Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Flowers for a Winter's Day

Here in Alberta the snow has fallen steadily for 10 days straight. This is a view from my dining room window-look at the weight of the snow on the evergreens. We are wondering where we are going to put more snow if it keeps falling! I have to say we were thrilled to see the blue sky and the sun today. My kids even got to go outside to play at recess this afternoon.
Like many others at this time of year, I have stopped to reflect on life's gifts. The new year's arrival has been mostly quiet and this little panel quilt always makes me smile. It is joyful and I am reminded of my life's rich blessings.
Here is my sunflower girl painting that I referred to in the last post. I love the flowers in her hair. She is happy and smiling - just like the sunflowers
I have played with a technique called Snippets to make a version of Sunflowers. It is my tribute to the Van Gogh sunflowers. I gave this wallhanging away as a gift to a family member. Perhaps one day I will make another version of it. Cindy Walters has a number of great books that can help you learn how to do this fused applique technique. She did a marvelous version of Van Gogh's painting Starry Starry Night that is on to do list.

My good friend Val knows how much I love sunflowers. These measuring spoons were such a perfect gift for me. The handles are sunflowers and the backs are engraved with one of my favorite mantras " Live Love Laugh".
Over the last few years, I have collected sunflower fabrics. One of the quilts that I created with them, was this Disappearing Nine Patch quilt. Another way that I have used some of my sunflower fabrics was in two coin quilts.
Now I have a nice new collection of sunflower fabrics just waiting to be made up into a new quilt- I just need to find a good design to show off the beautiful sunflowers. Perhaps you have a pattern or idea of how to use some gorgeous sunflower fabrics?


Our friend who painted the Sunflower lady, also painted these flowers on a set of glasses for us. She is such a talented lady and can paint on anything- old saw blades, baby carriages, candles and pots of every shape and description. She loves to create on different surfaces.
December was indeed a very lucky month for me. Heather from my muse blog had a lovely Christmas contest where she sent me this terrific light bracelet. Thank you Heather- it is so charming and will be a big hit with my kindergarten kids...
Mary Jane Carey from Holly hill designs sent me a note to say she would love to send me a pattern of my choice from the 100 designer block blog hop. This was the one I chose- I love the saying" Snow is for the birds". Right about now, I couldn't agree more- The snow is very beautiful but we hope that it will stop falling for awhile!

I had to show you this gorgeous stain glass poinsettia. It is truly a treasure from a dear friend. Flowers do make me smile in lots of different forms. I love how the light shines through the rich colors of the glass.


A blogging friend Carolyn is having a giveaway on her blog just now. She lives here in Edmonton and one day soon we are going to get together to have tea and talk about quilting. Do go and visit here and meet her cat Tika and see all the wonderful projects that she is creating.

I have been reading with great interest Barbara Brackman's blog . She is a terrific quilt historian and has two blogs(that I know of) going just now. One is on Civil war quilts complete with civil war blocks to make.This year is the 150th anniversary of the beginning of the Civil war. Her original blog that is linked here has all sorts of interesting information about fabric and the history that surrounds it. For example, she had a recent post about a London museum who currently is showing a fabric exhibit where the fabric tokens were from the mid 1760's babies and mothers that went to the London Foundling Hospital. You can find a link to Barbara's post here. I love how she gives great background and context to provide the fabric's stories.

I finally got my own sewing machine out the other day and added some borders to a quilt. It is another version of the Wonky Rail Ties - I am pleased with the borders. I have been reading on other blogs about different challenges and goals. I am thinking about 11 quilts for 2011- that seems a bit of a lofty goal but one needs to have aspirations.LOL
It felt good to begin quilting again. Sometimes, one just needs to take out some fabric and begin playing. You never know where the fabric will lead you..

I hope that the flowers have brightened your day and lift your spirits. I know that one day the snow will melt and we will have beautiful grass and flowers again - Right now Mother Nature needs to rest and renew the earth.

Don't forget to come back at the end of the month- I will be back beading for the One World One Heart blog hop.

Until next time,
Happy Quilting,
Anna
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