Saturday, December 12

Awaking of My Creative Self

After many months of not having any creative self I slowly started doing things again. I missed that part of me. My creative side has always gotten me threw hard times. It gives me hope and makes my heart happy. I knew I'd have to push myself to get back to where I wanted to be, but I needed that part of me back. I got out a quilt I'd put aside and tried to finish it, but it just seemed to lay on the machine for days with no attention. I would look at it and think I need to finish that but it just didn't happen. I'd lay beads on the jewelry bench and sit and look at them too. Just had a very hard time kick starting myself.

I did sew a little but still had no desire to make the type of projects I once enjoyed. I knew I needed to just make a simple quilt. So I got out these 4 blocks I had picked up at a yard sale.  It helped me to get me sewjo back in motion. I sat it aside and started cutting fabric to make a quilt for a present and got the top and back made. A few days later something kind of wonderful happened.

A friend of mine told me she wanted to sell her sit down long arm! I'd wanted one for ever and this seemed a once in a life time chance since she was willing to let me make payments. So I said yes and her hubby brought the machine by and set it up for me the next day. I was quite in awe of it. It was such a beautiful thing. So the quilt I'd just finished was quickly basted and off I went to get to know this wonderful creature that was now a part of my sewing world.





Since this was my fist quilt to be on the machine I just did what ever to get the feel of the machine. I didn't bast this little table topper except put a pin in each corner and about 5 in the center. I didn't think it would need more since I wasn't going to be squished up to push threw the small space in my home machine. No more of what I called fighting the octopus. 

When I was done quilting I did something I've never done and ripped it off the Husqvarna the trimmed the edges and put the binding on that day! It was done. I was amazed how short of a time it took. 

I had one other quilt, a bed runner that the top was ready and I did the back in record time just to get it to the quilting point, cause I couldn't wait to use the quilter again. 


This quilt had even less basting done. The pins were a good 8" apart. I'd always done about 3" max before. I started to relax and really get into the flow and concentrating on the quilting patterns on this quilt. The machine has a stitch regulator but I've not tried it yet.


I'm getting more comfortable with the quilter and can't wait to try more designs. 

I did notice that my art was changing too. This first drawing was done while I was still in my black and white world. It is called "How My Heart Works" and shows how I was dealing with stress during that period. The mechanics of this machine show how my stress was vented off into steam and smoke and what things in life I needed to make me happy. 
My faith in God, My friends and family and my creative self. 


More recently my drawings changed and color and the details I love were once again back. 
This drawing has many meanings to me. It's based on strength and my love of my mother. 


My beautiful Mother was the strength of our family and she gave us all her support in our lives that I continue to use to this day. I guess it's may seem strange for a Bee of all things to mean strength. I'm so very scared of them. 

One day while at my mom's she was showing me her garden and flying around her tomato plants were these fat bumble bees. I stepped back and tensed up and she just put her sweet little hand towards them and said "You fly away you are scaring my Royce", so calming was her voice that I knew there was nothing to fear. So the bee it's self became a symbol of that courage she passed on to me. Her love of her family was brighter than the sun and just as warm. She gave us so much that I carry threw my life. I miss her dearly and know that she is why I am the person I am today. 




Tuesday, December 8

Emerging from a Dark Place


As some of you may know on May 18th of 2014 I suffered a great loss. This sent me into a dark place. A place of confusion, fear, self doubt and depression. That was a big hole that proved very hard to crawl out of. At one point I though I could see the top, but slipped and was surrounded by it all once again. I'm not saying I've overcome all this but the daily dealing with it has become easier. Things look more positive and I'm thinking of the future once again. I had no idea how hard it would be. Few people know the depths I sank to. Coming out and saying this isn't easy either. I've always hid my negative emotions and only
share the good side of things. Now in an attempt to come into my new life I want to share it in this blog once again. 

During the first 9 months or so I stopped sewing/quilting and did little jewelry design. The only thing I felt like doing was drawing, and I did a lot of that. I guess it was a therapy of sorts. I poured out my inner emotions on paper. For months the drawings were in black and white. The drawing below was me missing my little dog, who had to be put down a month prior to my husbands death. Suddenly it was very quite and lonely in the house. 



So in time I started getting used to the empty house, the quite and the loss of my old routines. For a long time I just didn't know what to do with the extra time. I didn't want to create, go places or even think too much. After many months things started to change and new things started taking the place of the old. I am still not as organized as I used to be but working on it. Hopefully restarting my blog and reopening my Etsy shop will give me things to work towards. I know things won't come back to where they were, that life is gone. I do hope to now form a new life and see what it will bring to my future. 

