Thursday, June 10, 2010

My Introduction; Jan

As I remember there was a request that we introduce ourselves when we announce the next word for our challenge so that means its time to share a bit about myself. My name is Jan, when signing my work I use my full name "Janelle Girod" as a way to acknowledge my parents and their influence in my "creative" life. Growing up I thought everyones' families did what mine did. My parents are both gifted creatively, my mother paints in various mediums, was "green" before it was cool, never knew what she might convert into something beautiful or useful. My father hand carves wood into human forms, animals, creates vehicles out of wood and draws what ever we ask for. I didn't bother to draw much growing up, cause it never looked like their drawings. My paternal grandmother, was always an artist working in whatever was available oil paint, pen & ink, copper relief, bars of soap, watercolor and fabric; these are what I know of. My maternal grandparents always approached life with a creative mind grandmother knitted (rarely did I see a pattern), knocked holes in walls when she decided a change was needed. As a professional welder for a steel company my grandfather used those skills when he could see how they would lend themselves to their lake home or anything well as creating a child's cupboard for his granddaughter because she wanted one....I still have it today and now my grandson can be found digging through it to make us wonderful imaginary meals. I was an adult before I realized this was not how everyone approached life.
Officially I began quilting in 1975 with a class while living in Virginia; however I had played with fiber since I was a child in addition to whatever anyone around me was using to create "stuff". This picture is of my general work area, be it for my machines or journaling. The art work on the walls is mostly done by my paternal grandmother, a family member recently sent me the pen & ink drawing she had done as a teenager, gifting it to her cousin for their dining room where it hung all these years. The other entire wall is a dedicated design wall that I am currently trying to come up with a way to change out the background fabric easily, so that it can be used for photography. Across from this work station is my cutting table, set at a height appropriate for me at 5 feet 12 inches; it is a large wonderful work surface to stand and work at. No backaches here! You notice the "cat bed" in the window....usually no cat in it but my constant companion, Rocket Man, a Miniature Pinscher who ran from the room moments before this picture was taken because someone opened the pantry in the kitchen. For a small dog he has a "Huge" stomach and attitude.
This is a photo of my reference library, computer work station and supplies like beads and stamps. I love having these things within arms reach, not hidden from view. I have to admit that my fabric stash takes up the entire guest room does not fit in this rooms walk in closet..don't ask! The guest room also has an entire wall of shelving for things like paints, dyes, brushes, yarns and papers (everything from our studio space when we had the brick & mortar location). I'm sure my guest really feel crowded, but all those goodies have to go somewhere....besides if they are really feeling creative they could just sit in there and make some great art.
Here is a photo of what I do when I'm not in "my work room", this is a corner of Fiber on a Whim's booth at the North Carolina Quilt Symposium. I co-own this with my daughter, Kristin. We closed the brick and mortar location approximately 1 1/2 years ago when family demands became the number one priority. Now we try to vend at least once a month at a show, preferably twice and we also try to book a guild lecture/trunk show each month. This seems like a lot but compared to driving into the shop each day, this is a breeze; my grandson can work/play with us and we can have "pajama party" days. The traveling also allows us the chance to visit with friends around the country.

Reminder: The new word is "Reminiscense".

Main Entry: rem·i·nis·cence Pronunciation: Function: noun Date: 15891 : apprehension of a Platonic idea as if it had been known in a previous existence2 a : recall to mind of a long-forgotten experience or fact b : the process or practice of thinking or telling about past experiences3 a : a remembered experience b : an account of a memorable experience —often used in plural4 : something so like another as to be regarded as an unconscious repetition, imitation, or survival synonyms see memory

I have thoroughly enjoyed being part of this group. Thank you one and all for letting me "play" with you.

Monday, June 7, 2010

I promised you a map....

Hope this little sketch shows up. No prizes, but it was fun to read your comments. Thanks!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Green with Envy- Cathy Ortelle

Green with Envy
Recycled and reused fabrics were used for the "Green" challenge. And, I looked around till I found pieces in the color green. The leaves on the left were made from "roughed up" apholstery fabric. I plan on mounting this on stretcher bars with the fabric in the lower right corner. It was machine quilted with variegated green cotton thread.

Green detail

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

"Kudzu" by Jan Girod-Green

Kudzu is a vine found in the Southeastern United States. It was introduced from Japan in 1876 at the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition where it was highly toted. I've been told by native Georgian's that they claimed it would help control erosion....but today it runs rampant. It grows over everything, trees, buildings...lore has it that it can grow a foot a night, so don't close your eyes. I'm orginally from Minnesota, nothing comes through the winters. The biggest shock for me 30 years ago when I arrived in Georgia was the size of Poison Ivy down here and Kudzu. When driving back from IQA in Chicago this spring I knew I was getting close to home when the roadsides had there own "monsters" watching us go by. The trees become anything you can imagine.

I knew I had my idea....the background for this piece is painted Lutradur (a fantastic stabilizer). Vines were achieved by zig-zagging sisal cord with thread, the leaves were done using water soluble stabilizer, a sheer fabric in a simple leaf shape and thread. The flowers....well I will leave that story for another time...

