Monday, September 29, 2008

Glorious News.. A Wedding Next Fall

Such a grand evening last.... a family engagement party for daughter Shari Hughes and hubby-to-be Scott Hatfield. A lovely dinner celebrating a 2009 wedding. Many melancholy and beautiful forms of expression were shared. Great food, dessert, new memories for all time. Can you believe it?.. Wedding ring boxes now come with a battery operated built in light to showcase the ring should the groom to be propose in near darkness during a walk on the beach. Worked out perfect! :-) Don't ya love the wedding invitation made by granddaughter Morgan???

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Ya'll Come

Ya'll Come!!!
The blonde driving with the black poodle is my quilt titled Breezin. See the whole quilt and the others in the exhibiton running November 3rd (Artists Reception November 8th) thru December 23rd.. Soft Expressions Gallery, Anaheim California

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Quilt Line Planning

Art quilting often calls for some original quilt line planning. A talented friend Carol Culbert has a "body parts challenge quilt" including original ink drawings and text addressing the unique physique of Olympic Champion Michael Phelps. How to quilt? Well it seems water streams and bubbles might be the ticket.... so first... we took a photo of the quilt top ( actually about 24 x 28") and printed it out on 8 1/2 x 11 paper. The plan???... place a piece of clear acetate atop the image.... and create a plan using markers. I prefer to use Vis a Vis "fine point" dry erase markers because you can indeed erase and redraw, but the photo shows white board size because I have put my smaller ones in some safe place ( yeah right). Draw a would-be plan... adjust as your sense dictates... then you have a quilt line plan. By the way.. if I have the original quilt in front of me.... I also have an oversized piece of acetate and can lay it atop the actual quilt and plan as already stated. In this one... no evident quilting seemed appropriate for the framed drawings of Mr Phelps. .. so the idea would be to have water streams behind the drawn artwork areas. Streaming water is essentially an exaggerated curvy echo line and bubbles are overlapping rows of overlapping circles. If you double click on photo images you will get an enlarged view which is easier to understand. How do you create your quilt plan for such things? Let me know.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Fake Out Hand Dyes

I gotta get some quilting info in here.... Did you notice the multi colored strips of hand dyed fabric on the Ode To Bonnie Raitt quilt a week back in the blog? Well that was indeed hand painted with dye strips of fabric fused on the red heart. Since that quilt is gone to charity... I wanted to make another for myself to use in my fusing class... but frankly getting the dyes mixed for some multi colored fabric seemed more than I was up for... sooo... since I am a ink painter... I decided to use my ready to go inks to create a would-be hand dye look. Inks right out of the bottle were applied to water misted white prepared for dyeing fabric, thus creating a hand dyed look. Once dry and heat set, fusing was added to the back and then skinny strips sliced and fused on the red heart. If I didn't have so many unfinished projects, I'd feel rather smug.

On Top Of The Mountain

Well... notice how many non quilt things have been happening with me lately? So many things can keep us from our passions.... Our mountain home has just had the living and kitchen floor replaced with beautiful hickory... AND... the field stone fireplace expanded. This remodel replaced grey carpet ( stained from a skylight break from last seasons snowstorm) and vinyl kitchen flooring. We also redesigned and replaced the skylight in time for this coming season. And wouldn't you know... the first cold night in Mt. Baldy was the first day of fall. Apparently Mother Nature reads the Farmers Almanac calendar.I must say, living in white dust and glue and acetone smells for the week and a half remodel was a real challenge... but all worth it now that it is done. Do you have a remodel nightmare experience that tops tarantulas walking in the house? Tell me :-) !

Monday, September 22, 2008

here comes the bride

Not me.. I did that a couple years back.... but a dear friend married and ofcourse we must party. The quilt... a group gift from our Wanabe's Friendship group for my friend LAURIE LYON..

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Sure I can make that??!!

Ya know when you own a sewing machine, friends and family think you could make anything! No so but I'm up for the challenge.... a family member asked I make a velvet bag in which to place a book gift for someone. Me.. sew velvet...not skilled for that... but in the spirit of the effort... I found an elegant knit velour that I could back with Pellon Craft Fuse for stability. I then added batting and quilted in some texture before I lined the piece with a beautiful batik. Look at that closure I found.. Very nice. That took a full day for me to figure out but it's done... and anything for family!!!!!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Acorn = Alarm Clock

I am still learning the ropes of living in the mountains. I do not need an alarm clock this time of year lest I wish to arise in the dark. Each morning at first light... the local army of squirrels take to the trees.. detaching and tossing acorns downward for their later retrieval and burial for the coming winter. With so many large trees above our rooftop, it's like a little acorn hailstorm every morning. It's kinda crazy. But honestly.. I kinda like this intrusion of nature.... way better than yesterdays story.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Unwanted visitor

Crimanee.... for those that think living in the mountains is exciting... it is! Fear is a form of excitement isn't it? EEEK... today.... one of these little buggers walked thru the front door and into the living room. I've lived here 2 years now and this is the first tarantula I've seen this high up the mountain. I live at 4500 feet, but previously only spotted them on the road at about 1500 feet elevation. Needless to say, I haven't caught my breath even yet. The workers that were installing the new living room floor were even more excited and hoped I'd save them. Fat Chance! Fortunately, one of the guys pride overtook his fear and he scooted the spider back outside. I asked them to keep the screen door closed hence forth. I wonder if I really could live at my flatland studio???.... with NO TARANTULAS!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Ode To Bonnie Raitt

Are ya thinkin'.. Patt did this? This small piece ( yes I did it and it's not painted) is to be auctioned after touring on exhibition by Meander Publishing, publisher of Machine Quilting Unlimited Magazine ( check it It's a great magazine for those that machine quilt!!) It's part of the Have A Heart competition ( it won Judges Choice) for fund raising for the American Heart Association. This piece is all fused using my oh so 'bright' hand dyes. Ofcourse the challenge rules said this had to have a heart theme. The entire time I was playing and making this piece... I could hear Bonnie Raitt singing "Have a Heart!"... thus the name.

Monday, September 8, 2008

My next challenge

Well.. I have 3 quilt tops that need to be quilted..., This mountain lion is pinned and ready to go. I have discovered I like using batiks as a backing... they are a little bit slick and move around well on the tabletop surface. What I'm saying here applies to sit down quilting ... not long arm. What I DON't use for backing is anything with a lot of metallic or anything with a tendency to 'grab' the machine tabletop. I know that waxing the table top helps... and even cornstarch powder can help but I'd rather not if I can help it.

Fun with Acacia Guild

What a fun time we had on Saturday. Pictured are a few of the many students who painted either their own images or one of mine. EVERYONE did a fine job and many did their OWN THING... I love that.

Monday, September 1, 2008


Done! Margie came over today to pick up her finished portrait on cloth. The finished piece looks just like the original photo thanks largely to the detailed traced drawing Margie did to start the project.
"I don't remember being that pretty, she said!" Well... she was and still is! Now...back to my own projects!

Don't work hard at this...

Ever hear the saying.... "Never try to teach a pig to sing.... It wastes your time and annoys the pig!?!" That to say... don't try to do the impossible! So many times painters will try to create a perfectly smooth even fill background. It's not only near impossible with a strong ink application... it looks better ( to my eye anyway) if the fill is somewhat irregular. So here I'm applying a second layer of background fill using almost a cross hatch technique.... a few overlapping strokes in one direction.. then another and another til you are happy with the result.