Friday, August 28, 2009

The Great Chicago Fire and Smokey Bear

These are Artist Trading Cards from the third in "The Elements" series. This month's theme was Fire. Mrs. O'Leary's cow proclaims, "I've been framed," and insists the real cause was the candles on her birthday cake. I guess you had to be there.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Salute to Liberty quilt party

A great group of quilters got together for a Friday Night Quilting Party. We learned a technique for making the flying geese unit that is quick and "fabric efficient." Thank you to all that attended and for your help with the refreshments, set-up, clean-up, and above all, for your wonderful company, friendly conversation and a fun time quilting.
A block sub-unit is shown here in two colorways.
The quilt block is comprised of four sub-units.
To create a block, rotate each of the four sub-units 90 degrees from each other so the white fabric is in the center of the block.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

New host for ATC swaps

For those who have been participating in the ATC (Artist Trading Card) swaps at Stone Light Studio, or have been following the results of recent trades on my blog, I will now be hosting the swaps through my blog.

The swaps have been very successful as well as inspiring with a minimum of bumps along the way. We all follow the Golden Rule: give what you would like to receive; and everyone has a good time.

Anyone is welcome to participate in the swaps—quilters, stampers, scrapbookers and mixed media artists. The Rules and Guidelines are posted here.

Monday, August 10, 2009

ATC Swap Rules & Guidelines

The size of an ATC is 2.5" x 3.5" (64 mm x 89 mm).

Cards are made as one-of-a-kind pieces or in a limited edition.

The front of the card can be done in any media: fabric, stitching, textile arts, paper, rubber stamps, colored pencil, paint, ink, calligraphy, beadwork, digital art, mixed media, collage, etc.

On the back of the card, the artist writes part or all of the following information: artist's name, contact information, title of the ATC, date, and number (1/8, 2/8, 3/8 ...) if it's part of an edition.

Bonus! Previous traders enjoyed learning about the techniques and materials used in the ATCs. Please include information on the back of the card or include a small slip of paper with a sentence or two about what you used to make your card.

Follow the Golden Rule: Give what you would like to receive! Whether you are new to making ATCs or you have years of experience, do your best. What most collectors really want are cards that were made with care.

When you sign up for a trade, you are on the “honor system” that you will participate. Realize that the other participants will be making a card to trade with you, so please respect their investment of time and materials.

After the swap registration closing date, I will notify you with the total number of participants (so you’ll know how many cards to make). We'll be trading ATCs one-for-one.

Cards are due 4 days prior to the swap if you are mailing your cards. After the swap, I will mail you the ATCs you receive in trade. When you mail in your cards, please include a self-addressed stamped envelope (or a SASE). If you want me to use the USPS package tracking service, please include the extra cost.

I often post pictures on this blog of the ATCs received in the swaps. By participating in the swaps, I have your permission to post a picture of your ATC. If you don not want pictures posted, you must notify me specifically. All artwork seen on the blog is for inspiration only and the copyright remains with each individual artist. Reproduction without consent of the artist is not permitted.

E-mail me at if you have any questions. Enjoy the trade!

Guild Challenge quilt—Take Flight

The 2008 Choo Choo Quilters Guild Challenge was called the "Open Door Challenge." (I finally got around to taking a picture of my entry.) Among the guidelines that were issued was the incorporation of a door somewhere in the quilt. Here is my response to the challenge. It is an art quilt entitled "Break Free. Take Flight."

Various hand-dyed fabrics, including my shibori hand-dyed pieces, were used to create this piece. It is 39.5" x 39.5", machine pieced and free-motion machine quilted. I used my Janome 6500 domestic sewing machine to quilt it. It won the Best Workmanship, Viewer's Choice and Best Door awards. I was very honored.
"Break Free. Take Flight" detail.

My "door" is the bird cage door that is machine quilted into the composition.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

A day with the Tennessee Valley Quilters Assoc.

Stone Light Studio vended at the Tennessee Valley Quilters Association (TVQA) annual Assembly Day event this past weekend. Assembly Day is a day when all member quilt guilds of the Association (which encompasses the Tennessee River Valley area—Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama and Kentucky) assemble for a day of quilting activities—a quilt exhibit, a presentation by a national quilting instructor or industry personality, shopping, Show and Tell, a quilted wearables floor show, door prizes and various association announcements.

It was a bustling day with lots of excitement, renewal of friendships, food and fellowship. Members from the three hosting guilds were friendly, helpful, attentive and very organized. Things ran very smoothly which makes it a pleasure for us who vend at these kinds of events. Here are some of our offerings which we packed for the show.

My business associate and I shared a showroom with another vendor, Lebanon Vacuum and Sewing Center. Upon arriving at our space, we were openly greeted by our "roommates" who were familiar with our store through our web site and e-news blasts. They commented on our unique products, creativity and artistic use of color and were very complimentary of our web site and e-newsletters. An amazing feature in their store's display was the beautiful hand quilting on all their quilts. (And these were bed-size quilts!)

During a lull in the activities, we had the opportunity to visit with the other vendors. In a conversation with Wanda from the Lebanon Sewing Center, she was amazed and impressed to discover that I had quilted all our quilts using freehand (no mark), free-motion quilting and a domestic [Janome 6500] sewing machine. "I was sure they were done on a long-arm, computerized Gammill machine," she said.

It's always nice to hear when people take notice of your work. It's especially gratifying and humbling to receive compliments from one's peers.
Store display at the 2009 TVQA Assembly Day.

ATCs: The Elements series—Earth

What can I say??? Another great Artist Trading Card (ATC) swap! These are the ATCs from the second in our 4-month series entitled The Elements. The theme was "Earth."
The titles for the cards are: 1. Earth's Geology; 2. Earth; 3. From the Earth; 4. Mineral Wealth; 5. Fool's Gold; 6. Earth; 7. Earth; 8. Earth Song; 9. Mother Earth/good & bad; 10. Mother Earth. Although some of the interpretations followed similar lines of thought, the materials and methods used to execute the ideas were quite diverse: beads, copper mesh, metallic threads, gold edge paper ribbon, silk fibers, fabric and paper; painting, rusting, stamping, embossing, iris folding, stitching, punching, appliqué and digital collage.

Nine artists participated in the group swap. Card #1 was from a personal swap which I thought everyone would enjoy seeing as it followed the Earth theme. I'm very proud to have this inspiring and thought-provoking collection with a piece of art from each of these very talented artists. Thank you, ATC artists!
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