Grow Your Blog Winner!

Make My Heart Happy-Green

Once again, thank you to everyone who visited my blog during the “Grow Your Blog” days.   And a special thank you to all of you who have signed up to be followers of my blog.    The winner of my giveaway for this special time is Barbara Lillian In France.   A special thank you to you Barbara for participating.  Please stop in to see her blog…her photos are LOVELY!   I previous made one of these for a friend’s birthday…and I liked it so much I made another one for the giveaway.  Hope you enjoy it Barb! My days have been filled with lots of diligent work on finishing my unfinished projects.

Here is one of my projects I managed to finish.  It was so fun stitching one bird, that I made four of them!   It is a Just Nan pattern called “Cardinal Tweet” and it is available from Inspired Needle in Lemont, IL.  The pattern includes only the finishing materials for one bird.  I had to create my own tails and beaks, and add extra beads to make four birds.  Fun:(

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My trapunto flowers are coming along, although I had hoped to have them all done. It goes fairly quickly, but I worked on other things instead!

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Another favorite project I hope to finish soon is this one. I will not reveal the pattern until it is finished. Can anyone out there guess what it is?

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Of course, much time was spent in helping my DH clear out our snow-filled walkways. Recently when a group of ladies were complaining about the terrible winter, one friend said, “I woke up this morning, and I am not in any pain…so I cannot complain about something so minor as the weather.” I whole-heartedly agree!

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And so I let my beautiful African Violet inspire me. Just looking at it reminds me that Spring is just around the corner!

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Congratulations Barb.    Happy stitching to all.     Amities, Averyclaire

It’s Off the Frame!

I had GREAT fun this past weekend with the Grow Your Blog Party.   I have met SO MANY wonderful people and have seen such exquisite work and great blogs!   Thank you very much to Vicki of 2 Bags Full for coordinating this.  I am quite sure it was an overwhelming amount of work!   Looking forward to seeing more of the beautiful work that I saw last weekend.

Yellow Whole Cloth - Copyright

Yes…my yellow whole cloth quilt is almost completed.  I took it off the frame last week, squared it up and put on the binding.  Then it was soaked and washed (to get all the pencil marks out).  I love the look of it being all crinkled up nicely just like an antique quilt!  To be honest, I was TERRIFIED that some of the pencil marks might not come out.   This was a quilt I had begun years ago and stuffed in a drawer until last spring.  I took it out re-marked some of the lines and finished hand quilting it a couple of weeks ago.  Luckily all  of the pencil lines disappeared.  I am working now on trapunto-ing the flowers and leaves (corners and center circle). It is not taking as long as I thought it might…goes rather quickly.   Ahhh….I will be able to check another UFO off of my list!  I am in love with this new addition to my quilt collection!

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Also finished this small cross-stitch done on 32 ct. linen, finished with twisted pearl cotton and has a wool back. The pattern is from Homespun Elegance and is called “You Make My Heart Happy.” I made this small gift for a dear friend who lives in France, Maggy, for her birthday.  It can be used as a pincushion, a door hanger or a small wall hanging.  She received it in the mail last week and loved it.

Thanks again to all of you who stopped in to visit my blog during the blog hop…and to all those to signed up as regular visitors. I am delighted and honored.
I hope to see more of your lovely work soon.

Amities, Averyclaire

Grow Your Blog

Welcome everyone to Averyclaire Needlearts!   I am excited to be a part of the “Grow Your Blog Party.”  Thank you for stopping in to visit. 

I am a midwesterner, born and raised in the Chicago area.   Whether I am home or away, I keep busy hands.  There is nothing more wonderful than a cup of hot  tea while having a piece of some kind of needlework, sewing, quilting, or knitting in my hands.    An early morning in the perennial garden fills my soul. I can get lost for weeks in books and am a passionate Francophile. Music to sooth the soul is Andrea Bocelli, Adamo, and John Denver. 

