Friday, May 24, 2024

COMMISSION - MAKING GOOD PROGRESS

 I'm still working about 6-8 hrs. most days on my commission project. 

It's been awhile since I posted a progress photo....it's a big piece, appx. 54" x 62".......given my much reduced studio space, it's been challenging but I am enjoying developing new ways of working.



Tuesday, May 21, 2024

COOL KNIFE RACK

 Our very thoughtful son & wife gifted us this unique knife rack as a house warming gift. It only took nearly 2 months to get it hung! It's a live black walnut magnetic rack. Cool, right??




Sunday, May 19, 2024

PLUGGING AWAY

 Even though I'm putting in 6-8 hrs. nearly every day on my big commission......a few other tasks have been accomplished. After being here for a little less than 2 months, I really expected to be totally settled......oh optimistic me!

'The husband' had tons of heavy duty wire shelving used in our last two houses. (NO clue why so many were needed!?). Happily, after he finally got his garage set up (not to say the items stored in bins on the racks have been put in their proper place....like at least 200 DVD's!). However, there were extra units available for my sewing room...Yeah!
Nothing like calling the kettle black, I haven't organized my new canvas bins, but at least the old plastic ones are now empty and relocated to a grateful neighbor.
Here's a look back at my cramped space which is finally getting organized. Note to self, do not gain one pound...you'll never squeeze into the room!!







Wednesday, May 15, 2024

HELPFUL TIP

 Still working diligently on my commission project. Thought I'd share a trick I've used for ages (and mentioned here in the past but perhaps there are new readers who would find it helpful).


After successfully auditioning motifs on my design wall, I pin them onto the quilt top. Next, I use a small hand held iron and fuse them in place, directly on the design wall. It's such a time saver. If you have a small iron it may not be hot enough to totally secure them. Instead, simply 'tack' in place with the heat and then transfer to your pressing station to firmly secure.

I've been securing LOTS of trees lately! But still a long way to go.....







Sunday, May 12, 2024

GETTING CREATIVE IN THE LAUNDRY ROOM

Happy Mother's Day to all the Moms out there! I had to take a break from working on this monster commission that doesn't agree with my initial concept....so I took an off ramp and perhaps another today....stay tuned.

One thing about purchasing a new home is the multiple expenses involved for items that do not come with the house. As a for instance, the laundry room: no cupboards, no washer/dryer, no towel racks, no paper towel holder....get the picture? Now that doesn't seem like such a big deal until the estimate for cabinets to go over the washer and dryer, plus one tall - 12" wide cabinet to store cordless vacuum, mops etc. Hold your breath, this is CA after all!! $8,552!!!! Oh, I could have gotten cabinets of a lesser quality at Lowe's. Hummm, they will deliver but not assemble nor install. Have you noticed NOTHING comes assembled anymore?

Here's my solution. A floating shelf for the dust buster (whenever I can get 'the husband' to do it). I can't nag...he put this seemingly easy 1 hr. project together yesterday which took over 3 hrs. AND I purchased a school locker, painted blue for the tall items. It looks like I could have used a bigger one but the dryer door opens wide.....so I was limited.

Now back to sewing.... 






Friday, May 10, 2024

WHEN THE DESIGN TAKES AN OFF RAMP

As is typical when designing an art quilt, what's in your mind's eye, doesn't always come together with real fabric! I'm unhappy with the fabric choice at the lower level.....though it wasn't sold black, it reads too dark and too big of a color jump from the green areas.

I've done a small mono printed sample with brown/green tones using bubble wrap for the texture......sure hope I don't totally mess it up. I also started cutting and adding some trees that will cover the green areas.....a LOT of work ahead....  



Monday, May 6, 2024

THE WORK GOES ON......

Plugging away on my large commission.....I decided to outline the mountains in black.......never did that before but this piece will hang about 10' from ground level.......on a wall that's next to a 2nd floor balcony which overlooks the great room.

Elements need to be big and emphasized in order to have impact. It's a challenging piece for sure. 




Sunday, May 5, 2024

EVEN MOTHER NATURE REACTED TO OUR MOVE TO CA

 YUP, Mother Nature sent her welcome to us......sheets of hail! As we all know, sometimes she is not always a good & kind  Mother.....welcome to CA.




