30 May 2014

Play date with Marcella

For those of you who don't know, Marcella is the other half of MidCoast Surface Design Workshops. She is just back from Florida, her winter home and we decided to get together for some fun. I am starting some new work and need a lot of fabric in black and white. It is one of the reasons I did the thermofax screens in paint and dye. I used a gelli that I made, and Plexiglas to make these fabrics.

Just picture these overdyed with lots of hand stitching. 

These next are monoprints.

And these are "stamps" made with hot glue

On dry and wet fabric

I used the parchment that I squirted the hot glue onto to press the "stamps" down on the fabric

28 May 2014

That new project

* Sketchbook winners are Elle - coptic and Pamela - accordion. Email me your addresses using the comment form below.

Don't ask me why I can't leave circles alone...

I am starting on a new project that may be quite a challenge. Yes, there are more circles but it will be every different than anything else I have done before. 

Another obsession of mine is shot cotton. I can make all the fabric I want but I can't make shot cotton. A local fabric store had a 20% off everything sale. I have been drooling over their shot cotton since they opened so this was my chance. 

I bought 2 batches with one color that I will use in both - the lime.

These are future circles

Not sure about these fabrics but the sale was on (smile)

These last two really captured me. The fabric on the right and below is VERY thin and semi-transparent. I love the lines of threads on the wrong side and I am thinking of many ways of using that side. The dot side is OK but I bought it to use the wrong side. The other fabric was nice and I thought about over dyeing or maybe other surface design techniques. 

I haven't tried these but they assured me these watercolors were heavily pigmented. They are West German. They look exactly like another set I bought in the UK which are fabulous so at 20% off, it was a small investment...

I may or may not have mentioned Judith and I are taking an "Abstract art in quiltmaking" course online from Elizabeth Barton and I plan on doing more abstract art in monochromes soon.

26 May 2014


First with the Sketchbook stuff

I decided to make some silk scarves using Shibori resist and these are some ideas for color combinations. The colors inside the arrow shape are for an upcoming project.

The photo of me of the left page was taken at the Maine Event 2012. I guess I was showing a piece I made in the Show and Tell portion of the event. One of the participants took it and gave it to me when she saw me at a workshop I gave at the Maine Art Quilt guild meeting. The reason I blew it up in size will be apparent in a minutes. The page on the right was a nice piece of linen and I pulled the threads in the center. I placed the purple behind it so the empty spaces were visible.

I wanted to paste half a picture in black and white in the book then draw the rest of the picture on the facing page.

This was done with graphite on the left and charcoal on the right where I covered the page with black then used an eraser to "draw" the picture.

This was the scrap of sandwich I used to practice free motion on while making the circle quilt. Then I used a paint roller and paint on one half to accentuate how the stitches showed since they were indented in the fabric

This was a blind stitching exercise from the Dorothy Caldwell workshop. It is in another sketchbook in which I saved all the ephemera from her workshop.

23 May 2014

Making your own sketchbook

This post is an intro to the new tutorial on making your own sketchbook. I won't be showing any of the tutorial since you can find it's tab under the header above. What I am going to show are a few, certainly not all, of the sketchbooks that I have made.

 In Maine we used to have a lot of "shoe shops" where shoes were handcrafted and hand stitched. The end result of the closings of all these shoe shops is a lot of leather. I have trash bags filled with leather so I thought I would cover a few sketchbooks. The 8 with a line through it is my "mark". It is supposed to represent back to back B's. This book is made with watercolor paper and has an elastic fastener knotted inside the back cover for easy closure.

This is a small purse sized sketchbook for when I am out and about and find myself waiting or seeing something I need to sketch.

This is a sketch done while waiting for Brian.

This is a travel sketchbook with removable signatures

This is a signature being removed. This way I can keep the cover and just replace the signatures (4 pages each) which can later be incorporated into a bound book.

This is the first sketchbook I made. It has a leather cover with the "book" part glued into the front and back covers.

I used sketch paper, tracing paper, and brown paper. Some of the brown pages were made to fold out double width.

This book ( below) is the one I used for samples of my surfaces or grounds.

You remember this one. This is the current one that is pages from being filled.

This was a gift from Judith and has double coptic binding.

An older watercolor book with the stitching right through the leather.

I must have given this away because I can't find it. Very nice? Hope whoever has it is enjoying it.

This was a felted purse I made in a workshop Judith and I attended on Deer Isle. I ended up cutting it open and using it to cover a sketchbook.

This was a gift for a friend who lives in Arizona. I really like this closure.

Well, I guess that's the end of the fashion show. For those of you who suffered through it, you now have a chance of getting one the sketchbooks I made for the tutorial. One is coptic bound and the other is a great accordion traveling sketchbook. Leave a comment and which sketchbook you want.

Covered in gelli printed paper I made with Judith

Coptic binding

Coptic left and accordion travel book right.

21 May 2014

Going a bit potty

This is really out in left field. I thought I would show some of the pottery I made in college. The hand built pieces were from my first year and the thrown pots from the second. I made MANY more pieces than these but these were a good representation of what I did.

Hand built pieces

This and below are the size of a basketball

I called this "Birth"

As a final project I made an entire set of dishes with different evergreens pressed into the clay. I actually ate off these dishes for quite a while. Pine above and spruce below.

This I made while teaching a class in hand built pots to seniors at a senior center in Milwaukee. It had a round mouth and triangular bottom.

These are thrown. As you can see by the similar designs, this was my signature shape.