Cabochon Turtles


The weekend and this week have been busy. I've been beading cabochons for my friend Thearica's shop...and put 34 of them into the mail this morning. I forgot to get a photo before closing the box(...bad blogger, bad blogger) but, in my defense...it was before 6 a.m. and I was trying to get the inventory sheet and package ready to mail before Brady woke up. You'll have to keep a watch at her shop, crazyquiltsupplies to see when they show up on her site for sale.
Now, I'm working on beading up some turtles..aren't these cute?!
I had forgotten about doing some...but putting the other supplies away reminded me.
 
 
This little turtle was done a couple of years ago...and he was in one of the supply drawers. My muse decided she wanted to bead just a little more...so I'm working some up for a few friends.
Hope you are having a super day...and that the sun is shining! 

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Monogram Mondays - P


P is for "Piecing Crazy Quilt Blocks!!)
 
 
I need to do a couple real soon....so best get to patiently piecing! Ha!
 
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Hope S-P-R-I-N-G-s Eternal!!


Looky, looky, looky at what I spied in the front flower beds today! The first buds of spring! And, today was a glorious day...so pretty here...and I turned off the heat and opened up all of the windows!
 
 
They are the first little buds to stick their heads up...and they are small...but THEY ARE HERE!
Woot! Woot!
Tomorrow will be cooler, and cooler yet the next day, and next week...but still...these little buds give me hope that Spring is right around the corner!
 
Thought you might need a little boost of hope too!
Hugs,
 
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My Work Table is a Mess!

I've got four projects going at the moment...at the same time...which is how my muse is most happiest working it seems. But, it sure does make a mess of my work table! What a lot of clutter! And this photo is only about a third of the table.
 
I've been working on cabochons obviously. Thearica at crazyquiltsupplies.com has them for sale; and they are going out the door faster than I can make them! That good...and bad! Ha!
Also working on an organizational item which will be a tutorial later on...when done. It is stitched on wool, and I'm liking it a lot so far. If you are wondering how I got the design transferred to a dark fabric...and wool...I didn't. 
 
 
I traced it to the fusible interfacing on the back. Stitching on the front but using the back as a guide is a challenge!
 
 
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Nana Alert!

Aidan was here this past weekend and when she went home there was a little note on my pillow that said "Look on my bed". And on Aidan's pillow was this note. 
Just made my day!
It says "Thanks for the love and care that you have gave (given) me for so long!"
Her handwriting is actually better than mine...which is horrible after 30 years with the Army and always writing in a hurry it seemed. Her verb tense needs some work...but for ten years old, I'm not overly concerned because she speaks better than she writes. We had been working on class Valentines which were not given out on Friday because most of the students forgot them...having missed several days of school that week for weather...and not being reminded to bring them.
The note just made my whole week better. It is on my bulletin board now.
 
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Velia's Block Complete...


...and on it's way home. I am sure she will like it...but if not, hope she sends it back to me. I loved working on this block.
The other three ladies in this round robin (Alice, Colleen, & Ritva) did a great job of adding some luscious trims and beautiful stitching. As the last person to stitch, it was my job to make the block 'sing' with embellishing; especially since this robin had "Encrusted) as it's theme. In the crazy quilt world, 'encrusted' means heavily embellished. Of course, heavy means different things to different people...but I'm happy with the end results. Here are some close-up photos for your enjoyment.
 

This photo shows the silk ribbon roses and feather stitches I added to the floral block. Alice had already placed pretty yellow seed beads in there. And, you can see a peak of the gorgeous seam treatment at top that Ritva stitched; and the one at bottom that Alice added.


Here is the finished wisteria done in perle cotton with silk ribbon leaves. You saw the braid trim on the seam above in prior blog posts; but I've added pearls and sequins to 'heavily embellish' it.


This is the main seam work I did. It is easily recognizable as mine (you know I love those five-prong flowers). The seams to the bottom were done by Alice...and she graciously agreed to let me play with them some to help my own seam not to be so over-powering. I was happy to add some detached chain stitches, some bugle beads, and some detached bullion roses. Detached flowers because I stitched them first in a hoop on some stabilizer...then couched them into place.






