Saturday, December 11, 2010

New from Craft Cult

Now you can feature treasuries from etsy through Craft Cult.  What a great idea.  Craft Cult gives you full directions on how to get it onto your blog page.  I discovered that you could also have more than one as I have here.  Hope you enjoy seeing these.  Try one for yourself if you are an etsy person. Here is a link to Craft Cult:

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Let's have a hand for ...

This reminds me of the southwest -  the symbolism, the color of  the sky, the heat of the sun, the hand reaching upwards to feel the warmth that radiates towards mother earth .  Soy Wax resist and hand dyed on cotton, felt, beaded, stamped, machine stitched.
This piece is beaded with copper and turquoise colored seed beads.  It is approx 8" x 11" and part of the hand series I am working on.  The fabric is cotton with a "recycled" felt middle layer and cotton backing.  Hand dyed and designed by myself using soy wax resist method.
What do you think I should call this one?  Hmm?  I guess this is pretty obvious what the title of this small piece is - Yes you guessed it "little bird".  This was kind of a fun little piece to make with a quirk or two in it.  Originally it looked kind of empty (without the bird), thank goodness for iron on fusing!  All original fabric designs, beaded, hand dyed and embroidered by me on cotton fabric.
This piece is still in progress.  The color represented here around the hand is not quite as dark as it appears in reality.  I am not quite sure that the bow will remain as is - I may change it to a ribbon in a different color.  Some more thought on this piece before it is done is needed.
This is about 99% finished.  I will be tweeking this piece slightly just to highlight the hand a bit and finishing the edges.  The color saturation showing on my monitor is a bit deeper than the actual piece as the colors are somewhat neutral and soft.  I was very pleased with this piece's outcome.  It is on bamboo fabric measuring approximately 18"x22".  Hand dyed using the soy wax resist method, machine stitched and hand embroidered.  The "flowers" are variegated silk commercially dyed.

In this piece I used soy wax as my resist method and decided to use very saturated dyes to color.  The soy wax does not give the same crackle effect that paraffin wax does which may be more desirable in some instances.  Here I like the solid line for the vine along with the leaves being more solid as I wanted to have definite veins in the leaves where I wanted them. There a number of methods used in this piece to help with texture and backround.

This looks so much better here than in reality.  It is very pale and all of the design is made using sgraffito method.  The entire piece was cover in a heavy layer of hot wax which was then completely cooled.  Once cooled and etching tool was used to scrape off the wax down to the fabric to create the design you see here.  Dye was brushed over the lines and left to soak for a few hours.  The excess dye was then removed along with the wax.  The whole piece was then sewn and embroidered.  This is the result so far.

If you like orange here is something really saturated with and orange ground.  The hand appears to be dipping into the water through the vines crawling from the trellis to the left.  This piece is machine quilted with no other embellishment.  It was created using soy wax as the resist and dye paste gel.  It was left for a few hours before the excess was removed.  It is a very bright piece measuring 18 inches by 22 inches (estimated).
 All of the above pieces are at one stage of completion or another.  Some needing only to be bound at the edges.  My theme is obvious here being the human hand.  I just went along and whatever came of the "theme" so be it, I didn't really think about it much except to have a hand in the piece and limit the color palette somewhat.  Feel free to leave a comment as to your opinion or thoughts on this grouping.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

A Bag for Cecilia

This hand knit felted bag has a tropical feel to it even though it is made of 100% wool.  It made me think of my friend Cecilia and so she will be receiving it for her birthday.  This is one of my favorites as the colors are bright and the flowers turned out better than I expected (I was just fooling around with different shapes).  I hope that she will like it.
Felted items are very strong and durable.  I made a bag for myself and found that it was very sturdy.  If it becomes soiled it can be thrown in the wash - you do have to be careful though you don't want the item to shrink too too much.  Any how here is a picture of the floral part of the bag I intend to send.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

SOWA Open Market 2010 Boston

The SOWA Open Market is a great place to find all kinds of great products and meet the artists who make those products.  There are jewelry vendors to clothing vendors, furniture to pottery.  Lots of people of all ages from all over the globe.  It's a great family place to go and you can bring your pet too!  There are food vendors selling breads, fruits and vegetables and flowers as well as sandwiches, beverages and snacks. Take a look at the pictures above (I did not take these) for an idea of what the SOWA  is all about.  It runs throughout the summer and into the fall.  I am not sure what the last date is but I will post it if I find out.

