto the kitchen deck FOR HOURS. We’ll see if I actually get more done!

Right now I’m using some of the background fabrics I painted last week and will share more about them next time.

More Experimenting and Winners

I have been working on background fabrics. While I was making Crackle Vessel I ran into a disaster with the background fabric. I ended up loving that background but the way I made it was the problem, it involved (homemade) texture paste and removing it was a huge mess.

So for now, no more texture paste on fabric. Here are a few new fabric and paper pieces I worked on today. I’ll share more about how they were made in a future post or video.

Here it is wet, it dried much lighter but I think it’s so pretty.

When I hung this to dry it whipped onto itself wet and so I just rubbed it all over. It still has potential.

Thanks to those who entered the August/September giveaway/sweepstakes.

I’m not going to say who won what – it’ll be a surprise and happy mail. Even if you have before please email your mailing address to me at fiberdesignsbyann@gmail.com.

The winners are:

Karen G

Deborah F

Joyful Q

Cherie M

Chris W

I have a question for those of you who like to enter the giveaways – Would 5 or 6 inch squares of commercial fabric as a giveaway prize interest you? Please let me know in the comments, thanks.

I’ll announce another giveaway later this month. I’ll also share more painted and stitched fabric pieces and ideas.

Rock, Paper, Fabric, Glass

I remember someone being perplexed by quilters because we take fabric, cut it up, then put it back together again. It’s not just quilters; so much of art is cutting something up and reassembling it.

Paper – My daughter recently gave me some of her (dry) wet palette and wipe-up papers. I paper collaged this little bird. The wing was a piece of painted paper from my stash and the only part I may work on a bit more.

wet palette and paper towel papers
Cut paper collage bird

Designing and cutting up fabric continues to be my favorite activity.

This art quilt was made many years ago. I designed it for a San Diego Quilt Show challenge – The multi-color fabric had to be used in the quilt; it won first place, and though I hadn’t thought about selling it, I was approached by a couple, at the show, and they bought it, then commissioned two more art quilts from me.

Night Trails Original design, hand appliqued and quilted.

I absolutely love mosaic and went through my mosaic making period but after a few years I realized fabric is more forgiving, lighter weight, and safer!

Palm tree mosaic mirror
Abstract mosaic extension to our front porch.

And finally, I get to the “Rock,” which actually began as Gator Board to go around my roadrunner on painted fabric. I wrote about finding this piece of painted fabric in a previous post and that I had an idea for an unusual finish.

Roadrunner at Red Rock. My daughter drew the original roadrunner but I slightly altered it.

I have to admit to being very pleased with the roadrunner piece. I think I succeeded in finishing this art quilt in an unusual way! It is wired for hanging.

Have you cut anything up lately and put it back together?

Reminder – Next post I’ll announce the giveaway winners from the August post.

Painting Fur Fabric

Even with temperatures here around 90­° I found out that (homemade) texture paste takes a long time to dry and when rushed it cracks. The texture paste is going on my roadrunner piece, which won’t be done this week, so…

In the meantime I started something new… I was filming a How-to paint fur fabric tutorial but it went wrong so I just finished painting the fabric. On the left was the first layer, the fabric was painted damp so the paint really moved and lightened. I knew it wasn’t enough and a couple days later I painted it again, this time with dry brushes.

Using a photo of our cat, Kona, I made a pattern. The plan was to use only the painted fur fabric, I ended up adding a piece of hand painted green fabric for the blanket and the eyes.

There were a few changes to the pattern as I built the piece and I took plenty of artistic liberty. This is what is left of the fabric, I think there’s probably another animal in there, maybe a hamster or guinea pig!

Close-up

Part of me wants to just leave it as is, though I haven’t fused the pupils because I’m thinking about painting them or maybe I’ll stitch the heck out of it and fill them with thread.

Next week I’ll announce another giveaway, so stay tuned. Thanks for stopping by.

Surface Show

I hoped to have my roadrunner piece finished but between the designing, cutting, and next drying time, it’s going to take longer than I thought it would.

So, I’m sharing some pieces here, I’ve used different painting techniques on them. I’m sure I have shared some of them in the past but I think they are a nice reminder of what we can do when starting with white fabric. They could be done on printed fabric or painted fabric, again. I may not be completely sure what techniques I used on some but I’m sharing as much as I can remember.

Starting with the sweet one…

Chocolate Sauce and Wrappers. I pulled a thinned pint color, with a cheap brush, onto dry fabric and then wet the fabric and did a wash. The “chocolate sauce” was probably done with an eye dropper and then tilted. I hand painted little white highlights to give more dimension. The wrappers are metallic painted fusible in silver and gold.

Clothespin resist painted not dyed. I remember this being really fun to make!

I used the clothespin resist in this abstract that I then over painted. I remember starting to quilt it and not liking where I was going, so I think I put it away or maybe I cut it up! I probably should have just stretched it on a canvas.

Detail from Fallen

For Fallen I used real leaves for stamps and a credit card for the lines. I think I used a pointed round paint brush for the dots. This was a fun one to quilt.

Fallen one from my Photograph on Fiber series.

Detail of Above Lake Cuyamaca

In previous post I shared the how-to quilt and then paint the border. I painted the sky and water and I think the quilting worked well for the ripples in a lake.

Detail Drift and Flow

Drift and Flow has wool batting. I quilted the heck out of this piece on my domestic sewing machine; the last piece I did before getting my sit-down quilting machine. I’m glad the quilting shows in the photo because the black thread on black fabric is difficult to see in person. The black and gray on the right (above) is pole wrapped (same piece as the larger on the left below), and I was thrilled with the results, particularly in the gray area. It looked like hanging leaves. The square (ish) pieces were made by throwing paint down while thinking of sciencey things. The curvy lines are satin stitched and the gold drips are metallic paint tilted to let run and then the piece was cut into four squares.

Dwell detail… Dwell is a painted wholecloth and my most favorite quilt, ever.

Dwell back, this is the quilting that runs the width of the lower back. Sadly, it doesn’t show on the front.
There are simple embroidered “steps” leading down from the silk.

The background fabric was stretched on a frame and painted. The windmills are made from a handmade stencil, the brick rectangles are purchased hand dyed silk, and the gold frames are painted fusible. The binding fabric was painted especially to continue the colors from the main cloth.

I hope you enjoyed this little quilt show and the these pieces have given you some ideas for techniques you may want to try.

Focus

I’m working on another project for Visions Art Museum Stir Crazy Member Challenge. I like to make a How-to video to go along with the project, it’ll be out in October and I’ll share it then.

I had a slight mishap in the studio (roller cart tipped over when a caster came unscrewed). My (adult and honest) daughter was trying to move through my studio yesterday and proclaimed “This studio is a disaster!” I can’t argue with her, but I’m working on it… It could have been so much worse.

I also got new eyeglasses which are wrong, and so I’m waiting for new, new glasses. Needless to say, my focus has been all over the place!

I did find this piece of fabric while looking for another piece of fabric. I don’t remember painting it and I don’t remember where the top water and/or sky ended up either, but I liked it enough to hold on to it.

I quilted a roadrunner on it; the original drawing was by my daughter but I altered it slightly, and I’m going to quilt it a bit more.

I have an idea for a unusual finish, hopefully it works out, I’ll share it in a future post.