Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Chillin on a Chilly Day

On a snowy day, what's one to do....We did have another snowfall just recently...so pretty and didn't last but a day which is what I like...

Well I owed my son an apple pie...promised for his birthday last year and never delivered..
I make it from scratch...good old Betty Crocker's cookbook way so it takes hours but it does warm up the kitchen and sure makes it smell like Thanksgiving!

Also a good day to hang out with furry buds who can keep you warm - featured is Fraggle my 16 1/2 pound kitten...well he's 2 but very kitten-ish in behavior and a people lover.
But the best thing....John and Mike were working in the basement on a "Bee House". Mike saw them online and decided to build one himself. Both are avid gardeners - especially Mike (son) who has the eye for color and design; they're always adding something new. John built the frame and then Mike cut the bamboo (from our friend Gary's yard) into small lengths. They are held in place with wood glue and can endure the weather.
I love all the different sizes of bamboo....
The bottom part has holes drilled into wood...more apartments for the bees. Mike has done a lot of reading about these cute little dwellings and apparently bees love them.
And as soon as the snow melted, it was hung outside..They are supposed to be placed X amount of feet from the ground to protect the bees from wasps...will find out more about this later.
It's on a larger tree on the side of the house...easy to see and enjoy. I think they did a great job and can't wait for our little buzzing friends to find it and take up housekeeping.

Friday, March 10, 2017

PTA at Gens

PTA (our fiber group) met yesterday at Gen's home with Gen and Mary B hostessing. Well, first drama of the day...Barbara, Linda and I meet up in Ingles parking lot to carpool. We all hopped into Linda's car but upon reaching Gen's condo (about 20 mins away), Barbara realized she forgot her bag with her quilt and other things for show and tell.....well, no biggie...you can show them next month...right!! Well no, Barbara said in a panic...I took the bag out, laid it down on the ground and forgot to get it...Uhhh Ohhh...I stayed at Gens as Barbara and Linda made a mad dash back with fingers crossed that her precious quilt would still be there....
Barbara called to say, it was there but mentioned...think I'll need a glass of wine when I get to Gen's..
What's better than a glass of wine when you are in big stress mode - ?...TWO glasses - one for each hand.
Our meeting consisted of talking, gossiping, drinking wine and looking at wonderful show and tell. Barbara made Mary this ruffled scarf in Packer colors....guess who was a happy camper!
Mary Berry showed us a cute teddybear she hired someone to make. It's made from an old t-shirt used at a family reunion. Mary said she had lots of shirts but needed to find one with a logo that would fit on bear's tummy.
Barbara, who is great at piecing finished the top and it's ready to be quilted.
It has a pulsating effect which is so interesting.
Gen showed us some pieces she purchased, made from paper.
We took a break for lunch and Mary B made this fabulous dessert which tastes even better than it looks!
Dort, prolific as ever show us some pieces she was working on. This is a waterfall which has some beautiful texture.
Look at this amazing texture created with thread and the wonderful Stonehenge fabric that lends itself to this theme.
And more threadwork....
This is another one of Dorts smaller pieces recreated from a photo she took. Dort is known for her attention to detail.
Dort picked these blocks from our stack of White Elephants gifts from our Christmas party...has them together already.
Kate made this wonderful piece....
along with this darling childrens quilt.
Georgia was giving us an update on the quilt trail...
along with a brochure on where the many wooden quilt blocks are located so people can drive their own tour.
Georgia also showed us a series of owl pillows she's making as a gift...lucky lady to get these. The background is my favorite Stonehenge fabric with a tree theme.
Mary B showed us an adorable wall hanging made from an angel pattern her little grandson drew at a very young age.
And last but not least, Mary B is relocating...and still close to us. It's always hard to leave a home that's been part of our lives for so long but she's very happy to be going to this retirement community. She has made a collage of the very wonderful things she has to look forward to...always our very positive and loveable Mary! I am linked to Off the Wall Friday and Whoop Whoop Friday.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Fiber Junkies and Daffodils

