Stitch Journeys

Exploring life with needle and thread.

Fabric Embellishing Additions

The other project I spent finishing up last weekend was putting the edge finishes and tabs on some new pages for my Fabric Embellishing sampler. When we were writing the book Fabric Embellishing; the Basics and Beyond we didn't have time to make pages for some of the techniques that one of the other author's was writing so Ruth and I have been going back and creating some of those with variations from the originals in the book. A lot of the pages that I didn't get done previously were in the 'foundations' section of the book. This one featured above is weaving.



Here we have tucks. Don't you just love the mini pom pom trim? I had a lot of fun with this page seeing how this striped fabric would look tucked.

This is my Stitches and Bits page. I skipped the stitch part and just inserted lots of bits. The yellow strip is plastic kitchen lace (you know the stuff your produce comes bagged in). Just remember not to iron it!

This is my vintage take on the Fashion a frame page. I used a beautiful piece of silk paper in the windows and some vintage bits that seemed to be treasures the young woman in the photo would have kept. I used a hand dyed vintage tea towel for the base and added quite a bit of hand stitching.

This page was a sample that didn't make it into the final cut of Fabric Embellishing. It is a combination of paper, fabric and kitchen produce lace layered. The strips on the left are from a piece of sequin waste that I cut, overlapped and stitched down by machine. The edge finish is pieces of purple produce lace couched down around the edge. I love the little top piece that sticks up straight on the top.
Continue reading
  1901 Hits
  0 Comments
1901 Hits
0 Comments

A Wild Ride!

loving these warm waters



How on earth did it get to be mid-November already? Last I looked it was summer. Actually it was summer when I was in Houston last week! On October 27th my toes were happily splashing in the warm Gulf Waters and I was soaking up the sun with my buddies Ruth Chandler and Deb Prewitt.

Deb Prewitt and Ruth Chandler



We had a great afternoon relaxing before the big show! We all agreed that taking the extra time to rest and relax was worth the added expense. We plan on keeping up with this self care event in the future!

Before



After
After


Then there was the 10 days of chaos that are called Quilt Market and Festival. It always seems amazing to me how in a few short hours the show floor morphs from a cacophonous frenzy of crates, fork lifts, sweaty vendors and trash strewn about to a beautiful showcase of the latest fabrics, books and ideas for quilters and stitchers. I would call it the Greatest Show on Earth if that wasn't already taken.

Here are just a few of my favorite things from Market..

Creative Booth Displays



I really wanted to grab some of those bones to walk around Flinstone style.

Urbanista - love that leaf!



Kokka Fabrics - Prints Charming



I adore Kokka fabrics! This great line, Daisy Chain, in the Prince Charming Collection is awesome! Yes, I came home with some....is harder to resist than chocolate! You can get it soon from Blue Twig Studio.

Jennifer Sampou's newest collection ~ Fiesta



There were lots of great new fabric lines in bright colors. Looks like we are all going to be playing with these fun patterns, designs and modern colors. Maybe the dreary economy has something to do with that...or maybe I just didn't 'see' all the brown and gray fabrics out there.

Coral tree fabrics



One of my favorite discoveries is this new line of fabrics from Africa offered by Da Gama Textiles. These beautiful fabrics have a wonderful soft hand and the patterns and colors are wonderful...I came home with a few of these and you can get your own at Artistic Artifacts right now! You may have to e-mail Judy directly because she probably hasn't had time to get them on the site yet.

Art Gallery Fabrics



I am also in love with the new line of solids from Art Gallery Fabrics. Such luscious colors in their always scrumptious feeling cotton. The solids pair beautifully with their new patterns of course but I know they will blend well with much of what is in my stash.

I am always on the lookout for new products and found some great brushes for surface design from Royal Langnickel. Ruth and I can't wait to get the paints out and give them a workout...will post photos when we do.

