Saturday, December 26, 2009

Hanukkah/Christmas

I must have been a very good girl as December has been a very good month for me.  But before I show my new things, I've been working on cat/puppy quilts for Chloe & Harry's  New Orleans cousins.  Since I don't have any doggy fabric, the puppy (named Irma) got pink flamingos.  I did 5 all together...4 for cats, 1 for the puppy.











And yes they're blurry, sorry. It was a combination of no good light and being in a hurry.   But you get the idea.  Simple focus fabric with a border and their names quilted in it.

And onto my new stuff!

I've been wanting some red shoes for a while now...with just a hint of a heel...





Remember, I live in south Florida, so open toes and heels are the standard...... No throwing snowballs at me!

And then I got some new tops...I'm on a black, and red kick right now.











And a purse...still in my color scheme AND room for my new "Kindle" in the back pocket...



And then of course my Kindle





And we won't discuss how many books I've already bought and downloaded to it....

It's been a good month for me :)

Thursday, December 24, 2009

I must be out of my mind....

I spent time this afternoon frogging cat quilts... yes I mean quilts for cats.  I had a run of thread barf.  Then I re-quilted, and as I was finishing I realized how nuts I am.  Not only did I frog and re-do the bad sections..I did SID on all 5 quilts too!     Too much of a habit with me I guess.  Oh well, the recipient cats of family members are worth it, lol!

Merry Christmas everyone! May yours be full of love and joy.  And be safe if you're travelling!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Mail Call!

The mailman brought me some postcards today!

From Mary



from Mother



and from Nancy



Then my best friend (the guy with the brown truck) brought me this



I'm very excited about that!

Then to top it off, I had a phone call from my son and DIL....I'm gonna be a Grandmom again!   Maybe this time I'll get a little boy...or not; either way healthy will be good.

And as if you need more...I leave you with some cute furbabies...they were cute today.











Have a great night!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Sneak Peek #2

Work continues on my Fabrications challenge.

Last few details

I spent today putting together 5 quick quilt tops for 4 kitties and 1 puppy. I'll be taking these to New Orleans with me next week.  Very simple, just a cute print and sew on a border.  I'll get these quilted this week.  I had kitty fabric (of course) but no puppy fabric, so the puppy gets flamingos!











I also finished up my postcards for December and got them in the mail on Friday.



Some of you may recognize that fabric...it's one of the sunprints I bought from Vicki.

I'm still working on both "solar powered"  and my Fabrications challenge and hope to make lots of progress on both this week.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Finally, a decision and a design!

For the Fiberactions first challenge "Initiative".  I have struggled with this for weeks, but all of a sudden it became very clear. Here's is a sneak peek....

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Much more work to be done..I posted the details on the Fiberactions blog.  But that's all you get until the big reveal on January 15th.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

A process lesson

I have put the first part of the lesson on my website.

Playing with adding color

Since one of my current projects "Solar Powered" will have color added after quilting, I thought I'd experiment with using a wet technique this time instead of the usual dry techniques of colored pencils or Shiva paintstiks.

Making painted wholecloths is not a new thing for me, I have made many. But I have always painted first and quilted after.  So I wanted to see how it would work doing it the other way.  I quilted a small 12" x12" piece to play on. Pimatex PFD top and warm&white batting on the bottom, Quilters Dream Puff in the middle and Hobbs Ploydown as the top batting.  I also used the Pimatex for the backing so I could see if there was any bleed through to the back.

I tried several different textile paints and inks.  Some worked without bleeding and soaking thru, some did not. The paints that were medium to heavy body...Jacquard's textile paint, neopaque, and Lumiere worked very well. It is a little fussier than the dry technique, but I like the look.  Stewart Gill paints also worked well.  Jacquard's Dye-Na-Flow did not, also none of the inks worked either. They are all to "fluid" and bled past the stitching lines.

I used all of those products as well as the colored pencils and Shiva stiks so I would have a comparison all on one piece.  I also decided to try some sparkle..I brushed some of Jo Sonja's "Opal Dust" over everything.

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Fun and I got some useful information!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

"Solar Powered"

Is the name of the piece I gave you a glimpse of last night.  Many months ago, Irena Bhlum asked if I would be interested in doing a piece for her next book.  I happily agreed.  I am one of the least known contributors....and I'm in pretty spectacular company.  So you'll want to get the book when it becomes available in the spring to see what the really good people came up with!

"Solar Powered" is what I came up with.  I worked for several months  to come up with an idea and subsequently my sketches and finally the full size working drawing and pattern.  The next step was transferring the drawing to my prepared fabric.

