Thursday, August 28, 2014

Confessions of a Fabric Junkie

Don't think me wicked but I have long sought out ways to circumvent the quilt police, and since my friend Sam Hunter decided to share her quilty secrets I thought I could share mine, too.

For me learning the rules of quilting were a bit like torture. Every time I turned around back in the 90s it seemed like I was breaking some kind of rule, but I soon found out I was not alone....

, these and other like souls were more than happy to share their wicked ways.

Not to name, names but the first came along while I struggled with a mariners compass block in a Judy Mathieson workshop... 'ironing into submission' became part of my vocabulary and a part of my beliefs.

Wonderful, kind, creative and giving David Walker shared with us that sometimes in a pinch gluing beads in place were an option --

and, while I 'nearly' never have glued a bead, I do use fabric markers when I may have swerved ever so slightly while couching yarns in place over a stitched line. The fabric markers cover a multitude of little blips... so beats the alternatives.
My list of guilty quilty actions includes many of shortcuts taken by many a fabric addict. After all, for me the sooner I get through the top making and basic machine quilting the fast I get to the fun part, 'embellishing'.

The confession list of a embellisher would also be pretty long...
so many new products, new ways of using older products...

the quilt police probably would throw their hands up in the air with disgust, but I believe the quilters in the past would happily go out on a creative binge along with us if they had access to all the 'quilty stuff' we have today.

Things that help a quilter 'defy gravity',
and feel a bit 'wicked'.

Do you have a certain shortcut or tool that makes your heart sing...
I mean, makes you feel a bit 'wicked' ?


Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Do Words Inspire You?

I started out this morning, coffee in hand scrolling though Facebook when a message from a friend asked for folks to list their 10 all time inspiring books. She did not tag me to answer, but this set my mind wandering.

Books have always been important to me and I for this I have to be grateful for a high school education where we were rats in an experiment.

Back in the early 70's as I entered high school, the school system put us on quarters --- there were to be 5 quarters each year and you had to attend 4, and if you chose to get through faster you could go all five. The best part was that you signed up for classes like you were in college -- every quarter. There were requirements of course, 4 quarters English at each grade level, 4 of Math, Science, History in 10th grade - you get the idea. BUT, there were amazing choices, too.
My first quarter of English in 10th grade was Rock Poetry...
OK, stop laughing... it was a great class, and if you want to know what my final oral presentation was on you'll have to ask.
English and Art were amongst my favorite subjects so in between quarters on Basic Expository Writing and Vocabulary for College Bound there were classes like -- Science Fiction Literature and Psychology in Literature... you can see where this heading.
Keep this all in mind as I share my list:
The Collector - John Fowles
1984 - George Orwell
Brave New World - Alduous Huxley
Stranger in a Strange Land - Robert Heinlein
works of Anne Rynd, Kurt Vonnegut
The Handmaids Tail - Margret Atwood
Bird by Bird - Ann Lamott
He, She & It, and Woman on the Edge of Time - Marge Piercy
Almost any book by Mary Stewart -- the Hollow Hills just to name 1
Pride & Prejudice and again almost any Jane Austen book
The Red Tent - Anita Diamant
The Dovekeepers - Alice Hoffman
Broken For You - Stephanie Kallos

I did get a bit carried away, but good books do exactly that!

Right now there's a couple of books on my night stand, and a list of potential next reads posted up on my studio wall. Most of the time life seems to make it almost (almost) impossible to fit a book in --

but there is nothing better than getting carried away with a good book.

What's on your list?

just an aside -- it's all your fault Kristen

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Painted Ladies = Cat House

August brings with the start of new projects
and winding up and down of others.

Winding Down:
Yesterday I painted the last bits of colors to the shed...
luckily I chatted with my daughter-in-law, Dawn, for just at the right moment she said it should have some inspirational words, and I had just the right spot.

Now, I look out the window to visions of
Live, Laugh, Dream, Love, Create

The Start:
Shaping up with Fast-Piece Applique is underway, and I am loving being able to share with students literally from around the world.

Winding Up:

Book 4's next tick in the schedule is due mid-August..
with early announcement's on Amazon, etc, so I have also planned something fun for around the 15th... so stay tuned.

Meanwhile, the cat houses are calling.

Below you can begin to see how the wild colors of the painted ladies are starting to take shape.


Looky what h
appened to the CAT HOUSES!
Find all the patterns and instructions in Generation Q Magazine.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Painted Ladies

I've written quite a bit about houses lately...
well, at least about all the projects I have been undertaking around my own house.

For all this time, and admittedly sometime before I have had a quilt in my head -- I call it 'the cat house'. More for the fact that I wanted it to have a bunch of cats than for any of the other places some may call cat houses.

It started as a bit of a sketch on a piece of paper--long gone now.
and, there was little time to jump into the quilt making process since there was so many other things happening. But, this week I was able to focus on getting the pattern made and fabric selected.

The houses (now there are three) were loosely based on the painted ladies of San Francisco with their varying portals and FUN color.

Here's a few pics so far.
these are the houses that inspired the design
and below are the colors I chose for each of my 3 houses.

Feels great to finally get this quilt underway...
Hope you're finding some stitching time --
or inspirational time.