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Saturday, October 29, 2016

Honest...I am working on art!

I mentioned in a previous post that I started on my Valentine fiber cards and that's exactly what I've been working on this week!
I started off printing my own design onto Inkjet fabric sheets but I only had 5 of them left, which only gave me 10 cards...well, I need at least 40 fiber cards this year and decided that is not the economical way to make the cards.

Plus, because I was printing on white fabric, I had to paint areas on each, quilt each card, yada, yada.

So I had my design printed on a thermofax screen by Lyric Kinard...which, she created with a day notice!  Lyric was headed to Houston and got my screen printed before she left and I rec'd it within a few days!   Thanks, Lyric!!!

Can't show the screen yet....but here's a sneak peak!

I screen printed over 40 pieces of scrap fabric....good for some fabric!!!  Another sneak peak!  I'm sure you can figure out the pattern but those who read my blog and receive a card will forget by Valentine Day!

On Thursday, I started to fuse the Pellon 71F to the back of each piece so I can add some stitching.  I honestly did try to add some french knots but my hands just can't take it.  So off to the machine I went!  I think I have finished the quilting on 15 cards so far.  Doing a little at a time will make it easier this year.  I'm always so busy when we first get to Florida so it will be nice not to feel rushed in making the cards this year.

The production line is now started!  Once I finish the quilting then I can trim, print out my  labels, fuse and trim; then machine stitch some decorative edge.  Whew!  I probably am enjoying the process more so this year then in the past where I feel rushed to get the cards finished by February 1st!  It's a good feeling!

Monday, October 24, 2016

Steampunk Time!

I happened upon a series on Netflix called Steampunk'd....and I am hooked.  This is a 'game' show where 'makers' (that's what the artists are called) work in teams designing rooms in a 'house'.  Each episode someone is eliminated based on their work.

I am hooked...if you want to watch on Netflix, do not go to the link above...or you'll see the winner of the $100,000 grand prize.  I don't think it's in reruns on the GSN channel but guess you could check that out if you don't have Netflix streaming.

Today I decided I would stencil some 'gears' just because I was so inspired by the Steampunk work in this series.  So off the 'girls' (my dogs!) and I went to my art room and played!

I've had this gear stencil for several years.  It's from Mary Shaw and has had a lot of use from me and others over the years!  First off, I mixed brown acrylic paint with a small amount of Raw Umber soft body paint I had left.  I also added Liquitex Glazing medium just because I didn't have any other medium handy!  HA

The brown fabric is a  shibori piece that you can hardly see any of the shibori pattern on.

I used the brayer to paint the stencil and decided I didn't want to waste the paint that was on top of the stencil.  So what to do?  Lay another piece of fabric on top of the painted stencil then using another brayer to make sure I picked up all the paint.

And here are the two pieces!  I can see some hand work on those gears!

I like the clarity of the brown stenciled fabric but kinda love the pink!!

I  also had a piece of watercolor paper that I used to pick up the remaining paint.  This turned out really good didn't it! I'll have to use it to make a card or write a note on!  Waste not, want not!!

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Fiber Post Cards

Last Valentine's I said I was taking a year off in 2017 from making any fiber Valentine's.  Guess who decided to start working on them!!!  I's not even Halloween, Thanksgiving or Christmas yet but I really need to start them early...I'm up to at least 35 at last count and will most likely add more!  I can't show what I'm creating this year but this is a sneak peak! 

I also needed to prepare some Sulky Totally Stable, which I use for printing the labels onto.  I had a roll of TS which I cut into 27-28" sections.   I colored each sheet using  Derwent's Inktense blocks.  

First off, you have to remember to color the fuzzy side!    TS is an iron on stabilizer so you don't want to color the smooth/shiny side!  I've done that on more than one occasion! 

I use the side of the block and rub lengthwise on the entire sheet. 

Next, you  brush on water (I use a foam brush) to color the entire piece.  The top part in this picture is covered with the Inktense block and the bottom has water brushed on.  The blocks blend quite nice with the water.  I've also used chalk pastels in the past, which also work well.  

Here is the piece ready to dry!

After the pieces dried, I cut them into sheets of 8 1/2" x 11" for printing labels onto.  I'll need to get another roll of TS because I can only print two labels per sheet. It is cheaper to purchase a roll vs buying the 8 1/2" x 11 sheets.  

