Monday, November 29, 2010

Turkey Talk

Thanksgiving has become such a warm and peaceful time for me.  For the past several years, it's been just my husband, myself and our two adult children.  We enjoy a yummy (and simplified from years ago) dinner and then decorate the Christmas Tree together. One of the things I really enjoy doing is decorating the table.  This year I made these really cute Oreo turkeys - one for each of us. Fun!
I also like to do a centerpiece. Not much blooming this time of year, but as my good friend Diane taught me, you just go out there and start cutting - next thing you know you have a pretty good looking arrangement. And don't forget to embrace all the pretty leaves on some shrubs, like the colorful Nandina leaves. I even had some New Guinea Impatiens still in bloom that I was able to use.

Another favorite are the table linens that my mother-in-law crocheted for me years ago.  What that lady could do with thread and a hook was just amazing!  There are matching placemats and glass coasters on the table. It is also a special way of honoring her  memory.
And somehow a pretty table makes everything taste better!
I hope you all had an enjoyable Thanksgiving and that you are blessed during the joyous Advent season.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Celebrity Extreme

Quilt market in Houston was a couple of weeks ago.  Ty Pennington's new fabric line was introduced there in partnership with 
Westminster Fibers Lifestyle Fabrics. So Elyse got to meet yet another celebrity! I'm not one to ooh and ahh over celebrities, but it is kind of neat for her.  I haven't seen his line yet, but I'm sure it will be worth waiting for. Of course, I'm  jealous that she gets to be among all that fabric, thread, and all matter quilting related!
(Sorry the pic's not too great.)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Modeling Chocolate

A new medium! After watching 2 seasons of "Cake Boss" on Netflix, I had to try this. Much to my delight, you don't have to buy something expensive and premixed. You mix your own (recipe) using chocolate and Karo Syrup! I had the perfect opportunity to use it on a birthday cake for a fellow quilter who was turning 50. Not bad for a first try, althouth I think I made it a bit stiffer than it needed to be.  I scored it into squares using a pointed wheel tool, "painted' the squares using two colors - I used "pearl dust". DO NOT use liquid food coloring - it reacts badly with the chocolate. I then cut out a "5" and "0", placed it on the quilt and placed the whole piece on the cake. I then modeled some buttons and placed those on the side of the cake.  I was pleased with the result. Admittedly amateur - but a whole lot of fun!  See the needle and thread? The needle was a toothpick with a thin covering of the chocolate and a slit in the chocolate to look like the eye of the needle. Writing gel was used for the "thread." 
   The next family birthday cake is going to be such fun!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Retreat Part II

On Saturday Sandy did an awesome "make and take" using the Sissix machine and Stampin' Up stamps.  We made a funny greeting card, a Christmas ornament and a metal candle holder - what a generous treat. Thank you Sandy!
Here's Deanna meticulously putting her project together.

(Right) Sandy is a good teacher and Deanna was her "Vanna" like assistant.

Below Camille proudly shows off her ornament and candle holder. This was yet another great way to channel our creative energy - of which this group has no bounds!

Cindy celebrated the big 50 with us on Friday night. What better than a quilt cake?! It was my first attempt with modeling chocolate (more on that next post!)

Thank you to all the wonderful ladies who attented this retreat - they are a joy to spend time with, I learn so much, and come home chomping at the bit to sew, sew, sew!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

More Time to Sew Retreat! Part I

This past weekend 12 women joined me at a log cabin house on Lake Norman to sew, sew, sew! Aren't they just the serious bunch? Serious about their sewing that is. Miles and miles of thread were used and many pieces of fabric were cut up and put back together! I was totally amazed at not only how much they accomplished, but how wonderful their quilts, bags, tablerunners, etc. were! To be sure, though, there was much laughing to go along with all the work. I think sleep was the one thing that there was not a whole lot of. That's okay, we can sleep at home ladies, but on retreat we sew!

Michele appears to be singing a great sewing song!

Deanna is "manipulating" one of her creations.

This was Camille's 1st retreat - the girl sewed to 3 AM!

Liz had a hard time leaving that machine - the did sew a mighty bunch!

Cindy and Laurie are very serious about their ironing.

A LOT of cutting was done this weekend - I think we solved a few of the world's problems while we were at it!

Tomorrow I'll post Part II!