Going into April with a SPLASH!

My Mothly Newsletter on Surface Design

Puddle Jumping!

Each month I like to show some of my new artwork.  This month will not be an exception, but like most of my work it is inspired by something from my childhood.

Growing up in Michigan I realize that it’s the small things that really matter. Sometimes the simpler the better too!  The memories of “puddle jumping” came flooding back (oh gee pardon the pun, it really was an accident).  Like those times my sister and I were allowed to go outside and jump in the puddles.  My mom would give us the freedom to run around in the rain, if 3 conditions were met.  First of all it had to be a warm day.  Second, it had to be during the day.  And thirdly, under no circumstances could there be lightning or thunder.  Thank goodness for a cautious mother, or I might not be here!  Or, maybe I would have that curly hair I always wanted?  Hmmmmm… Anyway continuing on with my little story.  Puddle jumping out in the country was more like MUD puddle jumping.  Our driveway was dirt, and the many streams of rainwater would merge perfectly, creating the deepest darkest nooks and crannys for mud puddles, and a haven for kids to splash into.  Oh those were the days.  If only I still liked to get dirty! Darn, I hate being a grown up sometimes!

How about some raincoat artwork to go with that memory?

We were so “old school” back then that we didn’t even wear raincoats or boots!  WE would run around bare footed and let the mud squish between our toes! They build ’em tough in Michigan!

Moving onto some other news

I released another colorway (red) for my “A Happy Household” fabric collection on Spoonflower.  It seems to have created some kind of a “stir”.  Oh no, I made another pun, really, I cannot help it!!! These designs are getting a lot of love on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest and for me it’s been a real kick!

The 3 patterns are Top: “Fluff, Fold, Stir and Bake”,  Bottom Left: “Joy of Baking” and Bottom Right: “A Happy Household”.  These are wonderfully whimsical designs inspired by “womens work of the 50s” and are a pun themselves…

Because I don’t really believe that this is the way of the modern household.  NO SIREE! I mean just ask my husband – he does way more laundry than me!  In my opinion “A Happy Household” is a household where all those tasks are shared.  So this is meant to be fun, no judgement here! There is a link on my website for Spoonflower at the top menu where you can access my Spoonflower shop.  In addition to these designs, there are many more to be discovered!

What can I make out of “A Happy Household” fabric designs?

Well, so funny you should ask.  I have a few mock-ups to share!

How about sewing up an oven mit in the “Joy of Baking” print!

OR….

What if you were to create a snazzy apron for a Father’s Day or Mother’s Day gift?  See there is no judging here! I told you! Both may be used by any gender.

SURTEX News

My creative juices have been flowing, and I have been preparing all sorts of designs for all surfaces, which will only be revealed at SURTEX, which takes place May 21st-23rd at the Javitz Center in New York City.  Those of you that recieve this newsletter AND are in fact looking for new designs that will be available for all kinds of surfaces should certainly stop by Booth 2823.  My agent Sue, from Vivid Art Agency will be there representing me, and I would love to meet you as well. If you don’t see what you need, let’s talk about it and I’ll create something you really love.  All my contact information is at the bottom my newsletter and I would love to hear from you!!

#The100DayProject

I’ve joined an instagram movement, The 100 Day Project. This project is meant for creatives to spend up to 10 minutes a day creating something you wouldn’t normally make time for.  I have decided on painting with watercolors.  My theme will be flowers and with a goal of 100 consecutive days, hopefully this creative journey will result in some great artwork and a refreshed confidence in this medium.  Join me on this journey.  It starts today and I will be posting to instagram once each day for this challenge under my unique hashtag #the100DayProjectTraceywirthdesigns.

As always, thank you so much for reading my newsletter.  It’s a real honor to interrupt your morning routine with a little light, fun, and sometimes humorous artwork. Thanks for allowing me to be part of your day!

Have a great month, and I’ll see you in May!

Tracey Wirth Designs

Tracey Wirth Designs

 Tracey Wirth

 415 407 0609

 www.Traceywirth.com

Letting Go-It’s So Hard To Do…

I have been absent from blogging for about 2 months now.  Seems to be an epidemic with me lately.  I have been distracted from many things lately.  Mostly life.  I might be there in body, but the soul?  Well…. it’s thinking about other things, and wondering where all the time went.

