Saturday, February 21, 2015


That word used to scare me.  I thought it meant Rembrandt.  Michelangelo.  Van Gogh.  Picasso.  I thought it meant going to a museum to see it, and standing far enough back from it to not draw a security guard in your direction.

But then – I became a quilter.  And suddenly, I realized that art IS for every day, it’s all around, and I could make it myself.  Growing up with an artist mum who painted [and could actually draw]  this was a novel concept to me – art took on a new meaning. An accessible meaning.  It didn’t have to be paint on canvas!  It could be something I could touch!  So, I started surrounding myself with it -

I made a quilt for my son, using his artwork….


Then, I started using other people’s patterns [especially Jenny of Elefantz, right Jenny?]

DSCN0129    2

Ah but then I got brave – I had a go at it, using fabric as my medium.

PICT0217 lemon
tree2  3
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Something clicked in my mind when I started playing with art.  I realized it could really be everywhere.  I realized I liked art that I could touch.  I started looking for everyday objects that were useful, but artful as well.  Even something like wall hooks!

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I adore whimsical art.  It doesn’t pretend to be highbrow, or intellectually superior to me.  It speaks to me, and tells me to not take things so serious – to enjoy the little things, and to have fun.  Do you remember Mary Engelbreit’s Home Companion magazine?  I was a subscriber from the first issue.  She drew a whole world, and drew me right in.  Someone else does that for me too – Patience Brewster.

Photos courtesy of

I love the whimsy, the faces, the imagination.  Especially the Christmas ornaments!

How about you?  Do you surround yourself with daily art?  Do you enjoy whimsy too?  Do you surround yourself with colors you love, ornaments you cherish, quilts that warm the body as much as the soul? 

Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.  William Morris

Go gather your art supplies  - your fabrics, your threads, your needles - and make some art.  And as you touch and hold your art, let it touch your soul.  It'll do you good!

Disclaimer:  This post is my own, I received no compensation for any part of it.


Karen said...

Oh I love your art. I remember 1st following your site after seeing your lemon tree quilt. I still love this tree. Cool "everyday" art here. Especially like the seahorse and mermaid. I bought a couple of coat hooks at Disney World many many years ago of ceramic scallop shells. They are currently living in my closet :) Warm wishes, Allie. Hugs.

WoolenSails said...

I love the quilt and it is so fun and something he will treasure and pass down to his children. I actually have that mermaid in the brown rust as a soap dish, but I use her for shells.


Rachaeldaisy said...

What a great blogpost!! I so agree with you that art is all around us if you just look. It's great to see some of your past works, and some of your whimsical collection.

IHaveANotion ~ Kelly Jackson said...

Allie, I love your words...accessible give me permission to do my own thing...even when there are times I feel I'm not very artist like.

I do surround myself with things I adore...even when they don't match...since the TV cameras aren't coming to IHAN....I don't care! Giggles!

Big Hugs!

Peg - Happy In Quilting said...

You are one amazing artist Allie x

Carrie P. said...

I do surround myself with different kinds of art.

Sew This N That said...

Beautiful as always my friend :) I find art in the colours that surround us every day...from the things that our children create to the water and oil after a rainstorm. I personally think that this is what defines us as crafters :)

Jenny of Elefantz said...

I still absolutely adore your vase 'artwork'.
Yes, brave it good...and art is life giving!

VivJM said...

Oh yes, art that I can *feel* is good. I guess some people are as tactile as they are visual in their appreciation of beautiful things?

Shasta Matova said...

I too worried about not being able to make art, since I can't draw. But I've wanted to be surrounded by it, and now that I do find it more accessible, I am finding ways to have a house full of art. My goal is to have art in every single room of the house.

Jan said...

So sorry about your Abby. You ARE an artist of great merit, Allie. Love your quilts.

Anonymous said...

Very interesting, Allie. I really don't surround myself with art ... or much of anything else. I have quilts and things quilted, two pillows made by a friend, a doll made by a friend, some candles, a clock given to me by a friend ... plants ... not a lot else. My walls are more bare than not. I grew up in a house that was very much a museum of art pieces ... pieces I liked, but I think it turned me off from having "stuff" around. Which is not to say my house is either neat or barren. LOL I enjoyed reading your thoughts on art, though.


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