Monday, March 24

Where did the time go?

Well I just realized I'd not been back in blogville in ages.
I've been busy doing this and that as normal. 

We celebrated Ian's 5th birthday weekend before last - I just can't cope with him being 5 now! Wow seems like it was just yesterday that the little cutie was in his little footed pjs. I made him this little shirt to wear to his party. I helped Angel and we made about 20 red capes for the other kids to wear. It was a superman theme party. 


This past weekend we had hubby's birthday - no cute shirt required. 

The book I have been working on for a good bit is now at the printer and
will be available very soon. The author Sarah wrote the most precious story
and even if I say so myself the drawings are so cute.




Isn't this fabric sweet. My friend Pam gave this to me and I love
the print and the colors. Not sure what it will become but for
now it's laying on the machine so I can just look at it and give it
that little pat and rub like I do all my fabrics. 



Here are my 3 latest jewelry projects. The top left is my 
very first soldering project! I was so proud. It's far from being
a good job and I'll keep this cuff for myself but it was fun to learn
(hubby taught me) and I could tell I was getting better as I went along. 
Another use for my torch! yea!



I have started a new series of zen doodle note cards and
this one The Music City Series will be selling at 
Fontanel Gift shop as soon as it is completed. 
This is the guitar one with just the outline prior to
the doodling being done. They are all in the pick shape. 
There is also a banjo and fiddle and of course cowboy boots with
the Nashville skyline in the background.  
These will be in black and white. 

Well I need to get back to my doodles, but first
a quick lunch. 



Tuesday, March 4

Wonderful Saturday

This past Saturday I had nothing planned, which means play time! So I was working on learning how to quilt feathers. As I mentioned these don't come easy for me so I'm trying different versions (with echoing, with open spines etc.) This practice of feathers is being done on a small lap quilt. In the past I practiced new patterns on a smaller section - a little mini quilt. Then I found out that once I moved onto a larger quilt it kind of changes everything. So now I do even learning curve practice on a larger quilt. It's just different than that small 14x14 square. Moving the small lap quilt around and quilting the feathers on it is harder but gives me a better practice session. I also started off with really big feathers. 


I also received a wonderful package on Saturday with
2 beautiful 1950's vintage Japanese kimonos.
When Char told me she had these and asked if I wanted them of course I said yes! Not knowing the condition they were in I had planned on taking them apart and using the fabric for creating other projects. They were going to become a hat and a hip pouch for me to use at craft shows. Then I saw them...they will NOT be taken apart. They are beautifully hand sewed and in really good condition. The top one has hand embroidery. 



These will be traditionally displayed from a long pole so the sleeves hang out. The photo above is just a quickie on a regular hanger. It was hard to get back to quilting after opening these. 

Then I remembered I'd seen a drill press for sale on FaceBook. It was at our local bead shop Red Dog Beads - the owner was upgrading the one in her shop and selling her old one. So I mention it to my hubby and he gets all excited and pops into FB to give it a look. He wants it! Needless to say so did I. 
So we call to see if it's sold yet and believe it or not it's still available. So we tell her we want it and are down there in under an hour to pick it up. I of course did a little shopping while I was there - huge surprise that is.

Hubby has drilled holes into the top of my tool box (eeek) and the 2" long bolts have been purchased and hopefully this coming weekend it will be mounted and ready to play with. It's a metal drill so perfect for my jewelry making.

So it was a day of surprises! 
I was pulled back to my jewelry bench to play with a few things I'd started.
Two pendants that were made from the sawed metal I'd done last week. 


And of course the Zen Doodling habit continues. The other night as I was getting ready for bed a memory popped into my head from many years ago of a drawing I did. (sometimes my brain scares me) I just knew it would become a great outline for a doodle. Did I still have it? Yes - I'd kept it all these years. It had been done for a T-shirt design back in the 70's. 

So using this as a base for my new design I came up with this. 
I finished the ink work this morning and just had to do part
of the color. So here it is so far. 

I will be having classes on Zen Doodles at
JoAnn on March 12th and May 10th. 


I use a fine tip Sharpie for the bolder lines and a 0.5 Micron pen for the fine line. The color is done with water color pencils. It was hard to pull away from this but I knew I had paying work on the computer to do - digital drawing is fun too. 

