Monday, June 28, 2010

… a very special peek

This past week I got a very special package in the mail from Lecien. There are half-mitres of 36 fabrics. . . & although this is not an official debut. . . I just had to show you this itty-bitty peek of the fabrics in my next line. . .



. . . It's called Georgia Lou. . . named after my Mom. I am so very happy with this line (for so many reasons. . .) & it is very reminiscent of the vintage fabrics that I remember from the quilts that my Mom had that my Grandmas had given her. Those quilts were (& still are) the inspiration I had for designing quilts. I just love the look of quilts that would be at home in a farmhouse or a cottage. . . 

So for now. . . I'm finishing up projects on the computer so that I can get back into the studio & start to play with these little beauties!

Bren
(p.s.  . . . the Georgia Lou line will be released this fall!)

Friday, June 25, 2010

… of bit of color

While the temps are are making their way up the thermometer around these parts. . . the blooms in both the front & back yards are taking advantage of the sunshine & putting on quite a pretty show. . .!




The backyard is surrounded by a cinderblock wall. . . & for part of the back wall - it reaches about 15 feet, & one of the first things that Dad did was to plant, bougainvilleas, pyracanthas, & what was then - small little cat's claw plants. When the plants began to grow up the walls, Dad ran wire along the wall at different levels for the stems & tendrils to have something to take hold to. . . & boy did they! Now, 10 years later - here is the top of part of the 15 foot wall - with the cat's claw 'water-falling' down from the top. I just love the backdrop it provides for the backyard. You can also see - (in the lower right corner) a bit of the red berries from one of the pyracantha bushes that have also grown quite tall!



Just in time for the Fourth-of-July. . . the pot of blue petunias are putting on a wonderful show!



Just this past week, one of my very favorites - the crepe myrtle tree's blooms are opening. I mentioned a few years ago - how much I liked the blooms of one of the smaller crepe myrtle plants that we had. . . & over the years, Dad has continued to add them to the variety of blooms in the yards. (Isn't he sweet!) At last count, there were 3 in the backyard (1 tree, & 2 bushes) & there is a wonderful large crepe myrtle bush in the front yard. Love them!



. . . & even though they bloomed earlier this spring. . . we are seeing a few of the gladiolas sending up some new blooms!


These sweet little blue flowers are on what was a little bush not too long ago - (in the side yard - outside one of my Dad's bedroom windows) - & now the bush is taller than I am! It's full of these sweet little flowers. . . & is a testament to Dad's green thumb.




These tiny little blue blooms popped up on our rosemary topiary that sits at the corner of the driveway & the walkway to the front door. . . (see them on the top right?)


The rosemary topiary has been there for years. . . starting in a much smaller pot . But not until this past year have a ever seen it's little blue blooms! One of the things that I love about the rosemary is how - when folks come over - they love to brush the palms of their hands over the rosemary & then take a big sniff of their palms & everyone smiles & lets out a big "sigh!" !  :o)


Even the two nandena bushes that sit in their pots at each side of the front door are getting onto the act & are showing their pretty colors!

As for me. . . I'll be spending most of the day indoors. . . I like the sunshine. . . but when the temps are getting into the 100's + . . . I think my time in the yard will be able to be counted in 'moments', & I'll spend the weekend finishing up some pattern writing &, inspired by these pretties from the front & back yard, start on some new 'pretties' of my own!

Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Bren

Monday, June 21, 2010

… daybook ::22::

for today :: June  21, 2010

outside my window. . .  birdies tweeting, bunnies in the grass. & the sun is peeking over the mountains.

I am thinking. . . of how much I want to do a 'clean sweep' of my work areas. . .!

from the kitchen. . .  coffee . . . that's it so far.

I am wearing. . .  my favorite grey t-shirt & shorts. . . (but will be changing soon for work at the quilt shop).

I am creating. . . lots of sketches in my sketchbook for possible future projects(!)

I am remembering. . . Mom today. . . it is (was?) her birthday today. . . on the first day of summer. I'm missing her. . . a lot.

I am reading. . .  Spoken From The Heart  (Laura Bush). . .( & I am learning so much about the post Sept.11 days. . . wow.)

I am hoping . . .  that the part of my cold that keeps hanging around will go away!

I am hearing. . .  the local morning tv show in the background . . . (along with the birdies singing out the window!)

around the house. . . a new quilt just came back from my quilter. . . yippee! 

I am going. . . to be a 'shopgirl' today! 

one of my favorite things. . .  my Mom's smile.

a few plans for the rest of the week. . . pattern writing (still!). . . stitching. . . & cleaning.

from my picture journal . . .
Mom. . . from about 25 years ago - starting her day with her coffee! (. . . so that's where I get it from!!)