Friday, May 3, 2024

AND THE BASTING IS FINISHED!!

 I'm a hand baster....esp. when working on big appliqué quilts because I'm so terribly fussy about achieving flat work. The greens especially look like a mish mash now, but it will all get blended together with lots of stitching.


Tuesday, April 30, 2024

FEELS SO GOOD TO BE CREATING AGAIN!

I've been putting as many hours as my knees can handle standing......the reorganizing I did with my fabrics was worth it....made for slightly faster fabric selections for this big commission. But we all know there's really nothing fast about this process.

Some hand basting has been done and lots of pinning which I suspect will be an issue as I can feel the flannel is getting pinned at times too. Everything will be hand basted and then machine appliquéd. There will be lots of details, trees, clouds, 'smoke' from the mountains", textured grasses, etc. Then dense quilting....you know the routine......I easily have a month of work ahead of me.....if not more.
More smiling here these days.....thanks for hanging with me!




Saturday, April 27, 2024

HAPPY DAY!!

HURRAH!!!! Let there be light.....Our cutie pie electrician and I decided 3 of the 4ft - 5000K Daylight LED lights were sufficient.....'the husband has now claimed the other three for his garage!




AND, I now have a dedicated outlet for my iron. And with my newly installed design wall I'm raring to get working on my commission. It's been a long road, but I learned a lot and the goals were achieved.

There is still some rearranging to do in the studio ....I tried to find a folding table the right length and height to place on the back side of my sewing cabinet to provide more space for quilting/sewing bigger pieces like the one I'm working on. (I was very spoiled with my previous set up). Despite an extensive search, none worked, so I came up with the idea of using my ironing board that could be adjusted to the perfect height and it was already a good length. Bought a 2nd one to press on.




The location of the new outlet isn't ideal but I think with some rearranging I can make it work. So, NO drama to whine about today....Beautiful blue skies, going to get up to 75 today. Sooty is beginning to adapt and I have a report coming up about an art quilt group that allowed me to come as a guest and then extended an invitation to join them......it's really what I need. "The husband" and I are totally sick of each other's company!! 

Thursday, April 25, 2024

PROGRESSING

 I urge you to jump over to my Facebook page and catch up on the saga I've had creating a design wall for my new tiny space....plus trying to get better lighting, and finally the ability to have an iron going (even without anything else on) without the breaker popping.

As I mentioned last post, seems so many have abandoned blogs, (but I still prefer this format.....I'm way too chatty for Facebook posts.).......but to reach an audience I had to slowly move over there......

I appreciate my long time followers....hope you will consider reading what I have to say there... I will try to update here from time to time.......getting settled here in CA has left me with zero free time. 

However I have a large commission and with the above goals accomplished in a day or two I should start sewing again.







Sunday, April 21, 2024

IT'S BEEN AWHILE

 I know it's been too long......so much has happened since we began our cross country drive to CA.  Can't say we are settled yet....fish out of water is more like it.  Having a difficult time adjusting to urban living.

AND...then two weeks ago I took a terrible fall....thankfully nothing was broken but have serious contusions and married to a walker and an immobilizer brace.


Moving has been overwhelming.....despite selling and donating a ton of stuff....we still have and moved too much here.


The biggest change for me is having 1/5 of the studio space I enjoyed previously.  I'm now in a dark tiny bedroom.....with a nice closet but still way smaller than my needs.  It's slowly getting organized and we are addressing the lighting issue.

I wanted to update my blog and alert you that I will generally be posting now on Facebook.  I actually prefer the blog format better but so many have abandoned blogs and blog reading that it makes more sense to have just one place where I can be found until we get more settled and I have anything fiber related to share.  After all this is and always has been a quilt blog.  So hop over to my Facebook page and read on.....  I'll be back here as soon as I can.




Thursday, March 21, 2024

IN TRANSIT

 Followers......I'm in transit to CA.....you can find my travel log on my Facebook page....please visit that for the time being.....

https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100010740786368


Wednesday, March 13, 2024

SO IT BEGINS......

We've sold a ton, packed for a month and still there are 5 packing guys here and a big truck with just boxes and wrapping paper etc. Clearly we did not downsize enough!!! Moving van comes tomorrow....but it can't get up our mountain roads so everything will be handled multiple times...put on small (shuttle) truck from here to meet where moving van is parked.  






