Sunday, November 29, 2009

Tea Time

 About a year ago I started collecting my teabag wrappers. I've been using them but not as quickly as I collect them so I decided to make some postcards this weekend.

I noticed that my tea preferences have limited my color palette so I bought a sampler pack .... I'm looking forward to using these wrappers .....

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Tissue, Paint, Fiber and Clay

I've been wanting to try painting on tissue ever since reading Terri's article in Sue & Terri's "Creative Ways With Fiber and Stitch". Then last week I was reading Sandy's blog post about her cards inspired by Sue and Terri's lesson (one of their free online classes) and I actually thought of it while I was in my sewing room putting away some tissue paper. So I laid some tissue down, got out a couple tubes of acrylic paint. a tub of water and started spreading paint. I am so impatient when trying out something new, so got out the heat gun and quickly dried it. That was the first I've ever used that heat gun! Oh first I ironed the strip of tissue to some fusible stabilizer, making sure I had it nicely crumbled to hopefully add some freebie texture. Then I painted.

Some dried flower petals were sprinkled around with netting on top before quilting with the metallic thread. The piece was not large so thought I'd cut it up and make some ATC's. But I had my larger clay wall piece sitting waiting for it's fiber addition and I liked how this looked next to it. So I cut a piece off, found some fabrics and started piecing to add to the tissue fabric. This is how it ended up.

Today I used up some of the scraps to make this little ATC. They are so much fun to make! Maybe a clay ATC is doable? With some stitching of course.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

New Wall Approach

I've been really happy with my clay quilt boxes but want to create something 'outside the box'; a clay frame for fiber work but with dimension. So I placed my textured slabs over cylinders. Here I used an oat container and for the larger slab I used a plastic pipe from the hardware store. (I know there is a technical name for it but the term escapes me.) Molding the clay on these will give it the dimension I'm looking for and allow me to wire the backs to hold firmly against the wall. I cut some holes for the wire and then stitching holes where I will attach my fiber art.

So far I've worked on the small piece. Rather than create a little quilt I decided to use one of the papers I made this summer. This one has turmeric, onion skin and a few wild flowers. I stitched an extra piece of paper to the side to create the size I needed and then realized I liked the interest it added.

I tired out the heavy cord just inside the clay, going off both ends and off just one end. Now that it is complete I think I would prefer it going off both ends.  *** What do you think?  I also discovered when I looked at the photo that there is a little loop of thread caught up so now I'll be re-stitching the paper too!  Do I continue with this idea? Explore the handmade paper with it or go with my original idea of mini quilts? Always decisions to make as we move forward.

I'll end with a couple more quilt show pieces. "Freedom is not Free" is by Pat Kumicich. The last one I'm sorry I don't have recorded but images of the seal hunt came to mind and I wanted to scoop that little guy right up.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

more from the Quilt Show .....

 Does this remind you of Marcel Duchamp's 'Nude Descending a Staircase'? It does for me! Heather Jean Glennon of Florida created 'Falling Pins'.

Here's one of the 'glove ladies'. Because the quilts cannot be touched but show patrons love to see the back of quilts, several gloved ladies were available to carefully life the quilts to reveal their backs. One quilt created quite the curiosity as to how the subtle shadow effect was created. Here the glove lady explains the technique to a captive audience.
Here's a close-up of that quilt. Can you see the technique?

Here's another South African quilt by Shirley Prakke, 'Come to MY Garden'. 

And one of my favorites .... I thought I was always attracted to bright colors in fabric art and earthy colors in pottery but seems the earthy wins out in the end as I found this one to be one of my favorites. I think a lot has to do with the colors. Wouldn't it fit nicely next to a collection of pots?

Monday, November 16, 2009

World Quilt Show

Saturday was a wonderfully exhausting day from walking the quilt show in West Palm Beach. Jackie was caught on camera early in the day here ....

Belinda and friends study the quilts .....

The "One Woman Show" by Robbi Joy Eklow was fabulous! Here is one of my favorites - of course with pots.

I wish there had been more wearables but this kimona is stunning.

Sheila Walwyn from South Africa created "Egoli". This reminded of the musical performance of "Gumboots".

Another south African quilter, Shirley Prakke created "Storm Warning". I wish you could see this up close to see the details of the words and appreciate the concept.

I'll get a few more together for later this week. Coming up ...the 'glove ladies' were fun!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Metallic Frustration

After a frustrating Monday evening of trying to get my kiln vent running I gave up and ran it without the vent. today I opened the bisque load and everything is fine and it even finished in normal time of just over 12 hours.

Tuesday we had a crew of roofers pounding on the roof as they removed our old roof and started on the new. It was NOISY!!! I found the 'quietest' room was my sewing room so I hung out there most of the day. I finished another purse. Yes, that's fabric marker in the second photo that I didn't notice until I took the photo.

Today I continued with some upholstery samples I had cut and pieced originally for a purse but then kept cutting and piecing and stitching and it seems headed to become a small quilt. I tried out more stitches on my sewing machine and added some Halloween candy wrappers before covering it all with netting.  

Then the frustration! I wanted to add wonky quilting circles with variegated metallic thread but it keeps skipping and breaking. I changed the needle to brand new metallic needle and lowered tension but no luck. It still keeps breaking. Maybe before I give up I'll try with my old Bernina. I can't imagine why it may help other than it is my old dependable. This piece may end up in the forever unfinished pile.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Glazes and Test Tiles

There are as many different feelings about glazes and glazing as there are clay artists and potters. Many go so far as to say they hate glazing. Others love the time spend delicately painting intricate patterns or dipping madly away. Some dislike the chemistry or testing and just want a 'proven' recipe while others are happy to put together a triaxial grid or use some other format for testing numerous combinations of chemicals.

I fit into the group that feels time in the hot garage painting and dipping glazes is not my favorite part of ceramics. That may have to do with living in South Florida where almost anytime of year is hot and humid in our garage. I do however enjoy studying the chemistry of glazing and wish I had more time to spend creating and testing glazes. I've kept many of the hundreds of test tiles I've done and without space to store them in the studio some of them created a unique installation sitting on a low side table in our dining room!
Yesterday I decided I need to mix some glazes and thought I'd test a few new ones. I picked out these reticulating glazes thinking they could be fun to use on some sculptural work. So once I get the garage cleaned up I should have room for a few more buckets of glaze. It always comes down to space and time!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Weekend Fun

I had time to just have fun in the studios this weekend. One of the paper samples I made this summer was stitched to an upholstery scrap and zig-zagged onto a card.  I see my machine skipped a few stitches so it must be time to change the needle. Or perhaps I should have checked which needle I had in before sewing through paper and fabric!

My cousin is a quilter and had a birthday on Sunday. I left it late but on her birthday tried out a couple stitches I had never used on my machine to finish off a quilted postcard.  I think I'll use those little daisy like stitches again.

In the clay room I threw a pot upside down. The bottom is the top in the photo above. I opened the pot up to the bat and collared the clay in as it rose, closing in the top which later became the bottom. This left no trimming to do and it was easy to roll this little vessel into a sloped shape before adding some legs and stamping in some texture. It's drying and should make a fun little vase or tool holder.

Hope you all had a fun Halloween weekend!