Monday, March 26, 2012

Mary Ann Blackburn


I found Mary Ann Blackburn's sampler on eBay, and quickly called Barb so she could see it too. Luckily we won the piece!

We decided to base this year’s Loose Feathers program on vintage samplers and Mary Ann's seemed to be the perfect one to start us off. Her sampler is pictured at the bottom of the cover shown above.

We did a reproduction of her piece and included a couple of projects reflecting elements from the original.

The long tulips on this sampler are so unusual. I love the enormous size of them in comparison to that tiny, little house. The two side borders add movement and a dash of color needed to keep this symmetrical design interesting.

We always change a few bits and pieces of an antique sampler when we do a reproduction. We often add or subtract a motif or change the color of the floss. Barb and I tried to keep the changes to a minimum as maintaining the charm of this naive piece was important to us.


The booklet will ship out to the distributors on Friday. So it should be in the shops by the end of next week.

Dave's been working in the garage again. I took a class a couple of weeks ago and poor guy has to pay the price for my education. The picture below gives you an idea of my class content.


I just purchased two bee hives and Dave glued and nailed the hives together. I'm going to paint them white this week. I'm expecting two queens and a couple thousand workers around April 15th. Will show you more after their arrival. I have to admit I'm a bit fearful as I don't want to do anything wrong. Beekeepers must be vigilant to protect the hive from the many diseases bees now face. Luckily I have a friend to help if I run into trouble.


The queen is marked by a bit of paint. This shot above is like a picture from the children's book, Where's Waldo? Can you find her? She usually has a ring of workers around her. Will keep you posted on how this venture comes along.

Until later!

Alma

33 comments:

  1. Alma: I am in love with all your patterns but this one is beautiful, I need to call my LNS in Minnetonka and order one.
    Catherine

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  2. Completely gorgeous!!!!! I am on automatic for all the new Loose Feathers :-). Can't wait!!!!

    BTW, I finished my Christmas Garden with the alphabet at the bottom. I absolutely love it and can't wait to frame it and get it on my wall. There are pictures on my blog if you would like to see :-).

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  3. Beautiful!! I can't wait!

    I am anxious to hear more about your bee keeping experiences. How neat! Years ago I read a mystery about a woman who moves to the US south west & takes over her grandfather's bee keeping enterprise. I've been fascinated since--and frustrated because I can't recall the name of the book or author. Good luck!

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  4. OH NO!!!! am I going to have to take up bee keeping now! I can't keep up with you...although I did bake cookies today and am heading out to buy craft paint to paint my hobby lobby sewing box so I can make a sewing box...just like yours!

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  5. Beautiful!! I love vintage samplers and think you've chosen a lovely one to start this year's LF program.

    Bees! Now that's a great project. Bee careful,though!

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  6. As usual I will be stitching up this sampler. I can't keep up with them all, but I am sure gonna try. It's a
    beautiful sampler.

    And now a beekeeper to boot!!! You have such an adventurous spirit.

    Good Luck in your new adventure:)

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  7. Good Luck with the bees. I have always wanted to have a hive but never had enough knowledge or nerve to do so.

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  8. It looks beautiful, I can't wait to see it, I'll be signing up for them all. Good luck with the bees, I'm afraid I'm frightened of them so it would't be for me.

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  9. Looks lovely, but I am still busy finishing the last one while sitting in the Spring Sun!
    Greetings
    Lida

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  10. Ooooh, that's lovely, and so charming.... can't wait.

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  11. I'm working on your Winter, Summer, Fall Loose feather sampler from last year and loving it. I have a beehive in the wall of our stone home now. Trying to figure out the best way to get them out. Good luck with your bee adventure.

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  12. One of the summer jobs I had while in college...state bee inspector!

    It is a great hobby and I'm so excited you starting your own hives!

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  13. Oh. My. Goodness. I love what I see - I'll bet there are going to be lots of new starts!

    Good luck on your bee keeping venture. Do you have the cool hat and gloves and all the other wearables that go along with bee keeping? I can't wait to hear all about it!

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  14. Love the new Loose Feathers! So excited...and it's already on order at my LNS, cuz I called them right when I heard it was coming out! Wahoo! Can't wait to hear your bee stories and see pictures!

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  15. I don't know why I waited to get on auto for the Loose feathers. I knew I would fall in love from the first chart and of course I have. lol! Just lovely! I'm so looking forward to this series! And the beekeeping. Wow! All I can say is you are a brave woman. Bees freak me out. lol! I do love their honey though. I hope the venture goes well for you and you are able to avoid all those diseases out there.

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  16. It`s absolutely wonderful,can´t wait to see it.Enjoy!

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  17. I love it! Lucky you that you won this beautiful pattern.
    Nice stitching, Evelyne

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  18. I too am starting into beekeeping hope we both are successful.

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  19. I love Blackbird Designs!!
    I just want to stitch them all, so hard to pick and choose which ones to stitch.
    What a wonderful adventure raising bees, my father in law was a beekeeper as well as my husbands brother. It was a wonderful experience for my children. The whole family would gather at the farm from the little ones to the oldest ones and would help harvest the honey. It was a long sticky process but I wouldn't trade those memories for anything. When my daughter was two she would stand on a crate and help crank the spinner. Enjoy your bees!!

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  20. You are so lucky, I want a bee hive too but no one else wants one, so I'll just have to get my honey the old fasion way... the store. *wink* I love your patterns and books. bee-hugs, Debby (WI)

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  21. Are you still lecturing & teaching? If so, where can I find calendar & other info regarding this? Thanks!

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  22. Beautiful new patterns. I know nothing of beekeeping, therefore look forward to your newest endeavor. I do hope you share it with us.

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  23. I have to stick to making bread and am going to learn to make cheese....my sweet husband says no bees. Hope to see a new quilt book soon. If you need a good place to photograph it, please consider New Harmon, IN....Trudy

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  24. I love your new pattern book Mary Ann Blackburn. But being in Australia how do we source your new pattern? Do you have any retail shops here in Austrlia that sell your Loose Feathers patterns? Or where in the US can I buy them from?

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  25. I hope, in the future , that you could design us a chart with bees,honeycomb and so on.... This new Loose Feathefr is another temptation !!!

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  26. Dear Alma, I´m visiting NYC for the first time and would like to know a nice cross stitch shop where I can find your models, can you help me please? Thanks and congratulations for your lovely patterns, also very appreciated in Europe. Tesa Vives.

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  27. I just finished one of your designs and would like to send you a picture of it. How can I do that?

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  28. pattern looks gorgeous, wish there were more hours in the day.

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  29. Love the fact that you are getting your own bees! I spent the day, today, painting and cleaning one of my hives getting it ready for the new bees I expect April 20th.....you will do great! I have kept bees for over 10 years now...good luck-Nancy

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  30. Hello
    As always, I LOVE your new heirloom projects, especially since I am an avid stitcher of historic needlework. I was wondering if you could tell me if the Spring Song Jewelry Box on the cover is available. I'm interested for myself and possibly as a program for our EGA, Dayton Chapter but wanted to see if the box is a personal keepsake or available for purchase.
    Thanks so much for all new ideas you provide to those of us with a passion for stitching

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  31. ¡¡Maravilloso sampler¡¡
    Lo estoy bordando.
    Saludos. Nieves-Mª.

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