Friday, June 24, 2005


The air quality in Los Angeles, when I lived there, was less than desirable. But it did make for intensely colorful sunset walks. Surreal shades of crimson and ocher would wash over the trails and agave rosettes dotting the hillsides near my canyon residence. This quilt was inspired by one particular agave plant that seemed to capture the setting light in a way that made it glow with a regal luminance.

Hand dyed cotton, machine appliqued, machine quilted. 2006
56" x 47"

Stem Cells

Stem cell research is getting amazing results in a number of areas in the medical field. I am frustrated by the belief system of this administration when it comes to stem cell research. At the present time fertilization clinics dispose of unused eggs. Why is it more humane and Holy to throw away embryos than donate them to research that could potentially save lives?

Painted cotton batting, hand dyed cotton, machine quilted. 2006
18" x 15"

Primordial Sea

While living in Texas fossils fascinated my children, and we spent many happy days in the creek beds of Austin searching for evidence that North America was once under the sea. This quilt is what I like to imagine a Primordial Sea, abundant in jewel toned marine life would look like.

this quilt is whole cloth hand dyed silk painted with textile paints 89" x 62" 2005

This quilt won 1st place Innovative at Pacific International Quilt Festival 2006 and 2nd place Painted Surface at IQF World of Beauty 2005

If you would like to see how this quilt was made look in the May Archives.

Thursday, June 23, 2005


This is my strip for a group quilt that is being made with my art quilt group that formed when I lived in Austin. Now our members are in Austin, Dallas, Glendale (soon to be Chicago), Portland, Maine and Tokyo, Japan. This quilt is a follow up to two previous group quilts on a similar theme, a photo of Flora can be seen on the list of 2002 IQF Winning Quilts and Second Nature is going to be in this years IQF In Full Bloom exhibit. this piece is painted with Tsukineko Inks.

Bird of Paradise

This was my donation to the IQA auction last year. It is painted silk. The sky was painted with textile paints and the bird and tree were painted with Tsukineko inks, with gold metallic paint details. The edge is finished with couched colored and gold cording. I like to use other things besides traditional bindings to finish the edges of my work. I wish I knew who bought this. I like to know who my work is living with.
14” x 14” 2004

There's a Place Called Mars...

Looking at Mars mission photos, I was struck by the contrast between scenes of a rocky, lifeless planet and the rich, fanciful portrayals of Mars in popular culture. I prefer a fanciful Mars. A place, where flora and fauna from the pages of Ernst Haekel’s book, “Artforms in Nature”, fill a Ray Bradbury inspired world and a 50’s Sci-Fi alien femme fatal watches a song, sung by my sister in girlscout camp to the melody of “The Snake Charmers Tune”, weave it’s way though the landscape.

this quilt is whole cloth painted with textile paints 37" x 62" 2004
If you would like to see step by step how I made this quilt look in the May archives

This won Judges choice at IQF Houston, Judges Choice and Viewers Choice at the Glendale Quilt Guild Show

My sister, who's work you can see on my links, learned this song in Girl Scout camp when we were kids in Maine. the song goes like this.

There's a place called Mars,
where the ladies smoke cigars.
Every puff they take
is enough to kill a snake.
When the snake is dead,
they put roses on its head.
When the roses die,
they put diamonds in their eyes.
When the diamonds break,
it will be 1968.

I love to hear when some one else knows this song or a close variation (not the one about france and ladies under pants). When I was in Houston I had people from all over New England, upstate New York and Pennsylvania tell me they learned this song in the early 60's. Another woman from Tennesee jumped rope to it in the late 50's. It was also known by someone in Colorado and another from Southern California from the late 50's. A woman from New jersey said she knew it with tulips and I think it ended in 1969.


