Posts Tagged ‘nature’

Pink Grass

Tuesday, June 11th, 2013

I continue to have computer problems which make it difficult to post, but in the meantime I have been sewing. Here is the progress to date:



The original photograph shows a lot of pink in the distance and I think this fabric portrays it pretty well. We really do have pink grass in Kansas and it is blooming right now. I took these photos this morning!


I’m afraid people might question all that pink if they live where there is no pink grass – but it is what it is!



Coming Together

Sunday, June 2nd, 2013

Nice progress was made yesterday as I stayed inside all day waiting for a call that never came from a computer tech. The weather was cool and nice and I would have loved to have been outside working, but the time was well spent anyway.


The doe is taking shape, and the only two fabrics that I have that show leaves against a pale green background are laid in at the top. I think they will do the trick. Finding fabrics that will work together and play off one another is part of the challenge that makes this fun. I like how this one is coming together, but it has been slow work, with so many little pieces!

Seasonal Palette 2

Wednesday, November 14th, 2012

My work is machine pieced, in this case I will be using straight seams.
Transferring the original picture to tracing paper, figuring out where the
seam lines will go and dividing those into sewable sections comes next. I have to leave space at the bottom for the deer.

The finished piece needs to be 32 X 78” , so my working pattern will be
about 36 x 85” since I know that my intensive machine quilting will take up several inches in the end.

When I am satisfied, the lines are transferred to overhead projection film and projected in the mirror image to freezer paper on the wall in the finished size, which will be cut apart to become the working templates.

Freezer paper has a plastic side which will temporarily stick to fabric when pressed with a hot iron.

When these templates are ironed to the wrong side of the fabrics, cut with a quarter inch seam allowance and sewn, it will look like the original layout.

I have a pretty good stash of commercial prints and hand dyes suitable for nature inspired work. One of the first things I do when starting a new work is to pull any fabrics that I think have possibilities of working into the piece.

My studio has good natural light from windows and overhead fixtures so I keep my fabric behind bamboo and canvas roll – up blinds to combat fading.

Much of what I choose will never make it in and more will be added later, but this is a starting place. The fabrics are all 100% cotton, mostly commercial prints, though I do sometimes use hand dyes. I use a lot of batik fabric because I love the variations of colors within a piece that lends itself well to the nature inspired work that I do.

Behind the cutting table, you can see the blinds in the down position.

When I was teaching in Springfield, Mo., I found this wonderful panel.

(Winter Whispers by Michelle Mara, Wilmington Prints)

The scale seemed right and since my specialty is working with commercial prints, and even though I didn’t know if I would be accepted into Seasonal Palette I just had to buy two panels just in case! I needed two panels so that I could accommodate the seam allowances and still have things line up. I would want to fracture the scene, maybe rearrange the figures and integrate them into the piecing.

Deer often frequent the area of our farm pond and I thought they would bring life to the composition.

Fall Color

Wednesday, October 17th, 2012

Not to be compared with some areas of the country, but this year in spite of (because of?) the drought, we are experiencing some of the best color I can remember seeing here! Sunday, “just because” we spent the afternoon just riding around the edge of the Flint Hills taking it all in.

The trees seem especially bright this year.

The grasses play a big roll in the local color.


There is some pink starting to show but they don’t seem to have developed the fuchsia pink tones yet that I find so lovely. Some years that is more pronounced than others and I don’t know if it is dependent on moisture, frost, or what.

The weather was a bit windy but gorgeous in the 70′s, then we had some heavy rain so lots of leaves are now down.


Sunday, October 7th, 2012

Yesterday we went to the German Oktoberfest because Bierocks for lunch sounded good – and they were! But the plum kuchen wasn’t as good as it looked. There was rollicking beer drinking music and dancing, too, but my photos of that were not so good. It was 46 degrees, overcast and breezy so we were glad for  jackets as we watched the Weinerdog Races.

There were 48 entered so they were broken up into heats of 6 to start. We decided to leave before it was over, after a man got in front of me and took away my small window of photo opportunity.

This little guy caught my eye for his unusual color. The owner said they had petted him so much they rubbed the black right off!

On the way home

we saw this guy and had to stop and get a picture. Maybe the most unusual leaf man we’ve seen in a while!

We had a hard frost last night so finally had to bring the deck plants inside. Filling two of the three windows really closes in the studio. When I add the two Amaryllis plants, it’ll really be full! Nice to have flowers in the winter though….


