Tuesday, February 26, 2013

ATCs: Doodles

"Doodles. Lines in Motion."
In the dictionary, the definition of a "doodle" is a drawing made from idle scribbling.

After receiving the Artist Trading Cards (ATCs) for this month's swap, I can tell you there was nothing idle or mindless about these ATCs.  This month the theme was "Doodles" and ATC artists raised the mere little doodle to new heights.

Here are the February ATCs...

"Doodles from my quilt studio."
"Inchie Doodles"
Stencil shapes with colored markers.

Doodle block print.
"Doodling around in a pink universe with diamonds."
Here are others from the Lines in Motion and Stencil shape collections.
"Lines in Motion."
"Lines in Motion." 
Stencil shapes with colored markers.
Stencil shapes with colored markers.
Stencil shapes with colored markers.
Stencil shapes with colored markers.
Doodles with pen and ink.

Aren't they fabulous?

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Of the hand, from the heart

I couldn't let this day, February 14, Valentine's Day, pass by without a visual chronicle of heart-filled stitchery.
Free-motion quilted feathered heart.
This is a free-motion feathered heart on a warm-up sample. The solid turkey red fabric allows the quilting to show. What creative things do you do with your experiments, swatches and warm-up pieces?
Hand stitched pillow case.
I purchased a pair of vintage cotton pillowcases on an anniversary trip to Portland, Oregon with my husband in 2001. There was a rummage sale near the downtown hotel at which we were staying. On the left (in pink and mint green) is the progress the original needleworker made with this cross stitch project. I kept her stitching intact and continued work on the other flowers in a variegated red floss, with dark green for leaves and stems.

These vintage pillow cases are a connection between this anonymous needleworker and me as well as a happy memory of a special time with my husband.
Dresden plate made with Fabrications pre-cut strips.
Here is a new quilting project I'm working on. I'm revisiting acrylic templates (fast and accurate as well as fun) and pairing them with a new favorite—pre-cut Fabrications strips (the black and white prints). The dijon yellow floral fabric is from a new blender collection by Blank called Desiree. The salmon/red-orange fabric is from the new Dahlia collection.

Creating things with needle, fabric and thread—whether by hand or machine—can touch our hearts or the hearts of those we care about. The stitching process is rewarding and calming, it offers inspiration and nurtures creativity, it can carry us through uncertainty and times of struggle, and is a means of rejoicing and celebration. It connects our past, present and future.

Happy Valentine's Day! May your hearts be full, and your spools never be empty.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Are you a stripper?

As a Blank Quilting fabric rep, one of the items in my "bag" are samples of Blank's Fabrications. Lately, I've been enamored with the pre-cut collections of 2.5" fabric strips.
Crimson Inspired
Made with Blank Fabrications Red Hots.
Stripping Directions:
Open package of Fabrications. Pull out colors of your choice. Sew.
Stripping is that easy!

Here is my latest project, Crimson Inspired, just in time for Valentine's Day.
Crimson Inspired
24" x 37.5"
Detail of the free-motion quilting with Tutti by Wonderfil and King Tut by Superior.
Crimson Inspired, detail.
Last month at the Choo Choo Quilters guild meeting my team presented a program on using strips. Everyone is making a "lasagna quilt" top for Show and Tell at the February meeting. The strippy quilts will support our community service Cuddle Quilt project.

On Saturday, February 23, I'll be teaching my Angle Accents class using 2.5" strips and an improvisational rotary cutting technique. Contact Chattanooga Sewing to register. Let's get stripping!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Alpacas to co-star in Super Bowl ad

My good friend, Kathy, owns Rain Dancer Alpacas, an alpaca breeding and boarding business that she runs on her farm in Whitwell, TN. Alpacas, or "hippie camels" as my husband affectionately calls them, are members of the camelid family and their fleece can be spun into luxurious yarns that are soft, lightweight, warm and hypoallergenic (an alternative to wool for people with lanolin allergies).
Hank of alpaca yarn from Wildfire.
This hank of yarn is from Wildfire, one of Kathy's alpacas, and I am coveting it for just the perfect knitting project.

My friend Kathy showing pictures of
her alpacas and her alpaca yarn.
Today, a small herd of alpacas will hit the big screen in a social media-driven Lincoln Motor commercial that will air during the Super Bowl. This commercial should be quite interesting... it's based on Twitter "tweets" that comedian Jimmy Fallon received in response to his open call for people's wackiest road trip experiences. Fallon selected five tweets from some 6,117 that were received.

The tweet induced commercial knits together these five tweets and features the Lincoln MKZ, a 2013 midsize sedan. Leslie Warren, of Rancho Keleje Alpacas in Fillmore, California, provided 20 of her alpacas for the filming.

So cheer on your favorite team at today's Super Bowl game, or if you prefer fiber to football, cheer for the alpacas!
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