Friday, December 30, 2011

Lo and behold A Cover Girl

Quilting Arts has come out with a fantastic new book - The Best of Quilting Arts - Celebrate the first 10 years of groundbreaking QUILTING ARTS magazine with a collection of the best articles, projects and techniques.
• quilt art techniques from fabric collage and appliqué to resist dyeing, stamping, and foiling;
• machine-stitching and thread-painting tips and tutorials from award-winning art quilters;
• ideas and advice for the professional quilt artist;
• an array of binding and stitching techniques to make your art quilt stand out;
• methods for making realistic representational art quilts, including portraits of pets and people.

And I'm on the cover as one of the cover girls with my quilt Dancing Trees! Such an honor. Of course this quilt is made with my hand dyed fabrics.
Quilting Arts is one of my favorite magazines.
I have been fortunate enough to have several articles appear in this publication over the years.
My article on machine quilting is the second article in the book.
You really need to get this one.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Sketchbook ideas

Besides sketching in a sketchbook I also paste in a design book.
This is something we were encouraged to do in art school. And I like the process of doing it.
Here are a few examples of pages of images from magazines that I have in binders.
I now have about four binders FULL of images that some how caught my attention.
I buy clear plastic pages and just keep adding images that I like.
I go through these binders when I am stuck for ideas and am looking for inspiration.
Inspiration and ideas have to come from somewhere they don’t just POP into your head from nothing.
Take notes while you learn
Always be taking notes, whether you're reading, listening or watching. I keep notes when I am hand dying my fabric.
Center your notes around your goal.
Taking notes helps you engage with the material: you'll remember more of it.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Calendar 2012

A new year.
A new calendar
January – Illinois Farm fields
February – The Drive Home
March – Sister Trees
April – Jack in the Pulpit
May – Iris
June – Cat Tails 1
July – Wisconsin Farm fields
August – Prairie Grass
September – Fall Sister Trees
Sister Trees 12" x 14" $150
October – Prairie Moments
November – Storms coming
December – JOY
Something to brighten your walls all year long.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Dream a little dream for me

I am a dreamer.
In many ways I am a dreamer.
I day dream all day long when I am working in my studio. Do you?
I dream about the quilts I want to make and design them in my head over and over again.
I also have very vivid night dreams.
The other night I dreamed about a quilt. I haven’t done that in a long time.
I try to keep a notebook by my bed so I can make a quick sketch before I lose the images.
Do you keep a note book or sketchbook?
You should!!
No one has to see it but you.
Some times when I feel stuck or uninspired I can leaf through my notebook and ideas start to flow and before you know it I am off and running and working on a new project.

Go get a brand new sketch book for the new year. Write 2012 on it and start dreaming the new dreams.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Passing the tradition

My husband’s grandmother was Norwegian.
When we were first married she and I made these traditional Norwegian cookies together.
I can still see this little 80 year old woman who lived alone in the same house she was born in, whipping cream by hand for the recipe for these cookies. Her little body moving a mile a minute. She was so happy and cherry.
I love traditions and hope that this one will continue.
SO I bought one of my new daughters a new “electric” KrumKake iron and hopefully we will continue the tradition.
CucinaPro 220-02 Krumkake Baker

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Deck the Halls

My sister in law sent me this. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
My husband is from Minnesota.
The first year we were married we lived in Mpls while he attended graduate school at the UofM.
It was the coldest winter I EVER experienced.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

The Gift of Generosity

The True Meaning of Generosity

True generosity arises out of unconditional caring and compassion for another. Each of us is dependent upon others for our blessings. We flourish or perish together through interwoven acts of generosity arising from the benevolence and integrity of others, many of whom we shall never meet. This is the power of generosity. When we mindfully practice generosity, we come into contact with its joyful, healing power.

  • Practicing generosity is the intention to find release from attachment to gratifying our ego needs by giving freely of what we have that is of value.
  • What we have to give may be material in nature, or it may be our time, energy, or wisdom.
  • We practice generosity to eradicate the attachments that come from our feelings of scarcity and separateness.
The practice of generosity allows us to see the world from the point of view of what we have and what we have to give, instead of seeing it from the perspective of what we don’t have and desperately want. 

For your reflection:
During this season of gift giving, reflect on how you might practice generosity throughout the year. There are many ways to cultivate an attitude of generosity in daily life. Here are just a few that I hope will be easy to remember:
  • Be generous with your attention when you’re listening to someone.
  • Be generous in celebrating another person’s happiness.
  • Be generous with your sympathy toward someone who has experienced loss.
  • Be generous with your compliments and praise of others.
  • Be generous with your unconditional respect of others.
  • Be generous with your willingness to be helpful.
for additional articles, talks and meditations

    I  wish you and yours a happy and healthy Holiday Season.

