Friday, September 30, 2011

Fall Flowers in Watercolor

It's amazing what a little ink can do!  This little painting was begun with the intention of creating a traditional watercolor painting (without the black outlines), however, the painting had other ideas and I was very unhappy with it until I added them.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Madrona Collage

Using some of my hand painted collage papers, paint and painting mediums, on a larger than I've ever worked canvas, I've tried to combine abstract and realistic forms in this Madrona collage.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

These Delicato Mitts were finished a little while ago for my sister-in-law, but I didn't want to post a picture until they had been gifted, because I didn't want to spoil the surprise for her.  They're knit with sock weight yarn that I purchased because she is knitting a sweater in a similar colorway.  Fall is in the air here and I know her hands get cold, so am hoping these will be a colorful way to keep them warm.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Tiny Baskets

These little baskets in progress will be finished and made into pincushion baskets for my booth at the Block Party Quilt Show in November.  Each is one-of-a-kind, and these include reed that was hand dyed by me in Sisters this past July.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

More Watercolor Practice

I'll probably add some words or something else when I get back to the teapot, cream and sugar.

Mystery Sock - another UFO finished!

After more than a year, they're finally done!!!  You know it really didn't take a year to do the work, but the pattern was dated 2009, and the last picture I took of one sock and the second started was in June, 2010, so they've been waiting to be finished for quite some time and now I have a new pair of socks just in time for the weather to be cooling down:-)

The pattern was designed by Kirsten Kapur for Through the Loops.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

When the cat's away...

While my husband went on a recent business trip, I pulled out my basket making supplies and got to work, it just took me a while to take pictures.  Someday, I'd like to make an antler basket, and I've been told I need to make a melon basket to learn the basic techniques that will be needed, so I used some of the reed I dyed in Sisters, OR, and a purchased pattern, to make two little melon baskets.  The small one was made with 6" hoops and the larger one with 8" hoops.

Once those were finished, I decided to begin work on a gathering basket pattern that was in my "to do" pile, along with the special base and handle.  This is the most beautiful basket I've ever made!  The only thing that bothers me is that it's too light and white looking, so I've ordered some Weaver's Stain and am thinking of staining it, after testing on scrap reed.  Yes, it was time consuming, but I love it!!!

Sweet Jazz scarf

My studio is full of UFOs, and as I go through them, some will be tossed, others finished.  Some I'll work on enough to make a decision, and more than one has already been tossed for one reason or another.  No, I'm not going to count my UFOs!  I'd rather spend my time working on finishing them or working on new projects that have supplies taking up space in the studio.  Sometimes it's obvious it needs to be tossed or given away, like when I find a UFO and don't like it any more - that one goes! It's only worthwhile working on UFOs that I still like.  The decision to keep or toss depends on the type and status of the UFO.

Anyways, the Sweet Jazz scarf hasn't been in progress too long, and was a joy to make, so I'm saving the pattern.  I love the yarn, the color, it was wonderful to work with, and it's finished just in time, as the weather is changing and fall is in the air!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Summer Spinning

Throughout the summer, I've been spinning roving into yarn, so here is what I'm looking forward to knitting with:

I had intended to spin the huckleberry knits rovings so that I could use them all in the same project, if I wanted to, but after chain plying (3-ply) the darkest one, I decided to do the lighter two as 2-ply yarns.  They are all Blue-Faced Leicester wool.  I'm hoping the center yarn is enough for a cowl pattern (I think it should be),  The roving is from Hood Canal Yarns, Inc. and feels wonderful, because it is a 50 / 50 blend of baby camel and tussah silk, so it is a thin 2-ply, that I'm hoping will work with the pattern that I've already chosen! On the far right is the  skein from the woolgatherings Mixed Blue Face Leicester roving which I am considering using with the dark skein, as stripes in a cardigan pattern from Twist Collective, using the grey wool I spun from that enormous bag of roving as the background color (hey, I figure since I've got to have color, I'll never use the grey alone, it has to be used with other colors), but I need to dig in my roving stash for at least a third color, because otherwise, I might not have enough for the stripes.

While I was spinning those, I also spun a couple bobbins of thick and thin to make beehive art yarn, and am now in progress of plying it. This is a more time consuming project, because I need to work slowly, and can only ply for a short while before needing a break.  Therefore, I am working on it in short bursts between other projects, and will look forward to finished yarn.....eventually!

