Feather Lessons

This will be the main page for the Feather Lessons.

Supplies Needed
Resources You Might Like
Lesson 1 – Drawing feathers, including corners on the top border.
Video #1 for Lesson 1 – Drawing feathers.
Video #2 for Lesson 1 – Stitching the feathers on the top border.
Lesson 2 – The Second Border (includes video)
Lesson 3 – The Triangles in the Top & Bottom extra borders.
Videos for Lesson 3
Lesson 4 – Feathered Wreath (includes video)
Lesson 5 – The Star Points (Rhomboids) (includes videos)
Lesson 6 – Help with Inside Feathers on Wreath

Feather Lessons – Supplies

The feather lessons will begin on June 1.  Posts will appear on the blog every day or every other day.  A main “Feather Lesson” page  is categorized as “Tutorials” so any time you want to get back to the lessons, click on the Tutorials tab at the top of the page.

As I post each “lesson”, I will add a link in the “Feather Lessons” page and they should be fairly easy to find.

Supplies you will need other than the expected (thread, machine, top on which to practice, etc.) are:

Paper on which to sketch and practice feathers.  It doesn’t necessarily HAVE to be large enough to be able to draw your feathers to scale but I think you will feel more comfortable if you are able to draw them to scale.  Butcher paper, freezer paper, Golden Threads paper or simply sheets of paper taped together will give you the size you need.

Marker you’re comfortable using on fabric.  There will be a little marking (or a lot if you wish).  I’m not much of a marker but some things do need to be marked.

Circle guide.  If you have some fancy, expensive circle maker for your machine, get it out and let’s use it.  If not, find something that will work.  There will be two sized feathered wreaths we will be making.  One is the smaller square – 6″ if you made the pattern provided.

The larger wreath is where the four background half square triangles form a square.  Yours is probably a bit less than 8-1/2″.  I made my top larger.

I use the Circle Lord by Loricles.  I’ve had it for years and love it.  If you don’t have something similar, start looking around the house.  Here’s a large jar of Cetaphil® that’s exactly the size I used for my smaller circles.  I didn’t actually use this but it’s the same size and remember, my squares are 7″ finished instead of 6″ finished.  There’s no exact size you need to use — just think about the space you’re going to have outside and inside the circle for creating those gorgeous feathers!

Painter’s Tape (3M brand only!) – That’s a joke.  It doesn’t HAVE to be 3M but that’s good stuff!  (My husband works for 3M.)  I use painter’s tape a lot while quilting.

Sharpie or other felt tip type pen – I use this for making notes to myself on the painter’s tape.

Digital camera or phone camera – Not required but sometimes it’s easier to take a picture of what you’ve done so you can remember and not have to roll the quilt back to see how big your meandering was or which directions your feathers should go.

The most important thing you need to bring to class with you is a CAN DO ATTITUDE!  You can do this but it’s going to be hard if you’ve never done feathers and those first feathers may look like feathers off road kill but I’m betting if you ask anyone who’s good at making feathers, they will tell you that their first feathers were sad!  If they had stopped at that point, they would never be making gorgeous feathers now.  What will you do?  Stop with the sad feathers or keep on til you can make pretty feathers?  The choice is yours!

In another post, I will list some references that I think are great for feathers. None of them are necessary for our lessons but if you end up wanting more material, I will share some of the books I’ve found quite useful.

Those Escaping Chickens!

Vince still hasn’t had time to get the permanent runs made for the chickens.  We did go to Abilene Friday to Lowe’s to get the fencing material that we can’t get here.  We’re getting closer!

I think it was week before last that every day some of them escaped.  Two one day, then we’d work on the temporary fencing and think we had it fixed, then four would escape.  When we finally thought they’d never be able to get out, 12 of the 14 escaped while we were eating dinner.  We had a good laugh over that fix!  Smile


Then we seriously worked on the temporary fencing and didn’t have an escapee all week. This morning I came out of the garden to see this.  Ladybug!  I don’t think that’s where you’re supposed to be! 

