Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Compositions in Emerald and Violet

The sun has barely shone all week, but a dusting of snow is finally relieving the darkness. I have been working steadily on the next fabric line and am unusually pleased with its progress. But that means I've been sitting at the computer for days. And as any quilter knows, a day without fondling fabric creates a vitamin deficiency!!!!! So for my health and sanity, I spent the weekend playing with the Sunshine and Shadow fabrics.

I was curious how Jan Krentz's 45 degree Fussy Cut Diamond Ruler would work with Sunshine and Shadow, since it had been so successful with the past fabrics. So that's where I focused my experimentations. After trying many variations in color and motif, this is where I landed (above). Uncharacteristically subdued for "Miss Contrast", but I quite enjoy the verdant lushness that metamorphosed on my work wall. I also like the gentle undulation of the green fronds combined with the spicy glow of periwinkle. I have christened the piece, Emerald Forest.

Here is another quilt in the same Violet colorway. This piece combines all four Simple Silhouette Butterfly patterns and also celebrates Mother Nature's opulence. The asymmetry of the Jack-in-the-Pulpit print creates and interesting setting for the Paradise Butterfly.

Below the Coleus fabric makes a rich surround for the Fluttering Butterfly. The critters are appliqued with a matching satin stitch and the quilting is kept simple to allow the fabric to do most of the hard work.

Hopefully, these quilts are reminders of the emerald green energy hibernating beneath our feet. Time to
pull out those seed catalogs and dream of spring.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Winter Wearables

Well, I'm finally feeling rejuvenated from all the activity of the busy work year and the happy holiday gatherings. Above is a photo I took on New Year's morning, a lovely scene to begin anew. But now the ornaments are packed away, as we rapidly approach the deep heart of winter and look forward to that splash of February red.

The frigid weather and a foot of snow has contributed to the drama of the season. The driveway has already been plowed about six times, so there is a pristine layer of white over everything. The only tracks are made by the deer in the dark of night to be discovered the next morning. Sometimes mice will make snaky little tunnels under the snow.

So I was in need of a cozy hat to wear when I dig out the car and head for the gym each week day morning (a routine started last summer). Inspired by some Jacobean knitted hoods and 17th century embroidered sleeping caps, this is the result. It is quilted with wool batting and lined with fleece. Of course, I could not resist adding the Art Girlz felt dingle balls dripping down the back. Now I don't mind those cold mornings quite so much!

And this design is bound to be added to the Pint Size Pattern series. Below are the Cozy Cowl Scarf and the Romantic Ruffle Scarf patterns made up with the new Sunshine and Shadows fabrics. The colors really spice up the winter grays and browns. The first set is made with the
Periwinkle colorway.

Next we combine fabrics from the Violet colorway. I think the lovely blue adds a little Spring optimism to the ensemble.

The scarf includes a yo-yo decoration anchored with an antique shell button.

Finally we have the cowl and scarf in the Mulberry combination, which I think is really elegant, as well as warm. I have noticed lots of pink outerwear this season and I think these are their perfect fashion accessories.

The scarf below has a pearl button to add to the romantic look. All of these projects are lined with matching fleece for maximum toastiness and practicality.

I think these designs will even make Californians wish for cold weather!