Sunday, April 19, 2015

Color Drenched ….



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It seems as if I've never met a quilting method I didn't like. Our Fiber Art Bee recently had the chance to try out colored pencils on a quilted design. Our instructor and long-arm quilter Kim Hart prepared the quilted squares and provided the colored pencils and textile medium we needed to set the colors. We then began to “color inside the lines” as in our old coloring book days. It’s quite a relaxing process, and I set up a tray table so I could complete the project in the evening when watching tv. Once completed, I made this pillow from the quilted and colored square.


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In order to deepen, blend and shade colors, I needed to go over areas more than once. Some members brought their own Prismacolor pencils or Inktense ones that gave less of a pastel look to their projects. But most of us used standard hard lead colored pencils which work nicely.

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Kim used green thread for the quilting so it was easy to define where we wanted to add color. She also offered hummingbird and floral design options, shown below.

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This is Kim’s tote bag which she used as a sample when teaching another class in this technique.

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My neighbor at the work table was quite adept at shading her flowers, and achieved nice color intensity. So pretty!

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Here are two more of Kim’s class sample projects. This method was lots of fun, and I can see some uses for it in future projects.

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And speaking of color-drenched, we just returned from a trip to Arizona where the desert was in bloom. It was just lovely. We’ve visited before, but are usually just ahead of the bloom. Between the pollen and the dust, allergies bloomed, too! We traveled to Prescott where we stopped at Watson Lake to see the wonderful granite formations (below) and the Phippen Museum of Western Art.

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And we stayed in beautiful Sedona. Because this trip was a belated celebration gift for our 50th wedding anniversary, we treated ourselves to a stay at the lovely Enchantment Resort set right within the red rocks. Just magnificent!

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We never made the adjustment from Eastern time to Arizona time which is three hours earlier. That meant that we were up at 5:30 AM to capture this lovely early morning sky showing the last of the moon and the beginning of sunrise. I also had the 24-hour hot tub all to myself at sunrise. What a treat it was to watch the sun come up on the red rocks in the chill morning air.

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Good food is always a plus on a trip, and this delicious grilled scallop plate was my lunch at Renee’s of Tlaquepaque in Sedona. We had a grand time, and now we’re catching up at home, both feeling grateful for our wonderful time away.

Monday, April 6, 2015

When I Grow Up…



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This fabric book has big dreams of someday growing to  become even better than it is now. And I like it as it is. I saw this style of “quilt-lets” used to fashion a journal cover on artist Teesha Moore’s You Tube channel. There are four parts in the series, and the link will take you to part one. The appeal was instantaneous and I got pulling together fabrics and floss right away. I modified the method a little to make use of fusible batting and some machine stitching, but overall Teesha’s project suited me and all the small bits of fabrics in my stash. This is the front cover which is likely to get more embellishing over time.



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The view from the back in all its fiber-liciousness. There is something very soothing about hand stitching these small rectangles of fabric and it didn’t take long until I had enough to whipstitch together into the cover.


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Inside the book I made signatures (groups of pages) from watercolor paper and sewed various stamped, painted, and cut out elements to some of them. The photo collage above shows several of the trimmed pages. This may be a journal I’ll actually use. I have a problem that way- love to make them, find I have nothing to say when it comes time to write in them! But the watercolor paper will allow me to paint or add mixed media to it. So when the journal does grow up into its final version, it will be thoroughly colorful.

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At our recent meeting of the Alachua County Day Guild, the Fiber Arts Bee (a small group of the guild to which I also belong) did a presentation on fiber arts. The members, led by Celeste Beck of Goatfeathers Studio, all brought examples of their projects. And there I saw it- the big beautiful version of my small journal. My little book suffered immediate journal envy. This is what it can look like when it grows up-tons more embellishments and a wonderful spine made from yarns and ribbons. This book was made by Celeste and it contains her journal quilts from various challenges. She used fiberfill for the “quiltlets” so there’s a lot more texture on the cover. I had to chuckle as I noted that with all the wild and wondeful fabrics available to use, both Celeste and I placed the same pink batik in the lower left corner of the front cover. What are the chances of that??


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I had already started the decorative spine for my journal, using a latch hook and grid-style slip-proof rug material. Celeste used the actual firm rug hooking material which gave her journal spine a bit more body. So this is not the end for my fabric journal- it’s going to keep on growing. It was so much fun to make, there could even be another companion journal in the future. Stay tuned!