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 yarns. Show all posts
Showing posts with label yarns. Show all posts

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Sunny Delight

The fog lifted, the rain stopped, and the sun was out for a few hours yesterday!  Yay! Although it didn't reach 70 degrees, it was warm enough to sit outside on the patio, absorbing that sunny delight, especially when I saw what the day's mail contained.  Yarn and the latest issue of Quilting Arts magazine! Now that's a tri-fecta of sunny delights! Love!
The yarn is called "Summer Meadow" -- isn't it yummy?!  Scarves... free motion couching... just a little bit of heaven in a skein of yarn!  Does anyone else feel that way?

I unwound it into several balls for future creations in the sewing studio.

And... one more! Appropriately, it is named "Sunrise".  I am in love!
Delightful! Sun-shiny goodness in a luxurious beaded rayon.  This makes me excited about the possibilities just looking at that gorgeous color!  Both are yarns from Blue Heron Yarns.  Although they aren't as 'thick' (2mm) as what works best in my #43 free motion foot, they will still be alot of fun to play with!  I'm anxious to give them a 'test drive!'
Micah thought the yarns were pretty, too... although she found her delight lying in the shade! (and waiting for the postman!)
 And my neglected little garden beds... it was still too muddy to work in them... but someday!  Soon, please?

And I enjoyed the delightful sunniness of fresh lilac blooms... and the fragrance, too!  So now a full day back in the studio... playing with yarn and some silk dyed fabric I made last summer.  And I finished a little art quilt, "Live a Sunday Life" yesterday afternoon.  More on that tomorrow!
EnJOY and blessings on your day.
XXOO
Leslie

Sunday, January 23, 2011

FABULOUS FIBER SCARF

Oh gosh...I really hope you will want to try this project, if you haven't already!!  These scarves are not only beautiful, and one-of-a-kind, but functional, AND a great way for anyone who is new to free motion, to get the 'feel' of stitching without alot of other distracting issues such as tension.  And one gets to play with texture, color, and 'found items' such as laces, ribbons, threads, cording, and more. I have made well over a 100 of these! Currently they are for sale at Gallery 16 in Great Falls.  You can expect the supplies to cost you around $25.00, give or take.  When I add that cost, it means I charge a minimum of $75.00.   The "Fiber-Art Scarf" class I teach is popular for a good reason.  We hope to have at least several of these classes scheduled at the BERNINA SILVER THIMBLE in Great Falls, in March, April and May!  Stay tuned, or email me for further details. 

Easy and fun; the hardest part is in knowing when to stop!  Classes are popular prior to Christmas and then again for Mother's Day and Easter, but this is an easy project for any occasion... easily FINISHED in less than 3-4 hours!  *note: hand beading will take you an extra 1-2 hours depending on how handy you are with beads and a needle! 

The items in the first picture below are the basic stabilizers & supplies  you need to get started:
  • 505 temporary adhesive spray
  • Aqua Film topping
  • Aqua Bond water soluble adhesive stabilizer
  • Polyester thread is recommended for strength and durability, but you can use cottons and metallics as well
  • Aqua Bond is available at the shop at Quilting Arts or ask your local quilt shop or machine dealer to get it in stock for you.
  • 90/14 microtex, topstitch needle
  • free motion foot of your choice
  • ribbons, lace, cording, yarns, bits and pieces of fabric (batiks are great because they don't fray as much
  • Set your machine up for free motion by lowering your feed dogs, and inserting a FRESH  90/14 microtex or topstitch needle.
  • LOWER your top tension as needed
  •  Expect to use two new needles... don't hesitate to change it if you start having thread breakage. This project is hard on needles as those thicker fibers will dull the tip rather quickly.  Remember... you're going through stabilizer, glue, and thick yarns, ribbons, etc... don't be stingy with that needle... it's not worth it!
  • roll up the scarf as you are 'quilting' it, to make it easier to handle (see pics below)
  • don't forget to check your stitching from the back... just in case you really have serious tension issues!  And sometimes it's easier to look at the back to see where you may have missed some stitching, due to the reflection and shiny surface stabilizer on the top...
  • be sure to 'intertwine' all the stitches, making big and small circles all over the scarf surface, making sure they overlap each other.  You can choose circles, or you can choose straight lines... or a bit of both!  Be sure to catch the edges of the scarf in the stitching so that everything is JOINED together.
How about laying a bit of Razzle Dazzle thread in with the ribbons and yarns... fabulous sparkle, and it adds that 'crisp' factor I adore... but choose and play with anything that strikes your fancy!

Don't hesitate to throw on some of those metallic threads, and I do mean "throw!"  They can be quite dazzling, and easy to sew over as they are just trapped in between the two stabilizers... try it by just unravelling the thread from the cone on the top of your yarns and threads before laying on the top aqua film topping... letting them fall where they may! 
HINT: Be sure to wind the bobbin with the same thread that you have in your top, as both sides of the scarf will show!

