Thursday, December 28, 2006

Mommy, Baby, and Quilt

Here's mommy Rebecca, and Bronwyn holding the quilt ~

All is right with the world...

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Bronwyn's Joy

"surrounding the child, released by the woman, return to the elder" ~ the butterflies on the quilt appear to be fluttering around the flowers ~ each of the blossoms is made up of 3 hands.

a detail of the knotted pearl cotton, some sewn on buttons ~

a detail of one of the butterflies ~

hand-dyed cotton lawn, commercial cottons, rayon thread, buttons, beads, swarovski crystals, hand-dyed pearl cotton Artfabrik: Extraordinary hand dyed fabric and threads
quilted with a straight stretch stitch (2 forward stitches, 1 backward stitch),
30 inches by 48 inches

This quilt was commissioned by my sister, Sharon, as a gift for her grand-daughter. I shipped it just in time for Christmas, and I can't wait to hear about the unveiling...

Monday, December 25, 2006

We thought we were finished shopping...

Price of an mp3 player for Jason: $100.00

And an iTunes card: $25.00

Oh, and...our computer died unexpectedly Friday evening, so...


Friday, December 22, 2006

Holiday Funny for Thursday

Quilt update: finished, and shipped to Minnesota! Can't post a finished photo yet-not until Christmas!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Children's Advent Program

This photo is from our children's program this past Sunday. I have always wanted to put together something that wasn't "all Christmas, all the time."

I selected three Advent poems and readings, and there was only one Christmas song - "Go, Tell It on the Mountain," in which the children did motions, including one where they had to shake their bottoms and extend their arms at the same time. It was so much fun...

Of course the costumes were the same, but with learning the Bible stories that speak to the coming of the Christ child over the course of the past three weeks, they understand.

It was wonderful! And that "Miss Leavey" thing (see a previous post) - well, Julaine has been vindicated...

Quilt update: Bronwyn's quilt will be shipped to Minnesota tomorrow! I'll take some pix before I pack it up ~

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Holiday Funny for Tuesday

Mr. and Mrs. Fenton are retired. Mrs. Fenton insists
that he go with
her to Walmart. He gets bored with all the
shopping. He prefers
to get in and get out, but Mrs. Fenton loves
to browse. Here's a letter sent to her
from the store.

Dear Mrs. Fenton,

Over the past six
months, your husband has been causing quite a
commotion in our store.
We cannot tolerate this behavior and may ban both of
you from our
stores if it continues. We have documented all
incidents on our video
surveillance equipment. All complaints against Mr.
are listed below.

Things Mr. Bill Fenton has done while
his spouse was shopping in Walmart:

1. June 15: Took 24 boxes
of condoms and randomly put them in people's carts
weren't looking.

2. July 2: Set all the alarm clocks
in Housewares to go off at 5-minute intervals.

3. July 7: Made
a trail of tomato juice on the floor leading to the

4. July 19: Walked up to an employee and told her in

an official tone, 'Code 3' in housewares and
watched what

5. Aug 4: Went to the Service Desk and asked to put
bag of M&M's on layaway.

6. Sept 14: Moved a 'CAUTION - WET
FLOOR' sign to a carpeted area.

7. Sept 15: Set up a tent in
the camping department and told other shoppers he'd
them in
if they'll bring pillows from the
bedding department.

8. Sept
23: When a clerk asks if he or she can help him, he
begins to cry and
asks, 'Why
can't you people just leave me alone?'

9. Oct 4:
Looked right into the security camera; used it as a
mirror, and picked
his nose.

10. Nov 10: While handling guns in the hunting
department, asked the clerk if he knows where
to find
the antidepressants.

11. Dec 3: Darted around the
store suspiciously loudly humming the
"Mission Impossible"

12. Dec 6: In the auto department, practiced
his "Madonna look" using different size

13. Dec
18: Hid in a clothing rack and when people browse
through, yelled

14. Dec 21: When an announcement came
over the loud speaker, he assumes the fetal
and screams "NO! NO! It's those voices again!!!!"

And last, but
not least ...

15. Dec 23: Went into a fitting room, shut the
door waited
awhile, then yelled very loudly, "There's no toilet
paper in

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Holiday Funny for Sunday

Bronwyn's quilt

Grandma Sharon...Grandpa Bob...Mommy Rebecca...Daddy Brad ~
Here's an early photo of Bronwyn's quilt before the stitching began -
There's a story, you know...the butterflies...the hands as flower petals...the vines below. I guess you'll have to wait until Christmas to find out~

Untitled, so far...any thoughts?

