About Me

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Great Falls, Montana, United States
I love creating art. I love the Creator! And through that love, I find a little slice of heaven on earth and I give Him all the glory! It's a great adventure and I'm excited to see what's around the bend! Come join me, won't you?

Friday, September 19, 2014

trouble shooting silks acrylic glaze paint ~

hello there ~

i've been on a fact-finding tour of sorts, using the silks acrylic glaze paints on fabric.

they are shimmering, and beautiful, and very blendable, which is one of the facts i love about this product the most.

that being said, i have found them to be a challenge in keeping the bright, transparent color once an item has been washed.  so... i've been experimenting with other factors, in the hopes of enhancing their "color stability" through washing. 

as the package label on the back says, they are fully cured after 48 hours.  but just waiting 48 hours doesn't quite work ... at least, not on fabric.

 so... enter a fabric painting product, GAC-900.  it's a fabric painting medium, an additive for acrylic paint, to make it more "fabric-friendly." as the label says, "provides a soft hand, and greater launder ability."  

the directions say to mix is on a 1:1 ratio.  now let me say also, that this product is geared specifically to golden acrylic paint brand... which is a very high pigment paint {and very beautiful color}.  however, i used it with the silks acrylics and it works just fine, but it does appear to take the color down on this paint, at least more more than i liked... so you either adapt, or add two coats when you are painting with silks.
and in case you're not sure the type of paint i'm referring to, it's the jars, seen below.  they are really.... really... beautiful!  and i am determined to figure out ... {hopefully} how to keep them that bright, bold color without fading, after washing.
note: these paints are easy clean-up... soap n' water.

and this is the color i get when i put them on, straight out of the jar when using they GAC-900 and after washing, meaning the towel was pre-washed, and heat-set, and then washing afterwards: 

gorgeous color, and the pattern of the towel showing through is appealing to me, personally. this is why i love them as a paint medium. 

but i do not love this result on the t-shirt.  and it didn't seem to mater whether it was 50/50 cotton/poly, or 100% cotton fabric on the t-shirt.  
 BUT... it didn't do this at all... on the black t-shirt i tested {prior to quilting}... {same fabric blend which is 50/50}

and even after heat setting with an iron, and in the dryer, too, this is the result of my experiment on the dishtowel.  not bad, but not as vibrant, either.  so even with GAC-900... it did fade after washing, as seen in the application onto the cotton dish towel below, although i did find i could add another layer of paint, even on top of the threadplay, as it won't adhere to the polyester thread.  and i had a great time with the threadplay on this lovely heart {stencil by margaret applin from stencil girl products}, fyi:
and so this is the way the paint reacted with GAC-900 onto the canvas apron, seen below.  not bad.  it did run a tiny bit, tho.

so, to be frank with you, i just don't have a great answer, or solution to this issue.  it has been a bit frustrating to me.  but in a nutshell, i will still continue to use them, and i will follow these steps, and continue my research!

1. pre-wash items to be painted.
2. add GAC-900 to paint
3. wait till paint dries, and put into a dryer on very hot setting.
4. wait 48 hours, and heat set with iron.
5. do a patch test with a spritz of water.
6. if it runs... don't ever wash it again!  and if doesn't, rejoice!
what can i say?  i think it's a love-hate relationship!

anyone out there with other suggestions?  i'd love to hear em!


Monday, September 15, 2014

st. peter's mission ~ cascade montana

monday... full of grace!

hope you're weekend was full of amazing grace!  ours was, as we had another awesome road trip to glacier national park.  {more on that later!}

and we had a show-off day last weekend, in the early autumn beautiful, perfect day out in the country.  i invite you to sit a spell... and take in a few moments of the simplicity and grandeur of local scenery and history... i know i did!
the might missouri, or as some call it "the mighty mo" just outside of a little teeny weeny town called ulm.

the iconic vista of "square butte" just outside of cascade, montana,
yes... this is what i wait for... a beautiful horse ~ this was one is what i refer to as a "palomino paint" {not sure of the official color description} but i love it... against a stunning backdrop of montana sky and mountains.  
and the road less travelled led us to a beautiful, historic place that's been on my ''montana hit list' for awhile.  i'd never been there!  so glad we did... 
it's difficult {for me} to imagine what struggles daily life brought to these early missionaries.  
would have loved to been able to get into the church building in the distance... perhaps another day.

