Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Just a Few Old Favorites - Another Primer on Telling Egrets from Ibis!

There is a flock of Ibis that regularly hang out around the neighborhood digging in the dirt for food.  There were 8 across the street in the empty lot yesterday and they were all adults although you could see just a teense of tan on one of them (they are brown as juveniles).  I get a kick out of seeing them from my porch!  Note the curved pink beak and legs.

The weather has finally become a little sunny so I managed to get out for a short walk yesterday.  Haven't seen much yet except for my regularly visiting shorebirds.  

A preening Great Egret down at Ft. Fisher.  He has a bright yellow beak and dark legs and is pretty tall.

A Snowy Egret who is perpetually  hanging out in this one spot.  I don't see as many of the Snowy Egrets as I do the Greats. The Snowies are about the same size as the Ibis and have a dark beak with just a little yellow.  Their legs are also dark with a yellow stripe.  They are smaller than the Great Egrets.

There were a couple of juvenile Royal Terns hanging out by the boat ramp yesterday as well.  I don't see them as often as the Forster's Terns.

Driving through Carolina Beach State Park, I spotted this Osprey (again, I think a juvenile) off in the distance.  Another osprey was flying around.

This is my winter project for this  year.  I like to have something to do by hand at night when in front of the boob tube.  Two years ago I hand quilted the Baltimore Album quilt so this year I thought I would try this queen sized wholecloth quilt.  Not sure it will get finished this winter but I will try!!  I find hand quilting very soothing.  I use a pair of pliers to pull the needles through.  It is a purchased printed pattern and hopefully the blue will wash out!!

Sunday, September 28, 2014

My Fabric Dyeing Class!

I had been asked to have a dyeing workshop for the Quilters By the Sea group I haven't taught this class in a number of  years but did manage to find the old directions on a cd.  I decided to do my old standard gradation with fat quarters and then just have a play day for the ten members who signed up (we had to cut off there as we were doing this at Miranda's house).  Pat Mattison helped me with the ladies as well as the take down and clean up.  Miranda did a Herculean effort getting everything set up and flawless although she didn't get to do any dyeing.  She did take lots of pictures and I have included a couple of these.  Not only did I forget my sd card in the camera (Miranda lent me one) but I just didn't remember to take pictures as we went along -- too busy I guess trying to remember everything I wanted to tell them!!

All the ladies are gathered around their tables.  This technique using plastic bags and a dishpan to hold them takes up very little room.  We had a bucket of clean water at each table and later a bucket of soda ash solution at each table.

The ladies were each taking a quarter cup of the different dye solutions (5% solutions) to dye their 8 step gradation.  This meant the strongest was about 6% and halved at each step.  Loose instructions for this are on one of my other blog posts.

You can see the fabrics "curing" in their baggies during our play time.  We had lots of dye to play with and I had brought extra pfd fabric as well.

Doing the preliminary rinses to get out the soda ash before washing in the washing machine at home.

This looked like a colorful bucket!!

This was Betty V's gradation of a greyish green.  It should have been more green but I think because of the chillly temps, the tangerine didn't take as well as it should have.

You can see here Karen's finished pieces.  The ones on the right are a gradation of Intense Blue.  I had a lot of white on white snowflake fabric which I shared with the class and I love how Karen's pieces turned out (pictures taken from a note she sent me)!

Betty got some nice solids (she had wanted solids).  It shows that you can get some really nice solids using low water immersion dyeing if you squish and message the baggies enough! I took these pictures from Betty's Facebook posting!

Some just sprinkled the liquid dyes on folded pieces of fabric (note the snowflakes).

Scrunched with yellow and blue dyes.  This is the back side of one of the snowflake fabrics.

This is the back side of a snowflake fabric.

This is the front side of the above piece!

Another back side of one of the snowflake fabrics.  Got some nice deep colors with this one!!

There was a lot of dye left so I took the opportunity to throw in a couple of tshirts which I will post later when they finish drying.  Don't think they are my best efforts but they are okay!

All in all, it was a fun day and Miranda's location is gorgeous and the weather behaved for the day as well.  Her garage was a perfect setting with plenty of room!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

September Meeting of Quilter's By the Sea Guild

This isn't the greatest picture but this is a beach scene that will be part of a 7-piece commision that Pat Mattison has accepted!  She uses all sorts of fabrics and many are shiny silks so it is hard to really see all the wonderful detail because of the reflection.  She is one talented lady!!

There were quite a few quilts made to be donated to the local hospital neo-natal unit.  This and the next quilt were two of these.

Pat Sloan (Pat Sloan's Website) was our workshop leader and speaker at the guild meeting on Monday.  I didn't take the workshop as I had just gotten to NC.  It sounded like everyone had a great time and learned a lot even though it was not a complex technique.  She was certainly an excellent speaker and very entertaining!!  I could identify with a lot of what she said.

Thiese were the blocks that people made in class. As part of the class, Pat gave each participant the book containing the quilt for which this is the center.

This is Pat's sample quilt which shows the center block.  She has a wonderful color palette which I enjoyed a lot.

Pat designs a lot of applique quilts (for which she has published patterns) and this was one.

Another of Pat's quilts in which she uses a palette of fabrics from her designs for Moda.

This last quilt is actually a picture of one of her slides!!  I did like all the houses though!

