A whirlwind Month!

I officially moved to Bedford Jan 15, 2018. I’m still splitting my time between Little Old Lady Quilting Studio and our home in Fairfax where my husband is still living and working. I feel a little like Cinderella, or like I’ve died and gone to heaven!

I have not kept up with this blog on a daily basis as I hoped, but only because I have been so focused on getting all the things done that need to be ready to open my business officially at the Grand Opening scheduled for March 31, 2018.

One of the things that attracted me originally to the place was the two seperate buildings on property adjacent Route 43 ( Peaks road) the major thoroughfare between the Blue Ridge Parkway , the Peaks of Otter Lodge, and beautiful historical downtown Bedford, Va.  We could live in the single family unit to the left, and I could have a 900 sq ft studio /gallery to the right. All of it is Handicapped accessible. (I have “spine issues” and will be in a wheelchair eventually so it is good to plan ahead!) Plus the property had already BEEN a craft and gift shop and was known for such in the community.

Of course, as with any old home, there are going to be a lot of little things that need to be fixed to bring it up to date and to make it work for  one’s current needs.  Even with a complete inspection before we purchased the property here, we were surprised by a few things that have added significantly to the expenses of getting the Little Old Lady Quilting Studio ready to open.

7356 Peaks road Bedford, VA
Our new home and studio in Bedford, VA

 

The inspector mentioned a few boards in the handicapped walkways that lead into the buildings that “were not 100% sound and may need to be replaced.”  BUT… it turned out (after I fell through one of them) that they are almost all rotten throughout and the entire walkway and deck needs to be rebuilt. $$$ This has to be done before I can open the business to the public.

It also turns out according to our many friendly neighbors, the property had been sitting empty much longer than we were told by the real estate agents. Our first order of business was to deal with the MASSIVE Stink-bug invasion. This has been an ongoing issues with treatments every couple of weeks. EVENTUALLY they will go back outside and we will be able to seal up as many of the escape routes as possible. The Stink-bugs are just a fact of life here in the county.  They can be dealt with… one day at a time.

The next unexpected issues was major…. under the studio crawl space ( which the inspector cursuri looked at  but did not really  inspect)  turns out that there was water damage that lead to major mold and fungus problems. We had to remediate and encapsulate that plus add in a dehumidifier system in order to be safe for myself and clients in the building. Turns out there is also a fungal problem in the living cabin and so they will have to spray and treat that  in the coming weeks as well.

In spite of these major expenses and setbacks, this is STILL the most perfect place we could have found for Little Old Lady Quilting.

I have been able to get into the studio and create a lot. I have been working to build my inventory of thread painting and artwork as well as home decor items.

IMG_1779.jpg
Big Otter Mill – Bedford ( SOLD)

 

IMG_2134.jpg
The Knolls Pillow Series

 

IMG_2046.jpg
My fun placemats and napkin sets

 

I’ve also been showing (and selling) my work at the little gallery in town — The Electric Company Art & More located at 207 E Depot Street in Bedford, VA . I currently have several pieces in the 4th annual Curry/Bower Exhibit at the  Bower Center  for the Arts (and sold one of them!)

 

IMG_2003.jpg
Lazy Summer Day at the Lake – (SOLD)

I am about to Open Little Old Lady Quilting Studio to the Public with a Grand Opening March 31, 2018 11:00 am until 3:00 PM

I am also slated to be the Featured Artist for April in a solo Show of my new works at The Electric Company  Art & More. I have created a new series of Wall Hangings especially for this show which is entitled Blue Ridge Visions. Each is 24″ x 9″ and based on nature images of the Blue Ridge area I love so much here in Bedford.

 

I am now a member of the Bedford Artisan Trail Network and the Virginia Artisan Trail. Very excited for the opportunities this provides me to market and reach out to the arts community here as well.

28168147_213962102502104_1882118840018621646_n.jpg
It’s Official. I’m a member now!

