Wednesday, October 31, 2012

A final Hallows Eve finish

"Azaiha Nye"
In between answering the door for the trick or treaters, I had one final Halloween finish.
Eventhough Halloween is almost over, I am thinking that this nice sized pillow will be sitting in my favorite stitching chair for a while so that I can enjoy it :)
Hope your Halloween was happy :)
Blessings, Patti

Happy Halloween!

"Jack & Jinx"
design by Maggie Bonanomi
Wishing you a Happy Halloween filled with more treats than tricks!
Blessings, Patti

Monday, October 29, 2012

Prayers, purchases and a giveaway

My prayers are with all those in the path of Hurricane Sandy.
As I write this I am watching the coverage on the news...

In my last post, I forgot to mention the great antique mall that I found on my way to Osage, Iowa.

And here are my wonderful antique purchases I found in my travels - I fell in love with this primitive basket with its woven lid and well worn and loved patina. The antique piece of bunting jumped out at me as well.
I enjoy collecting stereoptiscope cards from places that I have traveled to - this time I found one from Yellowstone and another from the San Francisco earthquake. I have heard of folding skeleton keys and was so happy to find one (bottom right hand corner.)
And finally, here is my latest giveaway:
This giveaway is open to all.
One of my favorite things in the autumn is the beautiful colors of the changing leaves. So tell me... which is your favorite tree for autumn colors?
Simply leave a comment on this post or email me at with "Autumn Tree" in the subject line.
Thank you for letting me share my Iowa adventure with you!
Blessings, Patti

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Presents, Projects and Purchases

I hope you don't mind one more post about the Bittersweet Sisters trip to Osage, Iowa...
Look at this wonderful display. Everyone was so kind and generous!
Kim treated us to a Chicago style dinner one night with delicious food brought from Chicago - Lou Malnati's deep dish pizza and Portillo's Chocolate Cake. (If you have ever had it, you know how divine both of these are ;)
And look at this:

Nicki gifted each of us with a wonderful graniteware pie plate with some sweet sunflowers, wool from a jacket of hers and one of her husbands, some acorns and I guess I should admit some chocolates which seem to have disappeared...

Linda made 5 of the beautiful pillows! One for each of us!
Her stitches are so tiny and perfect, a quilter at heart.
Carla made us these perfect project bags - I absolutely love both fabrics inside and out. This has become my new project bag for the train. And do you see the fantastic vintage style Halloween treat cup that she made in the back? Mine is sitting on my kitchen windowsill so I can admire it while doing the dishes.
Wendy was a maniac too! Making each of us these wonderful pouches - cross-stitched and mongrammed from a lovely design by Lori Brechlin of Notforgotten Farm. I think that she said that she had never finished anything like this before, but she did a fabulous job. She also made a wonderful memory book for me too.
I didn't make gifts for everyone, I ran out of time.
But I did design a little project for us to do:
Here they all are in various stages of completion. We each brought a favorite piece of autumn colored wool and free hand cut hearts and shared them. I had already made a pillow as a model at home, but wanted to create something with the shared hearts. So...
  I made a little runner. I think it looks so sweet with the pillow and the pincushion that we made at Ewe & Eye.
Carla surprised us with a project of her own:
She brought a huge box of scrapbooking supplies.

And here is Carla with the wonderful banner she designed. She brought lots of supplies so we could personalize it , but I loved her style, so

Here is mine at home on my mantle.
Linda brought show and tell:
A fabulous hooked rug that I just had to share!
While in Osage, we stayed at the second floor above The Stitchery Nook:

The accomodations were fabulous!
It has been recently renovated and each of us had our own big work table, close enough together that we never stopped chatting as we worked :)

One of my favorite features:
This great exposed brick wall down the hallway to the bedrooms.
Here we are once again:
The Bittersweet Stitching Sisters is a fitting name - meeting in the autumn and it is so bittersweet that we live so far apart that we are lucky to meet but once a year...
One can never have too much wool, right? Here are the lucious wools that I bought on the trip.
and here is Jill Peterson's latest book that I picked up along with some wonderul hand dyed threads. (Half off at Ewe & Eye!)


And a few more patterns that I just couldn't resist!
You have been so patient with me as I go on and on about this trip.
So next post I will reward you with a giveaway :)
For now I am off to the first high school football playoff game! Go Hawks!
Can't wait to see my youngest son, the tuba player, in the halftime show.
As soon as the game is over, we will run up to my mother-in-law's house - we are celebrating her 80th birthday!
Until next time...
Blessings, Patti 

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Day 3 (aka A Slice of Heaven!)

