Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Blues and Pretty Mail

I haven't managed to accomplish very much in the sewing room this week. (Too tired after work) I have started these blue inchies which will make their appearance on some postcards soon. I have them to the point I can sit in front of American Idol on the telly for the next two nights and add beads and bits by hand.

This wonderful card arrived from Gwyneth in Cyprus. (no blog that I know of) I had to round up a map just to figure out where Cyprus is located. Geography is NOT one of my strong points but I do love receiving postcards from all over the globe. This is the first card from an International Celebrations Swap - St. Patrick's Day on Art We Mail. I wish you could feel/see all the texture in this card, it is amazing. The legend on the back of the card explains the front:
Saint Patrick is known for driving the snakes from Ireland.
I believe it is true that there are no snakes in Ireland.
(Hence my snakes on the postcard are in the sea)
Driving the snakes away was probably symbolic to
putting an end to the pagan practice of worshipping
a serpent symbol.
Thanks Gwyneth! I learned a lot from your Pretty Postal Art and I love this card. :o)

Friday, February 22, 2008

Read Any Good Books Lately?

It seems I am always losing my bookmark. Now keep in mind that my bookmark is either one of those postcards that fall out of magazines or a paper sales tag cut from clothing or whatever piece of paper I can find lying around at the time. It also seems that I always have long, thin scraps of Peltex left over from making postcards. So, I decided to use up some of the Peltex and make myself a couple of bookmarks.

I used the same blue fabric I am using for the blue postcards I am currently making. I used one of the decorative stitches on my machine then couched some yarns onto each side. Zigzag stitched the edges, added some more yarns, a few beads and called them done. The one on the right is reminiscent of a vintage couture dress. (Is too, doncha see the bustline and the hips?) :o) Or maybe I have a vivid imagination.

I hope I will be able to find one of these when it comes time to mark my place. I am currently reading Janet Evanovich's Ten Big Ones. What are you reading today?

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Of Buttons and Friends

I am always looking for some quick handwork that I can do while watching TV. I don't watch all that much TV, just the important shows like Lost, American Idol, and Project Runway. :o) The idea of all that unproductive time just isn't me so I try to have something handy to justify all that sitting. I saw these Dorset buttons on JenClaire's blog and just had to give them a try. They are fun to make even if it did take me 3 tries to get the spokes to turn out correctly. I can see these as the "star" on some postcards in my future.

My dear friend Sheila surprised me with this mug hugger in the mail this week. She has a new embroidery machine and I just love what she is creating with it. Aren't these coffee cups with the steam the cutest? Oh, and it certainly doesn't hurt that it IS my favorite color - purple! Thank you so much Sheila!

And last but not least, the 2nd row of the Roosting Round Robin that Debi is facilitating. Of course this is just one block in the row. I am not sewing my blocks into rows just yet. Debi may beat me but I have an idea of mixing the blocks within the rows. I am going to wait until they are all done, put them up on my design wall as I have it pictured in my mind, and then see how it looks. I may end up sewing them into the original rows. Since it is a mystery, I won't know or be able to decide until all the blocks have been presented.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Big Bird's Birthday...

... is March 20th. Did you know that? I didn't until this swap on Art We Mail. The prompt was "what can you do with a yellow card?" Here is my take on Big Bird's birthday and a yellow card.

Everyone seemed to like the shaker cards from a recent swap and I wanted to try another technique with those. The framing is something I picked up for $1 in the kitchen clearance at walmart. It is a rubberized mat that is supposed to go in your refrigerator. The lines of fabric are actually chenille that has been smashed a bit by the scanner. I picked up a packet of that presewn chenille stuff several months ago for 25 cents. Had no idea what I was going to do with it at the time but it seems perfect for these cards.

I gathered up some yellow bits and beads and make the shaker top of netting.

The frames went a little wonky as I was sewing them down. The rubber stuck to the foot on my machine and distorted it a bit. The wonkiness just seems right to me for these happy cards so I am not going to worry about them being a bit off kilter. Also, in the spirit of Sesame Street, several of these have letters that spell something that is yellow.

I am in the postcard "zone" it seems and don't want to stop while the ideas are coming. Next, I believe I will make some blue cards with the same sort of design as my Pretty In Pink cards.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Wearing of the Green

I finished these St. Patrick's postcards last night. They are for a swap on Art We Mail. The scans are a little wonky because I really didn't want to scan 8 cards individually. Yep, I am lazy like that sometimes. :o) Please click on them so you can see them a bit larger.

They all started out with the green batik background and the Irish Blessing printed onto fabric. Then, the leprechauns within started to speak to me. They didn't want to be the same, oh no..., each one begged to be a little different.