And  so, life is moving ahead. I am incredibly grateful for every opportunity here, for the beauty of nature I am surrounded with, for this gift of time to make art and build a business and life here in the area I love so much!

Create Beauty and fill the World with LOVE!

Wynn

Art as Inspiration

I began my visual art career as a painter mainly creating landscapes using oil Pastels. I loved the texture and the ways you could blend them (and the vibrant colors available.)

What I didn’t really like about painting was that a viewer can not touch it, feel it, explore it. I branched out into silk wall paintings that became quilted tapestries. From there explored traditional quilting techniques,  and finally have landed in my niche as a art quilter who also LOVES incorporating  thread painting in many of my works.

Most of my art these days is base on my original artwork that I am “transcribing” into fabric art. Art that IS touchable as far as I am concerned.  I also work at times from photos of places and properties that people would like commemorated in a thread painting.

My latest series of wall hangings are based on a series of paintings I did years ago. I loved the format and felt that they would transcribe well into the art I am doing today.

 

IMG_1997 2
Here you see the sketches I prepared on muslin to begin this series of paintings. i too liberties to change and add things as I went. After I do a pencil sketch I then go back with Sharpies and suggest color combinations. With my new design wall I am able to lay out all the 6 wall hangings side by side and and work on them all simultaneously. This helps me coordinate colors across the series as well as keep changing things up . 
IMG_2023
Here are the 6 wall hangings after I have done the preliminary layers of fabrics to define color and specific areas. Under them you see the photographs of the original artwork – all sold now and no longer available to me. ( Thank goodness, my husband Michael Putnam keeps meticulous photograph records of all my creations!)

Create Beauty and fill the World with LOVE!

Wynn

Adding to the Studio/Gallery piece by piece…

I’ve officially been here in Bedford for two weeks. It has been time spent cleaning, unpacking, and arranging Little Old Lady Quilting Studio/Gallery to get ready for visitors. I’ve been sewing a lot of the time too.

So I thought I’d show you a little of the display furniture that I’ve been accumulating:

Of course, first there is Ruby. She is my HQ Avante 18 long arm machine and my best friend! Though she was not cheap, she was an investment for a lifetime. (Mine anyway)

 

IMG_2019
The Cabin came with a set of twin beds in the loft that we will never user for guests, so I appropriated them for the Gallery to display quilts on.  They will eventually be painted for more color….
IMG_1967
This corner cabinet was an eyesore, until I got Sherry Miller of Sherry’s Chairs and More to come do her magic. she is not finished yet, but already the pieces of furniture she is painting are coming to life with color and whimsy!
IMG_1968
This old “This End UP 3 drawer Chest of Drawers was heavy and dark and ugly. But it is starting to sing with new life now. I love these colors and there will be large Dahlia blossoms on it a well….  I’ll use this chest to store placemats, napkins, and etc.
IMG_1997
My other big purchase, a retractable Design Wall. Now I can pull it down to work on a project and when I am finished I can roll it up out of the way!
IMG_2023
Here is my latest series of work. Six hanging tapestries based on my oil paintings of Rural Virginia. It is great to be able to work on them side by side in the early stages to coordinate fabrics and colors across the series.
IMG_2027
Last but not least, the other expensive piece I bought — an antique cabinet for displaying folded quilts in. Thanks to the folks at Needful Things Antiques in Bedford, VA who delivered it for me this week! I already love the color!

So that is where I am today. 2 months until my grand opening on March 31, 2018 10:00am – 4:00pm. I still have a ton of stuff to make, and some friends and family to collect things from. But it is slowly coming together!

Create Beauty and fill the World with LOVE!

Wynn

Creative Surges that lead to …..????

I’ve been fiercely creative these last few months. It is part of the reason I have not been writing often enough on this blog. Besides the 5″ x 7″ thread paintings I created for the Electric Company, I have created a number of alternate pieces for changing out the art  come January.

 

I  have also done a number of commissioned pieces for collectors and friends.

