A blog about my interests, which include fabric landscapes and various and assorted other artsy pursuits and sometimes known to contain mumblings of a random nature.

Monday, November 29, 2021

House beautiful - hah!~

Resident Chef hauled out the Christmas decorations on the weekend so I dutifully 'decorated'.  Our tree is perilously close to running competition with Charlie Brown's tree and is most definitely showing its age.  Two strings of lights are burnt out necessitating a trip to the store to buy more and it's shedding 'needles' in a vast shower all over the carpet.  It needs a fluffy green/gold garland to be stuffed all around the 'trunk' to make it look as if it might actually BE a tree and not just some sticks stuck into a broom handle.   Yeah, as I said - pitiful.  

No  matchy-poo ornaments or fancy beaded garlands for us either - it's a collection of mis-matched ornies that have been accumulated carefully chosen over our years of marriage.  Needless to say 'House Beautiful' magazine won't be knocking on our door for a photo shoot anytime soon.  

This is one of my favourite Santas that I made a number of years ago.  He depicts a Besnickle and for those of you who don't know, here's a description I found on Wikipedia....Belsnickel is a crotchety, fur-clad Christmas gift-bringer figure in the folklore of the Palatinate region of southwestern Germany along the Rhine

He has a real fur coat and is mounted on a log.

I love our nativity set - it's one I collected that was once sold by Avon.  At the time I was a rep and I treated myself to these.  It's not the complete set, sadly.

- THESE will most likely be the cause of a few awww's.  

- I think making one (or more!) of THESE would be cute.

- Those of you who knit or crochet with yarn cakes might find one of THESE useful (and they'd make a great gift along with some yarn).

- THIS is a cute little Christmas pattern.  And THIS one is adorable!!

- There are lots of free designs HERE for cowls (and a few scarves)

Friday, November 26, 2021

Continuing on

 I'm back to working on the 'ghostly' landscape and adding to the embroidery in the foreground....

- Some things just tickle my funny bone no end and THIS is one of them.  

- Have a look at THESE sweet Christmas stockings and maybe make one of them!

- Have a look at the amazing sculptures done by THIS artist!!!

- And THIS one too!!  I love his birds!

Today's quote..."I've finally reached the wonder years....wonder where I parked the car?....wonder where I left my phone?....wonder where my glasses are?....wonder what day it is?

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

Where angels fear to tread?

I was casting about to find something to post about today and so I thought I'd be brave and show you my little corner of the living room where I sit in front of the tv and either knit, crochet or read at nights.  

Just a few words of explanation - the blue 'blob' on the left is a corner of my chair and the black 'blob' on the right is the corner of the end table.  In between is my mess - the pink and grey (back left) is a sweater I'm working on for the baby and the Janet basket to the right is *supposed* to hold my knitting project but instead it currently has my zippered pouch I use when I'm knitting socks, my yarn bowl and a plastic sectioned container that holds such important things as cable needles and stitch markers.  In front of that is a ball of red yarn I'm auditioning to maybe make myself a scarf of some sort, and the bag to the right of that is currently holding a baby afghan I'm working on.  

And speaking of baby things, I just finished putting the binding on the wee baby quilt and this is the result....

Nothing spectacular about it - just a panel and coordinating 5" squares.  Here's the backing....

It's a lovely soft minky fabric.  Soft, but a brute to hand stitch through.  Good thing I machine quilted the quilt and only had to hand stitch the binding!

- THIS is something fun that you could print and fill in over the next year to keep track of the books you read OR wouldn't it be a fun quilt pattern if it was embiggened?

- Have a peek through the sweet designs by THIS artist.

- Not sure I'd have enough patience to tackle making THIS but it sure is cute!

The quote, from Gandhi..."When the power of love overrules the love of power, the world will know peace"

Monday, November 22, 2021

On waistlines and silliness

 Resident Chef appeared in my sewing room doorway on the weekend bearing these....

Homemade chocolates.
AND there isn't a single calorie to them!!
Uh huh.
They're bound for the freezer, minus
one or two for testing for quality control purposes.

For reasons even I can't explain I returned to making this....

I have absolutely NO use for reason to make it....and nobody to give it to. Sheer silliness to spend that much time working on something utterly useless, but what can I say!

Pattern can be found HERE .  I used 16 mm wooden beads and Sugar 'n Cream crochet cotton (100 beads!)

- THIS is a nice pattern that would be perfect for a guy (but isn't strictly for them!)

- HERE is another of those aww-worthy things that are simply too cute not to share!!

- Sometimes things just tickle me and THIS is one of them.  I learned to type on a typewriter that looked very much like this!

- THIS is a really cute Christmas decoration for a manel (or in a window - perhaps done two-sided?)

- Have a peek through the slideshow of great ideas for Christmas found HERE.  

Today's quote...

Friday, November 19, 2021

The last one!.....?

