Thursday, October 29, 2009

One month later

and I still love the lake and the area north-east of Orlando where I live. The large building in the center of this collage is where I reside and despite the size of the place I don't feel like just another cookie in a large box.
A piece of soda ash soaked silk is pinned to the print table waiting. Today I mixed up a bunch of thickened dyes to get started on something new. What? I have no idea at the moment, mainly because I have so many ideas running around in my head all wanting to be done, NOW. Which all of you know is not possible. I will however by evening's end narrow my ideas down down to maybe two and begin sketching.

I finished this quilt last night. Binding and top sleeve. Opted not to put a sleeve at the bottom. All it needs is a label, but since I don't know what to name it, the label can wait. It measures approx 42" x 36". Smaller than my usual fare, but not bad having a finished quilt of any size in the short time I have been here.
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Friday, October 23, 2009

The birds at Crane's Roost Lake

After lunch and not remembering that the libraries are closed on Fridays here, I was left with some time to fiddle away so I took my camera and went to the lake behind the apartment building where I live and took several shots of birds. I also too shots of flowers and fencing/railings and just general shots of the area that I will share from time to time so you can get a better idea of where I live and why I like it here so much.

The first two images were taken relatively close to the birds and the one below was shot with a zoom lens because the were on the other side of the lake; maybe a quarter of a mile away.

As far as the quilting on my latest quilt, well I am free motion quilting, in short spurts. I am trying to get my shoulder and neck muscles back in shape. It's been some time since I have sat and quilted for extended periods.
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Monday, October 19, 2009

NO, No, No, No and finally a

oh well...., okay.
The reason for the lets getter done and get on with it attitude is my order from ProChemical arrived today and I am itching to get started dye painting. I will mix up some print paste tonight so it will be ready tomorrow.
Have been doing some sketching and research on birds. Birds? Yes Birds. But not the ones I see every morning as I walk around the lake. Out there, there are cranes and other water fowl. No I am researching ordinary birds like Ravens, and Blue birds, and Cardinals and you get the idea. Birds like the ones Audubon documented and painted. Why? I am curating an exhibit based on his life and work and I want to have at least one piece to display next June in the exhibit.

I still have not received the size of the space my quilts will hang in in Ann Arbor, MI next Feb. so I touched base with those folks this morning requesting that information again. If I have to make new work to fill the space I need to know now so I can get started working.
I have also committed to teaching three classes at a quilt shop in Kissimmee, which is about 35 miles from my place. One class is scheduled in December and the other two are in January. It is so hard to wrap my head around the fact that you can think of doing a dyeing workshop outside in January. But hey can't be any colder than what the last three mornings have been here.
Saturday I wore shorts, today I walked the lake in knee length pants instead of shorts and I had a denim shirt over my t-shirt and I remembered to wear my hat. It kept my head warm when normally I wear it to keep the sun out of my eyes. It was a good defense against the wind today. Those who have become acclimatized they were out in sweats and some wore gloves. DAH!!! They tell me in time I will be doing the same.
I know there are those of you who had frost this morning and/or having snow and I know you are asking what I have to complain about. Believe me....... I am NOT COMPLAINING.
I am going to finish sewing the last three seams and then , press and maybe sandwich this piece tonight.
To sit and quilt on it will be a good foil and break from the time I spend dye painting.
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Thursday, October 15, 2009

I auditioned a lot of different fabric squares to go with the

the squares-n-squares I had completed so far, but at the end of today I am not sure if the ones you see will remain. I also thought of adding some nine patches to the mix. I made a few, but quickly nixed that.
This put it up on the wall and see what happens isn't how I work as a rule. I like a plan, a scale drawing, a predetermined size all of which is generally based on an inner vision, so bare with me, this is really a very different way of working for me. And I have no idea of how it will turn out.

So why am I doing it, you ask? HUMMM. I guess for one, I needed something to do while I wait for my supply of print paste to arrive from Pro chemical and I can get seriously down to doing some dye painting on silk and for two, I signed up to take a one day class with Dianne Hires the first of next month that is being sponsored by a local quilt guild and I know that she works in this lets not look to far ahead manner so I am getting myself in practice.
Why am I taking a workshop from her? It is not so I can do what she does. It is more that I decided before I left Missouri that I would get more involved with the quilt community here early on so I won't feel so isolated and the best way to do that is to take a workshop, at least that way you know that the people you meet in the workshop are at least interested in something that interest you. I am also looking into art quilt groups but have not had any luck so far.
I think it might need some more dark value squares...... Come back and see whats next.

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On the way home from the imaging

center after my mommogram,my car made a u-turn into the parking lot of the Altamonte Springs Library. It wasn't at all what I expected. Not that I was looking for anything as wonderful as the Library in Columbia, that I so loved, but I was looking for something that was just a little more than what I found when I opened the door and entered. That said, I did find two books that I wanted to bring home and leaf through.
I did learn from a women there that that library was just the library for our small city and not THE library for the county. WHEW!!! So with driving directions I went from there to a larger library that is one of five for Seminole County. That branch is about 5 miles from my place and while still not grand was more in line with what I visualize when I think of a library. I left after an hour of browsing with three books, one of which was the Quilts of Gees Bend.
I've never gone out of my way to pick up this book before or see an exhibit of these quilts.

