I love to dye fabric, make thread pictures and quilt. I live in the Yukon on an acreage with my husband, 2 dogs and 34 fish. It's the 'good' life.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Quick Piece

It feels so good to be producing art again after a very long dry spell. I have had a difficult time in the last year, and I think that has affected my creativity. 

However I think I am in the homestretch!  I even feel like exercising again, and this always happens when the weather warms up. I think I need to move somewhere that winter does not take up 8-9 months of the year.

So this little piece is a nod to winter breakup--when the Yukon River starts to flow again, when the little bushes along the riverbank begin to get leaves, and spring arrives in the Yukon.

Spring can't come too soon for me!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Another Thread Painting Finished (finally)

I have been making good on my new years resolution and have been finishing some of my thread paintings. I've posted the corrections I made on the truck at Snag Creek, and now I have completed the 'Summer Field' thread painting.

It took a very long time to get into this painting. A very long time. I think I started this almost 2 years ago…

I think it takes me so long because these pieces have to go through an ugly phase.

Then I have trouble trying to get an idea where it should go. I lose interest, and despair.
But if I let things percolate long enough (2 years?? come on!), and push through the blah stage, I get back in the groove and usually can get it done.

Then sometimes I have to let it percolate AGAIN for a long period of time to make sure the work is done. One of my favorite things is cropping the piece and getting such nice, clean edges.

And here it is finished and mounted. Yes, I did date this 2012 because that was when I took this photo and started the piece. 

At this rate, I should have my next piece done by 2016.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Truck Thread Painting

The colours on this truck have always bothered me. I thought it was done, but I did not bind it or put it in a frame, so I guess I knew it wasn't done. 

Before tweaking:

So today I played on my 'new' Bernina 830 (the old mechanical version). I just got it, my Bernina guy has serviced it to an excellent level, and I wanted to give it a whirl to see how it would do with free motion quilting. 

It worked GREAT!  What a super machine... I think I almost like it better than my Bernina 180 which is my Precious..

Anyway, here is the completed truck after tweaking:. 

I added some metal bits to the back of the cab to give the illusion of a truck box. The truck looked funny without some kind of junk back there. 

I added some orange and red fireweed as I thought the original colour was too brown. These really make the piece look more realistic, and I am happy with this look now. Fireweed in the height of summer is this tall and this red.

I also worked on the truck a bit to highlight some curves and extended the fender at the front left, and finally, I added some shading below the front fender. I could have done more, but I didn't want to overwork it. 

I still think this little evergreen tree is funny looking, but I left it. Some of the little trees do look funny.

Overall, I am pleased with this piece. I am going to send a picture to Sue Thomas Who kindly allowed me to use this picture. 

As you may see in the first photo, I called this piece Autumn at Snag Creek.  


Tuesday, January 28, 2014


Well, well, well..

I really had no intention of posting on the blog, but I received such a nice comment from 'Quilt 204', who did not leave her name, so Quilt 204 it is. She said that she hoped that I would start posting again, so how can I say no??

Holy crap. My blog went to shit poop while I was away! Pictures missing, info mixed up, etc..etc.. I spent a few hours today sprucing it up and fixing things. I only went back so far before I got tired of it.

Without further ado, here is my first post of 2014--a look back at what I did last year.

I went on an awesome retreat with my good friends.

We wore these teeth.

Ate these yummies.

And made these silly wallhangings.

After I taught the cardinal class, I knew my friend Janet would finish. And boy, did she do a good job! Here is her cardinal that she finished in ANOTHER class I was teaching in her home town of Carcross.Isn't this terrific?!   And the proud mom of this gorgeous thread piece. She did great..


I celebrated my 50th birthday. 

Made a baby quilt for a very good friend, with 2 co-workers (Janet and Robin).

Made 2 of these raggie quilts -- for my hubbies best friend and my father-in-law who loved it. 

Went to Penticton, BC with my hubby Mookie for his Christmas work Christmas party.

