Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Shibori - Underpainted - Bucket Time!

One of the things I often do before I roll my fabrics on poles to do the shibori dyeing on them is underpaint the fabric.

This is a LARGE piece of underpainted fabric that is ready to roll on the pole to be dyed in a bucket.

This is a closer view of part of the fabric so you can see the colors and the ombre effect better.

Later today I plan on underpainting more fabric. It is quite hot and humid today so I am not sure how fast it will dry. I can not roll it on a pole until it is dry.

I hope I can do the bucket dyeing either tomorrow or Friday.

It is always so exciting to see the final results and they are usually a big surprise.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

An Amazing Knitting Project! - UPDATE 2

I am on the home stretch with the knitting phase of this shawl.

I have knit almost 200 grams of the yarn and only have 38 grams left to knit.
I have a scale that weighs in grams that I purchased for weighing my dyes. I found it is also helpful when I knit.

This has been the kind of knitting I can pick up and knit a few rows between more strenuous activities.

The last two evenings there were things on TV I wanted to watch - a perfect pair - television and knitting!

I'm not sure how much knitting time I'll get in the next few days as I am doing some other things.

I am currently wrapping more poles for arashi shibori dyeing. I want to get one more dyeing session in within the next week. I like to wrap most of the poles I own before I do the bucket dyeing process. I'll be using several colors and several buckets.

We have had such good weather this year for dyeing. I have a lot of fabric ready to design with, as well as 3 pieces ready for quilting and one in the design stage.
Stay tuned!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Fan Quilt With Different Fabrics

I just found another fan sampler quilt I did.

This one is quilted and finished.

You might enjoy seeing how I used the different fabrics and different motifs in it.

Fan Quilt With Peacock Fabric

This is the quilt I have on the design wall today.

I am trying to decide if I want to quilt it myself or have a long arm quilter quilt it.

I am leaning towards doing it myself. There are so many areas that will be enhanced by quilting specific to the design.

I started selecting fabrics for this quilt using the theme fabric - the peacock feather fabric used in the border.
There were so many places I could feature motifs from this fabric.

This was a fan sampler quilt I designed and taught to many groups of students. I designed the fans to take advantage of the fabrics selected - even though each student selected different fabrics. I made myself available to help each student with their fabric selection. There were some guidelines to use as fabric was selected - such as two different background fabrics, etc.

This block uses a larger motif on one of the fan blades.

For this block I used a very small exact same image motif repeated 6 times as there were 6 blades to the fan.

This was an exciting class to teach. Each students quilt looked very different, and they were ALL wonderful.

As I have shared this with you I have made my decision. I have to quilt this myself as the quilting specific to the images will enhance the design.

I hope you enjoy putting this puzzle together.
Click to Mix and Solve

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Academy Awards for Pinterest What Were They Thinking Ideas!

How much is your time worth?

Since I have been on Pinterest I have found many great things.

I have also found some things that make me think "What were they thinking?"
"Do they have nothing else to do with their time?"
So I am awarding each of these a "Gertrude" for the time and energy they spent coming up with and executing these ideas!

Is it really necessary to cover your tape measure? Yes, this earns a "Gertrude".

What new mother has time to make a strap to hold the diapers together? I fact does she have time to put the diapers in this strap each and every time she needs some?
Another perfect "Gertrude" idea!

I haven't figured out how one would benefit from putting tags like these on your clothes in the closet. This earns the "Gertrude" for the best waste of time to use up scraps too small to use!

By the time you cover the inside and outside of your cereal boxes with fabric and take an hour or two to do this you could have bought some pretty expensive magazine holders! This gets the "Gertrude" for the way to spend the most money for something you could have bought for less!


I can't quite understand how anyone would want to make their own hair curlers with fabric and polyester fiberfill. You will need to make a buttonhole and sew on a button for each one. This one gets my "Gertrude" for the Best Picture Of The Year!

Your mileage may vary and you may think some of these are wonderful. For me using an hour or two of time to use up scraps of fabric or yarn making something that is borderline useful or attractive with scraps too small to use is not my idea of how to use my precious time.

And if I have used your idea on this post I apologize to you. These are my personal opinions and I hope you take it in the fun spirit it was intended.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Busy Bee's Quilt Show in Belleview

I went to the quilt show this afternoon.
I'd like to share just a few of the quilts with you. There were many really nice ones.

This was made by my friend Beth Sherman. I was not able to get far enough away when I took the picture to get all the borders in the photo. Beth's workmanship is impeccable.

