Monday, October 26, 2020

On My Design Wall

This is what I have been working on, and it is finally time for it to come off the design wall, onto the table for some finishing touches, then under the needle for quilting. It will finish to 23" x 52". The reference photo is from the area called Cinque Terre in Italy, a highly recognized tourist location.

On the design wall

Source photograph

It is necessary to view the piece on the wall to make design decisions, but then moving the work to the table makes doing some of the actual placement easier. Elizabeth is giving it a close inspection after I have moved pins out of her way.

Choosing a backing
More of the story later.


Saturday, October 24, 2020

Leaf Gathering at End of October

 Beautiful leaves are so hard to resist when I walk in my neighborhood. It is amazing what a variety of trees there are.  Meanwhile, the cats thoroughly enjoy having the windows open so they can nap in the window sill. Tarbaby prefers the quilt up against the pillows. 

Rahrah and Elizabeth in windows, Tarbaby on bed.
What a surprise I found in my flowerbed! The zinnias I planted in the spring have grown waist high without any sign of blooms. But here in October some seem to be putting on flowers. 
Zinnias finally blooming in October
This leaf is quite unusual and I need to find out what kind of tree it is from. The veins are growing from center down to center again, instead of out toward the edge.
Front of leaves

Back of same leaves

Chinese Tallow leaves are among my favorites; sorry to learn that they are a non-native species and are harmful to our native trees. These are often called popcorn trees because of the white berries they produce that remind us of popcorn.

Front of Chinese Tallow leaves

Back of Chinese Tallow leaves

Thursday, October 15, 2020

Flying Fish and Morning Walks

Flying Fish: Studio Art Quilt Associates (SAQA) is a fiber art organization I belong to. Their next conference will be in Florida and they put out a call for 250 donated fish or sea creatures of any kind, flat or stuffed, no larger than 12". So this was a fun way to spend my day. These guys are in the mail to Karol Kusmaul for the conference. They are photographed on green fabric but are free-flying. They won't be returned to the artist but will be re-purposed in some way. It will be interesting to see what will become of these.

I have waited and watered all summer, hoping for beautiful hydrangea blooms. Finally, in October, here is what I found. 
But you can count on coleus to multiply and even go to seed if you let it. 
There is very little else blooming right now. There is one lone blossom on the azaleas along my front sidewalk. I hope it is a sign of what is to come in the spring of 2021.
This tiny vine was growing along the edge of my street in several places. It is shaped like a Morning Glory but much smaller.
When there aren't many flowers blooming, Monkey Grass puts on a show with purple spikey blossoms. I love Pampas Grass if it is in someone else's yard. The fronds are very sharp and will scratch or cut your arms and legs. I will enjoy walking past this healthy plant.

Tuesday, October 6, 2020

Southern Fiber Artist Exchange

 I enjoy creating 8" x 10" art quilts to exchange with other members of my fiber art group. We make one little quilt a month for someone and we receive one from another member. This is the second round in this exchange.

Jackie Watkins knows my fondness for cats and she made this one for me. She called it "What's One More?" and I named it Gray Girl because it seemed a good companion to Rahrah.

I made this piece for Charlotte Timmons, using some leaves I gathered from my yard. Here is a description of the technique I used.
I gathered leaves, attached them to the silk boucle fabric with Golden gel medium (front and back of leaves). When dry, I layered canvas for backing and ecru tulle over the entire piece and added free-motion quilting stitches to the leaves in matching thread colors. The background was FM-quilted with ecru colored silk thread. The edge is finished with a facing.
I look forward to making and receiving more little treasures!

How Can It Be October?

But it is. The night temperatures are finally matching the calendar. The national news of COVID-19 and racial unrest and conflicting TV reports are fighting to take away the joy we can experience from this season. I have read some inspiring words and should repeat them here. But I'll let these leaves speak for me.

 I found some monster mushrooms in my yard one morning--as big as my shoes. The next morning they had been partially eaten by some night creature. Maybe the turtles were back?

The persimmon trees are dropping ripe fruit, making walking on the driveway a messy business. I can't reach any in the trees, and the fallen ones are too ripe and bruised. The leaves are pretty, though!