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Monday, March 30, 2015

Yellow and gray, black and white and orange too....milkweed and daffodils!

It is still March, a month which always makes me love yellow! This crib quilt was strongly influenced by one I saw on Pinterest.....
 
 
 
It also picks up all the colors of our daffodils, right outside the door!
 
 
 
So, no wonder, with these colors and images in my subconscious, I fell in live with this Abstract Expressionist painting at Crystal Bridges this week!
 

"Milkweed" by Lee Krasner, 1955.


 

My friend Sandra met me there and we toured the "Van Gogh to Rothko" exhibit. Before we left, Sandra took my photo near the painting. The scale is larger than you might think!
I look at this painting and at photos of milkweed (also known as butterfly weed because monarch butterflies hatch out on it and feed on it as caterpillars!)...... The seed pod stage of the plant definitely relates to the paintng!

[I think this caterpillar would blend into my quilt design very well!]

 

Lee Krasner was a woman artist, brilliant in her own right and a great mentor for her husband, Jackson Pollock.

 
 
An early self-portrait, 1929.
 
With her husband...
 

 

Another later self-portrait.

 

An abstract painting/collage by Krasner....similar to the one I saw.

 
 
There is a recent biography of Lee which has good reviews!

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One more yellow image for March.....love this quote!

 

 

Monday, March 23, 2015

Spring break then and now! Making plans...

Years ago, my daughter's first spring break....we drove north of Little Rock to see the daffodils at Wye Mountain. These were planted years ago and have naturalized, spreading more every year! I did an earlier post about this in March of 2008.... In case you remember! LOL!


This year, she is far away and planning her own Spring Break trip with her 4 children, hubby and nanny!
No, they aren't coming here, but to Virginia to visit godparents! A good thing!

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The warmer and longer spring days led Mr. P and me to make a trip to nearby Eureka Springs on Saturday....hope to have more photos (of daffodils and old barns) to post soon, but for now, I'll just show my choice of shoes for the day.
My red and purple Mary Janes! Ever the child at heart, I love these (and my red cowgirl boots too!)





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Further plans for this week include a trip to a newly opened local tea shoppe! I hope to enlist some friends and maybe some of their grandchildren to come too...



I will try the matcha.....and perhaps bring some home, as I have been seeing recipes for coconut ice cream with matcha, gluten free mug cakes with matcha....!!!



 Matcha mug cake recipe is HERE! [Photo from A Calculated Whisk]

Matcha is finely ground green tea leaves from Japan. It has 10x the antioxidants of most tea!

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W are trying something new in the laundry....instead of detergent.


This laundry ball goes inthe wash with the clothes....and supposedly make the water molecules so efficient that suds are no longer needed. My first load is in the dryer...have my fingers crossed!

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I am now crocheting a striped blanket. I had all this yarn left from a granny square delight last year!



This is easier than all those granny squares! And no joining together to finish!


More needlework...
I recently picked up this "Lorna Doone" quilt ( from a kit using Kaffe Fassett fabrics,,,except for my own choice of border and binding!) from long arm quilter Sonja Koch.




Now I am sewing on the binding! A colorful batik which should wear well. (Not sure I really like batiks with patterns like this....so much like tie-dye! but it works here!) Below, you can see the floral striped backing too.


Here is a photo of a kindred spirit....I just love this! Her life may be hard, but she escapes into beauty!
gotta love those chickens too!


Sunday, March 15, 2015

A really fun week! Including dinners with Beth Moore's big brother, LOL!

Wow, this week got to be very fun, Inspite of a slow, cold rainy start! I spent at least one day early in the week, sewing and machine quilting several quilt tops. Probably stayed in my cozy pj's all day that day!

This one "Dutch Mills", I love for all the scrappy goodness! Binding it now!

 

Here (below) is a little red white and blue crib quilt. One block has the Razorback, another the state of Arkansas...dogs and farm animals, cars, airplanes, and sailboats.

I made it for a little boy coming into our lives from China. Here, I give it to his grandmother, Barbara.

...and we examine the back side which has a whimsical map of the world. He can see where he is from and where he is now!

 

Then the week changed pace! The tour for "Joseph and the Technicolor Dream Coat" came to town.The conductor is Wayne Green, my junior high and high school classmate....always so smart and TALENTED!

