Monday, October 26, 2009

Sisters' Network Cincinnati Breast Cancer Quilts

The beginning of this month, I was commissioned by the Sisters Network-Cincinnati to make a quilt for each of their 5 honorees. (Sisters Network is a group that was created by African American breast cancer survivors to promote awareness in the African American community.) Click on any of the pictures to see a larger view.

To learn more about the Sisters Network Cincinnati and what went on this month, please visit their website at

Friday, October 23, 2009

What I've Been Up To

I've been pretty busy this month. I shared with you the bricks for Breast Cancer that I just did recently but here are some other things I kept busy with earlier this month:

One of my quilts was featured in the "Celebrate the Feminine: Quilting for the Cure" exhibit put on by the Quilt Artists of Kentucky and the EKU Women and Gender Studies Program. The opening was earlier this month on the 14th. THe exhibit is about a month long and is touring all over Kentucky to enhance breast cancer awareness. I don’t know where it goes after this, but it does not return until April.

The quilt is called “We’re All Good”. The intention of this quilt is to celebrate the differences in women, whether they are white, black, asian, Latina, short, tall, fat, small, light, dark, have straight hair, kinky hair and so on. You know, what ever the attributes, “ It’s all good”.

The quilt is 30” x 30” is made of 100% cotton fabric and cotton batting with various embellishments and machine quilted.

Monday, October 19, 2009

"Bricks Along the Journey"

What do you think of the two bricks I made for Breast Cancer? They will be featured at the “Bricks Along The Journey” event at the Sharonville Convention Center. It is a silent auction that will be held Sunday, October 25, 2009.

For more information, please check out their website at

Hope to see you there!

My Friend Sherise

Sherise and I started conversing with each other over the internet back in April 2008.

Since then, we have shared information and ideas about quilting and fiber arts. We share news of exhibits, quilt shows, classes and photos of our quilts. We had never had the opportunity to meet in person until October 12, 2009 in Chicago. She has a delightful personality and a wealth of knowledge about hand dying fabric. She also shared books from her vast collection with me. We enjoyed lunch at the Cheese Cake Factory and she went to the Marathon with me to see my husband run. It was so great to finally meet you, Sherise!

My husband and I at the Chicago Marathon

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Breast Cancer Month

As many of you know, this month is Breast Cancer Month. We encourage/remind all of you (eligible) ladies to get your annual mammogram if you haven't already and make it routine to do monthly breast exams to check for lumps and/or other changes.

Don't know the proper way to do breast self exams? click here for a brief tutorial on how.

We also encourage you to CLICK HERE and check out this site. Every time someone visits the site (and clicks on the pink specified button), a free mammogram is given to a woman in need. Visit daily all this month and click. Please share with all your friends and family, male or female.

Stay tuned for upcoming pics of my latest Breast Cancer Month inspired/related quilts.

Picture credit:

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Sculpture Quilting Classes with Carolyn Crump

Over the weekend of the 5th through the 7th, I took three Sculpture Quilting classes with Carolyn Crump. She is a dynamic fiber artist from Houston, Texas.

The class was very intense with very long hours. Some of the technique learned were:

Enjoy the pics of some of my projects I created during the classes

2-D quilting
3-D quilting - Mask making

Monoprinting fabric
Alcohol dispersion dying (fabric)
Fabric painting

Carolyn Crump

Thursday, September 3, 2009

My Newest Style: Collage Quilting

I've started expanding my style of quilting and have become addicted to creating what I like to call "collage quilts".

You can find these quilts in Eula boutique right now for purchase.

Narrative Arts, The Supreme Orator Exhibition

Last Saturday, my "Unparalleled Journey" quilt that I made in honor of the 44th Presidential Inauguration of Barack Obama was included in the "Narrative Arts, The Supreme Orator" exhibition opening at the Kennedy Heights Arts Center. This was their 2nd invitational exhibit of this year.

Other artists included, but were not limited to, Cynthia Lockhart; Joyce Young, and Kyle & Kellie Phelps. The exhibit included quilts, photography, paintings, jewelry, and mixed medium and media pieces.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Global Lead Art Gallery Exhibit

These are some of my quilts that are hanging up in the Global Lead Art Gallery here in Cincinnati for their "Building on Tradition-Contemporary Quiltmaking" exhibition.

