Saturday, December 31, 2011

sewing in the winter months

When the temperature drops, you can find me nestled in my wingback chair, needle in hand, stork scissors close by, slowly stitching the day away.  (Evidence found here.)

This is my latest undertaking, which involves hand-dyeing, reverse applique, and lots of embroidery or quilting, if you rather.  I can't decide if I'll call it a table runner or a wall hanging, but I promise to share more photos once I have more to show for myself!


We only have a handful of hours left in 2011, and I am not sad to see it go.  It was a chaotically busy year, during which I moved from Knoxville (my home of 9 months) to Cookeville.  I began my first semester of university, maintained a 4.0 GPA, held a part-time job, and sewed for school and for my business.  I attended craft shows in Greenville SC, Cincinnati OH, and Nashville TN during the semester, plus several other events before school began.  I learned to draw and to weave, and to manage my time like a total boss.

I look forward to 2012, don't you?

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

farewell first semester!

My first semester of university is officially behind me, and I couldn't be more relieved!  At the same time, I don't quite know what to do with my newfound free time, but there are far worse problems to have.

Look!  This is my final project for Intro to Fibers:

Aaaah!  I think it's kinda cute.  The main tree and squirrel fabric (as well as the acorn) was dyed and woven by yours truly.

You know the anxiety you feel when you cut into a favorite piece of fabric, perhaps one long out-of-print or almost too adorable to hack up?  Well, imagine if you lovingly (or hastily, as it were) painted each warp fiber by hand, then threaded them individually through the dents and heddles of the loom, then tied them on to this and that beam, and finally spent hours tromping the treadles and throwing the shuttle back and forth, over and over until you have about 45" of cloth.  And THEN you have to cut it up?  Please!  I'm telling you, I had to psych myself up for a good while before I could cut into the fabric I wove by hand.

But I finally did and I am pleased with the outcome.  This is a plushie set designed with imaginative play in mind.  I appliqued Velcro to the squirrel's tum so the acorn sticks to it.  (It's backed with wool felt.)  Is the squirrel holding the acorn, or did he eat it?  I look forward to watching a little 'un play with this so I can discover the answer.

And here is my final project for Drawing I:

This class was really the first time I'd drawn since high school almost 10 years ago, and I started the semester all but convinced I didn't have the stuff to make it through Week 1.  I was fortunate enough to have a wonderful instructor, however, and now have a little more confidence in my ability!

The final assignment was to create a still life portrait of a person/people/relationship with someone, and so I chose to illustrate my relationship with a couple of my closest friends circa 2005, when we all lived together.  I put about 3 dozen hours into this drawing, which means I spent a solid week streaked with charcoal dust, holed up in my apartment and living off of canned goods like an apocalypse survivor.

And survive I did, with an A in every class.  Hooray!

I never posted about my midterm project in Fibers--an improv-pieced baby quilt, composed entirely of fabrics I dyed and printed by hand.  I'll share as soon as I take some pictures!