New Work…sort of

September 7, 2009

I’ve been struggling these past few weeks to really get my head around my art. I keep starting on different pieces but nothing much happens to inspire me to continue. Yes, I am definitely in a rut.

I have ideas and sketch but I when it comes to implementing it, I stall. I refuse to push it though cause I know I won’t like what I produce. So instead I wait….

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Struggling with fiber art I am but I have been making more journals and have experimented with something new.

Most people use bookcloth for the spine but because I like the luxurious feel of it I use ultra suede (if I can find a matching colour).

Here’s my latest filled to the brim with 5 signatures of wrting paper.

Begin Journal tagThe cover is, as usual, quilted and I’ve sewn small beads on the spine.

The closure for this one is a button I found a few months ago.

I had to do a little bartering with my daughter to to be able to use the metal charm I sewed on the front cover. It says…

“we will never know unless we begin”

The words are apropos for my situation right now don’t ya think?chinese box3

I have also been experimenting with boxes. This is my first attempt. The top is covered in a beautiful chinese themed fabric and the edgechinese boxs and sides in a red bookcloth.

What I’ve found out is that making the inner compartments is a bit tricky but I really like how it turned out. An elastic that hops over a buton keeps it closed tight.

I will be adding the journal to my Etsy Shop this week. The box I wanna keep for a little while longer.

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See ya next time “In the Hayloft”,

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New Work

July 1, 2009

kgracehowes.atodds

I’ve finished a new art quilt “At Odds”, ready just in time for the QBL Show coming up at the end of this month. My muse feels good. Detail of the quilting below.

at odds detail

I also have 2 new journals that will go in my etsy shop. One is done in a beautiful tan leather and is filled with sheets of 140lb watercolour paper. On the front page of each signature is a cutout of a dragonfly. Love those creatures.

tan leather breaths journal9

The second journal is filled with 4 signatures of drawing & writing paper with a brown suede spine. On the front I placed a saying by William Wordsworth that I love…….”Fill Your Papers with Breaths of Your Heart”.

breaths journal Update: SOLD!

On the inside I’ve added 2 painted pocket pages ready to hold those bits of paper we all seem to gather to us.

breaths journal4

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See ya next time “In the Hayloft”,


New Pattern Released

May 26, 2009

You ever get to a point where you just have to make something yourself to get what you want?

Well that happened with my latest pattern. I was forever taking notes in meetings on little bits of notebook paper….then I started carrying around a notepad but that got messy cause the pages get ripping out or folded in all sorted of ways just hanging around in one of my gi-normous bags.

Design Stage

So one Sunday I took out the notepad, sat at my cutting table and didn’t get up till I designed a cover for it.

As those who design patterns know….it can take a lot of different prototypes till you get it right but it’s such satisfaction at the end. I asked a friend to test the pattern for me and can now let you guys see the finished product.

New Pattern

I introduce to you….the PadfOliO Notebook, a stylish way to carry around paper.

feather blue padfOliO

I knew I wanted to have a place to tuck notes so a slip pocket is available. Also, what’s the sense of taking notes if you have no pen to write with…so a pen holder was part of the design.

I also wanted a place to put business cards (to hand out as needed) but this pocket is also a convenient way to identify the owner of this stylish piece of artwork.

feather blue 2

Where to Find it

I will be adding this pattern to my website where you can conveniently pay for the pattern through Paypal.

I have to tell you that making this PadfOliO Notebook is very addictive. I’ve made 6 so far…2 have been commandeered by family (okay, truth be told….1 of them by me, it’s the blue one above) and the other four, ready to start taking notes, are listed for sale in my Etsy shop.

Let me know what you think. I really like ‘um.

See ya next time “In the Hayloft”,


A Retreat Journal

March 17, 2009


At my retreat this past weekend I got to completely finished a new journal that I’ve added to my Etsy shop.

