Friday, April 1, 2016

Latest Bat Art Quilts

I love making bat quilts!
Back in May, I donated this one to The Quilt Alliance's annual quilt auction fundraiser. It was actually my third one in this series. The first has a purple bat;but, my daughter fell in love with it. I started again with a blue bat:but, you guessed it... My son wanted that one. Here's the blue one still in progress.
The purple one is still in parts on my design wall. My daughter asks me about it pretty regularly. Soon it will be finished too! My favorite bat related charity is Bat Conservation International. Great info on bats, bat houses and how to safely remove a live bat if there is one in your home. My quilted bats are perfectly happy indoors. :)

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Look Hoo-Hoo's 10!

This is the fiber art quilted postcard titled "Look Hoo-Hoo's Ten!" that I created for Quilting Arts Magazine's 10th anniversary celebration. I am so honored and excited that it was chosen to be published with the first grouping of postcards in their 10th anniversary issue! (Dec 2010/Jan 2011, pg. 7)

Three of the fabrics, the green for the owl face, the red background and the numeral ten, were ones that I won from a fabric scrap give away on Pokey Bolton's blog. Pokey is the editor and founder of the magazine so I thought it was fitting to use some of her very own fabric scraps for the anniversary postcard. I free motion machine stitched the designs and used layers of decorated netting and velvet to add texture. For the eyes I used parts of a snap and glass beads. I just love the way he turned out!

I have several larger sized owl pieces in my etsy shop and I'm always creating more.
Happy Birthday Quilting Arts Magazine!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Clifford Costume-Book Character Day

As Charlie gets older (9 months now!), I'm able to do a little more creative stuff other than just watching Quilting related TV and reading my stacks of Quilting and Art related magazines and books. My latest creation was Claire's Clifford costume. I plan on using the felt scraps to make something new that is more Art Quilt related;but, for now, Clifford will have to do! (good to sew and Claire even helped!)

Claire's school celebrated book character day and she wanted to be Clifford the Big Red Dog. I made an easy Clifford Costume for Book Character Day.

I just needed...
3 pcs. red craft felt
1 pc black craft felt
snap or other closure
stuffing (I used plasitc shopping bags)
red bottoms (I used shorts and tights)
red top
sewing machine(or you could hot glue)
craft glue
needle and thread

The only things I had to buy were the pieces of craft felt which were about 20 cents each from Wal-Mart. I had the other items already. This could easily be adapted for other dogs or other animals by changing the color and shapes. Two girls in her class were the book character Biscuit by doing a similar thing with yellow felt and brown felt.

Used 3 pieces of craft felt for the ears and tail...

After tracing the shapes w/ a Sharpie, sew along the line then cut out a little bit from the stitching. Clip the curves and turn.

I cut a rectangle piece from the black felt and attached a closure for the collar.

The ears were attached to the headband with craft glue and pins. After the glue dries, I removed the pins. I stuffed the tail a little with plastic shopping bags and stitched it to the waist of the shorts. You could easily pin with safety pins.

For the bottoms I used tights under her shorts. I used adult sized red tights and cut the feet off at the right length for my daughter. I then used the feet on the hands as paws.

She had a lot of fun and the costume was easy and turned out really cute!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Swap Entries

While I haven't had a lot of creative time lately, I did manage to create two new piece for a recent swaps sponsored by Cloth, Paper, Scissors Magazine.

One is for their Art Affirmation Postcard Swap....

And another is for their Mixed Media Pendant Swap...

In several weeks, I will get a postcard and a pendant in the mail created by another artist. I'm excited to see what arrives and I'm happy to have accomplished something creative!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Willingness and Warly

Once we have placed the key of willingness in the lock and have the door ever so slightly open, we find that we can always open it some more. TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 35

The willingness to give up my pride and self-will to a Power greater than myself has proved to be the only ingredient absolutely necessary to solve all of my problems today. Even the smallest amount of willingness, if sincere, is sufficient to allow God to enter and take control over my problem, pain, or obsession. My level of comfort is in direct relation to the degree of willingness I possess at any given moment to give up my self-will, and allow God’s will to be manifested in my life. With the key of willingness, my worries and fears are powerfully transformed into serenity.

This was the topic at a recent meeting. While it was being read, I instantly thought of my son, Charlie "Warly" who is seven months old. Shortly before he came into our lives I told God that I was willing to do whatever He wanted in regards to me having more childern or not. I told Him that I had no idea what His will was for me and I would do whatever it was. If that was to have more children that would be great;but, I was going to need a lot of help from Him and if I was to be the mom of sweet little Claire and she was to be an only child that that was OK too and that I’d still need a lot of help from Him. I really had no idea what I was to do. I’m a planner and I never have been able to plan children. I know God is funny that way!

With my daughter we tried all kinds of things including infertility treatments and adoption applications and had decided that God wanted us to be happy without children and then…SURPRISE! A sweet baby girl!

After her birth, I wasn’t sure if I could have more children and I wasn’t sure if I wanted to or should. Part of me was afraid to get my hopes up again and part of me was afraid of beeing greedy or messing up what I already had. There also was an unexpected brain tumor and surgery thrown in there as well. So after years of thinking and figuring and praying and wondering I got to the point where after a yoga class one day I was lying on my back on the floor feeling the sun on my body looking at the clouds and I just said, “I’m willing! Whatever it is Lord, I’ll do it;but, please help me out as you know more than I that I have no idea what I’m doing and I will need a lot of help!”

