Sunday, April 27, 2008

Class with Nancy Crow

Barb Seils and I traveled to Columbus, Ohio, to take a 2-week quilting class, Improvisational Composition, from Nancy Crow at the Timberframe Barn on her farm.

Nancy's home and the Barn sit far back from the road, and this picture was taken about half way down the drive way.

The end of the Barn you see as you approach it.

The driveway has reminder signs to drive slowly and be on the lookout for the dog and kitties.

One of the fields along the driveway is flanked by beautiful flowering trees -- crabapples maybe?

These are Strawberry Parfait crabapple trees, which are known for their open, spreading branches.

This view is from the front of the Barn, looking toward the yellow barn.

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Thursday, April 24, 2008

Sewing Day

Barb Seils, Beth Brandkamp, and Priscilla Kibbee came to the studio today for some catch-up sewing.

I worked on my latest composition in the Jet Trails series -- #6. The center block has been remade a couple of times, hopefully improving the color choices. And now it just needs quilting....

Beth finished assembling the blocks for this lap quilt.

Barb did some more work on her composition from this week's Slash & Burn class.

And Priscilla worked on her composition -- just your basic art quilt....

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Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Slash & Burn Class - Day 2

For Day 2 of our class, Pat Pauly presented more techniques and options for working on our compositions. As you can see, the compositions are growing!

Barb Seils' work is on the left and Jeanne Simpson's is on the right.

Priscilla Kibbee's piece is on the left and Charmaine Babineau's is on the right.

Barb Magin showed us a lovely large quilt she made and quilted on her long-arm machine.
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Monday, April 21, 2008

Slash & Burn with Pat Pauly

Pat Pauly is leading our group of 8 students through her Slash & Burn class here at the studio.

Here Pat is showing us some examples of fabric pieces she has created and some techniques for Slashing them into new shapes. Barb Magin is to the left and Nancy Hicks has her back to the camera.

These pictures are all from Day 1 of the class.

At the left is the beginning composition done by Charmaine Babineau, and the one on the right is by Linda Bachman.
Nancy Hick's composition is on the wall. She is in the back of the picture with Pat Pauly, and in front are Charmaine Babineau and Barb Magin.

Pat is conferring with Priscilla about her composition.
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Saturday, April 19, 2008

Sewing Day

Beth and Priscilla came to the studio today for a sewing day.

Beth brought one of her Dear Jane quilts to pin baste for quilting. Notice that Inspector Suki is poised and ready to help with any stray safety pins.

Priscilla worked on her quilt -- or at least the portion of it that Suki wasn't guarding.

Priscilla modeled her "Just a basic blue jacket." The picture doesn't do all the wonderful fabrics real justice.

Priscilla brought some beautiful embroideries from Mexico for Show & Tell.

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Thursday, April 17, 2008

Double Dyeing

The warm temperatures today enticed me to do a quick batch of dyeing. I did a 3-step gradation of strong orange and then over-dyed those fabrics with a 3-step gradation of black. The 5-gallon pails and deep restaurant sinks work great for the low-water immersion process.

Since it was warmer outside this afternoon, I put the pails of fabric outside in the sun to "batch."

These are the light fabrics and the 3-step orange gradation fabrics drying on the outside clothes lines.

These are some of the wonderful dark oranges and browns that came from the medium and dark gradations.

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Wednesday, April 16, 2008


Our orchids are providing wonderful blooms this spring.

This particular flower is very fragrant, which is not typical of orchids. Its blooms will not last as long as the "pansy" orchids in the remaining pictures.

We have had good luck in getting our plants to bloom year after year. Some of these are several years old and were purchased either on our Florida trips or from local growers or stores.
We keep the flowers on stands facing a southern window in our basement apartment. They do receive year-around sun and are watered/misted regularly (or fairly regularly if we remember!)

We don't often disturb the plants by repotting unnecessarily. They prefer to be pot-bound, and it's common for their roots to hang out over the edges of the pots. We also keep the pots sitting on humidity trays of water that help moisten their daily environment.

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Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Burning the Grass Garden

The perennial grass garden easily makes it through the winter. For years we trimmed back the dead foliage by hand; a long and tedious job.

One year, in discussion with an area wholesaler of garden products, the concept of burning was suggested. He noticed that the plants are all "cousins" of prairie grass that were re-generated for thousands of years by annual fires sparked by lightning as the spring storms arrived.

In the current world, a few scattered newspapers and some matches started our blaze. In less than 30 seconds, the dead grass is gone.

The perennial gradens await new growth. We will add a layer of mulch, and a new display will grow from the crowns of the old plants. The "tear-drop" shape of the two plots is criss-crossed by a stone path and in 6 to 8 weeks will be spectacular!
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Tuesday, April 8, 2008

April Barn Cleaning

We have more piles of "stall material" ready for garden distribution. Our friends, Bill and Sky, help out. Sky is so named because he is almost seven feet tall. He is also a baker at the Penfield Wegman's and brings empty frosting plastic buckets for fabric dyeing.

Crystal, our guest mare, enjoys the beginning grass shoots as she waits for her stall cleaning. We have a front exercise and show paddock which we use as extra pasture and holding spot for the horses.

Our 30+ year-old gelding, Fella, also looks for new sprouts. He made it through the winter in good shape, and his attitude about life in general improves markedly in the good weather of spring and summer.

Inspector Suki loves the closets in the new studio, and here surveys the world from a basket of fabric scraps. The sliding doors usually cover these areas, and Suki takes every opportunity to explore when she has a chance.

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Monday, April 7, 2008

Sewing Day

Beth brought her quilt and has decided to add a seminole-pieced strip around the outside. There were a couple of votes to also add a strip of green fabric to the seminole piecing, but there's no final decision on it yet.......

Donna has made a lot of progress on her jacket. She has the front panels and back sewn together, and has the sleeve started on the design wall.

Donna is showing us the back of her jacket which features a panel of geishas.

Priscilla is working on her "just another blue jacket".... :-)
One of the front panels is to the left of the jacket back. She has added two blue & gold beaded strips to the back -- gorgeous!

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