Friday, September 28, 2007

An Experimental Structure

I started out with a piece of white fabric and began randomly gluing some technical illustrations of cicadas down with Golden gel medium. I then covered the surface of the fabric with metallic textile paints and glazed the line drawings with Golden fluids. When there was no more white fabric showing through I began to paint tree branches and leaves by painting the gold background. For a long time I was very unhappy with the look of the piece it seemed like nothing I did would improve it. I did really like portions of the painting but not the whole. This is when the light bulb went off and I decided to cut it up and make it into a three dimensional structure. Something that has been on my mind for some time to do anyway.
I drew a house template on paper and cut out the pieces from the painting. I fused these onto peltex choosing a dark blue hand dyed fabric for the back. I decided to put the photos of the cicadas on the inside of the house with windows to peek through on the front. This would put the photos of the cicadas in a dark environment like they come out of. They crawl out of the ground, split out of their shells often at night and fly up into the trees.
Then I began stitching details. Not too much quilting, just enough to add interest and sparkle. I think there has been an emphasis on excessive quilting the last few years. I think there needs to be balance. Besides if there is too much quilting it covers up all the painting.

I still have some stitching to do on two of the panels and then I will have to decide how I am going to put the thing together. I have a couple ideas. When I was designing this I didn't think about the technical challenges a 20" tall house might create. It might be hard to stick my arm up inside to sew the roof on. Maybe I will hinge it.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Nantucket Jacket is finished!

Buttons on and it was just cool enough to wear it the first half of today. I love it, and this time my sister won't get it. ^_^

Wednesday, September 26, 2007


Wow I finally got onto Ravelry. I think I signed up on the waiting list several months ago. They are inviting 400 people a day and it took that long to get to me. This is the the coolest site. It is a place for knitters and crocheters to keep track of their projects; finished, in progress and wish list. It also has areas to keep track of your yarn stash, needles, books, favorite patterns, etc. Then there are categories that you can look through of projects that people have made. For example sweaters has 198 pages of photos people have posted. It is so fun to see patterns that you may have thought about knitting knitted up by someone else and read their comments about making it. There are also forums, chats and links to blogs. One could spend some serious time here.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Collaboration piece part 2

Here is what Deb has done to the piece. There are fabric birds with antique foil wings, paper butterflies and eggs. rubber stamped designs white on pearl, french knots on the flowers and more. This photo is just a detail of a much larger piece that has been sewn into the form of a utilitarian garment for a new book. I will let you know when this fabulous new book by Cheryl Prater and Debbi Crane comes out.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Nantucket Jacket

I finished the Nantucket jacket from Interweave Interweave knits Winter 2006. Knit with Knitpicks Swish Superwash in Indigo heather. I added two inches to the body length since I am tall, but I think I could have added an inch or so more so that the flare would really fall on the hips. I added three inches to the sleeves to make more of a 3/4 sleeve, I did not like the elbow length shown in the pattern. After it was knit and put together this still did not seem like quite enough length so I made three rows of single crochet on the end of the sleeve before making the scalloped edge.

I loved knitting this sweater. The cable pattern was so easy to remember. I am not good at memorizing patterns and usually find myself constantly consulting the chart. But this one flew along. Now to find the perfect button.

Monday, September 17, 2007

A collaboration piece

A talented friend of mine is writing a book with another wonderfully talented gal. These brilliant women asked my sister Deb and I to submit a collaboration piece for the gallery section of their new book. I am beginning the collaboration by creating the base, this is a detail of what I have done.

I had such a blast doing this, it is very loosely painted compared to most of my work. I started with a piece of plain fabric and collaged a page from the phone book, some sewing pattern tissue and a few old black and white engravings then randomly added textile paint. I drew a branch with a black marker and grabbed the pearl paint painting big flowers by covering the background around them. I loosely drew details on the flowers with a black pen and cut out leaves from colored papers and glued them on with gel medium. Then I stitched around everything on the sewing machine. It was so much fun to work in a spontaneous fashion with only a vague idea of what I was going to end up with.

I will now send this to my sister to work her magic with further embellishing and altering.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Quilting Arts TV taping day

Here I am on set, getting ready for my segment. The set looks fabulous, but hey would you expect anything less from Quilting Arts.
Before rolling tape we went through the segment with the producer and talked about what the sequence would be. My segment was scheduled to take 3 minutes. It is amazing how little you can cover in three minutes, especially when 30 seconds of that time was set aside for a look at my quilt Primordial Sea.
This is what it looks like from the other side of the table.And I guess this is what I will look like on tv. This is the monitor in the green room. We got to see each other taping, but we never got to see our own. That is probably a good thing.
In the green room with the quilts I brought.
Lesley Riley also taped today. She had several 90 second spots! They are great information packed little segments. be sure to visit Lesley, Frances and Pam Ruperts blogs to read what they wrote about the experience. Pokey is going to be blogging about the show too, but she is a little busy right now, so check the Quilting Arts blog for the latest news real soon.
Frances Alford snapping shots in the green room. Late in the afternoon Beryl Talyor came by the studios, she is taping tomorrow. Oh, and I saw her project for the Quilting Arts Holiday issue it is gorgeous!!!!! We had a lot of fun together, it was so nice having friends there for mutual support. Being on a show like this was a first for the three of us. I may have screwed up a few times stumbling on words but I never felt like throwing up or fainting! Pokey made it relaxed and fun and helped guide us through our segments. The whole crew and staff were wonderful. It is going to be a great show.

This new Quilting Arts show is replacing America Quilts Creatively with Sue Hausmann. It is not scheduled to air until the end of December but make sure you contact your local PBS and urge them to pick it up, if your area does not have America Quilts in its line up.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Packing for QATV

Looks like someone does not want to be left behind on this trip. When ever we put our shoes on she gets in her carrier. And when the suitcases come out, she gets in those.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Finished Socks

These are the Clessidra stockings you can find the pattern on I used Knitpicks Bare - Merino Wool/ Silk, fingering weight yarn. I thought knitting knee socks might be tedious, but these were great. The patterning of the cables kept it interesting all the way to the toes.

These are the Embossed leaves from Interweave Winter 2005, you can also find this pattern here. The top one is blocked. I wanted a lighter weight sock, so I used two strands of Knitpicks Shadow. It is a very nice feeling sock.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Quilting Arts TV

Around the end of December our favorite quilting magazine Quilting Arts will also be a tv show on PBS. Taping starts later this week. I have been asked to do a three minute spot on an episode with pictorial quilts as the theme. Pam Rupert will be the main guest of this show. I am thrilled to be on the same episode I love her quilts!
I have been in a frenzy getting prepared, eek, so much to do so little time. I am trying not to think about how nervous I am going to be. I am just concentrating on getting my demo prepared, making sure I have all the supplies for the demo, trying to keep from breaking off all my nails between now and next tuesday (for those demo camera closeups), figuring out what to wear and how to pack the quilts without them getting all creased.

I will be doing a demo on painting fabric with textile paints and bringing some of my painted quilts to show.
When I was visiting Frances in Vermont I found out we are both taping segments on the same day as well as Lesley Riley. Hopefully having the company of a good friend on set will help with the nerves. I am a little queasy just thinking about it.


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