Monday, October 31, 2011

Herb Society Craft Night

Our last Herb Society meeting was filled with making herbal crafts. President Veronica was our speaker, she had so many wonderful ideas we didn't have time to get through them all. Here are a few.
We started by learning how to make an herbal gathering basket out of 3 grocery store bags. Fold the first one down 3 folds, then insert the next bag inside and fold down 2 times. The folding down makes them sturdier. The third bag cut off the bottom and place it in the bottom of your new basket for reinforcement. Cut a long strip off the same bag, fold it in long thirds for the handle and hot glue it on inside the basket.

This is my finished basket, we tied raffia on it that could be used to tie a pair of small scissors on for cutting herbs (or dye plants).
The little "herb card" was another project, a cute idea for gift tags held on with a small clothes pin. I liked it so much I hot glued it to my basket.

The inside has 2 smaller brown bags used as dividers for the plants.

Another cute idea, a small glass bottle filled with cotton and a few drop of lemon eucalyptus essential oil, a quick smell during the day to give you a natural picker upper and great for stuffy head.

Veronica filled a big bowl with lavender, herbs, flowers and drops of essential oil. She passed the bowl around and we each made little sachets.

Another idea she had was filling a glass bottle (hers was beautiful cut glass with a pineapple on top), with witch hazel and adding a vanilla bean. This makes a wonderful skin freshner applied with a cotton pad.

For cooking and the table, sea salt with your favorite chopped herbs mixed in. Leave a couple of weeks then enjoy. You can sift the herbs out if you choose and place the salt into a shaker.

And to sugar add lavender. Use the sugar with your favorite sugar cookie recipe, cake recipe, or tea. Sift out lavender if desired.

My bitter sweet vines were full of berries this year, last year I had 1 berry on all the vines. My grandson helped me take off all the leaves. This one loves helping with projects.

I finally had enough to make a swag over my dye studio door, redo the other windows in the studio and my kitchen window.

While on our fall color tours we collected beautiful red maple leaves.

Which when dye printed (steamed in the dye pot) on wool became teals and golds. I've never got the teal color before, this piece will be added to my wool quilt that's in progress.

Red leaves from the yard.

After steaming become golds and greens.

The kids had a great time carving their pumpkins they picked from the pumpkin patch. While they carved I baked the seeds: I melted 1/2 cup of real butter on a cookie sheet, washed the seeds and spread them all over the butter. Sprinkled seasoned salt over all. Bake 325 degrees 20-30 minutes stirring occasionally and test tasting to see when done.

Have a Wonderful Halloween!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Tempting Tables

Tempting Tables is a grassroots volunteer organization that showcases exquisite, elaborate and creative tablescapes as well as unique personal collections. All proceeds from the ticket sales go directly to breast cancer research. Even the 400+ volunteers pay to see the exhibit. Every year the exhibit becomes more and more over the top, instead of just tablescapes the tables are now set in complete scenes. I wish I could have posted them all, there were 33 total. My pictures don't do them justice, my camera was in the process of taking a big dump (I have since bought a new one) and there we're so many people there it was hard to get great pictures. Double click on the pictures to see the detail.

This first table is Irish Eyes are Smiling, complete with a little tree stump centerpiece, Irish china and glassware.

Venetian Carnival. The gondola was built buy the designers husband, the desginer painted the background bridge and water scenery. A wonderful table setting on a velvet tablecloth with her hand painted masks.

Good Morning, Red Rooster. This complete room setting even included the old cupboard, bales of straw on one side of the table for seats and a old sewing machine with a thirty's quilt waiting to be sewed.

The old cupboard in this farm kitchen.

The Twelve Days of Christmas, the large cards behind the plates were painted by one of the designers.

Beachy Christmas. I love the wooden arbor built around the table, I want one built in my own backyard complete with the grapevines, little lights and hanging jars with candles in them.
What a beautiful way to decorate for the holidays if you live near the sea side.

I believe this was called A Very Special Dinner For Two. Tucked in the trees was a beautiful table set for two, my favorite place to eat, outside!

The Mystic Canopy of Light.

Forever Best Friends. This table is the story of 4 girls who were best friends all their life and had their weddings together. This was their wedding table, beautiful with all it's silk, tulle, lights and flowers.
I'm not sure if this is a true story but it sounded good.

Close up, there are gold fish swimming in the glass tube holding up the centerpiece.

Into the woods, I love this one (also!), with its birch bark tree running through the table, twig chairs, field stone with moss tucked between on the ground.

Birch bark cushions and beautiful red roses.

Alice In Wonderland. The designers were our local garden club. the table cloth they made with antique pieces of fabric. There was a beautifully painted back drop.
This picture is a little fuzzy, camera was really getting bad.

The Mad hatter, white rabbit and Queen of Hearts we're there.

And of course Alice, whose eyes seemed to follow you everywhere.

More guests at the party.

Green and Red Gingerbread. What child wouldn't love to have this play house.

Complete with wonderful cushions on the chairs with matching window valances and table cloth.

The Cornfetti Table. How cute for fall with a scarecrow sleeping under the table.

The Art of Dining.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Antique Quilts

At our last quilt guild meeting the world famous Pat Holly was our guest speaker, she shared with us her antique quilt collection. Pat is famous for her quilts made entirely with her sewing machine, she has won many awards with them, including top awards from the AQS quilt show in Paducha, Kentucky. The antique quilts she collects all have machine work on them, be it the quilting or the piecing.
I posted them in order from the oldest to the newest, most from around 1890's. I tried to remember as much as I can about the quilt as she spoke, but I miss a lot while trying to photograph it. So, to all my antique quilt loving friends, enjoy the quilts, double click to see the workmanship a little closer.

This has an all over machine quilting pattern.

I love this cactus.

Close-up of.

Fun tulips with a tulip boarder.

Matching tops. Still late 1800's.

Beautiful red and green quilt.

Two more matching quilts, one being the negative of the other.

I didn't hear but I believe this was appliqued, no tricky modern piecing method!

A beautiful blue and white.

This is one of my favorites, Seven Sisters pattern. Love the color combination.

I love tree quilts, this one is wonderful.

The appliqued polka dots in the lattice are too fun.

Pat also makes miniature quilts and has won top prizes at AQS with them. I believe they are 12 to 14 inches in size. They are beautifully appliqued. Notice the tiny little trim she uses on them.

The workmanship detail is beautiful

Her silk Pink Elephant she made for her daughter.

  • Deb Hardman
  • Allie Aller
  • Jenny Bowker Cairo