Some of them asked for seed stitches made by hand. Some of them asked for machine embroidery - and some of them wanted both! Then of course they wanted to wear "jewels" in the form of beads, and one of them demanded a ribbon. Then one little snippy fellow asked that I quilt shamrocks in the background. (I think I did pretty good with it but wasn't about to risk trying that on another.) I managed to work in some of the lovely metal beads Anna sent to me and I think that one is probably my favorite.

So which one is your favorite? I would love to hear what you think.

Pay It Forward

I received this beautiful lavender scented sachet from Jen Claire this week as a result of signing up for her Pay It Forward Exchange. The hearts are embroidered on linen and the backing is a cotton fabric with red and khaki colored hearts. I just love it and it smells so good I want to carry it around in my pocket! Right now I have it sitting in my sewing room and it is making the whole room smell so peaceful and nice. Thank you Jen Claire!

Since no one signed up for my part of the Pay It Forward exchange (I am very new to blogging and was even newer at the time I signed up for the exchange), I have decided that I will just perform 3 random acts of kindness instead. I'll enclose a little note with my RAK's and encourage (not require) the recipients to perform a random act of kindness as well. I think the Pay It Forward exchange is a great way of spreading kindness and generosity across the globe and I hope my Random Acts of Kindness will do the same.

I finished these birthday cards last week and completely forgot to post a picture of them. This was an experiment with Photo Shop Elements and printing on fabric. I played around with backgrounds and text in Photo Shop and printed the image on plain white fabric. I used a few beads for embellishment and a varigated thread edgeing to finish them up.

I hope everyone is having a good weekend!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Fish Supper :o)

I received this cute little guy in the mail today. It is from Angela in England and part of the Shaker Card swap on Art We Mail.
Isn't he just the cutest thing?! He doesn't even seem to mind that he has fish bones in his belly!
Thank you Angela for such a delightful card.

Happy Cards

Quite often I find the need for a colorful card to send to a friend. Sometimes it is because they have been ill, sometimes they are feeling down and need a little cheer, and sometimes I like to send cards for no reason at all. These happy cards will fill in nicely.

I have been wanting to use this orange swirl fabric in a project for quite some time. I ran across the pretty ombre ribbon last week and immediately thought of this fabric.

I quickly pieced a few small pinwheels (the smaller ones are 2 inches square), added some beads and buttons, and voila!

I think these will work well for putting a bit of cheer in a friend's mailbox - don't you? :o)

Thursday, February 14, 2008

OWOH Winner

After consulting the algorithims of the universe and taking into consideration the temperature and humidity, a winner has been chosen. (Actually, I asked my son to choose a number between 1 and 104. He had no idea why I was asking and immediately said 19. I then scrolled down to the 19th post. Scientific, eh?)

The winner of my Pretty In Pink postcard is Sandi at Victorian Gypsy! Congratulations Sandi.

Thank you one and all for visiting my blog. I do hope you will come back often and leave a comment. I thoroughly enjoyed visiting all the blogs involved and have added quite a few to my blog subscriptions. Another big thank you to Lisa for organizing this event.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Cyber Fyber

I am participating in Cyber Fyber. This is a fabulous event organized by Susan Lenz. From the Cyber Fyber blog:

CYBER FYBER EXHIBITION is an international event scheduled at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios, 808 Lady Street in downtown Columbia, South Carolina, USA from January 8th through 20th, 2009. The focus of this exhibition is to highlight the influences of Internet access for today's fiber artists.

I sent one of my pretty in pink postcards and Susan sent me the gorgeous one shown below. It is painted and sewn and melted and ohhhh it is just yummy! LOL Unlike anything I have ever made or received.

The exhibition is only 3 hours from where I live so I have already made plans to attend. There will be an open trade of postcards with other visitors and I think that would be so much fun! It makes me a little nervous that my little postcard will be hanging amongst those of well known, published fiber artists but I decided just to go for it. Look for lots of pictures next January! LOL

Monday, February 11, 2008

I have been tagged!

I have been tagged by Debi. I am to post 7 weird or random facts about myself so here goes:

1- I work at an animal hospital.

2- I was the drum major of our high school marching band my senior year. My uniform consisted of a white satin shirt, white hot pants, knee high white boots, red cummerbund, white cape, and a white aussie with a big blue plume covering my big '80's hair!

3- My transportation of choice in the late '80's, early '90's was a Harley Davidson Sportster.

4- I abhor the sound of someone crunching ice, or smacking chewing gum in their mouth. (It drives me absolutely nuts!)

5- My bulldog mix sleeps in the bed with me every night.

