The Artistic Alchemy 2019 Retreat in Photos

by Sandra Bruce

Today I am simply going to let the photos I have of our retreat tell the story of some of the fun, creativeness, and learning that occurred in our 2019 Retreat at Zephyr Point. We 4, Jane, Heidi, Mary and myself thank all the participants for giving us yet another successful year! Following are photos of teachers, students, Open Studio ladies, Show and Tell, and some of the fantastic work that was created.

We look forward to 2020!




And last but not least, our annual group shot….the serious one, and my favorite, the silly one!

Announcing our 6th Annual Artistic Alchemy Retreat, Sept. 2nd-6th, 2019!

Welcome! Please peruse all the drop down boxes on the Menu bar. Any questions you may have, fill out the form in the Contact link on the menu bar.

We hope to see YOU this year at Lake Tahoe for our  6TH ANNUAL ARTISTIC ALCHEMY RETREAT!

From the team, Heidi, Sandra, Mary, & Jane.

 

Heidi Emmett’s Workshop-Upcycling and Creative Art to Wear!

By Heidi Emmett    What a creative bunch I had for my workshop at our 5th annual Artistic Alchemy Retreat. Ahhh…the beautiful views from Zephyr Point below.

We had an amazing time and it was just like I told you it would be, fresh air, great friends, lots of learning, and fun, fun, fun! Below are mainly pictures of my group of students. There is no particular order for the pictures. First, the intrepid teachers: Mary, me, Jane, & Sandra. We make up, Artistic Alchemy.

Check out Janet’s upcycled sweatshirt. She was so excited to upcycle sweatshirts in the workshop that she couldn’t help herself. She had to try one BEFORE she came. Love it!

Susan, one of my students, won a complete painting package from Dharma Trading. There were many, many, FABULOUS giveaways at our 5th annual Artistic Alchemy Retreat! 

Sharon had some painted pieces and favorite fabric pieces that she wants to incorporate into her sweatshirt. Great idea. 

The almost finished sweatshirt project will show up again in another picture.

Kathy is just thinking (not praying, or sleeping) about fabric placement for her Off The Grid vest from the “Art to Wear” portion of my workshop. 

Here I am wearing my pattern called “Off The Grid Vest” This pattern is a perfect choice for this retreat as you will have plenty of time to work on your own version. 

Her bright colorways really pop on the black fabric.

Garments are beginning to go up on “The Wall.” Kathy’s almost finished sweatshirt (gray one on the left), makes use of her leftover blocks from a quilt.Love that! 

Aprons from men’s shirts. Sweat shirts, their way. And I spy a Sparky Top and a Terrific Tabard. The dark gray sweat shirt has Sharon’s fabric pieces (from an older top she just loved so much,which I think is a great idea and I sure have a few of those myself).  Very cool. She isn’t quite sure yet where they will finish (pieces still hanging off the bottom). It’s good to put them on a wall and stand back and think a bit. 

The Wall keeps growing.I spy another Terrific Tabard way over to the upper right. The Terrific Tabard on the left has some lovely ladies on it(Susan got those from England). Everyone really worked outside of the box and I was so proud of ALL my students. I can’t wait to see what they come up with next. 

Terrific Tabard on the right, Sandra had a rounded piece on one side and cut it off on the other. Why have I never thought to do that. Great asymmetric design idea. 

Janet, created an Amazing Sweat shirt, bottom right and I think she has 5 different shirts in the blouse above on the right. 

A glimpse of the dining room. The view, oh, we love that Lake Tahoe view. 

Sandra jumped right in to create an apron using sleeves only. 

Susan made her apron with contrasting fabrics for pockets and ties. I have to say that all my students have come full circle. When I ask what their first sewing experience was, the usual answer (for those in middle grades) is an apron. And they didn’t have fun at all. Whaat? Look at all the smiling faces, and we’re working on APRONS! But these are NOT YOUR MOTHER”S aprons. What a hoot. We all had a great laugh over this. 

Susan whipped up her first apron so fast, that she made a second one using the men’s sleeves only. All sewing rules pretty much go “out the window” as we create these one-of-a-kind pieces. 

My students were so great this year (as in other years too!). I learn so many good ideas from them. It’s always a fabulous meeting of the minds for all of us.