IMG_1644
A client asked me to do a Red Clover Wall hanging. It is the state flower of Maine, a place almost sacred to her. I was deeply honored to be asked to create this for her
Fall in the Vineyard
Fall in the Vineyard — I created these two Pieces for friends who have a Vineyard in Bedford, VA  and also have a small Cottage they rent out. The countryside is so gorgeous there. I was so pleased they liked these!
Vineyard Retreat
Vineyard Retreat — Also created for my friends in Bedford, VA. I was so happy that they enjoyed these pieces enough to display them in the rental cottage and in their home. 

This series was commissioned as a holiday gift working from the client’s photos.

 

 

Abundance - 2017
This was also commissioned by the same client as a gift for friends. 

 

 

Homestead 2017  795.jpg
HOMESTEAD – 2017 This piece was created based on my oil painting of my parents former home in Bedford, VA.

 

IMG_1710.jpg
Something Totally Different… I created this little kimono and obi for one of my neighbor’s daughters who is totally obsessed with anything Japanese these days. The Kimono is made of one piece of fabric complete using the pattern of the fabric to determine the sleeve and the body area. 

 

 

Obsession

I am a fanatic, I know.

I am one of those people that take a lot of time to decide on an action, and then I dive in with both feet and head straight to the bottom of the lake. Many of my friends wonder aloud how I get so much done every day. The simple truth is that I don’t think about it. I plan and I do.

Take quilting… Two years ago I had never made a quilt in my life. I grew up with a crazy mom. SHE was the quilter, the seamstress. In a typical knee-jerk reaction to all she represented, I wanted nothing to do with a sewing machine or anything that represented her life choices.

Then after a life as an artist in theater, music, dance, and landscape painting, I discovered the world of Silk Painting fabric. That opened a new door to me. I began making simple art pieces – scarves, items of clothing, and etc.

 

Wynn Creasy Fine Art, Fine Art in Landscapes and Abstracts in Oils and Pastels
Blue Hawaii – Hand painted Silk – Sold

 

Wynn Creasy Fine Art, Fine Art in Landscapes and Abstracts in Oils and Pastels
Assorted hand painted Landscape Scarves -Sold

 

Wynn Creasy Fine Art, Fine Art in Landscapes and Abstracts in Oils and Pastels
Sunrise over Virginia – Hand Painted Silk  – sold
Wynn Creasy Fine Art, Fine Art in Landscapes and Abstracts in Oils and Pastels
Blue Ridge Rolling – Hand Painted silk  – Sold

 

From there it was really just a skip to Creating wall Tapestries of hand painted silk. Those led to more works of art that then had to be embroidered, and texture added with machine quilting.

Silk_Comforter 01.jpg
Sunset – Hand painted Silk Tapestry ( Private collection)
Silk_Comforter 02.jpg
Big Sky Blue Ridge – Hand Painted Silk Comforter  (Stolen from Exhibit)

IMG_0566 Quilting added more definition and texture to the Tapestry as a whole. IMG_0568

IMG_0569

Then my younger sister got me started with doing some quilting for her quilt projects – some placemats, then small quilts for her to sell, then larger quilts, and then I was hooked.

When I discovered the world of Long Arm Quilting, I knew I had found what I was looking for for the rest of my life. I am not so interested in the piecing of quilt tops, especially not traditional ones (although I happily do them for others, not for myself,) I really LOVE the process of quilting tops that others have created. I love the drawing with the needle. I love creating new patterns that compliment the quilt, and I really LIKE the solitude and the physical work.

Now two years later I have completed over 55 quilts for others.   I am obsessed with getting my new long arm machine so that I can begin to work MORE for others. I am quilting now on my heavy duty Singer machine and it is a great machine for me. But doing a large quilt under a domestic sewing machine arm is really a pain! So much fabric to tug and turn and move. With the long arm you move the machine NOT the fabric!

(This Kingsized Tumbling block quilt took me 2 weeks to quilt alone do on the domestic machine…)

So day by day I am more grateful the universe for all that I have, all that I am and all that is coming to me! I know that I have many creative gifts to bring to others, and my obsession with service is ONE of them!

