Monday, March 19, 2012

Slowly But Surely

It was a beautiful early spring weekend here in Minnesota. Temps in the upper 70s, birds singing wildly, neighborhood kids tearing around like sugar-fueled maniacs, and daffodil buds rearing their heads a month ahead of schedule. I spent it sitting inside on my fanny watching movies (did you know that Atonement is a *fantastic* movie?) and endlessly pinning blocks together.

But look! I have something to show for my efforts!



There are seven more interior blocks to go, which should be finished by dinnertime. Then I have to start on the border blocks, which are a completely different color. Can you guess what this quilt is going to look like when it's done?

My other project for the weekend was jewelry making. These pieces were made with Little Windows brilliant resin, little bits and pieces of Angelina Fibers, Angelina Film, foil, etc. left over from previous projects, and finished with the black glitter from the Little Windows Dichro-ish kit. I will use thin silver wire to create some filigree, wrap the beads in wire, and make a couple of necklaces and some earrings.



You would not even believe how easy this product is to work with. I bought it at Houston last year and it's been sitting on my desk ever since. I can't wait to make more stuff! I think some dichroic buttons for my new black cardigan sweater would be way cool.

Friday, March 16, 2012

A Painted Lady

Okay, so it's not a lady. It's a quilt. But it's very ladylike, so I think it qualifies. (even though I may have used some unladylike language while piecing it. But I digress.)

Anyway.

The Last Shadow has been painted and is now awaiting it's new binding. Here's a pic of the quilt in it's Before state...




And here's what it looks like After...




I just LOVE what the paint did to this quilt. It didn't change it a lot, but boy oh boy did it ever jazz it up. I think my favorite part is the deep purple area near the center of the quilt. Look how cool it is with that subtle painted section! I will definitely do a lot more of this type of embellishment on my quilts in the future, as I found it to be extremely relaxing as well as very, very fun. For more info on what products I used, please refer to my March 6th blog entry.

The HMQS auction quilt is moving slowly but surely toward the finish line. The segments have become blocks and the blocks are now being joined to one another. I need more pins.



I've gotten several emails from people asking me if I am insane because I use so many pins. A few years ago I'd have agreed with them. However, as my quilts have become more and more complex, I have found that if you want accuracy and precision in your piecing there's just nothing that beats a whole boatload of pins. And, believe it or not, I actually find pinning to be relaxing! I just plop myself on the couch with a big glass of Cherry Pomegranate flavored Crystal Lite, my cell phone so I can play Words With Friends as I pin, and the TV remote. I plug in a good movie, and get to work. A movie or two later and all of the pinning is done and I'm ready to move to the sewing machine to stitch everything in place. See what I mean? Relaxing!




Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Scattered

One of the surest signs of the impending spring show season is when I start taking over the entire kitchen with 56 projects in various stages of completion. Once this starts, my poor family knows that they will not be able to eat dinner at the table again until late May. However, since I am by nature a caring and sensitive person, I do make sure that I leave at least one third of the island countertop available for their use so that they can sit huddled over their plates. See? I'm nice like that.


This particular mess is all the fault of Sherry Rogers-Harrison, who has gotten me totally hooked on her PaintFusion technique. She showed me how to combine these really cool LuminArte dry pigment paints with her PaintFusion textile medium to create a whole new world of color on my quilts.


Sherry uses this technique to transform a plain white piece of fabric into a painted wholecloth, but I'm experimenting with how to use it to subtly alter the colors in a pieced quilt. Because I love the piecing process and don't want to give up that element of quiltmaking, I've chosen to use the paints to enhance my printed fabrics and create added dimension in my work. I'll show you what I mean.

Here's a pic of The Last Shadow before painting


Here's what it looks like with a little bit of paint. Please note; I have a lot of painting left to do. So far, only the center is painted, but you can see how the addition of the paint adds a whole new look to the quilt.


When it's all done, I will apply a turquoise binding with bright orange piping. You'll be able to see this quilt in person at MQS in the special Teacher of the Year exhibit. And, of course, it's one of the quilts featured in my upcoming Bordering on Lunacy DVD which will, I promise, be finished someday. If I'm ever home long enough to finish it.

In other breaking news, the HMQS auction quilt has gone from this


to this


I am zipping right along. Lo, the wonders of a caffeinated lifestyle.