Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Ripples of Creativity

Two weeks ago I was fortunate enough to attend a workshop taught by Margie Davidson at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, AB. The workshop was two days long.

The first day we learned about manipulating cotton in folds and gathers and then dyeing the cloth in vats of dye. This method of dyeing is called Shibori. The second day we used natural indigo in our vats.

It was a wonderful learning experience and a great opportunity to network with some members of the Fibre Art Network who were attending the workshop, as well as make some new friends.

Here are some of my results from the workshops.

The one below is my favourite.

Monday, 1 November 2010

Rainbow Zoodles of Art

Here are the same giraffes as posted below... with spots :-)

Sunday, 31 October 2010

Zoodles of Art

This weekend I am working on a project for the annual Quilting Arts calendar contest. This is an annual ritual where I submit work and get rejected :-) Toughens the soul and keeps me determined.

This year's theme is pets. Over my lifetime... a brief 45 years... my family and I have had... several cats, including three at the moment, several dogs, including one cute little Cavalier at the moment, two white rats I rescued from a science experiment in school in grade six, two zebra finches, a white mouse I found outside in grade five (and to my mother's horror, the mouse had babies the next day...), three horses, and the list goes on. HOWEVER, I never got to have a giraffe!

So this is the pet I hope to have one day... when I live in Africa and they can wander free near my home.

This piece is about 14" across and will get trimmed down when I am done felting the wool. I will post more as the piece progresses. Especially since tomorrow starts "Creative Every Day" month!

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Happy Anniversary!

Today is our 25th Anniversary. We celebrated yesterday because my husband has a business meeting tonight :-) We did have a lunch date today though!

I searched high and low for an anniversary card, but I never could find one that said what I felt. So, I made one instead. I'm posting it as a warm-up for Creative Every Day month which starts November 1st.

Each picture represents one year of our marriage starting with our honeymoon in Maui and ending with our new (old) boat we purchased this fall. Enjoy :-)

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

I'm Melting...

This week I'm experimenting with a product that is new to me, but has been in the fibre art world as a medium for a long while. Tyvek is a kind of plastic paper used in house building and it somehow made its way to the art industry... as industrial products often do.

This 4" x 6" piece was heated using an iron and then coloured with pencil crayons after it cooled. I'm going to try many, many more and practise stitching on them and try different kinds of paint on them as well.

Any Tyvek wisdom you would like to impart is more than welcome as a comment!!

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Funky Giraffes

One of the many things I do to relax and still exercise creativity is to make a treasury collection on Etsy.

Here is today's Funky Giraffe treasury :-)

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Fall Fell in colour :-)

And in colour.

Monday, 11 October 2010

Fall Fell

I live in Northern Canada. Our days are already getting terribly short... and our leaves are now gone.

Fall fell.

I inked this tree yesterday in remembrance of leaves :-) Thank goodness they'll be back in the Spring!

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

And the Years go Rolling By...

This month my husband and I are celebrating our 25th Anniversary. We are just celebrating quietly on our own, but in our minds it is something big to be proud of and thankful for. We have worked hard over the years... living, being, raising children... and we have many reasons to celebrate 25 years together.

One of our favourite consequences of our decision to share our lives together are our two children. They are healthy, extremely happy, a lot of fun and turning out to be really good friends. This weekend we visited our children in Edmonton and they surprised us with an anniversary gift.

It is a compass for our recently purchased Grand Banks boat. It has our name engraved on the front, and on the back is engraved May you always have calm waters. It is a silver compass and inside the lid is a tiny map of the world. It is beautiful. And will be treasured always.

Thank you to our children :-) It is nice to have them beside us for the rest of the journey.

Friday, 1 October 2010

The Organizing Bug

Often before an anticipated busy part of life, I decide I need to be more organized so that I can keep afloat during the upcoming busy time. Ironically, by the time I'm finished prepping for the busy time, I have been so busy getting organized that the busy time is quite relaxed.

Next Friday, October 8th, I begin working on my Master in Fine Arts. I know it will be busy. So I have been re-organizing and making large messes by sorting, stacking, un-piling, re-piling, moving, cleaning and eventually throwing out. I know it will all come together by next Friday, but it seems impossible right at this very moment :-) You can see this below in my studio...

How do I keep a balance during my pre-busy busy time? My love of the outdoors and the walks I can take near my home relax my mind and get me away from it all. That as well as a really good book.... actually three, that I leave lying around for those spur-of-the-moment drop-on-the-couch-and-read opportunities.

Needless to say, I am looking forward to defeating the organization bug, so I can be un-busier than I am.

Thursday, 29 July 2010

Rock Wall Sunflowers

While relaxing in my Mom's garden, I finished the binding on five more minature sunflower quilts. I'll post them on Etsy when I return home. My Mom's garden is the perfect place to photograph garden flowers.


Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Hat or Bowl?

This week I am vacationing in Ladysmith, BC at my Mom and Dad's house. It is lovely here and so relaxing to sit in the garden. Instead of twiddling my thumbs, I have tried to knit a bowl and then felt it. I did learn to knit when I was a teenager, but had to re-learn this week. I don't think I've ever finished a knitting project before, so completing this little bowl was good in all kinds of ways.

