Archives for March 2016

Remembering Children

Taking care of children has nothing to do with politics.
I think perhaps with time,
instead of there being a politicization of humanitarian aid,
there will be a humanization of politics.
Audrey Hepburn

A certain part of this week was devoted to assembling another quilt for Quilts Beyond Borders, an organization that provide quilts to children in need throughout the world. I first learned of them when I attended that Houston Quilt show last fall. There are so many organizations working for the betterment of children worldwide and that is a good thing. UNICEF, for whom Audrey Hepburn gave countless hours of time, reminds us on their website that 16,000 children die daily worldwide, mostly from preventable or treatable causes.  I wanted to give some of my volunteer time to help in some way to nurture those in need.  Quilts Beyond Borders provided one means that related to my love of fiber.

I shared the fabric that I had picked out for a quilt last week.

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This week that quilt began to take form.

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I had enough of the teddy bear fabric left to appliqué the back of the quilt a bit as well.

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These quilts are simple to make and fill a definite need. Given my time constraints, the smaller size dimensions requested by Quilts Beyond Borders (40-45″ wide by 48-60″ long), make it easier for me to get a quilt done.  This particular piece now only needs a binding and a washing and it will be off to a new home.

If you are interested in possibly makes a quilt for a needy child, you can find more information on the Quilts Beyond Borders website.

 

One Step at a Time

Creativity is just connecting things.
When you ask creative people how they did something,

they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something.
It seemed obvious to them after a while.
That’s because they were able to connect experiences
they’ve had and synthesize new things.
Steve Jobs

In my quiet moments, I often smile in wonder at how the various parts of my life come together. When I worked with Tom Crum for many years, we called it ‘following your center’. Creativity comes from following your center, just trusting it will all make sense in the long run. We decided to look for a second home out west, now we have one two minutes from our grandchildren including a newborn. We had no way of knowing when we made the initial decision this would be the outcome. We just sort of trusted and how great is this outcome!

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In my studio this week, various projects are coming together:

The assorted threads and fabrics are beginning to create a new pouch with the overwhelming feel of homespun cloth as the base – a piece of vintage linen found at an antique mall in upstate NY.

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On the art quilt front, the seascape of last week now has been pieced and fused.  Next steps are to play with shading, stitching/quilting.

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And, then there was that piece of cloth that I picked up at Undercover Quilts with the intention of using in a quilt for Quilts Beyond Borders. It has found a complementary partner in my stash and is currently being cut and pieced , and I hope to have another quilt to send on to Quilts Beyond Borders in the coming weeks.

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Hope that your creativity is flowing as well. Linking as usual to Nina Marie’s Off the Wall Friday, so you can see what others are doing.

New projects emerge

Patience, patience, patience!

Our new granddaughter reminds me constantly of the need for patience………not having had a newborn for over 30 years, I have forgotten how helplessly we enter this world. Even though we develop at an amazing pace, the first few weeks are just a matter of trial and error and everyone trying to figure life out. (The cynic in me immediately wants to add that the process of ‘figuring life out’ continues for the rest of our years!)

As Miriam learns what it means to be alive, I spent much of the past week enjoying her presence and recording it for pleasant memories.

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Happily, while Miriam was developing, spring also emerged enough that it was possible to begin to plant our front yard. I now can sit on a bench by our front door and watch our plantings also grow.

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Back in the studio, the theme of patience was ever present. Obviously, Miriam has cut into studio time. However, two of the three projects I hoped to begin on have begun to emerge.

This collection of thread, hankies, and cloth will become my next ‘pocket’ as I finish up my “Patched Pockets” class with Karen Ruane. Since April brings some travel with it, this pouch will be my ‘stitch as you go’ project.

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Finally, I have made inroads into my next art quilt. Some fabric from my favorite Seattle fabric store, Undercover Quilts, and some of my own hand dyed fabric created a backdrop for a sea scape I have been wanting to create. At the moment,  possibile rock candidates are pinned to the background. I have a template for an amazing piece of driftwood that will eventually rise to the sky from those rocks……next week will focus on exploring fibers for that wood.

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I am sure as this quilt evolves, Miriam will remind me to be patient. Whenever I begin an art quilt, I am my worst critic. That backdrop hung in pieces for many days while I contemplated and critiqued. When I began to add the rocks, I was dubious, but I persisted. I have learned that I need to move forward and then step back and let it set. If I have the patience to listen, the art quilt will tell me what works and doesn’t.

 Hope that you have all had a good week. If you have time, stop over and visit NinaMarie’s Off the Wall Friday blog and feast on some inspiration.

This week’s project

Some things take priority over art projects. Meet my new granddaughter!

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Need I say more? Back to stitching next week!

Hand Stitching Reverie

I cannot count my day complete
‘Til needle, thread and fabric meet.
~Author Unknown

I added hand stitching to my passions about two and a half years ago. The rationale was that the work would be transportable and that would be an asset with all my travels. It has grown into a daily practice that allows me to pause, breathe, and simply create something of beauty. My new studio allows me to go further with my art quilts and surface design that I ever could do before and I treasure that gift. But, my hand stitching grounds me and creates another meditative time in each day to simply savor my surroundings and gather my thoughts. Plus there is the added benefit of being part of Karen Ruane‘s online community which has expanded my network of fiber art friendships greatly.

Here is a glimpse into some of the handiwork that I have been about these past few weeks. Enjoy!

Some close ups from a silk pouch:

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A new needle case:

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And, finally a vintage doily transformed into a pocket to store treasured mementos:

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Linking to Nina Marie’s Off the Wall Friday.