Friday, February 29, 2008

Watch It Grow Bigger Every Day

Way too many spams in my other screen name, but I took the time to peruse the list of titles before deleting them. The one that caught my fancy was "Watch it grow bigger every day", referring to enhancing a body part that I don't have. I substituted graduated sizes of sunflowers in my interpretation. The bottom edge is almost a ruffle, quilted without batting, so it really is as limp as it looks. Finished size is 11x10".

Marilyn Rose

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Amazing Shrinking Fat Cells by Cynthia Ann Morgan

Here's my spam piece based on those miracle weight loss products that claim to shrink your fat cells.  It's 12 x 14" and constructed using fused applique and thread painting (for the words)
Comments welcome!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Rubbing It Wont Make It Larger

A crayon rubbing, about 9"x11.5".
What can I say?
Penny Irwin, Reno

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

The Chronicles of Norton

I love cartoons - both reading them and creating them; and when I can use fabric to make my point, I am especially happy! I created a character called "Super Geek" for a cartoon I did a while ago and it was easy and fun to turn him into "Norton - Spam Buster" for this challenge. The words read as follows: "Welcome to a brief glimpse into the Chronicles of Norton. On his home planet of Earth he is just another mild mannered geek...But once in cyber space he is transformed into Spam Buster, a modern day super hero sworn to protect computer users everywhere from villains such as The Stretcher, Hot Russian Babe, The Fraud Squad and many, many more!" I still need to put on the binding but that won't take long. My husband was appalled at this piece because he loved the background and thought it was totally wasted on a cartoon! Do you agree with him? Comments welcome.

Cake Poker

I knew the minute I saw "cake poker" that this was the one I would use. The image of a Royal Flush sitting on a cake immediately came to mind. With the funky background, I decided to glitz it up a bit by bobbin drawing heavy gold braid around the top/sides.....almost like a neon sign would beckon you in to play a game. I fused the real cards to the fabric and quilted the background using the triangles as a guide.

I limited myself to work on this for 2 hours between other projects. It all went together very quickly. This was fun and I chuckle every time I look at it.
Kathy Angel Lee

Create Your Own Zwinky

The spam that piqued my interest was titled “Create your own Zwinky. Well the word CREATE got my attention right away, and then the problem became “What is a Zwinky?”. My good friend Mr. Google helped me out and led me to none other than . Wow there is a whole world of Zwinky’s out there. A Zwinky is a cyber doll they call an avatar. This doll can be your icon or represent you in the online community. This website hosts an array of items to help you create and dress your own cyber doll. So I have spent WAY too much time creating first a cyber doll, buying clothes for her and getting accessories for her. You can take your Zwinky to a place called “Zwinktopia” where you may go into the Zwinchester hotel, the Java Jolt Café or a host of other cool places where you can talk to other people, and play games such as “Pizza Pitch” or “Zwinkoids” to earn Zbucks. With the Zbucks you can buy cool clothes and accessories at the various stores in Zwinktopia. If you don’t want to spend a whole lot of time earning Zbucks you can actually go to Target and buy (with real money) a code to give you thousand of Zbucks for the game.

Here is the Zwinky that I created – I have created her own clothes instead of spending HOURS on the computer to earn cooler clothes. I hope you like her, I named her “trendy Zwendy. She gave me a difficult time as she has quite an attitude and kept insisting on more “bling”. She is still pouting and has been sent to her room. She was a lot of fun.

Spam by Ann Morrell

I really thought that I wouldn't find just the right SPAM message. I fell in love with oodles of them...but just couldn't come up with an image that I felt I could really get into....until I came across:

From Now On Your Small Breasts Need Not Be The Cause Of Your Embarrassment.

After seeing this...I got my image and also got the image of the product that they might be trying to sell.

My camera is on it's last hurrah...and is slowly dying so sorry about the picture quality.

Can you locate that magic product that might make those breasts increase in size?

Here's a hint:

That's right...Little Blue Boob Chicken Feed.

This was a fun challenge.

Monday, February 25, 2008

when ordinary just won't do

I don't know what came over me, but I just HAD to put pieces of two strange fabrics together. And this is the result. This was the spam subject line that grabbed at me—when ordinary just won't do—and I immediately thought of these women, looking down on one of their own kind who happens to have befriended some really unordinary creatures. (Maybe that's not what is happening at all...I just don't know.)

