Category Archives: Stretch Works




My world is really alive with blossoms now.  Blue bells, buttercups, violets, lilacs, as well as many I do not know the names of carpet the ground.  Flowering crab apples and tulip trees color the air.  The dandy lions are are in seed and they join the  Oak, Maple and Beech as they dump there pollen on the wind- my world is awash with wonderful sensations.    I am enjoying spring.

IMG_5765  I did a little ice cube dyeing this week.  I wanted to play with some oranges and that is a color I do not seem to have a lot of in my stash.

Blue StoneProgress Report: Blue Stone This work is on stretcher bars and is 24” X 36”.     It is based on a photo of a rock face that I took a few years ago in Washington State.IMG_5755 I enjoyed working up the color changes with yarn and threads on top IMG_5753.jpgof the scrunched fabric pieces.  There is nylon netting, taffeta  and silk paper in this work as well as a bit of flannel.  I sure like mixing my textures.












Along the Shore   Along the ShoreThis work is 20” X 15”.  It started with the photo image that Ethel had transferred on to fabric.   Not knowing anything about the setting I got to invent it to suit myself.   IMG_5769I painted the edges of the photo on the fabric so it would have a softer edge  and stitched across the edge as well to make it blend into the  top.

The quoteIMG_5768 is from Vincent Van Goth.  I find it to be very true for my life.     Creating the pine tree branches  was an enjoyable process for me as I have always been attracted to them.IMG_5767


Memory Map JunctionMemory Map- Columbus Junction  I am working on the details of this piece now.Adding the plants in the garden is just one part of this process.  I am considering adding a bit of text to this work.



Purple Pleasures Close upPurple Pleasures   I am to the quilting stage on this work now.  Deciding to quilt triangles was a good idea, but it is very slow work with lots of stops, turns and starts.   I am trying to use the triangles in the piecing as my guides, but sometimes I am just filling in with that same shape pattern.

IMG_5762.jpgLion King-Coming Home  I have added the masks to the bottom of this work.  Then I put the stamped lions on under that  boarder.  I think I am now ready to begin quilting on this work.

New Work IMG_5759  I want to do a entry for the Layered Voices Challenge for SAQA.   This is my base, using Valerie Goodwin’s base construction method.  I  am now  ready to tack down the open edges by hand.  I am also gathering images of my mom and  my grandmothers to use as a part of this work.

IMG_5748Deep Jellies  I saw a beautiful image of Jellyfish on the web and I was captivated by it .  I started a piece based on the wonderful use of color and texture from this image.

Label Block #58 Block # 58  Working away on these little blocks sure reinforces the idea that the whole is bigger then the sum of its parts.

Keep Creating


Spring get away


Before I left for Florida I was a part of a second show at Turquoise Street Studio on the week end.   I even sold a piece and I am thrilled by that.  Barbara is so kind to share her studio with us and help  us all benefit from that experience.Sun rise


The photos tells the story of how I started many of my days when I visited Susan and Carolyn in Florida.  The sun rises were wonderful.  The light was truly “golden” as Barbara says.  IMG_5317A big reason for my trip was to see their show.  I went through the door and  was stopped short by the visual impact.  There was so very much to see I could not get myself started.  I think I IMG_5293.jpgwas fortunate to have seem some of the work before or I think I could have been truly overwhelmed.   In trying to decide my favorite I was struck by the variety and the powerful use of color.  I really like this altered Barbie that has become a  god.   Carolyn’s Swing Clocks with the moving feet made me smile too.IMG_5294 This picture is only two of  seven different variations that were presented.    Some works were small and intimate and others were bigger than life size like this red dress.  Red DressI liked Susan’s piece that was based on Little Red Riding Hood too because it had so many parts IMG_5296 that were all fascinating all by them selves and  also worked together.  It was a full and delightful experience for me.  IMG_5310.jpg  We went to the building next to the gallery and saw a second exhibit of the works of the collage faculty and staff.  I was taken by this wonderful small weaving.  Susan told my it was by the director of the gallery were their work was on display.Susan















Susan and I worked in the studio every day too.   This shot is of Susan painting on Tyveck for her project for the Diva 15 Show.   IMG_5339  We worked with wood and fabric as well and had a lot of fun.    We  went for a morning at the  beach as our way of celebrating Easter.    The day was a perfect one for our ramble with a clear blue sky, white sands, crisp  ocean smells and a cool breeze.

