Thursday, March 31, 2011

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

the efforts of others

I love seeing what other artists make of the cloth that they buy from me.
Made for one of Jude's online classes,
 Helen was kind enough to send this.

It always amazes me when my cloth is seen through other eyes and and felt through other fingers, to see what's made of it after I have thrown up my hands at a loss - yes, dear customers, you only get the fabrics after I am well and truly finished with them. If I had hours to waste I could backtrack and give you the provenance of almost all this fabric...hours!   

If you've made something, anything, with fabric purchased at Random Acts of Dyeness, send me a picture and I'll show the world, with your permission of course!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

time constraints

After working the weekend and using yesterday to catch up on errands, I woke up this morning fully convinced it was Sunday, fell back on my face and wasted half the morning of what's really my Monday. Ugh.

To compensate for the disjoint in time, I set about building my friend's Pink quilt with wild abandon. Ripping, ironing and piecing without a measuring tape or pattern in mind is very freeing.  Once the top is finished I plan on some very organic machine quilting - more fun for me and a good warming up for working on the Big One.

Monday, March 28, 2011


 one of many neocolor sketches from last night. it's still on my mind.

I'm still thinking about how I want to proceed with the new piece on the wall. I like it for it's simplicity and vigor and don't want to screw it up, bog it down with a technical misstep.

I gave fleeting thought to finishing it like "Beach" - only two layers, aside from the design elements and all hand stitched. It was finished as a functional summer quilt, one of my "flings' and I spent most of last summer stitching on it. The pale blue in this one is cotton lawn, the blue in the one on the wall is silk chiffon. Is the energy and immediacy of the new design cancelled by miles and hours of my very small Kantha stitching?

It feels that way to me.  I am more inclined to layer it over a light batting and machine stitch it, the way it did with "Innocent Bystanders" or "Roadkill"

So the question, dear readers, is machine or hand stitching..and why?

detail from Roadkill

Friday, March 25, 2011

new on the wall

Just something to think over in my sleep.

this is big, 4x8 feet (hear it crack in the wind!)

I met my friend Jan for lunch at our traditional place los Hermanos Taqueria in Lilburn where the California Quesadilla is  so reliably delicious I don't know why we bother with the menu.
One of Jan's sons, Ryan,  has been recruited to be on the Taiwanese version of American Idol!
Does anyone know how to access Taiwanese TV via the internet?


I spoiled my own coffee yesterday and walked around with a headache until after lunch, grumpy. This morning I got up to find the dishes already done and good coffee (correctly made) just a button push away. I love you Jimmy.

In a few minutes the sun will have cleared the eastern horizon and come blazing into the studio and I'll go back up there and take advantage of the light and work a bit more on this which has to be named "Clara's Tattoo Dream". 

I'm off from the office today so it's going to be an art day for me with a tentative break for lunch with humans at an actual restaurant. Wonder if I'll know how to act??

There is cloth to select, sort and iron, a big New piece to get up on the design wall, stitches to stitch and laundry to catch up on before the weekend rain sets in. ciao4now.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

after dark

My end of the swap arrived yesterday! It's more subtle and mysterious in person than it was on the web and impossible to do justice to with a hasty snapshot. Thanks again, Clara. For now, I have it stuck to the mirror right over my monitor.

I was inspired to take up tools and doodle a bit and a little later, I closed my eyes and reached into the scrap basket for two pieces of cloth and I was amazed that I never found them together with my eyes. This will be a part of a much larger whole:

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

worky worky

The morning was given over to a combination of cooking, laundry and cleaning - all satisfying pastimes with immediate and visible outcomes, unlike art.
But a new dye season is on the horizon and I'm already collecting the white goods. There's an Antique Depot nearby that has a great load of old damask table cloths with a half inch of dust on them, in time I will make them an offer they can't refuse.

My wish list at ProChem changes almost daily. I have to keep reminding myself that old dyes still make great fabric.

Lest you think I have been consumed by cooking and cleaning, (those who know me well are having a good laugh) above are two single sized tops waiting to become quilts destined to be shipped to Japan when I finish them on the machine.  I'm grateful that there are those in the US who are organizing the transport and distribution. I knew when I made them that they would be useful someday to someone.

This little exercise  is already finished off.  It's now a kindergarten sized quilt with a tiny black and white checked border and a soft blue and white pin striped cotton backing, built for living.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

dream influenced

I wanted to show this new piece in progress the other day but Voodoo decided I should go do something else for a while.  He was quite insistent.

I'm glad everyone else took great pictures of the super moon last night - although it was clear as a bell last night and I could see the craters and such, I still couldn't persuade my camera to come up with anything more that a fuzzy white ball. I did remember to take my tarot cards outside for a blessing.

We've been extra busy around the house this week. Jim is about to start a full time job and I am going to have to relearn how to shop and cook. Prepare for tales of woe from the kitchen.  

I'm been daydreaming about making this since I saw this.

Friday, March 18, 2011

the Big Swap

"Deranged" is being prepped to travel to it's new home.  I've worked out a swap with artist Clara Fialho and can't wait to show you what I will be receiving in return.

The sale is going really well. Thanks to everyone who has participated so far - it's been real a shelf sweeper!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Helping Japan

I was going to raffle off one of my larger pieces but local regulations make that idea a headache I'm not willing to live with. Instead, I'm throwing open the store at Random Acts of Dyeness  through March 31. Here are the details:

Any fiber bundle or grouping is $22, any crocheted cusspot is 12$. 
First come, first to make off with a bargain and help others.
Email me for availability and a PayPal invoice.
I hate it, but I can only ship to the US!.