"Santa Fe" Hand-dyed yarns
Luscious hand-dyed yarns make up this scarf in it's entirety... with the exception of adding a bit of silver Razzle Dazzle in with the gorgeous southwest colors!  Simplicity... AND... what a blank slate to add a few creative 'thread buttons' with silver metallic thread!!!
Beads... these are attached by hand, and you can expect the beading to take you at least an hour, unless you are an experienced beader.  I can do one in less than an hour, but in the beginning, it took me about two hours to complete both ends of the scarf with beading.  They are optional... your scarf will be quite beautiful without them too!

I use only beading thread for it's  strength, and a long, slim, beading needle is the absolute perfect TOOL for attaching beads.
 Silver metallic thread buttons... I love adding them!
Don't think you need to do only straight lines... making lines wavy... angular, and 'plaid-like' is terrific fun!

I've used chenille, rayon ribbons, wool yarns, and synthetic laces... just keep in mind that sometimes the "fuzzier" fibers (like wool) have a tendency to attract the glue, and that makes it much harder to wash out.
Be sure to soak your scarf in lukewarm water for at least 20 minutes or even overnight, but before leaving it to soak, rinse the glue that starts to fall away, so that it doesn't reattach to the fibers while the scarf sits in the water.... and rinse, rinse, and RINSE... making sure all that  glue is completely washed out!  You could also sing the song "I'm gonna wash that man glue right out of my hair - scarf!"  See the pictures of the scarves the girls made in the scarf class... my blog entry on here: DECEMBER 7, 2010


Roll up the ends as you work... and don't forget you can turn the scarf over and work from the 'plain paper' side, which really helps visibility, and to see where you may need to place stitches... and there is no light reflecting from the topping, so it sometimes makes it easier to see!
 I like to secure the ends with 4-5 rows of straight stitching, to give strength and a bit of stability so beads can be secured at the scarf ends if desired. This is the picture to the right.

The beads on the blue/green scarf below were "looped" and secured in between the loops.  You can also choose to just "dangle" them, in single fringes... and use a small bead as a knot at the end, and bring your thread and needle back up through the row of beads, to continue adding each line of beaded fringe.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Wool Flower Beaded JEAN Jacket

Flower detail of the back of the jacket
My most favorite Jean Jacket!

I LOVE to embellish clothing!  And I've found some products I really enJOY using.  Art Glitter, namely.  What a great product.  Durable, pretty and easy to use.  This jacket has been washed LOTS as I've enjoyed wearing it LOTS!

This is the front of the jacket, where I've added more flower motifs using wool roving and my Needle Punch Accessory Kit for my Bernina.

It's so easy to use...
1. Insert the felting needles (there are five of them all attached together in a circle on one needle shaft)
2. Replace the stitch plate with the special one for needle felting (including in the accessory kit); it has a large round hole to accommodate the  five needles).
3. Remove your bobbin case!  Please see complete package directions if you have this accessory item.
4. Ensure you're all in 'alignment' by hand-wheeling your needles and making sure they go straight down with bending or snagging.
5. Attach the special protective needle felting foot (included in kit)
6. Place your roving and assorted yarns under your foot (I used a shiny one here too - you can see it in the picture above) Most excellent!
7. Start needle punching by pressing the pressor foot.  Go slowly at first, making sure the needles are all 'in sync' with each other.  I needle felt first the front, and then the back, and then back to the front.  Three times is all you need!  Please contact your Bernina dealer for more detailed information, or visit the Bernina website here.


More embellishment opportunities await!  Such as the jacket COLLAR and CUFFS! I hope you are remembering... YOU are the CEO of that sewing studio, quilt room, kitchen table.... you get my meaning, right?"Creative Embellishment OFFICER!" Yes you are! 


Bobbin drawing is easy to accomplish when you can turn the cuff easily to the wrong side... and start stitching.  Notice in this detail that I used a pretty thread for my top... as it's likely it could show at some point... if I felt like rolling up my cuffs... and of course... just for fun!






Pictured is the top front of the jacket, with one main flower, beading, couching and bobbin play... and then the little added extra detail of bobbin play stitching line on the collar!

The picture below shows wool roving as the base of the flower.  Once once that is done, you have a "road map" on which you can work in your couching, bobbin play, beading, (some of it has been done by hand!) and other threadplay as you will!  I like how some of the bobbin play stitches "go off" the design - like on the leaves.  Not perfect... just quite... EXCELLENT!
Top of jacket flower detail
Here's another pic of the jacket BACK below.  First, I proceeded with the Bernina #43 free motion couching foot to make the beautiful hand-dyed yarn into the flowers shapes (very basic 'wavy' shape!)... then added the beading (by machine free motion style of course!)  to 'join' them.  The last thing I did was add the Art Glitter glue, loving that fine point metal tip, and then let it dry, heat set for permanency.    I did add one bead into the center flower on the back, by hand as it is too large to attach by machine free motion.
Because I have really enjoyed wearing this jacket, when it comes to washing it, I took extra care to button it up and turn it inside out, to protect the beading from bashing against a metal washer tub and dryer.  I have washed it on "normal" and also dried it on "normal" settings.... numerous times over the past three years.
Art Glitter is a great product, I think!  High quality, very reflective glitter.  The website is highlighted above.  Check it out, or ask your quilt store to get in stock for you.  Love the fine point tip that comes with the set, and it's a fast drying, heat set type of glitter.  and of course, it's washable!
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