Sunday, November 30, 2008

Outdoor Visitor

Honey watches from inside, while the visitor noses thru the bird seed. Yeah, I'm a softie, I've been putting some cat food out near sunset as this cat seems to browse by frequently

I think I liked this sequel as much as the first one The Friday Night Knitting Club

My 2008 Book List seems lengthy. I'm looking forward to starting out 2009 with a new list! I do have quite a stack set aside for pleasure reading.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Thx Karol : )

Look what came in the mail! I received a beautiful card & hand dyed silk ribbon from Karol. The ribbon is from Pat's etsy. Thank you so much, I'm planning to use if after holidays.
Yesterday, while out looking at sewing machines, I stopped at Crazy Eighths in Chesterton. Store will be closing mid-December. I picked up some fabric & an assortment of needles, 40% off. Now, I'm getting the final items on my 'to do' list in preparation for our family Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

I've Been Tagged & Awarded : )

By Pat (Gatherings)
Requested for the tag: Give 6 obscure facts about me ...
1) I love my husband. He is my light. I'd do anything for him.
2) I listen to all kinds of music, chart toppers, alternative, new age, rock; still, I love Beethoven. Listening to Moonlight Sonata, Fur Elise, I just melt. (Debussy - Clair de lune also a fav)
3) Holidays stress me out. A LOT. I feel like a different person.
4) My crush: If only Perry Mason was a real guy
5) Limelight is definately NOT comfortable for me
6) I'm more zoo-keeper than pet lover (surprised?)

By Marjorie (Moonsilk Stitches)
The rules for this Bookworm Award award are: Open the book closest to you, not your favorite or most intellectual book, but the book closest to you at the moment, and turn to page 56. Write out the fifth sentence, as well as two to five sentences following that. And pass the award on to five blogging friends.

I'm reading a few books right now. This one was closest to me when I read Marjorie's blog.

Book: Luncheon of the Boating Party by Susan Vreeland.
Quote: Auguste dropped off the supplies at his studio and walked the half dozen blocks to Gustave's apartment on boulevard Haussmann. Lined with elegant cafes and smart shops, the boulevard was clearly a different neighborhood than his own. He entered beneath the gild ironwook, went up two flights, and pulled the bell cord. Piano music stopped. Gustave's brother, a composer, let him in. "He's painting on the balcony," Martial said. "Then I won't interrupt him."
(This is historical-Fiction, characters in above quote are Pierre-Auguste Renoir & Gustave Caillebotte, around 1880) My 2008 Book list

and by BW (BW's Stitches & Things)
The rules for this tag: Find the 6th folder in your photos folder and then the 6th photo in it. * Pray that you remember the details * Post it on your blog Tag 5 others, leave a comment to let them know they’ve been tagged.

This photograph is of our Honey Bunny who enjoys napping on my Martha Stewart ironing board. Me thinks the cat feels like she is in a tree : )

This picture is taken in front of my wardrobe -- my stitching corner is at the left.

Thanks my friends! Since we are heading into holidays, I thought best not to tag; however, I'd really enjoy seeing other bloggers post on any/all of these ...

Monday, November 24, 2008

Don't Miss it ....

The Divine Art; Four Centuries of European Tapestries
November 1, 2008 to January 4, 2009
"See 70 monumental masterpieces from the museum's unparalleled tapestry collection restored to their original splendor"

Web link HERE.

There are photographs and extra information regarding tapestries and this exhibit at this web link HERE

Last Thursday, my husband & I hopped the South Shore train into Chicago. It was windy, snowy, cold, and I enjoyed every second. If you are going to the Museum, get off at the Van Buren Street Station -- the Art Institute is accross the street.

First, we visited the East Asian Ceramics Exhibit, and Jade Collection. Then, off to the Tapestries -- all 70 of them. Most are ginormous -- great big and fabulous. The colors, the workmanship, the detail. Hard to take it all in. I remember the beautiful tapestries I saw while touring Spain (25 years ago) in one of the palaces -- but, to have 70 of them on the walls -- it was overwhelming ; ) A few of the smaller ones from the 14th century were glittery with metallics mixed in with the wool and silk fibers. A feast for the eyes.

I think this one was my favorite LINK HERE. But, hard to select just one. There was a classroom, too -- with exhibition catalogs, and information on how the tapestries are constructed. Diagrams, brief video, photographs. Exhibition Catalog Info Here

We walked to Shaw's Crab House for lunch. Had oysters, fried calamari & beer ; ) Delicious. I'd like to go back today for more!