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

St. Nicholas...

a.k.a. Jeff, my husband! I just got this photo yesterday, but it was taken at Emmanuel's annual St.Nicholas Feast on December 3rd.  Posted by Picasa

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Just call me Miss Leavey

I looked for a picture of Miss Leavey, the kooky Sunday School teacher from the movie Simon Birch, but couldn't find any...

It's that time of year when Julaine is in the last week of preparations for the annual pageant at church. If you saw this movie, you'll remember the scenes from that pageant, and the teacher, who was going a bit CRAZY !!!

That's me!!! Every year it always works out; every year the children are so excited; but every year since 2004, something happened...

2004: a parent started changing the location of some props.
2005: the sound system decided to stop working, so solos were not heard.
2006: our accompanist couldn't rehearse with us today, because she had to play for worship.

Okay, so I haven't had any angels throw up on me, and I never have any problems with casting the parts - so I just need to focus on the children, and realize that it will be wonderful, right?

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Toasted Almond Party Spread

Stopping by the local Kroger store after work last night, this is what I was craving ~

Toasted Almond Party Spread

8 oz. cream cheese, softened -
6 oz. shredded swiss cheese -
1/2 cup mayo -
1/2 cup almonds (toast in oven/on stovetop before hand) -
4 tbsp. sliced scallions -
a pinch or two of black pepper -
1/8 tsp. nutmeg

Mix all ingredients together in a small casserole dish~bake at 350 degrees for 12 minutes~serve immediately with assorted crackers or on toast
points~be sure to put your favorite Christmas fabric underneath your dish (mine is an Alexander Henry print from 1997, called "Santa Gets Dressed"...

Quilting update: sent a portfolio of photos off to Quilting Arts, LLC...and
creating a commission quilt due by Christmas - I'll keep you posted!

Posted by Picasa

Friday, November 17, 2006

Heather at 16

"Life is rough" ~

"Hey, I just got done scaring a mouse to death (evidence found in basement) - what do you expect?"
 Posted by Picasa

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Cell Structure and Green Goddess Dressing

A teen's science project: goofy/creative! Jason used my ultra thick embossing enamel, a Smartie candy, a mint, and some ABC gum (already been chewed) ~ I laughed before I told him it was great...

My "Green Goddess Dressing" quilt from the Small Wonders exhibit is back from Houston ~ Karey and company are very careful about how quilts come back to their makers ~ it actually arrived last Friday (5 days after festival), but Fed Ex refused to give it to Jason because he is under 21 ~ I was impressed...on Monday, I was home when it was delivered ~

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Did you hear the news???

Follow the link: Quilting Arts, LLC - Home of Quilting Arts Magazine and Cloth Paper Scissors

Hmmm...Since Pokey and staff were so wonderful to work with last year, and I have been leaping out of the box once again as an artist...I'm considering submitting some work ~

This week: I'm being interviewed by an art student for a college project (oh man, I just had to correct my spelling on the word college - it came out 'collage.' "This arts stuff is coming out of me everywhere. I'm journaling like crazy~I'm dreaming~I'm creating~couldn't get to sleep last night until I got up and sketched this Gaia image~ended up doing nighty night at 6 am.~handed Jason $3.25 for his school lunch, because I forgot how to make a sandwich, and I lost the manual dexterity needed to spread peanut butter on celery. Even my home-made iced mocha didn't initiate any synapses in my cerebrum...
Ramble, ramble, ramble, I think my brain is scrambled, I know because I's almost midnight, and time to go into the studio!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Women of Stash!

Okay, so it's a working title...

I started this quilt two years ago ~ 45x45 inches, and the largest that I had ever attempted. Gave it up. Then, one night "they" were calling me. "Let's see if she remembers where she put us."
I have to admit I started freaking out a little when I couldn't remember right away.
The title, "Women of Stash" was decided upon two years ago because I didn't buy any new fabric to start this quilt. Everything came from my stash. I pieced fabrics for the backing. I even stitched pieces of Warm and Natural together (what a pain).

