Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Fleur de Bunny

Hi there! Just hopping in for a quick post this week. I am running around like a crazy bunny trying to get ready for vending at the Mid Atlantic Quilt festival next week. I do hope to see you if you attend that show. I know it's going to be so much fun.

Today, I wanted to share a new design with you. Well, it's actually a remake of a design I made back in 2009! Gosh did that time go by fast!

May I present my "Fleur de Bunny" quilt. Do you get it? Can you see the bunnies in the middle of the fleur de lis? hee,hee,hee



I made this using wool and cottons, but you most certainly can use all cotton fabrics.


It's lots of fun to make and it would look good in a variety of places depending on what fabrics you chose.

I have the e-Pattern and a few Wool and Thead Kits available in my SHOP. So hop on over if you would like to make your own "Fleur de Bunny."

Hugs and have a wonderful rest of your week!
Michelle and the Bunnies

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Teaching, Inspiring and a little Lindsey Stirling

Well hello there! I hope your week is going well. Mine is going really, really well. In fact, I am so excited to share some news with you! I have been accepted as one of 123 teachers at this years Houston International Quilt Festival! This has been a dream of mine for a very long time and I haven't stopped doing the happy bunny dance!

I started teaching the art of quilting back in 1995 at a local quilt shop. I taught nights and weekends, for the most part, to support my fabric habit. My most popular class was Quilting 101. This was a beginning quilt class in which I would teach fabric selection, design layout, how to use the tools of the trade, piecing, needle turn applique and machine quilting. I designed the quilt for my class as well, which was a medium sized wall hanging called "Star of my Heart."

In 2000, I met a wonderful lady from England, Sallieann Harrison. She and her husband were living in the States for a few years for her husband's work. Sallieann was one of those students who was chock full of incredible talent. Her quilts, use of color and embellishments blew me away. I knew she would go on to be a very creative quilter.

Well, this past November after twelve years since we last saw each other, Sallie and I reunited in Houston.


It was so much fun to catch up on all our creative adventures that we had been on over the years. She thanked me for inspiring and encouraging her with her quilting as she has gone on to inspire and encourage her own students as a quilt teacher in England.


I couldn't be more proud of Sallie. I knew way back from that first quilt class in 2000 that she would be a star and indeed she is.

Here she is with her students and my Dove postcard from my Postal Fusions Christmas collection. Everyone did bunny ears for me! LOVE!



Teaching and inspiring others to be creative has forever been my passion. Through many challenges and hardships in my life, I can truly say I have been blessed by falling down this rabbit hole.

I hope to see you in a class one day and if you are in Bristol, UK, Sallie would love to see you too!

Until then, here's a little Lindsey for you. Be sure to listen to her message at the end of the video. :)
Hugs,
Michelle

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Norfolk Windmill - the next stop down Briarside Lane

We have come to the next stop on our journey down Briarside Lane! This month we are excited to bring you the Norfolk Windmill.



Norfolk Windmill by Jules Woolford

On a clear, cold early morning in late autumn, the salt marsh is waking to the sound of birdsong. The reeds have turned from bright gold to a tarnished hue. We can hear the sails of the old windmill creak and grind. Many of the struts are lost and broken, but still the windmill turns.

Suddenly, a movement catches our attention; to our right, a barn owl flies home from its nightly hunt. It glides, ghost like, across the winding river. We stand, transfixed, watching this feathered beauty pass across the cycle of the great sails. A single beam of sunlight pierces the cloud above. For just a moment, the worn, old bricks glow and the giant windmill gleams, standing proudly against the soft colors of the autumn marshland.




The Back Story:

Jules is fascinated by windmills. Her favorite can be seen on a hike that crosses the salt marsh at *Cley, an eastern seaside hamlet located in the county of Norfolk. Walking this way for the first time, Jules had an amazing experience. As the majestic windmill came into view, the white shape of a barn owl flew across the footpath in front of her, a ghostly silhouette beneath the sails of the mill. It was an instance of pure magic and one she has never forgotten.

For those who know of the beautifully renovated Cley Mill, don’t be confused. The Norfolk Windmill remains untouched, harking back to an older, more romantic time!

* Pronounced Kly


Here is Jules original watercolor piece. Isn't it beautiful? I must say that I am having so much fun creating wool and embroidery versions of her incredible work.



Just like Bumblebee Cottage, there is a FREE embroidery version of this design.



