Thursday, August 27, 2009

Two New Patterns!

Veggie Seed Packets and More Veggie Seed Packets are hot off the press! These are the two new quilt patterns I've created using a combination of Mark Lipinski's Oakdale and Elements fabric collections from Northcott Silk. I designed 4 veggie blocks, then decided I was missing too many other favorites, so I created a second quilt. All the blocks are interchangeable.

The first, of course, is Veggie Seed Packets. The Wall Quilts measure 21 1/4" x 25 1/4". I've also included instructions on how to make the blocks into individual Little Quilts, which measure 7" x 9".

Veggie Seed Packets Wall Quilt,
Mark Lipinski's Oakdale and Elements fabrics

Peas Little Quilt, done in fabrics from my stash

Tomato Little Quilt, Mark Lipinski's fabrics

The Veggie Little Quilts all fit Ackfeld's Watering Can Hanger

More Veggie Seed Packets Wall Quilt,
Mark Lipinski's Oakdale and Elements fabrics

Corn Little Quilt done in fabrics from my stash

Radish Little Quilt,
done in fabrics from my stash

I used Superior Threads Brytes threads to machine blanket stitch around the cream circles and topstitch around the veggie shapes. These threads are a 30 wt and show up beautifully on the fabric, plus the colours were perfect. That shopping trip at their warehouse in February was SUCH a good idea!

The patterns will be available next week for purchase. Please email me for distributor, wholesale and retail details.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Paying Attention to Tiny

We ran away from yard work last weekend, and escaped to nearby Donald Lake with canoe and dog.

We stayed for 3 days, swimming, snoozing and reading. While sitting on a rock listening to the lake and wind, I looked down to see a wonderful world of tiny things:

Lichens called "British Soldiers" for their red hats

Pine seedling

A tiny landscape

I don't know what these are, but they made me very happy.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Monday, August 17, 2009

Contest Winner

On Friday August 7th I announced a contest. The mystery object, which I discovered tucked down a laneway near the tracks at the Sheahan train stop was this:

The correct answer, as Brenna wrote:
"Vehicle is a DUKW amphibious truck designed by The Royal Navy and used by the US Army and allied forces during WWII for transportation over land and water."
The truck is also known as an Army DUCK, and in this case is used to carry people from the train siding, across the Spanish River, to the cottages on Pogamasing Lake. The Spanish is fast and wide, and the DUKW would drive right through it.

Dolores, Susan, Deanna, Cindy, Nancy, Brenna and Diane all sent correct answers. And the winner's name pulled out of a bowl is.... Brenna! Brenna will be offered several choices of the Leaf Magic Little Quilts and can pick her favorite.

Diane also wins a little quilt, as she came closest to recognizing the location of the DUKW:
"That picture wasn't taken near Lake Pogamissing?"

Thanks to all those who participated. And on a personal note, when I spotted the Allied Forces symbol faded on the front of the DUCK, it gave me a shiver. Some of these vehicles were used on the D-Day beaches of Normandy in WWII. They were capable of crossing the English Channel. What stories could this one tell?

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Blooming Today


'Strutter's Ball' Daylily

'Tigger' Daylily

'Going Places' Daylily

I call this one Allie's Dad's Daylily. My friend Allie says it's a common lily that her father dug out of a roadside ditch, which would make it Hemerocallis fulva. However it seems to be reliably double, and it blooms weeks later than the common daylily. I suspect it's a cultivar of some kind, and I love the colour.

My contest is still on from a few posts ago, and the answers are coming in. This Friday night is the deadline to win your free Leaf Magic Little Quilt! I'll be away until Sunday and will post the winner on Monday. Good luck everyone!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

American Quilter's Society - Leaf Magic Journal Cover

I have a brand new project called Leaf Magic Journal Cover published on the American Quilter's Society website! It's available as a PDF download.

My contributor information is also in their latest issue - September 2009.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Welcome Daniel Thomas

I fell in love with a 2 week old baby boy this weekend. Daniel Thomas came to visit his Great Auntie Jan.

Do you remember what a baby's neck smells like?

Friday, August 7, 2009


While we were waiting here:

for the Budd Car Train:

to load and take us home:

we explored the nearby pine forest and found this:

What is it?

Email me at with "Contest" in the subject heading. The deadline is midnight of August 14th. If more than one person gets it right, I'll put your names into a hat and draw the winner. The prize is a handmade Leaf Magic Little Quilt!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

A Truly Canadian Holiday: plant photos

I learned something new about the area we tripped around, which was west of the Spanish River in Northeastern Ontario. I saw many plants that I normally associate with more southerly areas. Bog Rosemary was in abundance; a plant that I purchased years ago for plenty of cash at a garden centre. The absolutely MOST exciting discovery, however, didn't get photographed! There were clouds of mosquitoes and a long portage ahead of me. It was a Rose Pogonia orchid (Pogonia ophioglossoides). I'm kicking myself now... in the comfort of my home, with no mosquitoes driving me insane.

An unknown yellow mushroom. I really have to buy a fungi identification book...

Unknown orangey mushroom. Ditto with the ident.

Round-leaved Sundew (Drosera rotundifolia) which carpeted one of the portage exits. It was quite a dance to avoid stepping on them whilst carrying my pack! Sundews are carnivorous plants - the leaves are tipped with a sticky fluid that traps insects.

Indian-Pipe (Monotropa uniflora) emerging from the forest leaf litter

Twinflower (Linnaea borealis) - a tiny beauty that I did a pen & ink drawing of for the Nipigon Gazette newspaper waaaaay back in 1979. I wanted to name my fledgling landscape design company "Linnaea Landscaping" in 1992, but when I test drove the name with friends and family they unanimously suggested that I was the only one in the world who would get it.

And tomorrow, my first contest!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

A Truly Canadian Holiday: dog photos

Canoe tripping with a dog is great fun. Lily seems to be everywhere we point a camera, or is it us who can't resist her?

Breakfast with Bob

Looking at something but I can't remember what!

Lily peeks at Sid

Break time on the water

Time to relax

Enjoying the view with Bob and Allie

Pooped out after a day of portaging and chasing chipmunks

Tomorrow: plant photos and the day after - a CONTEST!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

A Truly Canadian Holiday: the photos

We're back, the bruises and bug bites are fading, and wow, what a trip! We canoed and portaged between 90 and 100 kilometres (60 miles) in 7 days. The weather was good, Lily was a great tripping buddy, and it was a treat to be with beloved friends.

Waiting for the Budd Car train at the Sudbury train station

The baggage car fills up with canoes, gear, dogs and their people. On this trip there were 4 Golden Retrievers, 1 Chocolate Lab, and a little Shitzu crossed with something else cute. The dogs have to ride in the baggage car, so their owners get to hang out there as well. The whole thing is very relaxed and informal - a great start to the trip!

Here we are in our new Souris River 16' Prospector canoe - me, my dog, and my Hon.

Allie has a new hammock, which was set up as soon as we made camp the first night. We crawled in with our glasses of wine and got caught up from the past year of kids, aging parents, work, and the beauty of escaping from it all for a whole week.

The guys drink cold Heineken while I start the camp fire. We freeze little cans of beer and keep our steaks on them in a lunch cooler for the first night's dinner. By the time we reach our campsite, the beer has mostly thawed and the steaks are ready. I also had new potatoes and sugar snap peas wrapped in tin foil to put on the grill. First night's dinner is always my responsibility, and after that my Hon takes over the food stuff.

It's good to be me.

The guys do some catching up. Lily does too.

A Northern Ontario sunset, and more photos tomorrow.