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a lesson in the value of contrast

Do not adjust your monitors,there’s nothing wrong with them.  You’re not seeing any color in this latest quilt because for the first time,I didn’t actually use any…

concretewborder“moon over the concrete jungle”

55″x 39″fusible raw edge applique,hand painted,machine quilted

I also didn’t dye the fabric for this quilt.  Well I did dye the black but the gray fabrics I used are by Cherrywood Fabrics.  They make the best grays.  Here’s a little closeup:


I learned a lot about contrast and value making this quilt.  Usually I work with so many bright colors I never think twice about contrast and value but I struggled a bit with this quilt.  I had gotten to this point with it:

concretewborderAnd I liked it but I knew it needed something.  My first instinct was to add a bright colored billboard to break up all the gray but that didn’t feel right so I called upon the wisdom of some very wise professional quilt artists whose opinion I trust and value and asked them what they thought and their advice was that it needed contrast.  Since I had already quilted the sky I headed into my dye studio and mixed up some paint and darkened the sky and then added the moon….


Much better!  The darkened sky really makes the buildings pop and I’m much happier with this piece now.

Whimsical Inspirations by Jamie Fingal

So I have a fondness for colored pencils…


Whenever I walk into an art store the first aisle I head for is the one with the colored pencils. They are definitely my favorite go to medium when I want to add color to my sketchbook pages and so when I found out that Jamie was publishing a coloring book of her whimsical drawings I was first in line to place my order and said count me in for the blog hop to celebrate it’s release….


When it arrived I flipped through all the of the pages and when I landed on this adorable page covered with dresses I decided it would be the first one I would add color to…

coloringbook3I left the book on the kitchen counter with my stack of colored pencils and every night while I was waiting for a pot to boil,or something to bake I’d sit for a few minutes and add a bit of color.   It’s a very relaxing way to spend a few moments during a hectic day and I’ve already started working on another page…


Jamie’s book is filled with 12 original hand drawings on 8-1/2″x1 1″landscape paper with coil binding on the left and a cardboard backing.  It is printed on thicker paper so you can actually paint with watercolors,use water based felt tip markers,and colored pencils.   This week more of Jamie’s friends will be sharing what they have done with some of the other coloring pages:

Monday,August 3 –Lyric / Markers –Quilt Circles
Tuesday,August 4 –Leslie / Watercolors or Markers –Coffee Cups
Wednesday,August 5 –Desiree / Ink Tense Pencils –Trailers
Thursday,August 6 –Deborah / watercolors –Houses
Friday,August 7 –Susan / watercolors –Flowers on Page 3
Saturday,August 8 –Sue / colored pencils –Dresses


To celebrate the release of her coloring book Jamie will be giving away 2 coloring books to two separate people.  Just leave a comment on any of the blogs in the hop,and two random numbers will be chosen,to two lucky winners living in the U.S. only.  Winners will be announced on August 10,2015 on Jamie’s blog.

Don’t want to gamble on being a winner?  Then  pop over to Jamie’s blog here and order your own coloring book!

A new online class

It’s been a  long time since I’ve offered any online classes but that changed as of today because registration for my online exploring the altered surface class opens today!


Click here to get all the details and to register for this class.

it takes a village

I have been working on this new quilt for weeks and I’m glad to finally have it finished…


“it takes a village”

48″x 47″hand dyed fabric,machine quilted

I took a different approach on this quilt than I have on my previous ones.  Instead of using a single piece of fabric for each building I used strips of hand dyed fabrics fused together by overlapping the edges to create a tone on tone effect and then cut the buildings from the resulting fabric.  I am pleased with the results!

A close up:


Dinner at 8

I am just thrilled to bits that my quilt Tutti Frutti City Street will be a part of the Dinner@8  Affinity exhibit premiering this October at the International Quilt Festival in Houston this year.  This year’s theme was Affinity and the size requirement was 40″x 40″.  The theme was an easy one to work with for me as I have an affinity for all things bright and wonky…

affinity“affinity”40″x 40″

hand dyed cotton,machine quilted

A close up of the billboard:(click for a larger view)


and of the blimp:


Congratulations to all the all the artists whose quilts were accepted –I can’t wait to see the exhibit in Houston this year!

2 Quilting Arts Articles

I have two articles in the June/July 2015 issue of Quilting Arts!


Turn to page 35 and you’ll find an excerpt from my book:

IMG_1390 (1)

and then on page 74 you’ll find my article “write on! adding text to fabric three ways”:

IMG_1391 (1)



and the winner is…

There were a total of 664 comments left on all the blogs that were a part of the blog hop to celebrate my new book!


