Monday, 31 December 2007
First, looking back. Today is the last day of the year and this day is always tinged with sadness for me, as it is the anniversary of my mother's death - seven years ago now. I have been feeling restless and annoyed that I am not producing anything, while at the same time whining endlessly about not having time to do anything. So today I resolved to make a small piece in the style of Lesley Riley's fragments to honour my mother.
I wanted to use some of the rust dyeing I have done recently -so used a piece of silk organza and some wide silk ribbon that I quickly rusted up. I transferred a favourite photo of her aged about 3, with teddy, using solvent, onto some smooth shiny fabric to get a clear print. Then I had to decide what fabrics to put with it. One of the limitations of rust dyeing is that it is orange - no two ways about it. I had previously paired some rust dyes with blue, the complement of orange, but didn't want to use blue in this piece, so was scratching my head, when my eye fell upon an article by Lesley Riley in a recent CPS on rust dyeing. She had done a piece in rust dyes, purple and aqua and I suddenly realised I should have been thinking of a triadic colour scheme - which would give me much more scope.
So, I rummaged in the scrap bag and quickly found some pieces. I had a beautiful piece of lace that I was determined to use, but alas no matter what I did it just didn't seem to work. In the end I discarded it in favour of the scallop trim which seemed to fit better. Along the bottom are five little flowers cut out of copper tissue with one of those little stamper cutter thingies you get in scrapbooking stores. On to the rust dyed ribbon I transferred her family motto '"to the valiant heart, nothing is impossible". In retrospect, I should have used a slightly larger font, but it does invite the viewer to move in close to read it. All in all, I am happy with this piece, and glad I just told myself to 'do it' and stop procrastinating.
As for looking forward - I plan to take more of the 'just get on with it' approach in the coming year. I am signed up for Liz Berg's class and she has a good line in just do it, work quickly, produce the work. I also have realised I have to accept Rayna Gillman's sage advise to accept the crap quota. Apart from a tendency to over analyse, I also tend not to want to start something until I am sure I am going to get it exactly right. This is a terrible trap, because of course half the time I don't start, and when I do, and the end result is not perfect, I get very despondent. Rayna's advice is accept that there will always be a crap quota - do the work - lots of it - sift through the crap and find the gems - the more you do, the more gems you'll get.
So - that's what I will try and do more of in 2008 - and if you hear me starting to whine about not having enough time, feel free to give me a very sound telling off.
Happy New Year
Thursday, 27 December 2007
Wednesday, 26 December 2007
Monday, 24 December 2007
Saturday, 15 December 2007
Wednesday, 12 December 2007
Tuesday, 11 December 2007
My favourite part of my birthday is my telephone call from my dear friend Gay, - we became firm friends fifteen years ago (OMG - can it be that long?) when my family was living in Virginia for three years while my husband was with the Aust embassy. Gay and her husband have now retired to North Carolina. And speaking of Gay, here are a couple of gorgeous postcards she made for me
At the beginning of the year we made a pact that we would make a journal quilt each month, then make a postcard size interpretation of it to exchange with each other. Oh dear - I only managed one (January), and Gay managed two (Jan and Feb). What happened? I do think one of my big problems is simply DOING stuff. I spend too much time thinking about it first, and then run out of time to DO.
For my birthday present, I have signed up to do Liz Berg's online course on the Elements and Principles of design. I love Liz's work, and she had a series of great articles on design in QA a while back.
I also love Melody Johnson work at Fibermania . Check out her great tutorial on making stacked, fused quilts. This looks like more fun that should be legal. I plan on giving this a go over the Christmas/New Year break.
And finally, I am not having much luck with my Pay it forward challenge. It is gratifying to find that other people do actually read my blog - thank you, but worrying that they don't want to put their name down to participate. Trouble is, I feel an obligation now to PIF - I have in my hands a lovely gift from Gunnel, and the deal was that I pass it on - if no-one signs up, how can I? If you are worried about over committing, think of this - the deal is that if you sign up, I have up to 365 days to send you something - and it follows that you then have up to 365 days from receipt to PIF - that gives a window of opportunity of up to 2 years!! Surely you can find time to do something - and you don't even have to make something specially - it can be something you already made! So come on guys, help me out here and let me salve my conscience by signing up so I now longer feel I am in debt. If that doesn't work, I guess I will just have to send Gunnel something back, so I don't feel guilty anymore!
And speaking of Gunnel - check out the cool stamps that came on her envelope! Those Swedes have got it right - hot chocolate with cream and ...more chocolate - with cream - what a civilised country!
Sunday, 9 December 2007
Saturday, 8 December 2007
Then come the precious handmade ornaments from dear friends and my mother
Wednesday, 28 November 2007
My husband has really got into the spirit of this and has been bringing me home all sorts of bits and pieces that he collects on his walks.
Sunday, 4 November 2007
Got some handwork done, but not a huge amount. I did, however, get a quilt finished - this has been waiting for its binding since June (this year!), which given my track record for bindings, is pretty damn quick (see previous post). Here it is
This is for a baby boy born to a friend of mine. His big sister has a similarly colourful quilt, so thought I'd better keep up the tradition for number 2. I used the bricks and stepping stones pattern from here. Good reference for scrap quilt patterns (I only make scrap quilts - can't imagine making a whole quilt with only two or three fabrics - I'd die of boredom - quite apart from which I doubt I have enough of any one fabric to use it over and over in the one quilt).
Had lots of lovely rain last night. Very windy today, which is why the photo is a bit wonky - pegged the quilt to the trust Hills hoist, and tried to get snaps in between gusts. Wouldn't do for a quilt show entry, but okay for the blog! Speaking of quilt shows, good to see some Aussies winning in Houston.