Birthday recap 2014

Ya know I manipulate time so that I get more than just 1 day for a birthday.  Feel free to do the same yourself.  My birthday month starts September 15 and ends on November 15 - yep, OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAbonus - cause birthday month is 2 months long!So this year during birthday month (lots of circular stuff):

  • Both of my hometown teams still played baseball into October
  • Bloodmoon Lunar Eclipse
  • New Handrail by Steve Baker of Whollyterra20141025-224639.jpg
  • "Guitar" quilt came home
  • Sisterly Reunion birthday gathering!
  • WatermeOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAlon Cake - WATERMELON, fruit with homemade whipped cream icing - best birthday cake!
  • Saw my mommy and daddy two separate visits
  • Wore a tiara - with BLUE hair (wig, not my real hair)
  • Got asymmetric haircut (my real hair)
  • Big deal day job twice yearly meeting presented the data on data to lunar scientists
  • Big deal art job yearly event, where astronaut who quilted in space, Karen Nyberg gave a keynote
  • Rode a scooter (while in blue hair and tiara)
  • laughed so hard I was crying (this is a good thing) - not while on the scooter, but that was pretty fun
  • Smiled at an old pup that reminded me of Lucky
  • Watched video of Lucky singing happy birthday earlier this year
  • Demonstrated techniques for not so traditional quilt I designed as part of a traditional shop-hop (featuring a moon)
  • Got on the twitter... love that I am calling it "the twitter"...
  • Had a logo designed so I can get a superhero costume made (slightly kidding)
  • Held various 70's dance party studio retreats
  • Watched the sunset - remembering to look outside office window in the evening!

Eh, that's kinda impressive huh? Oh, that's just the beginning... I'm keeping one of my birthday month adventures a secret for now...

Can't wait to share!



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Flamingos, Freedom & Fun

With great freedom comes great sacrifice.    Thanks to all our Veterans and their families.  Hats off to you! OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA On the topic of hats... got a fun new "old" hat during my adventures at the International Quilt Festival in Houston. So great to see my friends at Festival, like Judy Gula from Artistic Artifacts in Alexandria, Virginia (basically my neighbor in the DC metro area!) FlamingosFlamingos MGPostcard, bet you are wondering why this is about Flamingos.  Ya know my favorite color is Turquoise (well anything in the blues to greens is my favorite color like Teal, Peacock, Aqua)... eh-hem, Flamingos, back on to Flamingos... This year the Quilters Quest color palette had not just the colors of the sea, but also pinks and purples...  So, my mind goes to the Caribbean waters and flamingos... In my pattern "Flamingos Frolic in the Moonlight", these majestic creatures took on a whole lotta attitude.   OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA After painting highlights there was a whole lotta texture...  Which makes me wonder is the one on the right named "Lotta Fun"?  and maybe the one the left is really a cowboy flamingo named Long-necked Louie... Get this pattern during Quilt Quest and stop by my demos this Saturday November 15 (building birds using ABCs plus painting highlights on quilts).  at Material Girls Quilt Boutique; 6750 Crain Hwy, Suite B; La Plata, Maryland 20646      301.392.9575 I loved having Veterans at my demos today at Material Girls and creating impromptu poppies, after seeing the one I was wearing today. Hats off to you and all other Veterans! OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Fruitful Art, Art for Fruit... just after filming video for Go Tell it at the Quilt Show with Quilt Alliance at the International Quilt Festival in Houston November 1, 2014.
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Tempus Machinus