Flash of Blue

Wednesday, July 18th, 2012

It’s still hot and dry here. As I settled in last night to watch some TV, I could see the tree over the water garden and a brilliant flash of blue. I hadn’t seen bluebirds this year but nothing else is quite that color! I got up to see and there were four juvenile bluebirds getting drinks from the waterfall pool and sitting above on a branch! They stayed until a bluejay came along and ousted them. Others that are visiting for the water are robins, cardinals and the orioles. A few days ago we saw a doe going across the lawn in that direction as well, but she spooked and didn’t get that far. There are still some farm ponds in the area that have water, but both of ours are dry.

I sat out on the deck for a while yesterday morning while it was still cool and hand sewed on the binding of Bignonia after my walk. I think I will do that again today. It is so tranquil there in the shade with the sound of the waterfall and the splashing fish.


Thursday, July 12th, 2012

We are enjoying a brief respite from the record breaking heat – now it is only in the 90′s! We are about 6″ behind on rain.

It shouldn’t look like this in July.

The creek has been dry for a couple of months.

It looks deceptively lush in the shade.

On the 5th of July we had a grass fire probably started by fireworks about a mile away. With everything so dry, it didn’t take long for it to get to our land where it burned some trees and two hay fields and part of another.

The fire department got it out just before it would have gotten into the woods that separate the fields from where the house is, maybe a quarter of a mile away! As it is we were getting lots of cinders in the wind. Kind of scary!!

More Glacier Park

Monday, June 18th, 2012

These Mountain Goats were on a faraway distant slope. Very difficult to see with the naked eye and hard to focus on so I just pointed where I thought they were and hoped for the best. It was hard to tell what was goats and what was rocks or patches of snow. Cropping the photo brought them in closer, but it is a bit fuzzy.

Same with these Mountain Sheep! Now we can see the curly horns.

These goats were at a different location, GoatLick, where the goats come to lick the rocks, I suppose for the minerals they contain. Here we were able to get much closer, but it was a steep and slippery trail to get there! This rock face is nearly vertical and they navigate it with ease. Amazing!

This Crow? Raven? came right up to the car looking for a handout I guess.

We saw this Loon family in a roadside pond, quite unconcerned at our presence.

The handsome Daddy Loon stayed between us and his family and treated us to several choruses of his loony laughter. Or maybe he was saying “Don’t come any closer”.

Mama Loon meandered nearby with her babies alternately swimming and riding on her back.



Tuesday, June 5th, 2012

Well here we are in Kalispell! Yesterday was a long day of driving, we started out in Butte and spent about three and a half hours driving through the National Bison Range. I REALLY enjoyed that! We saw herds of buffalo and their calves, antelopes, deer and a spotted fawn, all pretty close and unafraid, lots of birds and flowers. We did not see the mountain goats or the bears though. Inside the visitor’s center we watched a short film about the program to restore the buffalo. I got some nice photos along the way but I need to find a place to buy Photoshop so that I can resize them for the blog. be patient! In the meantime here is one from Del’s camera:

We spent so long at the National Bison Range (we were told it would take a hour and a half to two hours, but spent much longer) that we arrived late to Kalispell. We debated whether to drive on, or stop sooner, but could not find a place to stop and eat other than McDonald’s so we ended up going all the way, part of the time in a heavy downpour. We found a gourmet burger place and were glad that we had not opted for McD’s. By the time we found our lodging and unloaded we were both ready to crash and slept through til 9am!

This afternoon we need to shop for breakfast food as we are at a long stay suite with a kitchenette. We will also go by the Quilt Gallery to claim our space and set up for the start of the workshop with Ruth McDowell that starts tomorrow.


Saturday, June 2nd, 2012

Tonight Del and I are in Ogden, Utah. This is the first time I have ever tried to blog on my laptop so I am not sure if it will work. Last evening we were in Cedar City. We had spent most of the day at Zion and it was SO hot. Over 100 degrees. We had thought we might go to Bryce Canyon but it was just too hot to enjoy it and since we both had been there before we passed on it.The scenery is amazingly beautiful and I got some nice pictures but I don’t have Photoshop on this computer and I don’t know how or even if it is possible to resize them in iPhoto so they are to big to post right now.

We drove a little way up into the mountains tonight to eat at a restaurant that had fresh Rainbow Trout. It was really pretty good and the location was gorgeous. The road was narrow and twisting and the rock formations were awesome; there was even a waterfall and a rushing river, or maybe brook. It wasn’t very big but it was fast and beautiful!