I’m Laura, owner of Appleberry Cottage. I love to share my primitive stitchery, primitive punch needle, hand crafted folk art, and heirloom crocheted baby afghans with you.
When I'm not crafting, I'm mom to 4 kids: Andrew, Matt, Rachel (17 yrs old), and James (12 yrs old).
I just finished creating the pattern for this Santa punch needle ~ called Winter Night. I'm offering it for sale here on my blog for $8.00 with free shipping to the US. The pattern includes a color photo, floss suggestions, and full size paper pattern . You supply the weavers cloth and floss. It's not too early to start on next year's projects!
St. Nicholas has arrived! Kind of. Last night I finished my punch needle Santa, so it' like he arrived ~ just in time for New Years. I re-punched the sky using a Valdani floss in black/grey. It could also be done with some DMC floss. I'm going to have to create the pattern/instructions, then the pattern will be for sale. I'll also need to get a better photo of the finished piece. Seems like the snow is getting a washed out look, but it does have sections of silver and white. I think I'll go out an take more photos, and avoid cleaning my house. :)
The snow is finished. It's white and bits of light silver - all DMC. The background is a Valdani 3 strand thread. Now that I've gotten this far, I'm thinking the sky is a bit too dark. I wanted more of a mottled/color variation for it. The dark blue is getting lost in the black. So.... back to the drawing board. I do have a couple balls of a different Valdani to try. More of a black and grey, which will give a mottled effect.
While debating on the color scheme for the sky, I transferred the rug pattern to linen this morning.
This is the color scheme Maggie Bonanomi has in her book. I want to do something different, but don't know exactly what. Part of me just wants to start with some wool that I have and just play around and see what happens. Another part of me wants to color plan ahead of time. But, how many hookers color plan, and still change sections as they go along? I'll see what I end up doing. :)
I finally got around to binding my snowman rug. I used strips of background wool over cording for this finish. This rug was done on monks cloth, and it was difficult to go back to working on monks cloth for me. Seems like I kept breaking a few of the threads as I was binding. But, it's soft to work with and cheaper than linen. It was something to start with, and learn what my backing preferences are.
I started punching more of my Santa. Yes, it's now after Christmas, but we had school/work up until Friday. That didn't leave a lot of time to get projects done.
My arm was getting really scratched up from the gripper strips on my frame. I tried using a dish towel, but kept having to move the towel to cover my arm. Then the edges kept scratching my other arm. I don't have any extra stretchy headbands that other suggested to use as a cover. I just tried a pair of terry ice skate blade soakers that I had. I put some extra strips of muslin over the other 2 edges, and it worked! It holds and no more scratchy edges!
I had to get another photo of this punch piece. Seems like each day that I get out my camera, it's too cloudy, and the camera turns the colors to brighter red - which it is not. I need to add a sawtooth hanger to the back of this one and hang it up in my hallway.
I now have the next week and a half to relax and get some projects done around the house. I'm still job hunting, and seriously considering creating and selling some punch needle patterns. (the quilt, and the Santa, and then a Valentine one still in the design stages). I think that will keep me busy.
The kids are busy with their new things. My youngest has been saving his money, and had enough after Christmas to get a laptop. (it's like a gift to me, as I get my computer back) The others have been busy spending their Christmas money. It's nice they can go out and drive themselves.
Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest heaven,and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”
It's time for my first giveaway!!!! I will be giving away a free punch needle pattern of my 1858 quilt pattern on weavers cloth. (not the finished piece, but the pattern) To have a chance to win this, simply comment on my blog. Please feel free to post this giveaway on your blog. I will draw the winning name on December 11, Tuesday night. Good luck to all!
I finished punching! I used an 1853 quilt block to create this pattern. I added a scalloped border. I'm not sure if I'll separate the blocks in the center or not. I'll have to play around with some paper to see how I like it. I now need to find a board to paint/stain to finish the piece. I have an idea, just need to find the right finish.
Please take my survey on the left side of the blog. If I offer this as a pattern, how do you normally purchase patterns? Is it on weavers cloth already printer, on paper where you use your own weavers cloth, or an e pattern for immediate use. Thanks!