They've been up for the past 3 months and came down yesterday but I still wanted to share a few of them with you.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

"Seeds of a Dream" Quilt

I was commissioned by Kennedy Heights Arts Center to create a quilt in celebration of their 5 year anniversary. I talked about this back in April when I had first started to draft ideas for it and had given you a sneak peek of my progress.

Here is the finished project:

The symbolism of it....

The founders' names are placed all around the seeds to reflect that they sewed the seeds that took root and formed the foundation of the arts center. The branches of the tree are the collective hands of a community that worked together to create a vision for the art center. Inside of the crystal ball is the Kennedy Heights Arts Center building.

If you're in the Cincinnati area, stop by the center to see the quilt among the other great works of art displayed.

Kennedy Heights Arts Center
6546 Montgomery Rd.
Cincinnati, OH 45213

"Honey's Mango Bop" Quilt

On June 23rd, 2009, my "Honey's Mango Bop" quilt was one of the many featured in the "TEXTURAL RHYTHMS: CONSTRUCTING THE JAZZ TRADITION -- CONTEMPORARY AFRICAN AMERICAN QUILTS" exhibition opening at the American Folk Art Museum in New York City.

The venue was packed with art, quilt, and jazz lovers all around.

Great works from artists included Carolyn Crump and Carolyn L. Mazloomi, who organized the exhibition.

I couldn't be there so my daughter went to represent for me and even signed a book on my behalf.

The exhibit will be there till October 11th. To learn more about it and museum, Click Here

Newsletter in the Making

Be on the look out!

I've been working with my daughter to create my Quilting & Lifestyle newsletter. Writing is a lot of work! But I have a lot of ideas and am excited to get the ball rolling on this.

If you would like to receive the newsletter once publishing begins, leave a comment with your email address and you will be added.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Busy Weekend

Boy, did I have a busy weekend. Friday I went down to my studio to straighten it up some. As I started to clear my cutting table of various scraps of fabric, I got the idea to challenge myself to create some small collage quilts out of the random scraps. Recently, I have developed a great interest in fabric/fiber collage and tried my hand at interpreting collage into my style of quilting. I think I did alright? What do you think?

This Saturday was "Quilt Saturday". I belong to a small informal quilt group which meets the first Saturday of every month. Saturday we had a delightful visitor to the group, which was very refreshing since for years we were a closed group. New energy and new ideas are always good for a group.

Every other month we watch a video of a new project technique and then do the project for the next meeting. After our the news & updates, and show & share, we watched a Quilting Arts video on free motion applique. The project was interesting, but the teaching methods left a lot to be desired. I can't wait until next month's meeting to see all the creative ways the technique has been interpreted.

Lastly, Sunday my husband ran the last leg of a relay in the "Flying Pig Marathon" in Cincinnati which meant we all had to get up at 5:00am to be in downtown by 7:00am. He did great! 6.55 miles in 53 minutes! The girls and I were there to cheer him on every step of the way. He was so fast crossing the finish line I barely got a photo of him.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Back for Real This Time

I know I keep saying I'm back and then disappearing but I really plan to be more active this time around. I have one of my lovely daughters helping me out with this place now so there are a lot of new and exciting things to come!

What I'm Working on These Days:

* Making and marketing my Miva Marks bookmarks

- If you live in the Cincinnati area, they can be purchased at Kennedy Heights Art Center or Eula Lifestyle Boutique

- They can also be purchased at my Etsy shop

* Creating a commissioned quilt for Kennedy Heights Art Center's 5th anniversary celebration (May 9th, 2009)

I've really enjoyed working on this project. I hope they like it!

* Working on a third Barack quilt

So as you can see, I'm pretty busy! I enjoy it none the less though.

