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?
Showing posts with label yarn. Show all posts
Showing posts with label yarn. Show all posts

Sunday, March 20, 2011

BOOKMARKS and Bernina Foot 2A

These are pieces of leftover embellished fabric from a quilted scarf. 
After trimming the edges of the scarf, these pieces were made into bookmarks.  

There are many possibilities of finishing the edges... metallic paint, yarns twisted to make a rope or a satin stitch zig zag.

A very useful skill is to employ the zig zag satin stitch with the #2 foot; which is included in every Bernina machine as a standard foot.

Why is it so great?  Because it makes a really beautiful RAISED satin stitch!

Align the outer right-side edge of the foot (not the toe) with the edge of the fabric.  Ensure that the right-hand swing of the needle covers the right hand edge of the fabric; adjusting your width as needed to do so.  Set up your machine for a zig zag with a satin stitch... this means approximately .6 inches in length and width as you prefer it for your project. This foot is designed to be used with stitches that overlock or overcast the edge of the fabric, keeping edges flat , reinforcing those edges, and preventing tunneling of your stitches.  A win, win, win! A great alternative to a serger overlock stitch... only with your home sewing machine... a stitch and foot that is often underused and overlooked!
make sure your needle position doesn't have your needle hitting the little metal bar!

Do you see the little metal bar below? That's your secret weapon! The needle will stitch OVER it, creating a slightly 'raised' feel, giving YOUR stitching a very lovely look!

And it looks a bit like this.  Hard to show the dimension in the picture, but I did my best!
I love it for finishing edges and seams on wovens, like these bookmarks I've made.  It's sturdy, practical, and best of all, it gives it a professional looking finish!
Here are some "Tested Techniques"  from my "FEETURES" Bernina Foot book for the #2 foot. If you've never given these books a look; I hope you'll do so when you have an opportunity.  Wonderful resource... filled with lots of color projects/applications for every foot Bernina sells.  If you aren't sure about buying a foot... and want to know more, go look it up in the book, ask the dealer to let you borrow the foot, and take it for a test drive in a live demo ... before you buy!

Here are some samples of some other bookmarks I made...

In the peachy colored bookmark below, I also used leftover pieces from the silk, quilted table topper I made earlier; that post was called "Pick Up Stix Glitz" where I featured the Bernina #39 foot.  So fun!  You can see it here.

And one of my personal favorites: (see my post on this foot) at this link:  #43 free motion couching foot) for couching on cords effortlessly in any direction you desire... loops, soft curves, tight curves; you can do it all quite flawlessly with this foot.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Making Fabric Paper

Thank you to Beth who left a comment yesterday asking for more details... I hope this post will help you out... but I welcome any questions you have! 

First things FIRST.  Lay down a plastic covering on the work service; laying out your muslin and items you want to use in the collage.
The muslin can be any shape; small, squarish...or round if you'd like!
Notice I left the frayed edge (on the left) of the muslin.
By the way, these are items I put in the art quilt "Katie Cutie".
As you can see... a napkin, doillie, pattern piece, a hand-written note, candy foil wrapper, miscellaneous text, pattern paper, torn wrapping paper, and tissue!
(the list is endless!)
I mix up 50% water/50% tacky glue (I use Aleene's - Elmers would also work).

  It's kind of sloppy-good - no need to measure; I literally just 'slap it on' with a cheapo brush, or whatever you have on hand.  Don't buy something new or good quality... in case the glue mixture dries before it's cleaned. (uhh... oops!)

Next: you will lay down your (pre-planned) miscellaneous ephemera items on the 'primed' glue-muslin layer. It will dry fairly quickly, so you don't want to take too much time deciding what to use.
Note: I know some artists like to use various gel mediums... as far as I know, either will work just fine... (but I'm not an expert - I'm just a hands-on, let's try this type of girl!  I've only used tacky glue so far. 

Above: place the white craft tissue paper (it's sturdier than your average gift-wrapping type) onto the muslin surface; having cut or torn it  into smaller segments from the package. Overlap them a bit as you lay them down on the muslin-textured base.   Then add your color; I use acrylic paint, watering it down as the notion strikes me! 

"Give Thanks" paper quilt
If you find the top tissue layer isn't sticking, gently add a bit more glue/water mixture to the top of the tissue  Than add your paint... watered down as you desire (add a bit of glue to it if you want and this has worked well for me)
AND.. if you 'over-do' it... you get some fabulous wrinkles or perhaps the tissue 'wears' away a bit!  No worries! (See 'Dancing With Jack') 

Here is the final dried, layered base... notice there is a transparent coating of acrylic paint, watered down significantly... but this is certainly a personal preference!  See an earlier piece I did, (below) in which the paint was mostly opaque... and I liked that too... but it does cover up more of the things you laid down... just a different style, really.
Now is the time to add further embellishments... fused flowers were added after the paint had dried.
Let it dry... it will curl.  
Once dry, iron it (into submission).
Stabilize it, bat it, back it.
Stitch it.
Quilt it.  Bind it!
Pictured left is one of my first fabric paper quilts.  These are the items added after paint was dry.  