I started the binding - finally - on my snowman rug. I'm going to use my left over wool worms, and use the wool fabric around cording. I started it after Thanksgiving while traveling downstate. Our high school football team made it to the state championships, so the marching band went for half time. That meant my son got to go. I went to watch him march. It's a much bigger stadium at a Big 10 school than our small local high school stadium. It's a great view to be up high. I got to see the band formations clearly. the 1 C-G was perfect!
Their half time show was great! From the first note, it was loud and clear. We had twice the amount of band members (maybe more) than the opposing high school.
We lost the game, but it was well played by both sides. We were glad we had the afternoon timeslot, as we got a little bit of sun. It sure was cold!
This week I took down the fall berry rings on my chandelier. I don't have any Christmas ones, so I quickly made some plain white pip berry rings. I had a long string of pip berries sitting in storage, so I untwisted them and tied 3 bunches into a ring for each candle.
I've been busily punching a new pattern I made. It's a larger 7x7 piece. This is a sneak peak. I started punching in my Morgan hoop stand, but then switched to my smaller K's Creation rug hooking frame. The gripper strips really hold the weavers cloth drum tight. I just need to get some cheap stretchy headbands to cover the edges. I don't like getting scratched from the points that stick out. Ouch!
It's hard to get into the Christmas mood, as it was a balmy 62 degrees this afternoon. My daughter took out her flip flops because she thought it was so warm. I know snow will come soon enough, but I'll just block it out of my mind for a while!
I have 6 extra wool applique ornaments that I'm willing to sell. They are 100% wool fabric that has been hand stitched. The top cuff is wool roving that has been stitched down. Each mitten is stuffed with and has a couple sprigs of green and a couple ice branches.
Each ornie is $5, plus shipping. I will put each in a cello bag with a ribbon ~ ready for gift giving! Just drop me an email with how many you would like (1 - 6). Shipping is based on weight (can do parcel post, Priority, or first class). My email is email@example.com All are now sold!!!!
I just finished an entire order of the mittens~ now to get them to the post office this afternoon.
While I was out shopping this week, I found this wonderful Pendleton wool skirt! It is SOOO soft. Can't wait to see what I do with it! Wish I could find more good resale wool, but it's hard to find. I've learned how to pick the good stuff, and leave the gaberdine, and thinner wools that won't work as well for rugs or applique.
We're heading downstate tomorrow for the state football finals. I get to watch the marching band perform at half time. It's sure going to be cold - only 39 degrees for a high. But, the band only gets this chance once! Go Trojans!
Last weekend, the squirrels were successful in chewing our pumpkin. I woke up and found a huge hole in the pumpkin. Plus, all the insides were eaten (and some left on the doorstep). They haven't touched the smaller pie pumpkins, so at least I still have those.
I've been busy stitching some ornies for an order. I have a bunch mostly stitched, and another batch to start. I think that will keep me busy during the evenings this week. My goal is to finish them by Thanksgiving. I'm still debating on what to put inside the mitten. Some greenery, cinnamon stick, ice branches, or something else? I'll think about that as I sew. At least the dyeing, and cutting and wonder under is all done. I have some new black pearl cotton, so I'm set to go.
Yet another football game yesterday. Our team keep winning! Matt is here in the marching band. He gets this week off, as it's an away game next weekend. After that, it's the state championships. The band gets to go for half time. That means we'll drive the 3 1/2 hours downstate to watch! (assuming we win next week) (for those observant people, yes, it's barbed wire in the photo. I've been standing outside the field rather than in the bleachers. It's a great view of the game from the end zone. Plus, no people trying to get out from their seats tripping over those that are sitting in the bleachers. Yesterday, there was quite a crowd watching from my favorite spot)
One more week, then I get Thanksgiving week off of school. I wonder how pumped the kids will be this week? If we get some snow flurries, that sure will spark some excitement!
This is the reason I don't put pumpkins or corn outside to decorate for fall. These pesky critters always seem to eat them. This guy started chewing our pumpkin the first day I got it. Grrr...
Today my daughter and I went to the Trail of History. It's a long walk from the parking area to the tent area. Long, but very scenic. The Trail of History has interpretors recreate life in the Midwest from 1670-1850. It was a gorgeous day - about 70 degrees and sunny!
I found a rug hooker, Dine. The top rug is a #4 cut.
My daughter noticed Diane's purse. Simply gorgeous!
There were tents with those that acted, entertained, and other had a shop. This one had trays of vintage reproduction buttons.