My son had a fascination with lichen when we lived in Texas. It was everywhere in so many different beautiful forms. Lichen is a class of organisms in which algae and fungi live in a symbiotic relationship as one. They are found throughout the world but are unable to survive where the atmosphere is polluted, so they are good indicators of clean air. The large lichen on this quilt was made by painting cotton batting and stitching the texture into it. The edge has a fine gauge wire sewn into it to give it form and dimension. The yellow lichen is painted cotton batting. The smaller thread lichen were made by stitching on Solvy. The other lichen is painted and melted Tyvec.
22” x 22” 2004

This won Best Machine Applique at the Glendale Quilt Guild Show

Painted Batting

Before I made Lichen I experimented with painting on Warm and natural cotton batting. I wanted to find out what the surface would look like, would it absorb the paint like a sponge or would it sit on the surface. It seemed also like it would make a nice soft surface for embellishing by hand. I have these two, I made a third but sold it at IQF’s silent auction a few years ago (without photographing it first, so I can’t show you it)

I was happy to find that the batting did not soak up the paint like a sponge, and they were easy to stitch and couch on by machine and bead by hand without falling apart.

Tree of Life

I was drawn to creating an image of the Tree of Life, which is a creation myth from many different cultures. The universality of this symbol was important to me as well as the idea that the location of the biblical Eden is in present day Iraq. I wanted my quilt to have the quality of a multicultural folktale using symbols from nature and various religious traditions. It is a whole cloth painted quilt, using Jaquard and Lumiere textile paints and Tsukineko inks for the faces, hands and feet.
53” x 61” 2003

This quilt won an Honorable mention at IQF Houston, and Road to California, Best of Show at the Glendale Quilt Guild Show and won Best Machine Workmanship at PIQF


This quilt is part of the national traveling invitational exhibit "Women of Biblical Proportion" curated by mother and daughter team, Ruth Harris and Chantelle Cory. "The exhibit portrays the rich diversity of female biblical characters through contemporary art quilts.

I chose Asenath, she was Josephs wife, as in the well known “Josephs Technicolor Dreamcoat” She was the daughter of an Egyptian priest. Asenath was also of interest to me because this is my sisters middle name.

This quilt was painted with Tsukineko inks and D’uva Chromacoal powders (for her skin) on raw silk. 22” x 22” 2003

Saint Michael Overcoming Evil

The central image on this quilt is from an engraving from the renaissance, called St Michael overcoming Evil. When I saw this image it brought to mind our present history; one that President Bush has drawn parallels to by referring to our fighting the axis of evil. Tsukineko inks were used to paint the main images and backgrounds. The wings are painted with Lumiere paint. And colored pencils were used to add subtle shading to the oval border.
18 1/2” x 29” 2003

Madonna and Child

This small quilt was the first piece I painted with the Tsukineko inks. It is whole cloth, machine quilted and embellished with beads and gold cording.
9” x 10” 2002

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Nina’s Leopard

One day my daughter Nina mentioned that I had never done a quilt with a leopard on it. I decided to humor her and painted an image of a leopard on a moonlit walk through a dark and mysterious jungle. I realized I was trying to capture a quality I sometimes see in her, which makes it a very special quilt.

whole cloth black fabric painted with Lumiere paints. 36”x 21” 2002

Graven Images

I was inspired to make “Graven Images” while visiting cemeteries in New England, following up on some ancestral research. I found the symbols and images carved into the various stones fascinating in design, symbolism and historical context. Wanting to recreate the look of stone in cloth, I hand dyed fabric in shades of gray using various techniques to emulate stone. I enlarged my photos of the stones and traced the designs using tracing paper. I put my dyed fabric over the line drawings on a light box and traced the designs with pencil. The images were free motion quilted onto fabric and batting sandwiches creating dimensional images as though carving them into the fabric with needle and thread. Colored pencil was added to the recessed areas to create more depth. After the panels were quilted I trimmed them and arranged them filling in any holes with small strips of quilted carved stone details and pieced them together.

The most haunting aspect of making this quilt was that after working on it, on and off for two years quilting the various panels, I spent 3 straight days piecing it together and began putting the binding on it the morning of September 11, 2001. I found this to be so unsettling; I did not feel comfortable showing the quilt for a year.
50” x 79” 2001

This was the first quilt I entered into the IQF show in Houston in 2002, it won Judges Choice and 3rd place Art Quilt Large.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005


I started making a series of heads on 12” square pieces of fabric. The images were machine apliqued onto the background fabric. I used some commercial fabric but mostly hand dyed fabric. The butterfly wings have clear micro beads fused onto the pink areas, and the head in the bottom left has some painted and beaded Tyvek on the edges. Each block was quilted individually and then sewn together with a wide satin stitch that was covered by a fused sashing strip with the edges couched with gold cording.
37” x 37” 2001

Word Quilts


This quilt was the first in a series of word quilts. The definition from the dictionary of the word tea is written on the center panel. With a teacup drawn on fusible interfacing fused on top of the writing. The tea bag is made from sheer interfacing filled with snippets of fabric. 14” x 12” 2000


This quilt was the second in the series, this expanded on the idea of language and the different things one word can mean. The definitions of the word heart is in the center of the quilt. The illustrated heart is made from fusible interfacing, colored with Prisma brand colored pencils. Surrounding the central image are all the related idioms such as heart sick, heart throb, and whole hearted. I transferred the type onto the fabric using Citrasolve from toner based laser prints.