IMG_5367.jpgI found so many fascinating  patterns and textures that I took over 75 pictures.    But I decided that this shot of Cyprus  stumps is my favorite.   They almost look like they could walk the shore them selves.   I had a great visit.



IMG_5388.jpgProgress Report:  Watakoo Wall This is another in my stretch works.  I am getting better at trimming back the corners enough that they lay flat now.  It seems I learn a new trick with every one of these projects.  IMG_5390 I put lots of fabric bits on the surface as I build up the effect I am after.  This one even has some “plastic twist”  on it to give it  a bit of a punch.IMG_5391 It has silk paper as a part of the texture and color as well.

  Second Wall  IMG_5381.jpg This work is a partner to Watakoo Wall.  Both are from the same  photo, but a very different part of the rock face.     This is a very early stage and I am sure it will grow and change as I work on the surface.  It seems to cry out for some light at the moment.

IMG_5392Out My Windows   I am to the fun stage of the work on this piece.   I am doing the free motion drawing part and I always enjoy that step.  I did all the  dark purple squares yesterday afternoon.Trees They are all night views across the roof tops showing the bare trees.

Spring GreenGreen Grass of Spring  This work is another of the pieces that is based on a collage.  It grew and changed a lot as I enlarged it from the 5”X7” card I did the collage on.  I did try to keep the tones of light medium and  dark in the same areas however.  I have it layered together and it is ready for the quilting.   I am just looking and thinking about that step at the moment as I have no real clear idea of how I want to do that.

Memory Maps:Columbus Junction IMG_5383.jpg  I started this work after talking with Susan before I went off to Florida.  She mentioned how much she liked one of the other Memory Map works and I realized that I had not done all the pieces I wanted to do in that series.  So after checking my list of possible subjects I selected Columbus Junction the home that  I lived in from Kindergarten to the end of  third grade.  IMG_5385.jpgThen I  did a list of possible  subjects and began some drawings.   I built my base and then started working on top.   This shot is of the map section with our house being the square with the blue roof.  This shot is of the upper right hand corner of the work.




Ethel’s Trees IMG_5382  I inherited lots of Ethel’s unfinished work and this is one.  I am sure I will not not put my stamp on all of her pieces, but using it as a starting point is a good challenge for me.  This started out as only the brown tree painted on the white cloth.  I added the gray painted “wonder under” to build up the land and then found this second  Ethel cut tree yesterday.   I need to live with this work to know were to go from here.  The gray tree is not stitched down so it may move before I fuse it down.

IMG_5379.jpgLabel Block # 45   I worked on this as I waited for the connections flying back and forth.    I did not want to get behind while I was away and the activity does not require a lot of attention and its small so it travels well.    Susan gave me a new batch of labels so I have more to work with.

IMG_5357  I am going off to Chicago to the Quilt Festival and a visit with my Friend Sharron Evens  on Wed next week so there will be no posting for  April 7.  It will be another double shot when I get back.

Keep Creating,


Green Day


IMG_5238.jpgHappy St. Patrick’s Day.   It is sunny and bright today and I am really feeling the wonders of spring. Notice the bee in the center of the wind flower on the left.   So many trees have big fat buds I am sure they will open soon.  I had no meetings this week so I got a lot done.  I do have stuff coming up however.  This Sat and Sunday I will be apart of the Spring Thing at the Turquoise Street Gallery.   I will be there on Sunday afternoon from 1 to 4IMG_5235Come along and have so goodies if you can.    My other news is I am off to visit Susan on Tues and I will not be back until the following Tuesday .  So there will be no post next week.   I am sure I will have lots to share when I get home as she already has lots of plans for activates for the two of us.

Briar PatchProgress Report: Briar Patch I have completed this work, but I do not feel like it is really done.   It is OK- but it has no life for me.  I will take it to the Associated Artists IMG_5258meeting this week end and get some feed from other artists on it.  I do like all the textures and colors that the patch contains but it seems fall short .IMG_5261

Ribbon Rose PillowRibbon Rose Pillow    When I went to visit Susan last spring I fell in  love with a wonderful piece of red fabric that she had.  It was topped with these wonderful ribbon  patterns.  It has taken me a year to study and then adapt the technique to my  collection of techniques.     I am quit pleased with this typeIMG_5272of embellishing.    I will admit that it is not a surface that is comfortable to press against however.IMG_5273  But the texture is wonderful!

