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So, I Read This Book Today

Editing, Proofreading, Reviewing and Other Stuff

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My Odd Obsessions

A Thought Provoking Video To Remind Us Of The Sacrifice Our Military Makes For Us

This video is from The Royal Dutch Guide Dog Foundation (KNGF). I will warn you that it is heartrending, both horrifying and hopeful at the same time. At Easter time, we should give a thought to the sacrifice of our military men and women, and how much they suffer for us. And exactly why they are suffering. Is it truly for the safety and security of our people? Or are they simply cogs in the machine that cranks out money for corporations and governments? Are our attacks to protect us, or to assure our oil supplies? Whatever it may be, THANK YOU to The Royal Dutch Guide Dog Foundation (KNGF) for this amazing commercial.

 

And more videos about the healing of dogs for returning warriors with PTSD

 

 

 

And finally – the dogs give you drugs and prescriptions – but Service Dogs could do SO MUCH! Tell the VA that you support Service Dogs for Returning Veterans!!!!

 

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An Easter Post

 All sorts of Pretties for Easter!! Have a wonderful Easter!

colorsheep
Pretty! Freshly dyed sheep run in view of the highway near Bathgate, Scotland. The sheep farmer has been dying his sheep with nontoxic dye to entertain passing motorists. Thanks to Vogue Knitting for the Photo!!!

 

 

A flock of orange dyed sheep brighten up the Isle of Mull
Click the photo to read the story!  One desperate farmer has given his flock a coat to dye for in a bid to thwart sheep rustlers on the Scottish islands. With the help of non-toxic orange dye the farmer has given the sheep the bizarre makeover as a result of ever increasing thefts

 

yelow
They call me Mellow Yellow!
coshp
Have you ever wondered how they make plaid? Well, this says it all! LOL

 

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Here, chicky chicky chicky!! Check out the original photo by clicking on the photo!
bunny
Love to spin Angora? Well, this is a lop, but she is already dyed for spinning! Check out the photo, and others, by clicking the link!
neonsunset
If you love spinning, you can’t go wrong with the spinning yarn rolags, and other items from my good friend Holly at Blue Barn Fibers! Check out her Etsy site by clicking the photo of her Neon Sunset rolag! Aren’t the GORGEOUS??
uke eggs
Aren’t these Ukrainian eggs amazing?? Thanks to Nancy Sproull for the photo! Check out her Pinterest page by clicking on the photo!
natural-dye-easter-eggs
Click on the photo to go to Sonya’s site to see how she coloured these amazing Easter eggs. The blue one is coloured with RED cabbage leaves. How cool is that? Photo courtesy of radmegan. All Rights Reserved. Please click the photo to check out this and other wonderful information and photos on Sonya’s site!

Love Easter? Collect Easter Decorating Items? A Seminar For You!

treen-rabbit-webinar
Adorable Bunnies!

Make an Heirloom Lop-Eared Rabbit Live Web Seminar

The only sewing I am doing right now is working on my quilt for the Hoffman Challenge. However, I ran across this seminar by Cynthia Treen offered by The Sew Daily Shop of Interweave (click here for more information and to register!) The seminar is only $19.95 and will walk you through the process.

ABOUT THE WEB SEMINAR:

This spring, create a keepsake that you will love to share! Cynthia Treen, popular designer of plush toys, shares wisdom, techniques, as well as her pattern, for an adorable felt rabbit and carrot.

With this web seminar, you’ll get:

      • The full pattern for the heirloom, lop-eared felt rabbit
      • Clear Step-by-step photographs and instructions for completing the project directly from
      • Tips and tricks for hand-stitching techniques
      • Insight into the types of tools that work best for stitching felt wool fabric
      • Join Cynthia Treen and create one (or two or three) little heirloom rabbit for yourself or someone special. This makes the perfect gift for the children in your life!

Resources you will need:

  • Body felt (beige or gray): 12″ X 12″
  • Inner ear felt (white): 4″ X 4″ Eyes (Black): 1″ X 2″
  • Wool stuffing: About 40 grams One skein of matching embroidery thread
  • One skein black embroidery thread
  • One # 5 or #6 embroidery needle
  • One doll needle
Treen-250
Your lovely instructor, Cynthia Treen!

Can’t attend the live event? Register now and get a recording of the event afterwards!

Instructor: Cynthia Treen

Live Webinar Date: Friday, March 28, 2014
Start Time: 1 p.m. EST
Duration: 60-90 minutes

ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR
Cynthia Treen is the Rhode Island based designer and owner of threadfollower kits and patterns. Her kits and patterns are available in her Etsy store (Cynthia Treen Studio) and in about one hundred boutiques and sewing shops across the country and internationally.
Her work with Dosa Inc, Martha Stewart Living and the PBS program “Cultivating Life” have been featured in both magazines and on television.
She currently splits her time between threadfollower, private commissions and freelance product design work. Her book “Last Minute Fabric Gifts” was published in 2006.