So that part is finished!  While watching football this weekend, I'll update my Word document from last year that I use to create my labels in.  I'll have to add and correct some addresses!  I have a long way to go before I need the labels but it's nice to know I'm ahead of the game.  

I also made another snap bag today...not sure what I'll use it for but it will be used! 

Still working on my hand embroidery project so I really am keeping busy.  Since our weather has turned cooler (breezy and only 50 today with no sun!) I'll be staying inside doing hand work!  Bob wants to move the patio set into the garage this hoo...guess summer is over in Michigan!  

This is what fall looks like this year!  It's not a tree in our yard (they're all still green!) but dogs and I get to look at it on our walks!  We can't complain because the summer was beautiful this year and even the fall up until this week was wonderful!

Monday, October 17, 2016

Busy Week

I was gone every day this week!!!  Not my favorite thing to do but I did have fun!

First off, I finished the embroidery piece!


On Tuesday, Bob and I ate breakfast out for a nice treat...I had mentioned I wanted to go to Nick's football game that night so Bob said he would go with me and we'd get a bite to eat before the game!  Eating out twice in one day!  UGH...actually, I was hungry by 4:30 so we had a burger at Red Knapp's in was really good!  The game was good  too but they lost by 2 points...

Wednesday I met my bud, Alice, and we headed back to Oxford for a great lunch at Victoria's then we walked around the downtown.  It was a beautiful fall day and nice being outside!  Just a nice girlfriend day out!  Oh yea, we had key lime pie for dessert!  And it was delicious!!

Thursday Bob wanted to look for slacks at Kohl's so off we went..then off to Walmart, then to Cici's for pizza buffet!

 Friday, I met my other bud, Carol, to do some shopping and of course we had to eat lunch, so off we went to Olive Garden!  Yep, another fun girlfriend day out!

Needless to say I was glad to be home this weekend cooking!!!  Reminds me of our vacations 25+ years ago where you ate out every day and ended up looking forward to cooking when you got back home!  We're never satisfied are we! HA

Thursday, October 13, 2016

More least some free motion quilting!

I couldn't decide how to quilt the embroidery piece Beth made for us...see my previous post where I pulled out all the echo quilting!

I was playing with some free motion quilting on this piece based on some work by Judi Madsen (I'll comment on her later in this post).

So off I went to start quilting on the embroidery piece!  This is the back...

And this is the front.

I still have a ways to go and to add binding.  I think it's kinda 'hokey' but that's's not for a show or for sale or anything that reflects my work!  HA  It is what it is!!  So next up is to quilt the border on the embroider piece and then bind it. Then who knows what's next!  Yes, I do!  My hand stitching for my other challenge that's due in January/February.
I do want to comment on Judi Madsen's class on Iquilt.  Judi does beautiful machine quilting and I love seeing her work.  With that said, I think  her class is good but it does consist mainly of watching her quilt on her long arm. I enjoy watching an expert at free motion quilting but I think the cost of the class is a tad high (you can get a discount if you are an AQS member).  Judi does a good job of doing demo's on the white board which I found to be beneficial and I have used them in my work.  

I would like to  see patterns included with the class as downloads of the designs she uses (she does give you a pdf which shows feathers drawn out (but not how to do them).  She also shows how to mark quilts (both traditional and modern) but again, you have to stop and start the video because she  shows this pretty quickly!  But, you do have the ability to stop and start which is a good thing.  So enough of my review of the class...again, it's a good class and I did get tips from Judi...just a little high for 2 hours of a class.

We've had so many beautiful days this summer and fall!!  The trees are just starting to turn, which is late for us.  Tuesday, Bob took us out for breakfast and then we headed to Nick's football game later in the afternoon.    Another beautiful fall day!!

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

A little progress

Last week I posted on creating a piece of fabric using text and stencils (you can see that post here).   I really liked the way the fabric came out so I cut it up to make borders for my embroidery piece!  This was the piece I added organza that was printed with the flower design and added to the piece (you can see that progress here!)

I added a 1/4" insert of ultra suede then my border fabric!