Day 3 for the Bittersweet Sisters was spent at Ewe & Eye in Osage, Iowa!
Wow! The moment I walked in the door, I felt like I had come home.
Breakfast was set up for us at a cozy little table.
 As we ate breakfast, we chatted about all the things we had in common~
first and foremost a love of wool!
 Marge and Beth are the mother and daughter team that own the darling little shop.
You can tell what fun they have working together,
you can read a bit about it on their blog by clicking here.
And you can find their online shop by clicking here.
 Everywhere that you looked there was joy to be found!
 I wanted one of everything ;)
 Don't you just love that Harvest Moon and the sweet hooked chickens below it.
 A little Valdani bingo anyone ;)
As if Marge and Beths' gracious hospitality in their lovely shop wasn't enough,
Marge invited us into her stunning home for a home cooked lunch!
 A comforting home, a delicious meal, and warm and friendly company ~ what more could a person ask for ?!
 Isn't this whisk broom valance just perfectly primitive?!
 And this little corner of their sheep collection ~ oh my!
 This entire day just stirred my soul and left me ever so thankful!
 I adore this hooked rug!
Marge would sing this song to wake her 4 children when they were little, just like I did to my boys :)
(BTW, I did have to go home with a hanging gourd garland made by Marge's husband. Now it is hanging on my stone fireplace ;) 
 Isn't this hooked three dimensional cat wonderful?
 Marge and Beth even put together a little project for us ~ a perfect souvenir from Osage, City of Maples! Carla and I managed to finish ours before we left for home.
All too soon it was time for us to leave our new friends.
We all wanted to stay there for at least a week!
We left with a day full of wonderful memories and the back of my van filled with wool!
Can you tell that the shelves behind us are quite a bit emptier?!
Marge and Beth, the Bittersweet Sisters can't thank you enough for such a perfect day - a true slice of heaven! Your gracious hospitality and warmth were such a gift to us!
And if you aren't tired of this trip yet, I think I have one more post filled with purchases, presents, and projects!
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
 in all your ways submit to him,
and he will make your paths straight."
~Proverbs 3:5-6
(this verse was hanging in Marge's home and touched me so.)
Blessings, Patti

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Bittersweet Sisters Day 2

I'm back with Day 2 :)
First stop was The Flower Gallery right on Main Street in Osage.
This is not your ordinary floral shop, this shop is beautiful inside and out!

In addition to flowers, this shop was chockful of wonderful unique art and home decor items.
You had to just stand still and take it all in.
Be sure to look up! You might miss something special!
You can reach The Flower Gallery by clicking here.
And here is my purchase from The Flower Gallery:

(o.k. ignore my sons' room on the right - I should have closed the door!)
This incredible "Autumn Harvest" pine board was painted by artist Carol Herman.
The Flower Gallery carries a wonderful array of Carol's work from painted wine bottles to incredible painted antique doors. I wish that I would have purchased much more!
In the afternoon, we had a wonderful opportunity to tour a 150 year old home.
Although a lovely home, this grey house wasn't the right one.
But eventually we sorted things out and found the right house ;)
(Imagine peeking through your curtains and finding a gaggle of women on your doorstep taking photos - I would have run and hidden for sure lol)
Now here is the right house:
 Isn't this side entrance so warm and inviting?
Unfortunately somehow I forgot to take a photo of the front.
This wonderful home is on the National Register of Historic Places.
And here is a portrait of Mr. Deering:
Annette Ashbach, the homeowner, was ever so gracious inviting us in, sharing the history, allowing us to wander throughout her family's home.
 Isn't this piece gorgeous? I was so struck by it and Annette shared that she found it at a garage sale for $150! What a steal!
The details throughout the home were wonderful. You certainly don't see radiators with this level of detail anymore.
Annette is also a longarm quilter extraordinaire!
Longarm quilting is Annette's business and the quilt above is one of her own. I don't recall the design or designer, but the tiny piecework was absolutely amazing. This quilt is Sylvia's Bridal Sampler consisting of 140 - 6.5 inch blocks - WOW!
 This little quilt really caught my eye as well.
Being such a lovely hostess, Annette even invited us into her sewing room.
Where we saw these lovely projects in process.
Then after our tour was done, Annette even served us homemade scones and tea! Yum!
What a lovely way to spend an autumn afternoon!
Thank you Annette for your wonderful hospitality!
And there is still more to come...
Blessings, Patti