Friday, August 25, 2006

One more pic added...

This is a close-up of the simple cat-square lap quilt I did for my GD Tabitha.

Aha, it worked!

What is it with uploading pics? Here is the I Spy Pillowcase.

summer has flown by.....I'm back

I've been very bad and totally ignored my poor blog. But spring and summer call me out the door. Working on quilts just goes to the wayside in opposition to playing in the dirt of my gardens. We had so much damage to the garden nearest and prettiest, when we had a new septic system put in last year. They tore up and re-shaped almost that whole yard area. The grass was gone, and many flower bulbs where scattered all over the ground area just below the dirt. I had to wait for them to start their growing to be able to find them.

Needless to say, the yard is looking much better now, and there are many new touches. So now I can get my head around the possibility of quilting. In the very hot days, I started slowly to put together an "I Spy" quilt for my granddaughter. She loved the little pillowcase with 3" squares I made for my youngest GD and wanted a bigger version for her bed. She is 10, and I didn't think that design would appeal, but she insisted she would just love it forever!!!

I started going through all the 6" squares I could find and then proceded to cut a whole bunch more to make enough to get a twin-size out of the design. (I had used many of my squares for the Katrina Survivors Quilts already made.) It came up a bit smaller than standard, but it will work. I put a dark purple print between each so that I could get a little more size without coming up with more squares. I didn't want to repeat any squares if I could help it. Then I was expecting to use the rest of the dark purp for the backing. But low- I was a bit short. I asked my GD if she would mind big wide stripes on the back. I had a white sheet that I could make stripes with. It came out just right. I'm trying to get a couple pics up of the little pillowcase and her lap quilt of cats. Let's see how blogger handles it today.

Friday, May 05, 2006

A "Fishy" quilt story...

When I was at that great quilt show in Sommers, I got a nice little fat-quarter pack with the brightest fish patterns I had ever seen. And I thought instantly of a great quilt for my son's wall. He is into aquariam fish, as well as liking to spend his vacation at the shore in Rhode Island.

So I put my thinking cap on and came up with a kinda porthole peeking pattern. I love the idea of 'stained glass' in quilting and I had gotten this roll of bias tape in black that has the fusing already on it. Super cool and easy to work with. So I incorporated that with the fish idea. Then I had a lot of other deep blues to go with the three in the FQ pack. Because water isn't smooth and still at sea, I cut the pieces without the ruler involved. So the blue squares are off tilt on purpose, til they were the right size to match the porthole squares.

Here is the finished wall hanging. It was and interesting one to work on with color combos that are unusual for me.

Here is a close up to show more of the detail on the porthole with gold blanket stitch, and the grasses coming up from the bottom are reverse bobbin stitching along with regular free motion stitching.

One more shot of a different part to show the beautiful materials.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

It's raining, so I can blog!

Been playin' in the dirt since it finally got warm and sunny here in New England. We had a new ceptic system put in last year that completely re-designed our yard. So I have been digging and adding and subtracting and moving plants, etc. But today and yesterday it finally rained soft and steady for all those plants to get a good drink and settle in their new spots.

But I did manage to finish this little wall hanging. It is using my own dyed background material and a whole bunch of fancy stitches from my machine, and some angelina fibers and beads for embellishments.
It was fun doing the 'swirls' for a first try. And the angelina stuff is soooooo pretty, that I was delighted to get it attached enough to show it off. I never knew what that fiber was til I read about it here on someone else's blog. She was sorry she couldn't seem to get any more locally. So I went to my favorite shopping mall -EBAY- and now I have five different colors to have fun with.

Monday, April 10, 2006

A couple more from Seymour... blogger finally was willing to take my uploads!

Always loved this pattern.

A jacket after my own heart...jungle cats and friends.

I have been trying to get more pics up, and have a very hard time trying in the daytime. Seems to work after at least nine pm. Does anyone else find this to be true with blogger picture uploads???

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Recent postcard art...

...that I tried uploading a few days ago. Today blogger seems to be cooperating again so I'm grabbing the chance to catch up.This lacy goody is for a friend who loves victorian.
And one for a fellow tea-drinker who now lives way up in Stowe, Vt.
This was a fun project for our real estate agent who has worked extra hard on trying to sell our complicated piece of property and houses. She had a bad time with a bacteria infection and I hope this will brighten her day a bit.

Now back to the drawing board. I have an idea cooking for a wall quilt. My son that is into fishy stuff hasn't received a recent quilt from me. I got some gorgeous material in a 'sweet treats' packet at that show in Seymour. It is a jumping off point for getting going. I want to incorperate the stained-glass method, and the cut-it-any-way without measuring method I have found on other blogs. The colors are really bright and 'out-of-the-box' for me. It also will include using the fancy bobbin threads and sewing upside-down for the first time. Should be fun.

Time out from Seymour for my own work...

