Welcome to 2013!

Goodbye 2012 – you will not be missed!

I’ve been in a bit of a funk for the last 18 months. That may have been noticeable by my lack of posts for the last year! I’ve been reluctant to talk about some of the problems because they are legal matters and better left unsaid. But I think FUNK pretty much describes how I’ve felt.

Creatively I’ve been treading water. It’s not that I haven’t been trying. In fact I’ve been trying hard to be creative during my free time, but often I’m just exhausted or stressed or upset or moderately ill and just not up to the task. This has in itself been a huge weight, I need creativity and art and friends and family in my life!

So what better time than January 1st to start the change. I actually have been resting over an extended holiday and feel great! So TODAY IS THE DAY!

I am even changing the profile pic/avatar I use.  Deirdre of the Sorrows,  really is one of my favorite pieces, but I need to shake things up so I’ll be using this image for a while.  You can see that Deirdre of the Sorrows is still in there, but she is a small part of who I am.

Deirdre2-qr

There will be changes this year!

My studio is semi clean, I have a space to work and I am excited to start the year with Health, Color, Family & Friends, Fiber and Paint.  These will do as a start.

I’m also lightening my stash of sewing machines. Some of these are too good to just sit and lie fallow. So if you are looking for a classic sewing machine please let me know – Right now I’m selling a Bernina 830 Record and my Stretch Mid-Arm, they are both listed on my For Sale Page.   I will soon have two Singer 301s, another Bernina 830 Record and a Singer Featherweight for sale.

Here is a recent newspaper article with a nice photo of my etching, Contemplation. I also have another etching of the NYBG Conservatory on the CT Post website

Contemplation

 

I wish everyone all the best for the new year. May 2013 be everything you desire!  GO FOR IT!

 

 

 

My clothesline basket (bag)

I had so much fun on Saturday a group of friends took a class with Mary Cannizzaro at The Quilters Alley in Ridgefield. We were going to make Bags from Clothesline and strips of fabric.  I have to admit that I’ve wanted to do this for a long time – and even had collected a number of different patterns.  The benefit of doing this in a class – is that I actually will do some of the sewing instead of just collecting more fabric or patterns.

I had a hard time deciding which fabrics to bring, but settled on bright batiks (leftovers from my bed quilt).

I didn’t take any photos at the class but when I came home last night I worked on more of the bag, so last night this is where I ended up. 6h x 9w x 6d.

As the basket/bag gets larger it is harder to manage the shape – Mary told us to hold the side up and that worked great in the beginning, but when the bag got larger I kept turning off the light or catching on the foot lever.  If you don’t hold the bag up – the tendency is to have the edges flare out and then the shapes turns into more of a bowl than a straight-sided container.  I was getting quite frustrated and decided to try a few experiments – taping a block on the sewing table didn’t work and I finally decided to try pinning the next strip.  THIS was a great help and I think that you get almost total control over where you want the strips to attach to each other.  I took a few back stitches and stood the bag up straight – then every 1 or 1.5 inches I put a pin in straight down coming out inside the bag. If you  enlarge this photo you can see both ends of the pins.

(DO NOT SEW OVER THE PINS!)

I did realize that since I was starting and stopping that I should only go 3/4 of the way around  so that I end in a different location (because I’m backstitching and don’t want each row to have the stitches end/starting in the same area.  I will also have more thread ends to bury.

Here is where I’m stopping tonight – I have a few more rows and then have to finish the top edge, but I’m thrilled with the way this looks – THANK YOU MARY!  (and Roxanne & Stuart). If you look at the top photo you might notice the variegated thread .  Since you sew from the inside of the container, and I’m using bottom line thread in the bottom, I will turn the final piece inside out to have the thread on the other side.

The height right now is just over 8.5 inches.

And I will definitely make a few more of these.

 

Great birthday present…

My birthday was at the beginning of April and my daughter offered to take an art class with me.  Something that she knows I would love to share with her, but what is in fact something that she loathes doing – despite her talent.

Trying to figure out the ideal class was tough, I didn’t want it to be over her head, or something she “really” hated but I also wanted it to be something I wanted to do or try – after all it was my birthday.  So last week when a friend sent me a link to a local class given by Christoper Staples I was excited.  Not only was it a minimal amount of time and close by the cost was only $15!  A real bargain.

Mayann brought 2 of her daughters and her girls really got into the spirit of the class.  At one point I thought one of the girls had taken a break – but instead she showed up a little later with several dozen more pages!  All were incredible.

The only down side was that Morgan was really under the weather, but she was a trooper and participated in making the papers – however he head was going to explode by the time the collage part came and she retired to the car.  She did however make some great papers which she really liked.  She said should would make these again with me at the house, and gifted me with all of the pieces she had that day.

Here is a small collage that I made with the papers we made, I was having fun playing with the circle punch.   The paper was very thin but sturdy and handled beautifully.  I can’t wait to make more.

And here are some of my unused papers.  The scans don’t do them justice, but I think you’ll get the idea.  I love the last image with the face in the upper right

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