work in progress: remains…

JPEG image-58EAACC43568-1More leftovers from the Mill Wheel series.
(hmmmm – maybe I’ll post those all together in a future post)

But it’s the last week of school so instead of working much in the studio I’m driving to and from schools, keeping a restless teenager out of trouble. Getting ready for trips. Wondering as always what I’m going to do with these kids all summer?

mill wheels work in progress: making decisions

Sometimes I have a general idea of where I want my art to go, sometimes not. In the case of Mill Wheels the idea was general but very much NOT exact. This is where one of my favorite tools comes in handy.

Design Wall + Digital Camera = Choices!

Stick your pieces on the wall and then move stuff around and take a picture of each iteration. Look at them together and what do you have? A good idea of which design ideas will not work, and which will.

kinard_mill_wheels_process03 kinard_mill_wheels_process02 kinard_mill_wheels_process01

I knew I wanted three wheels up on the wall but not exactly where. You can see I haven’t pulled the freezer paper templates off the wheel on the right yet. Scroll down the the previous post to read about how I use them.

As soon as I saw them up I realized I wanted just a little bit more structure in the background. I quickly cut up and pieced the background cloth back together. Subtle, I know, but I like the geometry of the squares that you can barely see against the circles. Now – where to place the wheels. 

kinard_mill_wheels_process04 kinard_mill_wheels_process05 kinard_mill_wheels_process06

Can you see how looking at all of the options together gives you a pretty good idea of what might work and what doesn’t? I like the center option but sort of fell in love with the option on the right with the wheel hanging off the edge. That could pose some challenges.

kinard_mill_wheels_process07 kinard_mill_wheels_process08 kinard_mill_wheels_process09

I tried adding a bit to one side and thought of adding the purple along the bottom too, but found I was missing that overhang. Adding a narrower strip worked for me. On the right you can see the artwork quilted. After thinking it over I used a sort of pillow-case facing to achieve the overhang I was going for. 


Leave a comment and let me know what you think of the final piece!
If by some lucky chance you are going to be in San Diego between July and October stop by the Visions Art Museum and see it in person.

Mill Wheels work in progress: piecing the easy way

Nothing like a deadline to help you get the job done!!! At least that is how it works for me. Last month I had to finish several quilts for….

To Dye For

at theScreen Shot 2016-04-23 at 6.09.46 PM
July 16 – October 2, 2016
Opening Reception: July 16, 5-7pm

2825 Dewey Road, Suite 100
San Diego, CA 92106

(Picture me now doing the happy dance around and around in circles!!!! I’m in a museum!)

I haven’t pieced a quilt for ages but I knew exactly what I wanted to do and thought I’d share a bit of the creation process for a couple of these quilts with you. I’m working on a series exploring the imagery of Mill Wheels. I love them. Attachment-1

For this piece I first am required to make a big fat mess. Oh, wait. No. First I have to clean up a BIG fat mess so I can even come close to seeing the top of my work table. It’s a huge old Oak drafting table that I rescued from the college art department’s junk heap and restored. It has a smooth drawing surface that is covered by a giant cutting mat that is usually covered by a print cloth and is always covered by a BIG fat mess. Kinard_piecing_mill_wheels_01

Step one – dig through and find the fabric I want, dye some more, do some simple strip piecing. I could cut each pattern piece and sew things together the normal way, but that sounded very much like work. Anything where I have to be precise takes too much brain power for me. I like easy.Kinard_piecing_mill_wheels_02Step two – draft my circle on freezer paper. Layer it and cut out a billion wedges. I sketch in just enough of the lines on each piece so that I can get the direction of line mostly right. Iron the shiny plastic coated side of the freezer paper to the strips, matching the direction of line. Then I cut out each wedge – stick a pin in the corners of each piece so the freezer paper matches exactly, and sew. Kinard_piecing_mill_wheels_03This way I don’t have to be careful about seam allowances or do anything other than follow the edge of the paper. On some of the wheels I ironed there freezer paper to the top and some of the wheels to the back of each piece. It didn’t really matter so long as I was consistent with each wheel.Kinard_piecing_mill_wheels_05Step three – once my whole wheel was complete I ironed the inside and outside edges over the edge of the freezer paper and had a nice clean edge.

Step 4 – I realized my piecing wasn’t super great, even with the freezer paper templates. My circle was just a bit wonky. That wouldn’t happen to someone who paid close attention to details but that someone isn’t me.

