holly hoch3BarbaraHarms

The Internet, A Shrinking World and Connecting With Hollyhock Lovers Everywhere!

This has been my month for hollyhocks. It began with a hollyhock art quilt. One of my customers, who owns a fabric art gallery purchased another art quilt from me. This is the 9th quilt for her.

She first found me through the internet.The quilt she chose this time was the hollyhock quilt, pictured above.I was delighted. This quilt is was one of my current favorites, and now going to a lady I liked very much, a genuinely nice person.
However before it sold, it captured the attention of someone else.

In a short jump across the ocean, a psychologist with a practice located in Australia, noticed the hollyhock quilt online. She has an affinity for hollyhocks, with one even pictured on her business cards.

She also has interest in art quilts, a large one already hanging in her office.

The internet has shrunk the world, it seems a smaller place.
Here’s a tiny example of our ability to connect with people living on the other side of the world,an impossibility not many years ago.
Three peoples’ lives overlaped for a brief moment in time, based on a mutual interest in the same simple art quilt. Living many miles apart, it was unlikely their paths ever would have crossed, without the internet to connect them.
To take this a step further. The psychologist, living in Australia, was able to locate and contact the quilt’s maker, living in the states. Two people, living in two different countries brought together despite the huge populations and miles. A business transaction is made.The psychologist is able to obtain an art quilt that suits her needs and the artist gains a new commission.

The world of commerce has now become a global market with the arrival of the internet.
But what strikes me as the most beneficial gain, is it’s ability to cross borders and help us to gain an understanding of the differing cultures,customs and people of the world.
Surprisingly, we’re not all that different, at our most basic level. We love babies and animals, have a need for love, friendship and acceptance. And people everywhere like hollyhocks and quilts.
The door has opened, we can experience friendships and insights into each other viewpoints and thinking.
Will this unite the world? Bring complete unity? Stop war? Unlikely,because every culture has it’s own share of villains, with no interest in unity, or peace. The villains are similar too, they like things the way they are.
The internet can’t change hardened hearts or harmful thinking.
But it can open a door to understanding and possible acceptance of our differences and similarities. Now that’s a pretty good thing I would say.
So back to work Barbara! I want to meet my deadline,because my quilt’s new owner will be in the states, near to where I am. She will pick it up in person.I will enjoy meeting her, a pleasure I rarely have.
I like where my quilt is going,

Red Hollyhock fiber art quilt update

This is the Red Hollyhock quilt ready for quilting, holly hocks appliqued on, thread paint finish.

the owner of my new hollyhock art quilt offers comfort and hope of improvement to troubled souls. And she likes hollyhocks and quilts.
I think it has found a good home.

Barbara Harms Fiber Art
7hollyhocks progress report 8

A detailed view of blossoms on this red hollyhock art quilt.

Red hollyhocks art quilt detail of one stock

The applique and thread painting is finished on this red hollyhock[caption id="attachment_10349" align="aligncenter" width="200"]https://asianartandquilts.files.wordpress.com/2014/08/red-hollyhock-detail-12.jpg A detailed view of a spray of large hollyhocks from the Red hollyhock art quilt.

art quilt. Ready to quilt[/caption]

hollyhock peogress detail 3

Ready to quilt. The Red Hollyhock quilt has the quilting yet to be dome.

Holly hocks thread painted and ready tp applique

A Whole Lot Of Flowers!

I’ve started a new commissioned art quilt. It features red hollyhocks, which makes me pretty happy!  I must confess that making a quilt with lots of flowers is one of my favorite things to do. I’m already making some headway. Due to a large amount of detailed thread painting that needs to o be done on a rather large quilt, this will take a lot of labor and time to complete. No complaints there, I love doing what I do.

The first step involved thread painting all my holly hocks, which I’ll cut out and applique to the backdrop that I’ve already painted.. The quilt will be a large size, so that means I’ll need lots and lots of hollyhocks. I don’t want to skimp on the amount, I want my stems to be full of flowers.

On a quilt that size, making so many has been a long process. Each one takes quite a while to complete. Each one is an individual and slightly different from all the others. They are after all, going to be the star of this quilt. All the focus will be on my hollyhocks, so no cookie cutter holly hocks allowed!

I give some thought to every flower before I begin it. I think that if I rushed from one to the next, in a great hurry, they’d end up being  duplicates. Little clones of each other.

What I found in making these little babies was. if I wanted each one to be a individual,  I needed a big  variety in the shades of red to give character  to each flower.