I love teaching store owners and other teachers at Quilt Market as well as the time we spend in the Landauer booth talking about our books. It is always a crazy busy fun time. Check back tomorrow for a post about Quilt Festival and a GIVEAWAY!
Continue reading
  1993 Hits
  1 Comment
1993 Hits
1 Comment

Getting Ready for School



Kathy King's Delectable cloth



No, I am not literally getting myself ready for school and my one remaining student gets himself ready for school and doesn't even need help with his homework...they do grow up! Anyway, for me, the summer is always crazy busy and this year we had the amazing Textile Evolution Retreat smack in the middle of August. I looked at the calendar on August 1, took a deep breath, started working and Bamm! the next thing I knew it was September already! How did that happen?


First let me tell you about the retreat. Once again it was an  incredible experience for both teachers and students...a lot of laughter, a few tears, fabulous art and a birthday party! Here are a few photos to make you jealous!Mono-printed messenger bags for each student.


The mono-printed messenger bags made out of Multi-Purpose Cloth (Love this stuff!) were stuffed with goodies from our awesome sponsors!


Judy Gula and Carol Sloan shopping at Blue Twig Studio on-site store.


Oh, yes we had not one but TWO on-site stores full of art deliciousness! Feast on these yummy offerings from Artistic Artifacts.





Evening tutorial



After dinner we had great demos and tutorials...here Laura Cater-Woods, Judy Gula and Carol Sloan share their many different approaches to rust dyeing fabric. There was a rust dyeing frenzy that followed this lecture.

We didn't know we could DRAW!



Students from Carol Sloan's Whimsical Mark Making class...as they shared their class work each one said 'WOW, I didn't know I could draw'.

Fabrics from Delectable Cloth



Just a small sample of the luscious fabrics created in Delectable Cloth with me.

Kerry Cain's Indigo Shibori cloth



Cat Mikkelson's Indigo Shibori show and tell



When the students from the Indigo Shibori class started showing their work it sounded like we were at a fireworks show...ohhhh...ahhhhh.....ohhhhh.....ahhhhhh!

Deb Prewitt's books from Carol Sloan's class



Kathy King's tree book made in my class



I am sad to announce that the Textile Evolution Retreat is going on hiatus. As wonderful as the experience is for the students and teachers (oh my gosh...the surveys made me cry because everyone loved it so much!) and as much as I love putting on this great event I have had to decide on where to spend my time. The retreat takes the majority of my time and I want to focus more on teaching and creating an on-line community of people who love to stitch. So, stay tuned for changes here on the web site.

The first change is that my friend and co-author Ruth Chandler has joined me in this quest to bring the full dance of joy in making stuff with fabric and thread to all of you! Our book studies are going strong and if you are thinking of a back to school educational event for yourself come and join us! It is FREE! You have to have our books but there isn't any other cost. Everything is in the forum section of this web site. We have lots of great info and some video tutorials...best of all you can start where ever you are and go through the workshop at your own pace! You are never 'behind'! Don't you love that? Who needs guilt added to having fun? OTOH if you need an excuse for the family to get into your studio, you simply tell them you have a class you are taking and must get your homework done! Great modeling for the kids and you get to play!

Kyle Gula's photo from the top of Pikes Peak



Judy Gula's family arrived right after the retreat and so I was 'forced' to show them around our fabulous state. We included a quick trip to Breckenridge where Judy and I scrounged the Sally Barber mine site for bits of rusted metal laying around...of course this resulted in another frenzy of rust dying. They headed up Pikes Peak on their own and were treated to an amazing display of Colorado weather...sun on the peak and storms surrounding them in every direction.

No wonder I lost all of August...it was full of fun, friends, art and laughter! Life is good!
Continue reading
  1854 Hits
  3 Comments
1854 Hits
3 Comments

Fall Quilt Market

Fall quilt market was great. The atmosphere was upbeat and some of the stressful faces from previous markets were replaced with cheerful smiles. Business in the quilt world is thriving.  I didn't have as much time to talk to fabric designers and see the whole quilt show but I do have some photos to share.

M&S Textile from Australia



I didn't take a lot of photos during the Schoolhouse sessions...just plain forgot! But I did get this photo during the M&S Textile session. Their Aboriginal fabrics are wonderful and wow do they create an intricate quilt. This quilt is actually a very simple pattern...the fabric does all the work. That is my kind of quilt!  Artistic Artifacts carries an extensive line of these fabrics...I want them all!!