Out the WindowOut the Window     I have finished all the stitch in the ditch work on this piece.  It is now stable enough to start the free motion drawing  part.  I Think I will make each block a different view.  I plan to leave some of the “windows’ blank and all the white ones with purple blocks printed on them will be curtained windows.  I am thinking that the deep purple blocks will be night scenes.    This is a big challenge and I may change my mind as I go along.  But that is my plan.


Riverwood earlyRiverwood    This work fits all three of  my monthly challenge criteria.   It is based on a collage, has my altered fabric  and some of Ethel’s fabric too.    I changed the color when I went to fabric from red to oranges and from grays to browns. IMG_5276_thumb.jpg I am showing one of the early pin up steps of this work because I have realized that as I enlarge the work from the 4”X 6” collage to a larger size it takes on a life of its own and I alter the work accordingly.  ( note the IMG_5266.jpgadditional half circles. ) I have finished all the stitch in the ditch work on this piece too and I am now ready to add the free motion work.   I am not sure what to do so I am living with it.




















Watakoo Wall  I started some new work based on photos of rock formations. This is the beginning. IMG_5270_thumb.jpg I always try to lay the wool out in a pattern that follows the lights and darks of the start, but it too takes on a life of its own when I change mediums.  Is this what is meant by abstraction?IMG_5262.jpg













IMG_5264.jpgThis is a second work from a different section of the same photo before I add any fabrics on top.   It to has morphed from the photo to this point.










Creative Assistants IMG_5254_thumb.jpg   I have been inspired again this week to get back into doing faces for my creative assistants.  I have done about two dozen and I will keep at it for a bit longer.   Then move on to the next step.



IMG_5245New work    Here is another work that is fits the monthly challenge work.  And it too seems to have  pulled away from the collage with enlargement. IMG_5274_thumb.jpg   I have broken things up and altered the sizes of color blocks as I have gone along.   I guess I will just have to face that the changes are a natural part of my process.  IMG_5251.jpg  It is all a part of learning and  creating as I go along.   A natural part of the process for me.













Label Block #44    I like the label form my Minion sculpture Christmas  gift ( upper left hand corner )  the best in this block.

Keep CreatingIMG_5252.jpg





We are coming to the end of another year and I have been thinking not only about my dreams for the future, but also reviewing what happened in 2015.

A Jewish Proved  says it best:

The Quality of life is fuelled by our productive wealth.

With this in mind I can say I am very wealthy.   For me it has been a very productive year.   For the first time I counted the number of spools of thread I used in my work.  All that machine drawing does add up and I finished off  65 spools this year.     This is reflective of the number of works I completed and with Autumn Collection added today that number is 49.    I do so enjoy challenging myself  and the amount of work I do reflects this drive I have.

I enjoyed my travels this year and visited lots of friends. I went south to  Susan in Florida  in March.   I took a trip to Maine to see Barbara and Elizabeth with Marty in May.  I went to see Barb in Indiana in June.   There was also loss in my life this year as two friends died.   The WWII veteran, Fred Bishop, who lived  up the street passed away in March.  My good friend and mentor Ethel Whitmore  died  in August.  I miss her greatly, but do to the generosity of her children I am wrapped in her fabrics and dyes that now fill my studio.  I made a promise to myself that I would use some of her material in every work I create for a year.  That will not be  too much of a challenge as I already find her fabrics blending into my work with ease.  She helped me grow so very much and all the joy I find in creating and using Silk Paper is do to her introduction to that material.    I am thankful that she was a part of my life for such a long time.

Buffalo-Bluffs-AB_thumb.jpgProgress Report:   Buffalo Bluffs    This diptych is now complete.  Both units are stretched and  measure 16” X 20 “.    I learned a lot about cutting up a unified work with this project.      I had to make some additions to both sides when I sliced it  to make each section work on its own as well as  in tandem.  I based the work on this part of a photo I took last summer.    I enjoyed building up the surface with lace , velvet, cotton, felt,  silk and organza.

IMG_4892  I continue to use the fabrics that  do the job texturally as well as colorfully to keep the piece functioning.  


Autumn CollectionAutumn Collection   This work is 37” X 30.5 “   With is quilt I finally used the silk leaves that I created with Cris in the silk paper workshop earlier this fall.  IMG_4882The piece has lots of different techniques and fabrics in it.     Not only the silk leaves but also leaves cut from cotton and organza fabrics.  The trunk has some of the fabric that Marty and I spray painted after we came back from visiting with Elizabeth last spring. IMG_4880  I also included some colored pencil drawing along the top of the hill to IMG_4881suggest far away trees behind the weeds.     It was great fun to work on this piece.

