Sunday, March 28, 2010

A little time in the garden; a little time in the studio ...

In between the rain on Saturday I spent time enjoying the garden. Every year my aloe plants sprout long stems with 'flowers'. Each time I see them I think of bananas. Above is one of the banana bunches.

 With only small bits of time for the studio I created a few buttons and some fun pieces for fiber art embellishments.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Making a Fiber Study Pocket

I've been combining two of my passions; clay and fiber; for several years now. Lately I've been adding fiber study pockets to my stoneware purses. Today I took a few photos as I created a pocket.

Below you can see the holes I cut into the purse during construction. This is where I will stitch my pocket in place. To create a pattern for my pocket I use some of the paper that comes with interfacing sold by the yard. (I no longer feel like the odd one trying to save a tree!) I cut a rough size just bigger than the pocket and with a pen poke holes in the paper where the clay holes are. 
I estimate about 1/2" extra from the holes to determine my pocket pattern size. This allows for a seam allowance as I will line my pocket.
Flat pattern drafting from high school and university days comes in handy in adding a little fullness to my pocket. I want the top to be a little fuller so I can tuck a few dried flowers or cinnamon sticks in if I wish. I cut and spread the paper to create my pattern.
I don't bother tracing a new pattern. Just pin and cut. I've cut the facing and main fabric above.
Then the trial and error and decision making takes 'forever'. I sprinkle and spread several different combos of seeds, petals, leaves, spices, paper, yarns, etc until I have what I think I'll go with. I have a box filled with fiber studies that started out just perfect but after they were made I mounted them on their clay and they weren't quite right. Above I decided on some dried petals, bits of yarn and a stamp. Some netting on top and free-motion stitching and everything is attached. One of the petals kept trying to scoot in front of the stamp so I decided to blanket stitch around the stamp. I liked the addition much better.
With 'right sides together' (aren't those the famous words heard over and over from a Home Ec teacher!) I stitched the pocket to it's facing; turned it right side out and slipped stitched the opening closed. Another lengthy decision is always what yarn to attach the pocket with. I started with an eyelash rust yarn but pulled it out. Then I thought dark brown but that was boring. Finally I decided this was the perfect time to use the hand dyed yarn the my friend Jackie had given me. I love variegated threads. The only color I didn't like with this piece was the blue so when I got to the blue section I simply went to the back of the pocket stitched a few hiding stitches until the blue was gone, then continued with my stitching.

Note this time I stitched the pocket first; just decoratively, and then I stitched it to the purse with clear thread. I wanted the smaller stitches that the decorative stitches could offer.
Finally the matching clay buttons are tied in place and my purse is complete. I added a few bits of dried flowers but not sure they are needed, but the pocket can accommodate them if wanted.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Mug Time!

I finally took some photos of a few of the mugs that came out of my last kiln load.
Someone from the etsy mudteam reminded me of this great video of Pete Pinnell discussing the 'cup'. The cup truly is a very intimate creation; as Pete says the closeness we have with a cup is usually a closeness we reserve for a lover. He discusses the history of art for art sake to conceptual art and how cups can be critiqued, examined and what he has learned from cups over the years. A wonderful video I enjoy listening to more than once! Whether a potter or collector, you'll enjoy Pete Pinell's thoughts.

A few of my new mugs can be found in my etsy and 1000markets shops. (different mugs in each shop)

Now for a cup of tea ... I think green ginger this morning ..... have a great day!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Flower Basket

I've finally finished another fiber and clay basket. This basket features an organic fiber study with flax seeds, leaves, angelina fibers and man-made yarns. Now I'm anxious to get busy with creating the fiber pockets for two clay purses I pulled from my last kiln load. 

Saturday, March 13, 2010

John McCoy and Friends Exhibit

My camera quit working part way through the show but I got a photo of many of my favorite pieces. Great show!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The Gallery Visits Continued

Last post I promised more photos of the other gallery shows I visited a couple weeks ago. I just had to visit a show of clay and fiber work! The incredible art quilts were created by Pat Kumicich and Jo-Ann Golenia. Above quilt is by Pat and the piece directly below is by Jo-Ann.

Ceramic pieces are all by members of the Ceramic League of the Palm Beaches
The wonderful "Feet on Pins & Needles" is by Karla Walter. I'm sorry I'm not sure which artist created the lovely family. If you know please let me know and I'll add in the credit!

"Form & Fiber" runs until March 27th at Lighthouse Center for the Arts in Tequesta, Florida.

Another local show, sponsored by the Broward Art Guild just opened on Saturday. "Elements" runs until March 25th at Art Expressions in Wilton Manors, Florida. Works included clay, fiber, metal, stone, wood and glass. I forgot to take a camera to the opening but below is "Tea in the Garden".

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

A Day of Shows

 Last Friday I met my friend Karla, who manages The Gallery at Eissey. She took me over to the gallery to show me "Twice Upon a Time". What a great show! Here are a few photos of Brian Somerville's clay sculptures and  paintings by Sibel Kocabasis. Fabulous works with lots of thought provoking titles and creations.

Following the show we had lunch at Whole Foods before stopping by one of Karla's favorite shops, Sur La Table, where she showed me lots of her favorite clay tools! As any clay artist knows there are lots of texture tools to be found in a kitchen shop. I came home with a new "silicone trivet with raised nibs."

I went on up to Tequesta and back down to Boca Raton to visit two more shows - clay and fiber! Photos to come .....