Tag Archives: fabric art

Rock Cozies

Frosty this morning! The sun’s out, and the cat’s decided the afternoon has warmed up sufficiently for her to mosey outside, for the first time in several days.  I’ve had a delicious turkey sandwich, and now time to do a quick update from the studio – the weather’s right for cozies … for rocks!  I’ve been fascinated by crochet-covered rocks, and finally figured a use for the many old dollies and lace cluttering my sewing closet.  With a bit of additional crochet, felt and fabric, they make excellent rock covers!  I’ve done seven in the past two days – that may be enough for now!!

Recent Challenge

2013 has been a challenging year so far. We laid another of the greatest generation to rest this past week, my mother-in-law, after a full 90 years.  In the restorative sewing frenzy that followed, I finished my entry in a recent quilt challenge, for my Beatles’ song of choice, “Honey Pie”!  Everyone participating chose one of their songs to illustrate in a 24″ x 24″ fiber art piece. The quilts will be exhibited in several venues.

I struggled a while with how to show a pie of honey, then at my husband’s suggestion, went instead with pi!  I’m pleased with the way it came out. I used several techniques: fused applique, paint stick texture plates, couching, and stamping with a hand carved stamp.

Spring Postcard Swap

It’s May, so it’s Virginia Consortium of Quilters Postcard swap time! I have several balls in the air this month, so I did mine early. I took advantage of Sue Price and Elizabeth Gibson’s wonderful themofax service on etsy and ordered a screen from a butterfly photo I took at Lewis Ginter last year.  The screen was here by the end of the week! I haven’t a clue where it is now, but at least I got my postcards made before it disappeared into the clutter!  I started on the blue cloud fabric, but was happier with the visibility of the yellow.  I wound up printing the image twice – I had to put more pressure on the scraper than I remembered to get the paint thru the screen.  I carved two text stamps, ‘fly free!’ and ‘escape the grid’, but found that the alphabet embroidery feature of my sewing machine did a better job.

I’m very pleased with my postcards!  Our theme was ‘cravings’, and this was the note on the back of the card:

“With the azaleas in full bloom, and a yellow haze on everything, I crave the freedom to fly away like a butterfly, to enjoy each lovely flower, without a thought for spring cleaning!”

For more great info on thermofax printing and quilt arts in general, check out   Elizabeth’s blog.

Winter Quilting

President Blocks

President Blocks

Memories of 2012

Memories of 2012

Caught by the Surf

Caught by the Surf

Mug Rug

Mug Rug

March already!! Apologies to my faithful readers – January and February slipped away from me. We bid my 93 year old father good bye in mid January, and I’m starting to get myself back together. Hospice, his choice, was a godsend.

Meanwhile, I have been in the studio. Creativity has marvelous healing powers. I started working on the first quilt top shown above in early January at our quilting beach retreat. I’ve had the blocks since 2004 – they were given to me by my quilt chapter when I stepped down as president. They sat in a drawer for all this time because I couldn’t figure out how to set them – I wanted more control on their orientation than the square format of the blocks were allow. I’m very pleased with this solution! I stitched each block to fusible interfacing in a cirlce, then turned and ironed to the stripped background.

The second quilt came together as I was cleaning off my sewing table in December and came across a lone TARDIS with fusible already on the back of it! I was just back from the trip to NYC, and had see the December full moon the night before thru our lace curtains…. The purple fabric of the blocks was some muslin I thru into the dye bath when I was dying the garden gloves my husband brought me from a rainy parking lot.  The palms were pink, but the cream of the fabric was still dingy after several washings.  Now they’re purple!!

I’ve finally finished the seashore wall hanging of our daughter, at 3 years old, running from the waves! She’s a bit older now.  I may do it over – it doesn’t pop as I would like.

The mug run was one of our beach projects that I didn’t get to til the end of January.  I was so pleased with it that I’ve made eight of them to set aside as Christmas presents.  And my morning beverages sits on one beside me now as I type!!

Hope your March is full of wind, rain, and early Spring buds!!

Thanksgiving Crafts

Hope everyone celebrating Thanksgiving had a wonderful day! It’s my favorite holiday – minimal commercialization and always a family gathering!  We drove over the river and thru the woods to grandmama’s house in Petersburg, toting lots of food and fun. For the tables I made arrangements like ones I saw earlier this Fall at the South of the James Market, using pumpkins as the vase.  I’m very happy with how they came out.  Worked great with the small pie pumpkins I bought for our porch for Halloween.

This year we had 6 cousins, 7 years old and younger, coming so I made Indian headdresses for them.  When searching for a 9″x13″ Pyrex glass pan to replace ours that self destructed earlier this year, I came across a deal on feathers!  I’d planned to make felt feathers, but these were a great time savings.  For the band I folded over lengthwise a 2″x44″ strip of fabric, padded the center with a 1″x6″ strip of felt, and stitched a couple rows of stitching across the felt.  After breaking two needles on the feathers, I left gaps in the stitching and glued the feathers in between the felt and the fabric.

All 6 kids were kind enough to let me tie on their headdress (except for the 5 month old), and even wore them – for maybe 15 minutes!!  Long enough to get a few photos!

T-Shirt Scap Creations

Our son-in-law, during a recent move, was getting ready to discard a pile of old t-shirts, so I offered to make him a quilt. Which is now finished and hopefully will be delivered soon.

Meanwhile, I was left with a pile of t-shirt scraps. I’d seen a slash technique for embellishing with t-shirt knits this summer at the Ashville Farmer’s Market, then saw it again recently at the Lewis Ginter gift shop.

So I gave it a try! These three bags are the result. Slicing the t-shirt piece in strips, stretching it, then stitching it to a base fabric worked best. It also makes a difference whether you slice with the knit, diagonal to it, or against the knit. I need to do some more experimenting to determine which works best. The knits also fringe very well. Hand stitching added interesting detail.

Post Card Swap

May 30th (or thereabouts) is the target date for our Virginia Consortium of Quilters semi-annual fabric post card swap – got mine done!! Yeah! With a grandchild on the way any day now, I’m pleased these are in the mail.

Our theme for this swap is ‘myth’. Since this is the year of the dragon, the May moon is also known as the dragon moon, and the first unmanned, commercial space capsule is named the Dragon (actually I just found that out today!) – seemed like a good choice for my cards. I wanted to screen print them, and tried the drawing fluid/screen mask technique for the first time. Either the window sheer fabric I used was too loose a weave, or I did something wrong – three attempts later I gave up on that approach.

Instead I cut the dragon stencil in adhesive vinyl and fused to the window sheer material – worked great! Mostly. Where the dragon didn’t come thru strongly, I followed up with a paintbrush. The moon was ink jet printed on satin and fused over a hole cut in the dragon print; stitching added; all done! Here’s the text from the back of the card:

The wingless Oriental dragon, fifth sign of the Chinese zodiac, is a water creature with power over storms and bodies of water. He’s deaf and frequently shown with a giant, fiercely protected pearl. The pearl is represented as the moon, symbolizing the tides and the dragon’s origin in the sea. Therefore: Meddle not in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and good with catsup!