Monday, June 30, 2008

Have A Holly Jolly Christmas

Hello Everyone, I am in the finishing UFO mode lately. I had a large wall hanging that I was going to hand quilt for the last 10 years or so and never got to it. So now it is being machine quilted and hopefully I will have it home soon.
Today I came across this wee wall hanging called "Have A Holly Jolly Christmas" so now it is out and hopefully I will have a wall hanging completed to hang up for Christmas this year. Hand stitching of all kinds is my first love then comes quilting, crazy quilting and I have always added beads to just about everything to make my projects sparkle. Now only if I could find some more valuable time to get all these UFO's done in "My Life Time"!! LOL I am sure there are many other stitchers and quilters out there that can relate to my struggle. VBG Hugs Judy

Dilly, SCQuilter, Cuppa, Embroidery Bags

Margaret in Spain creates some very lovely "Dilly Bags". Dilly Bags official definition is a "Traditional Australian Aboriginal String Bag" made from twisted bark fibers used to gather foods. But us stitching ladies have many uses for them. I use mine to place my many array of stitching items into for safe keeping. I told Margaret I had many lovely "Dilly Bags" and the best part is that they were all given to me by my "Very Dear Friends" from Australia and the top right one is from my friend in St. Saint Marie, Ontario, Canada. The one in the center is called a "Cuppa Bag" which you can place your tea cup into to carry with you to retreats, stitching meetings and on and on. vbg In my humble opinion I think only "Creative Australian Stitcher's" would think to do make a bag for their lovely tea cup!!! VBG In the bottom right corner I call this bag my Southern Cross Quilter's (SCQ) Bag because it is made from our official SCQuilters logo pattern and colors of blue and yellow. The top middle "Dilly Bag" is made from all lovely Australian fabrics. Everyone of these "Dilly Bags" are used and cherished.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Country Threads Stitchery Magazine

I received the Country Threads Stitchery issue I ordered from Erica's Quilt Shop in Indiana this week. It has been awhile since I have read one. I have many other old Country Threads Stitchery issues going back many years that I continue to look at with fond memories. Many of them given to me by my "Dear Friends"from all over Australia. I lived in Australia for a short time and I am still a member of the "Southern Cross Quilters" Online list and it is here that I met so many of these "Dear Friends". When I was accepted into the Southern Cross Quilters Online list I had NO idea that I would be so "Warmly Welcome" and some of these ladies would end up being my "Life Long Friends and Sisters!!!"... Many have come half way around the world to meet me. I feel very blessed and honoured to have these "Special Friends" in my life. A warm hug to you all. Judy

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Antique Embroidery Block Quilt and Freezer Jam

The above block shows the name of the lady who made this beautiful antique embroidery quilt and where she lived. I have done a wee bit of research on her name but could never come up with any further information about the maker of this beautiful embroidery quilt. Maybe someone out there in blogging land knows the history of this family or lady. There was NO date on the quilt.
This photos highlights several of the embroidery motif.
This photo shows more of the embroidery motifs. A wee story about how I found this lovely antique quilt. It was the summer of 2004 and I had come back from Germany to visit with family and friends and to met the wonderful man I had been chatting with on the Internet for the many months. This very sweet man decided to take me on a short trip along the Lake Michigan shoreline. We travel from Muskegon all the way up to Traverse City.

One stop was in Ludington at the local Antique Farmer's Market. As we were enjoying looking through all the barns we came upon a vendor selling old quilts. I instantly fell in love with this quilt. I loved all the old style embroidery motifs. The lady told me how much she wanted for the quilt and I hesitated a bit but then decided I really could not leave it behind. As I started to get out the money to buy it my sweetie said, he would love to buy it for me. I smile and said "Thank YOU VERY MUCH"!! I thought to myself what a very thoughtful and giving person I have met. I truly treasure this lovely old quilt because it brings back such Wonderful Memories of "Our First Summer Together". We've have now spent many a wonderful summers together and everyday is so very special with my DH.

All day on Saturday I decided to do some canning. Mine you I have NOT did any canning since I was a young married woman. Being a mother, wife and a new nurse took up so much of my time that this tradition fell by the wayside.

So now that the children are gone and life is much less hectic I decided to try canning one more time. I love Michigan strawberries and at the local farmer market I bought a flat of strawberries. I put 8 quarts of strawberries into freezer bags. The I decided to use 4 quarts to make freezer jam but unfortunately I had NO jars. So off I went to the grocery store where I bought 1/2 pint jars and some wee jars with a quilt block on them. I thought the wee quilt block jars filled with fresh jam would make a nice Christmas pressie for some special quilting friends. I could hardly believe it took me ALL day Saturday to get this canning done. But at the end of day I felt pleased with all my canning efforts and thought how wonderful the fresh strawberries will taste when they are not available during our long winter months. Off to do some stitching. . Have a great day everyone. Hugs Judy

Friday, June 20, 2008

June Blooms in My Garden

Good Day Everyone, I took some photos today of some of the flowers blooming in my garden. The bottom photo is my wind chime that says"Angel Gather Here". I love listening it to when the winds are really blowing. The third photo is of my rose bush called "New Dawn"with its growth surpassing the arbor and reaching for the sky. My DH made this arbor and fence for me. He is a very talented man. I planted New Dawn last May so it is only 1 years old. The arbor is over 12 feet tall so this lovely rose bush is certainly an aggressive rose bush. Right now it has lots of buds so it should be blooming soon. I can hardly wait to see it. The second photo is of my Peony. OH, How I love Peonies. I really need to plant more of them. The top photo is of my lovely pink "Princess Spirea" bush. This is its second summer of blooming and it looks better every year. Thanks for visiting my garden. Hugs Judy