My grandmother, Clara Avery, taught me to knit when I was seven and instilled into me the gentle art of all kinds of needlework.

If you leave a comment on this post you will be entered in the drawing to win a prize (the drawing will be held on February 15th).   It will be a lovely cross-stitched surprise.   However, please scroll through my blog to see some of my projects.  I hope you enjoy them all and I look forward to seeing all of your projects as well. 

 Amities, Averyclaire

Yellow Whole Cloth 1

Star Quilt 1

Sweet Sixteen HQ2

Berry Patch Rabbit

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Sophia Sampler Framed

Kathie Monog Pillow1

Scotty Ornament

Sewing Pockets

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biscornu

Flannel Quilt

Tablecloth Quilt 2011

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Fleur de Lis Scissor Fob

Wedding Quilt

Christmas Stocking Remade

Cross-Stitched Navajo Weaving

Thanks again for coming!

Progress

Well friends, I am trying to keep to my New Year’s hopes and have created a random rotation of ten projects.   Here are some photos of the work IN PROGRESS.   Yes…I am actually posting again!!

First is my yellow whole cloth quilt that is nearly finished and I hope to have it done SOON.  You can see that I am nearly at the end of the quilting.   I am hoping to do some trapunto work when it is finished in the floral areas…but we will see.

Yellow Whole Cloth Quilt

Next is a “flock” of ornaments. I began them too late for Christmas, but it will be nice to have them done for next year.   The pattern is Cardinal Tweet from Just Nan.   I decided to make four of them (they are two sided).  Making four seemed just as easy as making one!

Cardinal Ornaments

And my third project I am working on is a block of the month I began from Top Shelf Quilts in Frankfort, IL. It is called Saturday Soiree. I really love red and white quilts, but this is turning out to be a LOT of work.  It will be set on the diagonal with sixteen blocks.  I actually have all the setting squares completed, but I have not completed the main blocks yet.   The original pattern called for only twelve blocks, but I purchased four extra ones and all the extra fabric I needed to make it larger.   (Am I crazy?)

Saturday Soiree

It’s been so cold and snowy here in Chicago that staying inside, keeping warm and cozy, has helped the progress on my projects to keep rolling along!  Hope all of you are on the track to needlework success for the new year!     Until next time, 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

Stitching and Sightseeing

I know I should be working on Christmas things (because it’s RIGHT around the corner, but I have been busy with some little Halloween pieces. A couple of small ornaments (“Boo” from Waxing Moon and “in progress” is “Full Moon” from Ink Circles–Halloween Just Cross-Stitch Issue 2010) to hang on hooks and knobs around the house, and another lovely Halloween piece from Drawn Thread. I LOVE Halloween. Guess I am a kid at heart.

I DID do a bit of Christmas (only because this project takes a LONG time)! Another finish for me this week was the Christmas stocking I was making for my daughter’s husband. She has a felt stocking from when she was little and each of her children have one, so she asked me to make one for her DH. Voila! I thought “Santa’s Workshop” was appropriate for him. It had a “zillion” pieces, but it was fun to make.

This past week my DH and I spent a day in Chicago’s downtown area and I thought I would share a couple of photos of some of Chicago’s famous artwork. In 2004, the sculpture “Cloud Gate”, dubbed by Chicagoans as “The Bean”, was unveiled in our new Millenium Park. Creation of British artist, Anish Kapor, “The Bean” is 66 feet long and 33 feet high, weighing 110 tons. Made of steel plates polished to this shiny finish, it looks like a big drop of Mercury. The skyline of Chicago can be seen in it’s reflection and everyone loves the reflections that are like a funhouse mirror. “The Bean” and Millenium Park has become a destination for school trips and people of all ages.

