Monday, March 29, 2010

I have quite a few old sewing boxes.  Most are still ok on the insides but I grabbed one to use Saturday morning and the insides practically fell apart in my hands.  It was similar to the one in the picture above except smaller.  Well, next thing I knew, I had the insides totally ripped out and an empty shell of a box sitting there looking pretty pathetic.  So I decided to try and recover the inside of the little box.  What did I have to lose at this point!  Believe it or not ladies, I used a lot of glue on this project!!  Anyone who takes classes with me will attest to the fact that I don't like to use glue or fusibles, but in this project it was impossible not to use glue.  So I started measuring, cutting and trimming and came up with a brand new little sewing box.  I love it!!
The fabric has sweet little cherries all over it so I stitched a pincushion that says "Stray Pins" on a piece of vintage linen that already had two little cherries.  Now I have a fun box to keep my everyday sewing supplies in.  The box makes me smile everytime I open it!

And speaking of  smiling, Evette called and said she had been working on her own little creations Saturday and couldn't wait to share them.  She came over Saturday evening with two of the sweetest little for her and one for me.  I, unfortunately, didn't get a picture of hers but maybe that's best since it might be a future class and I wouldn't want to spoil the surprise.  But I do have a picture of the one she made for me and I absolutely love it.  She worked really hard getting the "tomato" on top of the box.  It's adhered with a button on top of the tomato which then connects through a button on the underside of the box.  It's so nice to be surprised with sewing gifts!!  Thanks E!!!

I spent the morning taking pictures of a couple of new patterns before I ship the models off to Oregon.  Debbie and I will be teaching in July together and these were a couple of the things that are going to be taught while I'm there.  It's hard getting a good picture for the front of the pattern and so important to have a good shot to show the pattern.  That has always been the most challenging part of putting together a pattern for me.
This is Holly girl.  As a result of this pattern, I'm now designing eight more blocks to go with her which will hopefully be a wool block of the month next year.  Nothing like a little pressure!
This pattern is a re-make of an older pattern called Candy Canes and Gingerbread.  The older one only had two gingerbread men and three candy canes and a few other differences.  I decided, during one of my classes, to update the mat.  However, I had put it aside, unfinished, to move onto other projects.  Didn't know Debbie was going to want me to teach it so had to drag it back out and get it done.  I love the new candy canes.
Reagan is tracked out of school for the next three weeks.  Her Mommy called to see if I could watch her today so she could go to her office and get something done.  Reagan is a very busy, creative little girl.  Even though she brought two latch hook rug projects to work on, she ended up wanting to paint.  So she's very busy right now working on a picture of her family that she wants to take home with her this evening.  Can't wait to see the finished product. 

Happy Monday to everyone......................

Friday, March 26, 2010

Raleigh, my three year old granddaughter, showed up at my house in her pajamas this morning with bed head hair and left an hour later as a ballerina!  I take her to school on Friday mornings and today was storybook day at school.  She was to dress up as a favorite storybook character.  She decided to be a ballerina from the Barbie Nutcracker book.  She looked adorable and got right into character, twirling and bowing and all that ballerina jazz!!  I had a hard time getting a picture of her because she kept moving. 
TA-DA!  The final bow.......................  She was so in the moment and so adorable.  Of course, being her Mina I have to say that but she really was.  Sometimes we don't know what surprises the day might bring.  This was a bright spot for my morning!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Good Friends

I just received such a special surprise in the mail.  A wonderful tomato pincushion that belonged to my friend Gwen's Grandmother.  She decided, after seeing my post of tomato pincushions, that it should belong to me.  What a treasure.  Look at the hole where the sawdust is leaking out.  I'm not sure I want to patch that.  It adds such character to this tomato and shows how much it was used by her Granmom Lily May's hands.  Thanks Gwen so much for thinking of me and sharing one of your special treasures.  It will now be a treasure to me.
This sweet verse was on the front of the card included with the pincushion.  Something we should all try to share with our friends.

Recipe for Friendship
Blend conversation,
laughter and fun together.
Add trust and acceptance
and mix well.
Stirring gently,
soften with teardrops
and sweeten
with understanding.
Sprinkle generously
with favorite memories,
decorate with hugs
and smiles, and enjoy!

To all my friends, wishing you a warm and sunny day filled with love and laughter.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Another beautiful spring day, although I spent it indoors working on a project.  I needed to create a new recipe card for the April recipe card classes and hate that I had waited so long to get started.  I think I have it figured out and so far the few people that have seen it have liked it. 
A very springy card this time and a very yummy recipe - Beef Lombardi.  I've made this a couple of times since the new year and everyone loves it.
We just finished up the last chick class for the month.  These little chicks are works in progress.  They aren't quite ready to fly yet!
And these little chicks are all dressed in their finest ribbon, ready for a special Easter basket.  Quite a flock of colorful chicks.  Good job ladies.

