Tag Archives: quilting

Autumn, Fairy Shoes and Ticking off lists


I am entranced daily by delicious vistas of autumn light – and raindrops so big you could loose yourself in them.  The environment is exuding a wealth that beckons a generosity of spirit.  My world is alive with the magic of enticing colour, warm light & shorter days.

Within the art of  photography, there is a time of day, called ‘magic hour’ – without getting two technical the half hour after sunrise & before sunset    Light at this time is warm & soft & you can capture photos with good shadows & tonal transitions. Subjects look warm, saturated in color.  Autumn in our house has me dashing to our front verandah – camera in hand………the half hour before sunrise & after sunset the light is soft & rich & has the depth of velvet.   Shadows are deep, but the light is extremely saturated, which makes for amazing sunset shots – which we are ideally situated to capture.  Autumn is one of my great loves.

(if you’d like to read a little more about ‘magic hour’ you’ll find some good info here & here)

I have been creating a bit of art with a needle lately.  I am thrilled to say that our little princess’s quilt is finished (which you may remember was on my list at the beginning of the year)  She has just turned 2 & she is so full of exuberance & has just a mischievious little laugh.  She is a little magpie and her little nonsensical conversations and comments make you laugh out loud – such a joy!!  What’s the first thing you do when you are presented with an heirloom that has cost many hundreds of dollars & has taken 18 months to make – JUMP  FOR JOY OF COURSE!!!  LOL!!!  We love her to bits – AND OF COURSE – as her grandies – we ARE biased!!  Back to the quilt – it’s huge – it began life as a cot quilt, then transitioned (when DIL & I discussed how the precious cot quilts of the older two had become obsolete now that they were in ‘big beds’) into a single bed, then finally into a king single (when I realized that was the size they had bought for their eldest.  The final size was 66in wide x 77in long…..aka big & heavy to ‘man handle’…..but it’s done now & sick person that I am, despite it becoming a guilty obligation in the end – I am already looking to the next one!  It’s the euphoria of the finished quilt driving me – no doubt!  After the spectre of failure that makes me choke at every deadline is overshadowed by a success – I want to recreate it.

We have an event coming up at the end of May that I am creatively involved in & I have been painting, sewing & doing some watercolours, mixed media & digital work – all around the topic of feet & shoes.  I have had fun creating fairy shoes, sweet little booties, as well as creating artful invites & treasures to sell on the night.

I HAD intended to post up the patterns that I made for the shoes – but that didn’t happen, so it has to be next time!  Til then – take care………..xk


a printmaking update and a little quilt


Impossible Loveyou know that it's been far too long between posts when you have to read your own blog to see what you wrote last! LOL!! Yep – tis been a while. I have the winter durge of thumping head & body aches & my 'aloe vera' infused tissues are my best friend, so regardless of my tardiness – i am posting mostly pics! We have had a little holiday, our 30th wedding anniversary & The Princess has turned FOUR! So a couple of things distracting me from THE MAIN THING – don't you hate it when life gets in the way of art?!   LOL!! 

I really have alot of art to catch you up on, but I thought I might catch you up on some of my recent printmaking & the joys of creating mono prints…………..or should I say pleasure & pain of creating monoprints? Like all printmaking processes – looks easy peasy – deceptively tricky to get a consistantly good result.

This awkward looking thing is an attempt to break out of the 'fine arts' mold of print making and think outside the square a little to combine processes.  I hope to use some of my prints in altered art and book projects & am still finding my way with the whole art/craft thing.  This is a monoprint, that has be overprinted with etchings.  There were many failures along the way, in an attempt to get a result I was happy with, which in practise means there were many hours spent, with not a whole lot to show for it.The ReaderFlying High  The etchings below were created using aquatints – which to the non printmakers – is like using UTEE as a resist to create a mottled Botanica Ibackground, which is etched, and deep tonality is achieved in the 'divits' that are etched into the plate.  Kind of a primative way to describe it, but hopefully you kind of get the idea.  If you are interested in the aquatint process you can read more here.  These are all relatively small plates – about ATC size, but each one represents about one whole day in the studio to get it to a printable form.  There's no quick road to becoming a printmaker – it's a long hard slog!

