Saturday, October 25, 2008

Eye Candy for Halloween

I tried to blog this post on the 25th, but the computer was so slow I couldn't load the images. Today it seems fine, so I don't know what the problem was. I worked long hours Monday & Tuesday. My knees have been aching ever since.
Weather here is quite frigid. Temps have been below 10 F. We've used the hot tub a couple of times this week. That felt nice. Yesterday Warren & I spent the day together. I picked up a queen sized quilt top from Cyndi Campbell, to quilt. Last night we went out for dinner & a movie. Warren wanted to see Appaloosa, so that's what we saw. It was OK. Not great. I found it interesting that Timothy Spall, who plays Peter Pettigrew in Harry Potter, was in it. He was a "good guy", this time, but still kind of smarmy.
The photos here are from my trip to Salem. I wanted to share with you Ilene's neighbors, John & Sandy. Both are artists. Here is John showing me a plate he painted.
He had several paintings, each one included a mandala, & a bird.

I love Mandalas. I've always wanted to make one in a quilt.
This was glass paint on a window.

They also had several beautiful hand woven rugs that John had picked up in his travels from Turkey. He is a retired airline pilot from Germany.
Sandy showed me a quilt friends had made for her. It had a sad story with it. One of the women who worked on it died before they gave it to her. She asked if I thought she should hang it on the wall, & I told her if I had been the friend who had died, I think I would want her to wrap it around herself when ever she needs a hug.
The picture on the wall above her right shoulder was one she won an award with. It's the face of a baboon. Below is one of her textural pieces.
This was from a live model in a class she took. I thought he looked like Leonardo Da Vinci. I also thought it was interesting how I caught her reflection in the glass.
Her paintings & mixed media art had a dream-like quality.
They remind me a little of Susan Seddon Boulet.
I loved these textures. I'd like to put them on fabric.
Speaking of textures, Sandy took me to this place.
Loose Ends.
They had old doors & windows,
& stuff that looked like it could've come from an dig somewhere.

Interesting paper boxes that made me think of Sue Bleiweiss.
This is some of the stuff I bought to play with, & maybe include in my embellishment classes.
Outside they had a great garden. Even though it was done blooming. I loved this flower bed.
This tree is a bright PURPLE, I couldn't get over the color. Sandy said it wasn't painted, & she didn't know what kind of tree it was.
I loved how the Sun peeked through these palm fronds, & how they shadowed each other.

Back in Ilene & Stu's neighborhood I soaked in all the red leaves, & seeds on the Japanese maple. We don't get much red in Alaska in the fall, & I miss it.
I may print some fabric from these.

Friday, October 24, 2008

At Ilene & Stu's in Salem

My trip to Salem went so fast. I enjoyed the time spent with Ilene & Stu. Ilene is recovering well from her heart surgery.
It was my duty as resident nurse-friend & wife of a Respiratory Therapist to encourage her to take deep breaths. She did quite well, even though she stuck her tongue out at me afterwards.
We walked outside in the mild Salem autumn, & met neighbor Sandy. Sandy had to check out the incision line. I found a kindred spirit in Sandy. She's an artist. She took me on a little shopping spree at a neat store that I'll tell you about tomorrow.
Ilene & I spent some time outside on the neighborhood bench, in the evening sun.
Stu showed me his culinary skills in the kitchen with turkey. It was SO GOOD!
He rubbed it with spices & baked it in a paper bag.There were still flowers blooming here &
there. It was tough to say good bye to my friends & the warm place, to come back to winter, but it was good to see Warren & Broccoli, & sleep in my own bed. today we spent the whole day running errands. It always feels like such a waist. We ate at Pizza Plaza, & enjoyed a quiet evening.
More to follow later.....Oh, my bread recipe is here.

Saturday, October 18, 2008


Today I quilted a client quilt, for my friend Julia. She said just do a panto, she didn't want to spend a lot on it, & it's for a young GD to use & love to death. I did use a daisy panto, but spread it out a little further & put free-motion leafy vines between the daisies just so it had a personality of it's own. The thread I used is a pastel pink-green -blue-yellow variegated.
I am also making bread because I wanted to take a couple of loaves along to Ilene's when I go tomorrow evening. She called last night & she's out of the hospital, staying at her brother's in Portland, & Monday we'll be going to the Dr. for a post-op check before heading back to Salem on Tuesday.
I got a new book in the mail a couple of days ago. It's Maggie Grey's book, "Textile Translations".
I started reading it, & even though I don't have any Gesso or some of the other things she uses, I decided to do a little experimenting with what I did have on hand.
I used unsanded tile grout for the textured surface, & different paints & Pearl-Ex powder. I even used some dried Lavender for texture. It smelled really nice, but did fire up a little when I used the heat gut for some embossing powder I threw on top. It smells like I've been smoking something funny.
Here it is before firing with a heat gun.
I'm going for the look of "Termination Dust", with the mountain top snow, dirt & red-brown vegetation. I'll be adding more layers once these are dry.
Now I should probably start packing for my trip tomorrow. Oh & I have to call my DGD Darian to say Happy 14th birthday!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Angelina Fibers & Car-ma