Also downtown, but on our “Magnificent Mile” is the “Forever Marilyn” statue created by artist J. Seward Johnson. It was unveiled in July 2011 and will remain here until Spring of 2012. Marilyn Monroe (26 feet tall) is posed in her famous stance from her movie “Seven Year Itch”. It is fun and interesting to see. There are mixed emotions from the masses regarding this statue. Some people say it does not depict a dignified enough image for Chicago…that it is too obscene. I thought it was delightful. (Everyone goes underneath it to see her panties.)

And last, but NOT least, I went with a friend to visit “The Farnsworth House” in Plano, IL about 1-1/2 hours west of Chicago. It was designed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and completed around 1951 for a physician who was single and wanted a weekend get-away house for the weekends. An interesting architectural experience, it sits on lovely acreage along the Fox River. All the walls are made of windows. While I do not care much for modern things, I could live in this house in a minute because of the surrounding woods and beauty. However, being near the Fox River, it has been known to flood, so I think I will stay where I am at!! Anyway…it was a SUPER fun day to spend with a good friend.

Til next time…Amities, Averyclaire

Another Birthday Gift

My friend, Maggy, is having a birthday on January 20th. Here is a little gift I made for her.

The pocket calendar pattern is from Drawn Thread and done on 32ct natural raw linen.

Happy Birthday, Maggy! May you be blessed in this New Year with Laughter and Joy.

Amities, Averyclaire

A Framed Finish

I finished this needlework back in June 2010, but I finally have finished framing it. Closeups of the stitching can be found on my June 12th post.

My framing was a bit of a “cheat”, but I love the way it turned out. Wish all of my pieces could look as nice! It is impossible to find a ready made square frame. The fnished needlework is 6 inches by 6 inches. One day I happened upon a sale at the store with framed art pieces for half off. I managed to find this frame for $10. The insides were quite glued together, but I carefully did away with the “ready made photo” and redid it to use for my Sophia’s Sampler. Just great….don’t you think? Will have to look for more finds like this!

Amities, Averyclaire

Sophia’s Sampler

It’s been a busy couple of weeks….but in the evenings I managed to get this sampler completed. It’s called Sophia’s Sampler by Cedar Hill.   (I had to have it because my granddaughter’s name is Sophia.)    I chose 32 ct. Lamb’s Wool Linen and modified the sampler by leaving out a design area I did not want in order to make it a perfect square.    I love the colors of the flowers at the top.

Now I am sewing daily on an art quilt.   It’s taking ALL of my free time.      I would love to tell you that it will be finished by my next post, but I doubt it!!!     Tomorrow we are going to celebrate Father’s Day here.    Both of our father’s have long since passed, but I have a son and son-in-law nearby who are fathers….as well as my DH…..so I will do the cooking and celebrate with all of them.

Amities…….Averyclaire

Now I Just Need to Do the Finishing

My days have been filled with either office work or working on THE quilt…and my evenings have been spent doing needlework in front of the television. I don’t have any photos yet of the quilt…although progress IS being made. I am bound and determined to complete it before mid-summer…it’s my goal.

But I did complete some needlework. However, I am really bad at getting the final finishing completed. One reason is that the framing costs SO much money. But I don’t have any excuses for the last three ornaments I made and still haven’t done the “finishing.”

Here is my Eiffel Tower from Jardin Prive. I did change a couple of the motifs…the major one being adding my “bee.” I also changed a few other items. Now I just need a frame.

Here are a few photos of the 4th LHN ornament in the series. I have done the “finishing” on 1 and 2…but 3 and 4 are still waiting for the “finishing.” I already have 5 and 6 in the series waiting to be stitched….and number seven is coming out on May 25th!!!! Will I EVER get caught up? Maybe before Christmas? This is #4 called Snowy Pines. You can see them all or purchase one at Anita’s Little Stitches. I really like the colors and motifs in this one.

Does anyone else have trouble procrastinating with their “finishing”???     What’s the secret to getting it done?    Let me know.

In my next post, I’ll have photos of a project I did with my new needlework guild.

 Amities, Averyclaire

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