Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Trillium found in Our Woods

Several weeks ago My DH found two patch's of flowers trying to come up through heaps of leaves in our small woods next to our home. So he carefully rack the leaves off of them. Well this week the one patch of flowers started blooming but I had NO idea what kind of flowers they were. Yesterday at work I was talking with a co-worker and when I looked at her lovely calender of flowers there was the exact photo of the flowers blooming in my woods. They are called Trillium. My co-worker told me they were a protective wild flower and can not be picked. I have no idea if they have just naturally started growing in our woods or if the previous owner planted them. The previous owner was a elementary school teacher and she was the only one who has owned this property before us. I love looking at them and now that I know they are so special I plan to keep them safe.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

My First Machine Felted Project

While looking at my old photos I found my very first Embellisher wool felted project I did back in February 1st 2005 just a little over a month from getting my Baby Lock Embellisher for Christmas. I was inspired to make the Red Hat felted block for a dear friend who was just diagnosis with breast cancer and had fallen in love with everything "Red Hat"!! I had NO clue what I was doing but it turned out pretty good. I machine felted the Red Hat on tea dyed muslin and it worked out good. Below is "My Embroidery Hand" that I sent along with it to represent our "Friendship" of many many years. Even back then I could not finish a project without including embroidery and adding a few beads. VBG My Dear Friend is doing well for which I am very thankful.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Artistic Impression: Spring In Michigan

I have been visiting Allie's In Stitches Blog and watching her create such beautiful things with her new embellisher that she has motived me to get out my Baby Lock Embellisher and start playing again too. I am so thankful that Spring finally arrived in Michigan this year I decided to make a Crazy Quilt fabric post card with the theme being "Spring In Michigan". I went into my stash of hand dyed 100 % wool fabrics for the foundation of my project. I also raided my collections of hand dyed wools for felting along with some yarns. I used my clover needle felting tools along with felting needles I bought several years ago. Along the one side of my home is a small woods and deer wonder through it all the time. I am also a passionate garden so I wanted to include lots of Spring flowers. I used hand dyed silk ribbon and embroidery floss along with some beads to make this post card sparkle. I included wild roses, blueberry bush, flowering and budding trees. The focus of the post card is the baby fawn walking through the wood. This weee fawn was a challenge for me to embroidery and I was going to take him out but decided to keep him after my DH told me he really look like a fawn. I finished the edge of the post card with the button hole stitch and some lovely dyed yarn. In the middle of the post card I used Timtex. I bought my 100% wool for felting at several places. Much of it was bought at the Michigan Fiber Festival in Allegan a couple of years ago. I took a wool needle felting class from Barb who owns Marr Haven Wool Farm. Barb's needle felting creations are incredibly beautiful. I enjoyed making this post card so much I decided to create another one which I will call " Spring in the North Woods". This post card is just about done so I will be posting photos of it soon.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

OH, Wonderful Spring

Oh, Wonderful Spring. Yes, Spring has finally arrived here in Western Michigan. During our cold, snowy and dreadful winter this past year, when I could not hardly bare it any longer I would imagine how wonderful my Spring Bulbs would look like and it help me endure the winter. This is my new back garden I planted last year. The first to bloom this year is my Tulips, Daffodils and my Forsythia which is not quite in full bloom yet. Isn't that Magnolia tree just gorgeous. We look out over this beauty from our sun room. I am very thankful to be able to see yet another lovely Spring.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Ulla's Surprised Gift

Last Friday I received a surprise gift in the mail from my good friend Ulla. Ulla was my neighbor when I lived in Germany. When I open the parcel, it revealed a very lovely tatted peach color butterfly made for me by Ulla's friend, and the three small lovely crochet butterflies were made by Ulla in my favorite colors. Oh, how I wish I knew how to do tatting and crocheting. These beautiful gifts will look so wonderful on the "Crazy Quilt Of My Dreams". Thank you very much for the very lovely gift Ulla.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Last Day with Inge and Jaap

On the last day of my visit with Inge and Jaap they took out into the countryside again to some very special places. They took me to see the only "Working" windmill still operating in Holland. I could not resist taking more photos of the beautiful tulips along the path to the working windmill. The most amazing site to me was seeing endless waves of colorful tulips fields every where we went. When we were at the working windmill I took a photo of many bikes parked along the side of the road. This site was seen in many places in Holland. I regret not get a photo of ladies taking their children to school in the morning on their bikes. Only in Holland. Then we came upon a Dutch Farm with cows grazing in the fields surround by the dikes. It was unusual to see dikes keeping the cows in the pastures instead of fences.

At the end of this lovely day Inge and Jaap took me to a lovely Dutch Restaurant called Hotel Akersloot where we had a chance to chat about the last few days of our wonderful visit together. The last photo is of Inge and Jaap in front of the lovely Restaurant/ Hotel Akersloot.

