Saturday, February 25, 2012

Puyallup Sewing and Stichery Expo

Two of our members are going to do a Style Show at the Sewing & Stitchery Expo in Puyallup Washington. Jan and Bonnie make wearable art, challenging each other, every year to make clothing from fabric and accessories they choose each year at Puyallup. They will be doing the fashion show on Saturday, March 3rd, 12:30 - 1:15 Please go and see their amazing creations. The description in the brochure - "Inspired 2 Sew, Last year, Bonnie and Jan shopped the vendor floor for new sewing inventions, patterns, and techniques to feature in this all new 2012 Sew Expo Challenge. Guess what? They designed a pattern for Simplicity! We are so proud! Rita Farro and her sister Deborah have accepted a challenge from the Inspired2Sew duo."

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Member Profile - Kay

This is the start of our members profiles, I will add one or two a month, after our meetings, so you can get to know the creative artists in our group. Today's featured artist is Kay. "I grew up in a sewing family that did utilitarian projects. It wasn't until I was close to retirement that I had time to explore the wonderful world of fabric now available. I realized rather quickly I did not want to spend my time on traditional quilt patterns, when it was more satisfying to design my own creations using color, texture, shapes and proportion in non-traditional ways. Fyber Cafe is an exciting challenge for me. This highly creative group is an inspiration as they share their knowledge in a variety of materials."

Friday, February 17, 2012

February Meeting 2012

Our February meeting had a guest, just checking us out, MaryJean, she modeled her reversible vest, she likes to do wearables, pillows, and slip covers. We set a tentative date for a play day at Vera's, March 27, Tuesday, we will plan on being at Vera's, more details to follow, some of us thought of trying to do some marbling. We would need to order some supplies from Dharma, and collect trays, and combing tools. We discussed the blog, with positive feedback, permission was given to post the members profiles, and use their first names and photos. Jana told us about her classes at the "Winter Spin In" at Forks Washington. They focused on spinning rare and exotic breeds of sheep, and learned about the breeding and conservation efforts. She said "it all felt like wool, although some was softer than others." We also discussed the use of magnetic clasps in purses and bags, some said it hadn't been a problem in the past, but just be careful of magnetized strips, like credit cards. Sow and Tell Jana finished a traditional applique quilt of flower squares, and Peggy had a small table runner, of embroidered wool, folk art style. Amy finished her art quilt wall hanging of the tree and owl, using Photo-shopped pictures as the background, and raw edge applique. We also had six "twisty-pointy bags" finished by members, from last months hands on workshop. It was suggested to use shoe laces as the drawstring, they come in the right lengths, and all different colors, the upholstery cording was too expensive and did not have a variety of colors. After show and tell, we had a hands on project to make a "collagegraph" printing plate, Amy passed out mat board to work on, and gave hints on items to glue in place to make a printing plate. Peggy and Kay shared the pieces they had done at Amy's the week before, and Peggy and Amy's printed fabric they had made for samples. They can also be used as rubbing plates for Shiva oil pastels. Use the paint either rolled on the plate with the fabric laid on top, or with the paint on the rollers, and the plate beneath the fabric. See - for more on the collagegraph techniques and fabric samples.
1. Amy;s collagegraph fabric project.
2. Five Pointy Twisty Bags.
3. Peggy's collagegraph fabric.
4. Peggy
5. Peggy & Kay make collagegraph plates
6. Nancy & Corinne
Show & Tell - Jana's applique quilt
& Peggy's wool table topper.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Bandon Field Trip

During our Bandon Art Retreat, we went out to lunch on Saturday, then went exploring to various places South on Highway 101. Our first stop is a place aptly named "ART101" you can check it out at The artist who owns the place has a beautiful view of undersea life, creating beautiful mixed media 3-D pieces, using recycled materials. Her "Sea Cave" is an installation piece, an entire room, with closing curtains to create a sea cave, with many glow in the dark effects. She uses a lot of shag rug, sweaters, knits, hair scrunches, paint, plastic parts, beads etc.. to create reef environments, corals, anemones, shells and other sea life. To be enclosed in the cave is an awesome experience. The second part of her work is with public participation and recycling. The project "Washed Ashore" at is made with found objects from the beach, people bring her all sorts of items found around coastal Oregon, plastics, nets, glass and metal. Large sculptures of ocean and coastal creatures are made with the recycled materials. I was there once when they were working on a large salmon, and Pat was there during the summer, with her family and helped make a starfish. A large jellyfish and a seagull were the recent projects.

