Friday, January 29, 2016

Eggs hatched

The goal is to make a birds nest and I'm "winging it" as I go along.


Here's the drawing - see the blue egg!


I made it like I do the rocks - one layer of heavy interfacing like peltex, then two layers of batting. On these more fiberfill was crunched in there also.


Running stitch all around, gather and pull all the sides in to secure.


Here's the front. I may try to speckle them with paint. Hermit thrush is the state bird of Vermont so I want to make the nest of them. Thrush nest on the ground or hidden in bushes and their eggs are light blue with speckles. I hope to build the nest part with "nest like" items. Figure if I can sew threw it then it's fair game.

Stay tuned, I have some ideas that may involve

This (from a pleated lampshade)


Or this bit of house insulation I picked up the other day walking past a construction zone.

This will be fun and most "eggselent" !

(Sorry, I couldn't resist)


Wednesday, January 27, 2016

still drawing

 this was fun, making all that lovely long hair

Donut - it's amazing how much we don't even see every day.
how many times have I looked at a donut and when I think of it (when I started to draw it from memory) I just think of a circle with a hole. 
But when you draw something you really look at it. notice the inside hole isn't just dark. See that little inside light ring? The inside is dark dark, light, medium dark then light again. And then the front is alittle jagged and goes in alittle. 

My donut drawing isn't all that great but I just wanted to point out that drawing a simple object can really be rewarding and you can learn alot.

I'll say good bye now - for some reason I have this irresistable craving for a donut

Friday, January 22, 2016

Postcards and projects

What have I been up to?


Finished a few postcards

Pulled out a full sized quilt that my mom pieced and gave me. All I had to do was quilt it which as you know is easier said than done especially when I tend to quilt very densely. I just started a new audiobook - Unbroken by Lauren Hillenbrand and and quilting away listening to my book is my idea of a perfect afternoon. Here is a link to the book in case you are interested.

And started a new project. Note to self - add more blacks to stash. This is all I have! Sad.

So I took this wonderful batik, which I used for one part but needed a shade lighter. So pulled out my trusty Inktense block of white.
First sprayed with water, then rubbed and mashed with my finger to blend.
Here it is dry. I think this will make a nice beak, don't you?

Is this where the body was found?

I forgot how enjoyable it was to work bigger. Bigger fusible pieces can be cut out on the inside making less glue on fabric and is so much easier to quilt and play with.

What have you been working on this week?



Friday, January 15, 2016

Bomber hat

It gets cold here in Vermont although this year has been usually warm, it still get down there and since I love to take dog walks even in the cold, I need gear. I've bought the hats with the ear flaps but they are always to small so when I saw a coworkers bomber hat made of knit and fleece a lightbulb went off.

I can make that!

I took an old sweater that had shrunk in the wash and doesn't fit anymore to use for the knit part.

(You didn't think I was actually going to take the time to knit did you?)

Found a free pattern online which by the way was terribly written. The pattern pieces didn't tell you to cut on folds, one piece was missing. Really? There are only 5 pieces and you miss one? Anyway, I figured it out.

Since the sweater could be a pain in the ass challenging to work with, I took the time to first cut out the pattern pieces (bigger than the pattern to fit my fat large head) from regular fabric for a foundation to stabilize. That worked really well.


I won't go into detail on how to make it but if you have made lined tote bags you will get the construction process easy. This is the outside. Then you make a lining the same - I used a shearling type fabric.

Then you turn.

Zu Zu wanted to help and kept eyeing this new chew toy that she thinks I am making for her.

It actually worked!


Side view - this puppy is going to be warm!


Although the front flap falls in my face.


Problem solved - just call me Carol Kardashian the Vermont fashionista - lol!


Friday, January 8, 2016

Facing tabs : word of the year

Instead of a New Years resolution I like to pick a word to try to incorporate into my life. The word for 2016 is develop. I would like to develop my skills in my creative life as well as relationships and health, mind and body. It all sounds good bit as you know, the creative part is fun and therefore easy , as to the last bits. Well I will try.

I wanted to be able to hang my hermit thrush art quilt from a branch. That means making tabs or fabric loops to go around the branch. I also wanted a facing and for once I actually thought about the hanging before the edge finish (binding or facing). See! I'm developing my finishing skills!

So first I made two "tubes" or tabs by cutting 2 pieces of fabric about 4" wide and 6" long. Sew right sides together. Turn inside out and press. Fold in half. I like to sew on the sides of my facings first, so after that and pressing, folding back and pinning the sides. I lay the tabs on top, raw edges out. Pin.

Now simply lay the top facing and sew as usual.

I have a tutorial on how I do facing sight here on the blog in case you want to see the whole process.


It worked like a charm! I need a better branch. Something lichen covered would be cool. It has to be straight though which is easier said than done in the branch world. This will be my "quest" for my next walk in the woods. Which will be today sometime as soon as it gets to at least 20 degrees.

I'm going to do all my future bird quilts this way.

Do you have a word of the year?

Friday, January 1, 2016

Flying in the new year

I'm making birds on this New Year's Eve. Quilting the background now and this guy is a hermit thrush so will need to put some blotches on his breast area. Not sure how yet and I probably should have done that before I spent a lot of time quilting in case I screw it up, which is entirely possible but, oh well . That's how I roll.
Do you like the lichen on the branch? I drew it out and made the brown branch smooth and used freezer paper for the template and turned under the edges. No glue. Then used fusible on the lichen since it's all jaggedy. That way there isn't as much glue and is easier to quilt. I really don't like two layers of fusible.
And here is another one being fused together on the parchment paper. This way if I do screw up the first one there will be another to try something else :-)
In the foreground is a postcard in the making. A cairns one, of course.

Here is a photo of Zu Zu and the sweet Summer today. We finally got some snow - about 5 inches although a lot of it melted already. They had fun running around in it.
I hope you all have a Happy New Year! I'm working New Year's Day so will not see the ball drop. If I stayed up to see it, then you would see Carol drop about half way thru the day on Friday - lol!

update on the blotches - I used watercolor pencil and aloe gel but not really liking it much.
on the left it's wet and on the right dry from this morning.