Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Another finish.....

This finish is actually from last week but I held off on showing it since it is the SAL challenge project for the FTLOS stitching list. The challenge starts tomorrow and I will be posting the photos of my step by step on my StitchingTogether blog for them to use along with the free online pattern from Patchpieces. This is such a fun project. I will be looking forward to using it during the holidays 2007.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

A few finishes

I am excited to say I have two finishes to share with you. Firstly, the pinkeep for Valentine's Day. I am really happy with how it turned out. This time I used thin satin ribbons in two shades of pink along with two shades of pink glass pins. I simply twisted the ribbon as I went around inserting the pins.
This ornament was stitched over the Christmas holidays. This is my Christmas SAL January challenge on my stitching list. We were supposed to stitch and/or finish a Christmas ornament. I sewed and stuffed this heart and then added cording. The tassle hanging from the bottom is from a Christmas card I received from a lady in my quilt group. I love using items from other things with my stitching. It added just the right touch.

Don't forget by clicking on the photos, you can see the photos in much more detail.

Monday, January 29, 2007

An experiment in tea dying

I decided to try tea dying some of my linen yesterday. This is the result. The actual linen is a warm cream although it looks brighter here. I like my first attempt but could not get regular coffee granules to stain it and give it an even older effect. I will try using instant coffee next time. For now, I have decided this is perfect for a little Quaker design for a scissor fob. I planned on using a large piece dyed for my Beatrix Potter Quaker sampler but think it is too dark for such a large piece so I will use the fabric as is ~ the cream color.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

A quilter's poem and stitcher's thought

Little Bits of Fabric

Little bits of fabric
Sewn into a quilt
Form a warm and loving blanket
From which memories are built.
And when you seek peace and comfort
In the quiet of the night
It will keep you warm and snug
Until the morning's light.

(Author: unknown)

Take a moment today to reflect on knowing that what you make today to use or hang in your home will become an heirloom tomorrow. Savour each moment you spend on your hobbies. Become one with the thread and sew a bit of your heart into it with each and every stitch.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

A find and a finish

I have been doing some major decluttering in my pantry in the laundry room. It is a combination of food items and my silk flower collection. I found this old stitching way in the back stuck behind the shelf. I got it out and it is really shifted and poorly framed. I must have made this about 20 years ago. I am going to take it apart and turn it into another pinkeep. I thought I will not hang it up so why not make a pinkeep that can be part of my collection.
I also had a finish today. I finished the freebie I posted about a couple of days ago. This will also be a pinkeep. I can't wait to start looking for all the right trims and ribbons and pins. For now it is bedtime so it will have to wait for a new day.....

Tuesday, January 23, 2007


Yesterday we had a discussion on our stitching list about nutcrackers since someone of the list is making all the Prairie Schooler Nutcrackers for ornaments for Christmas. Her first one is finished and adorable. I mentioned my nutcracker collection and this special present I received this year from a dear lady in my quilt group named Joke (pronounced Yoka in Dutch). She surprised me with it and I absolutely love it! I have never had anyone make me a quilt before since I myself am a quilter. It was made more special that she knows I love nutcrackers. Thank you so much Joke for a special gift that I will treasure forever!

Monday, January 22, 2007

What I am stitching on this Monday.....

Someone on my stitching list posted an adorable free design today which she found on a blog ( ). I printed it out and am going to stitch it up for a Valentine's Day pinkeep. I think it will stitch up very quickly so I can do this now in between all my other projects. I really want to have it finished in time for the holiday. I am using Zweigart 28ct. Lugana 'New Khaki'. The thread is The Dye Is Cast ~ pink 'Nose', green 'Mossy Spot' and browny-biege 'Brunch Punch'. I am being influenced by my French stitching friend, Francoise, as she is a great fan of pink thread. I decided to give this bright pink a go in honor of her.

This is the 2nd part of our PS Winter Wind SAL completed. The white thread is a white metallic thread by Madiera which gives it a snowy look. Unfortunately, it does not show up on the photos. I just sent out the new assignment this morning and will post a new progress photo again next week.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

What is a 'pinkeep'?

