Saturday, December 31, 2022

December Cornucopia


Well folks, it's the final, very last day of the year, and thus, the final Cornucopia post for 2022. A grouping of things I've read, enjoyed, etc. online these past December weeks that I think you might find interesting or useful or inspiring. The picture above is from Christmas in Shenzhen in 2014, the most enormous reindeer I'd ever seen at one of the local malls. The antlers went up halfway towards the second story, wild.


The group I've collaborated on making quilts for the two Sister Artists, the Advocacy Project (AP) is launching  Southern Stitchers, the first online store to sell embroidery from women and girls in marginalized communities of the Global South.


JayBird Quilts is offering a sew-a-long for their new Temperature Quilt design which is quite striking and unusual for temperature quilts. Priced fairly low for 14 month guided class until 1/3/23. I'm going to try it out, so come join me if you're interested.


A glass dress? What? Yes really, a glass dress at the Chicago World's Fair of 1893.


A sewing room declutter challenge with daily prompts for January 2023. I’m trying it!


Very interesting and beautiful art that evokes interpretation as quilt blocks but is not intended that way, it's all about math instead.


A new sewing related magazine, Sew&Tell is being published by Peppermin in Australiat. I recently checked out an online version of the second issue and found it to be quite lovely.


A fun sew-a-long is happening to make the very cute Stitch Happens quilt in January, hosted by SewHungryHippie starts on 1/1/23, it's going to be colorful and quick! Also doing this one because it's not too big and I like the look of the blocks involved.




Wednesday, December 28, 2022

Calendar Conclusion


All 24 doors have been opened on the advent calendar label gizmo.
It's quite a splendid variety of sew-in labels and two patches. It's going to be super fun to use these, and I'm glad that KATM (Kylie & The Machine) has a how-to video on how to sew them in correctly, because I honestly have no earthly idea. The more makes I finish, the more I'll get to try adding them in.
I've got them all contained in a baggie for the moment, but they definitely need to be in some sort of box.

Friday, December 23, 2022

Back In Clover

Back in clover, as in "living a comfortable and luxurious life" or back to making some blocks for the Clover quilt? Kinda sorta both, but mostly the latter as far as this post goes. This is the pattern for the first month of the Color Collective. I love doing the center on this block.

This is how it'll look once I press and sew the four sections together.
Here's how it will look with the first block I made. So that's nearly two, and many more to go. These are a bit slow going, as it's paper piecing and I'm not the most proficient at it. But it did get easier as I did this second block.

Thursday, December 22, 2022

Happy Solstice


"In the depths of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer." ~ Albert Camus

Solstice Blessing to you all!

Wednesday, December 21, 2022

Wandering Wednesday - Tucson Botanical Gardens


We were back in Tucson over last weekend, and had an hour to spare before my second appointment in the medical trial I'm participating in, so off to the Tucson Botanical Gardens we went. It was a cold spell, with nights under 30F, so the cactuses had cups on them to protect them from freezing. It was honestly hard to take them seriously, if that makes sense.

The gardens were all decorated up for a night-time event they have which involves zillions of lights and various types of luminaries, I liked this spiky tree-ish version. 

This was the garden's cactus-y version of a Hanukkiah (a menorah used for celebrating Hanukkah).
The butterfly house was so warm and cozy, it steamed up my glasses. At one point a gigantic Blue Morph grazed my hand and nearly landed, so beautiful.
There were a lot of orchids in the butterfly house as well, which the butterflies love.
Cool re-use of glass bottle bottoms on a metal gate.
When the sun hits these just right, they just glow so brilliantly because of the white hairs on the cactus.
So soft and cozy, don't you want to pet it? 
These flower-bud shapes remind me of pine cones with the overlapping shapes.
This Victoria Agave was a show-stopper, that brilliant white edging on each leaf was a real wow!

Friday, December 16, 2022

Triad Appears


Et voilà! A triptych appears.
I'm looking forward to quilting these now, a much more manageable size. I used fusible batting which always speeds things up for me. I even remembered to cover the print with something just in case some of the paint wasn't fixed. There were a few little tacky bits, so I'm glad I saved my iron the trouble.
I might use a thread color that matches the central print through the whole thing in lines...Sightlines.
In triad color theory that should work. I'll try it and see.

Thursday, December 15, 2022

Sightlines Triad


After getting the printing done that I wanted to accomplish I chose my three favorites to put into a quilt to enter into the Print/Quilt exhibit. It was going to have to be on the small side to get done in time, but I really didn't want to cut up the prints. The initial idea was to call this quilt Sightlines and have quilting lines going between all the eyes.

Based on a sketch that took a triad view from my color wheel, I came up with these combination of hand-dyes to sort of frame each one. The cerulean blue print would be framed with chartreuse and blue-red. The Blue Green print would be framed with red-violet and yellow-orange. The orange-yellow print would be framed by aqua green and violet.

