Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Little Pink Ranches

I may have to rethink my goal of finishing by New Year's Day 2010. I quilted all day today and now when I close my eyes, I see stitches!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

The Race Is On!

I found this wonderful box of reproduction western hankies at my favorite quilt shop and absolutely, positively had to have them! Of course they are much too spectacular to ever use as an actual hanky, so what did I do? I made them into a quilt!
Last New Year's Day, I got busy and made the entire quilt top in one day. A few months later, I put the layers together and quilted the center. And then it sat. The cat claimed it as her afternoon napping place all summer long and into the fall. Now that the New Year is rolling around, one of my resolutions is going to be to finish some of my projects. So I set a goal...to quilt one square a day and try to finish this quilt by New Year's Day. Yes, New Year's Day, 2010! I've kept my goal for the past 3 days. Now I'm going to post a square a day. Here's the first one:

Tuesday, December 22, 2009


What I love about collage is the instant gratification. Not that I mind spending years on a quilt, but sometimes it's fun to start something in the morning and finish it the same day.

This creation was made at Art and Soul in Lisa Kaus's Gridlocked class. Her class was magical from the moment we stepped into her classroom. Music was playing and each student's place was set with a vintage school-lunch tray in a gorgeous shade of aqua, filled with supplies and fun extras. We learned to use graphite sticks and water-soluble crayons to create a background that we could stamp, collage, and attach 3-D elements to. After we we done, we coated it in beeswax for extra dimension. It was joyous to spend a day coloring and gluing and making a mess!

My collage tells a story of travels with my husband. Let's start from the top. There's a piece of a calendar that shows a month of Mondays to represent time off when the rest of the world is facing the start of the workweek.
The egg and the tulip stand for new beginnings and the crowned goose and the surprised boy are for the many unusual things we see and experience. A game card that says "STOP" is a reminder of the times that things have not gone as planned, and yet we always manage to turn it into a new adventure. 75 miles stands for the times when we are so near, yet so far from our destination. The tape measure is for all of the times my sweetheart has done his research ahead of time and surprised me with a detour to a fabric store, a quilt show, or some other "all-about-me" destination. Chef Fish is for the unusual restaurants we try on our adventures. The cartoon stars are for the times our nerves are frayed and we get snappy.
Mended hearts are because travel is good for the soul and pencils are for sending postcards to those we leave behind in our native land. Stars and moons are there because we love to drive at night; leopard skin and a glamorous image are because we like to travel in style and pretend we are famous. Finally, a heart and a wilted sunflower mean that it's good to be home again, our garden missed us!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Bah Humbug!

The tacky sweater turned out fantastic!  As my brave husband entered the room, he was greeted by laughter, which was just the response we were going for. Don't you love the mini pockets on the Grinch's sweatshirt?!

To make the applique, I cut a stuffed Grinch in half, flattened him out and hand-sewed him on the sweater.  
I liked his poochy belly, so I put some of his stuffing back in the midriff area.  

I made a frame for Mr. Grinch using garland and battery-powered LED lights.  The battery pack is inside the sweater in a pocket that I attached behind his stomach.

We didn't win the contest, but we left them laughing for sure!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Tacky Sweater Fixin's

The blank canvases:

The embellishments:
I love competition, so when our staff was challenged to a Tacky Christmas Sweater Contest, the creative wheels started spinning out of control!  I rushed off to the local Goodwill where I found inspiration everywhere!  I am going to make two of the tackiest sweaters ever seen.  Let the games begin!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Cowgirl Shrine

Yee Haw! She's done and she's a beauty. Meet Ruby, a cute little cowgirl made from a vanilla-extract bottle, a tin nicho, and other assorted junk. She lives in a shrine adorned with leather barbed wire, rusty tin hearts, and plastic six shooters. And if that weren't enough, she has a light installed in her "sky" to bring a glow to her world after dark.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

The Country Lasses Are Up and Running!

DarLie, the wonderfully witty author of one of my favorite blogs "Libby Buttons", and a few of her friends have started a new blog called the Country Lasses. They will be writing about their rural life and hosting an occasional on-line flea market. Through November 30th, they are collecting comments for a "great give away" drawing. The prizes are fabulous! Check them out and leave a comment at http://countrylasses.blogspot.com/2009_11_12_archive.html.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Monkey Business

Sock monkeys have always had a special place in my heart. I wonder who the creative genius was who first looked at a pair of red-heeled socks and thought, "Hey, that would make a great monkey!"
When I saw Moda's sock monkey fabric, I had to have it. Each little square reminded me of photo-booth pictures, so I decided to make a little quilt fashioned after a yearbook page. After it was put together, it was cute but the pictures didn't really stand out. After playing around with various things from my stash, I decided rick-rack and vintage sequins were the missing ingredients.

Monday, September 21, 2009

A Glorious Morning!

Doesn't this seem like a color that would not be found in nature? But here it is, right here in our front yard! Every morning, as I leave for work, I take a moment to admire these Morning Glories that look like they come from another planet.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

A Box of Treasures

I've been on a soldering roll for the past three days! Last week I decided to dust off my soldering supplies and get to it but it was not meant to be. I soldered my pliers to my jumprings, I burned myself, I forgot to put the lid on my flux cleaner and knocked it over. Luckily, I had the good sense to give it up and go knit. I tried it again a few days later and got my groove back!

As you can see, I've got a couple of different things going on. These are soldered pottery fragments and beach glass that I picked up at Glass Beach back before collecting was prohibited. The little metal tag hanging from the beach glass is a charm I made in Patrik Kusek's PMC class.

This is a mini collage.

And this is one from the vintage photo series. What to do with all of these charms? Maybe I should make the world's largest charm bracelet!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Three Bad Girls Wall Candy

I finally finished my Bad Girls project today! I'm thinking of renaming it "Bad Luck." It was one of those projects that should have been simple enough but I kept making ridiculous mistakes. For example, last night, I made the seam binding too narrow. "No problem!" I thought. "I'll just trim a little off the seam." I ended up cutting the seam too close and cutting the seam binding.
Then I left my fabric cutting wheel out on the table. My kitten, Sadie Lu, thought it was a toy and batted it off of the table. The next thing I knew, there were bloody paw prints everywhere. The poor thing cut her paw on the blade. Thank goodness, she's alright! Reupholstering the dining room chairs will be an upcoming project.
I started with a Mitch O'Connell pattern from Sublime Stitching and embroidered it on linen. I added borders from my Kaffe Fassett fabric stash and hand quilted it. I added vintage sequins and beads for extra spice. I put it all together to make...

Friday, June 19, 2009

An Array of Cowgirl ATCs!

When I found out about ATCs, I dove right in. Finally, something I can finish in an hour or so! And what a great way to use my beloved cowgirl pictures from ArtChix Studio!

The only problem was, what do you do with a bunch of ATCs when they are done? I decided to string them together with leather laces and hang them on the wall, kind of like a little paper quilt! Yippee kai aye aye!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Mixed Media Wallhanging

A few years ago, I had the privilege of taking a class with D.J. Pettit. She is an excellent instructor who is very generous with her knowledge. If you ever have a chance to take a class with her, sign up! This little wallhanging is what I made in her class. We learned how to transfer pictures using liquid Sculpey clay and then we hand colored them. The rest is just hand stitching lots of fabrics, trims, charms, fibers, etc. together to make a little mixed-media quilt. I think it turned out rather nice!