Saturday, January 31, 2009

6 Picture Meme - I Was Tagged

I have been tagged by my talented friend Lyn Gaskill from CQI to participate in the 6 Picture Meme. This was a surprise to me because I haven't been blogging all that long and didn't realize she was enjoying my ramblings. The rules are that I have to go to the 6th file in my computer photos and print the 6th picture in that file on my blog. Then, I must tell you about it. Thank goodness it ended up to be a needlework pictures file and not a family file with bare baby bottoms or something, lol.

So, here is the picture. My little Blackwork Teddy Bear. He is about 4 1/2 inches tall. He was stitched in colored blackwork on Jobelyn, an even weave cotton blend fabric that I love working with. He was a 2 day class project that I began in 1990 through the Pikes Peak Chapter of EGA. The teacher/designer was Lee Brady. Some of the ladies in the class stitched their bears in black, some in DMC 3371 or 938, both dark browns. Many of us chose to work in DMC floss colors to achieve a more realistic look. The colors I chose were DMC 351, 433, 436, 501, and 503. Ms. Brady supplied us with the type of plastic eyes that are stuck through the fabric by making a hole with an awl and then snapped into place with a metallic brad. I did not want to ruin the fabric or stitching so I opted for shirt button eyes instead. I also added the small gold heart charm over his heart. The beads for the vest buttons (front and back) were in the original class kit.

I could not show you photo 6 without doing Teddy justice and showing you photo 7 - his backside. Lee Brady's pattern matched up perfectly on the sides to make this Teddy a complete success. He is stuffed with poly-fiber fill. I finished stitching him in just 3 days as I was very enthused with the technique - which was new to me at the time. It has become one of my 5 favorite stitching pastimes. I must confess though! I allowed him to "rest" in my UFO box for about 2 1/2 years because I would/could not sew him together on the machine! One day while I was rummaging in the box I found him again and cried for him. I lovingly picked up his flat little fabric pieces, carried him over to my BFF's house and she sewed him up for me. He and I did a happy dance all over her sewing room! He had suddenly come to life! Now he resides on top of the CQ baskets on my cedar chest with his big boy cousins - the CQ bears. Oh, and of course the frogs!

Thank you Lynn for making me relive this memory. Now I must tag 6 other unsuspecting souls whose blogs I follow closely. I choose to tag:

1. CONNIE W: My newest friend and partner in CQ stash building. On her fairly new blog she shares her lace dyeing experiences, her neat stash storage ideas and more. Check her colorful blog out at

2. Rose Anne B: Rose Anne is from Canada. I am attracted to her blog because of her humor, her sense of excitement and her enthusiasm for sharing. She is very creative with her needlework, as evidenced in her beautiful postcards. Go to and see what I am talking about.

3. Kathy S: Kathy belongs to a couple of the on-line needlework groups that I do. She is sponsoring a stitch-along-with-me -- 12 Dozen Stitches in 12 Months. She has some wonderful CQ seam treatment ideas. A trip to will inspire you.

4. Cathy K: I am a great fan of pansies and earth toned colors. I first became aware of Cathy's artistic talent when she worked on a pansy themed CQ RR and posted her pictures. Then she made the most beautiful Harvest Pillow and I have been a fan ever since. For great eye candy go to

5. Orinda: Her blog name - Orinda's Fancy says it all. She is a woman of many talents. I especially love her Dorsett Buttons. She has a way about her......and she expresses it through her fantastic embellishments! For a drooling good time go to and check it out.

6. Annie W: An Aussie, her blog is entitled Annie's Crazy World and she does very nice CQ work. I found her blog because I am an avid sampler fan and Annie has been stitching on a long band sampler for over a year now. She chronicals this adventure on her blog and shares her life and needlework in the process. How long is her band sampler? 22.5 feet! Go to to find out the rest of the details.

I will go let these ladies know that they have been tagged. Then they will have to choose 6 others to tag, so watch out! It could be you.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Where Am I Going To Put It All?