All of A.A. Retreat teachers are in the planning stages for next years 6th Annual Artistic Alchemy Retreat. I have been doing more upcycling since returning from the retreat(considering some new additions for my workshop). I want to show you a really simple idea AND I invite you to hop on over to my companies blog: DesignsbyHeidi.wordpress.com  to see all the different things I LOVE to do! Look at the vest below. Now, REALLY look at how it is placed on the mannequin.Scroll down one more picture and see it out flat. Basically, put your hands one through each hole with the middle sweater section across your front. The long ends are now going to your back. Bring one corner edge across your back, over your shoulder and to your front just a bit over your shoulder. Pin in place with a cool pin (this one is by Orna Lalo). So simple and chic.

 

What are you going to create this weekend? Make it Up, Make it Fun, and get it Done! Hugs, Heidi

Marcia Derse, Fabric Collection Fall 2018, What should I Do With It?

by Heidi Emmett

Here I am at the Marcia Derse booth at Quilt Market. I arrived at the precise moment she finished her little talk on her newest line of fabrics, “Art History:101″ So sad to miss it. But I was able to score 5″ squares of all 26 of her Art History collection. And later on, I was able to get one panel of the black(on the back wall to the left). Today, I’m going to focus on those 5” squares. Many of you might already know that I was asked to sign my book, Fashion Quilted Accessories, in the E.E. Schenck booth, at Quilt Market in Portland, Oregon. Pop over to my blog: Designsbyheidi.wordpress.com   to read more posts about Quilt Market.

Here they all are, out flat, and sort of lined up. There are two more, but I forgot them as I had them set aside. You’ll see them later. 

As with ANY collection of ANY designer, all the fabrics are meant to go together (this is to encourage us to buy more, not a problem for me).  Marcia’s fabric collections are so unique and visual, each piece a little gem. And I have found, as my collection  grows, each collection works with all her other previous groupings. Love that. I see a squirrel, and must follow it. After visiting for a few minutes with Marcia, I said goodbye and walked around the corner. I noticed the back of this ladies jacket. It’s a beautiful “little” modern quilt. I like that idea, so of course, I needed a picture. The “must do this someday” is now  on record.

“Upcycling” is a big part of my workshop for the Artistic Alchemy Retreat at Zephyr Point this September 3rd-7th.  There are just a few places left, so if you are thinking about it, now is the time to sign up. Below is just “touching the surface” for upcycling of a top.Yes, this is a great top as is, but I had to have a spark of color.

Sew, I took some random (truly, TRULY, don’t over think it, be brave, just pick!) pieces from that 5″ stack. I cut some into smaller pieces and pressed the edges under a tiny bit all the way around each piece. I always try to cut long and lean looking. The exception for ME is I want the “illusion” of a bust, hence a full 5″ square and sideways rectangle in the upper area. Hey, no laughing, it’s worth a try.

Here’s what I ended up with for the top, left section. 

I hate pins and poking, so it’s Elmer’s glue for me to hold the piece in place. I run a very small bead (and smear it) in the center of wrong side, about the size of a quarter. That’s it. One bit of glue on each piece. Let dry and edge stitch in place. 

Below is what NOT to do. And of course it’s the first one I stitched and smack dab in the front. I will remove the stitches and redo, but of course, I have a deadline. Good for you all to see that I’m not perfect. Ha, ha, ha.

I love, love, LOVE my new top. And the bleached out sections, while I did not do these on this store bought top, I have done it and will give you some do’s and don’t in the workshop (we wont actually do it though, not enough time).  I leave you with pictures of my Golden Chain Tree. It was the prettiest season EVER for this very s-l-o-w growing tree.

Have a great sewing weekend. Hugs, Heidi  P.S. Whatever site you view THIS particular post on, Designsbyheidi.wordpress.com, OR, Artisticalchemyblog.wordpress.com  you will see the same post on both (I need more sewing time!)

My Road Trip/Business Trip, Part 2!

by Heidi Emmett

I’m still at the Trends show in Portland, Oregon. I’m meeting and greeting as many new people as I can to tell them about my love (or is it obsession?) with all things “Art to Wear!” I even had my picture taken at two “booths” just for 50’s fun. That was the theme for the Spring Trends Show. Some great costumes were walking around. I even spotted Elvis.


I spotted this cool necklace and asked its’ owner if I could take a picture.  These beads were plastic but how about polymer clay, or fiber pieces? Hmm..I will file this in fiber/polymer jewelry… I really like how it is strung (she bought it at Macy’s years ago).

Someone won, YES, won, this adorable 50’s “kitschy”  display made by Mr. Kelly. It was about 4′ x 4′. 

