Category Archives: Relax

Tools for relaxation


Fiber Artsits Coalition exhibit, Blue World/Green World, is now open at the Schaumburg Prairie Center for the Arts. Hours Monday thru Friday are 8am to 6pm. Please call for weekend hours; they change depending on theater times: 847-895-3600.

Please join us for the Artist Reception, Sunday, November 11, 3:00 – 5:00.

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A preview of some of my work that can be seen at the FINE ART of FIBER
ChicagoBotanic Garden
1000 Lake Cook Road, Glencoe, IL
Opening: Thursday, November 1, 6:30-9pm,  Friday – Sunday
November 2-4, 10:00-5
Venetian Reflections I

 Venetian Reflections II

Venetian Reflections III


Free Spirit I


Free Spirit II

All images (c)Shelley Brucar 2012



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October 12, 2012 · 3:06 pm


Viewpoints, Works in Fiber will be shown at the Lincolnwood Village Hall,6900 N. Lincoln Ave,Lincolnwood,ILfromMarch 20, 2012throughApril 20, 2012.  Four fiber artists, Barbara Schneider, Michelle Sales, Sally Schoch and Shelley Brucar, were invited to be part of this group exhibit. Meet the artists at the Artist Reception, Tuesday, March 20, 5-7pm.

Barbara Schneider’s background is in visual design.  She began quilting in 1966 and discovered the pleasures of cloth, dye, paint and thread.  She has an on-going interest in the Japanese concept of Wabi-Sabi, finding beauty in things that are imperfect , impermanent and incomplete.   Barbara tries to capture the essence of light and movement in her art.

Sally Schoch’s art career started and still includes abstract flower and portrait painting.  She considers abstract art a marriage of imagination, spontaneity and color.  Sally started working in fiber, after a trip toLondon, and her fiber dolls will be exhibited in Viewpoints.

Michelle Sales will tell you that her work is concerned with the excavation and transformation of memory.  She creates art to capture and preserve memories, to document events, emotions, growth and decline.  Working with an earthy palette allows her to explore our connectedness to nature and the human condition.

My art brings to life my spiritual connection with nature.  For me, spirituality is about connecting with something larger than oneself as well as with one’s inner being, one’s core, the values by which one lives.  The tranquility of the natural world is my inspiration.  I wants to share a sense of serenity and encourage viewers to let go of life’s daily demands, to step into the art and feel their own connection with nature.

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It took three of us over 4 hours, but the show is hung!  And it’s looking good.





  Here is part of the wall in the gallery with “13 Ways of Looking at a Blackbird”  exhibit.    Work shown here is by Cheryl Dineen Ferrin, Kathie Briggs, Astrid Hilger Bennett, Shelley Brucar and Clairan Ferrono.





  This is a view of the hallway which goes from the gallery to the theater.  The work seen to the left is by Casey Puetz, Trish Williams, Astrid Hilger Bennett and Laura Wasilowski.  On the right, you can see “Southern Lights IX” by Shelley Brucar.  This photo does not adequately show the brilliant flash of color that greets you looking down the hallway so you just have to get to Schaumburg to see the show in person.  It’s at the Schaumburg Prairie Center for the Arts, 201 Schaumburg Court through Sunday, November 27.



Here is another view down the hallway with work by Joan Potter Thomas, Pat Owoc, Pat Kroth, Linda Witte Henke and Trish Williams.




This is the lobby in front of the theater with work by Shelley Brucar.






Very tired workers, Mary Berg, formerly of Simply Chicago Art, and Clairan Ferrono of Fiber Artists Coalition, curator of Some Like it Hot – with some help from Shelley.  Please join us for the ARTIST RECEPTION on Saturday, November 26 from 3:00 to 5.

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I was side-tracked with busyness over the holidays, but am now back to playing with paint.  One thing I love about working in cloth is that it is so tactile and naturally textured.  Then you take the painted, fabric-layered design and add stitching and, voila! a whole new layer of design and texture emerges.  There are many ways to enhance the texture of cloth before you even start stitching, and here are some experiments with adding texture to fabric. 

1.  This image started with a layer of ProChem paint over strips of fabric.  Then it was stamped (white paint) with a homemade stamp made of string wrapped around a piece of wood.  In the upper and lower left corners you can see stamping done with another homemade stamp, this one made of moldable foam.  The upper and lower right corners are stamped using a scouring pad.  (Oh, the many uses you will find for kitchen implements once you start experimenting!)

4.  This image is a combination of stamping with a scouring pad and painting over string with paint + Golden sand resin gel.  The photo does not show the rich texture from the sand gel, but experimenting with this and other gels is well worth your time.  The white brush strokes were done with broom bristles.  (Oh, the many uses you will find for items you thought were only useful for cleaning the house!)

You can see from the fabric pieces in the first image and the string in the second image, that paint acts as a glue so various objects will adhere to your fabric when painted over or under.  This is just the beginning – more texture experiments to come.  Meanwhile, how many ideas can you think of for adding texture to fabric pieces?

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I believe so strongly that we get more out of every experience if we truly focus on the NOW, putting aside all distractions, that I chose “present” as my word for 2010.  Present as in “being present” not as in “gift” although practicing being present is really a gift to myself.

Recently, the Zen Habits blog had a post about Being Present – 4 simple ideas to help you focus on what is happening in your life right now.  Here’s the link; hope you enjoy it.

Of course, sometimes we need a diversion which takes us “out of the moment”.   Here is a piece on my design wall that is NOT part of the 2 series I’m working on for 2010:

“Whispering Branches” (c)2010 Shelley Brucar

This design came out of reminiscing w/childhood friends about laying on the ground at dusk, looking up at the emerging stars.  That was definitely an “in the moment” experience.  Techniques used: hand-dyeing, discharge dyeing, screening.


Filed under Art Stuff, Coping, discharge dyeing, Fiber Art, hand-dyeing, Relax, thermofax screens



Finally, there is a new, non-aerosol product available to protect fiber from fading and sun damage.  The former, widely used product contributes to the destruction of the ozone layer while protecting fabric , and I have refused to use it for that reason, preferring fading to ozone depletion.  It is my understanding that, due to federal regulations, aerosols in the US can no longer contain chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs).  However, they still contain hydrocarbons and/or compressed gases which do contribute to global warming and asthma-inducing smog.  This is not exactly good for the air we breathe.

The new product, which I found at JoAnn Fabrics, is called ForceField UV SunBlock.  It comes in a simple spray bottle.  The directions state that it is to be used outdoors or in a very well-ventilated area.

To test for effectiveness, I have cut a piece of hand-dyed fabric in two and sprayed one with ForceField, not the other.  My plan is to place both pieces of fabric in direct sun to see if the protected piece holds its color, and I will post results.   Here is how the “ForceField test fabrics” look today:  Now I just have to wait for the sun!

And here is my newest completed piece.  It can be seen until 12/20 at Simply Chicago Art, Evanston.

Moonlit Forest 49″ x 49″, (c)2009 Shelley Brucar fiber art


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