Thursday, September 23, 2010

my first log cabin..... in EQ7

I learned how to set blocks into borders this morning - spent way more time than I should have doing it, but here is the result - looks more like Spring than Fall, which is not a bad thing, right?  I used a block (2, actually) from the library and left it colored the way EQ7 had it, added several different pieced borders, and this is the one I like best so far.

Must be getting to my chores now.  No more playtime today!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

EQ7 practice, dyeing to meet you, Morning Glory!

I've been learning Electric Quilt 7 - a quilt design software - after watching all the videos and reading through several of the 'help' topics, I managed to design a couple of things I can share with you.
First I did the Block of the Month for my quilt guild, QCE:

I couldn't find this in my 'big block book', so I named it "Circling Geese" and now I'm wondering whether geese actually fly counter-clockwise... but there it is anyway!
I made up 14 kits, which are now in the hands of guild members, who will (hopefully) sew them all up and remember to bring them to the Oct. guild meeting and some lucky quilter will win them all!

The next thing I did was learn to create 'my library' folder where I could store all this year's Block of the Month designs. 

Then I practiced reshaping some applique shapes - nothing impressive to share on that yet, but it's coming along - maybe in another week or two!

Then I opened up a can of worms bunch of New York Beauty blocks and tried recoloring, rotating, etc. in a few different settings, and came up with one that I really like:
not that I have time to make it, but I like it!

...and the other thing that is going on in the kitchen annex of the studio is a batch (the last of the season) of morning glory dye.  I've been promising to tell how this is done, so here it is:

First go find a neighbor with a profusion of morning glory vines in a bright, dark color.  Pull all the flowers off the vines - just the flowers; no stems, bugs, stamen, etc.  JUST the trumpet part.  Pick all you can - at least all you can get away with...
Then, put them in a bowl and check for anything you DON'T want in your dye bath.

Rinse the flowers in plain water, drain and pack them into a mason jar.

sprinkle with a pinch of salt, then fill the jar with boiling water (filtered or distilled is best)

poke the flowers down into the water - they will float until all the air is released.  You might have to add a little more boiling water.
Now put the cap and ring on the jar and let it seal.
Store in a cool dark place like you do the rest of the canned goods - just don't try to use it for syrup!

it will look dark right away, but don't use it until it has a few days to brew....

When you are ready to dye your whatevers - cotton, hemp, shoelaces, socks, etc. - pour the contents through a coffee filter (set in a strainer) over a microwave safe glass bowl. You might also allow your 'sludge' to dry on some paper towels or fabric to get all the dye you possibly can out of the batch.

Submerge your intended objects in the dye bath and place in the microwave (assuming you have one) for about 3 minutes.  Allow to cool before you try to handle that bowl - the dye will be boiling hot!  Don't say I didn't warn you!

Remove from dye bath, squeeze out excess dye, and lay out or hang to dry (not outdoors).

I've dyed a hank of embroidery thread, pfd Kona cotton, and an old sock in this picture:

the pink blotches on the sock are from the KoolAid stains leftover on the paper towels I used to dry the sock on - that will be another blog...
the cotton was scrunched into a ball while it dried to get that nice texture.

These pieces are all waiting for a 'spring' project - there's a nip in the air this morning, so I'm off to look for seed pods.

If you try this, let me know how your results come out.  Remember to take pictures!
Bye for now,

Thursday, September 16, 2010

much needed rain, just as I'm going out!

It is pouring rain - I'm typing this now as a procrastination, since I don't really want to go out in that downpour and get soaking wet just to mail my art trades.

here is what I've done lately -
this is at C&T Publishing:
done for their new product "Liquitex® Acrylic Iridescent Medium" which was so much fun to play with, I had a hard time deciding what to do for the project - it can be used on almost anything, wood, paper, clay or my personal favorite - fabric!  This piece will be traveling with them while they introduce the new product at shows, then go to a retailer for display.  I won't get it back, so I'll have to make another one for myself!  Of course, it would never be possible to make two of these identical - so the next ones will all be different and unique!  That's what I love about fiber art!   Go to C&T's website for more info on their new products, including the new inks!

The 4x6ers theme this month is 'Symbols' so I chose... oops, can't tell yet - it's a surprise, but here's a little hint: 

and FIBER ART TRADERS are swapping ATC's based on "Women In Construction" - so I did a little self-portrait set based on the plumbing I did on my first house back in 1970....  this was not the original blue print, that has long since dissintegrated; but a little freebie I found on the www:
which I put on the ATC along with a washer and a pic of myself that was taken a little while before I actually did that plumbing....
and, by the way, I want to send a BIG thank you to the Techies at STAPLES who helped me through my computer woes this summer - they were very helpful and supportive - and I don't blame any of it on them personally!  Especially now that I have a working computer!
I guess I'll have to find my raincoat and umbrella and get this over with. 
Hope you are safe and warm, whatever your weather is doing!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

and the winner is....

congratulations to crowefan0517 - you are the winner of a free quilting class at Quilting Weekly!  watch your email for a message from grannygoodstuff!

click the link below to choose your class:

Quilting Weekly

I'll be at the quilting machine if anyone needs me.....

Can you guess what song this postcard is?

Check back for pics of my latest quilts soon, I'm doing lots of bindings this week!