Monday, September 27, 2010

Cooped and Seafoam

This little quilt is called Cooped. It is a project I designed for my column on thread sketching for the October/November issue of Quilting Arts magazine. This issue is going out to subscribers and is on newsstands now. There’s lots of great stuff in this issue!
Jane Davila’s “Minding Your Business” column is all about selling your art at fairs and festivals … perfect timing for me and Fiber Art Options, since we are doing that this weekend (see my previous post). 

I met Victoria Gertenbach last month on the set of Quilting Arts TV, where we were both shooting segments, and admired her “Boro Bobbles,” lovely scraps of shot cotton fabrics and handstitched thread stitched into fiberfill puffed beads to display, use in jewelry, or as embellishments. You can learn how to make them in this issue. 

I also was fascinated to learn from Leslie Tucker Jennison’s article about two ways to use shredded paper in your work – as a resist for silk-screen printing, and as a laminated element for the surface of sheer fabrics. Very cool stuff.

And there are also lots of fun entries from the 2011 Quilting Arts calendar contest that won Judges’ Choice awards. Here is the table of contents so you can see all the other goodies:

Cooped is based on this photo, which I took many years ago on my youngest daughter’s kindergarten field trip to a working farm. As you can see, I changed the composition somewhat, giving the headless chicken a head, and changing the “windows” a bit.

I painted the scene on white cotton with acrylic paint, then thread sketched it. Here is a detail shot:

This is the second piece featured in my article. It is called Seafoam, and is made only with varigated Aurifil Cotton Mako 50 thread on hand-dyed fabric.
Here is a detail shot:

This piece is based on a photograph (below) I took several summers ago at the beach. I loved the pattern in the photo, but not the color. And I also felt it lacked a focal point, so I added the sand dollar (which is actually a type of sea urchin called keyhole urchin, I learned when I researched it!) 

If you are a member of the Quilting Arts community (which you can join for free), you can download my pattern for Seafoam. Just go to the website, and then click on “Free Stuff” and then “Online Extras,” and look for my little quilt.
In this column, I also wrote a sidebar on “Fighting the Fear Factor,” in which I give advice to aspiring thread sketchers, and offer tips on getting over the insecurities we all face when trying something new. Yep, even me.

Getting ready for AutumnFaire

This weekend, members Fiber Art Options will be selling small handmade items at AutumnFaire at Daniel Stowe Botanical Gardens.

It’s this Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 2-3, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. This is a celebration of nature that includes more than 29 vendors offering “a myriad of craft items made from or based on plants including such things as gourd art, basketry, handcrafted herbal soaps, garden pottery, mosaic art, candles, crochet, artisan jams and jellies, and more.”

I’m selling some of my notecard sets (above) and these stenciled and stitched business card cases like these:

AutumnFaire is free with Garden admission. Food and beverages will be available for purchase from Something Classic Catering. Members are free, $12 adults, $11 seniors 60+, and $6 children 4-12. The Garden is open 9 a.m.-5 p.m., seven days a week. For more information call (704) 825-4490 or log on to

Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden, located near Charlotte, NC, within 380 acres on the banks of Lake Wylie, offers spectacular gardens, sparkling fountains, a conservatory dedicated to the display of tropical plants and orchids, a visitor pavilion, gift shop and nature walks. HGTV named it one of the nation’s 20 Great Gardens and USA TODAY says the Garden is one of the nation’s best places to welcome fall with a flourish.