Sunday, March 24, 2019

More Ice Dyeing

I needed to create some additional fabric tor the back of a sweatshirt jacket I'm sewing using my hand-dyed fabrics.  So I decided to do some ice-dyeing.

Above and below are photos showing the ice with the dye on top. The cardboard keeps the ice cubes on top of the fabric. Without it, they fall off. I've placed the fabric on an old metal rack which is on top of an old dish drying rack, so the fabric does not sit in the dye and melted water.

The fabric in the top half in the container below was scrunched and rubber banded here and there.
The fabric in the lower half was fan folded and clipped with clothespins

Below are the finished fabrics. The top two are created on large vintage linen napkins a friend gave me.  They have a beautiful floral pattern woven into the fabric.

This last one was done on mercerized cotton. I used Komasu shibori resist technique to create the patterns. If you want to know more about that technique, 
you can look under the labels on my blog for Komasu. 

Monday, March 18, 2019

Sweatshirt Makeover

    I've been doing lots of improvisational piecing, having fun making fabric to cover my deconstructed sweatshirt. The other week I was Kathy's assistant in a class she taught to the Bear Valley Quilt Guild on refashioning sweatshirts into wearable art.
 She got me inspired and energized to make another one. Here's the one I'm working on now,
 using some of my hand-dyes, including shibori ones.

This is the second time I've taken this class from Kathy.  Some years ago, I did refashion a sweatshirt collaging Asian fabrics. The lighting in the room where I took these photos
 was not great, but you can get the idea.

Above is the front and below is the back.

Monday, March 11, 2019

Monet and More

Last week my husband and I took a short trip to San Francisco for my birthday. We saw "Monet: the Late Years" at the de Young Museum. In Monet's later years his painting became more and more abstract. He also had issues with nuclear cataracts starting in 1912 when he was 72. He refused surgery. He did get some glasses that helped him somewhat. Nuclear cataracts cause your eyes to absorb light and desaturate colors.

You can see a big difference between his two versions of "The Japanese Footbridge" below.

The Japanese Footbridge 1899

Above is "The Japanese Footbridge," 1918-1924

Above is "Path Under the Roses," 1918-1924, which is more abstract than his earlier works.

Also in the de Young was a set of  intaglio prints, "Five Beauties Rising", 2012, by Willie Cole which really moved me. Each ironing board has a name below of its owner, Savannah, Dot, Fannie Mae, Queen, and Anna Mae.  The ironing boards with all their pockmarks are a metaphor for the hard life of their owners, African American women of former generations who provided domestic labor in the antebellum South. He actually inked up the ironing boards of these women. Below is a link to learn more about Willie Cole.

Sunday, March 3, 2019

Beacon Art Show and Sweatshirt Makeover Workshop

Friday night was the opening reception for the annual Beacon Art Show at the United Methodist Church inSan Luis Obispo.  I was wonderfully surprised and honored when the judges announced that they purchased my art quilt for their permanent collection.  Every year they choose just one piece of art for it.  Above is the picture of my quilt, " Gothic Grace."

This year's theme was "Blessed and Soaring."  I was all over the board thinking of ideas for it, tall redwoods, birds, etc. One day I was looking at one of my ice-dyed pieces on  my design wall when I saw the lines of a rose window in it. Rose windows were first used in the tall Gothic cathedrals  of Europe as the crafts guilds of the time tried to build taller and taller structures to reach to the heavens. I thought this would be the perfect idea for the theme.

Below is the original piece of fabric. It is an ice-dyed piece.  I block printed the smaller circles in the window and machine appliqu├ęd them to the background. I added rick-rack trim and handmade fusible black, bias tape to create the lines. It has some  hand-quilting on it as well.

Below is a picture of me receiving the award. 
 Thanks to my son for taking photos. 

Yesterday I was an assistant to my wonderful friend, Kathy Howard, who was teaching a workshop on turning sweatshirts into art wearables through deconstruction and reconstruction. 
Above is a picture of Kathy, in her beautiful sweatshirt/jacket starting the class. Kathy also taught a lot of fabric manipulation and piecing techniques, including but not limited to seminole piecing and square within a square. She has been making beautiful quilts and wearables 
for many years and had great tips and shortcuts to share with the group.
  The class was presented by the Bear Valley Quilt Guild of Los Osos. They were a wonderful, fun group of women with whom to share the day.  It was a lot of fun and I learned a lot.