Don't you want a Time Machine?  Got one, but it's in a traveling exhibit.  Isn't that perfect? A time machine that is traveling?   Sworn to secrecy until the exhibit first opened (Oct 2013)... well um can I get that time machine so I can post this in Nov 2013 instead of 2014... Serendipitously,  now I can share that Tempus Machinus and its friends in the Studio Art Quilt Associates (SAQA)'s Text Message exhibit will be hanging in a museum just outside New York City... oh yeah, baby I said... MUSEUM... pretty snazzy huh? Morris Museum in Morristown, New Jersey, November 14, 2015 - March 20, 2016. Here's my "official" blurbage on Tempus Machinus... Texts allow us to communicate in a high tech manner, unlimited by space and time. We can chat with friends in faraway places, who read the messages at their own schedule.  We now live in the science fiction future we once read about in novels like Time Machine. Morusiewicz_TempusMachinus_lg The word "text" comes from Latin textus "style or texture of a work," literally "thing woven".  So I added a personal challenge of exploring texture. Adding layers of metallic paint over the heavy quilting, created metallic steampunkish style.   Quilted into the gears and cogs, letters are an homage to H.G.Wells, and Henry, a young man who inspires me with his creative mind.  I included my own personal "A to Z", since my first name starts with an A and my last name ends in Z.    24"x42" Machine applique, machine quilting, painting after quilting, facings (sides traditional facing, top and bottom faux binding with facing)    Morusiewicz_TempusMachinus2 Time Machine by HG Wells was the first book I read on my first kindle ereader.  Tempus Machinus was the first time I signed "ATOZ" on the front of a piece.  I am a sci fi geek, and I love clocks and gears. So the steampunk style really speaks my language. My Tempus Machinus piece evolved and changed much like the environment around our hero in the book.  Please come into my parlor, sip some tea (earl grey, hot), tell me your stories and I'll share how Tempus Machinus came to be...
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Making fun from A to Z, seriously!

Gathered with my tribe, my comrades in art, my fabric friends, my followers (loved meeting y'all in person!) and fellow humorous humans during the International Quilt Festival, has been.... FAB-U-LOUS! OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Sky Blue comic book hair! More on this later... How often can you call 3-d art a quilt... well my pineapple is 3 layers stitched together with a handsewn label... OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Fruitful Art, Art for Fruit was part of the "what's for dinner?" display, here I am just after my video with Quilt Alliance.  Can't wait to share the fun with ya... soon as I get the link I will post it here. The theme song of the day is Coldplay's Viva La Vida, perfect on a cool windy day...  "It was the wicked and wild wind, Blew down the doors to let me in" Thanks for having fun with me! ATOZ
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Never heard of "Wine and Canvas" til my sister told me of a groupon, she and her friends needed to use. Wonder if we can start the phrase "the groupon made me do it" and could groupon replace the devil as an excuse maker? 20140116-012933.jpgWhat a fun way to spend the evening! As we got to our table, the canvas, brushes, palette with paint were there and calling to me. But I resisted their temptation to play with paint as we socialized and waited for the instruction. The painting part was fun and easy! They do a great job making it simple and20140116-012916.jpg approachable and who doesn't love raising your hand to get paint refills as easily as a drink refill! We mixed our colors and painted the backgrounds, then drew our horizon line, then the instructor said she was then going to wait a few minutes for people to catch up... as if possessed, the paintbrush spun in my hand and scratched out a note in the damp paint of the horizon.   The words were "This is what happens when they slow down and I'm still on painting mode".  The back of a paintbrush does make graffiti scratched words really well, but doesn't have good grammar... what should it have been? on mode, in mode, en mode, ala mode? I must consult with the grammar gurus!  What would the GGs say about graffiti + opportunity = grafopportunity. 20140116-012534.jpg Later in the painting party another grafopportunity popped up and the words "Make My Own Path, Not Following Directions" emerged in the lower left, plus I started playing with 20140115-230422.jpga starburst design which is a distant cousin of my friend, the flog.  And one starburst led to another, and another.     Pretty cool, from this distance my sister's painting and mine look pretty similar... 20140116-012952.jpg But check out the sample painting from the website, then my sisters... baybridge ala wine and canvas20140116-012857.jpg mine, then the full moon tonight   20140116-221345.jpg20140116-195055.jpg isn't mother nature the best artist of all?
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Try-angle Trees and Cutting Tool Clouds

Can you see I've been having fun? Imagine yourself skiing thru the fall colored trees and looking up to see the clouds forming shapes?  Perhaps you should keep your eyes on the ski slope while skiing!

