Author Archive

Destashing – or one week, one goal

Monday, August 30th, 2010

My stated goal this week was to cut up 100 pieces of fabric (approximately 1oo yards) into 10″ squares, 5″ squares, 8″ strip, 3.5″ strip, and whatever was left into 2.5 and 1.5 strips.drum roll please….I ironed and cut up……200+ pieces!!!!!And yes – I had no life during this time, lol.200+ fabrics cut up for scrap quiltingOn the left side are the 5″ strips – I still need to cut them into 5″ squares.  Then is the pile of 10″ strips – again need to cut it up into 10″ squares.  Then the 1.5″ strips, followed by three piles of 2.5″ strips and then the 3.5″ strips.  In the background are the 8″ strips folded over and the two boxes are filled with the scraps and the selvages… both are a someday project.Whew – that was a lot of work, but I want to get through another 200 fabrics before I feel I have made a dent.  Then I am going to send off a couple boxes of fabric  to two quilting friends of old!  I think they will enjoy it!So my goal for next week is to have another pile like this but also have them in boxes, cut up and ready to ship and then my set ready to work on!!!!To see other entries in the one week, one goal please look here:  Amy’s Creative Side

January class with Gloria – white on white and embroidery treatments

Sunday, April 18th, 2010

Gloria McKinnon – she has been teaching at Piecemakers in Costa Mesa for maybe two decades now?  I should take a picture of the first project I ever did with Gloria.  She made me do 8mm and 11mm rolled roses – oh did I mention they were two ribbons (an organza with the silk ribbon)?  So yes I can roll a rose like its nothing now.

Its so true that if you start with the difficult version it all gets easier (refer to my class with Robin for why I mention this!).

Anyway – examples of the project we were doing with Gloria are below.  First she came with a 24 inch block we could either work with or subdivide into 4 12 inch blocks.  Some people were making the Christmas stocking, some of us wanted the “table runner” (4 blocks in a row).  I voted for the tablerunner.  The whole project is pretty much white on white.  In block one you can see the transfer in the middle, the edging on the seams and the beadwork (green flowers) and ribbon work(pink roses and also leaves behind green flowers.

The second block pictured has a wonderful MOP (mother of Pearl) poker style chip (vintage) peyoted stitched onto the surface, some daisies in SRE, a handpainted MOP button, a great old hankerchief corner, a lace bird dyed a pale pink or cream and the wonderful tree stitched on as well as great seam treatments that are hard to see on white, lol.  

 Now the question is – how much of mine is done?  NOT ENOUGH!!!!  (Like the tree and peyote work I still need to START!!!)



Gloria also sells great blocks of the month and I have to admitI love the soap labels from Paris in this one:





Then there was this great pansie example in SRE work – well I had to get this one:


Oh and a quick look into a Piecemakers classroom, see all the items on the walls?  And lots of room to spread out.  I can’t thank them enough for that.  Some classrooms I am in are super small – still workable but ah to have SPACE is great.


Art and Soul – Las Vegas 2010

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

Woohoo!!! Art and Soul in LAS VEGAS.   Can I say dream come true?  Too fun and next year Glenny has expanded the conference.  Thank you!  Now I do live in Vegas so it was interesting from several perspectives, the first being – I NEVER get to casinos.  Strange but true.  So it was fun to go through two casinos to get to classes, sometimes a long walk, but still fun/interesting.  And it was great being able to dash home to get supplies during the lunch hour.   And to sleep in rather than get up at 4 am for work, lol.  Too nice.  Very relaxing.

So, did I take photos?  NO, I carried the camera every day and did not take photos except the last day.  So for now I am just going to post about my last class – it was with Stephanie Lee and I finally got here Junkdrawer metalsmithing.  WOW!!!

The first shot – one is stephanies and one is mine.  I think we can figure that one out.  But in my defense I converted a mistake into my house thus the scorching and I kind of like the drunk roog.  Its in the next photo also of my work area and some of my items.  Hey it looks way better when NOT next to a great one!   Now on my work pile there you see a blue button (with lots of round dots like on it) and next to it you see the impression results I made.  Too fun.

The last photo is of my tablemate’s work.     Notice the hand – its actually the impression of a brass victorian hand piece I have.  Amazing how different these items look when we do Stephanie’s method of recreating them.  I think we both got addicted to doing those!


