Archive for the ‘Teaching / Classes’ Category

Intentional Printing by Lynn Krawczyk and giveaway!

Thursday, October 16th, 2014

The drawing is concluded.  Any comments left now (after 5 pm Saturday) will be appreciated but won’t be in the drawing.  The lucky winner (chosen by a random number generator on the internet) is comment number 16, Sylvia!  I’ll email you directly.

Sometimes the right book comes along at the right time.  For me, Intentional Printing by Lynn Krawczyk was that book. Lynn is funny (love her Facebook posts), creative and has been able in her book to get me (and hopefully you) to just “fling some paint” and have fun making cloth you will actually USE.  So I’m going to tell you a bit about her book.  Then I’m going to send you over to her website and blog:  if you’d like to win a copy of her book, comment here by 5 pm East Coast Time on Saturday, October 18th (that’s SOON), and tell me something that you liked about her website and/or blog.   Here’s her site, Smudged Textiles Studio and her blog.  Read on!

Lynn Krawczyk's Intentional Printing

Lynn Krawczyk’s Intentional Printing.  Here’s a link to Lynn’s website page about her book, complete with a fun video of her telling you about the book and showing her printed cloth.

For years now I’ve been buying books about dyeing fabric and surface design, yet I do precious little (almost no) surface design in my own work.  So WHY do I keep buying the books?  There must be some deep desire to make my own cloth in a way that goes beyond dyeing fabric.  Many of the books I’ve purchased are intimidating:  so much to do, so many options, too many supplies, too much set up and clean up time.

With Lynn’s book, which is about paint (not dye),  all of a sudden I got up and started DOING.  No fuss, perhaps some mess (the fun kind), and productive work that has got me to develop a whole new workshop that combines the best parts of a class I used to teach (and eliminated because I hated teaching the other parts of the class) with Lynn’s approach to paint on cloth.

Lynn discovered that the pieces she made just didn’t quite work, didn’t fit what she wanted to do.  So she figured out how she could work to create pieces she wanted to use, was inspired to use, while keeping the spontaneity of the process intact.   The chapters of the book are:

  • Introduction
  • Chapter 1:  Exploring Intentional Printing
  • Chapter 2:  Tools and Materials
  • Chapter 3:  Fabric Printing Techniques
  • Chapter 4:  Handstitching
  • Chapter 5:  Layered Printing
  • Chapter 6:  The Projects
  • Templates
  • Acknowledgments, Resources and Index

Inspired by this book, I worked up two pieces that you’ve seen recently on this blog, The Nest and my X and O (Hugs and Kisses?) pieces that I’ll be teaching in the Fiber on a Whim Booth at International Quilt Festival in a mere two weeks!   Here’s a link to more information about my mini-class and to my thermofax screens blogpost (and to Fiber on a Whim where you can ORDER those screens!)   Once you see the inside of the book, you’ll see Lynn’s X and O piece, which must have been in my subconscious when I made mine!

Learn to make the painted fabrics in this project in my mini-Whimsy class at IQF-International Quilt Festival Fall 2014.

Learn to make the painted fabrics in this project in my mini-Whimsy class at IQF-International Quilt Festival Fall 2014.

And some art cloth--this is SO not my typical, but I could see playing with surface design, a lot, to make more fabrics to use in my more typical style.  I wanted to have something totally "not me" though so that students get to try both representational and not!

And some art cloth–this is SO not my typical, but I could see playing with surface design, a lot, to make more fabrics to use in my more typical style. I wanted to have something totally “not me” though so that students get to try both representational and not!

What I really liked was that Lynn’s approach can work for the way I use fabric.  So many of the surface design books are by people for whom the fabric and the process are the be-all and end-all.  Once the cloth is done, no more needs to be done.  But I don’t like abstract stuff very much, and I don’t think the cloth is the artwork (for me! if it is for you, that’s great, but it’s not what I want to do), it is something that goes into creating the art.  With Lynn’s book, the cloth can be the goal and the finished product, OR it can be a component that goes in to the artwork.

In The Nest, for example, I used a couple techniques Lynn covers in creating the background fabric, the nest, and the eggs.    In a quilt that I will share with you next week, Insalata, I dyed the fabric for the background but it just wasn’t quite enough.  So I used paint and a couple stencils to create background texture that got the fabric from “pretty good” to “just right.”  That’s exactly what Lynn’s book is about:  getting the fabric you need for the idea in your head / the project you want to make.

