Monday, March 29, 2010

I've been awol...

But very busy.  Teaching here and online.  Getting the final prep done for classes at MQS. Prep for classes here in Florida.Trying to get my quilt entries for MQS finished.  And a bunch of other things. And a trip to Virginia in 11 days.

Not the least of which is anxiously awaiting the arrival of my iPad on Saturday!.. Today, I got my sketching stylus for the iPad.



Pretty,huh!

Enough messing around, I'd better get back to work!  Just thought I'd let you know I was still alive and kicking!

More soon, I promise!

Friday, March 19, 2010

What to use for Samples

With all the videos and classes, comes the question of what to use for samples and demonstrations.  The shear volume I do precludes having just the right quilt top ready to go for any given topic.  So what's a girl to do?

Well, I would imagine that answer will be different from teacher to teacher but I can tell you what I do. :)

If I happen to have the perfect top lying around, then of course I use that.  But most of the time that does not happen unless it's a project class. In that case I will be making it as we go along.

If it's a techniques class, most likely I won't be using a completed quilt top. So that leaves plain old fabric.   I don't want to use the really good stuff because it seems like such a waste of expensive fabric.  But I don't want to use plain old boring white muslin either.

So my solution involves using up excess dyes.  When I dye the good stuff, I always have extra mixed dyes left over. While you can keep them for a while in the fridge, they do lose their strength over time.  I certainly don't want to throw them away, so I use them to dye fabric for class and video samples.

I buy the 36" wide muslin at JoAnn's using one of my coupons.  That brings the cost down to 49 cents a yard.  I tear off random lengths, wash them in synthropol ; soak them in soda ash. Then dry them.  I just ball them up and stuff them in plastic bags where they stay until my next dye day, when I'll just dump the  leftover dyes right in the baggies with the muslin pieces.   It's not high quality muslin, so I wouldn't use it in a quilt, but for teaching it's perfect!

Here's some I pulled out to use last week...



Much prettier than plain old muslin, don't you think? Almost makes learning that new technique more exciting. At least you'll have something pretty to look at while you learn.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

A New Bag

I ordered a new iPad the first day they offered pre ordering.  I'm really excited about getting it, and it arrives on April 3rd!

I also ordered the optional case for it, but it won't be shipped until mid-April.  Well I have a trip to Virginia before then (for a family wedding) so I need a way to protect my iPad during that travel.  Today, I got the dimensions from apple and set about making a bag for it.  This is what I came up with. (Be sure to take note of my handsome assistant)



I decided to add a pocket on the front for my phone.  The lining (and the front pocket) are flannel so it'll be soft against that big touch screen.  And there's batting between the layers for a nice padded, protected home for them.



and the back (with inspector Harry)



I love this fabric



So I just need to add a couple buttons and it's all ready and waiting!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Globally Speaking

Today is the reveal for the Fiberactions Challenge for March.  Our word was "Communication".

My piece addresses communication in two ways.



First, electronic communication is an amazing thing. We "converse" with people all over the world through the various electronic means and consider it to be the "normal" thing to do. Our world is in indeed smaller and in constant motion in this digital age. We share our art and lives.



Second, quilting is a major form of communication for me. With it, I have found common ground and inspiration. But most significantly, I have developed friendships all over the world.



So my piece signifies both. The background and the disks are pieces of silk dupioni that I dyed. The globe is a line drawing from a coloring page that I printed on fabric and then colored with oil pastels. After it dried I sealed it with textile medium. I quilted a spiral in the globe to signify information travelling around the world.

The background is quilted with feathers going back and forth in opposite directions to signify the back and forth of communication, and the beauty communicated by our art form.



The little disks all have word beads with internet "language".

This was a fun challenge. Be sure to visit the Fiberactions Blog to see how all the other artists interpreted communication, they are amazing!

And I'm adding an edit to answer a couple questions.

I used two layers of batting; Quilters Dream Wool over Quilters Dream Cotton.

And the threads:  on the background I used Superior Rainbows, the color is "Rainforest".

And in the globe I used Superior metallic in the color "light gold".

Monday, March 8, 2010

Another glimpse...

I posted a few more clues to my challenge piece for this month.  You can see it on the Fiberactions blog.

And keep watching for the big reveal next Monday!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

A new phone

Yesterday I ordered a new phone.  Nothing wrong with the old one, and I'm not eligible yet for a free or reduced cost replacement.  But I decided to do it anyway.  I am spending quite a bit of time texting with my 14 yr old granddaughter, so I decided I needed a phone that was "texting friendly".  I really don't want to go the whole crackberry...

I mean blackberry, internet kind of route so I choose this one:



And yes, the only reason I choose this one over others( some that are better) is because it is beautiful and RED!

Yea, I know . Stupid reason to choose a phone.....not!

Though Don is still rolling his eyes.....

Men, what do they know!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

And the last two

Of the moon series. The series is called "Seasons of the Moon"

You have seen "Harvest Moon" (autumn) and last night you saw "Snow Moon" (winter).  Well today you get the last two.

Here is "Sultry Moon" (summer)



And this is "Jellicle Moon" (spring)



There is still a ton of work to do...stitching down all that applique  and then the quilting.  But there is nothing quite like work that is such fun!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

I'm really working...honest!

I'm still finishing the last few details of painting on "Solar Powered", but am taking a break for a couple days to work on my "moon" series. "Harvest Moon" is done and I showed it to you a while back. Well, today I worked on "Snow Moon"(winter), "Sultry Moon" (summer) and "Jellicle Moon" (spring).  This is "Snow Moon"  all fused and the stitching started.



All my moon quilts are made from Vicki's fabrics; the backgrounds are all gradients she made for me specifically for these quilts.  All the other fabrics are hers too.  The moons are lutrador and angelina.  Eventually, we will offer kits for all the moon quilts.

I'm also working away at my Fiberactions "communication" challenge.

The first session of my CircleLord mini classes (the ZigZag template)  at MQR has ended and we had a good response. Now I'm working on the next session which focuses on the basic unit.

So see, I am working....really I am!