Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

Or is it Merry Christmas???????

Years ago I started something that became a HUGE project.

I had left our full size undecorated Christmas tree up and it was almost the 4th of July.

So just for fun I threw some patriotic paper garlands on it and the grand kids loved it.

Eventually I had tree decorations for Valentines Day, St. Patricks Day, Easter, Fourth of July, Halloween, Thanksgiving, my husbands 60th birthday, a yellow ribbon tree and of course Christmas.

Each set of decorations came with it's own set of lights and a full set of decorations. Do you know how much fun it is to put lights on a tree? Each set had to be put on differently and it was the bubble lights at Christmas that were the most temperamental! The Halloween Jack O Lantern lights did double duty as I just turned their faces to the back and they became Thanksgiving pumpkins.

The local newspaper did several articles about the tree. At the time I started this Halloween wasn't the popular holiday it is today. In time there were other "copy cat" trees by others who had seen or heard about mine.

Eventually I came to my senses and realized how much time I was devoting to this project and gave it up. The memories will always be there and the decorations are safe in bins in the basement in case I ever want to revive the custom.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

My fall colors are inside!

Our yard doesn't have a lot of trees and bushes that change color. So if I want to see color I look inside!

This is the quilt I made for our master bedroom. It is 118 inches square.

When Quilter's Newsletter (March 1994) came to photograph our house it was featured on the bed but it wasn't obvious in their photo it wasn't quilted yet.

I finally finished it on September 16, 2005 for my husband's birthday.

He was so busy he didn't even notice it until I pointed it out.

To make this quilt I started with the colors in this rug that set the color scheme for our addition. I then added enough others colors so that I could change my decorating scheme and still use the quilt.
Although it is the perfect quilt now that it is fall it is the perfect quilt for this room all year long.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Where have I been and what am I doing?

I've been up in my studio trying to get things organized so I can layer and quilt the last 4 large quilts for my show in January.
It's finally starting to become a workable area and I should start layering the quilts in the next day or two.
I can't understand where all the "stuff" comes from! I throw away bags and bags of "stuff", donate "stuff" to the sharing center, occasionally sell some "stuff" on eBay and bring some of the "stuff" down to the first floor or the basement.
This week I will have at least 3 garbage cans full of stuff, as well as a car load of things for the Sharing Center.
I don't bring that much "stuff" up to the studio. It's one of life's biggest mysteries to me.

Technicolor Flying Geese

This is one of the quilts I made for sale in the gift shop at the Anderson Arts Center during my show that will run from January 25th, 2009 through March 29th, 2009.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

My Moo cards

Somebody said they would like to see my Moo cards.
They are so neat. They're half the size of a business card. You can put up to 6 lines of information on the back of them.
I scanned this selection of them.

You can use up to 100 different images on them. After you choose and download the images then you move the selection window around to get the part of the quilt you choose. I chose 55 images so I did get duplicates of some.
I have no connection with the company but I sure love what they do. They are in London and it only took me about a week to receive my order.
If you are interested in them you can do a google search for the company.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Jan Myers class final report

We had 8 students in Jan's class. This allowed us plenty of room to work both in the classroom and the dyeing lab.
It was interesting to see the different work done by each student.
Everyone interpreted the information Jan gave us in the class in their own way.

Desha is a weaver. She considers herself a beginning quilter. Her work could certainly make you think she has been doing this for a long time. She was able to create a lot of wonderful fabric in the class. This piece is only showing a small amount of it.

Daren's work is as bright and cheerful as she is. She dyed a lot of fabric, each piece more beautiful than the last. She also had created several compositions before the class was over. They were great.
I do not have work to show from the other class members here.
You have already seen Pauline's work. She dyed mountains of fabric and I can't wait to see what she does with it.
You have already seen one of Susan's quilts. Her fabric was incredibly rich and colorful. Much of it had a complex look to it.
Anna Mae's quilts were very happy quilts to match her personality. I certainly could live with any of her compositions.
Barbara is an excellent photographer. She is able to intergrate her photos with the fabric she dyes to go with each photo. I was amazed at how she could capture the style and colors from the flower photographs in the pieces she dyed.
Betty did fabrics in more colors than anyone else in the class but they had a common theme. Fantastic.

To conclude the posts on my classes I'm sharing a final photo of an assortment of the work I created hung together on the wall. This is about half of what I created in Jan's class.
For anyone who is thinking about taking either a class from Jan or Carol I will have to say you can't go wrong. If you hear they are teaching in your area, sign up right away. I do know that Carol will be teaching again at Nancy's Barn in the spring of 2009. I do not know when and where Jan will be teaching but I would recommend you look for a class from her too.
I'd take a class from either of them again in a heartbeat.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

I definitely have a "Color Signature"

I am looking over the fabrics I dyed in both Carol Soderlund and Jan Myers-Newbury's classes these last two weeks.
Since I went into both classes with no agenda other than to learn all I could I was slightly surprised how well the fabrics from one class worked with the fabrics from the other.