I have a pile of show applications sitting here on the desk and will soon be sending them in and will get the list of shows for spring/summer posted on my Craft Show tab shortly. 

Have a creative day

Friday, February 21

What I've been up to


I've been having a few back issues and can't quite seem to get rid of that so I've not been quilting as I want to do. It gives me more time to draw and think up new jewelry designs. 

Aluminum segmented bracelet. 

A 2" wide cuff done very simply. 

I've quite falling in love with these big chunky stones. 
My friend Becky calls them Wilma Flintstone beads. 
Remember her necklace?



One thing I am wanting to do is improve my sawing. 
So I thought I'd make several designs that used the little saw

I love my reverse tweezers. 

More things that were sawed. I really like the small 
ragged shape on the edge of these pieces. 
Slow going to saw and takes a good bit of filing but worth it.



My latest zen doodle for my Quilt series. Working on the
sewing machine now. I chose a featherweight. 
These will all be in black and white.


Friday, February 14

I love Friday's they are always for playing of one type or the other. Even thou the laundry is getting done at the same time - I always plan a fun project for Friday. 

Today I'll be quilting. Trying to learn feathers. They don't come easy to me, like any other pattern at first. I made a lap quilt that has no pattern in the piecing and it was made just to practice this pattern. Not being afraid of non perfect quilting I'm using black thread! I wanted to make the feathers easy to see which makes my learning curve a little less painful. 
 My very talented friend Stefanie will be doing a workshop
on free-motion this Saturday at our guild meeting

I drew this sewing machine for a friend for Christmas.
I also found out as I was drawing it that she loved
the Sound Of Music - so I just had to tie that in with the drawing. 

She suggested I do a series of quilt related doodles and
below you will find my first one, in a series of 4. 
(pin cushion, rotary cutter, thread and thimble, featherweight)

On Monday I was working on a few new ideas for jewelry and
made these "shield" earrings from aluminum.
Embossed them and then added this rich rust color patina.
I broke my RULE #1 when doing these and didn't work safely.
I was all in an excited fever and wasn't holding my metal shears properly and
now my right thumb join feels like it's 110 years old. So I've had to stay away from
the jewelry bench this week and may have to for several more days. Silly girl. 
But I do really like these. 

And just a little something cute to close with. 
When someone tells you they are going to help with the laundry.
That beautiful face would make any choir a happy one.

Monday, February 10

Trying out a few new things

Well with the book I am illustrating quickly coming to an end I am ready to start on some new crafting projects. I am almost out of my metal jewelry and need to get cracking for the summer shows. I have also let my quilting get way behind and want to get that in motion again. So yesterday I spent the afternoon at the jewelry bench playing with a few new materials and techniques. 

I love the look of etched metal but the chemicals you use don't make me want to rush into that, so I'm opting for embossing instead. So I am using some of my old scrap booking supplies to see what can be done. The Big Shot is just perfect for small sections of metal.  I actually bought it for metal not paper (thou I use it for both now). 
So here is the 20 gauge aluminum I embossed with it yesterday. Also a section of very thin copper for it's accent. 


After cutting out the metal and embossing it
I used 2 colors of Guilder's paste to add the rustic/worn patina.
The thin sheet of copper was glued on with E6000. 


These reverse tweezers are one of my fav tools.
I bought 4 (hubby claimed 2) so I ordered 5 more. 
They are great when you are glueing small items. 


Here is heavy brass with embossing
guilder's past and some shiny aluminum bits.

I just happened to mention to a friend that I wanted to 
try making a penny rug. So sweet Pam gave me this beautiful
stack of wool! Aren't these colors beautiful. 

So here is my little first try so far. 
I figured I could aways use another pin cushion. 
I've not done any needlework of this type in many years. 
But with it being primitive I figure my uneven stitches 
and wonky french knots are OK. I co exist well with non perfection. 

Tomorrow I plan on quilting my gray and yellow quilt that has
had a semi-permeant home waiting calmly on the end of the 
sewing cabinet for months. So I thought this afternoon
I'd do some practice on a little mug rug I put together from scraps. 

We are having a free motion class this Saturday at the
Music City Modern Quilt Guild - that will be a good 
practice time too.