Shrimp shadow detail, by Erica Sirotich

Art = LOVE

Detail of Yarn Monster, by Erica Sirotich; 2012
Detail of Yarn Monster, by Erica Sirotich; 2012

I am in LOVE!

It’s only happened a few times in my life – when I come across an artist whose work really blows me away — and that happened yesterday!

I went to the Cherry Blossom Festival in San Francisco, and, you know, wandered around, looked at all the booths, explored the stores in Japantown’s mall, and ate meat on a stick – yum!

Then I went into a big building that had an Atrist’s Village set up. Each vendor had a table with their art on display. Everything was super cool, I have to say! (The venue is a new three-story store called the New People Building, and you can go and see it next weekend, April 21 & 22. But no Erica that weekend. Boo, but see other options, below.)

And that’s where I fell in love with the most wonderful, whimsical, clever, intriguing prints I had ever seen!

detail of Yarn Monster, by Erica Sirotich; 2012
detail of Yarn Monster, by Erica Sirotich; 2012

They are the work of young and darling artist, Erica Sirotich.

This is my book letterpress, by Erica Sirotich
This is my book letterpress, by Erica Sirotich

Erica was selling many of her prints, cards, stamps, and letterpress art.

You have to believe me, there is something really special and exciting about this work.

I had the opportunity to talk to Erica a little bit, and I learned that she uses all archival inks and papers, as well as archival quality printing processes. She says that she draws the images, inks them, transfers them into the computer and then colors them in photoshop. Then she uses fine giclee printing processes to get archival-quality results.

Erica’s has sweet, creative drawings for children and children’s rooms. If you’re looking for something special for a child, she will personalize it especially for you.

She will also make personalized wedding or party invitations. You can see examples this work on her website.

And you won’t believe how reasonable the prices are!

Shrimp shadow detail, by Erica Sirotich
Shrimp shadow detail, by Erica Sirotich

Look at these Vikings riding a whale with their dog (who has a Viking hat), are you kidding! I’m in love.

While she creates many of the illustrations for children, there are also plenty of images made for a more mature audience. It is this work that makes me feel like a grown up child. Even with my adult experiences and foibles, the wit and whimsy of the work brings me to a sweeter, more curious, and absolutely delighted version of myself. I know there are many of you who know just what I mean and how rare it is to waken the little big girl inside of us. I find myself wanting to explore all of the details in the work, from the looks on the faces, through all of the little nuances and relationships of the characters, and to the delicacy of colors and designs.

Shrimp Shadow, by Erica Sirotich
Shrimp Shadow, by Erica Sirotich

Her Pajama-clad Vikings riding on the whale in this print are fabulous! My friend was lucky enough to get one of these as a gift for a friend – I regret not getting one for me!

I’m giving you some great links to see much of Erica’s work – you have to go and see these links. Click on ALL of these sites to see EVERYTHING! I have spoken!

Click here for Erica’s delightful website.

Click here for Erica’s lovely blog.

To see a different set of Erica’s work check out dribbble.com (and see more of Yarn Monster!).

Her work can also be found at the Collector Art Shop in Berkeley, California (Which I am adding to my Places I Must Go To ASAP list now that I’ve seen the website. It looks really great!).

Cuddlefishpress card
Cuddlefishpress card
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Ghastlie Dollie

Must Have Fabric 3 – If Looks Could Kill!

Ghastlie Dollie
Ghastlie Dollie

Alexander Henry Fabrics has sent another visual valentine to us fabric lovers.

It is a Must Have Fabric! I have spoken and it shall be so!

With last year’s Ghastlies series, we reveled in wonderful fabric that featured images from the strangest dinner party ever, and this year we can join this oddball group in A Ghastlies Family Reunion.

Ghastlie Family Reunion from Alexander Henry Fabrics
Ghastlie Family Reunion from Alexander Henry Fabrics

It comes in several colors, including mauve, grey and green. (I suspect it comes in a white background, too, but I haven’t seen it yet.)

