About Me

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i am a creative person. mother to a daughter who is an active young woman and a constant blessing in my life. i hope that you enjoy your visit here and that you will return often.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

i have been caught up in the holiday fervor and need to strike a balance so i've made a decision to take some time off from blogging until after the new year.
in the meantime, i hope you will enjoy the digital card that i've left with all my best wishes attached.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

aren't these mums wonderful!?! a very good friend gifted them to me. the growing number of cold and cloudy days combined with the shortening daylight hours has made for a lot more time spent inside but with this flowering plant in the house it feels like the sun is shining all of the time.

i've made these Christmas ornaments for a Christmas tree fundraising event that my guild is currently involved in. we will donate and decorate a tree and then it will be auctioned off at a community event along with other trees that have been donated and decorated.

these ornaments were made using tiny bits of my own hand dyed fabrics in a crazy quilt style. a variety of hand stitches on the seams, some peltex in the center as a stiffener/stabilizer and machine zig zagged edges. a fairly quick project.

i made a simpler felt backing for them so that if they get turned on the tree they will still be fun to look at. reversible is good ~ right?!

i've also been getting a small group of fabrics hand dyed. i hope to be making something Amish-like with them at some point in the future. the colors are showing fairly true except for the yellow one. that piece is actually a bit more gold/cheddar looking than appears in this photo.

i've received several more atc's and am so happy with my growing collection of them. i'm delighted to have these small but fabulous works of art as well as to be making my own.

these two are from Eileen Schwanke. you can visit her blog at: http://www.ruralwisconsin.blogspot.com/
the top one is called Serendipity. gotta love that~!

isn't that glued text background amazing~!?!

the stitched reindeer card came from Sweden. Emily aka flossbox (flickr) really knows how to work that needle~!!~ it's a very cute card and the back is also fabric with beautifully turned in and hand sewn edges.
she has a website called The Floss Box: www.theflossbox.com/

this next card - "Plate 51 - Oiseau" is also absolutely gorgeous~! it is from North Carolina in the USA.
made by Phyllis Terrell aka artchick501 (flickr).

the little teddy bear bed has finally been completely finished and is ready for my quilting guild's Christmas Bazaar. we do a table full of raffle items in which tickets can be purchased for a quarter. there is always a huge variety of items on and around this table from which to choose from. customers can choose to buy and place tickets into the designated containers (one for each item). then at the end of the bazaar a massive drawing is held for each container's winner. often people buy more than one ticket for each item that they would like to win and often they put tickets into several different containers. it's a popular fundraiser every year. i think we might be our own best customers though~! LOL

the proceeds from our "quarter raffle" table go towards an annual scholarship that we offer every year to one of the locally graduating seniors.

i think Ted here is ready for a snuggly nap . . .

btw: Emmitt has already managed to give this whole set up a test drive . . . leave it to the cat to find the newest, freshest, snuggliest bed in the house in which to rest upon. and imagine how delighted he was to find a special snuggle partner as a bonus!

Friday, November 5, 2010

i have been hard at work on the teddy bear bedding and my dh has been equally hard at work building the cutest little bed. the next step is painting the bed and making some linens to cover the mattress and pillow . . . the artist trading cards continue to be a highlight of my creative life and this is my newest card received. it was made by Joy/autumnsensation of (http://www.joytotheblog.blogspot.com/) it's a paper collaged card and it's slightly three dimensional. i love it~!!~and am happy to have it within my growing collection. in exchange Joy received my stitched MeMa's House/Joy card.

these next cards are ones that i made.

the Glyph Turtles is made using a metal tape on a gessoed background. i embossed the turtles and border design into the metal and then did some dye ink painting onto both the turtles and the background.

this turtle card is no longer available for trade.

the Skating Penguin card was made for a trade with another artist who also does stitched cards. i was pretty excited about the way that it turned out and it was perfectly sized until i got a little carried away with the "fluffy" edging. oooops.

i hope she doesn't mind but if she does i'm giving her the option to send it back to me . . . i might not even mind keeping this one for myself . . .
i'll be sure to post the card she's trading/sending to me (all the way from Sweden) when it arrives.

