Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Collegiate Softball!

I am a grandmother, first and foremost.  Although this blog is not about my family, I do occasionally deviate from my creative subjects and write about my grand kids. Today is one of those days. Just 'chalk it up' to one proud grandma!

Granddaughter Courtney, graduated high school last year.  She was on a winning softball team for several of her high school years.  Hubby and I loved to go watch her play, mostly the catcher's position, sometimes, short stop or second base.  Her team was top notch!  Double plays, amazing catches, team spirit and home runs!  Awesome.

Mound conference!

Back to it!

Two local community colleges have top teams too, but Courtney has chosen to move North to Seattle to live with her uncle and family, going to the local community college there, before transferring to University of Oregon in a year or two. She has her reasons. The team she is playing with now is NOT a top notch team. That was evident to me with the first game that I watched. Initially, the school had trouble getting a team together---returning players were pregnant, or didn't make the eligible grades they needed.  Open tryouts were held to fill in the roster.  So, wins have not been forthcoming like Courtney is used to.

But, winning isn't everything . . . Courtney is happy making new friends, and being on her own for a while. I am proud of her.  She has chosen carefully and is pursuing her goals.  I watched her cheer on her team members, dive for the ball at second base, and straighten bats waiting for use.  Spirit green bow in her hair, speaking to us after the game, I heard no excuses, no whining and satisfaction in her voice. All, I can say is:

Yay Courtney! 
When life gives you a curve ball, just continue doing your best!  Love ya!  

Monday, April 29, 2013

Another Quilt Show!

I spent Saturday with a friend; we went to a quilt show.  In our area, there is a quilt show series--four of them in fact.  I was able to catch all but one of them.  This one on Saturday, was held by the Metropolitan Patchwork Society here in Portland.   Here are a few pictures of some of my favorites.

This one for it's flower prints with free motion outlining in black--Hope you can see the detail!

This one for it's creative use of alternating quilting in the center circle. 

and my very favorite was a quilt  by Mary Derthick called "Fairy Bower"  with a semi-watercolor patchwork background and appliqued scenes.

Although I don't have a picture, it has scalloped edges--Beautiful work!! 

I enjoyed myself.  Hope you Enjoy the lousy pictures--BTW, hubby and I looked at a new camera, still deciding which way to go, but that's another story (mine got broken some time ago--using my smart phone camera--not very good indoors!)

Linking today with Create-with-Joy's Inspire Me Monday

Monday, April 22, 2013

Book Review on Embellishments

I recently found a book that I recommend on quilt embellishment. Fabric embellishment has been one of my current interests, so much so that I have taken up art quilts and opened a new Etsy shop to showcase my little embellished quilts.  Embellishment provides character to the usual fabric patchwork design of quilts.

Gallery page from Quilt & Embellish in One Step

The book is Quilt & Embellish in One Step! by Linda Potter, published by C & T Publishing.   Ms. Potter gives simple instruction for hand quilting with perle cotton instead of regular quilting thread. Her method produces larger stitches than the regular hand quilted stitch.

The thicker twisted perle cotton is intended to be easier to use than embroidery floss and to sit on the top of the quilted surface as embellishment, instead of tightening the sandwich layer providing the usual quilted puffing.  Also, besides coming in a large selection of gorgeous colors, perle cotton has long staple cotton fibers that are sturdier for the constant use that a quilt gets; sturdier than some other yarns and threads. I have never tried hand quilting with perle cotton, but I want to.

Ms. Potter also uses applique as seen here (sorry for the lousy pictures, I still don't have a new camera!)

This concept, when applique or beading is added, is the essence of Ms. Potters style.  Her style is not especially abstract but what I love is it is:
non-traditional and creative!
If you are interested in embarking on the new adventure of quilt embellishment, you might want to add this book to your craft library. 

Linking today with Inspire Me Monday 

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Bob's Red Mill Aprons!

Well, it's been a rocky few days since Monday morning.  With the Boston bombings Monday afternoon, I never got back to post my Grand Opening giveaway (that I promised).  Now, my mind has gone a completely different way, so it will be a few more days until I do that post. In the meantime, hug your family and tell them that you love them, there's no time like the present!

Several of my blog friends know that I make aprons for Bob's Red Mill and have asked to see pictures. (I have done a couple of posts about the aprons here and here.)The BRM Visitor Center is a great place to visit!  It's their grain store, restaurant and bakery.  We often eat there for breakfast! We love eating upstairs in the loft and watching all the action in the store!

They also have lovely patio seating, but I don't have pictures, since it is not quite the weather for that yet!

The big cafe/store/gift shop (that I have just shown you) is down the road from their mill facility.  Last year they were opening a new little shop in the mill where my friend Christie gives tours. (If you are ever visiting, you really should take the mill tour!  Awesome!) This next picture is not my own picture, but was taken from their website, it's of the Mill Store where my aprons are sold!

Christie - far left, and Valarie, buyer, far right 
Originally my personal friend, Christie-- BRM Hospitality and Tour facility manager-- asked me to make aprons for their new Mill Store. Here are two styles that I make for them:

Christie and I modeling aprons! 
All the aprons they carry have pockets with their logo on them, which we send out to be embroidered. Another day I will share the "making of an Apron".

And one final picture of the aprons in the shop:

Yellow Original style and a new style in green

I'm short of time today, so I'll be off,  'sew' . . . . 
you enjoy your day!  

