Thursday, August 31, 2017

I Like #32

A lot going on this week, especially the tragic flooding in Houston, but here are a few things I'm liking all the same:

1. I like knowing that my friends in Houston are safe.  I'm lucky in that everyone I know who lives in Houston is safe, and though many have flood/damage to their homes, they are, in the end, ok.  Events like this make me grateful to just be able to keep going with my day-to-day drag.  It's a bit cliche, but true all the same.

2. I love my fun plants!  Not much is blooming now, but both of my plants I got at the farmers market earlier in the year are doing great.  One is growing these cool green leaves that almost glow because of how they're placed in the window.  The other, I think it's called mother of thousands, has it's happy little baby sprouts on the edge of the leaves as always, but just this week I noticed they're sprouting little roots so now the leaf looks furry!

3. I love school supplies and new pencils and markers.  It's always a challenge this time of year because it's so tempting to snatch up lots of fun colored folders and notepads and cool school supplies I don't really need.  This year I restrained myself to a single pack of regular number 2 yellow pencils. For anyone who is interested in pencils, I recommend the instagram account of CW Pencil Enterprise.  They're pencil connoisseurs and have all kinds of cool things.

4. I like quilting!  I got a lot of quilting done over this weekend, it was quite restful to have a whole day to work on things.  I love picking out thread colors for quilting and figuring out how I want to fill the space.

5. I like crossing things off of lists!  I've been fairly productive at work this week, largely because I'm going out of town tomorrow, and it's very satisfying to scratch things off as I do them.  Especially with my rainbow pens (see #3).  Of course there are a bunch of things I won't get to till I get back, but still....

I hope everyone is hanging in there this week, and thanks as always to LeeAnna for hooking us up!

Thursday, August 24, 2017

I Like #31

Welcome to another week!

Lots to like this week even though we're in a busy time at work between grant deadlines and the beginning of the fall semester.

1. I like Project Runway!  The new season just started, and it's one of the only shows I watch each week.  I don't like the drama, but I love watching what the contestants come up with in such a short time each week. We don't have cable, but you can watch live episodes a day or two after they air on the Lifetime website.

2. I love visiting my family!  I was down at my sister's this weekend for my nephew's 4th birthday party and it was so fun to get to hang out with them and play with the kids all weekend.  Such a privilege.  I love all the laughing and running around and it's so nice to get out of my head!  The party was minion themed and Becky and I made/decorated minion cupcakes for the party!

3. I  loved seeing the eclipse!  We weren't in the path of totality; I think our max was about 86%, but it was still really cool.  Some friends had eclipse glasses they shared so we were able to watch, and I took some pictures through an overexposed piece of x-ray film (not safe for viewing from what I understand, but it cut the light enough not to damage my camera).

4. I like live music!  On Sunday when I got back from Dallas, Mike and I went to listen to the last Norman Summer Breeze concert in the park of the year, and it was lovely.  We even took Bullett who had a great time sniffing other dogs. The musician was John Fullbright, and it was so fun.  He played the guitar and sang, but also was a great keyboardist and harmonica player.  Fabulous!  Here's Mike giving me the side-eye, he does not like having me take his picture.

thanks as always to LeeAnna for linking us up!

Thursday, August 17, 2017

I Like #30

1.  I like painting different types of fabric and mixing colors and seeing what the results are.  A lot of my quilts involve painted fabric and sometimes really cool things happen.  I never seem to use the same fabric twice since I mostly am using up what people have so generously given.  This was some sort of heavyish polyester satin type fabric.  It's going to be an iris petal, but I thought the way the colors mixed and blended when I painted it was cool and unexpected.

2.  I like finding new fiber artists.  A friend of mine at work recently gave me a book by a Japanese embroidery artist named Hiroku Kobuta.  She's embroiders exquisite portraits of pets, mostly on shirts and mostly, but not exclusively cats.  This friend of mine has one of her pieces, and I was thrilled to see it up close.  I'm not sure she has a ton of web presence, but you can see her work on Flickr here.  Her shading is just beautiful.  One really cool thing is that her English book has page after page of detailed examples showing how she stitches and shades the cats, from the very beginning to the final stages.

3.  I love seeing new things growing.  We have gotten a fair amount of rain lately, and I went outside the other day to see that these giant mushrooms had popped up overnight!  So fun!

Thanks as always to LeeAnna

Thursday, August 10, 2017

I Like #29

I'm very late today getting this up, but at least I'm not missing it!!  Several things to like this week in my arena, and I hope in yours as well!

1.  I like crafty friends!  A friend of mine named Trish Maxwell is a quilter here in OKC who makes memory quilts for people.  Her business is called Journey Quilt Co.  and her stuff is fabulous.  She's a super fun lady and it's always really cool to see someone who has made quilting a profitable business.  It's especially cool because though I know many professional longarmers who have profitable businesses, her business model is a bit different and I love that variety.  Anyway,  she made me a super super adorable wallet as a thank you present, and I was so excited!  Apart from being lovely, it's made from that cool new cork fabric (the outer pink) that I keep hearing about but hadn't yet seen or bought.  She said it was great to work with, and I think it would be really cool for bags (that seems to be what most people are doing with it).  Thanks Trish!!

