STITCH LINES...... Ramblings on life as a quilter, stitcher, traveler, photographer, gardener and lover of books, cats and fine chocolate....

Friday, February 28, 2014

Blossoms and Birthdays

The last day of February. Yay! I don't feel one bit sad to say Goodbye February. For a "short" month, it sure has felt plenty long! On to March and hopefully some signs of spring.  So, just to get us in the mood for spring, I couldn't resist sharing a few more amaryllis photos with you. Both are now in bloom, 3 blossoms on the coral one and two open on the deep red with two more buds still to unfurl. You can't help but feel happy when you have such beauty to gaze upon first thing in the morning.

Today is Mark's 25th birthday!! My firstborn. Twenty-five! How can that be?! He arrived home this afternoon for his Spring Break week. And Laura will be home next weekend for her 23rd birthday. I haven't seen either of them since Christmas so am looking forward to having them home for a bit. Mark's birthday cake is ready... chocolate of course... is there any other flavour worth having? Oliver had his annual checkup and shots this afternoon, and a mini pedi, lol. All is well with his world!
Flowers and chocolate and a
healthy kitty.... it's a good day!


Birthdays are nature's way of telling us to eat more cake.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

A "Finish" Feels Good...

It's high time I showed you something I've been working on, lest you think I'm doing nothing but sitting here eating bonbons.. lol  I must admit I haven't been as productive this winter as I had hoped to be, but I have been working away on a few things. I have stitched 3 more of my stitched and beaded Santas- I needed two more for my recent Giveaway as I had gifted a few over Christmas. When you have a Giveaway and you've offered "winner's choice", you have to have all choices on hand in case the winner picks the very one you are without (which would be just my luck!) I have one more hat to finish and I will have all five designs "in stock" again. I did promise my friend Sandi a complete set as thanks for her hosting me in Florida. She'll be "home" in late spring, so I now have that taken care of...Whew!

I finished up a totebag last week too. I recently taught this class at our local quilt shop, the Christmas Crab Quiltery. The Twister Totebag was designed by my buddy Sue Robertson; she wanted to come up with another use for several rulers/templates she had purchased. She taught it for our Guild a few years ago. When shop owner JoAnne saw my bag, she asked if I would teach it and I told her "It's not mine to teach". But Sue didn't wish to teach it again and gave me her permission and blessing. I made up my own notes/instructions with a few small changes and off we went.
It is made using the Lil' Twister template and Sue Pelland's Leaves Galore ruler (both are available for purchase at JoAnne's shop). I like to  have a project under construction in stages to show during the class, as many people are visual learners. How many bags does one person need, especially of the same design? I told JoAnne if she chose fabrics she liked I would make her a bag. So this is it, now completed after the class held a few weeks ago. We do have several more people who would like to do this totebag, but we need a few more to fill the class, so if you are in this local area and are interested, please get in touch with JoAnne and give her your name. The
bag is a good size (approx. 16" wide by 17" tall), has optional inner pockets, optional magnetic closure, is quickly machine quilted and is do-able in a 1 day class! Large buttons and bead dangles can be added for embellishment, if desired, as I did on mine which you can see here. Straps can be purchased commercially or made. I made the straps for both bags - on mine I covered purchased strapping with fabric and top-stitched the edges, and on JoAnne's bag I made the straps with fusible batting and fabric, and again top-stitched with my edge-stitch foot (LOVE that foot!) So there you go - a finished project. That always feels good - another one crossed off the proverbial list!
I am finishing up a new Miniature as well. It should be ready to "unveil" in another few days. The top is finished but it calls for some embroidery - with a single strand of floss, so that gives you a hint as to the size. We're talkin' small here folks! I'll show it soon...
Are you happily working on a project today?


"Nothing can be done except little by little." ~ Charles Baudelaire

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Winter Blossom Beauty

Look at the beauty that greeted me this morning. How could this not make you start your day with a smile?! I love this Amaryllis - the color never comes out really true in photos - it's actually a coral color and always has double petals. It will have only three blooms this time around, but hey, I'm happy! So lovely. I also have a red one about to burst into bloom - probably the first of four blossoms will open tomorrow. So you'll be seeing it in the near future too! Just thought I'd share the beauty with you on this cold but sunny winter's day. February is almost over... yay!!!