I started a journal since I am determined to finish this one. For entries in 2007, I've made that decision. When I started thinking on the word stash, and what that means, part of it for me is not wanting to let go, not wanting to CUT, SLASH, WANTING TO SAVE IT FOR GOD ONLY KNOWS WHAT!!!

Well, to start, I cut the quilt top into 9 pieces, approximately 15x15 inches each. It originally had only 72 goddesses on it, and that wasn't nearly enough, so I added 45(?) more. Added circles, and folk hearts, again from stash. Most are connected, some now are broken. More journaling.

I'm pillowcasing each section, and quilting with gold metallic (good Superior) thread. How will I sew them together? Not sure. When they are stitched together, my design should look like a tree. Pictured is the bottom section, and I think I should move on to the bottom left next...

Blogger note: I've been reading about the problems, and I haven't been able to upload photos from any folders, but for now "Blog This" on Picasa seems to work.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Jason - October 2006

Here's the quilt that I made for my son in honor of his confirmation last month. Really enjoyed putting this one together, as I used pieces of jeans from his toddler years, and other bits of fabric from clothing that I made for him. His favorite colors (now) are red, blue, and black, so I dug through stash. Included some images of bass guitar stuff, including one of his beloved Ibanez ~ since that was a gift from our pastor, I asked him if he would write a few words on that applique (see detail shot)...

Some hand-dyed pieces, a zipper, guitar picks, the charm that my dad gave me at my confirmation 36 years ago, and single words printed that describe who he is right now.

It's home from the gallery now, and will be hung in his room as soon as he picks up a few million things and clears a path...
 Posted by Picasa

Sunday, October 29, 2006

I only made one

Fiberart for a Cause!!! Coming soon to Houston - first to Market, then to Festival!!!

For this last hurrah, there are over 2500 postcards that have been created and donated from artists all over the world...60 feet of them...

This time - I only made one. I apologize for the photo-it's not a very sharp image, but it's quite beautiful, if I do say myself. The background is heavy scrapbooking paper (which was completely covered up). I layered three colors of hand-dyed silk roving and then applied some Misty Black Fuse on top. More roving, and more Fuse. A fern charm, and a little stitching. Quilted with green, purple, and blue staples. Edge-stitched of course...

Now, who is going to get this little beauty down in Texas??? Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Artella !!!

What is Artella, you ask? I became a member after seeing Judy Coates Perez's sister, Deb Silva (one of the main muses at Artella) at a PAQA meeting earlier this year. Inspiration galore! Here's a link to their brand-new daily newspaper: The Artella Daily Muse

e-zines - daily "link lattes" ~ free creativity seeds ~ clip art ~ blog ~ shoppes ~ poetry ~ on-line groups (my favorite is "creative bartering") ~ games ~ tele-workshops ~ audio presentations ~ art supplies ~ and so much more...

Membership is only 6.00 per month - click on the first link in my sidebar and be prepared to be amazed ~

I have a couple of pictures from their site - but I guess blogger isn't co-operating today. I'll try later.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Congratulations, Jeffrey!!!

Am I thrilled? You bet!!!

But, alas, I was thinking about dressing up for work tomorrow night as Jeffrey, but I'm not sure I can pull it off - my upper arms don't do sleeveless anymore, and there is the little issue of the tattoos...

I'll have to think about that one!

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Yes! Yes! Yes!!! Tonight at 9 pm. -

By checking out this link to Project Runway, you'll know what happened to Jeffrey: : Project Runway : 7 Days of Finale Countdown

I was angry after last week's episode. I mean, c'mon, Tim Gunn was in Jeffrey's work place, and don't you think HE would have questioned what he saw? He loved everything...

Having 2 months to create, and having a few hours can make a big difference. Jeffrey - maybe he works better without so much pressure! Don't we all? Glamourous Laura, I see a difference in your work, too.

Since we last checked in

What I've been playing with - mixed fiber wrapped beads - hmmm, they're shiny, too - considering writing about the process...

I know I've been "out of the loop" lately. I took a vacation from Quiltart. I haven't been reading others' blogs (shame on me). When the deadlines came for Artscene, I felt like the PR designers. S - - - happened in the form of having my purse stolen out of my car a few days before Virginia and I's installation day at the gallery, so that put me behind.
I'm learning how to breathe again, and I'm feeling a quilt coming, I promise to keep up with posts, and check out what all of you are working on!