Tomorrow is the Chicks and Pussy Willows pillow.  That one is a lot of fun and several ladies have signed up to take that class. 

My husband and I are planning a trip to Oregon in July and he booked our tickets last night.  So it's official now.....we're flying west again.  I'm looking so forward to visiting with Jeff and Debbie and meeting their new triplet granddaughters.  Debbie and I are going to do a little teaching at her favorite local quilt shop, Holly Hill Quilt Shop.  We've already started planning our projects and I think the ladies there will be in for some fun treats.  I'm excited to be able to teach while I'm there.  We just need to make sure we save a little time for the fun antique shops she has all around!!!

Have a great day!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Spring has finally sprung.  But as warm as the temperatures are today, I'm hoping we don't go straight into summer weather.  All the windows are open, fresh air is being circulated throughout the house and it feels wonderful to finally be able to do that. 

And speaking of spring, spring classes are underway.  Met with a group of ladies yesterday to make muffin tin pincushions.  They had a good time choosing designs to stitch on their pincushions.  Each one was so different from the next. 
Everyone was so intent on their projects they didn't even realize I was taking pictures. 

Darlene dove right into the wool scrap pile, looking for the perfect pieces of wool for her applique pieces.  What a treasure trove that is!
While the ladies were busy creating their pincushions, Evette and Laura worked at another table on a different project.  Laura is looking a little confused!

The dawning of another day......beautiful, sunny, very warm, perfect for making baby chicks.  A group of ladies met at my house on Saturday and got busy stitching up chicks.  The goal was to get three done, but one would be wonderful!!  Sometimes we just overshoot our goals, so strive big and accept what you get.
Pam was really concentrating on the sewing machine.  The chick proved to be a bit challenging when attaching the gusset.  Everyone managed to get it done, but there were some bugs to be worked out here and there.  But all in all, I think everyone did a great job and left with no leaky chicks!!
Barbara is intent on getting that huge pile of stuffing in her little chick.  She knows I'll tell her to add more so she's going to town with the stuffing.
Donna is in the witness protection program, so we'll only be viewing her partially done chick!!!  I love the plaid wool she chose.  This wool came from an old Pendelton shirt I cut up.  Perfect in it's new life as a chick.
Debby, Pam and Elizabeth are just so busy.  This was a fun class but a very concentrating group of ladies.  They were determined to get those chicks completed to put in their Easter baskets.
Whoo-hoo.....Debby finished one chick.  Adorable!
Aren't they sweet! 
Oh look, Elizabeth is in the witness protection program too.  She sure has a darling chick. 

I was feeling better last week from my six week bout with bronchitis, still coughing some, but feeling much better.  And then last night I started feeling yucky again, cold symptoms, and today it was full blown runny nose, coughing, sneezing again.  So now I don't know if it's a cold or possibly allergies.  I have a doctor's appointment Monday morning with an allergist, so we'll see what he has to say.  I just apologize to everyone in my classes for being such a sick person the past weeks.  Hopefully the warm air and sunshine will help get rid of all the sniffles!! 

Have a great rest of the weekend.  One more class tomorrow.......

Sunday, March 14, 2010

I think spring is finally trying to show itself in the south.  Normally my daffodils are bloomed by mid-February so we're almost a month behind schedule.  Very unusual for our area to be so late.  But they're here now and they make me smile.  Buds are popping up on all the flowering trees and many are starting to bloom.  Spring is such a beautiful season.

Went on a little road trip to Fayetteville yesterday with Evette and Laura to visit one of our favorite quilt shops - Quilts 'n Tiques.  Gail has so much fabric crammed in her shop, it's an adventure everytime we go there.  You may go in with something in mind and leave with two or three new projects......which is what happened to all of us yesterday.  I really didn't need anything but love to go visit and by the time we left, I had fabric for two quilt projects that I haven't even designed yet!!  Oh well.......nothing like a little push in the right direction. 
Naomi and Gail holding up Calendar Girls quilt.  They have a show coming up later in the month and are going to be selling (hopefully) Calendar Girls patterns.  So I left the quilt with them to display in their booth.  Hope it helps them to sell more patterns! 
I snuck behind the counter and snapped this picture of Gail as she was writing up our tickets and laughing at one of us, probably whining about how much money we were spending.  Thanks for a fun time Gail and Naomi!!  See you later in the month.

I ended up with some free time on Friday and decided to start working on a new pattern I had been thinking of for awhile.  I sat down and drew and drew and drew and came up with a few new line drawings that I need to play around with and get stitched.  That's what the fabric is for that I purchased yesterday.  It really is hard to color plan a project when you're looking at line drawings.  But we all seemed to be envisioning something with all that beautiful fabric so now I need to get busy stitching.  Maybe another block of the month in the works.