Autumn Leaves IMG_4876I am now doing the quilting on this piece.  I loaded the bobbin with thick cotton thread and did the outline of the leaf from the back of the quilt.  Then flipped it over and drew in the vanes.  I am happy with how it is coming along.


Autumn LeavesCoastal Color- Red Rock I have only just started the thread painting on this work.  It is different to be building on top of a felted surface.   This work is based on a small portion of a photo.  I block off only the section I want to look at and IMG_4872use it as my starting point.    This is the section of the rock face.



 IMG_4885New work    I built this collage a few weeks ago and it is the start of another work.   I am not going to copy the colors – but try to keep the shapes IMG_4883.jpgand tones in the work the same. This is the first pin up of the fabrics I have selected for this project.  Two of them are from Ethel’s stash, but most are ones I have altered with dye and paint.











Wiliams-Quilt.jpgWilliam’s Quilt The top and back are now complete and I have the two sections united. I am doing stitch in the ditch quilting starting by quilting around all the photos and working out form there.     This process is not fast, but it is enjoyable  for me.



Label Block # 33IMG_4875   There is not rush here just slow and steady progress on this project.

May the  2016 bring you joy and delight.





Leaves seem to remain a strong interest to me.  Most of our local trees are stripped now, but as this photo shows some still have their fruit.     I am still searching out places were I can walk through the piles of crisp fallenLeaves leaves and enjoying the crunch.  I found a wall in the park where the leaves are piled deeper then my knees and I felt like I was six again as I plowed through them.    There is still lots of colors in those piles too- pinks, greens, tans, browns, yellows and purples.   So wonderful! The fact that I am printing leaves on one of my tops is part of the reason for my strong interest I am sure.

JudyThe FAB  group meant here this week and we had a good talk.  Judy finished tieing the bunk bed quilts she brought with her that day.  NancyNancy has added two of her boarders on the quilt she is making for her daughter.     It is great when we all make progress.


Progress Report:  Grounded-GroundedThis work is a part of the curvy cut series.   I am stamping the leaves I made last week.  The colors are not as strong on the brown as I would like.   But I feel it will work out in the end.  I am stamping from the largest stamp to the smallest.  Each stamp is a different color combination.  There is also a number increase with each stamp I am using.  I started with five of the biggest leaf and moved to seven for the next one.  I am increasing by two every time I change leaves to get a deep pile feeling.

Dead Horse Canyon Rock FaceDead Horse Canyon Rock Face   This work is going to be stretch.   I think I am ready for that step as I have done all the free motion drawing and tacking of the parts.   I am finding the small format a challenge.  There are three more canvases so I will keep putting in the effort.

New work   This work New workis one of my first pieces using some fabric from pile of hand dyed works I have been creating sense the beginning of Oct.   In this shot there are about six units.  I was happily putting them together this morning and I did not pin then back on the board every time after I pressed the seams.  That was a mistake as I put an early connection together backward and did not notice that error until I was “done”.   Now I have lots of seam ripping to do before I can go forward with this piece.

Label Block #27IMG_4724  The daily hand work goes forward on this project.

Keep Creating


Sports Lines


I am still thinking about lines and although this is a shot of tire lines  I think it shows one way we see them and do not really realize they are a part of our lives.   When I made my list of line types I was surprised by how many were  related to sports.     Almost all sporting events have a starting line  or beginning line and finish line.   In Basketball there are center lines,  free throw lines,  foul lines, boarder lines, side lines.  Foot ball has some of these lines and adds yard lines, front lines, boundry lines  and line men.  In auto racing you add fuel lines, break lines and checkered lines.  Other lines in sports include kite lines, trap lines, bow lines  and in horse racing you blood lines.  I am sure there are lots of othersIMG_2501_thumb.jpg I have not though of too and perhaps I am getting to the point were the lines have different meanings- but line is a very useful tool in art and sport. I went and spent a day playing with Cheri last week.  She had some wonderful felted work to share with us.         Colleen worked on this IMG_2504_thumb.jpgbarclet for the day.  It is more than half done now and I like the colors.  Cheri worked on this wonderful spider. IMG_2505_thumb.jpg Look at the scissors near the top of the photo to get the scale of how large this project is . I spent my day working on my entries for 6X6 for the Rochester Contemporary Art Center fund raiser.       Check out the web sight and see the work for sale at  $20  for each one IMG_2506_thumb.jpgor even better send them one of your own little 6″ X ^” creations and join the fun. 