Monday, March 30

Managing Time

One thing I have found during the last 10 months is I have trouble managing my time like I have in the past. Seems like distractions and life run all over the schedules I make. I sometimes wonder if I'm like the little dog in UP and get the squirrel distraction.
For what ever the reasons this blog has drifted off into my Scarlet area of "I'll deal with it tomorrow. "

With my first show of the year just a few weeks out I'd normally be in full swing of creating new pieces for the show. I have only started creating again a few months back and seem to be getting into the flow of working at my bench once again, thou now as regular as I did in the past.  Here are a few of the recent items.


 This brass butterfly was given a rusted look with alcohol inks. 

An old sewing machine bulb, the end of a fork
and some wings created this pendant

The focal element of this necklace is from a vintage bracelet

Then one day I decided to get out the poly clay again. 
I've not done anything with clay in a long time. 
These are the raw shapes after baking. 
 

Here is one of my hearts after adding 3 colors of
Gilders past. 

This pendant (see in raw clay image) has copper foil, 
2 colors of gilders past and a clear coat finish. 
Then a copper metal base was cut, hammered and
given a little touch of flame for a nice patina. 


Another clay component with foil, and guilders past. 

This pendant started life as a bezel and the clay
was formed into the metal shaped.
A 3 color patina was added and then clear coated. 

I wanted to do several small delicate necklaces - not my normal. 
3 pearl "peas" in a pod

  Small stone in metal frame

 Treated myself with a new saw (black handle).
I will use them both but the older one
just didn't have a deep enough work area. 

So hopefully my time management will improve and
things at the bench, sewing machine and in the sketch book
will get back on a normal track. 

Time seems to drift by either too quickly or too slow. Making the best use of it is a challenge. Life changes and we adjust - just not as quickly as I'd like. 

Tuesday, January 20

Summer is Coming

and with it the show season begins 

Just finished taking new photographs of my jewelry and looking over several show possibilities. I am still a bit shy of spring shows due to the hail storm and nearly loosing my tent several years ago. So many years I've seen the spring shows get rained out, it is so sad to think of all the work and money the artisans loose when this happens. It's all a gamble of course with weather. One of my fall shows in October was so cold and windy. We spent the day chasing my display and trying to stay warm. That is the way of it thou. On the up side when all is good and the sun shines and the temp is just perfect life is indeed good. So I keep my fingers crossed for good weather and good sales. 

This year there will be new designs. The sketches have started and materials being set out for mulling over. New designs often bring about new techniques which excites me to no end. Several of the new materials this year will be Mica, leather, enamels and a new outlook into poly clay. These will merge together very well with my current techniques and designs. 


I also plan on doing a lot of form folding (air chasing) and metal shaping that I've not done before. I will be getting a new jewelry saw - ordering that today and a few other tools. A sweet friend gave me a gift card for Christmas and it's all going towards jewelry tools. Things I've wanted for a good bit but just couldn't afford. Thanks Janice!

For now I need to get back to taking new photos and uploading them to the Zapp site so I'll be ready for show entries.

I have a quilt on the machine that needs to be quilted and hope to get that started later tonight. It's harder for me to work on projects at night for some reason but I need to make the most of all my time. 
Have a creative day...and night

Tuesday, January 6

The New Path

I've always been a rather wandering crafter. I love to do so many different crafts that I seem to never get real good at any one of them. So after much though and some good advice I've decided to make jewelry my path. I will still quilt and of course draw but they will be only fun things. Not that jewelry isn't fun, I love it. These other hobbies will be for free time between jewelry making. To advance my skills in this art form I really need to put myself into it whole hearted. I have a quilt on my machine to do for a friend and after that I'll more than likely step away from starting any other quilt projects that can't be completed in 2 days or less. 

As part of this direction the blog I started in 2008 will be changing too 

  1. Teaching Changes - I've only 2 more classes on the schedule to teach at JoAnn's and after that it's over. The classes I want to teach can't be taught there due to the new open classroom format. I'm sure the shoppers don't want to hear 4 or 5 people hammering on metal while they shop. So the classes tab will be removed. 
  2. I will however be adding a new tab with beginner helpful hints for jewelry making. 
  3. The tab Fiber will also be removed and be replaced with mixed media jewelry information. 
  4. The artwork tab will become design sketches and other jewelry design information
These changes will take a little while to be completed. For those who followed my quilting for several years, thank you. Now for the next step in my creative life.