Artist Residency - Empty Spools 2013

My experience at Asilomar, while having the honor of being "Artist in Residence" at Empty Spools Seminars, was amazing. Words cannot express the sense of peace I feel when I'm there. 

The beach is very unusual and beautiful. The eco system is very fragile...

I got lost and found this great path.

This is the view outside of the building I was in, Merrill Hall. 

This was the first time I actually saw all of my quilts up at the same time. It was a really nice feeling to be able to share my work and talk about my process. 

Sue Benner sharing her beautiful painted silk. Those are also my quilts on the stage.

My "radiant" friend, Caryl Bryer Fallert-Gentry. (A newlywed!)

I really enjoyed spending time with Jenny Bowker. What a warm and generous woman! She is sharing work by the Egyptian Tentmakers. She is the driving force exposing their amazing work to the quilting community and beyond. I look forward to seeing the exhibit in Paducah next month! 

And here she is with her breathtaking quilt Arabesque.

Another lady I got to know is the lovely Susan Carlson. I'm very happy to say that I've added one of her small pieces to my collection. It's a beautiful, colorful fish, and I'm so happy to have it! 

This is view from my patio. It is so quiet and serene...

And it's always nice to walk in and find one of these sitting peacefully outside your door. 

This year I had the opportunity to visit the Monarch Butterfly Sanctuary. Wow.


Perspectives: Fantasy and Reality - Exhibit at Road to CA


What a great time I had experiencing the "behind the scenes" world of setting up a major quilt show. It's a lot of work! Carolyn Reese, Matt Reese and the rest of the team were very supportive, and I certainly appreciated the opportunity and the experience. 

This was my first time curating an exhibit, and of course, I wanted to make sure I was with the quilts at all times. I was there for the set up, take down, and shipping.

The response was great and I was so grateful to have amazing artists and amazing works in this exhibit. It was very well recieved. 

Here is the description: 

"This exhibit will showcase quilts that are inspired by maps, aerial views and topography of actual or imaginary places. It may be somewhere the artist visited or would like to, or a vision from a dream. Imagine yourself in a spacecraft flying over an undiscovered planet, or take a trip into the vastness of an underwater world. We invite you to join us on a fantastic journey of discovery."

The Artists:

Frieda  AndersonELGIN, Illinois   Title: Hidden World

Hollis ChatelainHillsborough, NC   Quilt #1: Denim Flow  Quilt #2: From Stone

Karen CunaginFallbrook, CA   Title: BLUEPRINT: My Life to Scale

Eileen DoughtyVienna, VA   Title: Rhapsody Watershed

Lisa  EllisFairfax, VA   Title: Going Green: View From Space

Barbara E Friedman, San Diego, CA Title: The Visit

Valerie S GoodwinTallahassee, FL  Quilt #1: African Burial Ground III  Quilt #2: Scattered Archaeologies II

Sherry Davis  KleinmanPacific Palisades, CA,   Title: Bird's Eye View:  New York Avenue, Beach Haven, Long Beach Island

Paulette  LandersCamp Nelson, California   Quilt #1: Between Mars and Galaxia  Quilt #2:Mars: Penstemons Also Grow Here

Cat Larrea and Mark McDermottAnchorage, AL   Title: Chignik Lagoon

Sandra E. LauterbachLos Angeles, CA   Title: Out of the Box

Rodi S LudlumOak Park, CA   Title: Climbing to Higher Ground

Linda  McDonough, Beaver Island, MI   Title: Beaver Island Waterscape

Diana K. Shore, Bell Canyon, CA   Title: Cowpath In The Tundra

Gerri J Spilka and Delia Dungan, Philadelphia, PA   Quilt #1: City Edge #1  Quilt #2: City Edge #2

K. Velis TuranEarlton, NY   Quilt #1: MidTown A  Quilt #2: Midtown B



Click on the photo to check out an article that was written about the exhibit.

"Off The Wall Fridays" 





New Work

"Red Dragon"

36" x 38" Hand dyed cotton, pieced and machine quilted

2012 was the year of the Water Dragon, and it also happens that the Dragon is my Chinese Astrological sign. Of course, none of this crossed my mind when I started this piece, and it took a little while before it was revealed to me. As I began to read about it, I was surprised at all of the symbolism I had incorporated unknowingly. This is why I enjoy creating with no plan.
The Dragon is the fifth sign in the Chinese Zodiac, and it's the most revered.