These were the fabrics I dyed for our Thursday project in Carol's class.

This group of fabrics started as a dark to light gradation of yellow fabrics. I overdyed them all with the same olive green using the same technique on all of them. These were done in Jan's class.

In addition to having the same olivey color this piece picks up the blue from the fourth example in the first photo. This was done in Jan's class.

It was a surprise to me that the fabrics we dyed and then discharged had my olive palette color when discharged.

Even these silk fabrics have the same color signature. Jan's class again.
I always am attracted to greens and blue greens.
In addition to these I also love fall and the colors Mother Nature provides to feast our eyes on.
But if I want to be honest I think I really love all colors and enjoy working with them, changing my palette I use from time to time.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Honey I'm Home!

I arrived home in Wisconsin today from my two week trip to Ohio.
I thought I would be exhausted when my sister and her husband picked me up at the airport to drive me home.
Instead I had a lot of energy and we made several stops on the way home.
When I got home I caught up on phone messages, mail and a few of the many emails.
Then sometime after 4 it hit me and I had to take a 2 plus hour nap.
It took me a while to realize why I had this earlier surge of energy - it was the two cokes I drank in quick succession from the time I left the hotel until I went through security at the airport - a time span of less than 2 hours!

I'm going to share just a few examples of my fabrics with you tonight as I'm fading again.

These pieces were dyed using a cotton and silk blend that was originally a knaki color. I love the results and the color I obtained. I have left his photo size large so you can click it and get a very large photo to see the texture.

This is the same fabric dyed is shades of greens and blues. I love the effects I got with this fabric. I have also left this one larger so that when you click on it you will see the textures.

These were cottons I dyed with various techniques.
Some of them started out already dyed a color. Some of them have multiple layers of colors and patterns. There are some color similarities throughout groups of fabric which will make it easier to work with them in a construction. This does not necessarily mean I will use them together. The fabrics barely visible on the left are fabrics we dyed black and then discharged with various discharge agents.

That's all for tonight as my body is still on Ohio time and I'm getting sleepy.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Classes are over and I'm tired - a good tired

Today was the last day of Jan's class.
I really enjoyed the class and learned so much and accomplished so much.
We had a great group of ladies in the class along with our top notch instructor.
It was after 5 when I left the Barn.
The last thing we did today was share our work with the rest of the class and talk about it.
I would like to share some of my work with you.

These three small pieces were underpainted and shibori dyed over the painting. I have an idea how I will use these. (But don't hold your breath waiting to see the finished piece as my priority will be working on the quilts for my solo show in January)

This piece is also underpainted and shibori dyed over it. At this point I have no idea how I will use it.

These 24 pieces started out as a dark to light orange gradation. Each set of 4 was overdyed with a different color with the same patterning. I also have an idea how I will use these.

For this group of fabrics I split a one and one half yard piece of my Gradual Gradation Fabric into five equal pieces. Each piece was shibori dyed with a different color.
The Gradual Gradation fabric shades from dark to light and back to dark. It has been folded so that the dark and light are next to each other in the photo.
Almost all of the fabrics I worked with started as a color rather than starting with plain white fabric as most class members did.
I wasn't trying to be the maverick of the group, I just had some solid hand dyes that I thought I could enhance with some shibori dyeing.
I'm pleased with them and I hope you enjoyed looking at them.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Day 4- Shibori

The class is fantastic. How lucky can a girl get? Carol Soderlund one week and Jan Myers-Newbury the next.
We've really been busy dyeing yards and yards of fabric. Most of us have at least one composition on the design wall or maybe even stitched. Some have more than one.
I came to the class with no agenda other to learn whatever I could and create some unique fabric. I have definitely done both.

This is my composition. It is only pinned to the design wall. There will be some slight adjustments when I sew it together but the design will remain the same. For those of you who are familiar with my work you will notice the colors are softer than what I usually work with. I am pleased with it.

When we take our dyed fabric out of the dryer it is like getting a wonderful present.
If you are there when the dryer stops and you help sort it you really get to appreciate each and every piece.

We learned how to dye ombre fabric like this. It is just gorgeous. I haven't done this one yet.

Pauline is definitely the Queen of black and white shibori. These are just a few of the many pieces she has done. She is very prolific and each one is more wonderful that the last.

Jan showed us how to inset a square piece today. The green and brown section with 4 squares is inset into the piece. This is something worth the price of taking the class.

After Jan showed us how to inset a square one of our fellow students showed us how to inset a circle. We were all impressed. What slick trick to sew a pefectly round circle.
Tomorrow is our final day of class. We are going to hate to see it end as our minds are still full of so many ideas.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Today Jan Myers-Newbury's Advanced Shibori class started at the barn

I'm enjoying Jan's Advanced Shibori class. It has been quite a few years since I took her beginning Shibori class. I did a lot of Shibori after I took that class.
It's like riding a bicycle - you don't forget how to do it. We're here to learn more new things and refine some of the things we have previously learned.
We started today with a exchange of fabric swatches we had dyed.
We also showed work we had done and told what our goals were for the class.
Several people had great quilts to share with the class.
When I showed Pauline's work last week it was hard to see. She is also in this class and she brought this spectacular quilt to share.

