Comatose

Comatose…that’s a good word for the extreme laziness I’ve been feeling this week. I have all kinds of excuses. I am stuck on some design decisions. I have a cold. Lots of outside commitments, like a dentist appointment and lunches. But mostly I just haven’t felt like diving into my work.

I feel like I’ve been complaining so much about not finding the right thing to go in the center of my ‘light’ piece, and I still haven’t found a bead or bauble that is right. However, yesterday my friend made a wonderful suggestion to look up symbols for light, since that was what I was trying to portray. Yeah, that was a ‘light bulb’ moment…hahahaha!

There are a lot of yin/yang symbols that portray light and dark and some things that don’t seem to deliver any kind of message. I found some Celtic symbols that I liked, though they didn’t necessarily mean light.

This is the symbol I will probably use.

It seems to be Hawaiian and means ‘the light that makes you gasp’. Isn’t that a wonderful phrase and thought?

I have to get it drawn to the best size for the piece and then decide the best materials, but I love this idea and I think it will work just fine.

This weekend brings a little bit of hockey, a quilt guild meeting and another trip to the dentist. There should be a tiny snuggle up with the grandson, too…the best part of any day of the week!

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Directions and sleeves, again!

Are you tired of looking at this piece, yet? Here’s the newest rendition ————

And the detail

I had always planned on making the spot where the bead is my focal point. And I thought this large bead, surrounded by small beads would work. Played with laying out more and more beads and it simply was not working for me.

So I took them all off.

There is not a single bead or button or rock in my collection that is just right for this spot. For the moment then, I have decided to stick with the total hand stitching aspect and  identify that focal spot with a few French knots.

They don’t stand out very much, so I know that won’t be the final look. I changed the direction I was thinking of, too, because I don’t want to give the idea of a picket fence!

This one is going into temporary time out until I get it all figured out!

And since I’m working on several shows right now, I have sleeves and finishing…always!

Sleeves last night

and today I will work on adding hanging hardware and wires to my canvas pieces.

When everything is actually ready to be sold, I can relax and think about new pieces again!

Let the purge begin…

Spending two weeks away from my studio, in a place with lots of peaceful vistas, a venue with a place for everything and everything in it’s place…lots of thinking got done. Coming home and unpacking led me to assess what I have in the studio.

Everywhere I looked, all I could see was disorganized chaos. Too, too much of everything and nothing really placed where it could be easily accessed.

I was thinking of the song lyrics–clowns to the left of me, jokers on the right, here I am–and all I could see was…projects to the left of me, samples on the right, woe is me!

Something must be done!

A teacher from camp will be able to use some yarn, if I get it to her, so I decided to start there. Didn’t get it all sorted yet, but there is a ton of it that I will never use! Time to move it on to where it will have a new and happy life.

There is still a bit more to sort through, and I should get it done tomorrow. I will be able to deliver it through a friend. Hooray! I’m pretty sure that teacher friend doesn’t know what she is in for, but she can always pass things along, too!

Purge is the word of the month for me. I had lots of time to think and there are certain things that I have played with in the past that I no longer wish to pursue. Those things will be GONE as soon as I can find new homes. Not much is trash, so craft adoption is the way I’ll choose to go.

Once again, I have a plan to clean up the studio space. I certainly hope I can stick to it all the way this time.

And maybe no new projects to show you for a little bit. If I stick to my guns and keep cleaning and sorting, new/old projects will be my reward!

 

Overwhelmed and almost defeated!

Yes, I am declaring myself officially scrap overwhelmed! I keep my scraps in baskets, roughly sorted into warm, cool and neutrals. Then there was the huge plastic tub of kinda sorted scraps that I told myself I was done with…and then kept throwing in project leftovers without any sorting. I kept tripping over that one so I figured I could get it sorted and cut into some strips and sewn up and truly done with! Hahahahaha!

This is sort of what it looked like when I started, but it’s actually another whole pile of fabric to be sorted that I used to use when I gave a talk.

After pressing a few things, I remembered that the box contained mainly bright fabrics that I had used in one way or another for baby quilts and I was tired of them. Here’s the stack of quite small pieces–enough for a baby quilt here by itself!

And the pile of larger pieces, all nicely pressed! Probably 2-3 baby quilts here.