For novices to surface design, this book is a great start.  For folks like me who have tried it some but just weren’t jazzed, this book is a great way to help focus random flinging of paint into a process that will give you something with which to create (instead of a pile of “what am I going to do with that now?” cloth).  HIGHLY Recommended!

So if you want to WIN A COPY, here’s what to do:  go to Lynn’s website and blog,  Then come back here and  leave a comment  by 5 pm East Coast Time on Saturday, October 18th (that’s SOON), and tell me something that you liked about her website and/or blog.   Here’s her site, Smudged Textiles Studio and her blog.  I’ll post the winner probably on Sunday–Eli has a Cross Country meet that will last all day Saturday.   ENJOY!

And thank you Lynn for offering a copy of your book…I LOVE IT!

Thermofax screens galore!

Wednesday, October 8th, 2014

I promised I’d share more of the thermofax screens I have designed and that Fiber on a Whim is making and selling, so here they are.  You can order these online or buy them at International Quilt Festival and other shows where Fiber on a Whim has a booth.

Onions is one of my favorite designs.  I used a small white onion to stamp, then fiddled with the print in photoshop to create this screen.  It makes a fantastic background print.

Onions is one of my favorite designs. I used a small white onion to stamp, then fiddled with the print in photoshop to create this screen. It makes a fantastic background print or part of a  layered piece of complex cloth.

I’m teaching two mini Whimsy-Classes in the Fiber on a Whim booth on the show floor at Quilt Festival, and we’ll be using the onion screen for oen of the two small projects in the classes.  For more information on this, visit here.  There is no advance sign up–come to the booth and the first 8 in line 15 minutes before the classes get in.  The modest $10 fee covers the kit fee–I provide everything you need.

The screens are so new I don’t even have some of them yet!

Squiggles thermofax screen by Sarah Ann Smith at FiberonaWhim.com

Squiggles thermofax screen by Sarah Ann Smith at FiberonaWhim.com 

Woven, thermofax screen design.  Sometimes you just want a bit of something.  This is a full-size screen  so you can print as much or as little of the screen as you like.  With the somewhat irregular edges, it is easily overlapped.

Woven, thermofax screen design. Sometimes you just want a bit of something. This is a full-size screen so you can print as much or as little of the screen as you like. With the somewhat irregular edges, it is easily overlapped.

One of FoaW's best-selling thermofax screens is an old French ledger, so we thought we'd try an alphabet, hand-written by me in a brush pen.  Again, a good background design, which is what I was going for with most of my designs.

One of FoaW’s best-selling thermofax screens is an old French ledger, so we thought we’d try an alphabet, hand-written by me in a brush pen. Again, a good background design, which is what I was going for with most of my designs.

Another vegetable--this time celery!

Another vegetable–this time celery!

The dagger-drops screen is a smaller size because you can easily repeat it.  It will be fun to play with this, alternating the direction of the print 90 degrees or at diagonals or every which way.

The dagger-drops screen is a smaller size because you can easily repeat it. It will be fun to play with this, alternating the direction of the print 90 degrees or at diagonals or every which way.

The Queen Anne's lace is from a photo I took, modified in photoshop elements, then scaled into three sizes.  We will use this in the mini Whimsy-Classes project you can see in this blogpost.

The Queen Anne’s lace is from a photo I took, modified in photoshop elements, then scaled into three sizes. We will use this in the mini Whimsy-Classes project you can see in this blogpost.

Another onion print, a full size (9x12 inch) screen, that I call Tossed Onions.

Another onion print, a full size (9×12 inch) screen, that I call Tossed Onions.

Grasses, a full size screen with two ends to use.  Kristin of FoaW requested this one--I had ordered it earlier for one of my own projects.

Grasses, a full size screen with two ends to use. Kristin of FoaW requested this one–I had ordered it earlier for one of my own projects.

And last but not least, another great background print design, corn!  Yep, I sacrificed an ear of corn on the cob for the sake of art.

And last but not least, another great background print design, corn! Yep, I sacrificed an ear of corn on the cob for the sake of art.

In a few days I’ll do a review of Lynn Krawczyk’s great new book, Intentional Printing.  It will give you TONS of ideas on how to use thermofax screens and other surface design techniques.  Stay tuned! Here’s a link to Lynn’s website in the meantime, and she’s a ton of fun and on Facebook here.

