Month: July 2016

TIME OFF

As you probably have noticed,  I took a few weeks off  of writing my blog to spend some time with visiting family.  I always intended to get back to my computer at the end of each day to get back in touch with you, but after cleaning up from the days activities,  getting food ready for a crowd the next day, not to mention…garden duty, I would head off to bed and another day would go by without a blog post.

We are in the middle of an extreme heat and humidity event here in MN this week so after I go outside at sunrise to water my flower pots and do the daily maintenance the yard requires, I go back inside for the day. I treat this kind of a day as “summer blizzard”.  Yesterday, I spent the remainder of the day in my sewing room which is on the lower level of the house and even cooler.   It was a wonderful day.  I didn’t get one thing completed but did lots of sorting, organizing and cleaning and started to accumulate fabrics for 3 projects.  I can’t wait to go down today and get started by sewing the binding on two quilts so I have hand work for tonight.  It sounds like a “blizzard” is forecast for the remainder of the week.

I am in the middle of working on a new book for Landauer Publishing.  I have published many books with them over the years, many of which had a lifestyle bent to them as well as quilting projects.  This one is going to be a little different.  It will feature traditional quilt designs udsing traditional quilt blocks with my fabrics and the same quilt blocks made from the modern fabrics from Cotton+Steel, a division of RJR Fabrics.  I am convinced a good quilt design works for both and the most important thing for any quilter, new or experienced, is that the instructions be clear and well written.  Thimbleberries has always set the standard for excellent instructions, and this book will be no exception.   It has been a lot of fun reworking my designs to showcase a new look.  My home is still firmly planted in the traditional “lane”, but the quilt world is big and there is room for all color and fabric preferences.  The modern ones are so different that in some cases it it had to believe the basic quilt block is the same.  I am on my way this morning to pick up two of them.  I can’t wait to see them quilted and bound.  I always consider binding like whipped cream and a cherry on a dessert.  Here is a glimpse of a few I have completed with traditional fabrics.

IMG_1897 IMG_1893 IMG_1891Here’s what is blooming in my garden this month. Some of the perennial blooms come and go quite quickly.   Mid July often has the most color in my garden and it is the toughest to keep looking good….lot of dead heading and trimming to do as well as the ever present weed management. That does drop off a bit though as the plants get larger.  However, daily watering is required when it is this hot the plants get big.    I plant a few pots of Coleus that I can move around the garden areas to add color where needed. The add a lot of color and do not need deadheading except for the rare tiny blossom now and then.   It helps bridge the gap between blooming times of various perennials and bushes.

2016-07-21 08.45.09 2016-07-21 08.45.25 2016-07-21 08.46.27 2016-07-21 08.47.41

IMG_1245IMG_1243IMG_1241IMG_1239IMG_0996IMG_0843IMG_0819IMG_0732IMG_0401IMG_0395IMG_0393Here is a view from my sewing room last winter when a real blizzard was in the forecast.  I guess my sewing room is where I head to on those days that I should just stay inside.  Stay cool.

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FUN RUN (NERS)

June 1 was Global and National Running Day.  I decided it would be appropriate for me to participate in a “Fun Run”…that is, heading to my sewing room to make the easiest, fastest fun runner.  I had just small cuts of samples of the Cotton+Steel cotton/linen blend canvas and used them to make two runners.  On both, the smallest piece available determined the width of the runner.  I cut random widths and played with the placement using the same print at the each end of the runner.  Somehow, it just seemed more balanced that way…you know, a beginning and a end.  I had a binding prepared and not used from years ago in my binding scrap basket that turned out to be perfect for the long narrow runner.  The other runner sports a scrap binding, always a favorite for me.  The long narrow runner found its home at my daughter’s cabin on the white harvest table.  It is pretty cute there.IMG_1841

IMG_1842The second runner found its home at my house….often on the kitchen island or the dining room table.  I even use it now and then on the back of the couch just to add some touch of color that we can see from the dining room and the kitchen.IMG_1849

2016-07-01 09.13.03My Garden this Week  This is my favorite daylily…Rosy Return.  If I deadhead faithfully it will bloom throughout the summer.

2016-07-01 08.00.14Some of my hydrangeas have started blooming.  They really help brighten up large spaces in the garden and their blooms last all the way into the fall, changing their colors as the season progresses.

2016-06-28 19.05.44These Annabelle’s are pretty glorious and I love them grouped with Sun King peeking out just behind.  The contrast is stunning, especially in the morning sun.2016-06-28 19.07.552016-06-28 19.05.57

This variety (Kyushu) has an airy bloom that will turn rusty/pink later in the summer and even a deeper hue in the fall.  It is about 8 feet tall and a visual anchor in my back garden.  The other varieties of Hydrangeas bloom later in the season.  It is always a good plan to have blooming times staggered throughout the summer.  There is always something to look forward to each week.2016-06-28 19.13.58

This is one of my favorite combinations…no blooms but great leaf color and shape contrast (Tiger’s Eye Sumac and Britt Marie Ligularia).  Mixing plants is much like coordinating fabrics for a project…a blend of different sizes of prints and print images is the most pleasing.

We are having company at the cabin this weekend and into next week, so it is off to the kitchen to get things going.  My niece and her family from CO are coming and we are all very excited to see them and spend time with them at what she remembers as her grandparent’s cabin.  The weather forecast is good so all should have fun in the water, in the boat and on shore with a cold drink and plenty of good food.