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Saturday, January 30, 2021

It's not my fault!

 That's right!  It's not my fault that I'm interrupting my mono printing, knitting, collage work...I'm going to blame this latest technique to 'play with' on Kathy Loomis from Art With A Needle!  A few weeks ago, Kathy did a post about learning a "magic cross stitch".   Isn't it cool!

Magic Cross Stitch by Kathy Loomis

Sounds simple doesn't it!  Who doesn't know how to make a cross stitch!  Kathy has taught this class in person but also put together a 50 page tutorial you could purchase on how she does the "magic cross stitch".  So guess who purchased the tutorial! see it's all Kathy's fault!  

I have to say when I first started out stitching her technique/tutorial, I had a few 'right brain/left brain' confusion episodes!  But Kathy shows how to do this random stitching in a unique way, which I finally got it (well, most of the time!)!  I really think it's quite clever, even though the process is quite simple.  

So, I started...first I was trying to find the cotton/linen fabric to stitch on...I was anxious to get started (yep, just like a kid!) so I grabbed one of my previous stamped/overdyed pieces.  I haven't asked Kathy about this yet, but whenever I use embroidery thread(s), I always separate them and then place back together to stitch with.  I did notice my stitches were really loose/separated (see pink circle area) so I just started stitching with the six strands and not separate them.  

This was just to get used to the stitchin, I'm not going to finish this.  It was just a snip of fabric to play with.

Here was my start...actually, the background fabric is a deep purple.  It's Cherrywood fabric that I purchased several, several, several! years ago at Huston IQA show!  I tried to alter the color to what it really looks like but no success.  

I have a ways to go filling in more cross stitches on this piece.  I'm not adding to fill in the entire piece only more cross stitches on top of what I have.  It's hard to see but I have placed diagonal lines extending from the cross stitching.  I'll be doing either stab hand stitching (sorry, Kathy!  HA) or free motion.  

My readers  know I get bored easily so of course I had to start another piece before this one is finished!  HA

This is a strip of mottled black fabric that I stitched grid lines with straight stitch (I plan on stab stitching heavy threads on the grid line after finishing each square).  

This is the back of the fabric.

And so I started.......I am not sure what other color of thread I will use for the alternate this point, I don't want to stitch white in each square (which are 2"x2").  

And this is as far as I've stitched.....what will I do with this piece of the other piece?  Who knows...but they will find a way in my art work or perhaps even in a fiber card or two!

Thanks, Kathy for a new technique to add to my 'tool box'...even though it's overflowing with techniques, this is one I'll keep!

Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Boring I know - More Mono Printing!

 Yep...more mono printing!  A gal has to keep busy, right!  And I haven't decided on my next knitting project yet, so...I have to play, right! 

This is the piece I showed in my last mono print blog post. 

I've added a strip at the top and started to fill in the the tree trunk the little bird is attached to.  So interesting, very few have noticed the little bird on the bottom!  HA  I found this picture in the Bird and Bloom magazine and thought he would fit!

Now to add stitching...the papers are fused on a piece of batting (12"x12").  

These are some other mono prints I did using layering technique and ghost prints.  I really like how they  each turned out.

For my next collage I used the print above (on the left) and part of the print, on the right, in this picture.

The orange strip(s) are from some older papers I've printed last summer or maybe the summer before!  HA

I'm happy with how this one turned out.  Again, I need to think about stitching or whatever!  This one is 9"x10", again, fused on a piece of batting.

Today we're enjoying some time inside...what a unique idea!  HA  Snow started around 5 a.m. and we've received about 2 should taper off by afternoon so we'll just enjoy the beauty of a Michigan winter from inside our house! 


Friday, January 22, 2021

More Mono Printing

Still playing around with more mono prints.  I like the black printed piece I stenciled last summer and looking at it closer noticed some pale blue throughout. didn't seem like enough blue so I overdyed with some Robin Egg Blue dye by just painting the liquid dye on the cloth.  I wanted to use this piece as a background for a new collage I started to work on but I just couldn't get it to work out...too busy of a piece but I still like it and I will use it somewhere.   