And just in case you don’t feel like scrolling to the top but want to see the website where the screens are sold, here’s the link one more time!  I can’t wait to go to Quilt Festival, but I’m also looking forward to returning to my studio and playing with paint and thermofax screens!

 

 

 

 

Whimsy-Class and Sarah’s Thermofax screens at Fiber on a Whim

Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

What FUN!   As a result of collaborating with Fiber on a Whim, I am thrilled to announce that they are now carrying a line of thermofax screens designed by ME!  Whooda thunk it?   Best of all, FoaW is debuting the screens with a sale!

Learn to make the painted fabrics in this project in my mini-Whimsy class at IQF-International Quilt Festival Fall 2014.

Learn to make the painted fabrics in this project in my mini-Whimsy class at IQF-International Quilt Festival Fall 2014.   This piece was made (in part) with the Queen Anne’s Lace thermofax screen at Fiber on a Whim.

The collaboration began when Fiber on a Whim asked if I would like to do a mini class in their booth at Festival.  At International Quilt Festival I will be teaching regular classes (Intro to Machine Quilting, Birch Pond Seasons, particpating in the Machine Quilting Forum and giving a lecture on Tuesday), but I will also be doing two mini Whimsy Classes in the Fiber on a Whim booth #144 on the show floor on Thursday at 5 and Friday at 11. I’d love to see you in both the regular and the Whimsy classes!  The Whimsy classes (both the same)  will use thermofax screens and other paint processes to create your own cloth.  The booth is on “Main Street” (the big red-carpeted aisle in the middle) right next to the passageway/entrance to the quilts exhibits!  Read more about FoaWhim’s Festival plans here on their blog.

In the class I hope to have students do two small projects each.  In the class, students will create the Queen Anne’s lace background fabric used in this project along with the painted part of the nest, then finish the stitchery and quilting at home.  I will provide the materials you need in class, you add the rest at home.  Just show up, pay for the class (a very modest fee that covers supply costs), and play!  There will only be 8 spaces per class; stay tuned for details but I think you just need to show up about 15 minutes before class and the first 8 people in line get in to the classes.

The Queen Anne’s Lace custom stencil, which you can purchase from Fiber on a Whim not only at International Quilt Festival but also on their website is this one, which has the flower head in three sizes on a 9 x 12 inch screen.  (PS–did you remember all my screens are on sale right now?)  You can print with just a single size or use all three (or portions):

 

My custom Queen Anne's Lace screen that will be available from Fiber on a Whim, probably on their website later this week.

My custom Queen Anne’s Lace screen that will be available from Fiber on a Whim, probably on their website later this week.

I will also have students work on a piece of art cloth to make something along the lines of the piece below, which uses my Onions thermofax screen (I’ll post more about the screens once Fiber on a Whim is ready to sell).  This was like fingerpainting in kindergarten–pure play–but with cloth!

And some art cloth--this is SO not my typical, but I could see playing with surface design, a lot, to make more fabrics to use in my more typical style.  I wanted to have something totally "not me" though so that students get to try both representational and not!

And some art cloth–this is SO not my typical, but I could see playing with surface design, a lot, to make more fabrics to use in my more typical style. I wanted to have something totally “not me” though so that students get to try both representational and not!

Here are a few more images so you get the idea of what we will be doing–do come play!

For the nest piece, I took some pale beige batik, my Queen Anne's Lace stencil and paint to create this cloth, which I love so much I can see making yardage of this to use!

For the nest piece, I took some pale beige batik, my Queen Anne’s Lace stencil and paint to create this cloth, which I love so much I can see making yardage of this to use!

My onion screen will also be available at Fiber on a Whim.  I simply overlapped it a bunch of times to create this cloth, again something that I can see using as background fabrics.  And what a variety you'd get depending on your base cloth (this was plain white) and colors.

My onion screen will also be available at Fiber on a Whim. I simply overlapped it a bunch of times to create this cloth, again something that I can see using as background fabrics. And what a variety you’d get depending on your base cloth (this was plain white) and colors.  This was layers 1 and 2 in the red-black-white piece.

Hope you’re intrigued.  Personally, I want to go play with paint and cloth!

 

I’m back, and I’ll be teaching at IQF Houston!