A close-up vies of the beaded cabochon. I debated on adding a button cluster in the floral fabric patch...where the silk ribbon roses went down...but, decided that this beauty was enough to stand alone.
It really is gorgeous in person! And, you can see some of Colleen't absolutely gorgeous feather stitched seam on the left side with the silk ribbon and beads added...just stunning! I was careful not to over-power her work. As a matter of fact, I tried to be harmonious with all of the prior stitching...but added some 'background' to areas...like a scattering of seed beads or some thin lines of back-stitching to create a lattice. That helped tie everything together and make the work or various folks appear to be done in unison.


Lastly, the spider. I know you saw her/him yesterday...but wanted to get a good photo of the web for you. This is not stitched in a normal twisted thread. I've had this spool of gold for a while, so long that it no longer has a label on it. It was not fun to stitch with as it stretched at the least tug...so I had to go extra slow to get it into place and couched down. It was like working with extremely think Christmas tree icicles (you younger folks won't know about them...but sewing with one is not great fun). But the effect is really great. I so wish I had a really good camera and light setup...but, this little $40 wonder camera will just have to do. So, hope you can make out enough details to help inspire you to stitch!

If you are just arriving at the blog...go back a few posts to see this block from where I began. There are loads more close-up photos of the progress.

Velia...it's on it's way home today! Coming priority mail...so you won't have to wait too long!

 
 
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Encrusted Block for Velia - Spider Time

Work is almost done on Velia's block in the CQI Group, "Encrusted" round robin. I put a spider into the web...but, it is too dark I'm thinking.
 
 
 
So, I decided to un-stitch...and re-stitch with a white head and blue legs. Now, I've never seen a white headed spider with blue legs...but, the block looks better with it this way I'm thinking.
I also got the leaves finished to help give the spiderweb a bit more character and depth.
 
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Freebies for my Followers...

 
It has become my custom to have a give-a-way when the blog followers number jumps by one-hundred. 
 &
We just passed nine hundred! So, I was thinking about what type of contest or give-a-way have. However, the problem with contests is that only one (or a few) folks actually win something. And, I wanted all 900 of the followers to get something.
So, I decided to design a new pattern...just for you!
 
Shawkl Scissors Pattern Assortment
 
These were originally only two designs...then they grew into nine designs...then I created smaller designs to go with the larger designs...so they grew into eighteen designs. Well, before they just keep multiplying...I'd better post them! The above picture is of the French Knot design...one of the eight sets.
Eventually, (when I actually have time to stitch one of them for the pattern front page) I'll include a photo on the front of the pattern. But, for now, just consider it a semi-draft because I have no time to stitch more than is already on my plate. Hugs!
Hope you enjoy all of the designs included.
Just click on the link above to get the pattern download free.
 
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Velia's Block Continues...


You probably think this is the longest working round robin block ever...but, I've just not had much time this work to dedicate to it. And, yes...there is a lot of work going into it; but I would have been done had the week offered more stitching time. Of course, I also keep deciding the parts planned need 'more' like the spider web. My first thought was the web and spider...but, this is the lightest patch of the block, and really draws your eye there. So, it does need more 'interest' I'm thinking...and will add some vines/branches with leaves before putting the spider in.
 
 
This area of the block is finished...and I'm quite happy with it. Alice already stitched two very pretty seams, but when I put my 5-prong seam in...it overpowered her previous work. She was so gracious and agreed to let me add some more stitching to her seams. So, I put in some straight stitches, couching, and beads to her Chain Stitch seam. Then added some detached chains and bullion roses to her adjacent seam. Some beads were added to the wine trim with the gold sequins...and this area become done to my liking.


The gold fabric at the side of the block was too large to stand alone and too small to put a motif in because that would conflict with the gorgeous ribbon seam work Colleen had put in. So, I decided to stitch a simple background lattice and add a dragonfly and some small seed beads. It's enough to fill in the space so it doesn't appear empty but still does not conflict with the seam work...as a matter of fact, I think it enhances it.
 
 
The bright gold trim on the opposite side of the block needed some stitching to help anchor it down a bit...and keep it from being so glaringly present. There was a little space to work in, so I added a simple seam with some seed beads.
 
