An Artful Trip Through Alabama!

Steel Quilt Company Giveaway is here!

We’ve been back from vacation for a little while now, but I’m finally getting to that part of my story! I’ve been excited to share some of our adventures in my Sweet Home Alabama. And a couple of giveaways (Stay Tuned!)….

A little history, if you’d like… My family (parents, grandparents, etc) is from Alabama, but I was born in Texas and then we moved to Bama on my tenth birthday. It was not an easy adjustment for me! And I have to admit, I never fully appreciated Bama until I left. I guess that’s partly being a teen-ager and partly that whole saying, ‘The grass is always greener on the other side….’ But once I left home, I knew I had something great back home! And honestly, it’s only been over the last 6 or 7 years that I’ve come to find how much amazing art comes from my home state!

And just in case you don’t know about some of it, I’m going to share it with ya over the next week or two! I hope you enjoy this little journey as well!

Ready??? Here we go!

We flew home, grabbed a bite to eat with my mom, drove to my dad’s house, spent the night and then we were off for a family adventure to the NE corner of Alabama. Where I went to summer camp as a kid! Mentone, AL! While in this area we took in a few caves and waterfalls, which were all beautiful! And so fun. Our first stop was Little River Falls in the Little River Canyon. Our first place to take our shoes off and put our feet in the water and sit in the sun!!! Which was very much needed after a Pacific NW winter!

Warning::: You might want to stop and put on some sunglasses, our white, white legs are a bit blinding!

My husband and I love old buildings. So while we were driving around, from falls to caves, we found this cool old factory building only to find out that it was an antique and art gallery. So of course we jumped out to see what was inside! The first thing I saw when I walked in was this really cool quilt pattern art made of metal and wood.  I loved it! But left it there.

We got back in the car and I googled the artist, The Steel Quilt Company. My husband was driving around the building and while I was trying to find out more about this artist, I happened to look up and saw their sign! Right there in the building! You can google anything,but man, pay attention to what’s going on around, because I would have missed it if I had stayed online!

On our way to Sequoyah Caverns I found some barn quilts! I was sooooo excited! I just learned about the whole barn quilt thing a few months back and they aren’t common in the South at all. So to see one, was very exciting. Even my husband was pulling over and pointing them out. But it was the only barn quilts we saw!

Now barn advertising, on the other hand, that was everywhere!

And Sequoyah caverns… AMAZING! Getting off the interstate and to the caverns was a bit like stepping into a world left behind, but that only added to the adventure. A bunch of rusted out and abandoned buildings and cars, but…..  The caverns were great! The best cave I’ve ever been too. And it was us, the tour guide and some bats. How cool is that???

So that barn quilt by The Steel Quilt Company… Literally, I kept thinking about it. And I kept bringing it up to the family. So the next day when I brought it up AGAIN, it was quickly decided that we’d go back for it. And that’s what we did. We went back and I got myself my favorite one!

Winter Papercut Tutorial over at Sugar Bee Crafts

I don’t know if you remember, but wayyyyyyy back in 2011 I did a tutorial on how I do my 3D papercuts…. I made the tutorial to share with a great blog, Sugar Bee Crafts, but today I wanted to post it right here on my blog! It is a little Christmas-y… the decorated tree kinda gives that away, huh??? But it’s still hanging in our dining room, we just had a nice little winter snow storm last week (that kept us at home for a week looking at the walls…. yes, my husband started painting the walls again today… see??? we really have been staring at the walls around here!) and I’m thinking about doing a springy or Valentine’s day one too… So I guess what I’m trying to say is, I’ve been thinking about it for a while, so I thought I’d share it again!

The other projects I’ve become obsessed with lately are paper cut art pieces! I made one for Halloween and absolutely loved it, so thought I’d make another winter one. That idea grew into a tutorial that I want to share with you today!

Step 1- Gather the materials!

Frame- I actually used a wooden painting panel (1 1/2″ depth) turned backwards!

Paper! The blue background paper, the white paper, gold glitter paper for the star, and glitter paper for the tree ornaments.

Images- If you’d like to use mine, download them here.