and the architectural remains of a beautiful stone building.  i cannot imagine how each stone was placed, and slowly built into an amazing structure...

you may think it's a bit morbid... but i find the old graveyards fascinating ... and peaceful in many respects.  the stories that are untold {at least to me}, and the history ... the hardness of the life lived in this wilderness, carved out in the time-worn stones... {or not}.
many of the graves are unmarked now... but some attempt has been made recently to show where they were, in the white wooden crosses on this hill.

symbols of faith.  love.  and eternal life.

... therefore we do not lose heart. though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. {2 Cor 4:16 NIV}
and... "as amazing as God's work of creation is, it pales in comparison to His work of redemption."  {jean fleming, pursue the intention life, ch. 9, pg 61 ~ love this book i'm reading!}

an interesting marker... a new "x marks the spot" if you will, where the ravages of time have dissipated the previous marker.  

i've often wondered about why today, we need to have a place, a marker... a stone, to mark our spot on history.  oh, i know there are myriad good thoughts, historical, {business related too ~ ugh} and misplaced, guilt-ridden, or just because "that's what we do" kind of reasons, or even just a lovely sentimentality. i'm just sayin i consider these things.  i also can't help but think of the thousands who were buried in the prairies of this country, without markers, in order to prevent thievery, or abominations to the graves, as the settlers rolled their wagons over the grave to "bury" the existence of such a thing... does that life mean less.  nope.  absolutely not.

but the reality is that this life here and now is what begins our eternal life.  that is what really is the heart of the issue.  i'm not sure i'm a fan of graveyards, per say.  i'm not sure i even want a stone when i pass.   because the truth is... this world will all pass away...  and what really matters is the relationships we have now. the life we live now.  that's what i want my legacy to be, in the life we live each day.  "stuff" ~ homes, cars, financial gain, and... even the most sweet and beautiful old graveyards, will not withstand the day Christ comes again.  

although i do love what these old ones show us... and i sense peace from many of them when i visit, as i wander tenderly through the prairies and mountain grasses of hard, weathered earth.  

i know this life wasn't the end for many... but only a new beginning, regardless of a marker, stone, or grand fence surrounding the worldly evidence of a life upon this earth.
and... "release the obsession with building a life and believe in the life Christ in building in you."
and as i gaze into the amazing vistas of this most beautiful earth God created for us... and the hard, hard rocks... i am glad He also gave us a Savior to turn our hearts of stone, into hearts for Him alone...

you cannot help but notice that there is "nothing" out there... that is, no human evidence easily perceived.  this was hard country ... back then.  it still is.  even today here are not many new homes or ranches even, clear out here.  some tried, in the hardy, determined stance of many abandoned homesteads we saw... some who survived.  not that many.  but then others who did, not only survived, but thrived, and passed on that thriving, life-giving, living, loving legacy of faith, grace, and mercy.  
and the blessing for today:  "may you be diligent in taking time to pause and reflect on the many ways God has blessed you. may you cultivate a heart that knows how to rest in God alone.  may you take every chance you get to spend time with God, to accept His love, to trust His direction in your life. as you look to Him, may you be reminded there's a God in heaven very much involved in your minute-by-minute life.  He intends to get us safely home. but don't wait til then to find your rest in Him. embrace a joyful, faith-filled life and perspective today!" {inspired by susie larson}.  amen.


Friday, September 12, 2014

be thankful ~ linen {cotton} dishtowel

good friday morning to you!

i've sure enjoyed playing and in case i forgot to tell ya ~ "i've had a great time!"

not only a bit more inspiration for you, in using a stencil, silks acrylic paint, and free motion... but some helpful information on this fabulous paint product, too.
the back of the silk's acrylic paint jar says this:  "shimmer, shine and twinkle!  brilliant shimmering, semi-gloss acrylic glaze {which means it's semi-transparent} for paper, wood, fabric, clay and more. extended open time for ease of use. {which means it dries slower than other paint}. for added durability apply water-based polyurethane. drying time is weather dependent -- fully cured after 48 hours."
and my experimentation with heat setting this paint has been educational, for sure.  it's best to launder the fabric, first.
then after painting, let the painted item dry for at least a day, and then heat set with an iron, but also heat set in a dryer for at least a half hour {very hot setting}.  then i've wet the fabric again, and pressed it.  now the test will be to wash it once again, and see how the color holds.  