These bunnies are adorable, and would make a great addition to your Easter decorations stash! Click on Cynthia’s name above to go to her Etsy store to see more of her work and to purchase felt sheets for different projects.

The seminar is tomorrow, so no time to order felt now – but there is always the fabric store – or even felt you have laying around the house!

If you complete the Seminar and make bunnies, I would love to see! Send me photos and I will post your bunnies for all to see 😉

Thank you to Interweave Press for the information for this Seminar!  All information is property of Interweave Press and is offered here in order to draw your attention to the class. So, I Read This Book Today is not affiliated in any way with Interweave Press or it’s subsidiaries or affiliates.

Cosmos Is Coming Back!

This comes directly from http://www.space.com/24243-cosmos-tv-series-neil-degrasse-tyson.html?cmpid=556374 (I love Space.com!)

Rebooting Carl Sagan’s seminal “Cosmos” miniseries three decades later is almost impossible — unless you happen to be renowned astrophysicist and science educator Neil deGrasse Tyson.

For those who may have missed the original back in 1980, “Cosmos: A Personal Voyage” was a documentary series on PBS that explored the universe as well as the history of scientific discovery. Sagan’s topics of discussion ranged from Japanese folklore to debunking astrology to the ultimate fate of the stars and galaxies that surround us.

Now Tyson is hosting a new version of the TV series called “Cosmos: A SpaceTime Odyssey,” with the first episode airing in March on Fox and the National Geographic Channel. [Watch the trailer for the new ‘Cosmos’ series]

– See more at: http://www.space.com/24243-cosmos-tv-series-neil-degrasse-tyson.html?cmpid=556374#sthash.Yu0vwfE3.dpuf

http://www.space.com/24243-cosmos-tv-series-neil-degrasse-tyson.html?cmpid=556374

Melissa’s Bag!

I made my friend Melissa one of my bags for Christmas! She loves elephants, and of course, puppies, so I had to give her both. And Loving bright colours like I do, I thought I would indulge myself also by giving her bright, bright, bright! Thank goodness she loves brights too! It is big enough for her laptop, and has TONS of pockets. She can put her new Kindle in a pocket, and there is a pocket on the outside that is sized for her cellphone.

I make these for sale too – Hint Hint! LOL

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Wow, A lot of books reviewed. . .

I was talking with a publishing house earlier today and they wanted a list of books I have reviewed and posted anywhere on the web. So, I sat down and started “hunt and pecking” and found about 250 . . . and I previously wrote reviews for well under half of the books I actually read before the last year or so. I am actually looking at a 6′ bookcase full of books that I haven’t ever reviewed, including two more of these cases sitting downstairs, and another in the bedroom. Of course, when you add in the books that I never finished, or the ones I used to line the compost bin they were so bad, well, I probably have gone through a whole forest of trees. At least now, with the Kindle and my computer, I can stop killing trees! Doing a “kinda-sorta” count, I have close to, hum, well each bookcase holds about 20 books to a shelf, 5 selves in each case, plus the other various and sundry cases around the house and the boxes of books that never got unpacked after the last more . . . that is a lot of books. Who knows how many, I don’t feel like counting!

I bet there are a lot of you out there who have as many as I do – or even more!

grin
Photo courtesy of Ani by SHORTZ (Steve Svensson)

 

 

Review: Finish-Free Knits

finish
Check it out at your Local Knit Shop!

I have an admission. I only bought this book for one of the patterns, the “Divine Vest”. The rest of the patterns really don’t interest me. In my admittedly more artistic tastes the patterns range from frumpy (the Beauty Cardi) to outdated, 60’s reruns (Joy Lace Tunic). The Serenity Shrug does have possibilities, and I am considering spinning up some bulky for the short-sleeved Warmth.

You can see my start on The Divine Vest. Yes, it is kind of sitting there right now. Ooohh! Shiny!!!

The good things. Clear, beautifully written instructions, charts and schematics are clear and easily followed. I did have a problem figuring out the pocket layout on the Divine. Drove me nuts until I took it down to my local shop, The Recycled Lamb, and had her show me how silly I was being. I only had one pair of size seven tips, and I had pulled them and capped the cord, then forgot that I had done that! Silly me.

More good things. Some nice lace patterns. The fact that the items in the book are “finish free” which means very little sewing. The built-in pockets (that I finally figured out how to make!) and the beautiful back of the Serenity Shrug.

Overall, I would Google the different designs in the book, or look at it in your Local before making a decision. When I have made the Divine Vest, I will probably put it back on the market. Someone else is bound to think I am crazy and like all the patterns in the book – Tendyke is a wonderful designer. Four stars because it is so beautifully done and shouldn’t be punished because it doesn’t fit my particular tastes.

Review: Quilting Arts Workshop: Art Quilt Design from Photo to Threadwork

art quilt design
Check out the Video here.