Photos 1-4
Sea Cave closeups
& Orange corals.
Photos 5-11
Washed Ashore
recycled materials

Further South in Langlois we stopped at the Wool Shop, they were full of beautiful knits, felts, and fibers. Several of us got sample bags of various wools, mohairs, and silks to use in our needle felting projects. It was a place where you just want to feel all the textures, soft and fuzzy and hairy!

Bandon Art Retreat

In October 2011, I organized, an art retreat to Bandon, along the beautiful Oregon coast. We stayed at a new retreat center, above Forget-Me-Knots quilt shop. She has fixed up the whole upper floor with bedrooms, large kitchen, and living areas. There is a huge work space with big tables, and natural light from floor to ceiling windows overlooking the "Old Town" area and Marina. The rates were very reasonable, and it is very quilter friendly, with large cutting tables, irons/boards, and a full wall of design space. To contact her -- The weekends seamed to conflict with a lot of members scheduling, so we kept changing the date, and went the end of October with 5 artists. It was a small, intimate group of wonderful ladies, we talked, and talked, and laughed, and shared ideas on quilting and arts in general. In fact 2 of the ladies did ceramics instead of textiles, as one was getting ready for a big ceramics show in Grants Pass. We arrived Friday afternoon, and got all our MANY supplies up the stairs, and settled in. After a potluck dinner, we worked on our own projects and stayed up 'til dawn. No really we crashed out at about 10pm. Saturday morning pastries and coffee got us off to a good start. Vera was working on her ceramics, cleaning up some round "objects" that she had thrown on the wheel, they are parts for her garden art. Our new friend Dorothy, from Grants Pass, was painting some ceramics pieces she had made from a t-shirt design, they were colorful figures, that she was going to add wire armature too. Kay was doing a variety of things, scrap booky pages, with textile trims and embellishments. Lorrie was trying to finish a UFO of a turkey table topper quilt. I just wanted to play, I started with a big piece of black fabric on the design wall, and started to cut flower petals from my hand dyed fabrics, and sticking them on the wall. Later in the weekend Dorothy was doing some hand needle felting with silk fibers, and wool, to make small gift bags for her children, to fill with her handmade glass beads. I free motion machine stitched leaves onto painted Lutrador and melted Tyvek, and cut them out to make them 3-D. We went out to lunch Saturday, and on a field trip to several locations, more on that in the next post. Dinner was potluck again, we had way too much food for the 5 of us!! We had invited the local Bandon Art Quilters to join us for dinner and Show & Tell, but they were unable to come. Sunday morning Lorrie and I went for a long walk on the beach, taking lots of photographs, it was cool and foggy and the sun was just rising, with NO wind. After a little more artsy stuff, we cleaned up and headed for home. One of the best things was having the quilt shop downstairs, where we could go down for supplies, they have a large assortment of embellishments, Shiva Oil Sticks, books, and other tools, and a beautiful selection of fabrics. We had a wonderful time, and will definitely make it a yearly event, hopefully more members can participate next year.
1. Lutrador & Tyvek leaves
2. Amy's project
3. Kay relaxing
4. Dorothy's project
5. Dorothy painting
6. Dorothy needle felting
7. Lorrie's turkey quilt

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Guest Speaker - Buttons

We had a guest speaker at one of our meetings, Susie C. is a member of the Oregon Button Society, and the National Button Society. We all use buttons as decorative embellishments for our quilts, wearable art and purses, for costuming, and other uses. Susie brought a large assortment of buttons, arranged in trays, bags and boxes, for us to see. She explained how they are set up in the trays for competition and collecting by category. She talked about her specialty, Celluloid buttons from the 1880's to 1940's, and also joked that her husband recently beat her in an Oregon Button Society event.

