Saturday, May 27, 2023

my creative week... one drawing/painting, two quilts and a flamingo rising


"creativity takes courage"  H. Matisse

welcome to my creative week's round up of projects... starting with this bit of felt, and my attempt to do a shisha stitch to keep the medallion attached. I have not mastered this stitch obviously but for some reason I really like this little bit to use sometime, probably on a journal cover.
as I sewed this week, the sun shone in through the closed blinds and I caught sight of this pretty shadow
I think it would make a fine image to frame for my studio. Moments rise up, and we notice them or not but I hope I notice more often than not

 each morning as I sip coffee, read emails and see what new horrors have surfaced in the news, I do a little art project... I wanted to do a face and since I just love elephants, I googled images of babies

With my plain paper sketchbook, and a pencil who's graphite smears easily, I did this

trying to capture proportion, shadows, sweetness on a little face. Looking from image to blank page I always get a little catch in my breath... can I do this? Capture a mood or expression? I love this baby

Hard to see on my images here but the bit of purple, gold and gray watercolor drops really add a background with just a few swipes of the water brush... a lesson in not over painting. 

I used my new tombow fudenosuke brush pen to letter in the word that comes to mind when I see babies of any kind

Now for my sewing friends, there was a lot of stitching going on this week. 

Lots of decisions to be made on the portal project... block numbers, proportion, color placement, then being so surprised at just how much smaller it got with the blocks sewn together

4 rows sewn, the bottom to go!

then it was time to match seams of blocks, keep this thing straight and unstretched as I carefully sewed the long rows together. There were a number of needle sticks along the way as I navigated the seams,


the next decision is whether to border, how large I want the finished quilt to be (around 40" wide tops, and 50" long if possible" ) then which fabric will finish it off, stop your eye, accent but not steal the show...
I see this as sun shining through autumn trees... so
I liked the leaf fabric here

I loved that old Benartex leaf fabric for the change in perspective but found thru the week of coming into the studio and looking at it, that it takes the focus from the center I worked so hard on so the bottom fabric still fall like, might be the one. Plus a skinny black binding... I'll show you when it's done. 

It's gonna be a bear to quilt on my little domestic machine, oy

Thursday evening I got the grand idea to start this month's table scraps quilt... due on Friday! I got out the box of orange scraps for RSC color of the month and chose some pretty but thin strips to sew together to make another bedside table topper

trimmed to ~13" X 18" ready to quilt

I appliqued a cute homespun strip, love the glow this has in person, but it was very frayed. No worries, I appliqued it to the strip set and let it fray to it's heart's content! I like texture! I haven't done this before either, and always seek to try some new thing to any challenge quilt. 

there is a mix of straight line quilting, and curvy free motion work. I used orange cotton thread by Metler, and this mylar thread by superior for sparkle and glisten

I pulled lots of fun flamingo fabrics to use for backing

but chose this fun one, and LET myself cut it out of yardage!

why flamingos you may ask? I LOVE flamingos and my plan is to hand embroider a flamingo to the front... I googled coloring pages and found this (LINK here)

the leaves are from a Zen stitch teacher's gift to us

so this is how it will go... but I haven't figured out how to transfer the image yet, (probably trace over soral yellow chalk paper) and whether to do the bird in black perle cotton or purple.

I'll use outline stitch, an overlapping straight stitch for feather edges, and chain stitch for neck at least

I was rushing to finish this by Friday night but after the contortions needed to groom the lovely Milo, my body spasmed and all sewing went out the window. sad. 

I did a speedy binding, sewing a 1.5" strip of fushia to the back of the quilt, bringing it around to the front, folding the raw edge to the quilt, then flipping that finished edge to the front for machine topstitching with the glitter thread, twice. 

it looks so good, with the two rows of top stitching on the 3/8th inch finished binding, it looks piped almost

and that brings this session to a close... I'll be doing the flamingo embroidery today, and share the finished thing next week I hope along with the finished portal top. 

find your creative happy place y'all

design wall Mondays at smallquiltsanddollquilts

 link party

finished or not


Thursday, May 25, 2023

I Like Thursday # 351 are you going somewhere?


Welcome to this week's list of likes... kind of short on likes this week but here goes

I like rain now that we live out west.... except the flooding. This is our back yard recently... I like that birds can have a bath, and drink water, and find floating worms for breakfast! 

I like that the Zen Stitch workshop is over, I enjoyed it but even pleasurable hobbies can drain you...

I liked sewing this week on my portal quilt, and the center is done now.... I liked the colors, designing it, and sewing the blocks together. I love how it looks and will share pics on Saturday's post

last week's pic before it was sewn together

Fine Dining

we made buffalo chicken mac and cheese lunch this week...

Amy's mac and cheese box, add in cheddar, tomatoes, buffalo sauce and a can of chicken. We make a lettuce/celery/bell pepper salad to go under it. Very yummy and fairly fast.


I finished halfway to you, so good I looked forward to having it to read at bedtime and like the study questions provided at the end... 

I'm listening to this on Audio right now, in the series about a female Indian lawyer in 1925


Watching on tv

finale season.... sad for me... I like to have shows to look forward to but I liked the Guy who won American Idol this season. We are enjoying Brokenwood on Acorn and Chateau DIY on peacock

Watching on youtube

release of an eagle... magnificent! Awe inspiring!

this idea of cooking an egg in a waffle maker

this fine man's take on respecting others 

21 Travel Cartoons ideas | travel, local travel, dream cruise

Prompt this week.... where would you like to go on vacation if you could go anywhere right now? 

gosh, I'd love to go so many places...

I'd love to go to Italy for a month, sharing time with museums, and wineries

I'd love to go to Great Britain to tour historic sites, paint and meet people

I love a car trip, stopping at every ball of twine, historic house, diner, and state fair along the way

(loved the postcard images of happier times in America ) 

Most of all, I miss the pre-covid safety of travel not available to me these days

Milo's Moments

Milo: Oh hi y'all! When Mama says, "hello" I perk up because that means someone's here! 

Maaaama! A squirrel is in the yard!

I've been a busy boy this week, keeping track of all the comings and goings around our house!

My law enforcement activity is under-appreciated though...

Hey, you, keep moving !

I have spent a lot of time working on leg removal from the new octopus this week too. 

how can you resist this face?

I also am running for food tester around here, don't forget to vote for me! I often tell Mama, don't make anything special for me, just give me a bowl of whatever you're having. She makes some lame excuse about no onions/wheat/ chocolate for me... then I think she and daddy shouldn't eat them either! 


now please visit these people to see what they liked this week...if you did a post to include let me know in comments... love to you all

friday smiles at a stitch in time