Sunday, January 24

Snowed In And Loving It

I know a lot of people who hate being snowed in, but I'm not one of them. I'm just as happy to have the great excuse to sew non stop or sit on the couch drawing pad in my lap watching movies. I call these ME days and I make the most of it.

Being in the South we are not used to snow - our normal winter snow fall is maybe 2" max the whole winter. We got 8-9 inches Friday! I did venture out today to make a path to the car, tried to get the snow off it but after 20 min was just too cold. Not being the outdoorsy type I don't have the correct bundle up gear. So back I came and stood on the heat vent to warm up my footies. 

This is the view from the sewing machine. 
It was kind of hard to not just sit and look
out the window when it was snowing big flakes


I put out food on the front porch for my little urban furry and feathered friends. 
I had tossed some corn in the yard but they won't find that for days now. 
Evidence that it was appreciated. 


So yesterday I sat in the warm cozy sewing room,
I needed instant gratification so I made Mug Rugs. 


After getting warmed up with these little bits I thought I'd get out the Sashiko
I've not played with this for quite a few years. 
Love the stitches so pretty



Working on the new banner for Etsy, the blog and Facebook, 
getting all the little bits ready to hopefully open Etsy first half of next month. 

Tuesday, January 12

You can't go play till you clean your room

OK well yea I did learn that as a kid, but somewhere along the line I unlearned it I guess. Well if there is one thing most artistic people will all agree upon it's so much easier to create in an organized space but keeping it that way is a constant struggle. I'm kind of good at it but then there are times when everything goes to pot and you are unaware until it's a crazy mess. This happened to me during the holidays and I'm just now getting around to dealing with it.

After 2 months of back/hip issues and not being able to do my best at keeping the house in order, my craft area was sadly at the bottom of my list - and I can tell it.
I've just found out last week I can NOT take steroids. Oh heavens me what a roller coaster ride that has been. So now on day 2 of being off these tiny horrors I am starting to return to normal behavior. OR should I say my normal. The back issues have not been resolved but at least now I do know what is going on. Five bulging disks and two pinched nerves - not real bad but I'll have to watch and not act like a 20 year old lifting and moving stuff.

I have started getting things back in order - supplies, tools, "stuff" that I use in my often crazy creative life. My goal for today was to get all my art/drawing supplies in one place and contained into a very orderly usable space. I did have one "squirrel" moment and had to stop and organize my thread, but we won't go there.

Along with getting stuff in prep mode for several creative ideas I have, I have started work on reopening my Etsy shop. This will take a bit cause I'm starting over. My original shop was just fiber art, then I moved on to jewelry and dropped the fiber. I wasn't real happy with either of those choices so I've decided to just have a mixed shop and I will have 3 sections. Jewelry, Fiber Art and drawing/painting. I've always heard pick a passion and dive into it with all you have, but I guess I'm just not a one passion girl. The three all work together for me and they all make me happy, and after all isn't that was creativity is all about?

So here is a little peek of projects for the near future 
(unless I get the squirrel issues again)

Drawing's I'm working on


This sketch may well turn into my first painting in about 6-8 years. 
I spotted a photo of this young girl in cosplay costume on Pinterest,
 fell in love with it so thought I'd use it for a practice/fun piece. 


My next Quilt


I'm not sure how long I've had this fabric but it may date back to the last Paducah trip with Stef and Trudy. If so it's due to come out and play. This will be a fun one to do since I love the drawings. Just a tiny touch of steampunk. 

This one will be going to a dear friend when completed. Sadly it should have been to her at Christmas but things just didn't work out that way at all. I have to admit I have one other Christmas present I just finished a little over a week ago. Oops!

I don't have a jewelry project in prep mode now, but I have been thinking about a new style I want to try. I only have experience in one part of the process so I'll be learning something new, which I love. I already have a teacher who is beyond excellent. 

I guess I really should get back to those art supplies I wandered off mid organize - so me. 



Sunday, January 3

Ready For A New Year

The last 2 years have been very trying to say the least but I think I am ready to get back into full swing now, or at least that is what I'm telling myself.  My studio has things going on in many areas like in the old days. It's a mess and I'm thrilled. I just need to get focused on what projects I want to sink into. I want to get back to creative quilting, but also feel a tug from my past for painting again. I will do some small creations so I can have them both for a bit I think. 

Due to back issues several things may be changing for me this year. I love doing craft shows but may be cutting back to doing only small one day shows and I'm looking into doing the Nashville Farmer's Market on Saturdays. I'm also going to be opening the old Etsy shop again and see how that goes. The other change is I won't just be selling jewelry at shows - when possible I will also be selling original art, prints and Fiber Art. I really enjoy when all my creations, bleed into each other and I can paint on a quilt or wire up a fiber art piece. That is where a lot of my joy comes from. 

I will also be looking for a new job, and at my age that can be a scary thing, but I'm trying to be brave. So for now my mantra is - put it in God's hands and don't worry cause my worry can't fix a thing. (I still worry thou - but trying to do better)

My favorite author I've ever worked with is moving forward with a book we had started a while back so my first project in line is getting this book completed. It's a children's bird watching book. This will be perfect to get my digital art skills going once again. I love drawing on paper and picking up the Wacom pen again will be a wonderful thing. 



