Sunday, December 28, 2014

I joined the CQJP2015 project in an attempt to get back to at least a flavor of crazy quilting in my work. Each month I will make a 8" Crazy quilt circle using a mother of pearl button as a focal point. 

I have been watching  Gerry Krueger's blog and have been inspired watching her as she made her 8"squares and assembled her materials for CQJP2015 .  
I love this suitcase that a friend gave me.  She took it to college with her in 1962. I like to use it when I start a project to keep all the fabrics I think I might use together.  

I also gathered "some"  laces, trims, and of course feathers etc to have on hand.

I love crazy quilting but I love tambour work more.  My background will be black organza that I will layer with other fabrics and laces.
I have not shown you the sequins and beads that are overflowing their respective containers.

I have been experimenting and trying to get the CQ feel.

Have to wait until later in January for before the unveiling the first Circle of 2015.
Hoping you all had a wonderful Holiday and wishing you all a very Happy New Year!!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

I love to buy patterns for embellishing clothes.  I found this pattern on Etsy and had a cardigan I wanted to experiment on.

I simplified the design and only embellished the front of the sweater. (Sorry I didn't take a before unembellished sweater picture.)
The buttons were rather drab so I added a large drop bead that fits the button hole.
Now I have a new sweater!

Friday, November 28, 2014

I finished the evening purse for the Christmas on the Green fair at the First Church of Christ Longmeadow MA.

The Fair is Dec 6 from 9 to 3.  It's a great day.  The fair is not the usual craft  fair.  It is put on by all the people in the church we have a silent auction, vintage home goods, rummage room, book room, children's room, bake sale, Christmas room, picture gallery, luncheon, and of course Santa is there!
Stop by if you are in town!

Friday, November 21, 2014

lI made this evening purse for the Silent Auction at the First Church Fair in 2011.   I was asked to make another for the upcoming fair on December 6.

I am in the process of making another.  I am using Superior Glitter thread, 3mm cup sequins, size15 seed beads, a few Swarovski crystals and bugle beads on the front design.
 I love the way they pick up the light 

The back is black vintage beads and square sequins.
The easy part is done!  Now to sew it together !*~€?£
I am writing this post on my I-Pad because my compute has died once again!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

No Tambour Here!!

I have been collecting cashmere sweaters again to felt and chop up into my own creation. The last time I did this I gave them to a friend because I did not think I would ever do anything with them. This time I was determined to make a jacket.  I searched for a pattern high and low and found this Burda pattern 8168.  

Instead of making a" muslin" I purchased some felt to made the jacket with first.  I soon realized I did not have nearly enough coordinating sweater pieces to make the jacket.  I went to a local fabric store and bought 2 yards of orange cashmere wool for $35. 
Then I set about felting the sweaters and the fabric.  I  boiled water on the stove to pour into my washing machine so I could felt the cashmere fabric and the sweaters.  I did the sweaters first and they worked out fine.  Then I felted the 2 yards of cashmere fabric.  It turning it into 1 1/2 yards of fabric and 1/2 yard of orange fluffy lint in the washing machine!  BIG MESS!  But I persevered and cleaned up the mess.
I put my paper piecing Crazy Quilt skills into cutting out the fabric. I sewed it together and love the results.
The button was given to me last Sunday out of the blue by a friend.  It was her mothers and she knew I liked buttons!!

I still have lots left including pastels so I will have to contemplate another in a different pattern. That's what I have been up to lately!

Friday, September 19, 2014

I have always needed a lighted magnifying lamp when I embroider.  For years I used this model which worked well, but after time the springs would squeak, the arm wouldn't stay put, and the nuts that held the screws in place fell off and got vacuumed up until it finally fell apart.  I have probably gone through 4 or 5 of them.
About 5 years ago my husband surprised me with a Luxo lamp that looked a lot like the spring one above but as the literature says the "45" patented internal spring K-arm offers an infinite number of adjustable positions and an adjustable neck moves the Magnifier, head vertically and horizontally to provide total flexibility. Once adjusted, perfect balance is maintained by tempered steel springs"Fabulously it does all that but last week it stopped working.   What we thought was a simple bulb replacement turned into a switch problem.   My husband looked on-line and saw they have a new LED model.  To make a long story short this baby arrived at our door last night!! 

Its wonderful the light is so bright I just love it!!
It goes where you want it to and stays put!

This is a shirt I am working on.  I will show more in a later post.
No one is paying me for this endorsement!! 

