Isn't this just the most beautiful color orchid! It's a gift from my husband, Tony, for my birthday which is today. I love having a birthday in the spring as it's my favorite time of year. Everything in the garden starts to green up and grow. After such a harsh winter so full of snow, it's just wonderful having a spring finally. Still a bit cool here though so my attention falls to my indoor flowers, especially this new beauty.
I have such good luck with orchids bought reasonably at the Home Depot. The blue orchid is named Blue Mystique. Since they are so cheap, I'm always able to get new ones and I have them all over my house. The one below is a usual coloration for an orchid. This is also a gift from Tony. I have the same color orchid I bought last year in my kitchen and it has rebloomed this year but with fewer flowers.
Having flowers in the house is so inspirational to me when it comes to finding my artists heart. Cut flowers are lovely for such a short time, so I really have loved having the orchids growing in my home. The bright magenta one below is a miniature orchid I picked up last year at HD. It sits in the west exposure window of my kitchen above my sink, catching a lot of steam from cooking and cleaning and just the right amount of sun. I was thrilled to see such a lovely show of flowers again this year. It has a sister miniature sitting next to it which has a yellow flower that is sending up a shoot with buds. Just about the time that the flowers fall off of the magenta one, the yellow one will be blooming.
To update my progress on Mermaids, I have been stitching the wave. It is so frustrating pulling and pushing this large quilt through the space on my Bernina, that I am actually considering getting a new machine. This sounds like blasphemy to me as I have loved my current machine for years. I have created pieces as large as 4 feet in one direction before but usually smaller in the other direction, either 2 or 3 feet. They are not easy either but by comparison to my 4 x 6 foot Mermaids, they were relatively easy. Most of my work has been on the smallish side up to this point, so I am getting a real education in how to deal with large quilts. My plans for quilts in the near future include many more large quilts, in the range of 4 x 6 or even larger.
I have loved my Bernina because of it's perfectly consistent and beautiful satin stitch, which is an essential part of the look and construction of my style. This makes it difficult considering a different machine as it would need not only to have a longer arm but a consistently perfect satin stitch. I have been thinking about a Janome but I haven't done any real research yet. I would welcome any suggestions, or opinions on machines from my fellow quilters. I guess that my birthday wish is for a sewing machine that meets all my needs!
As I am almost finished with the wave's satin stitching which holds all the pieces on to the backing and quilts them to the piece, I will be shifting focus to the two mermaids soon. The mermaids get fused and stitched over the existing wave. The wave is a commanding presence and is just beautiful. I don't want to destroy it by choosing poor fabric choices for the mermaids. I need for it all to flow visually and this is my next hurdle. I'm excited by the prospect and eager to start in.
Another thing which is on my mind is my trip to Denver, rapidly coming up in a month's time. I'm excited about meeting the women I have been talking with in the Visioning Project and about learning new things and discussing my craft. Not real happy about all the issues the airlines have been having lately. I am flying out and as always a bit nervous about that. I do love a good adventure though, and I'm about to have one!