Thursday, February 24, 2011

More Mosaic Fun!

I was in the studio in dribs and dabs last weekend, so I didn't have the inclination to start anything big.  On the cutting table sat the bag with the leftover bits from the Atrcgirlz meeting.  (If you have a flat surface in your space, you know how things collect there until you have no choice but to clean.)  So I decided to play with them.  I had already applied the fusible to the other half of the fabric, so I cut it into squares and combined them with the ones I had leftover from the meeting.  As I divided them by color, some ideas formed in my head.
I took all the sort of directional pieces and laid them out on a grey background.  At first I was picturing looking out of a tunnel, but I think it looks like one of those pictures from the space telescope!  I'm seeing spiral stitching, some beads and maybe glitter on this one.

The next pile of squares were mostly all orange with some cloudy bits.  So I made clouds!  Not quite sure where I'll go with this one yet, but I am remembering a drive past the Montezuma Wildlife Refuge at sunset a year or so ago.....

I knew pretty much what I wanted to do with the first one as soon as it was done.  My son drew this picture a while back that reminded me of a tree I had seen in Ithaca.   Isn't it fabulous?? He has a great talent!

I thread sketched the tree after adding some stabilizer.  Here's how it looked on the back while the stabilizer was still attached.
( I have GOT to start making the fronts look as nice!)

I layered and quilted around the edges of the branches, then on the edges of the whole piece.  Here's the almost finished piece.  I think I'll add some beads in the space around the edge- for sparkle, not for color.  ( I like sparkle)

I also discovered I have quite a pile of quilts needing homes.  Many are small pieces.  Things I do for the fun of it, like these mosaics.  What to do with them?  A friend suggested "etsy", but I looked into that and it sounds like a full time job, with no guarantee of actually making any money.  
Made as an exercise from "the Quilting Arts Workbook",
Made for my guild's "Initially Yours" challenge.

So, what to do?  Sell them door to door?

I am grateful for:
Time to Play!
Waffles with Lucas
The things I take for granted every day
a Homecoming

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Seriously- Fun!!

First, my Seriously? "rant" for the week...
Apparently the brain trust at Ideal Chevrolet in Avon thought sending out anonymous letters to potential customers was a good idea. It was a plain looking letter with no return address and somewhat cryptic contents, until you read the "newspaper" (printed just for this purpose)   Seriously?  Who thought this was a good idea in this day and age???  I am not one to take things like this in stride, so I have called the dealer (and been treated rudely), the newspaper (The woman there said "Creepy!" after I described it.  My thoughts exactly!), the postal inspectors office, and sent a complaint to the BBB.  I also went to the Chevrolet website and posted a complaint.  I like to think one person CAN make a difference ( and haven't we in the 26th district seen the proof?).

Now- Seriously Fun!!!

I bought a "Double Diamond Ruler" at a quilting event in Chautauqua last September.  I admit it, I'm a gadget girl!!!  As soon as I got it, Kathi - who was with me- was asking if I'd do a demo at guild this spring.  I got home and made a couple of the strips just to try it out.  One I made into a little bag.  The other is still waiting for the right project. 
In preparation for the demo, I have been trying to find other ways to use it.  I found an orphan block in my UFO bin last week and decided it would be perfect for experimenting.  I am SO pleased with the result!  I don't know how I'll quilt it yet. 
I've either ruined my demo (in April), or whipped up some excitement for it by showing it early.

I am grateful for:
Les Nessman
A day that feels like Spring
The way people look at my socks while trying not to stare.
Reunions with "old friends"
I've lost 4 lbs since the holidays!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Another quiet- and very cold!- week

 Jack Frost did some fancy painting on my living room windows the other day!  I would love to figure out how to make this into a quilt, but fear my skills haven't reached this point yet.  meanwhile, I can be inspired by nature's glory!

 On Tuesday, the art group met.  Kathi had a project for us to play with.  She is testing this out for a retreat she is attending this coming spring.  We were the Guinea pigs.  It was fun!!!!
This is Kathi's Piece.  You can see more of hers here.

  Basically, you start with a piece of fabric with  mottled colors, like a batik or a hand dye.  This piece was a gift from my friend Debbie.  It came from South Africa, where Debbie used to live.

We ironed fusible to it and cut it into little squares.  These are sorted by color.

They are then arranged in any way you like- by color or patterns you find or just whatever strikes you when you start looking at them.  It isn't supposed to be anything- which is very hard for a left brained person!!!  This is my fused squares.  Now I can play with it any way I like!  I see a sort of sunset in this.

  I have more squares and can see myself doing this again with other fabrics as well!!  Thanks, Kathi!

You can see the rest of the "class" at the artcgirlz blog!

I am grateful for:
Friends who inspire and challenge me!
Chocolate, everyday!
A hubby who gets up early and runs the snow blower for me.
The occasional full night of sleep.
Lowered expectations

Thursday, February 3, 2011

A quiet week and labeling quilts

I've been busy preparing for the Guild's "Challenge" the past week.  It was my job to be sure everything was ready to set up the display this week.  This is the fourth one of these I've done, so it should be automatic, right?  I wish!
I discovered there are definite advantages to being slightly anal, though.  I make list of lists, you see, anytime I have a job like this to do.  I checked things off, then checked the other lists!  (I still managed to lose the numbers, but we improvised.)  All of that helped me be ready two days in advance when it became a very real possibility the "Groundhog Day Storm" would force us to cancel the set up. I called the gallery, found out it was available immediately, called my committee- and they were also available immediately!- packed the car, and a few hours later, it was done!  Like Boy Scouts say: Be Prepared!
If you've gone and looked at the Guild's blog, you've seen the great variety of work!  You may also have seen I won First Place for the piece I called "Grasshopper Pie".  That was a nice surprise.   I know I've showed this piece, but I don't think I've ever shown the close  ups of the quilting.  I believe that was what set this piece apart from the rest, to be honest. ( and a bit immodest).
The weekend ahead will begin with putting labels on some of my older pieces.  I often rush samples right over to the quilt shop and forget to label them until I get them back. I have discovered three of them recently that need labels.  One of them is going to be a baby gift for my niece's new baby boy- due sometime this month.  I'll have to leave a space for his name and date of birth.  I share this as a reminder to label your quilts.  Here is one of mine.    On gifts, I also include washing instructions.

I am grateful for:
The prospect of a really exciting game this weekend! (Go Steelers!)
The storm that wasn't.
Sharing a good laugh with my hubby.
Getting good sleep.
The luxury of time spent reading.