Sunday, October 31, 2010


it's been a fairly productive weekend. i got my donation quilt back from the machine quilters a few days ago and so proceeded to get the binding and label on.

oh happy me~!!~ it's done and even a couple of weeks before the deadline~!!~

i worked on and finished another Christmas postcard for my daughter . . .

and i have two more ATC's (artist trading cards) finished. i think these are the last two in this particular series . . . but they sure were fun to make. this one (laugh) has already been requested for in a trade. i've also had a request for the "joy" card that i posted previously. i'm pleased that others like them and want to trade their beautiful cards with me. i can hardly wait to see what comes in the mail over the next week or so . . .


this second XOXO card is no longer available for trade.

the cauldron of treats (with obligatory faux bone stir stik) awaits, for all of those little ghosts and witches who will be out and about this evening . . .

i hope you have a fun (and chocolate) filled Halloween holiday.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

for a good bit of the afternoon it has been snowing. heavy grey skies, cold wind and winter snow~! not a lot of accumulation (yet) but . . .
outside my window it's all golden confetti with white sprinkles.

what a great day to get out the king size quilt that i'm quilting and resume the stitching. it feels quite cozy to snuggle under it with my needle in hand and watch through the window as the winter blows in upon us from over the mountain.
the progress is slow but oh-so-comforting~!!~
it's a good day for making and eating a warm vegetable soup . . .
but i think the pepper i put in the pot has mixed feelings about the whole idea.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

our sun has been hiding behind a heavy cloudy sky for the last few days with a bit of rain falling now and then. i'm so glad that i went out and enjoyed last week's sunshine as now i'm quite content to be inside, curled up on the sofa, with needle in hand which has resulted in some finished ATC's (artist trading cards).

i've been working on a series that i'm calling "MeMa's House". these cards use bits that bring back childish memories of just that . . . i'm very happy with them and have decided that i will have to keep the "Bliss" card for myself . . . at least for a while . . .

the "Love" card is no longer for trade.

the "Joy" card is no longer for trade.

and the "Fun" card is no longer for trade.
i am currently working on two more for this series but i'll wait to show them until they are completed.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

welcome to my busy day~!

i've been hard at it working on my next (scrap) donation quilt top. still trying to use up all of my strips and strings. this is a 15 inch block made using Marti Michell's Kaleido-Ruler and instructions. so far it's worked out pretty nifty and i hope to have three more of these blocks put together within a few days. then i'll sew those into a 30 inch square center piece and think about some borders to bring it up a bit more in size to a baby quilt size.

i do have one concern. i have sewn the strips and strings onto low thread count muslin bases because the nature of string piecing can be a bit inaccurate otherwise.
i then felt like those pieces were going to be too "weighty" beside the other pieces so in the interest of consistency i also sewed all of the other pieces to the same low thread count muslin. my original thought was i could leave out the batting and make a lighter weight summer quilt using flannel for the back. after having constructed one of the blocks i am wondering if this will present any challenges to the machine quilter? the bulk only seems to be an issue where several seams come together but i know that if i were hand quilting it i would have to choose quilting that avoided those areas . . .

if there is anyone who can offer me their thoughts, experience and/or advice on this i would appreciate it.

i've been working on ATC's a little bit over the last few days and am in process with these two fabric ones. i've used vintage lace and emboridered bits of pillowcase to begin with and i'll add some stitching and maybe some other embellishment . . . a bit of vintage jewelry, buttons, etc . . .
maybe add an embroidered word or two . . .

btw: i want to mention that Sharon Boggon of www.pintangle.com has a new option for those of us seeking embroidery stitch instruction. she has created a system that will be expandable and allows for creating a personal sample book of embroidery stitches as one follows along. it's pretty cool and i'm excited to be actively making my very own stitch/sample book to use as a reference for not just the stitches offered but also for whatever variations that i may come up with. i highly recommend that you check it out if you are at all interested in embroidery.

i've not made any fabric ATC's before but i'm assuming that i will need to attach a card stock backing to them in order to create some rigidity . . .

once again, any advice would be appreciated.

this last one is a paper and glue collage card. i used a card that i had zen tangled on for the base. i wasn't thrilled with it so covering it with cut outs and paint seemed like a good option. the outer colored frame is made up of paint samples/cards from the hardware store. i cut one edge of them with decorative edging scissors.

i'm calling this one A Fish in the City and may do other cards with this "Lost" theme at some point . . .

the "Lost" card is no longer available for trade.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

"Each day comes bearing its own gifts.
Untie the ribbons."
Ruth Ann Schabacker
today i found time to sit in the warm afternoon sun and discover a few more of the season's fragile gifts.

