Days like this are going to make it very hard to get a lot of sewing done! I told myself I only had time for two laps around the lake, since I have a three hour class to teach tonight that I'd like to be awake for...But after the second lap, the radio said it was supposed to be cloudy tomorrow, so I had to do one more!!! People in the interior of Alaska pretty much live for the sun coming back in the spring. I always pay attention to the sun's schedule (and usually the moon, that's been cool lately too!), but I made an observation today that I hadn't before. Our days change gradually from lighter to darker and back again all year round. But in the spring it seems to come back all at once. I finally realized that is because we have snow... it magnifies the light we get. It always seems painfully slow in January and the first part of February, but then suddenly it's spectacular. (The daylight hours do change faster closer to the equinoxes also) I think that's why March is my favorite month here. (And it's not even quite March yet!) That and the fact that I love cross country skiing, and when March cooperates, it's skiing heaven here! I'm still using my 33 year old skis....the boots have duct tape on them, and I need to bring a pair of pliers to get them out of the bindings when I'm done...one of these days I'll replace them, but I do love them! (I always listen to 80's music when I ski, it makes my skis feel more at home:-))
I'm still doing lots of sewing, but mostly repeats of things I've already posted, getting cards ready for tourist season! So it's back to the archives again. This is a baby quilt made with Barbara LaVallee fabrics a few years ago for a baby gift. Of course I had to include this book illustrated by Barbara LaVallee as well! This is as close as I get to traditional quilting, I've made a couple of baby quilts and that's about it:-)
Tonight is the last session of my latest class, designing quilts from photos, it's been a fun class with a great group of ladies.
This next month will be a challenge to get sewing done, March is my favorite month in Fairbanks. Usually it is very sunny and warm, but not too warm to melt snow, so I ski as much as I can! Right now it is sunny and 82 in my living room, I think I need to let the fire in the woodstove go out...:-)
Back to the archives....this is a little purse I made for my daughter a few years ago, when I was first discovering art quilting!
I'm trying to put things on my blog regularly, but lately the sewing I've been doing is either repeats or working on a new pattern (hopefully coming soon!) so I'm digging into the archives for things to put on here:-) This is a quilted potholder I made a few years ago. It has a big plastic button, so you can only use the back side, and it wouldn't do much good as a trivet, but it's pretty, and that's what matters, right? :-)
This card is a variation of my Black Capped Chickadee pattern. It's just vertical instead of horizontal, and I used my great birch tree fabric instead of making the tree myself.
Major silkscreening operation at my house today, a friend came to help and we got 67 cards started! I just noticed I covered up most of the blueberry ones, but I'm too tired to take another picture:-) The ravens will get feet when I do the free motion stitching:-)
See my post from 1/31/13 for a tutorial on this easy method of silkscreening.
In a recent blog post, I suggested making more than one of a card to maximize efficiency. Then today as I was making a batch or two of Raven Moon cards, I realized that this pattern is one step better than that:-) The pattern automatically makes 4 at a time, and uses several different background fabrics, so they are similar but not identical. You can vary them further by changing the binding fabrics and the card stock color. These four cards all had the same fabrics until I put the binding on, but they have some variety when they are done.
It must be getting toward the end of winter, I'm using tropical colors for my Alaskan ravens...:-)
Update: This design and lots more are now available in pattern form, either print or download, click the photo below!
This is a card I made for my neighbor who moved away, she grew lots of lilies, and her adorable dog's name was Lily Pad:-)
I almost always make my cards in batches of 4 or sometimes 6. That's mostly because I sell them, but I would recommend making more than one even if you are just making them at home for yourself or a gift. The reason for that is although they are already quick to make, if you make more than one, they are even quicker, because you only have to think, change thread, or choose fabric once, then do it several times. It's a mini version of factory efficiency, and since it is a consumable item, it doesn't hurt to have a duplicate or two. I'm sure you wouldn't have any trouble finding someone to give the extras to:-) What I DON'T do is more than 6 very often, it gets boring at that point:-) Sometimes you can even use different fabrics and still use the same thread. Most patterns don't get made more than once, but since these are small, I'd highly recommend it!
Beret Nelson's On The Trail Creations Blog Page
I am a homeschooling mom of three fun kids, who are now old enough that I have a little time to pursue my passion for sewing! After several years of making quilted cards and art quilts, I'm now designing kits and patterns. Some of them have even been in Keepsake Quilting! I teach classes at local quilt shops, and would love to do more traveling and teaching eventually. I also have many tutorials, including some on YouTube. I am blessed to live in Alaska where I am surrounded by the inspiration provided by the beauty of God's creation!
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