Adorn me – final day

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

Windows Pendant with Jane Salley.  What a class.  Jane again made it all seem easy – we etched metal, aged metal, cut metal, sanded metal, drilled metal (or punched I should say), added ephemera  and mica for the window, added screws to hold it together – and there was our first pendant.  She gave us enough supplies to do two and I finished the second before lunch ended.  But what I really studied was her technique with the sari ribbons (I have two bundles myself).  THREAD – who knew – I kept tying multiple knots and hating the thickness of it.  I just don’t think outside of the box enough lately.  Anyway – here are some photos so I won’t forget this class!


The first two photos are my work from class.  The last two photos are examples Jane brought to class…


Adorn me! Day 5

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

 I took Earrings Galore, an evening class, with Emily, my newly turned 15 year old niece.    Great class.  The instructor really thought outside the box – uses a LOT of scrapbook supplies and very well.  Here is a a photo of mine and a photo of Emily wearing one of her EIGHT pairs.  We did sit down the next night and make some more with her sisters.  The last photo is of Laura and Michelle wearing their new earrings – they made themselves.

 my earringsthe designer wearing her jewelry

Laura and Michelle



But before Emily and I took the class, Kim took me to a herb lecture.  Well she sat at the herb lecture, but I shopped.  Great place – I bought the coolest frogs to use with craft supplies (rather than flowers).  And I found cute salt and pepper shakers for my bil’s birthday.  Too cute.  Then some great ribbon from Offray I had never seen with roses (3-d) across the front.  (Oh why didn’t I use on in Jane’s class?)  And some great almost like interfacing runners in green and pale yellow.  Fun place!  Good thing I don’t live LOCAL.   Here are are few fun shots from the garden center:


Adorn me! Day 3

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

I took a full day class from Beverly  Ash Gilbert .  Her color sense is great.  She has written two books – I bought one – Beaded Colorways because I love her technique on beading on metal.   So cool.  Now the class I took was Cornucopia of Gems.  I really did pack for this class – stuck with one color pallet – cools with an emphasis on BLUE.  Beverly gave a great talk about color selection and has the BEST set of color dials I have EVER SEEN.   Her color sense shows in her jewelry.  The class example is in the middle, at the bottom.


After a couple decades of quilting I think I know about balance and color mixing so it was relatively easy to pull beads for the class and I pretty much used all the ones I brought.   But the talk was still great – a good review.  I need to get her color theory book.  She makes a point of DESCRIBING a color – such as yellow green rather than lime – so a student KNOWS where it is on the spectrum.

Now on mine we did pull out a few beads that had more purple.  There were only three of us in class so it was easier to get started, to get Beverly’s opinion on color choices and necklace shapes.  I ended up doing a princess neckline because a square neckline is the one I know I look best in.  The other two did different also – one a v and one a elongated U.  Our colors were across the spectrum also – Emily (local to Houston) brought most of her beads to the class – ended up doing a gradated necklace – yellow to orange, orange to red, red to brown tints to lime green and then reversed back brown-red-orange-yellow.  Very citrus which is her favorite color set.  And the third student did blacks and grays with a touch of crème – and a lot of it in pearls.  All were beautiful! 

I did end up getting some bead mixes – I will have to post those later, and some of her yarn – that is how I finished the necklace.  I seem to need lighter jewelry around my neck now a days and this yarn/ribbon thing is looking really good to me!


 my necklace and matching earrings



Adorn me! – day 2 (shopping, lol)

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

Day 2 of conference I didn’t take a day class.  I have learned PACING is very important!  So I only took something in the evening.  But what I did do was map out an afternoon of shopping.  I come to Houston every year for the Quilt Festival in November.  DO I ever venture anywhere else to shop or see things?  NO!  Well this day was a lesson in learning to appreciate any city your travel to!

So lets talk shopping first.  I swung by Old Spring to the local bead store.  (They also came to vendor night at Adorn me!).   Picked up some wire and a couple strands of crystal AB.   Then got back on the Hardy Toll road and headed to Rice Village.  There was another bead store and an old fashioned 5 & 10.  Both were interesting.  The bead store had BOWLING BALLs for décor in the window.  When you think about it, its pretty much a BIG BEAD.  Cute.  What I loved about this store is they had mega containers of loose beads so a person could really just walk in and put together earrings or a necklace without ending up with a lot of left over beads.  I added pieces for the earring class (evening ) I had scheduled on Saturday with Emily.  The 5 & 10 – its just felt old fashioned.  Got some kitschy stuff and was very happy!