Went to the Sewing  Quilting Expo at the Dulles Expo Center this weekend.   I was so fortunate to be a passenger and I wanted to get my "stitching on".  So at 8:30am Saturday realized I needed some handwork to take.  Found the Scissors sunprint in my "altered fabric" box and fused it to some felt (oh yes, lime green!) - then looked at the shape of the scissors - in the class last week, I really saw how repeating elements helps the piece and thought , hmm - applique of a scissors shape was, well, kinda blah and I don't do blah very well.

So started looking at the fabric, where the blades open there is a very nice triangle. and there is a second triangle in the opening area near the handles.  So glad I decided to open the cutting tools - the largest one is actually a tin snip from the garage.

First I wanted to be able to practice some outline sewing - for the 3 scissors left to right- running stitch balanced, running stitch with longer thread than gaps, and backstitch. I liked the backstitch best so repeated it for the top scissors.  Added triangles at bottom, at first my thoughts went to "cutting the grass" so laid them out in a grass-like, organic order.  And did some free-motion applique with YLI thread. 

Did I mention that I love quilting... Not piecing, not applique, but taking a needle and thread and scribbling all over fabric at high speeds... At quilt shows I absolutely love running the longarms and just playing!  Yesterday, an energetic vendor was talking to me while I sewed some spiky flame shapes... She asked "what are your thoughts?" in a kinda getting me to open up about my intentions to purchase (it wasn't overtly pushy, but still doing her job)..  but I heard a question about what thoughts I was having - and I answered honestly - "I'm not thinking".  There is a methodical, meditative groove I get into when machine quilting (I know, it's drudgery to some).  If I could only do one of the steps of either piecing, applique or quilting - I choose quilting!

So thanks to one friend I had time to sew in the car, thanks to my other buddy, I was given the vision of skiing  thru trees and seeing shapes in the clouds... She insisted I see these stuffed koi fish in one of the vendor booths.  AND - I do love making me some three-dee objects, and fun to see what others are doing.  In the booth I was chatting up the sales person and behold, the topic of quilting came up - shocking, huh!  She had this steering wheel - but kinda square and shaped like a very blocky capital C. And she was no sales person, she was the Gypsy Quilter herself, Lanette Edens. Liked her right off - even when I thought she was just a sales person.

Love. LOVE, L-O-V-E the tool, it' really does live up to it's name "The Fabulous Fabric Glide", the feel and motion is really close to that of the long arm and the control is amazing.  Before this tool, I would wear the white Micheal Jackson like grippy gloves - better than barehanded - but not that comfortable.  I was able to do some ridiculously tight quilting - see in a nice turquoise Robison-Anton thread "Marine Aqua" - I do love the 40 weight Super Brite Polyester - one beacuse I have it - two cause it has a nice shine and the poly is stronger than rayon so can also be used in come construction.  Note to garment sewers - never ever never never use rayon to seam a garment - top stitching is fine, but seam construction in rayon can lead to unfortunate wardrobe malfunctions. 

Thanks for letting me go off on a quilting and thread tangent!  Back to the project at hand!  Here is a needle-eye view of my Fabulous Fabric Glide - hanging right behind the machine I quilt on.

Before I did that quilting I fused on some appliques.   The second shape in the scissor was the oval handle loop - so instead of circles, I cut ovals to and cut "triangles" out of the oval flower-cog...


My goal for this project was not to make art - but to experiment - so tried different stitching on the flogs - no two the same.  I can use this as a reference for adding handstiching to flowers. And if it was for a project I thing I would have done the same stitching inside each one - I think some variety is nice, now that I see it.  Maybe in future do a few styles of stitching - on purpose!