Saturday I decided to start to quilt the piece..well, that was a mistake!  I really didn't have any design in mind so thought I'd just echo!  WRONG!

UGH!!!  So what did I do for over an hour!  UNSEW!   That's why you see all the threads in the two pictures above!

I knew while I was doing the free motion I didn't like it...but I kept going!  Why?  I have no idea!  Anyway, after removing all the threads I wet the sandwiched piece and it was drying in the sun on my table.  How will I quilt it...dang, if I know!  I do know it won't be echo quilting!

I did use a pen and draw some feathers...they won't be in the quilt...but I had to feel like I was doing something!
This watercolor paper was laying under my fabric when I painted it!  Makes a nice background piece of paper!  Just like training a dog!  End on a good note!

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Progress or not!

Bob hung my modern quilt (aka Beach Glass!) in our master bath yesterday.  It sure makes the room look different. I had two other quilts hanging in its place for the past 10 or so years!   Nice to change colors from burgundy/green to blue/greens.

So that's one project finished! 

 Although, let's face it...we're never finished with our projects are we!!  But then what else would I be doing if not projects!

Guess I could sit on the couch and eat bon bons!  Actually, some days that sounds like a good idea!

Friday, October 7, 2016

Gum Chewing Wedding!

Yep, 25 years ago, Bob and I were hitched in the 'gum chewing and where the heck is that minister anyway' ceremony at the Little Church of the West in Las Vegas.

We were the 7:20 p.m. wedding and elected for the # 3 package.  That included live music!, a wedding photo album, a video, certificate holder (another woohoo!) and fresh flowers!  The only main issues was "where is the minister?"  Well, he was found having a nip in the back parking lot!   That was so funny!

The other noted memory was both  of us were chewing gum, which we swallowed so we could at least say our vows!

Of course, we couldn't wait to get back to the hotel, change clothes and get to the slot machines!
I guess "what happens in Vegas" doesn't always "stay in Vegas"!

Yesterday, Bob and I had our anniversary dinner at Applebee's!  Well, it is Long Island special Thursday and we do like the food...besides, Bob is golfing today so we each had our favorite meal and drinks!  Not a bad night out!

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

More playtime

So, once again Laura Kemshall (DesignMattersTV) inspired me to play!  I know, I'm easily led aren't I!  Laura was showing how to turn your sketchbook work from your journal onto fabric.  Well, this little old lady doesn't have a sketchbook journal, so I didn't have any pages to put to fabric.  But I liked the technique and thought maybe a new piece of fabric might work better than the geese on my embroidery flowers!

To start, I used Liquitex acrylic ink to write on a scrap of white batik I had.  The batik has circles in the background, which I hoped would show through.
After the ink dried, which is rather quick, I stenciled using a heavy body white acrylic paint.  Stencils were circles and what looks like branches.  I have several of Mary Shaw's stencils, which I really like.

After the paint dried, I mixed Liquitex soft body  paints to a very, watercolor shade and painted over the entire piece.

I'm happy with the results and it appears the colors may go well with the embroidery flower piece. But that's for another chapter!  Or post!

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Another challenge....

I can't really show the entire challenge yet...but just to let ya all know I am working away at this piece!  It requires a lot of hand stitching and is due the end of January/February.  So.....

This was my start.....I did machine stitch with invisible thread  (straight lines) some areas just so the piece is stabilized to start hand stitching.

In the circles, on red areas, I'm using Turquoise or lime green thread(s) and on the other areas I'm using red thread.

For outside of the circles, I'll be using matching threads to the background.  I don't want to detract from the circles.

And this is my progress so far....again, not showing the entire get the idea!

I just love hand stitching....I know, I sound like a broken record.  But I really, really do love hand stitching!!

So far, this piece is coming out as I wanted it to.  There is tons of stitching left  but, because it is so relaxing to do, I should be the most relaxed person around when it's finished!  Let's hope!

Hubby was looking up movies to watch on Netflix!   Is this an old age thing all of a sudden! I don't see us watching any movies on Netflix as we haven't even watched some of the new shows that are out right now (Bull, Designated Survivor, etc.).  Too much football going on and he is in 2 or 3 Fantasy Football leagues.  At least it gives me time to hand stitch!  Or watch my own shows on Netflix!