Sunday, 29 September 2019

Autumn, Flowers, Pesky Dresden Circles



Digging out the autumn projects and came across the one above.  A Crabapple Hill Design, Autumn's Call, that I stitched way back in 2013. The pattern is still available here .

It's been quite the week especially with the amazing marches for climate change occurring all over the globe. We live in hope that this will evoke change where it is most badly needed, at the top.
Meanwhile, I enjoyed reading this article 45 Ways People Did Something Clever About Saving the World Instead of Just Talking.  I think I'm pretty thrifty but I never thought of saving and reusing mascara wands. I could immediately think of so many ways they can come in handy.
                                 An Easy Way To Recycle Old Mascara Wands
I received some questions about the Painted Lady project in the last post.  Here is a fuller picture. It is a Laura Heine pattern, embroidery on wool, and her website called FiberWorks is here.
You may have seen Laura's collaged elephant around. Amazing!
                              
I've stitched the circles onto 5 or 6 of the Dresdens. Still wishy washy about their size seeing them on the wall.  I think I'll go with the smallest size on the left.  I will get this worked out to my satisfaction eventually! If only one of you wonderful quilters could pop by for a visit and help me with this! 
But today is the day I make a final decision with what's turned into a pesky debate.
We have no plans for this Sunday so will be puttering about. Out of the sewing room, I'm hoping to finish another little Quaker motif on my cross stitch piece. It's sitting on a woven throw Hubby brought back from one of his many travels.  I always think it would make a wonderful quilt design.
Last look at a beautiful display of purple asters in an overgrown spot of the backyard. To the left there you can glimpse the path through the woods we take for our daily walks.

Happy Sunday All!
Linking this post with other hand stitchers at Kathy's Quilts. Also linking with Creations- Quilts, Art, WhateverSmall Quilts and Doll Quilts and Life in Pieces.

Thursday, 26 September 2019

Painted Ladies, Real and Wooly, The Affair, Dogs Riding Subways


An abandoned nest...from its looseness, I'm guessing a mourning dove's. Interesting to see what gets revealed with even a few leaves falling.
Mourning Dove and Rose Breasted Grosbeak at the old farm, 2015
I had a larger number than usual of painted lady butterflies show up in the garden this year. They particularly enjoyed the Golden Broadleaf flowers. They are a still kind of butterfly so easy to capture good shots. Coincidentally they are calling 2019 The Year of the Painted Lady Butterfly in parts of Europe because they have been recording high numbers. Some badly needed good news!
 Some of you may remember I stitched a wool project a few years back by that name.  Still waiting for quilting.
And the stitched flowers are very much like the Golden Broadleaf flowers too.
 Hubby and I have been thoroughly enjoying this series, The Affair; we think it's gotten better as it's gone along. Any of you catch it?  We are watching it on HBO/Crave, I can't remember which. Good acting and what a plot!
                                             The Affair 2014 Poster.jpg
I liked this video of how New Yorkers are getting around the rule of no dogs on the subway unless they can fit in a bag.  New and hilarious use for an Ikea bag!
 

In between stitching
Making these little 4 square blocks when I have 15 minutes or so.  They're not perfect because I'm using up scraps of many different sizes... I can't give up on some of the better fabrics no matter how tiny. In my head, I'm imagining these as a border for the basket blocks. They look like autumn to me so seasonal stitching as it happens.
I like when I find a little hand stitched floral item at the thrift store. Here is one stitched by L in 1988. Very nice stitching and how nice that she "signed" it. An Aunt Martha iron on design maybe. (hints of blue markings can be seen under the threads)

Up close you can see how she filled in the open ribbon area, which is tricky to do, with long and short stitches. Interesting. L's work has now found a home with me.
Happy Thursday from these two!  Muggy weather always makes them pant and I don't think either has ever ridden a subway.
Downpours of rain as I finish this post. First real rain in ages.
Linking this post with Not Afraid of ColorPaying Ready AttentionInquiring QuilterThe Needle and Thread NetworkIt's A Small Town LifeFloral Passions,  Brian's Home Blog, Floral Friday Foto and My Quilt Infatuation.

