Little Red Cabinet - before and after

Well it's done and assembled... Click to see larger image....What do you think???
Painted furniture appeals to my CQ encrusted brain.....

I did make an extra "tray" top that I can lift on and off and it extends the top by 3" in both directions as the whole purpose of this project was to have more space.... I will add fancy handles to fancy top!!!! To see some FANTASTIC painted furniture..... http://www.reincarnations.com/

CQ cover Tut for DayPlanner/Address Book/ Notebook

(This is for my sweet friend Debbie from Maine) Covers need not to be for just needlebooks. They are great for day planners, address books, dairies, and notebooks. For these there needs to be an open center seam in the lining....

By adding zippers and pockets the cover can be converted to travel jewelry roll.

Finished diary cover


Oatmeal Sourdough Cinnamon Rolls - bread machine

A neighbor spent his Xmas Day going around the prairie plowing out folks that were stranded which certainly included us.. Today I am baking him something special..
Or if you are running out of friends to give starter or your cinnamon rolls double as door stops, try this recipe. It is my all-time favorite for cinnamon rolls and I do it in my bread machine... The oatmeal gives these rolls a light flaky texture. This recipe also makes wonderful dinner rolls...

Oatmeal Sourdough Cinnamon Rolls with craisins

FIRST: put 1/4 c. orange juice over 1 c. craisins, cover and put in microwave for 30 seconds and let cool....

Then put the following ingredients in your bread machine:
1/2 cup warm water
2 teaspoons yeast
3 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon molasses
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 cup sourdough starter
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup quick cooking oats
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
Select dough cycle; press start. After the dough cycle has finished and dough has doubled in size turn it out onto a lightly floured surface, cover and let rest for 10 minutes.
1 cup brown sugar, packed
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1/3 cup butter, softened
In a small bowl, combine brown sugar and cinnamon. Roll dough into a 16x21 inch rectangle. Spread dough with 1/3 cup butter and sprinkle evenly with sugar/cinnamon mixture and craisins. Roll up dough and cut into 15 rolls. Place rolls in a lightly greased 9x13 inch baking pan. Cover and let rise until nearly doubled, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Bake for 20 minutes

Spread this frosting on warm rolls before serving.
1 (3 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


Christmas dinner at Kruegers

My little mobile sewing station is right next to this window and there is constant drama. This morning we had our usual mob of song birds and woodpeckers plus dozens of quail, 2 pheasant, 1 rabbit and 1 deer during the time I sat stitching. The occasional hawk flies through and everyone scatters for cover but quickly return when danger has passed.


Happy holidays to ewe!

I have a very old ewe, Dolly, who is really getting "long-in-the-tooth" but she is a wonderful mother and has the most beautiful daughters. Most of my sheep have longer narrow heads but Dolly's daughters are born with heads that are almost heart shaped and they mature with large wide-set eyes and extremely long lashes. Above is Amber... born last April. I chose her for my Xmas lamb this year and with a little help from my photo software I adorned her with a wreath. She'll bedeck our xmas cards and bridge tallies during this season.

Although gorgeous Amber is very mischievous and a greedy eater. As a lamb she continually slipped under fences and gates and then bawled her head off because she was separated from her momma. She caused her momma no end of aggravation. Below is Amber at just a few days old. She just couldn't eat from the basket, she had to jump right into it..... Still first at the feeder.


Stencils on Buttons

I gathered these stencils are for etching on glass. They were very intricate and a filmy material that clings to a surface. I used the 1" wide border strip at least thirty times before I was done with cabinet (see below) and it was pretty much done also. But I wanted to see what would happen on a button. I used one wing of the larger butterfly on a 1 1/4" MOP button and one wing of a tiny butterfly from the strip on a 3/4" button... They are VERY rough but I can see that stenciling on buttons has lots of possiblilites and I am going to order another packages. I purchased these at

but I'm sure larger craft stores would carry them....

Done..ready to assemble

Finished this morning and wanted to post one last shot before assembling this evening. I LOVED the butterfly stencils...especially the tiny 1" ones I used for the border and I tried them on a button.....I experimented with the larger butterflies. On one panel I started to fill them in like the pansies but didn't like it. On the other side panel and door I just outlined the stencil which I really liked.. On the top I did nothing to the big butterflies except fill in the bodies and I like those also. This turned into a much bigger project but I am happy that I did it. Using stencils really helped to speed things up.


