Friday, September 26, 2014

Want a Bargain? Want to De-Stash?

If so, check out this facebook site...
Second Hand Crazy Quilt Supplies
What you have excess of can become new stash for someone else.
I'm letting go of a lot...and getting new things that I need more.
If I could just find a way to actually SORT through all the stuff I have to decide what to craft room looks like someone turned it upside down and shook it! Shook it hard!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Ribbon Colors

Have you even wondered what a purple ribbon means? We see pink ribbons for Breast Cancer Awareness; Black Ribbons for Mourning; Yellow Ribbon for Missing Loved Ones...but what about other colors.
Today, I came across a great piece of information...and it is in a printable version for color printers. (scroll to the bottom of the page).
Ribbon Colors
Thought you might find this information interesting and want to print a copy for yourself.


Friday, September 19, 2014

Giftee Idea

Wow, where has this week gone!?! My friend Pam asked me for this is one of those on my Craftsy page...but thought I'd also post it today as a freebie to my blog followers.
It's a wee wallet that I carry every day instead of a purse. My cards and money tuck in very nicely so just perfect for a quick run into the store. 
Keys in one blouse pocket and this mini-wallet in the other...and I'm in and out in a flash!
The pattern also has a checkbook cover included. It usually stays in my purse...back in my office. But, at times...the purse and ALL my "stuff" will make a trip too.
And, when it get's dirty (like mine is now)...just empty the contents and toss it into the wash, if you have used washable fabrics. Here's the link to download the pattern:
Rose and Lilac Wallet &Checkbook Cover

If you don't want to do hand embroidery on the front...use a bit of machine embroidery instead...or just a pretty fabric.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Printing Embroidery Patterns to Fabric

This has been a real work week of writing and editing classes for myself and for StitchMAP...and I'm battling another week of sleeping strange hours. Honestly, not getting much stitching done. But, there are a couple of classes coming up in the next few weeks that I have to get stitched, photographed, and written for StitchMAP. So, thought I'd get one of them traced on to my fabric and started. But, when I taped the pattern to the light has so many tiny little lines, close together...that I just didn't have the energy (motivation) to want to even get started. So, instead...I decided to print the pattern right on the fabric.
I began by spraying starch on the fabric...getting it good and wet. Pressed it until it was nice and flat and dry. I'm using cotton fine weave linen (...but have used cotton batik in the past with great success too). Then,
I cut a piece of Freezer Paper (wax side/paper side) about 10 x 12 and pressed it to the back side of my linen. 
Then, I used my quilter's 12"-square ruler and trimed the linen/paper sandwich...first on the top/side edges...

...then the other two side until it was a perfect 8.5 x 11.0 size for my printer. I loaded it into the ink jet printer paper tray (linen side down...because that's the way my printer works)...and now have a printed fabric sheet to embroidery.

Next, peel off the waxed Freezer paper from the linen fabric.

I added a piece of fusible interfacing to the back to stabilize the thin linen for this project.

And hooped...and am ready to stitch!
So, if you have a decent inkjet printer...and a small enough project to fit a standard size of printer paper...and enough "extra" to sacrifice in might like this quick method of getting an electronic pattern to the fabric. If your pattern has Logos or such that you don't want have to crop those out of the picture...or scan the pattern with these parts covered up with typing paper to get them "off" before you print. Since I created this pattern for the class..I could drop out all of the parts I didn't not the leaves.


Postal Goodies...

