Creativity…Or Not…

Just to be sewing and in an attempt to jump start creativity this week, I decided to start on a new sample for a class I will teach at the shop. ( I did create on Wednesday, but it didn’t translate to cloth.  It was a story for my little kids class at church.)

I purchased the fabric for this sample last Saturday. Now I  will need to sell the class to recoup my costs.  Anyway, I decided to work on what was in front of me to hopefully start the juices flowing.  Here is the block and the fabrics I am using.

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I bought 4 fabrics for the blocks, which will alternate and the sashing and border will be the yellow fabric.  The blocks are woven.   The collection of fabrics is called Serenity and is by Don Baker (?) it looks like (it’s hard to read).  Clothworks makes it.

I liked making the block and writing down notes for the class….but I don’t feel the juices flowing yet.  It was good to be sewing and experimenting again, though.  I have read one suggestion to “just show up”.  I guess I could try that.  But today I think I will read an article in the new QA magazine by Jane Davila…called “it’s About  Time”.

BTW I will be putting in some work time at the Paducah quilt show on April 21 and 22 (that’s Wed/Thurs).  I will be working for Betty Blais at the Embellishment Village booth.  Come by and see us!

Back Home…

I’m back from the Decatur show and trying to catch up on things here at home.  This show is put on by mostly traditional quilters, so my sales of artsy supplies weren’t as good as I would have liked. I’ve done better in past years, so it could be the economy.  The previous weekend I had a knockout day at the National Quilting Day event in our area.  It was like there was absolutely NO recession.  So who knows why you can sell better in one area than another.  It’s good to be home after 4 days gone.  April is the month I plan to do lots of new art for an art fair the first weekend of May.

I had an appraisal done of a new art piece while I was gone.  Sandy Sweitzer of PAQA is always the appraiser at the Decatur event and she appraised my new piece, “…Words Will Never Hurt Me”, which will go into a museum show this summer.  Her appraisal value exceeded my expectations!

In addition to getting an appraisal, I bought a few things…thread marked down cheap and some hand dyed cotton thread.  Of course, I could have dyed it myself, but I like supporting other hand dyers too.  Look at all the colors!

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The New Year

It is the last day of 2008.  My blog is set on some weird time zone, but I think it will show that I am still writing this in 2008.

(Note:  Whoops, guess not…after I published it I see it shows Jan. 1. 2009.  Oh, well.)

It is hard to be pensive and thoughtful about the past year as I am cleaning and fixing food, in preparation for a few guests tonight.  Perhaps I will be able to tomorrow.  Of course, my husband will also be home with me, so, maybe not. I am making that yummy potato soup recipe with homemade croutons that I have talked about before and the shrimp cocktail is on ice.

A lot of people on the quiltart list are already talking about goals for 2009.  Hmmm…all I know is that my first three months of the year are likely to be quite busy and I am gearing up mentally.  I will be attending two quilt retreats (count ’em…two!) in January.  My husband purchased one of them as a Christmas gift to me. What a sweetie.  I have a project class scheduled to teach at the quilt shop in Evansville.  In February I have a machine quilting class scheduled and the rest of the month will be spent preparing to vend at the Indiana Heritage Quilt Show in Bloomington, IN.  I received notification that they had a space available.  Since I have wanted to vend there for a few years, I jumped at the chance.  So I will be dyeing fabric as well as making decisions about my inventory of other artsy things to take.  The Indiana Heritage show is a fairly large show lasting 3 days.  I may also have the opportunity to teach a workshop for a Greenwood quilt guild while I am up there.  Currently I am still slugging around trying to complete the commission proposal.  It is not finished yet.  I am making small advances.

Anyway, here’s wishing every reader a VERY BLESSED NEW YEAR!

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New piece I’ve been working on for a “go green” exhibit…I’m sure it’s now done..except for finishing the edges…made from a section of an old quilt…

The Kreativ Blogger Award

I just read on Gerrie’s blog, a comment by someone that the word “Kreativ” is not a misspell, it’s German.  I’m glad to have that cleared up, because there was talk going around about that “misspell” and what it might mean.

I also agree with Terry that the logo is quite ugly (pink and blue are not my favorite colors), so I have designed a new one.  It’s quite simple and if I could ever figure out how to upload it to get it on a post I would show it.  But I probably won’t spend time on it today.  Sorry.  Maybe later.  I have other things I’d rather do today.

Today, my art project is a recycling one for an upcoming exhibit at the Rend Lake visitor’s center.  I am a member of the Illinois Artisan’s program and usually have some things for sale in their art shop.  This exhibit will take place starting in February, 2009 and run til the end of April.  The Paducah AQS show is in April and Rend Lake gets lots of visitors on their way from and to the quilt show, so they always plan something special for that time.  The exhibit is entitled “Repurposed, Renewed, and Reborn”.  For this project we are to buy nothing new, but to use what we have by recycling, reusing and reinventing.  At the moment I have cut a section of a very tattered old quilt and I put gesso on it.  I plan to paint and embellish it for my entry.  This is the starting point.

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I would like to keep some of the background colors peeking through and want to definitely tone down the pink feedsack.  I can’t wait to start painting and will be using some Lumiere paints.

