Friday, April 29, 2011

15% off Deal on Cool Stuff

Remember these:

Those fabulous little zipper pulls on my pouches?   Well, so many of you raved about them that I contacted the supplier of them, and guess what?

She loves you guys as almost as much as I do, and is giving a special 15% discount for anyone who reads my blog!  How cool is that?   The code is :   jabotquilt15
Jennie's etsy store is called Zipit.  And they have any colour and any size of zipper you could imagine and they are the really good quality YKK zippers. 

And this is where you can find the totally cool and funky zipper pulls.   If you are wondering, I bought the pack of 50 Kaleidoscope zipper pulls.   (and I am ordering more stuff too)

It gets even better.    You may say, what would I do with zippers and pulls if I don't know how to make those adorable pouches on Jackie's super fantastic blog?   Well, what if I told you that I was doing up a tutorial as part of my work for the design team?  And it is out of Sugar and Spice  (can buy it here at a super price from my design teammate Julie).    This is the hottest fabric on the market right now.   Might I add, I made one out of this fabric and it is on it's way to Salt Lake City Quilt Market and it looks totally divine!

What are you waiting for?     Go See Jennie and order some zippers and zipper pulls, then go see Julie and order some fabric, then enter my giveaway if you haven't already.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

5 Fat Quarter Giveaway

It's not every day I get a quilt accepted into a Juried Show and I would like to share my celebration by giving away the 5 fat quarters pictured below.   As I mentioned in the previous post, my quilt got into the Sacred Threads show and I am very happy.    And I want you to be happy along with me, and what better way to make you happy, then by giving you a chance to win fabric!

The fat quarter bundle has a theme of birds.    They are quite lovely and all to together.   It would be interesting to see what one makes with this fabric.

Okay, here is how to win:
1.  If you are a follower that I am so thankful for, leave a comment telling me so.
2.   If you are just joining, then leave me a comment telling me you signed up to follow.
3.   If you blog about it, leave me 2 comments.  

I will make the draw on Thursday May 5th, 2011.

Good Luck!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Sacred Threads Acceptance

I am over the moon in excitement and surprise.    My quilt, 'Bye Gram, I Love You' just got accepted into the esteemed 'Sacred Threads' juried show.   This show was started by Vikki Pignatelli.  

The quilt will be travelling to the Canadian Juried Show in May and then off to Virginia to the Sacred Threads juried show.   At that point it will have travelled more than Gram did.   But now a piece of her and her story will be told to more people than I could ever imagine.

Here is my quilt.   The story behind the quilt is written beneath.  I can't tell you how proud I am to be her granddaughter.
It was made in memory of my grandmother who died in May 2009.

Every week for 10 years I would go over to their farm and see them, to do some housework, or just to visit. I did this by myself, and then as I had my two sons, they would come with me. And every single time, just as I was leaving, I would kiss her cheek and say, 'Bye Gram, I love you'.

She was the most remarkable woman I have ever known. A farmer's wife to my grandfather, a fabulous cook, a loving grandmother, and of course a quilter. Her grandchildren and then great grandchildren were her greatest joy. She was always so excited to see us. Everything about her was fun, whether you were in her kitchen doing dishes or peeling apples, or playing euchre, you were smiling.

This quilt was made from her blouse and a sleeper that both boys wore when she held them. The clothing is stuffed to give it more of a 3D appearance. The yarns couched into the background were from a sweater that she was unravelling near the end of her life. She was so thrifty and environmentally friendly. Decades beyond her time.

And the buttons.... there is a story. The yellow buttons, quite a few of them, represent how sunny and happy life was when she was alive. The orange ones, not so many, show the time of her dying and how painful that was for us all. And the red, all the red buttons, that is to represent all the love she left behind for us.

She witnessed my birth, watched me grow up, celebrated my marriage, cherished my children, and I held her hand when she died.

Bye Gram, I Love You

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Give and Take Applique with Daphne Greig

I know, I have been MIA for about a week, but with good reason!   Our little guild has world renowned Daphne Greig visiting us. 

She taught the Give and Take Applique workshop today and it was fantastic. 

