Category Archives: commission process

Mastering Things

Vermont Dairy Barn

     This is my year of trying to master techniques in an attempt to find some kind of personal style within my work. So, I have  been giving you snippets of my two on-line classes I am taking. I have had a few questions regarding what the classes are so I thought I would give you the links again.

1. Artist’s Toolbox by Lyric Kinard. It is given through Quilt University which offers lots-yes lots of classes- for us. This is an excellent class which has taught me basic art terms and how to look at art quilts more critically. A good intro to art theory.

2. Online Color Theory by Judy Perez. An in depth color theory class which has really helped me understand terms and color mixing which I hope to be able to apply to my fabric dyeing this summer.

Both the classes and the references they have shared will be invaluable to me. I first questioned on-line learning for such a hands on thing as art quilts. But the visuals and the free sharing of information from the teachers and the other students has really been inspiring. Both Lyric and Judy have taken lots of time to answer questions and are intent that you understand the material. Time-consuming though so don’t think it will be easy. But you do it on your own time.

     With all that being said, the only thing I have mastered this week is the art of procrastination. I worked consistently on machine quilting on Monday during our snow day and then yesterday couldn’t wrap my head around a bit of productivity. Ughh…so I tried a yoga class last night with my daughter. Alright, I literally dragged her there. The eye-rolling going on was amazing.    I seem to have this mid-life crisis going on so need to try everything I haven’t done before:)). How nice was yoga? I loved it. I am still floating so hope to be more productive today!

Well, I guess if I am not creative- today-you be creative for me, my friends.

2010 Wrap Up

                                                     Unpacking-notice no clothes just fabric and supplies

    I am really not one for resolutions. I guess because they usually involve me losing some amount of weight. And it just comes back.  I am more for making a list and getting it done.  Setting goals. That feels better for me.  It’s probably all the same thing but just what motivates you to change , do something differently or accomplish something.

     So, I felt like I should take a look at what I have learned in the past year. Since I am a newbie, maybe it would help me with what I need to do next.

(I feel like this is one of those essays you write when you get back from your summer vacation in elementary school. I give you permission to skip this and go directly to the pictures.)

2010 : What I have Learned

1. I learned that even though I might not like the piece I am working on, I need to push through and finish it. It’s the pushing through part where I usually learn things about design, color or the unpredictablity of a composition.

                                                                 on my wall today

2. I learned that I have many friends, old and new, that I can ask for advice or critique. But in the end, I have to live with it.

3. I learned that by just reaching out a little bit online, there are some great friends to meet and enjoy this process with. Old friends and new friends have made it an enjoyable year.  Thanks again- you are great.

4. I learned through and indepth “Artprize” experience(visited many times…) that I can find something to like in all different forms of art. Meeting Nellie was loads of fun, too. I have much to learn about art and art history.


5. I lack focus. I just get so excited about the possibilities that I need to just concentrate on the here and now. Making a list helps. I did it all the time when I worked as a physical therapist and do it now as a mom. So why would I function differently here?

6. I need to have a reliable and dependable machine. Not one that will just handle piecing but one that can repeatedly handle  machine quilting. I  am just going to keep trading then in until I find one that works as well as my first machine did 20 years ago. The feeling that me and my machine are one make it  all worth it when I am doing a big piece.

7. And the biggest thing I learned- being a studio artist takes time and patience. You have to go through the steps. You can’t just barge over top of them. You have to do the work.  And then do more work.  And then do it again. I only have a glimpse of what this takes.

                                                   Japanese fabrics

     I have made some workshop plans. No I am not going back to school. For today, I am going to do some machine quilting and try to finish up one of my pieces that I couldn’t do last week. And make some dyes up for the snow we are supposed to get tomorrow. Snow dyeing!

     Thanks for listening. Be creative, my friends!

Lost and Found

   First, I should respond to some of my comments. Thanks-it is so generous of you to give your advice so kindly and freely. After I got used to it,  I found the process of  tying in the ends by hand relaxing and it did look nice so I will continue. My machine does tie off but it ends up a jumbled mess and not neatly-might be a bit of repair needed.
   Secondly, my piece from yesterday  in my hands is one that is mine and not the commission. I wasn’t very clear. And my not liking a commission, I thought about it and tried to clarify what was bothering me about the process. It wasn’t the commission I didn’t necessary like -but the colors were difficult for me to work with.  If it was totally up to me and I needed to use these colors, I would add another one in. I am learning  something through this process! I guess now, I must kindly relay the option of an additional color to the client and it will be up to them, won’t it? Learning, learning…. Thanks again.

On to today’s post-

 It began as a simple search for something. Might of been a lame attempt at cleaning…I don’t even remember what I was looking for but I got caught up into some of my bins at my work table. I found some delightful old projects that I had just forgotten about. Look a these beautiful old pieces I have re-discovered.

A find from my days in Ohio:

Still interesting to me:

A whole village as my husband said when he came up to tell me it was really late:

And another bag of silk scraps:

And a lot of other things which I know I will never use and have packaged them up for a local group that really needs supplies. Seemed like a fitting thing to do for Earth Day.

Must go-I am feeding 20 soccer girls at my house in about an hour.

Happy Sewing, my friends!