Wedding Guest Book

November 4, 2009

My friend, Delane,  had asked me to make a wedding guest book for the marriage of her son Ted to his bride Lauren.

I really wanted to make a special gift especially for Lauren, she’s the photographer who took those wonderful pictures of my work a while back. Her favorite colours were red, orange and brown and colours of the wedding were in the Fall colour range.

I had no idea where to go with this at first and took some time mulling over a few ideas, I remembered that she wanted me incorporate the words “our wedding, underneath the trees” in her wedding book so I started with that.

tree-stencilUsing a Stewart Gill stencil from their Flowers of Scotland collection, I reduced its size and cut out a new stencil out of freezer paper.

After ironing it to a piece of white silk dupioni, I painted it with Stewart Gill Brass Gold metallic paint.

I now needed to get Lauren’s words on the fabric. Because I don’t have access to a thermofax machine, I decided to try a new product


I had recently bought, Photo EZ silk screen. This was way cool and easy to use.

Photo EZ sheets are made from a silk screen mesh coated with a light sensitive water soluble polymer.

Using a saturated black image printed on plain white paper, it only needs sunlight and plain tap water to develop. Off I went and developed 3 separate screens for the front of the guestbook.

guestbooklauren9 The silkscreen was taped down with masking tape (above) and metallic paint was squeegees through the mesh with the edge of an expired credit card.

I added Lauren and Ted’s names to the front of the book as well. After drying, I was now ready to make the book.

Cutting 2 boards for the front and back, I covered them both in the silk dupioni.guestbooklauren3

For the spine of the guestbook I used two coordinating batik fabrics and staggered them on the left edges of the boards.

Lasty, I glued a passion red bookcloth (afterall, they are newlyweds aren’t they?) on the inside for the lining.

I cut papers for guests to sign and then decided to add some black cardstock so they guestbooklauren5can also add pictures to personalize their book. It was finally coming together.

Using a Japanese stab stitch method, I sandwiched the papers in between the covers and stitched the book together, tying a gold ribbon at the spine edge for a touch of embellishment. I named this one “Beneath the Trees”.

I wrapped the guestbook in my signature brown paper and tied a red ribbon around the gift.


I was very pleased to hear that Lauren squealed with delight upon opening  the package.  Check Delane’s blog for some pics of the absolutely beautiful bride Lauren made….and Ted looked dashing too!


See ya next time “In the Hayloft”,


New Fabrics

August 13, 2009

Back in May I was privileged to be asked to join a new art group, Fiber Art Options.

We are 7 fiber artists working together to promote and support each other. I had not had a chance to post and entry on our blog but now you can visit and read my first post.

I had a chance to play with soy wax again and created a few new fabrics for my stash. Like….big time!!

green soy

Remember in a previous  post about attending AQS in Knoxville a few weeks back…..well guess what….I bought not a stitch of fabric!

Yes, you heard me right. There was nothing out there I desparately needed because I am soooo much into creating my own pieces to use in my artwork. How cool is that piece above!!!!

In the post over at FAO I described the soy wax process I used to create the 3 pieces of fabric. Nice….even if I say so myself!


See ya next time “In the Hayloft”,

Collage Mania

March 31, 2009


One of my goals this year is two-fold…to push myself to make more art quilts and put my work and my name out there….scary though it may seem at times.

To that end, last month I created a piece for the Deltas of Charlotte’s Silent Auction called “It Takes a Village“. I also knew I wanted to put a few pieces in Collage Mania this year as this is the last year it will be held.

Collage Mania 2009, a Fiberart For A Cause online fundraiser for the American Cancer Society, was founded by Virginia Speigel, an artist whose father survived colon cancer.

In trying to find a way to give more, Virginia started by raising some extra funds with a 7 postcards. That blossomed in hundreds of postcards over the last 3 years.

To date, Fiberart For A Cause has donated over $165,000 to the American Cancer Society. This year Virginia wants to raise $20,000 to top her record last year of $13,000. In order to do that she has opened it up to include not only postcard sized pieces but any collages up to 8″x10″ size.

Since I’m not a postcard type of gal, the slightly larger format worked well for me. Here are the four I donated.






The background fabric of each collage is one of my hand dyed fabrics I screen printed and stamped. I then played with strips of fabric and paper to create each piece, then finished off with some free-motion machine quilting.

Each collage  is stamped with a word that represents the power within all of us to preserver through the worst of times, even when we feel the need to give up.







This year Collage Mania will be held May 5-7th. Patrons are asked to bid on collages donated by a wonderful community of  fiber and mixed-media artists.

May 5th is Gold Donor Day where there is a minimum donation of $80.

May 5th – 7th, which is Regular Collage Mania, the minimum donation for a collage is $40.

To Donate

Cancer, at some point, touches all out lives. Please consider making a donation in honor of someone close to you who has been touched by this disease.

Bookmark the Collage Mania page and revisit the site on one of the above dates. You will be a very proud owner of a wonderful piece of art by those artist willing to give a little bit of themselves for a very worthy cause.

Each of my collages is dedicated in memory of my Aunt Cynthia, who died from cancer in 2007.

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.


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.




Go on………indulge in one for yourself!



See ya next time “In the Haylfot”,

March 1, 2009

FAB Work

Some exciting news….my art group, FAB, has a gallery showing in June where we will each be showcasing our own work and the group challenges we have all worked on.

We recently decided to do a collaborative art cloth challenge. We would each make 24 small art quilts, decide which ones we would use and stitch them together to make one large piece.

We originally started last August with over 4o yds of fabric we hand dyed in two colours….fuchia and turquoise and all the shades of the two mixed. Our next two sessions were overdying and surface design.

After that it was up to each of us to just have at it, using any techniques we chose…..the only no-no was we were not allowed to use any realistic images in any one piece.


I struggled for a bit trying to see what my muse told me about these fabrics.  Finally over a 5 day span I finally found my mojo and came up with these 17 pieces (above).

At our monthly meeting last month we brought all the pieces we had finished thus far. All I can say is Wow…..what a job we have accomplished!


I am so proud of what we have done with this challenge and  can’t wait to see the finished quilt. I will be posting details about our gallery showing closer to the date.  If you are in the area we’d love to have you join us for the opening reception.

See ya next time “In the Hayloft”,

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”



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.

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.

brown-suede-fleurs-5 brown-suede-fleurs-4

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”,