Monday, December 29, 2014

Weekend Wanderings!

Since Bill has the week off, we have been getting out and doing some shopping and exploring new areas. We went to the antique consignment first, hoping for some after Christmas sales but the things I had my eyes on, were gone and the rest was over priced, so no buys there.

Then I wanted to try a back road and go around the area in a circle to see what was there. It was a long back road that came out to some beautiful lakes, great places to revisit in the kayaks this summer. I didn't realize the circle came back to another town, called Chepatchet. Chepatchet is home to several antique stores and a primitive country store, so of course we stopped in town and walked around.

Love the old buildings and the colors on the different shops. These two shops are well worth a visit.
The gold building is home to The Town Trader. It is a huge antique store, filled from top to bottom with antiques and newer items mixed in. There were a lot of things I loved, especially a huge trencher, but I refrained from buying anything, trying to be more practical this year.

The second building is Brown and Hopkins Country Store. It is a two story building filled with country and primitive wares, as well as an old fashioned candy counter. They still had all of their Christmas items on display and everything was half off, I know I will regret not buying some things;)

The bridge out of town was a nice place to walk and give Bean some time out. Old mills and homes line the streets going out of town, as well.

And, I am working on a project, though a bit slowly. This design is a free design from Broderie D'Antan. They have a lot of different types of designs that you can use and always adding new ones, each week.

The floss that I used is Finca, I like how it looks in the piece, though it doesn't show as well in a photo. This has more to come and will be a candle mat.

Friday, December 26, 2014

The Day After!

First of all, I would like to thank everyone for your Christmas wishes and support with my family situation. It really means a lot to me to know that I have so many people around the world, that I can call my friends and the support and love to get me through the tough days.

The good news was my son sent me a message and said we were welcome to stop by for a visit. So, I was torn about going but knew I would regret it, if I didn't, so we went. I enjoyed seeing the baby and we played and took a walk outside with Bean, but they were getting ready for dinner and we were not invited, so I left.

Nicholas is quite the talker, even though most of it sounds like a foreign language, lol.

This was Bean's first Christmas and he was 6 months old on the 24th. I put his first present on the floor and he kept circling it and touching it, and when it moved he jumped back. It really didn't move, it rolled and once he got to see what in inside he was thrilled with his new ball.

Once he got the hang of what was in a package, he opened up his next one. But, he did it very, very slowly, ripping off a piece at a time, lol. Another one of his favorite presents, something to shake to death.

Today was a "Me" day. We went for a ride and I bought myself a new pair of boots so I had something  more practical and comfy for the winter and a large vintage style jar for Bean's treats. After shopping we went to Black Rock and walked along the path and rocks.

Bean loved running along the rocks, he has a natural ability for maneuvering around them.

It was so beautiful today that we kept going and walked along the beach, as well. Bean loved greeting all the people and running in the sand. It is the first time I have been out since I have been sick and the fresh air and exercise put some color back into my face.

Taking a break with Bean for some hugs. I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Merry Christmas!

I want to wish all my friends, old and new, blessings for the holiday season and may your festivities include, family, friends and loving memories.

I snagged this photo of my grandson before I was unfriended, so Christmas this year will be bittersweet for me, since my  DIL persists in being mad at me and will not come for Christmas. But, I have joy in the fact that my family is healthy and I am surrounded by friends from all over the world.

I also found an old photo when we took the kids to Edaville Railroad in Massachusetts. The boy with the glasses is my nephew, Phillip. He is now a grown man who has served our country been a reporter on the war front.  May your holidays be filled with happy memories with your family.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Friday Finish!

This week I worked on some more punch needle stockings so I would have six, in total. I did two in crazy quilt pattern, which look more like stained glass. Two were, hit and miss stripes and the last two I did in the traditional red and white stripe, ticking pattern.