Spring classes are gearing up.  Three Little Chicks on Monday and several more during the week.  Come and stitch with me........................Make sure you check the calendar for dates and times.  See you soon.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

To market, to market I go with my wares!  A gathering of a few things I'm taking to the classroom this evening.  Some more cherry pincushion kits and a new March pincushion kit............and some pretty spring colored wool that a couple of gals have asked for. 
I finally finished the stitching on this wallhanging quilt I've been working on off and on since August of last year.  I bought the fabrics when I visited Debbie in Oregon and pieced it together there.  I knew I wanted birds in the blank squares and words in the smaller rectangles but until recently wasn't sure if I needed to draw something.  One day I found an adorable pattern by Kathy Schmitz of all these whirly twirly birds and they were the perfect size and look for my quilt.  And I just added fun bird words to the rectangle blocks.  I got those all finished up last night and am so happy with the way it turned out.  Next is the quilting and binding and it will finally be ready to hang in one of my bedrooms.  I love when something is finally done.....a sense of accomplishment.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

I decided today to change the header on my blog.  No reason except to just have some change.  Those of you that have visited my home know that I love tomato pincushions.  So what better thing to have as the header on my blog than tomato pincushions!  That's my reasoning and I'm sticking to it.  Plus I figured out how to add a picture and just had to try it!!

I have been collecting them for years and get a little giddy when I run across one in an antique shop or a flea market.  They are something that I am always watching for whenever I'm out and about.   I know I could go to the store and buy new pincushions, but they don't have the charm or history of a vintage tomato pincushion.  Think about the person who previously owned the pincushion and what their life might have been like, the wonderful things she may have created with the aid of her little pincushion.

My friend Evette says one can never have too many pincushions, and I add to that tomato pincushions!  I have never counted how many I have but I'm sure there are at least a hundred.  All different sizes, some full of pins and needles, some empty. 
The teeny tiny tomatoes are my most favorite and the most elusive to find.  I keep telling myself I don't need anymore but when I find one, I usually can't resist. 

Right now I have three jars of tomato pincushions in my kitchen.  I thought what more appropriate place to display them than in the kitchen.  Two jars are on my cookbook shelves and my newest addition on the kitchen counter. 

This is my newest addition to the collection.  I won a bid on Ebay for this jar full of pincushions.  That's very unusual to find this many and get a container also.
Found this little pewter dish at Just Country and knew it was made to hold one of my coveted pincushions.
Look at all the beautiful pins in these tomatoes.  That's the way they came to me.  I love when I find them loaded with big old hat pins.
I found this Tomato Butter lamp at Just Country and knew I had to fill it with tomatoes!!  It looks great in the kitchen.

So there's today's post and confession:  I am a tomato pincushion addict!!

Monday, March 8, 2010

What a fun afternoon.  I attended the photo transfer class at Evette's house this afternoon along with several other ladies.  Evette was a great teacher and went step by step to show us how the process worked.  I think everyone was excited and I could just see ideas whirring around in their brains about future projects!  I know I had a couple of brainstorms............
Look how organized she was with the supplies!
She gave everyone a bag of lavendar to add to future pincushions/sachets.  What a sweet display.
Working  hard on our pincushions.
Smile everyone.....we just did photo transfer and had so much fun!
This is a small photo transfer quilt Evette made in honor of her mother.  The possibilities are endless.
This has nothing to do with class.  It was just a great shelf that Evette bought at Just Country and now has it all decorated with lots of fun things. 

For those of you that missed out on the photo transfer class, email me if you want to sign up for a possible future class.

And on a final note, I think the postings I did with  my spring displays worked.  We are going to be in the upper 60's the next couple of days, possibly reaching 70 degrees tomorrow.  So you can all thank me for this drastic change in our temperatures!!  You're welcome!!!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

I am determined to make spring happen!!  I dyed wool yesterday in beautiful greens, roses and yellows.  Now if that's not springy I don't know what is!!!
And today I decided to get out a few spring/Easter decorations to push the season along.
I just love the chickies. 
This is my favorite bunny.  He is made from mohair and I've had him a very long time.  And of course, a couple more chicks.  Now maybe if my house feels like spring, it will be spring outside soon.  If the weather warms up, maybe I'll do some more decorating.
Raleigh was helping me decorate and put the pictures on the blog so we had to include a couple pictures of her.  She chose the poses she wanted me to put on the computer.  I think sometimes she wants to be a model with all her little poses.   When I'm taking pictures of her, she twists and turns and cocks her head from one side to the other.  Maybe she's seen a photo shoot at some time or another, who knows.  She's just funny to me!
So think warmer temperatures everyone and let's make spring arrive here in the sunny south!!