Thursday, December 29, 2011

The King Speaks

Finished this one yesterday. It feels SO GOOD to be quilting again! This one came entirely out of the donations of Michael McNamara and Interior Effects. The lion and the flowers are upholstery fabric, the background silk curtain fabric.

Monday, December 26, 2011

There's a project afoot . . .

I had to look up afoot. Make sure it was a real word - and it is: astir, in progress. Online dictionaries are really cool anyway - they usually have all sorts of info just there for the looking. The word of the day is solatium.
Anyway, is there a project afoot, or did my favorite bead store just have a 25% off sale? The answer is "yes" and "yes". I've discovered I enjoy beading, now that I found a needle threader that will thread those teeny tiny hole beading needles. It's called the Escort II and it has the name written in Japanese figures below that, probably because it's made by Kawaguchi Co. in Japan.

And beads are pretty cheap! You can build up quite a stash pretty inexpensively and they're really pretty to look at! And you can watch TV without feeling guilty (I never was any good at knitting or even crochet). Right after I found the needle threader that works, I started beading the quilt below and now I can't stop! I think I'll finish the parrot's wing and then stop.

By the way solatium means compensation for inconvenience, loss or injury.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Finally . . .

I'm a pretty crummy blogger. I never think to blog about cool things that happen. Here's one: The other day I went with a friend to an Interior Design shop that is downsizing and the owner offered to donate material to me since I make quilts for the AAQI. Talk about being a kid in a candy store! I found so many wonderful pieces my head was spinning. Here's a shot of about a quarter of my haul.
This is the quilt I made today - the tiger was a piece of upholstery fabric and the twill was part of the goodies I got too.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

This is an exciting time of year!

This week, the AAQI booth will open at Quilt Festival in Houston with over 1,500 Priority Quilts. If you're going to Houston, look in Row T near the front. I am not going to be there - I'm holding down the fort chained to my computer for the duration.

AND the monthly auction that started today has some very special quilts in it. Ricky, Alex, Holly, Becky, Caryl, Hollis - such fun dropping names! You gotta go take a look!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Priority Quilt (8.75x11 inches) raises $805 for Alzheimer's Research

Linda Woodard of Marion, Illinois, raised $805 for the Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI) with her donated 8.75 inches by 10 inches quilt which sold during the charity's October auction. The AAQI holds online auctions during the first ten days of every month. Woodard's quilt, Making Waves in the Fight Against Alzheimer’s, sets a new AAQI record for Priority: Alzheimer's Quilt sales, surpassing Sue Nickels' quilt, This Bud's For You, which sold for $350 in 2006.

"I am in shock—a good shock. How exciting!" said Woodard after the auction closed." She continued, "I loved making the quilt and grew very attached to it. I know the person who purchased it will love it too. I am so pleased that my quilt raised so much for Alzheimer's research."

Woodard's quilt was created as part of a challenge issued by the Shawnee Quilters of Southern Illinois. The group has supported the AAQI for several years through the AAQI's Priority: Alzheimer's Quilts project. More than 8,500 quilts (none larger than 9" x 12") have been donated by quilt guilds and individual quilters since 2006 as quilters make finding a cure for Alzheimer's a priority in their lives.

The AAQI's November auction (November 1-10) in honor of National Alzheimer's Awareness Month features quilts by Alex Anderson, Hollis Chatelain, John Flynn, Becky Goldsmith, Renae Haddadin, Sue Nickels, Caryl Bryer Fallert, Pat Holly, Libby Lehman, Judy Mathieson, Mary Sorensen, and Ricky Tims as they compete in the "Stanley Cup Quilt-Off."

The Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative ( is a national, grassroots charity whose mission is to raise awareness and fund research. It auctions and sells donated quilts through the Priority: Alzheimer's Quilt project and sponsors a touring exhibit of quilts about Alzheimer's called "Alzheimer's Illustrated: From Heartbreak to Hope." The Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative has raised more than $591,000 since January 2006.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Alzheimer's Illustrated: From Heartbreak to Hope will be in Madison, Wisconsin next month!

"Alzheimer's Illustrated: From Heartbreak to Hope" continues its five-year journey across the United States with a stop at Quilt Expo, September 8-10. The exhibit will hang in Exhibition Hall at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison, Wisconsin.