 This is the last Christmas present I'm making for this year.  Yes, it is - uh huh - yep - done.  

My friend has a habit of keeping notes about her knitting on random pieces of paper that tend to go AWOL so I thought she might have a use for a notebook.  I couldn't give her just any ol' notebook so I gussied it up with embroidery on the front.  I cobbled together some designs from HERE.  

The back cover was created using a piece from a blouse she once gave me for use in crafting.  She loved it so hopefully she will like it here too.  The spine is made from a scrap of musical fabric I had (she's musical so I thought it was fitting).  Hope she likes it and gives up on her bits of paper!!

- Another friend creates amazing short films and you can see her latest one HERE.  Can't imagine how she does this!

- Oh how I covet THIS (but I guess I'd have to also add a big room to hold it!).  

- THIS is another of those things that elicits an 'awwwwww'   (be sure to scroll down to see it)

Today's quote..."Conformity is doing what you're told regardless of what's right.  Morality is doing what's right regardless of what you're told"

Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Another baby knit and granola

 Last weekend I finished working on another little sweater for our expected grandie that's due to arrive in January.  Pattern is THIS one - I did the short-sleeved version because I didn't think I had enough yarn to do long sleeves...

Yarn label is missing but I think it's Caron Simply Soft.

A couple of you have expressed interest in the granola recipe Resident Chef uses, so here you go....


(NOTE: This makes a lot but it keeps
a very long time if you seal it well)

8 c. rolled oats (not the instant kind)
1 1/2 cups EACH: wheat germ and oat bran
1 cup EACH: sunflower seeds; rye flakes; 
cashews or pecans (finely chopped); almonds 
(finely chopped)

1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 c. maple syrup
3/4 c. vegetable oil
1/2 c. brown sugar
1 c. honey
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 tsp. vanilla

2 c. dried cranberries or raisins (or combination)
1 c. coconut

Preheat oven to 325.  Line two large baking sheets with parchment or aluminum foil.  Combine dry ingredients.  Combine remaining ingredients with the exception of the vanilla, cranberries, raisins and coconut and bring to a boil over medium heat.  Add vanilla and pour over dry ingredients and stir to coat.  Spread evenly on baking sheets.  Bake until crispy and toasted, about 20 minutes.  Stir once halfway through.  Cool, and then add the cranberries, raisins and coconut.  

-THIS is for the knitters who are wondering about different types of stretchy bind-offs.

- I really like THESE - and they wouldn't be too hard to make 

- THIS is a nice cross stitch design

- HERE is a great hat pattern that would work up really quickly for adding to your gifts under the tree.  

Today's quote..."When you see something beautiful in someone, tell them.  It may take a second to say, but for them it could last a lifetime"

Monday, November 15, 2021

oops and kitchen doings and no more drips!

 I'm sorry, but I can't show you pictures of the completed sleep pants because they're already wrapped up and residing in the box ready to be picked up by UPS tomorrow. I fully intended to take pictures to show you but completely forgot until it was too late.

While I had the sewing machine running full throttle, Resident Chef was busy in the kitchen, as you can see from these photos...

Homemade granola which will be gifted this year instead of tins of all kinds of baking.  This is easier on Resident Chef and doesn't need freezer space to store.  Win/win?  I hope so!

If you're interested in our recipe, let me know and I'll publish it for you.

And butter tarts.  There ALWAYS has to be butter tarts for our kids and a couple other close friends.  Heaven help Resident Chef if he doesn't make some!!

We've been dealing with a leaky kitchen tap for quite some time and finally managed to get someone to come to make a repair.  Or at least we expected a repair, but instead we got a new tap.  A rather Rolls-Roy-ish tap too!  Before we had the cheapest possible junky tap that the building management put in but this one is a huge leap forward.  It even has a pull out spray thingie.  Some things just make us ridiculously happy and this is one of them...

- There are a number of links HERE for making Barbie clothes that might be nice for Christmas gifts.

- And if American Girl dolls are in your life, there's lots of ideas HERE.  

- There are over 200 stuffed animal and toy patterns HERE

- If making mittens is on your list, perhaps one of THESE patterns might be just what you're looking for.

- Some of you might find THIS free printable set to be of  value as you plan your life over the next while.

The quote for today..."Sometimes you get what you want.  Other times you get a lesson in patience, timing, alignment, empathy, compassion, faith, perseverance, resilience, humility, trust, meaning, awareness, resistance, purpose, clarity, grief, beauty and life.  Either way you win"

Friday, November 12, 2021

Revving up the sewing machine

 This pile of fabric is about to be turned into sleep pants so you know what I'll be doing for the next few days!

- THIS is a sweet little project that would make a lovely gift for someone who sews.

- I love THIS even though I'm not a punch needler.

- I like THIS idea too.

- THIS sweater can be created in lots of different sizes.  

