Kicking back

…at least on  the sewing! Spending time housecleaning and that is no one’s favorite job!

I did manage to get what I’m calling a first layer of stitching done on the Hole-y Quilt.


Each circle hole has been surrounded! And I’m using the same variegated embroidery floss that I have been using for a couple of months now. I’m not sure I’ll ever use up this colorway, but I have learned a lesson: don’t dye so many skeins of floss on the same tray! This is giving me some great lost and found edges, though, and I’m happy with that.


This one is destined for a lot of embellishment, I do believe!

There is a bit of yard work to be done before Saturday, too. I don’t care about raking the falling leaves. Those colors are so beautiful that I don’t mind seeing them on the ground as well as in the trees. But my front walkway is very overgrown. The phlox and sedum are covering half the sidewalk and there is a decorative grass that has grown as high as my roof and wider than the plot it’s planted in. Trim, trim, trim!!!

Early in the mum season, before the buds had blossomed, I headed out to my favorite nursery to get some for gifts and for myself. I wanted yellow, and the tag SAID yellow…this is my ‘yellow’ mum!


It’s pretty, but not what I wanted. So yesterday I went back and got some real yellow!


Need to stick those in the spots where the zinnias are dying.

And then back to the “flat surface syndrome” cleaning. You know–wherever there is a flat surface in your home, things get piled up on it. Today they have to ALL get cleaned off.

Artisan Showcase is THIS Saturday!



Filed under Art Quilts, Color, Designing Quilts, Shows

Calling it good!

There is only a week until the Artisan Showcase and I’ll pretty much need that time to clean the house and prep it for the show. That means that I need to be done with any new creating, or even any finishing up of found UFO’s. There is just no more time!

There are a few things I need to keep working on, like sleeves and labels. I have a few of those to do!

little-christmas-pieces sleeves

Hand sewing anything is relaxing–except when you have a deadline and can’t get into the slow stitching mode! Almost done, though. I think I only have one more sleeve to attach.

Here are some pictures of things I may have left hanging with you…


This is what I chose for the final look of this piece–detail below. I want it to have a title that includes something like Underwater Reef Surprise but that doesn’t sound as good as I would like. Time to hit the thesaurus for this title, as well as others.


Did I show you this one? Started out large and discouraging and I cut it in half and now it’s two pieces that I like!


Another piece that I found in the UFO pile was this tropical island that I made over a year ago. Finally mounted and ready to find a new home.


And speaking of discouragment…this desert city piece did not go according to plan at all! It was supposed to get beads and with the fused fabric and the quilting I did, that plan did not work. My art quilting group suggested foiling and I thought it would work just fine…until I tried it on a practice piece of fabric. Totally disastrous. The only thing that worked was fusible web and that would have taken longer to put on than the original planned beads!

I decided to go with paint and stencils, which is what I created the original fabric with. I got out all my shiny paints and tried them on the type of fabric I would be painting.


If I had planned this from the beginning, of course I would have painted the fabric before I cut it and fused it to the background. This will work, but I needed to mask off the parts that I didn’t want metallic paint on! What a pain!

desert-city-painting-1 desert-city-painting-2

It worked, but this whole piece took a big track away from the original plan. Because of that, I don’t like it as much as I thought I would…but it could be a favorite for someone else!

Final finishing details are all that remain for me for the next week. That and cleaning…doesn’t that sound like fun? NOT! But it is so worth it because I absolutely love hosting this show. I most likely will not have much to blog about but I definitely will not subject you to pictures of my housecleaning adventures!


Filed under Art Quilts, Designing Quilts, Non-traditional Quilts, surface design

Same thing, different day!

Still frantically looking to get things finished for my Showcase next week. I’m opening drawers and bins that I haven’t touched for months! I found a few Christmas themed items that just needed a little bling and a finished edge, so I jumped on that boat! Remember putting sequins and beads on styrofoam balls to make ornaments? Well, somehow I acquired someone’s leftovers from a lifetime of those ornaments…it had to be a lifetime because no one could have that many leftovers from just a few ornaments!


Then I had a nightmare moment! I remembered my Rainbow piece that I had folded up and put on a shelf and it NEEDED to be done. And I couldn’t remember how much I had left to do on it and didn’t think I could possibly get it done!

So today was devoted to conquering the panic nightmare. I found where I had stashed the piece and found that I only had 6 more strips that needed embellishment and then an edging. HUGE sigh of relief, because that could be done today. And it is!


Well, except for a label and hanging sleeve, but I have several things that need those little details. Oh–here are some details from the rainbow.

rainbow-detail-2 rainbow-detail-1

Now if I can only remember what I had for a title, I’ll be all set and breathing a big sigh of relief!



Filed under Art Quilts, Beading, Color, Handwork

Working on the UFO’s!

Since I have the Artisan Showcase coming in less than two weeks (yikes!) I need to finish what I can this week and clean and set up next week. I had a large pile of almost finished items and I’ve been whittling away at them. But in reality, each piece always takes a bit longer than I think it will and I know now that I will not get them all done. So the priority is to select those things closest to done and concentrate on finishes.

So when I can say DONE! it makes my day.





And someday I may learn my camera well enough to get clear close-up detail photos!


This next one only needs that pesky background mounting decision! I was thinking paint, but it may be mounted on fabric stretched over the canvas. I’m trying out different colors and fabrics and simply need to pull the trigger and go for it.

coral-reef-surprise-1 coral-reef-surprise-4 coral-reef-surprise-3 coral-reef-surprise-2

Again, I’ll ask for advice from all of you. However, when I laid out the orange wool, my heart went pitty-pat. It’s very, very bold, though. While that appeals to me, will it appeal to a buyer? Do I care? Should I care?

And I’m aiming for DONE!


Filed under Art Quilts, Color, Quilt Design

Against the grain

On my latest finish, my advice was to use black, use piping, use orange, use green…and I’ll say that I took heed of all that advice and tried it out. Then I went with something totally different, and here’s why!

Black–safe, effective, comfortable and, to me, boring. Orange and green–for the same reason, too bright, too bold, too much contrast (and I never thought I would use those words!). But they both fought with the piece itself for attention. Piping really separated the design from the background and I wanted them to speak to each other.

And the winner is: a rich, deep burnt orange!


I’m satisfied that the background supports the piece without competing with it and it’s much more lively than black.



Filed under Art Quilts, Color, Designing Quilts

Too many beginnings

My last post showed you the beginning of a new piece. Haven’t had a chance to touch it since. However, that didn’t stop me from getting distracted and starting yet another piece!

Bent over to pick this scrap up off the floor…


and as it hit the table top, a new idea was born. My little pile of African fabric squares was laying right there and they needed to be put together and one thing led to another…

Beads will be added on the organza strips but I’m not sure which background I’m going to use. Tell me which one you prefer!

african-mask-3 african-mask-2 african-mask-1

I truly can’t decide!


Filed under Art Quilts, Beading, Contemporary, Designing Quilts

Barely begun

Decision made on how to proceed with this piece–kind of! Trying to be a little subtle, so I selected fabric with less contrast behind the circles. I’m starting embroidery with variegated floss in the same general color family.  And that’s as far as the decision process has gone.


I tell myself that leaves the door open for impromptu changes and spontaneous direction changes. I want beads, but don’t know where yet…

Back this morning from two weeks away and this is what I got done. Didn’t go through the mail and pay the bills, didn’t unload the car or teaching stuff or put anything away or do laundry. Took a nap, ate pizza for dinner and did a little sewing.

Tomorrow is soon enough to get back into the regular groove!


Filed under Contemporary, Designing Quilts, Handwork