Sunday, August 31st, 2014

Hi all…a quick note to let you know Eli and I are home from England, over 2000 photos later!  I promise I’ll share some but not ALL of the photos.  In the meantime, I wanted to share with you that I’m once again teaching in Houston at the International Quilt Festival.  To find out about online enrollment, which is now open, click here or in the link in the sidebar to the left. Here’s what I’ll be teaching:

Monday, October 27, All Day Class #128:  Let’s Machine Quilt–an intro to machine quilting, all day class, machines provided

Let's Machine Quilt class sample

Let’s Machine Quilt class sample–Right click to view larger

Coral Free-motion Quilting Sample, Click to view larger

Coral Free-motion Quilting Sample, Click to view larger

Tuesday, October 28, Lecture #254:  How Did She Do That?  A lecture and digital presentation supplemented with in-the-cloth quilts sharing how I go from idea to image to quilt.  At 11:00, ending just in time to attend the Noon Luncheon.

SASmithAmaryllis1400Full

Wednesday, October 29, All Day Class #339:  Birch Pond Seasons, an introduction to fusible applique and art quilting.  This is a fusing and design/composition class with no sewing.  You can see the pattern (which is included in the kit fee along with MistyFuse) here.  You can see a class in progress on this blogpost, and at the bottom of this post which includes a lovely winter version. This is the third year in a row that IQF has booked this class for Wednesday–yeah!

Thursday, October 30, Morning Event #460:  Machine Quilting Forum (alas, already full), with four other machine quilters where we each give a presentation to the full group.  Then you have about 20 minutes for a quick demo or lecture with each of us–think of it as speed-dating for quilters.

Thursday and/or Friday:  one hour SMALL demo/kit/hand-on class in the Fiber-on-a-Whim booth!   Exact one-hour class (at one end of the booth) to be determined, but likely printing with thermofax screens.  Class fee will include fabric, paint, paint brush to use and use of my thermofax screen(s) to make some printed fabric to take home.  More details to come!

Quilting the Garden Workshop and Giveaway

Friday, July 11th, 2014

The Giveaway is now concluded. Any comments left after 12:13 pm today, July 19, will not be part of the drawing, but comments are still welcome!  The winner is Phyllis Carlyle, comment #36 (picked by an online random number generator)!  Congrats and THANK YOU to all!

Hey I need some advice!  I’m putting together a new workshop and/or class called Quilting the Garden (part of my Quilting the Good Life series). I need your help picking which colors and flower images to use for the class.  In thanks for your help, I’m offering a free copy of my Quilting Arts video workshop, Art Quilt Design from Photo to Threadwork (read all about it here), for someone who answers some of my questions here on my blog (not Facebook).   I’ll choose a winner in a week’s time, on July 19th.  (See last paragraph for The Fine Print.)  Read on!

My questions for you, dear readers are these:

  • What color flowers do you think the majority of students would pick, including you?
  • Should I include the green-only hosta leaves?
  • Which individual images would you most want to do in a class?  Tell me your favorite three (use the names I have given to each such as Purple 2, Yellow 4, and so on). 
  • Would you want a complicated image as one of the options, such as Multi 1 below?
Purple, Multi and Green images

Purple, Multi and Green images:  four purple or purple and white Iris, a zinnia and hosta leaves.  Right Click on image to see it larger.

Some background information

Most students can either put together a top in a day class OR do some quilting in a day class, but not both.  And most guilds and shows won’t book multi-day workshops because students tend not to sign up for them.   I would dearly LOVE to teach 3-5 day workshops, but in the meantime I’m working on a one-day exercise which can be a standalone class also.

My solution to the “can’t do it all in a day” issue is this:  I will provide a kit for a modest fee including a photograph printed on cloth (from Spoonflower, my photos, about 8×10 or 12×10 printed size, or a tad larger) plus an 8 1/2 x 11 color photo, page protector, and possibly several color photos–one of each of the three options offered in the class.  The photos will come from the ones on this blogpost (or perhaps a different red, keep reading).  And what size is good?  is 8 x 10 too small, perhaps 10 x 12 or a bit bigger?  Or as large as 17 x 21 (which of course costs more to print)?

Dogwood, Water Lily, apricot Lily, closer view of apricot colored Lily

Pink Kousa Dogwood, Water Lily, apricot Lily, closer view of apricot colored Lily.  Right Click on image to see it larger.

