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 the CEO! Creative Eternal Optimist! Blog 
Tuesday, January 29 2013

I had a great time demoing for ACTIVA at the CHA (Craft and Hobby) tradeshow in Anaheim. Their Hearty Clay is an air dry clay with a solft silky texture. Once dried it is very lightweight and durable.

The talented designer and host of Hands on Kids Candie Cooper features the owls on her blog today. Full downloadable instructions can be found on Candie's blog!

Posted by: Debra Quartermain AT 04:36 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, July 20 2012

It is Fowl Friday with Fran & Freda AND moving day! Actually we aren't really do much moving as we are boxed up in our nest inside of one of the many bird cages Debra seems to collect!

 Freda was sure we would be riding in style in the front seat of a limo to our new home but I told her basically "when pigs fly". We are lucky we are in a bird cage and not encased in bubble wrap in a large moving box!

Speaking of "when pigs fly" which means something is totally absurd, not ever going to happen. The origins of the phrase are traced back to the Scots probably in the 1600's, they have a dry sense of humor as well as being witty. Lewis Carroll in Alice in Wonderland has the Queen using the expression and is probably the first well known reference to the phrase. 

So what do pigs look like when they are flying well not nearly as graceful as we chickens but at present a display of sculptures entitled "going with the wind" at Kingsbrae Garden has a whimsical example of the pigs in flight! Till next Friday Follow the Fowl! Fran & the "fabulous" Freda (she inserted that herself, typing with one toe, I said she should have picked a much shorter word and thank goodness for spell check!)

 

Posted by: Debra Quartermain AT 07:07 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, July 16 2012

 

 

I have been having such fun lately with Rit Dyes and my favorite wool felt from National Nonwovens plus I love to needle felt so my pen tool from Clover came in handy to add dimenssion to the dove.

 

What you will need.

 

 

 

Rit Liquid Dye Aquamarine, Fuchsia, Lemon Yellow
2-9" x 18" pieces of Natural Wool Felt by National Nonwovens

2 ounces polyester stuffing

4 yards of white craft thread

1 yard black craft thread

Measuring Cup & Spoons
Spoon for stirring dye
2-Gallon Container
Large Pot for heating water
Rubber Gloves
Plastic Table Cover

Westcott Brand Scissors

Cutting Mat

Clover Pen Needle Tool

Ruler

Embroidery needle
Pencil

Cardstock

Pattern (enlarge 50%)


Step 1:

Prewash felt pieces to remove any finishes that may interfere with dye absorption.

Cut  piece of felt off one 9" by 18" piece.

Step 2:

Cover work surface with a plastic table cover. Wear plastic gloves.

In a large pot, heat 4 cups of water on the stove until very hot, at least 140 F.

Dye Preparation: Wearing rubber gloves shake dye bottle and measure 1/2 cup of Aquamarine with 1 cup hot water. Stir well to mix dye and water.

Carefully transfer 4 cups heated hot water into large dye container. Pour dye solution into hot water and stir well.

Immerse a piece of wool felt in the dye bath and stir continuously for 10 minutes. Add 2 yards of craft thread to dye bath. Stir felt. Allow the felt to remain in the dye bath until the desired shade is achieved. Color will appear lighter when dry.

Remove the felt from the dye bath and squeeze out excess dye. Rinse in cold water running water until the water runs clear.

 

Repeat dyeing process with Fuchsia dye.


Repeat dyeing process with 2 cups of hot water measuring 2 1/2 Tablespoons plus 1/2 teaspoon of  Lemon Yellow with Tablespoon plus 1/2 teaspoon of Aquamarine with 1 cup hot water to make Lemon Lime. Immerse piece of wool felt.

 

Step 3:

Transfer pattern to cardstock. Cut out two of each piece for one love bird.

Choose a matching or contrasting color of craft thread and blanket stitch around edge of bird, leave opening of 2", stuff and finish sewing shut. Repeat for second love bird. Make a french knot for eye taking thread between a seam stitch.

 

Step 4:

Place wing on bird. Needle felt around edges adhering it to the bird. Repeat for second wing. Place heart in center of wing. Needle felt. This will give dimension to the bird.

These are fun to hang from a branch in a vase for a centerpiece or in a baby's room. Dye up some beautitful holiday shades for your tree! Sew Inspired!

Posted by: Debra Quartermain AT 07:28 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, July 13 2012

It is Fowl Friday with Fran & Freda! It is gardening time once again. Debra won't let us near her plants. She is like an elephant, :) she never forgets. All because we forgot to water a couple pots while she was away.

We thought the watering can was a new perch, who knew! Now that we are moving to a new home in a week with a lot of garden space not sure Debra will let us anywhere near the garden. Our fear is being given mower duty! ugh! Feathers are flustered! Freda feels faint!

