Saturday, January 31, 2009

Published Again!

I've been published before, but this time, I couldn't be more excited. If some terrible tragedy occurred, and I could only have one magazine, hands down it would be Sew Somerset. That little slice of heaven makes my heart sing like no other. I actually left my house after 9 pm, on a weeknight with work the next day, a few weeks ago when a friend emailed me to tell me the latest edition was on the newsstands. I, of course, called the nearest Barnes & Noble to be sure they had my personal copy still there and that no one had beaten me to it. Sure enough, they did, and the goddess of art theft prevention on the other end of the phone promised to put a hold on it until I could get there to bring it home. She even offered to hold it a few days. I thanked her kindly but explained that even 30 minutes longer was not even an option. I was lucky I didn't get a speeding ticket on the way.
Now, I am happier than I can say to report that I got an email today telling me that Sew Somerset wants to do a feature article on my Scrappy Journal I submitted! I have to do some writing. I only sent in 200 words with my submission, and they are looking at about 800, but I will be honored to do it. And I'm feeling a whole lot better about missing out on those workshops I wanted to go to to learn more about making fabric journals. Apparently, I knew a little something on my own about putting some fabric, thread, and some other fun stuff together to make it funky, and not making it in to those classes forced me to further develop a style of my own which paid off.
I owe part of my creative thoughts to my fabulous "art daughter" Kelly who taught me to play with scraps of paper when I took a class from her locally which made me want to do the same with fabric. First paper, then a little fabric in my paper books, then mostly all fabric with a helping of Jane, and it flies on its own.
By the way, if you need or want a little inspiration, Kelly has lots. She is teaching online now, (Yes, really!) and you should check her classes out. Over 120 other people are sitting in class with her now. And if you are lucky enough to be in the Phoenix area, she will be here in person next weekend teaching her little heart out, and inspiring the masses.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Meanwhile, back in the studio...

I decided to photograph these inchies and call it a weekend. The hearts are on little quilts I made by cutting and weaving strips of fabric and sewing them down to an uphholstery substrate.

Then it was back to work on my fabric books I showed the covers for last week. This book is finished for now. I left space to journal later if I decide to keep it or for whomever else might get it. The other book is still waiting to be finished to the degree this one is.

What Do I Do With All My Papers?

Someone in the Collage Unleashed Yahoo group posted a question asking what people do with the papers they make using the ideas in Traci Bautista's book, Collage Unleashed. These are samples of what I did with mine. The first two are papers neatly measured and made into covers with undecorated paper inside. I just sewed down little doodads and transparencies I made using the pages in the back of the book provided for personal use. The next photo is the cover for the rest of the pages in the rest of the photos below it. I used random sizes and just sewed them in some heavy upholstery fabric after sewing down pieces of my doodling, paper I painted on in Traci's class, and random trims to the front.

Art Weekend

Almost the whole weekend, I have been in my studio and my sewing room working away on secrets and projects.

One project was a book of papers. Kelly Kilmer emailed me a while back asking if I wanted to participate in a paper swap, and while I was thinking about it, the deadline to sign up passed. So instead of getting grumpy like we all know I am fully capable of, I just set off to make my own. The idea was to include lots of different types of paper to make it funky. I bound it adding pieces made with pieces cut from a composition book. Some day, I might want to host a swap like this. I think it would be fun.

Another project is so secret, I can't post pictures until the items reach the recipients. I am participating in a valentine exchange. We had to decorate three boxes, fill them with goodies and include something hand made. I LOVE decorating boxes, so I had to participate. Those will be posted later.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

You can win this!