Clad in costumes from the Roaring 20’s, these upper-class socialites seem to be frozen in tableaux whose meanings we can only guess at.

A Ghastlie Family Reunion fabric from Alexander Henry Fabrics
A Ghastlie Family Reunion fabric from Alexander Henry Fabrics
Family portrait?
Family portrait?

Last year’s fabric featured a beribboned girl holding a hammer.  My friends and I refer to the dress-wearing tomboy as “little Alethea.” She really reminded me of myself, the dress, the tool, and the perpetual pout!

Little Alethea
Little Alethea

There is a new (old) member of staff, the butler Cobblestone.

Cobblestone the butler
Cobblestone the butler

We also have some new family members.

Baby
Baby Bertram
Cousin Georgie
Cousin Georgie joins Frederick and the cat
Carlotta and her dollie
Cousin Carlotta and her dollie
Cousin Zelda (peeking out from Aunt Georgetta's skirt)
Cousin Zelda (peeking out from Aunt Georgetta's skirt)
If looks could kill...
If looks could kill...

One wonders what is going on between these two ladies. There must be more than meets the eye. Could it have something to do with the expecting mother and her wayward husband?

Happy couple?
Happy couple?

So now the question remains… what to make with this fabric?

I can see some great bags, placemats, and pillows on the horizon.

As for quilts, well, let’s see. Laura Nownes Shoji Screen Quilt pattern would be nice.

Shoji Screen Quilt, pattern from Laura Nownes
Shoji Screen Quilt, pattern from Laura Nownes

Think of the fun fabrics and images you could put inside the frames. Alexander Henry has some fun companion fabrics that will read solid for the frame fabric.

One of my friends from Wooden Gate Quilts is already making a 9-Patch Pizzazz from Judy Sisnero’s fabulous book. (Which I wish I had written!)

9-Patch Pizzazz, by Judy Sisneros
9-Patch Pizzazz, by Judy Sisneros

I can’t wait to see how it develops!

Large-scale prints like this are also great for quilts from my book Maverick Quilts. Try it in Superstars, California Housetop, in the off blocks in Bella Boxes, or as the central panel in Lovely Landscape. Any of these would be great!

Or, how about the Show Off pattern in the book?

Show Off Summer Quilt, by Alethea Ballard, 2010. 65" x 76.5"
Show Off Summer Quilt, by Alethea Ballard, 2010. 65" x 76.5"
Show Off Jewels Quilt, by Alethea Ballard; 2010. 65" x 76.5"
Show Off Jewels Quilt, by Alethea Ballard; 2010. 65" x 76.5"

As always, sorry for the photo quality! (The publisher sent me a CD with all of the nice photos from the book, but I can’t figure out how to open them, silly me!)

For my Ghastlies quilt, I chose the Show Off pattern.

Show Off Ghastlies Quilt, by Alethea Ballard; 2011
Show Off Ghastlies Quilt, by Alethea Ballard; 2011

This quilt is made from the fabric which came out last year, and I used both the green and grey background versions for the block centers. The frames are made in black, grey, green, pink and then I threw in some purple just for fun.

I used the white version in the border
I used the white version in the border
Poor wee Frederick
Poor wee Frederick

Unlike the Show Off Quilt in the book, I included sashing between each horizontal set and added a wide band a single fabric. On the band I created a funny portrait gallery with images from the fabric.

Upper Chambermaid Dorset
Upper Chambermaid Dorset

I made frames for each portrait by fussy cutting fabric and fusing it wown. You should have heard me cackling as I finished each one!

Aunt Agnes
Aunt Agnes

Love the hair!

Ghastlie Family portrait gallery
Ghastlie Family portrait gallery

Do you see the cat’s ears on the top of Father’s portrait and the four cat feet on the bottom? I will stitch everything down with the quilting.

Ringing for the maid - a Ghastlie dinner! Look at miserable little Frederick!
Ringing for the maid - a Ghastlie dinner! Look at miserable little Frederick!

Please send me photos of what you make from this MUST HAVE FABRIC! I always love to see your work!

Happy quilting!