Monday, November 20, 2017

TRY, TRY AGAIN

Well heck, I've been trying to incorporate some interesting digital prints into a new piece.  This is probably my 4th attempt. And darn it, those pictures just do not want to play nice.
 I've had this eco-printed hunk of silk noil sitting out tempting me ever since it was created several months ago. 
 The companion piece is this lighter cotton which acted as the carrier cloth.  It had been dipped in blue dye, placed on top of the leaf material that was arranged on the silk noil.  The pieces were rolled onto a wood dowel and processed in a simmering vinegar/water bath for about 2 hrs. Notice how the blue dye transferred onto the silk noil...cool! 

Happily several pieces rust/spices/vinegar-dyed silk noil created way back in 2015 were lurking in my stash.  
 The auditioning begins......and instantly it became apparent....nope those photos are not working!
 Okay....onward, those pesky digital photos will continue to linger.  That's okay, I've been enjoying creating what I call 'hodgepodge' patchwork.  The goal is always to utilize as much of my dyed/printed fabric as possible.  Leaving little or no small scrap leftovers which probably won't coordinate with a future project.
There's a lot of trial and error as the pieces are arranged...obviously with an eye to creating a pleasing design, interesting visual impact, and color balance that allows the eye to travel around the piece for the viewer to enjoy it in its entirety


Check back to see the final layout, won't you?? 

Sunday, November 19, 2017

PACK BACK ON TRACK???

Fingers crossed that today's 'throw back' uniforms will give them even more incentive to earn a 'W" today.  It's been a hard pull with Aaron Rogers out....Hundley and the rest of the team left us cheering after beating the Bears last week.

I'm not sure why they feel it's necessary to veer from their Green and Gold....I'm not crazy about this styling.....but what a kick it must be for the seamstresses that work on these uniforms.





My pals Lynn and Dennis will be sitting on the 40 yard line today.....bringing our NC Packer spirit to Lambeau Field.......GO PACK GO!!!!!


Wednesday, November 15, 2017

FIBER JUNKIES NOV. MEETING

This month we continued working with a variety of printing methods, mono-printing, gelli plates, silk screening.  For multiple reasons, each of us were distracted this past month, so our show and tell was very short. Judy shared her eco-printed papers, do click on the link and prepare to be awed.
 I'm continuing to develop various surface designs on felted wool to be used for my basket sale inventory.  A lovely indigo over-dyed piece of bamboo/rayon felt, that had been previously ice-dyed, was the inspiration for this simple design made using the edge of a hotel key card and acrylic paint.  I can't wait to marry the two pieces!
 This piece got a similar treatment with the addition of yellow dots created with a small firm brush.

I now have a large plastic bin filled with general supplies for our Fiber Junkies meetings...saves a lot of time each month.  In it I found a sponge and a ball of string which became a stamp.  Gen had the perfect Golden paint that echoed the color scheme of the piece of ice-dyed felted wool I'll be using to make baskets.
 At times I pressed too hard leaving more paint on the lining fabric than desired....but it was still pleasing to me.
 We celebrated Kate's 60th birthday.....which kinda got us all so distracted sneaking around setting up the table in the kitchen area while still trying to appear we were all working in the studio. It was supposed to be a surprise....we did this a month late in the hopes it would be!!  So unfortunately, I neglected taking photos of the prints everyone made that day.

We only do BIG birthdays.....and always choose an appropriate party theme for the birthday girl.  Kate enjoys spending time at Folly Beach....thus the beach theme.  
Our tradition is to have the guest of honor wear a crown and scepter.  Val (left) created the perfect duo for Kate..... 
 Gen came up with such a fun idea.....we each party favors..... a plastic bucket, shovel, & rake to dig into the 'sand' filled bowl for goodies.  Worried that sand would make too much of a mess....and given she could only find it sold in a 25# bag....she cleverly ground up a box or two of Cheerios!
 Here's the gang....L to R - Gen, Kate, Judy, Val, Denny.....I'm the photographer.
Hidden in the 'sand' bowl for Kate to find was Gen's gift to her.....Gen creates the wonderful gift tags....and lucky Kate now has some for herself.


Friday, November 10, 2017

INDIGO GARDEN WALL ART COMPLETED

Again, I apologize for the poor photo quality.....I believe it's due to the camera's inability to decide what to focus on!  Still, it's a fairly good representation of how  various indigo dyed cottons and line drawn/stitched motifs were combined to achieve rich color and interesting details.

