Inner Diva Mini Art Quilt

Inner Diva art quilt 11" x 17"

Another mini quilt I made this month, playing around with scraps and converting drawings in my sketchbook. I like her sassy pose!

Funny enough, the chandelier was the fussiest part to do in fusible applique. I ended up taking a black and white stock image off the internet, tracing it onto fusible web, and then having to edit all of the little bibs-and-bobbles on the drawing down. Otherwise cutting it out would have been a nightmare, leaving me with a stringy black mess.

I may have to do more of these girls wearing high heeled shoes, I think they're so cute.

I always come up with a quote or theme for the quilt after most of it is complete. She kept saying "inner diva" to me with her hands on hips pose, and flirty dress. I think we all have a little bit of that inner diva in us, don't you? Mine comes out if they mess up my drink order at Starbucks (that's a Venti 4 pump skinny vanilla latte with 1 scoop of ice, thanks!) or I'm wearing any shoes with a heel higher than 1 inch (twice a year, maybe). And like this girl, as long as I'm not mean about it, I embrace it. Two snaps!

What about you, when does your inner diva come out?



Solitude Mini Art Quilt

She Embraces Solitude mini art quilt - 8" x 11"

Here's another mini quilt I made recently. I used some Dylusions ink spray on canvas fabric to get a mottled/dyed background. As is often the case when I'm just playing with supplies, I wasn't sure until after it dried where I was going with it. I used a Donna Downey stamp for the face and enhanced it with free motion quilting and black thread.

Then I used a matching blue thread to do a little enhancement quilting around the face and background. I felt the size of this quilt made it closer to the size of an art journal page, so as I often do in my journaling, I added a quote.

One of my favorite things to happen when making these quilts that outline a central figure or image is the quilting lines that show up on the back. 

It's like double the artwork for your effort! Thanks for stopping by.



CGM Podcast Episode #66: Double Down Crafting

Listen to the episode here

Show Notes 

Life Update:
Finished Objects:
  • Rainbow Baktus scarf
  • Moneta dress (Colette patterns)
  • more mini quilts
Classic Movie:

Book Review:

 The Other Typist by Suzanne Rindell

Thanks for listening!



Painting Faces at CREATE Mixed Media Retreat

Small sample of drawings from entire class.

Last Saturday I had the opportunity to travel with the family to New Jersey and take a class at the CREATE Mixed Media Retreat. I signed up for the "Explore Faces" class with Julie Fei-Fan Balzer almost as soon as registration opened a few months ago, because I'm a big fan of Julie's work and trying to improve my drawing and painting skills.

There were about 18 of us in class, and Julie got us feeling comfortable with out "can-barely-draw-a-stick-figure-much-less-a-face" preconceived ideas about drawing a face. She broke each lesson down into simple steps and the basic shapes that form the foundation of a face. 

 A bit of my own work from the class. From pencil sketches to painting a whole face!

Julie is very laid back and reassuring in her teaching style, she insists you cannot make a mistake, anything can be corrected with some gesso and paint (true!) and I couldn't believe how awesome everyone's work was after the first hour!

 My faces are the top 3 from the right...yes, even the ugly green girl LOL.

I'll admit I had some serious drawing envy going on at times, and it's so true what they say in an art class: the person's work next to or across from you is ALWAYS better than yours (perception not reality of course!) LOL. 

But I was there to have fun and learn the techniques, not necessarily make ready-to-frame art that day. I am so excited to put what I learned to work in my art journals and even my quilting! If you're not already familiar with Julie's blog (and podcast!) I highly recommend you check it out..... so much fabulous inspiration there.



What We're Reading This Month

Beautiful Oblivion by Jamie McGuire

Delicious! by Ruth Reichl

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart

The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith/JK Rowling

Samantha (age 7):

Sami's Sleepaway Summer by Jenny Meyerhoff

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
(we're reading this together)

Maddy (age 3):

The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams

Biscuit Goes to School by Alyssa Capucilli

What are you reading these days?



