Detail from "Rain Dance," an original quilt by Sherrie Spangler

Monday, September 28, 2015

STITCH library show is up

"Kaleidoscopic Vision" by Carol Arnold
The STITCH library show in Gig Harbor is up and will stay up through early December! It took my art quilt group two mornings, but we finally finished hanging more than 40 quilts from the light fixtures. It was a stretch, in more ways than one. We call it:

"The Art of the Quilt"
October through early December 2015
Gig Harbor Library

We'll also give a talk and trunk show:

"Art Quilt Techniques"
Oct. 10, 2015 / 1-2 p.m.
Gig Harbor Library

First, we laid out everything in the community room then pinned on labels and found poles or wooden rods to fit each quilt. Then began the tedious task of running fishing line through each pole and tying the ends to hooks that we hung from the light fixtures.

I love how the quilts seem to float over the books.

"Sedona Spring" by Sherrie Spangler

The photos above and below show some of the quilts in our 22"x33" challenge, in which we wanted to see how many different directions we could go within that size format with the quilts hanging vertically. We went in a lot of directions! There are 11 quilts in that challenge and we grouped them together near the front of the library.

Judi did the giant snail, above, and Carol did the fractured piece, below. Hope you enjoyed this little taste of the show, and I hope some of you can see it in person and come to our talk on Oct. 10. Note: The library will be closed Nov. 9-22.

Here's the library's website:

Have a colorful day

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Stitching the wool birds

I've been stitching away  at my wool birds from Sue Spargo's "Bird Dance" book. I don't always follow her stitch suggestions because I want to throw in some of my own favorites, like the chain stitch (below) and blanket stitch. But other times I learn new stitches from her books, like the blue drizzle stitch above.

My birds are also different from hers because she uses a lot of cotton prints (often inside the wings and on the neck) that are needle-turn appliqued down, whereas I'm using all felt with a whip stitch applique. I love her lively prints, but I don't like to do needle-turn applique.

The gold stitch above is the rosette chain stitch, which I just learned today from her "Creative Stitching" book. In "Bird Dance," she tells you which pages in the stitch book you can find directions for the various embroidery stitches.

I'm saving all the thread tails because I like the colors. I may do something creative with them once I get a bag full.

 Have a colorful day

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Fall, Comfort Quilts and Chocolate

The first day of fall here in the South Puget Sound was sunny and warm, with an evening sky tinged with pink over the Hale Passage.

I spent an enjoyable afternoon with the Comfort Quilters sewing inside a sunny window at Quilt Revolution. We completed about five tops for local patients undergoing breast cancer treatment. I snapped photos of three, but the rest were folded up and tucked away by the time I remembered that I had my camera.

One of our members brought a box of delectable chocolates made by a local chocolatier, Trop's Chocolates. What could be better than quilting in the sunshine with friends while eating gourmet chocolates?

Have a colorful day

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Wool birds and real flowers

I'm starting to embellish the wool birds with embroidery! I've barely begun in these photos, and I can tell it'll take me awhile to get them all gussied up. I'm planning to do most if not all of the 30 bird blocks in Sue Spargo's book.

They still need feet, eyes, a lot more embroidery and some sparkly beads. The blue thread being wrapped around the long needle is my beginner attempt at the drizzle stitch.

I'm linking this post to Nina Marie's Off the Wall Fridays, in case you want to see what other fiber artists have been up to this past week:

Also adding color to my weekend were these glorious dahlias in the quaint little town of Pt. Gamble. I went to get more wool at the Quilted Strait but ended up spending a lot of time in the public garden marveling at the large size and perfection of the flowers.

This last flower harbors a tiny tree frog. You can barely see its head peeking out from among the petals.

 I blogged more about Pt. Gamble in these posts:

 Have a colorful day

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Beach, bunnies and baking

My daughter came home to visit over the weekend and it was like a little vacation for me. We walked the beach, cuddled her bunnies (my grandbunnies) and baked. I wish she could be here every weekend, sigh.

The weather was sunny, with a touch of fall in the air. Seagulls swooped and bobbed in the water, and a Great Blue Heron stood guard on a dock.

Mt. Rainier loomed massive over the water, blending in with the sky.

Frankie and Bailey, her rabbits, are SOOOO adorable and snuggly and silky soft. I just couldn't get enough of petting them. To top off the weekend, we baked plump loaves of chocolate chip zucchini bread. Yum!

Have a colorful day

Monday, September 14, 2015

More wool applique

I started another wool applique project, this one a quilt of birds designed by Sue Spargo. I bought the book, a selection of wool/acrylic Grenziana thread and some colorful felted wool fabric when I was in Sisters, OR, in July for the quilt festival.

Book of applique bird patterns.

The cutting and quiet hand stitching are very addictive, and only my screaming arthritic thumbs make me stop every once in awhile.

Freezer paper template.

Sue's technique is to stitch the wool applique shapes down with the wool thread and a tiny whip stitch. After everything is down nice and snug, then the fun of using decorative embroidery stitching begins. Here are a few of my blocks before starting on the embroidery. Note that the birdy legs and feet will be added with embroidery stitches.

 Have a colorful day

Monday, September 7, 2015

Welcome to Sew Day

Linda J. welcomed us to Sew Day yesterday with these colorful floor mats that she made of fabric, paint, rick rack and layers of sealer. They were so pretty I hated to step on them.

Then we commenced to breakfast: French toast, sausage, fruit and yogurt at a festive table.

Linda also sewed this nifty little bowl holder that can go into the microwave and allow you to remove the bowl without getting burned.

Once our tummies were full,
we moved on to show and tell.

Carolynn started this abstract piece, above, last month in a Sue Benner workshop in New York. It's all fused and made in sections. I love the rich colors and texture. She's debating adding some stamped figures.

Nancy completed two cute embroidered pillows and added striped piping that really popped. Linda J. showed us another tote bag in a series that she's been making for Christmas gifts.

We also share new books, and Carolynn brought this interesting one that I haven't seen before: "Threadwork -- Silks, Stitches, Beads and Cords" by Effie Mitrofanis.

Then we got to work.

 Yes, we do sew at Sew Day, even though some of my friends say it sounds like all we do is eat. Here is some of what we worked on:

And then it was time for lunch

Lasagna (it was a drizzly, gray day that was perfect for a hearty meal), rolls, spinach salad, brownies and chocolate chip cookies. We don't starve!

The fabric bowl is my Sew Day project. I'm making it from strips left over from all of this year's projects. Here, I set up my sewing machine in my dining room to work on it today while I watch the clouds float by on this lazy Labor Day. The rain departed this morning and now we have a soft blue sky filled with streaky white and gray-blue clouds floating over the water.

Have a colorful day