Foam Core

Spray Paint- If you want to paint your canvas

Cutting Materials- cutting mat, straight edge, exacto knife and extra blades

Hole Punches- I used a regular hole punch and two smaller ones, 1/8″ and 1/16″ hole punches

Picture Hanging Materials- Eye Screws and Wire

And miscellaneous tools that didn’t fit in the picture!- Double sided tape and Glue

Step 2- Spray Paint the frame. This is going to be Step 2 and a few in-between steps throughout. I started with this step. Then moved on to the next steps and between steps would go add my second and third coats of paint.

I got my panels at Artist and Craftsman Supply here in Seattle. Actually I got mine out of our cabinet that stores our art supplies and my lovely husband pointed out that the panels I used on this and the Halloween one was actually not mine at all, but his! It was nice of him to donate them to the cause! I know what’s going in his stocking this year…

Step 3- Cut the background paper.

Step 4- The Papercuts- Part 1! This step is kinda long and tedious. I kinda hate to say that, but I don’t want you to get into and wonder why it’s taking so long…. If it is, you’re doing it right! I taped my image onto the white paper and then start cutting. Don’t try to get it perfect in this step. This one you’re just making the lines, but not worrying if they actually connect… (this will make more sense in the next step)

Step 5- The Papercuts- Part 2! Yep, another long step… Remove the image from Step 4. This is where you replace your knife blade and go in and actually connect all the lines for nice sharp corners. Also, don’t forget to cut the moon.

Step 6- Cut the Foam Core. Outline the ground-line of the paper cut on the foam core and then cut the foam core about a 1/4″ shorter than the actual paper cut for each layer.

Step 7- Tape the Foam Core. Tape the foam core to the papercuts with double-sided tape. I love this Scotch tape! It says it’s removable, but it holds really well!!

Step 8- Punch out the snow. I used both of the smaller hole punches for the snow and primarily the 1/16th inch punch.

Step 9- Glue on the moon and the snow. First I laid out where the moon was going to be and then glued it down. I sprinkled all the snow on, then adjusted if there were any clumps of areas with too much snow. Then I glued it down. I was planning on just using regular glue, but imagine my surprise when I found this WONDERFUL ball point glue pen. LOVE IT!

Step 10- Punch tree ornaments. I used all three hole punches for the ornaments.

Step 11- Cut out the star!

Step 12- Glue on the ornaments. I was a little skeptical about the ornaments… I loved it with just the star being the only color, but at the same time, I loved the ornaments…

So I did a little mock-up with and without the ornaments. Obviously I went with the ornaments! Actually, this idea didn’t hit me until I was done… But I actually liked the idea of making one or two extra layers of the tree… Hmmmmm…. Next time…

Step 12- Take a break from the actual art piece and add the picture hanging wire.

Step 13- Assemble all the pieces! Start by adding the double-sided tape to the back of the frame. Then continue by adding the tape to each layer and building up the piece.

And lastly, add the star to the top of the tree! Just like in our house, the star (or angel, depending on the year) is always the last ornament!

Step 14- Hang it up and enjoy!

I’m so excited about my new paper cut obsession! What do you think? I’m thinking art shows, my name in lights, world acclaim…. Ok, Maybe I’ll just stick to making them for my home….

ahhhh… that felt good to get this posted yet again! Hope you don’t mind the repost… I’ve been working hard on some fun stuff, so of course, there’s good stuff coming the next couple of weeks!!!  I can’t wait to show ya some of the other things I’ve been working on.

Shared with the these link parties!

From Here to There, From There to Map Quilt Link Love with a Give Away!!

I don’t know if it’s my architectural background or my love of traveling, but I’ve always loved maps! Topographic Maps, City Maps, Celestial Maps, Antique maps, basically any map. I love them. And you know I love quilts. So it only makes sense that I’d also love quilt maps!

I had the idea, ‘Ill make a quilt with a map image!’ then a few weeks later I got my next issue of Quilting Arts Magazine with a feature on map quilts. Ok, so I wasn’t the first one to have this idea! The feature story was written by and showcased the quilts of Valerie Goodwin. Amazingly beautiful work!

I’ve also fallen in love with a few other ‘map’ quilters…

The quilts made by Haptic Lab are very literally, quilted maps. love…..  (hmmmm…. The company was started by an architect)

Valerie Goodwin’s map quilts take on a more abstract imagery of places and the mapping of space. Keep reading for more about Valerie below…. And a Give Away!


These two are by different artists. (Can you tell??)

