Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Soothing Stitches

Hundreds of silken stitches in shimmering habotai.
Rusty traces reminiscent of ancient shores. 

A few pieces of summer's natural dye experiments 
collide head on with my love of Kantha cloth. 
These photos are of a commissioned piece I'm working on - 
delightful hours transported to a faraway land.

The Studio is a beautiful and exciting place to be, 
a productive retreat from this bone-chilling deep freeze!
Also happening in the Studio are a new (traditional) quilt, 
two art quilts and a handful of developing wool & cotton quilt designs.
Stay tuned for updates, and keep warm! 

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

The Story of the Friendship Star

 As a supporter of Project Linus, the idea of donating handmade 
blankets and quilts to children in need across the US is near 
and dear to my heart. Imagining the power of giving a quilt 
in someone's time of need has fueled me for years, 
and has even inspired me to create and share my own patterns.
A few summers ago I made the two quilt tops shown above,
both earmarked for Project Linus.
Since that summer, they've patiently sat on the back burner
looking just like that. Waiting. You know.
Well, a few weeks ago I felt ready to bring them out, 
finish them up and send them off to Project Linus.   
 As fate would have it, I was first drawn to the Friendship Star quilt.
Just as I was beginning the quilting, however, my dear friend Atu  
fell quite sick and was hospitalized.

It was then that I realized this quilt wasn't 
patiently waiting for me, but for Atu.

Atu loved all the colors of the rainbow, the cosmos, and the night sky.
One of my treasured memories is the peaceful summer night we sat 
in her convertible in the middle of a dirt road in Roslyn, Washington 
and star gazed and talked for hours.

I managed to finish the aptly named Friendship Star quilt, 
in all its vibrant, cosmic glory 
in time to lay it over Atu's lap shortly before she left us. 
Thanks to my dear friend, I now truly understand the power of 
giving a quilt or blanket to someone in need of love and comfort.

If you're looking for ideas to get started on your own quilt(s) 
for charity, here are a few favorites I've made over the years:

Kaffe Fassett's Diamonds quilt (above) makes up fairly quickly 
and beautifully showcases a wide variety of fabrics. 
I could makes these all day long!
Think boys, think girls, teens, toddlers.... 

In the second photo from the top of this post is a quilt top 
and I mostly used Lizzy House's Castle Peeps fabric collection. 
This is my own design, Cartwheels, and the pattern is available for free 
in the right sidebar. It makes up very quickly, and the giant blocks 
leave plenty of room for hand or machine quilting fun! 
I'm currently planning another one with the cartwheels in 
black, gray & yellow fabrics set on a cream background - 
a little more sophisticated for a teenager.
Finally, Storm Clouds, my first go at a scrappy quilt, 
and inspired by a summer thunder storm that rolled through 
our valley. In this previous post you can see three options 
for block settings, each with its own distinct look. I can 
easily imagine this quilt wrapped around someone's shoulders, 
snug as a bug. 

Need more inspiration? 
Find tons of free patterns on the Project Linus website.
It's informative and easy to navigate
You can also locate your nearest chapter.
Whether losing a home to fire, being placed in an orphanage, 
becoming a patient in the hospital or temporarily living in a shelter,
 receiving a handmade quilt or blanket surely puts a smile 
on each child's face. 

If you're planning to sew or knit for Project Linus, 
leave me a comment and let's share the good vibes! 

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Sew Many Friends

 Announcing the release of Silver Trumpet's
"Ladies Who Lunch" wall quilt pattern! 
Invite these 11 adorable Ladies in to your
little Lady's room, and every day is sure to be a picnic. 
 Chock full of helpful photos, complete instructions and templates,
 the pattern is now available in my shop as a PDF, 
ready for immediate download.
Some of the fun techniques included are working with fusible web, 
mastering the mitered corner, adding (optional) Ric-Rac 
and simple embroidery stitches. 
Originally designed for my 2 year old niece, it just seemed
too cute not to share. Have fun creating your own version, 
as there's plenty of room for your personality to shine through. 
Dive in to your scraps, learn a new technique or two,
and let me know what you and your little Lady think!  

For my local friends, I'm teaching this wall quilt in Ithaca at 
Quilters CornerApril 12-13, 2014. 
Join us for a fun-filled weekend of sewing, fusing and embroidering!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Cozy Hearth and Home

Real stockings hung by the fire knit especially for 
my dear friend and Sophomore year college room mate, 
Karen Johnson.
There's nothing like knitting to keep a long-distance loved one close. 
As if our special friendship wasn't reason enough, 
following a well-written, beautiful pattern 
made knitting these even more of a pleasure
My friend Lara Smoot's sock pattern: Ferry Beach

Do you typically knit large or small projects for loved ones?
If you have a go-to pattern, I'd love to hear about it!

Trust me, this tasty morsel is a mouth-watering must-bake! 
(a supposed Starbuck's knock-off)
At first bite, they instantly took top spot 
in my recipe collection. They're that good.
Crank up your oven, brew some coffee and reach for your knitting. 
You're about to have an amazing day. :) 

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Ringing In The Fun!


Here's to making time to play, 
dreaming new dreams
savoring every last bite of these scrumptious 
Wishing you all a year full of hope, love and adventure!

Shown in the top photo, a bit of play time yielded my own little 
Miniature Animal from "Tilda's Fairy Tale Wonderland".
"Dream", "Play" and assorted clay pieces were recently gifted to me by
 a dear friend who located them online at: Essential Elements.