Listen to the road

Saturday, December 21, 2019

A Little More Light

Let go of thoughts and energy too heavy to carry forward.
Lighten my load and lifting my heart.

Focus on each day and new stories woven thru it.
Look for peace, work for it.

Friday, December 20, 2019

Lion cubs

This Medieval illustration caught me by surprise. I was sure it
was a gruesome killing scene at first. Then I saw it was the parental care
of the cubs. Not sure why it moved me but I felt it needed a frame
and so I made one. Fierce animals parenting fiercely. Tough love.

Monday, November 25, 2019


Sometimes I get bogged down. Something needed to go forward.
I found some  movement here but this may be stuck in the literal story.

Monday, November 18, 2019

Insight on my design habits

I trained as a jeweler. While making
this mosaic - like frame I could see my training has
kept me involved in making a setting with a focal point in a field..
The halo in this ancient cave painting fascinated me....
very much like a beautiful gem stone.

When I saw this photo it hit me - My training had locked
me into one way of design. Symmetry is OK but
I've discovered the power in lack of balance thru cloth making. Huh.
My favorite cloths aren't balanced but off kilter a bit. A little unbalanced.

Winter is dropping on us like a cold, wet anvil.
Good thing I have my puppy to remind me that fun
and mischief  come in all seasons.

My new pre-wash cycle.

New bark alarm for reflected dogs.

What I see when I look and love.
Stay warm; sleep with a dog.


Saturday, November 9, 2019

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Everyday Magic and the Mysterious Disappearing Comments

This quietly came together in small bits of sewing time lately.

So many small and large gifts opened lately in my life.
Dad's death in Hospice House. HH having an open room for him(they only have four).

Meeting cousins I hadn't seen in 55 tears (!).

Being with dad as he died.

My Parkinson's symptoms responding so well to Yoga.
Most days I don't use a cane where last year this time 
I needed a walker.

With my mind on all I have to be grateful for I began noticing
everyday magic... bright yellow leaves, the pup's soft muzzle,
crows roosting and gossiping, the hawk flying to a fence right
outside the big window, wild turkey families
crossing harvested fields - every day the world hands out visual magic
to us here in Va's rural zip codes. Right now the West field is
turning the color of a ripe melon. Deer walk the tree line.

Then we come to the Chrome browser/comment problem. Took time today and
may have found some possible fixes. In a nutshell, my browser has been
Firefox but mysteriously this summer changed to Google Chrome. 

I'm in the process of finding the Borg-like Chrome, removing it as my
default browser, deleting the tentacles of Chrome's program and
firmly reestablishing Firefox as my browser. 

Here's a link to where I started this morning;

When I get this fixed I'll be more specific. If anyone reading knows
a quick fix I'd appreciate your info. Just tried commenting to
Grace and know it's not yet fixed but I'm ot done trying.

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Semper Fi

My dad died last Friday. He was a Marine and lived to be 90.

At the memorial part of my family I hadn't seen for 55 years came to honor
him. So he left me a gift... four Cousins and an Aunt. Thanks, dad. 

My good friend sent me this photo that, without words, says so much.

Monday, October 28, 2019

Crow Moon

There is no Crow Moon in named full moon months so I made one.
This cloth kept me company during a death vigil this last few days.

Fortunately, I had a big hearted friend to remind me to play and look
at the sunny side even in dark times. All is well.

Monday, October 14, 2019

Lizard Smile

I worked on this most of the weekend. I keep seeing it look back at me no matter
how I configure the blocks. That little lizard insists on being a smile. There
is another watcher I put there on purpose. Very faint but there.

Monday, October 7, 2019

Sew blind

I've spent so much time with this cloth I can't really see it anymore.
At the top of summer it began as a love song to our home.

I'll put it away awhile.

Go outside with the little dog now that it's cooler. Move outside
 and listen with the the trees and cooling land.

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

What I've learned about WC and drawing on cotton

I use 100% cotton and usually dye it first.

Then I spray it with regular spray starch. This somehow
keeps the WC from seeping outside the lines. It's a nice effect - the
seeping color - but I like to make that decision. I iron it dry.

Then I iron freezer paper to the back side of the fabric. This is temporary and just keeps the
cotton flat while I draw/paint. I suspect it also controls the seeping of WC.

I draw the design with a fine point permanent pen. Sharpies are not so
good. I found that older pens make more regular lines with fewer blobs of ink along the line.

I use pan WC with a water brush. Most water brushes have a really good point.
I sometimes dip the brush in a bit of water for more concentrated color. 
I do blot the brush just a little before painting. It takes awhile to 
apply the paint as the fabric just drinks it in.

