about the artist

Archive for January, 2010

Dyeing Embroidery Thread

Monday, January 18th, 2010

I have started the hand-stitching on the irrigation circle piece. I love the zen of sitting with fabric and making marks. Because of the complex colors in the piece, I felt that I needed some embroidery thread that would work better with those colors. I knew that the Colorhue dyes work with wool and linen in addition to silk. I did not have an immediate source for white or unbleached silk thread so I went out to look for an alternative.

I found this white bamboo for crocheting.

I wound some skeins.

I also found some natural linen embroider thread, already in skeins. I thought that might produce some interesting color when overdyed.

I spritzed the skeins with water so that the dye would penetrate more quickly. I dipped and poured dye, using 2 to 3 colors on each skein. You can see from the first photo that I got some good results. Click the photo to see them larger. They are still damp. I will rinse them tomorrow and hope they do not lose color.

Here is Mr Scooter in the studio today. He has about 2 inches of hair, now, so he looks like he has put on weight. I tell him he is not fat, he is fluffy.

SAQA Oregon, a Beginning

Saturday, January 16th, 2010

I first joined SAQA before we left California, 4 years ago. I never got involved with the local group, which was pretty active at that time. When I moved to Oregon, I expected to get involved here, but there was absolutely nothing happening. Recently, we got two new reps, Georgia French and Laura Jaszkowski, from southern Oregon. They are both members of the High Fiber Group, too. They have started organizing meetings. They  had one in Eugene today and the northern area will meet in March.

When looking for a spot for us to meet in March, they approached The Pine Needle quilt shop in Lake Oswego. The owner  was more than happy to have us meet there in the class room, and also invited us to show quilts and be available to share info about SAQA at an open house this week-end. Georgia and Laura gathered some quilts from the group and got them hung at the quilt shop.

I did a 2 hour stint to answer questions today and took some photos of the quilts. That is my sunset composition up there on the left. Apparently lots of people were curious about how I got the orange glow — serendipity!!

Here is June Underwood and Jill Hoddick who were on duty when I arrived. June is speaking to someone on the other side of that counter. Jill teaches costuming at Portland University and has jumped into the art quilting arena and can’t wait until she retires to get more involved.

Here are some other shots of SAQA member quilts.

These are clickable to see them larger.

I have high hopes that we can have a real exhibit of our work in a gallery. You have to start some where!!

I stitched the circle quilt with monofilament polyester thread to stabilize it before I start hand stitching. I can’t wait to do some hand work.

Ready for Hand Stitching

Thursday, January 14th, 2010

I am liking this now. It is all Mistyfused and ready for hand stitching. I want to start it right away, but I think I will save it for our trip to Hawaii next week.

Speaking of handstitching, Laura Wasilowski is blogging about it. I love the stitching she is doing.

I had a great time at STASH today. It is always fun to sit around and chat with like-minded good friends. We had a little talk, a little show and tell and a great lunch. Terry made sweet potato soup and beer bread and for dessert, Panna Cotta with fruit.

When I got home, Mr C and I decided to run out to the Dr’s office to get H1N1 flu shot which they are now offering to old folks like us.

Then, I ran down to the studio to fix the problems with the circle piece before making dinner. Now, I am watching Project Runway. I think it is going to be a great season.

A Pause to Recoup

Wednesday, January 13th, 2010

Yesterday, I awoke feeling rather crappy. I felt I was coming down with a bad cold so I took it very easy and drank tea and zinc lozenges. I awoke this morning with a bit of a sore throat, but as the day progressed, I felt better. I even did a short walk with Mr C and Scooter before the weather turned really awful.

Tonight, I was able to tack the pieces to the batting so that I could get it up on the design wall for a good critique. I can see areas that I need to reorganize or change, but overall, it is looking pretty good. I am so glad I did this smaller piece first because I have learned a lot about how to manage the layout.

I was not happy with the shibori that I had used. It was organza and was not fusing well. So, tonight, I used my color hue dyes and whipped up a few more pieces.

These are all small pieces of habotai silk.I love the last piece – whee!! I’m thinking I might add a few more shibori pieces.

I had a lot of clerical/computer work to do again today. I got all of my images for the book burned to a cd and sent off to Lark. I also had a big SDA job to do. I have been gathering images of my vintage Japanese fabric quilts to send to Judy Mathieson who is doing a talk about the use of Japanese fabrics in quilts. I have done quite a few.

STASH is tomorrow at Terry’s house. I am looking forward to some girl talk.

Bloom in the Muck

Monday, January 11th, 2010

In Eastern religions, the lotus flower is an important symbol because it starts life down in the muck and dirty water. As it emerges from the muck, it becomes a beautiful flower. The dean of the cathedral reminded us of this on Sunday, reminding us that we are always some where between tragedy and ecstasy. He admonished us to not wait to bloom. If you have gift cards, spend them; if you have unused airline miles, use them. If you have been meaning to spend time with some one special, what are you waiting for, do it. I loved the sermon and the symbolism, and perhaps, it is my age, but it was meaningful to think about reaching for what makes me happy and not worrying about what might be. It fit with my word for the year, to follow my bliss.

Today was a busy day of doing SDA website stuff, handling some guild issues, taking Scooter to the vet and getting homework done for my theology class. I did manage to get some more fabric cut for the silk irrigation circles. Here is my workspace. I love the circle cutter.

Here is the piece so far. I am hoping for a pretty full day in the studio tomorrow.

Scooter has yeast infections in both of his ears. Apparently this is a common problem with dogs with floppy ears. The vet taught be how to clean them and he has drops to put in his ears for the next 10 days. He is such a good boy at the vets. Their resident 3 legged cat walked right up to him, sensing that he was a total woose; it was so cute.

I hope you are blooming in the muck!!