Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Some More Applique and Playing with the Little Bluework Blocks

I had two more blocks cut out and fused to the background so this morning I appliqued them .I am always drawn to the patterns that have grapes or cherries in them. The circles are not bad to do - just takes a little time.

These blocks are so much fun to pick out the fabrics for the leaves. Kaffe F. fabric has such huge flowers in some of the prints that you can find great stuff for smaller leaves. Kind of turns the fabric into swiss cheese, though. I try to take what I need as close to the same spot as possible so I don't ruin the whole piece.

Then I spent an hour os so playing with the little bluework blocks. I had soaked them all in some special soap I bought someplace and it did clean them up quite well but there still are signs of the hoop in some of them. By the way, when I spritzed them with water and ironed them, they smelled wonderful!! Whatever that stuff was that I used was really great smelling. I found this setting on the internet and thought that the little triangles in the corner of each block would detract from any faint stain. They really look pretty good. Also found three more pieces of fabric to go with the blue from my Aunt Gracie stash. I like the touch of red. (Click to enlarge)

Sunday, March 29, 2009

The Other Little Blocks

Here are the other blocks that are either finished or ready to be appliqued. One more is on the ironing board in the basement but just in the "picking out the fabric" stage. It's like eating potato chips!! (Click to enlarge)

What a Difference a Color Change Can Make

I should stay out of my basement - I start playing with some fabric and end up getting involved in working on another project. This time I was going through some fabric I had gathered together to go with the little lavendar and cream wiggly stripe that I bought on sale at Material Mart a long time ago. Then I got out more fabric and a really cool book that Julie gave me the weekend of our quilt show. I have a book by the same author that I have had for a long time, but this one has all of the blocks in the original plus enough more to make 101. I just love the blocks in that book. Anyway, I have made four blocks and am now working on the fifth. The size is eight inches and pretty simple so actually doesn't take long to do after you decide on the fabrics. This block had been completed ready for applique but I just wasn't too taken with it. It needed something - so I decided to give it something bright - don't you think it makes a big difference? Just changing the little cherries from the lavendar (which looked okay) to the hot pink really gave it some sparkle. Picking the colors is something I really enjoy when it comes to applique - it's amazing how they just seem to fit together when you hit on the right combination. (Click to enlarge)

Friday, March 27, 2009

Ain't She Sweet?

In going through the old pictures the other day, I ran across this picture of a cute little girl, Carol Charlene, with her leggings (I guess that is what she has on), a furry coat, and great doll buggy and big doll! And in the big buggy next to her is her cousin, Harry Arthur Pearce (Hap). I probably was somewhere around 3 1/2 years old. This was taken in front of the house we lived in on West Lake in Peoria Heights. Don't recall having many toys as an older child since the depression had a profound effect on my parents - as it did on so very many people. However, I was the first grandchild near my grandparents so probably was doted upon. (Is that correct grammar?) (Click to enlarge)

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Red Delicious Block 5

Still needs something to depict the tassles at the end of the little strings. All the appliques except the strings are stitched in gold thread and I think I will glue a rhinestone on the black dots on the blades at each end. (Click to enlarge)

Some Pretty Birds Stopped By this morning

As you probably know by now, there isn't a heck of a view to look at from my house. However, I am not complaining--I love my little place! It's just right for an old hag. Occasionally, there is a nice diversion and this morning one came along. Actually, a week or so ago this happened but I wasn't able to get a picture.
These are cedar waxwings - about the size of a cardinal and with a tuft, also. The first time I ever saw one was years and years ago in Iowa. It seems like they must migrate through since they are never around for long. When we spotted them the first time I looked them up in a bird book and found out what they were. The pictures aren't too clear but I took them through the window behind the curtain. The birds are easily spooked. Then I isolated the single birds in one of the pictures and enhanced them. I think they turned out pretty good. Funny, I didn't think birds liked the berries on the mountain ash tree, but the finches ate them last fall and now these fellows are enjoying the dried ones this spring. (Click to enlarge)

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Another Old, Old Picture

This picture is for Jonathan, a friend who visits my blog and likes old pictures. I thought you would enjoy this one of my mother, grandparents and aunt and uncles taken probably somewhere around 1920 in Peoria, Illinois, their home town. Cool convertible, right? And the wheels and fenders are something else. Note the carriage lights under the windshield. Grandpa looks really proud of that car. My mother is the first lady on the left in her pretty big hat with her little sister, my Aunt Leah, between her and my grandma. Then my Uncle Ed in the back and my grandpa and Uncle Ham in the front seat. The only family member not in the car was my Aunt Nelle who had married and moved to San Francisco. I hope you enjoy this picture, Jonathan, and I hope that you are feeling better. May God bless. (Click to enlarge - it enlarges great!)

I Finally Saw One

Just went out to put the trash container and recycle bin back into the carport so it wouldn't be blown away and there it was!!! My first robin sighting of spring! Now there will be many, but the first one is special.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Going Through Bins in the Basement

This weekend I was going through plastic bins of fabric and a few old projects that I never finished and probably never will. I ran across these quilt blocks that I had intended to be a large, hand-quilted piece when I started it about 11 or 12 years ago. There are quite a few applique blocks that were in various stages of completion. About four of them I had already done in satin stitching, which I don't do much anymore. Anyway, I started playing with the blocks and came up with this group which I buttonhole appliqued.

Almost all of the fabrics are tiny prints which you don't see much of these days. Actually, there are some very pretty, dainty little patterns.
I like this little bird block, but would have picked different fabrics for the flowers. Decided to let it be, though.

This one I almost screwed up and it was the most work with 44 little grapes to go around. I had cut the background larger than the pieced blocks. In trimming the applique block to fit the pieced one I messed up and cut it too small. I was not about to lose this one so I made it fit - the seam on the block is quite small but won't be handled a lot so should be fine. Senior moment?