Stay tuned to watch this place come alive!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Yet, another Obama quilt

Yet again I am embarking on the journey to create a third quilt in honor of our 44th president, Barack Obama. This one is for a new and exciting book that will published this summer. The book is titled The Journey of Hope in America: Art Quilts Inspired by President Barack Obama. This will be the third book that I am published in. I am very excited and grateful for this opportunity! My quilt, Unparallelled Journey will also be featured in the book.

The Journey of Hope in America: Art Quilts Inspired by President Barack Obama will capture this incredible cultural movement in a book featuring quilts and the inspiration behind them. The book will be a large, full-color, 200 page hardback, published by Paper Moon Publishing.

I hope to get started on it in the next few days. I just about have the concept worked out and hope to have all the fabrics select by Thursday. I will keep you posted.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

I'm back

Happy New Year!

I know that it has been forever since I posted. The election is over, Barack Obama won, YEAH!! The holidays have come and the inauguration is just next week! Wow, time really flies.

I was planning on attending the inauguration next week, but instead I had the honor of going to Washington D.C. this past weekend to participate in a quilt show to celebrate the inauguration.

The "Quilts for Obama: An Exhibit Celebrating the Inauguration of our 44th President" exhibit opened on Sunday, January 11, 2009 at the Washington Historical Society. I was one of forty four master quilters that were invited to submit a quilt depicting the journey to historical event of Barack Obama being elected as our 44th President.

I am so blessed to have been accompanied by my husband, daughter, sister, nieces, nephews and close friends. I was especially blessed to have my best friend, Valerie, to travel all the way from Toronto, Canada to surprise me and attend. It was a great experience.

Myself and three of my fellow quilters were featured on the front page of the Cincinnati Enquirer on January 12, 2009. It was great to get public recognition, many thanks go out to my sister-friend Rosalind Thomas for making it happen.

I'll post the article when I figure out how to. In the meantime I have attached a photo of the quilt and artist statement explaining it. Enjoy!

Quilts for Obama: An Exhibit Celebrating the Inauguration of our 44th President
“Unparalleled Journey” by Carole Gary Staples

When I reflect upon the United States of America’s journey to elect an African-American as its 44th president, my heart radiates with joy and astonishment. America’s journey to equality has been an accumulation of many parallel, long arduous voyages, and rites of passage. This piece is representative of the United States’ journey, Black America’s journey and White America’s journey, which together made this historical event possible.

“Unparalleled Journey” commemorates images of many of the symbolic, authentic and significant events encountered along this journey. The three ribbons of color, which flow through the work, represent the three journeys, parallel in time, yet unparalleled in reality. The quilt also depicts events in our history that contributed to America being readied spiritually, physically and mentally for an African-American to be elected to its highest office.

Quotations by Barack Obama and other historic leaders flank the outer border of the quilt. Many of the symbolic images within the piece reflect the meaning and the prophecy of those quotations.


The brown print fabric at the bottom of the piece represents the land that this great country is built upon. Footprints dominate the green print that I choose to show those who made the historic middle passage and the blue print represents the water that delivered a people to the shores of this great land. The female images depict the dark days of slavery. The figure clad in the muted hued dress is a slave; the one in the vibrant dress is freed. Also celebrated on the “Journey” are the old Negro hymns and the Emancipation Proclamation, without which this journey could never have been made.


The experience of seeing the many colors of the rainbow is one that we can all share and The Rev. Jesse Jackson has often spoken about. I’ve included it in my piece to signify that unity is possible among all Americans and is representative of the multitude of ethnicity's that make up this country. Mountains seen in the background reflect the strength required to continue on the “Journey” and reflects the many references to mountains made by Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in many of his speeches. Any bill signed into law by the President of the United States requires paperwork and documentation. That is the reason I have included the three blank documents as well. They represent historic legislation such as Brown v. The Board of education, the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act. All of which occurred during the continuation of the “Unparalleled Journey”.


The autumn scenery in the background represents a figurative change of season in America. Autumn marks a time of transition and is the season of primary harvest. On this journey it is the season in which a greatly hoped for and anticipated transition occurred and the seeds sown during the summer indeed resulted in a season of “primary harvest” for 2008 America. Diversity is represented in the rally of the diverse people seen on the face if the quilt. While we are different in many ways we are all Americans and we have journeyed well together.