I love the bottom one with the V's and the single french knot... Never would have come up with this stitching pattern if I had not done the others.  And I didn't undo or go back - in the left of this photo the one with the single bar on each pedal is not my favorite, but that's the one I did that led my to the V's.

Here you see it hanging in our powder room, the walls are the same mossy green as the flogs, not yellowish as it looks here. 

And that raises two questions
Question number one
- Should I be providing "powder" if I insist on calling it a "powder room"?  Or it it BYOP?

Question number two
- What is "a scissor", singular?  The 2 handled tool is called "a pair of scissors" or a scissors, plural...

Just saw this in Wikipedia.  It's a bit odd...

"In New Orleans, some believed that putting an open pair of scissors underneath your pillow at night was a sound method for sleeping well, even if one might be cursed."

I don't recommend sleeping with scissor open or closed under your pillow!
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Seasons of Sewing

cool mornings, warm days... makes me wonder which way to go!

I've got 2 traditional quilts that need binding and I'm looking forward to some handsewing time under a warm quilt.

As the earth revolves around the sun, while rotating, I think of my evolution as an sewing artist too... Birthday month introspection!

Throughout my school days, I doodled echo lines around words.

Later, I sewed garments, curtains, reupholstered furniture, machine embroidery... then I fell in the rabbit hole of quilting...

quilts of my own design (didn't know the term art quilt or traditional quilt) it was just play!  This was a slow design process, but oh so enjoyable...  Love the bike close up in the center with the Kermit leg, and the Vanna White posing Kermit!  No pattern, just drew it!

traditional quilts following traditional patterns made it faster and got me to hone skills, piecing, binding and machine quilting - repetition is great teacher.  Tried lots of techniques like this small stack and whack

took classes, like this one at Bears Paws West (no longer in existence in HoCo) made art quilts following patterns,

playing in three dimensions, the garment sewer in me loved this, shaping, using my Marks pinking shears (my oldest pair of scissors), following patterns but adapting them.

Here is Professor Moskovi of Duck U.  I wrote a whole little back story for him.  One of these days I will get all my ducks in a row (I've made at least 6, all but 2 have flown the coop!) 

Felt Doughnuts, love working in felt by hand!
Sewing the sprinkles on the pink one was laborious, but fun!

 stretching a technique, here's watercolor background, broderie perse dog, and freemotion zigzag applied black eyed susans. Inspired by a good friend's dog "Daisy" so it's "Daisy in the Blacked Eyed Susans".  I spotted this last week at her house.  It's the first piece that I ever sold, not for money, but for a steak dinner... mmm

art quilts of my own design - these 3 were created in Ideas for Art Quilts class with Deborah Boschert.  Looking forward to this Saturday as I'm taking her class, Small Art Quilts: Designing in a Series.

and now having fun with surface design (dye, ink, paint, beading, needle felting)...

Like the earth revolves, I get back to a different season of sewing, a little older and wiser.  I've got ideas of for a garment and a young neice asking to sew with me, hmm...

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Contrast and Commonality

In Quilt University's Playing with Paint online class with Lyric Kinard  I've been having a lot of fun and learning some good painting techniques. The painting on silk reminded me of a book, that I saw once.

I use my phone camera as a memory tool, so I looked in my photo album to remember...

On Reveal Day 12 I wrote "But is there some contrast and commonality I ask?".Reading Kees van Aalst's blog for July 1st, I see the terms cohesion and variation while discussing color and the need to have some balance.

Some of the fun I had painting thru the Playing with Paint included, learning that the back of what I'm working might be more interesting than the front.  Here I loaded the brush with multiple colors ala Donna Dewberry's One Stroke painting.


Plus if you don't like something... add more paint.
I like step 2's sponge painting addition to the mix.

step 1
step 2

Somethings you need to take with a little grain of Sodium Chloride. 

wet color wash

wet color wash with salt

It's fun to play with your food!

thanks for having fun with me today!

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