...that I have been trying to upload for three days. Used this photo from a Vermont trip to guide the wall quilt below.
Used beads and stones to embellish and some fusible very gently touched on one edge to make the 'foam' on the water.
Longer bugle beads enhance the fall leaves
Hope you can see the crystal beads on the foam, here. And, of course there is lots of free motion quilting going on.

The difference with this quilt is that I used stiff Timtex as the base. Figured if it worked so well on postcards that a piece would make it easier to do the machine work. And the fabric pieces are just glued in place(Avery purple glue, acid-free) for the machine work, and it held the fabric just fine. I liked working on the firm surface, but found I should have included the edging in my measurements for cutting the Timtex. I put in triangle corners and used dowels on the top and bottom to hold it straight, but when you hold it in your hands the edging kinda flops and the picture is firm. Live and Learn...

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

A large Japanese garden quilt...

...that blogger finally let me upload. What is their problem? Can't I post more than one time a day? Can't I upload more than 3 pics?

This was really detailed, and made by a group of women. The pink blossoming tree was individual branches with tiny blossoms coming out of the quilt in 3-D
Hope you can see the detail here, but it doesn't compare with the real thing.

Now I just took a chance and got two more pics uploaded. Gotta hang in there while it's working!!!!

This was a fascinating wall hanging. Certainly fabric art, not a quilt.

A little bit of everything was in this.

Seymour show had a 'Window' quilt challenge.

The challenge was to depict something seen out a window. Any type of window, and any size. There were many more but I kinda liked these...

This was a flannel material so it had a very rich warm color scheme. The pic didn't pick up the warmth of the colors. I have always like this block that looks so three dimensional.
Another kitty one. It was a simple quilt, but favored my cats theme.
The lace in the window was three-dimensional and made to look like it was blowing in a breeze.

Here we have a Tuscany feel to the scene. Can imagine warm sunshine and soft breezes and a nice glass of wine in the afternoon.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Lotsa Pics!

But I was only able to upload three so far. Blogger seems to be struggling again.
These are from the quilt show in Seymour, Ct.

This was just amazing, in that it is loads of little bits and pieces all sewn down to make the beautiful garden. Of course, there is a kitty, and the lady certainly has earned her peaceful resting spot.

As I favor cats, they are often in the quilts I favor. This is no exception. He looks so comfy here.

And I do love the ocean- therefore this one is especially appealing. Love the simplicity of line and fresh open feeling. Just like being there.

I will try to upload more tomorrow, as I took 37 shots. I won't try to get them all posted, but certainly as many as I can. I love all the different methods used and am so glad to have the pics to remind me and inspire me.

Friday, March 31, 2006

Goin' to a quilt show...Whohooo!

No pics for today, but maybe a whole bunch in a couple more days. I and two of my sisters are going down to Seymour, Ct to a big show and I am looking very much forward to it.

I have learned so many techniques since a couple years ago when I first visited this large show. Therefore, I am itching to see more fabric-art types of quilts, maybe some postcards, and to buy all kinds of threads, embellishments, and the obvious great fabrics that I usually find at a show that never seem to be at my local stores. Hopefully, they might even have some demos with the new stuff that is out there and I have held off from trying because I don't quite know what to do with it.

Friday, March 24, 2006

A Quilt Window... my small bath that has no window.
I got this idea and inspiration from a quilt made for the alzheimers cause. I added my own touch with shelves, bottles and a plant. The Window also has sheer curtains and the edging is a color that looks like the wall color in the bath.

This gives you a closer look at the detail.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Fiery Sunset...

...another photo turned quilt.This was great fun, as I used a lot more free motion machine quilting than ever before. Just got these great variegated threads that seem a tiny bit thicker than ordinary sewing thread. Show up much better when you 'draw' with them.
Here is the pic I used to guide me. We took this going at least 65 mph(probably It wasn't convenient to stop on the highway, so I just shot from the open window. Hence the soft blur of all details!
A closer shot of the sky painting, and the tree silouettes. This quilt also incorporates the wavy edging idea. I thought it made a good contrast frame against the reds and oranges and yellow brightness and picks up that small dark cloud coming in at the left.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Using real photos helps make the quilts look real...

I found the pic I used as a guide for the last blog entry. I put the barn on the opposite side in the quilt, but I only intended for the picture to be a guide, so it worked out well.

Monday, March 20, 2006

New Scenic quilt

This one was actually all cut out from our last quilt camp get together. But by now I was improved on the machine quilting and I think this one came out better than my first ones.

Don't know if it can be seen but this is a closer look at the sewing.

This also comes from a pic I took on another trip we had made to Vermont. I figure if I use my pics, there will be more reality and balance when I try to put the fabric ideas together. I hope to try some more complicated angles now that I am getting the idea.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

One more of my older scenic quilts...

This one uses lace to accent 'waves' which I thought was a very clever idea. All of these use a curvy edge border idea, too. And it was encouraged to make the borders and edging wider and very noticeable, like in art work with a big mat surrounding it that made you want to look closer to the small picture within.
Hopefully you can see the lace poking up as surf and a spurt against the rock.

