Thursday, April 28, 2011

April Downpours!

We've had a little bit of rain the past couple of weeks.  I  told a friend last week I'm not sure if I'll be buying flowers or fish for my garden this year!!

In spite of this, I was able to go out and work in one of the other flower beds the other day when it was so nice and warm here. Every little bit helps, I guess.

In other news, the teeny invasion continues!    The teeny bunnies are multiplying- as bunnies tend to do when left unattended.
(My husband asked me what I plan to do with all of them.  Men are so funny, aren't they?)

Meanwhile, the daffodils have attracted a teeny bee.   He's actually hovering over the quilt pictured at the top of my blog.  I guess he thought the flowers were real?

I did some garment sewing last weekend.  This one is for a class at Mt Pleasant.  We called it the Easy Three Seasons Jacket.  It's an easy to sew pattern by Butterick, from their "Fast and Easy" collection.  Very comfortable, too!
This one is from fabric I got in Lancaster last month.  The pattern is the "Four Yard Wonder Jacket", by the Rag Merchant.  A very comfortable shirt/ jacket.  If, like me, you travel to the Bahamas frequently (how a friend describes her hot flashes), you know the value of a light, easy to remove shirt!  The fabric is from the "Paradise collection" by art gallery fabrics.  They are soft and thin, like batiks!  (No affiliation, just loved the feel of them!)

I have high hopes for this weekend if it's not nice enough- and dry enough- to work outside.

I am grateful for:
Sitting on the porch listening to the birds and the peepers.
Sleeping with the windows open!
The hype over the royal wedding ends tomorrow.
In 12 more days I'll be with some of my Quilt Pocket friends!
A pretty bouquet of flowers from my boss.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

The results

The cutest little Easter bunnies ever!
I thought you might be as impatient as I was to see the flour paste painting results.
The only other thing I've managed to do this week is making a few of these teeny bunnies.  Another fun project from the folks at mochimochiland!   They are easier than they look.

As for the painting, I am having mixed feelings about the results.

I like the way the swirly parts came through,  but the crackles are still less obvious than I would have hoped.

Again, the pattern I made in the flour is nice, but....
too much blank space left. 
I also had an awful time getting all the flour paste washed out.  It wouldn't crack off dry and wet it turned back into goop- and with the color I chose to paint, I bet you can guess what it reminded me of!

The Sharpie dyeing was more successful.  I like how the crackly parts are mostly in the green sections.

We're still waiting for Spring to decide to stay for more than one day.  The trees are getting a green tint where the leaf buds have popped!  I am anxious to see the blooms on my flowering crab this year.  It looks like it will be loaded this year- finally!!

I am grateful for:
The promise of better days soon.
The end of a very busy stretch.
My baby flowers are all doing well.
Only another few days until the start of the next chapter!

Monday, April 18, 2011

A lost week?

It's snowing today- pretty hard, actually.  There's a bit of it on the ground, which is creating a fair amount of grumbling here in Western NY about the fact that the one warm and sunny day we had was a very quick summer.  I, however, decided to find Spring where I can.  So I picked a small bouquet of daffodils from my garden this morning.  In spite of today's snow, it really IS Spring, if I can enjoy fresh picked flowers!

Last week flew by and I didn't have much time for creative endeavors.  However, at the ArtCGirlz meeting last Tuesday, Sharon gave us all a lesson in creating fabric using a flour paste resist.  This is a picture of one of Sharon's experiments.  Different types of paint make more or less of an impact.

Sharon was also kind enough to provide each of us with a prepared piece of fabric to play with.  here is mine. I tried a few different paints.  The teal is "Dye-na-flow".  The others are acrylics.

One is supposed to wait a week for the paint to cure, but I am an impatient person.  I washed the resist out on Sunday.  It is not a very successful first attempt, I'm afraid. 

Never fear, I will not give up.  So what contrasts with purple?  Orange? Lime green?  Perfect!  I have been wanting to try the Sharpie tie dyeing I read about a few weeks ago.

Here is what this piece of fabric looks like right now.  I'm waiting for it to dry. Stay tuned for more of the experiments in my mad scientist lab-OR-atory!

I am grateful for:
A really good grilled cheese sandwich.
A great meeting of the quilt guild last weekend!
Hearing from far away family.
Several good nights' sleep.
Time to play and materials to play with.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Getting it all done!

As I mentioned last week, the middle of April is the center of my quilting universe right now.  I don't know how  I managed it, but between April 16 and 20, I agreed to do three classes and a demo, plus this week is the date I set for having Jake's quilt turned in for machine quilting!  I work well with deadlines, but absolutely HATE the last minute.  I feel like I am late if I'm not ready a week in advance.    So, needless to say, I have been sewing a LOT the last few weeks, in an effort to get it all ready in time.
Since it was so close to being finished, I put this little quilt on top of the pile.  Once the machine quilting was done, and the binding machine sewn, the rest could be done during the evening when I can find something worth watching on TV.  (More and more difficult every week!)  SO cute, don't you think?

I got Jake's quilt top finished and decided I'd piece as much of the back as I could with the scraps- none of which were big enough to make a matching pillowcase.

This was as far as I got.  This meant two things:
1- I only had to buy a yard of fabric for the back!
2- There will be NO scraps from this quilt!!!

I'm teaching a patchwork jacket class, inspired by the work of Priscilla Kibbee, for my guild- using a mola I bought from Priscilla.  This is one of my pieced sections.  I can't wait to start putting it together!!!

April has arrived, and with it the "mud season" we have to get through before the real spring!
This is the same spot I showed last week, after heavy rain- and thunder- on Monday! Needless to say I won't be pulling weeds in the garden without hip waders.

I am grateful for:
70 degrees in the forecast. Even if it will be raining!
I heard peepers the other night!
Sleep, when I can get it.
My sweet son.
Brownies for sale in the forum!