Archive for July, 2014

Billings Farm Quilt Show

I’ve written before about entering this small very local show in Woodstock, Vermont (here and here).  This year my entry was Ti Plant.  I went to the show opening to get a preview of the show and to find out who’s pieces captivated the jurors.  There are three jurors and each one chooses their favorite piece.  Can you imagine my surprise when my name was called?  It caught me off guard for several reason: 1) This is historically a traditional show and I was submitting an art piece, and 2) my work was relatively small.  Much of the work submitted is lap sized or larger.  I was very pleased none the less!

Ti Plant - juror's choice


Crab Claw Stinkhorn Fungus

I found these interesting fungi growing on some rotting debris in our woods.  They looked for all the world like someone had dumped crab claws on the ground.  A little research revealed that they are a kind of fungus called crab claw stinkhorn (who would have guessed?).  You can read more about stinkhorns here.
crab claw stinkhorn

Leaf Skeletons and Chicken Feathers

Remember the leaf skeletons I mentioned in my last post?  Here is a picture of the smallest one.  It is about 3″ long and missing a good bit of the very fine veining.  I scanned the leaf and enlarged it, printing it on nine 8.5″x11″ sheets of paper.

magnolia leaf skeletonscan of leaf skeleton

The next step was to trace this image onto tracing paper, and from there, to make a second tracing onto a water soluble substrate.  This was layered onto the quilt sandwich and stitched through all four layers with black thread.

leaf skeleton stitchingleaf skeleton

I auditioned several ideas for quilting and by far the best one was echo quilting.  I did this before dissolving the substrate, and because it needed to be very wet to do that, the piece needed to be blocked.  A narrow black binding completed the work.

leaf skeleton blockingLeaf skeleton 2

In keeping with the black and white theme, I love the barred rock chickens our son owns.  The rooster has the most beautiful tail feathers and the hens are gentle and sweet.  Pretty, aren’t they?

Barred Rock Chickensbarred rock roster feathers

More garden gems and a leaf study

Here is some of the loveliness that is blooming in the garden today:  Spotted tiger lilies, Astilbe, and Foxglove.

tiger liliesAstilbe


I’ve been spending time in my studio as well as strolling in the garden.  Several years ago, I collected some lovely magnolia leaf skeletons from our daughter’s yard.  Somehow they had survived the winter mostly intact.  They are beautifully delicate and fragile, their vein structures all that is left.  I have wanted to add these to my leaf series for awhile and only recently figured out how to do so.  To test my method, I did a small study, just a tiny section of the whole leaf.  Next under the needle is the whole thing.


leaf skeleton study 16.25"x 14.25"

leaf skeleton study
16.25″x 14.25″




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