Don't you just love the little surprise that come from the postman? I mean the good ones...not the bad ones (like bills due each month). Even if I know something is coming...because I ordered still lifts my spirits a bit when it arrives. Like a tiny little Christmas Morning feeling as I walk back up my steps...anticipating the fun I'm about to have at seeing the contents.
That's the way I felt a couple of days this last week. The above pattern and pretties came from Janet at Vintage Vogue. I've been wanting to do this hat for a few years now actually, and it might be a few more before I actually do it...but at least now I'm closer to starting the project because I at least have the pattern.  Also got some glorious ribbons and threads and can't wait to stitch with these. Janet has the best stuff!
Then, I got a surprise envelope...from my friend NickiLee. Some of her gorgeous hand painted/dyed laces from her shoppe RavioleeDreams! They were send by my secret sister...who contacted Nicki and ordered them. Wasn't that a cool gift idea from her! My secret sis is just the bestest!
The postman also brought me two international envelopes this week...both from special new friends in my crazy quilt classes. Linda B. is from Canada, and send me some hand-made crochet and tatted pieces that she made! 
She has great talents with the tatting needle (which I don't have) and crochet hook. She is also sent some pretty little beads for me to work with.
The last little envelope is from Pippa P. in the United Kingdom. She also does beautiful tatting work...and I'm so envious of her talents! 
Her family has done needlework for generations...and she sent me three pieces of lace done by her Great Aunt...can you imagine! 
These are so delicate and the thread is teensy like sewing thread...just outstanding work. Not what we see today...and I'm just flabbergasted and honored that she would entrust me with a bit of this. It is just gorgeous lace. 
AND, just after first writing this post...the mailman delivered some pretty charms and seed beads from my friend Mary B. in Texas. I'm going to have fun with these too!
So, I've had a wonderful week of surprises from the postman.
Oh, and also got my 2015 CQ Calendar this week..and two new, am going to be enjoying some eye candy in print too this weekend!
Hope you had some good news and little surprises in the mail this week too.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

CQJP 2015 is around the corner....

It's time for
It's time for me to begin the planning for the next Crazy Quilt Journal Project Challenge....
Registration will open this November...and I'm open to any idea you might have to "tweek the challenge".
I have some ideas of my own....
-- changing the block size
-- requireing a specific shape
--including patterns to use as an option
So I'd love to hear your ideas before establishing the rules for this next year.
Just email your ideas to me...or include a comment below if you prefer.
I can't promise I will use all of them...but I will consider all of them in my final decisions.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Thank You to Phyllis and Anna

The postman delivered this beauties to me yesterday afternoon...aren't they so pretty!
My pal Phyllis sent them to me...and she did them in all these colors! Wow...she really surprised me. She told me she was sending me a few butterfies...and I thought "Oh, I love butterflies...expecting to get a card with 4 or 5 butterflies...not an entire field full of butterfles. I was doing the happy dance when I opened her envelope! Had to phone and tell her how happy they made me.
Then, my sister showed up this morning with these ribbons. Spools and spools of satin, growgrain, cotton, and some poly too I think. Hundreds and hundreds of yards!
These were obvious ends from a mill they are on wooden spools. One says "Talbott" on the perhaps from past clothing items for the Talbot brand.
Here are some of the bunched up ends that came off the spools...They will need a pressing with the iron before use...but that is for another day. And, the best part...they were free to me! It sure is nice to have friends and family that help support my "habit". Ha!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

More Organization...and Bargains Too...

Last week, I shared the tapestry pill box (bead organizer) I received from Miles Kimball. I had also ordered a tapestry zipper double eyeglass case...that was backordered.
 It arrived this week and I'm so happy with it. Look at all the room! The cost is very reasonable at 12.99 for a zippered case. My sunglasses are huge...and the other side holds two reading glasses. I like the elastic bands that hold things in place...and there is a mirror (yikes, scared myself!)...and a little net pocket on the divider. And, I tested closes completely with all of these in there.

Think organizer...and you could pack a few things into this little case! I also think that eyeglasses on one side, keys on the card and drivers license in the purse! 
Look at all the supplies that were in there! if organization was not enough this week...I got some cool bargains at my Dollar General store today!
 These dish towels were 4 for $5...a great buy. One brown one will be "saved" to be used for teddy bear fur...and look at the ribbon that the bundle was tied with! It is so soft...and all cotton. I'm thinking I can make woven roses with this!
 These are men's handkerchiefs...not fancy, but wonderful cotton linen fabric. The size is huge at 16 x 16...and being cotton I can dye them any color I want! I'm using these for embroidery backgrounds...and at $2.50 for FOUR of them...I got four packages...16 handkerchiefs. I wanted them all but then thought of that poor man who really might need a handkerchief but could not find one...because I bought all 20 packages! left with four...might go back tomorrow. I mean, he only needs one I could get 15 more packages...ha!
 Lastly, I needed pony tail holders...these were also $2.50 and I got ten in the package...a good deal in itself. But I can only use nine of them because one will be cut to remove this wonderful black crystal filled rose slide! It belongs on a CQ Block...not in my hair. Again, I should have bought them all...and that's a second reason to go back tomorrow! Ha!

