Thursday, September 3, 2015

September RAFA Meeting -- My Last until Spring

I had to feature this quilt first as it uses one of my mandalas in the center.  This quilt was by Val Schultz and was a "purple challenge".  I was particularly interested in the way she quilted it as she is a fabulous machine quilter (it is her business).  This was one of the 8-fold pieces.

You can see some of the quilting in this blowup of the piece.  

The theme for today seemed to be photographs on fabric.  This is one by Elaine which features the center of a hibiscus (a really pretty one).

This is Elaine showing another piece she had done -- this one a part of the Klimt challenge that her small group had.  I really like this one!

Liz also shared a piece done from a photo she took.  Jullie has been busy!!

A few months ago, Donna offered everyone the opportunity to take a plain white table cloth she had gotten from someone's estate (a very large group of them) and transform it into a garment.  Caris Burton was the first to get hers done and this is it.  She dyed her piece two different colors of brown and used a commercial pattern to construct it.

I haven't done anything with mine yet but have lots of time.  I did dye Janet's fabric for her.  She requested turquoise so I did half of her tablecloth (and it was HUGE) in plain turquoise and then half adding a bit of intense blue to the turquoise.  Both turned out really evenly dyed.  I used really warm water and let them sit for several hours instead of my usual hour (turquoise likes more time and a lot hotter bath).

Our very own Mari Wieser modelled it for us!

Donna showed this jacket which was made with mud cloth strips.  Beautiful job!!  She used every scrap and had a tote to match it as well!

Sarah T has been hosting a design challenge each month and last month I was not able to attend because of visitors.  They worked on stitching.  She does gorgeous needlepoint and this was her example.  It is about 8 inches square.

Janet R shared this piece that she begun in a class with Rosalie Dace who is a group favorite!  

Sue D also shared a couple of pieces that she had Julie print!!  She has been taking a year long photography course which sounded fantastic!!

Sue and Beth K had recently returned from visiting former RAFA members in Ft. Collins Colorado.  They all made these large totes to commemorate the visit.  I made several of these in a smaller size several years ago,

I  only will be doing a couple more days of dyeing as my trip to Hawaii is fast approaching (two weeks away) and I will be leaving for NC a couple of days after I get back.  So suitcases need to be packed and "stuff" organized for my NC trip.  At least the house is in fairly good order (including my sewing room which is a change).  I am working on the thread painting of my birds and hopefully will have at least a couple of those done before leaving as well.  I would like to hang the up down at the beach as they are local Kure Beach birds!





Saturday, August 29, 2015

Another Day of Creating Mandalas

This is a collage of six of the pieces that I did the other day.  I used sun yellow, golden yellow, strong orange, basic brown and a touch of grape to create these.  You never know what  you will get.  These all sat together and you can see how different they are.

This and the following three images were done the other day with some extra wide fabric I got from a supplier in Arkansas.  It was supposed to be PFD and I had excellent luck with the narrower version but even though the fabric feels the same, the colors are much more pastel.  I may try scrubbing it to see if I get better results although I kind of like these pastel pieces even though a lot of dye is wasted!








I like the more vibrant colors I got with these other pfd fabrics.  I had tested them the other day as I had no idea whether they were pfd or not.  Several of these are a sateen that I bought (not cheap) on speculation that it would dye well.  It didn't disappoint!

The rest of the pictures are from this same batch.  
















Last but not least, I finally finished two purses using some of my mono-printed fabric (using a heavy bottom weight fabric) and the pseudo suede that I bought with my sister last spring down in Wilmington.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Printing Your Own Fabrics and Making Whole Cloth Quilts from Your Own Images!!!

You may recognize this mandala from a previous posting.  I used it as an experiment in printing a repeating pattern. 


Here I grouped four copies together.

Then I collaged four of the combined blocks together and had it printed on cloth using an Epson 9900 so that this image is now 36 inches by 36 inches. It was an experiment.

I had a fantastic day at fellow RAFA member Julie Brandon's office located in her home.  She runs Red-dog Enterprises which is a printing service like Spoonflower only you get a much more individualized attention. Walking up to her house is a treat has beautiful landscaping including a pond with different colored water lilies.  Of course she did all the landscaping herself as she is a talented designer in her own right!  Together we printed six yards of fabric with my images from my marbling days, mandalas and some bird pictures I have taken.   I have been meaning to do this forever and it was soooo much fun!!  Being able to take  your own images and alter the colors, saturation and size is amazing.  I had several marbled pieces that I had done a few  years ago that I have not used because I really liked them and didn't want to cut them up!  They look even better printed and enlarged!!

This had always been one of my favorite images I had marbled.  The original is below and is only 18 x about 24 inches while this one  is 36 inches x 44 inches!

Of course it is turned above!  I really think the copies look better than the original!  The color is certainly true!

This is another one that I had blown up to the large size.  There is so much detail in these marbled pieces, the larger size showcases it better.  

We filled up the whole 36 inch x 44 inch area with images.  Above is one of a Tri-colored Heron which is about 14 x 28 inches.

Here is a picture of a great egret which is 36 inches high and we inserted three of the mandalas on the side.  I have already got some threads together to start the machine quilting which will take courage but I can always print another image if I screw it up -- now how freeing is that!

Here is another copy of my favorite marbled fabric and a Little Green Heron.  You can see how much you can get on a yard of fabric.  


Of course, then I had to come home and look through all my images for my next bunch!!  I think maybe some of my New Zealand pictures....  I think my bird images will do double duty as I can take tracings of these larger images and maybe also draft them into pieced quilts.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

A Break from Dyeing -- Visitors to Rochester!!

We had visitors from Florida up for a few days to fulfill some items on their bucket list -- the biggest of which was a visit to Niagara Falls.  We filled their days pretty well and we were all pretty exhausted by the end of the visit!!