Step 5 – I went back and used the ruler to mark from the center to the inner and outer diameter of the circle and trimmed my wheel back into shape. There you have it. a lovely interpretation of a mill wheel. 

Now isn’t that a pretty thing!?!? Keep your eyes open for a peek into the rest of the design process on this piece. I love how it turned out. Hope you love it too!


work in progress: untitled as of yet

Untitled… and this is just the second or third layer of ideas for this piece. It was inspired by a tutorial posted by the fabulous Jill Berry. Of course I can’t find the tutorial anywhere now but her site is beautiful to behold so go there and take a look anyway.


She is, as we speak either undergoing or preparing for open heart surgery today. I’m praying for her. Please send your prayers her way as well. 

preparing to film: beautiful frames

For my Picture It Framed DVD I worked on quite a few pieces yesterday. New works that will be used to demonstrate different ways to mount and frame textile art. My favorite of the day was made for a floating canvas frame. I think I’m calling it “scraps” or “Ode to Mirot.”Kinard_ode_to_Mirot1

What is a canvas floater you ask? It’s a wonderful frame for a gallery wrapped canvas – the best of both worlds. You get to see the edge of the canvas and bring the artwork up a notch with a classy

I’m really glad I got started on this one ahead of time because apparently I messed up my sizing on my order and the work I intended to use the frame for is too big. Or the frame is too small. It still looks great in the frame, but it doesn’t have that fabulous gap between the frame and the edge of the canvas – or in this case the tiny quilt – that makes it appear to float. (Wow – it’a hard to photograph black frames. Trust me that in this frame there is almost no gap at all.)Kinard_more_circles

Last month I was in Grand Rapids and saw one of last years’ winners of the Art Prize at the museum. If you haven’t heard of ArtPrize I encourage you to go over to their website and take a look. It’s on my bucket list of to-do’s for sure!!! The entire city becomes a public art gallery, tourists and locals come, and a bucketload of prize money is handed out. The best part is that the public gets equal say with the fancy-schmancy-arty-juror folks. There are two 200k (you read that right) awards and one is viewers choice.Ann_loveless1

Sleeping Bear Dune Lakeshore by Ann Loveless

It’s a quilt. But it’s a large scale quilt, wrapped on stretcher bars and frames. Nobody will look at it and picture it on a bed when it is framed! The immediately understand it as a work of fine art.ann_loveless2And don’t misunderstand me. I think many, many bed quilts could just as well be framed and hung on the wall of any museum today. It’s just that a framed textile work is seen by most of the general public as “Art” while most people still think of quilts as something their grandma made that they use for a picnic. They don’t give grandma nearly enough credit, do they?


work in progress: direction

direction_lyric_kinard6Another late night session… quilting this time. I have gone old-school and used my Bernina 930. I think it’s one of the best machines ever manufactured. There is no computer do be outdated and the parts will last forever. I quilted with simple straight lines and using a walking foot after drafting a mariners compass.



With art quilts, the added element of line and texture through the stitching can be problematic with portraiture. If you try to follow facial contours with quilted lines the face ends up looking wrinkled. The only way I’ve seen it done very successfully is basically thread sketched rather than more open quilting lines. I often choose to quilt lines that are entirely different from the face itself.

direction_lyric_kinard1The compass was painted on after the piece was quilted with ProChem’s ProFab Textile Paint, transparent white. For the chartreuse I mixed in a little green Dye-Na-Flow (by Jacquard) with the white… only because it was the first bottle I touched with the perfect color. This piece is title Direction.

work in progress: direction

When hubby travels I tend to stay up waaaay too late.
But I manage to get in LOTS of creative studio time.IMG_8095This piece started with a silly selfie using the Paper Camera App.

direction_lyric_kinard2Playing around with markers. Figuring out where to draw the lines.

direction_lyric_kinard3Don’t know why I chose to enlarge the pattern by hand… drawing a grid.direction_lyric_kinard4And I wasn’t paying attention (late at night, remember) and reversed it.
No worries.

Work in progress: xox on the road

We are on the road again…. although this time we flew to Utah then started driving. 