That’s a lot of comments!  Thank you to everyone who participated in the hop and stopped to leave a comment on one (or more!) of the blogs.  After I tallied the number of combined comments I used a random number generator to generate a number:


And tracked that number to Deborah Boschert’s blog post which led me to the winner who name is…

Vickie!  Vickie’s blog is More Stars in Comanche

Thanks to all of you who left comments and for those of you who didn’t win you can purchase my book at Amazon here or from Interweave here.

Solo exhibit

I’m so excited about the opening of my solo exhibit this week!  The exibit opens with an artist reception on  Saturday May 9 from noon to 2:00 pm at the Lawrence Library located at 15 Main Street (rt 113) in Pepperell MA.

affinityTutti Frutti Neighborhood 40″x 39″hand dyed cotton,machine quilted

I hope I see you there!

Colorful Fabric Collage Blog hop!

It’s time to celebrate the release of my book with a blog hop and a giveaway!

indexColorful Fabric Collage walks the reader through the techniques that awarding winning renowned quilter Sue Bleiweiss uses to create her colorful,vibrant art quilts. Readers will learn easy fusing techniques that serve as the basis for her design,along with ideas for keeping and using a sketchbook,hand-dyeing fabric,and adding further embellishments. Offering techniques and projects,Colorful Fabric Collage leads readers through the steps to successfully design,fuse,and quilt 14 projects based on Sue’s signature style.

The book is  now shipping and is available on Amazon here and the Interweave Website here. If you’ve already purchased it I would love to hear what you think about it so leave me a comment here or better yet,post a review of it on

Okay now for the fun stuff –the blog hop giveaway details!

giveawaypack1 giveaway package includes:A copy of Colorful Fabric Collage (please note that international winners will receive an e-copy and not a hard copy),a 2 1/2 yard package of Mistyfuse,a sampling of Aurifil threads and a stack of 10″squares of my own hand dyed fabric!  To be eligible for the giveaway just leave a comment on either this post or any of the other blog posts in the hop.  You can increase your chances of winning by leaving a comment on each of the blog hop posts but please,leave only one comment per blog hop post!

And here is the blog hop lineup,featuring the spotlight artists in the book:

May 4:Sue Bleiweiss:you are here!

I will announce the winner of the giveaway on Monday May 18th –good luck!

Thermofax 101 DVD by Lyric Kinard blog hop!

I’m so happy to be a part of the blog hop and giveaway to celebrate the release of Lyric Kinards newest DVD “Thermofax 101 –screen printing made easy

Thermofax_cover_square_web800pxh-650x650DVD running time:approximately 65 minutes

click here to order or watch a preview of the DVD

Screen printing is my favorite go to method for altering the surface of cloth and this DVD by Lyric covers everything you need to know about it.  She opens with an overview of what a thermofax screen is and how it’s made and then walks  through how to create and prepare the image that you want to create a screen with.  And those of you who don’t want to make your own screens ,she provides a comprehensive resource list of websites where you can buy ready made screens.

Now that you’ve got your screen you’ll need to know how to use it and that’s what she covers in the 3rd and 4th chapters of the DVD.   Starting with an overview of squeegies,paint and printable surfaces,Lyric then very clearly demonstrates exactly how to use your thermofax screens to add imagery to your cloth as well as some great techniques for layering your imagery,using your screens to discharge fabrics and how to use them to add foiling to the surface of the cloth.   Also included on the DVD is a 5 page printable PDF file that includes a general screen printing supply list,footnotes for each chapter detailing where to purchase the supplies that she references in the DVD,additional reading and online tutorial resources,and an extensive list of suppliers of custom and ready made screens.

The DVD is well lit and the sound is crisp and clear.  If you want to learn how to screen print then you definitely want to order this DVD!

Lyric is very generously giving away a DVD at each stop along the blog hop!  Just leave  a comment on this post between now and May 16th and you’ll be eligible to win. 

Be sure to stop by all the other blogs in the hop for more chances to win:

April 24 Cheryl Rezendez

April 25  Leslie Tucker Jenison  

April 28  Sue Bleiweiss

April 30  Judy Gula

May 1  Sue &Elizabeth Gibson

May 2  Judy Coates Perez :

May 4  Linda Stokes

May 6  Jane Davila

May 6 Melanie Testa

May 7  Liz Kettle

May 8  Carol Sloan

May 9  Kathy York

May 11  Susan Brubaker Knapp

May 12  Desiree Habicht

May 13  Jamie Fingal

May 14  Deborah Boschert

May 15  Sarah Ann Smith