1/2 of sample spree



Sample spree is a shopping experience not to be missed. Store owners, teachers and designers have a chance to pick up some of the hottest new products and fabrics so they can get their samples and classes prepared before the products are shipped. It is a bit of a mad house as everyone rushes to their favorite vendor table...quantities are usually limited. This photo shows just half the ballroom where it is held.

Ruth Chandler and I in Landauer booth



Ruth Chandler and I had demos for Fabric Embellishing: The Basics and Beyond every day and I had demos for Threads: The Basics and Beyond as well. We love talking about the books and getting store owners and teachers excited about giving classes based on them. Our demo table is always a pile of samples! Other quilt authors bring nice neat stacks of quilts and we bring all this little stuff! LOL! It is sort of a treasure hunt as we try to show cool techniques amid the jumble of book samples. No one seems to mind though. We were very excited to learn that Fabric Embellishing will be translated into French! Hope I can get a copy.

I had two big book signings at distributor's booths. Unfortunately, my co-author Debbie Bates couldn't attend. These signings are a lot of fun and I get to talk about thread! They had to listen very intently in the E.E. Schenck booth because I was losing my voice.

Book signing at E.E. Schenck



Threads signing in the Checker booth



I also taught a Take and Teach class designed for shop owners to give them ideas for teaching from Threads: The Basics and Beyond. We made this cute little quiltlet with a flower power theme. The students had a great time and almost everyone finished their mini quilt. Those classes are hard on the store owners because we start at 8am! Then they hit the show floor at 9:30...it is pedal to the metal stitching! Fortunately I had my dear friends Ruth Chandler and Deb Prewitt manning the heat guns so we could get their thread lace flowers dry enough to stitch on to the quilt. Friends who will get up at 5:30am to help are priceless.

Take and Teach students hard at work.



Susie's finished Flower Power quiltlet.



Tomorrow I will post some photos from the market floor and then more from Quilt Festival...stay tuned because you know I brought home some goodies for a giveaway!
Continue reading
  1953 Hits
  2 Comments
1953 Hits
2 Comments

To Market To Market

threads key fobs

I am headed to Spring Quilt Market in Minneapolis. Wow, has it been a crazy busy month. Two weeks getting ready for market and final edits on Threads: The Basics and Beyond. At market my Fabric Embellishing co-author Ruth Chandler and I will be offering a great Take and Teach class for store owners.  Ruth and I made great little embellished pins as a present for those who take the class. We will be demoing in the Landauer Publishing booth so stop by to see us if you are there.

I am offering a class for Threads also but solo as my co-author Debbie Bates won’t be able to attend. We are really excited to be presenting our new book at market. This book covers everything about thread and is a whopping 176 pages. You all are going to love it! I made these winged heart key fobs for my students who will earn their ‘thread wings’ in the class.

Don’t feel sorry for me because I have been working so hard…after all that prep work we headed east for a real vacation! Of course we hit some great homeschool history sites such as Old Bent’s Fort CO, part of the Santa Fe Trail in OK, Fort Smith AR, Hot Springs AR and the Great Smokey Mountain National Park in TN. Our final destination was Charleston SC to see my oldest son graduate with distinction from Nuclear Power School at the Navel Weapons Station. We also got a chance to welcome in the newest Kettle family member in person. We are so proud of him and his family!

We spent 5 days exploring Charleston and hanging out with the family. We saw enough forts and cannons, battleships, airplanes and traffic to fill us up for a while. One of our favorite sites was the Fire Museum. K-Man who is 3 loved their virtual ride in a fire truck. He got to be the driver numerous times. Baby Z is a delight and perfect.

We met up with my friend Carol Sloan and her husband for a kayak adventure in Charleston Harbor. We had never been kayaking and it was so much fun. We will definitely do that again. Carol will be teaching two great classes at Textile Evolution. We will have to find a Colorado style adventure for her when she is there for the retreat.

