Sunday, August 23, 2015

work continues

this piece was for a challenge in one of my bead groups to create something that was black and white and one other color

this came together really quickly -- sometimes these pieces pop into my head and have no issues at all in the making, and this one was one of those

voting on this challenge doesn't start until the 9th of September (talk about being done WAY ahead of a deadline!!)

since that piece went together so quickly, I'm now back to working on the pumpkin leaves -- moving along!


the stitching continues on the shed doors

I'm pretty pleased with the way these two came out

there are seven more of these to be stitched

I've been fiddling with painting on silk organza for another piece I'm working on -- not entirely sure how I feel about this yet

this week I had my first real gathering in my new house --- had all of my side of the family that lives in the general area here for a "Summer Gathering" --- can I say once again how much I love my new kitchen area!  

we had 10 people around the table with out any problem

and I had spent most of Friday doing food prep -- making pumpkin pie, scratch chocolate cake, Watergate salad, two different pasta salads and had plenty of room to make it all happen

all this and an awesome studio space coming together

so happy to be in this new house!!!!!

Monday, August 17, 2015

if all the world's a stage, I want better lighting!

On Saturday I took a day off from working in the house and the studio and made a trip to the Rocky Mountain Quilt Festival to see the only exhibit there will be of every piece in the 2015 Hoffman Challenge

First let me say that it has been my privilege to have pieces hang in this exhibit for five of the past six years

and second, that this will probably be my last year to participate

it is a story of diverging paths -- they are going in a more traditional direction while I am headed toward something much more out of the box!

I had already made that decision pretty much, but when I saw how these pieces were treated this year, it sealed the deal

Here is where I get on my soap box:

the lighting on this show is terrible -- but it always has been, and that's part of the down side of holding a show in a Fair Grounds building

but the real annoyance was how badly creased many of the pieces were -- including the award winners!  the quilts had obviously been FOLDED into a box as tightly as they would fit for the shipping because they had deep creases in them

when I ship my pieces I try to make sure there will not be any creases -- it detracts from the work

I was very disappointed by that, and frankly I don't care to share my work with an organization that treats it with so little respect

Ok, stepping off my soap box now!


but while I'm talking about quilts -- this piece is coming right along now -- I've been adding shadows at the bases of the trees -- hand stitching on pieces of tulle that have been cut in reverse of the trees they are meant to shadow

I have a couple more days of that work to do then it will be time to work on the next step of this piece

bead work continues too

this pumpkin pin is all finished and ready for the show I'll be doing in September

I started this piece for an on line challenge this week -- also moving right along

and this is part of another piece designed for that September show

one of the most important things that got installed in the studio this past week was the stereo system

I know there are a lot of MP3 player approaches to this including radio type stations, but like with things in my art, I want to control what it is I listen too -- and I have a lot of CDs, cassette tapes and even record albums

there was a minor crisis earlier in the week when I could not locate the cables to hook it up, but by the end of yesterday I was in business -- back to putting other things away to the sounds of Andrew Lloyd Webber tunes (the 5 CD selection that I found first in the one box of CDs that has been unpacked

this week I hope to get a lot more done down there!






Sunday, August 09, 2015

overcoming

last week I was talking about being afraid to ruin the big piece I'm working on right now

after some further thought I made some changes by fusing some additional fabric to them
in each of these pairs of pictures the "before" is on the left side and the "after" is on the right

I'm much happier with how these look now

and happier with the overall look of the piece

I still have a lot more to do here -- like adding some stitching to hold down that fused fabric, and adding all of the shadows for each of those trees, but I'm much happier with it now

this piece of jewelry got finished just in time for the challenge I wanted to enter it in

(the public voting for that challenge is going on now, so if you are interested in voting, you can go here:  http://www.etsy-beadweavers.blogspot.com/2015/08/entries-for-august-2015-lost.html to do so)

originally I was going to use these two pieces as part of the necklace, but in the end I could not work out the connections, so I made them into a pair of earrings that go quite nicely with that necklace

all of these pieces are in my Etsy store now


the stitching of the pumpkin shape is all done!

I'll be making this in to a pin to be featured at the September Art Walk show -- can't believe fall is that close, but it is!

we have now progressed to the more interesting portion of the move in --- the organization of the studio!

all of the beads have been organized into the plastic boxes and arranged on the shelving -- it is SOOOO much easier to pull things out and put them away in this configuration!

right now the boxes are "labeled" with hand written pieces of paper that is stuck inside each box, but my daughter might be willing to use her Cricut to make me some more attractive labeling -- Cool!

I've started sorting the fabrics and putting them in the shelves of the glass front cases -- nothing like organizing your "crayons" to put new design ideas in your head!

as I've gone through the boxes I have I already have another stack of stuff that is going to be donated to my local quilt guild for charity quilts --- I kind of knew that would happen

we're getting to the home stretch --- I'm ready now for the last big push of moving furniture and boxes into the studio rooms so I can finish setting up shop --- still a lot to do, but a whole lot closer!