Monday, April 15, 2013

New Shop Open!

Yesterday, I opened my new ART shop on Etsy! Abigail Jayne Art!  I've been working on art quilts for the last few months and been having fun!  Before this, I had fallen into my own rut, creatively. I seemed to make the same types of things and real creativity had been shoved to the side.  'Sew' lately I have given myself permission to break all the rules!  I've been making non-practical items and wall textiles that are non-traditional. Not all the seams are finished, nor are all the stitches 'kosher'.  But I don't care, I have had sew much fun creating this past few months!

Love to have you take a look at some of the art pieces in my shop.  I have listed several of these and will be adding more in the next few days.  You can find them at Abigail Jayne Art.  (Also love to have you look at my 'About' page. You'll see how all this came about!)  Thanks for looking!!

Tomorrow I'll be posting all about my Grand Opening giveaway.  
See you tomorrow for all the details!  

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Shop Preparations

Preparations are marching right along and almost complete for my new shop,
Finished working on the new banner !  Looks presentable, I think!

I built it to NOT detract from the art presented in the shop.  I originally did a collage, much the same as my banner in my Creations shop, but I decided that it wasn't very interesting, nor was it artsy!  It will more about photography than anything; it was displayed on my empty shop for about a month, so I guess it served it's purpose, if anyone visited and wondered what I sell.

Shop is ready to open on Monday the 15th (I know tax day!)  I am excited to share my art work with the world. Initially the shop will carry my textile art, under the name of my art pseudonym, but eventually I might add my water color art prints, ACEO's and greeting cards.  Several of my readers have asked if I was going to sell my watercolor art. I still haven't decided about that--we will see!

First things first--shop open on Monday!  

By-the-way, I would love for you to like my facebook page , sign up for my newsletter (button in sidebar), or follow my art blog, Abigail's Attic.


Friday, April 12, 2013

'Spring Party' Friday Finds!

Ready for a Spring party? 

Here's a centerpiece:

Burlap Grass Table Centerpiece by Wonders4you

Throw on a matching table runner:

Table runner by Modernality2

Grab some pretty napkins:

Napkins by SilkImagination

And some napkin rings:

burlap Jute Napkin Rings by HomeGoodsalacarte

Add your favorite tea pot: (BTW--MY favorite!)

Franciscan Tea Pot by blkolivecottoncandy

Add your favorite fare, and there you have it . . . oh, except for inviting a friend!  Have a great weekend!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Quilt Show!

Went to a quilt show today with a friend and saw some AWESOME  quilts!  The theme was "Red and White~~A Quilter's Delight!" and those of you who know me, know that I love embroidered Redwork, so you can imagine what I feel about red and white quilts!!  Here are a few of the quilts that I snapped with my phone camera (sorry these are not very good pics, but you get the idea):

Love this design!

Machine embroidery/quilting

I wanted to remember this pattern!

Then there were the colorful quilts:

Applique in the middle 

Love the side design!

Complicated, appliqued and gorgeous!

Hope you can see the artistry in the quilt stitching in this one:

So sorry that the pictures didn't come out better!   I had a wonderful eye full and came home with tons of ideas!  Yay!  Now to see if I have any time to work on any of those ideas ;)

Thursday, April 4, 2013

"About" page?"

This is me! Albeit a few years ago, but none-the-less me!  (Sorry it is a grainy, yellow picture--I know!)  Sew . . . what about me?

When Etsy first added an "about" page availability to our shops, I was like so many: I said to myself, "What do I need that for?  I already have a public profile!"  It was a bit of a mystery to me.  I tried working with it, but I just made a mess of it and quit.  I didn't understand the concept nor the procedure.  And I am no stranger to online processes!

But the other day, I sat down and waded thru the process--for two of my shops no-less!   First up was a portion that asked for my picture and some facts about me as the owner of the shop.  Pretty obvious.  Once I  did that and saved it, the screen changed to what I thought was a blank template again, seemingly I had lost what I had done!  (**!!????)  Actually, it was prompting me to add members.  "Members?  What is this?  I am only me!"  I said.  I finally figured out that I should move down the page to make a shop description and skip the members section, if I had no members! Dud!

Once I added the info about myself, I could add information and pictures about my shop and my work. It was a fun process looking thru pictures of my handiwork and deciding which ones to use.  I got some good advice, online, from other Etsians, as to how to describe my work.  The best advice was that the about page is not intended to be your resume!  It's about what you do and why you do it!  People--prospective customers-- want to know about why you do what you do!  Sew . . . that makes it fun!

I was pleasantly surprised with my finished product--my about page-- and my other about page--and hope when you visit any of my shops, you will take a look!  If you need more help with your about page, there is lots of instruction available on Etsy and elsewhere on the web.  Good luck!    

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Another Sneak Peek 2

I am opening a new shop in a few days.  I have kept it a bit of a secret as to what the products will be, but you can explore for a few more details here--  Abigail Jayne Art -- if you like.

Other sneak peeks are here and  here, in previous posts.  Today I am giving you another peek of one of my Abigail Jayne art pieces:

I think this is one of my favorites!  Can't wait to unveil the shop!  Shooting for around the 10th, give or take a few days.
This is sew fun! 

BTW-  If you like to be notified, please leave your email in the comment section and I will add you to my newsletter list. There is also a sign-up button in the right sidebar.