From the attic.....

....I managed to find my scenic quilts I had worked on a couple years ago. I had seen them at a quilt show, and bought a pattern for this one, but typically, I still did it in my own way. I did need the directions to get me started in the basics, but I let my imagination take over once I got those directions in place. This dunes scene is my fav' of the ones I did that year, but I want to do even better in the details and aspects of view, now that I have a better sewing machine, and a lot more learning under my belt. I learned how to open up my thinking a great deal in the making of these 25 different postcards. So now it is time to put that new info to work in a field I had only barely touched on a couple years ago.

Here you can see a bit closer the machine sewing I was newly learning.

The sailboats are somewhat three dimensional in that there is only the black 'mast' holding it to the quilt. I learned how to do the two-sided material in a class called 'Petal-Play' which taught how to make three dimensional flowers etc. Super idea that I have tacked on to this quilt- and a few others. I didn't particularly like how the quilting came out on this one. I think I can do better..sure hope so.

In this close-up you can see what I mean. The shapes are a little more 'blocky' than they should have been.

Monday, March 13, 2006

My first postcard swap all finished...

...with my favorite subject the big cats, and a neat idea I saw on another quilt. Each piece of 'fur' is folded and has an actual edge you can tuck your finger under. The outside edging holds them in place, with the accent cat pic in the middle.

I loved how this color combo turned out. I think it may be my favorite of the whole 25 cards. I did an extra edging with a fancy stitch, and it looks good on the back as well as the front.

This last one is "Victorian" inspired. Deep greens, pinks, and burgandy with that gold sparkle touch - great color combo in my book.

Now that I am finished with the cards, I'm dying to sign up for another swap. They were so much fun to make. But I'm going to hold off and work on my twin bed quilt for my guest bed.

And I wanted to share my 'scenic' quilts with you all, and finish the ones that are still in parts. Went to a small sewing center up in Glastonbury with my sister and got some neat 'grass' material. Have a goodly amount of scenic parts to play with and want to try using my skills that were honed on the great variety I tackled with the postcards. They definately helped me to stretch my imagination.

It also helped that I searched the sites for postcard inspiration and found so many other types of fiber art. So many talented people out there that I am somewhat stopped from trying, and yet encouraged when I read their accounts of how they felt at the beginning and some still do even now. Many humble and hardworking folks who just express themselves in a medium that is fun and beautiful and unbelievably varied.

Now to get back to work...

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Almost at the finish line...

Three more fun cards finished for the Postcard swap. This one has my first attemp at using cotton tatting thread on the edging. It broke more than once till I got the tension just right, and the bobbin rewound.(of course it ran out right in the middle of the trip around the edge!!!)

I called this one hot spot for the obvious reason. I had fun doing the free-motion embroidery on the little pink spot. I'm not sure I'm pleased with the black and whites, though. I think maybe I would have liked the round pieces to be exact circles, instead of freeform. And I'm thinking I would have liked it better if the quilting was grey or even black rather than the white. I'll have to try a second version and see if it improves.

This one was my first try at using different yarn and ribbon fibers with the machine embroidery holding them in place. There is a black netting with red dots covering it all, and I left the edge of the linen hanging off for a new effect.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

"Fiberart For a Cause" postcards

Took a bit of time out from the 'swap' cards to do some for a great cause. ( This seemed a wonderful way to express myself and to show concern for a terrible disease at the same time. These postcards we donate are actually sold at the "International Quilt Festival" in Chicago! They sold over 350 of them last year. Cancer hasn't got a chance if we all pitch in and fight it. So I am going to try to give it a couple punches of my own.

My favorite purples with a fish missing the net. I even added a few red beads to the net edging.

This speaks for itself in it's title -"Gone Wild" The fuzz of the yarn shows off the edge of the card as well. I even took a tiny crochet hook and pulled some of the fuzz looser from under the net.

This came out so cool. I loved the shear white material with the striping and couldn't think what to do with it to make the transparency work. One of the other scraps had a cloud-like shape and the bell went off. "Sunshine on a Cloudy Day" was born.

Friday, March 03, 2006

More lovely colors for postcard art!

I'm happily back at it with the postcards....

Here is a fav combo of mine. Black and White designs with a little bit of red to punch it up.

Lots of red in this one. Every heart design I could find in my stash to give a strong impression of Kitty Love.

Can never work enough with my favorite color purple. Again went into little scraps of my stash and found all the purps I could that would be used up in this little fan.

This one kinda represents my own blue dish collection I used to have in my dining room. Changed the color scheme many times since then, and the dishes are gone, sold on eBay or given away.

Love that EBay! Just went looking for rubber stamp colors. I has bought some garden theme stamps last year and promptly forgot them. I was so busy in other directions that when they finally arrived, I didn't follow through. Re-discovered them today and thought what fun they would be on my postcards so I was off to find some ink. I have never scrapbooked or any thing similar. These rubber stamps are beautiful and I am looking forward to trying them on material. I hope it works.