Wednesday, September 25, 2013


So my friend Jan showed me some silhouettes that she had cut from magazines (ladies in interesting poses) and used as stencils and masks in her journal.  This was a few weeks ago.  It made the page look complex with a very simple design.  Thanks Jan!!

And as I was looking for a new project - sort of dancing and humming my way around my studio - I remembered the silhouettes.  And wondered how I could use the idea with fabric instead of paint and paper.

Hmmm.  I had saved some little catalogs from Black and White because I liked the model's poses.  Maybe that would work.  I found the catalog, taped and cut out the silhouette and then realized that I could just trace the shape and didn't have to cut it out.  Silly me!

Sooooo - I found a silhouette that I liked of a model with her hands on her hips.  And the cover of the catalog had butterflies - a really huge one that looked good behind the model - and tiny little ones.

 I was set.  Found some fabric and got started.  Here is a picture of the quilt fused and sewn.

And here she is with the quilting completed.  I used a fancy stitch on my machine that reminded me of the wavy way that butterflies fly - in a large version for the radiating designs and a small version for the binding.

I like her so far.  Next step is to add beads.  That should be a lot of fun.  I will post a photo when that step is complete.

I am thinking that silhouettes might be the theme for a series of quilts.  We'll see.       barbara

Friday, September 20, 2013

Spa Day for My Bernina

I just took my sweet sewing machine for a Spa Day in Springfield Missouri.  And yes that is a long way to drive.  But it is the nearest place with official Spa Facilities for Bernina machines.

AND the store where it is located has beautiful fabric that I do not get to see around here.  And yes, I did buy some.  Can't wait to use it.

So when I brought my machine home and started to use it - guess what?  It purred!  Yes it actually did!  It sounded smoother and happier than before its tune up.  Ahhh - I guess it is worth it to take good care of my tools.               barbara

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Getting Started Again

Is there such a thing as TOO clean and organized?  Nope.  At least I didn't think so until my studio was super duper clean.  And then I went in to try to create something in this lovely CLEAN space - and found myself stumped.  Could NOT find my muse anywhere - maybe I swept her out when I was cleaning????  Oh no!!!!

But - I went to my fail safe fallback project that always works.  I made a new group of tiny faces - all 4" x 6" and all complete little quilts.  Here are the pictures....

I like the hat on this one.  Lots of patterns but they work together nicely.

And I really like the hat on this one - can you see that it says "shoes"?  Lots of sparkles too....

More little ones.  Can you tell that I was working from the same stack of fabric?  All pinks....  That way I can just keep working and not have to put stuff away.  And I can use the same thread over and over.  But the backgrounds are all different because they seemed to NEED different things....

OK.  This poor little guy.  He is sadly a failure.
Oh my.  TOO many different patterns.  Looks crazy and you cannot really see his facial features.

But he is very important to me - because when I teach a class he is an excellent example of what NOT to do.  So he will actually stay with me a lot longer than the other little faces.

I guess he needs a name....

Ahhhhh  --- feels SO good to not be stuck anymore.


Thursday, September 5, 2013

Is a CLEAN studio really important?

A good question to ask every couple of years.  For the past couple of weeks I have been cleaning  my studio.  Going through every single box and drawer and actually considering whether or not I should keep things.  I hadn't used some of them in several years - but would I maybe NEED them someday?

OK.  Too be truthful..... I had a hard time doing this.  If I spent real money on a "thing", I was hesitant to give it away or throw it away.  Just because I didn't even remember ever buying it was no reason to get rid of it - - - was it?  Well finally common sense (and perhaps a sense of needing more space) got the better of me - and I packed up a lot of things to give away.  Wonderful supplies NEED a better life than to be tucked in a box somewhere.  They NEEDED to be used....  Uh huh.

Harder than I thought.  And a lot dustier too!  Could you hear my sneezes????

But I am almost done.  And I only LOST a couple of really good UHU glue sticks - I know that I bought them - - I remember seeing them - - WHERE did I put them???  I guess I will have to be surprised when they suddenly pop up......

AND - here is the exciting news.  I found some drawings for more Farkleberry critters.  I had completely forgotten them.  I think they may need to become quilts.... What do you think?   barbara

obviously this little guy needs to be turned..... but isn't he cute?

Sunday, September 1, 2013

More Creek Lady Parties!!

(You may be wondering what I have been doing the past month or so - well I had a project.  To complete a dozen beautiful little quilts.  Here is the story......)

So what the heck does "creek ladies" imply?  Women who muck about in the creek?  NO!  Wonderful Creative Ladies who get together and Create Art!  In a house that just happens to be on Mill Creek --- which is very near to Piney Creek --- which is where I live.

So these ladies - some who I knew and some who were new to me - got together on July 13 for the pure and lovely purpose of making ART.  I brought the supplies, they provided the space and the food and the wine.... and we had a great time.

The focus of our activity was to make some lovely little fused faces.  And I was dazzled at the results.  I agreed to take the basic little fused faces and make them into finished quilts.

Well - little did I know how challenging and interesting that would be.  Several of the designs requested hats that completely ignored all common sense and poofed out above the binding.  Other hats demanded to be puffed up into three dimensional shapes.  Some of the hair was not content to stay flat - no!  it needed to be dimensional!  And of course there were the little bows that had to drift off the lower border of the quilts.

SOOO - I learned a LOT of new things.  And enjoyed every minute.  Here are the dozen beautiful creations of the Creek Ladies.   I am one LUCKY artist to get to work with these creative and fun ladies......     barbara