A good day…considering!

Exciting times!  Earlier this spring, a dove built a nest and laid some eggs in a tree that is visible from our front window.  Last weekend, my husband was trimming the bushes around the tree and noticed the Mama bird keeping her 2 baby birds warm.

mom and baby

On Thursday, I noticed a bit of commotion around the tree (and our cat was going crazy!)  Good thing he is an indoor cat!  The baby birds were finally leaving the nest!  I made sure my still-living-at-home, recently graduated 21 year-old daughter was paying close attention!  Here is the Mom and Dad and one of the babies.

mom dad and baby

The other baby is over here, maybe in a time-out?

2nd baby

Anyway…back to the block!  I added a few more flowers and leaves…

a few more flowers 1

flowers 2

Next, it was time to make the vine.  First I ironed the freezer paper to the wrong side of the fabric.  I trimmed just one side of the vine.

vine 1

I prepped one side…

vine 2

…then, I trimmed the other side.

vine 3

I finished prepping the vine, removed the freezer paper and added a few dabs of glue….

vine 5

…..and added it to the bouquet!

vine 6

In the meantime, I  noticed that I had forgotten a little bud in the top right hand corner of the bouquet.  So I prepped the missing bud, and also the blossom that goes at the end of the vine.  And stitched them in place.

Here is the missing bud…

oops 2

…and the blossom at the end of the vine.  Spiffy!

vine 7

I must confess, I did not look at the pattern, and mixed the two pieces up.  I did not think it mattered….keep reading!…

So once all flowers and vines and leaves stitched in place, it was time to make the stems.  I used bias bars to make them and used 4 different fabrics.  I did not want to glue all the stems in place before stitching them, so I glued and stitched a few at a time.  I took a few minutes and traced the stems so I wouldn’t have to keep putting the background back on the lightbox.

stems 1

I added a few more stems and stitched them in place…

stems 2

…voila!

stem 3

Next, I added the leaves.  So far, so good!

leaves

I was pretty impressed with myself (which usually means I have screwed up somewhere!) and started prepping the ribbon.  I put the pattern back on the light box and started to glue the ribbon in place.  Yikes!  Good thing I keep the stitch ripper handy!

yikes

Ah….that’s better!

better

Til next time…

Kerry

Finish a block…start a block!

Darn it!  Does this ever happen to you?  I was stitching merrily along, when I thought my stitches felt a little weird.  Then I noticed my background had folded over on itself and I was stitching through two layers.  I keep my stitch ripper handy for occasions just like this!

stitch 2

So, once the block was finally finished, I did what I do to all my finished blocks….I gave it a bath!  I like to wash everything out of my block…like glue, starch and anything else that shouldn’t be there!  First, I fill the sink with very hot water and a bit of soap.

sink 1

Next, I take a very deep breath…and then I toss my block into the water.

sink 3

I usually let it soak for a couple of hours.  Then I let the water out of the sink and rinse the block under hot water until there are no more suds.

sink 4

Next, I gently squeeze the block so it is not dripping wet, but still fairly wet.  Finally, I spread the block out on a thick towel and pin the four corners.  Then I just let it air dry.  I should mention that I pre-wash all of my fabric in Synthrapol before even beginning the block.

sink 6

sink 7

So…while the block was drying, I started the next block of Civil War Bride.  First I traced the block…

cwb 1

….then I made lots of bias.  (You can never have too much bias!)

cwb 2

Oh!  And speaking of Civil War Bride, I finally made a decision.  I chose Nest #2!  Instead of putting 5 eggs in the nest just like the pattern, I chose to add 3 eggs…an egg to represent each one of my lovely children!

nest 7

Til next time….

Kerry

Think Happy Spring Thoughts!

I looked out the window this morning and this is what I saw!  Yikes!

snow day

So, I thought  I better get busy and think some Happy Spring Thoughts!  The next block from The Civil War Bride inspired me to think Spring!

First, I started with the branches and a few little leaves.

block 1

Then I added more leaves.

a few leaves 2

…and some more!

more leaves 3

Next, I added the bird’s feet and the underbelly of the bird. (If you let your imagination run wild, it looks like a folk art kind of bird…but just wait…!)  I used Ultra-Suede for these tiny pieces because they are really….tiny!  When using Ultra-Suede, I just cut out the pieces without adding a seam allowance and stitch it in place.  Easy peasy!

feet and underbody 4

Next came the rest of the bird.

bird 4

Then, I auditioned a few nests.  Should I choose Nest #1…….

nest 5

….or Nest # 2?nest 6

Til next time….

Kerry