It's getting to be a magical time of year when the leaves are gone, and other things show themselves. Here by the stump, the blueberry leaves are all gone from the plants (there are a few berries left, but I wouldn't eat them;) Isn't it fabulous the way the pine needles fell on the moss?
I love how they scattered.
Such a magical half light that day too! On the next forest walk, I saw a moose, just 20 yards away. My dogs spooked him away though.
The big anthills are really visible now too. I think this one looks like the ones in Buu and Baa's Adventure, a book my kids liked when they were little.
If I remember right, the two little sheep keep looking for a place to picnic while they are out picking blueberries, but they keep sitting too close to the anthills!
When we were in town, we found
one of these:
Is it a nest? Some kind of ganglion from the tree branches? I find it very hard to tell, even when I look at those still in the tree....
Here's what I'm working with later:
These hot and cold bundles are for some bee blocks. I hope I've got plenty to show tomorrow.
Here's my second entry for the Blogger's Quilt Festival over at Amy's Creative Side!
It's a Butterfly Spool Mini, made using a tutorial from Rita at Ped Pepper Quilts. I saw her post almost a year ago! (My comment is still there ;) And I bookmarked it twice.
I finally made a smaller version of it and finished it earlier this month!
The pictures can tell.... I had a blast getting all the different colors and prints to balance out. I tried several layouts, including arranging by color, to show a glimpse of spools lined up in a case. I settled finally on my first layout attempt.
Rita used a 60 degree triangle ruler, but I just used my Hex N More Ruler, as it also
has a 60 degree angle.
I used prints from Heather Ross's Briar Rose line, as well as some Flea Market Fancy by Denyse Schmidt, and a bunch of the Picnic Pals prints by Penguins and Fish. I think they work really nicely together. I used a slate grey instead of black for the backgrounds, to make it a little richer, and I finished the quilt with some Lucky Penny by Alison glass for the binding. I think it turned out to be a sweet little take on the rainbow, and that's why I'm entering it in the ROYGBIV category for the Blogger's Quilt Festival.
Go on over and check out all the entries, it's lots of fun!
I'm so excited to have something to show this year for the Blogger's Quilt Festival! I'd love to be at Quilt Market, but I also love seeing all the fabulous stuff people have been sewing since spring. I usually find loads that I missed on the blogs, and new blogs to follow too. Amy at Amy's Creative Side does a fantastic job at getting us all together in one virtual place!
This quilt was made for another quilter as part of the the Doll Quilters Monthly Group. Our theme was animals, and while I love cats, and my partner Barb, of Cat Patches, definitely does, I felt somehow more of a draw to create a Totoro quilt. Totoro is a character in a Japanese film from 1988 called My Neighbor Totoro.
We have watched the film several times at our house, and the artwork is astounding, especially for an animated film. And Totoro? Well, he endures, and I like that.
I started by trying to sketch Totoro from some favorite movie stills I found on the internet.
And then I traced a few from my computer's monitor.
Finally I sharpened them up by freehand, taped to some cardstock (recycled ads, actually ;) and cut out all the pattern pieces
I dabbed glue stick on the smallest pieces (Totoro's spots, his eyes, and nose) to the larger pieces, and then I sewed everything down to some uneven strips of Oakshott that I sewed together to make a magical, rainy forest. I love how the Oakshoot shimmers, and the rougher linen cotton blend of Totoro looks kind of furry, especially around the claws and after the wash.
Since Barb always has lots of pictures of her garden, I made sure to send her some tomatoes in a sack next to Totoro. I love how the "asterisk" stitch didn't quite set, and the stems look pretty real for that. I had a lot of fun with the challenge of distilling this design, and I really enjoyed the drawing part of it as much as the sewing!
I didn't use any interfacing for the Totoro's body, but I like how fluffy he looks, rather than flat. I think it is simply a matter of preference, at least at this smaller size. I kept the quilting simple and echoed rain in the trees, letting the applique do much of the rest of the quilting.
It's hard to say what I love best about how this came out, but I think it would have to be the whiskers. I love how hollow they look and how the straight stitch and zig zag look together to make his imaginary face look more real. It is sketchy like the original Studio Gibley animations, but the stitches still add another dimension to Totoro.
Hope you have fun looking at all the entries and thanks for stopping by!
Lizzie in Sweden
See, the lobelias were still blue! The very next day, they got frosted. But the bag is still good. I used Ayumi's Lunch Bag Tutorial from Pink Penguin. I've seen different versions of these around for awhile, and I've bookmarked the page twice! I finally tried it out!
I had my fabric in mind for a while: Some woven brown and pink gingham, some pink zebra fabric by Alexander Henry, and some printed linens by Melody Miller. How the colors sing together! With the fabulous directions, this practically sewed itself.
But it was challenging enough to be fun too. There's a casing for the drawstring, the separate parts of of the bag, and directions on how to cover your seams if you want. I tried them and I think it went all right. Next time I'll use an even bigger seam allowance though, as I decided halfway through that I wanted to cover them.
Here is the other side of the bag, with the top part pulled up! It is some special linen called Japanese Kei fabric, that has a very soft drape. I thought it would be great for a part that might be used often. Plus, I thought it was really sweet that it had a bit of pink on the linen, that echoes the gingham colors.
This part of the bag is sewn in at the top. Ayumi gave directions on just where to sew it in so that the seams would be covered. It worked like a charm! This part is for protecting your lunch, but it is also super for keeping your knitting safe, not to mention quilting!
Here's the surprise happy lining! I love these zebras peeking out here! If this were a lunch bag, the lining would be vinyl or pvc. I already scoped out some neat stuff if I ever want to make this for carrying food ;)
And then I'd get to come up with a whole new color scheme!
I liked how straight forward this bag was to make, and I felt like Ayumi was right there saying, "go ahead, you can do this!" I also thought it was pretty fun to make a drawstring with craft cord. I am not sure if that is what I found, but I used something that is cotton covered in a light layer of wax. Beautiful color, and very sturdy. It also was easy to find in town at the hobby store.
All in all, this was a fun project that I'll definitely make again.
No, I'm not at the Quilt Market, but I sure have been having fun reading about it and looking at the pictures people have been posting. It looks really busy, and BIG!
I'm looking forward to reading my favorite bloggers' posts about it next week.
Since I last posted here, I've had some medicine that made me really tired, but I'm not that affected now. I finally got to sew a little, and a little more. I found out about the Scrappy Trip Around the World Bee on Flickr, and that seemed like a good way to get going again.
Here are the blocks I made and sent away:
And here's Mine:
Whew! I can see why people really love that block-- it's really fun to make! And using someone else's color scheme is pretty fun too, it gives you a whole different point of view. I feel refreshed!
The sign ups for the next round are open on November first.