Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Progress on a scrap quilt...and some other random stuff

A few months ago the San Antonion Modern Quilt Guild had a block of the month drawing for strip-pieced quilt blocks.  The design idea was simple:  strip piece 6.5 inch blocks with a yellow fabric strip diagonally through the center.  I was fortunate to win the blocks!  Ever since that fortunate win I have been steadily working on creating more blocks, as I love the scrappy look of them, yet the yellow strips create a pattern that unifies the overall appearance.  Here is what I have so far:
I'm working in a large, "double diamond" orientation.

More has been added since this photo was taken and I'll post another, better image soon.  This is a nice, 
meditative activity.  To construct these, simply cut 6.5 inch squares of plain muslin cloth to serve as the foundation for the strips.  Strips can be any width:  in fact, I think the blocks have more interest if the strips vary in width!  I randomly piece these together, but find I am liking the way the yellow elements are consistent inside one "diamond".  I think I will add a bright strip of color around the perimeter, then perhaps another strip pieced border and a back, but no additional batting.  This will be a quilt (3 layers) but will serve as a coverlet.

I took some images of a couple of odds and ends in my house, just for fun.  Here they are:
I have a glass "fetish".  Here are a couple of the glass platters I have installed in the living room.

Did I mention I love (adore) skeletons?

and metal repose' hearts?

more skeletons and a miniature mixed media piece

another heart made by a Kansas City artist (name unknown at the time of purchase).

This is the coolest stuff!  Yarn created from paper!
You can get it at Darn Good Yarn.  Mary Ruth Smith introduced me to this fantastic website.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

How to make paper buttons, a blog tutorial by Kelli Nina Perkins

Take a minute to stop by my friend Kelli Nina Perkins' blog and check out her tutorial on how to create paper buttons.

Check it out here!

Monday, March 19, 2012

QuiltCon 2013!

Have you heard?  QuiltCon, the first-ever national gathering for the Modern Quilt movment, is happening in Austin TX!  Am I going?  Yes!  Are you coming?  I hope so!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Orchids waking up to springtime

I purchased several orchids last fall (in a moment of weakness) after seeing the most gorgeous specimens at a big show.  I was told the best strategy for them was "benign neglect":  this came from the grower.
Concerned about them during the chillier nights through the winter, the poor orchids that hang from my tree were ferried in and out of the house.  The three that were actually planted in the ground were on their own.
To my delight, I'm seeing signs of growth on several of the hanging specimens, and actual buds and one tiny blossom on one of the planted orchids!
The following images aren't terribly impressive, but I'm thrilled nonetheless.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Piano Day

This is my very first attempt at editing video footage.  Shot with my icamera, edited on imovie.  Enjoy.
Please give me some feedback.  

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Artist Interview: Jeannie Palmer Moore

Please drop by the Sketchbook Challenge blog today and read the artist interview of my friend, Jeannie Palmer Moore.  I guarantee her work will inspire you!
A page from one of Jeannie Palmer Moore's sketchbooks.
Visit the SBC blog to see more of her work!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Springtime Sightings in Texas

I love this time of year:  things are blooming and my wish for a wildflower-covered landscape is coming true this year!  I need to do some wandering in the countryside to get some wildflower shots, and will post images once I do.  Recently I took a less-traveled highway and spotted a few colorful things:
these gorgeous Bradford pears lined someone's ranch entrance
I don't know what kind of rooster this guy is, but he sure is pretty!

magnificent cypress trees keep their feet wet in the Guadalupe river near Kerrville TX
In my own garden the Texas Mountain Laurels are in bloom

Friday, March 2, 2012

Mary Ruth Smith Workshop

Mary Ruth Smith is a master of fiber, particularly embroidery.  I was fortunate to have the opportunity to attend her day-long workshop at the Texas Federation of Fiber Artists' Conference in Kerrville TX.
The day was so inspirational, and brought me back to hand stitchery, something I have not been engaged with in recent years.
Mary Ruth gave permission to share images of her work, as long as we didn't show her face!  I am thrilled to share these beautiful works of art with you:

Peggy McCaskill Forrester admires the dimension of Mary Ruth's embroidered piece,
mounted on a frame

This piece was created with french knots.
Mary Ruth stated that each inch took approximately 2 hours to complete.

detail of another piece

Mary Ruth demonstrated how she stretches muslin over a frame.
This serves as her work surface.
She works intuitively after first making some sort of grid over the surface, something as simple as dividing the work area into quarters.

Susie Monday holds one of Mary Ruth's "sampler" pieces.
Susie has another great post about Mary Ruth's workshop, so don't 
miss visiting her blog!

Paper yarn on a spool.  Source:  Darn Good Yarn.
You can bet I have already ordered some of this!

The beginning of my embroidered piece, using black embroidery floss
over free cut pieces of hand-dyed silk organza and cheesecloth.

details of the progression of my piece.....
the rusted crepe de chine was created (and purchased from) Adrian Highsmith.
My muslin-stretched frame is 12x14 inches.
No idea where this is going, but I'm sure having a grand time!