Sunday, March 29, 2009

Progress on Monochromatic block

This weekend we again experienced a very dreary, rainy Saturday. I stayed in all day and as I surrounded myself with needles, threads, and beads I nested and enjoyed my day. Progress this weekend was the addition of a fan, beading and a tea dyed flower in the center. I found the idea for the fan on Ira's blog. Hope she doesn't mind that I tried to replicate her great stitching. The lace panel in the center is so pretty I do not want to cover it up but have tried to just enhance it with pearl beads. I love the way my blocks just continue to evolve. I suppose some go into their projects with a plan. Not me.
I will be traveling this next week, attending a conference in Orlando. Hoping to soak up some Florida sunshine. I will pack some threaded needles and a little sewing bag to pass my time while traveling. I have been stranded in too many airports waiting on flights not to travel prepared with a good book and some stitching to work on.

A Spring Bouquet

March weather in Missouri can be very unpredictable. Yesterday brought a dusting of snow which we were thankful it wasn't more than a dusting. With fruit trees blooming along with Spring bulbs and shrubs in full splendor we were afraid what we would find this morning. Overall, they fared well. I cut a nice assortment for a Spring bouquet and loved the fragrance that permeated from the blue hyacinth. I always look forward to Spring in the Ozarks and the promise of rebirth as everything comes to life.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Favorite Way to Spend a Rainy Week end

Spent some time this weekend working on my first blue color study block designed by Wanda from Illinois. In this round robin (my first to participate in)we are to complete one design or motif on a patch with stitching and embellishments along two seams. The trim that appears to be pink in this photo is actually a light blue with silver tones. I tried my hand combining stitching and beading, getting some great ideas from Nancy Eha's book "Bead Creative Like Crazy." Great resource book!

I am still trying to figure out how to get my photos where I want them and again I have not succeeded! On the monochromatic block above the beading and stitching doesn't show up in the pictures as well when tone on tone but I am really loving the results. Jewel tones have held my interest up to this point but I am on to something new that really appeals to me. I love it!

This block will be submitted to go into an effort to raise funds for cancer research. My father would have been 82 this week on his birthday but due to cancer his life ended early at age 59. Hate is a strong word that I try not to use often but I do hate cancer!

Even though the weekend weather was not good, it did give me the perfect opportunity to spend some time doing what I love to do......stitching.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Experimenting with Monochromatic and Coffe/Tea Dyeing

As I look over my creations I see that I naturally lean towards the jewel tones in most all I do. The stitching on these rich colors just seems to pop. As I looked through my stash I found several pieces that would work well in a beige on beige monochromatic block and decided to give it a try. The different textures and patterns adds plenty of interest without loud color combinations. I then chose some trims and lace and tried my hand at dyeing with coffee and tea. I am very pleased with the results. It is so much fun to experiment with things we have around the house to create pieces for our blocks that couldn't be found and purchased in stores. And it saves me a trip to town.
Today I awoke to a dreary, rainy day and I'm happy. It gives me permission to stay in and stitch to my hearts content. Sounds like a perfect day off to me!

Friday, March 20, 2009

New Arrivals At the Rays

Look what arrived at our house on St. Patty's Day. Our girl Marilyn chose to deliver in the back of the barn under a stage. My husband and son had to do a belly crawl to take her food and water and to see the pups. She finally came to the house and allowed her puppies to be moved. What Ithought was going to be really ugly pups have turned out to be pretty darn cute!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Welcome signs of Spring

I have had my eye on the Lenten Rose (Helleborus) for some time and this past summer planted my first. While it prefers a shady location which I have little of in my gardens, I tucked it beneath a rather large forsythia where I could keep an eye on it from my kitchen window. Now one of the first bloomers in my garden and withstanding the fluctuations in temperatures very well. It is touted as blooming up to 5 months and is resistent to heat, cold, drought and wildlife will leave it alone. Sounds like the perfect specimen!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Amazing CQ

You can imagine my joy and amazement when I walked into church on Sunday morning and one of our ladies is showing this CQ that she has had stored away for years. She moved to Missouri from Colorado years ago. She had found this unfinished quilt in the attic of a home that they had bought in Colorado from an 80 year old lady. The fabrics are mostly silks, brocades, velvets and other fancy types. The colors are beautiful. The stitching is most all a variation of the feather stitch but so perfect that everyone at church was sure that it was machine done. It has some breakdown of patches along a fold line. Part of the muslin backing is from a feed sack labeled wheat flour from Bushnell, Illinois. On this particular Sunday I really didn't want to get out in the cold and go to church. What a blessing I found awaiting me when I walked in the door. Thank you Lord for those small, unexpected blessing along the way.

Joyce, the quilt owner sent it home with me to research her options. She would like to have it restored, bound and backed so that she can display it in her home.