Thursday, April 30, 2009

Sorry ladies, in the pics below I obviously added the little black fan shape in 3 times. You only have to look once.

Hugs Freda

Here I am back after a few days absence. Didn't have much to show or say until now. I have been working erratically on the new blocks. I am trying to restrain myself until we get home where most of my stash and dyes, lace, etc. are. I like to start putting these around before I do too much. I mentioned the beading I was doing on the scalloped fabric. This is what I ended up with. Do you thing it time to stop or any suggestions?

Next I did a silver thread featherstitch following the lines but it did not show up so I went over it with some knitting ribbon I had in a silver color . then it looked better and I added a little zigzag bead trail between and that picked up the bit of color in the silver ribbon. I was hoping this picture would go in front of this paragraph. Obviously I am not doing something right. They keep going up top. Help someone. Tell me how to get the picture below or above the paragraph. I have more to add so I guess they will be the same until I figure this out. Also why is there always 2-3 inches between paragraphs that I have to go back and move up? Anyone know?

Next pic was a bead trail I did down the silver and grey stripes. Hard to know what to do with stripes. This in't the greatest but can always be pulled out later if I decide I can't live with it.

Next I added a piece of tatting to the little black piece with the green motif that was embroidered on the fabric. It had very faint black spokes radiating out from the middle so I used greenish beads to match the clor and just did spokes to fill in. Also on this piece is the little piece of ribbon I found that I had done awhile ago. I also added a pic of this whole block.
Just to let you know I am almost finished with the pink quilt. I have added a piece of an old flannelette sheet that I tear up and use for dusters. It was the perfect size and I did as Allie suggested. I invisibly hand stitched a lot of the quilt parts to the flannel to give it more body for hanging. Next is adding the pink backing. I will be very glad to see the finish of this considering I spent 2 years on it and have no idea where it is going to hang,
Probably under the bed in a box where my kimona is now residing.

Monday, April 27, 2009

I have one daughter who lives in the Chicago area and has 3 boys ages 6-13.
She was a kindergarden teacher before she had the boys. Because she knows what it is like to teach and how much teachers appreciate the help she volunteers at the boys schools. She spends one afternoon a week helping in the kindergarden and one afternoon in the library plus she arranges for the other mothers to help. She is not a quilter and is more into paper type crafts, stamping and does beautiful creative memory scrapbooks.

She was working with the children from kindergarden thru 6th. grade drawing pictures that she took home and made up the quilts with other fabrics added in. They are for the Linus Program. Here are 3 of them. If I manage to put these pictures in right you can tell the older kids handwork all the way down to the kindergarden one. The last one is being held by my grandson Luke. He was the cowboy boots boy I made the images of a few posts back.

I am very proud of my daughter as she volunteers not only at school but at church and does Pads when it is their turn. Now to try as Debra and MaryAnne told me to download. Last first so here goes.
Well ladies it worked. Thank you.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

We went to the Apopka plant and craft sale today. It is a great plant sale as all the nurseries and growers in the area are there and you see very unusual plants. It is alway so tempting to me but knowing we are leaving in 2 weeks and have no room to carry anything home I have to curtail my urges. It was a pleasant day to just be out wandering around. We bought hot dogs, pop and chips from a little league group and that was lunch. Sat. night is always pizza night for us and we just finished. We will top it off with ice cream later. We try to keep the ice cream down to once a week. I have high cholesterol and have to watch it. Harv's is low but he has to watch his weight not getting physical exercise anymore.

