January 2013

Embroidery Blog Hop

SMUannouncement

I am participating in an embroidery blog hop organized by Madame Samm over at www.sewwequilt.com. Next to quilting, embroidery is my favorite needle art. To make things even more fun, the cheerleader for this blog hop is none other than my friend Jane, of Jane’s Fabrics. The blog hop features 95 bloggers who will post an embroidery project on their blog something between March 20th and March 29th.

packages

The bloggers will receive 10 assorted colors of Presencia Finca Perle cotton and two John James Needles for embroidery. I have never embroidered with Finca Perle cotton so I am excited to give this a try.

sneakpeakpatternsThe bloggers will also receive eight different original embroidery patterns and may choose one design to stitch up and feature on their blog, or go completely crazy and do all eight. The prize is a basket filled with Presencia thread and needles from the Colonial Needle Company. Sounds like a good reason to do a little embroidery to me! Sign-ups are still open, so if you are a needle arts blogger and would like to join the fun, click on over and check out the details at Sew We Quilt. Mark your calendars to hop the blog list posted on the website between March 20th and the 29th to see what creative projects are generated by this group.

Until next time,

Joan

 

Jumping Jack Flash

Pat Sloan is moderating a design challenge for Aurifil thread on their blog, www.auribuzz.wordpress.com. The designers she has chosen for this Block of the Month challenge must design a block using this fabric:

rock-and-romance-fabrics-used

This is Pat Bravo’s new Rock n’ Romance fabric line. The designers are to use any or all of the six fabrics featured in the circles above. They are also allowed to use a couple of fabrics outside of this line in their design. The block the designers submit must be inspired by a rock and roll song. This sounds like a lot of fun to me, so I have decided to play along. There are some talented designers in the lineup so I am looking forward to seeing the designs generated by this challenge.

This month’s designer is Erin Russek of Once Piece at a Time. I admire Erin’s applique patterns. Erin’s submission to the challenge is this block called “Jumping Jack Flash,” which was inspired by the song of the same name by the Rolling Stones.

jumping-jack-flash-block

The Ohio Star block is one of my favorites and I think Erin did a great job of combining the floral motifs in this block. Putting this many busy motifs next to each other is not an easy thing to do! This is my “Jumping Jack Flash”:

Jumping Jack Flash

 If you participate in the Block of the Month and post photos of your block in Aurifil’s Flickr group, you are entered in a monthly drawing for a prize of Aurifil thread. I love Aurifil, so I am clicking on over now to upload my photo to the group.

Until next time,

Joan

California Poppy for Beth

Poppies for Beth

In the Quilt Around the World Bee II, Beth in the UK asked each of us to make her a block of a flower that represents our country.  I live in California, so I chose to make a California Poppy for Beth. I love the simplicity of this beautiful, golden-yellow flower. The inspiration for this block came from a painting I have long admired by Shirley Novak, called “Pumpkin Poppies II”. This block also allowed me to play with raw edge applique, which is one of my favorite techniques.  This is another quilt that I will enjoy watching as it grows.

Until next time,

Joan

Bee Block for Phuong

DorryLu

In the Quilt Around the World Bee II, DorryLu (Phuong) asked us to make her a block that reminds us of summer. She requested that we use pinks and lime green fabrics. It is very chilly here in the San Francisco Bay Area, so dreaming about summer was a pleasant way to spend the morning. The majority of Phuong’s blocks have florals in them, which is appropriate for summertime, so I chose several florals for my block as well. I love the fabric in the center of the block, and really like the dramatic contrast of the black against the pinks and greens.

DorryLu2

This is a photo of Phuong’s blocks so far. As usual, a photo doesn’t do them justice. They are so much prettier in person. This is sure to be a colorful, fun quilt and I will enjoy watching its progress as it moves through the rest of the group.

Until next time,

Joan

Epicurious Recipe Clipper!

51140410

 

Thai Chicken Curry – www.epicurious.com

 

In January I am usually in the mood to start anew. I look for new quilting projects, explore new design ideas, and look for new recipes to try out on my unsuspecting family. Aside from Pinterest boards, one of my favorite sources for new recipes is the Epicurious website. They are partnered with Conde Nast publications, so many of their recipes come from Bon Appetit and Gourmet magazines.

Epicurious has launched a fabulous new recipe box app on their website called the Recipe Clipper. You simply drag their Recipe Clipper button into your browser bar and start browsing the web for recipes you want to try. Whether you are on the Epicurious site, browsing Pinterest boards, or find a blog with a great recipe, you simply click the Recipe Clipper button and, voila, the recipe is saved to your personal recipe box on Epicurious. No longer do I have to drag my laptop to the printer and print out a recipe to save it. This is such a great tool! You are able to customize your recipe box to save the recipes in a way that makes sense to you. You can also generate shopping lists from your recipes on this site.

Each day, Epicurious features a special Recipe of the Day, and today’s Thai Chicken Curry looks like a winner for dinner tonight! So click on over to www.epicurious.com and check it out.

Until next time,

Joan