Sunday, March 31, 2013

Easter in Shreveport: Spring has Sprung!

We had a lovely party on Saturday night to celebrate Easter as a family.  I made a tri-color bundt cake.  I filled the hole with malted milk ball eggs.  It was easy to make and was turned out tasty and festive.  I used Grandma Vivian's Noritake china - isn't it pretty?

Spring is in full bloom in Shreveport, from the rhododendrons at the front porch...

to the wisteria on the bird feeder.

Wisteria grows wild in the trees in Shreveport - it's just beautiful!

These azaleas are my favorite.  They should be ready to pop in a few more days.

The rhododendrons and magnolia tree give the entry way almost a "Secret Garden" aura.  I love this time of year!

I was glad to see that the "house" plants managed to overwinter outside just fine this year.  I've been watering them with rainwater every few weeks and they are thriving.  In fact, as I filled the watering can with water from the bucket, a budded succulent leaf floated to the surface.  I planted it in the back of the top cascading pot along with another budding leaf I found on the ground.   I love plants that can fend for themselves!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Cake Pan Carrier with Table Runner - Two March Finishes!

My sister gave a number of these 
retro fabrics as a fun fat quarter Christmas present a few years ago, along with a pattern from The Sewing Basket for a cake pan carrier and table runner, which I took as a big hint.  
I had good intentions of finishing this for my niece's birthday in January - better late than never!
The table runner wraps lengthwise around the outside of the carrier that is holding the pan.
The carrier has handles and wraps the short way around the pan. 
I designed the patchwork for both the table runner and the carrier.  The table runner has stitch in the ditch quilting.  I love how it turned out.  I really enjoyed working with the retro fabrics.
Designing the angled stripes into the carrier fabric was challenging.  I really wanted the carrier to coordinate with the table runner, and the dull green fabric just wasn't getting the job done by itself.  I upgraded the handles to leather.  Larry cut out the leather for me.  (Twice!  The pattern called for 1 yard of cotton webbing and it should have specified nearly 2 yards.) I bought a leather needle for my machine and it sewed like a dream. 
I had to settle for a covered muffin pan because I couldn't find a nice 9" x 13" covered cake pan like my sister bought me a few years ago.  (It is totally awesome.  The cover is engraved with my name so it will never go missing at a potluck!)  Now I just have to send it off to Green Bay.  Patience, winter people!  8)

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Recent Prizes from Down Under

Not too long ago I was the lucky recipient of two lovely prizes from halfway around the world.  The first is this wonderful stitchery from Gail Pan Designs called "My Sweet Home", awarded to me from from Quilt Kitty in Perth, Australia.  [Go visit Tracee's blog and vote five paws up for the picture of her beloved Brunnie among the daffodils.]
I have often admired the Gail Pan line and am thrilled to finally have one of my own.
This lovely ditty bag came to me all the way from Tasmania, from Christine of Aunties Quaint Quilts.  Christine is currently busy making sewing kits and goody bags for people affected by the recent bushfires in southern Tasmania.

I don't know how I got so lucky as to win twice, but I'm very happy that I did.  Thanks again to my good blogging buddies from down under.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Dallas Quilt Celebration 2013

We had a great time at the Dallas Quilt Celebration and saw many lovely quilts, but there was bad news in this year's program: 

"Quilt Photography.  Taking photos of your favorite quilts to share with friends who couldn't come is part of the quilt show experience.  Please remember a few "rules of thumb" while viewing the many amazing works of art you will see here:
  • You may photograph entries in the judged show.  However, please respect the copyright protection to which our quiltmakers are entitled by obtaining written permission from the quiltmaker before posting a photo on the Internet."
I'll comply with the rules, of course, but I think it is a shame.  And with only a name and a city to go by, getting written permission from the maker seems almost impossible.  No one supports copyright protection more than me.  I get irritated with people who disrespect pattern copyrights or somehow think copyright law doesn't apply to them; however, sharing pictures of quilts put forth in a public venue seems different to me.  For one thing, most of the quilts would be impossible to recreate even with a detailed pattern, much less from one of my fuzzy photos.  And if selling patterns is their aim, they are getting free advertising, since I have always provided full attribution.

I'm concerned about this restrictive trend.   I know the guild was probably just listening to their lawyers, but it seemed like the show was smaller this year than in previous years, with both fewer vendors and fewer quilts.  Also, they didn't provide a show cd of all the winners, which was really disappointing.  At the very least, they need to have a mechanism in place where written permission can be easily requested.

The posts I've done on past quilt shows have been some of my most popular posts, so I know this is one way quilters love to share in their craft and get inspired.  Now it has been severely curtailed.  Your thoughts?

Sunday, March 3, 2013

First Post from Phone - it Works!

It was so easy to take a picture with my new phone and post it; 
I had no idea how simple this would be.  
Why did I wait so long?  lol  
I was going to delete this test post, but I love this picture.  
It perfectly captures my beloved's good nature and goofiness.

Now I just have to make something so I have something to blog about.  8)