Saturday, March 31, 2012

in the garden...and some updates.

Have been spending lots of time in the garden to set everything up. I haven't really done much gardening since I retired 10 years ago but enjoying getting my fingers in the dirt again. The indigo seeds are planted since 2 weeks ago in the jiffy pots but nothing showing yet so I seeded some more directly in the garden. Some veges, some herbs and some flowers. Click on the images for a closer view.

working on paving around the edge

my favorite tiny fairy rose

All caught up with my Chikan Embroidery and waiting for the next lesson to be posted.

Chikan Embroidery

Work continues in Karen's class:

slowly creating this cloth that will be partially ruched (gathered).

playing with tea bag labels as templates. looks like a star created in center.

And for those of you interested in watching the baby eaglets grow up, there are now 3 babies at the Decorah Web Cam. You can see it here. I could get lost watching them, if I let myself.

this picture was taken when only 2 had hatched.

Here is another amazing cam of baby hummingbirds. It's here. There will be some advertising first...just keep watching.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

lush velvet...

Unwrapped the three copper pipe bundles but the only one I love is the lush velvet. This started out as white silk velvet wrapped with rose leaves around a copper pipe.
Click on the images for a closer view.

white silk velvet with rose leaves around a copper pipe

And this thrift store dress from back here is finally a wearable blouse. I extended the sleeves and they are now a perfect length. I did wear it yesterday.

sleeves made longer and have lots of extra fabric to play with

And Mo sent me this wonderful card with my inital, D. It is a page from the book she did as a collaboration. Check out all the pages and the story available in her shop here.

a gift from Mo

Monday, March 26, 2012

it's hard to know what to tackle first...

Today there was some planting going on. It felt so good to get some color in those pots.

Some tin can reveals...

the copper pipe bundles need more time

a figure all ready for stitching

just look at that face...

rose leaves, silk, around a tin can

the back
And still working on samples in Karen Ruane's class...

this bird was not planned...he just made himself known.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

nine patch fun...

scrim scratching on indigo cloth from Jeannie

Thursday, March 22, 2012

a nice thrift store find...

I stopped in at the thrift store this afternoon and so glad I did. I found this lovely example of Chikan Embroidery in this blouse that looks brand new. It was only $2 and it actually fits.  I really bought it just for all the stitching that I could see close up since I'm taking a class with Anita of artistic fingers. More about that at the end of this past post. And for those of you who were interested, here are some good examples of what the stitching looks like front and back.

Chikan Embroidery---blouse front

Chikan Embroidery---back of stitches

And, of course, the experimenting continues in Karen's class:

making lace on the machine...I started blanket stitching over it for a different effect.

stitching layers

needle weaving on a small stitched sample
I started planting seeds this past weekend and really wanted to plant purple carrots for eco dyeing. Jeannie was so kind to send me some seeds and also some of her beautifully dyed indigo cloth and embroidery thread. Can't wait to dive into that pile. Thanks Jeannie.

goodies from Jeannie

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

our journey is our only guarantee...

the butterfly has been considered a soulful symbol...hoping WAS journeys on the wings of a butterfly...

and meets up with all of our missed pet friends...

Sunday, March 18, 2012

a vintage look...and more samples

I've had this old plastic cameo for many years and just knew that one day I'd find a use for it.
Click on images to enlarge.

2" cameo stitched onto hand dyed cotton and silk

I'm thinking I will stitch this onto the front of brown t-shirt.

The cameo was inspired by a lesson on stitching shisha mirrors onto fabric in Karen's class.

shisha mirrows stitched onto cotton cloth

And some more samples from class:

butterfly stitched on paper and 2 layers of cheesecloth with paper cut away

3 layers of cheesecloth stitched on the machine and 3 areas hand stitched.

more fun with scrim scratching

Friday, March 16, 2012

scrim and paper stitchings...

more samples from Karen Ruane's class... click on the pics for a closer view.

stitched hexagons on handmade paper

free motion embroidery on soft but sturdy paper

it started out with scrim machine stitched on cloth (right); hand stitched some holes and then did more hand stitching to distort the fiber (left).

free motion stitching done on paper with scrim, some hand stitching and frayed the scrim edge.

scrim scratching experiment...more to experiment with this idea.

I did wear my completed bobbin lace collar (sorry...not a great picture).

Sunday, March 11, 2012

the experimenting continues...

The samples, from experimenting in Karen's class, are piling up. Recording them here helps me to remember what I have as the time is coming near when we will be joining them into some sort of design. Click on the images for a closer view.

left: tucks and pre-programmed stitch   right: scrim backed with blue and white cotton. hand stitched holes.

double layer of mulberry tissue...pre-programmed machine stitches

hand made paper cut out and machine stitched grid ready for weaving

bits of scrim and cotton leftovers woven through a dried up tissue wipe

And as if I'm not over extended already, I'm learning Chikan Embroidery, from Anita at artistic fingers. It is an Indian embroidery that is a form of whitework. Check out the links, if you are interested. The class is closed but all the lessons are posted on her blog. I'm working on the double back stitch which is the first lesson. The back looks like a herringbone stitch and creates a shadow on the front of the cloth.

double back stich creates a shadow effect on the front of the cloth

Friday, March 9, 2012

lots of experimenting going on and a heads up...

Having fun experimenting with scrim and paper in Karen Ruane's class Extending Embellishment. Some more images below. Click for a closer view.

a failed stitching on scrim w/cotton backing dropped into the dye pot

stitch play on a lokta paper with a webbed overlay

a thin mulberry paper backed with thin cotton. embellished with ric-rak and french knots.

nothing paper-like in the house is safe from experimentation

And a heads up on some quilting shows available for free for a short time:

Big news here! In honor of International Quilt Day (March 17, 2012), The Quilt Show (, the web TV show hosted by Alex Anderson and Ricky Tims, will "open" all of its shows from the first nine series--that is, from show 100 through show 913--for the entire weekend of March 16 –18. This means that—for three special days—everyone will have the chance to view these 117 shows, featuring some of the quilting world’s leading artists, for FREE.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

lace collar is finished and...

I can't often say that a project is finished. I've been working on this bobbin lace collar since October, 2011. I just work on it in class which is 4 hours, so it's not surprising that it took me this long. It just needs a clasp which will be stitched on today.

bobbin lace collar with beads...linen thread

And I know you're probably tired of seeing these cloths from the dye pot, but this is how I keep track of them. I'd never remember when I did what, if it wasn't for this blog. These 2 pieces were originally done shibori method with colorhue dyes. They didn't turn out great, so I decided to overdye using the tin can method I just love. I used onion skins and some eucalyptus leaves and some pennies hidden between the cloth and the can.

this was originally blue done with the colorhue dyes. the pin holes are still visible from the shibori stitching. it's a habotai silk.

this is a heavier silk and i did lots of folding so some of the original green color would remain.
And, of course, I've started Karen Ruane's class this week so lots of playing and experimenting going on.

stitching on scrim...a new experience

a scrim ruffle and grid...and some stitching started.
Finally, here is a delightful video that Michelle posted this morning: The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore.
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