Sunday, June 29, 2008

Big Black Bug Postcard

Cathy Jeffers says "Art Quilts come from the heart." This one came from my right ovary ...

A few months ago, I had a Reiki session, energy work. I have an ovarian cyst that bothers me periodically. During the Reiki session, I saw a big black bug crawl out of my ovary/hip (figuratively, not for real) -- maybe now it can heal. The color of the art paper came out to be the colors that I visualized the ovary.

Detail of the June Bug (Dover Archive)

I've been wanting to try image transfer methods. Above, you can see the results of the gel medium method with the paper hanging off of it. The transparency version didn't work any better. This didn't really seem to work at all for me. Neither did ironing a laser jet print copy. Maybe the paper was too dark, not allowing enough contrast between the black bugs and the relatively dark base paper ...

The method that actually DID seem to work was the Packing Tape method. Although there remains the shiny tape, the image transferred beautifully. But it was still a little too subtle, so I highlighted the bugs in the final postcard (above) with a little couched yarn.

I'll be doing more experiments with th image transfers to find out what works ... There appear to be some wonderful tutorials here. Worthy of more exploration.

Art Papers

In January/February, I purchased some Starburst Stains and Moon Shadow inks from Lindy's Stamp Gang.

I haven't been so impressed with them on fabric, but look at it on paper :

I purchased this holey art paper also in Jan/Feb. It was an ivory color in its "pure" state. I started daubing and painting on the starburst stains, but it seemed to be taking too long to cover the surface. Eventually, I crumpled up the damp paper into a ball and poured on the starburst stains and inks, and squeezed the color through--and got this wonderful result!

I used MistyFuse to fuse the art paper to a dark base fabric. With enough heat, the MistyFuse melts and disappears (as through the holes in the paper). This will make a lovely journal cover someday.

This one could use a little more sparkle ... I don't think this one is quite finished yet. Stay tuned!


I'm still slowly working my way through the sample batting sample squares. This shows a sample marked with quilting paper. I traced the feather onto the tissue paper with a permanent marker, then pinned it in place on the batting square sandwich. Then I free-motion quilted over the lines, through the paper.

When the stitching is complete, the paper can be pulled off. This takes a little bit of effort, but scoring the tissue paper with a sharp pin helps.

This particular batting is Hobbs Cotton (my favorite batting). These will all look a little different again after they are washed (like a real quilt would be). Washing will also help to remove the last little bits of the tissue paper.

This is also a great way to practice free-motion quilting.

This seems to be the best way to mark something like feathers. I'm not comfortable enough to do them free-hand yet.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

New Book : Fabric Art Workshop

My original thought was to use this book for a technique-a-week this summer. There are lots of things I want to try ...

But summer is already getting away from me. It seems like all the weekends have been scheduled with no time for my experiments and creations. Sigh!

I used to keep Sundays as sacred time where I didn't have to go anywhere (really, I don't have to leave the house) or do anything but putter about in my sewing room or dye studio. The chores get done on Saturday, and my husband is the cook at our house. I've been very fortunate to have a husband who doesn't complain about my creative time, or the money I spend on it (Quilting is better than gambling or a drug addiction, he says.)

It occurs to me now that I really do need that Sunday time for more than just "making stuff." That time helps me to get grounded and re-charge for the rest of the week at work and in the world.

A few chores today and Farmer's Market, then I hope to get back to experimenting ...

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

New Toy : Table Loom

Haven't been able to do much on the creative side the past few weeks. The Flooding and visitors last week kept me out of the sewing room.

A thoughtful junk-hound friend picked this up for me today (With the flooding people have been forced to clean out their basements ... The Garbage Men will be working overtime this week!) :

I have long wanted a loom! Now I have one (for free!) This one does not seem to be water damaged at all--just a little dusty.

Now I just have to :
1) clean it up
2) figure out if any pieces are missing
3) and figure out how to use it

Sue Bleiweiss did some posts on weaving with a loom a few months ago ... May be time to review those! Anyone out there have suggestions on where to start?

Picture long dark winters beside the fire with the rhythm of a loom ...