Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Triple C: "Cute Canine Companion"

Bizzi poses on the edge of my Cooper

soooooo cute!

Garden activity

Everything is coming to life in the garden now that we have had some warm, sunny days and moderate nights.  I worked hard this morning moving brown leaves into the compost bins and moving my nice, loamy compost from last year into the rose beds.  I found two wonderful tools at Home Depot yesterday that have made this work much easier:  a large swivel-handled "dust bin", and a narrow leaf-rake with wide tines.  I can scoop leaf matter and compost into the bin quickly and deposit it where I desire.  Still hard work, but so much easier with good tools!
all these leaves were scooped into the 3 bins.
The bins were moved slightly from the site of the old bin
so I could use the compost from last year

happy little ranunculas under a rose bush

two pots with a combination of plants sit next to a prolific bed of 
texas bluebonnets

salvia resides next to blue fescue

the pink knock-out roses are blooming like crazy 
and the blue salvia is budding out

I wish I could describe the heavenly scent of this rose!

the patio table with no home....

lots of plants await my attention....
a Hawthorne "walking stick" bush, foxtail fern, and many petunias 
for the front porch pots

On mornings like this one, I think I live in paradise.  My garden is a tranquil, lovely world.
It inspires my artwork, my mood, and hopefully everyone who visits experiences the serenity it provides me every day.  Life is good!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Felt Stones

I am updating a guest room in our house.  Since I'm obsessed with rocks & stone this is the dominant theme of the room.  I found these amazing felted "stones" in a catalog, and they finally arrived.  Since the guest room is still a dusty mess, I placed the pile of "stones" in the living room temporarily.
This is one of the medium-sized felt stones.
The stones range from 20 inches long to 36 inches long

My daughter poses with the rock pile.
They are very comfy to sit on!

Friday, March 26, 2010

To Answer a question about whether script will "smear" when printing...

Thanks to everyone who has contacted me about the article in the current (issue #44) Quilting Arts magazine.  I have received an inquiry from a reader about whether the script created using the extruder will smear once a lighter color of dye is pulled over it.  Interestingly, there isn't much smearing of the script.  I won't say there isn't a little, but the script remains legible.  Only one pass can be done because the dye-colors will muddy once pulled across the screen.  This dye is scraped off into a "dye trash can" container.  Sometimes, I use the "dye-trash" for something else, but I rarely deposit it back into my screen and pull through a second time.

Here are 3 facial cloths that have been printed with this technique.
Since I'm writing really personal things on the screen,
I don't really want the viewer to be able to "read" it.
Therefore, I position a corner of several cloths under the screen at one time,
then rearrange them after printing.

Here is a combination of facial cloths and the silk broadcloth "dropcloth" that was 
positioned under the facial cloths during printing.
These items have been batched and machine-pieced together.

Please don't hesitate to ask questions about the process.  Thanks for your interest!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Article in Quilting Arts magazine (Issue #44)

look for my article, "Silk-screen fabric with 
everyday objects" in the current issue of QA magazine!

I made an interesting discovery about a year ago when, in a deconstructed screen-printing workshop with Kerr Grabowski, I began using disposable facial washcloths under the screen.  The article in Quilting Arts discusses this process.  I'll be interested to know what you think about it, so please give me some feedback if you are a subscriber.

This construction is a combination of facial cloths and silk broadcloth,
the quilted piece is mounted onto a painted, gold-leafed, stretched canvas


Monday, March 22, 2010

San Francisco/Berkeley Artists' Studio Tour:

Here are a few shots taken during the day-long studio tour.  More to follow.....
And you thought YOU had too many machines.....

or a few too many buttons....

heavenly freesia outside an artist's studio door

and it's a red door

A Mini-twin!

I spotted this mini-Cooper with the Threadz vanity tag
while we were on the artist-studio tour in San Francisco/Berkeley
Just like my car, except it isn't an S-model and it has a cooler tag than mine.
Go mini Go!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Day #2: A visit to Joan Schulz studio & Yvonne Porcella in Modesto

We began our morning with a brief stop at the studio of Joan Schulz, the mixed media textile artist who juried the Federation show in Dallas 20007.  Joan's studio is a thing of wonder:  any artist would turn green with envy at the space & wonderful natural light she enjoys.
Joan in her lovely studio

We drove up to Modesto, enjoying the lush green landscape enroute.
Seeing Yvonne, who looks SO good for only being 6 weeks post-op and well into her chemotherapy, was a high point of the trip.

Yvonne shows her surprise when she views her quilt

Iris smoothes the quilt over Yvonne's bed

Yvonne's dog, Kiery, steals one of her knitted hats

Yvonne & Kiery, wearing the same joyful expression

Thursday, March 18, 2010

San Francisco: Day One (Happy St. Patty's!)

