Sunday, March 27, 2011

Thread Play

So what do you think? I spent some time practicing my thread painting. This is from a photograph I took. So this one is my own. I am very pleased with it. It was so much fun. Now, I need some other colors of thread so I can do some more!

It was a nice Sunday and to top it off my sweetie will return from his trip so it will be a great day.

The Colorful Quilt

Here is the beginning of my Colorful Quilt...
I have started a project... It is the Colorful Quilt by Jacqueline de Jonge. The photo above is the picture from the front of the pattern. This is my first paper piecing piecing so I am learning so very much good and bad. There is a lot of trial and error.
I have to apologize for the quality of the photos since we have not seen the sun in days. This photo is the first section of the quilt. I am having second thoughts about the gray for the background color. What do you think? I could change at this point if I need to. I just don't know if after some time it will grow on me or is it just the lack of sunshine.

I hope all of you are having a good weekend.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Busy day!!!

My husband spent the day watching Basketball, so I spent my day sewing. As you can see I have finished my Blue Heron. I am pleased with how he turned out. Stitching this way was time consuming but fun! I am anxious to try and apply what I have learned to a piece of my own!
I also finished this piece today. I used some of my new skills making swirls on this piece. I used a variegated thread for the machine quilting. I also added a port hole with one of my photographs transferred onto silk fabric. I hand quilted around the flowers in the photograph.
Last but not least I did a bit of paper piecing. This is a new skill for me. I have never done this before and I enjoyed it. The two quilters I get together with every couple of weeks wanted to make a quilt called the Colorful Quilt. This is the beginning of that quilt for me.

So, I feel like I had a very productive and fun Sunday. I hope all of you had a great weekend.

Happy Birthday Rick

Today is Rick's 21st Birthday. We have not gotten to see him in person since late July of last year. He is studying in Sweden this year. I am missing him quite a bit latly. We are fortunate we get to visit on Skype on a regular bases though. I don't know what I would have done without that. It is spring break right now so he is spending his 21st birthday in Paris and then on Tuesday he is off to Morocco. What a life.

I am so thankful he is having a wonderful year and I am sending Birthday Wishes to him and Safe Travels!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

The ocean has an ominous look today. The surf is very high and there is so much debris in the water. Most of it has come down the rivers since we have had continual rain for many days.

I have not been spending any time on the beach lately. It has been very rough. The power is very humbling.

As I watch the power of the water I have been sending many good thoughts across the ocean. The unbearable loss the people of Japan are having to deal with . It is difficult to wrap my head around.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Thread, Thread, Thread

OK, no one ever told me I would be wanting lots and lots of thread. I purchased a few spools this week when we went to Eugene to see our daughter. I am surprised at how much it cost. I have always looked at thread as being something out of sight and not payed much attention to it. I now have a whole new appreciation of it as a design element. Now I have done machine quilting before but I have used thread I had on hand. I will now be paying attention to sales of thread so I can add to my thread stash. The thread I purchased is for me to use on my Blue Heron piece.

I hope to spend a bit of time this weekend sewing and playing with thread.

I hope all of you have had a great week. I am thankful it has been uneventful here but my heart goes out to Japan.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

I really have been sewing

Here are some photos of my heron. I am just amazed at how much time it takes to cover a piece of fabric with thread. As you saw in my previous post I took a class from Barb Shapel. I have been having fun trying the techniques she taught us. I have practiced many of them on my heron. He has quite of bit of work left to go.
I need to finish his body and his beak. I don't have the proper colors to complete him so he is on hold for now until I am able to purchase more thread. I never in my wildest dreams thought I would want a stash of thread like my stash of fabric. It is such fun.

So while I have to wait to go and purchase thread I have been working on a small piece of my own. Here is a close up of what I have been working on. I hope to show you the entire piece later this week. Taking Barb's class has enabled me to look at machine stitching with a new eye and many new skills. One of the best things I learned is to set the speed on my machine so I can keep a consistent stitch size as I move the fabric.

I still have a long way to go but I am loving the journey.

Sending many good thoughts and prayers to Japan!!! They are an amazing people!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Sending good thougts

pacificrimbowl by conniesayler
pacificrimbowl a photo by conniesayler on Flickr.

I have been thinking about these young men. The two Japanese young men stayed with us 3 years ago and played a football game with my son. They are Ken and Ken. :-) They are such sweet young men. We were unable to remain in contact with them after they returned to Japan due to the language barrier. We had such a good time spending a couple of weeks with them. Their team came to Oregon and spent a week learning about our lives with the ultimate goal was to play a football game. This game was between the Ashland High School and the Japan All-Stars.

I am sending good thoughts to Ken and Ken and their families, you are in my Prayers

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Thankful and sending Prayers

As most of you know from my photos, I live on the Pacific Ocean, this is the view from my window, which I love! However yesterday at 4 am we were awakened by a tsunami alarm, this is a horn type sound which goes on for 3 minutes. At this point we got out of bed and wondered what to do and what was going on! I got on line and typed in Tsunami warning in Gold Beach and to my surprise there had been a major earthquake in Japan. At that point I felt so sad for all of those affected in Japan but at the same time was worried about what we needed to do...

Several months ago my husband attended a community education program on Tsunami Warnings and what to do. Since we were hearing an alarm that meant we needed to prepare for the wave and we had some time, and we are fortunate we are 80 or so feet above sea level, so our preparations are how will we be able to survive if we have to shelter in place here in our home. If necessary we can go further up our hill but we decided to stay put. We filled the bath tubs with water in case we were to loose our water. At this point I just wandered around not knowing what to do...

Then I decided to put sleeping bags in our car with water and a cat carrier, just in case we needed to drive up the hill we would have a few items. Then we just waited. M dosed a bit but I was not able to relax so I sat and waited for the sun to come up. It was a long wait. The not knowing what was coming was a very strange feeling yet we knew we needed to be prepared. I can't even tell you how many different thoughts were going through my head. Soon, family and friends started calling and checking in on us. It was so good to be able to visit with them and voice what I was feeling.

By 7:30 we could see that here in Gold Beach everyone was fine and the initial wave did not amount to much. We are so fortunate. We had high surf and rough water all day. You could also see that the ocean was very muddy looking and it was very rough. Some of the ports along the coast did not fair as well but we are fine.

I have never had to think about something like this before. I will now put a few things in place so I can be as prepared as I can.

I will be back to sewing today and I hope to post photos tomorrow. I am sending many prayers for those in Japan today!!!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Thread Painting with Barb Shapel

I traveled to Roseburg, Oregon last week and attended a one day class with a couple of friends. We attended a class taught by Barb Shapel, she taught us to do what she calls thread painting. The photos I have included here are of Barb working and with her work.
Her work is incredible and she was a wonderful teacher. I learned so much. This is the first class I have ever taken on Machine Stitching and it was so helpful!!! I had a great time and learned so much.

In the class we learned how to create the heron. I am working hard to complete my version and it will take a bit of time. I know it will not measure up to Barb's creation but in the process I am learning so much and look forward to applying these processes to my own work. I will post photos of my heron in the next few days. I hope to spend sometime at my machine tomorrow while I do laundry. :-) It seems like housework always gets in the way!

I hope all of you have a great week!