As I mentioned before, Connie, DD Amy and I went bead shopping at the skating costume shop. I had a hard time deciding what I could leave behind for some other lucky person - as you can see by the photos below. I didn't mean to be selfish...honest I didn't. I just saw such potential in everything I touched!

Here are some of the sequined appliques that they had. They are just a bit larger than a quarter but not as large as a half dollar. They can be cut apart to make separate motifs for CQ. There are actually two different patterns on these.

Aren't these leaves and flowers lovely? They can also be cut apart to make separate motifs for CQ. The baggies in the middle hold about 1/3 cup each of Swarovsky crystals and gemstone beads.

Couldn't untangle the sequins and trims quick enough to satisfy my photographer (lol) but you can get an idea of the pretty rhinestone encrusted ones I picked up for my future evening purse, the ones I got for CJ are in there (guess which ones CJ) and so many other beautiful colors. There are also some baggies of iridescent glass sequins type beads that get held down at the center top hole with a glass seed bead - had never seen these before!

This pile looks like a mess of tags but there are over 150 little bead bags here full of tiny iridescent seed beads, sequins, bugle beads, rondelles, briolette and rocaille beads in 3-4 sizes of each color, pearls in all sizes, crystal/glass beads of all shapes and sizes and some odd sequin shapes that we were assured aren't even made anymore. Just imagine sifting and tossing through these baggies for the afternoon.

Then there were the laces.....we know how I love the lace! I was so happy to get the roses which turned both directions so they were sold as a pair...the butterflies are great and the hearts were the last they had. Even the large lace motifs can be cut apart and used bit by bit if necessary. Yes, you guessed it....I bought all the lace the lady had left and plan to dye a lot of it. Connie tells me that the roses have dyed beautifully for her and she will be posting some on her blog soon.

I did give Connie a cut of each bolt of lace before we left the shop. The lady could not believe we stood there and did that! Hey, when you are getting it at cut rate prices on cut rate retail prices from the 1980's you can share!

Speaking of sharing, I want to thank Lyn Gaskill for having a monthly give-away on her blog. It is a little quiz that requires a bit of research but it is always fun! For prizes she offers a silkie of an old time actress and a second place prize of some sort. Sometimes she throws in a bonus prize. I won the bonus prize this month for knowing that Ricky Nelson sang a song in the Jack Lemon movie Wackiest Ship in the Army. I was a big Ricky fan as a teen! Thank you again, Lyn, for the wonderful silk CQ pinkeep with silk ribbon roses! I have begun to stick pins in it already as you can see. Here are front and back views of the dramatic pinkeep I won.

Have a great day and keep on stitching a more beautiful world!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Stash Enhancements & More

You would think that it is springtime in the Rockies. The sun was shining yesterday, the kids were outside playing in their shorts. Today it is a steady gentle snowfall with cool temps. That's Colorado for you.

I promised photos of the other items mentioned in yesterday's post. So, here they are:

This is the 6" heart I have pieced for a swap on CQ For Newbies. Right now it is 'nekkid". I am supposed to stitch at least 2 seams and embellish at least 1 patch. If I want I can do the whole thing. It must be in the mail by the 30th of the month. Will post another picture after I have done the work. I am allowed to finish all the stitching if I have time or desire to do so. In return I will receive a 6" heart that someone else has done. I wonder what they all do with these hearts? They exchange them every other month with different themes. After awhile wouldn't you run out of need for hearts? I guess I will learn more as I go along.

This unfinished 6" heart was sent to me by Vera Ellen, who is a member of CQI. It was attached to the fabric around the Christmas cracker she sent to me for the holiday swap. She included a lot of wonderful fabrics and embellishments too. I will have fun stitching on it and thinking of VE. Hmm......I am getting an idea as to what could be done with these small hearts. Let me ponder the subject a bit longer. I want to thank her again for taking time to make this heart in some of my favorite colors. Most people might think that rust, purple and cream wouldn't go together well but I think VE did a fabulous job showing that they can!