    Friday, December 23, 2011

    Angels we have heard on high Sweetly singing…

    I love the angels in my collection. Yes another collection, I guess I have a few.
    Each is so special. I don’t tell people I collect angels because I don’t want people giving me any old angel.
    My mom gives me some though.
    This is our Christmas tree. That’s my Tree Skirt from the Quilting Arts Gift Issue!! Yummy isn't it. It is made with my Winter Reds, and Grass Green gradations.
    This is the size tree I am going to have from now on. It is perfect, easy to get and FRESH. I refuse to have a fake tree.
    I only put angels on my tree.
    Felted angel made by my friend Randi, so sweet.
    Scherenschnitte - Paper cut angels, made by my friend Kirsten.
    Lois gave me this one last year, made from a tatted hankie.
    This one is extra special because, you know that is my other real obsession, collecting tatted hankies.

    Thursday, December 22, 2011

    Santa of the Year

    2011 Santa of the Year. Made by artist Jamie Young.
    And his reindeer.

    Wednesday, December 21, 2011

    Santa Claus is REAL


    Nothing says Christmas like the perfect Santa.

    I collect Santa’s.
    I collect many things but Santa’s is one of the happiest collections.
    It’s a fun collection and it promotes such happy memories when I begin to unpack them each year for their yearly trip into the real world.
    Here are just a few of the Santa’s I have in my collection.
    Do you have a collection? I'd love to hear what it is.
    I stated collecting Santa Clauses a long time ago, probably when we first got married. I just love the imagery of a jolly fat man.

    I like to treat myself to a new one each year.

    I usually like ones that are kind of quirky.

    It becomes a great treasure hunt to find one that appeals to my sense of humor or style or whatever it is I can’t explain. I really don’t like people to give me Santa’s, because I like to pick out my own.

    The one on the far left is from my oldest son.
    In the last month of my pregnancy of my eldest son, I had a dream that as I was leaving the hospital with him in my arms he turned into a monkey and leaped out of my grasp, scampering down steep steps that loomed ahead disappearing into a sewer drain. I know bizarre.
    I tell him this story from time to time and we all laugh, we was born in the year of the Monkey according to the Chinese Calendar.
    Last year he found that Santa with a monkey made out of wood. It was his Christmas present to me. No one else I think would really appreciate it.
    I made this Santa in 1992. His robe is made of silk jacquard. It has a beautiful piece of tatted lace running down the center of it.
    White Mink trims the cuffs and hat of his costume. My mom had a white mink coat and I had the trimmings from it.
    His beard is made of 100’s of white buttons crocheted together. Many from my grandmothers button box.
    I just love him. 
    This guy is a real hoot. He is made of paper Mache and riding on a cow. The artist also had one riding a pig and I would have loved to have that one, but the pig was just too pale in color and didn’t really look as fun.
    Check out his face, he looks so excited.
    Santa is REAL.

    Tuesday, December 20, 2011

    It’s a Happy Holiday

    Don’t you just love getting out all those ornaments. I mean it is a chore and it takes time, but putting on the Christmas music and unwrapping each one brings back such memories. 

    Like who was born that year, and what the kids gave you. I just love it.

    These are just some of my decorations this year.
    I have been collecting Oreforr Ornaments since 1985. 

    I do like them.

    They always look so pretty in the window, they are really too heavy for the tree.

    Monday, December 19, 2011

    Just do it

    Just do it - 

    • Carve out an hour today (ideally, that starts right now. Don’t tell me you can’t — you were going to spend the next hour reading blog posts and twitter anyway) and work on the Big Uncomfortable Important Thing.
    • If you don’t have an hour, spend 20 minutes. And put an hour in your schedule for tomorrow. And the day after that. And the day after that.
    • Use a timer. Work up to the full hour if you have to.

    Because Big Uncomfortable Important Things are uncomfortable, you will immediately be tempted to go complain about something on Google+. Therefore, you need to turn off your distractions of choice.

    Not all day, don’t panic. Just for an hour.

    (Yes, your mobile, too. If you are not a brain surgeon, they can wait for you for an hour. Tell them you were in the toilet.)

    Here is my original sketch for what I call “lemon tree”


    This is the fused quilt I made from that sketch. And NOW I am working on a pieced version. It will be my big uncomfortable thing today.

    Here is that quilt on the cover of the new
    the best of Quilting Arts. You can get this book at Amazon or Quilting Arts.

    I have a very nice article about machine quilting in the book.

    That is Melody's quilt on the top there and she has a nice article about design.

    Laura and Judy have articles in there too.

    Treat yourself to a really good resource book for your stocking today.

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