Till next Friday! Follow the Fowl!

Posted by: Debra Quartermain AT 10:48 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, June 25 2012

 

Needle felting with Wool Wisps from National Nonwovens and Styrofoam Brand foam is one of my very favorite techniques. The above design I created for the 4th of July can also be adapted very easily for the Canadian July 1st celebrations. Photo courtesy of and complete instructions are available at CraftsnCoffee.com.

Crafty happenings, the talented and divine Ms. Margot Potter is on the new TLC Craft Wars show hosted by Tori Spelling. Can't wait to see her! Trailer promo http://tlc.howstuffworks.com/tv/craft-wars/videos/on-the-craft-battleground.htm

Have a creative week! Follow the Joy!

Posted by: Debra Quartermain AT 10:48 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, March 09 2012

Finally we get to see a friendly face around here! Debra has been making mostly feliines lately and we were getting concerned. Freda has been watching her tail feathers so much she has a stiff neck and can only walk sideways!

This new friend began as a 12" sheet of Makeit:Fun STYROFOAM Brand foam and the Spring Blossoms Wool Wisps Collection by National Nonwovens. Debra began by drawing a design lighty on the sheet. With her Clover pen needle tool she just needle felted away creating our very cheery spring friend! Adding some stitches, buttons and trims and in a very short time he was singing spring!

 Obviously he hasn't looked out the window at the four foot high snowbanks yet! He still thinks he is in New Mexico, has a bit of an attitude as he was on the PBS show Creative Living with Sheryl Borden. Another Prima Donna, he and Freda will have to sort that out, ah should be a fun weekend! Follow the Fowl!

Posted by: Debra Quartermain AT 08:34 am   |  Permalink   |  2 Comments  |  Email
Monday, February 27 2012

I have had the pleasure of working with the Makeit: Fun STYROFOAM Brand Foam for several years now and the design possibilities are endless! For kids crafting with any kind of materials combined with the foam they can create magical creatures to fantastical structures to wild wall art! (and so can big kids too!)

For the Creative Living segments I taped in NM I showed how to make some funky birds from a foam ball shape and cube. A full video how to coming shortly!

By simply taking the shape and some fleece which has a bit of stretch and clings to the ball easily. You can create the cutest characters. Soooooo introducing Roberto Rooster and Daphne Duck! Creating the JOY! always!

Posted by: Debra Quartermain AT 08:32 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, February 03 2012

Finally it is Fowl Friday with Fran & Freda! We are now in NM, thank goodness! These past few days while Debra has been at the CHA, Craft and Hobby Show we suffered serious indignity! Her booth display was diner themed.

While she was decked out in pinky ruffly apron fashion we were stuck in a takeout box labelled chicken wings! At least we talked her out of tacking on bandaids across our wings!

 

Freda will never be the same, she now is sleeping with her wings wrapped under her feet, not easy to do and her blanket over her head! When Debra said we were going on this road trip we were excited, so far not so much! No room service or perks as of yet! Sigh. Follow the Fowl Fran & Freda!

Posted by: Debra Quartermain AT 08:00 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, December 01 2011

It is Fowl Friday with Fran & Freda! Tis deck the halls season, we love it! BUT there is a BIG problem! Owls have invaded once again, how Debra can let in these dangerous birds we do not understand!

We were here first, not that it seems to matter anyway a small consolation is that one of them is wearing a very silly looking hat, the other a scarf maybe it means they are the outdoors type. Perhaps they might enjoy the balcony, on a permanent basis. hmm I have an idea...Debra is away all weekend at the 37th Annual Arts & Crafts Show so we will be in charge and home alone, the ideal combination! Look out owls, this is one feisty fowl!!!

Posted by: Fran AT 01:48 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, August 23 2010

Fran & Freda were correct in their Fowl Friday post, I do love birds and bird cages. Birds have been and still are a popular icon trend in everything from wall coverings to dishes. I have created many birds of all kinds from the saucy Fran & Freda to elegant wedding doves. My latest birds are for a project reveal next month. A sneak peek....

This litte one is needle felted with wool over a foam ball. Painted quilt pins inserted make great eyes. Eye placement is very important, spacing them wide gives that endearing look along with chalk blushed cheeks.

In my apartment I have added paper birds I cut out to my sunroom over a mirror. There are several large windows and a high ceiing so a flock of flying birds seem called for!

On one of the neat angle walls I added some adhesive birds and branches above my storage shelves.

My youngest daughter is here for her first visit and so we are off for a couple days to have fun. Enjoy your day! Debra, CEO!

Posted by: Debra Quartermain, CEO! AT 08:11 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
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Debra Quartermain Design

Heart + Hands Create Magic. Mimi to 11 Grandlittles, I love to create, decorate and celebrate, sharing joy and inspiration from my heritage five star B & B on the east coast of Canada.

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