Maybe it's because I have been making paper collages each week. Maybe it's being annoyed at some recent events in which a woman friend of mine has been treated by her (male) supervisor as though it is the 1950s and women were expected to stay home and men thought they were kings. Maybe it's because my sock monkeys and silly critters evoke all that the world should be like. Maybe it's none of these and just my mind working to clear itself.


Sunday, February 24, 2008

Fire Escape

Spam...... what on earth is it if you don't eat it???

So, with Jacque's 'help list' I found the words .... fire escape.. and using the 'play'factor of this Challenge, I did a play with the words and came up with this.
I overdyed a piece of fabric I was ready to throw out ..part of the playing...and didn't worry about square or exactly straight,[more playing], even raggedy--ed the edges, drew my person escaping the flames. I gave him some eyes, sprinkled some stamping sparkles on it to kick up the heat.
The quilting is in 'fire' motif with red and orange thread. Just did a wavy edge with my wavy blade cutter.
I am thinking I may 'play' a bit more later and attach this to a black piece of felt ..if I can get some.
Quite a challenge Jacque, and glad I could come up with something so I could 'play',
thank you.

Comments please, they are appreciated.......always.

My World

"My World" came to mind when I saw a spam headed "your world" and started thinking about what my world would like like if I were its designer. I had a great time grabbing scraps that already had fusible web and laying them on a circle until they pleased me. Then I satin-stitched them and free-motion quilted over most of the piece using mostly metallic threads. The piece is approximately 15" across. I've never made anything circular so I simply faced it and stuck it on a piece of foam core.
As always, I will appreciate your comments.

Engagement Ring Deals

While browsing through my spam and the ones in the files, this one is the only one that flashed an instant picture in my head. So how could I say no? LOL
I used fusible appliqué, not quilted yet, because my leg isn't up to it yet and no matter how hard I try I just can't control the pedal with my left foot!
This was great fun and I have begun looking at my spam in a whole new way!
Just noticed, she is cheating and dealing from the bottom of the deck lol


The spam I used was "Create your own free Zwinky". I had no idea what a Zwinky was but the word intrigued me and I knew that was the one I wanted to use. I did a search for Zwinky and found out they were cute little cartoon smileys -- so, meet Zwonko (I wanted to change the name so as not to violate any copy rite laws). After I chose her name I used one of my dolls as a model. Except for her hair everything was done on the machine. I thread painted her. I also decided to trapunto her to give her some dimension. The size is 10" x 10-1/2"
I love this group. I have done so many things that I would not have done otherwise...Betty

Some day I'll understand frequency

30" x 24 1/2"

The spam e-mail actually made it past all the screening and was the first spam received after the challenge was issued. The poetry following all the pictures of watches and handbags was stolen from the poet who goes by the name of "Epic Dewfall" ( (I contacted his agent and got permission to use this verse.)

The first verse struck me as special enough to be the focus of my piece. I never before used text as part of my work. I also pulled the pictures of watches from the e-mail and scattered them around. The pieces of petals came from something I started at Robbi Joy Eklow's class a year ago, which I knew I would never finish, but they fit the clockwork theme.

The clock hands are cut from black mat board, painted with pewter Lumiere paint, and needed to be glued down. If I had planned a bit better, I would have made sure they would not directly overlap any of the text.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Want To Be A Hero In Bed


This was the most fun I have ever had doing a challenge! I found myself laughing outloud each time I added another bizarre piece. I did the full size freehand sketch and then just started making templates and building like a puzzle.

Thanks for the great idea for a challenge Jacque! I loved it.

Feedback loved, as always...Cherie

Friday, February 22, 2008

Challenge #18

SPAM is it food or is it junk mail?

Words are fun and evoke many different feelings, attitudes, and thoughts naming quilts is sometimes the funnest part of making a piece. Sometimes the naming is the most challenging. Do you name your pieces before or after they are finished? Does your quilt name itself?

The Challenge...

Go to your SPAM. Find a subject or sender name that strikes your fancy.

FIRST NAME and THEN DESIGN a quilt using the technique of your choice.

Monday, February 11, 2008

A Tough Nut to Crack!

I moaned at the thought of creating a self-portrait; I had done one before, and didn't like it, but this time I at least a recent photo taken for a flyer for my current art display. I saved the face for last, and again, it just didn't work, so it sat for most of another week. I considered just cutting out the face and putting black fabric in for a touch of mystery, and finally thought of using a walnut shell, with the obvious title. The actual walnut was too small, but with a bit of help from Photoshop, I got it to fit! I had already made a fabric wood-trim border, so it's too late to make that a nut shell also.

