Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Come Join Me In Houston at the International Quilt Festival!

I have two fun all-day workshops scheduled this fall at the International Quilt Festival in Houston, Texas, and I hope to see you in one or both of them!!
First, I will be co-teaching a rollicking workshop called "Painting With A Twist & Shout" along with Jamie Fingal.  This workshop is for anyone who loves the idea of painting is intimidated by the blank canvas.  We collaborate as a group to create amazing paintings on large pieces of unstretched canvas, and then we (gasp!) cut them up to make some very cool mixed media items in the afternoon.   You just won't believe how much fun it is!  This workshop is from 9-5 on Friday,  October 31st (wooooo, it's on Halloween!).  Workshop #512 on the schedule, which is now LIVE so you can enroll!Check out some of the images below:
Morning:  collaborative painting!

Afternoon:  create all sorts of cool things with your painted canvas sections!

Saturday Workshop:  "Fifty Shades of Groovy:  A Modern Quilting Workshop"!  This workshop (#719) runs on Saturday, November 1st, from 9-5.  We will construction a contemporary panel from your own set of fabric squares and a selection of gray solids.  Please see the workshop listed on the IQA Website for more information.  Most students leave the workshop with the panel constructed and we spend time discussing the use of negative space and placement of the constructed panel.  Students are amazed with their results and how different each participants' work turns out.  
Examples below:

details of "Thoroughly Mondrian Millie"...
this is a portion of the negative space surrounding the pieced "panel".

This quilting workshop is for any level of quilt maker.  The only prerequisite is to have a basic knowledge of using a sewing machine and rotary cutter.  

Monday, July 14, 2014

Playing Around with "Flower Party", one of Traci Bautista's new collection with Stencil Girl!

I am a fan of Traci Bautista and was very happy to learn that she has become a designer for Stencil Girl.  I love the irregular edges of this fantastic stencil, called "Flower Party", and I think you will, too!

Click Here for this stencil

I was really interested in moving this stencil around the surface of several types of paper as well as some mixed media cloth by RocLon.  Because of the irregular edges it seemed like this would be fun to use with spray paint, so I pulled out several cans of my wonderful Liquitex acrylic spray paint.  
I placed a plastic drop cloth in a well-ventilated area and placed my various papers, including some tissue paper, on the plastic.

I began by working with thess turquoise and lime green paint colors.

Since there was paint collecting on the surface of the stencil I turned it over and used the paint as a stamp, thus creating a positive mark with the stencil design.

I like!

I introduced black paint onto the mixed media cloth.

Again, I used the paint on the stencil to create a positive mark.
I'm very pleased with the depth created by the various layers of paint!

Next, I took the stenciled mixed media cloth and fused a large fabric ring
overlapping the edge of my cloth.

I trimmed the ring and placed the remainder on the edge of the cloth in a different position.

I cut small, slightly irregular circles from the leftover cloth that was in 
the center of the ring.

I stitched the rings into place using black thread for a high contrast.

Then I free-motion stitched the small pieces into place.

I love the soft edges of the lightly spray-painted areas...

contrasted with the sharp, positive image that was obtained by using the leftover paint on the stencil surface....

and the layering of the same shape in a larger scale with cloth!

The future of this piece of mixed media cloth remains to be seen.  I am considering constructing a paint brush roll with it.  Stay tuned!
Don't forget to leave a comment here, and on all the other blogs.  This will qualify you for the giveaway!  Thank you so much for stopping by, and I hope you will return often.

Please be sure to visit all the blogs on this hop:

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

A Walk Around Tirano, Italy

I love old doors and walls.  This city has clean, cold mountain water running from public fountains.  I had a cold drink of it and it was better than Evian!
We had pizza for dinner from a wood-burning oven in a delightful small restaurant down the street from our hotel.  After, we wandered the streets and looked at the old buildings, walls, doors, and streets.  I had such a good time!
This is the post office parking lot!

I adore the old, gnarly boards that make up these doors, as well
as the plants lining the top of the arch.

Look at this old stone sink!

It was after 10 pm when we were walking around.
The street lights were just coming on....

Wouldn't you love to have access to this wonderful, cold mountain water?

The evening light was amazing.  We noticed that it stays light so much longer in this area than the central US.  It was light as late as 10:45.  The temperature was slightly cool and crisp.  What a wonderful evening to poke around this small, beautiful city.  

Monday, June 23, 2014

A Train Travel Adventure on the Bernina Express!

This little train has always captured my fancy.  The fact that it is the BERNINA train is icing on the cake!  When I found that I would be traveling to Basel with my husband (more on that in another post) I factored two extra days onto the trip so we could do a bit of exploring.
We began in Basel this morning by taking the tram to the central train station, or SBB.  First, a train to Zurich, then Chur, then St. Moritz.  Then, we boarded the Bernina Express Train in an observation car, which we had all to ourselves.  
The scenery is beyond belief.  One immediately understands why this was deemed a UNESCO World Heritage Site!
Here is what Wikipedia has to say about the train:
The train leaves St. Moritz and takes the line to Pontresina (1,774 m) in the Val Bernina. It ascends progressively the valley to theBernina Pass passing the Morteratsch station (1,896 m), where the traveler can see the glacier of the same name and the highest summit of the Eastern Alps, the Piz Bernina. Before arriving at the pass the train stops at Bernina Diavolezza (2,093 m) where an aerial tramway leads to Diavolezza. The Bernina Express reaches the summit at the Ospizio Bernina station at 2,253 meters above the Lago Bianco.
Alp Grüm (2,091 m) is the first station south of the Alps, situated above the Lago Palü and right below the Piz Palü and its glacier. After many hairpin turns the train reaches Cavaglia (1,693 m) above the Val Poschiavo, then the Swiss Italian-speaking town ofPoschiavo at 1,014 meters. The train then follows the course of the Poschiavino and stops at Le Prese (964 m) and Miralago (965 m) both on Lake Poschiavo's shore. After Miralago it continues its descent toward Brusio (780 m), where it passes the spiral of the Brusio Viaduct. Shortly after having passed the Italian border at Campocologno (553 m) the Bernina Express ends its journey at the Tiranostation at 430 meters.

The Albula line and the Bernina line on the Bernina Express route were jointly declared a World Heritage Site in 2008. The trip on the Bernina Express through this World Heritage Site is a four-hour railway journey across 196 bridges, through 55 tunnels and across the Bernina Pass on the highest point at 2,253 metres in altitude. The entire line is 1,000 mm (3 ft 3 38 in) (metre gauge).

None of these photos can fully capture how magnificent this experience was.
And, tomorrow, we are doing it again in reverse!

And we are on Italian soil!

I love that my traveling companion is adventurous!

We walked to our hotel from the train station.

I love these old cobblestone streets even though they 
are very hard on my knees.

As a postscript:  when I texted one of our daughters that we had done this trip she responded by writing, "Well, you must have felt right at home on that Bernina train!"