 
The lace motifs now all have some beading added. There could be more even, but the 'feel' of this block is opulant, lucious, and grand...so too much will not be good...even for an 'encrusted style' block. At least, that's my thinking.
Next, I have silk ribbon work to add...and finish those leaves in the spider-web...and add that spider. So, the next time you see this block...it should be finished. Hope you are enjoying the show...I'm sure enjoying the stitching!
 
 


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My block is home...

 

The past couple of posts has been my work on Velia's Encrusted Block before it goes home to her...but, MY own block has found it's way back to me. Isn't it lovely! Can you tell that the ladies in this robin know how much I like beads? Ha!
Thank you to Colleen, Alice, Velia, and Ritva for your hours and hours of beading and stitching!
 
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Did You Notice?

Last night, I was up very late...and was watching the weather predictions for the next two days...ice and snow. While watching television I was also stitching. Then, before heading off to sleep I took photos of Velia's block...and posted to the blog first thing this morning.
 
Did you notice this photo in that post yet? I didn't...until I started to stitch again this morning. Do you see the half completed last French knot? It's at the lower right...felt finished, but the thread caught on the line of beads below it. Luckily, it was the last stitch...and I could pull it through and finish off again this morning.
 
Lessons learned:
1. Put beads on last (no choice here because this is a round robin, and the beads were already stitched down before I began my work). 
2.  Don't stitch late at night in poor light and while you are tired.  
3.  Watch your stitching to make sure they are completing correctly before cutting the thread.
 
Geez!
Hugs!
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Velia's Block Continues...


The trims and laces are now stitched down. And I forgot to slip one of them under the black rose trim as first planned (see prior post)...did not even cross my mind...until AFTER I had stitched the trim securely in place. Duh! Yes, I could have taken out some stitches...
 
 
but instead I layered the two together a bit, and still like the effect just fine. These will get beads too...when I get to that step in the process.
 

If you follow me much, you might already know that two of my pet peeves are the abrupt ending of trims and leaving the raw edges of trim showing. And I've managed to do both of them here!
Ending trim with a raw edge is just not okay with me. But, for every 'rule' there is an exception...or so I've heard. And this exception is because I'm not the only person working on this block...and Colleen already finished the adjacent seam so beautifully that I don't want to ruin that by putting this trim over it (of course not!!). So it has to stop short of the intersecting seam. That leaves the question...how to cover this abrupt ending?
 
 
Well, I have chosen to use a purple dragonfly Czech button cabochon in this area. It is large enough to cover all the trim ends and adds some bling to that area as well. And, it will fit in nicely with the beaded spider to come later on...and Colleen's beautiful silk ribbon and beading work. You might also note that there is a spider's web already stitched down with filament...it needed to go down now before the lace clusters went into place, IMHO. It is waiting on a beaded spider with long legs to move in.
 

You might have also have noted that the other two lace motifs at the top area of the block are stitched down; but one looks a little 'unsecured'. That's on purpose.
 

If you were to peek underneath, you'd get a surprise...and so would the little frog you would wake up! I like hiding things on a block...and adding little critters is also a favorite thing of mine to do. Wonder what other little critters will find a home on the block? Already there is one dragonfly, one spider, and one frog planned...perhaps there will be more?
Next...a bit of stitching is needed before the silk ribbon and beading begins! The spider web is already stitched into place; because it needed to go under the lace motifs but some embroidery seams and motifs are also a must.
 
 
This seam is placed against the side of the black rose trim. It will also get silk ribbon roses and beads added to it later.


This gold fabric area will have a branch of silk ribbon leaves with a vine of wisteria hanging on to that. So far, the the French Knot blooms and the Stem Stitch limb are stitched.


The next area that needs something is this floral patch of small flowers. It already has some golden glass seed beads scattered about in some of the floral centers...but I'm thinking this would be a good place to put a button cluster to balance that beaded cabochon.
Off to stitch some more...and I should be finished soon (and on time) with this block. Of course the silk ribbon and beads take the most time (for me)...so we shall see. Ha!
 
 
 
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