Rite of Confirmation

Jason's confirmation day at Emmanuel! Proud mother, father, and grandmother! I made a quilt for him, but it is hanging at the gallery, and I haven't taken any pictures yet. Soon...

Welcome, dear little one

This is Bronwyn Skye, our family's newest member. She came to visit last weekend all the way from Minnesota - with parents- my nephew Bradley and wonderful wife, Rebecca.

Human/Nature Exhibit - Julaine Lofquist-Birch and Virginia A. Spiegel

"The Creative Spirit" - dyed, painted, oil paintsticks, vintage nude image on silk organza; on stretcher bars, 28x34 inches. This is one of my pieces for Artscene, and is hanging at the Church Street Gallery in Rockford. Since it is hanging up higher than I could reach, the photo is not great, but it looks wonderful in person!

Three of Virginia Spiegel's "Geometry of Bees" series - beautiful!

Virginia and I at our opening...

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Where have I been?

It's been over a month since I've posted anything. My extra job has put a bit of a crunch in my schedule, and I was very busy getting ready for a BIG art event here in Rockford last weekend - The Greenwich Village Art Fair -It was a wonderful event, and I found out that the organizers really, really like me, because they gave me a corner spot across from the main outdoor bar. What a party it was all weekend. I was way beyond exhausted, but had a great time, and sold lots of art!!! Garments, and small fiber collages were a big hit, and I sold a quilt, too!!! Time to take a breath, Julaine...

In two weeks, Virginia Spiegel and I are exhibiting at the Church Street Gallery here in Rockford, as part of the local art council's "Fall Artscene" - the link: Fall Artscene 2006
Here's your invitation! Come and join us celebrate "HUMAN/NATURE" with new works by Virginia and I - the opening reception (with food and wine, of course) is on Friday night, October 6th from 5-9 pm. If you click on the link, you can get a map to the gallery...

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Remember the "Hair Gel" scene...

from the movie that Ben Stiller and Cameron Diaz were in?

If you, like me, are involved in a church community, but appreciate humor that pokes fun at religion once in awhile, check out this site: Ship of Fools

I really needed a good laugh today - how about you?

Monday, August 14, 2006

Something new

I just can't resist ~ Heidi will now be pulling my name out of her bag! But, alas, she'll probably "Auf" me right away, because I'm not really a Project Runway designer (see below) ~

I've gone back to work at Jo-Ann Fabrics, two nights a week - no fabric department manager this time, just a fantastic team member, providing our guests with fantastic fabric cutting and register ringing ~

A few weeks ago, my husband and I were discussing extra income, and I told him there was no way in h _ _ _ that I would ever go back to retail. The next day I went into the store to have some fabric cut, and the team manager and operations mananger were talking to themselves, and then looking at me. "Would you be interested in some part-time work here, nights?" ~~~
I thought about it for a few days, and decided to go for it. The only challenge - not spending a whole paycheck there, just a small amount of it.

CONFESSION HERE: I detest the word 'disciplined,' so I will just say that I'm already 'appreciating' the time I have in my studio a lot more.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

A peek inside

More from my schedule book - can't judge a book completely by it's cover ~

A little attitude never hurts ~

A funny description by Steve Pitkin, (he photographed 300 Gee's Bend quilts), who I had a wonderful chat with the other day ~
*added note about Steve: the first class stamps coming out this month with the quilts on them are his photography*

The pocket and bookmark ~

Friday, August 04, 2006

After being teased

So I didn't choose the easy way, or the CONFORMING way, but I'm satisfied -

I was teased a couple of weeks ago after showing up a day early for a meeting at church, and was told that I needed an appointment book - a nice, black, possibly zippered one - probably on sale now - hint,hint,hint JULAINE !!!

"But I have this small, very artistic spiral notebook. It has lines - what's the problem?"

I'll show 'em - I'll create something that will knock their socks off -


~Golden Enclyclopedia, 1961 (1st grade for me) ~
~Chose the letter "S" (see a previous post)

~Mona was already on the cover ~
~Christmas photo of me at 2 yrs.old ~
~Illustration of Jesus and the Children (I work with children at church)
~Greeting card image of elder women crouching down (you would need to know me quite well before I would tell you that story)

I printed out lots of weekly appointment pages to glue inside. Finished the weeks through this year - a fabric pocket inside the front -

Check out the photos of one of the pages - I left that one alone...