Tuesday, 24 September 2019

Hand Quilting, Gardening, Free Patterns

I've been reluctant to spend time in the sewing room for a very good reason...the weather has been so beautiful.  Saturday I actually spent most of the afternoon on the veranda. Glorious is all I can say.
It is slightly past the fall equinox so autumn is official but the temperatures were belying that fact...up until today that is. Cooler today but still pleasant.

 I added more hand stitching to the appliqued flower table runner. I'd forgotten what enjoyable stitching this is.  The Sulky variagated thread is wonderful to sew with. My goal will be to have this all quilted by next Tuesday.



I'm also pleased to say I have the quarter circle pattern worked out for the Dresdens. Thanks to all of you who offered advice.  I think it was SusanQuilt Fabrication ) who said she would keep them smaller and I went with that idea.  My Karen Kay Buckley circles arrived so I used one of them to trace a perfect circle. I used Wendy's Wendy's Pieceful Thoughts) idea to use paper folded in fourths.  Made a cardboard template and way to go. At least now each will more or less be the same and with it being smaller, more of the pretty colours are showing. Perhaps 10 or 12 of these will be finished for this week's goal.

 Still must make a decision about working on a fall/Halloween project this year.  To that end I've been visiting sites and also remembered to have a look through the magazines on hand. I sometimes feel a tinge of guilt for buying them and not making at least one project from each.  Do you feel like that?
Seeing Jinny and Jo featured probably was why I bought that top one!
Live Art Gallery Fabrics has a fabulous bank of free quilt patterns. Traditional with a modern flair is how I describe them.  Have a peek if looking for a fall project is on your to do list too.

I got to collect more seeds from a variety of plants, the dianthus, globe thistle, coneflowers and yucca. Still more to get as they ripen for the picking. Have to package, label and store these in the cold room.

                                       See the source image

And from those rather noble words to this:- the fact that I have an aging cauliflower in the fridge that I must use up.  Soup maybe.
Happy Tuesday all.
Linking with Home Sewn By Us today. Also happily joining Clever ChameleonQuilting is More Fun Than HouseworkEm's ScrapbagLove Laugh Quilt, and Sum of Their Stories.













Sunday, 22 September 2019

Sensational September, Stitching, SAL, Squirrels

The little red squirrels are running all over the place, frantically it seems, gathering stores for the winter. There's no doubt their internal seasonal clock is working.  And they are completely unafraid of me as out on the deck, one ran across my feet!
I couldn't get over how like my photo this cross stitch design below is. I guess British red squirrels must be very similar to Canadian ones.  It's a kit from Bothy Threads, part of their Wildlife series. This is a link to more information about Bothy Threads.  It would be an appropriate piece to have here at the wooden house.
Buy Derwent Wildlife Squirrel Cross Stitch Kit Online at johnlewis.com
But a piece that is on the wall here at the wooden house, September's redworked stitched block of A Patchwork Year designed by Kathy Schmitz.
My brief online shopping this week brought this Welcome Fall pattern by Kathy straight to my inbox.  Just love these stitching patterns that can avoid the international shipping costs. I love acorns!
                     Welcome Fall PDF download
A wonderful season to be working in wool and what lovely wool to crochet, the Debbie Bliss Andes, which is an alpaca blend. These are miniature granny squares and at this rate I figure I'll need a gazillion to make a scarf. Perhaps Sophie Digard's prices are worth it! Check out Sophie's scarves here.
So enjoying my "new" cross stitching project, Swirling Flowers by Karen Kluba for Rosewood Manor. The 32 count antique linen is working fine for me with my new readers. So far, so good!
Our monthly SAL linkup is today. Thanks to Avis at Sewing Beside the Sea for hosting this group of international stitchers.
AvisClaireGunCaroleSueConstanzeChristinaKathyMargaretCindyHelenLindaHeidiJackieSunnyHayleyMeganDeborah, Clare, Mary MargaretReneeJennyCarmelaJocelynSharonSusanAnne
There is a certain stillness in the flower beds, nothing new opening, it is all shutting down I guess. Even the bees are slowing down. Browns and duns and grays slowly taking over. But no sadness here, just glad to be here to enjoy another season spinning round. 
And with that, a last look at my single patch of planted autumn asters, one of the Gaillardias, caught by the September sun.

