Friday

This new year, I am finding that I am not as organized as I would like to be. I have a rough idea of projects and things I want to do; but nothing is set in stone. I still have not figured out what to do about the problem I am having with no more space for photos on my blog. Tierney sent me the link where she explains her photo management. Thanks, Tierney! The problem is how to change the situation as it stands now. I had already upgraded once, but I took up all the space with those unedited photos. I have to consult with my sons to see what, if anything, can be done.

One of my interests for this year is to learn embroidery stitches. Two of the local quilt shops I visit are each having Sue Spargo embroidery classes, but it seems I can never make it to any of the classes. I am trying out new stitches on my own and making small art pieces. One of the pieces I embroidered was a selfie for 2020. The other piece was a combination of techniques. I drew a bird on muslin, and used water color pencils to add color. I sewed some burlap onto a leftover floral charm fabric. Then I added a silk backing. I am also working on another piece where I embroidered the dove, tree, heart, and butterfly that I drew on some linen blend. I am liking this project better than the 365 Day Button and Embroidery project that I started. In this project, a button and or stitches is added on each day of the year.

My Meemaw friends and I had a Wabi-Sabi day, last Sunday. Three of us decided to use these Wabi-Sabi days to work on new quilts. The fourth buddy is helping with whatever needs to be done. Since I had just returned from out-of-town, I did not have anything ready for the quilt I was planning. Instead, I helped my friend cut and get ready to piece her first quilt. This past Monday, I visited Las Colchas to get the fabric for my next quilt. The shop has a great selection of Tex-Mex prints. I have been wanting to make a quilt to celebrate my family culture and heritage. I chose a pattern from the book, The Gentle Art of Quiltmaking by Jane Brocket. The book was loaned to me by one of the Meemaws. She recommended one of the quilt patterns that she had chosen from this book to make a quilt for herself. She thought that the pattern would showcase the vibrant color and design of the Tex-Mex fabric, and I totally agree. I pieced the backing for this quilt, using a fabric which features milagros.

I am also working on a Minecraft quilt. The free pattern is by Kelli Fannin. In November, I had pieced the top three rows, and the bottom two rows. When I went to attach the two parts, I realized I was off. The bottom piece was wider than the top. After fooling with it a bit, I threw it in the This-Is-Driving-Me-Crazy bin. I pulled it out this past Tuesday, and took it to the Mesquite Bean. The helpful people at this shop gave me some suggestions that would require minimal rip and sew. Thanks to these friends, I was able to piece the top together today. Kelli Fannin created a dragon block for the backing. I plan to try this out tomorrow.
Note: Phyllis, if you are reading this blog, this quilt is a secret!

Last week, while in Round Rock, I went on a birding walk around the lake where one of my sons lives. It was my first birding walk for the year. Then, this Wednesday, the Meemaws went on a birding walk by the river in the King William area of San Antonio. So far, I have seen 21 different species of birds this year. Bird watching is so exciting!

*In the video, the linen blend that I used for the embroidery projects, shows an exaggerated version of the fabric. The fabric is really not that grainy.

Dia de Los Muertos

Dia de los Muertos, Day of the Dead, has been celebrated throughout Mexico and Latin American countries, since pre-Columbian times. It is a time to celebrate our deceased loved ones. There are many traditions on ways to celebrate with food, altars, family gatherings, visiting cemeteries and much more. For the first time, San Antonio is having a Dia de los Muertos River parade. One of my friends and her granddaughter set up a beautiful altar with photos of family, friends, and even pets that have died.
This year, I have made some fabric art for this special day. I made a fabric journal for two family members who recently experienced the death of two loved ones. I printed some poems on fabric, made some puffy quilt blocks for the cover and some of the pages, and added buttons and milagros. Milagros are small charms that are like prayers, petitions to saints.

Our local HEB grocery store has an array of Day of the Dead clothing, items, food, and decor. I purchased a crow that was the inspiration for a quilted art piece.
Process:

  • Iron fusible stabilizer to the back of muslin fabric
  • Draw bird on the stabilizer
  • Collage and hand-sew different pieces of fabric to form the bird
  • Use white fabric paint to paint skeleton
  • Prepare 12.5″ x 12.5″ block for quilting, using a muslin backing
  • Iron bird onto quilting block
  • Hand quilt and use embroidery thread for stitching
  • Embellish with milagros and buttons
  • Cut quilted block to 9.5″ x 9.5″
  • Prepare backing, cut at one inch more than block. Fold and form the binding.