Monday, January 31, 2011

This and That

I'm sitting in my living room, listening to the evening news as I use my computer, and I realize that I've heard the word "snow" around thirty times in the last two minutes. Yes, we are buried, and yes, we have 2 new storms coming this week. The snow is piled about as high as a snowthrower can throw it, and snowplows have created mountains on every street corner, making it impossible to see oncoming traffic at intersections. Heavy accumulation is expected and the news media is doing a great job of intensifying everyone's anxiety!
So, I went through my photos, looking for something non-snow related to share!
This is a quilt I bought several years ago from a fellow member of an arts and craft society I used to belong to. The quilt artist's name is Diane Johnson and she used silky fabrics from a book of decorator fabric samples. It hangs on the wall directly opposite our front door and I love seeing when I come into the house. The colors perfectly reflect colors in our living room, so there's a nice flow.
I've been busy organizing my fabric
and my notions in my sewing room!
No, seriously, these photos are from Mood in New York City,
yes, the same Mood we see contestants go to on Project Runway.
We went there a couple of years ago when visiting our daughter.
I was so overwhelmed I didn't buy anything!
And, finally, I've been revisiting some fabrics I painted last year
and I'm readying them to create some fabulous landscapes!!

Tomorrow is my surgery and I'll be back in a couple of days!

Have a great week!

Friday, January 28, 2011

The Joy of Painting

Thank you, friends, for all of your kind comments on my last post. I'm going to have surgery this coming week to remove my salivary gland, and that should take care of my poor sore mouth!! But I really appreciated your helpful, concerned and sometimes funny comments!

Today I decided to do something soothing and creative. I've been going through my fabrics, concentrating on commercial prints which I feel can add some texture to the landscapes I now have in progress.
I have many batiks like this which are very beautiful. I like to take pieces of these fabrics and overpaint them with Setacolor transparent paints, giving them new blended colors, yet retaining the markings of the original design. When I painted this fabric, I came out with this result:
Of course, the way I cut up fabrics, any tiny corner could be valuable to my latest project.
This over-painted piece holds many treasures:
I find just the right section to use by cutting a window from a piece of paper to make a view finder.

I have a few pieces drying on my porch table, out of the reach of certain furry creatures!
Some have salt to disperse the paints and the colors always dry lighter than they look right after painting.
So, it will be fun to see how they look in the morning!

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Down in the Mouth

That's me on the right!
In case you're wondering where I've been, I've been dealing with not one, but two separate oral problems. The first took place a few weeks ago, due to what was thought to be a failed root canal. After the endodontist/oral surgeon had cut open my gum and performed 3/4 of the surgery to correct it, he determined that it indeed was not a failed root canal and the tooth would have to be extracted. Of course, he could not do the extraction, so he sent me off with a huge bill and a very sore gum. 
Before I could make an appointment with a regular oral surgeon, the opposite side of my mouth became severely inflamed with an infected salivary gland. (there is a stone inside that needs to be removed) Yesterday I was seen by two doctors, and I have a consultation with an oral surgeon tomorrow. That is where I stand right now, with a huge swelling in my lower jaw, on antibiotics and pain meds, unable to eat much and just a bit miserable. 
I know this doesn't have anything to do with Hartfelt Fabric Art, but it feels good to vent! Sympathetic comments are welcomed and encouraged!!
I'm off to take my Percoset. Perhaps in the altered state of mind it puts me in, I'll create some lovely artwork. Or sleep. Or watch a movie.

I'll be back when I'm feeling better!

Hope you are having a great day!!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Everyday Life

I've been wanting so much to create something new to post on my blog, but I've been immersed in organizing, cleaning and shoveling snow! My husband is away on business, and this is the week when Mother Nature decided to send us two snow storms! It snowed last night and today, and this is what greeted me when I went out to shovel:
Front Walkway

Now, I just know this is due to the fact that, in my last post, I boasted about my superior strength after a year of working with weights at the gym! That will teach me!!

Inside, some of us are cuddling for warmth.

And, while cleaning, I came across this little stuffed kitty that my mother used to keep on her bed. 
She named her "Betsy". It is stretched out on a beautiful afghan my mom made for me years ago.
Although it has been 3 1/2 years since my parents passed away,
I still miss them terribly.

And, finally, I'm adding a photo of some roses, past their prime, but still beautiful.
The doily was made by my grandmother, probably 50 years ago!