This show took place in a GINORMOUS warehouse. Look up and beautiful quilts were on display. These were entered by shop owners across the western states. Iowa was the furthest east that I met. Yes, those are shopping carts. Big ones, easy to fill, use as many as you need, load up on the latest, greatest, of fabrics and notions. Ackk! I want to do that too!

Aisle after aisle, after aisle! It boggles the mind. Ladies had their “shopping” lists in hand and wheeled their carts down all the isles. Fill one up, just park it in a special place and get another one.  

This is Miss Elizabeth. She is the Iris Apfel of the West Coast. She called her coat, “The Four Seasons.” It goes all the way to her ankles. I thought the flowers on the front were quite intriguing. Let’s go in for a closer look. 

Some kind of Origami. I think they are fun. This is the “Spring” side she said. 

Below, a lady and I are trying to arrange my “Sensational Scarf Vest” She is from Eastern Washington (so sweet)). She gave me the BEST idea for Scarf Vest. Using fabric paints, stamp or stencil on plain (any color)silk Georgette, to make your own beautiful fabric. In case you didn’t know, Scarf vest is made up of two layers of the same sheer fabric so there is some lovely pattern on patterns created. 

Work is done, LET’S PLAY!! Five hour drive south  from Portland on Interstate 5 brings us to Ashland, Oregon.  Here I am in Lithia Park. It is so lovely. It is a 99 acre park in the middle of the town and has a large stream running through it’s length. A very European feel. It is also home of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.

The top of the hills behind this picture all had a dusting of snow behind them. Brrrr…

Lovely homes everywhere. This one is on East Main St. 

And THE FOOD!! Ohh so yummy. An Antipasti plate. 

Another view, everything so fresh. Can you see what my glass of wine says? This is Pie and Vine, with wood fire ovens for that fabulous “Pie” below.  We liked the food sooo much, we went back a second time. 

We took a little drive in the outskirts of Ashland. 

And then, on to the play! Center seats and four rows up!! This playbill cover is so cool don’t you think? It was really well done! We had never seen a Jane Austen in play form. Kate Hamill did a wonderful job. Love, love, LOVED everything, the town, the food, the shops (more about Sew Creative and Web-sters in another post!), the plays, the scenery. Sheesh, it sounds as if I don’t get out much. Oh dear, that’s kinda true. Oh well, I enjoy it that MUCH more when I do get out and about. 

We’re in California now and this is a stunner of a view from the car, on Interstate 5 looking at Mount Shasta. 

The mountain, all 14, 412 feet, is all covered clouds. The taller mountains make their own weather patterns. Mount Shasta is particularly stunning as it is a classically shaped volcano all by itself. They say the last time Mount Shasta errupted, was 1786, when Sir Francis Drake was busy discovering places along the northern coast of California , and made a log entry that he had seen an eruption to the east.  

And that cloud shape above the other cloud layer, I think, gives an eerie, other worldly look to it. That is a “lenticular” cloud and caused by lots of wind.  Historical facts, meteorological facts, that’s what a road trip is all about. Ha, ha.  

I have other pictures and fun factoids but I will leave those to be mixed into other posts. Thanks for stopping by. Happy Easter to all, Spring, and rebirth!    Hugs, Heidi

“Hip To Be Tied” A New Type of Belt using Terial Magic

by Heidi Emmett

Craftsy-Logo InstagramAA Logo1Pinterest-Pinnedetsy

I recently saw a belt in a catalog that was very wide, embroidered, tied once on the hips, and looked fabulous! It was also $148.00! So, I decided to see what I could put together that looked just as good and at 1/10th of the price!

Materials

1/3 yard large scaled print and 1/3 yard of a smaller print fabric for the lining.  Both fabrics should be quilting cotton weight.

1 bottle Terial Magic spray.

Thread, same thread top and bobbin.

Optional, beads and fabric glue

Sewing machine and supplies.

Finished belt size is 5″ wide x 84″-90″ long (Depending on the width of the fabric).

Directions: Prepare the fashion fabric and the lining fabric with Terial Magic according to their directions.  In case you didn’t know it, I love, love, LOVE, Terial Magic for its many creative uses. 

1.From both fabrics, cut 2 strips, each strip being 5″ x width of the fabric. Seam each piece together with a 1/4″ seam allowance. Press the seam open.

2. Place the two pieces wrong sides together. Pin in a few places to hold together. Thread the machine with the same colored thread both top and bobbin. I put an open-toed embroidery foot on (so I could see where I was sewing), but did not lower the feed dogs. Use a straight stitch and sew all over. I sewed from the center portion out in long meandering lines. Some of my stitches (as seen below) are larger, but with all the other stitching, they aren’t noticeable.