Metallic Needlework Cover

Finished my "metallics" needlebook cover for the December challenge. Since we are still snowed in my DH is on the computer all the time. It's amazing how much more I get done when I can't sit at the computer. I'm thinking this needlecase will be for me.......... encrusted and my colors.... I deserve it...right???

Progress on Little Red Cabinet

Well all the pansy work is done. Today I am starting on the butterfly borders and accent butterflies and if all goes well I can do the rest of the black and gold on Sunday.... So the end is in sight as the most tedious work is done. I am so anxious to put it together but it is sooooooooo much easier to work on in pieces...


24" in 24 hours

24" of snow in 24 hours and 9 more expected this afternoon. These are tables I use for parties in the garden....Both DH and I have been pulling snow off the greenhouses, sheep shelters and gazebo. We have a large snow rake with a 14' handle made for just this purpose. We had to shovel out an area big enough for dogs to urinate, as the snow is well over their heads...

The city has shut down..schools, buses, offices, roads... But you know...I love it...

When life gives you lemons......

Last month I bought a big bag of lemons at Costco and made lemon poppy seed breads, lemon pie, lemon sorbet, lemon curd and, best of all, mini loafs from a Sour Cream and Lemon Pound Cake recipe which was fantastic and has been my hostess gifts this holiday season. Now gone, I have another big bag of lemons and making just the mini loafs..

Sour Cream and Lemon Pound Cake
( 5 or 6) mini loafs
3 cups cake flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt1 cup
(2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
3 cups sugar
6 eggs, room temperature
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon grated lemon peel
1 cup sour cream
Preheat oven to 325°F. Grease 16-cup tube pan or 5 or 6 mini loaf pans. Dust pan with cake flour; tap out excess flour. Sift flour, baking soda and salt into medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat butter in large bowl at medium speed until fluffy. Gradually add sugar and beat 5 minutes. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating just until combined after each addition. Beat in lemon juice and peel. Using rubber spatula, mix in dry ingredients. Mix in sour cream. Transfer batter to prepared tube pan. or mini loaf pans.... Bake cake until tester inserted near center comes out clean, about 1 hour 30 minutes. Let cake cool in pan on rack 15 minutes. Brush with glaze.... Turn out cake/ loaves.

Lemon Glaze: 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice 1 1/2 cups sugar Combine the lemon juice and sugar in a small saucepan and cook over medium heat until sugar disolves, stirring often. Brush hot glaze on warm loafs/cake. I poke holes with wood skewer to let the glaze saturate the loafs/cake


My favorite book for 2008

Of all the books I bought in 2008 this one is by far my favorite...Goldwork by Mary Brown. In fact it will be one of my all-time favorites. I used it on Bonnie's fan block and am trying to incorporate it more and more into my work. It fits right in with CQ embellishing and the techniques work with other trims as well. All these challenges just get my poor old brain buzzing and Cathy said metallics for December I popped out this book and lots of gold stuff. Hope to finish it this weekend but today I am PAINTING on my little red cabinet...

Needle books/ Address book covers

At the retreat I started a couple needlebook/addressbook covers for Christmas gifts. I kept thinking of one more person until I had 6 going at once and now the outer shells are about done. Altho I used tapestry instead of quilt squares, I tried to incorporate most of my favorite QC techniques. Since some are not needle women (can you imagine) they will be covers for day planners or address books...
Is there anyone that doesn't know how to do a lining so a book can be slipped in? I will be glad to tut one!


Cabinet Progress

The cabinet came unassembled which is great as it was easy to paint all the parts red and start on the cabinet door. First I stenciled it with an old thrift store stencil. If you look closely at the stencil you will see that it is far wider than the little panel and only has 4 pansies. So I just stenciled the 3 center pansies in white and then shifted the stencil a few times to make a tight bunch of 6 pansies and then I just shifted it a bit to stencil the greenery...
After it was stenciled white I proceeded to fill it in with craft paints. It saves drawing time and is like using a coloring book almost and the easiest way to replicate an image. Unfortunately the flash sucked the color out of the pansies but will get a better color shot later. Will stencil sides today.


On being first

If I had to choose my favorite position in an RR rotation, I would say it would being first to work on a block. There is something decadent about getting a blank block and having all that space tempting you. This block was part of a 2007 Encrusted RR and belonged to Cobi in Leiden Netherland. It arrived pieced with gorgeous velvets and satins with an image of a lady pinned to it.

