Monday, May 30, 2011

School Year's End

The countdown continues. 2.5 days left in the school year. Last week was a sprint. Along with the usual duties of teaching, wrapping up the quarter and submitting grades we had some extras to take care of.

Two of our staff members are retiring. We have a tradition of giving them a book or a quilt as a parting gift from the staff. Mrs. R chose a book and it was custom made for her highlighting her love of lighthouses. Above is the back and front cover of the book. Click on each image for a better look at the details and textures. If you know my work, you know I love to pile on the patterns and the textures...

The covers are mirror images of each other. I wanted it to look as if you were looking at the front and backside of the building. Paper piecing mirror images confuses me but I did it without losing the fabric samples. I only had a piece of each, some small and others quite large. Each cut had to be just right or I had to use something else. Luckily, I had enough of everything I wanted. You work with what you have, you know? That was part of the challenge. That kind of challenge I do enjoy.
It took me awhile to put the materials and the idea I had floating in my head together. Sometimes it's the brainstorming that takes me the most time. I'd been gathering these pieces of upholstery and wall paper samples to put together for the covers for some time.

The image is pieced and sewn. The rays of light, the doorway and windows get their texture from layers and layers of stitching. I used a black gel pen to draw the pathway and to emphasize some of the details. Gold acrylic paint was used for the stars in the sky.Inside front cover. The shells are a wall paper sample and the lighthouse image came from a calendar. Each staff member was asked to contribute a letter, poem and/or scrapbook page to go in the book. I left a space for my contribution. I haven't been able to bring myself to put words of good bye together. In the interim, I dug through my collection of rubber stamps and found quotes that were stamped and then sewed onto the light house images. I dispersed 6 throughout the book.

Our retirement event was held on Thursday and the gifts were presented. Cindy loved her book. It was made with lots of love. We've worked together for 15 years, getting to know one another slowly over time. I'm going to miss her.


  1. What a beautiful tradition! I'm sorry to have missed it - I had 4 other events that day & didn't make it to Kate's until 6. I'll have to send a card to both Cindy and Lorraine -quickly!