What I really wanted to tell you about is at the flea market last week I found 2 packages of white rick rack shot with silver. I usually buy the white and dye it and wondered if the silver would take it. Well it took it very well. I dyed a piece pink and the silver metallic stayed silver and looks good. What I did find out and want to warn you about is I used the dyes that we put the fabric, lace, etc. in the microwave to dry. I thought of the silver so wrapped the tape in about 3 thicknesses of paper towel and put a glass of water in there also. After a few seconds I heard sparks so shut it off immediately and dried it with a hair dryer. There is enough metal in there that it cannot be dried in there. I took a pic of the white original and the pink I dyed. Actually if you look at yesterdays post it was the pink I used on the curved piece. Not sure if the silver showed or not. Hope it does in this pic. At least we now know we can dye it and still retain the silver sparkle. I will be using this dyed in various colors throughout the quilt.

Have a great rest of the weekend all.

Friday, April 24, 2009

I see from the weather reports that the Midwest states are having a heat wave. In the 80's. It was 86 today in Florida according to our outside thermometer.

I had a haircut scheduled then stopped at a store to buy a couple of pairs of shorts. For some reason I took a lot of them home and only left a few here so picked up a couple of pair then on to the doctors to drop something off. I remember the days when I only went to the Drs. about every 5-10 years but now it is about 6 different guys we have to see twice a year. Getting older keeps you busy.

I do not have too much to show today except I started working a bit on 2 patches. I put rick rack and thread and beads around one of the circular pieces, did another feather and then embroidered and beaded above it. When finished I think I went a little too close to the feather but in the overall when finished it will never be noticed. I had some ribbon that I had played around with doing some little thread and bead designs and it has been hanging in my sewing room here for a couple of years. I saw it and one section was the perfect colors so that went on a block. You will see 2 butterflies made with beads and wire that are just sitting on the fabric. This is not where they will stay but I just wanted you to see them as there is a story here. I believe most of the cq gals know Marie Alton from Canada who developed the gorgeous Melanie Rose and does gorgeous work.
Well Marie is helping her niece Amy who is doing a ride for Cancer from Toronto to Niagara Falls. I can't remember how many miles but it is probably 2 hours by car from Toronto. If you would like to read about Amy's trip and what it is about go to her link here:

Now to enourage and help her Marie has or is making small beaded ornaments and she has them listed for $5.00 each. If they all sell that will be $250.00 and the best part is Marie herself is going to match that amount
so if we all buy 1 or 2 Amy could get $500.00 from this alone for breast cancer. Marie's email is:

Please pass this info along on your own blogs if you read this and see if we can't get that $500.00. I ordered 2 butterflies and they arrived today. The postage for this little package cost $2.11 so Marie is absorbing the shipping costs also so all your money goes direct to breast cancer.
I just noticed that the one picture just shows the beginning beading I am doing on this scalloped piece of fabric. I did a leaf in green and already ripped it out. So may stay with just the one color. They are delica beads and are my all time favorites for color and sparkle. Will show what I end up doing. May need some help from you all here.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

I have started doing a little embellishment on the butterfly blocks. I never know in which order the pictures are going to appear so will describe what I have done and you can try and find the right pic. Little brain game. I had printed a feather with a stamp and silver stamp pad and it turned out but not as bright as I would have liked it. I sat and went over it with silver thread. I did a chain stitch up the middle then just straight stitches of various lengths. Next I did all the silver butterflies adding additional beads on them and all around where ever a tinsel dot showed up. In person it added a lot but in the pic I am not so sure if you will see it all. The large piece of lace I used I did small silk ribbon roses in 3 rows in shades of purple, pink and variegated shades of same. I did silver beads around the center flowers before adding the little roses. It still lacked something so I took mattte green beads and did the stems between the flowers. Just a small touch of green. I wondered about adding beads to the other things on the lace and did 2 or 3 then pulled it all out. It was too much. If you remember I used 6 of one butterfly on 6 blocks and 6 of the other fabric on the other 6 blocks.

I added some beads to these silver ones also.

Lastly I had a large peony type flower that was dark grey on tan dupioni. I kept looking and thinking I don't like that. When going thru the embellishments I came up with a piece of white dupioni that I had beaded a motif on when I first started beading. Luckily the piece was on the outside corner so I undid it and was able to put the beaded piece in there. The colors work perfectly. This probably won't be the only piece I change before I finish. What looks good when you piece often doesn't once you start embellishing or at least it seems like that to me.