Bleary-eyed from our long sessions in the studio, we got up early this morning and Jamie's husband took us to the airport.  We arrived into SFO and took a cab to the Kensington Park Hotel in Union Square.

Our friend, Iris Karp, who owns Misty Fuse, arrived yesterday and was waiting for us in the lobby!
Although Yvonne had planned an entire day of activities for us in San Francisco, she was unable to be with us because of her chemo schedule.  We thought of her frequently as we saw some of the sights.

Iris & Jamie in Kati Koos boutique

Britex Fabrics?  OMG

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Finishing Yvonne Porcella's Quilt

Many of you know that SAQA founder, Yvonne Porcella, was recently diagnosed with ovarian cancer.
We put out a call on the SAQA online list, as well as the quiltart list and a few other places, for quilt artists to construct blocks (ala Yvonne-style) in increments of 5-inches, and send them to Jamie Fingal and myself.  We hoped to receive enough blocks to construct a quilt for her, and we laid-out an ambitious plan to construct the blocks and finish the quilt in time to take it to her during the time we were in San Francisco for the SAQA/SDA conference.  
Blocks poured in from all over the world!  It was truly stunning.  I put together 2 large panels of blocks,
Jamie did the same (along with some help from some SAQA quilters of Orange CA).  I shipped my panels to Jamie ahead of me, and when I arrived at her house last Monday we set to work.
We constructed more blocks to fill in and even out the sections, then joined the sections together:
Working on Yvonne's quilt in Jamie's studio

working with a large quilt becomes quite challenging,
as many of you know all-too-well

The final two sections are joined together.
We rolled up the sections and Jamie held them up while I stitched, first in front of me, then behind!

Here is most of the quilt:  too large to adequately photograph in her studio
(and it was very late at night).  We are still in need of a better photo of the entire piece
Finished size:  84 inches wide by 104 inches long!

Here is the folded quilt before we put it in the tote bag for travel.

I'll post additional photos of the quilt, as well as shots of presenting it to Yvonne, as soon as I can.
I wanted to get these up so many of you who have been waiting to see the finished piece could take a look.  Thank you so much!  It is truly a labor of love, and a joy to put together.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Los Angeles, Day 3: Hollywood Farmers' Market

I love the Hollywood Farmers' Market.  You can find anything there.  If I had a market as wonderful as this one I might never go to a grocery store again!  I wandered through the market with Karen & Alissa.  We bought items for dinner, and I visited my favorite stall at the market, Roots Brothers.
this seems to be a popular fashion:  shorts with Wellies.
I saw them everywhere.

We spent a lazy afternoon at Alissa's house, helping her set up and begin sewing.  Using strips of muslin, we encouraged her to "just sew".  She seems to have the hang of it!
Here is some gorgeous cloth I purchased from Sew LA
etsuke furuya designed this 50/50 cotton/linen Japanese cloth for KOKKA

Alissa cooked a lovely dinner for us, and eventually took us back to our hotel.  Tomorrow, Karen leaves for Kansas City and I drive to Orange to jury "Beneath the Surface" and work on another project in Jamie's studio.

I spotted this cute little vintage Cooper.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Los Angeles, Day 2: recruiting another quilter....

Today was Alissa's 32nd birthday.  She requested a sewing machine, as she is considering doing some "crafty" things, and wants to learn how to quilt.  She looked around at stores that sell sewing machines, and picked a nice independent shop called "Sew LA" because it is located near DreamWorks (where she works).
We dropped by her office briefly.  Here is her birthday card from Jeffrey Katzenburg:

Here is a large fountain on the DreamWorks property:

one of the crazy message boards for the animators:

We drove to Silver Lake in search of the sewing store.  I've never been to this part of Los Angeles.  We drove through a couple of the neighborhoods and stopped for lunch,_Los_Angeles,_California

a funky little shop with a cool window display
(hello Billie!)

bunches of barrel cactus

finally, we venture into Sew LA

Sew LA is a tiny little shop with a lot of character.  First, they have great taste in fabric!  Whoa.  I saw some amazing Japanese printed cloth made from 50 cotton/50 linen.  There was a basic quilt-making class going on while we were there.  The store is on the upper level of what appears to be an old apartment building.  Look for it if you are ever in the area.  Why I didn't photograph the old Kenmore sewing machine (an exact replica of the one my mother owned & I learned to sew on, complete with the knee lever that operated the machine!) I'll never know.  I gifted Alissa with a set of basic quilting lessons from the shop.  I'm always looking for more recruits!