Tuesday, July 30, 2013

New Thermofax Screens!

I had fun last week playing with some new designs, an electric assortment that would add to your collection.
Remember I can make them in three sizes: 3" x 4 1/2", 4 1/2" x 6" and 6" x 9" (all approximate). They come mounted in a frame and include full instructions and a nifty little scraper!


 Hanging Out
 Rose Window

You can order them all here: http://fabricimagery.com/category/pattern-and-texture/

Friday, July 26, 2013

Where the Wild Fern Grows

I love seeing finished projects from my students and this picture arrived last week from Connie, who was in my class at the Minnesota Quilt Show in June. In this class students learn my layered applique technique where you can play with changing around the fabrics of the applique shapes for variety and interest.
Then they play with learning to use all those dozens of stitch choices on their machine that rarely get used. We all know about that, don't we? It's a fun filled class and best of all they get a pack with 15 spools of thread to play with!!! Perhaps your guild would like to try this class out?
I think Connie did a great job and used an interesting quilting design as well! Good job, Connie and thanks for sharing!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Canadian Quilt Talk

I hope you can take a few minutes to day and listen to my interview with Brandy Maslowski, the producer of Canadian Quilt Talk, a new internet podcast that she has started for quilters! It has just opened this month and already Brandy has so many devoted followers looking forward to each episode on Thursdays at 4pm PDT.
You can listen by visiting the Explore Fibre blog at:http://www.brandylynndesigns.blogspot.ca/
 Brandy is a well respected quilting teacher, author, pattern designer and apprentice judge. She is full of energy and talent. Don't miss out!
You can also "like" Canadian Quilt Talk on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/CanadianQuiltTalk

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Another Three Blogs

Back again, with another three blogs that you'll find interesting! Colour, fabric, quilts, thread and more.....what could be better?

One of the most regular bloggers I've seen is Kay Koeper Sorensen,  a prolific dyer and quilter. She always has something of interest for the reader. I particularly like that she discusses her design challenges and there are lots of in-progress shots to pique our interest!

Embroidery, pattern, design, history.....its all here for you to discover, all that and so much more!

Leni Weiner is known to many quilters and her blog is a wonderful read, insightful and full of great thought! You'll want to spend lots of time there!

Ok, see you again!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

New Work - a little smaller this time!

I've been preparing for three shows this summer, the Sooke Fine Arts Show, the Bowker Creek Brush Up, and a Surface Design show at the Metchosin Art Gallery.....whew!
I've had fun making some small pieces with fabric and stitch to offer at a lower price point. I love the matting, they look so clean and neat! I think they're fun. You can buy some if you can't make it to any of my shows: http://fabricimagery.com/category/art/

Here they are:

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Making a Print Table

Since I've been doing so much printing lately, I thought I'd post instructions on how to make your own print tables. They're easy to make and essential if you want to do any printing or stamping on fabric. The "firm softness" of the print table gives much clearer definition and sharper edges to your printing and stamping and since they're so easy there's no reason not to make at least one! I have five of them because I take them when I'm teaching, they're portable and easy to lift in and out of the car. I would love to have a dedicated table at home, just for printing but these are the next best thing as I can lift them on and off the art table and store them upright in a corner of my room. Since I have a few of them I can print a piece of fabric, put it to one side to dry, then go on to make another and another on the other tables.

I stretch 3 layers of cotton batting over the plywood and staple gun the edges on the back. Make certain you have a good 2" extra on all four sides to bring around to the back. Its really much easier to have someone to help you with this.

I have used pieces of batting that I've joined together with a butted seam (don't overlap edges or you'll get bumps on the top). You can also use industrial felt, old blankets or towels. Just make certain that the product is absorbent and will stand up to heat and steam. Avoid anything too bouncy such as polyester batting or synthetics.

The top layer is a medium-heavy muslin or unbleached cotton. A lighter coloured fabric is easier on the eyes and you can see if images are running through your printing fabric. Avoid thinner fabrics as they can rip too easily. Staple this layer (or two) separately to the back of the plywood, again stretching well but not straining the fabric. By stapling the batting and the muslin separately it is easy to replace the muslin when it becomes too stained. You can also try using the stained muslin as an interesting piece of art cloth!

Now you are ready to use your print table, the thick batting means its easy to pin your fabrics into the table (I use T pins so I can print right over them). Place the pins so the sharp end is towards the centre of the fabric. This way they won't come out if  there is any tension on the fabric. In fact, you should pull the edges of the fabrics slightly so there is some tautness but no distortion.

In my perfect world, I'd love a 4" x 8" sheet of plywood made up into table for larger printing, but what I have works well for me. You can also make a table from foam core (Michaels has 1/2" thick sheets), thicker sheets of styrofoam or heavy cardboard. Try it!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Best Quilt Show in the West

Its a little over a month until the Pacific West Quilt Show in Tacoma, WA. I hope you are planning to be there! I'll probably be the one in the booth selling tickets, so you may see my smiling face! Would you like some reasons to visit the show?

1.  You can come early and take one of my classes on Thursday, August 22nd.

In the morning from 10-1pm, I'll be teaching Layering Colours: Combine paint, powders and foils with a variety of fusible webs and interfacings to create texture, layering and pattern. We'll try stamping, scrunching and ripping to make a small abstract sample suitable for further embellishments.

In the afternoon, join me for Thermofax Printing: Thermofax screen printing with textile paints is an easy way to print unique and exciting designs on fabric. Learn simple and effective methods of repeating pattern, colour mixing and possible applications on quilts, clothing and more.