I took no time off during the holidays, instead I painted silk scarves with thickened fiber reactive dyes. 
Here are a few examples:


I'm also on Nina-Marie's blog...   "Off the Wall Friday" 

New(ish) Work

"Lair of the Amethyst Deva" is currenly on display at the Oceanside Museum of Art and I just discovered today that it is featured on the home page of their website. 

"In a realm, undetectable to most humans, lives a powerful and loving being. Her violet glow shines brightly throughout the universe as she guides us home. This quilt was designed intuitively and pieced spontaneously using my hand dyed cotton fabric."  27" x 32"

"Yellow Brick Road" 

"This piece was created with no plan, but as it started to unfold, it reminded me of the Wizard of Oz. I see the blue of Dorothy's dress, the red of her ruby slippers, and of course, the yellow brick road. The bright colored areas remind me of Munchkinland and the gray symbolizes the energy of the Wicked Witch of the West, who is trying to find a way to get to Dorothy. This quilt is machine pieced using my hand dyed cotton fabrics."

37" x 36"



Ok, here are the last of my quilt photos... 



My piece, "In the Desert" was in the Tactile Architecture Exhibit.

"Road Trip" was my donation to the IQA Silent Auction. I'd like to know who the winning bidder was...  :)

The very talented Ferret

Super cool coat!

Sharon Schamber and Gail Thomas.

I thought this was an adorable booth...   :)

On our last night, Jena Moreno and her husband, Tom Gandy (the creators of the movie Stitched), took us to Hugo's for dinner. Lisa Ellis and Hollis were with us as well. There was a special celebration and menu for the Day of the Dead Celebration. The food was AMAZING, and we hope to get back there next year. 

These were the only shots I took because it was too dark. This was on display as you walked in. 


 Karey Bresenhan hosted an Art Quilt Reception at the Hyatt in Houston. It was a wonderful evening where online friends met in person. Members of QuiltArt and SAQA were in attendance. 


And last but not least, we enjoyed a slightly nerve-wrecking light show in the sky while in the air on the way back home. I shot video, and these barely do justice to what we witnessed. 

It was pretty funny because I felt like William Shatner in that Twilight Zone episode when only he sees the "monster on the wing". Everyone was sleeping or their windows were closed, and I was glued to my window!  :)

It really was an incredibly beautiful site, I must say. 

I'm definitely one of those people that can't sleep on a plane, no matter how tired I am. I like to gaze out of the window and enjoy the sites. I don't know where this is, but it is beautiful. 

IQA Houston Show 2012 (Part 1)

As usual, I was blown away by the amazing quilts in Houston this year. I took so many pictures, and it takes time to crop everything, so I will share these slideshows in groups. This is the first one. If you click on the image, you can pause the slides, and then manually go to the next pic, or reverse, as you choose. I had to do it this way since there are so many photos. 


One of the best parts about going to Houston is seeing my friends, and making new ones...

Dinner with Hollis Chatelain, Noriko Endo, Sue Nichols and her sister Pat Holly, Marilyn Badger, Mary (Caryl's friend), Ron (Caryl's wonderful partner) Caryl Bryer Fallert, and me. My husband Matt was also there but he took the picture.  :)

Caryl, myself and Hollis... I adore these women. They are two of my soul sisters.  :)

Noriko and I. She is a lovely lady and an amazing artist...  

Hollis, Noriko and Sue.

Pat and Marilyn. 

I look forward to seeing Luana Rubin and Sophie whenever I have the opportunity. Luana is another "soul sister" and Sophie is an incredibly interesting and talented young lady. 

Here I am with Heidi Farmer who sold me my beloved Innova sit-down machine. 

I love Alex and it's always a pleasure to see her. She is the only person I've sold a quilt to. She is the owner of "Sunset Cinema". 

Another favorite buddy of mine is Ricky Tims partner, Justin Shults. 