It also shows where I had alot more color than water... a happy accident, and ugh - I muddied the colors a bit.  So it goes; and it turned out better than I had expected. Opaque or transparent... it's all good!  
 After all the tissue paper layers and paint had dried... hand-painted accents in a silver metallic pen are very fun!  I had leftover fusings... angelina fibers, silk roving... added decorative stitches...& a beautiful hand-dyed yarn -- couched on with my #43 free motion foot!  See more about it here and here.
 Be original, and have fun with your own personal 'stuff', and make it unique to you.
AND... if you'd like to know more, go to Terri Stegmiller's blog and  the 3 Creative Studios website... (great resource!)  She wrote a book: "Creative Paper Quilts" (which I just discovered today, because she left me a comment-thank you Terri!) You can purchase it from Amazon.com too.  I hope you will visit her blog, which I enjoy LOTS. She has such great style, and fabulous, colorful inspiration for you!  Another resource is a book from Beryl Taylor: Mixed Media Explorations.

Friday, February 4, 2011


A FIESTA... no Siesta going on here... but if y'all have a more creative title for this piece, I'd LOVE to hear it!

I do really love bold colors, and the lovely rayon ric rac yarn featured here has been a favorite for many projects.  And this is the last of the silk fabric scraps I found stashed away!  I'm pretty happy about all the little samples I've made with it.

I love using my zig zag in free motion, and this was also another opportunity for me to use my favorite silver metallic thread GLITTER from Superior Thread Co.   In this piece, you can see, hopefully - my "zig zag jewels" and a then I did some straight stitching in between the yarn rows... but not everywhere!  That would have been predictable, and... not to mention... very boring. At least it would have been for me!

And... this is where knowing your machine can really pay off... in Bernina Land, it's referred to as 'temporary altered stitch memory' and you can learn lots more about a free motion zig zag in a post here

Yessss...! The free motion couching foot #43 really wins the supporting role on this project;  the gorgeous yarn gets the 'best actress' award!
In case you missed that blog on the #43 foot, you can find it here.

Yup... Phil's fabric for the binding - again.  (Phillip Jacobs, fabric designer, not my personal friend or anything like that!)  I just like that fabric so much I've started calling it that!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

FLOWERS from Mac

Ah... the sweet memories of summer in the middle of January!!!  Awesome! God is good... really GOOD!
It really doesn't get any better than this when it comes to spending a little vacation time on a hot summer day with the girls by the lake... sitting... chatting... fusing and cutting!  A darling boy "Mac" helped me cut these flowers out... and so the title of this quilt 
I don't "do perfect" --- and some of the couching with the yarn wasn't right on the edge of the flowers... but that is why it is so important to keep at it... practice... invest in something you like to do... DO WHAT YOU LOVE.... and Love What... You... DO... and you will get better... and pretty soon... it LOOKS EXCELLENT... and you have a finished project that represents a tangible result of your learning... and loving the process!

Bright and Charming... just like our favorite young nephew "Mac" ....

I used some of favorite fresh fabrics... pretty flower pattern...... glorious ribbons, and metallic threads!  See my blogs on bobbin play... bobbin quilting... threads and needles!  Oh Ah... don't forget the pretty yarn...
 LOVE to learn.... learning to LOVE...
 Practice... practice... PRACTICE!  How FUN it is!

and soon... your garden looks like this: 
"The Sweet 16" 
charming and very 
colorful little darlings...
Pattern was adapted from "Classic Runners #142" here from the Little Quilt Company

Tuesday, January 4, 2011



This is the first quilt in a series I am planning... dedicating an art quilt to each of several Sisters and Friends.

REJOICE!  That's what I feel everytime I see this lovely young lady, RACHEL. I rejoice! So this art quilt is dedicated to her!  (And it is her birthday gift too!)  This young lady was part of a girls basketball team that won their school's first-ever Class C basketball championship several years ago - their highschool has only 32 kids in it!  She now plays college basketball at MSU-Bozeman, MT.  (GO BOBCATS!) Charming, warm-hearted, strong, faithful, and FULL of  vibrancy our Rachel is... beautiful, athletic, and a good friend to others;  she's a hard worker,  (see how she can help her Uncle John vaccinate cows!)  

That vaccinating gun is "hot!"
Charming, and warm-hearted!  I am so fortunate to know her, and we and the rest of the girls have an awesome blessing of spending time together at Flathead Lake whenever we can. Moms and girls... we've had the huge blessing to share some absolutely fabulous memories together! I love you Rach! 

It's a fairly small quilt; approximately 8x10" is painted on a muslin base using tissue paper, and acrylic paints.

Free motion couching adds dimension and texture in a very free-wheeling way!  Lovely fabric flowers are fused on.  Heavy bobbin play in pink for added visual interest.  By now you know there is lots on this blog about Bobbin Play, couching, metallic threads! 

I loved this sweet little birdie posed on a "wire" or branch of decorative stitches! This quilt is finished with a very "free" bound edge... the fabric is simply folded over, and stitched somewhat randomly!  FUN FUN FUN!
Detail of Bird and Decorative stitches in "RACHEL"
I really had to challenge myself to get out of that 'perfect box' --- it truly is entrapment!   So I let my stitches BE imperfect, meandering, and decided I could just do a decorative stitch and STOP in the middle of the line if I felt like it!