Daphne along with her business partner, Susan Purney Mark have produced over 100 patterns and their 5th book is being released this July.

Their patterns are not difficult but produce vivid results and allow you to play with the designs so you can make them your own.

Twenty guild members sat in awe as she explained her simple yet stunning method of Give and Take Applique.   We left with the ability to create our own designs or some purchased patterns to create beauties Daphne has already prepared the design for.

Here is my practice one.  Of course it has circles in it!    I have sketched out a few other designs that I hope to show in the next little while. 

You will have to stay tuned because I also purchased a fine little miracle gadget that I want to tell you about.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Pouches and Table Runners

 I have been sewing up a storm for the little store that opens up here in our town for the summer.  

I have made some zippered pouches, (like 20 or so, cause I just can't stop) and I know I have already shown you some, but I just had to take pics of these ones as they are so totally scrumptious.   I even ordered cute little pull tabs to put on each pouch.

I also designed some table runners as well.   I am really enjoying working on a cream background, as colours just seem to pop, yet the cream colour still gives it that earthy country feeling. 

And let me know what you like best.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Shiva Paintstik Tutorial

As promised, I am going to show you how to use the Shiva Paintstiks.   I had these things sitting in my studio for months, thinking I needed to learn how to use them.  If I had known how completely simple they were to use, I would have been at them a long time ago.  

They really are fabulous.   Easier than painting, yet very similar effects, but no running, seeping or  spilling.   Now there is hardly an art quilt of mine where you won't see a bit of Shiva somewhere.

Let's get started.

Shiva Paintstiks
block of fabric to practice on
freezer paper
brush, any will do, but those that have a flat end are the best

The first thing about the paintstiks that you need to know is they have a self forming skin on them.   That means that they form a dry crust on them when not in use.  So you have to remove that crust.  Some people take a little paring knife, I just press hard on a rag and you can see the skin come off.

Once you have the skin off, you are ready to go.   Don't worry, you can see the skin, and you can see it come off.  

There are several ways of applying the stik.   First you can just draw with it.  This gives a heavy thick line.  You can see by the little heart I did below.

Or as lots of people do, they use a brush.   This can give you a softer look, yet allows you to do shading and different colouring too.  Remember I mentioned a flat end brush is best?   I have used both, and they do work, but the flat end gives a more equal distribution of the colour.   You can always just clip your brush to make it more flat.  

You just take some swipes with your brush on the paintstik till you have some on, and lightly dab the area you want to paint.   I am using a stencil here to show you.  When I say dab, I mean some sweeping motions, or brushing motions.

Here are 2 different flowers using the stencil.  The one on the lower left, I used yellow and pink in it.

Another way to create shapes more personalized, is to make your own stencils.  And you can do this by using freezer paper.   Just draw your design on the paper side of the freezer paper,  and then cut it out.   Then iron the paper to the fabric, shiny side down.   The paper stays in place while you use your paintstik.

Here is the freezer paper ironed on.

This photo shows the coloring I did with the brush between the freezer paper.

Here the freezer paper is lifted, leaving nice clean lines.  

This last picture shows all three methods.  The heart is where I just used the paintstik and drew.  The 2 little flowers, I applied the paintstik with a flat ended brush using a stencil.  Lastly the lines are done with the freezer paper as my stencil.

Now you must leave it for 24 hours to cure and then heat set it with an iron and it is permanent. 

You will want to wash your brush or it will get hard and crusty.  (Don't ask me how I know)  Soap and water doesn't work, due to the oils in the paintstik, but I did soak it in some Citrasolv and that did the trick.  
Pretty easy?  Let me know what you think.

Here is a quilt of mine that has the Shiva Paintstiks in the corner, the paisley motifs is done using this method.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Pipe Cleaners and Art Quilts

It's almost been a week since I last posted.   That's what a horrible cough and cold can do to you.  Thankfully I am feeling much better and hitting my studio again.  

My kids love doing crafts with pipe cleaners.  They are soft and fuzzy and they hold their shape to whatever you make it into. 