I decided that I needed something in-between the print and the much more intense hand-dyes, so I chose a lighter hand-dyed and manipulated one that would tie all three together and had the additional dye printing work of dots which echo the backgrounds of the prints. I thought that looked a lot better, but I still didn't like them all in one piece. Too crowded, too formal, not enough space to have a dynamic design.
So I decided to make three separate but much smaller (but not too small). Much better. 
What's this? Another triptych?
This works much better for me. It's really fun working with my hand-dyed and surface designed fabrics, it's been a while. If I can figure it out, I'm going to quilt them keeping the Sightlines idea in mind to have the quilting lines connect between the three quilts and the eyes.

Monday, December 12, 2022

Kitty's 1st

 We finally broke down and got a Christmas tree on Saturday. All because I watched a compilation of cats knocking down Christmas trees and decided I couldn't deprive LeeLoo of her chance at that experience this year. As you can see, she is very fascinated by the garland being put on the tree. 

At first she was just a bit upset that her cat climbing tree perch was moved out of its usual place and replaced with the tree. She watched very closely as we decorated.

She sniffed around the whole thing for a while, as this is a big change in her environment.  When we put ornaments on the tree, I chose to not put any glass or breakable ones on just in case, we still had plenty.

She finally tried to eat a little bit of the Douglas Fir needles, nibbling at the very end of the lower branches. I thought that the face she made was hilarious and I haven't seen a repeat of tree sampling.
Here's Meg making sure that she's okay and not going to actually eat the entire tree. You can see the disaster prevention measures a little better in this picture. We always tie the very top of the tree to the curtain rod, as a previous cat definitely knocked the tree over a long time ago (Zippy, R.I.P.) This year, for some reason my DH put garland on it? Also, the wooden box we set the tree stand on is reinforced by screwing the tree stand onto the box.

She's pretty entranced with the whole shebang, so far so good. I have a feeling it'll get weird once we start putting presents out. I'll have to make her something with catnip to wrap up and see if she can find it.
So that's what I spent most of my energy on this weekend, no sewing happened to report on, just a lot of power outages and an enormous amount of rainfall, nearly 7" this weekend, and 13" this month so far.

Saturday, December 10, 2022

Even More Printing


In a big push yesterday, I think I've finished off the printing I'm going to be doing for now. It's a lot of set-up and then clean-up of course, but it sort of takes over and then I can't sew or do anything else.
But wow, did I ever have fun as you can see. Combining colors and using the same set of stamps the whole way through.
This one might be my favorite.
Some of my fabric paint is on its way out, not as juicy as it should be, and the heater came on which is directly overhead of my worktable, so this plate got really dried out before I could even pull the print. I think this one would have been my fave if it had worked.
As you can see it did not. I added some over the bottom and I do like the look of that.
Wait, this one is probably my favorite. I guess I don't really have to pick just one.
I quite like the range of colors I ended up with, it's going to be very usable.
The worktable after the tools have been removed to the sink for cleaning. 
The very pleased printer after cleaning up, new glasses and my Mrs. T's apron (and a bad rosacea flareup for my eyes, yikes that's not trendy red eye makeup).

Friday, December 09, 2022

Juicy Practice

Juicy! Maybe a little too juicy, as in too much paint as you'll see in the next picture, but then I'm very out of practice.

Here's how it looks, very layered and intense, but not enough background fabric showing through. The batik stamp images are very crisp, which is harder to do printing directly onto fabric without a padded surface below. The Gelli Plate has a nice give which helps do the same thing.
The stamps used to mark an image into the paint on the Gelli Plate. There's one of my own hand-carved stamps which is the eye, and then two wooden batik stamps. The stamps are on top of the scrap paper that I stamped and brayered the excess paint onto.
I only got the one piece of fabric done and then there was a scheduling change in my day, my DH was surprisingly able to take off and go to Costco in the middle of the day. In December, you don't ever want to go on the weekend. After some scrubbing up, my tools we were off.

Thursday, December 08, 2022

Pre-Print Work

Time for some mark-making before I start doing some Gelli Plate printing. I measured my Gelli Plate and cut pieces of freezer paper to size and ironed it to some of my hand-dyed fabric. 
I recently bought some new-to-me media, Faber-Castell Gelatos, which are pigment/wax/oil crayons and Edding textile markers, which are wash-resistant water-based ink.
I was very pleased with the transparent look of the Gelatos on the fabric. I smeared it around with the sponge included with it. Like a makeup sponge but much more firm.
This was very fun and hard to stop myself from covering the entire surface. I wanted to leave room for what I'll be printing over the top. It's All About The Layers.
I think these pieces of fabric are going to be even more interesting to work with when I'm printing instead of using plain white or solid color fabric.