Friday, June 20, 2008

Jewelry piece of the month

I am still working with magnet wire. The goal is not really to create jewelry but it is nice to practice and experiment with the desired material and then actually have a result that can be enjoyed. My goal is still to add more depth to my fiber pieces. 

I bought the book 'crocheted wire jewelry' by Arline M. Fisch. I like the book very much. The information about materials, wire gauges, hooks etc is great. The projects look very interesting, some of them I like better than others. I was a bit disappointed that in quite a few pieces one needs to have more than just crocheting experience. Soldering comes in very handy so does bezel setting. I also think the descriptions could be a bit more precise. I consider myself to be a good crocheter. But I am quite sure that without my very profound knowledge of reading patterns and instructions I would not be able to use the book. Still I am enjoying the book and use it a a challenge in between my other art work. 

Oh before I forget. I think they forgot to mention that the most important tool in creating this pieces for people above 30 years old is a very very good lamp. My absolute favorite phrases in the descriptions are : " count the stitches often as you crochet. Dropping or adding a stitch will greatly disrupt the pattern of the chain". I certainly agree with that but I was never at any point able to count the stitches as you can see on the picture. Or how about that one:" The shape is clumsy at this point, but make note of the stitch pattern. You can open the loops with a scribe to count the stitches and see the pattern more easily". I started bursting into laughter when I read that one, 'clumsy. open the loops WHAT loops, I know they were there just WHERE', I am sure an expert is able to do so, and after I bought a lamp I at least saw traces of stitches.... my friend kept me going by promising cosmos if I finish the project. I LOVE my bracelet and will treasure it. And of course the admiration for the artists working in that field has grown immensely. 

Titanium Needle

It seems that I am discovering things that have been around for a long time, but I was simply not aware of them. For whatever reason I am for sure not one that keeps up with what's new out there. And there is no particular reason for this.
I guess out of desperation I went needle hunting. I really LOVE working with my Microtex 8. There were no wholes even in my most delicate paper area. But with all my fabric and paper layers I simply was buying needles in the same amounts I buy swiss chocolate. That needed changing, no not the swiss chocolate part. So I asked  my new mechanic for advice. He just sold me the Janome Gem Platinum my new travel companion. He did not flinch when I showed him my work sample, but it must have looked really strange to him. That's different was all he said. We all kind  know what that means. But his suggestion was a titanium needle. And long and behold I am on my third art piece and I have NOT broken a single needle. Maybe just luck, but I like to believe that I found a solution to my needle drama. Granted the titanium needle is also a little heavier but the size of the wholes are so far not a problem. 

Friday, June 13, 2008

Janome Gem Platinum 760

I got myself a new 'toy'. As a Bernina girl for the last 40 years it is quite a step to move to another sewing machine. But I have been looking for a small light machine for a while. Nothing will replace my good old Bernina, but there is simply no way I would take that machine on a trip by plane. Of course I considered renting a machine but I had the opportunity to try the Janome Jem in one of my workshops I taught. And I liked what I saw immediately. So I started doing some searching to see if I could find a little machine that would offer me most of the things I love about my Bernina. I am convinced I found it. The only real important thing missing is the knee lift, but I will manage without it! This little machine has many more stitches than I will ever use, many more buttonholes and other features. But it has a good straight stitch for my type of work, a great free motion foot and it handles easily. 

Monday, June 9, 2008

Thank you all out there

Thank you, thank you, thank you.... does this sound familiar? Do I sound like Hillary, ( I am not talking about Hillary Fletcher, but let's remember her and all her effort for us artists) maybe so but I don't care. I simply wanted to express my sincere thank you to you all out there for all the terrific e-mail your response to the wonderful article 'Quilting Arts magazine' did about me. All the lovely comments for sure are very motivating and I appreciated each and every e-mail and compliment very much. Thank you also 'Quilting Arts Magazine', especially Cate Prato who did the interview and wrote the article.  
Thank you, thank you, thank you and for more about me go to
Sounded familiar again?