"Affairs Of The Heart" was appliqued and hand quilted by Ruth Sibley. Her workmanship and choice of fabrics was beautiful.

"Geisha With Parasol" was made and quilted by Jody Webb. This quilt had it all. It is not easy to use embellishments on a quilt. So often they just look like someone added something because the quilt wasn't working. The embellishing Jody did was an integral part of the design and the quilt.

This is just one example of an embellishment she used on this piece.

Today was a beautiful day and it was made complete seeing this show and a lot of my friends and neighbors at the show.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

An Amazing Knitting Project! UPDATE

This is the 6th day I have been working on this.
I have made some great progress since yesterday.

I weighed the remaining yarn and I am almost half finished knitting the tube.
If I keep up at this rate I should be finished in another week of knitting.

I can't stop knitting as I am so anxious to see what the finished shawl will look like.

Several people have asked for details on the yarn and the pattern. I will share more when I finish and know I am successful!

I hope you enjoy this puzzle. The shawl is still a puzzle to me!
Click to Mix and Solve

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

An Amazing Knitting Project!

I am knitting an amazing shawl. The hand painted yarn is forming a gorgeous pattern as I knit. The yarn feels so good as I knit it, and also the portion I have knit feels heavenly.

You knit this in a tube.
After you have used up almost all the yarn you cut it open and unravel parts of it for an airy lacy shawl or scarf. I can't wait to see the finished project!

Stay tuned as I make progress and hopefully complete this soon.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Mardi Gras Furniture!

Today is Mardi Gras in NOLA, The Villages and many other places.

I have my Mardi Gras decorations out. I actually purchased this mask in NOLA when we were there a few years ago.

A perfect couch for Mardi Gras season!

Of course you'd need this credenza so you could watch TV in Mardi Gras style!

And don't forget chairs for the dining room.

Was someone thinking Mardi Gras when they decorated this room?

I realize these colors are a little off of the official NOLA Mardi Gras colors, but they are close enough if you choose to redo your home for this hoiday!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Simply Sensational Six Pointed Stars

This is a technique I developed to make it easy to do those tricky six pointed stars.
The traditional way of doing them means a lot of Y seams.
This method has NONE of those dreaded Y seams.

As with any quilt the way you put your colors together can make or break the success of your finished quilt.

I used a rainbow of hand dyed fabrics for the stars themselves.

The background is black fabric that I spattered with a bleach/water solution. The black fabric is the Holy Grail of dischargable black fabric - it discharges to white. NO - it is no longer available anywhere!

The quilt still needs borders. I will have to do some more bleach spattered fabric for the borders.

The cut I used for this puzzle is called "Six Star" - how appropriate!
Click to Mix and Solve

A Whole Lot Of Visitors To My Blog

Last time I looked I was quite far from 150,000 visitors to this blog.

Thought I'd check this morning and there have been 150,216 visitors since I started keeping track in December of 2008.

Thanks to all of you who visit my blog, regularly and occasionally. I never dreamed so many of you would be interested in what I have to say and show.

I'll be back later with a daily post.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Only An Artist - Amulets

An artist friend who had never been to my house stopped to pick something up a few days ago.

As you know when you visit me the first time you get to choose two amulets - one to keep and one to give away.

It was interesting to watch an artist make selections. The amulets were viewed with an artists eye and intelligent questions were asked. I would guess my friend did not even realize what they were doing - it just comes naturally for an artist.

But, I think the most interesting thing was something I found after my friend left.

The amulets were arranged very precisely in the tray - something no one else has done! There was a relationship apparent in the way they were placed.

As an artist I find the arrangement and relationship of things is something I am passionate about. I will move something 1/2 inch if it looks better that way. Before I put things away - as I am doing today - to have the carpet restretched tomorrow - I take pictures of things so I know where they go. I will follow the photos when I put things back and tweak the arrangements as necessary.

The amulets make a colorful puzzle for you today.
Click to Mix and Solve

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Shibori - Where It Begins

Most of the Shibori I am currently doing is Arashi Shibori - which means it is wrapped on some sort of pole.

I often set up a pole wrapping station on my peninsula counter in the kitchen so I can wrap a pole or two whenever the spirit moves me.

Some poles can be wrapped in 5-10 minutes and others take hours.

These are some poles I have wrapped and they are ready to dye. Each of these has been previously dyed. I don't always do double dyeing of the fabrics.

