Sunday, May 23, 2010

The Graduate

Barb and I were not able to go to Spring Quilt Market.....and pictured above is the reason why! My youngest graduated from college. Look at his joyous face! Congratulations Greg!

Barb and I are very sorry we missed seeing everyone at market. Thank goodness Edie McGinnis, our editor, presented our newest book, Country Inn during schoolhouse at market. It should be in shops very soon.

I finished the new Anniversary of the Heart pattern while riding in the car. (A bit hard to keep the threads counted right...but great time to work as Dave drove us to the graduation.) It was stitched in memory of my grandfather. I was surprised how much I enjoyed thinking about him as I stitched this piece. Usually I pick a grandmother to remember in my samplers....but as I stitched the year of his birth and his initials into the linen I was so glad that I had chosen him. During the quiet stitching moments I thought of him and our time spent together. It felt so right. This pattern should be in shops in about 2 1/2 weeks. (And....we will include the first bonus pattern with next month's pattern. My son after reading the blog told me, "You have to fill the space.")


The above picture showcases our final Loose Feather project for the years 2009/2010. This is the front of the project bag....the reverse side is stitched with another design. It too should be in the shops in about 2 1/2 weeks. This was stitched on 20ct Straw linen by Weeks Dye Works. It was an easy fun stitch. I had Barb's mom, Leona put the button holes in for me. I just couldn't take a chance of doing them wrong. After all of the stitching!!! I'm a whimp.

Until later!

Alma

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Anniversaries of the Heart

Pat Ryan of R&R Reproductions is stitching the complete piece for us. She sent this piece to show her progress. As we work on the house patterns, we stitch them individually. But we send the patterns to Pat so she can progress on the larger piece. The empty space is left for one of the bonus pieces...which was to be released in October. But Barb and I have been talking about this. Maybe it's because I like everything to be orderly....but the empty space is beginning to bother me. We are thinking about offering this bonus early ....so you don't have an empty space in your sampler for a year.

What do you think? Does it bother you or not?


Meant to post this on Sunday....but was busy stitching and talking on the phone. Hope all of you had a Happy Mother's day. When you think of all the time and effort that go into raising a family being a parent is quite a life time adventure. We should all pat ourselves on the back. Thank you Mom for spending all those fun years cooking dinner and doing laundry and walking to the grocery store. Dad is holding my hand....and my Mom is expecting my sister. Looks like we are going on a picnic with one of Mom's friends and her baby. (Where did my Dad get that shirt????? holy cow!!!!) Maybe that's how I first got interested in quilting....

Until later!

Alma

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Time for a Garden Party


BloggerThe random number generator has spoken....here are 8 winners. E-mail me ... alma@blackbird-designs.com and let me know your address so I can ship out the fabric packs. Congratulations!!!

1. #36 Leslie Allen said...Now, I would LOVE to collect Pink Hill manor, but since finding your blog, I've ventured off to your quilts (after a 7 year hiatus in quilting), even though and I'm two years behind with Loose Feathers' club too! Talk about a wealth of choice! I'm trying very hard to resist, but it may be fruitless! Thanks so much for your wonderful inspirations!
2. #49 Kim said...Your new book looks wonderful and I love the new house! Beautiful as always!3.

3. #94 Carmen Sutton & Jean Hohulin said...Can't wait to see your new book in person. It is amazing all the you two get done.

4. #103 susan_bish said...Can't wait to get my hands on the new book. It look great. Just love your designs. I am a quilter and have never taken time to do cross-stitch(I don't get all the quilting done I want to do), but your Pink Hill Manor is calling my name...

5. #146 Berit said.."Anniversaries" is moving right along!Thanks for offering a fun fabric giveaway; please include me in the draw!

6. #379 edie said...Can't wait to get the new book, new chart, and . . . my local stitchery shop's order for the linen has been on back order FOREVER, and it looks like we have another five weeks to wait. BOO!!! Patience. You all two are so talented. How do you do all you do, AND just keep coming up with wonderful things. Counting the days until Boxwood and Berries! Is it possible to bribe the random number generator?

7. #434 Emma said...Can't wait to get my hands on Country Inn. Right now I'm finishing your latest freebie Done My ABCs. Love your sweetness and generosity.

8. #452 Jantine said...I hope I am still in time. Love your designs and would love to stitch one! Maybe some day I will ;-)


I have a dish thing going.....as you can tell from the photography above and below. I love plates that have pink floral designs along the outside rim of the plate.


While at the beach I found these plates at a local antique shop. I picked these up so we could eat in style out in the screened-in porch. The chips and cracks don't bother me too much. I love the sweet look of the plates....and I love the smaller size too! Helps with smaller portions and still looks like your plate is full. The wine glasses were a find too.

Variety is the spice of life and using different plates for each setting is like looking at a great scrap quilt. You look all over the surface of the quilt trying to find the pattern. It's the same with my dinner table. The consistency of the pink floral trim around each plate makes everything go together. I use these for parties and even Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners. (Nothing is too good for those I love.)


I tell the check-out people at the antique shops, "I'm having someone special over for dinner." Usually they just take a second look at me and smile. (They are thinking....poor dear! She doesn't have the money for a "real" set of dishes!)


But the man helping me at the antique mall in Robertsdale, AL, looked at me and said, "Sounds like fun. Wish I could come too."

I think he meant it. Even with the big chip in the plate (see below)....I think dinner on old chipped plates sounded good to him. (My kind of guy!)

I just love the simple beauty of them!!!

Wishing you all great vintage finds and friends and family to enjoy them with!


Until later.

Alma

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Country Inn


Our newest quilt book. It's at the printer now and all the proofing and corrections have been made. It should be done in a couple of weeks....just in time for market. This one has quilts, food and other fun projects.

My friend and editor, Edie McGinnis and I went to Spring Green, Wisconsin right before last Christmas. We stayed above Country Sampler (quilt and cross stitch shop) in their Second Story. Click on the shop name to check it out. We cooked the recipes for the book in the kitchen and worked on quilts in the very large, open and gathering room. You can see the areas in the photographs when you visit her site. I photographed the food in a window well on top of a cutting board. (Great light!) Jeanne Horton, owner of Country Sampler has a great shop. Staying upstairs of the shop has its advantages. If you run out of something, you can go downstairs and make a fabric run in your slippers!

Pink Hill Manor is the newest in the Anniversaries of the Heart series. It is at the printer too ...and should be ready to ship out this week. Barb did this one and I think it is my favorite so far. Love the colors.



Cathy Campbell from Primitive Traditions sent these two sweet quilting templates to us. She was staying in Cape Cod and found them. Usually, I'm a Baptist Fan person when it comes to quilting.....but I have to say I can hardly wait to use one of these! Aren't they sweet. (Click on Primitive Traditions to go to Cathy's site.) I've been checking out her Eliza Robertson. Love the saying and think I have to stitch this one!

Well....have to make this short....Barb and I are working on the fabric line and we have to get it sent to Moda.

I've got 6 of these sample packs of Garden Party fabrics. Leave a comment and will do the random number generator and pick 6 winners Thursday morning.

Until later dear friends!

Alma