I thought I should give them a try on a little art quilt.    This one was made in celebration of Valentine's Day.   I shaped the pipe cleaners into hearts and spirals and couched them onto the fabric.   Then I did some free motion quilting around them.  Put a little sleeve on the back and it is ready to hang.

For this next one, I wrapped some very thick eyelash yarn around a pipe cleaner and couched it down.  This one has a very very furry texture that makes you want to touch it. 
I am currently working on some more zippered pouches.  Wait till you see the cute zipper pulls I bought on etsy.   And I am also working on a Shiva Paintstik tutorial to show you.  

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

More 3D Art Quilts

I thought I would show you another small 3D art quilt I created.   This piece is made using aluminum cans and a sink scrubber. 

I admit I was amazed at how easy my needle went through the aluminum.   I did use a very small needle  as the puncture marks don't disappear.   You want to make sure you know what you are planning to quilt before starting.  Although just having needle holes through a piece would make a great addition too. 

The sink scrubber was a fun addition as this stuff is just impossible to pull apart.   The pieces held their shape and stayed straight up after stitched down.

I am now officially a Course Instructor for Riley Blake fabrics!  My tutorial went up to make a funky scarf.  Check it out.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Crayon Tutorial and Sugar and Spice Fabric

First up is the latest fabric from fabulous designer Amanda Herring.   This lovely bundle is called Sugar and Spice and it is just gorgeous.   I don't know how I am going to make  a quilt from it when I refuse to remove the ties.  

Now try not to faint, but here are her laminates!  Aren't they to die for?   You are just going to have to take my word for it that they are soft, smooth as butter and oh so very pliable.   I have a super secret, super sensational tutorial planned for them.

Crayon on Fabric Tutorial

Second to beading, crayon on fabric was the most sought after tutorial being requested.  So I finally found a spare moment to demo it for you.

Piece of light coloured fabric
several sheets of blank paper

Either trace or draw out a picture or design on your light fabric.  A light pencil is great if you don't want your lines to be visible.   I used a marker so you could see my work better.  Your pencil line will be covered up when you quilt it anyway.

Tape down onto a hard surface.

Start colouring.   I pressed fairly hard as I wanted it to be quite dark due to the fact when you iron it, that will lighten it up.   But you could do light and dark areas with one colour to give nice balance and contrast.   I ususally outline the shape first and then colour it in, trying to keep the strokes going in one direction.

You will find you have to sharpen your crayon frequently so it is easy to get into corners and near borders.

I used Crayola Crayons as I know they work.  Other brands may work too, but keep in mind, sometimes the cheaper ones have a higher content of wax and less colour, so your picture may not be as vibrant.

When you are done colouring, gently blow off any loose flakes, don't rub them off as they may leave a mark.  Remove the tape and head to the ironing board.

Set your iron on the highest Cotton setting, but no steam.  Place a piece of blank paper under it and one covering it.   Press the iron on the paper, moving slowly around.   I held corners of the paper, so it didn't slide around, smearing the crayon.

Once you have  a good amount of crayon residue on the paper, remove it and put a clean piece of paper on top.  I continued to do this until there was no colour on the paper.   It only took a minute.

Remove and voila, you have mastered colouring on fabric with crayon.   Turn it into a pillow or cute wallhanging by quilting it with fun colours to match!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

A Giveaway from Julie!

My friend Julie, a member of the Design Team I belong to is having a giveaway of two, I repeat two charm packs of Happier by Riley Blake Fabrics.   Go and check out her blog and enter the giveaway, and while you are there, check out her brand new etsy shop!  

Friday, April 1, 2011

Nintendo DSi Purse for Little Girl (or Runaround Purse for Big Girl)

Head on over to The Quilted Fish to see what Stephanie from Peas in a Pod, a member of our design team has cooked up for you today in her tutorial.
The instructions are so clear and precise and she gives you a ton of photos with little notes right in the photos, so there is no way you can get confused.   There is even a spot to hold the little cartridges!

Stephanie is one of those gals that is super talented.  Go and check out her blog and see what she is up to.  She is great for posting a ton of pics of quilts for you to look at.

DSI Photo  1 89