Next I headed to the Heights – got a bit lost on the way, but the whole trip was an adventure.  Went from mansions (on pretty small lots) to Victorians – what a treat.  The Victorians are part of the Heights.  Well worth the drive.  So ended up on 19th Street and visited several stores, including a craft store – focusing mainly on craft classes.  Cute.  I love that these are popping up all over the country.  My sister actually the next day ended up signing up for their beginning crochet class that weekend and was very happy. 

So then I visited antique store #1 – bought a few more pieces based on Diana’s class.  Then went into another antique store and a Mexican art gallery.  Both very nice also.  Finally ended up finding ANOTHER BEAD store.  Who knew?  It was probably my favorite of the three.  

After that I headed towards the Embassy Suites for my class that night – FUNKY RINGS with Jane Salley.  Great class.  Taught me a bit about Jane’s style of teaching – very laid back.  She is always checking her students and moving around the classroom but she lets you design the ring, just reinforces your virew.  That is actually a great teacher – it helps a student develop their own style rather than duplicate the teachers.  I wish I had photo’d this one ladies where she had made a ring with a square glass bead – it was just definitely a “FUNKY RING” like the class title.  Definitely an artist ring.  

Teacher’s examples



So here are my relatively simple bead rings – it taught me how I can make rings and attach pieces, it was a great class.  And we used the same screws and nuts in Jane’s class on Sunday so it was good practice.  Another project (2 actually ) finished!


my work

Adorn me – day 1 for me!

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

Day 1 of conference (for me) – first day of classes
also.  I took Diane Cook of Rosa & Josies blog.  Diane is the nicest person as is her husband.  They make quite a team!  And I so appreciated they came stocked from a local antique store with pieces/parts for us to use.  I was thinking I would not  NEED anything.  A true statement and yet I still BOUGHT things.   However the results are worth it I think.   And I have enough crystals and rhinestones to do a few more pieces.

Diane sets up her display so beautifully!

part of Diane’s display


 I would tell you her trick/technique, but its so good you need to take a class from her.  Its like a lightbulb EXPLODING in your brain, lol.
I took photos of other classmates work – and a lady named Andi (I think with the i) was so funny – she is the one posing with the necklace over her shoulder (wrong style shirt to wear it in front for a photo so we thought we would improvise for the shot).  Anyway, she kept saying thewhole time about “how do you know what to put together”.  Well she finished FIRST and her INSTICT was perfect.   The necklace tells the story.  Oh and I finished a project in class (kind of cheated with the chain – I want to replace that, but at least the necklace was wearable).

First picture – mine!!!  Second picture – my tablemates – WOW.  She has the height too that just makes this piece PERFECT.  Final picture – Andi and her great necklace.


my workanother excellent classmate’s workAndi and her work

2010 Word – GIFT and some goals

Saturday, January 2nd, 2010

Its hard to pick one word for a year.  Not sure how well I did with last year’s word, but the word GIFT can mean so many things.  Appreciate the gift of life, the gift of family.  Treasure each day as a gift.  Treasure the ability to create things with my hands.  Treasure that I have a job I enjoy (actually thats two gifts isn’t it?)

GIFT.  Oh and the joy and hope of the wrapped present.  My sis and I sent each other pretty much the same thing for Christmas.  I unfortunately had also ordered one for myself at the same time so I now have an extra scale.  (Hopefully the 3rd party vendor of Amazon will take it back.)  But the joy we both got from ordering this for each other was immersurable I think.  To find something each could USE sometimes is so nice!

GOAL – that was my other choice of a word for this year, but I went with Gift.  However I do need to set up some goals for this year.

1 – 12 quilts this year

2 – 12 pieces of jewelry this year for presents

3 – 12 embriodered projects this year

4 – 12 soldered items this year

5 – 12 pincushions this year

6 – 12 blogs a year – would really like it to be once a week though!

So  my goals this year are always 12 items of each type!   Off to work on the first 5 of 12 (got the blog entry done for once!)

Anyone listening – you have to try this

Sunday, September 20th, 2009

Threads magazine has this fun game up on their website – I am like addicted.  It took a couple times to get a few of the pages.  Remember those

games that are still in the newspaper for kids – what is different or Spot the differences between two pictures that look identical upon first glance!!