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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Halloween 2013!

Well, this is Kalee's third Halloween greeting the kids and she did a great job again!!  What fun...so far we've given out 180+ pieces of candy and have about 15 min. to go!

Kalee dressed up in Mandy's maid uniform....she looked so cute and looked like Mandy!



This was Mandy in 2008.....my baby!
Aren't these cute!!!
There were lots of unique and cute costumes this year....and so another year is gone...it's now 7:30 and we've given out 196 piece of candy!  We usually run out at 200 pieces but must have been the rain keeping them away!  Temp was and still is 59 degrees...but the rain did finally stop. 



Wednesday, October 30, 2013

QAYG...

OK, I'm not sure exactly why they call it (QAYG) Quilt As You Go...yes, you are attaching the strips to the batting but you still have to quilt it...oh, well...I didn't name it but I am trying it!!

This is my first block...or maybe my second...doesn't matter!  All three blocks are using the same fabrics but in different positions...go figure.




I currently have my beaded birds and butterfly hanging on a wall in our living room but I don't like them there...I wanted to make something and this seemed like the perfect way to make something quick.  And these were quick.

Now I need to quilt in the ditch then free motion quilt...see what I mean...you still have to quilt them!!  But never less, I did enjoy the process and happy with the color scheme.  After I quilt each block, then I have to join the blocks with strips.  I might attach them to canvas or stretcher bars rather than face or bind them...but I'll figure that out later.
Today temp was up to 64!!  And  I had a wonderful lunch with my friend Alice...she reminded me today that we've known each other for almost 40  years!!!  Hard to believe but we have!!!  Alice is a wonderful lady...wife and grandma....and ALWAYS has a smile on her face!!!  I mean always!  She is so pleasant to be around!!  You'll never be down after spending time with her!

So now it's do a load of laundry, research our Advantage Health plan, then dinner, walk the dog and veg while watching TV tonight.  At least with no baseball or football, we're able to catch up on our shows!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

More Cuttin Time!

  A week or so ago, I was reading Margaret Ball's blog post on making fabric beads (go to her post to see how she made these).   For those who don't know Margaret, she wrote the fabulous bead book, Embeadery, which I love (it's one of the few books that goes to Florida each winter with me!).    These are the beads she made.  Aren't they great!  Well, Margaret didn't want them and said if anyone did want them to email her.  Well, I love fabric beads and Margaret's were unique being made with strips of sheer fabric so, of course, I emailed her and I received these in the mail!!!
Well, I had to make something for Margaret and use a bead or two so....it was 'cuttin' time again!
 This was a piece I made several years ago.  I took dressmaker's pattern fabric and dyed it (dark blue) then laid it on top of a piece of commercial fabric (I think this was Pat Campbell's Fossil Fern).  I cut out an applique fern piece and stitched it on top of the other two fabrics...free motion quilted and ended up with a nice little table topper!

But now...it's a hum bug bag for Margaret!
 I used one of Margartet's beads and added fibers for the tassel.
 This is the back...
I haven't checked the tracking on the bag but Margaret should have rec'd it today or at the latest tomorrow.  Hope she likes it!
Now my next project is creating a new piece for our living room!  I have my beaded birds/butterfly's hanging up (framed) but I don't like them for the room.  So, yesterday I started to work on a QAYG piece!  I've been a fan of The Quilting Edge and saw where Marianne had created some tutorials on QAYG...so, that's what I've been doing.  I have three squares finished and hope to join them by Thursday.  I really like the process and the blocks made uup quickly!  What fun!  I sent Marianne a note thanking her for the tutorials and look forward to sending her a pic of my finished piece!  Let's hope!!

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Cuttin' Time

Yep...it's cuttin' time here!  At our 'girls weekend' I made a snap bag and hum bug bag...for some reason, I struggled putting in that dumb zipper...you only use one side of a zipper and insert the pull, yada, yada...anyway, I wanted to make a gift for Tommy to thank her for her hospitality so on Monday I took this quilt.....

And cut it up!  It was a piece of black fabric that my daughter had bleach resisted...hence, the orange.  She stamped images (rectangles) with Jacquard paints.  I thought the piece was pretty interesting so I used it as a 'hand job' (as Tommy likes to say!) and hand stitched the black and orange areas and continued with embroidery stitches in the rectangles.