Time in the car and on the plane has been well spent.


work in progress: ordinary intensity

The Canadian artist Emily Carr said,
“Do not try to do extraordinary things, but do ordinary things with intensity.”

ordinary_intensity1I was given this quote as a basis for making a piece for consideration for Lesley Riley’s forthcoming book Inspirational Quotes Illustrated. The words spoke to me and I knew I wanted to work on a piece with neutral cloth but intensely textured. Bits and pieces from my stash appeared and were collaged onto a piece of batting. I can’t remember what size I used. I have a small bin of batting scraps that I keep for my small collage works and this piece looked good enough. I think it might be around 10×14.

ordinary_intensity2After I stamped a coppery paint over part of the piece and looked at all the elements I decided they weren’t hanging together enough, not really integrated. A little bit of white opaque textile paint would meld the pieces all together. I had the words “ordinary” and “intensity” from an old dictionary and wanted to keep the words “ordinary” and “intensity” visible so I covered them with bits of paper before rolling.

ordinary_intensity3A good pressing flattened out the cloth and set the paint. Textile paints are an acrylic but they have a polymer added to them to keep them flexible and soft instead of feeling plastic like regular artists acrylics. I’m a textile artist because of the wonderful element of touch – that tactile connection to the material. I like my cloth to feel like cloth instead of having a hard plastic feeling surface.

ordinary_intensity4It seems like in almost every project I get to a point where if I had a plan, it went awry. Or if I didn’t have a plan, I just plain am not sure what needs to happen next. This was that point for this project. Sometimes I toss the piece and start over. With this one I simply waited for a bit.

What do you do when you don’t know what to do next?

work in progress: ordinary intensity

This piece need to be tied together even more. The color palette was all neutrals and I wanted to keep that, but I wanted to bring out the texture more. The actual texture of all those different fibers on the surface is something I really love but the visual patterns didn’t mesh until I did some serious stitching with embroidery threads. I love the mostly controlled and very delicate lines contrasted with the heavier and more chaotic seed stitches.


Now to deal with the words. The black wasn’t working for me. By the way, if you haven’t tried the Pentel Gel Roller for Fabric pens yet – they are WONDERFUL! They go on super smooth and dark and so far appear to be nice and permanent. It’s just that they were too much for this piece.ordinary_intensity5

With this much time and effort invested in the piece I didn’t want to start over. I have found that with many pieces if something stands out or is bothering you, sometimes the way to make it work is to add repetition. In this case, even more stitching. Varying the weight and intensity of the stitches felt right here. ah. Intensity. I get it.

ordinary_intensity7“Do not try to do extraordinary things, but do ordinary things with intensity.”  That makes sense. There is some fairly intense stitching happening here. Adding in a little more value contrast and then the red adds a focal point – and also feels intense. I think I’m good with what has happened here. In fact, I really like it. At some point I’ll probably mount this on Canvas. I really like the presentation although I’m finding that those thick canvases take up a LOT of storage space. Perhaps what is happening is that I’m getting ready for my one woman show, right? In that case I’d better get busy.

You know how the colors yellow and orange can behave like Divas in a work of art if the whole color cast is not well balanced? Red can lean in that direction but for me, it has a certain intensity to it that keeps it from simply being brash. It’s all subjective, I know. This is simply how it worked out for me with this piece.



work in progress: something whimsical and very pink

art_quilt_pinkA little stitch here, a little stitch there.

Work in Progress: something whimsical and very pink

As I’m coming closer and closer to my truer artistic voice (I should write about that) the work that takes careful thought and considerable time and effort becomes more and more enjoyable. The works that make my soul sing have multiple layers of visual texture but are becoming more and more neutral as far as color is concerned.


So in the midst of this wonderfully painstaking work I find myself taking quick little breaks to play.


I find related images and layer them into the cloth with thermofax screens, discharging color first then adding paint.


Even pink, which is a color I usually shy away from, emerges as a welcome option.

All of these screens are available in various sizes in my thermofax shop.
Pop over and take a look – or doodle some of your own designs and I’ll make a custom screen for you.


New Work: Inspired by Libby

Like much of the rest of the eastern United States, the winter of 2014 in North Carolina was wickedly wild. One week we will had lovely 70 degrees and the next week (or even the next day) it froze. And unlike the North, we are unprepared. No snow tires, very few plows, no snow shovels. Of course I still have a snow shovel but even when it snows I rarely use it. Everything shuts down so I don’t need to get out of the driveway – why bother. It will melt the next day anyway.IMG_8284So during one of these “shut down” snow days when I couldn’t get out or run my errands I played with fabric. I had some lovely screen printed cloth and a great inspiration.

LALatMachine_500Libby Lehman is one of the greats! She has been a talented quilt artist and one of the best teachers there is for longer than I’ve been quilting. Last year she had a devestating stroke at much too young an age.

