Monday, January 19, 2015

Studio Time

It is January in western Oregon and we are deep into rain these days. The kind that people in other parts of the world think of when they think of Oregon. I get tired of wet feet, but mostly I find the rain oddly comforting. It makes me want hot tea and and a fire in the fireplace and/or a day in the studio, with the sound of rain pattering away on the skylights.

I am working on this piece that will be covered with words, and I am rather painstakingly cutting out letters. Lots of letters. I printed the letters very faintly on white fabric prepared with a fusible on the back.

This has, and will, take hours.

I woke up in the middle of the night, the other night, and was thinking about those letters. They will be fused onto the background fabric, but then they will need to be sewn as well. "Why?" you ask. Two reasons. First, I don't trust fusing alone to keep things permanently attached, especially small pieces like those letters. And second, and more importantly, I think fused work that isn't stitched looks cheesy. Sorry, it just does. But in the dark of the night I lay there wondering if the stitching of those letters would distort them, or destroy the crisp, graphic look I am going for. So I made a little sample to see how I might stitch them, then how quilting around them would affect them.

I am satisfied now that this can work— and won't send me up the wall in the process.

As I sat and cut letters the past couple of days, I drank tea and listened to Podcasts. Ray gave me a nifty little Bluetooth speaker for Christmas. I have it in the studio, synced to my phone and the sound is wonderful. I am more than halfway through "Serial," the NPR podcast, associated with "This American Life." It is addictive — so well done. Isn't technology grand? An embarrassment of riches at our fingertips. I know my grandchildren will grow up taking it all for granted, but I am regularly stupefied by the access to a world of information and entertainment and connection that is now an integral part of our lives. Wow. Just wow.

So, time for me to head on out to the studio. More letters to cut, and I wonder if I will ever know for sure if Adnan was the one who killed Hae...*

*Serial! If you know, don't tell me!





  1. What Bluetooth speaker do you have? That would be a lovely addition to my studio as well. :) Looking forward to what those letters will be!

  2. I agree with you about the rain and the comforting it brings. And even the dark days are glorious for when the sun comes out, we are all overjoyed at the beautiful greens in our world. I also agree about unstitched applique. Cheesy or just unfinished. I like your idea of this new quilt.

  3. I'm terribly behind on all the fun technology stuff these days. I'd like to hear what you have, too. And I'm sure whatever you do with those letters will be wonderful. :-)

  4. I'm actually painstakingly cutting letters as well (though out of fusible vinyl to make silk screens) and listening to podcasts. When you're done with Serial, you might check out Stuff you Missed in History Class. It's my favorite podcast, and they have many years of back episodes on a huge variety of historical topics.

  5. I always learn stuff from you. I don't own an iPhone as I have no friends to call on it, but I can see, now, that it's use as a phone is not it's best use. It's a tool to use to explore the world. As the computer was---once.

  6. I have been exploring what phone I will get...have no cell phone at present...traveling in late spring to the coast I will need to have one...and thinking how great it would be to use it for programs..while in the studio..and a Bluetooth speaker would be nice..all this technology my grandchildren use when they come to see me after school has opened my eyes to the possibilities...Your post stirred the thoughts to more possibilities.
    Cutting letters, something wonderful will surely come alive.