Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Project Drab to Fab: Outdoor Table


Sad looking table at my front door.  

I needed a new top as the old one was weathered beyond fixing.
 I purchased a 30" round table top from Menard's for around $30. 

Sanded the top a bit and then painted it white with acrylic outdoor paint

The rest of the paint is acrylic craft paint from Hobby Lobby. 

I had a basic sketch of the design, but I found as I painted it evolved.

I was challenged by the large green leaves and how to make them look finished. 

Tried several ideas for veins in the leaves,  but then settled on adding the white centers. 

To which I doodled and painted.


I coated the top with a satin spray on polyurethane,
but I think it may need a more durable product.

Reused the legs from the old table...

...and changed out the chairs.

Now to add some for flowers and stitch up some pillows. 

Monday, May 22, 2017

From idea to refashioned tote bag...

I have a couple of tote bags that need a refresh and an idea of chevrons or hexies done in raw edge applique popped in to my head.   

And so this past Sunday, rather than work on a quilt that I would like to finish for a show, I started this...(note the huge logo on an otherwise great tote) Now, I am not opposed to shopping at said store, but I don't like being a walking advertisement for anybody.  Secondly, the day I used the bag to haul my daughter's girl scout cookies around the neighborhood to sell (it is a huge bag and there was too much snow to use the wagon), I thought a bit inappropriate for an 8 year old.    

I had thought of paining over the logo but since the bag was black I decided to cut out a piece of black fabric just big enough to cover the logo. That way I could do all of the applique stitching on the fabric and not have to deal with wrangling the tote under the sewing machine needle.  I found a cute mini charm pack of rainbow colors and picked the brightest ones for the chevrons.  Those bright colors sure look great against the black.  I fused each 2.5 inch square to some Wonder Under and then cut out the chevrons.  

Once I fused all the chevrons to the black foundation piece, I used black thread and did some messy free motion stitching around the edge of each piece.  With everything stitched I added more wonder under to the entire back and then fused it to the bag.  A final bit of stitching around, the logo cover up was complete.  

It is my new favorite bag.  

Next up is this freebie from Ulta....

Friday, April 22, 2016

Quilting onward....

After finishing up two quilts and sending them off to their new owners, I found myself with nothing really ready to keep me busy. 

So I started laying out a new house block....

And then as I dug through my stash and happened across a charm pack I decided to try out the pattern "Crazy for Plaid" by Allison Aller's in her book Quilting...Just a Little Bit Crazy

The pre-cut fabric in the charm pack is 5" squares, the pattern calls for a bit larger, so first thing I had to draft a smaller version of the black scallop applique.

And with a few rainy days I had the whole charm pack appliqued up....

ready for some embellishment.  I stared with a feather stitch on the main seams.

With the main seams progressing, I tried to find something to put in the center of the circles.  Did I mention I challenged myself to use only what is in my stash.  I dug through my laces, but nothing spoke to me, I look through my beads, nope nothing.  I found some buttons that could have been a good choice, but did not have nearly enough that the quilt required.  So I started thinking about creating an applique flower or something and came up with this....

I like where this is headed.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Family Adventure: McDowell Dam

The last two weekend have been windy and rainy but prior to that the kids and I hiked around McDowell Dam, just east of Bismarck.  We had my Nikon point and shoot along for the kids to take some photos as well as my new Cannon.....

Alex trying a few shots on the DSLR

A few pasques starting to bloom

Stopped for a snack.

Picture of each other...

No hike is complete with out a little complaining ;)

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Playing Favorites - 2016 Quilt Alliance Contest

The 10th annual Quilt Alliance contest theme is "Playing Favorites" and all quilters, regardless of their style (traditional, modern, art) or technique (longarm, hand quilting, applique, pieced...) are encouraged to enter a 16" x 16" quilt celebrating their favorite technique, style, pattern or whatever you most love about quilting. All concepts are fair game -- let your imagination run wild!  Read guidelines here and enter your quilt here.

American Foursquare, 16"x16"

What do I love most about quilting?  I love creating my own patterns and unique designs. Mixing traditional and contemporary techniques. I love a quilt that is an organized mess, with raw edges and ripped fabric.  I love crazy quilting with a mixture of fabrics, embroidery and embellishment.  I love beads.  I love applique.   I love playing with color. I have a career in historic preservation and am drawn to old house, dilapidated barns and historic architecture.

Monday, April 04, 2016

Fabric and color play....

I play with my fabric all of the time,  auditioning various prints and colors to find a combination  that just sings. I use my phone to snap photos of the process to remember what I have tried and pull back and take in the whole work.

This process was perfectly illustrated when I was working on the background of my most recent quilt, the American Foursquare....

Which do you think works better?

That lime green strip in the foreground brought everything to life. 

Friday, April 01, 2016

Easter Road Trip

The kids had a long weekend for spring break/Easter so we packed up the car and headed to the Black Hills.  It was a bit breezy and chilly but we did get out and have some fun.
First stop was at the Dickinson Museum Center to check out the dinosaur exhibit but the kids wanted to sit and play with this "dinosaur" of a typewriter.

Took a few pictures of the old school house where I attended the 6th grade.

Had fun on the playground.....

On the way home to ND we finally stopped and checked out Salem Sue, the worlds largest Holstein cow in New Salem.

beautiful views of the surrounding prairie