The shirt has separate pieces for the collar and cuffs, and tiny doll buttons. The hair is from a purchased hair piece that I tried using on one prior attempt at a portrait of a friend; again I failed at making the face! The hair is a bit too dark, and doesn't show the encroaching white, but I don't see myself as that old anyway!

The Whole is Greater Than the Sum of its Parts

I am approaching a major birthday this year and wanted to portray who I am, but I have done so many things that it is impossible to “collage” a lifetime. So, this is where I am now. All my children, grandchildren, cats, job and hobbies are shown. The split in the “hairdo” has two meanings: one is my hair before and after chemo, the second is the fact that I use both sides of my brain – every day! The only thing not noted is that I would not be who I was today if it hadn’t been for my late husband’s guidance toward the real and the practical.

The techniques used, which are not necessarily my favorite, are portrait painting on fabric and photo imagery. First attempt and definitely need more practice.

Karen Markley

Sunday, February 10, 2008

What Was I Thinking?

This is my "self-portrait" that I finished for Pamela Allen's internet class. I don't particularly like it but I don't hate it either. I am happy with the composition and enjoyed experimenting with using one of Pamela's quilting ideas. I am really enjoying the class - highly recommend it to any of you who would like to see her work through someone else's eyes.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Portrait--not realistic!!

17" x 22" This was done this week in an on-line class with Pamela Allen. What you see here has been radically changed from the first attempt. The only original fabrics are those in the background! This type of work is extremely far from my comfort level and experience. I did learn a lot from Pamela in doing this---learned new ways to really see something. I also learned that I probably won't do this type of work again!! (I have learned not to say "never".) Everything is just spot glued---no applique or quilting.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Callenge 17- Sue in the Flowers

I think this one was the hardest challenge for me by far. I do a lot with sunprinting and fused floral applique, but could not figure out how to go about putting it all together. I have never done anything depicting anyone's face, and the thought of doing mine..... scary.
I tried to think of a way of not showing my face, but this ended up coming out. My husband did recognize it as me. He is just beginning to take interest in what I do (and many times he has to move whatever is in process off the ironing board to iron a shirt- he really needs his own ironing board)

Anyone who knows me, knows that I have lived and breathed flowers and plants just about my whole life. A degree in floriculture and working at or owning greenhouse/flower shop businesses took up the first 27 years after high school (1 of our sons was in our greenhouse the day he came home from the hospital). My favorite book in high school was a book on forcing flowers to bloom any time of year.

We live on nearly 16 acres of land, and for the first years we lived here, I added a new garden each year, until there are more than I can easily keep up with. I told my husband many times that I would love to live in the middle of a botanical garden, surrounded with flowers. He also has an interest in gardening, too, so we're a good match.

I finally decided to just go for it, and started with a base of my painted fabrics, added some sunprints, then any flower I could lay my hands on. Delphiniums are one of my favorite flowers, so there are a pair of them. The Echinacea flowers are photos from my gardens printed on fabric, and other flowers are cut from floral fabrics. There are some silk flowers added, and even some flower shaped buttons. I added some butterflies cut from fabrics, and a couple metallic bead ones.

At this point, my favorite color is cobalt blue (and of course pink is right up there, too), so I am wrapped in a gorgeous blue silk fabric in this. My glasses are made from picture frame wire- was going to paint them gold to be more like mine now, but left them silver. Facial features were really hard to do (I don't have many photos of myself, to look at). I was going to add couched yarns to my hair, but just left it with colored pencil on the fabric, leaving this me a bit blonder than I really am. The necklace finished things off. Looking at the photo of the piece I see myself fading in comparison to the flowers around me, I guess that is how I am- hiding behind my flowers or quilts.

Here is a detail shot, showing some silk flowers, buttons, a butterfly bead, beaded flower centers, and organza with printed flowers appliqued, accented with yellow pencil centers, with clear crystals over them. I used gold metallic thread in a decorative stitch over the silk. Free motion quilting is done in clear thread.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

I haven't done a self portrait before, even though I appreciated the ones I saw in quilting Art and elsewhere. Basically, the style most of them were done in would not be ME at all, so I didn't feel tempted to be involved. So, I needed to think outside that box, and do something in my own style.
But besides that, like some have said, it was also hard to settle on which ME to represent! I am made up of so many bits, it seems!