Favorite Fictional Places Yard Sign

It's official. My book nerdiness knows no bounds. I'm a little bashful sharing this project, because:

A. It's incredibly book nerdy, and while I tend to be rather proud of my book nerdiness when it comes to the actual books I read, when you start making stuff that puts the spotlight on it, well......that can straddle the line between weird and batshit crazy. (I fully understand I'm a bit of both.)

B. I think it's super cute, but....see A.

I made this yard sign over the holiday weekend, since I had some time on my hands (kid free time, woohoo!)  and it's a project I've had kicking around in my head for a loooong time. I've seen several cute non book-related versions of this yard sign on Etsy, highlighting favorite destinations/vacation spots with mileage from your house. 

But let's be real, if I'm going to imagine where I want to be, it's usually in a fictional place I've read about over and over and over. Seriously, I would love to live at Green Gables one day and I know you can visit PEI and see it (I plan to with the girls in a few years!) but how sad would it be for a 40 year old woman to wander around looking for a real Marilla and Matthew, and my friend Diana? And Gilbert to ride up on his horse? 

So to keep it more down-to-earth and fun, I went with a yard sign declaring my book love for those who pass through my gate. I'm thinking of giving a quiz, and only those who can name the book for all 6 places can enter. But that might not be fair to the current parade of 3 and 7 year olds who are the most frequent guests. Samantha didn't know a few...I know, bad parenting, someone tell those people to get on the ball!

And if I'd had a 20 foot pole, I would have listed more places of course. Here are some others that came to mind:
  • Emerald City
  • Avonlea (town where Anne of Green Gables is set)
  • Whoville (How the Grinch Stole Christmas)
  • The Chocolate Factory (Charlie and...)
  • Middle Earth (Lord of Rings)
  • Island of the Blue Dolphins
  • Barrow, AK (Julie of the Wolves)
  • Watership Down
  • Klickitat Street (now that I think about it, I should have used this one. Not many people immediately can guess this one!...Ramona Quimby)
  • Metropolitan Museum of Art (From the Mixed Up Files...)
  • Treasure Island
  • Highbury, England (Emma)
  • Panem (Hunger Games)
  • Skull Island (King Kong)
  • Busy Town (Richard Scary books)
  • River Heights (Nancy Drew)
  • Misselthwaite Manor (The Secret Garden)
  • Neverland (Peter Pan) 
  • Wonderland (Alice in Womderland)
  • Chewandswallow (Cloudy w/a Chance of Meatballs) 
  • Camelot
  • 221B Baker Street (Sherlock Holmes)

So tell me, what favorite fictional places would you like to visit?


Updated to add: I've received several emails asking if it's OK to "Pin" this sign - YES, of course and thank you! I would appreciate it though if you would linkback to this blog post if you Pin it. 

Shared this week at these fabulous blogs:

Fluster Buster
Cast Party Wednesday
Crafty Allie


Art Journal Mini Quilt: Birds on a Wire

8" x 14.5" Fusible Applique, Dina Wakely Stamps, 
Acrylic Paint, Dylusions spray inks from Ranger

I made this little quilt over the 4th of July weekend. It's amazing how much you can get done with an empty house (kids were at the grands, husband was on a golf course) and some creative mojo. I've been itching to play with fabric and the large (and growing) stash of stencils and stamps I use in art journaling.

I used the Dina Wakely "Scribbly Birds" cling stamps and acrylic paint to make the birds on a canvas fabric background that had been sprayed with Dylusions spray ink. The wire the birds are perched on is also painted with acrylic paint. I free motion quilted over the birds several times in black thread to enhance their sketchy look. I have 2 kinds of background FMQ only because I was playing around with different textures.

This was a quick little quilt to make, fun to try some new items in my quilting. Watch this space for more projects, I had a LOT of fun this weekend playing in my studio!

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