Welcome to my Blog, A little art, and a lot of Friendship

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Sketchbook Challenge-Zentangles.

Have you been watching and learning about the Sketch Book Challenge? If I can figure out how to post this I will put my gourd Zentangles on their page.. I really wanted to do a wash with some watercolors, but found that the paper I chose is not good with water. Cutting up a water color sheet to take with me to camp, might just do the trick.. This in the middle of packing for Point Bonita. All my quilt projects are nestled in bags, and my suitcase is ready..
I purchased a little book on Zentangles something that has held my interest for some time, but had never pursued it. With this Challenge I thought it might help with Free Motion Quilting and would be great fun.
Sometimes we really need a push. One of my goals this year was to say No, to tangents, and to work at the projects I have that are on going. But,, I am sure you can see how this relates to Quilting.. is this an excuse to stretch?
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Monday, January 24, 2011

Journaling, Painting, Sketching

I am reading so much about Journaling, which includes writing, drawing, painting and sketching. So many wonderful ideas with paper, yarn, paper towels, nothing goes to waste these days. I had a group of ladies over for making Fabric Paper and we all had so much fun, (Scroll down for that.)..

Not ready to show my start, till I can show you the follow up.. There is so much we can do with simple items around the house.. sometimes it is overwhelming. Potato mashers, yard screening, gravel, on and on.

Several years ago I belonged to the Fresno Fiber Guild and they had Traci Bautista visit and give a two day class. It was like eye candy, and my introduction to experimenting with various types of paper, including sewing , painting, threads, beads, and don't stop there. Any thing goes!

Sometimes I feel this is just an excuse for not throwing anything away.. and thus the items in the studio grow by leaps and bounds..

Walking in our field, I fall in love with every little rock, plant and piece of wood, anything that catches your heart, could be a work of art.. and some day it just might.

My pockets, thankfully, are not that big.. but on occasion they do bulge with found objects.
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Sunday, January 23, 2011

Gifties, Zippy Strippy purse

Every year I attend a 1 week Quilt Retreat in the Marin Highlands, Point Bonita.. I will tell more about it at some later date,, because right now I should be packing and getting my "act" together.. I started out wanting to make a little black and white purse for my roomies.. But time marched faster as usual, and I am not great at patience to read directions.. guess I should not admit that.. So the above are the little purses I created. I made them to hold the black and white note pad paper, little scissors, and tape measure.. I hope they enjoy them. We only have 3 in our bedroom... used to be 6, but too long a story to tell now.
This last week I took a class Zippy Strippy,at Cottage Quilts, in Fresno.. I have tons of zippers from my moms sewing basket.. and thought this pattern would be great using them.. I like the way the zipper is set in.. Not that I could not have read the directions, but so much easier to have some one tell you.. The one on the left is Nancy's, and mine is on the right.

When our YoYo group got together recently the discussion came up about what knowledge is there to learn when one has been quilting for eons.. And do we really need to take any more classes.. I said I always learn something new at a class.. No matter how basic,, might be something I had forgotten, or am sloppy about, a new way of approaching some stitching.. a new design etc..

So I must say with this simple little purse.. I learned a different way to set in a zipper, no fear about cutting one apart, how to use the zipper foot on my Pfaff, and the list goes on.. We can always learn something new.. and the best part is having fun with friends, and making new ones..

Carolyn and David at Cottage Quilts, were great about checking/ cleaning my sewing machines. My greatest fear is that I get to camp and they break down.. Yes, I have some knitting, hand work, English Paper Piecing, Embroidery and all sorts of piecing, and machine embroidery. Is that the fear of having nothing to do.. Thankfully, I ride with a friend..and we have room.. More about that some other time! I think this is my 12 th. year...Great way to start a New Year, with enthusiasm, and goals..
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Saturday, January 22, 2011

Fabric Paper- Sisters 7=4

A fun day was had by all 4 of "Sisters 7",, due to circumstances 3 could not make it that day. Julie, Kathleen, Vivian, and the unseen photographer Anita were present to discuss the book, "The 12 Secrets of Highly Creative Women"

We had a lively discussion related to Chapter 5.. Committing to Self- Focus. The reading is a catalyst to discussions on how we sabotage our selves by procrastinating for various reasons about putting our art work first.

We had a salad luncheon, and went on to make fabric paper.. Kathleen, is very good at pre-planning what she would like to see, Julie also had her idea set.. and Anita, made white on white using white rice paper. I tore random paper, will show mine later, when I take a photo.. It will be fun to see how we incorporate the fabric paper into our art work.

I was browsing through a variety of sites today and came upon one on Sketch books and was fascinated by the variety of ideas, and people from all over the world that are participating..

It is different from the Sketch book Challenge I am observing here in the States.. Yes, procrastinating about participating.. But fascinated by the wonderful artists and their sharing.
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Sunday, January 16, 2011

Paper Pieced Decorative Check book cover

I am having such fun with English paper piecing, sometimes don't have a project in mind, but I like to keep my hands busy in the evening.. better than desert munching after dinner.