Wednesday, March 6, 2024

FRIENDS FOREVER

 This may be overkill for you dear readers......but I can't help it.  Fiber Frenzy is the 2nd chapter of the original Fiber Junkies.....which Judy Simmons and I co-founded way back in about 2007-2008.

The goal was to bring together a small number of like minded fiber enthusiasts willing to meet once a month in each others' homes for the purpose of pursuing new techniques.  As time marched on, heath, relocation, and family matters altered the make up of our group.

Recently we invited a new member, Heather Horton who was unable to join us yesterday but the 4 of us gathered to relive memories of laughter and fun, and of course tears when saying goodbye for now.

Selfies abound.....so here are a few.......repetitive sure.....but taken with the greatest love of each other.  A trip to CA for a wine tour is in the works......

Susan Lee, Judy Simmons, Kathie Briggs, & Mary Stori



Monday, March 4, 2024

IN CASE YOU THINK I'M JUST SITTING AROUND.....

 This moving stuff is sure hard work...physically and mentally.....sooooo many details to take care of.....but progress is being made...

Piles of packed and 'to be packed' by movers are everywhere...sure hope we have room for all this in new place.......getting worried.





Friday, March 1, 2024

ANOTHER SAD SO LONG......

 It's been such a humbling pleasure to have such good friends here in WNC......and it's very hard to say goodbye for now......

But I have to say, the farewell lunches have been great, even through the tears.  My pal Arlene gifted me one of her masterpiece shawls.....this gal is an excellent knitter... just look at the variety of stitches and yarns she incorporated.  I'll treasure  it!!  



The sweets and even sweeter sentiments in her card were so special.  Hope to see you before too long Arlene!!



Monday, February 26, 2024

LOOKING BACK

 Looking back.....After moving to WNC in the spring of 2006, we visited a Southern Living Home and fell in love with the log cabin outbuilding featured by a local builder who reclaimed vintage log cabins in the area.

That company was actually just down the road from our home and soon we contracted to have an Eastern Tennessee pre-civil war small log cabin erected on our property. It housed our John Deere riding mower and all the other garden equipment that becomes necessary as an owner of over 2+ acres of land.


- View 1 was last fall (when the notion of moving wasn't even a blip on our radar)
- View 2 is the foundation being built....this craftsman's could have used cinder blocks but couldn't bring himself to do that.....instead he collected rocks and build a dry rock foundation. I recall standing for hours watching this amazing process.....it reminded me of assembling a quilt.
- View 3 is the hand mixed cement floor he laid.....encouraging us to write our name and date. (So grateful he thought of it!)
- View 4 is the completion in 2006....he even found some mule iron shoes to use as hinges and recycled tin roofing.
 
We've been honored to be the keepers of this slice of history.





Sunday, February 25, 2024

My New Address

 To all that received my address change....of course I had a typo.....too many balls in the air!!!!


My zip is 95747.        sorry!!

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

FIBER FRENZY GROUP

 As I've said over and over......the fiber friends I've bonded with here in the Asheville area are simply the best.

Yesterday was my last official gathering with the Fiber Frenzy group. Two of us (Mary and Judy) were members of the original Fiber Junkies where sadly age, relocation, and health saw that group disband after about 13 years.  The Fiber Frenzy members are just as dedicated, love to experiment and most of all love chatting, nibbling, & sipping.

We played with image transfer this month....a technique some of us had done before and loved it just as much this time.

An overview:   

After selecting an image, it's scanned into the computer.


A photo program can help you edit: reverse the image, remove or add text etc.


The image is printed onto the rough side of a transparency, using an ink jet printer.


Acrylic matte medium is painted onto fabric (we used a large sponge brush).

Turning the transparency, printed side facing the prepared fabric... the back of a large spoon is rubbed over the image, burnishing the ink onto the fabric.  
Before completely removing the plastic....lift a small edge to check if the image has sufficiently transferred....if not....keep rubbing.    We all got so engrossed I missed taking a photo of that step......drat!!

But here's the best photo of the day.....

Left to right:  Heather Horton, Kathie Briggs, Mary Stori, Judy Simmons, & Susan Web Lee.  THE FIBER FRENZY GROUP.   I'm already check out wine tours to entice them to make a trip to CA!!!