Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Catching up in October

Where has October gone, I don't know. I've been meaning to post but never seem to have any extra minutes.
So from last week, I finally had one of my summer Moon flower plants bloom. I planted the seedlings late and with the cold summer I got only one bud which took forever to open and when it did it was with the Full moon last week. If I was only going to have one flower this was perfect timing.

What a wonderful moon week, the blood moon was visible here and at a good time. The grand kids and I went out early to see it.

Then that night we drove around to get the best picture of the Hunters Moon.

It also was time to decorate the house. Fist, Fall garlands and ceramic pumpkins on the piano.

The kitchen hutch gets a new look with a Halloween quilted table runner, herbal vinegars,

and velvet pumpkins and pears.

Wool pumpkin people tucked inside.

Several years ago I made this wool wall hanging from wool I naturally dyed (all except the black).

My favorite Halloween memory from childhood, my paper-mache pumpkin now used to hold napkins.

Last weekend we went camping at our local State Park. Every year they have a Fall Festival, starting with trailer decorating contests and ending with hay rides and trick-or treating. We have a large group of family and friends camping.. This year we made candle holders to decorate our tables with. A garland of leaves from the local craft store, old jars and mod podge. The most important part to make this a successful project is to pull the plastic "veins" off the leaves before trying to glue them on.

We didn't coat the top of the leaves with the glue but we did coat the whole jar. Some of the leaves were velvet, they looked beautiful in the candle light.
This idea came from Pinterest. Oh, we love Pinterest!

Next pumpkins in my flower pots,

my favorite for the season, black and orange pansies in a crock.

Fall garland around the light.

And the porch is ready for the season.

Back to the campground, the weather was perfect, the water beautiful and the grand kids happy.
They fished and fished.

Catching and releasing.

Lots of hiking.

My husband and daughter.

And my grandson taking a selfie.

Last night I had my girlfriends over for dinner. I pulled out my good china. My mom bought them 65 years ago for her wedding china. She was raised in town and when she got married they were moving out into the "woods".  Not really far out but that's how it felt to her.

So while all her girlfriends were buying rose patterned china she bought these pine bough and leaf dishes. Long ago she gave them to me. I use them for special occasions but hate the fact that I'm afraid to put them in the dishwasher and have to hand wash them.

I had my friends over for hot soup, salad, crackers and cheeses. Laura made this cute jack- o-lantern cheese ball.
Another idea from pinterest, if your not familiar with this site google it and enjoy.

 Laura also made me this wonderful witch wall hanging, it has a companion piece of a cat but after paper piecing this for hours she gave me the cat pattern to do myself! LOL, Next year.

And on to the next holiday, Jamie paper pieced this cute Thanksgiving wall hanging.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Nature's Creatie Edge

For the past 10 or so years Robert Friese-AIFD has sponsored a show of Florists work on his property. Each year there is a new theme, this years theme was Suspension. Floral artist come from all over the U.S. to display their sculptures. For three days/nights hundreds of people come and walk through the displays. The admission fees going to scholarships for young florists. There were 27 displays this is just a few of my favorites. The entrance began with two topiaries and large swags.

Surreal Suspension
This was an old wooden ladder full of flowers, moss and candles hanging in glass globes.
We went at dusk so I could take pictures before it got too crowded. But it's much more wonderful all lit up with all the candles.

Fast Food! This frog was covered with vegetation leaping out of a pond

to catch a dragon fly.

Saturn Rising
 (OK, Saturn didn't make the picture but I did get the Sun).



Tubular Color, a please touch display.

Lotus Gate.
You can see in this picture the paths are all lined with candles, beautiful at night.

Four of the dials moved, including the hands of the clock.

One of my favorites, E.T. Phone Home.
At night the moon glowed.

Looked like beautiful bridal bouquet.
Just between you and me I think my Earth Loom would have fit in nicely with this exhibit.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Natural Dyeing

I'd like to begin this post with a little of my personal natural dyeing history. I began natural dyeing around 1995 with my Kindred Spirit, Deb Hardman. We both are quilters and love the outdoors so natural dyeing fit right in with our life. We first began dyeing with cotton fabrics, the color was ok but not great. Once we found how wonderful wool took the dye we never looked back. I now have been dyeing almost 20 years and still love it just as much as the first day. When we started there wasn't much information out there, a few books but nothing like now.
 Next I discovered India Flint  and her book Eco Color, and a
whole new world in dyeing opened up for me. Thank you India for sharing your research and dyeing knowledge with us.  
This past weekend I spent the day outside with the last of my summer flowers and some rusty metal. I haven't dyed much with metal and want to explore it more.
With this first piece of wool I used a rusty piece (my grandson brought me home from the playground), dried eucalyptus, golden rod, cosmos etc.,   


next a piece of copper with woad leave, dyers coreopsis and eucalyptus,

rusty saw blade with flowers.

roll them all up and into the boing water.

in the bottom of the pot I put cut up oak branches and leaves.

A while later I had enough bundles to fill up 2 pots. I simmered them a  few hours and left them overnight.

Oh my gosh the fabrics turned out beautiful,

the pictures don't show the detail at all.

One saw blade gave a Chinese character look.

a fern became a blue print.

more rusty saw blade prints

And from India's other book "stuff, steep & store" I have a jar full of wool and flowers.
It's to pretty to open.

I hope this post doesn't seem to "choppy", I do my blog at work, while writing this post I've driven one customer home, answered the phone too many times to count, did up several work orders and checked out customers. So please excuse all the grammer issues.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Quilt Weekend - Herb Society Herbal Vinegars

Last weekend my girlfriends and I went "North" to Laura's cottage. We all needed to get away from the "real" world. This was perfect. But we weren't to far away from the real world we all worked on gifts for friends and family.  Laura making daughter-in-law to be a table runner.

Cathy making a baby quilt for a gift.

Joni quilting a table runner for a gift.

Jody making her new granddaughter a quilt with Minke Dot fabric for the back and silk binding for the edge. No baby can resist this combination.

(Don't look at this picture Deb C.)

I sat all weekend hand stitching my wool Santa blocks, I making them to exchange with my other girlfriend quilt bee at our Christmas party.
My girlfriends I was with liked the idea so much we're now making snowman blocks to exchange at our Christmas party. You make 6 of the same snowmen, keep one for yourself and give the other 5 away. You go home with 6 different snowmen (or Santa's). You can add more yourself or just use them to make a quilt. 

Our one friend couldn't make it so we all made her a paper-pieced Santa block. Cathy put the wall hanging together with paper-piece flying geese blocks. Miniatures are always so cute.


We also made these cute Origami mats (found on Pinterest). I made my mother-in-law two for Autumn beverage mats. Let me know if your interested and I'll post the directions. They take about 30 minutes to make.

Joni put batting in hers to make a Christmas mat for a warm pot. Too pretty to put a pot on.
Thank you Laura for the beautiful weekend.

This month at Herb Society we used our left over herbs from our gardens to make herbal vinegars.
Our speaker premade up gallon jugs the beginning of July filled with different herbs.

We brought in fresh herbs and our own bottles.

Her recipes written on the bottles.

Lots of good ideas.

You picked which one sounded good to you,

strained the vinegar into your own jar

already filled with a few fresh herbs.

My friend brought some wonderful jars from France to share. I hate to use this it's so pretty.
Thank you Marsha, Master gardener and herbalist.

  • Deb Hardman
  • Allie Aller
  • Jenny Bowker Cairo