Rusty Ol' Cotton

Rusted Cotton Fabric left on a clean piece of steel for a short period of time.
This piece was placed on the steel after the one above so the rust is a bit more saturated .
The rust has spread and the fabric has captured the image of this migration.  The contrast of the white mingled in gives interest to the piece as the well as the darker areas, there is a sense of depth.
This particular piece of fabric was left on for over a week and as you can see the rusting continues even though the piece was dry.  Rust would eventually distress the fabric even more creating holes and even turning the fabric into nothing but rust dust with little evidence of what was once there.
This is a closeup of the previous picture.
These small pieces of old cotton have been rusted.  These small pieces of old cotton have been rusted.  They were made as an experiment to see what would happen to fabric left to deteriorate on a piece of steel which was brushed to a clean surface.  Each piece was left in place undisturbed for a day or so.  The steel was not cleaned between each application of fabric.  Here are the results of my casual experiment.


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Just a couple of dolls

Race Car Doll - showing detail of race car banner
back side Race Car Doll
Race Car Doll face and hair
Race Car Doll front view
Detail of crocheted miniature basket
Detail of painted on face, necklace (turquoise stone) and wool jacket
Front view of Gypsy Doll.  Free form croceht skirt, painted legs with texture.
Here are two more dolls that I made.   They are not your typical play dolls.  Made from cotton mostly and any other materials that I had on hand to use.  The Racing Car Doll has little cast racing cars on her sash that were made by Ralph Scudieri.  Many of the materials used in the "dressing" of these two dolls were things that would have otherwise have been tossed into the trash.  Instead I have re- purposed those items.  The skirt on the Gypsy Doll with the red hat was crocheted by me with embroidery floss as was the little basket she carries in her hand.  The basket has a blue lapis egg in it!  The dolls were painted with ordinary latex interior house paint.  Can you tell what some of the items used are or what they are from?

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Guardian Angel Ida

This little doll was entered in the Quilting Arts Magazine call for "Guardian Angels" a few years ago.  Her name is Ida.

  The story behind of Ida goes like this:  I was going over to my mother in law's house one very snowy evening.  Enough snow had fallen on the ground making it difficult to drive on the streets. It was slow going, I was being very careful though.  Going down a steep hill I could feel that my brakes were working yet I was still sliding down hill as the wheel were not turning  I  could see to my left that there was a car coming down the road and that I would be intersecting it.  It had four young boys in their late teens inside.  They saw me coming. Fortunately the driver had enough sense to realize that I was not able to stop my vehicle and swerved out of harms way just as I was able to do the same.  They ended up in a snow bank as did I on opposite sides of the road.  I quickly ran out to make sure that everyone was safe.  I was very nervous but quickly my fears were dispelled as the four young kids got out of their car laughing and carrying on and grateful that no one was hurt.  I would have hated to have been the cause of grief for someone's parents.  It was a close call.  Smart thinking on their part and a little guardian angel on my shoulder kept everyone out of harms way.
  My mother in law passed away on Christmas Day that year, two days before her birthday.  It was that same week that this near miss happened.  I was very grateful she was watching over all of us.  She still watches over us.  I hope those four boys are happy and safe young men in life today.  I hope they remember the day that their lives could have been much different had things turned out badly.
   So when Quilting Arts Magazine presented this call to entry I wanted to make a doll but could not come up with an idea. . . until that day when we all walked away laughing about this almost accident. 

   Ida is made of 100% cotton body.  The legs are painted with regular household acrylic paint, with dots of white.  Hair is feathery yarn, you know the kind that was in everyone's scarves a few years ago.  Her top is habatoi silk with an arashi pattern that I dyed.  Skirt is just a nylon gauze ribbon with a beaded trim for the waistband. The wings were sewn on my sewing machine using a wash out stabilizer and I just kept sewing until I got it right!  There are two sets of wings, a primary set (larger) and a secondary set (smaller).  Her face and arms are painted in flesh tone, with a green eyed angelic face painted on.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Recent Dyeing Activity

No, I did not fall off the planet, but I have been at the studio dyeing.  I thought I would post one of my projects while in the beginning stages.  So here is an image or two of what I have been up to.

This is a cotton/bamboo blend that has been wrapped and placed in a pretty saturated dye bath of orange.  I love orange as it reminds me (along with a whole bunch of others) of autumn when the leaves begin to change.  I am fortunate enough to live in the north where I can witness this change every year.  I am always in awe of this change like I am seeing it for the first time every time.  Great inspiration.