A few months and one miscarraige later, I was pregnant again and my baby boy was born in July of this past year. So Charlie is all about willingness to me. My worries and fears were powerfully transformed allowing God’s will to be manifested in my life.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

I'm not here for fun

I found out today that this guy I knew from the program killed himself a few weeks ago. This is very, very sad and reminds me once again of why I go to meetings. I go to meetings because I have a fatal disease which has no cure. That is why I get up on Sunday mornings and go sit in a hospital basement for an hour. It is how I stay alive. Now that I've done it awhile I actually do enjoy the people and the meeting. I look forward to going all week. The people there I consider dear and important in my life. But, really even though it's something I look forward to now; that's not why I'm there.

It reminds me that my disease is patient and cunning and it never goes away. He had recently picked up his 2 year sobriety chip. From what he'd shared, it seemed like things were going well for him in those 2 years. He had gone from being homeless to again having a job in his field, having his family talk to him again, having a sponsor and new friends in the program. He was a wonderful artist and was handsome and witty. I enjoyed watching him get his life back. I liked waving to him as I drove by when he was taking a smoke in front of the place he worked. A couple times when I went in he showed me his portfolio and his work. He was very talented. He always gave hugs and seemed to be getting better. One time in a meeting he told a story about denial and how when he was using and homeless in California he'd convinced himself that he was OK because he had a sleeping bag and didn't have to sleep on cardboard or the ground like the heroin addicts. Something about that story hit home with me.

Many weeks ago I'd heard from my mom that someone I knew from the program had killed themselves. I'd missed meetings due to having Charlie and I wondered who it was but she didn't know. When I went back to my Sunday morning meeting, I would feel relieved when the old faces were still there and would walk through the door. Mike hadn't been there and I'd been afraid to ask. Maybe he went to visit family in California, maybe he's got the flu, maybe he moved. Two weeks ago his brother and friend were there and no one mentioned Mike. I'd kinda figured it out but was still hoping he'd come through the doors. Today I had a chance to ask someone privately and they confirmed it. SO SO SO SAD!

I ask God every day to help me stay sober. I never want to be too sure of my sobriety. There are no guarantees. I just know that I don't want to be the one that picks up a chip and the puts a gun to my head after 2 weeks of drinking. Mike is not the first person in the program I have known who has gone back out there and not made it back and unfortunately, he won't be the last.

I wonder if maybe I should have gone in to talk to him more when he was at work, or talked to him more at meetings or maybe if I'd been at the park that afternoon to say hey and wave, maybe he would have not done it...I know that doesn't make sense but that's what I think about.

I also think about how suicidal I was when I was drinking and even early on in my sobriety. I'm so glad I didn't do it. I would have missed out on so much. I think about all the good that has happened and how I would have never known about it all and how sad it would have made my family and friends. It seemed like things were going so well for him. I wonder what wonderful things would have continued to happen for him if he'd not picked up that drink.

So when I drag my sleepy self out of bed tomorrow and leave my husband and two young children to sit in the basement of a hospital for a hour I will think about dear Mike and how I'm not here for fun, I'm here to stay alive.

So this is a disease that can take 2 years of sobriety and within 2 weeks have you dead with a self inflicted gunshot wound in a city park of a small rural Texas town. Alcoholism is serious stuff and I'm here for very selfish reasons. I'm here to stay alive.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Estate Sale Treasures

I love going to Estate Sales. I like looking into other people's lives and it's interesting to see what things people have collected over the years;plus, every now and then you stumble across some really cool stuff.

My neighbor across the street had a living estate sale this past weekend. Very convenient to have one across the street. I live in a small town and I think everyone in town came by her house for the sale. The time that I wasn't in her house nosing around through her stuff I spent watching the people come and go. I love people watching and usually we have a very quiet street. So for a new mom who hasn't gotten out much, this was quite an event!!!

The first thing I found was a wooden spool holder filled with thread and a small metal holder. I have already hung it in my studio. I then found a larger sized color wheel. which is not in the picture.

I also found a piece of vintage fabric with a stamp design. Hoping to do a series with postage stamp images using my grandfather's huge collection. This would be great backing fabric for the series.

And finally, an old embroidered dresser scarf. It just looks neat.

The next day I returned and got many more things. Overnight I'd had time to think about what I saw the day before and how I'd use some of the items and where I'd store them. My studio is shared with my washing machine/dryer, recycle bins,dog and kitty supplies and my daughter's computer desk so space and storage require careful thought or I may end up burying myself and having no workspace.

So on day 2 of the sale I got 2 bags of silk and chiffon scarves for art quilting. These washed up quite well and I bundled them by color into a container. Now they remind me of a fabric version of a crayon box. Just need to hide them from my 5 yr. old daughter!

An old quilt that is really a cutter quilt due to its condition. Not sure if I can cut it though. It has a nice flower motif and is hand done. I'll have to take some close ups of the daisy flower design within the blocks.

An unfinished quilt top. Plan to use as a tablecloth.

Another piece of vintage cotton fabric. Love the bold floral design.

And for the grande finale.....A big stash of wooden stretcher bars, a box full of a variety of wiggly/teddybear eyes, and a roll on non-woven interfacing.

I'm very excited about my finds and the have all found happy homes in my studio. Now I need to find the time to make some new things with my new finds;but, my baby boy turned 2 months today and he's growing SO fast... I think I better just spend this time holding him....these new treasures aren't going anywhere. I have the rest of my life to create and sooner than I realize my baby boy will be running around instead of needing to be held ALL the time. Such a sweet little boy!