HAPPY HALLOWEEN……..

I absolutely love Halloween decorations…the fun that the children (and adults) have in dressing up and partying…the chocolate candy. Alas I did not have a lot of time to do many new Halloween needlework pieces, but here is one of my favorites finally mounted and finished.    I found an unfinished box at Hobby Lobby, painted it black and roughed it up a bit to look antique.

I found the cutest tiny fuzzy ball trim to go around the mounted cross-stitch work.    Sorry it’s so difficult to see.

And the grandchildren just love the surprise inside!!!    And I love the orange paint!!!

My birthday is coming soon and my dear French friend, Maggy, sent me the most BEAUTIFUL pair of “Eiffel Tower” scissors!! I absolutely adore them. How did she know that I have wanted a pair of these for a LONG time? Thank you Maggy.

She also sent me two French Patchwork magazines and a watercolor book on scenes from Provence. This will keep me busy for sure.

Remember the Stumpwork workshop I attended….well I had finished the needlework itself, but now I have completed the finishing on the ornament. Don’t you just love the look of the Dupioni silk?

It was great fun doing the little spider.

And whoo hoo….I have finished the quilt top I started on retreat last weekend. Now it just needs to be quilted.

It turned out larger than I had expected…isn’t that nice!!

Hope everyone had a fun weekend and a laughter-filled Halloween Day.

Til next time, Amities, Averyclaire

A Quilting Weekend

Last weekend I went to Shalom Retreat House in Dubuque, Iowa for a four day quilt retreat. My SIL, Judy, and her friend, Kay, inspired me to come along. Their quilt shop in Cedar Rapids, IA sponsors this event twice a year. It was great fun, filled with lots of laughter and LOTS of sewing. Here are the photos from this productive weekend.

Monica w lovely purse

Monica's almost fnished quilt top..great colors

Patty with her Noah's Ark quilt

Patty's "circle" blocks (Libby Lehman pattern w Ricky Tims Fabric

More of Patty's circle blocks

Patty's duck baby quilt

Kathy working on Backyard Safari quilt

Kathy's lovely purses for the grandchildren

One of Kathy's many finished projects....Beautiful for any little girl

Lisa made a beautiful purse for someone who just learned of a serious illness

Lisa's lovely quilt top finished

Theresa with a small Halloween pillow cover

Theresa's Mom hand pieced this quilt a long time ago. Theresa had it hand quilted by some Amish women.

Betty Jo and Joanna enjoying the day

Betty Jo and the cute boxer shorts she made

Batik Purse made by Betty Jo

Betty Jo sewing a labor of love (buggy barn style) for the family of someone recently passed away

Terese working on a Paris Flea Market scrap quilt

Sue and her batik quilt...she was making LOVELY borders for this one.

Connie working on her Christmas Card basket

Connie and her monkey baby quilt....what a fun piece

Kay made this lovely table runner as a gift

Kay made several of these lovely purses, two with her Dad's ties

Another purse with a tie

Kay's lovely blue version

Kay also made this lovely table topper with tiny, tiny pieces

Kay also did this lovely fish (going to be a pillow)

Andrea sure is enjoying the creativity

Andrea's Rocket ship almost done

Rosie made this lovely sports quilt for a special needs friend

Heather working on fleece pants for her son and several neck warmers

Judy's beautiful batik fish quilt

Judy's Zen quilt

Jill's homespun quilt

Jill's red and white beauty she quilted this weekend

Jill's blue and brown all finished quilting

And LAST…BUT NOT LEAST…I did finish one quilt top…my Summer Nana’s Garden quilt. I also did a star quilt, but have not taken photos….next blog I will show you.

Averyclaire's finished summer scrap quilt

Hope you enjoyed the photo show.   If you have never been on a quilt retreat or a needlework retreat…you really must go.   It is a lot of fun, very relaxing and quite inspiring.

Amities……Averyclaire

So Much to Do…So Little Time

Stumpwork

Last weekend I went with a friend of mine to a Needlework Class in Indianapolis, Indiana. It was sponsored by the Indianapolis Chapter of the Embroiderer’s Guild of America. We belong to the chapter called Needle Artisans of Northwest Indiana (NANI) that meets in Munster. Once a year they have an event called State Day in various locations around the State. Last year it was sponsored by our Chapter here in Munster.

This year’s class was a lesson in “Stumpwork”…it is a style of embroidery where the stitched figures are raised from the surface of the work to form a 3-dimensional effect. It was a very beginner class, as I had never done anything like this. After one prepares the foundation by layering pieces of felt, the finished bird (or whatever you are doing) is painted with one strand of embroidery floss (needlepainting) in various colors. I very much enjoyed the process. Here is my cardinal which I finished embroidering Sunday after the class. I plan to turn this into a Christmas ornament. The finished ornament will measure only 2.5 x 3.5…so it is a VERY small cardinal.

The designer and teacher was Marsha Papay-Gomola. She is an excellent teacher and taught a fun class.   She has a website here.    Her class was delightful and I would encourage anyone interested in learning something new, to check into her classes.   I did take photos of some of her samples she brought to the class, including the step-by-step proces for our cardinal.    I think her work is magnificent.

She even showed us a sample of leaves for us to have ideas in how to make a choice in finishing our cardinals.

It was one of the really FUN weekends.     Southpaw Stitcher has many more photos on her website, so please check them out if you have not done so already.    She is a GREAT traveling companion with a super sense of humor.    We even did our own shop hop on the way down visiting Persnickety Stitchers in Zionsville and Needle Fever  in Indianapolis, and even stopped at a quilt shop nearby, Quilts Plus.

Home Dec Project

Last post I mentioned that I was working on a home dec project for my daughter for her dining room. Here are a couple of photos of what I have finished: Six antique dining room chairs were recovered. Three cushions for the window seat with zippered custom covers, six large pillows with zippered covers, one hand embroidered pillow for the center of the window seat. I made this black velvet pillow out of leftover velvet from a dress I made her MANY years ago for a dance. Thought it would be good memories…then I cross-stitched a deisgn with a monogram with their last initial.

Still have to make the draperies and the table and buffet runners.    So it’s not done yet……the story of my life!!!

Halloween Cross-Stitch

I have been diligently working on a Halloween Fairy (Nora Corbett) cross-stitch. It is from one of the cross-stitching magazines from a year or two ago, I can’t remember which one.  A friend of mine stitched it and graciously donated her leftover threads and beads to me. I couldn’t resist doing this one for Halloween. I hope it will be done (even if it doesn’t get framed on time).   Unfortuantely, I still have a ways to go.   I have been really slow on this one.

 

Am I Lucky or What???

And last, but not least, I went to a neighboring quilt group meeting, Pieces and Patches. They had a very entertaining speaker that evening, Amy Walsh. She and Janine Burke have been publishing patterns under the company name, Blue Underground Studios, since 2005. The patterns are more modern than my usual choices, but they are absolutely lovely.   And lucky me, I won their favorite pattern, “In and Out.”  I can’t wait to try it.   They tell us that their patterns are easy and quick to make and great choices for using up your stash of fabric.

And from Inspired Needle Blog, I won a lovely patriotic needlework pattern.   Please visit her website as well as the blog.   I will save this one to work on for next summer!

 Hope you have enjoyed my photos……….until next time……………Amities,  Averyclaire