I discussed with Irena her feelings about sharing the work in progress, and she was happy for me to do so.  As a result, you'll get to watch as this piece comes to life.  The rules were that it was to simulate piecing with Irena's "quilt first, then color techniques".  It could be a wholecloth or include appliqué....just no traditional piecing.   The color could be added by any medium you wanted...there were really no restrictions other than it must have the look of piecing through color application.

I decided mine was to be a wholecloth.  I am documenting the entire process and will be adding a section on my website to show my entire process step by step. I'll have still photos, as well as some video segments.  So look for it in the next few days.

And as a teaser for tonight, I'll leave you with a few more progress photos.

Here I am stitching the star points of the sun.  Two things; you'll notice that I am using colored threads to stitch these motifs on the white....the motifs will have color added later, the thread color adds depth.  And second, you'll see lots of thread tales...with this project I'm saving the thread burying until I finish the quilting.

stitching the star points of the sun

Sun star points, rays and checkerboard ring around the sun

sun points,rays&checkerboard ring

leaf vines, lizards, & diamond border

leaf vine,lizards & diamond border

another view...

another angle

and another...

and another

And in this photo you can really see how much loft there is.

lots of loft

When I go into detail on the website, I'll be specific about batting and threads used, as well as all the tools I used to draft the pattern and execute the stitching, so stay tuned.  There's lots more to come!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Back home and back to work

I'm caught up on laundry and kitty snuggles.  It was a good trip and I enjoyed spending some time with Mother, my siblings, children and grandchildren.  The weather here is weird; so hot and humid that the  AC is back on!  And yes, I am aware of the blizzards up north...but it is uncomfortably warm here this week, just sayin'.

I did get back to work today.  A little appliqué stitching on the frogs and lizards...they'll be ready to quilt next week when I get the current quilt off the frame.

As for what's on the frame now?  You'll just get a snippet here and there as this project won't be completely revealed until the spring.  So here's your peek.

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Those and a few other projects will be keeping me busy over the next couple months.  Of course, this month won't be quite as productive due to the holidays, visiting family and travel again at the end of the month.  But steady progress is my goal.

Have a great evening!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Leaving on a jet plane...

I'm headed out in the morning for Virginia and a family get together.  We have severe weather forecast here for tonight and early in the morning...hope there aren't too many flight delays. (:(  Oh well, not much I can do either way.    Have I told you I hate to travel? Yup, I do.

Don't know if I'll have internet access while away, so if you don't hear from me that's why.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

NQR

I spent today finishing up my kitchen cabinets. My favorite colors are blue and green (though I love all color, and the paint scheme in my house proves it!) In the kitchen, I have combined the two. I also love the ocean and  tropics ; my decor reflects that as well.

In the kitchen, I have used blues and greens together in paint and wall tile. Even my granite counter tops have blue...(it's "blue pearl"). The floors are travertine...and are the color of sand.  Well the cabinets now have new hardware and all the upper doors  have their art glass "wave".  I love how it turned out and even Don likes it.  It was pretty easy to do, though a little time consuming.

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Excuse all the stuff on the counter...Don does probably 75 % of the cooking and he wants it all out.  So since he cooks, I don't complain about it...well, actually I do, but I  leave it out.  So while I'm away in Virginia this week Don will do all the ceiling repairs from where we tore out the old soffit and lights and it'll be ready for me to paint when I get back next week.

Now, I realize this is probably way too much for most of you, and I realize it'll have to be redone if we ever decide to move. My neighbor almost had a stoke when she saw it!  But it is sooo "me" and I love it!

And when I was taking a break, look who I saw in the neighbors' yard just on the other side of my sea grapes.

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After his scratch, he'd had enough of the lady with the camera and walked across the street!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

I've worn it out!

Today I cut some applique shapes with my GO cutter to take to Mother when I go next week. When I got to the last couple,  there were places that didn't cut as cleanly.  When I looked closer I saw why!   I think I need to order a new cutting mat...can you see the cracks?

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This particular mat probably gets more use than some of the others, as it fits 4 or 5 dies.  No problem, I just ordered 2 new ones. And these are the shapes I cut...lots of stuff for flowers.

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I just realized I didn't post a picture of Mother's finished quilt either..well here it is.

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If you look closely, you can see I stitched the binding on the top too. I did that with the longarm and even made a video lesson on how I do it.  It'll be available  as a free video on MQR, just as soon as Suzanne has a chance to post it.  All the "frames" in the blocks were done with the Circle Lord "Aztec" template and then embellished. I also posted that step by step on MQR as a Premier video.  So check them both out.