1920566_10152079666832762_756236289_nA number of artists have been invited to use one of her quilts as inspiration to create a work of their own. These quilts, inspired by Libby, will be exhibited then auctioned, raising funds to help defray some of her medical expenses. 

IMG_8285Once my quilt top was printed and pieced I played a little further with paint then slapped the piece up on my design wall while I played with the kids for a while. 

IMG_8288When I came back to take a look at the work the circles just weren’t enough so I added a few more, quilted some straight lines to contrast with the circular elements and once again, set the piece aside for a while. 

IMG_2424The next morning I decided that the piece needed some warmth to contrast with all those cool colors. I didn’t even think about how vibrant a predominantly primary color scheme would look until it was done. A few darker orange swipes to add some depth of value and I think we are done. I’ll let you know when the pieces go on display and when they will be auctioned.

At the end of February Ricky Timms and his partner, Justin were able to visit Libby in her home. She was able to answer the door herself with the aid of a walker. Good for you Libby!!!!!

Work in Progress: Intentional Printing table runner

Here is yesterday’s progress on the table runner Project from Lynn Krawczyk’s book, “Intentional Printing.” There is still plenty of time of US readers to leave a comment on the previous post for a chance to win your own copy.

imageExcept it isn’t going to run down the table, it will be square to work as a really giant hot pad on my square dining room table? What does one call a square table runner? (Leave a comment and tell me!)

imageBut of course then I had to go and add some more circular elements. The lid of my countertop compost container was the perfect size for printing some high contrast (opaque white) circles.

imageI chose not to print the red cloth, leaving it as a strong linear element to offset the dominant looniness of the printed circles and written words. Next up – stitching. More linear to contrast with such strong circular elements.


work in progress

imageOne of the things I really, really, want to do this year is to get some art made and start entering shows again. It has been years since I’ve entered anything other than a few local art shows. I just didn’t want to deal with the hassle of paperwork and shipping. But maybe, just maybe, I’m ready to get some of my work out and about again.


Work in Progress, giveaway – QA Magazine

Just a very quick post for today’s giveaway.


Here is a peak at the progress on the two concurrent pieces I’m working on.


I’m still going back and forth between the two, working on one while I think about what to do next with the other.


Today’s giveaway is an extra copy I have of Quilting Arts Magazine issue #64. (I have an article in it.)
Leave a comment letting me know why you read this blog.
Specifically – what do you want to see more of?
I’ll pick a winner next saturday.


(And congratulations to Rosalyn who won Valerie Goodwin’s book, Art Quilt Maps!)

Work in progress & Giveaway

Yesterday was a lovely day in the studio. While the rest of the country gets snow to play with (and shovel) we just get lots of cold drizzly rain.  I had my usual million mile long list of things to do but didn’t. Instead I made time for some actual art making. I call myself an artist so you think I would do that more often. 



I actually worked back and forth between two pieces of cloth that were cut down into smaller pieces when I moved from printing overall texture to composition.


Flipping back and forth gave me time to think about what to do next with the cloth on the design wall while I was printing the cloth on the table.


Layers of imager were added in varying levels of transparency.

I’m back from scurrying around to all my appointments this morning and am going to get OFF the computer and spend an hour working on these a little bit more.

Tomorrow is another book giveaway so today is another pair of mini-thermofax screens.
Leave a comment here telling me about your working style.
Do you prefer working on once piece from start to finish or are you as scatterbrained as I am? (nobody is as scatterbrained as I am!) I’ll choose a winner next Wednesday.


Work in Progress: In Search of the Old Ones

I would have to go and change my mind about these pieces. I had an idea and just had to follow it through to see where it would

I’m mostly happy with it but am still thinking about the upper right side of the horizontal piece. I don’t want to stitch in the trees and background but am not sure what to do with

This is when it’s a good time to set it aside for a little bit and let it rest. When things get to this stage and I push through I often regret my design choices. The art usually turns out better when it I have time to ponder various

Work In Progress: In Search of the Old Ones

Here is the next stage in these two small pieces.

photo 1-9

I’ve added the drafts of some of the ruined cliff and mesa top dwelling foundations.

photo 2-8

I machined some stitching. Not to self – change the needle BEFORE starting. That “poc-poc-poc” sound means skipped stitches will ensue. Now to figure out what hand stitching comes next.

Work in Progress: Zebra

It’s finally time to finish up this fancy girl – it’s been years that she’s been in process. That happens all the time with my art. I might still add beads, or shading. Who knows.

photo-4Anybody got an idea for a name or a title?