I used some of my hand dyed fabrics for the back ground, here are the paper pieces that I have removed from the fabric. Because the check book will get lots of use, I used my sewing machine and a decorative stitch to attach them to the front of the cover.
Next time I will do a bit more quilting, make it a tad bigger, so that I can top stitch around the edges..
The inside is colorful .. I will write up the pattern.. Doing this was not on my list of to do's for today.. I have a bit of an allergy or the end of a cold.. So I thought this would be an easy project to work on.. not what I should be doing.. ah well, tomorrow is another day.. Some one say dusting the house?
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Stitchers Garden # 5

This is really a fun class, learning all about the feet for my sewing machine. But as usual I am a bit behind on "homework". So I am rushing, and after putting the squares together, and ironing the batting to the back, I rushed to iron on the flowers.. and guess what, I forgot to "quilt" the back ground.
Well, where there is the will there is a way.. and you know this block has to be the one with more small pieces then any of the others.. One way to remember for next time is to goof,, will not forget that step again. I marked off the lines, and then just where I came to the leaves and flowers, I dragged the thread across, it will be anchored when adding the decorative stitching.
Remember only takes a moment to reread the instructions..
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Saturday, January 15, 2011

Winter- foggy-postcard

A friend emailed me that my fabric postcard has been detained by the post office and never made it to her house.. So I sent her a new one. We are in the midst of a foggy year, and it has been going on for weeks.. Just 5 miles and further up the mountain from the house is sun.
So in honor of sun. I sent her a flowery fabric postcard.. Hope this one makes it!
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Thursday, January 6, 2011

Life is always changing

The Storm settles down, and there is sun again.. the cutting away of the land gets bigger and more pronounced.. this used to be flat sand to the river bed.
You can see how the river has cut the sand down again, all the little river rocks are on top.The river is out by that rock in the distance now. Almost looks like a tractor has been through there.. just nature leaving it's mark.
Little raccoon feet make wonderful impressions in the sandy soil.. No other prints are noticeable, sometimes, deer, mountain lion leave their traces in the sand. Today, just the unhurried explorations of this little animal..
3 of the 7 sunning and enjoying waiting for me to finish feeding the llama's. We enjoyed a quiet walk with the warmth of the sun..
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New Years Mess, gourds, fabric, designs

Do I admit that the studio is a mess and am continuing to try and to find a space to work.. I had New Years Resolutions and some are in the process.. But others are not. I received this advise from a Fortune Cookie... "Very little is needed to make a happy life." How true that is, BUT.....

The gourds are part of a series I am making with shapes of hands burned into them and stained.
Part of my design wall is the project class I am taking in Fresno at Cottage Quilts, Stitchers Garden.. The reason.. I have a new Pfaff and this is one way to learn the variety of feet... No, all those pieces do not go together.. one is a portrait that I still have to look at and finish for our YoYo Sewciety, the other I am trying different quilting designs on it.. not all that satisfied..
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Sunday, January 2, 2011

Vision Boards Jan 1, 2011

My friend Joyce sent out an invitation to get together to create Vision Boards on New Years Day.. Sadly the weather prevented many of us from attending, and it had to be canceled.. Julie Mitchell, who lives near me and I decided we could spend a few hours at my house cutting, tearing and pasteing. I have read about the boards for years and believe in the power of positive thinking. So maybe this year I can accomplish more by envisioning the opportunities and being open to them.
We had a fun time in my studio, with the heater on.. Out side there was a light rain, but we had our boards almost complete by the time she had to leave.. Julie is going to add some of her figures and a photo of herself.. Mine is so cluttered with cuttings I am not sure where I would put me.. Is that telling me something? Look at the bold "Yes",,, and I had said something about learning the word "No" when asked to volunteer for projects this year..

Guess I still want to do it all.. Time for another New Years Resolution.... Exercise, lose weight, stay in the studio, create and learn more on the computer... and the list goes on... Happy New Years!
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Saturday, January 1, 2011

Natures Beauty.

Is natures beauty in the details or in the over all.. How fascinating to see what is left behind by the water, it's signature in the sand.
A bit of 28 degree weather left the tree a glow in white splendor.
Our 7 cats were let out of their run after the rains.. Looks like Peaches is intent on this little mouse.. It was fun for awhile, and kept his attention..I have to laugh as they play with a mouse or gopher, but still have to look so casual. This little mouse sat on his back feet and threatened the cat, I wished I had been able to get that shot. But finally they both sat for a bit, and the mouse got away..
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Quiet after the storm

It is amazing to see nature in it's full glory. The changes it brings to the landscape is awe inspiring. What used to be a hilly area, is now flat with wonderful small river rocks instead of sandy beach.
Seeing the reflection of the sky and trees in the bit of water left by the storm is perhaps the calm before the next. After all this is just the beginning of winter and it is sharing it's much needed water with us..
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