Tag Archives: just for fun

Obsessed

Yes, obsessed with beads! Can’t resist! Here is what I found today…

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But the red beads were on sale for Valentine’s day! I really like these floral shell beads, too. Oh…true…I really like them ALL!!!!

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Filed under Beading, Color, Life

Lost in the wetlands…

Not me, thank goodness! The wildlife refuge where we walk has nice paths raised above the wetlands so that it’s easier to see the birds and alligators. When I am standing on that path and look in any direction, I see to the horizon, but it’s all the same…grasses, water and a few trees.

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Hot sun, even in February and nothing but that sun to give you direction. When I step off the path, down to actual ground level, this is what I see.

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It makes me realize how foolish it would be to leave these nice, safe paths. And how hard it would be for anyone who was camping or tracking birds to try to find their way out of the wetlands. You could so easily lose your way.

No metaphors, or philosophy today. Simply the physical reality of this environment…AND there are alligators!

Lectures and teaching this week then it’s real vacation time. Still funny to think of vacation when I am retired but it’s essentially a change of routine and a break from “should be doing” to “whatever I feel like doing.”

Aaaaahhh…

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Filed under Life

Did you hear the brakes squealing?

My brain took an abrupt turn around all the projects I have hanging around my studio and I practically got whiplash from the spin!

This

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and this

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are now going to be merged into one project!

I couldn’t decide what to do with either one of them separately but suddenly it seemed perfect to slam them together!

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I threw them up on the design wall and tried out a couple of sashing fabrics. Here’s how round 1 came out.

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One more row top and bottom and suddenly I have a full size quilt!

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I’d put a little border on it, but I don’t have any more of the yellow sashing fabric and nothing else really seemed to fit. And the best part is that I have only a tiny pile of scraps left.

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The strips equal about one more width of the quilt and they will be fine to go into any back I put on this. I’m feeling pretty good about my Use Up the Stash efforts this week!

Now–I almost forgot that I have a group project that is due a few days after I get back from my next trip. I won’t be able to take it with me, so I guess that jumped to the top of the list, didn’t it? And it’s one of those that I can’t show you until later. S0……………busy, busy, busy!

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Filed under Designing Quilts, Fabric, Thinking About Quilting!, Use Up the Stash

Couch potato time!

My immediate teaching and learning opportunities and obligations are fulfilled! I have a couple of weeks to relax before the next  class and then I’ll be on a vacation. I can feel myself slipping into lazier and lazier by the minute. However, when I get lazy, I am not idle. For me, it means that I have time to leisurely knit or embroider or sew without interruption and that is the greatest possible luxury.

My 1 Year of Stitches project was a little bit stalled. I keep stitching on it but I’m not liking it very much. I moved it to a separate page on this blog simply so that I can more easily see my progress on this year long project. I thought I was done with this piece of fabric

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but I added more circles to it and I’m going to fill it up some more. At some point I’ll call it done and start on something else, but it IS very nice to have something always at the ready when I have a few extra moments. You can see detail photos here if you are curious.

There is a big pile of stuff in the studio that needs sorting out and an even bigger pile that didn’t make it downstairs. This all needs to be sorted and re-packed for my next teaching adventure in a few weeks.

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That is, if I can motivate myself to get up off that couch!

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Filed under Handwork, Learning New Things!, Teaching

Something new–again!

While I really need to stay at the sewing machine and try to put a dent in my fabric stash, I’m always easily distracted! I got a set of cutting blades for stamps today.

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I’ve only tried stamp carving once before, in a class, and I really liked it. I have a ton of stuff for making stamps, like self-adhesive foam, hot glue, corrugated cardboard, foam core, shapes and pieces and bits and bobs, but not the carving stuff.

I took an old eraser, just like I used in my little class, picked up a blade and made some cuts! Didn’t even draw a picture; just wanted to get the feel of the blade.

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When I stamped some fabric with it, I found out that it was not totally flat and it left a void in the center.

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But with this simple carving it was easy to overstamp and fill in the void.

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Feeling braver, I turned the eraser over and drew a little flower.

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Picture of the carving was blurry, but here’s how it worked!

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And then on paper

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I’m sold on carving anything that is carve-able now! I’m going to try not to jump into stamping and neglect my sewing goals for the next week! Stash busting is at the top of the list for the next little while, with only a few little distractions allowed!

 

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Filed under Art Quilts, Learning New Things!, surface design

And next up….

The Knot Even Quilters (AKA Whacky Quilters!) have chosen paper fabric for this month’s experiment. I have read about it but not done it, so that’s what I played with yesterday.

Start with plastic covering your table–for sure! There are many and various blogs and tutorials on the internet, so I just played with what felt right as I went along. Mixed glue and water and went to town.

One of the tips was to water color the tissue paper before you use it. I was planning on using old watercolor paintings for a base…maybe…so I wet a couple of paintings and put some tissue paper on them.

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Picked up the color just fine, but very pale. Fine if you start with a white base, not so much if you start with color. But I had colored tissue paper for playing with, too.

I used three different bases for my experiment: a thin, mesh-y fabric, a regular cotton, dyed dark, and a relatively thin paper watercolor painting.

I added tissue and glue and threads and yarn.

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When wet, you could see everything very well.

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When I came down this morning to the dried pieces on the plastic covered table, here’s what I saw.

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Nothing too exciting when I peeled the pieces off the plastic…I left half of each piece as is and took the other half to play with.

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The dried tissue on the watercolor paper, without glue, actually looked the most interesting!

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The thin, mesh fabric ended up being way too thin to use as is, but it can be layered on something else or more tissue and texture added to it. I did a bit of stitching on the other two pieces. The fabric base had white tissue over the whole thing and dried to a pretty boring piece. The transparency of the pieces when wet vanished when dry so the white tissue made the piece pretty boring and white! That will NOT be the top layer next time!

I tried tearing the tissue in a few places to expose the metallic thread I had inserted, but it didn’t want to tear very well. Verdict: I could use this, but it would need a lot of work before it would be something I liked.

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The watercolor paper base also had a white tissue covering the top, but the yarn I inserted while layering didn’t seal tightly and was easier to tear open for texture. It stitched quite well and gave me a base that I think will make an interesting project, worth further development.

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There will be more experiments, because I have a TON of old watercolor ‘paintings’ to play with…quite a few that are really ugly and now there is hope for new life! I definitely have a whole new area to explore. Hooray!

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Filed under Art Quilts, Color, Learning New Things!, surface design

I made a quilt!

Though it’s certainly not the first quilt I’ve made, it almost feels like it. It’s been a long time since I’ve made a regular quilt, not an art quilt and it feels really good. I need to do it more often.

I could definitely use up a lot of scraps this way, as well as all that yardage sitting on my shelves. I keep telling myself to use it, use it, use it but I am so easily distracted…

Check out the finished top

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No borders…this is the final product. It’s hard to see, but there is a little bit of a focal point with a pathway through the top.

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It’s those few blocks that were made with multi-fabric strips. They are in a trail from top to bottom. I know it’s there, anyway!

No idea what happens next, but I’m sure some lovely bit of fabric will attract me as I clean up the trimmings and yes, scraps, from this quilt. I believe I will be donating them to the lady who uses them for stuffing dog beds!

On to a new adventure…

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Filed under Modern Quilts, Non-traditional Quilts, Quilt Design, Use Up the Stash