October 25, 2013

Countdown to Houston

In a few days I'll be flying to Houston to attend the quilt show. Andi and I will be there for several days, so we should have plenty of time to see the whole show and all the exhibits. I will be a volunteer in the SAQA booth on Saturday from 12:00-2:00. If you're at the show, I would love to meet you.

I'm taking a one day "Beyond Piecing" class with Ann Johnston. I rarely use solid fabric and actually had to dye fabric for this class. All the colors look nice together, we'll see what happens when all those solids are put together in one piece. I brought a couple of hand dyed fabrics with lots of pattern and colors . . . just in case I'm allowed to stretch the rules a bit!

See the red case on the right side? That is what I'm using to carry all of my tools for the class. It's really lightweight and fits everything except the extra large rotary cutter and scissors. I generally keep it stocked with embroidery thread and beads so I always have a supply ready to take with me. 

When the case is opened flat, it has four separate zippered compartments. It's made by Laura Ashley and is probably meant to be a cosmetic case. I've been using this case for approximately 8 years and it's still in great condition.

I've added some hand dyed silk scarves to my Etsy shop. Click HERE if you want to see them.

October 23, 2013

Marimekko Fabric

Here it is . . . Merimekko Fabric, all washed, dried and ready to be rolled for storage on my fabric wall.

 Each photo shows about a fat quarter yard of fabric.

 The original price for Marimekko fabric is $45.00 per yard, but once it hits the Crate and Barrel Outlet, the price is reduced to $5.95. The clerk told me that they use this fabric in the store displays, but the only tell tale sign was one staple.

The fabric is really thick and extra wide. I'll probably use these for quilt backs because the extra weight will really make my quilts hang straight.

The red and green fabric are actually the same design, but the red shows the design towards the edge and the green shows the design towards the inside.

I'm not sure if you can buy it in all of their outlet stores, but I know there is plenty available in Calabasas, CA.

October 21, 2013

San Diego Fun

San Diego is a fun city with a variety of things to do. In a few days I managed to visit the Contemporary Art Museum and saw a very interesting beaded color field exhibit by Liza Lou, Gaslamp District, Little Italy, Old Town, and Balboa Park. I also stopped at Crate and Barrel outlet store and bought a 8 yards of Marimekko fabric.

I spent a day exploring Balboa Park and some of the museums and the IMAX theater.
This was the view I saw as I walked into the park.

The architecture was truly impressive. I spent half of the day looking up.

I got some nice photos of the lily pond and gigantic koi.

 This huge sculpture of a dragon is located outside of the Mingei Museum. It's constructed with concrete and covered with tile and marbles. They allow visitors to climb on it. Quite surprising.

This is Spanish Village Arts Center. It has 30 or 40 talented artists with little studios throughout. It's a very charming area.

 Another stop was Old Town. They are definitely getting ready for the Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) celebration on November 2nd.
 There were plenty of skeletons everywhere I went. They are quite beautiful with very elaborate costumes.
These two had a whole story line and wedding in progress.

October 10, 2013

Felting and Stitching

I'm such a lucky girl. My good friend Susan Italo gifted me with some of her hand dyed wool for felting AND hand spun yarn. She dyes her own wool and then spins it gorgeous yarn. Truly amazing.

Look at the great items I scored in her yearly studio clean out. I'll use this wool in hand felting projects. I don't know what I'll do with these gorgeous bits yet, but for now they are happy living with the rest of my stash.      
I'm not sure if it's the jabbing with a sharp object or the rhythm that I enjoy, but I think hand felting is pretty relaxing.

Here's a piece that I just finished hand stitching on. It will be a postcard once I add the backing and finish the edges.

Here is one of my Photo Note Cards that I've added to my Etsy shop. There are 25 different cards, all of them are 5 x 7".

October 7, 2013

Etsy Store is Open!

Yay . . . the Etsy site is up and running. So far, I have the half yard pieces of dyed fabric and some fiber art postcards listed. I still have quite a bit more fabric and dyed silk scarves to get listed. I'll also be selling 25 different Photo Note Cards.

The store name is JudyRysdesigns. If you want to take a look, you can click on the name and it will bring you to the Etsy store. I'll be working on Photo Note Cards this afternoon, so they should be live tomorrow. Thanks for looking and let me know what you think.

October 5, 2013

Black and White Photography

Lately, there have been several photographers showing black & white photos at my camera club. They brought me way back to my college days and inspired me to convert some of my photos to black and white. Here are a couple that I think turned out pretty well.

 This calla lily was shot in a shaded area of my backyard.

Lake Los Caneros is a beautiful place to go for a walk.

October 3, 2013

Pepper Jelly Anyone?

Something had to be done with all the ripe jalapeno peppers in our garden and the best solution I came up with was Pepper Jelly.

My tolerance for spicy food is sort of on the low side and I don't eat much sugar, so I won't be eating this, but I'm sure my husband will love it. He has been away this week for work so he hasn't tasted it yet. The recipe uses 2 red and 2 green peppers and 10 jalapenos. I left all the seeds in this batch and I'm too chicken to taste it to see how spicy it turned out.

Tomorrow, I'm going to make another batch and leave only half of the jalapeno seeds in. That level of spiciness may be better for most people. I think I'll chop the peppers a little smaller for the next batch.

Anybody have any other ideas of what to do with a lot of jalapenos? My plants keep growing.

Jelly making was my break from posting information on Etsy. It's going pretty well but I have a question and I'm waiting to hear back from them. I should have the site up and running tomorrow.

I'll keep you posted.