They went out in a blaze of glory!
Sunday linking with Kathy's Quilts where Kathy has announced her first stitching retreat outside Guelph! Also linking with Nina at Creations- Quilts, Art, Whatever where she shares 25 ways to find inspiration, with Viewing Nature With Eileen where Eileen shares amazing bird photos from coastal Iceland and Floral Friday Foto where I learned the lilac tree is a species of olive tree. Happy as well to link with Life in Pieces where Kate is maintaining her goal of 15 minutes a day of stitching.



Tuesday, 17 September 2019

Cake, Mice, BOM

Continuing on from Sunday's post about stitching pumpkins, I remembered a recipe I loved for eating pumpkin.   A search back through the posts and I found the link- I Made a Pumpkin Dump Cake.  It made a huge cake, in a 9 x 13 pan, and was delicious so we mustered our resources and the two of us finished it off.
                        
Grocery list this week includes the fixings too. (No, there is no cheese or relish in this cake!)
The bread machine came out on the weekend and I/it made a loaf of whole wheat bread. Very good for lunchtime sandwiches. I must remember to do this more often. Don't know if the bread is any better for us, but at least I know what's in it.  I love these small appliances.

As I've said, I watched a number of YouTube videos and learned how to collect seeds from the coneflowers and the yuccas.  This was a TO DO item from a couple of weeks back.  It's partially done as the plants have to be ready and a recent warmer spell slowed the drying process. So an ongoing goal.
Meanwhile my Yucca has doubled and needs to be divided. But I'm a bit chicken to try it as it involves slicing through the whole root ball . Maybe in the spring.
I want to learn more about this project...The Red Manor House Coverlet. Featuring sweet applique motifs, it is The Quilters Guild of the British Isles BOM project this year. I signed up to receive more information about it. I know many of you who would enjoy this stitching.


Also from a past TO DO list...My humane mouse trap has been set up in the garage and is working. I've captured two mice so far and released them at the back of the pond. Loads of hidey places down there! Fingers crossed this will keep mice out of the cars this winter.
I've just started exploring the meditative stitching movement. I want to learn more about it and the possibility of hand stitching with more freedom,  I can draw a little so it is only my own inhibitions that are stopping this particular process. Why anything should stop me at this stage of life is a mystery. However, I think art is about audacity too of which I don't have a single shred so maybe that's it.
 I'd love to hear your thoughts on this matter.  Have you ever wanted to just stitch, with no particular pattern to follow, guided by the colours or threads or fabrics or mood?
Hope you have a wonderful week!
Linking up with Home Sewn By Us.















Sunday, 15 September 2019

Pumpkin Love

Once a week I drive past a field where pumpkins lie. Suddenly they are much plumper and dotting the field with orange as far as the eye can see. For some reason, this always makes me feel happy.  Maybe because I did not grow up with such fields, they now intrigue me or perhaps because I loved Halloween as a kid and they remind me of that.  Or it may be simply that the orange found in nature is so cheerful.
 This made me think of past autumn stitching that featured pumpkins.
 Here is the pumpkin I appliqued for the Sew Spooky SAL a couple of years ago. The design is free at the  Facebook Quilts By Cheri Friendship Group.
And my little hanging
that featured this dotty pumpkin.  I experimented with fusible applique and then hand stitched around.
My biggest pumpkin venture was in 2018 when I made the Laundry Basket Pumpkins designed by Edyta Sitar. I loved working on these shown here in progress. 
Have you stitched pumpkins? I'm always interested in stitching more so if you know of a pattern please let me know.