In answer to my sister's question on what I used to make my rubber stamps, these are the Exacto knives I use. The rubber material for carving comes in sheets 3/8ths inch thick, & can be purchased in small squares all the way up to an 8 1/2" x 11".

My friend Ilene is doing well. I've been worrying about her because I haven't been able to reach her husband by phone, & unfortunately I didn't think to ask what hospital she was going to be in, so I found her famous brother on the Internet & emailed him. He emailed right back & let me know she's doing well.

We've been having a run of bad Car-ma lately. That's an intentionally bad pun. My Durango was just in the shop for transmission troubles, now the van is in for the same thing, & today Warren's truck sprung a leak of engine coolant, & is now in the shop for that! The van is our summer car, that we loan out to friends & family when they come up to visit. It doesn't have 4 wheel drive, & we're hoping we will be able to get it home when they're done with it. The hill we live on is a 4 wheel drive hill in winter, & it's winter here now.
The TV satellite dish was blow off it's Azimuth a week ago, we're still waiting for the dish guy to come realign it, & our hot tub has been on the blink for 3 weeks. The guy came today to replace the temperature probe. Is Mars in retrograde?

Tomorrow I'll be teaching the ABC's of Embellishment Class, part 1. I've been playing around with the Angelina fibers in preparation for the class.

This is a feather entrapped in fibers.

This is a little cluster of Forget-me-nots made from Angelina fibers.

This is a work in progress. The Angelina fibers ironed over a rubber stamp, then stitched down on fabric that I painted, & embellished with Xpandaprint & Pearl-ex powder. I burned the edges on this & the brick-rusty red color fabric. I also painted & stamped the rusty-red fabric. It's all layered on top of a piece of an upholstery fabric, & time related words free-motioned on top.

I'll be doing some hand embellishing in different threads, ribbons & beads before I'm finished.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

We had a terrific wind storm this weekend. Thursday night there >90MPH winds. I got up at
3 a.m. because the frame for the swing was walking around on the deck above our bedroom, &
making a lot of noise. At about 4, the power went out, & by 5:30 it was starting to get cold in the house. We have a gas furnace, but the thermostat runs on electricity, so the heat was off too. I bundled up & went out into the storm to bring in some wood for a fire. Just filling the wheelbarrow full of wood warmed me right up. Pulling it to the back door & carrying in upstairs warmed me even more. I got a good fire going & sat & studied ( I have to renew my Pediatric Advanced Life Support tomorrow), by oil lamp until the power came back up around 9.
Hope stopped by for a fitting of her Irish Dance dress. It fits well, but I need to tweak the batting in the back. It needs to be a little wider. It's getting there!
After all the studying, I worked most of the day in the studio on stuff for my ABC's of Embellishment class that will be coming up on Friday. This is Angelina fibers over a rubber stamp. Doesn't look like much does it, but will be lovely when added to an art piece later.

I also spent some time playing with embossing powder & foils. Above are bits of embossing powder & the 2 on the upper right are clear Embossing powder mixed with bits of foil. They look almost jewel like in person.
Above is Alene's It's OK to Wash It glue (my favorite) stamped on to my fabric that had been bleach discharged, & sprinkled with copper embossing powder.

This is Liqui-Fuse stamped on & foiled.
This one is Liqui-fuse & a flake foil that is used for paper making.
Here I needle felted some of the Angelina Flash fibers into wool on silk.

I also got into carving a bunch of rubber stamps to use. I made most of them 2 sided.
I used walnut ink on paper so I could see how they turned out.

I'm pretty pleased with the results. It'll be nice to have my own designs on my fabrics.

Here I used one of them on black & foiled it. I sprinkled it with some glittery stuff & a few bits of Angelina, then cover it with black Tulle, & Stitched it all down. It's about an 8 inch square piece.
I got a bunch of small samples done for the class. It's only got a few students signed up so far, & frankly I like it that way for now. It takes some of the pressure off, since this is a new class, & it always gets better with time. I don't want my students to feel cheated. I want them to have FUN!
PS please say a prayer for my friend Ilene today. She getting a new valve put into her heart!