What can I say about Pokey... she is amazing in every way. Pokey has been a wonderful supporter of my work and her love of animals is incredibly touching. Her Pet Postcard Project raised well over 10k at the show to benefit a local Houston animal rescue organization. She is a doll! 

The very very humorous David Taylor. I love him.  :)

Here I am on the last day. What a blast I had and I am so grateful that I have a husband that loves and looks forward to coming to Houston, and quilt shows in general. 

I will post more quilt photos very soon. Seriously, I took a lot of photos. In addition, I just got back from Art Quilt Tahoe, and I'll post photos of that soon.  

I don't get many comments, and that's totally cool. I have no idea of how many people check out my blog, but thanks to those that are following my adventures. I sincerely appreciate your support and interest in my artwork.  

Peace and Love to all of you.  -s


My Donation to the International Quilt Association’s Celebrity Mini Quilt Silent Auction

"Road Trip" Pieced and free-motion quilted

IQA will auction the quilts on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday of Festival; however, they will be on display and available for bids from the beginning of Quilt Market.

In addition, I've donated some little fabric postcards to Quilt Festival’s Pet Project Postcards to benefit Friends For Life Houston’s premier no-kill rescue organization and animal shelter. They will be available for $20. at Festival in Houston.

Fiber Dialogues Exhibit - Oceanside Museum of Art

My Piece, "Lair of the Amethyst Deva" will be on display. I'm very honored to be a part of this exhibit.


October 14, 2012 - February 10, 2013
Singh Family Gallery

Preview Reception
Saturday, October 13
5:00 - 7:00 p.m.
Complimentary OMA Members
$10 Nonmembers

Expanding on the conversation between artists working in the shared medium of quilting, Fiber Dialogues presents a group of Southern California artists interested in responding to works in the Quilt National exhibition concurrently on view at OMA October 14, 2012 through February 10, 2013. Inspired by visual, conceptual or technical cues, this counterpoint exhibit creates a dialogue between the two exhibitions and participating artists. Featured artists include Jane LaFazio and Sheila Frampton-Cooper, among others.

The intention of Fiber Dialogues is to give voice to regional contemporary quilt artists and engage them with the Quilt National exhibition on view at OMA. While Quilt National is an international juried exhibition, OMA wanted to stay true to its mission of presenting artwork and artists with a strong connection to California. By inviting a small group of artists to synthesize and interpret works in the Quilt National exhibition, they were able to find innate existing connections that provided an intriguing platform for the universal role of image-making through contemporary quilting.

The Quilt Show taping in Boulder CO

What an incredible experience I had taping an episode of The Quilt Show in Boulder! I will admit, I had a case of the nerves initially because it was my first time doing something like this. However, I definitely relaxed into the experience and am so honored they asked me to do the show. 

I can't say enough about Alex and Ricky, they are total pros and really guided me though the process. Ricky reminds me of Gary Oldman's character in "The Fifth Element" in this shot. He just needs the clear skull cap. 

Justin, John, Shelly, Lilo and the entire crew were so supportive and warm, and they all have a great sense of humor!

Here I am playing on the Gammill as the master, Sue McCarty, checks out my work. Lucky for me that part of the photo is blown out.  :)

I had the good fortune of taping the same day as Sue McCarty and Angela Walters.

My husband and I fell in love with the Boulderado Hotel, just a block from the popular Pearl Street area. We had three meals there. The food and drinks were sublime, and the place itself is beautiful. If I go back to Boulder, that's where I'm staying. 

The first day we discovered the Boulerado Hotel, we noticed this wacky bus picking people up just outside. Of course, I had to get on that thing, so the next day, we experienced the Banjo Billy Tour complete with ghost stories told by a very funny guide. 

On the last day we went for a drive to the little mining town of Nederland, and stopped off to enjoy the scenery. I know I don't look too happy in this photo (but inside I'm really smiling!), but I'm coming down from all of the excitement I'd experienced in the past few days. It's was nice to be quiet, sit and just be. 

The town of Nederland, very cute indeed. 

I don't have pics of one of the highlights of my trip, and that was my visit to eQuilter, which is located in Boulder. We had a great lunch with Luana Rubin. I really dig Luana and her passionate, generous spirit. Sadly, I deleted my pics from our visit while on the Banjo Billy Tour. I guess I was distracted...