But check out the Botanical stem stencil that I printed in the middle.  It's a stencil by Mary Beth Shaw and I really love it.  It's 9"x12" and a perfect size.

This was a ghost print on deli paper after I printed some layers using the gelli plate.

The prints on the sides were from using up any paint on my gelli plate.

Sorry...forgot to turn the picture...birds of course!  HA  

I used the original mono print of the Botanical Stem above to be the focal point for this  collage.  You can see where I used some of the bird stencil prints and ghost prints as well.

I added a picture from my Birds & Bloom magazine to the bottom right.  He just seemed to fit.  

I still need to blend some of the hard edges as well as extend or outline the stems.  The print is brighter than what's showing in the can see the 'real' color in the first picture on this post.  Hopefully, when it's finished it will look deeper when I photograph it! 

Instead of putting this collage on a canvas (because I didn't have any!) I just fused to some batting.  I'll be machine and hand stitching so this works better for me.  Too hard for me to stitch through canvas.  Now on to the next collage.  

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Some Mono Printing

 These are some of my mono prints from this week using the Gelli plate.  I had some papers previously printed that I wanted something on the backs of them.  Good way to play and practice.  I just used any acrylic paint or Set-a-color opaque paint to print with.

This was a ghost print from the one below that I ended up adding some painted bubble wrap and paint.

The first print was for the feathers outline..then I painted over a ghost print from another print!  You can see what it looked like in the second pic below before I added the blue print.

This was a ghost print from the print below.

A before print (see 2nd pic above for the finished pics).  I downloaded some out of order and too lazy to reload!  :)

Nothing great...just some bubble wrap and smearing from leftover plate on the gelli plate.

Had to use up the pink paint!

I love working with feathers on the gelli plate!

I took the wet feathers from the print above and laid on top of the white feathers...putting them a little off center of each feather.

  The first print with the feathers 

And, again, took the feathers and laid on top of the papers and printed.

The feather ones turned out really nice!  These are all 8"x10"

Just playing with leftover paints and feathers!  Fun hour or two and the backs of my papers have some cool designs printed on them.  

Sunday, January 17, 2021

Birthday Time...

 My 74th BD was  day of ups and downs...Bob gave me a beautiful, meaningful BD card, we had a nice breakfast and then the Internet went down.  OK, so not a big deal, right...but enough to have to call tech support and be on hold for over 1.5 hours until a real person came on.  Later about that remaining 60+ min. call.  

While Bob was on hold, I had a phone call from my friend's sister in Florida informing me that my friend had passed away!   I received the message Elizabeth had passed away around 10 a.m. on 1/16.  I was devastated and just in shock. 

 Elizabeth and I have always kept in touch with each other via email/text or phone calls.  Elizabeth was such a kind soul and just a sweet, sweet is her twin sister, Jane.  My heart hurts because it's such a shock and it certainly made my birthday seem like such a silly thing to celebrate.  

Elizabeth's little dog is named Ranger and she has been working him in agility!  They were becoming such a wonderful team in that sport!  Ranger is the only dog, other than Kalee, that Gigi would actually play with.  They would lay in the grass while Elizabeth and I would talk (and talk!)...we both love to talk and the two 'kids' would run in the back yard.  Sometimes playing and sometimes just ignoring each other.  Other times, one of us would be on our dog walk and the two dogs would just lay in the grass, yep again, just listening to Elizabeth and I talk!  This is hard for those who know Gigi to think she would tolerate another dog.  I love little Ranger and I'm so glad Elizabeth's sister has him to hold in her heart.  Elizabeth will always be with her in this way.

Fortunately, my grand daughter, Amber, called  me just as I had hung up talking with Jane...and we did a video chat on Google Duo.  That was such good timing...I needed that call from we chatted along for over 20 min.  Amber was keeping me occupied, which I didn't realize at the time.  She knew what surprise awaited me!

 Bob was still on hold and then he signaled me that he needed help with the tech and the Amber and I hung up...I went into the office and started to help Bob when my daughter called on the phone.  She said "open the garage door"!  And yep, Dawn and my DIL, Kris were unloading their car! 