To change the subject the fisherman in the family did catch fish on Sunday after nary a one on Sat. He actually came second in the bank group and won $80.00 prize money plus a bag of fishing stuff, 2 t-shirts and 2 hats.
They do pay to enter this and it was actually $80.00 which helps to pay for all the goodies they give out so it turned out to be an even draw moneywise. He is brown as a berry while I am my usual Irish white skin.
People look at me when I get home and say how long were you in Florida?

My days of sunbathing are over for me after having a number of small skin cancers removed in the last few years. Another small one on my face and I go to the dermatologist on May 11th. back in Chicago. He will just burn it off and all will be well. If you ever have a small spot that does not seem to heal make sure you go to a doctor because that is what these small skin cancers do but are readily taken care of. Advice from Mother Butler.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

It is a beautiful Sunday morning here in Florida. The birds are chirping and we have seen a few cardinals this past week. Have not seen them all winter so whether they go farther south and are heading north or here to stay is anyone's guess. We usually have a couple of pairs in our trees in Chicago and I just love seeing that flit of red flying by. My hubby is on a 2 day bass fishing tournament. He is in the bank division which means they do not go out in boats. It was very windy yesterday and he came home and had not caught one fish. Hopefully the wind has gone down and this is a new day. They do catch and release but weigh them first.

A lady asked on the list if anyone had used silk ties in their cq. Well I use them often and have made both a vest and a wallhanging with them. I am going to post a pic of the wallhanging and the vest if I can find a picture of it on here. Not sure if I have one.

Have a great day wherever you are. Just hope not in Colorado where they had an unbelievable amount of snow for April.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Today I finished the 4th triangle and then was able to take down the 2 tables and pack the fabric neatly away. Doesn't look like the same room. I put the 4 triangles on a piece of black fabric and took a picture outside in the sunroom. It is a little hard to see I think.

I also took pics of the individual triangles and the last one I pinned up the large allowances so you could get a better idea of the size. I have never left this large of a margin before but am so tired of running near the edges that I went way wide on this. It did give me an idea that I could try out stitches or colors of bead or thread on the margin piece before using them on the actual piece. They will be cut down to 1/4" when I am ready to assemble it. Probably 2 years from now.

I just saw the pinned triangle came up sideways and have no idea why. It was not like that on the desktop. Hope you can at least see the difference in the size of the triangle when finished.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Yesterday and today I spent in my sewing room as long as I could and I have 3 of the 4 triangles made. I hope to finish the other tomorrow then I can finally clean up this mess. I have fabric everywhere but you have to have it where you can see and grab it. It poured rain most of today. There were bad weather reports all last evening so I put the weather radio on and was awakened about 3-4 times through the night when something in our area was affected. Thank goodness nothing right around us except the heavy rain which we need. I had a fasting blood test at 10 so slept in until 9 and at 9.30 took off for the doctors. Just got up the 2 mile drive to the Hwy. and all hell broke loose. Rain so hard I could not see. Could not see the road markings, other cars, etc. I was terrified and finally arrived at the next stop light and pulled into a CVS parking lot and sat it out. I can't remember ever driving through rain that hard. When it settled down a bit I took off and went for my blood tests. The gal said she was surprised I came out in that. Thought I would cancel. I said I would have if it was that bad before I even left but glad I went and it is over with. It was so gloomy I did not take pics but when I finish the other tomorrow I will take pics of all 4.

Now I have to start thinking of embellishments and what I want to do. I spend more time thinking then doing. I will certainly use Jo from NZ's postcard book for some good stitch ideas. Handy little book to have near you when you stitch.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter to all my family and friends.

Friday I mentioned the problems I had with my pink sashed quilt. It was stupidity on my part. The pink taffeta frayed very easy and was thin so I used interfacing on each border and that helped. Well once all the sashings were on the the quilt ready to be backed I decided to try putting interfacing over the whole thing as many people have suggested. Never did I think that I had already interfaced the sashing parts once. I merrily ironed on 3 pieces (couldn't find the 60" wide stuff) turned it over and almost fainted. The second interfacing made the fabric completely puckered on the front. It was awful. Then I thought the middle strips were the worst so I would try and remove very carefully the interfacing. Armed with little scissors I would hit it with the little ironing tool then pick at it and it removed 2 layers in some parts and only the last layer in some. Then I accidently cut into the taffeta strip. Just about 1/4" but enough to make me scream. I was ready to throw the whole thing out. I put it away and sat and had a cup of tea and calmed down. Later I looked and thought I can't take the whole thing apart as I have all the cording around, etc. Then I got the idea of cutting 2 new center strips and very carefully appliqueing them over the old. I caught the stitches just under the cording and you could not see that it was applied later.

Well once that was done then all the outer strips looked bad except the top which is covered in tatting. So I thought well I had better do the whole thing so cut 2 new side and 1 bottom strip. Sewed the bottom on the machine until it was shaped like a large U and fit exactly around the corners. Then I pinned it in place and appliqued it down again catching just under the cording. I am not even going to put an iron near this again. Am just going to back it and bind it. I took a few picks to show you what I did if you can understand it. I should have taken a couple of before so you could see how awful it looked but didn't think of it.

I had originally planned a deep bottom border but after decided to make it the same as the 2 sides with the top being wider for the tatting. You will see the original piece hanging below the new one as I haven't trimmed it off yet.

Am I having a nice weekend yet? Really once I had it pinned in place and saw it would work I felt better.

The strange part is that with the colors in this quilt I have no idea what I am going to do with it. No place to hang it. I may have to redecorate a room to go with it.

Hugs and again Happy Easter.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Today turned out to be an outside landscaping day for me. I had finished the front but still had moving and planting to do in the back around the new room. Sand is very easy to dig into except there seem to be roots everywhere. I bought stepping stones so I can get back to the hose turn on without having to wear gardening shoes. I was hoping to find some very pretty ones and went to a plant - art crafts type fair and found some that had been done with the broken china in pretty patterns but when I asked the price it was $30.00 each and I said thanks they are beautiful but I need about 7. Ended up at Lowes and paid 3.79 each. The plain fact is we would not see them unless we were to turn the water on and no one else is going to be around that side so I am happy with plain stones.

The boxwood shrubs I put in have taken well and the double knockout roses seem as if they have acclimated also. They are in the knockout family but with a larger rose but a more compact shrub. They said they will not get long and leggy - we will see.

I took some pics so you can see the curbing I mentioned having put in. I really like it and said why can't we do this up north. Hubby thought it would crack with the freezing. Probably so. We have used brick or flagstone at home wherever we have needed it and it has held up well except some little rodents tunnel under the front walk to the small verandah to get under the stoop. Next thing you see a brick sinking and I am calling someone to come and fix it. The first time he took a lot of brick off and it was like a little city down there with all kinds of tunnels. Amazing. We are not sure if they are moles, chipmunks or something called voles. I found a powder at Lowes and sprinkle that all around the edges of the walk but you have to keep doing it. It is a war - us against them. I am just afraid one day someone will come to the front door and down will go a brick and someone will have a sprained or worse broken ankle. What do people do that have brick driveways? If anyone has a solution I would like to hear it. I never know what pics are going to pop up first but I took one of the front (should have closed the garage door) one of the side front, one of the side, one of the roses on the right side and one on the left side.

Tomorrow I will have a story to tell you about my pink edged quilt if I haven't lost my mind trying to fix it.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Yesterday was our garden club's spring potluck luncheon. We have one in the spring and one at Christmas and the rest of the months we have speakers or field trips to all things garden related. We have been to some strange places in this area. Apopka, FL is about 15 minutes from here and is the fern growers for the country. There is every type of wholesale grower in this area. To get back to the garden club we meet the 1st Monday of the month at 10am except if it is a lunch or we have to travel. It is called Lakes & Hills Garden Club and is comprised of 6 circles. We are the original Founders Circle and have approx. 25 members. Each circle operates independently but we all get together for general meetings, lunches, etc. This way they can continue to have the meetings in each other's homes - very Southern and very nice. I also belong to the Arlington Hts. Il one and have for over 30 years. They meet at night at the library and I never make a meeting being gone all winter and really don't like going out at night by myself anymore. I still volunteer for the garden walk every July to be a hostess or sell tickets and get to see a lot of my old friends from when I did attend every meeting. If you have a garden club in your area, I recommend that you join. Gardeners are nice people and some are so knowledgeable and everyone is eager to share their plants plus you will meet some nice people who may remain friends for years like some of mine.

I am going to post the last 4 blocks of the butterfly quilt. The outside blocks look very large but remember that I cut the muslin 13" for my 10" squares - hence I will be cutting off when sewing 1 1/4" on each edge. when I fold that up under they look fine. There is a fairly large grey dupioni half circle that looks large but I do have a plan for it. I just have the 4 triangles to do and I think on them I will piece smaller and maybe just do stitching on them. Will see when I actually start.

It is very windy and cold today here in Florida. Was only in the 40's last night and tonight also then turning warmer. Who would expect that in April. I feel sorry for the Spring Break families. My 2 groups that were down had good weather and are back home and to school safely.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Today I finally took pics of the last 3 squares of the new quilt. 9 down and 3 to go plus the corner triangles around the butterfly. I am really not following the pattern as I thought I would. Idea was to follow and make it easier. Well I should have know better. First they have used a lot of very small pieces and I find it hard to embellish squares like that so I am just doing my own thing. Plus it really doesn't matter what month it is as I won't be putting that kind of stuff on it. Probably the only thing like it will be the butterfly in the middle which I hope to do on my embellishing machine and I do like the layout.
I did take a pic of the collar that I put on the one square. It is sheer with the white embr. plus it has colored rhinestone sparkles all over it. I hope the closeup pic of it shows them.

Work time around here this weekend. We or I have been re-landscaping around the back of the new room and already planted 12 boxwood bushes right across the back and put 3 double knockout roses in the one bed and have a larger one for the other end plus liriope grass in between. I still have some digging to do but except for tree roots it is all sand and fairly easy to dig. I put 12 bags of mulch around the front beds and bought 10 more today that I carted around to the back and will start laying that down

in the next few days. We also had curbing put around the front flower beds and the back beds to keep the mulch in and not all thru the grass. I had never seen the curbing up north but it is very popular down here., I will take some pics when I am finished and show you my handiwork.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Yesterday I had the pleasure of having friends over for the day and for lunch. All cq'ers. Carol Kramer from Claremont, FL and Joyce Boudreau who is from Nova Scotia, Canada but wintering in the Villages. Carol I have known for a few years but Joyce and I got together last winter after communicating on the internet then finding out how close we were to each other in the winter months. Willa was going to come if she could but work was very busy and she could not justify taking the time off. Willa and I went to our local quilt show a couple of weeks ago and are planning on getting together again one Sat. before I leave early May.
I only took 1 picture of the two gals but it turned out great. I will post it here so I know some of you will remember Carol from the John Campbell Folk School class that Martha Green taught a few years back.

I have 8 blocks done on my quilt but need hand sewing a few places then will take their pics and put them on. I believe I have only shown you the first 5.

I am trying to talk Carol into coming to Omaha and being my roomate. We were both their in 2007 and Carol had her hubby Woody with her as they were continuing on to the Dakotas if I remember right. He was the one who made and donated the beautiful hand carved bowl.