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Well after cleaning/organizing my stash and a little retail therapy I am feeling much better.
This is a book I recently purchased on Amazon on tambour beading.  Although it is in French I do enjoy looking at the pictures and trying to figuring out what they are doing.    
This book along with the weird wonky top I purchased at the Eileen Fisher sample sale leftover rack for $20 inspired a new project.
I liked the way this top in the book was embroidered so I took the side seams out of the Eileen Fisher top and made it symmetrical... actually it wasn't cut on the straight of the grain so it will always be a little wonky!
I copied the pattern in the book making it fit my top and changing it around to simplify it.
I found this "Sticky Wet N Melt" water soluble temporary stabilizer at the Worcester MA sewing show earlier in the year.  I mounted the stabilizer on a frame and just laid the top on it evenly and it stuck enough so I was able to work on it.  
I embroidered beads around the neckline and decorated the rest with beads and sequins.
The top  is washable and the beads and sequins are color fast. When I was done I cut away as much of the stabilizer as possible and ran cold water over the rest to remove the remainder of the stabilize.

Now I have a fancy top!!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

 Lately I have been in a funk so to speak.  Trying to figure out the Lier Lace  fillings with some success but so many stitches.  Guess I am lazy!!   The main reason is that two good friends of mine and one of my daughters 15 year old friend passed away in the last month.  My sadness has dried up my creative juices.
Instead of vegetating on the couch and eating.... 
I have decided to clean/organizing my stash and eat!!
Here is one area that I have organized and filled the draws with odd sized beads larger then size 11 and weird shaped sequins. On top of the bookcase is a glass Christmas tree that I put all my glass buttons in.
You can see why I didn't sign up for the "where artists create blog hop".   Its not too pretty!!  Lately every time I see one of those little metal boxes or other cabinets that tools usually live in I acquire it with the intention of cleaning it up and painting it.  I have managed to clean them but the paint part takes more energy then 
I care to put into it right now.  

I also have a map chest with 16 drawers.  In the top draw are six plastic inserts arranged in two piles of three.  I did crazy quilting for a long time and collected lots of buttons etc.  I particularly like the flowers and the kitty faces on the extreme right.

This is just some of the top draw..... One down and 15  to go!!! I have realized that if I never bought another bead, button, or sequin again it would be too soon!!
Hope everyone is enjoying their summer.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Well I have been plugging away on my Lier Lace sampler.  It's a lot of stitches!!! A whole lot.........
The top row left got a little wonkie so I will have to pull it out.  I decided to take a rest and go onto something else I am working on. 
This has quelled my fears about working on tulle and given me some knowledge about how to mount the tulle on the frame.  So I decided to experiment on regular tulle from my stash.

 The flower I am working on is a carnation ... maybe ... The bottom three layers will be tulle outlined in gold metallic thread.  I have not figured out a good way to transfer the design onto the tulle so I traced the flower and cut it out of heavy paper.  Then I sewed it to the tulle and outlined it in the metallic thread.  Next I will carefully cut them out of the tulle. 
The flower designs I am working on are traced  onto  silk organza.
 I used a new pen to transfer the design (Pilot  FriXion erasable) I purchased at a textile show that disappears when heat is applied... and it does!

The top of the flower will be the gold velvet outlined in tiny size 15 gold steal cut beads I hoard.  The design is Persian and symmetrical.  so I am doing all the fun stuff first before I trace the whole design onto the organza background and add the flowers.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Last Friday I was the featured artist at  the Windowbox Boutique in Stafford Springs CT.  On the  second Friday of each month the main street is alive with people.  The local theater had the doors wide open and had a live jazz band playing.  The shops were open and many featured artists of one type or another and had goodies to munch on.   It was a great time.  I did demo's and had my quilt on display and made some flowers to sell.

Great time!!

My newest adventure!!
 Ever since I found this book on Lier Lace, which is made using a tambour hook, I have been intrigued with it.  I found a website left several messages but got no reply.  

Several weeks ago I got an e-mail from a follower in Germany looking for some information and in our correspondence she mentioned another teacher of  Lier and gave me her website.
The teachers name is Fie van Dyk and has a website   I ordered the books with of course the English translation and threads and tulle.
It took me all day Saturday to figure out how to mount the tulle so it was square.  The sampler below is the suggested  piece for the introduction to Lier Lace.
One chain stitch in every "!@#***" hole!
Perhaps my biggest lesson is that all tulle is not created equal.  I have attempted to embroider on Joanne's Fabrics cheep tulle with a little success.  This is cotton tulle....what color can I dye it??? ... and is $80.00 a meter