Had record snow fall--and this is just our roundabout in the driveway! 

And for Christmas, my crazy sister got me this. I needed a laugh.

Christmas Eve day I spent seeing the surgeon in Whitehorse, and snapped this somber picture of the snow. Worried and apprehensive about medical issues. 

Ended up in Vancouver for further tests right after Christmas.

The day before my biopsies I ate this (or several of these)

And found the best store! (I'm fine now, everything turned out excellent).

And THAT was my year in one post. A few more things happened, and maybe I will talk about them, and maybe not. But whatever, it was nice to get back and fix the blog and talk to you all. 

I hope your 2014 is wonderful! 

Wednesday, May 8, 2013


I have been sick with 'something' and today it was a beautiful, hot day. Hubby said we were going for a short ride on the ATV Razor to see the swans. He said I needed to get out.

The Yukon River is about 5 minutes from our house, and in the spring a lot of swans come to nest in this area. It is fun to see the little goslings. It is still really early in the year, so this trip was more to get me out of the house than anything. But we saw swans!

There is still a lot of snow, which you can see on the far banks. The ice is called caped column crystals and this is the only place we frequent that has ice crystals like this.

Crystals come from these snow fields.

But pussy willows are coming out!

And the clay cliffs are almost dried out although the mountains have a ways to go.

And look at how dry the trails are!

We didn't stay long since I am really not feeling well, but it was worth it. I felt so much better getting some fresh air. We even took Ripley the dog and she had a great time tearing around..

Monday, May 6, 2013

Carcross Class

I am teaching the last class of thread painting for ??  I don't know when I will do another as I need to really work on my OWN muse. I counted the different classes I have taught over the years and was surprised to see that I have taught 27 different class--very few of them were repeats. So I need to take a theme and work on it.

As a farewell (for now), I am teaching at my favorite place with some of my favorite people. Some of you may know my friend Janet from Carcross Caribou Crossing who is also a good friend. She set up these teaching experiences a few years ago and I love this group.

One of the play projects we will be doing is doodling around this leaf. I took this picture of a rhubarb leaf last fall and I love it. I have not completed it, but I love the look of it at this stage. Hmm..sometimes less is more. I may leave it like this.

Nope--I worked on it a bit more, and here it is finished. The colours are true on the pic below.

I was able to get the group a great selection of 'thread embroidery' thread. This is linty and cheap and I love it dearly for thread painting.


The main project will be a pansy from my garden. I think they will like it! Pictures to follow when theclass is over.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

What I am working on


I am having one of those weeks/months. My blog was high jacked by 'anonymous' and I had to add some external security features to wrestle control back. My last post was a test--all is working well. If you can believe it, Blogger actually assisted me in this!

Now that I can post again, I will be adding some stuff. For now, here is what I am working on:

I am doing a 'quilt as you go' with these monster 19" blocks. I had put them away for a year and it was time to work on them. Not my favorite quilt by any means (I did the patches wrong), but will be fine for the couch.

Here is the layout I'm going to use.

This thing seriously took less than a day to get together. I just need to put the blocks together and add a  binding of some kind and its all done. I will do this again AND will do the patches correctly..

And here is the machine embroidered Christmas wall hanging top completed. I like it in blue. Yes, this IS sitting on 4 feet of snow. Yes I DO still have this much snow in  my yard.

And I am putting together this half square triangle quilt. Using all my extra creams and whites and a couple of charm packs I received from Creative Threads. 

Just fooling around with the layout, and this may change by the time I put the top together. 

I have 6 quilts needing to be quilted and my friend Robin has graciously offered to let me come around whenever I want to do them. My goal is to have them all done by June. 

That's it for now! Hope you are all having a great weekend.. 

Friday, April 19, 2013

Seriously, it has been how long?