OH... AH... how I really ENJOYED doing it!  Couching... bobbin play... no 'perfect' plan... just being... FREE!  Much like Rachel!

I love her freckles and pearls... right at home on the ranch!

Detail of Free Motion Couching onto the Fabric Flowers --- HOW FUN IS THAT!

Thank you Lord, for Rachel!  Bless her as she continues to grow, learn and be your LIGHT! Amen!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

YO YO'S, Pom Poms and No Bon Bons!

I hate to admit... how late I am "coming to the table" of making  these charming little yo yo darlings!  For some reason over the years... they just didn't appeal to me... but two weeks ago, I WON a grab bag of scraps from Art Gallery Fabrics... and what a BEAUTIFUL hand they have; so very satiny-like and quite luxurious!  I don't believe I've seen these fabrics in our local area, so now I know what to keep my eyes out for, or where to go to buy some more! Thank you Pat, it was a great give-a-way; I'm a lucky lady! These scraps are perfect for yo yo's...I used the form you buy made by Clover...
I also saw a charming Amy Butler's "BLOOM" quilt - a FREE pattern (gotta love that!) and it was covered in lovely, incredibly charming, bright colored prints in YO-YOS of varying sizes... stacked everywhere... loved it!  It was made from her SOUL BLOSSOMS fabric collection, available I hope at my local quilt store...SOON!  If not, then I must go shopping at Hawthorne Threads!   

I love bright colors, and now I know exactly what I can do with those new 6 inch and 8 inch circle dies from Sizzix... BIG YO YO's!  Wake me up when it's time to go-go... " - you know that song?  I have NO IDEA who wrote it, or even who sings it... but it is in my head... because I have now re-created it with:  "Wake me up - I love to YO YO!" and.... if I could think of a song to go with Pom Poms, I would!  

While I dearly love to play games on New Years Eve, the kids weren't around, so we just enjoyed a lovely quiet evening in our warm little cozy home. Who knew yo-yos and football fit sew well together!  (Well... they are both kind of round and bouncy! 
 Love that ribbony yarn... this one I think I will make into a frosty-wintery boquet for my office!! 
 I decided to do a bit of re-decorating and embellishment in my dining room... so I  hung the three sizes, from large, medium and small.. I could enjoy them as a decoration!  Christmas tree ornaments for next year, perhaps?!!

A pile of them in a bowl.... pins... hats... oh gosh... what ideas to you have?  I'd love to hear!
LOVE the hand-dyed yarns... pom pom CHEER!

The "assortment!"

 As you may have noticed I dearly adore yarn, ribbons and the like... and now I've found a new way to incorporate them... and a host of other great and inspiring embellishments options!  And another thing to do on a long road trip... that is, if my hubby is driving!

EnJOY a new day... a new opportunity, and a new LOVE!  Amen!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

"JOY" Art Quilt

During the Christmas season we celebrate the grand night God came down to earth as baby. And perhaps to the rest of the universe the event looked merely like an astounding humiliation...

God, the Creator of all, became man, taking the form of a human body; a somewhat ordinary and perhaps unimpressive thing to some of us. He endured life as we do; he knows our sorrows, our temptations, how broken we really are... He came to us both as God and as a man.. enduring a confining life, and more importantly, as the ultimate sacrifice for us, dying a grisly death on the Cross.  The Apostle Paul points to this death to show that God can take even the darkest moment in history and turn it into JOY.The cross, and Jesus' triumph over death, prove that nothing is powerful enough to stamp out a reason for joy. "JOY in the LORD" as Paul says. 
And so, "Joy Comes in the Morning" is the inspiration of this  art quilt. 
Razzle Dazzle in gold, on top of the painted and stamped tissue paper surface
Heavy bobbin play really lends itself to this detail of "pebble stitching" giving it much presence and... impact!

 Psalm 30:5 "... weeping may endure for a night, but Joy Comes in The Morning."

SAVE... and savor the flavor of those beautifully tinny foils leftover from candies... they are part of the fun and joy of this little art quilt, and notice them peeking out from under the fabric paper?!  I LOVE it!

My husband really thought I had lost all my marbles when I scolded him (well not really) when he wadded up the foil wrappers from the chocolate candies as he ate them... I saw all these tiny balls of foil rolling around on the coffee table, and brought them to his attention, saying: "No, No! My love, you MUST flatten them!"  Now I have to just find a place to STORE them!!!
Little Quilt... BIG joy!
This technique is part of a book "Mixed Media Explorations" from Beryl Taylor, also available from Quilting Arts.... and yes, I have found joy also in making "Fabric Paper Quilts." Can't wait to make more!  Save those gum wrappers, letters, tissue papers...what a great jumping off point in this new year for more embellishment fun and joy...
May your faith increase as you look to a new year...  knowing your JOY will come in the morning! 
Happy New Year!
May you know and live in all of God's blessings today, tomorrow and forever.


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