This is a closeup of the stitching.  I did take it with me this past weekend but never had a chance to cut it up.
This is the hum bug bag I made on Monday and mailed to Tommy!   and I didn't have any problem putting in the zipper!  WooHoo!


I made the tassel with some fibers and threads and attached.  Tommy has received it and also posted on it so I can post it now.   I also made another one on Wed.  but that person hasn't received it yet so that 'cuttin' piece won't show up until next week sometime.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Small Paws Rescue

I've uploaded my donation pieces to the Small Paws Rescue for their online auction that starts November 16th!

This piece is called Sunflower, 8.5" x 11.5...all hand stab stitched; machine quilted petals and lots of other hand work and beading..of course.  Two of the leaves are 2-D and can be twisted to curl up!

closeup of center and leaves...
The next one is a small piece from my Underwater Fantasy series I did a few years ago.  Lots of beading, couching different threads, tyvek, which I would burn and painted transfers.  This is a smaller piece measuring 6.5" x 11.5".
This last piece, called Falling Leaves, is made with hand dyed shibori, FMQ and reverse applique (stem).  The leaves are metal that I sewed down the center to attach and which can be twisted and bent to your hearts desire!  It measures 11.5" x 9".  Each piece have a sleeve attached and are ready to hang.
If you're so inclined, check out some of the other auction pieces available...not sure if you can bid ahead of time or not...don't honestly remember.  No surprise there, right!  You can click on the widget on the sidebar of my blog or click here.  It's for a great cause...I'm still so shocked at all the different rescue organizations that are needed due stranded, abused and neglected dogs that are tossed away each day.  I know there are several rescues out there but I can only donate so much.  Small Paws is one that I've tried to work with as well as Semper Fidelis Pet Rescue which is one of my local rescues I try to donate to.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

More Tommy Time!

 After our lunch on Friday and some sewing, we took a break for some show and tell.  Tommy has more pictures on her blog post, so go there to see more from Gayle and Irene.

Gayle took an abstract mini quilt class from Debra Gash (who is from Michigan) and she brought two of her pieces.  I think they are quite interesting and cool.

This bottom one is laying on top of  a painted and stamped collage piece Gayle is working on.  Neat stuff isn't it.
 Tommy has pictures of Irene's show and tell...again, no point re posting same pics.  Go there!  More neat stuff.  And you can see what Tommy accomplished this weekend on her post here.   Her work is outstanding and identifiable!

I was busy this weekend doing hand work on my reverse applique peacock!  I actually got a lot done on this piece!  Really was nice having the time to sit and just work on it.  And with all the light in Tommy's studio, nice to be able to see what I was sewing!

 Of course, I thought it would be easy to remember how to make my hum bug bag!  NOT!  I worked on putting in that dumb zipper for a day!  You have to remember, this is only one side of a zipper that gets sewn in!  You sew one side all the way around then slide the zipper pull onto both sides..sounds easy...it is if you sew the one side zipper in the right way.. and if you sew your hum bug bag the right way...Dang...I spent more time unsewing then I did sewing!


BUT...it's finished and I'm quite happy with it.

This is the back.  I couched some fiber/threads before sewing the sides.  You'll recognize the blue fabric is from my Carnival quilt I made.  I had some leftover pieces so brought them for a starting point on the bag...the orange is from another quilt I made that I cut up.  It's actually the back of the quilt.  The front was ugly!

And this is a snap bag I made for my neighbor!  She 'babysat' my husband while I was gone...

 And check out the view from Tommy's house!  You could see this view from every room...if this isn't inspiration, nothing is!  
I'll remember this weekend for quite sometime!!  So great meeting these wonderful ladies!  Friendships I hope to have for the rest of my lifetime!  Thank you each again for my wonderful get away!  And Tommy, you are the best!!


Monday, October 21, 2013

Tommy Time!

Tommy (bot left), me, Irene (left top) and Gayle
My weekend was wonderful!!  Three of us have been part of group projects  that Tommy has invited us to over the past three years.  This past summer Tommy put out another invite for us to visit for a sew in weekend at her home!   Tommy lives just over the Michigan/Indian line right on Lake Michigan.  Wonderful views.