At about 100 hours, I gave up trying to keep track of the hours spent creating it.  Already more ideas using this hodgepodge grid format are swirling in my mind.

 INDIGO GARDEN 40" X 33"
Indigo dyed cottons, machine stitched line drawings, machine quilted.
DETAIL

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

STOP DAY LIGHT SAVINGS!!!

Stop already with this time change twice a year!!  I've been up for hours...getting up before the sun rises is not unusual for me, but I've noticed the older I get the more impact the time change has on my body's clock.

It was worth it today to enjoy this beautiful view from my studio window. The sun is just beginning to peak over the Eastern mountain ridge here high up in our mountain valley.
The true pinker colors didn't translate.......my photos resembles a sunset more than the sunrise.....

Monday, November 6, 2017

The Art of Michael Johansson

I've recently become aware of the art of Michael Johansson, a Swedish artist.  I'm totally smitten!  The hodgepodge patchwork quilts I've been making lately are similar in their approach; fitting different shapes, subjects into an uneven grid.



Sunday, November 5, 2017

FALL COLOR IN THE MOUNTAINS

Although most locals agree our fall color is not as spectacular as it normally is...which is due to the warmer temperatures.  This is the view we enjoyed our the 'forced march' early this morning.  Nothing wrong with that!!  AND....I'll take the warmer weather!!

Saturday, November 4, 2017

P.S. - ONE MORE TASK.....

Oh ya......yesterday's post neglected to mention just how long it will take to pull the zillion thread ends to the wrong side, bury and tie them off!! Tedious....however, due to the black sashings, each of the indigo sections must be stitched individually....meaning threads have to be tied off at the beginning and end of each line of stitching.

My machine has a tie off function....hummmm fuss budget me is not satisfied with the look of those small knots! At least I've been able to amuse myself and catch up to some of the silly reality TV shows I follow.....

It'd be helpful for potential buyers to have an understanding about what's involved in creating a piece of fiber art....that'd go a long way to better acceptance of our work as ART. (And, the value.)  Alas, as long as I have a needle, thread, and fabric.....I'll be making my art!


Friday, November 3, 2017

LOVE OF INDIGO

There are quilts that appear to have taken mere days to stitch up.....this is probably one of them. BUT....it's not.  Though I don't keep close track of the hours spent on a piece, this one may be closing in on 75 hours, and it has yet to be quilted.

Original art just takes time, especially when factoring the time spent transforming white fabric with stitched motifs and the whole process of indigo dyeing. I'm a slow cutter and deciding how to best utilize the precious/limited amount of indigo fabric is not something done quickly.  Additionally, in order to achieve the accuracy I demand of myself, I'm also a slow stitcher. Yet, all of these different tasks keeps me interested and engaged.


The color is a bit off in this photo.....the camera sure had trouble focusing on the line drawings as well!  The next step is obvious....making the quilt sandwich and machine quilting...oh ya....then there's the binding and the sleeve and the label.....time is ticking away.  There's actually no hurry, it will be hung at my NC Arboretum exhibit in April, 2018, that is unless it sells quickly from my online gallery shop!  

Visit these inspiring blogs to see what other artists have been working on this week.  Nina-Marie's Off The Wall Friday, Sarah's Whoop Whoop Friday, Crazy Mom Quilts.

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

SEAT TIME

"The husband' refers to leisure drives in his 'boy-toy' car, as "getting SEAT time".  Well, I've had some 'seat time' myself at the sewing machine this last week as I begin a new project.

Regular readers know I don't do much free-motion stitching. Though I greatly admire those who have mastered this technique, I'm not one of them. Okay, I'll admit the desire to have this skill but I guess just not enough to practice it enough to meet my (probably) unrealistic standards!
 So, I work with the skills I do have.  I'm creating about a half dozen patches with wild flower images, stitched with black thread onto stabilized white fabric.  Instead of marking the motif directly onto the fabric, I prefer to stitch following pencil lines which are drawn onto tracing paper, and pinned to the fabric.  This approach requires removal of the paper after sewing, but any oops moments of stitching that didn't exactly follow the line are eliminated when the paper is ripped away. So, no messy marks need to be removed from the fabric. 
The pile of indigo fabric created this summer at our Fiber Junkies meetings has been calling me.  It's my favorite color.....bar none......therefore I'm having a wonderful time developing a new wall quilt design.

