Sunday, March 8, 2009

Inspiration from Quilting Arts Magazine and more

This cute little guy is the reason why I'm behind with everything! He's Harley for harlequin, all black and white with perfectly symmetrical "color blocking." After a month of seeing him around, we finally decided that Harley is a stray looking for a home. Unfortunately, my two adult cats refuse to let him set foot in their territory, but he sneaks in just the same. Night-time temperatures dropped to freezing, it rained for days, and I heard the raccoons and smelled the skunks moving through the backyard, so Harley moved into the garage where he has a soft bed and lots of food. Now my trick is to keep the other cats from seeing this sweet, gentle, well-mannered cat. Chessie attacks if he can,"I know you're doing something nefarious down there mom. I know something is going on--where is he?" Harley stays quiet in the garage and so maybe I won't get a lot of vertical spraying in the house. Anybody looking for this cat?

When my husband's chronic illness finally sank in as our new reality, and I started packing, house-hunting, and then moving us slowly, I really missed sewing, writing, and my whole creative process. Looking back now, I realize that the doing had stopped, but the learning continued. When I was most down, when I most missed color, and my sewing machine was in the closet of the new house 200 miles away, it was tough. What got me through it was Quilting Arts magazine and Cloth Paper Scissors magazine. Patricia Bolton, her husband, and staff continue to find and present the leading edge of art quilting, mixed media, surface design, and "artistic discovery." They kept (and keep) me breathless with innovation and inspiration. I'm finding out that there are still folks who haven't discovered them so here's your introduction. I will write later about their other magazines. I will also tell you that except for Stitch magazine, you're not going to find wearable art, just pure inspiration and sometimes techniques that can go through the wash. I would never have thought to applique a crow onto anything I wear, but the enchanting designs made me do it. I'll show you when I finish.

Recently I told you about Pamela Allen's DVD. CQFA (California Quilt and Fiber Association) is hosting a Pamela Allen workshop on April 17 and 18, 2009 at the Community Church of Santa Clara. (directions: The workshop is on the same topic as the DVD, "How to Think Like an Artist" but will focus on each person developing a personal voice and private language. See the description on Pamela's website: To quote Pamela, "There are two parts to every art is the technical expertise of stitching, applique, quilting, blocking, binding. And we all continue to improve in this category simply by making work. The other side...the ART more ephemeral and esoteric perhaps, as it requires many years of questioning, risk taking and imagination to develop.... Students will hone in on the whole process of art-making using a series of hands on exercises which focus on the important elements of creativity. Each morning and afternoon, the class will work on projects that address certain problems faced by every artist." Boy, don't I wish I could go to that one! To reserve a space send a check for $155, payable to CQFA, to Julie Stiller, 1251 Highland Drive, Boulder Creek, CA 95006. This price includes a one year membership in CQFA! No machines are required.

When I wrote about Therese May in an earlier note, I neglected to include the url for one more website. This one includes her interesting blog as well as photos from her present exhibition at the Triton Museum in Santa Clara, CA, and more works. I was just thinking how interesting would be fabric printed with some of her designs.

Remember my note about Margot Silk Forrest and her embellished shoes? Margot is now writing a blog for her business, Sassy Feet! Check out her stories and tips at Now she's convinced me to buy Steve Madden hightops and embellish to my heart's content. I want shoes with comfort but also flair and sass, so this might be the way to get what I want. Time to start collecting the right trims.

No comments: