Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Air-Dry What?

Air Dry Clay -- No need for an oven of any kind, and is fun and easy to work with...

Sounds like my kind of thing, and during a design group work day a while back someone introduced us to this clay and I have to admit to being hooked. We started making some beads and my mind just swam with possibilities for embellishments.

and, I was off...
this is why it's one of the materials I introduce in my new book, and it's also why I'm offering a package of this wonderful 'stuff' as the give-away item for Trail-Marker#2.

I've been playing with it a bit this week, too and have included some pictures here with pieces that are drying, and being painted. Then I get to put them into action... think mine are going to... well, I'm sure you'll check in later to find out.

Don't forget... to be in the drawing follow & comment as many times as you like here or on my FaceBook Fan Page...

Off to design group today.... hope you're making a creative day for yourself as well!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Meet Stacy Hurt!

I met Stacy many years ago when she joined Quilts on the Wall: Fiber Artists. She is a wonderful quilt artist and we share a love of ravens and crows. It is always special to see her share a new piece, and I am always amazed at the beautiful calligraphy that she includes on many of her quilts.

Stacy has her own blog, and had additional work on the Quilts on the Wall website. Hope you enjoy her words and photos here and click through to see more!

In her own words:
The colors and textures of quilting draw me further into my textile experience even more than all the embroidery I've done; crocheting; knitting, and calligraphy. In my art quilts, I like to blend the passion of each of these disciplines. Mixing the media of everyday objects, fabric, graphic images and icons has taught me to look at the world with different eyes. I enjoy the challenge of blending my calligraphic art into the fabric medium and creating images that are more in depth and, paradoxically, more ethereal than just pen and ink on paper.

Gallery Quilt Artists Guest Blog - Begins 3/26

We're drawing closer to Exploring Embellishments time to hit the stores. I've been having a great time sharing this time with some fun on-line happenings. The 1st TrailMarker Give-Away was really interesting, too -- life is so much easier with the right tools.

Trail Marker #2 Give-Away is in full swing, so I hope many of you choose to jump in and share about beads... a link to your favorite, a bit about how you choose them, stitch them---confess, do you stitch by hand or by machine? No matter, share and be in on the upcoming drawing!

Now, to add to the fun, I will be have a guest quilt artist tell us a little about themselves and their work. Best of all, each of these artists have a piece in my new book. The first guest will appear tomorrow... Friday - March 26! Then look for another guest artist every Friday 'til the end of May.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Trail Marker#2 - GiveAway

As we prepared to go exploring for embellishments, earlier this month we went in search of our favorite tools. There were lots of art & quilting tools mentioned and I know I got a few new ideas along the way. Thank you all for participating.

Now its time we set out along the trail...
Some of my favorite things to collect and use on my quilts are beads...and there are just soooooooooo many to choose from out there.

Exploring Embellishments: More Fun with Fast-Piece Applique 12- Week Trail-Marker Give-Aways

Trail-Marker #2

March 22 thru April 4

Stocking up on Basic Beads

Win a block of Air Dry Clay & 2-special sanding tools
(you'll be ready to make some beads of your own)

Enter by:
Following this blog & leave a comment about a special bead you like,
Become a fan on my FaceBook Fan Page & comment about beads or beading
Tweet this give-away with @rosehughes in your message
For bonus entries - leave a photo or link to a favorite bead store

Monday, March 22, 2010

Winner of TrailMarker #1 GiveAway IS!

Lisa Rhoades ----
Yeah! The set of Clover chacoliners are going out to Lisa...

Everyone is still in the running for the final book giveaway, BUT
look for TrailMarket #2 info coming out tomorrow.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

It's Spring

I love spring and had a blast last weekend while down in San Diego. Finally, after 20 years of visiting, made it to the Flower Fields. Many of us find that our thoughts of quilting tools turn to thoughts of gardening tools this time of year... so, on this last day of the Trail-Marker#1 Give-Away... post a comment about your favorite gardening tool and get included in the drawing. Hope you enjoy the photos from the FFs and they get your creative ideas flowing. Happy Spring!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Monday, March 15, 2010

Filling Your Bag of Tools

The Canyon Quilters worked on finishing up some great quilts yesterday, and as soon as I get home I'll be able to share some photos.

It really was a weekend filled with folks adding new tools and techniques to their Bag of Tools and creating some really fun, artful landscapes was just icing on the cake. Tonight I'm looking forward to giving a trunkshow at the guild's meeting.

Just wanted to remind you that there is one week left to follow me here or on my facebook fan page--and leave a comment on your favorite tool --- whether its one, two or many...
Then you'll be entered in the first of the Trail-Marker Give-Aways.

All leading up to the release of my new book in June!
Exploring Embellishments is all about creating artful quilts while learning about new, exciting materials and how to easily make them into wonderful embellishments!

I'm really enjoying & learning about all sorts of tools and their unexpected usefulness.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Canyon Quilters

It's a quiet Sunday morning and I'm enjoying the chirp of birds and view of the water from my window from where I am staying while in San Diego. Yesterday was a wild, fun day with a group of 20 members from Canyon Quilters. Nothing like the anticipation felt in the air as everyone pulls all their supplies out of their cars, wanders into the big empty room and scopes out the best seat.

That is how the morning started, and it just got better from there. They came with photos and sketches in hand of far away places and some much closer to home and by end of day these had been stitched into fabric landscapes.

Tops done, we will be couching, quilting & embellishing these today. So, in just a little while I'll be back to the rooms filled with old & new memories of Africa, Paris, Yosemite and local Palomar mountains..... wild, fun!

Hope your Sunday plans bring you peace & creative contentment.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Tooling Around ---

OK - not a good pun, but I wanted to share a picture of the work table in my studio. This was taken just a couple of days ago...

it holds the contents of my new book, Exploring Embellishments... yes, really...
when the manuscript is written the author gathers up all the other stuff to go along with it. It is organized and packaged and shipped off with all the quilts and a little cd. After all the pictures are taken, the pages laid out, editing, editing and more editing... all the stuff is sent back to you.

What a treat it is, too... all those fun and wonderful tools and things return home!

The box went first (down to the recycle bin) and slowly but surely things are being cherished a bit, then put away. Silly, but I really missed the small nail filing sticks...so cool when you have to sand little areas.

I'm off this weekend to teach in San Diego, for Canyon Quilters. Should be FUN!
Don't forget to post about your favorite tool -- one more week before I pull the winning name.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Pulled From the Bag of Tools

Thanks for all your responses and comments about your favorite tools. Some have been surprising!

Here are few that have been mentioned:
rotary cutter
clear rulers
seam rippers

Don't forget to check out the Trail-Marker GiveAway and let me know what your favorite tool is!

I've been using one of my favorite tools this week. It is the one that I carry around with me in my pocket while working on quilting and beading.... Shown is a picture of my beading kit....with my fav tool kind of hiding on the right, the chaco-liner. I use it to mark out areas to be quilted, or block out shapes for quilting, or as in the other two pictures here...I note where beads may need to go before picking up needle & thread.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Bag o"Tools

When I first started off writing Exploring Embellishments I came across this poem:

A Bag of Tools---by R.Lee Sharpe

Isn't it strange how princes and kings,

and clowns that caper in sawdust rings,

and common people, like you and me,

are builders for eternity?

Each is given a list of rules;
a shapeless mass; a bag of tools.
And each must fashion, ere life is flown,
A stumbling block, or a stepping stone.

It struck home with me, for no matter what medium or style we go to create we all use tools...we need to learn what's out there/ how to use them... and throw that knowledge in our own Bag of Tools so we can pull them out as we need them to fashion our 'stepping stones'.

There are tools out there for every step in the quiltmaking process.
  • creating the quilt top
  • sandwiching the layers
  • quilting
  • finishing
  • and of course, my favorite... EMBELLISHING
What's in YOUR bag!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

12-Week Trail-Marker Give-Away- #1

My new book is scheduled to 'hit the streets' in early June, so I've planned a bit of fun to wile away my every moment of anticipation... hope you JOIN IN!

Exploring Embellishments: More Fun with Fast-Piece Applique

12- Week Trail-Marker Give-Aways

March 7th thru May 30th

Every two weeks I will offer a new 'give-away'... a goody or supply that you'll want on hand to go exploring exciting & new paths in my upcoming book!

Enter once or as many times as you like; then as the last Trail-Marker is passed all the entries received during the 12-weeks will additionally be included in drawings for a copy of my new book.
Six people will win a signed copy!

Trail-Marker #1

March 7 thru 21

Packing your Bag o'Tools

Win a pair of my favoriate marking tools!
1-yellow & 1-white Clover Chaco Liner Slims

Enter by:
Follow this blog & comment about your favorite art or quilting tool, OR

Become a fan on my FaceBook Fan Page & comment about your favorite art or quilting tool

BONUS entry-- Tweet this give-away with @rosehughes in your message

12-Week Trail-Marker Give-Away

Exploring Embellishments: More Fun with Fast-Piece Applique
12- Week Trail-Marker Give-Aways

March 7th thru May 30th

Every two weeks I will offer a new 'give-away'...
It may be a goody or supply that you'll want on hand to go exploring exciting & new paths in my upcoming book!

  • Enter once or as many times as you like;
  • The Winners of EACH Trail-Marker will be announced:
  • then as the last Trail-Marker is passed all the entries received during the 12-weeks will additionally be included in drawings for a copy of my new book.
  • Six people will win a signed copy!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Cultivate An Obsession

I've chatted about starting and keeping a 'color book' or a 'perspective book' a number of times, for they have been important to me and my art.

Recently this idea of 'seeing' and gathering data came full circle for me, in of all places, a book called, Crow Planet, Essential Wisdom from the Urban Wilderness, by Lyanda Lynn Haup.

A number of months ago one of my sisters told me she bought me a present. It never showed up, and finally one day she confessed that she was having a great time reading it for herself, but she assured me that it was time for it to travel. The book made it to me, and in just the first chapter I found that there is a much larger wisdom being shared here.
It is not a book 'just' about watching crows... it is much bigger. Once part that really struck home with me, the artist..not the raven/crow watcher that I already am, was her chapter on Preparing. Each part of her preparation was really getting you ready to BE AWARE. When I read the section on Cultivate an Obsession it all made sense. Lyanda stated, "...a good question fills us with a sense of purpose and gives structure to our observations. It engages our mind on levels unforeseen."

In her next section she talks about carrying a notebook...boy, that hit right home for me. The gathering of data--whether it be putting into words, making a a few sketches, or snapping a few pictures helps to capture the moment of discovery so we can ponder in delight over shining a bit of light onto our question.

what obsession are you cultivating at the moment?

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Shared Stitches

My new book, Exploring Embellishments has been on the desks of many, many folks at Martingale Publishing up in the Seattle area over the past six months or so. These are great people who do amazing work and are really fun to work with, too. It will soon be hitting the streets, and this month I will be beginning to take pre-orders.

But, back in October I was visiting the offices of Martingale while Brent (the best quilt photographer!) was shooting the photos for this new book. During that visiti I also gave a class to a group of Martingale stitchers. The sun shone through the yellow leaves we all had a great day of Fast-Piece Applique. In this one-day class everyone works on a self-created abstract designs. Below are a few of the finished pieces.

The top one is by Stan
Middle piece is by Cathy ....
The lower one is by Regina ....

I'm looking forward to seeing MORE,
and also sharing MORE about my new book...
Does the title have you intrigued?