We still haven’t figured out how she escaped so we haven’t fixed anything.  You know what that means . . when I go back out there next, they’ll probably all be out!

If you wonder why we don’t let them run loose . . one afternoon last week Vince had gone out with Speck.  We only take him out on a leash.  Speck was ahead of Vince, who was still on the porch and I guess the hawk wasn’t paying a lot of attention and swooped down towards Speck when Vince started yelling and flapping his arms. 

I know that’s just the way things work on the farm but I don’t want a hawk getting my chickens.  So, they’ll stay confined to a run that will be covered . . as soon as we get it built.  For now, they’d better take my advice and stop escaping!

Garden Update

The garden is doing great!  It’s a lot of work but don’t feel bad for me.  I love every minute of it and it doesn’t bother me at all that it’s cutting into my sewing time.  It’s a few months out of the year and the yield is so worth the effort.

DSC01489As I walk through the back gate, this is what I see.  To the left are a couple of rows of zipper cream peas.  At the far end of those two rows are cucumbers.  The next two rows are purple hull peas.  The next two . . really about 1-3/4 rows . . are green beans.  Going over to the right from there are the rest of the green bean row and one more in okra, then a row of squash, then the planting gets kinda wonky.  The garden isn’t a perfect rectangle and because we had to leave room for “watering central”, there’s kind of a hodgepodge of rows.  But, over to the right side, there are beets, a row of bolita bean, onions, peppers (pimento, ancho, poblano, bell, jalapeno, Tabasco), tomatoes (cherry, celebrity, rutgers, roma, and I can’t remember what else), potatoes, eggplant, zucchini, tomatillos, more squash, basil, sweet potatoes, fennel, cilantro, cantaloupe, watermelons and probably other things I’m forgetting!  About every third day I’m picking green beans . . not enough to do any canning yet but enough for dinner.

To the right is aDSC01490 shot of “watering central” as we call it.  Water hoses going off every direction.  Except for a couple of small areas, it’s all set up on soaker hoses so watering doesn’t take as long as it had been taking.  Most of my time in the garden now is weeding, checking for bugs and trying to keep the watermelons and cantaloupes headed in the right direction.  I don’t want them running outside the fence  and then wild critters getting all the fruit.

DSC01505Besides the gorgeous blue sky, in the photo to the left you can see the asparagus and strawberry beds in the “West Annex”.  We’re going to add the “North Annex” for blueberries and raspberries.  The grapes are going in an area closer to the house.  We’ve done a heck of a lot of planting around here in less six months!

DSC01498To the right are pimento peppers. I’m thinking of stuffing some of these this week and seeing what they taste like.  I planted six of them and they’re loaded!  I was thinking pimento & cheese when I planted them but I think I need to find another use for them.  Otherwise, we’ll be eating a whole lot of pimento & cheese around here.

DSC01497I had just re-tied these before taking the picture so they’re a little “stemmy” looking but these are the tomatillos and they’re loaded too.  I may pick a few of those tonight and may make either Tomatillo Stew or these Chicken Enchiladas.

DSC01502There are about a dozen eggplant plants and they’re pretty productive too.  I think we’ll be picking eggplant by the end of this week.

We’ve been picking a few cherry tomatoes every day but haven’t gotten any full size ones yet.  Bottom left is a full size tomato that’s getting ripe.

DSC01500I can hardly wait for a BLT made with a fresh tomato and homemade white bread.

That’s about it for this garden update but there will be more . . coming soon I hope.

I’m so thankful that we have a good (so far) well and we’re able to water and keep our plants, fruit trees, shrubs, chickens and humans alive!  It hasn’t rained here since the weekend my car got the hail damage (May 5).  There was a chance of rain this afternoon but I see that’s gone from the forecast.  We have a small chance of rain towards the end of this week and a better chance next week.  Keep your fingers crossed for us please!