– Re-vision: New pictures for Close Your Eyes

When I did the first edition of the lullaby book, I printed photos of my daughters with Jace and Griffin on a commercial cotton cloth on an adhesive backing designed to go through the inkjet printer. The quality wasn’t great, but the pictures were adequately recognizable.

Of course, after finishing Jace’s book, I found an inkjet canvas that worked much better, so that was what I used for Griffin’s book …

It made the photo in Jace’s book pale by comparison (literally), so I cut Jace’s picture out, printed a new picture and slid it into the resulting hole …

The resulting edge is a little wonky, but the picture quality is much better …

And as Don pointed out, the whole book is wonky, so it all works.

– Close Your Eyes: The final chapter of the first edition

It’s a book … which is not just the title of my favorite toddler board book, but also the result of my most recent endeavor in stitch …

Of course, a printed book would have a dedication page, but due to space limitations, this blog post will have to suffice:

Dedicated to Jude Hill
with much appreciation
for her artistry and inspiration

Because as I stitched the final page, I realized that Close Your Eyes had become a virtual sampler of the many innovative stitches and techniques gleaned from Jude’s incredible online classes on Spirit Cloth.

First, here are the overview shots: the a-sides, if you will, to the b-sides shown in the last post

Then the close-up shots, with notes in the captions that detail the techniques, stitches, and back stories …
Cloth weaving anchored with invisible baste, Kantha stitch (aka running stitch), split back stitch
Wrap stitch (aka satin stitch) and Kantha stitch (aka running stitch)
I never would have thought to use a tattered edge like this before Spirit Cloth 101
Closer view of split back stitch on a setting sun discharge dyed with bleach
Full moon discharge dyed with bleach on denim
Back stitch worked from the reverse side, see details in this post
A bit of silk tie from Don’s school administrator days
spinning through a galaxy of thread bead stars
The back side of some rust dyeing and a picture of Melissa and Jace
inkjet printed on cotton fabric and attached with invisible baste and blanket stitch
Text hand lettered with a Pitt pen and back stitched with a single strand of floss
Each page was connected to
the spine with ladder stitching
Interior view of ladder stitch in the spine (top pulled tight, bottom left loose to show detail)

Cloth label hand lettered in Pitt pen and back stitched
Interior label lettered in Pitt pen on cotton cloth from a threadbare shirt of my mom’s
that I wore as a nightshirt virtually every day of the six years following her death in 2008.
First repurposed here when I began following Spirit Cloth, a part of it will now be passed on to her great-grandson.

– February 14: B-sides being Valentine’s Day

I can tell you exactly what I had to eat for lunch on Valentine’s Day twenty-nine years ago: a Belgian waffle with vanilla Haagen Dazs ice cream and hot fudge sauce. Then I took a long nap and when I woke up, it was snowing. By 8:00 Don insisted we go to the hospital before the snow got any deeper … a few hours later Melissa Reid entered the world.

Which is why this is what we had for dessert tonight …

Yes, I did add tart cherries in a soft creamy mousse this time around … seemed like the color was just right for Melissa’s birthday (around here we call February 14th “Valentine’s Day” at our peril).

And it was also noteworthy that Jace’s lullaby book took a leap forward, with all twelve pages now complete and stitched together along their individual spines …
The next step will be to secure the other three edges of each pair, but before concealing the b-sides I took one last look at each two-page spread from the inside …

With any luck, I’ll be done by the end of the week … just in time to head to St. Louis.