Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Lots and lots of plastic...

We are getting the upper level of the back yard ready for the wild flower seeds I want to plant next spring. We laid down black plastic (100' x 16') across the upper level of the back yard - that's a lot of plastic. Hoping it does the job especially in killing the bermuda and crab grass that currently lives in that part of our yard. From what I have read, bermuda grass has It has deep rhizomes that are difficult to kill. For all I know, the bermuda grass is probably sending out shoots right now looking for the edge of the plastic only to continue growing next spring. I have been told it will do this. UGH!

Don't you just love sunflowers - they are so happy - bought these at the supermarket. To date, haven't been successful in growing my own - will try again next year.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Material matters

I am so thrilled, my handy husband just finished installing shelves in one of our closets to hold my fabric and sewing items. This is the first time I have had my fabric all in one spot, semi-organized and ready to use. However, this photo does not reflect all the fabric, baskets and embroidery "stuff" I have finally stored away on these 16" deep shelves. There is even room for a bit more fabric, too!

PS: June, do you recognize any fabric here?

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Sustainable wildlife

Attended a lecture last week at the Tulsa Garden Center. Douglas Tallamy, author of Bringing Nature Home, spoke on sustaining wildlife with native plants. WOW, the evening was very interesting, his talk, the people|gardeners who are into native planting, the plant people who brought native plants to sell and the plants themselves. It was a bit overwhelming - I am just starting out to plant wildflowers and plants native to this area of NE Oklahoma. The current area to be planted is about 1500 sq feet. Plans are to kill the grass in this upper area of our yard, layout out a winding gravel path, spread lots of wildflower seeds, scatter some nice rocks around, plant some native plants and then wait for the birds, bees and caterpillars to flock to our yard. It feels like lots of work ahead, but it will be worth it - not having to mow that 1500 sq feet of space, doing something helpful to nature, plus the hope of bringing a variety of birds and butterflies makes it all very exciting.

Here are the two plants I bought for our wildflower garden:  wild blue sage (smells quite sagey) and swamp milkweed (food for monarch butterflies). Hope lots and lots of monarchs find their way to our yard next year.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Patchwork coasters

I had forgotten how hot it gets in Oklahoma during the summer and it has been especially hot this year - my first full summer back home. We drink lots of ice tea and have been battling water rings left from the condensation that gathers on the outside of our glasses. Decided to make some patch work coasters in an effort to use up some 2.5 inch squares of 30s and 40s fabric from a recent quilt project. The coasters are padded with mylar insulated fleece which I thought would act as a barrier to stop any water from making rings on our tables. While the coasters do absorb the "sweat" from the glasses, I forgot that the fabric would also wick any water through to the back side of the coaster. Oh well, they are still pretty, but we continue to take care where we sit our glass of tea when we use them.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Peach pie and a yard of fabric

It's peach time here in NE Oklahoma and Porter peaches are the best. Here's a homemade pie in the making with fresh Porter peaches. Yum Yum.

Recently bought a yard of Alexander Henry's "sew now! sew wow!" Isn't it fun -  the bright colors and all those sewing motifs on this fabric make me happy. Not sure what this yard will become, but that doesn't worry me because there is plenty of other fabric in my "stash" with this same dilemma.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Another butterfly block

Here's my fourth block for the butterfly|moth wall hanging. It's my interpretation of the Paradise Birdwing Butterfly. Tried my hand at reverse applique on this block - not easy to do - but am learning so much applique as I sew.

In nature, this distinctive butterfly is rare and found in the most remote parts of New Guinea, where it lives in the canopies of the forest.

The real Paradise Birdwing butterfly. Found an image of this butterfly (below) on godofinsects.com.

Monday, August 16, 2010


Here's a recent embroidery I did for a friend who just had her second little boy in June. I found the royalty free image in an on-line embroidery archive, resized it  and added the text in Illustrator before tracing it on heavy muslin fabric to embroider. The finished embroidery measures 12"x12".

The little guy is so sweet, just like the real Elijah, I'm sure.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

My first attempt at "blogging"

Wanted to share a current project I am working on with a long-time friend. The collaboration is a quilt/wall hanging featuring appliqued butterflies and moths. We are making 12 blocks each and will exchange 6 of our blocks with each other when done. It's fun to see the uniqueness and creativity we each are bringing to this project. I am learning to applique in addition to discovering how fun it is to embellish with beads, buttons, thread, etc.

The first applique is of a Spanish Moon Moth. Hence the circle of beads representing the moon in the upper right side.

Below is the second block in this series: a Blue Swallowtail Butterfly

My third block in the series is: a Lo Moth

The patterns for all our butterflies and moths are from Darcy Ashton's book, Butterfly Dance, Ashton Publications, 2006.

In addition to learning some new techniques and allowing myself the freedom of expression with all sorts of embellishments, I have fallen in love with batiks. Will certainly plan another project using batik fabrics in the near future.