Now I want to share photos of what I dyed while at my friend Connie's. We both brought what we had in the way of dyes to the party. We shared our dyes, we mixed different colors, we even mixed products. We experimented with different methods for hand dyeing lace, silk leaves and ribbons. In short, we had a blast!

The white silk florist's leaves, which we dyed for various projects. were one of Connie's contributions. I had the small flower motifs and the larger motif. I forget now which one of us shared this particular flat lace. I am very happy with how it all turned out. I didn't work as fast or as long into the day as Connie did so she got a lot more done than I did. She even tried immersion dyeing over the next few days with great results. See her blog at

Now for the really tactile and fun part of the day! Connie had LACE! Lots of LACE! She shared it with me! Just look at the pictures below and you won't find any two pieces alike. There are slight differences in the edge perhaps or the color in a few, but they are not the same! Connie has said she may offer these for sale in the future. Some are sooooo vintage looking that they are irresistible!

Don't you love the sea shells in the last picture? I can hardly wait to dye some for an Under The Water themed CQ. Thanks for stopping by.....

Friday, January 23, 2009

Catching Up With The New Year

My goodness! Has it really been a month since I last posted? Life has a way of making time stand still I guess. It certainly wasn't me standing still!

First, let me wish everyone a Happy and Prosperous New Year. I made no resolutions this year. I never seem to meet my own expectations anyway. I have hopes that we will all stay healthy and together though.

We all had what I fondly refer to as a fractured holiday. Due to circumstances beyond our control we were forced to celebrate twice. I think many families have to do that nowadays. My daughter Kim had neck/spine surgery on 12/17/08 and that required a trip by the whole family to Denver. Then I left my other daughter, Amy, up there to take care of Kim when she got out of the hospital. They weren't cleared for travel until the 29th so DH and I made another trip to Denver and brought them home to our house. We had their Christmas the next morning. Of course they both had lots of gifts for the kids and the rest of us. That meant that there were almost as many presents under the tree on the 30th as there were on the 25th! Needless to say, the children were elated and we all were thankful that both of the girls were home with us. I am happy to report that Kim is doing fine. She went home without her 'nurse' and is managing quite nicely she says.

Next trip to Denver was to take DD home and to take Baby Belle to Children's Hospital for oral surgery the middle of the first week of January. She had 6 crowns put on at age 2! If that had been me I would have been in bed for a month - she was up the next day! Very resilient and eating so much better now that she can actually chew! Her new mantra is "Don't knock my teeth out."

The first picture below is of my oldest daughter Kim in her post-surgical hard neck brace. She didn't want to miss being there for Belle's surgery so she came in spite of her own discomfort. Below that is a picture of me trying to get 2 yr. old Belle to settle down in the pre-op prep room. Little did she know what she was in for....

I have managed to get some crazy quilt box tops pieced for the Fabulous First Timer's Round Robin that I am doing with some wonderful gals at Crazy Quilt International. I also pieced a CQ heart for the Heart Swap over at CQ For Newbies. I took my friend Connie to Pikes Peak Embroider's Guild. The next week she and I had a lace/ribbon/fabric dyeing party at her house. Found time to go shopping for beads, sequins, sequined motifs and lace at Fashions for Athletes near the Broadmoor Hotel. It is a small shop that made skating costumes and sports wear for the Broadmoor Skating Club (home of several Olympic Champions like Jill Trenary). They are closing and going out of business so were offering trims and embellishments at almost wholesale prices. The gentleman who owns the place with his wife babysat Belle while I shopped. He fell in love with her and before we left he GAVE a real ice skating costume in the smallest size they had - which she swims in! She loves it and has worn it almost everyday for at least a little while.

Here are some pictures of two small wooden jewelry boxes and the CQ piece I made to go on each of them for the CQI RR. The blue rose hankie is from my collection and the yellow trim along the one seam line is from a bag of trims I picked up at the ARC Thrift Store earlier this month. The embellished area will be within the basting lines and the rest will be trimmed and turned under when I finish the top after the RR is over.

I will post some more pictures tomorrow to show the other pieces I have told you about. Thanks for stopping by........