What will you do with your one wild and precious life? - Mary Oliver

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Report from Craft South!

The weekend patchwork retreat at CraftSouth in Nashville was a soul-enriching experience. The generosity in sharing techniques and ideas has empowered me to be more creative in my craft, whatever I am doing. The creative divas Amy Butler and Anna Maria Horner are supportive of anyone who wants to pursue their dream. The pop-up shop gave us a first-look at new fabric designs and pattern samples, as well as gorgeous ribbons.
 The studio space is a dream come true: spacious, skylights, plenty of room. There were 24 participants, proving that women can get things done in community. We all loved the hands-on guidance from Anna Maria and Amy as they demonstrated techniques for using their beautiful fabrics in quilts, clothing and accessories. If you're planning a trip to Nashville, check out the workshop offerings at Craft South Nashville!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Skirting the Issue with Project Sewn

Here's the info on this wonderful project, just click: Skirting the Issue

This project is fantastic: making skirts for little girls in foster care. I have made around 25 skirts this far. Some for foster care, some for little girls who live in poverty and need school uniforms, and others for little girls who are in need of the basics of life. These are the same style skirts I sell on my Etsy site, with some of my profits going to The Community of Saint Therese of Lisieux here in Memphis.  Here are a few pics:
I like to put something a little extra on my skirts. Like the quotes on the pockets, or special ribbons or fun fabrics - a little whimsey is good for a little girl's soul.  Here's hoping the recipients love them as much as I loved making them!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Little People All Around

Here is my latest creation. I have no word for them. They were/are fun to make. I've posted the pics in the order of making these little guys. And they are going with me down to the New Orleans Freret Market soon.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Going to Nashville, and New Colorways to Explore

In a few weeks I am gong to Nashville to spend a few days with Anna Marie Horner and Amy Butler and a few other friends as we explore color and pattern in textiles. Anna Marie has a new line of fabrics called Pretty Potent,
 and Amy has a line called Hapi.
I will let you know (with pix) how it goes, because I am very excited. Part of our assignment is to gather photos and images that we feel drawn to, so I am collecting those as I go about my days.

I am an admitted fabriholic, and wherever I go and a textile print catches my eye, I have to stop and explore. And perhaps make a purchase. My husband and I were in Nashville a couple weeks ago and he graciously allowed me time to explore to my heart's content two fabric stores within walking distance of each other (he sat at a coffee shop and read a book).The Fabric Gallery (no website) and  Textile Fabrics . At one I purchased a large bag of gorgeous, rich-looking drapery trim remnants. At the other, I purchased two patterns and 3 pieces of sale fabrics at a bargain price.

Sellers and shops on Ebay and Etsy, as well as Craftsy and Fabric.com are my favorite places to find the modern fabric designs that I love. There are a few Etsy shops that sell imported Japanese fabric that has vintage charm, like Babuska dolls, airstream trailers, old cars and old rotary dial phones. If you have not explored Craftsy yet, take a look. There are classes in most any creative direction you may want to explore. And then there's the designer Kaffe Fossett! His bold colors are addictive! My next project is a quilt mixing Amy Butler prints and Kaffe prints. 

Is there a new creative avenue that you would like to explore? Where do you get your inspiration?

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Every One of Us is a Creative Spirit

"I wish I could show you when you are lonely or in darkness the astonishing light of your own being."  (Hafiz, Persian mystic, in the 1300's)

I believe this in a deep spiritual way. Some of us live in loneliness or darkness. Others have fleeting or extended periods of our lives that seem to be taken over by these feelings. How do we get in touch with this astonishing light that Hafiz refers to? When we turn and face the loneliness, the darkness of our being, we may discover a part of ourselves that we never knew existed.

Lately I have been obsessed (more so than usual) with creating something every day. This week I created two quilt tops that I may make up into one quilt, using one of them as a 'back'. Both are pictured here. When I am sewing, creating (writing, painting, gardening, etc.), time flies past and I forget even to eat.

I needed a small strip of fabric to fill in some black space and picked up a scrap piece off the floor. I went to iron it out, planning to applique it onto the quilt top. As I ironed this small snippet of fabric, about 1/3" x 5", I began to read what was printed on it: "... went in search of her soul. Stitch by stitch she pieced her soul together." 

No, I am not kidding. 

In Anne Lamott's book on writing, Bird By Bird, she says over and over that for writers getting published is not the goal. Writing is. Writing, creating anything, is a royal road to the soul, where your true self resides. 

How do you get in touch with your true self, that "astonishing light"?

Friday, April 11, 2014

Sewing is my Delight!

This past week I gave a presentation to our new confirmation class on Sabbath Time.

The concept of Sabbath is an ancient one .... and not a vacation or time off to do something you don't have time to do otherwise. Sabbath time is a time set aside to take part in what delights your soul!

This is what I did last week:
I love fabrics, textiles of any kind. I hoard them. I admit it. This is one of the first quilts I have ever made, and it will not be the last. Sewing is meditative for me. It is my delight!

So much so, I made the decision several months ago to turn my delight and passion into a business at retirement. You will hear more as I move more in that direction, still quite a ways off. 

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Time is not on my side

Time is my enemy. It goes by much too fast and I have not accomplished very much. I become obsessed with doing small things, like stopping to paint a tiny bird on a piece of torn cardboard, or seeing a beautiful textile and reaching out to feel the fibers. I blame this on my personality type. I'm an INFP. One description of this type says that I am 'like a new puppy, nosing into everything.' Yes, it's true. (You can find yours here.)

My writing suffers, and therefore I suffer, because of this character trait. One of my editors said, "You have an uncanny gift for describing the minutiae of everyday life." A kind way of saying I overwrite.

But I can't not tell you how the characters get from one point to another. As in, yes, John moves through the doorway like a loose skeleton, his drab green coat torn at the sleeve where he carelessly allowed it to get caught on his dilapidated car's rusty door. An item of clothing, a flannel shirt that he was wearing the first day we met, trails behind him, flapping from his backpack, as if it is waving goodbye to me for the last time.

That's the only way I can get my character out the door.