Monday, December 11, 2006

Beaded Shells and Wool

This is a piece that I've been playing with for a week or so. After reading Larkin Van Horn's bead embellishment book, "Beading on Fabric", I just had to use these shells that have challenged me for quite a while. I LOVE this book. Larkin's descriptions and visuals demystify the beading process, and the images provide plenty of fodder for creativity.

Can't wait to move on to creating my own buttons! Now, I don't have to throw away those old boring jackets and blouses. I'll add some beads and unique buttons and recycle!

The rust color is a commercial 'burnt' velvet, for lack of a better description. Sorry...I never know the correct terminology. The blue is dyed wool, stitched with some eyelash and angelina. to display it. I am perplexed over whether I should mount it on a background or not. I'm leaning towards not...but your thoughts are important to me. Please post your suggestions here.

Monday, September 11, 2006

9/11 Five Years Later

I made this quilt one year after 9/11, and thought I had worked through the worst of it. But last night, as I watched the documentary on CBS, I realized I will never get over 9/11. As it should be.

If you zoom in on this image, based on a photograph taken on 9/11, you will see pentagon shapes stitched amongst the buildings and behind Liberty's flame. Please remember our military today and everyday.

My son-in-law is still in Iraq, my daughter is still missing him, his children are still missing him. This is the life of tens of thousands of military families who continue to combat terrorists in Afghanistan and Iraq.

This is why Operation Kid Comfort is so important, and why we need your support.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Peace and postcards

Prayers For Peace...This quilt started several months ago, after a play day with my heat gun. I melted the synthetics to the black tulle, set it against the chartreuse sheer with imprinted swirls and waited. A few weeks ago, I thought about using the silk cocoons, to insert prayers into, but then settled on the rovings (I hope I'm using the right terminology, I threw out the package). I wrote my prayers on cinnamon sticks, inserted into the silk rovings, tied them with multi-colored chenille yarn. I thought the background fabric set it off nicely, adding an Asian flair...this could be a prayer scroll from anywhere, Asia, the Middle East, Africa, the America's...we all share the same universal prayer for Peace.

Prayers For Peace measures 23" Wide X 17" High and will be part of the PAQA-South ARTQUILTSfive exhibit, opening in late September.

I also sent out some postcards to the Fiberart For A Cause sale at the International Quilt Festival in Houston during October. This event raised more than $50,000 for the American Cancer Society last year, and is sure to beat that figure this year. Each mailable fiber postcard sells for $30, and makes the perfect pick me up or affordable work of art to keep. You can learn more about FFAC at

When I was battling cancer last year, it was such a delight to receive fiber postcards in my mail, from all over the world. And my post-mistress loved it too!

Below are the images of the cards I sent to FFAC last week (sorry about the bad photography). I try to put a little whimsy in them, and hope the recipients enjoy them as much as I did making them.

Pigs Fly II is a result of the Fiberart Trading Group challenge. We created two cards, one to trade and one to donate to FFAC. In this instance, I created was sent to my stepfather who is battling cancer right now. I thought it was important to have a subject that a man could get a laugh out of. When I heard about the tornado that hit the Jimmy Dean plant, all I could think about was...well if pigs can now fly...

The two Pink Power cards were created during playtime. I just love playing with my heat gun. They honor an old friend who recently passed away from breast cancer, and the opportunities that are lost. Remember, now and then...just stop and play.

Hope is the result of another play day. The soft furry fabric is so much fun to just touch.

And my frogs are just for fun too. It is so important to maintain some humor during adverse times. Imagine the life of a frog...just lazing around with nothing better to do than catch flies.

Please take a few moments to visit FFAC, and see all that Virginia Speigel has accomplished. I feel so fortunate to have the opportunity to participate in this very important project, and that I took the time to just have fun and enjoy it!

Friday, July 21, 2006

New Generation of Fiber Artists

When I told Christian that we would be visiting him in Texas, has asked: "Mimma, can we use all those pieces of fabric you sent me to make a blanket for my Daddy?"
Does that tug at your heartstrings or what?

