Sunday, July 30, 2006

One Word Meme

Well, I decided that I just plain didn't want to answer some of them... So my list of one word answers to these questions is shorter by seven. You can make what you want of the ones I left out. :)

One Word for -
1. Yourself: creative
2. Your partner: divorced
3. Your hair: gray
4. Your favorite item: computer
5. Your favorite drink: diet coke
6. Your dream home: castle
7. The room you are in: den
8. Your pleasure: quilting
9. Your fear: pain
10. Where you want to be in ten years: here
11. Who you hung out with last night: cats
12. What you're not: skinny
13. One of your wish list items: longarm
14. The last thing you did: sew
15. What you are wearing: clothes
16. Your favorite weather: Fall
17. Your favorite book: Ender's Game
18. Last thing you ate: salad
19. Your life: quiet
20. Your mood: good

Besides, 20 is such a nice round number for questions.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Center done

Quilt Center
Well, here's the center of my quilt... now for the borders! Just as I predicted, it's too long to hang on the fence now. :) I took it to work and used the tall library shelving units to hang it for a quick picture - really speedy, I just lifted up a book on that top shelf every foot or so, and pinched the top edge of the quilt under it. I've been working on the borders, but I'm at the cutting strips to go with all my hsts stage and it's nothing interesting to take a picture of yet. This IS the first large quilt I've done - larger than twin size, I mean. I've been surprised at what a mass of fabric it is to move around!

Here's Libby, looking at the birds in my front yard. I know I'm weird, but I love the way she curls her tail around her toes so neatly. I wanted to try to move her tail around to the right side of her body, so she'd look prettier, but figured I'd take a picture of her before I tried it. Lucky I did, as soon as I tried to pose her, she got disgusted with me and decided window-sitting-with-interfering-mom wasn't a good place to be. :D

Chickweed Lane is my favorite comic strip. :) Mostly because it features Solange, the Siamese cat - the artist has the quirks and mannerisms of the Siamese down to a T. Chickweed Lane Index

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Parking challenge

Ok, I know it's not quilty, but here's a challenge for you to try:

Click Here to Drive

I'm not doing too well with it - better be glad you're not parked next to me! :D

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Almost done.

Well, I'm still not finished, but hey, it's only Saturday. :) I've got three more rows of 6 stars to go. Here it is at the 6 blocks by 5 blocks stage - I went on and took a picture of it now, because soon it'll be too long to fit on the fence without hanging on the grass.

And still playing in Corel, I decided to see what it'd look like if I had set the blocks on point. I rotated the picture 45° then cropped it to make it square again:

Interesting look that way! It would have meant a lot of white triangles around the edge, though. I think I like the straight set better. Easier too.

This whole quilt was pretty easy, doing it in snowballs, nine-patches, and cobblestones. I was trying to give the impression of white sashing around the stars, with colored cornerstones. Back up far enough from your monitor and you can see I could have made the stars as one block, then added sashing and come up with the same design.

I'll put a 2½ inch border of white all the way around this, so the edge color squares float like the middle ones do. Then I have a LOT of little bonus hsts, in the point fabric for the stars, all high contrast dark calicos against white. In EQ, I've only had long one-fabric strips for borders on this - haven't even started trying to replace a border with something using the little triangles! A line of little sawtooth points would be easiest, but I've done that before, and would like to try a new pattern using them. Any suggestions?

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Jelly Bean

Thanks, Hanne!
This one was quick. :)

You Are a Caramel Apple Jelly Bean

You have a gentle sophistication. An appreciation of fine things, without being snobby about it. You enjoy sweet tastes and silky textures.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Art from Snowballs, 9-Patches and Cobblestones

Well, I have been sewing on all my little 6½ square blocks. But I don't want to show you a picture till I'm farther along. :) So, here is the little set of squares I sewed as a test, BUT *evil grin* I've put it in Corel and squinched at the photograph, so you can only get a general idea of what I'm doing.

This first version (all three pix started with the same photograph) is what they call an 'impressionist dabbled paint effect:

The one below is what the quilt would look like if I dipped it in white paint or a discharge dye, and let it drip:

And the last is what Corel calls a 'swirled paint effect' but instead, looks to me like something you're seeing through a rainy window pane:

The quilt is actually going to be queen sized - six 9-patch star blocks across and eight blocks down, plus borders. Because I want the star points to match around the 9-patches, I had to stop making snowball blocks and start connecting, so I'd be able to make sure I have the right combinations of snowball corners I need. I'm hoping to get a lot more done this weekend! Right now, I'm at 4 blocks over and 5 down.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Leaf Art

I've joined an Art Quilt group, here in Memphis, to try to expand my quilting horizons and stretch my limits a bit. I don't consider myself an art quilter by any means, but I figure it can't hurt to give some of the techniques a try, get out of my comfort level. We're almost all beginners at this, muddling along.