Hey, if I like it enough, maybe I’ll start a “series”.  I have plenty of that quilt left!

Friday This ‘N That…

There are not a lot of exciting things happening this week.  I am starting to think about what I need to have ready for a quilt show in Elizabethtown, KY.  It is the 19th and 20th, but I will leave on the 18th to go get set up.  The dyeing, painting and printing class that I have been doing SO much preparation for is cancelled at the Rend Lake facility.  I was so looking forward to teaching this class, but there will be another time, and I have a bunch of new cool fabrics!

I am working on a new sample.  The pattern is Kimonos by Betty Blais of Embellishment Village.  Most people would probably use oriental fabrics for this pattern, but I am using my hand dyed fabrics.  See…

I will probably make a couple of other blocks using different fabrics.  I am also planning on painting some sky fabrics to sell with patterns from the Accidental Landscapes series.  And there are probably a few other small samples to make.  I sell Angelina fibers and film, paintstiks and accessories, beads and beading supplies, surface design books, as well as patterns, kits and fabrics.  I plan my booth to offer items for the quilter interested in trying something new and, so that it will offer items other vendors might not have. I will be demo-ing paintstiks, Angelina products, and foiling with some new glue and foiling glue pen products.  I am really looking forward to this show.  Last year was the first year I vended and the reception from the quilters was very good.

It is cooling off here some this morning and I am thinking about getting outside and creating some more dye painted cloth.  I have some ideas I want to try.

Keep making art!

The Last Few Days…

…I know I’ve been pretty quiet here. That’s because…last week I was contemplating expanding my selling options by opening an Etsy shop. On Thursday I signed up and on Friday I listed a few items. I will be using the shop to sell hand made textiles, silk scarves, and small pieces of fiber art. People started to visit the shop on Friday. By Friday evening I had two people who “hearted” me. Etsy people will know what that means! That was exciting. So I have been busy with that. See the shop here.

On Saturday, I taught two short classes in Evansvile. The first class was this little bag made by Jill. She was thrilled with it. I also managed to get two of them made at the same time!

The patterns for the other class didn’t make it to the shop…and then I discovered I had forgotten mine! Have you ever “winged it” when teaching a pattern class? Fortunately for me, it was a tote bag and I had just made my class sample in May, but still…I had to think. I teach so many different projects, that I just can’t be expected to know on a whim what is what. I threatened to take the sample apart, but it all came back to me, step by step. Whew! This was a pretty cool bag and the way it was made was pretty cool. It was the Whimsy Bag by Lazy Girl.

I have so many things I am working on and need to work on, I feel like I am running in circles. I have one quilt show in Kentucky lined up for the fall and I am making up a few samples that feature my hand dyes so that I can sell kits. I’ll give you a sneak preview of one sample, but it is not complete as I am still deciding on what the borders will be. This pattern is called Rosa and Friends and it was designed by Betty Blais of Embellishment Village. I think she did a great job.

Have a great week!

Monday Ramblings…

I am back from the Decatur show, my head is full…of thoughts and things to do this week. There is the possibility of some workshops with the quilt guilds ahead. And now I am the proud inheritor of my grandmother’s Singer Featherweight sewing machine! I spent some time with my mother this weekend and she gave me grandma’s machine. I am excited about that. It’s good to be home and today is a “tired” day. I am resting.

Monday ramblings has turned into…Tuesday Ramblings

I did some demos of stenciling with paintstiks at the show which sold my new stencils very well. I oversold the leaves stencil, don’t ya’ know! I have plenty more on order and will be putting them up on my website soon.

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paintstik leaves

Using the 1/2 inch paintstik brush with short bristles made specifically for use with paintstiks, I stenciled these leaves onto a light gray hand dye. After applying one color and leaving the stencil in place, I applied a second color in various places to provide shading and dimension. People were quite impressed with them. Paintstiks are wonderful for stencils and rubbings. The only downside I can see about them is that you can’t be in a hurry with them. They do take some time to dry. After all, it is oil paint. But it doesn’t take the drying time of an oil painting.

Here is what a section of the Southwest stencil looks like. I did repeats of the design. Again, I used more than one color for dimension.

southwest stencil

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These are available for $3 each plus shipping.

I see several possibilities with these designs. They can be applied to a border and then used as the quilting design; just quilt around them as it’s already marked. One could apply fusible to the back and cut them out to make applique. You could also do some thread painting on them to fill in the vein and stem areas, then cut them out for applique.

Quilt Shows

I am leaving in the a.m to first, drop off a quilt at Rend Lake Artisan’s center for their quilt show. It will run the whole month of April and is planned to coincide with the AQS quilt show in Paducah.

Then I am off to Decatur, IL for the quilt show there. I will be vending and sharing a motel room with my good friend, Betty from the Village Mercantile in Boonville, IN. This is an annual two day quilt show and a pretty well attended one.

If you have not gotten to Evansville to the Women’s Hospital to see the Inspired Women in Art exhibit, you have a little over a week to get there. That show comes down on April 4 and my piece called “Labuk’s Gift” is on display.

I will have our laptop with me this weekend so I can check in on what is going on!

This wonderful quilt was created by my friend, Cynthia, from Greenwood, IN. Enjoy.

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