I took a piece of jute and wound a piece of red  homespun around that and tied it to my curtain rod. I used mini wooden clothes pins that I stained with walnut. They seem a bit bare all by themselves so I added a piece of homespun in between them. I think I like the idea of making the ropes with homespun ties and some with bells and other items, then I can hang stockings or mittens from them. Lots of possibilities and it will be fun experimenting.

This is a closer look at the new ones, that I made this week. I aged them all with walnut ink, so they have a nice grungy look. I think the hit and miss stripes is my favorite. This is a great way to use up those scraps. The stockings are about 6 1/2" long and 1 1/2" wide.

I was going through old photos, trying to find some Christmas photos, when the kids were young and found this photo. I had forgotten all about these. I made them in the 80's and sold them to my friends. We lived in a townhouse complex, so I had lots of customers for my hand made items. I just wish I knew where I got the pattern from, I think a box of old magazines got thrown out by accident since i cannot find the ones with my wood nativities in them. Would love to make these again, so if you happen to stumble onto it, in one of your old magazines, would love to have the pattern again.

Not the best photo, I should have scanned it in at a higher resolution and maybe clean my scanner glass;)

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Scrap Stockings!

I decided to try something I had been thinking about, punch needle stockings, using scraps from my leftover box. I started late yesterday and finished them this afternoon, so they do work up quickly. I plan on making more and hanging them from a jute line, with mini clothes pins and using it as a garland.

This is a fun project to do if you have a lot of leftover floss pieces and a great way to use them up. I drew the stockings onto the backing, in reverse of the direction I want them to hang. It doesn't matter what size they are, I made mine long and skinny so I could fit two on the backing that I use on a mini rug frame. These I did with a crazy quilt pattern, using black for dividing lines. The next ones will be strips of colors. I will be antiquing them, so it doesn't matter if the colors are a bit bright.

Here is what I did so far. I will make the rest and hopefully by friday I will have a finished garland to show you. You are welcome to use the idea for yourself, use a hit and miss scrap look or add designs or letters to spell out words, have fun.

Today we had two hawks sitting in the nearby trees. We threw some pumpkins out in the back garden and I think they were waiting for some mice to come by for the pumpkins and a treat for the hawks;) I wish I could get a good shot, but when I get too close they fly away and it is hard to keep a zoom steady, when you are moving in the yard.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Friday Finish and Friends!

I finally finished my sheep punch needle. I had ideas but they wouldn't work the way I wanted, so I made it into a pillow. I sewed the punched piece onto a wool backing, then added a twisted cord around that and sewed that down, next to the punched edge. After I made the pillow, I whip stitched a thick yard on the outside and gathered it, as I went. After it was finished, I didn't like how it looked, too boring of a pillow, so I played around and came up with the penny stars with a button.

The design was a freebie by The Old Tattered Flag. The finished pillow measures 8" x 7". It has been antiqued, but looks lighter in the photo.

Today I received two surprises from my friends. It has been hard to be sick and not being able to shop or do the things I want for the holidays, so getting something special from my friends was a great way to perk up my spirits today.

Anna of Woolie Mammoth sent me the most fun package. A cute dog mug and a mat to sit it on, and she even put a surprise for Bean in it. He loves biscuits so he was quite happy too. Anna is also having giveaways this month, so be sure and visit her blog.

Karen of Log Cabin Quilter also sent me a wonderful gift and it was the perfect size and shape for an area that I had nothing to hang. I love the quilt, love the fabrics she used and it looks so much nicer and prim in person. My shaky hands don't help with photos lately.

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend and blessed with friendships as I have been over the years.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Monday This and That!

I had a slow weekend, no shopping since I was too miserable to go out and I don't like making others sick with what I have. The good thing is, better to get it now, then at Christmas;)

I decided to make a rag wreath and used material that I didn't mine ripping up. I put my two wool cardinals and a twig of berries, onto it and instant prim wreath. They are fun to make and a nice thing to do while resting and watching tv.

The cardinals were made with a pattern by Apine Industriose with a few changes by me.