I would highly recommend her as a speaker at any guild meeting.  She lives in Northern Virginia and has lectured all over the world.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Just a Little Dyeing

In preparing for a dyeing class I am teaching down in NC next week, I found some old dyes (I have no idea how old) in some bottles but still in powder form.  I also found still more tshirts that I didn't know I had so....This tshirt and the second tshirt were inspired by the tunic that Anne Fischer wore to RAFA last week.  I just kind of accordion folded it but on a diagonal.  I then twisted it into a spiral and set the ice on top of it and poured yellow high concentration sun yellow and then spread some powdered strong orange and basic brown on top.  I was very pleased with the results.

This was the second of the tshirts and had a little better coverage of dyes.  I will enjoy wearing these.  If I had time, I would probably do some more, but.... am trying to get packed up to head south.

This is the first of two pictures of different parts of one piece.  Again, I used these leftover dyes, pouring the yellow dye and then throwing on some blue (not sure which one!!).  This was a piece of fabric left over from a bolt I had. I had wanted to dye just some plain yellows as I have used up most of mine so there is also six yards of varying shades of  yellows.

A Black-capped Chicadee enjoying a warm day last week.  It is COLD here now and supposed to get colder by weekend.

Friday, September 12, 2014

GVQC September Meeting

 Yesterday was the first meeting of the 2014-2015 quilt year at GVQC.  As I have been trying to de-stash, yesterday was a sale day for me.  So after having a mammogram at 6:45 in the morning (serves me right for calling so late for an appt.!), I lugged several boxes filled with fabric and books.  It was very busy and I did well.  I gave the leftovers to our Comfort Quilt group and the Community Quilting Bee.  

A perfect segue into the picture as there was an abundance of quillts for the Comfort Quilt project -- I think she said 47 were turned in this month.  This picture and the next two are collages of as many of the quilts as I could get from the back of the room as they were of course moving fast across the stage!

This was a nice "disappearing nine-patch".

Another closeup of a simple but very effective quilt layout.

As usual, there were many beautiful quilts in show and tell but this was one of my favorites by Lynn MacDonald.  This is a little tricky to figure out the pattern but think it is one of those that kind of uses a pattern in the sashing to create the look.  Will have to look at some more!

I was at quite a disadvantage for taking pictures as I was standing in the "show and tell" line.  This was an absolutely stunning dahlia quilt by one of our newer members. 
Of course I always like a good "one block wonder".  Wonder what the fabric was?

There were two of these beautiful wedding ring quilts.  Loved the quilting but again don't have the name of the maker!

Another really lovely quilt.

Our speaker and teacher for this month was Luanne Corts and her topic was "Up to My Eyeballs in Scraps".

One of the many scrap quilts that Luanne talked about.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

September RAFA Meeting

This is another Show and Tell from one of the subgroups in RAFA.  This month they were doing pieces inspired by the works of Georgia O'Keefe.  More detailed views follow.

This was a piece done by Liz S.  This is a whole cloth piece and the abstract image is taken from a picture of the lake and then manipulated in Photoshop and printed on cloth and quilted.  Our own Julie Brandon runs a business called Red Dog Enterprises that provides this service (Red Dog Enterprises).  Her prices are reasonable and she uses all different kinds of fabric.

Elaine did this luscious piece taken from a photo she took of one of her hibiscus.

Caren B has finished all her wonderful thread painting on this piece also inspired by one of her photographs of a lily.

Kate W chose to portray Georgia O'Keefe herself with her sad expression.

Julie Brandon did this whole cloth quilt manipulating one of her photos and then printing it on whole cloth.

Regina S is one of our newer members and extremely prolific!!  She does a lot with the embroidery designs found commercially.  I really liked this quilt especially.  She was the lucky lady who inherited by 9 boxes of upholstery and drapery fabrics.

Caris showed us some pieces from her dye painting class with Ann Johnston.  Ann is one of my favorite all time teachers and certainly is the "mother" of low water immersion dyeing.

This was a really large piece that Caris did in class.

Another very complex piece that Caris did in class.

Beth K took a class on making fabric and this is one of the pieces resulting from the class.  I was not familiar with the teacher but Beth really liked the class and felt it was the direction she wanted to go in. I also "make fabric" for a lot of  my backgrounds and even some of sections of the foreground as well these days.  For me, it was a result of taking a class with Cynthia Corbin which was probably one of the most freeing classes I have ever taken.

This is another very large piece that Beth did as a result of the class.  We all loved the sherbet colors!

Sue D, Marcia B and Beth also work together in a small group and this was one of their pieces.  Believe it or not, this is a disappearing 9-patch!!  I loved it and may do some like this with my hand dyes although I am already thinking about introducing some smaller pieces into the mix.

This is Beth's piece using the disappearing 9-patch.  Marcia just didn't hold hers up high enough!!

This is Tina (another relatively new member) showing us some of the detail is this absolutely stunning quilt with all the dragonflies.  Like  Marcia DeCamp (one of my featured blogs on the left), she has a piece in the new AQS calendar!

Anne Fischer has decided to focus on her felted clothing and this is a jacket she has recently completed and pictures do  not do it justice-- it is beyond stunning!!  I can see why she is moving in this direction!

This is an absolutely gorgeous shawl she also did -- unbelievable!!  

A number of the members also took a felting class with an Australian felter who focuses on jewelry and I managed to forget to take some pictures of that as there were all sorts of very different pieces.  It was a decidedly magical show at the group today.  

Last but not least is a shirt that Anne dyed.  I crept up and took a shot of the back while she was sitting as well!  I just loved the diagonal.  She dyed the fabric and then made the shirt which was tunic length.  Of course she looks like a model in anything she is wearing!!

You can see more of our group at  Rochester Area Fiber Artists on Facebook.  We won't overwhelm your news feed but will post pictures of art from the various members, give notices of shows we are either sponsoring or in which we are participating.