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Kenny after his bath 1996

You see, my oldest of 2 children is headed off to college.  This is truly something to be celebrated, as there were other paths he could have taken and this by far was the one that all parents hope for.  Not only is Kenny going to college, but he is headed to the college that both Jim and I graduated from.  A really nice nod for a kid to give his parents.  It does make you proud.  The one thing that is hard to swallow is that he is 2300 miles away from home.  Far away from Marin County, really really far away.  Three time zones and a whole other climate away.  It’s good though, it’s all good (I say this over and over again while rocking back and forth).  Only kidding, I’m not that bad…… yet.  I have been known to spontaneously burst out into tears, though.  I know there are other moms out there just like me, feeling the same way I do.  Right?!

I guess you could say I am somewhat in mourning.  I call it “mourning” because it is a type of  loss.  Please, stay with me here and let me explain.  I do tend to over-exaggerate.  I think anytime your child hits a benchmark, you are both proud and sad.  Think of the first day your child goes to Kindergarten, you are so proud, but you are crying, right?  Life is changing, he is on his way to his grade school years…. your family dynamic is changing.  Right?!  It’s exciting- but that little baby that needed you for everything doesn’t need you as much.

Well, with Kenny leaving for this new chapter of his life, our family that was once a family of 4 is now 3.  I know Kenny is still our child, but the next time he comes home (Christmas Vacation) he will be his own person (he will think he can do whatever he wants under our roof, which is not how it will work), and it will be very different for us to parent him.

photo 4-41On our way to the airport to take Kenny to MSU 

Fast forward to a few weeks later.  Kenny was dropped off to Michigan State University.  We (Jim, Will and I) took him there on Sunday the 24th of August.  We spent the day moving him into his 12′ x 12′ room, unloading all of his belongings and searching for a futon at any shop nearby that happened to have one left, for any price.  The difference between boys and girls, is more pronounced and evident with this experience.  In my opinion anyway….. The girls decorate their rooms and make their beds, adding throw pillows that in the end are pretty and inspiring, while the boys (especially my son) throw their beds together and call it a day.  I went to great lengths, to make sure that his bedding and hamper matched the huge brown carpet that I spent hours searching for on the internet.  Choosing just the right one, that wasn’t feminine at all.

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Kenny “making” his bed with his roommate Matt

I spent weeks, crafting a quilt, a one of a kind quilt, that in the end was tossed up on his bunk like a bunch of dirty laundry. And, although these things came together, and made me feel sad, the hardest moment was that last hug….. the last embrace.  My son, now a young man doesn’t need me in the way he used to and was ready to let me go.  We spent the last 17 years preparing for this very moment.  It’s not like we didn’t see it coming or even that it wasn’t something we fully supported. That’s what good parenting is, I guess.  If your kid is able to leave the nest and feel confident, safe and equipped to handle what life throws his way…. then you have done pretty well. He has his “tools” now it’s time for him to “build” something.

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I free motioned part of the MSU fight song around the border.  

Here is Kenny’s one of a kind quilt.  The quilt pattern  (referred to as the water waves quilt) was a pattern that I got from Must Love Quilts.  It’s a fast and easy quilt.  And for Kenny, it was more on the masculine side.   Green and white fabrics were a great choice for Kenny since these are MSU colors.  photo 5-28

 Here, Kenny is telling me to “hurry up and take the picture”.

I did a stippling free-motion for the quilting on this quilt. Super fun to do!

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There is  camo binding around the entire quilt.  

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My favorite part.  The back with a Spartan, surrounded by MSU fabrics.

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These are wonky cut 1/2 square triangles.  I was going to do the whole quilt out of these, so glad that I didn’t.  I had a very hard time finding the licensed MSU fabric on-line.  I stocked up when I visited Michigan!  I am all set for the next Michigan State University project.

So, as for now it has been a week since Kenny started his new adventure, and us, ours.   Today has been hard, but like so many mother’s before me, I will get through it and it will all be okay.  Perhaps a cupcake would make me feel better.   It couldn’t hurt, right?

Thanks for stopping by.  Until next time, keep creating!

Michigan..

I have been absent from posting for a few days.  My reason?   Our family and our two dogs are in Michigan visiting my folks and enjoying the snow… the snow, what little there is of it.  We have been here since Saturday and luckily we have received one snowfall that enabled our boys to partake in a couple hours of sledding and snowball fighting, before it did it’s disappearing act.  Now you see it, now you don’t.

Just a small dusting of snow is all that they needed!

I took this opportunity while visiting  my mom and pops to talk to my mom about the quilt that I am making, here.  Well, she told me that she is the one that made the infamous black and brown cathedral quilt that I thought my grandmother made.  And here it is…..

I took these photos outside, the lighting is so much better.

After closer inspection, I noticed that this particular quilt is in need of some tender loving care.  A stitch in time saves nine.  I will be doing a little mending.

My mom with me

Happy Wednesday everyone!