Friday, October 31, 2008

Goodbye October...Hello Rain

I bid adieu to October, determined not to let the onset of winter and the rainy season 'dampen' my creativity. So what can I focus on as the rains start? Yes, we desperately need the rain...the ground is thirsty, the fire danger is extreme, the reservoirs are too low, but in my own little world, it is satisfying to see the garden drink up the moisture. And I love how true colors are in the rain, not washed out by our perpetually brilliant sunshine.

Drink up, my darlings, and shine forth with beautiful rainy day colors...

Thursday, October 30, 2008

The Perfect Box for my ACEO Deck

I have been on a hunt for plain boxes for my ACEO decks. I want to custom embellish them for those lucky recipients who are getting ACEO decks for Christmas.
I cannot find, anywhere, plain card deck sized boxes.

But while on the hunt, I am coming across some very interesting ready-made boxes, some of them vintage, and of course I want them all.

This one I could not resist. Remember, I did the Joker card. So how perfect is it to find a ready-made card box with a joker on it!! ??

And it's beautiful, too! I think it's called parquetry where different colors of wood are inlaid and arranged to form a pattern.

Next step is to figure out how to mount the original Joker inside without damaging the felt.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


It started with, admittedly, boredom. I would go to every one of Megan's volleyball games, and I would go early, usually because I was driving the team to an away game. That often meant at least an hour to kill before the game would start. I would sew, or read, or even work. But then one day I was playing with the camera, and thought, why not take a picture of my shoe. I really like this picture, always have.

Then there was another time, I was struggling with this quilt. Pixie Stix has a whole story around it, but we'll save that for another time. I kept moving the blocks around, taking pictures, moving them around some more, and finally I just got bored and tired, but oh, I can take a picture of my favorite snow leopard slippers!

(Where are those slippers? Megan, do you have these slippers?)

Then one day there was a shoe sale at Anthropologie. I would be a richer woman, were it not for Anthropologie. Come to think of it, it was Holly that first told me about Anthropologie, which brings me full circle to Pixie Stix, but that's another story.

So when these, two of the most incredible pairs of shoes, arrived from Anthropologie, I had to take pictures.

When I wear these red, white and blue shoes, I am happy. People go nuts over these shoes. Perfect strangers want to talk to me about my shoes. Those who don't talk to me stare at my shoes with envy.

Here is the latest score from Anthro, are these awesome or what??

So now I find whenever I'm sitting around, with shoes on, and a camera in my hand, something tells me to take a picture of my shoes.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Playing Cards, ACEOs, Playing Card ACEOs

What is this fascination with playing cards? Is it something new? I think if I reach way back into the memory banks, I recall playing cards with my mom. But its only a faint memory, and I'm not even sure if its true. Then there was concentration, trying to remember where the cards were hidden. Did I play that with Robert? Or by myself? Oh and the cheap trick "want to play 52 pickup?" I clearly recall tons of games of 500 rummy with Megan. It never even mattered who won. It seems throughout my life there was this fascination with holding the cards, arranging the cards, sorting the cards, observing the cards, touching the cards.

No wonder I can't stop flipping over and over through my ACEO 'deck', or at least the diamonds. Does no one else share my fascination??

Monday, October 27, 2008

Shooting Star...Seen and Quilted!

Location: Kirkwood, California
Date: October 25, 2008
Time: About 8 PM

A: "You know what we should do, we should go out and look at the stars. We never get to see stars from home."
B: "But it's cold outside."
A: "It won't take that long, we'll just go out and look up and come back in."
B: "But I don't have any clothes for going out at night."
A: "There are plenty of coats and stuff here, just go get a coat."
B: "OK"

A few minutes later...
A: "Wow, there are tons of stars out here, we can even see the Milky Way."
B: "Do you know what the Milky Way is?"
A: "Star dust?"

A&B: "Oh look! Gasp! Wow! A shooting star!!"

(OK, so we didn't take this picture, but this is just what it looked like! The background was much better, however, with millions of clear pinpoint stars and the swath of the Milky Way.)

How about a contest - guess who said what correctly and I'll send you a prize.

OK, we now return to our regularly scheduled programming... Star Quilts!

