"I do believe in an everyday sort of magic...the inexplicable connectedness we sometimes experience with places, people, works of art and the like; the eerie appropriateness of moments of synchronicity; the whispered voice, the hidden presence, when we think we're alone." Charles de Lint

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Silly Little Bunnies

Here is a line-up of some little needle felted bunnies I made for a friend a while back.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Thinking About The Beach!

Inspired by this picture at the beach...and this layered photo from flickr I found on Pinterest....

...I made this wall hanging for the church youth group auction last year. I was pleased that the winning bid was from Rob and Martha....Rob carved my beautiful "Joy." They have a cottage on the South Shore of Massachusetts. That seems like a great place for this to land.

I was relatively new to free motion quilting when I made this....but I'm getting there. Notice below the little bling fiber at the horizon line that could be the shimmer of the sun....and the cloud like fiber embellishment right above the horizon.

I bought the shell beads at a local tag sale.

This row of beads, shells, and fibers represents the foamy shoreline.

I think the row of buttons at the bottom grounds the piece.  

I would like to try something like this again....I learned a lot doing 
this one and think I can make some improvements.  

Sunday, March 29, 2015

A Birthday Sunflower

I wanted to make something for my sister LaVonn's birthday using a couple of the beautiful photos I shared a few days ago in the "Sunflower Field" post.
Once again I used a paint panel and three of the same photograph.  I sanded and stained the paint panel, and adhered the first photo with Matte Medium  and my brayer.  I put another coat  of medium on top and let it dry. I carefully cut out the other two photos to layer on top using foam spacers to give the flower dimension. 
Foam spacers are sticky on both sides and come in all sizes.
I ended up not liking that upper level of petals on the third photo attached to the center of the flower....so I cut them off and glued them right on top of the second photo.  This still gave it a little dimension....but made the center of the sunflower pop out nicely....again using foam spacers.

I also mounted this great view of the lilies on a square panel....using a second photo to make the fence and the lilies dimensional.  The grassy area between the fence railings is also cut out...it's hard to see. 

Happy Birthday LaVonn!  It's in the mail...and 
it is still your birthday month at least.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

My Colorful Quilt

You got a glimpse of this happy quilt in the last post. I used mostly Kaffe Fassett fabrics and some coordinating fabrics from my stash. My friend Jane is a master quilt maker and helped me put this together for my bedroom in Maine.  I cut out all the squares using the stack and slash method, she sewed the individual quilt blocks and we both sewed the blocks together during a girls' get-a-way weekend. Then she quilted it for me on a long arm quilting machine and I did the binding.
She's amazing!  Thanks Jane!

To cut the blocks I put together three coordinating 10 inch squares into a stack.  Using the same general pattern with a square in the upper corner, I cut each stack...using 5 different widths of cuts.  Then I rearranged the pieces from each stack of three to create three new squares that were a mixture of the fabrics.  It's a fast and easy way to make a lot of squares.  

Did you get that?  I know it sounds confusing... and 
I can do better if anyone is interested.  

Here is where we planned the layout on the floor of the guest room...before I had furniture.

My husband makes fun of this chair...but it's actually an art piece....and pretty comfortable...for a piece of art.

You're wrong Paul!

Jane has also made me several wonderful bags including this one. She used batiks from a jelly roll and wrapped and stitched the fabric around clothesline...then coiled and stitched the whole thing together.  It's a true work of art and I just love it!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Denyce's Doodle Art

I met Denyce through my friend Lynn while I was living in Madison and I was immediately drawn to her colorful, playful work.  She mainly uses Copic markers and pens....and it amazes me what she comes up with.

I love these "Cool Pots for Hot Teas"....the image on a business card she gave me.

The one below is one of my favorites.   I love how the colorful squares grow into the flowers.  I am so amazed how people can make doodling look like art....I guess that's the sign of a true artist. My doodles just look like doodles. But I'm OK with that...because I know people like Denyce and Lynn.

It lives in my bedroom in Maine. 

The little green dresser was given to me by friend Janice...it used to be red and her husband had it a child.  I sanded and painted it this apple green.  More on this wild quilt tomorrow.  Most of the pieces of furniture in our house in Maine are hand-me-downs...there was very little that was purchased new.

This is such a happy patch of flowers.  I decided to leave it unframed....I hung it with removable mounting squares.  It lives in my craft room next to Lynn's watercolors.

To match her doodle squares...here are Denyce's doodle circles.  It has the same rich colors and tones as my rug....

...coordinating with these squares I put together.... which are actually made from wrapping paper mounted on paint panels.  I made them a while back as something kind of temporary...but I just keep using them.

I think these two pieces make a nice duo.  There are touches of gold that you can't see...they make a great addition to my living room.  There is a lot of glare on the glass....there is no good way I know of to take pictures of framed artwork.

Here is looking one way in the living room.  You can see 
where Denyce's work is...right by the puzzle table and next to the TV.

And this is looking the other way.  I take these photos....and think I should have 
straightened things up a bit more....but this is a very "lived in" house.

This fun piece lives in my bathroom along with the porcelain berries. I love how Denyce added the painted cut outs of the leaves on top of her doodled flowers.  
The rest of these are photos I took while I was visiting her in her home studio...but I wanted to show a little more of Denyce's doodle art.  I just love seeing where artist's work....and Denyce's studio was lovely and bright!

She has done several pieces that tell a little story.  This one shows chairs without a table...and a picture on the wall of a table without chairs. Makes you stop and think.

She had another view of a room with empty bookshelves....except for a kindle.  hmmmmm  

I just love her repetitive doodles....she says she does 
this to relax while watching TV. They make me smile.

I love your work Denyce...I can't wait to see what you do next!

A Missing Piece!

A puzzler's nightmare!

I finally finished this 1000 piece craft cupboard puzzle I mentioned a while back.  I looked for this piece several times and thought it would present itself at the end....but NO!  I will need to do some cleaning to see if I can find the missing piece.

This one took me a while...too much blogging I guess.  But I'm OK with that.  Time to start another one.  I have been putting my puzzles away with the edge pieces already sorted ready for the next time.  I just loaned one to a friend and he was thrilled with the presorted edge pieces.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Sunflower Field

My sister LaVonn and brother-in-law Tim live on a farm in Wisconsin. Years back Tim raised cattle, but now is just growing crops. That left a cattle pen right along the road sitting empty...and you can just imagine how fertile the soil was. 
Then Tim had a brilliant idea!  

He turned this.....

My son Sam (on the left) and his cousins Sam and Ben in with the cattle several years ago. (I think it was 2004)  This was Ben's calf he was showing at the 4-H fair.  I grew up as a 4-H member.

....into this!

Looking left as you pull in the driveway.
A zoomed in view from an upstairs window of the house.
Looking right as you pull in the driveway is this awesome view below.  The lilies and the sunflowers bloom about the same time so it's a spectacular show and was perfect timing for our family reunion last summer!

Nice job Tim and LaVonn!

Tim told me someone gave him seed heads that are 14 inches across...it could be an even more spectacular show this summer!

I am working on something for LaVonn's birthday....stay tuned.  I hope to have it done soon....I already missed her birthday.