Anyway,  Friday a.m. I left to pick up Irene in Lansing then off we headed to meet up with Gayle at Tommy's house (go to Tommy's blog to see her post of our show & tell - no point in me re posting same pics).   Well, on our way, we did have one stop!  The Chocolate Garden!  It's only a mile off the expressway!  And well worth it!  Exit 39 off I-94!  But that wasn't the best of the trip!

We arrived at Tommy's around 2:00 Michigan time and were welcomed  by Bella!  Is she a sweetheart or what!!!  Yes, she always sits like this....just adorable...I couldn't keep my hands off her.
Tommy wouldn't think of us eating lunch on the way so she had lunch prepared upon our arrival.  Hot, steamed bagel sandwiches!   Tommy made them with Turkey, cheese, cukes, mayo and steamed them.  AND the best chocolate chip cookies ever!!  Don't know what made them so different but they were SO good.  I think I ate two that afternoon.   After we ate, off we headed to Tommy's studio to start sewing!  And sew they did!!  More on what all we did in tomorrow's post!  Today is all about the food!  Tommy is a great cook, as you'll see...and if you want some recipes, check out her blog or her food blog here.

For dinner, Tommy prepared a feast of "'pu pu's", as she called them...started with deep fried pickles!  They were fantastic!  And yes, that is a box of chocolate chip cookies behind the pickles...and yes, that is a bottle of wine!  I was so busy sewing and eating I didn't get any more pictures of the rest of our "pu pu's" but they consisted of:  Brie Puffs, Mini Sirloin burgers, Sauerkraut balls, mini pizza's, Buffalo Chicken puffs, mini potato latkes and  mini Smore's for dessert!



This is our gracious hostess, Tommy!! And she is as cute as a button!  And the best hostess!!!

Gayle was working on a quilt top on the design wall - Irene was sewing, cutting and ironing her blocks

Irene sewing away - yes, that's my peacock sitting on the chair!

We stayed up until after 12:30 sewing, eating, talking and laughing!  What fun!!!   Saturday morning after eating some of Tommy's wonderful strawberry and banana bread(s), we were back in her sewing studio working away!  At noon, Tommy had us stop work and we headed out into 'town'...we drove around looking at some of her old homes she lived in then stopped at a local grill for a great lunch.  Of course, we had lots of stories to tell and we laughed a lot...no surprise there, right!  

Back to Tommy's, after trekking around town to do more sewing!  OK, more eating!!!   Tommy was busy in the kitchen preparing our next meal and this is what we had!!  So cool!  

You put polenta onto Kraft paper then top with roasted veggies and grilled sausage!  YUM...I did take a bite of the sausage but the veggies were wonderful!   You know me and beef...but I did eat the mini burgers Tommy made Friday night...go figure.

Anyway, Tommy also had fresh baked bread you could dip into the polenta and veggie mix...this was my 'dish' so to speak!  And Tommy had chocolate cupcakes for dessert...hard to believe but I didn't eat any!  I was stuffed!!!

It was such a fun get away for me!  I got to meet and bond with some great ladies...ate well and even had a nice fall drive to and from Indiana.  Tomorrow I'll post pics of some of the projects everyone worked on.  It was a very productive weekend!!!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Small Paws Rescue

Well, it's that time of year again!
Actually you can't click on the pic above!  I have a widget on my sidebar that will take you to the auction page.
  The Small Paws Rescue is holding their annual online auction starting November 16th!  I am getting a few small art pieces ready to donate.  Last year I sold all three of the beaded art pieces I donated.   I sure hope I can sell some for them this year as well.  You can see the pieces I donated  on my post here.

If you're a Bichon fan, they do have lots of items with that adorable Bichon dog on them...in addition, there is always jewelry, quilts, etc. to bid on.  Or you can donate cash!  Click here to go to their web site and just scan what they have!

Well, have to start clothes packing for my trip!  Rain today...should stop by a.m. then rain again on Sat. but I'm sure we'll be inside all day Sat. sewing our little hearts out!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Packed and ready to go...well, almost!

