24 days later

WOW!  It’s been over 3 weeks since I wrote.  Time does apparently fly when you’re having fun.  Or is it that it moves faster as you age?  Or is it just that there’s so much to DO that I forget to take the time to blog?

Either way, it’s been a while!

The chickens are doing well.  We’re getting 7 eggs a day consistently, which is more than we can use so I’ve started selling a few dozen a week.  The difference in fresh eggs is so amazing that I am convinced I’ll have chickens as long as I have the land to raise them on!

Our garden has been going crazy this year!  My new canning shelves are almost full, but I still haven’t put up any fruits, nor enough fruit juices, well besides the strawberry jam and strawberry sauce.  And as you can see I’ve got more potatoes to store today now that they’re dried off from digging (note to self get another storage basket):

Whoops!  I didn’t realize I left my sandals on the chair when I came in from mowing last night!  And it’s time now to re-till the ground, pull some of the plants in the garden, put up the fence to keep the critters out and plant my winter garden.  The winter garden here this year will be mostly greens, beets and peas.

On the knitting front I’ve finished one shawl:

Although I need to re-block it as I didn’t get it shaped quite right.  It’s supposed to be stretch into almost a half circle shape.  And I’ve almost finished a second shawl:

This one was a kit I purchased some time ago when I fell in love with the colors of the hand-dyed yarn in it.  I think I’m going to really like the shape of this one as well, it comes to more of an elongated point on the front edges.

On the quilting front I’m still working away at a few new patterns (to be shown at a later time), and I’ve done quite a bit of custom quilting this summer.  This is a sneak peak at the current customer quilt on the frame:

It’s taken much longer than I anticipated, due to the bending over neck issues and my lack of hydraulics on my machine table to raise it to height.  But it’s coming out pretty well and I’m hoping my customer will love it when it’s finished.

Of course part of what takes away blogging time is always the “normal” stuff….. you know the real job (husband’s company paperwork) and the required job (housework) and in the summer there’s the acre of land with all that weeding!  Who’s idea was it to put in so many flower gardens?  Oh yeah, that one was mine!  LOL

Oh and I’ve revamped part of my design room to allow for a little bit of painting:

And even allowed some time to play with a little bit of silk painting on stretched wire:

And lest you think that in all this I have neglected my spinning wheel, I assure you that I haven’t:

The jumbo bobbin is a silk/merino 2 ply that I struggled with a bit this summer.  It wasn’t the fiber, it was apparently me.  But I’ve gotten it done and moved onto a Merino/Alpaca blend that I carded myself and am now spinning with the lace flyer in the hopes of getting a fine enough 2 ply for another lacework shawl.

So, as you can see, time really does fly when you’re having fun…….and there’s so much to do that occasionally I tend to forget to blog.  Okay, maybe MORE than occasionally!!!  But I always try to make up for it……….even if that means it’s a super-long, photo heavy post!

Happy quilting, spinning, knitting, gardening, painting, or whatever else makes YOUR heart sing!

tree branches in thread

Most evenings, after the studio closes for customer work, you can find me back in the studio working on my own pieces.   I find the quiet of the evenings is my most productive time for artwork.

Last night I continued on the thread painting of the branches in the tree on my latest landscape.  This landscape is based on the same photo I used for “Overlook”, but worked in a different season, with a few different elements into it.  Eventually I can envision all 4 seasons done with this same base photograph.

For this one I started my thread painting with an Aurifil gray variegated thread.  That put down my stabilizing stitching in the colorway I am using.  Then I switched to a King Tut black/white/grey for the main bark on the tree.  I’ll follow this with returning to the Aurifil thread for the highlights on sun in the bark.

I am anticipating another 3, possibly 4 evenings of thread painting on this tree before it is completed.  Yes, that’s a LOT of thread painting, but my goal is to use the thread to emphasize the dimension in the tree and also to give a raised relief to the piece.  That takes a lot of thread and a lot of care to do, but isn’t it fun watching an idea come to life?

If you missed my class on the first landscape “Overlook”, it is being offered again, through Quilters Loft in Mooresville, NC on Saturday, January 23rd.

Back on schedule

Well, I’m finally back on my normal schedule…..housework and office in the a.m.,  studio in the afternoon and evenings.  It feels good to be back to normal, or whatever is normal for me.

This morning I took a walk with my camera and discovered we have one tree with COLOR!   Yes, COLOR in capital letters!!  Here where I live there are bits and snippets of color, but the property has mostly oaks that turn brown and cedars that don’t turn on it, so seeing a tree with bright vibrant color was a pleasant surprise.  Isn’t this just gorgeous:

oak-2-behind-shed

Now it’s not as pretty as the colors in Ohio were, but it has some glorious orange, red and yellow in those leaves:

Oak-behind-shed

The colors are similar to the backing of a customer quilt I quilted with a pantograph before I left:

Monicas-Quilt-Back
On another note, I’ll be teaching a Painted Quilt class at Quilters Loft in December.

painted-quilt-2-for-erica

This is the class for you if you’ve ever wondered how to use Shiva Paintsticks.  We’ll be covering techniques such as rubbings and stencils, we’ll be working with blending colors and adding layers as well.

Painted-Quilt-Detail2

Painted-Quilt-Detail1

During the class you’ll be making the painted blocks, and you will take home the pattern for completing the quilt once your blocks have cured (and we’ll go over various methods of curing the paint).

 

Have a great day and enjoy the fall colors!!!!!!!