Monday, November 16, 2015

When I'm quiet here, it means I'm busy elsewhere. Most of the time it involves doctors' offices, and that's true, but it also means I'm either in my sewing studio, drawing, catching up around the house, cooking etc. I have been in the studio. My sewing studio is my safe place. When I have sleepwalked through the years, I am usually found under my sewing machine cabinet or in my sewing room. When life gets crazy, my sewing studio is where I prefer to be. I have been making garments lately for my husband and me. I gave or threw away all of my winter clothes last spring. Some of the clothes I have had for over 30 years. I made flannel winter pajama bottoms for both of us. I made a lined winter coat out of duck with suit lining, I added special touches. I made a matching cloche hat. I also made a quilted matching vest, to add warmth without bulk, and so I can have that only when I need it. I have made a matching tote/purse. All of this took a lot of time and patience. I made the muslin test outfit first for each, and adjusted as needed. That turned out to be invaluable with the coat as the pattern was messed up. I am going to make a top to go with it for sure, and I think I have enough twill in a matching color, and if so I will make a pair of pants. I hope to have some decent photos of what I worked on. I love retro looks, and that is the way I envisioned the coat with cloche hat. I need to be sitting in my sewing room and cleaning it up as much as I can before I work on the top, pants and other things. Fall is the time I like to sew garments, but some years I don't get any done. Then I will be back at trying to get quilt tops quilted, sew a quilt top, start fresh on art quilts.

Gulf Shores Art Quilt Series, I, II, III (IV Pending)

Sunday, October 18, 2015

I - Brown Pelican
II - Dolphins
III - Shells and Great Blue Heron

Gulf Shores Photos

We had a great time at Gulf Shores, we have been going there approximately 30 years for my husband's family reunions. We stay on the beach in a beach house owned by a family friend. Here are a few photos to enjoy.

Gulf Shores Beach Art Quilt Series, 3rd one

Sunday, September 27, 2015

The third art quilt in the Gulf Shores beach series I am working on is finished, minus the binding and sleeve. The binding and sleeve are ready to go, I'm hanging it to let the shape settle, then do any squaring etc. that is needed. I have already blocked it, but I added a couple of touches to it. If I need to re-block it, I will. I showed a snippet of some of the stitching in the last post on the series. I don't want to give the details of this one away as it is a gift. I will show a snippet of a Great Blue Egret I made. By the way, don't ask me why it is called a "great blue," I haven't figured that out and I haven't read up on it. This is entirely thread drawn on the sewing machine, not machine embroidered. I drew a basic outline using an air pen on a piece of Pellon thick stabilizer, then I started. This took 10 different colors of thread, but the last stitching is not showing as I did it after I cut this out and appliqued it onto the art quilt. I added some silver into the feathers to give it a more reflective look, like when light hits something.

Each art quilt in a series is supposed to be different, how different, and what it will look like is up to the artist.

Totally Me!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

There's a new movie coming out with the Peanut characters, and there's the opportunity online to make your own character. The above character is totally me. My son and his family live in Santa Rosa, where Charles Schultz lived, and they are members of the museum.

Totally cool....

Gulf Shores Beach Art Quilts, 2 finished, 1 in process, probably 1 more

Saturday, September 19, 2015

I have previously posted the first art quilt in this series, for my husband's family. They have been vacationing in Gulf Shores since they were little, I will just say 60 years and leave it at that. They have a reunion of the siblings every year, and those gatherings (in the past with parents) have been going on for about 30 years. This series of art quilts is to commemorate that and to give each person a part of the memories.

The first art quilt reflected brown pelicans:

I can't post the second art quilt yet, as that person is on the computer a lot. I want to wait to reveal it after she receives it. This is a tiny peak that shows the small circles I stitched. I placed a pin next to it to give some sense of size.

The third art quilt is in process, and that person isn't on the computer with a lot of mobility as most, so I will share a small snippet. This recipient's art quilt will reflect sea shells, as this person has liked to get up early at sun breaking, walk the beach and collect shells. There are very limited shells now at Gulf Shores due to the lack of sea grass in the Gulf. If you have sea shells, hang onto them. Lack of sea shells is another sign our oceans are dying.

This snippet shows the top quilting stitches being in spirals, to emphasize the spirals in sea shells and waves.

It won't take me long to get the third piece finished, and then I decide about the fourth one.

Crocheted Friendship Braid Quilt

I prepared this friendship braid quilt of butterflies in a method most people have told me they have never seen before - when they have watched me put a braid together. I don't quite understand what they are talking about. I prepared panels so I could quilt as I go, and planned to joining the panels together with fabric strips. My Crescendo sewing machine has a running eyelet stitch and I got the idea that I wanted to crochet the panels together.

I first mentioned the idea to someone who crochets and quilts, and they thought I was crazy and told me it wouldn't work. It did work, whether you like the result is up to you. The colors in this yarn helped to pull out the colors in the butterfly fabrics. I used a long straight upholstery needle that I purchased at JoAnn's in the curtain and upholstery section, and I pulled yarn through the eyelets to make a pattern of stabilized yarn loops to be able to crochet around. I crocheted around each panel, and then I joined the panels and then crocheted around all of the panels together. This was stabilized enough, but I decided to do more.

Using my sewing machine, I stitched the crocheted places to the fabric. This really wasn't necessary from a stability standpoint, more as a design standpoint, that some people may not like the other way. I did that.

After it was all finished, I then took the leftover pieces from making the quilt, and I added in leftover pieces of white fabric, and I made a matching bag to store the quilt in. I sewed in a personalized machine stitched label, and I left a little side opening for the note to the recipient. It was signed, sealed and delivered.
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