A pile of all orange……….

And bright and black that I thought I might start each block with….

except now I have no idea what kind of block to make! My original idea was a log cabin kind with logs added only on two sides. Large and fast, probably but not good for using up those smaller pieces….which have lots of matching parts with the larger pieces. Sigh…………….obviously I need to do a little research and planning before I simply start cutting. I’m not likely to want everything all one size, even if my scrap sizes agreed with that idea. Ideally it would all go into one large quilt, since it all goes together.

And I thought using up my stash was hard with fat quarter and larger pieces….HA again! These smaller pieces are trouble and I can’t seem to bring myself to pitch it all or chop it up into dog bed stuffing or inflict it on someone else to figure out a solution.

Yep, overwhelmed and walked away for today. Cogitation needed! And maybe a glass of wine…………………………………………….sigh!

Stashbuster 1 done

It really doesn’t take very long to make a quilt top, when you keep the design simple and limit the fabric choices! Hooray!

I forgot to measure it for final dimensions, but it’s a decent cuddle up size! In an effort to totally keep it simple, I used all the smaller blocks in a header section and all the larger ones in the bottom section.

Sewed together super quickly and now we are ready to move on.

As I looked at the shelves, I had a moment of being totally overwhelmed with the task ahead of me. Making one top at a time will not make a dent in the stash until about 5 years from now, but each top made will be progress. Something will change before then…………

I realized that my hand dyes are here to stay, so I started stacking those on two of the shelves. I think I may have three shelves of hand dyes when I’m done.

And there are some things that are definitely heading out the door–like fabric that I bought when my daughter was a toddler and never made clothes with. She’s an adult now, with a 9 year old son, so I think it’s safe to rid myself of those pastel pink and blue knits.

When some of those items are off the shelves, it may be time to sort through for things I just plain don’t like any more. Those, at least, will be useful cottons that I can pass on to someone learning to sew. (My preferred method of disposal!)

I’m no longer overwhelmed, but it is a formidable task.

Next step is deciding on the next quilt top. Simple and pretty, so it will get done!

Empty Calendar!

As I checked my calendar for March, I found quite a few blank days. More than usual. Empty, uncommitted, free time! It’s so easy to say ‘yes’ to things and fill up those days, but I refuse to do that!

And I don’t think I am going to concentrate on finishing up art projects. Whenever I go to the studio, THIS

greets me. I am sick of looking at THIS.

I want stuff to be GONE! I am so tired of saving things because I plan on using them someday, or “I’ll get around to it when I have some time.”

I found a picture that I took in 2013 of this same spot.

Doesn’t look much different, does it? I probably had the same ambition to clean it out then as I do now.

Well, it looks like the time is here!

That empty calendar is a clear sign that action time is available. And those actions usually work better with a plan. So in my time between now and the “after March 5” beginning date, I will locate those patterns that I liked, when I used other people’s patterns. I will select some fabrics for each project, though that is always subject to change! I will plan a project or two of original designs, that use up my fabric the way I usually use it. And I. WILL. SEW.

And scraps…………….I get distracted by scraps. They are usually bits of fabrics that I loved and a piece will catch my eye and I’ll be off on a tangent, creating with scraps. This time, everything designated as a scrap will be going into a container with a lid, so I can’t see them!

My ultimate goal here is to get my fabric stash down to one set of shelves. If the other shelves are piled with unfinished tops, that will be just fine!

March will be my month to get it all under control. When I write it down like this, it seems like a very ambitious plan, very challenging. But it IS a goal, and without goals we never make progress.

Wish me luck!

Sittin’ by the lake…

That’s what I feel like when I’m looking at this piece. I think it’s done, except for the mounting!

Since it’s part of a challenge, one of the rules was to finish with raw edges, no binding. Not a problem for me, since I love those raw edges, but it was stitched without a backing, since I didn’t know how I would finish it. I believe I have it figured out, but haven’t had time to actually TRY it out. Some days there are just not enough hours!

My water and sky were large areas of the total, but I didn’t want to make them focus areas. Similar big stitching, fat threads got the job done and I’m excited to get it finished!

Water

Sky

You never know where a little challenge in your art group will lead! I love this piece!