Sunday, August 02, 2015

success, completion and fighting fear

From the Jewelry Studio:
it's finished!

this piece actually came together exactly the way I saw it in my head -- yeah!

it has been entered in its intended challenge, but even more important, it has a promised buyer

it doesn't get much better than that!



the rework on this piece is finished too

it originally had two small magnetic clasps, but it did not meet the "wear ability" test -- those clasps did not stay closed if you did anything but walk around holding your hand out for folks to admire the bracelet --- nope, that won't do!

so I took the back off, stitched on one of my new style toggle and loop clasps and put the back on again with a 3 bead edge instead of the 2 bead edge it had originally

much better!

so I have returned to trying to create a "chain" for this piece

attempts to create a flat beaded piece just won't work on this one since the piece itself is so dimensional, so I have decided to create 3 tubes of beads on each side and braid them together

something I've not tried before -- so what's new!?

so far, so good, but here I am again against a deadline -- I have 3 days to make this work to be able to get it into the challenge it is intended for

geesh!


A bit about moving in:
last weekend I had some help moving some furniture into my newly finished (by the contractors) studio

these two pieces of furniture have been repurposed from their former lives in other rooms of another house

this week we got them fastened to the wall behind them (tall, narrow pieces are at risk of being pulled forward -- not a good idea!), I scrubbed them with Murphy's Oil soap, cleaned all the glass and installed contact paper on the painted shelves (when I washed those the paint crocked off -- not a good thing!)

the very bottom shelf of each of these will be filled with art books, and I plan to fill the other shelves with my fabric -- it will be good to have that where I can see the color but it is safely behind glass to be kept clean


Taking a little break:
we invited our daughter, son in law and grandson to come and have dinner with us last night, and since my son in law was working yesterday, my daughter and Mr Cute came earlier in the day to spend some time

while Mr Cute was having quiet time, I gave my daughter a sewing lesson

she brought some flannel and made her very first pair of pj pants for Mr Cute

this is the face of a successful sewing lesson completed!!

and Mr Cute gave them the seal of approval by putting them on right away and spending the rest of the evening in them -- fun


Dealing with artistic fear:

I worked on this piece a little bit this week

I've done a lot of stitching on the bigger trees

True confession time:  while I am still committed to this piece, I am not happy with the way those trees look

it's time to "Be Brave" and risk ruining it

for the last two days I've been thinking that what I need to do is either a lot more fusing of more varieties of colored fabrics over parts of those trunks or to paint them

or there is option three which would entail many, many, MANY more hours of stitching

I'm leaning toward the fusing of more fabric -- mainly because I know I can do that in small steps -- and I'm really afraid of the paint thing because .... well, I just am (and I know that may be in the end how  I put the snow on them)

no wonder so much work has been done on beading this week -- I'm trying to deal with the "Fear Factor" on this piece!

like I said -- time to Be Brave!

Sunday, July 26, 2015

rocking through the week

and a busy one it was!

the list is out for the Hoffman Challenge 2015

this piece will be traveling until about this time next year with the traveling trunks

I will get to see the entire exhibit at The Ranch in Loveland, August 15 thru 17 as the Rocky Mountain Quilt Festival is the only place all of the pieces appear together

on Monday I got to see this quilt (which I submitted to the Sacred Threads exhibit)
as it appears in this book -- the catalog of the entire exhibit

this was a great thrill for me as it is the first place one of my quilted pieces has appeared in a show that is that tough to get in to










I've been working on this piece of jewelry this week, and it is now ready for backing and fringe and a "chain"

the gradation of color on this worked really well

and since the next show for jewelry that I will apply for will be held in September, I'm thinking about fall themed pieces for that

this will be a beaded pin

and there was enough of the prepared backing in the center of the necklace that is almost finished to do the beading in for this piece -- cool -- no wasting!


the trees have all been fused down on this piece now, and I have started doing the color stitching --

the first step was to use black in the very center of every branch and trunk

I'm still doing the hand stitching of that part on those little bitty trees/bushes at the very top along the horizon, but the bigger trees were all done on the machine, and I've started doing the lighter color along the outside edges of each one

I decided that the light for this piece is beyond the horizon on the right hand side, so I'm shading and highlighting accordingly

and the biggest news of the week

the basement has been magically converted into the studio space!

my contractor was here on Friday to finish up the bathroom -- including hanging that antique mirror and the carpet guys were here Friday evening to put down the carpet

the final inspection was done on Friday too, so I can start moving things in --- WOO HOO!!

I'm so glad to be through this step and ready to start setting up shop

Sunday, July 19, 2015

ArtWalk Longmont and other activities of the week

this was part of my set up for ArtWalk, which concluded yesterday

because it's July, I used a lot of my summer themed pieces for this show

the next ArtWalk is in September, and I will feature more fall things then

one of the fun things about ArtWalk is that it is held in the quirky old buildings in downtown

my pieces have been in the Inspire Salon and Spa, and I could not resist taking pictures of the finishes on the wall (check out the cool pieces of weathered and painted wood!) and the random pieces of tile work at the front entry

it's a fun environment

and while we're discussing environment -- here are the latest pictures of the progress in the studio

the painters have been here doing the walls, the flooring is down in the main room of the studio and the cabinet, sink and counter tops are set in the bathroom

on Friday my contractor told me I can plan to be able to start moving into this space the end of next week

Wooo Hoooo!

meantime, in the makeshift studio upstairs, work continues on the shed door projects

there are now 3 of the 12 that needed stitching that have been done -- only 9 more to go

and the kitchen counter got pressed into service for the layout on this piece

the plan was to have this piece on the left finished in time for the ArtWalk show this week -- and that just didn't come together

so I have put it aside for now and started on something new --- hope to get both of them finished shortly

and the fabric for the kitchen arrived this week --- it's pretty cool to be thinking about making things out of fabric I designed!

hoping to get lots done this week