The black and white piece from Emma McNally isn’t a quilt at all, but wouldn’t it make a beautiful one???? From what I’ve read about Emma (and how I found her work) is that’s she’s inspired by cartography and maps. Her work does leave my mind wondering about the maps and imaginary places her art might be representing! 

The quilt on the right is by Leah Evans and is exactly what I had in mind when I first envisioned my map quilt. Her pieces have a sense of place, a sense of topography and yet all imagined places. Stay tuned for an artist interview with Leah next week.

And last, but, as always, not least…. I’m in awe with the amazing details of Jimmy McBride’s space quilts. I don’t know if these are technically ‘maps’ per se, but the star quilts are a map of the night sky. His blog is amazing to read and to see the technique he uses for his quilting process. All the detail and pieces!! The moon quilt is a rendering of  Saturn’s third largest moon, Iapetus.

I recently got an email of pictures of earth taken from space. The pictures are taken at night and you see all the lights glittering on earth. Between that and Jimmy’s star quilt inspiration, I’m envisioning another quilt to add to my do to list!

And now….. Insert drumroll here…..

Feelin’ Crafty’s first ever…..


This is your chance to own a beautiful mini Art Quilt by the multi-talented quilt artist (and architect….) Valerie Goodwin! As I was looking around online at all her beautiful pieces, I saw these mini quilts and she graciously agreed to give one to one of my readers! I was giddy with excitement when she said Yes!

After she agreed, I realized that if it’s a giveaway, it’s a giveaway and I can’t keep it for myself! So, I had to buy one for me, too! (more to come on that….) You won’t believe the detail in these quilts. When I was reading about her techniques, in the pictures I couldn’t visualize all the details as described in the article, but in person… Another story! Beautiful! (not that the article isn’t beautiful as well.) I keep looking at them and each time I see a new detail that I didn’t see before.


Ready to WIN? You have FIVE ways to enter! And come back and leave a separate comment on this post for each entry!

1) Head to Valerie’s Website  and tell us which quilt is your FAVORITE !

2) Become a fan of Valerie on Facebook.

3) Become a fan of Feelin’ Crafty on Facebook.

4) Subscribe to Feelin’ Crafty.  

5) Share the Giveaway on your blog.

Winner will be chosen on Wednesday, April 13, 2011. 

Winner will be chosen using


Comments closed as of 9.45PM PST. Thank you!

Buildings of Fabric- Friday Inspiration

A bit link love, a LOT inspiration….

Either way, I found these projects online and haven’t stopped thinking about them! I think I’ve mentioned that by day I”m an architect and work in the field getting buildings built on a daily basis. These are not the kinds I build, but man, do I want to!

This one started my obsession! Slipcover for a Schoolhouse by Judith Hoffman

image by GRAFT LLC; Ricky Ridecos. via specialyfabricsreview

ahhh… New Orleans. Where my architectural journey began! What fun times I had while at school at Tulane. What hard times the city has gone through since. The Pink Project was a collaborative art installation to bring awareness about the devastation of New Orleans 9th Ward and it did! It raised over 12 million dollars to help rebuild this neighborhood. Each pink house marked the spot of where a home once stood and where another one will be rebuilt.

And last, but not least, the work of Do-Ho Suh

Suh is was born in Korea and later moved to the US, studied art here and has exhibited internationally.  There is a great interview with Suh over at designboom.

Insane! (and I mean that in the most magnificent way) Meticulous. The details are amazing! All of his work is amazing, but I am blown away by his fabric architecture pieces. In these pieces he creates architectural space out of translucent fabric. These architectural elements he recreates with his fabric vary from the very personal gateway to the mundane of everyday life, but either way, each piece draws you in to become a part of it, to want to walk right in and make it your place. Exactly what every architect strives for.

This installation, Staircase, is the one that first grabbed my attention and introduced me to Suh’s work.

image via artnet
image courtesy gallery lehmann maupin via designboom

This week I’ve spent way to much time discussing mechanical ducts and pipes and yes, sink carriers (those pesky legs and arms hidden in the walls and sinks that actually hold up the sinks). So I found myself drawn to this sink and toilet in The Perfect Home II!

image courtesy hermes japon co via designboom

Check out the article on this particular piece, Reflection, at designboom.

And this last one, Paratrooper 1, is not about architecture per se, but the stitching is amazing!

image courtesy gallery lehmann maupin via designboom

The Sketchbook Project- Done!