For the class I want a relatively uncomplicated image that will allow students to learn to use thread colors to shade and paint and color their artwork.  By working on top of a photo, the imagery is provided.  They can then use my collage process, taught in my DVD (info here), to create their own imagery in cloth rather than using a photograph.  But they will, having taken this class, have learned the skill to interpret the photo into color and thread.  A multi-color flower may be best, but not many fit that bill.  The simplicity of a lily is perfect–only six petals!  Too many petals make it more complicated.  Would you want a complicated image as one of the options? Or should I keep all the images relatively simple?

Reds, alas I don't know the names of these glorious flowers (sending email to the Botanical Gardens horticulturalist).  Should I find a different truly RED flower?

Reds, alas I don’t know the names of these glorious flowers (sending email to the Botanical Gardens horticulturalist). Should I find a different truly RED flower, as these are burgundy and ladies who love red want REALLY red?  Right Click on image to see it larger.

In the red collage, photos 3 and 4 are intriguing, but probably not the best for this exercise, but I couldn’t resist including them.

Are whites too hard for thread selection?  Right click on collage to view larger.

Are whites too hard for thread selection? Right click on collage to view larger.

I’m also thinking that white flowers are not the best choice, but would like feedback.

Lots of yellows that I love.  The solution to the white question might be to choose the cream lily above.  The yellow rose will be one of my sample flowers--I'm working on another project for an article that involves this sample, so students may want to try this one.  Right click on the collage for a larger view.

Lots of yellows that I love. The solution to the white question might be to choose the cream lily above. The yellow rose will be one of my sample flowers–I’m working on another project for an article that involves this sample, so students may want to try this one. The coneflower photo may be too complicated for a classroom, especially the cone.  Right click on the collage for a larger view.

And:

A selection of  popular flowers, but the owner of the local gallery that has sold my work tells me orange doesn't sell, people don't like orange.  What do you think?  I think the lily would be a fabulous one for the exercise, but....

A selection of popular flowers, but the owner of the local gallery that has sold my work tells me orange doesn’t sell, people don’t like orange. What do you think? I think the lily would be a fabulous one for the purposes of the exercise, but….Right click on collage to view larger.

And there is the question of thread:

I use and teach using 40-wt poly thread, which shows up beautifully.  But some people prefer cotton, only cotton.  If students do not pre-order the photo, they won’t know what color they will get in class.  That means they would need to bring a LOT of thread:  for the orange lily above, for example, if at home I would use at least 3-4 shades of orange (pale to rust), yellow, yellow-green, and the background greens.  Is it better to kit the thread with the photo? Or allow students to bring their own, but perhaps be frustrated because they don’t have the right colors?   Me taking a thousand spools of various colors without requiring a purchase is, alas, not an option because I can’t afford to have so much money tied up in inventory.  So, what would you prefer from a class/teacher?

So tell me what you think:

  • What color flowers do you think the majority of students would pick, including you?
  • Should I include the green-only hosta leaves?
  • What is a comfortable size for you?  Is 8×10 too small? 
  • Which individual images would you most want to do in a class?  Tell me your favorite three (use the names I have given to each such as Purple 2, Yellow 4, and so on). 
  • Would you want a complicated image as one of the options? Or should I keep all the images relatively simple?
  • Should I include a thread as part of the kit?  Each one would probably need at least four shades of thread at $6-8 per spool of Superior 40-wt polyester plus a pre-wound bobbin of  blending fine thread, so that would be an additional $25-33 on top of a kit fee for the fabric and color photocopies of about $10-12.

If this class is a go, I will offer at most three flower options.  IF students register for the class 2 months in advance, they may write to me directly with their choice of flower and I will make sure they get their first choice for the workshop.  It takes that much time for me to order the fabric, have it printed, and shipped back to me and be ready in time for the class.  The remaining students would have to pick a color from what is available at the class.  That means they’d need to bring thread for multiple colors (at least four shades of each colors) if thread is not part of the kit.

THANKS!

The Fine  Print: 

  • Remember to comment by 8 a.m. Saturday, July 19th (US East Coast Time) for a chance at winning my DVD in thanks for your taking the time to read, think, and comment here on my blog!
  • If you are outside of the US, you may comment but I’d appreciate a little help with the postage–I’ll pay up to $5 in postage.
  • Comments must be here on my blog, not a feed reader or facebook!
  • Comments like “gee I’d love to win the DVD” won’t work–I’m really looking for feedback on the images and questions I asked.