Inge and Jaap I will never forget this very special time we had together in Hoorn Holland. Thank you very much for all these wonderful memories.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Continued Travels in Holland with Inge and Mieke

After we left Marken Island Meike took us out to the countryside to see Tulip Fields and to see the beauty of Holland. One of our stops were to see how the many dikes in Holland are now automated and not controlled by windmills anymore. Most interesting. Then we travel on to a local quilt shops which had everything under the sun. While there we discovered three Dear Jane Quilt in progress . They were just gorgeous. I bought some beautiful dutch fabric and some very lovely embroidery flosses. As we were walking out the door Mieke took a photo of Inge and Me with all our goodies. After driving around the countryside Mieke invited us over to her home for show and tell of some of her very lovely quilts. Mieke quilt creations were awesome. I especially loved her garden barn quilt, I thought it was very unique. And the top photo is of My Dear Friend Inge with one of her very lovely large quilts. This wonderful day ended all to soon. Thank you Inge and Mieke for this lovely day filled with so many wonderful memories.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Dutch Lace From Marken Island, The Netherlands

While at the Quilt Shop on Marken Island, The Netherlands I just fell in love with these Dutch Lace Curtains with Windmills. I bought them in April of 2003 and I had NO idea how I would use them. But I like them so much I bought 7 yards of this beautiful lace. I still remember the shop keeper asking me what I was going to do with 7 yards of Lace Curtains and I told her I hoped one day I would have a home and put them up in my sewing room. She just smiled. My DH and I bought our retirement home three years ago and these lovely lace curtains still are not up in my sewing room. This summer I have promise myself they will be go up in my sewing room so I can admire them everyday. Of course , I will still have lots of yardage left over and I am thinking they may also look wonderful in our sun room after we get in all the new windows.

Inge, Mieke and Me on Marken Island

Inge's good friend Mieke took us for a day of site seeing. OH, what a fantastic day us girls had spending time together. First we started off visiting a market area where we had lunch at a small cafe over looking the docks and bay area. Then we went on a tour boat that took us to Marken Island. Marken Island use to be a fishing village but now is noted for tourism. This village is so unique. The fishermen used the "Green" paint left over from painting their fishing boats to paint their homes too. The native costumes of Marken Island was lovely to see. As we walked around through the narrow cobblestone paths we discovered an special quilt shop. They had fabrics used for the native costumes and lots of lovely laces. The shop owner kindly let me take a photo of her while she was wrapping up my Dutch Lace Curtains. I could not resist taking another photo of my friends Mieke and Inge inside the quilt shop. Mieke is in the red shirt and Inge has the happiest big smile on her face. . Before we headed back to the mainland we stopped and took time to sit and chat and have some dutch ice cream which was very good. But this wonderful day of spending time with Inge and Mieke was not over, there is lots more to come.

Visiting My Friend Inge The Netherlands, Day One

When I think of Spring, My Memory takes me back to April 2003 when I was living in Germany. The first trip I took was to visit my Dear Friend Inge and Jaap in Hoorn, The Netherlands. I had known Inge via the Internet for many many years prior to living in Germany. Inge and Jaap invited me to come for a visit when the Tulip Fields would be in full bloom at the end of April. I was so excited to finally meet Inge and Jaap and see the Tulip Fields and Windmills I had only seen in books.

Day One, The top photo is of the ICE the fast train that took me to visit Inge and Jaap. The second photo is the sky view of Hoorn, The Netherlands what a neat village surrounded by dikes. The third photo is of Inge and Jaap, Inge's DH in their home. Then Inge took me up to her lovely sewing room where she was showing me her fabric stash. That first day we chatted and chatted for endless hours. It was so fantastic to finally see Inge in person and give her a hug and see the lovely place where she lived.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Stone Age Doll, Seascape

I would like to introduce you to a new unique doll I discovered in the UK Magazine called "Stitch".. She is called a Stone Age Doll and was created by Corinne Renow-Clarke. A bit of history about this doll. The pattern is based on the stone carvings of the Romano British goddesses at Housesteads. The orginal doll pictured in the article had weee feet and was stitched a bit different. The Stone Age Doll is 5 inches long and 2 inches wide. In issue Number 51 of Stitch Magazine there was photos of 20 Stone Age Dolls created by a group of lades from Belleville, Ontario Canada who said, they had so much fun making them they could not stop at just making one. I called my Stone Age Doll, Seascape and added lots of beads.

Friday, April 4, 2008

The Pink Artist Doll: Reveal

Her name is "Love Squared."
She wears 180 two inch art squares.
182 artists total created her.
She is just under 40" tall
and weighs 6 pounds and 2 ounces.
She smiles because already she knows love
and is able to give love unconditionally.
To many, she is a symbol of hope.
She stands for COURAGE and was built
by a community of givers.
If you go to Monica Magness site Girl_Gone_Thread_Wild blog you will be able to view this lovely doll and how she was created from 180 two inch pink art squares. She was created to raise money for the Susan G. Komen For A Cure Foundation. Monica you did a super wonderful job of creating this Lovely Pink Artist Doll. She is a reflection of your super talents andthe creativity of all who took part in this worthy cause. She will be appear in the Art Doll Quarterly at a future date and then will be sold on ebay. All the Proceeds from the sale of "Loved Squared" will benefit the foundation.
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