Detail from "Rain Dance," an original quilt by Sherrie Spangler

Monday, January 15, 2018

Can't live without color!

"Don't wear beige. It might kill you." 

I saw that quote on Facebook, but I can't find definitive attribution. I feel like a little bit of me dies when I'm not around bright, saturated color, so I don't wear beige and when I saw this book at the quilt store I had to get it. 

"A Passion for Colour"
By Ruth Issett

I curled up last night with the book on the couch wearing my purple robe layered over purple and red pajamas layered over orange and red fingerless hand warmers. I pulled the orange and purple and blue and green and red blanket over me and feasted on Issett's luscious colored papers and fabric.

While the morning's water and cloudy sky were breathtaking, the subdued palette didn't make my heart sing.

Have a colorful day

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Sew Day inspiration

We had a major reveal at Sew Day's show and tell today at my house: Carolynn showed us her finished Sue Spargo block of the month quilt, which she worked on for two years!

It's wool hand applique and lavishly embellished with gorgeous hand embroidery. Great job!!!

She sent it off to be quilted, then she added more of her own quilting on the inside of each applique.

Then Linda J. unfurled the hand applique cotton quilt that she's been working on for the past year. The colors and design are absolutely a joy to look at!

 She still has to add the outer borders. Here's the pattern:

Carolynn got right to work on her next project, using a light box to trace the pattern for a quilt to be made of embroidered blocks. 

And Linda P. worked on her wool embroidery project, which is a pattern that most of us in the Woolies group are making.

I know you're wondering about the food. Well, we decided to skip serving breakfast and just have lunch at our meetings. We used to serve both. Since I hosted, I made a healthy vegetable soup accompanied by a spinach and cheese stuffed Christmas tree made with refrigerated pizza dough. I rounded it (and us) out with grapes and mini pumpkin muffins.

After they all left, I got some beautiful sunset photos.

Have a colorful day

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

First finish of the new year

I could have used any colors in the world with the grey herringbone reindeer, but something drew me to soft, sweet, spring colors ... even though I worked on this project over the Christmas season.

I think I'll call it "Signs of Spring," or something to that effect.

The applique pieces are wool, and the background and border triangles are cotton. 

I embellished mostly with pearl cotton, yellow beads, a few buttons and some lace.

For the borders, I cut 2-inch squares and folded them over the edges.

Outside, someone else is patiently waiting for spring. Look at how he's starting to blend in with the tree trunks behind him. I wish he was ours, but he came with the house we're renting. I've grown quite attached to him.

Have a colorful day

Sunday, January 7, 2018

More light

I took the ferry over to Seattle in the rain a few days ago. Our mission was to catch the Andrew Wyeth exhibit at the Seattle Art Museum before it closes this month. While I was amazed by Wyeth's realistic detail and sense of place, what really got my heart pumping was the astonishing light in some of the paintings in the permanent exhibits.

Here are three that caused me to keep coming back:

Then I got home just in time to catch the last moments of light before our sun slipped away.

Have a colorful day

Thursday, January 4, 2018

New Year's LIGHT

Photo taken by my son, Keith, while backpacking last summer
in Glacier Peak Wilderness, WA.

The sun never says to the earth,

"You owe me."

Look what happens

with a love like that.

It lights up the whole sky.

-- Hafiz of Shiraz
    Persian poet, 14th century

This week's morning light over the Puget Sound.

I was turned on to the Persian poet Hafiz by one of my yoga teachers just before the New Year. Joy -- a good name for a yoga teacher -- left us with this quote by him:

I wish I could show you,

when you are lonely

or in the darkness,

the astonishing LIGHT

of your own being.

Sunrise this week behind our house.

And that's the thought I'll leave with you on this, my mother's birthday,
and my first post of the new year.

Have a beautiful day

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Happy New Year

Wishing you a joyful,
colorful, creative
New Year!

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Sew Day and wrapping it up

Pin cushions that Nancy made.
I'm rich in pin cushions after our Sew Day annual Christmas gift exchange a few days ago. At the beginning of the year, we decided to make a pin cushion for everyone in the group -- there are five of us -- and the big reveal was at lunch during a day of quilt shop hopping.

The top batch is what Nancy made for everyone. She designed each with our unique interests in mind -- mine is the funky, colorful bird, which I love!

The batch above was made by Linda J. -- selvedge pin cushions with padded zipper bags. Carolynn, below, also made quilted zipper bags for her pin cushions -- log cabins with the buttons tailored to us. My button is the chili pepper, because I love the Southwest.

Linda P. made us each a tiny tomato cushion in a pretty glass dish. She also made thread catchers that unsnap to pack flat for taking on the road.

I made wool applique flowered pincushions inspired by some that I saw on Pinterest. I added a blue sea star since we live in the Puget Sound area, which is rich in sea stars.

Since it was the Sew Day group, you know food was involved! We all had French toast at a restaurant in Kent near one of the quilt stores, Running Stitch. We also went to Carriage Country Quilts in Des Moines.

Nancy, Linda P., me, Carolynn, and Linda J.

Here are some other cushions that I made for Christmas gifts this year. The bunny is an 8-inch wool cushion for my bunny-loving daughter. I filled it with ground walnut shells so that she can heat it in the microwave and use it as a heating pad.

I also made tubular pieced pin cushions for my STITCH group from a pattern on the Stitching' Post's blog.

Color directions for the new year,
from this week's purchases:

My color preferences are getting a little softer, but still colorful, based on what I bought this week. I'm starting to like neutral backgrounds and accents, which has surprised me. That little turquoise wool piece doesn't quite fit in, whereas in the past that color played a big part in my art.

I think I'm going to make napkins with the bird print and a coordinating table runner with the ivory and turquoise dots and the stack of wool below.

I bought the fabrics below the day before our Sew Day outing when I went to the Quilted Strait in Port Gamble with Nancy. Again, I was drawn to softer apricots, greens and grey.

This final picture is from a quilt I did this year that uses most of those colors. I guess I'm not going in a major new direction, just softening it up a bit with some ivory and grey. (Just like my hair.)

Here's to a great year!

Sunday, December 24, 2017

A peaceful Christmas Eve

Julia made it home with the bunnies! Best Christmas gift ever. Here they are in their little outfits, all snuggled together on a wool blanket on Christmas Eve.

Wishing you peace, joy, happiness
and a colorful, creative year ahead!

Have a colorful day