On another subject, while we were away, I took a 'handwork' project with me & commenced a cot quilt for our Baby Princess'  first Christmas.  I am using primarily olde worlde rose & floral theme (as I know my sweet DIL is not really a 'pink princess' girl) and basing it around the tones in this TOTALLY GORGEOUS flower fairies fabric by Michael Miller.  The detail and crispness of the print is beautiful and it has just a tiny bit of glittery stuff (don't actually know what it is) – and ALL Princesses need a little bling!

changing medium with the weather


I have GENUINELY been a MIXED MEDIA artist lately….changing medium with the weather & accomodating what ever my pain level of the day is…….IMG_0036_resize
We have been having wild extremes of weather – at the end of last week there were parts of our state in 'Catastrophic' Bushfire conditions and today – it has snowed!  We have had so much hail it has been like snow!…& of course this has provided us with a spectacular vista, night after night from our front verandah as the sun sets……last week it was a golden haze that almost hovered from the heat….tonight it is an ominous stormy sky, with smatterings of the purest white…… .. I am continuing my 'learning to draw' journey, done some collage work in a journal, made up a few ATCs, and continued with my 'love quilt'.  Here's a few pics of my recent work: 2-072b-Somewhere-far-Merged
I was incredibly fortunate lately to spend a little time sitting beside this lovely river recently.  A friend & I had caught up for coffee & she had to leave me & get off to work.  As it was so far from home I allowed a little time to explore & had come prepared to art!  I got down enough visual info (as well as photos) to capture what I needed to complete the drawing & then finished it off at home using watercolours, markers & tech pens.

I've had the priviledge of having a 'play' in Jenene's gorgeous 'Affectionately Yours' Round Robin Journal from Paper Traders…..the journal is based around correspondence, notes & letters, to create the topic for your pages……I have used a whole lot of vintage bits & bobs to create a story around the garment & fabric industry.   I hope Jenene likes what I have created as the last entry in her book.

Fish garden webJan 10

This is one of my latest ATC's called 'Fish Garden' inspired by the ads we are seeing at the moment on TV about our City Aquarium.  It has large sharks swimming through the air overhead.  The Princess LOVEs these ads & has put in a special request for Poppa to take her to see the fish swimming in the air!  (they have an overhead viewing tank)  

I have also been creating a Valentines Token to participate in a swap at Paper Traders.  For those from Oz – it seems that in USA the tradition of Valentine's Day has retained some of it's original glamour & extends to friends & aquaintances as well as members of the opposite gender you may have designs on.  (or have re-designed LOL!)  I dithered & dalied with this so much – it was on my studio table for a week and it NEARLY ended up in the bin in frustration.  I have really gotten out of the altered art process & I just couldn't seem to bring this to a happy conclusion.  It is made on 640gsm Fabriano cotton watercolour, so it was a dream to work on & then I decided I wanted to stitch it, which of course was a little bit of a hassle as it's NOT that bendy!  I also created an ATC to add to the Paper Traders' Winner Takes All pot (one artist is randomly drawn to win all the cards entered for that month)  I thought that February's should be one for LOVE!

Valentine front_resize
Valentine inside_resize

As I said I have also been doing a little patchwork, continuing with my 'love quilt' & incorporating some of my Nan's linens (as well as some found vintage treasures) as I said last time, these blocks are 15in square – so they are quite large.  It's a nice size to work with actually.

actually, in reviewing this post, it may not have been entirely a bad thing being without my computer, it's certainly been a productive few weeks.  The thing that I didn't add is that The Princess has been for a 'little holiday' at Nonna's and we have had some fun times playing.  She has started on her FIRST mixed media journal and I am convinced (in typical Proud Nonna style) that she has the makings of a fine artist!

OH, and BTW – I have FINALLY joined into Facebook – if you are out there and want to touch base via facebook – here's the link to my facebook page.  I haven't worked out how to link my blogs & pages all up yet – I will get on to that shortly! 

computer woes


Christmas has come and gone & I am sorry peoples – despite my best intentions – I have something wrong with my 'puter & it's NOT well!  This has stopped me from posting my promised freebies, it has a pending appointment with the computer doctor & I am unsure how long it will be away – SO – I will post some images for you for use today (as a separate post) & hope to be able to have a concurrent give away in a month or so.