Show hours are 9am to 6pm daily.
For more information, please contact call 866-297-6545 or email

"Alzheimer's Illustrated: From Heartbreak to Hope" is an exhibit of quilts about Alzheimer's sponsored by the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI). Fifty-four small format art quilts (9" x 12") illustrate the disease from a variety of perspectives. They hang among 182 "Name Quilts," each 6 inches wide and 7 feet tall, which carry the names of more than 10,000 individuals who have/had Alzheimer's or a related dementia. The names of loved ones, written on fabric patches by family members and friends, honor the 5.4 million Americans in the United States struggling with Alzheimer's disease.

Ami Simms, AAQI Founder and Executive Director will present "Quilting & Caring: The Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative" at 8:30am on Friday, September 9th in the Waubesa WA room on the second floor. Tickets available here.

"Alzheimer's Illustrated: From Heartbreak to Hope" is exhibited at Quilt Expo through the generous support of Wisconsin Public Television, Nancy Zieman Productions, and the Professional Art Quilt Alliance (PAQA).

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Improvisational Quilt

I've been thinking about Ricky Tims' All That Jazz: Improvisational Quilt call for entries. Deadline is September 30th and the quilts will be displayed at the Road to California Quilt Show January 19-22, 2012. Quilts will be juried but not judged.

The other day I made a background out of used Shout Color Catcher sheets fused to a piece of stabilizer. I made it long and narrow for the simple reason that 2 across and 10 down seemed to look nice, it fit the challenge specs and I figured it'd be easier to quilt.

I really like the texture of the color catcher sheets. Because of their dull colors, though, I was thinking bright colors would be needed to keep it interesting. I toyed with the idea of a long and narrow stained glass piece. Then I was looking at a book of American Indian motifs and I was thinking about a long and narrow design that echoed some of those pieces. Neither was totally convincing me.

Keeping with the recycled material idea, I was thinking about how to use used tea bags when I came up with the idea of fashioning them into a rope and having flowers blooming out of it. I glued a bunch together and twisted them, but think I'll have to braid it to make is stable enough. Of course, now I can't find my container of cleaned open tea bags. It'll show up.

Then I started wondering about quilting it. Came up with some ideas from the class I took at MMQS but I didn't think an all over pattern was what I wanted. Then I clicked on the free show that TQS is showing this weekend with Jean Wells and noticed how she'd done a really cool background on one of her quilts - sort of leaves and grasses and flowers. I think I can do that if I draw it out on the background first. I'm not confident enough to just let the machine take it away, although I'm sure there will be some unintentional improv.

So I'm letting it sit for a day while I decide if it's what I really want and then there's also the thought running through my head that this isn't a unique idea, although the way I make it will be unique. I hate to think I'm poaching on someone else's idea . . .

Friday, July 29, 2011

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Quilters Finance Alzheimer’s Research!

The Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative has awarded a grant of $25,000 to the University of Pittsburgh for a study led by Dr. Nicholas Fitz. Read more here.

This award was made possible by a donation of $25,386 to the Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative by Island Batik, Inc.

Dr Fitz is the owner of Priority: Alzheimer’s Quilt #4658 (Day Turns Into Night) made by Ida Hansen of Odem, TX.

When he thanked the Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative for funding his current research he wrote, “I am very grateful for the tireless time and efforts provided by all of the quilt makers and volunteers of your organization. As an owner of one of the donated quilts I truly understand all of the time and care needed to complete one of these small works of art. I have my quilt hanging in our laboratory and every time I look at it I am reminded of all the patients, family members, and friends that are affected by this disease.”

Every quilt counts in the fight against Alzheimer’s.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Quilts For Sale

Priority Quilts For Sale!
Money is tight. The economy is wobbling. If you need a lift, just go look at these quilts. You might even find one that is within your disposable income limits. Or one that is just right for someone you need to buy a gift for. Throw caution to the winds! Or just dream a little dream. It won't hurt to look!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Island Batik donates 25K! Amazing generosity! I tell 'ya, next time I'm buying batiks, I'll be checking for those by Island Batik!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Mather Experiment