I will get more poles wrapped before I do the dyeing as it makes more sense to have many poles in the dye buckets.

This one took "forever" to wrap. It is a large piece of cotton/linen damask.
I had previously dyed it to get color samples of colors I was working with and there was far too much white. I had thought the colors would blend together but I guess I should have used a lot more dye if I wanted that effect.

This is the result after I over dyed it. I am very pleased with this piece.

I thought this would make a great puzzle using my favorite lizard cut!
Click to Mix and Solve

Friday, February 17, 2012

I Love Color! I Love Black And White Shibori!

I think one of the reasons I find fabric dyeing so appealing is because I get to work with color and also see how colors combine.

I love to use color in my quilts, my home, my clothing and food.

Many of you would recognize my work by the saturated colors I use.

Black and white have a crispness color can not match.
The combination also gives your eyes a place to rest when they have overdosed on color.

I am ready to layer and quilt this black and white shibori piece.

I thought this would make an interesting puzzle!
Click to Mix and Solve

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Art Quilt Trunk Show By Robbie Payne

Our art quilters were treated to a trunk show by Robbie Payne on Valentine's Day.
Her work was very accomplished and inspirational.
Robbie (on the right) is is discussing her work with one of our guild members.

This was one of my favorites. Although I could say that about over half of what she showed us!
She used illustrations that were under copyright to make this. She worked hard to track down the holder of the copyright to get permission to use this. She DID get permission. That is something people sometimes forget to do and it is so important.

This frog quilt was another of my favorites. If you have been to my house you probably have noticed a lot of frogs in various areas. It is a tribute to my grandchildren who LOVE to catch frogs. (They do catch and release).

This butterfly quilt was stitched by hand to an artists canvas and then the design on the canvas was integrated with the quilt.

Robbie showed quilts where she had used so many different techniques to create the works and each was so well done. She really has the "ART" part down.

If you would like to see more of her work her blog is:

I didn't think I knew Robbie until I asked her if she had a blog. Then I remembered reading her blog and also talking on the computer. After the meeting I went home and caught up on her blog. I then discovered that we both had created a "slice" for the To Market, To Market quilt Tommy Fitzsimmons facilitated and remembered our conversations which were many!
Yes, although there are millions of quilters in the world, the QUILT world is still a small world as I discover over and over.

There is no way you can appreciate these quilts as well here as you can in person. I hope you get to see them in person some time.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day

I think this is my favorite Valentine decoration this year. It is a convertible centerpiece. The hearts are something I add each February.
We used to have a wonderful garden center across the highway from us. Their floral department made the best arrangements, wreaths and baskets.
I really miss having it there and I am so thankful I bought several of their arrangements. This is one of theirs.

Since I didn't make or send Valentine's this year I'm sharing the ones from last year! These are fiber art postcards. I sent the one with the "jewels" in envelopes last year. I have since found out that they go through the mail with no problem without an envelope.
Do you see the one I sent you?

I'm also sharing the same puzzle, but with a different cut this year.
Click to Mix and Solve

Monday, February 13, 2012

Valentine Tablescape

After my two BFF's got new furniture I decided I needed to freshen the decor in my house.
I don't do major changes. I just take what I have and move things around, put some things away and take others out.

I created this vignette before I took out my Valentines things. I put the three hearts in it for the season and will remove them to be replaced with ????!

I simply added this heart within a heart to these 3 vases on the buffet. Sometimes simple is best! Do you see a color theme running through my home and seasonal decorations?

Valentines Day is tomorrow but I can make it last a little longer with these simple additions.

Then it will be time for Mardi Gras, St. Patricks Day and Easter which my overlap in my house!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

I Love ........................

I have a lot of things to use as seasonal decorations.
I tell myself "Don't get out the decorations for XXXXX holiday this year!"

And before you know it I forget what I told myself and I'm decorating again.

This has to be one of my favorite purses. It is not one I use often but I enjoying the feast for the eyes it provides. There must be a "million" beads strung on the swags!

It starts before you even get in the house on the front door!
I believe this started as a fall wreath and then I added the red leaves for the Christmas holidays and eventually the hearts. My idea was I could have fewer things to store by adding and taking away from one somewhat basic wreath.
It didn't work as I never took away!

This vignette is in the guest room. It is not seasonal, but part of the usual decor.
It certainly shouts "Valentine's Day"!

I am using the Crazy Cut for this puzzle! Crazy about you!!!
Click to Mix and Solve