Friday, November 18, 2016

Week in Review 2016 - 11/18

Tips, Thoughts and Techniques:

Normally I crop my images so
that my work looks squared up.
I'm so pleased with how nice
and straight the edges to Siren's
are and how sharp the corners
I'm sharing what it looks like hanging
on my design wall.
I seem to be in a constant state of betwixt and between these days. I am never quite finished with one project before the next one begins. The overlap of the two has me in a constant state of multi-tasking. My artwork is caught in transition, too. Siren's Song is finished - well, sort of. I still need to do those last bits of attaching the sleeve, label and adding it to my website. While I complete those tasks I have started working on the design for my next piece, currently titled, Where Have All the Flowers Gone? The title, of course, is a reference to the peace anthem of the '60s written by Pete Seeger in collaboration with Joe Hickson. Perhaps the group that cemented this song in all of our brains (some of you reading this are probably hearing it in your head) is Peter, Paul and Mary. If all of this is meaningless though, you can hear their rendition here.

Multi-tasking is not my strength. Nevertheless I did make progress this week, as you can see:

1)  Face Siren's Song - Done

I don't think I have ever hand stitched a facing into place so quickly. This is quite a sizable quilt at 72" H x 56" W.

2) Free motion quilting practice - Oops, missed this.

This is a 10" H x 12" W detail from
Siren's Song showcasing the prairie
points and intricate, intense quilting. All
the fabric started as white PFD Kona cotton.
I dyed, painted, inked and used a glue
resist to achieve the various colors
and textures seen in this image.
3) Do some surface design work - Done

I did take several hours betwixt and between to sit down and continue practicing my hand stitching. It is always a treat. No wonder there is a slow stitch movement.
4) Settle on a design for my next piece - Started

The idea for my next quilt has been percolating in my head for months. I thought I had pretty much nailed down my idea, at least in my head, but something about it just wasn't sitting right with me. I'm not sure why Where Have All the Flowers Gone? popped into my head. It just did and the answer to the question, "gone to graveyards, every one" was the visual image I needed. I don't have enough sketched out yet. Maybe I can share something next week.
5) Beware of when I find myself shutting down and find a way to stay open.

One more detail showing off the fabric
and quilting. 
I'm such a stickler for maintaining my routines as a way to achieve my goals and keep me from shutting down completely when they going gets tough, so much so that sometimes the routines themselves can be stifling. This past Tuesday, my yoga instructor called in sick and there was no substitute. Normally, I just plow forward and do yoga in the classroom often encouraging the other students to "share" facilitating the class with me. This time I opted to head home and go it alone. The first minute was torture, so were the next five and the five after that. In a rare, totally out of character choice, I didn't continue to push myself. Staying a slave to my routine was not helping me stay open, instead I was shutting down and becoming resentful. I opted to stay open by NOT doing what I planned and focused my attention elsewhere. 

Thanksgiving is next week and we are hosting a very small gathering. Whether the gathering is for 4, 10 or more, the work is fairly similar. There won't be much time to work in my studio, but I will find a way there and when I do I have a plan to keep the forward momentum going.

1)  Attach a sleeve to Siren's Song

2) Free motion quilting practice

3) Do some surface design work

4) Complete the design for my next piece

5) Beware of when I find myself shutting down and find a way to stay open.

I am now linking up to two blogs on Fridays. The first is Nina Marie's Off the Wall Fridays and the second is Free Motion Mavericks.


  1. This quilt is fantastic. Your quilting is amazing. I sure remember that song and the protests of the 60s. I recall my conservative parents reaction at the dinner table the night I said we should not be in Vietnam. I thought the roof was going to blow off.

    Interesting that you would be thinking about making a quilt from that song. I have thought about making one to go with the song Eve of destruction. I did make a red and black quilt to work out my anxiety, but I am going to call it We are broken. I might get a photo posted on my blog later today.

  2. That song brings back a lot of memories, and then reading Chris's comment above about Eve of Destruction, has me thinking about all the music of that era. Powerful songs, I wonder what will come out of this new era. Your stitching on Siren song is magnificent.

  3. I wasn't expecting the 'photo insert' in Siren Song so it took me by surprise...and what a delight! And yes...I think I know all the words to "Where Have All the Flowers Gone?" (and "If I had a Hammer" and "Blowin' in the Wind"...Memories!

  4. entertaining for 4 or 10 is lots of prep, cleaning before and after, and keeping everyone happy in the middle. I agree with your decision to drop the yoga that one day. It's for you, and if it's not working for you it's responsible to stop. It's a lesson in care taking we can share. LeeAnna

  5. I have had several conversations recently about people feeling they had lost their rhythm, in quilting and in life - I am hoping that 2017 will see the back of this problem. I love siren song -all those tiny variations in shade and colour are exquisite.

  6. Hello Gwyned,

    With the combination of cool colours and quilting patterns I am reminded of frost on the inside of my bedroom window when I was little - back when we had harsher winters, unheated bedrooms and no double glazing. Frosty windows were a visual treat.

    Thank you for linking up with Free Motion Mavericks - your quilt is this week's featured project!

    Love, Muv