Susan made this stunning quilt after participating in Jan's Shibori class.

After we shared our work we dyed fabric with 4 different black dyes. It was amazing the difference between the blacks. Add to this the fact that class members had different fabrics and there was even more variety.
We then took the fabrics outside and discharged the black color with Soft Scrub cleanser, Dishwasher gel, and thickened bleach. Each product gave different results.
After that we started on the things we wanted to work on. I am trying several different things and hope some willl be successful.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Sharing the work of other students in the class

I'd like to share the work of some of the other class members with you.
First I'll show the work of our family reunion group.
Carol really accomplished a lot of wonderful work.

Karen's work has a definite color signature. She even dressed to match it. Her black on white piece is stunning - too bad my photography leaves something to be desired.

Sorry that the ironing board and iron are in Pauline's photo, but anyone who works with fabric will understand how important these pieces of equipment are. Unfortunately her special work is dificult to see.

And last, but not least is Sue who also was very prolific. She came all the way from London to take Carol's class and attend our "Family Reunion". Yesterday I had a sideways photo of Sue but I've changed it and you can aso see her work so much better now.

Joan is another dyer who dressed to match her work or did she dye to match her attire? Figuring this out is like figuring out which came first - the chicken or the egg. She doesn't have it on but her sweatshirt matched the mauve in her work.

I don't have a photo of Ellen but I have a photo of here lovely work. She used some interesting colors and did some unique projects.

Barbara did an interesting piece of large squares. She Also also did some neat black and white images on fabric but they aren't visible in the photo.

I missed Meg but I'm glad I can show you her work. She did some really unique work

Sandra isn't here either but her work is. I wish I oculd show you a close up of the gold piece. The detail is great.

Unfortunately I don't have a photo of Sherryl either. Her color sense and imagery on the top she was wearing was closely related to her lovely work.

I'm sorry I missed taking photos of the work of a few students in the class. It definitely wasn't because their work didn't measure up. I missed taking photos of some great pieces. I just somehow thought I had photos of everything but didn't. I'm sorry if those of you I missed are reading the list. In fact - if you are could you send me a jpeg and I'll add it.
I'm sure those of you who are interested in working with dyes can see why were were so excited to be able to take this class.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Carol's class is over and it was top notch

Our last day of class was Friday.
We learned so much more on the last day.
We learned why we did the "class quilt" and each got pieces of it to remember the learning experiences.
We also cut up and distributed pieces of each of the colors we dyed for the Sky Family.
Carol showed us examples of various experiments she had done to discover the effects of different variables in dyeing. This was so interesting. She also gave us hand outs so we could do some experiments on our own.
The last thing we did is share our work with the rest of the class and talk about how we got some of the results we achieved and how we felt about the different pieces.

This photo shows some of the pieces I created in the class. I was quite happy with most of them. I also learned what I should now do to add a little color to some of them without obliterating what is already there.
Carol spent a lot of time explaining overdyeing and the effect you get depending on the color and the value you choose. This was so interesting. I am glad I did not choose to overdye any of my work before she covered this.
A few of us had a lovely dinner at an Italian restaurant and then said our good byes. Since we live in various parts of the world we do not know when and if we will see each other again but we keep in touch via the internet.

This photo is of the group of us who originally met at Carol's Dyeing Part 1 class at the Timber Frame Barn in 2007. Since we were dyeing Color Families we called this our Family Reunion.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

A beautiful day at the Barn

Today the weather was absolutely beautiful. I got out and walked around a little after lunch. I took some pictures of things on the farm I'd like to share.
This is one of my favorite art pieces on the grounds.

Another interesting group of art pieces are these cone shapes. I have no idea what they are. I think they are very interesting. There are several of them in various locations.

The trees are loaded with apples and crabapples.

The next photo shows the pieces we dyed to complete the "class quilt".

Tomorrow is our last day of Carol's class. We will be sharing some of the work we have done with the rest of the class.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Day 3 in Carol Soderlund's class

We had another great day in Carol's class.
We worked with thickened dye paste again.
Many methods of working with silk screens were covered today.
How to design and use thermofax screens was also covered.
Carol is a wealth of knowledge with so many different ways to use these tools.
The first image is layer 1 of one of my pieces.

I made some new stamps to use to put the thickened dye on my fabric and enjoyed using them. I used one of them for layer 2 of the same piece.

This photo shows a variety of pieces students are working on as well as some of the supplies students are using.
I am including several interesting images done by various students using some of the methods Carol has taught us.

I do not know if these images you see are complete of if they will add more layers.
I can't begin to tell you all the things we are learning in this class. Take a class from Carol if you ever have the opportunity. You will thank me for recommending it. I can't imagine anyone not enjoying her classes. this is my 4th class with Carol and I have never been in a class where there was an unhappy student.