Work In Progress: really large canvas pt. 4

And then this….

20130522-181922.jpgand this…

20130522-181908.jpgJust filled in a lot more of the space. Now what?

Work In Progress: really large canvas pt. 3

Scroll down to the previous post to see part 2 of this piece where inspiration only took a year to arrive.


This time it only took a week or so. I screened molding paste through this fabulous stencil, and also just slathered it on here and there.20130522-181806.jpg

 I got the fabulous Crafters Workshop stencil (TCW124 Capricious) way back in 2009 at Houston.20130522-181843.jpg

Looooove it!

Work in Progress: really large canvas pt. 2

Congratulations to the winner of the Art Postcard Jayna – who wants me to send it to Judit. Love that act of kindness!
and to Jaclyn, the winner of the QA Gifts & Gadget case. It must be a “J” kind of morning!

Remember this? I wrote about it, oh, forever ago.


It’s been taking up space in my studio, or the hallway, or wherever I move it to while I’m trying to work. Ages and ages. OK I just checked – almost exactly one year. I didn’t know what was next so I ignored it.

And then I was wasting time actively seeking inspiration on Pinterest and came across this on New York Carver.

Screen Shot 2013-05-23 at 8.53.13 PMAnd then this happened.

photo 1-17I love it when that happens! Wasting time isn’t alway wasting time – sometimes it is necessary to allow time for daydreaming, for connections to bubble up to the surface, for that thing called inspiration to happen.

Work In Progress: that “aaaaah” moment

I’m finally happier with this little piece. Here is a post on some of the re-workings that have happened with this piece.

That post shows me ripping out a beaded bezel that was quite time consuming to create. I’ve since created and ripped out two more beaded bezels with different bead colors. Sometimes I’m happy to just toss a piece and start over or simply call it a learning experience. Sometimes, for some unknown reason, I’m happy to work and re-work a piece until it relaxes into that “aaaaaaah – that’s it” moment.

Work In Progress: the digital camera as a design tool

Here is another piece in the little series I’m working on. In the small works I create I’m inspired by the materials themselves, in this case a few lovely scraps of hand made lace and some lovely rocks. I can picture a woman somewhere with thread and… hook? Bobbins? Shuttles?

I haven’t chosen final placement of these sweet little stones. I do mean sweet. Something about them is so beautiful that I think of candy when I touch them.

A tool that I encourage all of my students to make use of in the design process is a digital camera. Lay out various design options and take a digital picture of each one.

As you look at the thumbnails all together, or prints of each photo side to side, it can be obvious which options are not viable.

I’m leaning towards this iteration although I’m sure I’ll spend a few lovely moments choosing the perfect stone for the perfect spot. What do you think?

Work In Progress: The Artbox CSA

In November there will be a fabulous new set of Art Boxes for sale at
 The Artbox CSA

If you’ve been thinking a bit about purchasing one of the current boxes there are still just a couple left. Once the new group opens the old set will not be available at such a fantastic price. I suggest you buy now if you’re waffling – you won’t find a more beautiful collection of artwork at better prices anywhere.

I thought I’d give you a peek at what’s been going on in my studio in preparation.

First – a little bit of screen printing. I’m a little bit obsessed with circles. Well, when I have not been?

Next a little bit, just a little bit, of piecework.

Then a little bit of play – fusing some fun bits.

These are six different pieces that will be wrapped around an 8″x8″ gallery wrapped canvas, 1 1/2″ deep. There is a lot of extra fabric around the main central area that will be wrapped around the edges and back of the canvas.

Take a look at some of the other artwork that is bound for this endeavor.
Kathy York 

Sue Bleiweiss 

Judy Coates Perez

Work In Progress: changing my mind

The road project continues…

Unless I have a looming deadline I never consider “undoing” wasted time. It was worth a try and hand work can be like meditation to me. The color of the reddish beads worked beautifully with the center stone but I could tell it wasn’t going to work with the other two and the direction I had in mind. So out it goes. I’m not expecting perfection so it isn’t a mistake.

Work in Progress: Boro Skirt

Little steps – stitches here and there.

 I loooooove these buttons. One is a compass.

 I actually wore it Sunday and enjoyed it very much.

Work in Progress: flutter – a sneak peak

I’m working a bit on a very exciting project…

thought I’d give you a sneak peak….

I’m just bursting to tell you about it but you’ll have to wait…

Work in Progress: boro skirt

A few more stitches here and there.

 You can see all the posts about it here.
from here – to there – so far….

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