Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Olde Rowan Fiber Guild Program

I had the privilege of presenting a program for the Olde Rowan Fiber Guild this week about felting, in particular wet-felting wool beads to make earrings, key chains, and other items. We had such a good time, what a fun, lively group! They did a fantastic job of wet-felting their wool beads, some of them had not tried their hand at this technique before and did such a great job. A large group, I didn't have time to take many pictures as I cruised the room helping folks during our time together. But we did manage a "selfie" towards the end (notice Pamela in front modeling her beautiful earrings she made!), and I grabbed a couple of shots of  wool beads and finished earrings here and there. All in all, I think everyone enjoyed it, and will have some special new accessories to wear for the holidays.
 Love the rich blue hues of these beads!
 What a fun group, we all had a great time felting! Pamela modeling her gorgeous earrings.
Felted wool beads in various sizes.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Healing in Art

What a crazy ride this week: between the unexpected results of the election and the resulting marches and riots on the street, folks unfriending each other on Facebook because of who they voted for, and all the surrounding drama, I am ready to take a sabbatical from the world and just crawl back into my little space and stitch! Today's sunrise celebrates a crisp, clean autumn morning, and I am thankful for the peace and serenity I feel today; not every day is like that for me.

  But I did take time this week to stitch. I believe there is healing in art, and therapy in using one's hands to create. Whether you are a quilter repetitively passing a needle up and down through warm  layers of fabric, a knitter/crocheter using needles to repetitively stitch your creation from yarn, a painter/artist utilizing brushes and other media to express your inner thoughts and feelings, or a beader, passing your needle through lustrous folds of silk and sparkling beads, this process has been scientifically proven to be healthy and good for you. If you can get together with friends or take a class and peacefully chat and share creative thoughts and energies, even better! Today I plan on taking the time to create with my hands, even for just a few moments, and thank God for the friends I have, the talent He has gifted me with, and the multitude of blessings He has showered on me. I hope you, too, are willing and able to find comfort and thankfulness in this tumultuous time.
Silk shibori beaded brooch I finished this week.

Monday, September 12, 2016

Nuno Scarf Class

We had such a great time Saturday in our nuno-felting class! There were 4 very artistic gals who attended and made absolutely glorious scarves, each one unique and different. They started out with a silk chiffon scarf base, either black or hand-dyed in a medley of harmonizing hues. Then they added hand-dyed and solid merino wool fibers in their chosen design: twirling vines, leaves, big robust flowers, swirly circles. Lastly they added the "icing": bamboo, silk fibers, Angelina, wool nepps, all sorts of goodies. Then came the soap, water and agitation, and finally, the shrinking and felting. What beautiful works of art each of them created! And every one so different as they chose their own personal color palette. We really need to get back together and wear our scarves when they're completed and dry, so gorgeous!

Sawtooth Scarf Dyeing

We had a "Taste of Art" silk scarf-dyeing class at Sawtooth a couple of weeks ago, and what a fun and adventurous group of gals we had! These girls were not afraid to try new things and "think outside the box", and you know me, I'm always the first to encourage someone to just try it, why not? Some of them experimented with some different resist techniques using bamboo sticks and string, others really went wild with their colors. It's always a wild ride to see the end results when using vegetable dyes, as some of the more unstable colors (like black) will separate into 2 or more other colors, like indigo blue and green (go figure!) I guess it's the combination of 2 or more colors that make up some of the more complex colors of dyes, and when exposed to the heat, they separate. At any rate, their scarves turned out gorgeous! I know they'll enjoy wearing them to all their autumn festivities.

Friday, September 2, 2016

SECU House Wool Beads

We had such a good time felting wool beads at SECU house last week! I have to admit, I was a little apprehensive about the class this time; normally I look forward to teaching there and sharing my skills with patients and their family and friends. It's really nice to be able to do something I enjoy and help others forget their problems for just a little while, it helps me forget mine too! But this was the first time I had been there since my dad passed away from cancer on August 12, and that was still fresh on my mind. I wasn't sure if I'd be able to minister to other people who were going through the same thing I watched take away my dad.

But all went well, once we got started, I was able to put my life on the back burner for a little while, and everyone made beautiful wool beads! We also had a male grad student who made a wool bead representing "earth", and he was going to turn his into an ornament, while the ladies made necklaces with theirs. All in all, everyone had a good time felting and visiting. It's always a blessing for me to get to help others, and I hope it is for them.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Presentation at Pineapple Fabrics!

I'm so excited and honored to be presenting my lecture on "How to use Pineapple Packs to expand your Creativity" at Pineapple Fabrics August 26 & 27 at 10 am. This will be a free event (although you might want to touch base with them if you know you are coming, web-site and will have the added bonus of being held during their awesome end of summer fabric sale! If you've never been to one of their sales, you are in for quite a treat. Pineapple carries a wonderful variety of new fabrics from contemporary to traditional, and during their sale they mark their fabrics down to unbelievable prices! Not only will you find beautiful batiks, modern prints and traditional small prints, they also carry solid cotton fabrics in every color of the rainbow as well as extra-wide quilt backing too. Truly there is something for everyone in their selections, and then there are the beautiful Pineapple Packs they put together, they are like little works of art.

What, you might say, is a Pineapple Pack? Well this company has done half the work for you with these little gems. Pineapple Packs are a set of pre-cut fabrics that are beautifully coordinated to make up your projects perfectly. They come in several different types of cuts such as 2-1/2" jelly-roll strips, 5" charms, 10" squares, bonus (oversized) fat quarters and more. Not only that, there are lots of complimentary project sheets you can choose from to make up your Pineapple Pack! With the cutting and coordinating done for you, your project will be a breeze to stitch up. And there are so many designs to choose from: pet projects, tote bags, and sewing accessories among others. Each Pineapple Pack has a name depending on which cuts are included, and the corresponding project sheets have the same name to make it easy for you. And I cannot tell you how nice these folks are, they go out of their way for outstanding customer service - often a dying art these days (but not here!)

I am thrilled to be presenting a new design and several variations of it which will be free during my lecture! I'll be sharing lots of tips and ideas on taking this style and doing more to really stretch your creativity. I hope you'll join me at Pineapple Fabrics in Archdale, NC on these dates for inspiration and a great time!

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

My birthday!

I got to do something fun with my son and friend on my birthday weekend - go see the new Ghostbusters movie! I have been a huge Melissa McCarthy fan for years, I love her gutsy strength and how she stands up unapologetically for herself and the average woman. But her role in this movie was almost tame compared to Kate McKinnon, what a hoot she was! And I really loved her hairstyle, avant-garde and powerful. I tried tweaking mine a bit last night as I was getting ready to visit my family, OK it's a bit more challenging to duplicate Kate's do when you have kinky curly hair, but here is my version along with my sis. Next time I'll try some stronger stiffy hair gel!