Hello peeps! It has been a long time since I posted and because I don't have sponsors or work for sale and this blog is for my pleasure, I don't even feel guilty about not posting. My last blog died a miserable death because I felt obligated to post weekly, then almost daily. I felt anxiety and guilt if I didn't post something for my very large following. My virtual friends became more important that my real friends--not that I have not made some read "friends" from blogland, I did. And I chat with a number of them I met more 14 years ago online..

Still--I decided to keep my following private on this site so I don't see who follows me. This is more so that I don't feel obligated to post if I don't want to. That means that WHEN I DO POST, I am really happy to share something, or have a real interest in the subject matter.

Later today I have a great post to share about actual thread painting. And I will share this--it is from a pagan ritual of burning an effigy. Here in the Yukon we have it just after the Spring Equinox and this year we held it on March 23. I'll show you some neat stuff from there..

View from my yard 3 minutes ago. Yes, it snowed tons the last 2 days. April 19 and we have this much snow??!!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Cardinal Art Quilt Classes--Done!

I must say I really enjoyed these 3 artsy styled classes that started by painting the cardinal, to embellishing the piece, to finishing it with thread painting. I have wanted to teach this style of class for several years now, so it was very satisfying to see it come to fruition.

Janet's cardinal. Wendy in the background

Because I didn't want to have a closed class, I allowed anyone to sign up who wanted for one, two or all three classes. In hindsight, this was probably not a good idea, but it worked out just fine. People like Wendy (above) just did a smaller piece in the thread painting class. I'll show you her cardinal below. Quite stunning!

Look at those yarn branches!
Close up of Debbie's cardinal 
And this is Debbie. Debbie has never made a quilt and has only been sewing for a few months. I don't even think she has a sewing machine, but here she is creating a fabulous cardinal. The free motion quilting didn't even faze her at all. What a trooper!

Are you having fun?
As a person who is forever hamming it up for the camera, I love a kindred spirit. :-)  If you click on the picture (this or any of my pics), you may be able to see the lovely branches and puffy painted snow. We had a class of Friday, then this final class the next Monday. This was done during the weekend--Gina says it was 'homework'. 

Notice the backing? I always, always suggest using a busy backing piece so that stitching is somewhat hidden when you thread paint all the layers together.  

Metallic threads here were gorgeous.
I could kick myself for not getting a close up of Sarah's cardinal because she used the most beautiful dark red metallic thread for some of her cardinal. Sarah hums loudly-as she is stitching and is not adverse to letting out a resounding screech if she does something good, bad, funny, interesting, odd or just because she is a fun, happy person. 

Look at the concentration!
I felt SO bad for Sara. She brought 2 sewing machines and one would not start and the other would not allow her to free motion. So I let her use my class machine. She was off and running then. I didn't hear a complaint out of her all evening. Now THAT is a great person to have in your class.. 

Catherine made a mini
And what a trooper! Catherine had just flown in from Ontario that day (10+ hours) and was bound and determined to make this class, as work out of town had prevented her from attending the other classes. So Catherine got a mini cardinal and tried her very best to learn the techniques. I hope she soldiers on and finishes it, or tries another one when she is not so tired. I really liked her choice of reds here.

Janet wrestling her piece under the needle
This picture gives a much better idea of the actual size of the cardinal piece. I wanted something big because then people will hang it up. It seems when we do small pieces, under 9", they end up in a pile somewhere. The idea is to fool around with this piece and if you like it, then you have the tools, skills and confidence to continue on. I hope there are some more thread painters born from this humble beginning...

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And last but not least is Karen. I think Karen has been in every class I have taught since she also opens and closes the store. I like to think she takes these classes as well because she likes them. I mean, who wouldn't?? And she is taking her time on this cardinal and has a bet with the store owner that she will finish it.  Thank-you Karen for always being there and taking care of the till and helping me clean up. And your cardinal is awesome!

Oh yah! I was going to show you Wendy's cardinal. Here it is. Bye for now. I will post more often--promise. 

Small cardinal--14" x 8"