Create Beauty and fill the World with LOVE!

Wynn

 

 

 

 

Making Space for a dream!

In my continued daily work preparing for the Universe to provide the HQ Avante 18″ Long -Arm-Machine of my dreams, I spent the holiday Monday cleaning out and re-organizing my studio space to be ready for Isabeau (my name for her) when she arrives!

I had been working on a tapestry project that was going ALL  wrong and I finally decided that it is OK sometimes to trash something in order to move on to more good in my life.

Here are pics of the NEW and Improved Little Old Lady Quilting Studio!

 

IMG_1161.jpg
The Far end of the studio has light in the high windows, as well as stackable “crate” shelving that can be rearranged for storage of fabric and my many research books. (Next on my to-do list: inventory the fabric and clean up that mess!) The two adjustable height tables double as a large cutting table when needed, and are also perfect for domestic sewing machine tables, as well as an ironing surface. This flooring is a floated Laminate floor – really necessary for the hours spent standing upright at the machine working.
IMG_1162.jpg
Here is where Isabeau will be hanging out and doing her thing! Since she comes with a 12′ foot adjustable height work table and needs a minimum of 3-foot clearance on all sides for comfort, I am lucky I have a 22′ wall on one side with lots of space for her to make herself at home!
IMG_1160.jpg
This is the other end of the Studio. The large rack is perfect for hanging clients’ quilts in calendar order while they are waiting to be quilted. I will be ordering some heavy duty Upholstery hangers for safe support and there is a quilted dust cover to protect them while in my custody. ( Ignore the mess on top of the rack.. lol that will be sorted and moved to storage later today.) The central door leads to a large workroom with more storage, a large utility sink, and washer and dryer for the finishing of quilts.  The third doorway ( hidden by the screen to the left) is a full bath for clients convenience. Behind the screen is another rolling metal rack which holds my 24 drawers of thread cones… 

 

 

IMG_1163.jpg
A close up of the sit-down work cubicle. I am so lucky!!!!! Excited to be moving on in this journey!   Thank you, Universe for all I am, all I have, and all that is coming my way to serve others!

 

Making way by cleaning out the old, by straightening, organizing, and by opening myself to the new, allows me to welcome MORE into my life.

 

Create Beauty and fill the world with LOVE!

Awakening

IMG_1001.jpg

 

AWAKENING – 2016

This is one of those pieces that seemed to just create itself. It hatched ( no pun intended) out of my unconsciousness when I realized I had promised to provide a piece for the Fairfax Quilters Unlimited annual quilt auction in November, and promptly forgot it until the end October.

I had had an image in my mind for a few months of a lone crane facing the sunrise. And it evolved from that. From sketch to finished product was 2 weeks… a record for me. I feel so connected to this piece for some reason.

 

IMG_0996.jpg

The fabrics are for the most part batik, but there is 100% silk satin on the white of the wings, as well as a wonderful interfacing fabric I used for the crane’s legs…

 

IMG_0999.jpg

 

I machine quilted the red border fabric with a free-arm quilted motif of cranes feeding.

I love this creative process so much!

Here’s what started it all…

IMG_0569

I was working as a landscape painter, but I really wanted to create works of art that one could touch and feel and explore. I accidentally discovered Silk Painting. Using imported silk paints I began to hand-paint landscapes on large silk panels. That grew into wanted to hang them and so I began to embellish them with stitching and embroidery.

IMG_0567

Here you can see the sewing machine stitching to simulate grasses in the wheat field.

IMG_0568

Here I used contour to embellish the shapes of the mountains.

IMG_0566

and I began to use free form Machine quilting in order to stipple and to give shape to large areas such as clouds in the skies.

 

Then it began to grow…. I began to explore pieces quilts and creating landscapes from fabric that is appliqued.  And that grew into my desire for a long arm machine that allows me to continue to explore stitching as a form of painting.