So, walk around your local "dime store" and look at'd be surprised what you might find!


Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Coming up roses...

This might be a rose you it is a couple of years old. This was done for an SRE journal. The ribbon for the rose is 13mm bias cut silk ribbon with 7mm silk ribbon for the leaves.
Yesterday I stitched it again with 7mm silk ribbon for the rose and 4mm for th leaves. It is one of the silk ribbon flowers in my Intermediate CQ Class...and I needed to re-write that module. Thought all of you might enjoy the photos.
The turning shades of the grass and leaves (getting a bit "yellow" looking around here) have reminded me that roses are soon to be a thing of the past for this more rain and cold weather begins to drop down into the southern states soon. Some years, it's freezing to go out at Halloween! Roses are my favorite flower to photograph and admire...and I miss them every year beginning about now. Good think we can stitch up a reminder whenever we want!

Bunny Block

This block was both fun and stressful to do. Why do we always worry over what our peers think? It's a social thing I suppose...but it makes me sometime second guess if I like or dislike an aspect of my work. However, after a smidge of time living with this completed block...I have to say that I'm pretty happy with it now.

So much so, that it is framed and sits in my entry way. (There is no room on the wall for hanging...but I like that it sits on the hutch along with framed photos of my grand-parents, parents, children, and grand-children. A place of honor in my home.
 Thought you might like some is the central dimensional Bunny. When Pam sent me an email asking if I'd like to contribute a block...she specifically asked if I would do a dimensional bunny...knowing that I contributed a mini-lesson in this technique to Pat Winters magazine before. I was honored and readily agreed. Of course, then I freaked out! Ha! He sits amongst some tiny French Knot flowers made with 2mm silk ribbon. The larger flowers at his base are porcelain teensy beads and 7mm SRE French Knots. The little bunny tail is a rick-rack rose.
This blue flower is from an embroidery design found on Mary Corbet's site. I had done this in acrylic bell flowers once before and liked them so much...but thought that ribbon was a better choice for this block. And as a nod to tradition CQ work; I added a wee little spider and web.

These ants are a very favorite little group of critters that I enjoy adding to many blocks. The idea is not mine, they are inspired by the blog header on Allie's site. I do  mine in different beads, but the original "genus" idea is all her's. Thanks Allie!

This little hedgehog is all bullion stitch on a bed of felt. A simple child's coloring book shape was reduced to about 1.25 inches wide...and covered in embroidery. He is not hard to do at all...just begin at the rear with bullions...and continue to full until you reach the front. Add a seed bead for the eye and he is done. The thread is a variegated brown/black. He travels through a flower bed of irises. The little rose cabochon was beaded by me...and gifted by Maureen Greeson. Thanks again Maureen, isn't it just right at home here?!

Here is another spring garden bed...with tulips. When I think of are the first thing to come to mind. I wanted to include many in this block...without them being the main focus. Hopefully that has been achieved.

Lastly, my most favorite part of the block. The basket of flowers. I began with the basket shape from a photo of a basket. The flowers are perle cotton french knots (Seam #12 in my book) and the roses are made in 2mm gold silk ribbon. The leaves are 4mm silk ribbon, and the bow is 7mm. I just love that this really looks like a will call it a success!
So, there are the closeups...hope you enjoyed the block as near as I could get you!
Can't wait to get my calendar...and see all of the work by the other ladies too!


Monday, September 1, 2014

Yea! Calendar Time is here!

Today, Pam Kellogg's crazy quilt calendar is ready for purchase at MagCloud! Yeah, can't wait to see this entire calendar.
She asked me to contribute a block, and I was very honored to do so. My little bunny is ready for Spring! I'll show you some details tomorrow...
The ladies that contributed works are some of my favorite stitchers! I'm so eager to see all of their blocks! Come on mailman...bring me my calendar!