Just a nice little block - easy to do and one that fits right in.Ditto this simple little pattern. Now I will figure out a border - there are a lot of 2" squares that I had cut out and I may work with those or I could do a vine with appliqued flowers. I certainly had no intention of working with this when I went to the basement this weekend, but it just seemed to be the designated task.
I wonder when I will quit wanting to do everything that I see--and I wonder if other quilters feel the same way. As I have said before, I will never be bored!
(Click to enlarge)

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Two Little Girls in the Thirties

These two little girls all dressed in overalls and a kerchief are Carol and Joanne at a long, long ago picnic with our family which I just barely remember. Jo used to say that she remembered they forgot to bring the plates, but that Grandpa, who was a salesman for Thomas & Clark Cracker Company, made plates from cracker boxes. She was so little, but she was adamant about her memory. The picture is oil tinted - the only way you had colored photos back in the "old days". This is another picture I just love and I have it hanging here in my computer room. I miss my sister. (Click to enlarge)

Thursday, March 19, 2009

A Tisket A Tasket #3 and Birdies

Here is the latest basket block. Fun, quick little blocks to do. The other day when going through some files of pictures I came across this picture I took when we were in KC at Bill and Ann's for Norah's graduation from law school several years ago. Hanging from the tree by their patio was this little bird house with the hungry little baby birds waiting for their momma to bring them some bugs. I was able to get two pictures but this one was the best. Tomorrow, I think, is the first day of spring so thought this was appropriate.
(Click to enlarge)

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

An Old Family Picture I Didn't See Until a Few Years Ago

Unlike today when people have boxes and disks full of photos, there were very few pictures of our family taken back in the thirties when we three kids were little. Some time back, my brother Bud (or Chuck as everyone else calls him now) sent me this picture I don't remember ever having seen. This is the only one I can recall of my Dad and the three of us. My little sister, Joanne, is on one arm of the chair and I am on the other, with Buddy on Dad's lap. I cannot remember Dad ever wearing white pants but he surely did. I love this picture. I have other pictures that were taken on the same day but none with Dad in them. This was undoubtedly taken with my Mom's really old box camera - and it did take good pictures. (Click to enlarge)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Another Beautiful Day

The banana bars I mentioned yesterday turned out great. Here they are minus the icing which I put on not long after the picture was taken. Called for cream cheese icing but was out of that so just made the plain powdered sugar variety which did the job well. In a comment from Feather Duster the recipe was requested so here it is----
Frosted Banana Bars
1/2 c. butter, softened
1 1/2 c. white sugar
2 eggs
1 c. sour cream
1 t. vanilla
2 c. all purpose flour
1 t. baking soda
1/4 t. salt
1 c. mashed ripe bananas

Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 10 x 15 jelly roll pan. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Stir in sour cream and vanilla. Combine flour, baking soda and salt, stir into batter. Finally, mix in the mashed banana. Spread evenly in prepared pan.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Allow bars to cool completely before frosting with cream cheese frosting. If in a hurry, use the prepared frosting. If you have the time, make your own. Either way, these are yummy. (Click to enlarge)

Monday, March 16, 2009

Just Like Spring

What a gorgeous day!! Makes you feel good that it's so springlike even though we still have more cold and probably snow to go through but at least there's a light at the end of the tunnel. I did something I have been wanting to do all winter........washed the storm door windows and the patio door. Everytime I look through the patio door I see the deposit a bird, who must have been flying sideways, made on the glass. I guess we can all be thankful that cows don't fly.
And look at what else I found in the little garden area off my patio. There are some hardy little violas that come up every year from some that I planted several years ago.
And here are the resident turkeys foraging for food in Andy's yard. Hope you're enjoying pretty weather wherever you are, too. Now I am seriously thinking of making some banana bars to take to Sit and Sew tomorrow. That is one yummy bar!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

One More on the Quilt Show

There were some lovely pieces featuring embroidery and here are some of them. Carol R. did a lovely little wallhanging with hand embroidered hearts.

Of course, this is not embroidery! But it is a lovely miniature quilt that is hung with the others and you can see from the next picture just how small it is. Beautiful, Barbara!

A wonderful Christmas wallhanging to cherish for all the years to come. I am not sure of the makers of these lovely pieces. I think they were made by Karen and Kathy - someone leave a comment and set the oldhag straight. I apologize! I have put a closeup of two of the blocks below. Aren't they pretty? Another piece with just precious blocks. I think these are all wonderful.
(Click to enlarge)

Quilts, Quilts and More Quilts

My little white wool piece - one of my favorites.
Wall of gridgame round robin challenge quilts Nancy's Betty Ann's Christmas wallhanging from book by Piece o' Cake

Carol's Butterflies Claire's Playing card - 6 diamond earrings Debbie's playing card Kathy'sJack of Clubs by Amanda This is just awesome and it is by Linda. Nancy did this wonderful quilt. I am sorry it is fuzzy - the quilt is gorgeous.Bargello by EarleneCarol's Icicles

(Click any picture to enlarge)

Leslie, Our Featured Quilter

This charming fellow was in the foyer to greet the people who came to see our quilt show. He was the creation of
Leslie, who is the president of our guild and this year's featured quilter. Leslie is in her second year of being our leader - and what a great job she does and what a fun girl she is. We have so many hard workers to keep the guild fresh and fun and it is a joy to be a member. The featured quilter's work is displayed in the foyer and up the hall to the main room of the Carriage House. It is a bit difficult getting pictures in the hall, but you can get an idea of how it looks. Leslie's quilts lovely.These two pretty quilts are on racks in the foyer.One more friendly fellow welcoming our show attendees. (Click any picture to enlarge)