Friday, October 15, 2010

the past week has been FULL of busy~! appointments, visits from far-away family and the fall yard duties have kept me from my internet friends and i've missed you all. the constantly changing and saturated colors of this season have been delighting me on a daily basis.
i hope you're finding your fall to be just as captivating.kale is one of my favorites. it's frost hardy so i'm still managing to keep it alive in a pot on my front porch. the colors and shapes add so much when mixed in with the bright pumpkin oranges, berry branches carrying small scarlet morsels and tall feathery grasses that it sits with.

i've also managed to get a few small projects across the finish line . . .

these last two cards were made for my daughter. i'll send them to her and she'll use them to wish her far away friends a merry Christmas when the time comes.

i've completed my little teddy bear quilt. it's been a good way to use up a bit more of all of my accumulated scraps. i decided that a big stitch using a larger thread would be just right for the "not-too-perfect" look that i wanted for it. i think that i may have mentioned it's for a fundraiser and that i was going to package it up nicely with some books and a teddy bear.
i've now decided that i'm going to help my dh make a primitive little doll bed to go with it. i may even make some cute little linens to include . . . the project groweth . . .

i hope that you are all enjoying the sun warmed days of this golden season of ripe~!!~

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

it's October~!!~
we've had an unexpected warm spell for the last couple of weeks and our fall weather seems a bit delayed which somehow makes October an impossibility in my mind . . . time races on though and it is indeed Autumn. within the last couple of days we've had some cooling off and the wind is blowing colder . . .

once the season/weather turns i catch myself being drawn to the visual warmth of this 9-patch quilt that i made for my husband. not only does it make me feel warmer on the inside somehow but it also echos the riot of autumn colors that are growing brighter by the day.

this is one of the few quilts that we have in our collection that are of my own hand. it seems they get given away before they're even finished~! i'm sure that many of you quilters out there know how that goes.
it was a gift for him on the Christmas of 2002. it was started and completed in a relatively (for me) short period of time (approximately 9 months).
although not a bed sized quilt (app. 47.5 x 56 inches) it is actually showing quite a bit of wear and has a wonderful cozy feel to it.
if folded in half lengthwise it fits perfectly on the back of our small leather sofa. it's gained a permanent sort of "home" there as it looks quite nice in that space. we currently have this sofa in a reading nook and it really doesn't get the same sort of use that it used to get when it was part of our living room furniture and i believe that that is where this quilt received most of it's "wear and tear". it was quite handy to snuggle under on cool winter evenings.

i'm a huge fan of the Amish style of quilt making and decided to try it using fabrics that i had hand dyed myself. the fabrics were, for the most part, dyed in small batches which accounts for the color variations that you can see within this piece. that was exactly the look i was trying to achieve and was pleased with the final effect. i did not attempt to make all of the 9-patches the same throughout the quilt and sometimes went out of my way to create blocks using "non matching" squares. i like the look of make-do that happens when choosing colors/fabrics in this somewhat random way. the 9-patches measure 5.5 inches (sewn) and i set them on point because it adds a dynamic element to what would otherwise be a somewhat static pattern. within each of the pieced blocks i quilted an "echo" 9-patch.

i did decide to use a batik fabric for the back which is not in keeping with the Amish style at all. i liked the warm tones of it and those leaves begged to be incorporated into the quilting. i created a stencil from a tracing of one of the leaves and used it within the main body of the quilt as well as throughout the first (dark charcoal colored) border which measures 4.25 inches (sewn).

i liked the way that this choice subtly tied design elements to both the front and the back.

to dye a true deep dark black can be difficult and mine ended up being a dark charcoal. these photos don't quite capture the depth of that color very well as the camera flash washed it out quite a bit. but the quilting/leaf pattern can be seen nicely in this shot so i included it within the group of photos. i used the same variegated cotton thread throughout the quilt. it was similar in tone and color to what was within the fabric/batik back.

within the widest outer border i quilted a feathered cable. this border, which is a wonderful rusty brown, measures 7.25 inches wide.
i found this pattern in one of my books by Pepper Cory called Quilting Designs from Antique Quilts. i used it at the size that was presented within the book (pages 46 and 47) and i, once again, cut my own stencil/pattern.
the quilt uses a 100% cotton batting and is bound in a narrow dark orange fabric/color (also hand dyed).
i used this same fabric to cut a leaf silhouette from. the leaf is the same as the one used for quilting and "floats" gently on the back acting as the quilts label.

i hung this quilt on my bedroom wall in order to take the shots.
notice that i've painted the wall in a wind blown, color on color, leaf pattern . . .
hhhmmmm . . . maybe i have a thing for leaves . . .