This is an activity we did the first day which was a ride down the Erie Canal and experiencing one of the locks.  Even though it looks like the water in front is filling up the locks, it is really coming up from below and this is just a "leak".  Where that white line is on the wall is how high the water eventually gets!  We also took the up to visit a local Webster place -- where the Irondequoit Bay joins Lake Ontario.  There is a nice stone pier and lots of boat traffic.  

The next day we headed down to Corning NY to visit the Corning Museum of Glass (CMOG).  Warren and I frequently would visit when we were up here in the winters.  This was the first time we have gone during the tourist season!  (A side note is that our daughter works for Corning down in NC.)  What a difference to be there in the tourist season!!!  Lots and lots of demonstrations and a whole new wing with contemporary glass art.  It was fantastic!  This is the ongoing glass show in the big auditorium.  Here a glass blower is adding a dragonfiy to the handle of a pitcher he has just completed.  I wouldn't mind having this pitcher!!  We also saw shows on glass fibers used for telecommunication and on breaking the different kinds of glass as well as the more traditional flame glass.  The contemporary art was a wonderful addition.  Of course the shops at CMOG are to die for!!  It is like an exhibit of contemporary glass as well!!

 This was entitled Leaves and was different from all the different angles of looking at it.






The black piece is actually a mile of black beads made into a large vessel like structure.





We took the long way home from Corning and stopped at one of my favorite places -- Montour Falls.  You can see how big this is from seeing the person at the fence level.  I get such a kick out of this falls as it seeming sits between two houses and the noise must be something when there is more water falling.  In fact it falls into a river that is behind these structures.

The next (very very hot and humid) day, we headed west to Niagara Falls USA and then Canada.  This is of course the view from the US side.  You can see the Canadian falls in the distance.  

Our first order of business was to take a ride on the Maid of the Mist -- an absolute must do for any visitor to Niagara Falls.  Here you can see it below  under the rainbow created by the falls.  It gets amazingly close to the falls and you get VERY wet!

This is a closeup of the boat.  We stood on the bottom deck at the front.  The pictures I took on the boat have too many water spots to show!!

Here are friends with hair slightly the worst for the trip on the Maid!!  They were great guests!!

 This is the view of the American Falls from the boat.


We next went over to the Canadian side.  As there was no parking available anywhere there (unlike many of our other visits), we let off our guests to see the view from this side and we headed to a side street to wait before picking them up and heading to our next destination which was the scenic overlook of the whirlpool in the Niagara Gorge.  It is the southern end of where the Jet Boat that my dh and my friend took later.  I was surprised by how blue/aqua the water was.  There is a gondola that rides over this but we didn't take that as it was from the American side.

This shows the gondola.

We then headed to Niagara-on-the-Lake where we ate lunch and then headed to the Jet Boat ride which Vicki and Warren were going to take. I had no desire to get soaking wet and it had somewhat scared me the only time I have taken it!!  This was the boat they went out on.  Confused the heck out of me when they came back on a lavender boat!!!  I was wildly checking my pictures to make sure they had been on an orange boat!!

They were posing here for the obligatory tourist pictures.

This was a great picture of my husband with my friend Vicki sitting next to him as they headed out on the boat!!

We were exhausted after the day and arrived home about 12 hours after we left.  The next day we just declared a day of rest before they headed to the second half of their trip!!

And now back to dyeing and getting ready for my upcoming trip to Hawaii!!
I have the fabric sitting in the soda ash solution.  I had tested some mystery fabric strips in a recent batch (pictures later) and found they were all pfd so have a BIG pile of ironed and folded fabric sitting in that solution!!  Now to start coming up with some design ideas!!  Hopefully I will get with Julie this week or the next to put some images on fabric -- something I have been meaning to do for some time -- more on that in subsequent blogs as well!!!!

Friday, August 7, 2015

August RAFA Meeting - Post QBL

Between Caren Betlinski and Janet R, there were so many beautiful pieces that they did in their classes with Katie Pasquini-Masopust and Cynthia Corbin, I decided to show them primarily as collages!  This was from the Katie class which was on working in series (which basically seemed to be the same for Cynthia's class!).  You had to bring in an  inspiration piece and then work from there.  The first picture is the inspiration piece and Caren developed closer and closer views of the City of Rochester picture through her series.  The last one in the series she didn't want photographed and was an even closer view and will have much of her famous thread painting!  She is a WONDERFUL artist!!

This was her series from the Cynthia Class.

This is a larger view of one of her final pieces from that class.  Beautiful colors and composition!

Again, this was her final piece form the class and I loved it as well!!


 Anne Fischer shared a couple of her beautiful felted vests.  They are just stunning in person!!  She has been receiving a lot of recognition for her work.


This is the back of the vest.

I really loved this onne and all the earthtones.  Each vest she does is more beautiful than the last one!!

Janet R was also in the Katie and Cynthia classes.  This was her series from the first class.  She brought a very limited pallette with her this time with mostly darks, blacks and grays.

This was the beginning of her series from the Cynthia class.  The final piece is pictured next (the collage just wouldn't work with the final piece in it).

Loved this piece as well!!  Just the right amount of green to perk it up!

One of the ladies (whose name I missed) did this wonderful scrap quilt from her children's clothing.  It has a lot of denim in it and is very heavy.  I have done this pattern and it is a great use for strips!

Another of our felters did these two wonderful textural scarves.  I wish I had the hands to do  this!!  I just love the work these ladies do!

Last but not least, another of our indigo dyers from last week!  I love this t-shirt!  It was double dipped.

There were a lot more pieces but people were moving pretty fast with holding things up so I missed quite a bit!  It was a great meeting as they always are after QBL.