Thursday, January 30, 2014


Costa Rica came and went (wonderful trip!) and I returned to a full schedule of divine dye days. My winter open studio time has begun and so far I've encountered only eager dyers. Faithful Rosemary from Toronto is back and she brought her friend Sharon with her who HAPPENS TO BE  FROM KLAMATH FALLS,  OR...which is close to our home there. AND we have a mutual friend. Such a small, small world!

Two Mexican neighbors showed up at my doorstep last weekend, wanting to make customized tee shirts for Sunday's cancer run, to honor their survivor friend, Gaby.


Yesterday some local friends arrived to build up their stash for more collage work. AND a great local painter added some lovely flowers to a tunic she wanted to spruce up.
Today my "sewing ladies" joined me for a fast and furious dye session. They were so eager to try new things and they have been to my place enough that they seem quite comfortable. My Spanish suffers greatly, but I stumbled through the day, practicing over and over the verbs for pour, rinse, mix, squeeze. We had a great time and they are so appreciative.

 I love the group dynamics of trying new things and watching what everyone produces, seeing a small thread of a technique morph into the day's favorite method. I am so grateful for my wonderful studio that draws all these wonderful dyers to my doorstep and my sink!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014


Tomorrow I leave for my annual girlfriend trip! Yeah! This year our group of eight is heading to Costa Rica for 12 days. I am packing my bags and have included this year's art kit:
-my sketch book and pencils
-5 stabilized (with "steam a seam lite") fabric sheets, along with fine line black markers and 6 fabric markers for coloring. I want to make background pieces, much like the one I did earlier this year.

-a small bag of hand-dyed scraps for raw edge applique work...I want to make outside pockets for bags...maybe I'll applique butterflies, lizards, flowers, birds, or whatever else inspires me on our travels. And of course I am bringing along small scissors, thread, needles and a few pins.

I've also been thinking about shopping as we go. Lately I've been in the mood to de-clutter, so adding more to my already sufficient collection of travel souvenirs isn't high on my list. I love the open markets and many of my friends are keen for searching out flea markets, so I have in mind a quest for new textures for printing...plastics, woven materials, or ?????
Stay tuned.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014


My "2014 Grateful Everyday" jar is located on my kitchen counter. Today I am grateful for a number of fiber-related things:
-my CyberFibre friends who are constantly sending me amazing quilted treasures and ideas via email. This online quilt journal group has been an important part of my creative life for over five years now, and they truly help to feed my soul. Our core group of five has recently been wonderfully invaded by four newbies who have brought great energy and enthusiasm, and it's terrific!
-my new subscription of "Quilting Arts" on my new tablet. Having the ability to receive a magazine subscription WHERE EVER I AM is an INCREDIBLE gift to this gypsy quilter.
-my "sewing ladies" of Mazatlan.  These local women are such models of grace and patience, and such fun too. They loved the "grateful jar" idea too and I believe they'll be making their own.
-my friend, Patti, who dropped off about ten meters of muslin that at one time was used to cover her furniture in the summer time.  Now it will be ready for the sewing ladies to dye. Gracias Patti!
Here's something I'm not thankful trusty, 40 year old Bernina had a blowout last week. I only sewed for 5 minutes when I heard a "pop" and then saw smoke coming out of one of the plug attachments. BUT my friend Marie left her machine here in Maz I have tracked it down. I am hoping to use it for the duration of January and February. That's a good thing.
AND, in three days I head off to Costa Rica with my Castor Bean Sisters (my traveling sisterhood.) Time to get my sewing stash prepped and packed. This time they (airport security) will NOT take my needles and scissors away from me!
Grateful everyday!

Thursday, January 2, 2014


     The streets of downtown Mazatlan will be bustling this Friday evening. My studio will be one of many with doors open to the public, and inside will be the first exhibition of my Signs of Life Project, a collection of 62 journal quilts documenting my life in 2013. These small, hand-dyed collage creations feature my signature signage, birds, and unique style, all accompanied by stories that tell of special events, people, travels and experiences from the past year.
     The photo above is of the self-published book from this project that I recently produced through It was the perfect activity for my stifled energy when I broke my foot in November. I love thumbing through the hardcopy of this personal journal. I recently lent it to a friend and this is what she said:
     "We were both blown away by your book. What a treasure! We feel privileged to have been allowed a glimpse through this window into one year of your life, as well as to have been given some background and history about you and your family. You have a remarkable way with words that makes some scenes come alive. Thank you for sharing with us. Having read Signs of Life has given us even greater admiration and respect for you as a gifted artist, and as a giving, caring, and loving individual."
     I am humbled and honored by her words. This little note is going in my 2014 "grateful jar" where I'll be documenting small wondrous moments of this upcoming year.
     See you at the Artwalk!