Hoping for a sweet start of summer for you!
Bren

Thursday, June 17, 2010

… a bit of writing


My plans were to come back from Spring Market & start writing the patterns for my new designs. . . .

Well, . . . that was the plan.

But between the icky  'bug'  that I caught in Minneapolis that decided to hang around for a couple of weeks. . . & the amounts of cold/flu medications that I've had in my system. . . & the fact that all I could manage to do was sleep, nap, snooze, & sleep some more. . . the reality hit me that pattern writing wasn't going to happen.

I actually tried a couple of times. . . & it was a sad sight. I sat there - in bed with my laptop & my notebook where I write out all my directions, notes & sketches, & my tissue box, & I would have no idea how to start! I knew then & there that I was not to be trusted to try & explain how to put together a-n-y-t-h-i-n-g(!). So, the notebook went on the side table until I was able to get through the day without needing to nap every half-hour.

So now. . . I am finally in full pattern writing mode (yippee!) I finished & proofed & reproofed one yesterday & now it will go out for a final proofing. Today I'm starting the pattern for the designs above.  It shouldn't be too difficult, as I already wrote out the directions - in detail as I made them - so mainly it will mostly be working on cleaning up the graphics for the templates & diagrams for the applique & the embroidery. I'm actually really excited to work on this pattern - 'cause I had such fun making the projects.

The goal is to get the last of the new designs/patterns to the printer by mid- week next week. . .

So. . .  if  I'm a little bit quiet for the next week or so. . .  you'll know why !

Bren

Monday, June 14, 2010

… celebrating




. . . She's a grand one. . . isn't she!

Happy Flag Day!

Bren

Saturday, June 12, 2010

daybook ::21::



for today :: June  12, 2010

outside my window. . .  breezy. . . with a touch of sunshine streaming through the oak tree

I am thinking. . . of new project designs for the next fabric line (a very special one for me. . .)

from the kitchen. . .  coffee & toast from the best 7-grain bread from the bakery!

I am wearing. . .  t-shirt & shorts (the usual summertime outfit)

I am creating. . . a special block for a special Australian/American project. . . (more info soon!)

I am remembering. . .  how much I love it when the sun rises early & I do as well. . . I love getting up early in the morning, & getting an early start to the day!

I am reading. . .  contracts. . .  (two came this week!) &  Spoken From The Heart  (Laura Bush).

I am hoping . . .  (& praying. . .) for the families so effected by the oil crisis in the Gulf. . . & that the efforts to resolve it really will. 

I am hearing. . .  Bailey - in the studio, rumbling (trying so hard to be quiet!) a bit at the bunnies in the backyard. . . He is learning to 'leave it' when it comes to the bunnies & 'sharing' his yard.. . . (bless his heart!!!)

around the house. . . planning to paint a few pieces of furniture in the living room - a creamy white. 

I am going. . . to give Bailey a bath today. (& get fluffy snuggles afterward!)

one of my favorite things. . .  looking through old family photos.

a few plans for the rest of the week. . . pattern writing (still), & a bit of late spring cleaning (. . . the things I didn't get completed before leaving for Market. . .)

from my picture journal . . .
. . . the sweet little flowers that have been greeting me each morning on my bathroom counter.

Hope you have a wonderful weekend!
Bren

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

… a little bit of this & that. . .


Have you ever had days. . . (or even weeks!). . . where there has not been much that you felt was 'blog-worthy'? . . . Well, that's been me since I returned from Market. 

I had all the intentions of taking a bunch of wonderful photos for you from Market - as I didn't have a booth - & was able to walk around. . . but the cold/flu that hit me on the first day has really been a doozey & I ended up not even walking the entire Market floor, & me sneaking out to my car to 'nap' between appointments. So, I apologize - as I came home with really no decent photos of Market. Thankfully, I know that there are bunches of photos of Spring Market on bunches of blogs out there . . . & then there is always Fall Market! I just got my contract for Fall Market (whew!. . . they are on-the-ball!) & will be doing a booth. . . along with my next line for Lecien. . . (& this one is very. . . very special to me , I can hardly wait to show you!).

So, needless to say, I came home one sick puppy & spent more time sick in bed than I have in the past decade. I usually get antsy after having to stay in bed after a day or two. . . but with this cold - I have spent more time sleeping & waking up only long enough to try & start a project . . . just to need a nap. . . again.