Anyway, here is the bowl. It is only about 3" across the top and 2.5" inches tall (mabye not even).


Sunday, 25 July 2010


My twenty-one year old daughter... always watching out for my best interests... taught me how to Twitter on Thursday. I am here to rave... a bit. As a marketing and business exposure tool, Twitter is probably one of the best. Some say Twitter is old news, but I think it will work for me just fine and dandy. Worth a look if you want to boost some traffic to your web sites and spread the word at no cost to you!

Thanks to my smart daughter :-)

Thursday, 22 July 2010


I have been hand-dying fabric and getting it ready to sell on Etsy. I have photographed some of the fabric today... takes a lot of time, but is fun too!

Go to my Etsy site if you want to purchase any.

Enjoy colour...

Monday, 21 June 2010

Sunny Sunflowers

This weekend's creativity involved two-dimensional gardening. Here are three miniature sunflower quilts I made to sell on Etsy. Cute and sunny and fun to make


Saturday, 12 June 2010

Canadian Designer

This has been an exciting week for me in design. I have been featured as a Canadian designer in the Canadian Quilting Association's magazine "The Canadian Quilter". It is a five-page feature, which is wonderful! One page is about me and the other four pages feature my pattern "Counting Sheep".

This pattern is also availble on my website

Thanks to CQA for this opportunity!

Sunday, 30 May 2010

Fibre Art Network

Do I have anything to show for my creativity this weekend? I don't, but I did spend a lot of time being creative! This weekend was spent catching up on graphic design work, both paid and volunteer. One of my latest volunteer ventures, started in the winter, was to become Assistant Website Coordinator for the Fibre Art Network, also known as FAN.

There are a variety of things that I do... post recent newsletters, help people with setting up Artist Galleries and trouble-shooting various problems. I had some success solving problems this weekend, but I still have work ahead of me. I volunteered for this position because I wanted to continue to learn about web development... and I am.

FAN is a group of women (so far, but men are always welcome!) fibre artists in Western Canada. We have over ninety members! Many are professional fibre artists who exhibit regularly, and many are part-time fibre artists who want to belong to a group like this to network and learn together. It is a fabulous group. Please explore our web site if you have time. I always have a link to the Fibre Art Network on my blog in the right-hand bar, so come back later and explore if you don't have time today.

So... even though I don't always have work to show at the end of a period of creative activity... I am still busy being creative behind the scenes :-)

Monday, 24 May 2010

Pink Cupcakes

After spending all day Saturday watching the rain (and snow) fall from the sky... I got bored and decided I had a craving for pink cupcakes. Too lazy to drive anywhere to get one, I decided to add a treasury to Etsy about pink cupcakes. Ironically, every pink cupcake I chose was inedible. Fun, but did not do much for cravings.

Today, May 24th, is my daughter's birthday. Sam is 21 years old today. And though an adult now, she still enjoys celebrating special days with the same enthusiasm she had when she was six or eight or fourteen. Lucky for me!! Thus, my pink cupcake craving will be taken care of tonight after supper and a good old round of Happy Birthday is sung.

I was up early this morning (read 10:00) :-) and Sam's cupcakes are complete. There are 21 candles in the top cupcake, which was a clever suggestion by Sam's boyfriend, Jordan. We are also feasting on fresh crab and mussels and will have garlic fettuccine with scallops added for a treat. I really hope I have room for a pink cupcake after all of that. If not... breakfast tomorrow!

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Something Old, Something New

I've been away for a while and then sick for a bit and now life is ready to get back energized. I travelled to the Canadian National Quilt Show in Calgary with my very good friend, Elaine. We had a marvelous time, despite the snow and explored a lot of different places in Calgary as well as attending the show for a couple of days.

I had my first quilt exhibited with FAN (Fibre Art Network) as part of the GeoPhysical exhibition. There were many pieces and all were worthy of being hung. What a creative bunch of people... and I am proud to be part of this group. This exhibition will be available to see on our FAN website soon.

Elaine and I visited many quilt shops and other specialty shops in the Calgary area. Our favourite quilt store was Out of Hand with its unusual assortment of goodies. We also enjoyed Shuttle Works which had a fantastic assortment of wool, books and DVDs on fibre, knitting and weaving and other assorted spinning and weaving paraphernalia. Worth the drive South of Calgary... better not to drive in snowstorms, but can be done :-)

On my way home from another trip, I decided to see if I could remember to knit. I was excited that I could, although I think I dropped and picked up stitches quite easily and completely by accident. Could be the complex wool I used... too beautiful to resist. I did learn to knit when I was a teenager, and I was glad to see I could remember the basics. No idea how to cast off... probably because I never finished a knitting project before.

And as a final note, I am including a photo of the lovely birthday card my Mom made for me in March. She carefully punched the holes and sewed fine threads into this lovely design. Blue and yellow are my favourite colours. Thanks Mom.

Enjoy everyone!

Sunday, 4 April 2010

Birthday Surprise

My birthday was last Monday, March 29th. I had a good day... considering my age :-) I turned 45 and I am really happy about it because I didn't really like the number 44. There was just nothing special about it.