Anyhow I will be unwrapping this fabric and re-wrapping it so that I can over dye it.  I am hoping to achieve a fall like appearance to the color scheme.  It would appear that I am on the right track from the looks of it at this point. 

Enough blathering, I will post soon again.  Smiles

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Thought that I would share a picture or two of "The Gardener's Hand" with you.  This piece was an experiment of sorts.  It is accented lightly with beadwork and  a multiple of wax resist methods was used to achieve the designs.  You can see this and a few other quilts and things by clicking on the Fiberarts/Mixed media logo to the right.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Featured in Treasury

I am thrilled that I have been featured in "Grand Canyon" treasury on etsy.  Here is the link: 
 Please come a visit, it is a beautiful array of oranges like one might see at the Grand Canyon.  My thanks to Orito, Jewelry from our Earth for including me in this treasury.  Here is a link to Orito:

  This is my Colors of Summer silk scarf that is featured along with the other gems in the treasury.

Friday, July 23, 2010

First Vendor Event!

  Well last weekend it could not have been any more humid had it rained!  It was also just warm enough to make it really uncomfortable, but in spite of the humidity and hot sun bearing down on all of us we had a great time.  Our neighbor Cheri aka Betty was quite a character, we really enjoyed her company and optimism.  Dotty also is a new found friend.  We plan to meet sometime in the next week or so.
  Sales for me were better than I had expected as it was a 4 H event where activities are the main focus.  Those who dropped in to see what I was selling seemed to like what they saw and a few people even made a purchase or two.  
  The 4 H Country Fair was filled with activities.  Horse riding competitions - what beautiful animals horses are;  oxen pulling (great BIG animals, WOW), iron man competition where they were flipping 500lb tires!  The younger crowd were showing some of their livestock: cows, chickens and what not - hoping for that blue ribbon prize.  Pie eating and  skillet throwing contests.  Birds of Prey organization was there as well singing groups for young and old alike.  There were even alpacas there from a nearby farm where there is a herd of 85 of these lovely big eyed sweet looking mammals.  Alpacas have a beautiful soft downy texture wool.   Glen Ridge Alpaca Farm in Portsmouth, RI is the home of  these docile animals. They are on Facebook for more information.   It really was a fun time in spite of the sweltering weather. 
  I was glad I was there.  Glen Park in Portsmouth, RI is a nice, well kept park and the city should be proud of it as well as Glen Ridge Alpaca Farm.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Creativity is on the Increase!

Of late much time has been spent in the studio, which of course is a good thing.  Fat quarters in silk and a 50/50 cotton/bamboo blend are the base for what is coming out of the studio these days.  The results have been very pleasing.  I have started to post them on Ten Pines Studio, my etsy store.  Just click on the link listed here on the side. 

The silk I am using is raw silk which has a nubby texture and a great drape.  It is lightweight and flows nicely.  Silk really picks up the colors well.  It's a fabric well worth trying a project with.

The 50/50 cotton/bamboo blend is smooth and soft (shown above).   It has a more satiny feel than 100% cotton.  It also takes well to dyeing.  Bamboo is one of those sustainable products you keep hearing about these days.  Bamboo is a grass and grows in many parts of the world and grows fast enough that it will be replenished within five years or so.  It has many uses. Furniture, flooring, fabrics are just a few examples of what can be done with bamboo.  In fact I have a great cutting board that was given to me as a gift a couple of years ago and it has held up so much better than my wooden board that I have retired!  Bamboo also has anti bacterial properties!  Many studies have been done and showed a fantastic efficacy rate of eliminating certain bacteria when Bamboo fibers were used.

Now it's off to the studio to create some more fat quarter designs!    Have a great day everyone.  

Friday, July 9, 2010

Pretty Cards from a friend

These cards were sent to me by an dear friend of mine.  She made these paintings and had them done into cards.  The pictures here do not do justice to the beautiful colors - but you get the idea.  I believe that she sells them.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Fourth of July

Well it's the fourth of July weekend and I was thinking of a time when the kids were small.  My in-laws used to rent a beach house for a week or two down in Narragansett and the whole family would come down during that time for a few days here and there.  On one occasion, my mother-in-law took me, my husband and our daughter to a shallow area away from the beach to dig for periwinkles.  The sun was warm and bright, the breeze was cool and the water was clear.  We had the whole place to ourselves.  Our daughter would have great  fun digging for the small dark blue/brown shells and playing in the water.  She was small enough that the water reached to just below her knees.  Later that evening Ida would make periwinkles with spaghetti.  She could always make a feast out of simple ingredients.  We would eat it with some nice Italian bread and salad.  After dinner she took us for a ride to have ice cream cones and watch the fire works.  Even though I was no longer a child myself, she made me feel like a kid again. It was a fun day.  Both my in-laws are gone now, but they left me with some great memories and this is one.