I will post photos from market this weekend so check back to see what great stuff I find.
Continue reading
  1728 Hits
  0 Comments
1728 Hits
0 Comments

Sneak Peek - Fabric Embellishing

fab. emb_edited-1

Today's Sneak Peek photos are from Fabric Embellishing: The Basics and Beyond.  I am co-author with 3 other very talanted artists. We worked in a 'sampler' method so you could try lots of techniques without committing to a big project. Each 8"x10" page shows a feature technique and then we embellished the pages to create little pieces of art. The first photo is from our 'hard' embellishment section. It features metal embossing, stitching on metal and image transfers on metal  I totally love this technique for a  vintage tintype look. Transfer Artist Paper works like a dream.

fab. emb_edited-2

We had another glorious day of blue skies and sun so these silk cocoon and silk rod flowers just begged to be seen. Nothing takes color like silk cocoons and rods. They are fun to work with and no one can quite figure out how you made these.  The flower stems were made from ripped strips of fabric very casually free motion stitched down. Any of you like ripping fabric as much as I do? I love that frayed edge. I especially love ripping canvas...it frays so gloriously. I will leave  you with a photo of the pins I taught at Quilt Festival last year in the Cloth Paper Scissors classroom.

miu prototype 2_small-1
Continue reading
  1738 Hits
  0 Comments
1738 Hits
0 Comments

Celebrations!

passport cover small

I have a lot to celebrate as the end of January closes in. I am crossing the t's and dotting the i's on my next book: Threads: The Basics and Beyond.  I am so excited that it is coming togther so well.  When you are in the midst of writing a book you get really focused on what you are doing right here and now.It is easy to forget what you did or wrote 3 months ago. Heck, even on a good week I forget what I wrote yesterday...that is one reason my e-mail file is so stuffed. I constantly have to go back and see what I wrote! I am getting of track here...back to the book...as I go back through my text to polish and edit and put my technique samples together for the final photography I am seeing it all for the first time as a whole rather than unrelated parts. I am very happy with the look and feel of this book as well as the great information it has within its covers.It should be available in stores in April. I can't wait to share it with all of you so I will be posting some sneak preview photos over the next week. I will throw in some photos from Fabric Embellishing for extra fun.

passport top view small

What else is on the celebration list??? More sunshine every day. A printmaking class this weekend just for fun, my college kid asked for a hair cut, a drawing from my grandson,  the web site hackers didn't win, more time to make art, new classes to teach and looking forward to sharing art and creativity with an awesome group at the Spring Textile Evolution Retreat!
Continue reading
  1681 Hits
  0 Comments
1681 Hits
0 Comments

Relish this minute

breckenridge in october

Can you imagine being able to spend the weekend with these views and work at the same time? I was heads down in Breckenridge stitching away to meet a deadline for the Threads: the basics and beyond book. Yeah, life is tough! I won't tell you that in addition to breathtaking views I  was also surrounded by great friends who kept me laughing and singing and made me get back to work when I got distracted for too long. They cooked for me too! I am a lucky girl. I did suffer a cut on my finger if that  generates any sympathy.

So often in life we get caught up in working, family responsibilities and the rush of everyday life and forget to take time to take care of ourselves, to take time to enjoy the sweet pleasures of lingering over morning coffee with friends and basking in glorious sunsets. We forget to savor the present, the now. Take time now to breathe and relish this minute. That is my new mantra.

I hope your weekend was just as wonderful as mine.

breckenridge sunset
Continue reading
  1547 Hits
  0 Comments
1547 Hits
0 Comments

French Knot Obsession

french knots close up

I have become obsessed with french knots these days. I love them! They seem to be finding their way into a lot of my work these days.This is a sneek peek of one of the projects for the new book on Thread (Spring 2010). Aren't they yummy? These were stitched with a hand dyed silk floss. I love using hand dyed threads and may have gottten a little carried away with the number of french knots on this piece. I just couldn't seem to stop.

Speaking of books...I hear the new Cloth Paper Scissors has a review of Fabric Embellishing: The Basics and Beyond. I  hear we got a thumbs up review but I don't have my copy yet and with the snow storm we are currently enjoying I may not get it today either. I am not so good at waiting! Hmmm...maybe some more french knots will keep me occupied!
Continue reading
  1645 Hits
  0 Comments
1645 Hits
0 Comments

Login Form

Shopping Cart

The cart is empty