I also wanted to try some paper snowflakes. I do make paper cuttings and intricate snowflakes and cuttings, but I wanted a simple way with just cutting and having fun. I found a nice tutorial  from First Palette on how to fold the paper for cutting and they also have a section with templates that you can use. The sad thing is, I am no good at cutting this way, my brain takes a turn and I end up cutting the wrong way and messing up, but fun to try. The one on the upper right is supposed to be christmas trees and angels. A good rule to remember is, if you are cutting shapes, cut or draw only half the shape on your paper, then it will come out like a round head, instead of a double bird head. The smaller star is one I bought, it has crystals so the sun hits them and throws rainbows around the room.

Bean still keeps me busy, I have come to realize that I just have to put him in the cage when I need a real rest break so I don't have to worry about what he is doing. Today he was good and took naps while I rested, tonight he was back in high gear. I tend to eat a lot of snacks and Bean loves anything I eat, so far. Tonight we had yogurt and he got a frozen chicken piece as a treat. Nice snack for him to much on and gives him something to teeth on.

As you can see by his face, he ate his yogurt out of the container, good to the last lick.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Nativity Punch Needle!

I decided it was time I made something with my nativity design and I wanted to try something a little different. I enlarged the design and made it in the shape of a stable. I punched the main designs in a #3 height and the background in a #1 height. I also did Joseph's beard in a #4 height to make it more scrappy.

I really didn't get the 3D look that I was going for, but it is raised. I also did a horrible job on the punching, way too big so it took me all week and my hand is tired and numb, lol. I really like the idea though, so I think I will work on another and maybe make it more detailed, will have to think on it. The other problem is when I stuffed it, it puffed out, so that killed the background being in the background. I think another idea would be to make a wool stable shaped frame and put the piece behind that.

You can get my free designs from the previous post and make your own nativity. It works in all mediums and I did do a cross stitch, as well.

I would also use better colors, but I was digging out of my scrap box, really need to use those up.

The finished piece is about 8" high by 6 1/2" wide. I used a dark and lighter wool yarn for the roof and sides, by bunching it up as I sewed and laid it flat on the bottom.

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend. I am down with the flu, so hoping I feel good enough to go shopping this weekend or no one is getting any presents, lol.

I did antique this piece, but it came out lighter and too bold, compared to the actual piece. Also this week, I have taking off the word verification and hopefully the junk mail won't return.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Must be Monday!

It seems I got nothing accomplished this weekend, having my family home is too distracting;) I had plans to go shopping at my favorite primitive store and there was a for sale sign on the door, very disappointing. The good thing was, I did a search for stores in the area and found out that another store that had closed was under new ownership. We went yesterday and I spent hours going up and down the aisles and revisiting booths. It is a mix of new and antiques so lots of eye candy. No photos allowed but if you are ever in the Rhode Island area, it is worth a visit. It is a large 2 story building filled with booths from vendors that sell antiques and craft items. It is called A Bee's Buzz and I am definitely going back since they have an ever changing stock.

I love going down back roads when we go places,  you never know what you will find. In Stonington Connecticut we passed by a park and enjoyed a short walk along the path. Bean loves walks and was happy to get out of the car for a bit.

The path goes around a marsh and pond, but it was way too cold to do the entire walk and I think all the critters went underground.

I got back to working on my punch needle today. It looks like a mess from the back;) I am usually too tight and close so I am working on spacing better. When I am finished, I look at the piece from the front  with and see if there are any gaps and fill them up, if needed. This is a large piece, I had to put it on my rug hooking frame, luckily it turns so that makes it easier as I work. It is over 7" tall.

Tonight I was trying to get things done and Bean was trying to annoy me. He has calmed down a lot but tonight he was in high gear and running around the house. I gave him a biscuit and I think that is what made him hyper, so no more of those.

Looking for a fun, quilted project to do? Check out The Patchsmith's blog for a quilted Christmas tree tutorial.