"Flowers always make people better, happier, and more helpful; they are sunshine, food and medicine for the soul." ~ Luther Burbank

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Quilts of South Africa, World Quilt Competition

As I have already said, more than once, the entire experience at the World Quilt Show in January (West Palm Beach, FL) was an awesome one. The quilts in the 18 consecutive shows, in addition to the World Quilt Competition, were just absolutely incredible. The skill and workmanship, the talent, the design, the color, the originality - all I can say is WOW! My photos just do not do them justice, as is often the case. It is near impossible to pick favourites as they all were so impressive, but I have tried to show you some highlights - what I considered the Best of the Best! So here are a few more "bests" - from South Africa. Once again, the info card precedes the quilt.

Note - this quilt, Scenic Spendour, won "Best of Country" for South Africa.

Wouldn't you agree? These quilt are inspirational....    What is inspiring you today?


"The moment of inspiration can come from memory, or language, or the imagination, or experience - anything that makes an impression forcibly enough for language to form." ~ Carol Ann Duffy

Canada takes Hockey GOLD!!!

It's a great day! The sun is shining, the temps are supposed to get up to plus 3, and Canada has won the Gold medal hockey game!! Plus we have two hours of  Downton Abbey tonight. Woohooo!!  It doesn't get any better. I was up a little earlier than normal this morning for the 8a.m. game start and when I opened my blind and saw that golden sun shining across the snow, I took it as a good sign... Way to go Canada! Once again, both our Men's and Women's teams have shown the world that HOCKEY IS OUR GAME!!!
So I've been sitting here on the couch in front of CBC television, wearing my pj's and my red Olympic mitts and cheering on "my boys". Ollie seemed confident that Canada would take the gold so he's been catching a few winks. What a puss!
I'll be back a little later with more World Quilt Show photos from South Africa... Y'all come back!


"The key is not the will to win.  Everybody has that. It is the will to prepare to win that is important."~ Bobby Knight

"We all play for Canada!"

Saturday, February 22, 2014

More Quilts from the 2014 World Quilt Show

Well as you can see, I didn't get this post done yesterday as planned... I got too wrapped up in the Olympics shenanigans, and  a new Miniature I'm working on. (You'll see it soon.)  But it's high time I finished up with the (Florida) World Quilt Show photos.. the days are flying by and that trip seems so long ago now. I had a bit of camera trouble - thought I had lost one entire day's worth of Show photos. I couldn't retrieve them from my memory card, so I took it in to my camera shop when I got home and they, thankfully, could retrieve them and put them on a disc for me, bless their little hearts. I guess the fall in Prague perhaps did more damage to my camera than I thought. I guess I'm going to have to get a pro to look at it further... (Wouldn't( it be just awful if I had to buy  a new camera..??  heehee)  So, let's get going on the last group of  photos from the World Quilt Competition 2014 in West Palm Beach, FL. In random order.... This group is from Japan. (Note: I've had some troubles tonight with my photo editing program which has slowed me down considerably... (good thing you can't hear some of the bad words I've been muttering) So to save some time and get this post up before I turn into a pumpkin, I'm going to give you the info for each quilt with the actual card. The info will precede each quilt.)

These quilts were all awesome. Some required considerable study....  I'll continue tomorrow with my favs from South Africa. Until then...


"The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. " ~ Steve Jobs

Friday, February 21, 2014

Gold Rush! Go Canada!!

Well I'm sitting at my sewing machine today but my eyes are on the tv more than my sewing... The men's semi final hockey game is on - Canada vs USA - need  I say more? No score yet after first period. Come on guys! Put one up on the board. Or two or three... Both teams are working so hard...
I'm working on a  new miniature. Probably not the best choice for today.... I should be sewing carefully, slowly, paying great attention to accuracy...hmmm, might have to re-think this... I should be working on something "mindless" as my mind is on what's happening in Sochi right now...
We've seen a bit of a Gold Rush in the last 24 hours.. Gold in Women's Curling. Gold in Women's Hockey. Gold this morning in Men's Curling. Gold and Silver this morning in Women's Ski Cross.... GO CANADA!!
Gotta go- second period has started.. I hope to post again later today with more photos from the World Quilt Show in Florida.. and I have a finished totebag to show you too...


"Each of us has a fire in our hearts for something. It's our goal in life to find it and keep it lit." ~ Mary Lou Retton, Gold medalist, 1984 Summer Olympics

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