Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Wednesday WOW - March 31

Last day of March . . . bring on April!  I certainly hope the weather is better this month!


As for my worktable - more of those blue star blocks.   This one seems to be going slower.  I've done more than the usual amount of ripping!  But, at the end of the day I can say 'two down and three to go'!

Monday, March 29, 2010

In the Bag

Last week I took a class in using Electric Quilt.  Yes!  I finally took the plunge!  I am still playing with it a lot, so no results to share yet.  But, oh my, the possibilities are amazing.  Actually, the possibilities are that I will become lost in the computer world.  LOL!

But, this post isn't about EQ (yet).  This is about the carry bag I made for my laptop!  If I'm taking it to classes, I need to carry it safely and all together.


I looked all over for a ready-made or a pattern.  But, of course, nothing was just exactly what I had in mind.  Sounds like a perfect excuse for a new project!  Yeah.  Like I need another one!


I wanted to have pockets for the adapter and my mouse, and maybe for the thumb drive.  And I wanted zippers!



When I open it all up, I have a surface to work on, and I don't have to stash the bag anywhere.  The bottom section is lined with a thermal fleece - like you put in potholders - plus a solid piece of plastic foam in case I don't have a table top to set it on. 

It worked great!  Well, almost.  Of course, there are some issues to be worked out if I ever do another one of these.  But that's not too likely!  I may need to strengthen the strap.  It seems a little thin - and this is one bag I definitely do NOT want to drop!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Trees of Autumn

Yes, I know it's Spring.  Or at least, in some places it is Spring.  I'm not too sure about around here!!!

But the page I made for Ruth in the Traveling Page swap was of Colorado aspens in the fall.


My inspiration came from a trip to the Colorado mountains I took last fall. The mountain aspens were turning color and seemed to be everywhere! I took tons of photographs and printed one onto silk to use as a background for this piece.


This particular photo was taken on a train ride up to Silverton, CO, but it was actually just a starting point!



I’ve always thought that drawn thread work makes great trees, so that was the next step.


I used watercolor pencils to give color to the area surrounding the opening and then fused colored cotton to provide more intense color behind hand embroidery.


I can't seem to do one of these pages without adding beads somewhere and with all the leaf shapes available, this page cried out for embellishment!


I happened to have a batik in a perfect autumn color to use for the backing.  There's those beads again - same ones - they dangle from the upper edge.

Ruth has let me know the page arrived safely, so I can finally share this page with everyone.  This page was lots of fun to do.  I tried out several embroidery stitches and had a lovely time cruising through my books & papers to choose the "right" ones.  The open space created by the drawn threads is larger than anything I've done in the past and I was quite pleased with with final effect. 

Now, to get busy on April's page.   The theme is Goddess Within.  I've already got some great ideas!  Well, I think they're great anyway.  Just need to settle on one!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Wednesday WOW - March 24


It's been a busy week, but I took a little time out to play with tassels.  These need fancy caps, so you'll probably see them again one day.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Wednesday WOW - March 17

Seems like I just posted one of these.  Time does fly when you're having fun.


Looks pretty messy, but I'm playing with beads.  Any day with beads is a good day!

Monday, March 15, 2010

The Village Green

I know it's been a little bit quiet here.  Don't let that fool you into thinking I'm not doing anything, though!  Ha!  I may spend a lot of time on the computer, but it's not ALL the time (in spite of what Sarge says!).

So here is one thing I've been working on.  It is a Block of the Month, so there isn't much to show yet.  By the end of the year, I'm hoping to have something pretty impressive!  (Well, I can hope!)


This is January's block.  Nice tree - pretty easy to stitch.


This is February's block.  Really easy house block.


And another tree for March.  Okay, time to stop lazing around!  This block was NOT easy!  The Therapy session quilters had lots of cussin' discussion while doing this one.  But we helped each other through all those triangles and it sure is a pretty block!


So here are my blocks for the first three months.  It already looks like a fun quilt, doesn't it? 

I know you want to know the name of the BOM.  It is Thimbleberries' 2010 Quilt Club and it's called Village Green.  The blocks are available in three color options.  I am doing Midnight.  I seem to prefer darker colors in this type of quilt. 

I have other BOM blocks sitting in the UFO pile.  Maybe I should get busy and put some of those together, huh?

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Wednesday WOW - March 10

Snow is melting!  Temps are warming up!  Woohoo - Spring is a'comin'!!


In the meantime, I'm working on a Thimbleberries Block-of-the- Month.  Pretty block.  Simple concept.  A real bear to put together!   I'm thinking this will not be one of the blocks I'll want to use in another project!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Meet Mali

Mali is the second page for The Story of the Traveling Pages group I am participating in this year (see the badge on my sidebar).  This page is for Gayle, whose theme is "All Creatures Great and Small". 


I love animals myself and the hardest part of this page was narrowing down the options! While I was choosing an animal I saw a news item about the birth of a baby elephant at the Melbourne Zoo. Suddenly I knew exactly what I wanted to do! I searched for pictures of elephants and babies and picked portions of several that I liked, then composed a design that is sort of “original.”

I used a couple of techniques that are fairly new to me. For the background – and Mama – I painted the linen with Jacquard fabric paints.


Imagine how pleased I was when Sarge recognized a half-finished elephant from upside-down! Then I pulled out every resource I have on Stumpwork. It is something I’ve wanted to try for a long time but this was the first opportunity to actually do so.


I decided to use long-and-short stitch for the baby, but my experience with it has been only simple shapes. So, once again, I needed to refer to several resources!  My goodness - I'm learning all kinds of fun stuff!


I particularly enjoyed assembling the separate pieces and adding felt padding to raise the surface.


In this shot, you can see how far the baby's forehead stands out from the surface, and that her ears and trunk are free-standing.  It's so cute that way!


For the back, I found some jungle animal fabric.  OK, these are probably African animals, and Mali is an Asian elephant.  Picky, picky!

Mali is a Thai word for jasmine. If you have not seen the cute photos  and videos of her, check out this web page: .

I had so much fun making this page - although it took longer than I anticipated - and the baby turned out far better than I expected.  But it was really hard to ship her off to someone else!  She's too cute.  I hope Gayle thinks so, too.

Next I am working on a theme of Trees.  This one is turning out to be fun, too!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Wednesday WOW - March 3


More stars.  I spent the day at the local quilt shop for "stitchin' therapy."  Something was wrong with my side of the room, though.  We spent an awful lot of time ripping seams!  Rats!