At the last, I took to heart what one of the ladies said about just starting, and seeing what would come. First I pulled out fabrics, like I usually do. I had been strongly thinking about the idea of words, so I decided to use a page or so from some books I had "rescued". When I started looking through the books, I found a wonderful drawing end paper, which is from one of the Everyman Books. I painted the swirls in the line drawing, and touched up the lines, etc with gold gel pen. What with other bits and pieces of dyed lace and ribbons and fancy machine stitches, I have come up with something that is quite in my style, using my familiar collage of paper and fabric.

The lady is made up of a page talking about Hampton Court, because a lot of my work is inspired by that period, however, she is dressed up in fancy clothes, reflecting the bespoke garments I make for others, and never seem to get to make for me! She is juggling, since I sometimes feel that is what I do with all my responsibilities. the bits of words at the top are from a book about how to write letters (from 1954!) I guess they often felt overwhelmed by responsibility, since the lady is trying to get out of helping in someone else's event. the words highlighted are " so very busy these work and family obligations...really difficult...take in any more...neglecting somebody or something else...busy woman...I wish you success..." Feels like me!

Sandy in the UK

Sunday, February 03, 2008

My adventure in self-portraiture 21"x30"

Well, I didn't know what to do for this challenge; I have done a previous "literal" self-portrait, and have to admit, it is not really my thing. So, I went more with the favorite technique idea, and hoped to pull together something from that angle. Although I enjoy using a lot of different techniques, my favorite techniqe is still piecing; and more specifically, collaging fabrics together.

The design is from a sketch I had done a long time ago. It resembles a paving pattern, which reflects my background in Landscape Architecture. I started pulling blue/gray fabrics out of my stash; I think because my mood was reflecting the gray sky gloomy weather we're having, which really starts to get to me after a while. So I guess this might be considered a portrait of my mood this week.

Blue has always been one of my favorite colors, but I can't say I use these smoky, grayish blues very often! I do have one of my favorite batiks in there, which I am now down to just a scrap of. Any guesses as to which one it is? Finally, the piece is quilted with a number of icy blue and green rayon threads.

Hope you don't mind my "not really much of a self-portrait" self portrait.

Brenda Jennings

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Crazy Hair Day

This isn't how I look, but sometimes I sure feel this way! Favorite techniques used were fused applique and colored pencils. The new technique was painted Tyvek. I used alcohol inks dribbled onto plastic wrap. The Tyvek was then gently placed on top and the color was transfered. At first I tried dripping the inks directly on to the Tyvek, but they soaked in way too fast. The transfer method worked best. The Tyvek cuts easliy and made great hair.

Linda's Self Portrait

I began with a sketch (not a very good one, but it will have to do since I didn’t have a lot of time for this months challenge). My current favorite technique is freehand cut raw edge collage, but I abandoned thoughts of using this technique on this challenge, for something that would more easily translate my sketch.

I ended up tracing the sketch onto white cotton, added paint and quilting. I’ve gone into more detail on my blog.

I’m not very happy with the results, and don’t think it looks a lot like me. But it was fun to do.

Friday, February 01, 2008

Abstract Self-Portrait

In designing this quilt, my thoughts were to use the blue-green colors and soft organic shapes to portray my quiet interests of reading, quilting, music and being at home by myself. The bright, bold orange and yellows with straight sharp lines show my more outgoing, adventurous side that likes to hike in the mountains and go scuba diving. I choose to do raw edge applique and zigzag the edges to outline and highlight the different shapes and fabrics so they didn't all blend together. Does it work as a design? Does it say "self-portrait" to you?

Nancy Schlegel

ren's self-portrait

Here it is: my self-portrait. better late than never; and better unfinished than not at all---that's my motto!
This is only my second self-portrait ever. I lived with a photographer for a number of years and had gotten used to being photographed; that took a while, but then when we went our separate ways, it took me a while to get used to not being photographed. Go figure!

So this challenge was truly a challenge for me (and yes, that is the point, eh? LOL). And all I could do was this: I call it "The Eyelashes I Think I Have." I'm hoping to add much more thread work on the face and into the border. There should be hair and maybe part of an eyebrow. If I manage to do more, I'll post the result. Meanwhile, enjoy my green stare :)