This could be yours for free. I am participating in an event called One World One Heart. It is designed to bring bloggers and readers together. Participating bloggers show an item they are giving away for free. Readers leave a comment and cross their fingers until Feb. 12 when a winner is chosen for each item. So, if you want to win this domino pendant, leave a comment, and make sure it attached to this post. Approximate size is 1" by 2" by 1/4", a large domino. If you do not have an active blog, you can still enter to win on this blog. If you do not have an active blog, please leave an email address, so I can contact you should you be the lucky winner. Good luck!
You can click on the logo if you want more information or to see the full list of people giving things away.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

All In A Thread Junkie's Day's Work

Today, Penney, my crazy art sister as I like to call her sometimes, came over to the studio, and we sewed together, kind of like two people who sit next to each other and paint or make jewelry. Except we sit at my sewing machines and talk and laugh and make things. This is a sneak peek at the two books I am working on now. I just started them yesterday and they are a lot of work, so they aren't done just yet. As I said to Penney today as we were working, "Ya know, it takes a lot more time to sew stuff down than it does to glue it." I will post more of them when I am done.
I realized after posting the last book that I completely forgot to photograph one of the spreads, but I can't go back and fix that now because that book in the mail. Drat!
Penney also helped me play with the image now at the top of my blog. Then I called Jeane and asked her how my boy Jim (also know as my #1 son-in-law) helped her with hers. Then I just started playing around and figured out a few more things. It is part of my thread stash. Call me a thread junkie. I don't care.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

For Your Consideration

I stole this from Karen Michel's blog. There is a link on this page, if you're interested in seeing it.
Feel free to join in, if you are so inclined.


I have been asked where I get my inspiration. Well, I hate to tell you, but often it comes in my sleep. I wake up knowing what I need to do. It is rarely the work of fastidious (Gosh, I hope that is a word.) study. I will admit to sticking with a project until I like it if something goes wrong, because I have that awful disease of not being able to give up on anything. I just keep trying something else until the project appeals to me. Sometimes it comes when I am awake, fully awake. I let things stew in my head, and stuff happens. My dad, a musician, used to talk about "the muse," and I hated when he said that, but I was too inexperienced to really know what that meant. I think I do now because sometimes I sit down with an idea and the things around me take over and it turns out completely different than I imagined it from the beginning. The other thing I will say is that I RARELY start off with a complete vision of what I am working on will look like in the end. I just get started and keep adding things until it looks done. I find that a lot of times what I need is right at my fingertips, and I love making things out of leftovers and pieces of fabric or whatnot that would normally get thrown away. I remember taking something to the trash can at the end of an Art Unraveled class and seeing what was in the trash. I became like a "dumpster diver" that day. The next day, I was showing a woman I met there my "treasures" when she gave me a funny look, and said, "I made that." That was pretty funny, but it became a page in a book I made later.
Moving right along, on the off chance anyone is still awake, I have made a list of blogs which includes places I go for inspiration sometimes when I hit a dry spot, artists, and friends, places that get me jumpin'. Maybe they will work for you, too.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Swap Fever

Okay, I admit it. I have the swap fever, for just about anything art related. I keep saying I am going to do other things, like maybe make just one of something, but I keep coming back. Right now, I am hostessing 5 different swaps and playing in others. Am I crazy? Here are my pages for an itty bitty 3x3 book of abc pages I am hostessing in one of my Yahoo! groups. We started it back in December and won't finish until early March, and I can hardly wait to see all of the pages. I am doing two letters, so I can get two sets of pages, and make one set into a book for my aunt who loves this kind of stuff. She used to be a librarian in an elementary school, so it will be even better than just seeing the art. I chose I for inchies and Q for quilties. The inchies I made out of metal and glued down to some leftover background paper I did for a background swap on another group. The quilties are like little victorian style crazy quilts. I am done with the I's and almost done with the Q's.
And then there are the puffy hearts for a swap someone else is hostessing. The photo shows the fronts of some of mine. I made three kinds and four of each, but they are all different in some way.I am trading some on the online group, some with Penney, and keeping one of each, so I will be able to display them all like a centerpiece. I got so stinking excited about hearts after seeing the In Love magazine from Somerset Studio that shows a round robin project, kind of like True Colors goes to valentine land.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Finally! And the Sew Scrappy Journal

Finally, I am back. The last post never got me up and running like I had planned. These are pictures of pages in a fabric book I made when I missed a fabric class online because it was canceled, and I missed one at Art Unraveled because I couldn't be in two places at once. I decided to see what I could do on my own with a helping of inspiration from lots of things I had seen around in various art forms. The end result is what I now call the Sew Scrappy Journal.

A little P.S. This journal ended up on the cover of a Sew Somerset magazine. I was overjoyed when I found out!