Sunday, November 1, 2015

My Life-Long Project

According to Webster's Dictionary, lifelong means something that is "lasting or remaining in a particular state throughout a person's life".  I surely hope that is not the case here, but it certainly looks like it may be on it's way to becoming lifelong.  

This is from Endangered Species by Cross My Heart.  The copyright is 1988.  I purchased the pattern book on a trip to Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville AL in 1990, with the intention of making it for my first grandson who was due in Jan, 1991.  He is now 24 years old and I am still s..l..o..w..l..y,  s..l..o..w..l..y  stitching.  It is on 24-point grey canvas and I am convinced I have 12-point eyesight...that's my excuse, anyway. 

I'm linking up with Slow Sunday Stitching...please visit the other Slow Stitchers there.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

A Finish!

I think my friends and I started this in February and it is finally finished and is designated for a World War II veteran from Muldrow OK.

There will be no Slow Sunday Stitching today, since I will be packing and moving all my mother's belongings to storage.  Since she is facing an additional four months minimum in the nursing home recovering from a shattered femur, we have decided to let her apartment go.  Not a happy time for an 85 year-old who values her independence.

Enjoy your Slow Stitching today and send good thoughts my way to keep me packing and toting.

Linking with Slow Sunday Stitching.  Lots of beautiful work to look at.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Slow Sunday Stitching

Today I am binding a Quilt of Valor that has been in the works for MONTHS.   This has been a group project...piecing done by myself and a local friend here in Sallisaw,  quilting was done by another friend from Weleetka.  I am doing the binding.

This pattern is "Star-Spangled Beauty" from the Fons and Porter magazine Patriotic Quilts, issued in Fall 2013.  

Tools of the trade.  I found these Mini Binder Clips at WalMart...100 for under $5.  They work great, even with arthritic hands, AND stay on throughout my many adjustments of the quilt in my lap.  The small dish of STUFF is a magnetic parts dish from Harbor Freight.  This has been a great more dropped clips, needles, thinbles or pins.  

 Now, to keep motivated for a Slow Sunday, when I have on today's "to do list" ... church, take a beautiful fall walk, spar varnish a front porch rocker, complete one Christmas gift  and finish reading American Ghost by Hannah Nordhaus.  Good thing I got up at 5:30 this morning.   At 57 degrees right now, cozying up under my binding project sounds great.  So, time for another cup of Irish Breakfast Tea and stitching.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Freedom Day

Since the touted leisure time of retirement is very illusive here at Lakeshore House, we have designated one day per week as "Freedom Day".  That means freedom from the demands of family members, freedom from the demands of house and gardens.  We are free to indulge in hobbies, books, movies, touring....whatever catches our fancy.  This fun day was instituted as a New Year's Day Resolution and since then, we have only managed about one day per month.  We have lost our free days by driving a son to Dallas to catch a plane to Cambodia, moving a granddaughter to a new apartment, caring for my mother who has broken her leg twice in the past eight months, awarded a Quilt of Valor to a WWII veteran in Arkansas, etc, etc.  Life happens, doesn't it? 

So, just to be on the safe side, we started our Freedom Day yesterday and are continuing it today.  Yesterday was a lovely, cool, though wet day in Fort Smith, Arkansas and with our track record of losing our free time in mind, we set out for the Fort Smith Little Theater for a matinee performance, in spite of the rain. 

A humorous British comedy that would have been even more enjoyable if the theater air conditioning had not been set at FRIGID. 

Food is fuel, right?  Fuel means warmth, right?   Next stop : Paizis Gyros and Baklava.

And today...Freedom Day, the man is in his Man Cave doing man stuff and this will be how I spend the rest of today.

Binding a Quilt of Valor for another WWII veteran.    
Working up the courage to do free motion quilting on this with my 1946 Featherweight 221.   I took a class recently from Betty Kent New at the Blackgum Harvestime Quilt Show (love that name) in Vian, Oklahoma.  I was a total failure!

This is a counted cross stitch wolf from the Endangered Species from Cross My Heart.  It IS a wolf but it has become my "Albatross".  I began this for my grandson when he was eight.....he is now 24.  It is on 22 pt canvas and my eyesight has degenerated to 12 pt.   The pattern page has yellowed and become so brittle I had to make fresh copies.  I will continue to plod through this project and hope to finish it before I become a great-grandmother.  On a brighter note...great-looking stitchery bag given to me by my cousin, Marlene. 
Time to get busy or I will lose the rest of Freedom Day.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Antique Store Saved My Latte

Hmmm...Latte?   I don't even know what a latte tastes like...or looks like.  My mother, husband, siblings, children and grandchildren are great fans of all coffees.  I, on the other hand, do not like anything coffee or coffee-flavored.  I crave chocolate and have been tempted by mocha desserts, but can't get past the coffee taste.  What a waste of chocolate!

So, I really was having trouble coming up with ideas.  I wasn't thrilled with the fabric line or the colors.  Couldn't figure out how to use the fabric in my house...needed to find someone to gift.  My mother just moved into a new apartment and it is very stark right now.  She loves coffee; she needs apartment decorating; her new furniture has the major colors of this fabric.  Perfect.

While waiting for the fabric to arrive...and still no plan, I was aimlessly wandering through a local antique/collectibles store and found these for $2 each.

Now, I have direction.  (Too bad I don't know how to adjust the time and  date on my camera).

A reversible table runner.  The good side.

And, the not so good side...don't ask.

Next was a set of snack size placemats.  Notice that one is for a

Now, we need something for the wall above her table.

Close-up of stitchery to give more texture and dimension...