He has had a very interesting career in musical theater!

Several classmates came into town and we had time to visit with Wayne.

Here after breakfast at Arsaga's on Friday.

Inside with the red glow from "Hugo's" restaurant's neon retro decor.... more classmates!We are glowing and happy to see each other (cell phone photo by my husband, Steve)He and Wayne really hit it off, and Steve invited Wayne to have dinner at our house before his Saturday evening performance. I made Tabriz meatballs ( ground lamb, spices and a dried prune in the center) with Basmati rice and yogurt. Sorry, it was a busy evening and I didn't get photos!Old year books were pulled out and memories poured over! A great visit!

Truly, the effort made by each classmate, to come if they could was such a blessing! It meant so much to Wayne!

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By the way...Wayne's little sister is Beth Moore! Two gifted siblings, for sure!

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Now, today the sun is out! It feels like SPRING!

I cleaned out my little garden surface, found strawberries and cilantro still alive, and sowed leaf lettuce!

 

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Snowy weekend! Still sewing...and dreaming...

Last week I made small quilts using natural linen lattice and background.....I love the zakka look!

 

I am hand quilting this lovely pink and taupe quilt with pink perle cotton, and sashiko needles. As much as I love pink, this is one of my favorite!

It is too cold in the sewing studio this morning, so I have set up one of my machines on the breakfast table. This is a 3/4 size Kenmore 1040 which is a little workhorse! And cute too!

 

 

Some natural light from the snowy world outside will add to the joy of working here! This is what I will be making, a crib quilt from a charm pack, plus more 5" squares from my stash.

Of course, I may add borders if I need to enlarge the quilt top!

I am really trying to get lots of my sewing and quilting projects well underway. It is discouraging to see the fabrics and patterns stacked in their bins. So much more fun to see them come into "being"!

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I have always made things! And I come by this trait from my mother. She is gone now, but she left this quilt top which she pieced from a Kansas City Star pattern in the 1940's. She was in college and probably pieced it in the summers at home. It is no small undertaking, lots of small pieces, using purchased lavender and gold cotton along with family scraps.

I have now taken it to be quilted. Then perhaps it can be a wedding gift for her namesake great granddaughter...when that day comes?

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For a while in the late 1970's, I was learning to weave. I took tapestry classes from a wonderful teacher...... we had a shop in Little Rock with many fibers and yarns to chose from.

I still have this wall hanging from those days, and am delighted that my daughter now wants it to hang in her newly painted dining room!

And to think, I almost donated it to a thrift store in my decluttering!

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A couple of knitting projects I would like to do....this sweater!....and this one...madelinetosh "Creature Comforts Cardi", pattern available on Ravelry.

A show I have enjoyed watching....it can be streamed onto the iPad ...

Of course it makes me want to bake instead of sew, paint, knit ......makes me very hungry indeed, LOL!

 

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A book I have on reserve at our library....so there is no end to what can make life enjoyable!

[not to mention a granddaughter's first track meet, and a grandson's first soccer practice!]

 

 

Now to post this and get back to making things!

 

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Projects for cold winter days!

 

An ice storm just south of us hit the area where my brother farms. This photo of an old iron bridge near his home was on the local news. It is so beautiful, but not too much fun! The ice breaks the power lines, and homes are then hard to heat! Fortunately, they have a cast iron wood burning stove!

I stay "in" a lot when the temperature is below freezing outside. I turn on the heat in the sewing room and spend time working on piecing blocks!

Here is one which I am working on now...called "Dutch Breeze". Very scrappy and easy!

It is from a McCall's Scrappy Quilts magazine.

More Dutch Breeze blocks today! This magazine has the pattern for the "Haiku Charm" quilt which I made last week, with my Japanese indigos!

And it has a pattern using Japanese taupes which I also plan to make!

This will be another easy, fun small quilt!

When I make the Dutch Breeze blocks, I end up with even smaller little scraps, pieced in threes! So I make some irregular little 9 patches....these will be in a quilt with lots of natural linen...a little Zakka* quilt, or maybe 2! For the small quilt auction which will be at the quilt show!

* Zakka, the art of finding savvy in the mundane.

As the quilt show approaches, ( in April) I have been sewing hanging sleeves and labels on the ones which I will hang in the show. Here they are!

 

 

 

 

 

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