Progress Report: RusticIMG_2520_thumb.jpg Rambles IIMG_2518.jpg and Rustic Rambles II   This is the first of the works  new stretch series that I am doing.   I wanted to try my collage technique on a stretch surface so I an enter it in a art show that IMG_2527_thumb.jpgis specifically asking for stretched works.  I like the effect. There is no batting but I have not been using  batting in most of my foundations works for over a year.   This work also includes paper that I have done wax resits on.     I used the same machine drawing  work I have been developing for the last year. IMG_2522IMG_2523IMG_2524IMG_2525  These two works are a set and flow into one another when they are hung with that in mind. IMG_2526  

Circuits    This project is completed now and is 20″ X 30″IMG_2513.jpg







 This was a fun project to work on in the evenings while I did machine work onIMG_2515_thumb.jpg Scrap Happy’s during the day time.

I started this with the orange stamped shapes.  I used the errasor  end of a pencil for the stamp.   When the paint was dry I stated to connect the  rowsIMG_2517_thumb.jpg of dots together like the welds on a circuit board.     I added the orange beads as I tough they were needed to make the idea feel complete.  The stitching and beading became more and more complex  as I went along.   I am very happy with the final results.IMG_2516_thumb.jpg





Scrap Happy # 4   I am still working away on these scrap quilts and finishing them as time allows. IMG_2547 IMG_2546  Scrap Happy #5   I gave one away yesterday to the Prevention  Net Work.  It is an organizations that helps direct high school kids away from drugs.  I have starts for two more and then I will set this work aside for a while.

New works    I am still strugglingIMG_2550_thumb.jpg with how I want to finish this piece.  But yesterday I looked at it and though of my trip to Canyon De Chilly again and think I will try to push it in that direction. This is another experiment I am trying.  It really falls into my Graffiti  play stuff so I am  IMG_2548_thumb.jpgnot sure at all were it is going.  But when I give my self the Okay to play some good stuff can come out of that.

I will be away next week so there will be no post   March 5.

Keep Creating


Valentines Day


IMG_2436 Hello,

I have finished and sent my Valentines Day Cards.  The making is the best part of the whole event from my point of view.   It is always a fun excuse to get out the paper and play with it.   I do not care if I get any response from doing these- the joy of making is all I really want anyway.

This week has been a full one for me as they all seem to be.IMG_2439I went to visit my friend Ethel and we spent a fine day playing with felting.  I do enjoy the process and do not take time to do that very often.  I started out making a background for the pebble like  felted units that I made  on the  play day at the Blue Moon in the fall. IMG_2471   Ethel suggested that I slice the units in half to add to the surface.  I really like that idea and would not have even thought of doing that without IMG_2465_thumb.jpgmy play time with her.    Another point of view is always a good thing.       After lunch I tried a whole new picture like image in felt.  What fun.  I ran out of energy and time before I completed it, but I am sure I will finish the bird and flowers later.

IMG_2441  Ethel created this wonderful felted bag.  I love the soft colors and the button she found is just perfect for its job here.   It was a fun and productive day.   We have set a date to do something similar next month.

IMG_2456.jpgProgress Report:   Rustic Rampaging I  & II  I wanted to enter a art completion were all the work had to be mounted and framed so I did a set of pieces that would fit into that format.  I thought why not try stretching my work on a frame like one does canvas for a painting.    The first piece show here is Rustic Rampaging II – and it is not stretched.    It is ready for that step as I did the two works at the same time, but I did not have a canvas so I could not do that step until I went out and got the materials.  IMG_2470 This is Rustic Rampaging I. The process is  is all experimenting  so I am learning things.   For example -the next time I will make the piece just  a bit bigger as I like how the side were I could rap the project all the way around to the back much better then  were I just had to attached it to the side.

IMG_2464Circuits   I am finally finished with the  hand stitching on this project.   It was enjoyable,, but a slow process.  Now I need to add it to the quilt top.  That portion  will be a piecing project for this week.

Paint Play   When Cris WinterIMG_2463_thumb.jpg came to visit a few weeks ago she gave me a little gift that was work on canvas and I really liked the look.  So I did a little playing in a similar style this week.  It too will get stretched around a frame when I am done with some hand work on the surface.

IMG_2461Old work Revisited   I finally looked again at this work I had started last spring.   This time I saw a way to go forward with it.  The red on the side is added and now I will work on the embellishment to pull the work together.   Sometimes one has to just set work aside for a while and look at it again later with fresh eyes.

Keep Creating