Overall, the days have felt pretty quiet. . . with the exception of an evening spent with my Dad in the emergency room. I got a call last Saturday & my Dad had fallen at our local market. Poor guy, he had just wanted some ice cream & he stepped on a grape that someone had dropped at the end of the freezer section aisles. Thankfully everyone knows Dad there - as he goes to the Starbucks within the market pretty much every day, & they took such good care of him. But, when he fell, he landed (hard) on his hip & it was giving him a lot of pain. So, when I got the call (& had to quickly get out of my half-pj's outfit I've been sporting at home lately. . !)  - I picked him up & off we went to the local ER. After all the x-rays  - the doctor let us know that thankfully, they all came back negative. (They were even surprised!) He could then get a nice dose of pain meds & five hours later, we thankfully came back home. (By-the-way . . . I did stop by the market on the way home - to get my Dad his ice cream. He sooo deserved it after all that he went through!) He had a couple of days with a sore hip - but is doing pretty good! At the suggestion of the nurse, I am still trying to convince him to think about getting a walking stick to use until his hip feels all better . . . Hmmm. . .  that one is taking a bit of doing. . .  no success just yet.


On the pattern front - my plan was to have my new patterns all ready mid-June, but I have honestly not been able to sit & focus long enough to get any of them finished. Plus, with all the cold medicine in my system, I really didn't trust my ability to write anything clearly!  For the past couple of days, I've felt better & so I've made a bit of progress. . . but the new designs should now be ready around the end of June / beginning of July. So sorry for the delay!

See the cute little pincushions? . . . I got these at my local quilt shop. Nancy, the owner carries several handmade items (including vintage quilts!) on consignment. . . & I couldn't resist these. (I've also purchased a vintage quilt or two in the past. . . ) This quilt shop is where I took my first classes. . . & so I consider it my 'home' quilt shop. I remember when it first opened & it has been fun to see it come into it's own. What I love about this shop is that Nancy's goal for it is not to be a shop that is so concerned with quilting 'fads' - but with teaching people all about quilting. She knows what her customers like & amazes me with her ability to know what to buy. It honestly overwhelms me! (I so admire all you shop owners!)


I tell you all about this sweet little shop. . . because I have started working there a day or two each week! (I'm now an official 'shop girl'!)  After only working from my home for the past 2 years, I had been feeling like I was losing touch with seeing others & so working at the shop has been perfect. . . & I'm loving it. In fact, I'd best close out this (chatty) post as I'm 'working' at the shop today. (Honestly - it hardly feels like work - it's such a joy!)

So, there's my little bits of what's been happening here. . . Sorry for the rambling. . . kinda like my days lately!

Hope you have a wonderful day!

Bren

Friday, June 4, 2010

… a little 'PSA'

We interrupt our regular (or irregular!) blogging for this little 'public service announcement'. . .
For all of you who have been asking when Durham- Anew will be available. . . I just discovered that 'Shabby Fabrics' already has it up on their website


I want to thank you for all your kind emails & comments about Durham. It has always been one of my favorites & was an honor to be asked to work with designing the line. Also a big thank you to all the shops for ordering Durham - Anew fabrics!


Bren

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

daybook ::20::


for today :: June (already!) 2, 2010

outside my window. . .  a couple little chirpers in the oak tree. . . & it's warming up! (summer's here!)

I am thinking. . . that I really need to make a to-do list (for the month!)

from the kitchen. . .  coffee & my current favorite cereal - Special K Cinnamon Pecan (like a cinnamon roll in a bowl!)

I am wearing. . .  t-shirt & shorts.

I am creating. . . patterns this week . . . must. finish. patterns.

I am remembering. . .  that all walks with Bailey will need to happen right at sunrise - or right after the sunset.

I am reading. . .  A Lineage of Grace  (Francine Rivers) . . . (slowly - the stories have so much to take in!) & Spoken From The Heart  (Laura Bush).

I am hoping . . .  that the cold/flu I got at Market is finally going away (I still don't have my voice back.)

I am hearing. . .  the soft 'whirr' of my overhead fan & the birdies outside.

around the house. . . Quilts still waiting to be unpacked. I got my clothes unpacked the evening I got home. . . but the quilt suitcase just went into the extra room & have been 'camping' in the suitcase while I spent the week in bed. . . I think they would appreciate some air & a good stretch!

I am going. . . to do some serious pattern finishing today.

one of my favorite things. . .  vanilla ice cream when your throat is sore from coughing. . .

a few plans for the rest of the week. . . getting back out into the fresh air, finishing patterns & starting new designs . . . (a wonderful circle!)

from my picture journal . . .
(Matt Cardy - Getty Images)

  Bren

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