Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!

I've had a busy month...back and forth to Virginia and New Orleans and Florida.  And let me say...air travel ain't the joy it used to be.

All that aside,  I did manage to get some work done in the art department.  A set of quilts quilted for the guilds' host church... sorry, I forgot to take photos before I gave it  away for binding.

The Flamingo commission that I posted about in June

is now very close to completion...in fact the quilting will be done tomorrow. The bird is no longer nekked....



And then my sweetie made me a fabulous prime rib dinner for New Years Eve....perfectly cooked. (S'cuse the bags of kitty cookies)


and we tried a Spanish champagne



good, but definitely not to the same caliber of Krug or the  Dom Perignon that the lucky ones will enjoy at midnight.

For us the New Year signifies a new home, in  the city of my husband's birth.  We'll be near family and friends as we enjoy the remainder of our "Golden Years"  and you can't ask for much more than that.

We have so much to be thankful for, and we are so very thankful for all we have... most of all each other.

I hope as you all make the transition from this year to the next, you count your blessings and truly appreciate them, carry your crosses with strength and dignity, hold close and cherish those you love; and embrace the New Year with hope, peace and a vow to live each day to it's fullest and tell those you cherish that you love them and appreciate them each and every day.

May your New Year be filled with peace, happiness, good health and love.  See you in 2011 for a new and creative year!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

From Our House To Yours



Chloe and Harry and I wish you a Merry Christmas and a  creative New Year full of  peace, health and happiness.

We thank you for visiting with us throughout the year.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Harry

Has been full of himself today! First thing this morning talking to the birds



There are lots of birds at the feeders this morning



And then he tries to hide from Chloe



Later,I'm working away and go to wind a bobbin. This is the first time he has ever jumped up here



If looks could kill...I figured he's saying "What? You got a problem with this?"



"What do you mean I have to get down?  It's so comfy up here!"

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Back in Florida

After a busy travel week, first to Virginia for Mother's birthday celebration. Saw lots of family and enjoyed the short time I was there.  Caught up with Mary and Chesty...



And my girls...



Then from Virginia I flew to New Orleans to see some more family and to look at some houses.  For those of you that have never seen the Mississippi here's a shot from the plane.



Had a great night out with my SIL and cousin...great food and company...sorry, I forgot the camera. We closed the place down that night!

Then it was on to look at houses.  That was a successful trip, as we now have a house in New Orleans!  It's large and has a huge studio space. It's a great location...near the yacht club. We are thrilled to have gotten it.  This is the of the back of the house.



The back yard



And last, one taken at the yacht club and marina



So now we just need to sell the Florida  house, pack up and move!  Today we had an open house here..hopefully we'll sell quickly...two houses is a pain!

Hope you all are enjoying the last few days of prep for Christmas!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Leaving on a Jet Plane

First thing in the morning.  Bound for Virginia for the weekend to see part of the family and celebrate Mother's birthday.  Then from there, on to New Orleans to see the rest of the family and buy a new house! All very exciting!

And Don and the kitties will be holding down the fort here.  I miss them already!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Two Finishes!

First I finished my friend Sherry's quilt.



and the back



And then, I also finished my guild brown bag challenge quilt.  I had to wait until after the reveal to show it to you, but here it is.  I used my "GO" cutter to cut those nifty background diamonds!







What have you been up to?

Monday, November 22, 2010

Changes on the Horizon

And they are exciting...we have put our house on the market and will be moving  back to New Orleans.  It's time to get back to where we are closer to family and we are looking forward to this move.

So the next few weeks include lots of work....selling this house ...lots of work and not so much fun;  and finding a new house... definitely lots of fun.

And lots of quilting too in between showings to help keep my sanity :)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Working

And actually getting a lot done.  I got my Guild brown bag challenge quilt pieced , appliquéd and ready to quilt.  I'll load it just as soon as I finish Sherry's quilt...which is just about done. I haven't shown as photos of it for a long time, so here are a couple.





They are a little dark, but you can get the idea.

So that and a little sailing is what I did this weekend... what did you do?

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Solar Powered is featured in video from Houston

My friend Cathy Wiggins sent me a message and the link  http://www.youtube.com/user/quiltfairy#p/a/u/1/-jJ6VW5Into.

Luana Rubin's ( of e-quilter)tour of Houston Quilt festival.  My quilt is the second one featured, but be sure to watch the whole video...all the quilts are fabulous!

My 2 seconds of fame!  Thanks Luana! And the video was shot by Bonnie McCaffery

Monday, November 15, 2010

Eye of the Beholder

Today is the reveal of the Fiberactions "Transformation" challenge.

Again, I have chosen to do two pieces. Since so much of my work is about the quilted design and often incorporates painted elements, the word “Transformation” seemed right up my alley.  So I did two identical pieces, one white work, one with color. The same, yet different…



A few weeks ago, someone on an online list that I read occasionally made the comment that she did not think painted quilts deserved to be included in quilts shows, especially the big national shows.  Her rationale was that first of all, those who made such quilts were all professionally trained artists so they should have their own show...not with quilters like her who have spent years perfecting her piecing and appliqué skills.

Someone pointed out that not all who make painted quilts are trained artists; and that her idea of a quilt "worthy of show" also eliminates the traditional wholecloth.   The original poster then modified her stance to include traditional white work as "worthy" but maintained her stance on painted quilts.

