Saturday, December 31, 2016

The State of the Studio - 2016

Well, it is 10pm on New Year's Eve so I guess that it is time to look back at my studio time for the year.  Unfortunately, it has been a bit slim this year!!

However, I did have a few finishes that I am proud of.   The first was for my friend Cathy who succumbed to cancer just a few days after she received the quilt......

Next was a baby quilt made for my Daughter's good friend, Emily.....

Then there was the "Southern Thing" challenge.......

.....followed by the Sunflower applique.....

 ....and the final finish of the year was "No Fishing".....

While not a quilt, I have one more finish that I am proud of for this year.  My husband Michael, is starting a new hobby in 2017.....building reproduction black-powder firearms..... and he needed a workbench.    We decided that we wanted to make it heavy-duty so that it could serve many purposes.  I had spent much of my childhood sitting in the garage watching my Dad build things so over the years I had learned a thing or two about construction.  So Michael put me in charge of design and production and he provided the muscle for the job.   And, it turned out great......

So, as we ready to head into 2017 there are lots of things running thru my mind .....

  -  will I get my Nepal quilt finished in time for the show???

  -  will I get my Queen Size pineapple quilted in time for the show???

  -  will I figure out the block placement for my Christmas Pineapple quilt???

  -  will I finish the Kaffe Fasset Needlepoint that I have been working on???

  -  will Michael be awarded the Fullbright fellowship which will mean that we be spending FOUR months in India in 2017??

  -  how will the new gun building hobby go???

  -   will I finish with digitizing all of our old photos???

  -  will I survive this year's income tax season with my sanity intact???

But, most importantly, I am thinking of all of my friends and family and how they have been such special parts of my life in 2016!!!

I am truly looking forward to what 2017 brings.....

Monday, December 26, 2016

It’s Rose Smelling Time!!!


I don’t tend to “wax philosophical” very often but this is one of those posts…..

Lately I have been in a hurry!!

When we got back from our travels I was in a hurry to get things put back together at home.   Next I was in a hurry to get to Texas to visit my Mom.  Then I hurried thru October, trying to get everything done so that I could have “creative time” in November.   I hurried thru Thanksgiving so that I could get the house decorated for Christmas.   I hurried thru the decorating so that I could get ready for our party the following week.   I hurried thru the party so that I could get Michael off on his trip two days later.   I hurried thru the 13 days that he was gone trying to get as much done during that time as I could.  I hurried thru the gift shopping, doing it all in about 90 minutes on Amazon.  I hurried thru the family Christmas Eve festivities so that I could get to the relaxation of Christmas Day.  And today, the day after Christmas, I have been hurrying to get my house un-decorated and redecorated for Winter.

The problem with all of this hurrying is that I forgot to stop and enjoy the events, the people and the fun of the season and that makes me sad!!Sad-Emoji

SO, I want to start this new year ( well actually this new week) off with a different attitude, one that says its okay if I DONT get everything done that I have planned, or if I DONT get my quilts ready for the upcoming show or if I DONT get the ME time that I desire.  Instead, I want to strive to enjoy each and every day regardless of what I am doing and stop all of this hurrying and looking at the next thing!!

So, if you see me on the street or in the Blogsphere, ask me how it is going?  It is going to take ALL of you to pull me thru this one!!!!!

AND, please feel free to join me in a bit of Rose sniffing……I’ve heard its good for the soul!!!!


Wednesday, December 14, 2016

No Fishing

The latest challenge for our guild is called “Say It with Flowers”.  The rules are that the quilt has to have words of some sort on it and has to contain 3 flower fabrics.  At first I searched online for words or sayings to use and came up with things like “Be Creative” and other cutesy sayings.  None of them caught my fancy!!

Then, my computer screen saver popped up a photo that I had found in my Mom’s stuff.  It was a photo of an old Windmill that was on my parent’s property.


The best part of the photo were the words “No Fishing”… search for inspiration was complete!!!

As I drew out the pattern I decided that I wanted a more “up-to-date” windmill, so I started out just working on the background first with the idea that I would add the windmill later.

I had originally planned to make the sky collage style using  a bunch of different fabrics, but when I saw this one, I decided just to make it easy, especially since I am on such a short time line.



Next was to add the ground.  My initial attempt was good, but when I looked at it, I realized that good ole West Texas soil wouldn’t have that much green in it. 


Michael agreed and I pulled all of it off and started over again……


This is MUCH better.

As I started to work on the trees, I first cut them out of solid green fabrics, but again, when I looked at the photo, I realized that they were Mesquite trees and very wispy.   Mine were MUCH too solid.

Then I decided to try painting them and pulled out my trusty favorite sponge and started mixing green paints.  I didn’t really trust myself to paint directly onto the sky fabric so instead I cut pieces of the fabric out and ironed them to freezer paper that had the tree shape drawn on it……


I was then able to cover the entire piece with paint without having to worry about the outlines…..


Now I just had to cut it out!!IMG_2509

Now the background is complete and it was time to start on the Windmill.  I got online and started looking for photos of windmills that I might want to use.   I found this one…..


…. but obviously something was missing!!!

After playing around with it a bit and trying to extend the legs, I came up with this…..


It looked good but was a little TOO perfect..,…the one at my parent’s farm NEVER looked this good.

At this point I made the decision to build the windmill myself, using strips of fabric and just adding on as I wanted to….should be interesting!!!

It was a lot of fun putting all of the pieces together and trying to figure out where the shading needed to be.  I was excited when I stepped back from it and was able to see how it looked….IMG_2528

One thing that I have learned is to use a grey Fabrico marker to make the shadows.  


It works perfectly!!!    I really need to buy a stack of this color since it is about the only one that I use!!

The next step was to do the mill itself….

I wanted a metallic looking fabric so started with a solid grey fabric and added a Lumiere pewter paint on top…..


I then added a bit of black to the paint and sponged some more…..IMG_2538

I wanted the sail to look different from the blades so did the same thing but started with a  print fabric….


I was so pleased with the final result…..


The last step was adding some fussy cut flowers (from 4 different fabrics)….


I had a wonderful time doing the quilting and trying to think what details needed to be added with thread.  I am happy with the final result….IMG_2547

If I was making it again, I would make the windmill base narrower and shorter.  I think that the proportion would look better.

Overall, the thing that I enjoyed most about this quilt was stepping outside of my box and trying painting the fabrics and just using the pattern as a guide and not as an exact pattern.   Both of these represent personal growth for me!!!

It was finished about 45 minutes before time to leave….one of these days I will finish a challenge quilt early, but don’ hold your breath!!

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Nepal Monument Quilt Update….

I figured that it was time to give you another update on the Nepal Monument quilt. 
Last week I had time to lay down all of the grass and I'm very pleased with how it looks…… IMG_2499

I will still go in and add a lot of details to the grass, including rocks and other things like that, but I'm pleased with the basics that I have right now.

I also decided to use a dark background for the monument opening as I think that it will be the best backdrop to the items that are going to be INSIDE of the opening.

I really am enjoying this new technique of just cutting the fabrics and pinning them onto the background.  It only took two hours to lay down all of the sod (grass), and another hour to glue the pieces down.


But now I have to take it off the wall to work on a new project. My guild has a challenge that's due on Tuesday (it is now Saturday),  and I have an idea that I want to run with.   So, I have started working on that.

I am also spending the day with my friend, Marianna, helping her make a quilt for her granddaughter!!!

I said that I wanted to find some creative time in December and I have done it!!!!



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Total Pageviews