Speaking of drawing here are a few of my current doodles.
These are my first two traditional Mandalas.  
Excuse the bad photos they are just iPhone snaps



Just finished this one today

The lasted quilt


This is a rushed photo cause I was on a hard deadline on this quilt. It was a Christmas present for my Niece. She and her sister both got lap quilts. And I made pillow cases for the "kids" on my list, with super hero fabric and one set of Dr. Who fabric. I still have a set of Minion cases to make for a late delivery present. 

Hopefully will be blogging as often as I used to also. Till next time 

Saturday, December 12

Awaking of My Creative Self

After many months of not having any creative self I slowly started doing things again. I missed that part of me. My creative side has always gotten me threw hard times. It gives me hope and makes my heart happy. I knew I'd have to push myself to get back to where I wanted to be, but I needed that part of me back. I got out a quilt I'd put aside and tried to finish it, but it just seemed to lay on the machine for days with no attention. I would look at it and think I need to finish that but it just didn't happen. I'd lay beads on the jewelry bench and sit and look at them too. Just had a very hard time kick starting myself.

I did sew a little but still had no desire to make the type of projects I once enjoyed. I knew I needed to just make a simple quilt. So I got out these 4 blocks I had picked up at a yard sale.  It helped me to get me sewjo back in motion. I sat it aside and started cutting fabric to make a quilt for a present and got the top and back made. A few days later something kind of wonderful happened.

A friend of mine told me she wanted to sell her sit down long arm! I'd wanted one for ever and this seemed a once in a life time chance since she was willing to let me make payments. So I said yes and her hubby brought the machine by and set it up for me the next day. I was quite in awe of it. It was such a beautiful thing. So the quilt I'd just finished was quickly basted and off I went to get to know this wonderful creature that was now a part of my sewing world.





Since this was my fist quilt to be on the machine I just did what ever to get the feel of the machine. I didn't bast this little table topper except put a pin in each corner and about 5 in the center. I didn't think it would need more since I wasn't going to be squished up to push threw the small space in my home machine. No more of what I called fighting the octopus. 

When I was done quilting I did something I've never done and ripped it off the Husqvarna the trimmed the edges and put the binding on that day! It was done. I was amazed how short of a time it took. 

I had one other quilt, a bed runner that the top was ready and I did the back in record time just to get it to the quilting point, cause I couldn't wait to use the quilter again. 


This quilt had even less basting done. The pins were a good 8" apart. I'd always done about 3" max before. I started to relax and really get into the flow and concentrating on the quilting patterns on this quilt. The machine has a stitch regulator but I've not tried it yet.


I'm getting more comfortable with the quilter and can't wait to try more designs. 

I did notice that my art was changing too. This first drawing was done while I was still in my black and white world. It is called "How My Heart Works" and shows how I was dealing with stress during that period. The mechanics of this machine show how my stress was vented off into steam and smoke and what things in life I needed to make me happy. 
My faith in God, My friends and family and my creative self. 


More recently my drawings changed and color and the details I love were once again back. 
This drawing has many meanings to me. It's based on strength and my love of my mother. 


My beautiful Mother was the strength of our family and she gave us all her support in our lives that I continue to use to this day. I guess it's may seem strange for a Bee of all things to mean strength. I'm so very scared of them. 

One day while at my mom's she was showing me her garden and flying around her tomato plants were these fat bumble bees. I stepped back and tensed up and she just put her sweet little hand towards them and said "You fly away you are scaring my Royce", so calming was her voice that I knew there was nothing to fear. So the bee it's self became a symbol of that courage she passed on to me. Her love of her family was brighter than the sun and just as warm. She gave us so much that I carry threw my life. I miss her dearly and know that she is why I am the person I am today. 




Tuesday, December 8

Emerging from a Dark Place


As some of you may know on May 18th of 2014 I suffered a great loss. This sent me into a dark place. A place of confusion, fear, self doubt and depression. That was a big hole that proved very hard to crawl out of. At one point I though I could see the top, but slipped and was surrounded by it all once again. I'm not saying I've overcome all this but the daily dealing with it has become easier. Things look more positive and I'm thinking of the future once again. I had no idea how hard it would be. Few people know the depths I sank to. Coming out and saying this isn't easy either. I've always hid my negative emotions and only
share the good side of things. Now in an attempt to come into my new life I want to share it in this blog once again. 

During the first 9 months or so I stopped sewing/quilting and did little jewelry design. The only thing I felt like doing was drawing, and I did a lot of that. I guess it was a therapy of sorts. I poured out my inner emotions on paper. For months the drawings were in black and white. The drawing below was me missing my little dog, who had to be put down a month prior to my husbands death. Suddenly it was very quite and lonely in the house. 



So in time I started getting used to the empty house, the quite and the loss of my old routines. For a long time I just didn't know what to do with the extra time. I didn't want to create, go places or even think too much. After many months things started to change and new things started taking the place of the old. I am still not as organized as I used to be but working on it. Hopefully restarting my blog and reopening my Etsy shop will give me things to work towards. I know things won't come back to where they were, that life is gone. I do hope to now form a new life and see what it will bring to my future.