Green Does My Garden Grow

Here we go again.
My garden is my favorite spot, obviously.
For years I had a block on my design board I wanted to expand and low, it was green.
So I made some similar pieces and then had to kick out the original one.
The greens were way too grayed.
I wanted some cleaner greens. Finally I need brightness in my work.
I find I am so much more at ease doing traditional work to make art.
There is a peacefulness handling blocks and it is so fun to see how they can tell a story.
Here you see pathways, you see wandering, you see the colors of the yard, you see soft and hard, straight and meandering. What else, my friends?

"Reassembled 1" - Green Challenge

Reassembled 1 by Lynn Krawczyk
(photographed on a black background)

I may have stretched the idea of "Green" a bit. I went through several variants before finally finding my way.

I wanted to go along the lines of recycling and reusing but wanted to reach beyond the obvious meaning. I decided to turn my attention toward my UFO box - which offered plenty of options to work with!

The piece that I ended up choosing for this project is shown in its original state below:

I've always liked this piece but it didn't have much energy the way it was and I could never figure out where to go with it to finish it. I randomly chopped it up and put it back together into the composition you see at the top of the post.

After I reassembled it, I did something that I almost never do with my work - I machine quilted it. I am a dedicated hand stitcher but this piece is covered with gel medium and gesso and various paints which would have made hand stitching very difficult or even impossible.

Since I know my limitations when it comes to me and my machine quilting skills, I did a simple grid pattern on it. After quilting, I did some printing with thermofax screens to help pull everything together.

I am really happy with the result and plan to do more pieces like this.

Blue Lagoon

I used the 'Green' theme to rework a 20 x 20 piece that wasn't the best, even tho' I really liked it, it was just lacking. I trimmed it down, removed a few of the beachy elements, added the tree and leaves, together with an egret leaving the scene for better fishing.
The leaves are made using scraps of dupioni silk and water soluable stabilizer, in a hoop and free motion zigzag stitch.
The bottom , in real life, the scrim hangs below the edge. It doesn't make for a great photo hanging down. I do like the vertical as opposed to horizontal on this one.
It may still get some more work, what do you think? Should the egret be flying in? or out ? as it is.

Green and Green

The idea of photocopying greens came to me immediately, but the overall design took a while. Mint, rosemary, marjoram, dill and red leaf lettuce were photocopied onto paper-backed muslin. All fabrics are left over from other projects. The blue batik in the lower right corner is the bottom of an old shirt. The batting is "Quilters Dream Green" made from recycled plastic bottles and the the quilt back is unbleached muslin.

Quilting lines follow the hills and are meant to look like the irrigation ditches I remember passing on my walks to school on 1960's Sunnyvale.
(Sorry about the fuzzy image - camera difficulties. Will try to get a better image in the next couple of days.)

Susan H in San Francisco

2nd green

Here is my 2nd green - made with left-overs from a former project and waste of electrical wirde and a green plastic folder.

Noughts and Crosses

Green - a few ideas came to my mind. Not all did work.
The piece I take for the challenge is made with recycled material, I had in stock.
At the bottom on the right side is an old linen bedsheet with a handstitched hemstitch, which is a Gelatine monoprint.
On the left is an old duvet cover with ribbon closure. The piece in the upper middle is some sort of towel. Only the x-discharged fabric is new cotton. I dyed all fabrics with Procion MX.
The long black stripes are PVC - machine turning waste.
I added machine- and handstitching.


I took an online class by Susie Monday about using graphics on fabric. I decided to print the word green on thick handmade paper from Thailand. I used different fonts and different shades of green. In some places the paper was a little too thick going through my printer so there are dark ink marks but for the most part, the lettering worked well. I cut out the individual letters and glued them to the background fabric after playing with the arrangement.
I sewed down the skeleton leaves to my batik background and did some hand stitching with my hand dyed threads. It was a wonderful opportunity to use what I had learned in a project.

Green Challenge

"Green Can Be Any Color…As Long As You Recycle, Repurpose, Reuse and Restore!" Yes, this is a very long quilt name but I like it.

For my “Green” challenge, I decided to interpret it as recycling. Men’s cotton shirts provided the fabric and the buttons; the batting was left over from an old project; the beads were all from a garage sale necklace; and I used sheets of foil that were so used up that it was hard to get anything off them.

I just sewed the fabric into strips and then zigzagged the seams for very simple quilting. Although the quilt was set horizontally, I wanted a vertical feel to it. I then cut the insets for the bead fringe and faced it. I made a stencil for the large word out of freezer paper. It was at that point that I realized I didn’t want any of the color green in the piece and so I decided to use orange and gold against the brown background. The buttons were an easy addition although I had to cut buttons off more shirts than I had used for the fabric. I stamped the words Recycle, Repurpose, Reuse and Restore with ink and also foiled the words at this point, but it would have worked better had I done it before it was quilted. Some of the words "sunk" into the batting and became somewhat unreadable. Live and learn! The bead fringe was done last and I painted a few of the beads gold to go with the foiling.

For me, this was more of a challenge than the “color” one because it was such (IMO) drab colors, yet I ended up really liking it. I can’t wait for the next word!

Lisa Kay