2.  I like getting to see quilt/art shows!  This weekend was the opening of our annual juried fiber arts show for the Fiber Artists of Oklahoma.  It was wonderful to hear the jurors lecture, and to get to see the show.  My favorite part about this show is that since it's all fiber media, not just quilts, there's so much variety I don't often get to see.  There were lots of great quilts, but many of the things that caught my eye were other types of things.

Coral Dreams of the Life of the Jellies by Lynn Lucas

Daisy Domergue by Darcy Lenker

Sunset, by Janet Shipley Hawks

Red, White, and Blue, by Shan Goshom

3.  I like discovering new artists!  I'd never heard of Blake Conroy before, but he had an exhibit in a separate gallery space at the same place as our show was hung, and his work is fabulous!! He's experimenting with layers in a way very similar to what I want to do and have been doing, but at a much more detailed way.  I think from looking at them, that the layers in each of these pieces are cut (laser cut I think) from a light weight matboard.  So cool.

 4.  I like fixing things!  The electronic condenser on one of my microscopes broke this week, and I was so proud of myself for being able to take it apart, figure out what was wrong and fix it.  Sometimes it's the small things!

5.  I still like sailing!  We didn't get to fly the spinnaker last night because we were short crew, but as a result it was calm enough on the downwind legs of the race that I was able to get a couple pictures of the other spinnakers.  So pretty.

Have a great week and thanks to LeeAnna!

Friday, August 4, 2017

New Sculptural Pieces

Back in May I blogged about this small sculptural piece I made out of an old quilt sandwich I painted, cut into a mariner's compass block, and then sculpted.

Recently I decided it might show better as part of a set and I wanted to see what other shapes I could make from standard-ish star blocks, so I made two more.  I drafted my stars slightly differently, and for one I wanted to see what would happen if I stretched the star out.  Once again I started with leftover fabric/quilt sandwiches so some of the pieces already had stuff on them before I started to paint over them.  Here are the front/back views of the two after I painted them and started the quilting.

And here are the stars after I started cutting them out.

And here are the two new sculptures.  The top one is the one that was elongated.

And finally a couple shots of all three together.  Photographing them was quite challenging!

These were fun to make, but something about them isn't as exciting to me as some of my other work.  It's hard to put my finger on, but maybe it's just that they feel a little too cutesy?  Part of it may be the color scheme- I picked it because I like these colors, but they don't feel terribly vibrant or compelling.  And part of it may be the curly frilly nature of them.  I'll have to do more 3D exploring in future!

I'm linking up with Nina-Marie!

Thursday, August 3, 2017

I like #28

Lots to like this week, and I hope you guys have all found pleasant things around you as well.

1.  I like fiber festivals!  I've been to lots of quilt shows, but never to a fiber festival before, but I had to drop a quilt off in Tulsa and my friend Melody wanted to go to the fiber festival, so we made a day of it.  It was mainly targeted at spinners and yarn aficionados.  There were so many beautiful beautiful batts and yarns and roving and even some unprocessed wool.  I didn't taken any pictures which I can't believe, the rainbows of colors were fantastic.  I don't need any yarn, so I promised myself I wouldn't buy any, but I did get a few miscellaneous things.  I also learned a ton, the vendors were so helpful at explaining things and demonstrating carding and spinning.  Fabulous!  The one we went to was Fiber Christmas.

2.  I love my pyrex!  Lots of people collect vintage pyrex and its very pretty.  I'm not much of a collector (apart from art supplies and my mom's pottery) but I have two pyrex pieces that were both hand-me-downs from my mom.  I use the white casserole dish fairly often, but I have several other pottery casserole dishes so it's not the most commonly used thing.  But that little brown pot is the single most used pot in my kitchen.  Since it's microwave safe, I use it for virtually everything I cook in the microwave, from re-heating leftovers to canned soup, to frozen vegetables.  It's also one of the few pots that in size/purpose I don't have a duplicate of.  I'd be very sad if it ever broke.

3. I love my Bullett dog!  I love my other dogs too, but Bullett is the only one who will sit still long enough to take a good picture.  I'm so pleased they leave my toads alone!  And on that note, we recently acquired (if acquired is the right term for something that has taken up residence in the backyard) another toad.  One is stripey and the other slightly plainer.  Bentley will still nose at them when he goes outside but after a quick nose-bump he wanders off and leaves them alone.

4.  I love using scraps and making bags!  Since I finished my latest quilt, (come back tomorrow to check out my post on it), I'm taking a breather and making a new handbag.  I have some fun upholstery remnants I'm going to make the body out of (the warm brown on the left, tapestry in the middle, and dark turquoise corduroy on the right).  As an accent fabric I'm going to use one ore more of the scraps of handwoven fabric that are pinned up around the edges.  My friend Georgia (who kindly gave me so much yarn and fabric) was a weaver and gave me the scraps of her handweaving.  They're mostly long strips with lovely colors.  Tell me what combination of main fabric/accent fabric (s) you like best!  I'm looking for opinions! You can see the colors a bit better in the detail shots.

 5.  I love this little walkway at work.  I go down it each day walking to and from the parking garage and it has such lovely large trees that arc over and create a very cool feeling shady lane.  In the fall it's gorgeous, I'll share some more pictures then.

Thanks as always to LeeAnna!