50% of the proceeds will go to the most direct "to the people" relief fund
I can find and I'm still doing research, all suggestions will be welcome and investigated.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

painting, not.

Did anyone else think how incredibly arrogant I was  to think I could just pick up a brush and wail away in a medium that I never came close to understanding, much less mastering?  

My husband won't even let me paint the window trim.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Watchover completed

And not without some bizarre challenges. I went to press it and saw something dark in the water reservoir of my iron.

Rather than spew unknown crud on a finished piece, I took the iron into the bathroom to empty it out and clean it. The dark stuff was a horde of ants that took me close to an hour to evict down the drain. WTF?

That background damask is such a difficult color to photograph. This was taken outside just a few minutes ago, the sun down in the trees.

I haven't measured it so here is Karma to help with the scale.

with clara's permission

With Clara's permission, this is listed as

watercolor & gouache on paper, 30"x22"

but the name of the jpg file is "dream" which suits it perfectly.

stick a fork in this one

Isn't early morning light peculiar?
This looks like a sonogram!

I'll post a decent picture once it's blocked and finished off but no more needling for this one.

I still haven't taken a moment for some painting - I'm relearning my way around the kitchen now that Chef James will be having better things to do during the day. My problem is that we are all spoiled rotten and his culinary magic will be a hard act to follow.

Friday, March 11, 2011

other mediums

  this is from the Scribbler
this weekend I'm going to take a break from sewing and feel around with paint and see what I find and how well I like it.

The fragrance of  this day is "Un Jardin sur le Nil" by Hermes. I think I have a winner.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

link love

Get out your happy faces and party hats! No time to ask permission to post an image so you'll just HAVE to go there and see Clara Fialho's work for yourself. 

And....they are whoppin' huge!!

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

the watchers

They were there all along just waiting for me to bring them up from the white on white. These beings always find their way back into my work -this time after a long vacation. I'm good with it - an audience is always fun.

"Atavistic Inclinations" 
28"x 23" 

from 2006

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

the dragonfly quilt

A few years back I gave this quilt to my Dad. It had to have been a "hurry-up-Christmas-is-coming gift" because it was not quilted at all but tied with DMC floss. All but one or two of the ties had disappeared so I brought it back with me and put the Janome through it's paces and stitched in the ditch all over the place, gave it a good wash and was pleased see it restored. I'll get it packed up and back to them before the season is over.

Monday, March 07, 2011

Sunday, March 06, 2011

Sights, sounds and smells

I eavesdropped on about six consecutive hours of "Ancient Aliens" through my very slow shift last night and I'm thinking I've been 'fluenced.

Looking forward to a Braves game on TV later on(even if it's only spring training) and more time working on this one while a pot of home made chicken noodle soup simmers.

The fragrance of the day is "Creed Aventus" which I liked from the very first whiff.   OF COURSE I did...turns out it's a man's fragrance (adored by women, the ad sez). Well, they make the stuff to turn our heads and make them follow them down the street, right?  It's cool that they offer sample packs of their other offerings.

ps...I have given my husband a headache.

Saturday, March 05, 2011

frangrance as the live link to memory

Yesterday my patron saint A, bless her daily,  sent me box of treasures. I had the nerve to ASK for any pinks that she might have languishing as I don't have nearly enough for a badly planned gift.

She also included a bag full of perfume samples!
I almost peed m'self in delight as I went through the bag.

Trying on a new scent is an amazing adventure for me. Fragrance can take me places I'll never see and likewise can deposit me squarely in the past as vibrant and rich and fully expressed as the first time around. Perfume is a time machine.

Today I am rocking Cartier de Lune. I think I like the name more than the cloud I'm in but I'll give it the day and see what it conjures. My sense of smell may be slightly damaged though. I was so excited to check out all the little samples I accidentally beheaded a tiny bottle of "Jimmy Choo" thinking the spray top was a twist off..a fat dollop went directly into my mouth. Now THAT was an experience I don't want to revisit.

Here's just some of the bounty she sent and a few of my own wilder creations. I forget that pink doesn't' necessarily have to be riotous.

Friday, March 04, 2011

the arc

During my morning blogcrawl the arc in Jude's work in progress caught my eye and made me wonder about why such a simple shape has so much appeal for me. I've been using it a lot in my own work lately. I'm sure it's nothing more than the biggest shape I can draw in one swipe reaching in all directions at once.
Casting the circle, setting up the boundary of my influence.

Stop over at Wake Robin where Velma has posted several more incredible photographs. I could babble on in artspeak for hours about the second chipmunk shot taken through the screen, but just zoom in on it yourself and take in all the tiny little things that make it so compelling to look at from those two snow sparkles, the light in his eye, the arc of his ear and the cruciform shape on his back. Just marvelous.

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

back in harness

As much as I enjoyed seeing my family in NY, it was good to come home to my crew in GA, February in NY is plain nasty.

I'm just now shaking off the effects of the flight home. The plane seemed to be waddling through the air, like riding in a bowl of jello, and that would have been ok but for a nearby unhappy child. Unhappy because she needed a diaper change even before we boarded. Twice I saw my hand reaching for the paper bag and twice I told myself "you won't feel any better afterword so don't do it" It was very good to touch down in the ATL.

There's much to look forward to and plan for. An invitation for a group fiber exhibit here, AQE to plan for in the fall. Closer in, a big sale at OHCO this weekend - imagine, piles of fabric pushed around by little bulldozers....

I'm taking small steps with this one making each stitch count for a lot.

The dragonfly quilt has come back from NY with me for repairs. It's nice to have a day off in the middle of the week and needful things to do.