Friday, February 1, 2013

Elderberry Fairy CQJP 2013

I am participating in the Crazy Quilt Journal Project 2013.  I started last year's CQJP, but only got the January, February and March accomplished.  I was working with the paisley shape. 

This year, I am making blocks using Flower Fairy Fabrics (a Michael Miller fabric) with images by that renowned artist, Mary Cicely Barker.  I'm also an herbalist.  When I can blend my two loves together, it's a good thing. 

This year, Elderberry is Herb of the Year.  I had the elderberry print from the fabric line, so, it seemed a natural for the January block.  All the work is by hand.  Even the beaded fringe at the bottom, which I had made years ago and had waiting for the perfect project.  Because elderberries are often found in hedgerows in England (I lived there for four years), I wrote Hedgerow Magic on twill tape and added it below the fringe.  Elderberry is exceptional medicine - every year I make elderberry syrup, elderberry tincture and sometimes, elderberry glycerite.  And, of course, elderberry pie!  Often, elderberry chutney makes it way to the table.  I make elderflower syrup and fritters as well.
 I painted the fairy charm, she started out as silver.  The silk ribbon flowers above the fairy are elderflowers. 
 I dyed the lace flowers that are on the right side of this photo.  The heart is stitched with a cable chain stitch in silk pearl.  Gold #4 braid for the intersections within the heart.  Then, burgundy pearls and the beaded dragonfly were added.  The flowers on the green velvet patch are made with pearls, seed beads and twin-hole beads.
The fairies wings were stitched #4 braid.  The leaves are silk ribbon and silk chenille with silk floss for veining.  The elderberries are size 6/0 beads.

I'm sure you know that folklore holds that if you sit under an elderberry bush on Midsummer's Eve, you have a chance of seeing the Fairy Queen and her procession ride by!