Here's a photo of three of my grand-
children, Josie, Christian and Joel. Christian and Joel are holding their first art quilts. Both have been using fabric for their fiber collages for some time now, but just loved sitting on Mimma's lap while that sewing machine whirred its way through their designs.
Bravo for our young artists!

Christian sent his art quilt to his Daddy overseas. For those of you who don't know, Christian is the reason that Operation Kid Comfort was started. I made that first photo-transfer Daddy quilt for him.

And if you think you recognize Joel, it is because he is the subject of Made in the USA' and art quilt that I created for the QA Challenge: E Pluribus Unum.

So . . . Here's to budding young artists, who just happen to be MY grandchildren!

Friday, June 23, 2006

Challenging myself

This week, I challenged myself to use the Kimono scraps I bought at the Quilt Festival in Chicago. Actually, it was an exercise in creativity to remove a block I've been succumbing to lately. Take a look and let me know what you think...I think I succeeded. The cloud has lifted!
For now, they are not titled. I'm so intrigued with other cultures and will think of something appropriate.

For the quilt above, I used three kimono scraps...well four if you count the binding. The quilting replicates the brush the deer is lying on in the center piece. It measures 16 1/2 X 13 1/4.

This one was fun to create...I have so much playing with beads, but always worry about overdoing it. Simple design is just fine for me.

Five scraps were used in this little quilt. For the quilting, I mimicked the lines in the mountains fabric. This one measures 11 3/4 X 9 1/2.

Now... back to the 'brain' series. Always thinking!

Sunday, May 21, 2006

The Global Art Project...A joy to be part of

and what a delight it is to see this image of Meenakshi Mahajan with the work I sent to her as part of the 2006 Global Art Project, Peace Lily. I just love how she framed it.

Today, I received her exchange work, May Peace Prevail On Earth, a mixed media work that depicts the rush of rotation our Earth experiences in vibrant blues, purples, reds and white. A stunning comet in the sky reminds me of how fleeting Peace is, and our wish for all to experience it's blessing. I will post an image of Meenakshi's work as soon as I've had it framed.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

American Quilter Magazine

Please be sure to check out the Summer '06 issue of American Quilter Magazine for my article "A Quilter's Promise". If it's not in your mailbox now, it will be on newstands in April. Or you can purchase the magazine at:

Little Quilts From Texas

Little quilts have become quite appealing to me lately. They are manageable, easy to work on while moving in and out of the guest room (my temporary studio), portable (as we bop all over the country in the 'Z'), and best of all....instant gratification. They are done so quickly.

And they make a wonderful travelogue! Here are three little quilts that resulted from photos taken while touring the South Texas Coast. If you ever want to escape the cold, but are tired of the Florida rat race...try South Texas. We stayed in Laguna Vista, just over the bridge from South Padre Island, and about twenty miles from Brownsville and the border with Mexico. We stayed the entire month of January and had a blast!

The Brownsville tour, provided by the Brownsville Historical Association out of the Stillman House was wonderful. I was fortunate to be on the same tour as the Texas magazine writer, so we got the full treatment! was a wonderful tour and I encourage anyone visiting the area to sign up for it...and only FIVE BUCKS!!!

The first quilt is 'Brownsville Market'. I've been experimenting with beads, and learned quite a bit on the subject while making this quilt! Like...don't use too many beads!

Brownsville has a wonderful old downtown, filled with 'Ropas' or second-hand shops. I loaded up with wonderful materials to recycle into quilts. Some of those materials are in this quilt.

This is the 'View From the Old Bakery'. Attached to an old store from the frontier days of Brownsville, the original ovens are still there. The building is now houses offices for the University of Texas - Brownsville. I've got other images to make into quilts from this site. One from the back veranda is calling to me as we speak!

And this little quilt is of a flower that was growing like a weed under the porch of our condo. I'd never seen such a pretty little flower. It needed to come out of hiding. I've since learned it is called a Peace Lily. Last year, I signed up for the Global Art Project for Peace and decided on this image as my entry. The project is a biennial exchange of art for artists of all ages from around the world. I will be exchanging works with an artist from India and sending this piece out on April 23rd. For more information on this wonderful project please go to: