Saturday, March 31, 2012

Easter Fabric Postcard

I made three of these little Easter Fabric Postcards for my friends.  I had wanted to try redwork embroidery with my Janome 11000.  This was a perfect opportunity to experiment.  The design is from Martha Pullen.  I purchased it a number of years ago when I attended an embroidery conference.  She was one of the guest presenters.  I just love to listen to her speak.  She suggested that we use # 30 thread.  It is thicker than regular embroidery thread.  I didn't have any so I just used my regular thread.  I'm hoping to get to the fabric store next week and I'll purchase some of the thicker thread.  I would like to do a complete quilt with redwork.

I plan to make one more postcard tomorrow and I plan to use a bright pink thread.  I think it will work for an Easter card. 

I'm finding it difficult to find to time to blog.  Things are very busy here at home with DH's health issues and picking up my Grand Girls from school each day.  I do try to read as many blogs as possible.  I'm thinking it may be time to take a blog break and catch my breath.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Welcome Spring

I finished my Easter Tabletopper.  I had planned to make a wallhanging with the squares but decided to do a tabletopper instead.

The blocks were inspired by the St. Patty's Day Anita Goodesign Embroidery Party last weekend.  The party was so much fun and I was excited to get home and use my Foundations program.  All the background quilting on the blocks has been done with the Foundations program.  I them added the embroidery to the corner squares.  It is another Anita Goodesign "Easter Bonus Collection".  All the fabric was from my stash.  I decided to fill the center block with HAPPY EASTER.  It looks so good on my little table in the breakfast nook.  So glad I decided to attend the Embroidery Party.  It is always good to get ideas on how to use all those embroidery designs I've purchased over the years.

I'm linking to Pink Saturday at Beverly's How Sweet the Sound.  Stop by her blog for many other Spring Ideas.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Easter Quilt Block

I spent Friday and Saturday at an Anita Goodesign Embroidery Party.  I was so excited to try out my new Foundations program.   I can home last evening and completed this Easter quilt block.  The program is wonderful.  You select your block size and quilting design.  The batting is added  in when you do the background quilting.  Next you just select one of your embroidery designs and embroidery in the center of the block.  It is so easy.  I am making a small 9 patch Easter wallhanging.  Only 8 more squares to go.  It is a rainy day here in the desert so it will be a great afternoon to spend in the studio.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Happy St. Patrick's Day

Happy St. Partick's Day!  I will be attending the second day of the Anita Goodesign Embroidery Party.  The party is sponsored by Mulqueen Sewing Center.  I'm sure the Mulqueen's will remind us of all things great about being Irish.  Day one of the embroidery party 
was great and I purchased some really neat embroidery designs.  Can't wait to get in the studio to create something.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Butterfly Garden - We Helped Release the Butterflies

Zebra Longwing

Zebra Longwing

Spicebush Swallowtail and Julie



These are just a few of the photos I took this morning at the Butterfly Garden at the Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix.  The garden is open daily from March 3 - May 13.  We had a very exciting thing happen while visiting the garden. 

I saw a friend of mine volunteering in the Butterfly Garden.  She suggested that we drop back by at 1:00 because there might be something exciting happening that the grranddaughters would enjoy.  Of course, we planned our visit so we were back at the Butterfly Garden at 1:00.  The girls got to help release day-old butterflies into the garden.  The butterflies were in envelopes.  This is the only time you are allowed to touch the butterflies.  Since some of the butterflies are cold and aren't ready to fly, you place them in your hand and wait for the them to warm up and fly away to one of the many colorful flowers in the garden.  What an exciting thing for the girls.

You can see the envelope in this photo.

I believe this is a Painted Lady

Zebra Longwing

Two small ones (Painted Lady) were in one envelope

Painted Lady

The weather was beautiful and we also walked on the Desert Wildflower trail at the Botanical Garden.  It was a fun way to spend a day during the girl's Spring Break.  Hope you enjoy the photos.  I will post more later.


My oldest Granddaughter finished sewing her skirt yesterday.  She completed the entire skirt including the casing and inserting the elastic.  She even helped serge the seams.  I did put in the hem last evening. 

It was a "Perfect Day" when I stopped by K-Mart to pick up a top for her to wear with her new skirt.  Can you imagine my delight when I spied this little shirt!  It was the" perfect" match to her ice cream fabric skirt.  Can't wait for her to see the shirt this morning.  We are going to the Botanical Gardens this morning to see the Wildflower Trail and the Butterfly Garden.  Weather is beautiful in the 80's but I understand that most of the country is experiencing similar weather.  Happy Spring a few days early.

Tomorrow I'll post the p.j. project the youngest granddaughter made on Sewing Day.

(Looks like I should have pressed the shirt before photographing)

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Ready, Set, Sew

I found this vintage Super Simple pattern at the local thrift store for 25 cents.  It is the perfect pattern for my granddaughters skirt she is sewing this week on "Sew Day".  I made the sample skirt below from my stash to make sure the pattern fit.  It did!!
She selected the fabric below at JoAnns for her skirt.  The fabric has a texture and cute design.  I'm not sure how much of the skirt she will actually sew.  I will have the pieces cut and ready for straight seam sewing.

The second granddaughter has chosen to make p.j. bottoms from flannel.  Here is the sample I made from my stash to check for fit.  It also was a perfect fit.
Below is the simple purple dot flannel that she chose at JoAnns.

They are excited for "Sew Day" tomorrow.  I'm hoping they feel the same way when we finish their garments.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Now I'm Happy!!!


I'm finally happy with these pillowcases.  The bright solid color works great and the threads on the back don't show through like they did on the white.  I'm sure no one will notice the threads on the white borders but I SAW THEM.  I have another monkey print and one girlie one that will say "Sweet Dreams" with a cupcake. 

Today I preparing for the granddaughter's sewing day on Wednesday.  Yesterday we purchased their fabric.  I'll cut the pieces out so all they have to do is sew straight seams.  I think I'll do all the serging on the seams.  I think the serger might be a little too much for beginners.  Don't want to take a chunk out of their skirt or p.j.s.

It's a lovely spring day here in the desert.  Orange blossoms on the the trees.  Allergies acting up!!!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

St. Patrick's Day Fabric Postcards

I finally had some time to play in my studio.  I found this cute St. Patty's Day fabric at JoAnn's last week.  I thought it would be perfect for some St. Patrick's fabric postcards.  I embellished with a little glitter glue.  The address side is bright green.   Hope it goes through the postal system without problems.  I made four of these cards but plan to make a couple more this afternoon.

Next week is Spring Break for the granddaughters.  They are excited to "Sew with Mema".  The oldest is making a simple skirt and the youngest is making p.j. bottoms.  I made samples and they tried them on yesterday.  We are going to select fabric this afternoon after church.  It's fun to see how excited they are to learn to sew.  I'll be posting about the experience next week.

Friday, March 9, 2012

More Hand Embroidery

I finished another pillowcase today.  This one "Don't Let The Bed Bugs Bite".  I found the fabric at JoAnns and the bug design in a coloring book.  I'm still not pleased with how the thread tails show through.  I even purchased a high quality quilter's cotton for this one. 

I was reading a book on redwork and the author suggested lining the white fabric with a muslin to prevent the tails from showing through to the front.  A friend suggested interfacing but I'm afraid it would wrinkle over time from washing.  For the moment I have decided to ditch the white fabric and use a matching solid for the borders.  We'll see how that works.

Below is a cute pillow my friend Susan made me for Christmas.  She and her DH are our partners in Diamondback Season Tickets.  I just love this pillow.  I think she had a pattern but again it would be easy to duplicate.  It seems that hand embroidery is making a comeback. 

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Pillowcases for the Kiddos

My sister and I went shopping this past weekend.  She wanted to check out a Scrapbooking store and there was a quilting shop in the same strip mall.  Of course, we had to visit both.  They had the cutiest embroidered pillowcases in the quilt shop.  They used themed print and then had an embroidery design and wording related to the print on the border.  I thought they would make great Christmas presents for the nieces and one nephew.  They were selling patterns but my sister said: "You can do this without a pattern".  So I gave it a try and found  monkey print and a monkey design in a coloring book.  My only complaint is that I didn't use a heavy weight fabric for the embroidery.  Some of the threads on the back show through to the front.  Since I've been accused of being a perfectionist, I'm not pleased and will shop for a new white fabric.  Otherwise I very pleased with the results.

I'm planning a "Sweet Dreams" with a cupcake design and "Don't let the bed bugs bite" with a bug fabric.  Hope the ladies who designed the pattern don't mind me copying their ideas.  It's been a number of years since I did hand embroidery because I have my embroidery machines.  It was fun to do it the "old fashioned" way.