That little exchange is what prompted me to do two pieces for this challenge of the  identical design...one white work, one with color.

So does the addition of color diminish the "worth"  of this quilt?





Not in my view, in fact my preference is the one in color.  My first thought when reading that thread for the first time was how sad it is that some would be so exclusionary.  Me...I think there is room for all of us in the quilt world.  And I love seeing all types of quilts in a show.  Even if they are not my "style"  I still can appreciate the beauty and skill it took to create them.

So, "Eye of the Beholder"; two wholecloth quilts,both began life as white PFD fabric and one identical drawing.... one painted with thickened fiber reactive dyes.   Both 16 x20 inches, two layers of batting(cotton &wool), Superior threads(metallic & So Fine) used. More photos below.











Be sure to head over to Fiberactions and see the work of the other artists.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

A Little Needle Felting

I finished another scarf, nothing fancy. So I decided to embellish it a little bit.  The plain scarf...



I have tons of hand dyed wool roving (silk too) but for this wool scarf, I'm using wool roving. I'm needle felting this by hand.



I decided to do the flower directly on the scarf, so I just stitched a general outline with yarn and then started building up the layers little by little.



Needling both sides of the scarf to make sure all the fibers are firmly felted through, petal by petal.



For the leaf, I decided to form that shape on the mat first





And then felt it to the scarf and we're done.



That perks that plain scarf right up!

And the socks are coming along...almost time to start the heel flap, so cover your ears...there may be some bad words flying!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A Crafting Hoarder??

Vicki posted this query on her blog tonight.  I had to confess,lol.  She did ask what the weirdest thing you kept was, and this thing popped into my mind first.



In case you don't recognize it, it's a glade plug in air freshener.  I used to keep one in the cat box room before I found the  lava rocks.

That great leaf vine cutout in the plastic makes great printing and molding tool!  Really!!

Yeah, I know I'm sick. :)

And We Have a Cuff!

Actually two.  I got the cuff ribbing finished and have started on the legs... whew!  It has gotten much easier, and I don't feel quite as stupid or uncoordinated.  So that's a relief...I might get this done after all!



And just when everything was going so well........  I'm sure you noticed and are wondering why the sock on the right has 3 tails instead of one.



I'm knitting along, and all of a sudden the yarn ends!  I look down and find Harry with the other end in his mouth...he chewed through the strand!  I guess the dangling yarn was just too much temptation.  And this is the look I got when asking him why he did that.



And when I told him he better not do that again, he stuck his tongue out at me!



Hmmm, I wonder what he was muttering under his breath?

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

And on to Socks....

I finally have read and re-read, and watched videos until I decided the time was now to cast on that first pair of socks.  Well, it has only taken me 2 days and 10 times of ripping out to finally get the first round of ribbing completed!  I had a hell of a time working with the two needles...I feel so uncoordinated.

It's no where near perfect, but correct enough to be able to press on.  I sure hope it gets easier, my poor kitties are hearing too many bad words!



You'll notice I gave up trying to match the coloring of the yarn between the two socks.

Finished!

Don't you just love the shimmer of metallic thread? I sure do!  My Fiberactions November challenge piece based on the word "Transformation" is finished.



Just a few more days until the 15th and the reveal, so stay tuned!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Work Continues

I'm making good progress on both the quilt on the frame and my Fiberactions challenge piece.  Tomorrow is supposed to be stormy so if it is, I won't be turning the Gammill on.  But that will allow me to finish up the challenge top and get it ready for quilting.

The big news is a cold front coming through tomorrow (the reason for the weather forecast) that will bring nighttime temps into the 40's this weekend!! That's downright chilly for this part of the world...guess I'll be able to turn the AC off for a few days!

On the knitting front, I bought a pair of addi turbos to try.  I think I like them for the worsted weight yarns, but I still prefer the Harmony needles from KnitPicks for the fingering weight.

I finished the hat and have started the matching scarf...I haven't taken photos yet though, maybe tomorrow.

Instead I'll leave you with some more peeks of the challenge piece progress.





Saturday, October 30, 2010

Back to My Regular Schedule

Class is over until the end of November, so things are getting back into the usual routine here.  Back to work on the quilts in progress, and on my Fiberactions challenge piece for November.  It's well under way and so far so good.  I did post a teeny peek of it there, so I'll post the same here.



Stay tuned for the reveal on Nov. 15th.

On the knitting front, just a couple more decreasing rounds and the hat will be done! And I ordered a scale so I could wind even balls :)

The weather has finally cooled off again, only got to 86 today and the evening temp is supposed to get into the 60's!  Hopefully, it'll continue for a while.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Winding Yarn

I've been pretty busy this week with the October session of my class series, so not much happening on the quilting or knitting front.

But this afternoon I got the chance to try out my new yarn swift and ball winder that I bought from KnitPicks and wind some of the wool I've dyed.

It's so easy and fast and I loved watching the hank transform into that cute little center pull ball.





The hanks I dyed are all 100 gm.  Since the yarns I wound today will be used for socks, I needed to wind them into 2 balls each.

Well, since this is my first time :), I had no idea when to stop winding and start the second ball. The first set is no where near even...one is much bigger than the other.



Then on to the second hank, I just love this yarn!





Better, but still didn't get two balls the same size



The last set was the closet in size..actually they are almost even!



Not too bad, only took me 3 tries to get it!



I wonder if I'll remember  the next time I need to wind??  Probably not!