Friday, June 18, 2010

A Learning Experience

  A couple of days ago during the late evening before it became nighttime light I pulled out some of my fabrics.  It was also somewhat overcast with a slight threat of rain!   I set them up, set up the camera on the tripod and quickly started snapping.  This is the result of that "photo session".  I was rather pleased as the colors looked the same in the pictures as the fabrics do in real life.  Previously pictures that I had taken were in bright sunny daylight and always trying to remember not to cast a shadow on the subject. So I will have to remember to take my shots in overcast type lighting.
  All of these fabrics are 100% cotton and hand dyed by myself.  The method used to obtain this patten is called arashi, which translates to storm.  Fabric is wrapped around a pole, scrunched up and dipped in a dye bath.  I can be a little time consuming but it is well worth the effort.  

Monday, June 14, 2010

Look closely and you'll see ...

Well the day lilies have come and gone in my yard but, if you look close enough you can see that the weeds are flowering!  Thank goodness for the weeds, what would we do without them.  I'm not sure what this tiny blue flower is called but it is only about a quarter of an inch across and very delicate on a tall, thin stalk.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Indigo Moon (renamed)

This is a favorite of mine.  It is dyed in my own indigo vats and machine stitched and quilted.  The design is hand stitched onto a blank fabric and pulled very tightly.  The area that does not receive any of the dye is "capped" off with plastic wrap and also tied very securely so that no dye seeps into that area.  Indigo dyeing is very interesting to watch as the items being dyed come out a very saturated emerald green and change to the familiar indigo blue as the oxidation process occurs.  It is also a very time consuming process as the indigo dye builds upon itself, so the more times that a particular item is immersed into the dye vat the deeper the blue color result.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Memorial Day, May 31, 2010

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth, upon this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived, and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met here on a great battlefield of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of it as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.
But in a larger sense we can not dedicate - we can not consecrate - we can not hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled, here, have consecrated it far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember, what we say here, but can never forget what they did here.
It is for us, the living, rather to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they have, thus far, so nobly carried on. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us - that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they here gave the last full measure of devotion - that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain; that this nation shall have a new birth of freedom; and that this government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth. 
 The Gettysburg Address
Abraham Lincoln - November 19, 1863
 Remember all those who have given all for the freedoms we all share here in this great land of ours.  

Photo above is a view from the Lincoln Memorial overlooking the reflecting pool in Washington, D.C.
The reflecting pool is surrounded by various monuments 
dedicated to the men and women who served our country.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Artichoke Heaven

This small machine quilted piece is created using the Rozome (row-zoh-may) resist method.  Using molten wax to draw the design onto fabric, in this case cotton.  Allowing the wax to cool and harden creates a barrier for dye medium.  This was my first attempt at this method.  The areas that I was not dyeing were covered over to avoid spilling drops of unwanted dye in them.  This piece has been sitting waiting for some attention for some time as it was stowed away in a box of other items waiting to be completed.  Now it is done, maybe . . .  I think. Anyhow, it is finished with a binding of my own hand dyed cotton and a purchased yellow ticking for the backing.  It measures approximately eleven inches square.  The swirls are yellow beads.  The artichoke seems to me to be floating - therefore the title of the piece - "Artichoke Heaven".

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Water, water everywhere" and "Sunset in the Tropics"

     So with all the recent flooding in large parts of the United States, including areas like my own that don't normally flood, I remember that I had another unfinished object sitting in wait for a finishing touch and a title.  Well it came to me and now I am ready to complete "Water, water everywhere" and "Sunset in the Tropics".  They are two pieces that are strips of cool and warm colored fabrics that I thought looked good together.  The strips are random widths and they are sewn together at random as well.
      "Water, water everywhere" has a soothing feel to it - quite the opposite of what many people are feeling right now considering that some of them have lost everything.  While "Sunset in the Tropics" is warm and relaxing - can you see your feet at the end of the lounger that you are laying in?  Sipping something with an umbrella and ice in it?

  The photo on top is "Water, Water Everywhere".  The one on the bottom is "Sunset in the Tropics"

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St. Patrick's Day

There's a little bit of green everywhere - all you have to do is look around you. Happy St. Patrick's Day.


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