As I said, just the stuff of everyday life!
And, by the way, that is the name of one of my favorite blogs,
written by Lyn who lives in England (West Yorkshire)
and who is a truly wonderful photographer!

I'm working on a small journal quilt and hope to show it to you tomorrow!

Stay warm and enjoy your weekend!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

New England Blizzard

I think I've said this before, but I'll say it again:
I love New England!!
Even in the midst of a 24 hour blizzard, I can honestly say,
I love every season in this beautiful part of the country!
And, although this scene greeted me when I opened the garage door,
and I went out twice to shovel out a place for Bill to park when he got home
from work, I still loved the excitement of the falling snow, 
the kids on our street building snowmen, and the beauty of the frosted trees.
When I had nearly finished shoveling the driveway, thankful that I've
been lifting weights at the gym for a year, I looked up at my
studio window and thought, 'now to go in and create something'!

But when I got inside, made a cup of cocoa, and saw these two 
munchkins sacked out in their beds
(little Rosie in the big bed, bigger Angus in the little bed)
I decided to sit and relax!!
Creativity will have to wait for another day!

Hope your day is going well!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

New Friends and an Award

Photograph by Anne Butera, used with permission
In November, while participating in Art Every Day Month, I discovered some wonderful new blogs and made some new friends. Anne, of My Giant Strawberry, and her mom Sharon, of Sallymomsprouts, were two I was especially taken with. They have an interesting story to tell and  each has her own blog. They are in the process of fulfilling their lifelong dream of starting a small farm in rural Wisconsin, and their blogs are filled with photos of their home in the country and the beautiful scenery around them. I love their stories of discovering a new community and a simpler way of life. There is a quiet sincerity about these blogs that I find refreshing. Take a peek and you'll also see some beautiful photography, lovely handwork, painting and a great deal of creativity!

Yesterday I was given the Stylish Blogger Award by the Anne mentioned above. I usually don't accept awards, but I'm thankful for it and, instead of passing it along to specific people, I invite anyone who wants to participate to play along. I'm to tell you 7 things about myself.
Here goes....

1.  I love flowers, birds and beautiful sunsets. (Doesn't everyone?)
2.  Even as a child, I always loved to draw and paint.
3.  I first used a sewing machine when I was 19 years old.
4.  I don't like to cook, but I've been "famous" for my lasagna for many years!
5.  I'm a terrible athlete, but I met my husband at a skating rink.
6.  In my lifetime I've been a cashier, draftsman, teacher, arts and crafts instructor, tutor, picture framer and art consultant.
7.  I'm a real procrastinator, but always manage to come through when there's a deadline!

I challenge anyone who reads this to name 7 things about yourself on your blog. It's always interesting to learn more about the people whose blogs we read, and do share an occasional photo of yourself!!

Finally, here is a photo of Angus and Rosie, all tangled up in their bed. My husband Bill aptly named it "Cat Soup"!

Have a wonderful week!

Monday, January 3, 2011

What I Did On My Winter Vacation

Over the holidays, besides taking a wonderful trip to Canada with my family, I spent some time working on a lap quilt/wall hanging  for my daughter Kate. I should begin by saying that I am not a quilter. Every quilt I've attempted in the course of  my life has been off-kilter or has remained unfinished. Wait, I did make a few little quilts for Project Linus, and a few for nieces and nephews, but those had more personality than precision. So for me to attempt a quilt, with matching corners and an actual pattern, is a real act of love on my part, and I told my daughter that. (She laughed.)
Of course it isn't finished. I totally underestimated how long it takes to make something like this, but I did have a completed square to show her. I'm hoping to have it done in time for her March birthday.
The name of the quilt is Bento Box, which I thought was appropriate since Kate loves Japanese food.
Also, these are her favorite colors.
It's created by making a block of Courtyard Steps, then splitting that into four sections and mixing up the sections to make new squares. Already I've messed up a bit, since the longer outer strips should be
outside of the longer inner strips, but I didn't find that out until I had several squares made and I was not  about to rip out stitches. We are not quilt experts in my family and I think it will be fine!
Tomorrow I'll be meeting with friends who are quilt experts and I hope they will help me determine whether I should put sashing between the squares.

Already I'm starting the year with a new adventure!
Will I persevere?
For Kate, definitely.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

A New Year

A clean slate,
a new beginning,
a fresh start -
Wishing you a year of exciting possibilities
and great fulfillment!

Happy 2011!