I have been asked by a number of people "What is a pinkeep"? The pinkeep idea of today came from what was called a pindisc. It was a round wheel with ivory, wood or silver ends. In the center was a soft center (many antique examples are velvet centers) where the pins were inserted into the disc. The ends kept the pins points tucked inside. This was an safe and easy way for women to place their pins in the pocket of a dress. The pinkeeps stitchers make today are for decorative purposes. It is fun to collect trims and ribbons as well as pretty glass head pins that will match.
(Photos of front and side of an antique pindisc)

Friday, January 19, 2007

My WIP tray

I had mentioned on my stitching list about clearing out my stitching tray so that only two or three projects are in it at a time. I actually only have my current SAL project in the tray after I took everything out. It means I can really enjoy this more as it looks so pretty sitting in the tray. Here is a photo of it sitting on my dining room table. I must admit it encourages me to work on the SAL even more as I love just seeing it all laying in the tray so neatly that my stitching time is enhanced even more. How are you storing your WIPs? Do you have a special place to keep and carry around your most current project?

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

My stitching and quilting corner

This is my spot in the living room where I sit and either stitch or do my hand quilting. It is on the couch and I have a lamp that I can pull right over to my work from IKEA. It gives really great light. I also have a wooden footstool which I use sometimes with a pillow on it to put my feet up. I also read here sometimes although I have a reading corner up in my bedroom with a very comfortable oversized chair and ottoman. The current book on my table here is "The Stillmeadow Road" by Gladys Taber.

Where is your stitching or quilting corner? If you read in the same area, what book do you have sitting there at the moment? I would love to hear about or see your spot in your home.
The 'little man' you see on my spot on the couch is my cat Dagi. He is such a cutie. Just look at that face! My husband says he is never more than 10 feet from me these days. He loves my spot and tries to take it over as soon as I get up.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Gathering UFOs

I am gathering my quilt UFOs that I want to finish for 2007. I am starting a UFO challenge in my quilt group. Each person can turn in a list of the UFOs that they would like to try to finish this year. For each UFO on the list, they turn in a fat quarter of fabric. These are all placed in a basket. Each month, the ladies will bring any completed UFO to show us and then she can pick out a fat quarter from the basket. This not only motivates to finish off projects but you can get some fun new fabrics in the meantime.

So far, I have 5 UFOs choosen for the challenge:
1. Quilted calendar
2. Ragged hearts quilt
3. Birds in the Air quilt
4. Flannel toile medallion doll's quilt
5. Pioneer Braid quilt

I am cutting fat quarters to place in the basket for the exchange and deciding on any other UFOs to add to my list.

Monday, January 15, 2007

PS Winter Wind SAL

I am leading a new SAL this month. We are doing Prairie Schooler's Winter Wind. This is a great companion piece to Autumn Leaves which we stitched during the autumn season. I will post updates on this site, but will post all the finished photos on my StitchingTogether blog in February.

Monday's needlework quote

I cannot count my day complete
'Til needle, thread and fabric meet.
~~ Author Unknown ~~

This rings so true for me personally! I find there is something missing in my day if I have not made time to either sit and stitch or quilt.

It seems 2007 being freshly started, we all have long wish lists. I hear so many of my stitching and quilting friends saying they feel a bit overwhelmed at the moment. Is it maybe that with the entire year still ahead of us, we see so many possibilities and want to try to do so much. I am trying to reduce the amount of projects in my tray this year. Firstly, I am going to remove all the WIPs. I will place only a couple of projects in the tray that I want to and can realistically work on in the coming weeks left in January. I think this will help me feel more organized and give me a feeling of accomplishment when I can say something is finished.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Pinkeep is finished!