Stay tuned for further updates as I stitch, rip paper, cut fabric, and stitch some more....

Friday, October 27, 2017

LOOKING EAST - NEW WORK

After testing several approaches to add texture/interest to a Japanese theme fabric, a plan was formulated. (Refer to previous post.) The fabric was spliced vertically into sections, interspersed with black flanges that were manipulated/twisted. 

LOOKING EAST  32.5" x 23"
Commercial cottons, machine stitched.



Follow these links to view what other artists have worked on this week:  Nina-Marie's Off The Wall Friday, Sarah's Whoop Whoop Friday, Crazy Mom Quilts

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

DIGGING THROUGH THE STASH

As long as I had piles of Japanese theme fabric spread over every surface after completing "Oriental Dreams", it seemed like a good time to see if anything else caught my eye.
Why yes.....something did.  Though this style isn't the type of fabric I'd ever purchase....a gift of several boxes from a friend continues to challenge me.  After more thought than I care to admit, this scenic panel gained the interest I was seeking after I pleated a couple vertical rows.
 BUT....translating that idea into a quilt eluded me.  On some practice fabric I strip pieced in a narrow flange.  Perhaps that might be interesting if using a different print....it sure didn't work on this one.
 Next I pieced two solid black narrow flanges (about 1/4") between strips of fabric (cut 2.5" wide).  Nope.....nothing special here.
Finally, I pieced in a larger solid black flange....cut 1.5" wide.  This is a take off on Caryl Fallert's High Tech Tucks, made popular in the 1980's.  Now the question is.....will it provide the interest/texture I quested after on the fabric panel in question??  

Stay tuned.....

Friday, October 20, 2017

ORIENTAL DREAMS

NEW WORK......
ORIENTAL DREAMS  60" X 60"
Commercial cottons, machine stitched

Follow these links to view what other artists have been working on this week:

Thursday, October 19, 2017

FELTED POUCHES

The fun continues.....my hand wet-felted/ice-dyed wool yields various sizes of embellished pouches.  Available in space 235 - Woolworth Walk, Asheville, NC 


Wednesday, October 18, 2017

A TISKET - A TASKET - NEW FELTED BASKETS

Nose to the grind stone.....I've been utilizing all kinds of mono-printed, indigo-dyed felted wool to make a bunch of new baskets for sale at Woolworth Walk, downtown Asheville.

They are more time consuming than they look because reinforced bottom and edge stitching are just some of the finishing touches I can't seem to skip!

Monday, October 16, 2017

HUGE BUMMER.....

Packer fans held their collective breath after QB Aaron Rogers went down because of a LATE hit by the Vikings.  Word finally came back, he has a broken right collarbone.......which pretty much means he's out for the season, which pretty much means the Packers are too.

Packer fans are definitely crying in their beer.....what a shame! 

Friday, October 13, 2017

FIBER JUNKIES - OCT. MEETING - PART 2

.......Our focus this meeting was printing with gelli plates.
Since I don't own one, I brought some felted wool to mono-print. I'm using one of Judy's home-made screens....thank you Judy!  White acyrlic paint is applied through the screen with the use of a hotel key card.
I'm gearing up to make more folded felted baskets for what I hope will be brisk holiday sales at Woolworth Walk....and these leaves will be so attractive on a basket. 
 This isn't a novel idea......it's borrowed from the internet. The tongs of a fork are dipped into acyrlic paint and transferred to fabric.
 Sometimes the designs I create are used for the inside of the basket, others for the outside.....a lot depends upon what other felted wool I have to combine it with.
 A stroll out the back door of Gen's house yielded numerous interesting leaves which were painted with a gold metallic paint.....
 ......and printed onto a piece of brown felted wool.  
My attention was so devoted to what I was doing, I was remiss in getting very many photos of what everyone else was playing with. This was one of Judy's.  She was working with fabrics that had previous been printed/dyed and not to her liking.  I LOVE what she's created here....using a gelli plate and a 'crackled' stencil. 
 Kate used white fabric, printing it numerous times with paints and textured items.  It really came to life when she used Judy's chair stencil.
Gen's work station illustrates the great number of stencils everyone brings to share.
This is Kate's area.....as she layers and layers various paint colors on the gelli plate.
This is her first printing....it will be altered again with more printings and perhaps even stenciling.

We had so much fun......it's been decided we will continue working with gelli plates next month!