Those sweet girls brought me beautiful flowers, an Instant Pot air fryer, recipe book, birthday cake, breakfast for tomorrow (Dawn's famous French toast) and Blueberry scone mix! What more could this 'mum' ask for!!!

This Air Fryer fits on top of my Instant Pot!  Both the girls use their Air Fryer's and love them.  I can't wait to experiment with more recipes!  

The brown topping is for the delicious overnight French Toast my daughter has all ready for me to bake...and fresh blueberries and scone mix!

This is the BEST overnight French Toast!  Both the girls are great cooks and always find fantastic recipes!

This is a White Chocolate Raspberry bundt cake! DIL has had this cake on different occasions and it is fabulous!!! And it's all mine! HA Well, I will share!

Well, the only thing left was what to have for dinner!!! Bob called and ordered take out Mexican from our favorite Mexican restaurant. My favorite dinner (chicken Faitas and chicken flautas!). Of course a Margarita was in order too.

Oh, back to the internet...we were actually on the phone for over 3 hours trying to get the internet up and running...which we finally did the pswd has been changed to this funky pswd that we now need to either a) change - which isn't as easy as it sounds or b) change all our devices, which are at least 10-12! That includes phones, laptops, tablets, NEST, Google get the picture!

And, yes, we did have some cake! SO SO SO good!

It has been a day of different sad for the loss of my friend and how her twin sister is hurting and I can't be there to give her a hug. And so thankful for my wonderful family who give so freely of themselves to make others happy. I am truly blessed and so thankful for what I/we have.   

Thursday, January 14, 2021

A gift and playtime!

 Look what my wonderful "Q" bud from Florida (aka Susan) send me! 

 She's so sweet and knows how much I love sketchbooks and journals.  This one can be used for lots of most art's 80lb acid free paper!  Can't wait to get started to fill it up.  Susan gifted me several  journals over the years.  One I use for Hilary's online's over half way filled already!  Thank you my friend...I think of you anytime I use one of your special journal gifts!!

And I did print a page in my new journal  Well, sorta a print...I was painting over the stencil of the crows from a screen print.  Working on using the crow silhouette I showed on my blog before....just trying some different ways of using the print!

This past weekend (after finishing the knitted project) I was ready to get back to some artwork.  Our online class with Hilary starts back up this week.  So, as I was watching some video's folks had recommended, I came across a cool YouTube channel called "Art Prof:  Create & Critique".  They have some really interesting video' I had to play a little...after all I have so many papers I've made in Hilary's online class..good use of the ones I'm not so crazy about!  

This project is called the Lotus Fold Artist book...kinda fun and similar to the Squash Book I made for Amber back in 2019.  I wasn't sure what I was going to do with this...perhaps write inside each section...or stamp...or do nothing!  Now there's an idea!

The cover is 4.5 inches and sheets inside are 8 inch folded...these were some ugly papers I had...just to practice with.

The pale purple are the covers..and the other squares are the folded pieces of papers.

When the piece unfolds, this is what it looks like!


Kinda a cool folding technique isn't it!

Just a picture of it being folded back together

I hung it up on my wall...didn't know what else to do with it...but might fold back again...don't want to ruin the folding!

Not a good background...but you get the idea!  So now onto working to create my canvas background for our online lesson!

Monday, January 11, 2021

Ta Da! Finished!

 Yep, my knitted top is finally finished and before spring!  HA  

I also have to be aware of the pants I wear with it.  The ones I have on now don't have a button or zipper closure but they do have a wide (3-4 in waistband/elastic) that shows least I can see it just below the waist area.  Picky I know...but....

This really was an easy pattern, if you pay attention to your knitting!  That's the only time I had to rip out was if I added a YO or dropped a stitch...but I finally only worked on the top when I was not watching TV!  That seems to help.  HA

So from start to finish..

It only took about 3 months...but I did other things in cooking breakfast, lunch, dinner, breakfast, lunch, dinner, breakfast, get the idea!  I have another knitted project in mind....but so far that's where it has to stay...our online class is back up with Hilary so I need to get busy with that!