Okay, I still dislike coffee, but love this fabric.  This picture was taken on day 4 of rain, rain and more rain.  But the sun decided to peak out just long enough to leave a shadow across my handiwork.

The remaining antique store placemats will become chair pads with coffee cup ruffle.

Thanks to Joan at Moostash Quilting for leading us through this hop and to Madame Samm for the idea.

Please visit the other creative people on today's schedule.  

Friday, March 20, 2015

Tree Birds Blog Hop Schedule

I have missed a few days of visiting my fellow bloggers due to family requirements.  Hopefully we have my mother settled and on the way to a speedy recovery.  I will make every effort to go back to all of you I have missed and send along my comments.

Please visit these bloggers.  They love your interest.

Friday, March 20

Monday, March 23

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Tree Birds Have Arrived

As most of you may know, I have been having a bit of trouble keeping up with my blog hop projects.  New Year's Day my mother broke her hip and at the end of the month, I developed a retinal problem.  So, I was looking forward to peaceful stitching with the birds in February and March.  Alas, not to be....

...broke my thumb while loading a fat Border Collie into the truck.  Surely this isn't going to be the way the entire year is going to progress.  

Nevertheless, I got all my projects done...with a lot of adjustments to accomodate the handicap.  So, here we go.

My first job was to build my tree full of bird houses.  I loved it, but am way too practical to frame and hang it as wall art...though it would make an excellent picture on the wall. 

While packing my mother to move her to a new apartment, I was admiring her perpetual calendar and decided I needed one in my sewing room and the bird houses would be a perfect background.

 Now,  originally I was going to embroider all the numbers, months, and days on a lovely tea-stained linen that I am dying to use.  Enter the BIG thumb...can't hold an embroidery hoop.  Plan B:  Magnets!  I made a canvas backing to hold foam board covered with adhesive magnetic sheets.  Great idea!  Not... The magnets on the numbers were not strong enough to attach through fabric and stabilizer.

Plan C:  Velcro dots.  I am not happy with this solution, but it will do, until I can get back to Plan A and embroidery.

Picture divided into calendar divisions with a simple machine quilt stitch...

Three pockets at the bottom to hold the unused numbers, months, etc.

Numbers, months created on canvas with t-shirt transfer paper and an ink-jet printer...  Oops, forgot the days of the week.

All I need is a bird to sit on the branch.

My sister had a birthday during this time and she is an avid bird watcher.  So, I decided to make her a small tote....from a bird seed bag.   I cut the bag down to the image field I liked...maybe too much removed because the bag ended up smaller than I had intended.

Lined with birdhouses.

Add a handle...

A small tote bag!  (My sister was not impressed).

Still had time to make a curtain for the single window in my sewing room.  I have three sewing machines and not one had a ruffler attachment, so the bottom ruffle will have to wait until I can stitch by hand again.  It is pinned in place for the picture. 

I have another dozen or so birdhouse squares left that will become mug rugs to catch the condensation from frosty glasses of iced tea consumed while lounging on the back porch watching the birds at their feeders all spring and summer.  

Thank you Samm and Lana for a fun and very cheerful blog hop.  Please check out the rest of our bloggers in the schedule below. 

Friday, March 13

Tree Birds Are Coming

It is time for another fun blog hop from Madame Samm with Lana as our organizer.

Please join us each day!

Friday, March 13

Monday, March 16

Tuesday, March 17

Wednesday, March 18

Thursday, March 19

Friday, March 20

Monday, March 23
Sew We Stitch

Thursday, January 15, 2015

It's ALMOST Summer......

I was really looking forward to participating in "Tammy 4 All Seasons" and got an early start in mid-December with pauses for holiday commitments.  Not to worry...plenty of time to finish well before my "due date".

Enter Murphy's Law:  If anything can go wrong, it will.  On New Year's Day, my mother fell and broke her hip.  Since she can no longer live alone, we started the grueling process of moving her belongings to my sister's house.  This involved multiple trips for me driving from my home to mother's apartment, to sister's home, to the nursing home, and back to my home....330 mile round trip.  I have logged over 1500 miles in the last two weeks, with more to come.

And, somewhere in this saga, I have damaged a retina!  So I am showing you my failure at finishing this project.

I chose Summer, but did not use vintage fabric...though the red on the bag is a 1930's copy print.  I ended up using 14 point white fabric for the stitching, which I normally shy away from.

I actually had two lovely 28 point an Irish Linen and a hand dyed fabric in a Queen Anne's Lace color that I was excited to try.  So, I began on the hand dyed while sitting in the hospital with my mother.  I just could NOT see well enough...even with my Beam and Read.

I may not have used vintage fabric, but I did try to use my vintage Beam and Read.  This is over 20 years old and sports a single, incandescent bulb.  It was no help.  I considered just throwing it out, but looks like the fault lies with my retinal problem, not my ancient stitching pal.  I am definitely looking for the new model, though.

After I switched to 14 point white fabric, the stitching went somewhat better, until the nurse told me it would be best to turn out the room lights to make it more restful for my mother.  So, I tried to stitch standing at the room window on a dark, cloudy day.  When I got home to bright sunlight reflecting off the lake outside my doors, I realized my grey outline stitches were not grey enough.

I chose to make a ruffle, rather than box pleats...again because I could do it at the hospital.

This was still fun, in spite of all my trials and tribulations.  As soon as I get my eyesight repaired, I intend finishing the project.

Please visit the rest of our "Tammy 4 All Seasons" participants.  You won't be disappointed in the quality of their work.

January 16, 2015

Julia Plunkett will post on Sewwequilt
It Seams To Be Sew