Here are the thick and thin bobbins:

And the aqua 2-ply wool / silk is the core / plying thread.  I thought I had plenty, but am noticing I'll need to prepare more, because I'm going through it much faster than I thought I would.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Olympic National Park (continued)

The ranger station on Hurricane Ridge has a spectacular view!

The road continues a bit further up the mountain, and ends with a parking lot where you can continue further on a paved trail, which we couldn't resist!

Besides the gorgeous views, we chose this time of year to visit because the wildflowers were blooming.      At this altitude, the spring / summer is quite a bit later and much shorter than we have at home.

It's such a beautiful place to visit, I'm already looking forward to the next trip!!!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Quilt, then paint - progress!

My fat quarter quilts now have color added!  Since I'm experimenting, I've treated each a bit differently.  For the sunflowers, I mixed fabric paints with Decolorant and used a sponge roller to work it into the surface, mostly from the top to about 3/ 4 of the way down, blending it out as I went.  I didn't want the  same colors at the bottom, and wasn't sure I liked it, because the bottom was lighter than I wanted it to be.  I mixed and diluted some Dye-na-flow fabric paints and brushed it onto the flowers in vases, leaving some areas a bit lighter, and darkening the mix so that I could make some areas even darker.  Since I liked the color, I decided to go back to the sunflowers and use the Dye-na-Flow to darken the light areas that needed it.  Here's where they stand right now, although I haven't pressed them yet, and when I do, the sunflowers should do some color changing with steam, because the Decolorant will be activated, which will lighten up the fabric color while setting the paint. 

Little Watercolor Paintings

Still practicing watercolor painting! 

These two are still a work in progress:

with this one being a bit larger.

Monday, September 05, 2011

Olympic National Park

Saturday, my husband and I took a road trip to Olympic National Park!   We took a scenic highway that followed the Hood Canal for part of the way, headed towards Port Angeles, and then into the park and up to Hurricane Ridge!  We stopped at Switchback Trail, and took a short hike, before continuing upward.

View from the pond at the bottom of the trail:

There are lots of springs coming out of the mountain here!

My husband said I had to pose for a picture to post on the blog, so here's me at the ranger station at the top of the road to Hurricane Ridge.  We drove a bit past here and then went for about an hour and a half hike at the end of the road.  As you can see, views from here are gorgeous!

These pictures were taken with my little pocket camera, but I also took pictures with my little video camera, as well as another camera, so I'll post more as I get them uploaded to my computer and edited.

Friday, September 02, 2011

Watercolor Practice

I've been practicing my painting skills (more like learning by doing), and have been a bit slow to post the pictures that have been hiding in my camera, so here are a few:

As you can probably tell, I'm painting things in my kitchen, because I'm painting IN the kitchen:-)

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Painted Floral Quilts

These two little quilts were begun when I was at Quiltworks NW, demonstrating the Grip 'n Stitch disks, as I wanted to show the shop hoppers a more interesting quilting than just the little doodling, that just showed how to use the disks.  First I used chalk to draw circles around my drink bottle, scattering them across my sample, fat quarter, quilt sandwiches.  Once the flower centers were filled with quilting, petals were added, and then I chalked the stems and leaf placement.  I didn't stop until the whole quilt sandwich was covered with quilting!

For the second fat quarter quilt, flower heads were quilted in the circles, and then I decided they would be placed in vases, so I added a few more chalk lines.  Switching between chalking a few outlines and quilting, I worked until there was no more room for quilting! 

 Of course, the next step is going to be painting in the quilted designs, although I'm thinking I might like to try a wash of color to make the background more interesting before starting on the flowers.

Trip to Olympia, WA

This past weekend, we took a little road trip and then extended it with a drive to Olympia.  Fortunately we happened to pick a wonderful weekend to visit, as the weather was beautiful, and they even had an event called "Sand in the City" going on down by the harbor!

It was impossible to get the full capitol building in one picture, as I only had my little pocket camera with me (my phone doesn't take that great of a picture), so here it is in pieces:

The grounds and view from the capitol are gorgeous!

And the sand sculptures were amazing!