I got many nice gifts, but received this extra special one today from my daughter who is away in University. It is called a Wordle and it is crafted by hand not by computer, which is the normal medium. I love it! It will always be very special to me.

I did get some creativity achieved this weekend. I was looking through the inspiring online shop of Creative Every Day Mentor, Leah, and I just got antsy to spend time in my studio. So down to my studio I went. I received a new felting machine for my birthday from my family, so I decided to try it out. I have a couple of pieces on the go now and have discovered the machine is a lot of fun... and  lot easier on my tennis elbow, which has been plagueing me for some time.

Here is a photo of one of the pieces I am working on. It is Northern Lights...


Saturday, 20 March 2010

Clever Counting Sheep

Creativity is followed in many different ways in my studio. Besides graphic design, fibre art, felting and quilting, I have been interested in drafting patterns of my own designs.

My first pattern is now up for sale on Etsy! It has taken me a while to get all the details finished and now that the pattern has been officially tested, I feel very comfortable putting it up for sale. It is available here, for only $9.99 plus shipping.

If you have time, go online and check it out... along with my other Etsy fibre arts.

Sunday, 14 March 2010

Dragons... Flying

Back home from holidays. We had a great time in Maui exploring and snorkeling and relaxing. I picked up a Sashiko kit at the Maui Quilt Store. It took only two or three hours to finish and now is ready to be made into a pillow. It was nice to work with my hands while I was away!

Tuesday, 2 March 2010


This week my husband and I are visiting Maui! We are staying near Kaanapali along the West shore of Maui. We arrived late in the day after the Tsuanmi warning was lifted. Everyone is happy their homes and livelihoods were spared.

Yesterday we took a lovely afternoon drive to Kihei and found the Maui Quilt Store. My husband found another husband outside waiting for his wife and they quickly became anti-fabric-buying team buddies and stayed out in the sun for a visit. The other gentleman was from Edmonton... just five hours from our home of Grande Prairie, so they had lots of things to talk about (read hockey & golf).

The Maui Quilt Store is a wonderful shop to visit. Every kind of Hawaiin Quilt pattern you could ask for and lots of unique Maui-esque products. The balis were so Hawaiin in colour range (yellow, orange, pink, sky-blue... compared to the many earth-tones we have available in Canada.

I bought a book The Hawaiian Quilt: The Tradition Continues. Great instructions and many photographs of high-quality Hawaiin Quilts. If you are interested in this form of quilting (and I wasn't until yesterday), I recommend getting this book.

Tomorrow we will be checking out a quilt store in Lahaina!

Saturday, 20 February 2010

I Caught my Rainbow!

It has been three weeks since my last post. My husband and I took a short trip to Florida and I have been busy catching up since. I hope this weekend will allow me to spend some time in my studio!

I was honoured to be invited to speak to the Edmonton and District Quilt Guild on February 17th. This was my first public speaking event. I was asked to share how my career as a graphic artist has influenced my quilting. I thought I might be nervous, but not so... I was very excited to talk about something I am so passionate about. What a great opportunity AND what a great bunch of people. I was warmly welcomed and I appreciate all the kind and supportive comments made to me after the talk. Thank you!

On my way home to Grande Prairie the next day, I stopped at Pam's Wooly Shop in Stony Plain. I found this lovely wool batt, which is about 1.5 feet square(ish). I have no idea what I am going to do with it, but the colours are gorgeous and the batt itself is so inviting to touch. It is meant to be spun, but of course this won't happen in my studio. I will incorporate it into a project eventually... or maybe just enjoy it as the rainbow that I caught :-)

Monday, 25 January 2010

Merlot and other great volcanoes :-)

This quilt was finished last Friday, but I had to wait for weather to cooperate for a photo opportunity. I am submitting the quilt to be included in an exhibition called GeoPhysical held in May as part of Quilt Canada. The Fibre Art Network (FAN) of which I am a member, is putting together this particular exhibition. It is great to have it finished. I really enjoyed machine quilting this one... a more manageable size and maybe some of my practising is paying off.

Tuesday, 19 January 2010


Penguin has a new friend. King Penguin that is... or mini-Giraffe. I made this Giraffe over the weekend with instruction from Wool Pets by Laurie Sharp. Turned out kind of hairy. Maybe in the olden days, giraffes were hairier? Or maybe this is a Northern Alberta Giraffe. And must admit Giraffe is kind of buff... more like horse muscles than giraffe :-)

My quilt is now listed on CraftHope for Haiti... hopefully it will sell and the money can go to help people. CraftHope is close to raising $10,000 in three days for Doctors without Borders. Kind of exciting to help by sharing a skill.

Monday, 18 January 2010

Craft Hope for Haiti

A little post :-)

Craft Hope for Haiti is an Etsy Site that is selling handmade items to raise money for Doctors Without Borders. If you would like to donate some handmade items, please visit this site and learn how. There are some excellent items for sale, so if you don't have anything to sell, you may find something to buy!!

If you have a blog, put up the Craft Hope for Haiti Button to help generate traffic to the site.

I have donated my little snowflake quilt... Snowflakes for Haiti.