Sighted in the yard this week, a white tailed deer which I got this photo of before it was gone. For a moment I thought he was going into the garage.
This week,  Hubby and I watched three, two adults with a young one, walk out of the woods at the back of the house. They were wary but did not run away with us both there watching them from a distance.

The dogs and I surprised Tilly the Turkey one morning down near the pond. Just like the last time she ran away as fast as her legs could take her and I wanted to shout why don't you just fly.  Then the next day she was out front calmly scratching and sauntering around the driveway. Obviously our almost encounter did not scare her off.  I took this photo from the kitchen window.  Such tiny heads on such big bodies!
Gone are the hummingbirds...it's been two weeks since the last one sighted so I've taken down the feeders. Hubby bought a second one because they were fighting over the one.  Then they seemed to wage war between the two. I never knew hummingbirds were so aggressive with each other.  But I'll look forward to putting the feeders back up next spring because there was a lot of snacking between the fights.

Stitching on a Sunday will be no pumpkins but relaxing and stress free just the same - adding some quilting lines to this runner. The appliqued flowers, a WIP from several years ago.  The fabric I'd chosen for the borders, one of the  Butter Churn Basics by Kim Diehl came in the mail late spring. Its time has come to have it finished.  It will be long enough to fit the sofa table.
A little echo quilting around the flowers to start with I think.
 Em's Scrapbag
Sunday, a day of rest no more.  Hope you are finding a moment to rest though or at least to sit a spell with something you love doing.
Linking this post with Kathy's QuiltsI'd Rather B Birdin'Small Quilts and Doll Quilts,  Tish's Adventures in WonderlandQuilting is More Fun Than HouseworkEm's ScrapbagSum of Their Stories and Viewing Nature with Eileen.




Thursday, 12 September 2019

Counting Blessings and Did I Cut My Hair Too Short

I never take any of the blessings in my "now life" for granted including you who are reading my blog. Thanks sincerely for the care, concern, encouragement and advice you take the time to write me in comments and emails. They always give me a lift.
Here are a few of my other blessings and likes for this week.
More fall colour appearing here and there in the garden. The Sedum is blooming in its unique way.  These are pretty shades of mauves and lavenders.
 The Golden Broadleaf has been blooming well, faring better this year than last.  Bees and butterflies love it as well as the Sedum.
And lots more of the gorgeous wild purple asters that are called Smooth Blues.
We enjoyed having visitors here to the wooden house last Sunday.  It was especially nice to catch up on all the news and they came bearing treats, namely homemade blueberry tarts.  Delicious!
While younger grandson is a Grade One'er, older grandson is a Grade 10er! It was his 15th birthday recently and his aunt made this cake, the Marvel Infinity gauntlet, for him. It was quite a hit with everyone including The Keg staff. It had chocolate and vanilla layers inside and I wound up eating two pieces, it was so good.  What a great night our tiny family had! Little grandson could barely contain himself but did keep the secret of what the cake was this year.
I really liked the summer duvet set I bought at Ikea.  So much like William Morris- his influence lives on!  It caught my eye online and luckily they had it in store too.
I mentioned I was piecing all the pastels and florals scraps together for a someday project. Here's what I have so far.
These are the littlest of the scraps and I think it produces an overall pleasing look. Some time ago I showed you the Quiltmania idea that inspired this venture Their plan includes applique and making a pillow cushion.
 For some strange reason, smaller projects don't come to my mind. Contrarily I prefer longer ones I guess.
Meanwhile I was pleased with this thrift store purchase below and thought I'd show it to you.  A blue and white striped tunic worn over leggings.  It is by Guillaume, a Canadian name I recognized, and the fabric is super nice with pretty embroidered flowers here and there. Comfy comes to mind.
I'd just cut my hair and am thinking I cut it too short; maybe that accounts for my slightly worried look,:). However, I never really worry as I know hair will grow back.
I've rambled on long enough for this thankful, things to like post. Happy Thursday all!
Linking with Not Afraid of ColorThe Inquiring QuilterFor the Love of GeeseFloral Friday Foto and It's a Small Town Life.