This weekend three of us are meeting up for a weekend 'sew in' or is it 'food in'!  I'm sure it will be both!  This a.m. I packed up all my supplies!
My family and friends know that I don't "leave the farm" often...I visit my sister while we are in Florida at least twice, but it's been years since I've had a trip 'alone' - which means, no hubby or dog or bird!  As my grand daughter commented when I told her I was going away, "grandma, you need to get out more!"  From the mouth of babes, right!
So on Friday a.m. I'll be heading off to pick up one of the ladies in Lansing, then off we go to Indiana!  WooHoo!!!
Now what do I do between now and Friday!  Hmmmmmm,  I'm sure I'll think of something!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Still beading...

Well, no surprise there that I'm still beading...probably will until my fingers totally quit!  This is the beaded part of my MACRO quilt for the online challenge.

I know it's hard to imagine what it is...but that's the fun part, right!  Anyway, I dyed my background piece and cut out some other pieces I need to finish this piece or at least to start laying it out.  I need to get a jump on this challenge as it's due the end of November, which is my busy time with holiday's and getting ready to leave for Florida.

This a.m., I fed dogs (Cody spending the night), fed Grace, made a frittata for our breakfast, on my 3rd load of laundry, cleaned bathrooms and then scrubbed Grace's cage and area...decided to take a coffee break so I took our 'tunnel' out back.  M friend, Chris, who is a dog trainer and does agility, gave me a tunnel and a jump for Kalee!  We are having so much fun (Kalee and I)...Bob doesn't really get this at all...it has nothing to do with golf...go figure....

Anyway, this is how we play with the tunnel.  Kalee does love it and it replaces a walk!  Well, maybe one of the walks!  Gives her some exercise and we both get to go outside!
video

And for those of you who are into dogs...check out Kalee riding shot gun on our way to Obedience class the other night!  I just love this dog!  I have posted before on FB and her blog a similar video...she rides like this all the time!  She's in her harness and sitting on a pillow I made...but she loves to look out the window!
video

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Sky fabric?

I made a thank you postcard yesterday for one of my friends.  She gave me a tunnel and a jump for Kalee!!  How cool is that!  Of course Kalee has already made several runs through the tunnel!  I'll be posting pics on Kalee's blog later this week.  This is the card I made.   I printed on fabric an image from one of my original mono prints I did a few years back.   This pic was printed on cotton fabric then I printed the same image onto organdy, placed it on top of the image then stitched around the pear and cut excess.  Yes, I had to add beads!!

Today I posted on FB about the fact you never have the right color of fabric even though you have tons in each colorway.  Happened to me today.  I was looking for a sky blue for the background of my MACRO piece and couldn't find a 'sky' fabric in my blues to save my life!  Go figure, right!   So this a.m. I went downstairs and got out the Setacolor paints.  I didn't want to fool around with dyeing so chose the paint instead.

My piece sunning themselves.....
Looks better in person but I think this reflects the sky best

This  picture should be turned portrait wise...looks more like the color of water.. but still a keeper.




Kalee is resting before we head out for obedience class...only a few sessions left.  The last class they teach is the middle of November then reopen in January.  We'll be in Florida by January so hope we get to take our Good Canine Citizen testing in November....

Monday, October 7, 2013

Still playing...

On to or back to my design for Ugo...yesterday, after dyeing the color magnet pieces, I decided to play with some stamping for my Ugo piece.  I found some fabric that I liked but didn't want to ruin them with stamping letters so I played with another piece that was 'calling' me!  Now it's my favorite piece!  Go figure!


Yes, it spells HORSE...well, I didn't want to copy Ugo's 'MUSTANG' totally!

I stamped on the fabric using cardboard letters.  I have some larger letters but was just playing....giving myself some ideas.


So while I had some paints out, figured I'd so some more stamping/stenciling.  I really like Mary Shaw's stencils and use them frequently.  They're great with oil pastels or fabric paints.  Even wood icing!

I used Golden Fluid acrylics to paint.....



This was one section....



And this is about a yard of fabric stenciled.  I have to say I prefer monoprinting (you can see pieces here and here) but this tured out ok.  I know I'll use the fabric somewhere!!!

This morning Kalee and I went to the dye room and painted some fabric (this time with setacolor) for my MACRO piece.  I say Kalee because I found her sniffing on top of my painted pieces!  At least her feet didn't turn yellow...yesterday, she got some dye powder on her foot and had some nice blue streaks!  Well, Halloween is coming soon!  Maybe she's getting a head start on her costume!