We stolled the magnificent mile to walk off our meal. We spent some time at Neiman Marcus & Saks before bording our return train.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

North Star Quilt Block

North Star (WIP)
The Legend of the Underground Quilts
c. 2008 Eileen J. Bennett

Thank you to Sharon H & the members of the Sycamore Ridge EGA Chapter. On Nov 15th, they sponsored Eileen Bennett, The Sampler House to present her class on The Legend of the Underground Railroad Quilts.

I had not taken a class from Ms. Bennett & it was interesting to learn new stitching tips like: try a size 24 needle (which to me, was like using a toothpick), paying attention to thread lengths, using an away waste know (I couldn't get it -- but fun to try), and seeing the difference on the front of our projects in ending threads. I tried a couple pieces of linen, 2 & 3 strands of floss. Eventually, I managed stitching one of 10 quilt blocks in the sampler. When I came home, I found a size 24 Petite needle & was better able to stitch with a shorter needle -- still tough to end threads with such a large needle (IMO), good to try new things.

I had a great time riding along with Karol blogging at Rosebud's Stitching. I know Karol as we are in the same EGA chaper; however, riding there & back was fun chatting away & getting better acquainted!! Our table mates were equally delightful. We were joined by two more NANI members: Sue D (w/o Blog, but needs one) & CiCi blogging at Stash Queen. I wished our table had room for one more NANI stitcher, Terry T (w/o Blog, but needs one)!! Terry recently moved & I think needs to blog for sharing her projects! What fun to sit next to our speaker during lunch. She is a gracious and patient teacher : ) If you get the opportunity, sign up, don't pass on any of her classes.

I'm in the process of buying a sewing machine & stitching a sampler for the 2009 State Day Project (no photos yet). Stay tuned : )

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Snow Day in NW Indiana

Blessed Are the Peacemakers
Mary Garry's Sewing Cabin - oop
Not much to share as I am also stitching a 2009 State Day Project sample for our EGA Chapter (sorry, no pictures, yet).
Our dog, Buddy, enjoys the snow. There is a 2-hour delay for school.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Homespun Elegance

c 2000 Homespun Elegance, Ltd.
I finished this Autumn Freebie using DMC floss on red aida cloth. The needlebook has orange felt inside (matches the pumpkin)
Fall - Freebie Here
Link to Pattern here

NOTE: Far better photographs on the Freebie Gallery blog!!!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Thought for the Day

"With an eye made quiet by the power of harmony, and the deep power of joy, we see into the life of things."

William Wordsworth
Quote is from Tintern Abbey

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

"In The Pink"

In The Pink
Midsummer Night Designs, Oct 2005 Release

Thank you Sandy for generously donating this kit via a giveaway at the Stitch Pink blog. Not only is this a beatiful project, it came wrapped in pink tissue paper & pink ribbon : ) I know I can manage the over-one stitching, the finishing might be a bit of a challenge for me!The kit has DMC & Crescent fibers, 32-ct Awareness Pink linen by R&R, freshwater pearls, beading needle, pin back, button molds, over dye ribbon, and the material for finishing (white lining & printed pink cotton fabrics)

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Wool & Flax

I managed to get the border stitched on the front of this La D Da Pinsafe (Wool & Flax). This was the piece I started using one strand of silk -- took all that out -- and with the help of Sue D, who shared her left over silks, was able to get the front stitched.The back of the pinsafe has initials and a couple small motifs. I haven't decided what to do about the back as I don't have enough silks left for initials. I probably should go thru my fiber stash & see what would be ok -- it is the BACK after all. Who will see it?

Marjorie asked if I was able to visit any of the local exhibits. Actually, I did view the current exhibits at the Brauer Museum of Art in Valparaiso, Indiana. There are works by Hispanic Artists from the permanent collection on display and there are beautiful paintings by Joel Sheesley (realist painter & Professor of Art at Wheaton College). I enjoyed seeing the Joan Miro, Salvador Dali, Pablo Picasso, and Jose Ortega pieces on display. This will continue thru November 21st.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

crazy quilting

I had mentioned the crazy quilt kit I got from the Quilt Show:in this post , and am just getting around to taking some pictures of the fabulous ribbons & kit, including the silkie or ciggie image on cloth. I picked the bride & groom as DH+I celebrated our 25th anniversary Oct 1st. I thought the ribbons so beautiful, I've pinned them to the wall!! Don't forget to swing by Pat Winter's blog, blog link here, for beautiful photographs & a showcase of her artistic talent. I bought her book, link here, and have enjoyed every page. I've gone thru it several times. Not sure I'll ever be as good at this as she is, but then again, there is always her Etsy store for finished projects, and more supplies.