Well, better late than never...and it seems like I've been saying that a lot lately....it's not like I'm involved with any big project that's demanding my time...but life does get in the way. We had our February Fiber Junkies meeting at my home this past week...using Denny's die cut machines for cutting fabric. First we did a quick show and tell...
Denny has been making big, big quilts and every month, she seems to have several to show...Denny makes wonderful art quilts but has had to stray from that path for a while to do some easy sewing. Sometimes it's just great therapy to sit and sew with little thought in mind.
I loved this piece made with Tim Holtz fabrics
and a detail.
I love Kaffe Fasset's fabrics with the big bold prints and this was a beauty.
Kate made this from cuts from a previous meeting...really a darling piece and beautiful quilting which is not visible in this picture.
I think I've shown this before but I really love this piece that Mary made using ice dyed fabric. She did a beautiful job blending several fabrics. I thought it was all from the same piece but not so.
and a detail...
Onto my studio which has some big tables (thanks to hubby who made them) and good for the many die cut machines Denny brought...We are all so thankful to Denny for sharing and bringing them for us to use.
There were so many die cuts to choose from along with an electric cutter and a hand cranked one...whoops and some wine...!
Gen was such a doll helping Mary with ironing and cutting her squares....I know Mary just did a post on our FJ meeting...much more timely...but she does say how we all want to be Gen when we grow up...no truer words...this is one great lady...not only talented but so very giving.
With these machines, there is no waste. Kate and I were working together as we're doing the same quilt at retreat. We're using half hexagons and there are 3 sizes...the smallest which accomodates very small pieces of fabric. Kate being the piecer took the small ones....she'll do something great with them; I would be ready for a straight jacket if I attempted to work with this size.
This is the quilt we'll be working on...very pretty and bright.
I chose a more subtle palette; I love it but also think I'll need to sparkle it up a bit.
On another note, the following night my hubby and I went to our bi-monthly supper group. It was the night before the frost and our hostess has a huge daffodil garden ...soooo...she cut lots to treat us to a little bit of spring...beautiful...
and we all went home with a little bouquet. A fun couple of days. I am linked to Off the Wall Fridays and Whoop Whoop Friday.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

"Passing Thru"

So I've had this piece of fabric on my wall for a while and always a conundrum as to what to do with deconstructive screen printed fabric?...but for this piece, I did find a solution. 
 It is very busy but thought I might try printing on top ...running it through an ink jet printer. What do I have to lose. Right?

I found these 2 images in my picture file and thought they might work together as a layered image, so into my photo editing program to manipulate and make adjustments. I printed the layered image on the deconstructive piece of fabric and Voila!

 I love layering photos as it's always a surprise...sometimes good and sometimes not so good but in this case, I think pretty good. I did flip the trestle as perhaps you can see, like it better that way.

 I loved the gold and wanted to pull that in...along with blue. I had more blue deconstructive fabric which worked well. The tree on the side is silk screened onto the fabric and covered with organza to tone it down....but not sure I should keep it there..
 A piece of fabric from my Stonehenge collection seems to work better on the left....
 and the tree works better on top as a frame.
 It was an afterthought to wrap this piece around stretcher bars rather than bind or face the edge. So when quilting it, I used a soil separator cloth, rather than a fabric...on the back. Soil separator cloth is similar to pattern duplicating material only less expensive. I get it at home improvement stores in the plumbing department...used to line large outdoor pipes. So back on track, I needed to add pieces to the edge for wrapping around the bars.
 I assembled the stretcher bars, made sure they were squared up and started pulling the quilt to the back. Using an electric staple gun, I added 1 staple in the middle on each side, turned, added a staple etc. while constantly checking the front.
 This is the way it looked on the side.
 The back was finished with a piece of muslin, silk screened with trees and then picture frame wire added for hanging. This is one of my Haiku pieces.

                                                          I did do some discharge using a screen with writing (a recipe written by my grandmother), also some screened trees and metallic gold decorative couching thread in the ditch which is obvious when you turn the piece a certain way.
I am linked to Off the Wall Friday and Whoop Whoop Friday...Check out these great sites to see what other quilters are up to.