 You can register for both those classes here: http://www.regonline.com/builder/site/tab2.aspx?EventID=1181666

2. There's a Charity Sew In on Friday night from 6-9pm., you can stitch up pillowcases for the One Million Pillowcase Challenge http://apwq.org/page.php?ID=58

3. On Saturday, August 22nd, there's the popular Pacific West Fashion Show from 4-6pm.

4. There are several Special Exhibits sprinkled throughout the show, including work from the LaConnor Textile Museum, the APWQ members Exhibit and much more. Don't miss out on these wonderful parts of the show!

5. The Saturday Sampler is a "don't miss" event! Lots of teachers, designers and authors showcasing tips, techniques and topics. I'll be there with my Soy Wax Resists!

6. Sunday is Military Family Day, low price on group tickets with military ID card.

So these are just a few reasons you don't want to miss the Pacific West Quilt Show, August 23-25th. Hope to see you there! Check out more details at: http://apwq.org/quiltshow-events.php

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

More Quilts for Calgary

My quilt group met again today and in six hours we had sewn together or got the backings and binding organized for five quilts. I had two tops that I no longer wanted and they will be sent to Calgary as well.
Thanks so much to everyone who worked so hard! If you want to help out you can check the Facebook page for more information: https://www.facebook.com/groups/quiltingforcalgary/?fref=ts

Aileen's quilt is ready for shipping!

Wenche and the team made this one today!

Monday, July 8, 2013

Shattered Angles-Student Work

I've been on the road a fair bit so far this year and have taught my Shattered Angles design a number of times. I'm always amazed at the wonderful work that my students produce, its great to get pictures!

Marvella in Haliburton, Ontario finished her quilt for a raffle at the Princess Margaret Cancer Research Foundation in Toronto. Its a little hard to see, but the centre panel has a forest of tress and Marvella appliqued some deer near the bottom of the panel.

Bobbie in North Dakota played around with cutting her strips at different angles and got a delightfully quirky design. I love the border fabric she chose!

 Vel on Mayne Island chose a beautiful setting to photograph her quilts, don't you just love the view? She also has her Gingko Table Runner that she designed in my Give & Take Applique class, its such a lovely layout setting!

To celebrate all these wonderful quilts I'm offering 20% off all my books for the month of July. You can order them here: http://fabricimagery.com/category/books/ and type in JULY20 before you check out. Thanks for all the great inspiration!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Books on Sunday

Would you like to own a book that you keep coming back to again and again? One that has so much depth and good solid content that you could spend months and years working through the activities and exercises that are offered?
Then Joen Wolfrom's Adventures in Design is the book for you!  The three sections are titled Setting the Visual Stage: Eight Ingredients for Great Designs, Creating the Visual Dance:A Blueprint for Superb Designs and Designing Spectacular Quilts. Each section explains important design elements and has detailed explanations as well as exercises to do. One of the most important parts of this book is the photographs used to illustrate each point that Joen makes are explained thoroughly for the reader to understand the design. For example: "Reflections is a lovely example of an impressionistic scene. Impressionism, which is a genre that is part of the representational design style, offers visual suggestions rather than clarity. Most shapes are recognizable in this design yet some are left to our imagination. This allows us a certain amount of visual interpretation." I really appreciate explanations such as this, its like guide taking me gently through the art gallery.

Another interesting point is that the book contains visual references for both the traditional and the contemporary quilter, so would be suitable for every style and technique that a quilter would use.
If you are interested in understanding your work and wanting more and better designs, then run out to buy this book!
Joen's website: http://joenwolfrom.com/

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Charity Begins in the Studio!

I'm sure by now you have heard about the flooding in Alberta and the amazing response by quilters to provide quilts to many of the people who have lost their homes and belongings.
Yesterday, four friends and I gathered in my studio and began piecing quilt tops to send to long armers who have volunteered their time and skills to quilt the tops and make sure that the quilts go where they are needed. One shop has set up a donation page: http://www.mysewingroom.ca/classes/index.php?pageref=alberta_floods_2013

Here we are working, I was surprised to find four machines and the sewing divas fit comfortably in my studio:

Here's a quilt top that Cathy Miller finished!

Last night I pulled out a box of blocks that I had made when I taught Block of the Month series for our local shop and guild. I didn't want to use a sashed layout so tried something a little different. I still have about 18 blocks left, so I think I'll make it bigger.

There is always an on going need for quilts when disaster strikes anywhere. Its always good to have one or two quilts on hand, ready to help out. They warm the body and the soul!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Three More Great Blogs

I've not posted about my blog visits for a while, but I have been surfing around checking some of them out.
My friend Brenda sent me a link to this site: http://blueandwhitetokyo.com/

Blue & White is an original and quirky shop in Tokyo presenting the best of blue and white handmade crafts to Azabu Juban and the world for 35 years. Indigo and sashiko, yukata and tenugui are carefully chosen to highlight the beauty of the blue and white tradition of Japan. If I ever get to Japan, this shop is definitely on my list!

I've been a student of Gail Harkers off and on for many years. Gail posts pictures of her students work when the classes graduate for their programmes. Take the time to scroll through the pictures, there is an amazing amount of wonderful eye candy for colourists, stitchers and, well, everyone!

You may be familiar with this blog and even subscribe, but its definitely one of my top ten favourites! First, the title will catch you, and then continuing content of interesting techniques will keep you coming back for more! Check it out at: http://andthenwesetitonfire.blogspot.ca/

That's it for now, but I'll be back with more soon!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Happy Canada Day!