I decorated for the holiday over the Thanksgiving weekend. One of my favorite parts of decorating is pulling out my holiday quilts. I'll try to feature a few of them here over the next few weeks.
I made this amaryllis quilt several years ago, from a Susan Du Laney pattern. The flowers, leaves, and bulb are stuffed, giving wonderful relief from the background. (No, I *still* haven't embroidered the roots. I also plan to add a little shading with chalks or Copic markers to the bottom of the bulb and the stem/leaf areas. Someday.) It is hung at the top of the stairs, and quite lovely to look at every time I walk upstairs during the holiday season.
One of my bees, Cyberbee, will have our annual holiday party on the 10th of December. We only meet 4-6 times a year, several of which are all-day meetings. It's all about catching up, sharing both food and sewing projects, show and tell (and what a great show and tell this one is with all the holiday quilts and gifts being shown off!), and a gift exchange for those who signed up. The gift can be anything, store bought or hand made. This year, I'll be giving some fabric, chocolate, and two handmade items: a needle book and a notebook cover.
This is the needlebook. One nice thing about quilting and scrapping is the number of tools that can be used for both types of project. I used my die cutting machine and some QuikKutz and Tim Holtz dies to cut out the pieces for this needlebook. The flowers are attached with french knots, and the leaves (which I hand cut) with a simple vein down the center. All of the felt is from Papertrey Ink - they make a gorgeous range of colors and it cuts like butter. I used a white lining and a piece of the melon berry felt for the inner leaves of the needlebook. The recipient's name is embroidered in the upper right quadrant, but I blurred it out in case she reads my blog.
The quilter who gets the needle book will also be getting this notebook and notebook cover:
I dyed dryer sheets with Dyna Flow to try to get green and teal colors that would coordinate with the background fabric. While the green turned out great, the teal was not as bright as I had wished. I pulled out the die cut machine again and cut a variety of circles and rings, then arranged them on top of 2 layers of un-dyed dryer sheets (to brighten the colors and reduce the transparency) below the colored circles. I fused on a very thin layer of angelina fibers to give it some shimmer. I layered the background fabric and a stabilizer, then free motion stitched the circles onto them and trimmed away the excess, undyed dryer sheets. Some beads and couching with a variegated yarn in green and teals finished it up.
I made one more notebook cover; this one will probably be for one of the boys' teachers, and I'll be making another one for my other son's teachers. I went simple with this just fused a beautiful peony blossom onto a green pinked square, and added them to a dark brown speckled fabric. A bit of stippling brightened up the brown fabric.