Progress on Marya's block

I finished lace, ruching and half the beading and was anxious to work on center so will finish beading around the heart later. These roses are only PINNED on here at this point and will attach them and finish the floral spray today. I made some leaves last night but they were wrong and I was tired. I make roses separate from the block on pins and when I finish this block I will do a mini-tutorial on how I do them.

I have had a couple problems. One: everything kept catching on the lattice so I will have to tighten and secure all the threads when I am finished. Second: Marya has a very stiff and crisp interfacing as a foundation and on a large block it has made it difficult for me to manipulate the block to stitch.. But other than these two little things I should finish by tomorrow. I used my fabulous thrift-store ribbon and the roses are much more gorgeous than they show in photo. Husband is out of town and Dr. threatened me with another plaster cast until June unless I stay off leg.. So "Big Boot" and I are just stitching and stitching and stitching away....

p.s. So far this "Heart" block only has 2 hearts. But by the time I am done it will have at least 9/10 more!!!!


Marya's Heart Block

This arrived yesterday and I didn't have to think about this one at all. That big naked heart in the center was just waiting for me... I'll do ruching around the inside of cording and will add lace and beading around the outside. For the heart itself...more lace and a floral spray using larger ribbon...Helen Gibbs style. I do have some burgundy glass crystals that would be perfect on this block but will make that decision later.

Marya loves encrusted (I can do that) and she said do "as much" or as little as we like... She may have said that "as much" bit to the wrong person... Husband is out of town this weekend and I am supposed to stay off my leg as it's not healing well so guess I'll just have to sit and stitch and watch old pbs mysteries...... I can do that!!!!


How does a guy get service around here???

How does a guy get service around here??? One rings the bell of course....especially if one is getting older and having some trouble getting around.... Bell tricks are Fritz's specialty...

2009 Challenge - Paisley

Paisleys are part of the March challenge. Early crazy quilters called them "Persain Pickles". I had never done one but now I'm hooked. I did a little research and discovered, except for the general shape....anything goes. Much like CQ. This one is mostly stitching and I'll do a larger one with just beading... I will definitely include them often as I stitch... I hope we see LOTS of paisleys in the March album... Superb aticle on creating paisleys in CQMagOnline... by Suzanne Surfass


Beaded Ribbons

The top one is Cobi's and after I saw it I just had to try it as northern lights... I think they are soooooooooooo cool and think they should be on the 2010 challenge list... Make a note Cathy!!!

2009 Challenge block - Stage 4

Good girl, good girl... I've added about 5 seams so I get to do a motif... Lower left is shaping up. I added gold rickrack and gold cording there and will add both elsewhere also.... I want to use the green cording to weave in and out of the ribbon pansies.

My favorite seam so far is the butterfly garden. the end of it will be covered by the MOP button which I will add last so my thread does not keep catching on it.... I want to do one embroidery paisley and one beaded paisley.. As motifs are my "rewards" I've decided to save the ribbon pansies until last so I can fiddle endlessly with it...


2009 Challenge stage 3

I've secured the hankies and silkie and did a seam but now it's time to make some serious decisions... I know some women draw out their blocks but I like to cut out shapes and move them around until I'm happy. Then I take a photo for a record to refer to. I want to save the dark purple area for an embroidered word and I may try to space things further for 3 paisleys. The butterfly buttons are ones I did as a whim with stencils and I really like them... I've beaded the small one and placed it just below the silkie... At this point I want to run some random cording and rickrack need to know where it will not interfere with motifs....

Note: I always want to rush into the motifs as they are my favorite part but know if I don't do the seams now I will be sorry later.. so I will do seams now before I finish any more motifs. Since layered seams is one of the challenges, I will take more time with seams than I usually do.... I do love the motifs and embellishing....and ENCRUSTING!!!


There is a thrift store goddess!

Just when I think the thrift store goddess has abandoned me, she triumphs again...Tues. I found this huge roll of wired ribbon. It is 3" wide and the color blend is from cherry red to burgundy and has a sateen finish. It is very lite weight and I believe a rayon... VERY easy to work with and will make glorious roses....There is at least 25 yds on the roll and maybe more.....cost: $3.10...


2009 Challenge Block - Step one

Below is a reproduction of a vintage postcard. I received it as an advertisement 8 yrs ago and kept it as I loved the little birds. It will be my inspiration item. The colors are perfect. I had wanted to make ribbon pansies anyway for the challenge and even tho birds are not on the list I will add these lovely birds in 3D stumpwork.....and a branch with leaves could qualify for April's challenge.

So I have begun... I already had painted on this block for the January challenge but will touch up the painted motif to blend with the postcard pansies. I've added the corners of 3 hankies. I'm always looking for ways to repeat variations of elements and colors to give continuity to a block.... I had already added the silkie and will leave it. The color palette will come from silkie, fabrics and the postcard. And of course, as always, I have to add the lace. Besides the hanky corners, other recurring elements will be pansies and butterflies... Gold outlining (as on the postcard) is another element I'll use to pull everything together.