Well, this week there hasn’t been much bloggin’ goin’ on here this week. And I miss it. But that doesn’t mean I haven’t been busy busy… Let’s see…

Finish The Sketchbook Project. Check

Finish Ghostie Order. Check

Made Baby Presents for one of my best friends preemie. Check

Patched husband’s jeans. Check

Finished Winter Photo Swap Project. Check

Get Featured in Another Etsy Treasury. Check

Oh, yeah, and worked all week and played with my family. Wow, honestly I didn’t realize how much I had done in a week. I’ll cut myself some slack on not blogging….

OK, all those projects will be posted (well, except the jeans. they look pretty good, but not very exciting.), but this one is the finished Sketchbook.

Come On, Bow Wow, Let's Go Campin'

Some pages are just ‘Happy Thoughts’ (the theme of the book), while others are ‘sketches’ of projects I have planned. Fish for a fishing game. Dreams of the beach while I’m working on a play mat. Upcoming quilts.

One Day I'll Fly Too

Rain Rain Go Away

Spring Is Here, I Wish

Not The Sun, Mercury

Climbing On Dragon Hill

So that’s mine… My favorite? I think the very first one I did, my son and his dog Bow Wow. Daddy used to tell Max stories, this is one he came up with, an adorable one about our son going camping with his stuffed animal Bow Wow. They packed their bags, headed out, pitched their tent, made a fire, and laid out under the stars before packing up and heading home for the snacks they forgot!

Which one is your favorite? Please tell!

This will be a traveling exhibit. If it comes to a city near you, check it out, scan my library card while perusing mine and the other 28,000…

February 19-27    Brooklyn   Brooklyn Art Library

March 12    Austin   Austin Museum of Art

March 30- April 2   Portland, ME    SPACE Gallery

April 8-9   Atlanta    The Granite Room

April 11-31   Washington, DC    Transformer Gallery

June 10-12     Seattle    Form/Space Atelier

June 18    San Francisco    111 Mina Gallery

July 14-17    Chicago    Hyde Park Arts Center

July 29-31   Winter Park    Full Sail University


Silhouettes, I’m loving them right now!

Yep, loving them.

There seems to be a resurgence of silhouette art these days! But that’s ok with me. A while back I saw an art piece in a magazine of all sorts of silhouettes and it inspired me to want to do a shadow box piece of a bunch of silhouettes from our trip to NY, the kiddos playing ball, my son staring out the train window, looking at dinosaurs… You get my point..

Well, that project hasn’t happened, so I can’t show you that! Were you thinking I was leading up to that?? 🙂 sorry. But not to be disappointed, I have a link love and a mini tutorial for ya today! 

First, the link love….


1. I was lookin’ around and fell for the dog silhouette done by Living with Lindsay. I love the white accents around the dog’s ear. She has a tutorial for doing this using paper, what I think of as the traditional way….

2. I’m in love with Circles and Squares work. I got this print for my son’s new playroom we’re working on. I also got my husband an awesome shirt from these guys. And on a side note, I bought a kids sweatshirt from them 3 years ago or so and it’s held up to 2 toddlers for this whole time. Very impressed…

3. Another tutorial for silhouettes on fabric. Inhabitots shows you how to make one with a freezer stencil. I’ve never done a freezer paper stencil, but want to try. Very cool.

4. And another piece from Pumpkin and Butterfly! (I showed you her Fly to the Moon print a few weeks ago.) I realized I had bookmarked this print ages ago, before I was featured with her in the Etsy treasury. ANYWAY…. The bright colors of this one are awesome for a more modern appeal! 

5. After our trip to the zoo today, this watercolor silhouette tutorial from Prudent Baby caught my eye! So many ways for silhouettes!

6. And last but not least, how adorable is the hippo and the toothbrush by Karl Johnson?? I should get this and hang it in my bathroom in hopes that it will help with the 2 year old’s nightly tooth brushing ritual!

And for Part 2 of my post today….

Mixed Media Fabric Silhouettes Tutorial



Computer (sorry it’s not in the picture, but I wasn’t going to move my whole computer over to the photography board!)