It seems every time I make a painted suede journal it gets sold so quickly I can’t quite keep them in stock in the shop.

So here’s another …better act quickly!

I love the feel of the suede and but always feel I need to add some oomph to it so I painted a design this time in bold, RED splendor.

blue-suede

I added a large folding pocket in the back cover for all those notes and ephemera we all like to keep handy and of course, it’s filled with wonderful text weight paper wrapped in beautiful scrap papers that’s delicious to draw or write on.

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Go on………indulge in one for yourself!

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See ya next time “In the Haylfot”,


bronze paper journal

February 27, 2009

I put a couple of new items in my Etsy shop.

A little while ago I entered an art techniques swap and finally finished making all 121 pages. I thoroughly enjoyed coming up with the technique and…..I went green at the same time!

I used brown paper bags (from Paneras of course) and painted them to look like a metallic paper. At first I was going for leather but…..the paper sorta kinda had a mind of it’s own and turned into a bronze metallic looking paper. I also made silver metallic paper.

arttechnique-23 arttechnique

Anyway, after much cutting and glueing, I sent off all my 4″x 4″ cards on Sat last and found out that Margie received then okay. Phew! I didn’t fancy making them all again if they got lost on the way.

I had promised to make something with the paper and just finished it….. a “Faux Bronze Journal”

faux-bronze-journal2

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It is filled with 4 signatures of really wonderful paper to write and draw on. I could even see this one being given as a gift to that special fella.

I also finished another one that a young girl would absolutely love. Can ya tell I was in a PINK mood? The closure is a bunch of fabric and trim that I corded on the machine.

all-buttoned-pink6 all-buttoned-pink8

I want to try a new binding (these last few have been pamphlet stitched) so the next few journals I make will look a bit different.  Look for their unveiling soon.

See ya next time “In the Hayloft”,


Passion for What You Do

January 28, 2009
Let the beauty of what you love be what you do.
–Rumi

This quote by the Prussian poet and mystic, Rumi, is one I use at the end of my lecture presentation “Evolution of a Quilt Artist: The Life and Times of a Quit Addict“. One of my missions as a fiber artist is to encourage and  inspire others to be their own creative selves and to do the things they love to do no matter the neighs from others or their own personal doubts.

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Here’s my latest journal I finished 2 days ago.It measures 6″ x 4.5″ and is filled with lots of beautiful papers. The cover  is a luscious brown ultra suede that I painted with brilliant green Lumiere paint, hand stitched french knots and a simple running stitch. To add a bit of sparkle I beaded  the flower centers on the front cover. I loved how it turned out.

And……it has been SOLD.

Last night I went to my evening guild meeting (Lake Norman Guild) and showed them my latest creations, telling them I am so hooked on making these new kind of art pieces. truly believe they are a part of my creative spirit.

As the journal was being passed around a wonderful friend just stroked the cover, looked up at me and told me she wanted it for herself.  I was awestruck. She wrote me a cheque right then and there. Needless to say I was very thrilled.

blue-vintage-journal-3And I was thrilled even more when another guild member, clutching my Blue Vintage Journal (at left), told me me in a very plaintive but serious voice that she “just had to have it”.

WOW! Two journals sold…just like that. Rumi has it right. Do what you love to do and everything else will follow (gremlins are chomping at the bit to get to me for that statement but I won’t let them spoil my fun).

I am on the right path…for me.

Don’t forget to check my Etsy store for new pieces.

See ya next time “In the Hayloft”,


January 14, 2009

I’ve added another journal to my etsy shop. My husband practically commandeered it for himself he loved the vintage quality of it so much. Like before it’s filled with 4 signatures of fantastic art papers.

blue-vintage-journal blue-vintage-journal-3

Along the edge I stitched blue seed beads and then attached metal letters that spell the word “ARTWORK”. I really like this one. I know, you’re thinking….she says that about each one…but I really, really do! I can’t help myself.

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See ya next time “In the Hayloft”,