Wednesday, June 19, 2013

New Dresses

The time is moving along smoothly. I have suffered every frustration with the speed or lack-there-of of this project. I finally finished the leaves and other greenery to my satisfaction.

The picture is from 1943. It seems to be full summer and a time of gathering for cousins at their grandmother's house.

I was there last week at that same house for our annual family renuion. Our family has been gathering there for more than seventy years. It looks pretty much the same. The house is sinking and the shutters have been updated. It also needs a new paint job, but the joy and memories we all share at that house are astonishing.  My grandmother used to tell us she was born there in that front bedroom in 1886. She lived in that house all her life and died in that same room in 1974. It was a good life. It was full of family and love. She and my grandfather had ten children and a hell of a lot of grand-children. The land the house sits on had two major pecan trees, several volunteer pecan trees, a peach tree, and several pear trees. We all played on the big rock under the pecan tree and picked pears from the tree nearest the back porch. Most of all there is a big open field that we all played on and my children played there and now my grandchildren are playing there.

I am very much aware that it is a blessing to be able to share that kind of longevity with my family. Many of us (African Americans) do not know our family history. My family works very hard to keep that knowledge alive and pass it along to our children and grandchildren. This quilt is going to be an important part of that legacy that we pass along. I'll tell you a little story about what/who each child on this quilt grew up to be. 

Can hardly wait.

Monday, June 10, 2013

The Yellow Brick Road

Just as Dorothy made it down the yellow brick road, I too have been making my way to the Wizard. This journey has  arduous at best. I love how it is shaping up. The shirt on the second outfit may need a little more detailing. Can't wait to do their faces and a picture of what they are eating. Feeling like skipping ahead but that wouldn't be right. I must stay the course. Next I have to make two little girl dresses. That should go fast.

I must confess that when I started with the picture and the image in my head, I wasn't so sure how it would go. I told myself that if I followed the yellow brick road, I would make it. Then it started to take shape. The colors are coming in and bringing it to life.

Last week I launched my first ever campaign on I am pretty excited about it.
This campaign gives me an opportunity to bring you a quality calendar for 2014 and gives you the opportunity to own several Art Quilt pictures for your collection. I am always so grateful to all the people who have and continue to support my efforts. Your contribution will help make the calendar a worldwide success and help me continue my quest to explore the art of quilting.
This quilting thing is in my genes. It started a long time ago with my ancestors, primarily with my Great Grandmother Emma. I have been told many times about her great quilting skills. Yes my cousin tells me often that I am carrying on Grand Emma's tradition. I am sure she too was carrying on a tradtion from her grandmother and a grandmother before that. I'm proud to be able to carry the tradition on and thankful to you supporting my journey.

All I need you to do is go to and contribute.
I have set up some wonderful perks with you in mind. Just $5-$10 will go a long way in making it happen. You will get a calendar either way you go.

Pledge $10.00 and get one Jazzy Blues 2014 Art Quilt Calendar, a 2014 Art Quilt Calendar Magnet, and a shoutout on OBA Quilts Facebook page. That is exciting!
The campaign goal is $6000.00, it will be used to publish, print and ship the calendars. Growing up in the rural south, I rarely saw artwork that reflected the soul of my community and people. I decided to create the kind of art that I craved. It is my dream that I contribute to the visions of young people who are newly introduced to art as well as adult art lovers. I choose a calendar as the vehicle because it is a great way to collect art that everyone can afford. Contributors to this project will help me spread my love of art to a vast audience.
I am so excited about this fourth calendar. As you may know, I made my very first calendar in 2009-Two Step; in 2011 I followed with Laughter, Lessons and Triumphs; and in 2012 Metamorphosis was born. Now I am happy to top it all off with Jazzy Blues. It is a journey into Improvisation.

If you can't contribute, there are other ways you can help. You can help me make some noise. Spread the word to everyone you know.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Multi Tasking

I can say for sure that I am a lover of multi tasking. Yesterday, I found myself saying, "multi tasking is for the birds." Shame on me, but I do wonder sometimes if doing a lot of things at once is really a good thing. I am sure my parents watched us as more external stimuli held our attention less and less. We no longer had time to curl up with a good book. "Just watch the book made into a movie on tv; or worse yet get the Cliff notes so you will know enough to pass the test," we would say. I would have missed some really good books if I had held to that philosophy. Now I look at my grandchildren's generation and it is moving even faster. Who has time for tv, watch it on your phone or the computer and fast forward past the commercials. If the world keeps going faster and faster with each generation, where will it end up? I also wonder what my grandmother thought about the world she was leaving me in.

Well anyway, I have been multi tasking like crazy. I feel bad that I haven't gotten to my newsletter but it is getting higher on the list. I started making the outfits for the children on the quilt.
I'm really pleased with the way this one turned out. I had to stop myself from getting too detailed. Afterall, it is just a quilt. I used several different white fabrics in this quilt so that difference between things could be noted easily. I used some kona white on the house. Then I found some white linen in my stash and used that on outfit number one. I had another piece of white that I used on his shirt. Can't wait to find more different ones for the other outfits. The leaves are finally almost finished. Nothing has moved as fast as I wanted it to but it's coming along.

I have to admit that I am getting a little antsy. I catch myself thinking about the next project a lot. I need to be thinking about this one A LOT. I will get it done though because I've got multi tasking on my side.