1. Susie, Georgia
2. Susie, Georgia, Kay
3. Sylvia
4. Button Collection
5. Susie, Georgia, Jan
6. Fyber Cafe, L to R
Sylvia, Kay, Sherry, Susie,
Georgia, Jan, Pat, Sandy

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Workshop - Spinning & Needle Felting

The Fyber Cafe Spinning and Needle Felting workshop was held at Vera's, she had several friends from Grants Pass that joined us too. We started by examining and feeling up different types of fibers, wool, llama, alpaca, mohair, silk, angora rabbit, and others. We discussed their characteristics, advantages, and dyeing. I had brought a bunch of drop spindles, and we spent the morning trying to get the hang of using them to spin yarn. Most of the ladies had a hard time getting the feel of it, but several caught on to the technique. A few wanted to try the spinning wheels, and Pat got the hang of it, but most were just frustrated with the whole mess. They decided it wasn't for them, but I just wanted them to get the concept, of the twisting fibers, and the different types of fibers available. We were too busy laughing and being frustrated to take any photos. After a wonderful potluck lunch, we cleared the dining table and dumped all the fibers on it to play with the needle felters. We had a beautiful assortment of colorful fibers and they tempted us into the process. Mostly we used hand felters, either as a group in a handle, or individual needles. We used felt as the background, and added lots of textured yarns. Corienne had brought a big bag of thrums from her weaving that we all pawed through, and took a variety to play with. Again, a colorful assortment was fun to try, but by coordinating the colors, and adding texture,in a controlled way, we got better results. We all really enjoyed the process, it was fun and relaxing, and we each made several small samples to work with. We were envisioning glasses cases, small purses, or pin cushions. I thought I would add beads and shells to one of mine and just put it into a picture frame. We discussed the merits of machine quilting over the felting, and all agreed that beading would spice it up. We never did play with the felting machines several of us had brought, and we did not play with the silk ribbon, chiffon scarves or polyesters either.

Photos- Vera and Corienne, Peggy, Amy's felted piece, Supplies, Busy hands

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Next Dye Workshop?

I think we need to try this at our next dye workshop? I know Vera has cows and horses, any sheep? My sister took this photo at the Washington State Fair, in Monroe Washington last summer.

Workshop - Pat's Play Day

The Fyber Cafe artists decided to try a weekend play day, at Pat's house. Amy organized a paint, melt, decorate, make it and take it project. This four part workshop was used to create ONE piece of fabric, which we were then challenged, to use in making a small project. It was loosely organized along the lines of one of the articles in Quilting Arts Magazine. We started to paint fabric, and Tyvek, stamp, print, stencil or otherwise decorate the fabric. We used everything from Acrylic paints to Shiva Oil Pastels, Pat and I really got into the metallic copper paint. Then we spent an afternoon melting with a heat gun an assortment of materials, painted Tyvek, organza, plastic wrap, netting, tulle, polyester fabrics and "whatevers." We used wooden bread boards or large ceramic tiles as a heat resistant base. We also found bamboo skewers were great for holding the piece of material to keep your fingers out of the heat.The second day during the morning, we used the melty stuff to embellish our fabric, and free motion couched yarns and threads. This gave our sewing machines a workout, along with our imaginations. The afternoon was spent on a demo, doing hands on beading and embellishment. The resulting fabrics were all very individual, DIFFERENT!! Some of us spent more time painting, some on hand work embellishments or just stenciling with Shiva oil Pastels. We learned a lot about making a mish mash of everything, maybe having a plan for color coordination, or warm or cool colors, would have helped. But it was just play time, time to experiment. We ended up with a lot of "sample" pieces, and it became a challenge to make something of it. It only had to be small, a pin cushion, small wall hanging, purse, glasses case or some such. The "finish it, make it," became a home project with a surprise reveal at the next meeting. We all had a wonderful time, also enjoyed a potluck lunch, with Pat's extra rich chocolate cake, followed by a walk about her ranch, a visit with the horses, and exploring the old BIG barn. A very successful weekend!

Photos- 1.Gracie melting stuff 2.Gracie, Pat & Amy 3. Pat's copper painted Tyvek 4. Kay's mess