hint: it's also very helpful to have a teflon sheet, just to protect the iron surface from any paint transfer. 
i'm going to wash this again... and we'll see how it holds up!  .
you can see from the picture below, where i had the paint bleed before i heat set in the dryer:
look at that gorgeous transparency!  i love how the plaid of the towel, comes through the leaf, but....!  it turns a different color, when the pink hits the turquoise/green... it's turns to a purpley periwinkle blue tone, or shades thereof!  

i love it and ... ain't that COOL?!!
now... i also want to say i am doing {more} experimentation!  and i'm playing with a golden product, GAC900 to add to the paint {which is clear fabric paint additive} that may help this to cure stronger and better.  we'll see!  i'll be sure to let y'all know, too.

october 4, 2014 in helena montana!  {be there or be square!} lol!  hope you locals can join me for a creative good time in the apron painting class at the prickly pear quilt shop!   i'm so excited to be teaching there!  and i hope to be teaching this towel, t-shirt and apron class locally in great falls, or anywhere else.  will let you know the details as soon as they are scheduled. 

thanks for coming on by this week, and have a fabulous weekend!  we're looking forward to clear skies after rain and snow days lately.  i am looking forward to some photo-taking good times... heading to glacier park!  i'm hoping the going to the sun road is now again open, after much snow fell in northern montana.


Thursday, September 11, 2014

i choose joy ~ a painted linen dish towel

thursday greetings fellow artists! {yes, you are!}

today's project features a towel.  painting.  a stencil.  and free motion quilting.  and, more importantly... joy!

i choose joy ~
this is one of the "blanks" of cotton dishtowels, and i usually purchase them for about $5 at a quilting store.  you can also buy fabric to make your own, too.  

for the motif, i chose a stencil, and blending the colors, again, using the silks acrylic paints.  it's important to use a bit of a dryer brush, and brush from the stencil's outward edges, onto the open spaces.  
and be sure to stabilize prior to quilting.  the cotton weave of the towel is a very open one, so the stitching is a bit of  a "sketchy look" {which i like}, but what i really want to do is avoid unsightly puckering.  and because this is a towel that will be used and washed, i didn't want a piece of white stabilizer hanging out on the back when was finished.

so this time, i chose a clear stabilizer, "badge master" which is a water soluble stabilizer. just one layer of this stabilizer is all you need for this project.  and it washes out very easily in warm water.  i soak mine in a bowl for about 20 minutes until it softens up the stabilizer {it kinda turns milky white} and then rinse, press, and it's ready to go.
and of course i adhered it using the 505 spray:
and i quilted it:
i wanted to show you the backside again, after quilting the words, too.  you definitely need to stabilize where you think you're going to quilt the words.  don't forget that part!

i like to add what i'd have to call only a hint of extra shading, and highlighting.  this i did with yellow thread, and pink.  i outlined it very "freely" with black thread to add punch to the overall design.  you could choose to add more black quilting lines to show more of the leaf lines or shape.  totally your preference {or not to do any at all!}
again, no worries about staying in the lines perfectly... just make a creative, joyFUL piece of quilting delight, and practical application!  

it's a win either way ~ you learn, you grow, and then you give.  or give it away {yourself or the towel}...

choose joy.
the difference between happy and joy?  
happy is temporary, joy is forever.  
happy is something we try to contrive, manipulate, or create
{for ourselves, or for others}
based upon our own desires, circumstances of the day, 
or moment; our likes or our dislikes.

ahhh... {thank God} ~ it never leaves, dissipates or fades ~
no matter the day, the circumstance, or the human striving, or contriving for it, or attempts to define it.  it is based in the faithfulness, grace, and mercy of our sovereign, loving God {when you put your whole heart into His hands}.
thanking Him for today.

soli deo gloria!
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