A couple of good things happening in the art world – AlphaStamps has some GREAT "9 Days of Giveaways!" give aways happening right now on the blog, along with a big post Christmas sale.  Lots of chances to win but its already day 2 so hurry over and see all the great goodies you could win. For full contest rules, click here

For all you art journallers out there – we are starting a great new art journal project at Paper Traders which will run for several months & have a combination of prompts, techniques & challenges.4-227 Tote Bag_resize

I have been continuing with my EDM drawings, albiet, not daily, as I am also doing a little patchwork. (more about that later)  I have scanned all of my EDM drawings to date & they are in their books on my Flickr site – if you click on the drawing above, it will link you to my site, if for some reason it doesn't – here's the link: http://www.flickr.com/photos/thecolourguru/collections/72157608675713059/

I used to patchwork & quilt alot however it really took it's toll on my arm & finger joints, particularly coupled with working on a computer in my work-a-day life.  I made quilts when the grandbabies each arrived, and it is with hope that I have started another one.  I am hopeful in annoucing that we are expecting another little one in April.  I have waited this long to announce it because of the two little loves we sent to heaven in the last year, as each week goes by, (currently 23 weeks) we are more and more hopeful that this little one will be with us.  If you click on the image it will take you to my Flickr site where I have posted the other blocks I have completed so far (each block is 15" square)

Nurture_resizeMiss 3 has lots of wisdom on this, when discussing the prospect of a new little one she said:

'Nonna, Aunty is having a little girl baby,' says she with a very serious face.
'How do you know? I asked.
'Well, we don't want any more boys around here!' she replied completely nonchalant, and continued with her playing……further pearls of wisdom were revealed a little while later, when she said

'Nonna, God sent me, to you to love, didn't He?'
'Yes darling,' I replied with a cuddle……
'And for icecream' she added…..

Click to join Paper_Traders

Click to join Paper_Traders

What’s in a Name?



We were sitting around with our (grown) kids after we came back from holidays & as two of them now have children of their own, they are very interested in stories and detail of their ‘babyhood’ & things they did as a small child.  Some how or another the conversation got to names & our son (pictured Toby_daddy_web_1here with his son, Toby) asked how he got the nick name ‘George’, (something only his father has ever called him).  I told them both that it was the name that we had for him ‘in utero’ before he was born & we Name_detail_webdidn’t know his gender.  George/Georgina…….it worked…….any ways, that mystery solved, a name like that is emerging for Princess ‘L’.  I put a panel with her name & its meaning in the centre of her cot quilt,  my daughter saw it in passing & asked, “Why did you write ‘light & creamy’ on Ellie’s quilt?”  Bemused, I wasn’t quite sure what she meant, but then realized she had mistaken ‘light (Eleanor) & mercy’ (Grace) for ‘Light & Creamy’……between ourselves, we have been calling her Miss Light & Creamy ever since!  I wonder if they will be sitting around in years to come trying to work out where THAT name, & its subsequent derivatives came from!

Comfort_quilt_webMy foray with cot quilts before Christmas has provoked me to rekindle some of my quilting skills. Though of course I didn’t NEED to – I while we were away I bought a few fat quarters of fabric (1/2 metre of fabric, cut in half…so it is not quite square as the fabrics are about 110/115cm wide….so it becomes a FAT quarter).  I think that I will start a new quilting project, it is trying on my hands which are over worked on computer during the day, so I expect it won’t be anything terribly complicated.  DH & I are POLES apart on body temperature, so I often use a throw rug or quilt, so I don’t mind having a few more around.  While we were watching the cricket (oooppps….I am not sure whether I have ever let that slip……….I am a MAD KEEN cricket fan!) I finished the binding on a quilt that has been sitting in the attic for ages…I machine sewed one edge on it a few months before Christmas, & I started handsewing it down, but didn’t get much done.  In the last week 3 different people who were visiting have picked it up & gone to use it, I had to stop them as it was still pinned.  TIme to finish it, me thinks………so last night I did.  Here it is. 

A Christmas Quilt


Pic_with_title_web_1  Here it is, the distraction that I’ve been telling you about, Toby’s Cot Quilt, wrapped & under the tree at long last!  It’s a riot of colour, which is a bit scary for some, & a huge departure from your traditional pastels, which is how I did Ellie’s (mostly because I knew her gender).  It is made from a very simple block that starts with a 4 inch square in the centre & is wrapped around with 2 inch sashes to form an 8 inch block.  If I hadn’t been under the time pressure that I was, it would have been fun!  Toby_sleeping_in_colour_web

Here is a new pic of darling little Toby.  He is such a big boy already, (NO, I am still NOT over his volume of hair…………where did this child come from????)  Only 2 weeks old on Friday and already he is one pound or 500gr over his birth weight.  He is literally growing in leaps & bounds.