Fusible Adhesive, like Steam to Seam or Heat’n Bond (Seems to be one of my favorite tools these days. For this project I used Heat’n Bond Lite for sewing)




Sewing Machine

Step 1: Pick your picture. You can just print it and go from there. I wanted to have a real image before I got started, so I did a little Photoshop action. I’m not going to add the Photoshop part to the tutorial (but if you have questions, just ask).

Step 2: Print the image the right size for your project. You will be transferring it to the back side of your fabric and fusible adhesive, so be sure that you don’t need to mirror your image.

Step 3: Iron the fusible adhesive to the fabric. Here, I’m using the traditional black, but as you can see above the fabric can be anything!

Step 4: Trace your image onto the fusible adhesive. You either need to cut it out and trace it or hold it up to a light source and trace. I typically to option 2, but with the black I had to turn to option 1.

Step 5: Cut out the silhouette.

Step 6: Iron the silhouette to you paper. Quickly, some paper will show the iron marks, so careful.

Step 7: Stitch the silhouette. Here I did the kids with the machine and the sleeping dragon hill by hand.

Step 8: Ta-Da! You now have a fantastic mixed media art piece! (which is also a page from the Sketchbook Project I am working on…)

Climbing Sleeping Dragon Hill

She Likes It!

Ahhhhh… I sent Katie from oohmoon pictures of my Advent Calendar and she likes it! I’m honored to be the first reader project featured on her blog!

And my son loved it too!


Happy Holidays!

12, 13, 14… Advent Calendar = Check!

OH MY! That only took two weeks longer than it was supposed to! Finally finished on Day 14…

I checked out all sorts of Advent calendars and designed one made of 4 or 5 different houses… Well, I made one and hated it. I just really disliked it.  Here is Plan A:

So, Plan B. Technically I didn’t have a plan B, but I was determined that I was making an Advent calendar this year! So, Plan B actually included coming up with a new design…. I didn’t really have a clue what Plan B was going to be and I was already behind schedule…

I came up with the idea of all the pocket being presents. Maybe under a tree?  Maybe just presents? Or another house theme?? Then I started following this awesome blog, oohmoon. Katie, from oohmoon is making an art piece everyday and then giving it away for free for 24 hours. (If you haven’t already seen this, you should.) She was working on a series of animals and I had fallen in love with the owl. Then she made the owl in the tree with the fox. When I saw that, the design just popped into my head instantly!!

That was the design process. Then I made all the present pockets, positioned the tree pieces and Katie’s art, sewed on the pockets, layered the quilt pieces, appliqued the tree pieces, finished the edges and wah lah…

There is one other thing I have planned for this quilted advent calendar. I have a bunch of pearl beads that fell of the pearl fabric I used for the stockings. I want to stitch those to the quilt for a little snow effect. Cool? Leave it alone? Let me know…

As I was making this, almost done, probably about the 10th of December, my husband asks, ‘Is this something he’ll use every year?’  My answer was basically a look of shock, of course he will! Until he’s about 40 years old…

Helping Spread Crafty to Facebook

Nothing crafty today, just a new Facebook page for my blog…

I am totally relishing everyone’s comments on my art and craftiness! I can’t even explain how getting supportive feedback from family, friends and complete strangers is spurring my creativity! So I thought, why not set up other ways for people to see my things, comment and keep me motivated.

And not only that, I’ve found so many other awesome artists and bloggers online from comments on my blog and Facebook. The more the merrier!

The Like button is right over there… To your right…

And just to make it that much easier… Click the image below and away you go to the merry ‘old land of Facebook!

Thanks again for the motivation and inspiration!

Postcards From The Gulf Update

All the postcards are online! Check them out here, there are some great ones! I have a list of all the ones I want to buy, but I am going to have to narrow that down. way down…

They go on sale tomorrow!! Beginning at 10:30pm CST on Friday, Nov. 5. $50.00 each and all the proceeds go to Alabama Coastal Foundation to help with the clean-up of our beautiful beaches and awesome coast line environments.

If you are in Mobile, AL, you can also check them out in person.

Preview and Sale: Saturday, November 12, 2010

6pm to 9pm

Room 1927 –  Saenger Theatre

Mobile, Alabama

I blogged more about my piece and the project here and here.

Here are a few of my favorites:

Bebe Kern, Winston-Salem, NC; Walter Beckham, Mobile, AL;

Elaine Rutledge, Mobile, AL; Joyce McAdams, Edgewater, FL;

Anna Vanover, Riverside, CA