6- I am the mother of twin boys.

7- I have been married once (still am) to the same man for 25 years!

Now, I am supposed to tag 7 other people but I have decided to leave this as self serve. If you would like to play along, please do. Make sure you leave me a link in the comments section so I can visit your blog and giggle at your answers. :o)

Whole lotta shakin' going on!

I received this beautiful Valentine's shaker card in the mail today from Lisa. I couldn't stop shaking it! These cards are so fun.
And here is a picture of my #1 helper. LOL I can hardly believe he was able to fit himself in that box. Those strips are the ones I am using for my scrappy bargello. Yes, I am slowly but surely working on it but will come no where near getting it finished in a day.

Yesterday, I worked a bit more on my St. Patrick's cards and then had a brainstorm for another postcard so started pulling fabrics and bits for it. I really need to write all these ideas down as it seems I just keep thinking of more things to incorporate into that 4x6 space.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

What a week!

It has been quite a week for me at work and I haven't had time to do much of anything but work and sleep. Arrgh! I need a sewing fix. The only sewing I did this week was accomplished while collapsed on the sofa in front of the TV. I worked a bit on my St. Patrick's Day themed postcards.
I have had a grand time surfing the blogs of those participating in the One World One Heart Giveaway. Thanks to everyone who has visited my blog and entered my giveaway. I have over 80 entries now and am just thrilled to know that others enjoy and would like to own my work. My brain is about to explode with all the new creative ideas I have seen and want to try. Now, if I didn't have to do that thing called work everyday, and didn't have to work late on some of those days and on Saturday..... well, one can dream.
I did receive these lovelies from my Valentine inchie swap. Aren't they pretty? I don't think I will get anything done with them in time for Valentines Day this year but they will have a place of honor in my house next year. I had hoped to mount them on a piece of velvet or satin ribbon and hang them on my front door.

Okay, off to see if I can sneak in a bit of stitching today. I have so much I want to do and so little time. Isn't that a big complaint for all of us who love to be creative?!

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Wallhanging Finished!

I finished the postcard wallhanging last night. I really like it. :o) I used rather dull fabrics - a mottled blue, black, and cream so the wallhanging doesn't detract from the beauty of the cards. I wanted them to be the focus of this quilt.

I wasn't quite sure how to quilt this so I just winged it. I quilted straight lines in the thin sashings, put a heart motif in the wider sashings, made a simple criss cross in the windows, and meandered the outer border. Again, I didn't want to try anything fancy as the postcards are the stars here.

I want to thank everyone who visited my blog today as a result of the One World - One Heart event. I have accumulated quite a few names for my drawing and hope to see many more before the 14th. I browsed a few blogs of the participants and wowsa!, there are some talented artists here in blogland.

Today I worked on the beginning of some St. Patrick's Day postcards for a swap on Art We Mail. I wanted to get the machine sewing done so I can do the beading and handwork while watching the Superbowl tomorrow.

Tonight I plan to start sewing on Bonnie's scrappy bargello. Doncha just love the weekend? Time to sew!

Friday, February 1, 2008

I'm Stripping!

Ha! Got your attention, didn't I? I have my strips all cut in preparation for Bargello Bowl 2008.

My plan is to start sewing tomorrow night and hopefully (crossing my fingers here) finish the top on Sunday before the Super Bowl starts. I AM a big football fan and will be watching the game but I don't care so much for all the pre-game hoopla so that leaves lots of sewing time.
Now cutting usually isn't one of my favorite parts of quilting. I get bored with it quite easily. I actually enjoyed digging through my scrap bin and cutting these strips. It was fun trying to remember what each fabric was used for originally and brought back some fond quilty memories. I can't tell that these 130+ strips even made a dent in my scrap bin.

One World - One Heart

I have closed this post for comments. Wow! 104 of you entered my giveaway - thank you so much! I will draw a winner later this evening (2/14) and get your postcard in the mail by Monday. Happy Valentine's Day!

I am participating in the One World - One Heart blog giveaway event.
You can click on the badge to the left to learn more about it and to see the blogs of the other participants.

I will be giving away one of my Valentine fiber postcards. It will be sent to you without an address, in a clear sleeve so you may send it on to a friend if you choose. Now I am not one to make a little postcard travel all by itself so I am sure I will find a few other goodies to come along for the ride. :o)

If you would like to own this pretty pink postcard, just leave a comment on this post. Please make sure you leave your email address if you do not have a blog so I can contact you if you are the winner. I will draw a name on February 14th and get your prize in the mail within a couple of days after that.

I am looking forward to "meeting" lots of new bloggers through this event. If you are not participating, it's not too late to join in!