Friday, June 13, 2008

Lynette Anderson Lovely New Redwork

Lynette Anderson, an AustralianPattern Designer has some lovely new Redwork designs out called Trio Of Greetings which will be featured with the new issue of Homespun Mag. Issue 9.6. I have been admiring Lynette Designs for many years. She create lovely patterns of all kinds. Please have a look at her blog. It is lovely.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Turkey Rose PC and Clematis Blooming

Oh, How I love my garden blooms. This photo is my clematis in full grandeur. It blooms now and again in the Autumn. This is its third summer for blooming and it has already outgrown the metal garden art decoration pole I bought for it. DH is working on building another one.

The second photo is of a weee Turkey Rose Pincushion I just finished. I put a few beads in the center to make it sparkle. The fabric I used is 100% hand dyed wool.

The top photo is of another flower blooming in my garden and I have forgotten its name. Can you see the Bumble Bee enjoying it sweet nectar??? This is also its third summer and last year for some reason it did not bloom so I am really enjoying its blooms now.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

My First Folk Art Bottle Cap Pincushion, & Tutorial

I was inspired by Designer Jen Segrest Bottle Cap Pincushions to try and create my own art pincushions. I thought the 20 oz bottle caps a bit to small for me so I found the bottle cap of a liquid laundry detergent to use instead to create My Very First Folk Art Pincushion. The finished Pincushion is 2 1/2 wide and 3 inches tall.
To start, I found some felt in my stash and used a wave rotary cutter to create the grass of the PC and the bottom. I button hole stitched around the bottom and straight stitch the grass onto the sky wool felt. Then I cut out a 5 inch square piece of sky felt and rounded out the edges. I based stitched around the edges and gathered up the floss and stuff it with batting. I put a bit of extra batting in the bottom of the bottle cap too. Next, I placed the gathered stuff top into the bottle cap and button hold stitched it to the bottle cap bottom. Then the fun part began with the embroidery to create a Folk Art Autumn theme to the pincushion. I used variegated colors of DMC threads. I even embroidery a weee heart into the tree trunk. I surrounded the Pincushion with Sunflowers. The final stitching was my initials JG. I used a fabric pen to date the bottom. Now on the next one. VBG

Saturday, June 7, 2008

My GrandChildren and Nephews

I would like to share with you all some photos of my very special grand children, and nephews. The bottom photo is of my sweet nephews Tee with his arms wrapped around his tiny brother Jack. They were here visiting from South Dakota a few weeks ago. The next photos up is of my grandson Ethan on his birthday weekend when he was turning 3 yrs old playing with his Thomas Train toy I had just bought him. The next photo is of my grand daughter Chloe with the doll cradle I bought for her birthday. Chloe just turned 2 yrs. old. The top photo is of my grand daughter Morgan all dressed up to go to her Senior Prom. Isn't she lovely. She is now a HS graduate who will be going to college soon. I feel so fortunate to have such lovely healthy grandchildren and nephews.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Quilted Sea Tapestry

Quilted Sea Tapestry was the second quilt I ever made. It was made for my son and his wife. I learned many new techniques while creating this quilt. I hand dyed some fabrics. I used silks, cottons, velvets, and I covered the whole quilt with tulle and then machine quilted it with metallic threads. I machine embroidery all the fish in the quilt from pictures I found in a book. I added a beaded starfish, I hand embroidery many of the motifs and I also used yarns to create the effect of sea weed. I truly enjoyed creating this wall hanging for my son and DIL.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Garden Delight Penny Rug and Spring Blooms and Health

Oh, How I love Spring especially when my gardens come forth with its lovely blooms. The bottom photo is of my Azalea which I planted last Autumn and it is bursting with many lovely pink blooms. My Rhody seems to be struggling a bit this year but still its flowers are so very pretty. My pride and joy is my Snow Ball Bush. I bought it at a end of season special and unfortunately it had been badly neglected. I bought it knowing with some TLC it would be OK. This is now its third Spring and its blooms are very grand. I have planted in front of one of my sewing room windows where I sat to sew. I am hoping it will grow so big one day that it will provide a lovely scene when I am sewing.

I recently read in a book that said, Modern scientific research shows that sounds, colors and aromas of nature each have a unique frequency or vibration which, enters our brains, affects us "Emotionally, Mentally and even Physiologically". With this in mind, we may begin to pro-actively choose for our gardens those colors, aromas and sounds that will positively enhance our "Health and Attitudes". I believe this is true. I know when I walk through my gardens my heart feels very happy and at peace. Just glancing at a bloom brings a big smile to my face.

I enjoy all kinds of stitching and the tops photos are of a Garden Delight Penny Rug with flowers, blueberries and dragonflies. I have added a bit of batting under some of the flowers to make it look more dimensional. This pattern is by Pat Sloan and Co. Today is Sunday June 1st and it is a beautiful sunny day here in Western Michigan. I hope you all have a wonderful week. Hugs Judy
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