Monday, November 26, 2012

Door Buster Sale

Really, who has the energy to go shopping at midnight for a door buster sale?  I'm all tucked in under quilts, sound asleep at midnight. 

While you're busy getting everyone gifts, have you made your own list?  This year get something pretty without wondering if it will fit.  The Vera's Hollyhocks bag is pretty, fun to make, and holds threads, jewelry, or whatever else you would like.  It is about 10" tall x 12" wide with a nice square bottom and a zippered top.

Just drop the hint to order this in my Etsy Shop, or go ahead, order it yourself.  From now through December 15th I will include the pattern at no charge.

While everyone else is playing with their new toys on Christmas, you can stitch on a beautiful hollyhock garden.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

A Little Bit Different

I love applique!  Especially wool applique with embellishment.  But, I am fascinated by the Australian style of quilts.  I have practically worn out the pages of Quilt Mania magazine featuring the Australian quilt show.  So, it's really no surprise that while browsing the Material Obsession web site I signed up for the Urban Owls Block of the Month designed by Wendy Williams.

This is month 1 and 2 and let me tell you, I can't wait to receive month 3!  I am almost breathless when I rip open the envelope and see the beautiful colors awaiting me.  I struggle with piecing.  When I see the "experts" on TV their pieces always line up perfectly.  Not so much in my sewing room.  This quilt is going to be a challenge for me as there is a lot of piecing. 

I added a bit of embellishment to the flowers, leaves and owls just for fun. I didn't follow the pattern instructions to applique with pearl cotton in a running stitch.  I used my regular method of using wool thread and a whip stitch to applique down the pieces then embellished with cotton and silk threads.   I was surprised that wool felt, rather than felted wool (my favorite) was included in the kit.  But, I'm doing this to learn a new style so I used the felt.  I must say that it's not my favorite but still gives a nice, but different,  look.

This is what the finished quilt looks like. See what I mean about the piecing?

URBAN OWLS By Wendy Williams

Friday, November 23, 2012

Seasons of Home

 Several months ago I had an idea for a wool basket.  A square basket just called for depicting each of the four seasons on a side that is 6" high and 12" wide. Lambs running across a field of flowers with a blooming tree and spring showers announce Spring.

 The bright Summer sun shines down on "Home" with a dog chasing a rabbit in the front yard and fruit ripening on the tree.

 Autumn brings the falling leaves while an owl stands guard over a harvest of pumpkins.  Watch out for the spider hanging from his web!

A dusting of snow on the branches, snowflakes falling from the night sky and of course, a snowman and pine tree herald a winter scene.

Unlike my bucket patterns, this isn't a basket to carry a heavy load.  Rather, it's purpose is to be a beautiful accessory for your home.

I loved the process of designing the basket and the challenge of putting it together with a handle that stands up in a nice curve.  I'm working on a pattern that I hope to have finished soon, but considering this busy time of year, no date is promised.

Monday, November 12, 2012

You go, girl!

 Last year I taught my Bucket class at The Gathering Place and Kathy Bowen was one of my students.  Kathy interpreted my blocks and design with wonderful fabric and stitches - adding her own creativity to make a one-of-a-kind project.  The Gathering Place is 3 hours from my home, the perfect stopover place for lunch/shopping on my way to Hailey/Sun Valley last month.  I was so excited to see that Kathy was teaching a stitching class at the store! 

Kathy used a Kim Diehl pattern to create this colorful wallhanging.  I only wish I had taken close-up photos of her embellishment on each berry, leaf and flower.  Most of the background fabrics are cotton with wool applique.  Kathy has learned to love wool applique and embellishment and is treating others to share her inspiration and skills.

I'm so happy to think that maybe I played a small part in her creative genius.

Monday, November 5, 2012

I'm 6 years old today!

Today is scheduled to be busy.  I'm helping my husband out with some errands, want to finish a few yard projects (snow predicted for this weekend), make a treat for the carving club tonight, and get everything packed for my class tomorrow.  But first - get some exercise.  My husband and I try to get out every day for a walk in the neighborhood with our dogs, Mickey the springer spaniel and Juno the border collie.  I try to keep up for about 40 minutes and then hubby and the dogs take off for some "real" exercise.

While walking alone, I was magically 6 years old again, kicking my way through a pile of leaves, amazed at the variety of shapes and colors.  Then I came upon this oak leaf with "dots".

 Isn't this just perfect for applique?  My husband said the dots are probably poisonous spores but that's because he worked in a hospital. Me, I'm just thinking applique!

Tomorrow I'm going to teach my Take A Note pattern at the Beaver Quilt Guild.  Beaver is about a 3 hour drive from my house so I'm packing the car tonight for tomorrow's early start.

 Yesterday I made kits - don't they look yummy?
Speaking of yummy, time to frost the cupcakes for tonight's group.

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