I volunteer for an afternoon program at my local nursing home - one of the many Mather Lifeways - and I'm always dreaming up new stuff to "do". Today I wanted to experiment with making art quilts, so I used SteamASeam on a bunch of different fabric scraps and came up with a sort of "kit". Background with stems already in place, and a sheet of transparency film with a bunch of cut out flower shapes. I used a plain white background, but fused it onto a colored back sheet because I read that dementia causes loss of depth of field vision in many. I put a black border on the transparency too but that was mostly for me - hard to keep track of those babies!
Now these are all ladies with fairly severe dementia, so the test was if what I gave them was enough information or not. Only one of the five ladies I had playing with me today grasped it right away and began to place the flowers on her own. One slept through the whole exercise and the other three needed me to peel the flowers off the transparency and hand them over. But all were able to get the concept of putting the flowers down on the fabric, although I got a lot of "where does this go?" questions. Anyway we ended up with 4 pretty cute pieces of fabric art, which I will now quilt and finish.

Now the goal is to donate these to the AAQI but I have to find out if there are any legal ramifications - these women aren't exactly capable of signing a consent form. But even if I can't donate them, it was a lot of fun and everybody was very impressed with the ladies' work and there were a lot of smiles!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

New Priority Quilt

I've been spending so much time scanning quilts for the AAQI and working on the website that I haven't had time to be creative lately. I got a chance recently when my sister opened her new studio to my Mom and my sister-in-law. I actually worked on 4 quilts, but only finished one - and it's taken me weeks to get around to registering it . . . but TA DA! This one is called Heart of Flowers and my artist's statement reads:
I was in my sister's studio with an embroidery machine and scraps from other quilters laying around - and I couldn't resist using either of them!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

I named my newest Priority quilt Abundance

I got the concept from a Dover royalty-free image and the fabric paper from I love using fabric paper for fusible appliqué because it cuts and stays fray-free. The Dover image was just a sort of curve of pedal-shaped shapes and I read it as a flower so took it from there. The background is commercial batik, and the binding is hand dyed fabric from Beth at FMQed in leaves.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

One World One Heart 2011



One World One Heart is a worldwide event for bloggers only. It gives all those who blog a chance to meet and mingle and form connections with those they may not have otherwise met from all over the world. In the past 4 years this event has grown to over 1,000 participants with lasting friendships (and even one love connection) formed along the way. Think of it as a GIGANTIC open house allowing you to travel without ever leaving your home........going from blog to blog(in various countries) seeing the wonder each one has created and meeting all the fabulous people behind those blogs. As a bonus each blogger participant will offer up a "door prize or prizes"....just for dropping by, saying hello and seeing their world. It's really that easy.

Welcome to Diane Did It!!! I love mixed media art! I especially love fabric, tho, so even when I digress from that media, most of my pieces seem to begin and end with fabric. My OWOH doorprize is a 12x12 wall hanging about the color purple!

True to form, Purple Soul begins with a piece of muslin on which I adhere all sorts of paper and scrips and scraps of purple fabric sealed with tissue paper and topped by some Jolee scrapbooking flowers and free motion quilted flowers. It's 12 in. x12 in. and all about purple. Finished with quilt binding (had to get more fabric in there!).

If you would like a chance to win Purple Soul, just leave a comment, making sure there is a way to contact you if you are the lucky winner. I will use a random number generator to pick the blog post that reveals the winner. That winner will be announced Feb. 17th and that I will email the winner as well as post it.

I know this is a crazy time to be browsing other posts on people's blogs, but if you like mixed media/fiber art, click to "follow" this blog and come back to visit now and then! I only post about art and I try to give some steps for each piece I post so that you can get inspiration.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Another Heartbreak To Hope preview

If you are in Florida, you can get a sneak preview of the AAQI's new traveling exhibit, "Alzheimer's Illustrated: From Heartbreak to Hope." Approximately a dozen Name Quilts will be on display on Friday, January 28 from 4-6pm at Quilters' Choice (Jupiter, FL).

And here's the really cool part! Shelli Lockhart, from WPBF-25, a Florida ABC affiliate, liked my quilt FEAR.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Tea Bag Flower

My newest Alzheimer's: Priority Quilt. I used a Rust-Tex background with strips of commercial vintage print and walnut ink stained pink ribbon. Flower is started with riped tea bags edged with tri color cording, also walnut-ink stained to tone down colors. Plastic button was re-colored with alchohol inks and the center is more of the cording.

Just sent the email off to register it!