Thus  began the great “red thread quest’ I was on a mission, find the shades of red I wanted and needed. You may not have realized this, but red colors can vary greatly and still be considered “red”.

There are blue based reds, then there are orange based reds and and a lot of ground inbetween. I wanted several different orange based reds, with out their being an actual orange. I needed a colors starting with  dark, then lid shade and finally light.

It’s funny, that with each new project you begin, no matter how many spools of thread, or amounts of fabric that you own, there will always be at least one or more necessary colors that you don’t have, but you must have for the integrity of the design . I repeat this unbelievable truth, there will always be at least one missing color. Ask a few quilters or seamstresses you know, they’ll say the same. You begin scouring the fabric stores and buying yet more fabric or thread.

I have a massive stock of thread, I do a lot of thread painting and need it.

When I say that I have a massive stock of thread,  I think there is no way to envision it, so I must provide a visual aid, to preserve my creditability.  So expect pictures, these are not my complete stash, but I just got sick of photographing it all.

I can’t fathom that out of my entire collection of thread, massive as it is, I couldn’t find the exact shades of red that I wanted…

I’ll give you a tiny look at some of the finished hollyhocks,  There are many more. Now I invite you to just wander through the photos and be amazed at the impossibility of a missing shade out all of this!


Holly hocks thread painted and ready tp applique

 A little trimming around the edges and they’re ready to go.







Drawers of thread used for art quilts





Blue cones of thread for art quiltsRed thread used in art quiltingART quilting threadsLoyts of thread for threadpainting fiber artthread cshelf with variety for making art quilts


































































Oh please, do come and  check out my new website, http:barbaraharmsfiberart.com. 

This blog will be connected there,  I have a store  and a portfolio is included. so you can see it all in one location if you like.


New Beginnings and Change

Change is Good, Growth and New Beginnings.

I’m a bit obsessive about making my fiber art, it can cause me to be a tad unobservant of what’s happening around me.

In spite of the fact that I’m a rather concentrated but unobservant fiber artist,  I did manage to observe something the other day. It was  a commercial for school clothes. School clothes. Didn’t summer just start? Apparently not, according to the TV commercials it’s time to start thinking about school clothes.

Fall will be upon us in no time and with it, change. That is the theme behind my latest landscape art quilt, “Change, New Beginnings”.

Change is inevitable. I have to admit I can be slow to adjust at times. Rather than resist it, I’m trying think of it as an opportunity. We’ve been given a fresh start, of sorts. “I didn’t get to that last fall, but this year I’m going to….”. The great thing is that the slate is clean, we can do whatever things that nagged away at us the past year. This new season offers an opportunity for change. It’s a good time for it. My advise to all, including myself is, use it wisely, because time really does fly!

I started this landscape art quilt a couple of months ago. I’ve just finished and have listed it on Etsy this morning. I’ve started my nest project, the thread painting for flowers that will be appliqued on  has begun. I want to work full throttle, it is waiting for me and I’m eager to dive in with both feet [please excuse my 3rd or 4th cliche, I'm challenging my post editor with this post. A foolish thing to do, because me, of all people require my posts to be edited. It is correct, four cliches in one post is just plain  excessive!]

I love the feeling of satisfaction when I’ve completed an art quilt and like the results. And I love the anticipation of starting the next one.

I guess I’m just a person who loves beginnings and endings.

Here’s that landscape art quilt; “Change, New Beginnings”.

Whole view landscape art quilt Autumn scene copy

 A meadow with the few stragglers of summer, soon to be replaced

with the growth of a new season.

New Beginnings and Change New Beginnings and Change

One small note, I’m experiencing a change in my life these days. I have a new website, http://barbaraharmsfiberart.com

I haven’t had even one bad experience, which is strange because I require a great, great deal of patience to help. I have not sensed one single sign of irritation, no impatience or exasperation detectable in their voices. Nada. Just nice polite and patient people with a  desire to help you.

One more change, I’m going e-commerce. Which means for anyone unacquainted with the term [I feel it's important to explain terms, I appreciate it when others do that for me. Just kidding, you all know what eCommerce is.] I’ll have a store right on my site, with the ability to purchase my work directly from there. Big change for me, you may have already heard about this.  I might have mentioned it, oh just a few times perhaps. Stage one completed, the store and tie in to this blog is in progress. So just to take a look at the bare bones of it http://BarbaraHarmsFiberArt.com.

I’m slow, but eventually I’ll get the store up.