See planning step below.....


2009 Challenge Block - planning

My initial intent when I pieced this block last month was to use the materials and threads that my wonderful secret sister, Cathy K. sent me thru the year. But when I started pulling things together, it occurred to me that it could
be an opportunity not only to use it for Cathy's gifts but also as a diary for all 2009 challenge techniques since I had already painted on this block. Below is the pile I'm assembling and a list of the 2009 challenge techniques is at hand...

Finally finished

Except for a final run through for any details I missed, I am finished with editing my son's 600 photographs. I am sure at least 500 of them were of grown men with silly grins holding or standing by big dead fish.... But I did enjoy the scenery and wildlife shots...

Helicopters are my favorite!

I had my first helicopter ride in 1963 when I was cooking for forest fire crews.... What a thrill... So whenever a copter is flying out with fishermen and there's an empty seat, I drop everything to go... The aerial views in Alaska are especially breathtaking . I am STILL editing these pictures..have to finish this week...

Maire's Encrusted RR block

The "spirit" of the blank block shines even when heavily embellished ( encrusted). When the picture of this blank block was posted with its center of forget-me-nots, I knew I was going to do love birds and forget-me-knots on it when it got to me. If I had been first it would have been pink roses but Ati was before me on the upper left and the yellow was INSPIRED! This is the very thing that I love about RRs....the unexpected elements.... I found the poem about forget-me-nots to add... Leslie encrusted the upper right and take a close look at it ......

So small, so blue in grassy places,
My flowers raise their tiny faces.
I've never seen a garden plot;
But though I'm small,


Boy with a dream!

When my son was about 4 yrs old he decided the most exciting job to have as an adult would be a tent salesman in a sporting good store. But when we moved to Alaska when he was 8yrs old he decided it would be even more exciting to fish for a living... When he was in high school there were lots of good paying jobs for teenagers because all the men were working on the Alaskan pipeline. When other boys were saving for a car, he was saving for a riverboat.... Right out of high school he was living in a tiny camp trailer by the Kenai river and taking tourists on the river to fish.... He never let go of that dream....32 years later he owns that lodge and still fishes for a living. As a bonus he found the perfect wife and helpmate in lovely Vivian.....

Below is the lodge site...

Below has some of the newletters featured on Jake Jordan's fishing site.

It is often featured on sports channels but I'm never sure of when...

Lindy's spider block and stumpwork rabbit...

I can see this is going to be one of my favorite RRs. I finished my corner on Lindy's block and tried to leave enough room for four others to work on it. The rabbit is "stumpwork" -- embroidered off the block on felt, cut out, padded and added to the block.... I'm trying this year to explore this technique more...


My Fish & Son

My one fishing venture resulted in the fish on the left and I had the photo pinned to the bulletin board in the kitchen. But later decided to work on the fish in photo shop and now the photo on right is posted in kitchen... which really impresses everyone. Son who was just here commented..."You know mom, I just don't remember that fish being that big...LOL"

Spiders & Webs - Lindy

I just started last night on Lindy's Spiders & Webs block. I chose the lower left which is unusual for me when first on a block and did some underpainting.... I left a spot for a stumpwork rabbit and have it drawn on felt. I will embroidery it separate from the block, cut it out, pad it and add it to the block....so it has some dimension. Webs will be last...


The Deep Creek Fishing Lodge

My son's lodge in Ninilchik Alaska..... In the aerial view you can see the cliff to the beach. It is in those trees on the cliff that the eagles nest. From the lodge you can look across the inlet and see two active volcanos. One, Mt. Redoubt, was on high alert a few weeks ago and you can frequently see it blowing steam and ash.

Other Alaskan wildlife

Whales, otters, seals, porpoises are common sights in Cook Inlet. The moose and caribou are frequent visitors to the lodge area. But the eagles provide the real drama. The lodge is on a treed cliff and the eagles are nesting practically at eye level... The fledglings spend hours teetering on the edge of huge nests flapping their wings before launching themselves on that first flight. They feed on the beach and at sea... plus my son has a feeding platform where the fish scraps are put out for the eagles and other sea birds. Aerial territorial squabbles are a common site....



My son said there were "about" 500 photos to edit. I've done over 500 and have 2 discs to go.. Not all the fishing is salt water. A lot of clients prefer flying into the wilderness in helicopters and float planes to fish. So this set of photos not only included lots of the usual man/fish pictures but fabulous shots of wildlife and scenery.

There were dozens of bear photos because if the salmon are running the bears are fishing and they are so large they have the right-of-way ALWAYS... Noone argues with a brown bear.

A fishing brown bear is like a dog on point and stares intently at the water and then suddenly in one swift motion scoops out a fish. They are also very territorial with their fishing spot and fights ensue if another bear encroaches. Although I don't fish when I'm there I never miss a chance to flyout if there is an empty seat on a helicopter. My favorite photo was the first one ...the bear on the rock...
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