Smooth Sailing


Not too long ago I shared plans to spend time sewing, shopping, and just having fun with a group of friends. Sadly my first full day has come and gone.

Almost all of my time was focused on my hand stitching pile of unfinished projects. Thankfully all of those items were finished. Take a look.

It feels so great to have crossed over that hurdle. Time to focus on other things!

Warm wishes to you!

Art Piece 97: Mint Shake


Mint Shake, Art Piece # 97 is the second of fourteen items I produced while attending the May, 2019 Susan Lenz class at Woodland Ridge Retreat. All of the items were small in nature and thus the reason for my productivity.

Art Piece # 97, just as with my first Susan Lenz product, utilized polyester stretch velvet and heat. The heat helped to both fuse and melt prescribed areas.

Art Piece # 97: Mint Shake

To embellish my art piece I added free-motion quilting along with numerous hand-applied stitches; their addition helped to add interest and pizazz. Using Susan’s methods to create art was very different from any other I had ever attempted, let alone imagined. While I am happy to add this masterpiece to my portfolio, the process of heating polyester stretch velvet to alter the appearance of the fibers will not be added to my regular repertoire.

The four outer edges of Mint Shake have been surrounded with a black border. Artistically applied rows of stitching were used to give the solid black fabric flair. The raw edges of the black border have been secured with facings. Art Piece # 97: Mint Shake measures 7 3/4” x 9 3/4”. This item is for sale.art,

Interested in the origin of Mint Shake’s name? Elements within my art pieces often provide the inspiration. In this case the mint green velvet was the catalyst.

Thank you for visiting today!

Warm Regards,

Art Piece 95: Exploring Shapes


A friend of mine asked me to choose a project for both of us to work on simultaneously. She lives about two and one half hours away; the traveling distance meant we would work on our projects independently. The deadline for the completion of the item was February, 2019. I was assigned the task of choosing the general guidelines. I selected red, teal and black for the must use colors. I also encouraged my partner to utilize the techniques outlined in Cindy Grisdela’s book Artful Improv.

Before the month was over I had this lovely specimen completed. Measuring 24” x 22” Exploring Shapes, Art Piece 95 easily met all of the requirements.

Exploring Shapes, Art Piece 95

If you have really great eye sight you might be able to read the placard displayed above my art quilt. On the card is the details of my project. This art piece was part of my September, 2019 solo exhibit at Blue Bar Quilts in Middleton, Wisconsin. Exploring Shapes is currently on display in my home.

Best wishes for a pleasant and productive day!

Exploring Shapes, Art Piece 95

Exploring Shapes is a one of a kind art piece. Measuring 24” x 22”, it was constructed from cotton fabrics.

$150.00

Sixteen of Sixteen: All Done, AP # 65


The Last One

Believe it or not, we have finally reached the end of this series. I’ve been sharing photos of my recently completed art pieces. Last Tuesday we took a look at number fifteen Today’s post features the sixteenth, and final art piece in the collection.

Mixed Emotions

Reaching the end of a project always brings with it a mixed bag of emotions.

  • Sense of Relief: Finishing a project means I can finally move on to other endeavors.
  • Degree of Sadness: I pour so much of myself into each of the projects that it often leaves me drained, and exhausted.
  • Elation: Lastly it’s a chance to shout for joy and acknowledge the awesome accomplishment of successfully achieving a goal.

The completion of this series is no exception. I started out with a desire to tackle my goal head-on with every ounce of energy I could muster. My enthusiasm was as boundless as the stars are in the sky.

As the days and weeks passed I experienced the slow drain accompanied by intense concentration. In spite of my fatigue I managed to press-on.

Even though it is sad to acknowledge that the sixteenth quilt is the end of an era, I am at the same time thrilled to be able to turn my focus in another direction. Before doing so let’s take a look at the sixteenth quilt.

The Inspiration

I’ve titled this last item All Done because it brings to a close my quest to repurpose my orphaned Courthouse Steps remnants.

As you can see from the photo below I approached this miniature quilt differently.

Rather than stitching together random snippets of scraps, to create a center panel, I allowed the three tiny fragments to form a cascading arrangement similar to that of a staircase.

The leftover scraps were originally part of a courthouse steps quilt block. Replicating that design with these pieces seemed only fitting.

The remaining smidgens just happen to be from the same original block and as a result their colors nicely compliment one another.

Finishing Touches

To give the itty bitty squares the focus they deserved I enveloped them in a sea of stark white cotton fabric.

The seams of the border provided natural beginning and ending points for the quilting embellishment.

It Packs A Punch

Even though this small art quilt took very little time to create it carries with it a punch that demands attention.

All Done, AP # 65
All Done, AP # 65

Quilt Details

  • Materials: Fabric top and backing are 100% cotton
  • Batting: Warm & Natural White
  • Dimensions: 8 1/4” L x 4 1/2” W
  • Quilting Stitch: Angled lines using white thread
  • Quilted On: Conventional sewing machine

The Other Fifteen

If you have an interest in reading about and viewing the other fifteen pieces you can find them filed under the category Court House Steps.

Thank you so much for following along on this very long adventure! I hope that you have enjoyed watching.

Dont Go Away!

I have many more art pieces yet to share so stay connected for the next reveal.

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Fifteen of Sixteen: Court House Surprise, AP # 64


Fifteen of Sixteen

When I set out to write stories about my sixteen quilts I knew it would be a while before I finished. Now that I’ve finally made it to number fifteen I can’t believe my project is almost over.

Last Thursday we took a look at mini quilt number fourteen Today we move on to number fifteen.

Are They Different?

Creating sixteen different quilts takes a lot of imagination. How boring would it be for them all to look the same.

By the time I made it to number fifteen I was getting bored with my project and eager to get it done. Has that ever happened to you?

To keep myself focused on completing the final two art pieces I had to figure out a way to spice them up.

A Framework

Just like the other fourteen, this one has quilt block scraps laced throughout the center panel. Connecting them all together is a woven framework of teal and lavender strips. The added strips are what make this piece unique.

The squares created by their intersecting pathways form small windows. Some of them are starkly white while others are saturated with color. The tick-tack-toe-like pattern provides a pathway for the eye to travel.

On Second Thought

Directly adjacent to the center panel is a grid of borders. Inside those borders are circles of varying sizes.

I am quite fond of the two designs and the fact that they compliment one another very nicely. They do however draw your eye away from what should be the focus of the quilt.

The flaw, which stands out like a sore thumb now, clearly was overlooked during construction.

Since I can’t go back and change my approach, all I can do is move on and learn from my mistakes.

Have you ever had that happen to you? Do you think the circle borders look out of place?

To Wrap It UP

To complete this original art piece I added a simple arrangement of straight-line quilting using a variegated thread.

Variegated threads are one of my favorite items to use. They add a peppy element of surprise. The abrupt changes in color help to add a sparkle much like that of jewelry.

Court House Surprise, AP # 65
Court House Surprise, AP # 64

Quilt Details

  • Materials: Fabric top and backing are 100% cotton
  • Batting: Warm & Natural
  • Dimensions: 10 1/4” L x 6 1/2” W
  • Quilting Stitch: Straight lines using a color coordinated variegated thread
  • Quilted On: Conventional sewing machine

What Next?

With number fifteen finally finished there is only one more to reveal.

Would you like to take another look at the other fourteen? Links to those can be found under the category Courthouse Steps, Block of the Month. Go ahead and check them out! You won’t be disappointed.

I’m always interested in hearing what you think of my work. Please share your thoughts.

We have only one more revelation to see! Don’t miss out!

Thank you for visiting!

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