Hand dyed fabric and crochet cotton, citrasolve transfers, fusible
interfacing, raw edge appliqué 23”x 21” 2001

All Men Are Created Equal

This was the last in the series. The definitions of woman and man are printed on the quilt. With the related idioms in the rectangles around it. I thought it was interesting to see how much more extensive the definition of man is. I sold this quilt and Tea too quick and do not have good slides only these photos. Make sure you get slides etc. before you sell your work, later you will regret not having it documented. 31” x 29” 2001

The Worms Crawl In...

I wanted to experiment with dimension on this quilt, and see what would happen if things broke the surface and went through the quilt. There are wholes in the quilt that the worms crawl through, you can see this clearly on the back of the quilt.

There are also a few shapes that are stuffed with several layers of batting. My good friend and surface designer Kathy McTee from Austin referred to one of these shapes as a cosmic steak. My worms really resemble nematodes, but that would not have made as nice a name.

26 1/2”x 28” 2000

Green Tea & Plum Wine

I made this quilt so that I could have a good surface to experiment with machine quilting. To avoid putting a binding on it I satin stitched the outside with thread. I like the look, but it took a long time to sew and a lot of thread. 32”x 34” 1999

Recycled Nine Patch

I had read about annealing metal and wanted to try it. I cut up several coke cans and held the metal over a candle flame outside (bad fumes). The aluminum became smoky and gold. When you heat metal evidently it goes through a molecular change and it becomes softer. So I took an old ballpoint pen that no longer wrote and drew on the metal. I poked holes down the sides so I could sew it. Using wire and beads I wove the metal squares with the quilted squares that I had sewn jump rings onto. 11” x 11” 1999

Wheel of Time

When I made this quilt, I wrote this prayer to go with it.

Mother Earth, Queen of Heaven,
we celebrate with your many names.

Within the earth that is your body,
the waters of your living womb,
the air that is your sacred breath,
and the fire that is your radiant spirit
life is born, grows, dies and is reborn.

Instill in us an awareness of
the cycles and rhythms of nature.
As seeds sprout in the spring,
so should the inspiration of new ideas.
From summers fiery heat we shall
harness positive energy and
celebrate the abundance around us.
When the days grow short in the fall
we will listen to the wise intuitive inner voice
and honor our feelings.
During winters cold days and long nights
we will acknowledge our bodies wisdom
and the healing power of dreams.
The moons celestial light and sacred dark
keep us in balance as our bodies cycle in harmony.

We will dance around the tree of life
listening to your leaves whisper words of wisdom,
and celebrate your abundant beauty.

this quilt is machine appliqued, hand dyed, hand painted, and machine quilted. 59" x 59" 1999
This quilt was used as the theme of a March of Dimes benefit in Austin, TX called A Stitch in Time, as the featured art is was auctioned off and half the proceeds went to the March of Dimes. I am very happy that it is in the collection of my good friend Frances Holliday Alford.

Joan of Arc

I think Joan of Arc was an interesting figure in history; courageous, spiritual, devout, used for political gain and wrongly condemned. Joan and the angels are painted with textile paints and colored pencil. All of the cloth is either painted or hand dyed, It is machine appliquéd, pieced and quilted.
42” x 49” 1999

The Create-her

Prior to the introduction of Judeo-Christian mythology in Europe, the early
agricultural peoples worshipped a god in female form. The creation myth of this early culture describes a Mother Goddess who creates a serpent to be Her mate, and tells the story of how they created the universe together. The four elements of creation are represented by the earth, water, air and fire around Her. Within Her womb the creation of the universe takes place

Appliquéd, and pieced hand painted quilt
40”x76” 1998


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