Call for Entry: Special Exhibit at Road to California 2013


This exhibit will be on display at Road to California January 24-27, 2013.

It will showcase quilts that are inspired by maps, aerial views and topography of actual or imaginary places. It could be somewhere you visited or would like to, or a vision from a dream. You might imagine yourself in a spacecraft flying over an undiscovered planet, or take a trip into the vastness of an underwater world. 

Click here for more information

Hollis' Master Color Class 2012 at the Oregon Garden Resort

I spent a week in early June at the Oregon Garden Resort, about an hour from Portland. What a beautiful place to take a workshop...

Hollis really worked us, and even though I consider myself an artist who is comfortable with color, I learned SO MUCH more. I adore and respect Hollis as a person and an artist and I consider myself fortunate to have the opportunity to study with her. 

This was the first picture I took upon arrival. 

My room was in this building, and was super nice! Comfortable bed, high ceilings, a fireplace and my own private patio. 

I stayed an extra day so I could actually see some sights, and the one that was #1 on my list was The Gordon House, by Frank Lloyd Wright.   

Mrs. Gordon was a weaver.

I think this was day two, and this was the main bunch that was burning the midnight oil every night. You'll notice one guy in this pic, Joseph, and he was at the resort for a conference and happened to wonder in out of curiousity. We were in a room right across from the bar/lounge. He took pity on us and ended up taking our drink orders and bringing back two bottles of wine and various cocktails. It was a fun night even though I'm looking pretty tired here. :)

Here I am modeling one of Kayla Kennington's amazing pieces. 

Mount Hood, kinda cool...

Last but not least, I flew up to Portland via Virgin America, and gee whiz, am I spoiled. Anything else will now be a let down...  

I ordered every free item that was available to me via the touch screen menu. It was a nice flight back home. I watched an excellent movie, "Jeff Living at Home" with Jason Segal. I laughed, I cried. I highly recommend it. 

New Work: Nan's Whale


43" x 44"

In mid March of this year, I was watching the Smithsonian Channel and there was a documentary about Nan Hauser and her Humpback Whale research in the Cook Islands. She was telling a story about a particular whale that initially rammed the boat, but ended up sticking around for quite a while and they bonded. I was mesmerized, and inspired to bring my feeling about this whale into form. This is the result. 

Her colors and patterns are inspired by my extreme love of tropical fish. I'm amazed by their magical, otherworldly beauty. 

She is painted with fiber reactive dye, and free motion quilted. This is a whole cloth piece. 

New Work

"In the Desert" 28" x 31"

Cotton fabric, monoprinted and painted with Procion MX fiber reactive dyes, discharged, free-motion quilted, additional shading with Shiva Paintstiks. 

Empty Spools 2012 at Asilomar

I had an amazing time in Pacific Grove this week and my workshop with the incredibly talented Hollis Chatelain exceeded my expectations. 

I met wonderful new friends...

My workstation was right next to "Ernest", the nickname for this breathtaking piece (Innocence) behind us. It must be seen in person to truly appreciate. 

I met this "wild" lady named Nancy, who reminds me of Ruth Gordon's character in the movie "Harold and Maude'. The "Maude" character is a hero of mine, and someone I truly relate to, so Nancy and I bonded instantly. And to top it off, she is quite an all around artist! I was impressed...    :)

We were in an awesome room this year, and the work that came out of our class was so beautiful! 

African-American Quilters of Los Angeles Lecture/Trunk Show

Last Sunday, I had the pleasure of speaking at the AAQLA guild meeting. What a wonderfully warm and talented group! It was truly an honor. 
During their show and tell, I was really blown away by the diversity of quilts.
Here is my buddy Patsy, from the LA Modern Quilt Guild, sharing her beautiful bags, and then the reaction from the audience. As I type this, Patsy is making a custom bag for me to carry my rolled quilts. I'm super excited!!!

New Work


"Fantasyland"  43" x 44" Hand dyed cotton, pieced and free motion quilted.


"Elemental" 8" x 10" Printed, thread painted and free motion quilted.