We have a National Nonwovens wool blend kit available for this block.


and we also have the Briarside Lane Valdani perle cotton collection, which includes all the colors we will be stitching with on this adventure.



The e-Pattern, Wool kit and Valdani kit are all available in the SHOP. So hop on over!

Please feel free to post your creativity on The Raspberry Rabbits Facebook Page. It's been so much fun seeing what everybunny has been inspired to create! Be sure to visit the Briarside Lane tab at the top of the blog for more inspiration.

We hope you have enjoyed your visit to the Norfolk Windmill. Our next stop down Briarside Lane will be March 1st when we debut the third block of our journey. Until then, hoppy stitching!

Hugs,
Michelle, Jules and the Bunnies

Thursday, January 26, 2017

A Play Date with the Brunswick Quilters

Hi ya! Sorry I am late to this blog post date, but I had a most wonderful adventure yesterday and so I delayed my post to share it with you today!

The best part of what I do is being able to inspire creativity in others through my designs. For 2017, I decided to make a big change to my "Play Dates" workshops.  Instead of having students create one of my patterns and providing a kit to make the exact same thing I made, I decided to make my "Beekeeper Pincushion" exclusive to my Play Date participants. I wanted to offer something special to those with whom I have the honor of teaching in person.



The participants are able to choose from three flower designs, then choose their own wool colors, Valdani perle cotton and embellishments to make their own individualized "Beekeeper Pincushion."



Yesterday was the first time teaching and inspiring with this new class format and I must say, it was a total BLAST! Everybunny had so much fun and I was so excited to see the beautiful flowers that each of these amazing friends made.

Of course, I had to get a class "Bunny Ears" photo for my collection. :)




This is Brenda, who hired me to have a Play Date with the guild. She is such a doll and I was so excited to finally meet her in person. She has carpal tunnel in her wrist and she said that stitching the flower didn't bother it one bit. Yaaaaaaaaaaay!!!


Here's a close up of Brenda's flower. Pretty! 


Here's the rest of my friends with their flowers.














Gail had fun playing with the threads. hee,hee,hee.




Stephanie is a former student of mine from The Cabin Branch Quilters in Virginia. She has since moved to North Carolina and it was so wonderful to hug her neck and have her in my class again.







Marji (above) brought me a pressie! She made these adorable wool trees. I love them!!! 
Thank you Marji!




Jean saw me on Quilting Arts TV and downloaded my "Conrad the Carrot Collector" pattern (link on my about and free designs page above). She brought her interpretation of Conrad to share with me. Adorable! 


Jean also brought this sweet little wool bird in a nest. So darn tweet! hee,hee,hee



Vicki is a talented rug hooker and creates incredible wool pieces like this bunny!!!! Yes, I threatened to put him in my bag and run out the door! hee,hee,hee. Isn't he the cutest? 


Vicki also shared this gorgeous penny rug. It is a Doreen Frost design and the light yellow wool was hand dyed by her friend using Daffodils, or was it Dandelions? Gosh...my bunny brain is getting old. Anyway, I think it is stunning. Thank you for bringing these Vicki!


It was a wonderful day and I now have many more friends added to The Raspberry Rabbits family. Would you or any of your friends like to have an adventure down the rabbit hole with me? I would love to have a Play Date with you! You can click on the tab at the top of my blog for more information.

Join me back here next week as Block 2 of our Journey Down Briarside Lane continues! Until then, keep creating.

Hugs,
Michelle and the Bunnies

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Inspired by a Paper Cutter

Hellooooooooooooo! I must say that I have been LOVING the weather this week. It has been in the 60's and 70's. Now that's my kind of January and winter for sure! hee,hee,hee.

If you have been following my blog for a while, you know I'm inspired by many things like music, animals and nature, not to mention, other artists. I think every creative person is inspired by many things and people.

Today, I want to share an incredible artist who truly inspires me. Her name is Karen Bit Vejle. She is from Denmark, but lives in Norway. Her paper cuttings are incredible and I love the stories they tell. They inspire me when I work as many of my designs start out as a paper cutting. In fact, I will have a new design coming soon that was indeed a paper cutting.

So take a little hop into Karen's (Bit as she is called) world. There are two video's I think you will really enjoy.

Bit in action from Karen Bit Vejle on Vimeo.


Hugs and see you back here next week!

Michelle and the Bunnies