I browsed my closet & did unearth a couple books on ribbon embroidery, crazy quilting stitches, and seam decorating. In addition to that, I pulled out a past Indiana State Day project where blocks were passed out & stitchers encouraged to embellish. I didn't get very far!! Now that I have some inspiration & a sack of lace from GF Sue, I think I'll have to give this a try.

Friday, November 07, 2008

Bent Creek WIP & Alex's Crabbies

Managed a few stitches:
Autumn Row
c.2000 Bent Creek
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Our son, Alexander, has a few hermit crabs. He took these pictures.
Now that the season has changed, the humidity was becoming an issue for his pets. Even with a heater under the habitat, the humidity wasn't high enough. Alex tried to put rocks, sand, distilled water in the habitat. The problem was that all the sand was damp all the time. Spent some time re-thinking the habitat & changed from this:
To This:I found an old tray & put brand new, special sand inside. That way, the rocks and water stay clean -- the sand stays dry -- and the humidity so far is constant. Should be easier to clean, too. Just need to take out the sand tray, wash the gravel & put in fresh distilled water. I think there are five in the habitat -- at night, they like to go under the piece of wood (tunnel).

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Thank You!

The Pink Artist Project raised $3,028.34 for Susan G Komen for the cure and breast cancer research. I would like to thank everybody who participated, donated their artistic talents, created squares, donated hand made gifts, added a blog post, put a group button on their web sites & blog pages, donated money, and supported the project. More Information Here.

I was fortunate to be one of nearly 40 people to have their name drawn for a gift. I just love my new vase. The vase is Red Maple w/Black Walnut Rim. The photograph doesn't do justice. I tried several pictures & this one seems to be the best. I think you get the general idea of the size and exquisite shape!

When I opened the box, this is what I saw: This treasure was made by William Burroughs, Jr. in Henderson, NC. I enjoyed seeing the pictures & reading his web site! Thank you very much : ) Included with the wooden vase was a letter from his wife, Thearica, explaining the use of orange oil 2x/yr & buffing to keep it looking great.

She, Thearica, has a quilting studio. (and you all know how much I love quilts) I'm gobsmacked by her talent! Quilting Studio, web site link here.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

The Lacemaker

(De kantwerkster)
oil on canvas
9 5/8 x 8 1/4 in. (24.5 x 21 cm.)
The Louvre, Paris

This web page not only showcases the fabulous art of Vermeer, I found several links to lace & lacemaking. Loads of lace photos, lace pillows, background, links, and MORE. Web Site Here Follow the many links : )

Making Lace With Vermeer - Link Here
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I can see why this book is an award winner.I checked it out from the public library & am enjoying it. Book Excerpt here. Web Site Here. I seem to be on a roll selecting some awesome books!

So, no stitching to report : (

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

SAN-Q & The Lace Reader

Delighted by the new issue. The spot sampler (one of 2 parts) has loads of interesting texture - they would be awesome in the sampler or just one motif stitched for a sewing small. Plus, the article on crewel embroidery is awesome.

Wendy asked about this book, and I can only say, I really, really liked it -- It was interesting, well written, strong (wacky) characters, and an odd drama. Of the many I've read this year, these are my favorites:

The Lace Reader by Brunonia Barry *****
Lauren Groff: The Monsters of Templeton*****
Kate Jacobs: Friday Night Knitting Club *****
(I requested the sequel from the library - Knit Two)
Maeve Binchy: Whitethorn Woods *****
Paulo Coelho: The Alchemist *****
Amy Bloom: Away (read it & listened on audio book -- I felt like I missed a few turns in the story - tho, even the second time around for this novel, was confused, would be perfect for a reading circle)

My 2008 Book List - link here

As for younger readers, I've enjoyed the Doll People series by Laura Godwin & Ann Martin. Link here. I came accross these books while browsing the book store. Alex wanted a french text of The Little Prince & I had a blast going thru the shelves in the youth section.


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