Design Life

The most solid satisfying moments I have are creating objects that are beautiful and useful. In this case I was inspired by the Japanese cat fabric to design a bag that I will use daily to tote my notebook, books, media, music, lunch, etc to my job each day at the library. I have been grabbing colorful plastic grocery bags for this use until now.

The Japanese cat fabric is linen (1/2 yard)  and to reinforce it and add structure to the bag I layered it with cotton quilt batting and sandwiched that with a remnant of upholstery fabric. The lining is a floral cotton. I incorporated a sectioned wrap around pocket in the lining to keep small items organized and out of the way.

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I did not use a pattern. Instead I studied the way many other bags are made and I improvised mine to maximize the 1/2 yard of Cat fabric.

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I quilted the layers between the cat heads. VOILA! I love my bag. Something I will use every day and which will cheer me with these merry cat faces and feel cozy anytime I pick it up. This is what I mean when I say design life. I like the design life.

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Yes, you read that correctly…web design

This summer after my chorus Oakland Symphony Chorus went on a singing tour to Eastern Europe, I was inspired by all the beauty I saw to learn something big and new that I could use as a platform to more widely communicate. That led me to learn coding and web development. I can now begin to share my art digitally and make the way for others to do so as well. The internet is magic.

My pet design of late is the mille-fleurs bird which means, a thousand flowers. I will be exploring this and other themes with digital drawing.  My first and still very primitive website is at Millefleurs Bird – we code, develop, design

Millefleurs Bird
Millefleurs Bird

Dee’s Beach Cabin

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Here is my latest, a play on the classic log cabin block from traditional quilting. I was thinking of my mom who first taught me to sew, thus the name Dee’s beach cabin. She really loved the beach. It is 59 ” by 60 ” and suitable for wall or throw use. Fully washable, Cotton and linen.

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Zig zag quilt progress

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Orange and turquoise zig zag quilt is in the quilting stage. These colors are so stimulating together that it calls for a laid back quilting treatment. I’m echoing the. Zigs and zags in subtle machine stitching. The lime patterned backing is so soft and cozy. This is a quilt for curling up in. Comfortable, durable and energizing.

Introducing the Blossom Quilt

This project is a breakthrough piece. I was not quite content with just the pieced Thai silk quilt top, but no inspiration had yet arrived. Then yesterday I was reading through art books and recalling my textile studies at SF State. Suddenly I felt ready to take some bold steps with color in pushing the textile forward into a new place. I have been in a very happy state since the breakthrough. It is as if several disparate parts of me have decided to work together. I feel harmony.

Blossom quilt

Blossom quilt

I employed free motion machine quilting and machine drawing and applique in this quilt. I drew the blossoms in my sketchbook first, then on the white cotton.

Front view

Front view

Detail of stitched applique

Detail of stitched applique

Detail of free motion machine quilting

Detail of free motion machine quilting