Today's quote is from Michael C. Clark...."Negativity is contagious.  Unhappiness is contagious.  Fear is contagious.  But so is happiness.  So is optimism.  So is love.  Surround yourself with people who bring out the best in you and strive to be a reflection of what you want to receive"

Tuesday, November 09, 2021

Public service announcement - and baby thing




There is a universal hand gesture signal for
people to use when they're in trouble and if 
you've watched the news in the past few days you
will have heard that it saved a young girl from
a kidnapping.
This is vital information we ALL need to
be aware of.
Please go HERE for further information.

Please also share this on your blogs
because this needs to be known!


Here is another completed 'evening project' ...

The crochet pattern is one I've had in my files for years and I don't have any idea where I found it.  The original pattern calls for long sleeves but I opted for sleeveless and just trimmed them with some picots.  Yarn is 'Baby Marble' from James C. Brett....another one I've had in my stash for too many years to count.

- THIS is a sweet little Christmas embroidery design that could be used in many applications.

- HERE is another great idea for Christmas 'makes'!

- Have a peek through the galleries of THIS amazing artist.

Monday, November 08, 2021

Hard to see but there's progress - and a little sumthin''

 I know it's very difficult to see but yes there HAS been progress on the landscape....probably about ten hours worth of embroidery so far.  I know - I need to get a life!

Another of my evening projects involved making this little guy...

He will accompany a copy of THIS book that will be gifted at Christmas to #2 grandie.  Pattern is from HERE.  

- There's a great quilt exhibition that you can view online HERE

- You might like to check into the galleries of THIS artist.

- THIS is a great quilt pattern - I think it would be fun done scrappy too.

Today's quote is from John Lennon..."When I was 5 years old, my mother always told me that happiness was the key to life.  When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up.  I wrote down 'happy'.  They told me I didn't understand the assignment, and I told them they didn't understand life"

Friday, November 05, 2021

A tad more progress and a finish

 There's been some more progress on the landscape as you can see here...

You should be able to click to embiggen if you'd like to.  I fussy cut all those flowers and now I'm in the process of adding embroidery details over top.  There's going to be a LOT of French knots on this one!

And, one of my evening projects ended up with this little finish for our expected 'grandie'...

The sweater is a pattern in a book 'Grammy's Favorite Knits For Baby' by Doreen L. Marquart and the headband is THIS one.  Yarn is 'Baby Soft' from Lion Brand.

- I love THESE!  Wouldn't they be fun for fall decor? And THIS is something else that might be fun to create.

- HERE is another fun project for creating gifts.

- And THIS is another one!

- And one MORE!  

- THIS one would be nice for Christmas decor.

Today's quote..."My body sometimes feels sore, but it works.  I don't sleep well most nights, but I do wake up to fight another day.  My wallet is not full but my stomach is.  I don't have all the things I ever wanted but I do have everything I will ever need.  My life is by no means perfect but it's my life and I'm happy"

Tuesday, November 02, 2021


 Yes, maybe I'm on the right track with this least until I try to add something else in which case the entire thing could very well still be fodder for the trash heap!

At this point it's been quilted and next 'up' will be 
adding the borders and then the embroidery.
Jury is still out on what I might, or might not, add
to the church.

The next two photos are the view from our balcony the other day just before the sun set.  

Those skies look rather forbidding, don't they!

- Have a look at what THIS artist does!  Be sure to have a look through his other galleries as well.

- I think I posted a link to THIS idea before but Joy has done a really great tutorial you might want to check out.  

- HERE is another amazing artist whose work you might like to see.  Be sure to take note of what she uses to embroider with!! 

- THESE are an easy knit that would make great gifts.

Today's quote..."Perhaps they are not stars in the sky, but rather openings where our loved ones shine down to let us know they are happy"

Monday, November 01, 2021

Fearless - or - foolhardy??

 In the background, while you were reading all about Shudayra last week, I have been working on the latest landscape.  My inspiration is this photo, kindly shared with me by Dale Stewart....

Our Lady of Mount Carmel
Raymore, Saskatchewan
Photo by (and used with permission) Dale Stewart

For reasons I can't entirely understand I immediately thought that church should be a ghostly image.  Of course I have NO clue how to accomplish that using fabric but never let it be said that I'm afraid to try.  As I said - either fearless or foolhardy, take your pick!

In progress - and thinking seriously about chucking the entire idea.....


Adding further details and some shading...

But, mama still isn't happy.

Stay tuned!

For those of you who are curious, the church was printed onto organza using my computer.

- THIS is something that would be great fun to create and give to a friend who sews!

- And HERE is another little project that would make a great gift.

- All I can say is Wow! when I see the work of THIS artist!

- THESE would be such fun to give for Christmas (not that the chocolate inside would be any attraction either!!)

- I try not to send you to too many commercial sites, but I must admit that the cuteness factor of THESE caught my eye!

Today's quote..."Don't stress about your eyesight failing as you get older.  It's nature's way of protecting you from shock as you walk past the mirror"