I spent today in an “Artistic Haze” watching Sara Ann Smith’s “Quilting Arts Workshop: Art Quilt Design from Photo to Threadwork”. I purchased the download from The Interweave Store, a rather guilty pleasure of mine. They are one of the best online arts and crafts stores on the Interwebs. They have so much: quilting, crochet, knitting, beading, jewelry making, needlework, sewing and spinning and weaving, even mixed media is represented.

hoffman fabric
2014 Hoffman Challenge

For a few years I entered the Hoffman Challenge every year, and am very proud to say that my quilt actually got to travel with the International Show two years running! When I got cancer, I had a quilt nearly finished, and had a friend help me finish so I could enter the quilt. It wasn’t up to my regular skill level, of course, so it got sent back to me, but I was happy to be strong enough to at least enter.

2013 Hoffman Challenge
Click here to see the 2013 Winners

Last year, I liked the fabric quite a bit, but I just couldn’t’ get into the quilting part. {My workroom was a mess, to tell you the truth, but I was too lazy and too busy to go down there and clean it up . . . sigh.} Anyway . . .

This year’s fabric looks like it is going to be really cool. So, I decided to pull myself out of my “quilting slump” and get more interested again.

This is a great video. First, Sara Ann is a wonderful teacher. She is smart, well trained in colour theory and design. The pattern she chose (the one on the cover) is beautiful, and requires just enough work to keep it interesting without freaking you out. The colours are, of course, awesome. She takes the video step-by-step, from choosing the right fabrics, the right tools, and the extra little items that make the process fun instead of work. She does a quick discussion of using paints and pens for darkening or lightening fabrics, which I found quite useful. I have done that before, but her skill taught me quite a bit.

sarah ann smith tomato
This is the quilt that you learn to make in the class.

She gives you different methods of patterning, and a choice of being meticulous or “blobby” in your cutting of pattern pieces. Once she has the fabrics cut and ‘tacked down’ with a hot iron on the ironing sheet, she helps you decide on the background fabrics.

Once you have your fabrics fused down, she then gets into threads, both colours and types, as well as how to choose the correct bobbin threads.

threadwork unraveled
Check out the book here. It’s on Sale!

She spent a good amount of time on blending threads, which I have always had a problem with and was really thrilled that she took the time to both show and describe the quilting. I intend to purchase her book, “Thread Work Unraveled” to learn more. As a note, it is on sale for $20.16, originally $28.95, on the Interweavestore.com site.

If you are at all interested in art quilting and thread painting, I highly recommend this beautiful DVD. I purchased it for watching online, in standard format, but there is also HD format, or you can buy an actual DVD.

Highly Recommended!

Spruce: A Step-by-Step Guide to Upholstery and Design

Spruce: A Step-by-Step Guide to Upholstery and Design
Spruce: A Step-by-Step Guide to Upholstery and Design

Amanda Brown

Storey Publishing

Pub Date: Oct 2 2013

I have a confession. I am a serial crafter. Ooohhh!!! Shiny! Wanna try THAT!  Hence my workroom full of quilt fabrics, stained glass and tools, wood and woodworking tools, boxes of yarns, rolls of upholstery fabrics.  . . Oh. Did I say upholstery fabrics? Oh, yea!

You see, I found this beautiful wingback chair. The fabric was in bad shape, but the form was so gorgeous, I had to have it. And then, I found out it was going to cost several hundred dollars to have it recovered. Well, no way was that happening! So, I checked out the library, checked out a couple of upholstery books, and went to work. The body of the chair is gorgeous . . . but the seat? Well, let’s just say, the chair is sitting there, beside the upholstery tools and the rolls of fabrics. Couldn’t figure out how to make it so that it looked smooth and professional.

Well, with Spruce I am going to be making a trip to the upholstery supplies store, because I know how to do it now! Amanda’s book is beautiful. Not just her work, the overall design and layout of the book. The photos are clear and beautifully done, and she even shows layouts of why she made the fabric choices she made for her style and room size and shape. From design plans and yardage estimations, tying coil springs and choosing the right padding to sewing knife edge pillows, Amanda covers it all, in a clear and precise manner, with lots of those beautiful photos. Of course, Chapter 19, Constructing a T-Cushion is going to be my first job I am going to take away from this lovely little book. After that? My recliner took a beating during my cancer treatments and the aftermath, and to say the seat is sad is quite an understatement…. I was only comfortable sitting against the left arm of the chair, so now the poor thing sags in that spot, leaving me sitting sideways when I sit in it. I am going to be thrilled to fix that and be able to use my recliner again!

Overall? If you have the faintest interest in upholstery, this is definitely a wonderful go-to book. Even if you want to start out just making some beautiful pillows, I highly, highly recommend that you add this book to your shelf. It is beautiful, helpful, and so well written that it is a true pleasure to read.

A highly recommended craft book!

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