Saturday, September 28, 2013


font: Forte
I had a bit of fun today playing around with fonts. Typically I just free motion any old letters, mostly capitals, but lately I've been interested in what else is out there. So, with a bit of help from my word processor (WORD), I just typed in the word I was going to stitch, highlighted it, and went through different options for fonts. Then I started stitching! (I'll admit I did need to practice with pencil and paper for some of them.)
font: Candara
font: Kristen
font: Curlz MT
font: Goudy Stout

Five fonts today with more to come!

Saturday, September 21, 2013


We've been back in Oregon for over a week now, settled in our simple home here, and most important, I'm back to sewing! The first half of our southern migration was successful.

On the way south, I was able to go to this year's first guild meeting for Quadra Quilters. It was great to connect with my guild friends and catch up with some of my quilt journal buddies. We turned in our summer challenges, portraying a "place" of importance to us. Mine showed my garden, with bees a-buzzing.

Onward to Sydney, BC, just north of Victoria, where we stay with our friends and Refuge neighbors, Jim and Sharon. On the way down, we stopped in Duncan for a SAQA (western Canada division) show. All pieces were 14" square and so well done. Great inspiration!

In Sydney I met with new Cyber Fibres member, Judith. I brought some of my quilt journals to show and she had her smart phone with photos. We connected well, got to know each other a little, and now we aren't internet strangers anymore.

Before we boarded the ferry to Anacortes, Washington, I stopped at another show that happened to be on display next to the ferry terminal. This was an exchange program of fiber art from Canada's east coast (Bay of Fundy) to the west coast. Ocean related, sea-faring themes dominated...more inspiration.

Anacortes brought us to Chris and Sarah's house for a few days. My niece, Sarah, and her hubby Chris are living in the area as Chris is stationed at the nearby Naval Station. Among other things, she showed my how she embellishes baby clothes with bleach product, and also tips on using Pinterest.
We also saw friends from past days when we kept our sailboat in Anacortes. This is a special place for us and we always stop to re-connect.

We're getting closer...but there's one last stop. Alaskan friends Becky and Kevin (from my Gustavus days) have a snowbird home in Port Townsend, another ferry ride southward. They shared fruit from their apple and pear trees and we had a few hours to catch up before we headed off for the last leg of our migration to Oregon.

Ah, feels good to be settled...and sewing!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013


I do a lot of discharging and my product of choice is Soft Scrub with Bleach (or, if in Canada, Vim with Bleach). A friend of mine doesn't like bleach products because of the smell/fumes, and her product of choice is Discharge Paste, a product she buys through Dharma Trading Company. For curiosity's sake, I purchased some and have used it with stamps, etc., but never in creating signage or with lettering.  I thought I'd do a comparison project.
I used the same fine tipped bottle for application that I use for the bleach product. (I used a syringe to get it into the bottle.) After I free-motioned my two bottle designs onto my sandwiched fabrics, I carefully applied the discharge paste to the bottle on the right. I let it dry for an hour before I applied a hot, dry iron to it for pulling out the color. The discharge paste obviously ran and bled past the stitch lines, and the result was a bit of a mess. Following this, I applied the Soft Scrub, let it sit on the surface for 10 minutes, then took it to the sink for a gentle washing/brushing of the residual product lying on top of the fabric. The product stayed behind the stitch lines, leaving crisp, precise detail. I would have predicted this outcome, but this little project made the differences even more obvious.

I recently used discharge paste to stamp on a dark, multi-colored parfait fabric. The result was muted and organic, perfect to use as an unfocused background piece with something of detail in the foreground. I used it  in this piece I created for my "Signs of Life" project. I like the little bit of spiral that peeks through, creating the idea of a sun. What's Mexico without the sun!!!?

I want to make a few personal remarks about about using bleach product. I use it sparingly as the brightness or neon-look of the results can be overpowering in a composition. I try to use it in a well-ventilated room, or even better - outside. Most of my discharging projects are completed in under ten minutes, and if I have more than that to do, I might take a break. I have been regularly using this technique for over five years, and believe that with conscious use, it can add so much to the world of fiber art.