One of the older star quilts in my repertoire, this is a "Stack-n-Whack" technique quilt made with a Faberge eggs fabric.
Faberge Quilt
Faberge Star, Diane Weber 65" x 65"

This next star, "Star of the Orient" was an original design I did for Quilter's World magazine, with fabric provided by Kona Bay fabric company.
Star of the Orient, Diane Weber, 45" x 45"

All 41 pieces in each star (that's 369 total) of this Alto's Star quilt were accurately cut using the Alto's Quilt Cut. This is also the first quilt I quilted with a Handi-Quilter.
Alto's Star Bright
Alto's Star, Diane Weber, 37" x 47"

These next four are samples of my Supernova pattern. This first and last were made for Lakehouse Dry Goods, the two in the middle for Maywood Fabric Company.
Rose Toile Supernova, Diane Weber, 60" x 60"

Fun Floral Supernova, Diane Weber, 60" x 60"

Fireworks Supernova Quilt
Fireworks Floral Supernova, Diane Weber, 60" x 60"

Super Bits
Super Bits 'n Lotta Dots, Diane Weber 48" x 48"

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Seeing Yellow... Leaves and ACEOs

We were almost too late, the leaves having turned and fallen at Kirkwood. But down a little lower in the Hope Valley, on the way to Lake Tahoe, there were still plenty of quaking aspens, shimmering yellow against the brilliant blue sky.

This weekend I started listing my ACEO Deck. This is the set of 54 ACEOs I am creating from prints of the first 54 ACEOs I created, backed by a matching original piece of textile art.

The 1, 2 and 3 of Diamonds are also very yellow, with backgrounds of a yellow fabric dotted with spots of gold. The numbers and pips on these cards are hand-stamped, the red fabric diamonds are hand cut and glued in place. The "faux stitching" around the diamonds is done with red pigma ink, and on each diamond a little crystal is glued in place (Gemtac is a great product for glueing beads and crystals to fabric.)

2 of Diamonds, Diane Weber, 2 1/2" x 3 1/2"

3 of Diamonds, Diane Weber, 2 1/2" x 3 1/2"

4 of Diamonds, Diane Weber, 2 1/2" x 3 1/2"

On the back of these cards are prints of my very first Tribute to Vincent:

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Cedric Goes Hiking

Cedric hasn't been hiking since France and Switzerland, and he misses all the gnomish pals he met in the Alps. It's like that song...'how ya gonna keep em down on the farm, now that they've seen Parieee...'

Well, it's all a matter of finding the best of where you're at.

So here's Cedric at the top of Red Lake Peak (really should have taken a photo before we climbed up the 1000 feet or so it took to get to the very steep top! Couldn't have done it without my new Swiss Alpine trekking sticks!).

And here is looking North...that's Lake Tahoe in the distance. You can actually hike from Kirkwood to Lake Tahoe on the Pacific Crest Trail. We won't be doing that today.

It seems standing on a rock is his favorite photo op. Here's a similar picture from Mt D'Arbois above the village of Megeve in France.

So, how about a little compare and contrast between Megeve and Kirkwood.

The sky is just as blue, the rocks have interesting lichen on them, the peaks in the distance have a similar profile. Biggest difference...the effect of the rain! It rains in France, thus it is gloriously green. The landscape around Kirkwood is desperately dry, longing for the first good rains and the snows soon to follow. Here's hoping for a good snow season, and then maybe we'll revisit Cedric when he goes skiing.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Oyster Creek

On the way to Kirkwood today, we stopped at the Oyster Creek rest stop. The ranger recommended it to us during wildflower season, and we didn't get a chance to check it out then, but took a quick stop today. Well, beyond the parking lot, outhouses and picnic tables, and over a little hill, we met a lovely little creek emerging from the forest.
What a nice start to our visit to the mountains!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

More on Fall Colors

I didn't always live in Northern California, so I know more about fall colors than one might think. Earth tones aren't my favorite, I prefer brights, reds, vibrant colors, but it's nice to break away from the bright and work with nature's more subdued palette sometimes.

This is a Shadow Boxes quilt I created for Maywood fabrics a number of years ago, but it seems quite appropriate to revisit it in light of the season.

Gladiola Shadow Boxes, Diane Weber, 48" x 48"

Gladiolas in wonderful pinkish beiges and browns sit against a chocolate brown background, highlighted by dark pine greens. I love the lines, scale variations, and contrast of stripes against the organic shapes in this quilt.

This is such a versatile quilt pattern... you can arrange the large-scale fabrics vertically, like I did with the gladiolas above, or horizontally, as shown on the cover below, and you can also zig-zag the diagonal.