June 24, 2008

Hand Painted Cloth

Has anyone seen Rayna's book, Create Your Own Hand Painted Cloth? I haven't received my copy yet, but have heard great reviews. Let me know if you've seen the book and my quilt.

A while ago, Anna Nowicki and I decided to trade ATC's. This is the beautiful card I received from her. It has bits of shredded paper, ribbon, and handmade beads. Thanks Anna, I love it.I'm afraid this is the only photo I have for this post because my camera has gone off to Greece again without me. Hopefully, it comes home with more great shots.

The grand opening of Pazzazz took place this past weekend. Of course, I went to all three performances and took three different friends. It was a lot of fun and a real blast from Vaudeville past. The best part of all was the costumes, and I'm not just saying that because that's what I worked on. Arlene Larsen is an award winning, Hollywood costume designer and I was really fortunate to work with her. It was a lot of fun, and I'd do it again in a heartbeat!

Back to making apricot jam.

June 10, 2008

Coming Together

The idea for my Art From Scrap challenge piece "Coming Together" began with the quilting samples shown here. I had them stacked up and wondered what I was going to do with them. Do I put them in a drawer and look at them every couple of years. No, that's a waste. Why not paint the samples? I dug out my textile paints and a roller and had at it. Then, I added oil stick on top . The quilted texture showed up nicely, lots of depth. I cut the shapes and added the strings and sewed it all down. Here it is, in all of it's lime green glory.

Here's a detail shot where you can see the layers of color and the stitching line. Little by little, it was "Coming Together.

All of the entries will be on exhibit at Art From Scrap through July 19th. There will be a silent auction with the proceeds going towards children's art classes.

I went to see A Tear in the Fabric exhibit at Cal Poly. My friend, Jeanne Surber's "Size Prison" piece is in this powerful show. Definitely worth the drive!

June 6, 2008

PAZZAZZ The Musical

We're entering the final round of costume design and alterations for PAZZAZZ. Dress rehearsal and three performances are scheduled in a small theater in Los Angeles, then it's the world premier at the Granada Theater in Santa Barbara June 20-22nd. I never knew that I would enjoy working on costumes as much as I have. Arlene has been designing costumes for Hollywood for many years and her talent shines. The most amazing costume is the break away ballroom gown. It disappears just like magic! Can't give you any more details than that, you're just going to have to see it yourself.
Here are a few close-up shots of some of the costumes, just enough to tease! This is THE DRESS. I've spent many hours working on the beaded fringe on the sleeves and miles of lace. I have to say that I'm really glad it's finished!

The saloon girls will be wearing these, they are VERY sexy!Feathers, lace, satin, sequins, beaded appliques and flowers. You name it, it's here. I thought I had a lot of embellishments, but Arlene's collection puts mine to shame. Definitely over the top!
The rusty items in this abandoned workshop made me want to climb the fence with a few yards of fabric. I looked around to see if there was somewhere that I could leave a business card in case they wanted to get rid of some of this rusty junk, but it looks like they walked away 20 years ago and haven't come back since.

There is an ordinance in Santa Barbara that makes businesses clean up graffiti within 24 hours or they get fined. So, you really don't get to see a whole lot of graffiti, so I was surprised when I found this piece downtown. The caption read "Are we Alive?"

June 1, 2008

Photos Printed on Fabric

I shot some photos of lillypads at a local pond and couldn't resist the urge to manipulate the colors. They had glossy green leaves and beautiful yellow flowers before I had my way with them. I really like the large shapes and glowing colors. I printed several of them on cotton fabric with my ink jet printer and auditioned some colors that I think will work well with the blues and purples. A little orange will make a big statement.
Whenever I have a piece layered and ready to quilt, I freeze up. I know how to quilt, but I don't know WHAT DESIGN to quilt it with. So, I hang it on my design wall and stare at it, hoping that it will reveal the perfect quilting design. Unfortunately, it never happens! Finally, I get tired of staring at it and decide to go for it. As I begin, I have no idea what I'm going to do and that makes me nervous. I'm always afraid that the quilting isn't going to look good.Somehow it magically evolves and turns out looking good. Now, I want to take it to the next level; I want the quilting to be great. There are two ways to achieve quilting greatness, the first is to take it to my dear friend Susan Italo. The second is practice, practice, practice, both with pencil and paper and with the sewing machine. For me, the easiest designs are the vines with heart shaped leaves, garlic bulb shapes and spirals. If you have any helpful quilting tips or designs you like to use, drop me a line. Bet you can't guess where I went today? Awww . . . you guessed it, the Santa Barbara Zoo. Here's a close-up of an elephant eye . . . I know, it's a little odd, but the texture is fantastic.
And here's a beautiful macaw. They love posing for me.