WooHoo! The pinkeep is finished and I am so pleased with its very cheerful look! How is this to brighten a February day? Also on this photo, you can see a pretty crazy quilt pincushion I got in a Christmas gift exchange from my quilt group a couple of years ago. The colors looked nice with the pinkeep. Also shown is a thread holder in the form of a robin. You can see the thread holders which are handmade at: . I have three of them and love them.
I used a scrap of quilt fabric once again for the back. I wanted to base the colors of the fabric on the trim.
This is the trim I found while I was in Brugge last month. I fell in love with it and am so happy it worked for the first pinkeep of this year. The ribbon used for the bow is from my stash and I happened to have colors that match the coloring of the trim. The glass head pins are from a find when I last went to Utrecht. It is fun when everything comes together like this.

Someone asked for a link to this Bent Creek free chart. It can be found at: .

Friday, January 12, 2007

Stitching finished!

Last night, I finished stitching this little Bent Creek design. I am waiting for glue to dry to put this together as a pinkeep. I hope to have more photos of it totally finished to share either later today or tomorrow.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Some things remain special in life

This is a beautiful letter I received from a friend on one of my Yahoo lists. We had been talking about how computers are wonderful for making friends across the globe and staying in instant contact, but I really miss getting a letter that drops through my mailbox onto my doormat.

One of my friends on this list created this wonderful handwritten letter for me. She illustrates them with stamped pictures which she then colors in. The letter is like a piece of art.

That friend's name is Terri ( and I want her to know I still have the letter from April 2005 and just love it. It is a very special gift to me! Thanks Terri!

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

My WIPs for this week

It has been a while since I have showed you my current WIPs. This is what I am working on this week. The first is the Mrs. Jefferson sampler by The Sampler Girl and I am stitching this in a SAL. I am very behind on my assignments but hope to do some catching up in this month of January.

Secondly, I am working on the Bent Creek freebie ~ Ground Hog Day. I will be turning this into a pinkeep. I would love to have this finished this weekend.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Quilt shop 'De Lander'

Back in December, I went to Brugge, Belgium for a couple of days. This is my favorite city in Europe and I try to go a few times a year. The city is amazing and like walking in an open air museum.

There is a quilt shop there that I just had to share with you all. It is run by a wonderful lady who really has an eye for making this shop a very magical place! Isn't the quilt in the window just adorable! Katie is not only warm and welcoming but she has a wonderful collection of items for quilting and decorating. Even for those who do not quilt, this is a great shop.

One of Katie's special talents is her bears. She makes the most beautiful kits which she sells in her shop. The mouse I used to display my pinkeep a while ago on the blog was made by her.

I think this quilt shop is a must for anyone going to Brugge! Check out her website at .

Friday, January 05, 2007

Another quilt UFO

This is once again a UFO that has been sitting for years waiting to be quilted for years now. I did this up as a sample when I showed the quilt group the 'pioneer braid'. It can be used as a border in a quilt but I wanted to show them that the braid itself creates a cute quilt. I did this in red, green and cream homespuns. After I finish hand quilting it, I will sew the binding and add a label at which time it can be added to my 2007 finishes. This will be the 2nd UFO I can take off my quilt rack. Yeah!

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Starting off the New Year right.....

I just commented on the blog of a friend ( )from one of my lists. She is a wonderful lady and has shared some great finishes in 2006 on one of my Yahoo lists. We are starting our WIP SAL for 2007 and everyone has to create a list of the things they hope to accomplish in the coming year. I know we all relate to her feeling of intimidation at actually seeing the list written out. It is frustrating to want to do it all and then thinking you can't accomplish it. We all create wish lists in life that are larger than we can realistically do in all walks of life. We then seem to concentrate only on the things that we did not finish, forgetting to look at the things we did. If we never set goals that are high, we will never challenge ourselves to become better. This does not mean we have to accomplish each and every thing we set out to do as long as we enjoy the ride getting there.

I will repeat what I just told Barbara on her blog: Remember when you feel overwhelmed with those UFOs/WIPs that you did accomplish so much last year. But most importantly, remember to enjoy the moment. Take pleasure in each stitch you make and the finishes will take care of themselves!

I am starting a new little freebie today. It too was shared on our list and is from Bent Creek. Rarely do you see any designs for Ground Hog Day. I plan to make this into a pinkeep. I want to find a nice basket to put a whole series of holiday/season themed pinkeeps in.