Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Another four blocks

Hi all,

The long Easter weekend has been fruitfull! I've managed to make another four blocks!
Each block has it's own particularities but they all have one thing in common ... they all take much more time than you would think!

Working at the Dear Jane quilt means - for me - three P's = pinning, patience and perseverance :-)!

Here they are:

Block F7 : start and finish - Thursday 17th of April

Block H7 : started Thursday 17th of April - finished Saturday 19th of April

Block G6 : started Saturday 19th of April - finished Sunday 20th of April

Block E7 : started Sunday 20th of April - finished Monday 21st of April

I just like them all ... can you tell it's addicting?! ;-)

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Start on Dear Jane quilt

I have been pondering about this quilt for almost two years but felt I wasn't ready for it yet ... untill someone at a recent quilt show told me to "just dive in".

The original Dear Jane quilt from 1863 - made by Jane A. Stickle and brought to our
attention by Brenda Papadakis who painstakingly drafted and published the blocks
in a book (read somewhere that it is one of the best selling quilt books out there)

Here are the first two blocks. Lots of the "Janiacs" (the ladies working on this quilt :-) start with the first row and then work their way down. I've started from the middle out which allows me to stop whenever I want - although I want to tackle the whole "monster" ;-).

Block G7 - started and finished Tuesday 15th of April
Block G8 - started and finished Wednesday 16 of April

On this blog I've read that when making 5 blocks a week this quilt takes 1 year to complete. When taking 4 blocks per month (which is more realistic for a working mom) this equals 4 1/2 years ... ouch! :-) What counts is having fun chosing fabrics, thinking of the next blocks and bringing the whole thing to life!

I see quite some blocks in my near future! LOL!!!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

First update on And They Sinned

I've started this piece on March 21st (the start of Spring and also the birthday of my deceased grandfather). Since then I've been happily stitching on this piece which is executed on a 35-count with one thread ... something which I didn't do before but which will certainly be repeated! It really is a pleasure to stitch this way!

I have all the colours except for two which are on backorder. And guess what ... I need them for the upper part = the three crowns and the big angel that is standing between two pillars. Hence the empty spot on the top part of the sampler.
It's only now that I get to realise how big this piece is going to be! Just to give you an idea ...I've spent almost an entire week (only stitching a couple of hours during the evening) on the big grey cloud - of which I first thought it should be blue :-).

Still enjoying it highly so you'll see other updates soon!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Lovely little stash busting

On Saturday we drove to the seaside to bring our children to their grandparents where they'll stay for a week (there's two weeks of Easter holidays in total).

I didn't resist the temptation of the LNS where I've already purchased things before. She has different items for knitting, crocheting and stitching but in all it's a small store.

This time there was something by Mango Pratique which caught my eye. Here it is ...

Six booklets filled with motifs concerning the UK, America, Asia, Russia, Scandinavia and the Mediterranean region. Added bonus are the 16 strands (only 4 metres - half of the normal strand) of DMC that are offered for free.

I just love the possibilities it offers and hope to play around with it soon :-)!

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Cabinet of Curiosities by Thistle Threads

Well my dear friends ... after long and thoughtfull consideration - which took me over a year - I decided to take the plunge and subscribe for the Cabinet of Curiosities online class by Thistle Threads!

As it is a project which will be time - and money - consuming I didn't immediately dive in. Actually I've been thinking to join last year (2013) but chickened out just before the closing date. Recently I've seen another announcement on a third class (or is it the 4th?) starting this year due to popular demand. I've considered this as a sign so I'll be in!
Taken from the Thistle Threads blog (which explains far better what it's all about):

The course teaches the fundamental information needed to design, embroider and cover a wooden cabinet to make a replica of a 17th century casket.  For those who have ever seen a picture of an embroidered cabinet or been lucky enough to see one in person, these items delight and enchant and are quite desirous for needleworkers. 
The course is 18-months and includes three phases:
- learning about the meaning and design of the 17th century embroideries seen on caskets so you can design your own;
- trying out embroidery techniques on five small projects that include a small trinket box;
- learning how to finish and apply the embroideries to a box. A small trinket box is provided to learn on with reproduction finishing materials.
Two kits are sent during the class. They include four full 32-color thread lines (Soie Ovale, Soie Paris, Silk Gimp and Silk Wrapped Purl) that were reproduced in a color line that matches the back of 17th century embroidery. That is over 125 tubes of silk fiber! Other contents include the fabrics and finishing materials for the five projects and the trinket box with reproduction hardware.
Some students use the designs I offer in the class, others design their own based on the motifs and design instruction, and others use a contemporary muse to make something their own. A casket will take a long time to embroider - it needs to be what you want to hand down generations, not the teacher's vision.
The course is designed to allow the student to chose to make their own wooden form or purchase one of the boxes or mirrors that I offer.

Can you tell that I'm excited to begin this journey ... even though I don't exactly know where it will lead me (if I'll make a casket myself or if I'll be purchasing one with her afterwards - students get a reduction but it's still expensive)! ;-)
I'll keep you posted!