 Here I sprayed the right side (from your perspective) with
starch but left the left side with no starch. I think you can see the slight
bleeding/seeping on the left side.

For details I use WC pencils. Dip the tip into water then you can transfer the
WC to small details. They work best on very small areas.

Please keep in mind this won't last on cloth exposed to water. Also, I haven't
been using WC for more than a few months on fabric. Not certain how it will
age. I use Daniel Smith WC so the pigments are rich and relatively color fast.

If you can add anything I'd love to learn from you.

Monday, September 30, 2019

Horse Story

The Outer Banks of North Carolina are full of stories.
Many wrecked sailing ships sleep under the dangerous waters 
right off this string of barrier islands. 
The horses who live on  the island swam to shore (they say)
I experimented with drawing and WC painting on fabric for the 
swimming horse and whales. 1 and 2 inch pieced blocks
framed their nvironment. It became a shrine to these horses and their
survival throughout the years. They make me feel hopeful.

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Like a Tusker

"Better it is to walk alone. There is no fellowship with fools. Walk alone, 
harm none and know no conflict. Be like a Tusker in the woods alone."

- from A Life of the Buddha by Sherab Chodzin Kohn

I stumbled on a tapestry elephant and began 'skatchwork' based on this quote.
So satisfying to work with all the moon symbols for walking alone with dignity
 for many nights. So many of us have had this experience.

 I'll let this sit awhile and see if it needs embroidery.

Monday, September 9, 2019

Something old and something new

This had an old beginning. The woven patch was made in Jude's
class in 2010.The colors leaned into a recently dyed plum-y linen cloth.
I worked in the quiet heat until I couldn't see it anymore. I slept, it slept and this
morning I could see it's done.

 I saw this while out with the pup in the front yard.
See the old tree with the hole? A watcher is sitting there.

So I watched him and local crow friends came and squawked and dive bombed him.
I love our local crow vigilantes. Also love hawks but...


Thursday, August 29, 2019

Talking to myself

One of Jude's skills is to talk or think about why or what if.
Why is it that too many turned edges on top of each other are distracting?
How can I rethink edges and components? 

Some turned edges and some softened raw edges. I used a needle to
pull one or two threads from each side of the blue grey backing.
This left an less solid flat edge. Much better.

Things were kind of static for the little horse here.
So I tilted some parts. Now I see the heart needs to 
break out of the outside border...snip, snip.

This needed a broken border, too. 
It feels bigger now.

This talking to myself is very helpful. Will unfold the edges 
on this cloth and give this bird some room to wander. 

Thank you, Jude.

Sunday, August 11, 2019

American Boro Cloth

All flags sewn on (4" squares) nine patch.
Have made linen frayed patches to sew on.
Mending places to show where they've broken. 
Respect for all.

Friday, August 2, 2019

Sewing lately

The dots came in handy making this. 
It just continued to grow up into space. Then it grew roots.
At least one blouse in it. Jude's class is showing in my work.

I keep hearing folks yelling about what our country is or isn't.
What if it could be many realities respecting differences.
Far from where we are now but as close as our noses.

Now I need stripes.

Monday, July 22, 2019

Dots and dogs

I wanted dotty fabric but also need to use up what''s here.

So I hunted down my permanent markers and now have lots of dotty fabric.

I wish I spoke 'Dog'.  Lots of singing going on around here.

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Squares on my Mind

The past 2 nights I've been up late with my squares.
Nine patch in my brain and too many possibilities to settle down and sleep.

One inch squares...
who knew i could still work so small.

Two inch squares. These are grey. Ive changed my sorting 
to value instead of color. For now.

I've pinned them to foam core scraps to change them 
around and look at different combinations.

Embroidered more of my little creatures. Removed them from sketchbooks.
Less paper and now they're all over the place inspiring me.

Speaking of creatures.....and inspiration.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

More Applique

After ironing freezer paper to the felt body on this galloping little horse
I was able to cut my sketch with little stretching. Then just peeled it off
so I could applique and embroider the details. The wax surface held just
long enough for cutting-no residue.
I ordered a bit of silk velvet for more applique. Somehow hearts came from
working with soft velvet. The sewing down was so gentle, velvet seems 
to love being sewn. I know I enjoyed the feel of it under my needle.

Years ago I used to carve stamps so got them out and experimented.
Dated my Ranger Archival black ink pad when I opened it 2/24/14.
It was a soft grey on fabric now ( a bit dry). Perfect for soft impressions.

The grand boy is visiting. Harry Potter marathon and a happy puppy
who loves running after him. Good long days to enjoy.