At the time I was experimenting with beading from pixalized images so I beaded the bird first... I've not beaded from an image in a long time and if there's room on Jo's COC block when it arrives I'll do a bird or flower. At the moment I am blockless which hasn't happened in a long time.

This block went from me to Leslie in CO, Ati in Norway, Maire in NY and then back to Cobi. Since it was an encrusted theme there were no holds barred. I always sent to Leslie and knew however over-the-top I was, she would raise the bar (and she always did...) Below is how it looked when it returned to Cobi... I'm hoping someone will start another encrusted RR in 2009.

Note: For those not familiar with CQI, it is a group of woman from all over the world who love crazy quilting. Five at a time sign up for a round robin and make a block. Each block travels in rotation until it is returned after all members of the round robin have worked on it. It is great fun and fellowship..


New necklace from old jewelry

The love I have for mixing, salvaging, and using all bits and bobs is what I love about crazy quilting but it carries over in all I do... I had a necklace that I purchased years ago that was filigree and chain which I liked when I bought it but it was "neon" brass and I'm sure if I were lost at sea in a fog, rescuers could have found by the glow from the brass. So I found some acid to soak it in to "age" it. But it was still blah and the "aging" was a bit uneven.

I used to wear brooches when I worked but don't anymore so searched thru them to find something to jazz up the necklace and glued on a costume cameo. I wore it yesterday to a Christmas luncheon and received comments from everyone (even store clerks). It was amazing how many thought it was really an heirloom piece.. So now I'm searching thru a few of my brooches (Cqers NEVER throw anything away) and definitely see some possiblities....


Bedside cabinet

The plain black image on the right is my new project...pretty bland huh? The Asian chests on the left are my inspiration... (They sell for hundreds of dollars) For years I have used an antique typing stand for a bedside table but I need a drawer and space to keep all the things I now seem to need during the night as I get older. The walls of the bedroom are a rough cedar and the quilt on my old cast iron bed is barn red. So I decided to paint this $36 chest from an unfinished furniture outlet with an Asian decorative style. It was this idea that inspired my CQ cabinet transformation.
I wanted to paint it black at first but opted now for red to match the quilt.... I want to have an all-over decorative effect like the black asian one.... Since I'm really not into dragons, etc.. I'll to go for pansies and butterflies. I chose pansies because I already have a thrift store stencil I can use and last night I cut 4 little stencils of butterflies that I can twist and turn to create the effect of more...
If you look closely you will notice the tray effect that extends the top of the black Asian chest. I would like to use this idea on my little chest also .... I love this all-over effect so we will see what happens...... It's a small piece and shouldn't take as long as the large cabinet with ALL the drawers.....

Sherry's DYB Christmas Block

Just finished Sherry's xmas block. She wanted victorian and I knew Maire was doing a boot so I opted for a caroler. This will also go into the face folder. I sculpted polymer face with bead eyes... Now I am done with all of my contributions to this RR and will pop this in the mail to Sherry in Mn....

What I used on cabinet

I was asked what I used on the CQ Cabinet. I did ALL the painting BEFORE I assembed the cabinet (much easier). First I used rustoleum gloss paint and put it on the cabinet pieces with a fine-finish roller ... a 6" dense foam that lays down a very smooth coat and is available at any hardware store. I did the gold line with an Elmer's paint pen and the corner deco with a stamp and gold stamp pad (Michaels craft store.)

Then using some old stencils and ordinary craft acrllyic paint I put on the flowers.I was not even especially careful with the stenciling as I was going for an aged look in the end. The long stencil was too wide so I just used bits and pieces at a time. I sprayed the drawers with high gloss black paint and then sponged them with gold Folk Art paint from Michaels.

Since it is winter and the humidity is so high, I am using the cabinet now but in the spring I will roll it out on a warm day and give it a coat of antique glaze and spray it several times with a high gloss clear glaze for a lacquered effect. It required no "artistic" talent using the stencils....just time and patience.


My new CQ cabinet!!

Well it's about done. I have a little touch up to do with black and gold and a piece of gold molding to over the middle seam... This would have been sooooooooooooooo much easier if I could have done it in the summer when I could have laid everything out on a tarp and sprayed it..... All would have been easier if I had read ALL of the directions first but it will look much nicer than the big white box in my living room....
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