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Where have I been, you ask?

I have been so slack in posting since early Sept but I've kept busy so that's a good thing. The only thing I have completed to show you is some fabric collages I made for some blog friends: Becky, Marsha & Terri.
I posted a blog giveaway back in March and they were the lucky winners. I've heard from them all since they received their pieces and I believe they're quite happy with them. Terri even called me from PA to chat.
It was a delight to actually talk to someone that I've only exchanged blog comments with. We have quite a bit in common. Although I have to say that the more time I spend with creative people, whether in the blogosphere or in person I find that there is a common thread that runs through all of us women.
Last month I joined the North Suburban Needle Arts Guild and I feel like I have 'found my people'. I connected with a few 'like-minded' creative folks when we lived in GA through the pottery studio where I worked with ceramics and it was fun, but not quite the same as this guild. I NEVER found my group of artsy friends when we lived in CT, although I did have a group of artsy/craftsy friends when I lived in KY and we gathered together once a year to produce our own art show/sale at one of our homes.
BUT this guild is like I've finally found a home. The members are very diverse and amazingly talented.
It's such a fun group of women and each month the guild sponsors a 2-day workshop with  fabulous artists.
I just completed a workshop with Laura Cater-Woods and she was absolutely FANTASTIC! I was familiar with her work because of Quilting Arts magazine but never imagined I'd be taking a workshop with her! Not that I  wasn't interested in her style but because I just never thought I'd get that opportunity to do so this close to where I live.
I'm not the type to venture far and wide to attend workshops with the exception of attending Art & Soul in Hampton, VA. I've attended that twice with my dear friend Sandy because it's close to my hometown and Sandy is SO much fun to take classes with. She's my art buddy from WAY back. Plus she's been an inspiration to me from the very beginnings of my artistic journey.  So to have found this needle arts guild
makes the whole move to this area a major bonus in my book. I think I'll survive the cold winter a little better than I did last year.
Back to Laura Cater-Woods...She's an extremely talented lady, very easy going and loves to share her knowledge. Not only did I learn quite a bit about color theory, designing and piecing a quilt in her style
but she offered up so much more information. If you ever get the chance to take one of her workshops,
I highly recommend it.
The Chicago area is brimming with talented fiber artists. I knew from internet searches and reading Quilting Arts that this area was full of some very creative artists in all mediums but to finally be in an area where fiber arts is considered an ART is amazing. I think that's why I've gone off into so many other mediums through the years, because textiles were not really considered art. So I kept my sewing skills for making garments for myself and my daughter. At one time I was taking orders for little girls clothing, mainly specialty dresses for the holidays or for weddings. I also sewed for my home, making window treatments, pillows, covering chairs and ottomans, etc, etc, etc. And that was fine, it kept me sewing and refining some of my skills.
The most recent money making sewing venture was in GA. I bought my Bernina machine specifically so
I could monogram. My daughter is an equestrian and her collar for her show shirt needed to be embroidered with her initials. I did her collars and her saddle pads for the horse. Then I put her initials on the polo wraps for the horses legs, and on and on. Then I put an ad up at the barn and got bags full of horse accessories to
monogram. I was able to make some money and hone my skills on my new embroidery machine.
All these sewing 'projects' through the years have brought me to the realization that I do LOVE to sew and although I haven't been creating the art that I want to create with my fabrics, threads and my wonderful sewing machine, it has been part of my journey and obviously steps that I needed to take.
Now I can finally say that  I DO want to concentrate on fiber arts, although I'm not giving up ALL of my art mediums that I play with. I want to continue to expand my knowledge of fabrics, thread and my machine,
as well as hand stitching. I just love the fact that I'm finally able to realize that fiber arts is where I need to be.
I've been waffling back and forth with painting, collage, fiber, etc. Bringing them all together is going to be my  focus.

I will probably always think of myself as a 'mixed-media' artist but maybe one day I'll be able to call myself a fiber artist or better yet, a fiber/mixed-media artist?? What do you think?

Below are the fabric collages I sent to Terri, Becky and Marsha. (in the order of the photos)

Each collage has a quote printed on fabric. Terri's Paris theme is actually in french and loosely translated says "Nothing compares to Paris".
Becky's quote says "Life on the planet is born of Woman".
Marsha's quote says "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day, teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime".
Off to my studio to continue with the piece I started in Laura's class. I will post it when I'm finished. Until then, live your life creatively~


Terri Kahrs said…
Cathy, My Dear, Dear Friend! I am SOOOoooo happy that you've found kindred spirits in your community! I can see you happily putting on your warmest coat and boots to slosh through the winter weather to get to the Guild! Yay! (**hopping up & down**).

Funny, but I've ALWAYS thought of you as a fiber artist! You're love of textiles, beading, threads and fibers shows in every detail and stitch of the gorgeous wallhanging you were so generous to make for me. (BTW - I FINALLY got a dowel so that I can hang it in my studio! xoxo) I am totally THRILLED with my gorgeous piece! Thank you, thank you, once again for your kindness and generosity!

Can't wait for more updates on your on-going artistic journey! Love & Hugs, Teri xoxo
Janine said…
These fabric- collages are awesome. I´m sure the ladys will be delighted.
Have a nice weekend
Cathy said…
Thanks Terri and Janine!
Cathy I do so love the piece you created for me. I get comments on it every time someone comes to my home. It is truly a treasure that I will cherish forever.

I am so glad you found the guild. I believe your talent should be seen by the world! What a wonderful thing to find a place you belong, home the place where you feel most comfortable to create.

XXXXOOOO thank you again my dear friend.
Cathy said…
Becky you are so very welcome! I'm glad you love it.
tmstewart said…
Hi cathy,
It is SO good to have you in the guild. I love having the chance to take workshops with you and look forward to dragging you into our work group.

Glad to hear that you feel you've found an artistic home. I am so apreciative to find someone who works in other media and really want to see more of your work and talk about incorporating different media with fiber. I love the experiments in that area that you've already done.

I hope you'll be in the area for a good long while-I'm really looking forward to getting to know you better.-Tracy
deb did it said…
WOW! your art is so wonderful, I am happy to find you via Monica! and that art bra quilt is amazing! I just photographed a group of Breast Cancer survivors who all modeled art bras submitted to a local quilt store! I will be sure to come visit you here often....I love your work!
Cathy said…
Thanks Tracy, I'm really glad to have found the guild. Also looking forward to playing with you and your gang on some 'mad scientist' experiments!
Thanks Deb. Glad you found me, I'll have to come by and visit your blog.
julie mitchell said…
Please come by my blog...I have something for you..hug, hug
Cathy said…
Thank you Julie! I'm honored to receive an award.
What lucky ladies! All three are beautiful!
Cathy said…
Thanks Lisa, I think the ladies were happy with their giveaway prizes : )
I do hope all is finding you wonderfully well! Just popping in to say hi:)

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