We each brought a piece of fabric to our last meeting - only stipulation was that it could NOT be 100% cotton quilting fabric. Then we traded pieces in a drawing, and also traded some embellishments.

The piece I drew looked like autumn to me - so I added some satin branches and corduroy leaves along the top edge. This picture (at least on my monitor) looks a lot more pinkish than it really is - the two red leaves are actually a deep burgundy. There's another 6 to 8 inches that drapes off the table on the bottom - plenty of room for someone else to add something more! Today I'll take this to our meeting and trade for another piece of fabric. I still don't feel like an art quilter - this is just machine applique. Maybe if I'd done something abstract and non-representational, it'd feel more arty? I guess I need to decide what my definition of an art quilter is. Any suggestions?

Friday, July 14, 2006

More Blocks

Well, working full time gives me only an hour or so each evening to quilt, so this may be a long, drawn out riddle. *evil grin*

Here's the progress so far:

Yes, I know it looks a lot like the last picture, but this time there's

52 snowballs with 4 dark scrappy corners
50 scrappy nine-patches
8 half cobblestones (rectangular, for the edges, lots more to come)
30 square cobblestones (and a lot of strips cut but not sewn yet)
AND more than 230 bonus triangles in the baggie, and stacked on the lower right corner, from the snowballs.

I'm kinda procrastinating on ironing all those triangles, yes, they WILL be for the border, (you guys are so smart)and I still don't know if I'm just going to make a row of hst's or maybe something windmill-y with them. I'll decide when I get the final count.

I've staggered the half cobblestone stack, so I can see what fabrics I've used for them. I am just anal enough that I don't want to have a bunch of the same color in that outer edge, so as I sew the cobblestones, I'm trying to remember to put aside a variety of center fabrics for these skinnier blocks. Some of my scraps will let me strip piece a row of 4 or 6 centers between white strips, but there won't be too many repeats.


Wednesday, July 12, 2006

A Riddle

Is anyone ready for a riddle?

What do you make when you have:
48 scrappy nine-patches,
33 snowballs with scrappy dark print corners, and
15 I dunno what name to give them, but I've been thinking of them as donuts,
(all 6½ inches square)

AND what seems like two hundred little bonus 2¼ inch half square triangles, some pressed and some not?

Well, you'll just have to check this space later for the answer! But except for the white background, it sure is eating into my scraps.


Saturday, July 08, 2006

The Material Mountain

Well, I succumbed to the lure of the going out of business sale again. They've upped their ante, now the fabric is all 50 to 70% off, so of COURSE I had to stop in and see what they had left. Plus I'd been beating myself about the head for not getting more thread at 30 or 40% off last time. *excuses to self* And I had just organized my stash, so I knew exactly what I didn't have much of ... plaids! So here's my newly washed and folded material mountain:

Our guild president has issued her president's challenge to us - lap quilts for folks who are wheelchair bound. Some of this will be used for that. I was thinking the plaids with red might look good paired with navy or black in a guy type quilt... and who can say no to fabric on sale?

Of course the mountain didn't go uninhabited for long.

Doesn't he look like he's thinking, "I have climbed to the mountaintop, and it is good."

"One feels much closer to the light of the sun, when one is on the summit." (I'm glad it's a florescent bulb, or he'd be singeing his whiskers!) Toby is my main heat seeker, he can sit in the sun in a window until his black ears and nose are almost too hot to touch.

But then he had to taunt Libby, pacing below. "I am KING of the mountain!" He can't be dignified and aloof for long... lol

"HA, ha ha, and YOU can't climb up when I'm here, pttttth!" Of course, by this time, she was studiously ignoring him, pretending that she had NO interest in sitting up there. She strolls into the kitchen toward the food bowl, and suddenly, Toby gets worried that he's missing something... so he jumps down and follows her.

At which point, Libby gets a gleam in her eye and saunters past him, jumps up on the table with the fabric. Here's Libby thinking, "Ya know, being up here looked a lot more fun when he was up here, and I was down there. Now what do I do?"

