Friday, August 29, 2014

Friday Inspiration - Erin Leigh Carlson's Needle Felting

I've done a little "dabbling" in needle felting and know it's not easy, so when I first saw Erin Leigh Carlson's needle felted work I was impressed!  Especially her birds!  We spend quite a bit of time up at the Oregon farm birdwatching - Charlie is a budding ornithologist.  Just ask her about birds and she'll fill you in on all the interesting facts about various species!  

Erin Leigh Carlson American Goldfinch

Birds of prey are her current specialty and we often watch turkey vultures circling over clearings in the forest.  But our more usual observations are the American Goldfinches, Jays, Dark Eyed Juncos, and other birds that frequent our feeders in the backyard.

Erin Leigh Carlson Blue Jay

Back to Erin's work, her website has a wonderful description of how she creates her pieces and if you get to Pennsylvania, take a look at her exhibition and class schedule here.

Happy Creating!  Deborah

Monday, August 25, 2014

Ohio Star Baby Quilt

It took a little longer than I expected, but I'm finished with the Ohio Star baby quilt!  I wanted to do something with the quilt blocks that was traditional, but different .... something a little more modern.  So, I made different sized star blocks and interspersed them with various sizes of solid fabric blocks.  Here's how I did it .....

I decided on what size blocks I wanted to make - 9 inch, 6 inch, and 4.5 inch.  I taped together two pieces of graph paper and cut it to equal the size of quilt I wanted (36 x 54 inches) - having one square equal one inch.  I decided I wanted a border of 4 x 2 inch rectangles so I drew that in on my graph.  After several tries of drawing the star blocks in and erasing each time they didn't work out where I put them, I finally got smart and made separate star blocks in each of the three sizes I planned on using.  I put tape on the back of each and could move them around until I got a layout I liked.  I then divided the remaining space into solid blocks of various sizes.

For this quilt I used about 1 1/2 fat quarter packs of Winter Northwoods Artisan Batiks from The Fat Quarter Shop.  I found one of the fabrics by the yard and used that for the backing and the binding and also added in a snowy fabric to give me another choice for light colored fabric.  I had a lot of fun making the squares and deciding which fabrics to use where!  I definitely need to do another quilt this way!  See this past post for how to make an Ohio Star square.  For the various solid rectangles, I cut them the size I needed and added 1/4 inch on each side as a seam allowance.

After sewing the quilt top together, I quilted it in loopy free motion quilting, 

trimmed, it and added on the binding.  See these past posts for bias tape and quilting basics.

Happy Creating!  Deborah

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

After the Storm ....

The sky split open in the wee hours this morning .... booming lightening that shook the house, torrents of rain.  And the best part of night time thunderstorms is taking a walk in the morning!  Everything is all green and fresh and still dripping.  And, in the case of this chipmunk, trying to dry off.

I've been working on a North Star quilt and am almost done - in time for little Henry's arrival.  I probably won't be around much again this week as I play hookey with visiting family .... next week I should have a post on how I put the quilt together.

Happy Creating!  Deborah 

Friday, August 1, 2014

Friday Inspiration - Christmas

Since it's now August (where did July go?!) this post doesn't exactly qualify as Christmas in July, but if you need some good ideas to jump start your Christmas fiber crafting, here are some I've recently come across!

For the past several years I've had plans to make some type of fiber art Christmas cards .... and every year it keeps getting put off until "next year."  Here are some Marti at FiberArt and More made last year - I really like the graphic look.  And the sparkle!  She has more on her blog here.

I haven't attempted knitting socks yet, but if you have here is a cute snowman pair from Drops Design.  And if you changed the background to a shade of blue, they'd work great all winter!  The free pattern is here.

Jill at Dappertoad has a free pattern for these cute little snowmen - the rainbow scarves caught me!  These would make cute decorations and if you sewed the scarves down, maybe even cat or baby toys. 

My plan at the beginning of the year was to crochet a couple of snowflake ornaments each month so that when December rolled around I'd have a nice collection of them.  So far I have done .... zero.  Yeah, it's been a busy year!  Luckily snowflakes are pretty quick to make, so I still have time.  This pattern from Lion Brand is on my list as the first one to whip up.  And if you want to add variety, Google will lead you to hundreds of different ones!

Happy Creating!  Deborah