In order to get the maximum number of inches of design wall space I had to find a way of getting access to the light switches on the wall. So a hole cut in the polystyrene sheeting was the answer, and a flap of felt to cover the hole solved the aesthic problem.
Below is what is on my design wall at this time. It is not what the final quilt will look like since all I am doing at the moment is make square -n- square blocks. Will keep you updated on my progress.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Had I taken pictures of my design wall and blogged last night

before I went to bed well after midnight, I would have had something to show you. But sadly I didn't. Sitting and mindlessly running pieces of fabric under the sewing machine needle can be a mind opening experience. As I worked and was placing blocks after block on the design wall I realized that I was never going to be happy working and being limited to just 48 inches of design wall space. I might have downsized my living quarters, but I haven't downsized my thinking of what size and scale I like working with.

So tonight I went back to Lowe's and brought another piece of Dow 2 inch blue styrene insulation and then to Joann's for more white felt. I had the guy in the lumber department cut the insulation sheet at 32 inches and that was what I brought home with me knowing that if I held my breath I just might could get the 32 inches to fit next to the 48" I already had on the only wall suitable.
But no, on getting home and wrapping the sheet of polystyrene with felt, 32 inches was an inch too wide. Out came my trusty saw. I removed an inch or so. Now I have a design wall that measures 79" x 8'.
Now I'm happy.
Tomorrow morning, I go for a mammogram and when I return I will take pictures of what I am working on.

And oh... I got a letter from Lark Books and the editors of 500 Art Quilts. Both quilts I entered for consideration in this up coming book were accepted. YEAH!!! I think the book will be available sometimes in the Spring. Double YEAH!!!

Friday, October 09, 2009

Finish each day

.... This has been my favorite quote for a long time. I ordered it initially from "WallWords" and had it on a short hallway wall that lead to my bedroom in my Kentucky condo. Lyn ordered the quote for me when I moved to Columbia because she knew how fond I was of the quote. But I never found the right spot to place while I was there.
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When I unpacked the box that contained the quote that is laser cut from a vinyl material that you burnished to a surface, it was like finding an old friend. The door to my bedroom seemed to be the perfect spot.
You can get to Wallwords by clicking on the title for this post. Not sure how that happened when I was trying to link "WallWords" to their website.

From where I plan to sit and sew, this is what

I can see. Sigh!!! I was hoping I would have a less obstructed view of the garden.
Yesterday after googling the whereabouts of the closest Lowe's I went on line and was disappoint to see that they did not carry two inch thick Dow insulation. So I had my mind set to use 1 inch instead. How happy can you imagine I was when I got to Lowe's last night and found that they DID have the thicker sheets. Now double the happiness. I brought one sheet.. had then split it down the middle, because one sheet halved is all I can haul at one time. I brought white at Joanne which conveniently was around the corner. Covering and getting it attached to the wall will be tonight's job after I finish my dust ruffle.

I am loving how easily it is for me to find everything I need or want in this area.

It felt so good to be sitting and sewing even if it was something as utilitarian as a dust ruffle.

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On Monday when the movers took their leave,

I was left with lots of boxes and wondering where everything I'd brought with me was going to be placed. As I was opening each box, I wondered too if dispite all that I had gotten rid of had I still over estimated the amount of space I would have to live and work in.



I am happy to say that everything has a place althought I am not sure if where the stuff is now it will be permanently. As you know one has to live in a space to see really what fits.
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Sunday, October 04, 2009


Steve the moving guy just called. Said he was crossing the FLorida state line and would see me tomorrow. YEAH!!! Four days ahead of when I expected them. Could life get any better than that? Here I was ready to sleep on the blow up mattress until at least Thursday, but this time tomorrow, or an hour or two thereafter my bed should be standing in place with fresh sheets. AHHH!
This is the view from my slider. It is better than I imagined and remembered. Yesterday Rene' and I went to a garage sale in a subdivision one interstate exit from us and I found this wicker chair. Not sure where it will be placed permanently in the apartment at the moment, but for now, it keeps me off the floor. For some reason my color taste has moved from red/orange and purple to RED and green. But not Christmas red and Christmas green but a more blue red and a yellow green. HMMM! I can see my new works materializing in this color palette. But first I will need to play with dye color mixing to get what I want.

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Favorite places I have visited and spent money in while here so far. The Sweet Tomato,(3 times) Barnes & Nobles,once, Pier One, once, Home Depot (3 times), TJ Maxx and Marshall's, too many times, I have lost count, The Home Store, Kirkland's,IKEA, The Black Sheep( a yarn shop) and Joann Fabrics,all once. The Joann's here puts the one in Columbia to shame.
The bathroom is up and running, the clothes closet is organized and the kitchen is functional. I have a microwave, an electric tea-kettle and a small skillet and a grill pan which I opted for instead of a George Foreman.What more is there.
This morning I visited another church equal distance from the one I liked when I was here in July. I think for at least the next month or so I will alternate to see if one sticks more so than the other.
Today, I need to finish hanging curtains in the bedroom and then I am off to Home Depot for some bolts for the bed. One of the movers told me as he was dis-assembling my bed that several of the bolts holding the head and foot board to the frame were bent and I promised them new ones would be here when they arrived.
WOOO HOOO, my furniture is coming!!!!!