 

Trim off the excess fabric along the edges. Cut along one of the stitching lines for an interesting shape for the belt.

The Terial Magic makes the two fabrics stiff enough for easy sewing.

The Terial Magic gives the belt “body” so that when it is tied, it will stay in place. But you can easily rinse the Terial Magic out for a softer look and feel. 

Tie the belt right on the hips. What a fun way to use some of your favorite fabrics. 

Of course, I couldn’t stop with just one belt! Check out this “house” fabric. I like to use another colorful fabric for the lining, just in case is shows.  Craftsy-Logo InstagramAA Logo1Pinterest-Pinnedetsy

No worries where the stitching lands. It’s easy and relaxing stitching. 

This belt calls for some subtle bling. Look closely at the bottom end of the belt. 

Here’s a close up. I didn’t have time to hand sew my large seed beads down. I wanted the holes of the bead to show. Using  fabric glue and using a pair of tweezers, drag the back of the bead across some glue. Set in place.  

Wear this belt all year round with dresses, skirts, or pants. Make a bunch for gift giving too.

Visit Heidi Emmett at her blog: Designsbyheidi.wordpress.com for more fun ideas.;Orrrr….if you are already here at my blog, you might want to visit Artistic Alchemy at: Artisticalchemyblog.wordpress.com and read some of the past posts. There are four of us teaching at our retreat this September 4th-8th.

One more time,  I love Terial Magic and use it for so many of my creative sewing projects. See my latest projects using Terial Magic in my new book, “Fashion Quilted Accessories” by Leisure Arts. Thanks so much for stopping by. Hugs, Heidi

Running Hot and Cold!

by Heidi Emmett

“Kaffe Fassett Extravaganza!” That is the name of our Trunk Show. Christine Barnes and I have long had an interest in all things Kaffe, from fabric to his knitwear, to his needlepoint, mosaics, and of course, quilts. So we were off to Merced for Trunk Show # 1, this past Monday. Below is the coolest Mosaic in the hottest part of the day, 108 degrees! I saw this as part of a wall to sit on. That streak of white is the blazing sun.  The A.C. was on and the quilt guild in Merced was a hot group! They were such a creative, lively, and nice group.
And look what Lora Wheeler made, her own Mommy & Me vest! I love it. She bought the pattern at our Artistic Alchemy Booth at the Pine Tree Quilt Show back in May in Grass Valley, CA. It is always so fun to see what you all create with one of my patterns. She used a fabulous puckery type of rayon. I thought it was silk.

I just love what you did Lora. You were thinking outside the box! I sure wish I could come back and take your “upcycling” workshop-taking four shirts to create one.

On to San Francisco! It was 63 degrees when we arrived! Ahhhhhhh, so refreshing. As soon as we got to our hotel, I took a walk across the street to Sutro Park. It has tons of Nasturtiums, they are such a happy plant. Great colors.

I came close to the edge of a trail and stopped in my tracks! Yes, this was my view. It is just astonishing! That large green patch is the beginning of Golden Gate Park! Did you know that it is 3 1/2 miles long and 1/2 mile wide? Wow. And check out that HUGE beach area.  A lovely rose. Sutro park is 128 acres of loveliness. Adolph Sutro purchased that acreage in 1881 and built a Mansion, Conservatory, and a Parapette. When he passed, the whole place went to ruin. All the buildings were torn down but all the foliage stayed. It is now a city park within San Francisco.   

These homes border the park on one side.These home owners can walk down the hill to the Cliff House restaurant.  Don’t they look like places on the Cote d’Azure in France?  Succulents in front of the hotel, Seal Rock Inn. Cool and crisp looking.  There it is, Seal Rock Inn from Sutro park. 

The ladies of the S.F. Quilt Guild were also a delight. We had a great time telling them  some things they didn’t know about Kaffe Fassett. He grew up at Nepenthe which is near Big Sur, just down Highway One, south of San Francisco. Thank you Cathy and Laura, you were great hostesses.

No, NO! Christine and I didn’t want to leave. A 63 degree high, I had to dig through my Kaffe samples and find my Kaffe Alpaca sweater to wear. Who knew?  

Thanks for stopping by. At our Artistic Alchemy Retreat in September, my workshop, “Pick a Pattern”(Designs by Heidi patterns) is still taking students. Maybe you will want to design and create your own Mommy & Me Vest. I would love to have you in my workshop. I will help you fit whichever pattern you choose. Let’s all get our creative going. Hugs, Heidi