It was a fun day to walk and enjoy. I got some twill tape for rugs. Rachel got a necklace and some homemade root beer.
I now need a weekend to unwind from my weekend. Instead, I'm off to pack lunches and work on some Christmas ornaments.
Prototype ornament - done. (Found some wool roving to attach to the top. Took off the star and moon, and added french knots for snow)
Primitive cedar chest - to do. I found this at a local thrift store this weekend. It has chipped/peeling paint. (wonder if it's lead paint???). I loved the styling of it, so I bought it. I will (eventually) sand and re-stain it. Then to remove my son's turntable from the top! But, it has plenty of storage inside.
To-do. Get ready for winter. Our local weather predictor, Chuck, the ornate box turtle, has been hibernating earlier than last year. Wonder if this means we are in for a long winter?
I have a lot of unfinished objects (UFO's) around here. I'm getting closer to finishing this one. Only a little more of the background to go.
This wool applique table runner has been unfinished for, gulp, a year. I kept it as a project to take along. No reading directions. I finished stitching the basket and flowers, just needed to button hole stitch the backing to the front.
I've been browsing and debating on Christmas ornies to make for this year. I want to get them done before Thanksgiving, so time is getting short. I started playing around with some leftover wool, using a pattern by Buttermilk Basin. I shrunk the pattern down, and they only are about 4" tall. Since I shrunk the pattern, the moon and star are just too much for the small area. I might change it bit on the next one. The handle will be different, too. I have another idea for the top edge, but need to make a trip to Hobby Lobby. Then to make 2 dozen of them. Guess I"ll be busy!
I had Friday off of work, as it was a teacher institute day. (aides don't work) I finished stitching my table runner. It's not on the living room table (which is an antique cedar chest).
Homecoming for the high school was Saturday. Two of my three went to the dance. This is the only photo I got of the boys. They went to someone else's house for some photos.
The boys wouldn't let me take photos, so I went on a walk this afternoon at the local conservation area. My other 2 kids came along.
Rachel and I were taking photos. She's taking a photography class in school, and is always needing photos for the next project. Of course she had to critique a few of my photos and tell me to edit them!
I still have one more day off school for Columbus Day. Hopefully it will be a productive day!
I found a new home for my vintage quilt. It's on the living room chair. I won't be cutting it up, so my sister can breath a sigh of relief! I don't need a quilt ,as the weather has been gorgeous. But, winter is coming, and a nice quilt would be nice to keep around.
What's on my frame??? I've been working on my older snowman face rug that I started a while ago. I decided to do the background in a saltbox red that I dyed. I used a natural, oatmeal, and 2 light plaids of wool all in the same dye pot. My flash is really emphasizing the differences in the wools, but it's a nice blend.
I'm not thrilled about hooking on monks cloth again. I'm finding that my hook gets stuck and I end of grabbing a small section the cloth. I think I'll stick to linen for all future projects.
I get a 4 day weekend this weekend. I might end up painting the foyer, on top of doing more job hunting. I'm totally discouraged about finding a job. I just applied to an internal posting, but didn't even get an interview. Sigh. Maybe one day. If only I could get paid (enough to make it worthwhile) to craft and rug hook. But, that might take away from the relaxation of it. I think I'll spend the rest of the evening finishing another section of the background. I might have to dye up a little more wool to finish the entire background. I'll see how far my wool worms go.
I went to the Country Folk Art Fair in St. Charles this past Sunday. Lots of nice folk art! I got a chance to meet and chat with Anne of http://visionsofewe.com/ . She's a rug artist, and hooked all the rugs here.
I like the saltbox house!
This is a huge rug she's working. If I remember correctly, it's 6' x 9'. The colors are much prettier in person.
Some game board inspired rugs.
I bought a dye book she was selling. It uses Pro Chem dyes. She even gives which colors will coordinate with each other, so that you can choose the correct combination. I can't wait to try some of the recipes out!
I did manage to put up my wood sign in the foyer. Of course I couldn't reach the spot where the nail was to go, so I ended up on an extension ladder. It's not perfectly centered on the wall, but I'm not climbing that ladder to fix it. I did paint this wall as a test of a beige color. I manged to paint it with an extender, and no ladder. Now to decide if I want to paint the entire foyer this color. I have a 4 day weekend in a couple weeks, so it would be the perfect time to paint.