Friday, July 07, 2006


I am a

What Flower
Are You?

Never thought of myself as a violet, but that's what the survey said!

Thursday, July 06, 2006


Just have to give a little WOW for Bloglines - it's easy to sign up for, and since I use Firefox as my preferred browser, I just put the "subscribe" button on my toolbar, (just dragged it there, that was easy too) and it didn't take me long to subscribe to my 60 favorite blogs! Visit the blog, hit subscribe, it's that easy.

Now, I just go to bloglines, log in, and there's a nice list of everyone's blog I like to visit. If you've posted, your blogname shows up in bold print. If you've posted two or three times since my last visit, there's a little (2) or (3) after your name. It makes it SO much faster to only visit the folks that have a new post!

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Stash Organizing

Would you like a tour of my newly organized stash? It took me all day - but I also watched tv and set up bloglines with all my favorite blogs... :)

After hours of folding and sorting, I ended up with 4 plastic drawers of fabric. On top, there's the florals and blues collection, under that the forest green, green, and brown drawer, moving to the left, my red, pink, lavender, purple drawer, with a few maroons and burgundys on the bottom. Then in the drawer to the left of THAT, on the bottom my skimpy stash of blacks and greys, topped by mostly-white prints, whites, creams, beiges, tans, yellows, oranges, pumpkins, and peach. Some of the teals ended up in the blue drawer, and some ended up in the green drawer.

Below that you'll see my seasonal and theme drawer - I don't know why I keep adding to these - maybe cause they look so good on the after-season sale tables? I've got red/white/pink valentine fabric, Christmas fabric, Autumn leaves, Winter snowflakes, Easter eggs, St. Patrick's day shamrock and leprechaun fabric. And even after making a big patriotic wall-hanging, I STILL have some red-white and blue fabric. And because that was the only drawer with an inch or two of room, I also put in my little collection of stripes and checks and plaids.

I have a LOT of white muslin, and had bought some off white and unbleached at my neighborhood Hancock's going-out-of-business sale. Some of it I bought from Ann-sewsalot after her daughter's wedding - all nicely serged on the edges, (she made her own tablecloths instead of renting or using plastic) so it'll be great for dying or marbling.

All the pieces in the drawers are from FQ size to 1 yard or a little more. On top, near my lamp, you'll see some bigger pieces I also bought at the sale. Some of them were in the drawers but had to come out to make room for smaller pieces. Now I need to figure out where to store all my bigger chunks and whites.

*embarassed grin* I also have two bags of scraps that are too big to just throw away, and ANOTHER drawer of 4 inch to 6 inch squares I bought on e-Bay with the intention of someday making a landscape type quilt. And a drawer of UFO's.

And geesh, these are just my quilting cottons. I also have denims, flannels, satin, nylon, t-shirting, fleece... :) I'd better get busy sewing!

But there are sure to be sales at all the stores tomorrow.... maybe just a few?

Sunday, July 02, 2006


No quilting yesterday, but I did get the block of the month web page done for my guild. I drew the block in EQ, then put a few of them together in a sample wallhanging.

Anyone want to see the instructions and comment? We do have a lot of beginners in the guild, so I should try to spell things out more, maybe:

July 2006 BOM

I still haven't made MY block for our outgoing president yet, but when I do, I'll put a small picture of it up on the BOM page too.

For those of you who were asking, no, the can cover was not a pattern. I was drinking a diet coke while I was making it, so I kinda rolled the can on the fabric to measure how big it needed to be.

I've already thought of some changes I'd make if I were to make another one. I like the separating zipper, but a drawstring might be easier. I'd also like to put some more insulation in it. That one only has two layers of a fairly thick batting. I wonder if the kind of stuff you use for fabric bowls would insulate well? But actually, as cheap as you can buy those foam can covers, (or get them free at events)it might be fun to hide the sporting or beer logo with a quilted cover.

And no, Finn, I didn't have a pattern for my bowl either. *guilty grin*

What I did was take an exacto knife, carve the curved rim off one of those cheapy thin plastic 'serve-n-save' bowls you can buy in sets of 4, with lid. Then I made 6 evenly spaced slits down to the bottom circle on the bowl. In order to trace around it for my pattern, I DID have to smash the sections down pretty hard... lol

I might go to the dollar store and get a HUGE bowl next, to cut down. Then, on each two of my six sections, I could cut a different edge shape. I've seen some that look scalloped, some have slightly rounded points, some are flat on the top, like my first bowl... *thinking*
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