Tuesday, October 11, 2016

check, check

I am so behind on baby quilts.  I think baby Adali was born in February.  I finished her quilt last week, except for the label.  Once it is labeled, I will be happy to deliver it.
 How do you like the yellow bird fabric on the back?  I absolutely LOVE it.  I bought it years ago in Napa, but didn't know what I was going to do with it.  The bird fabrics on the front were purchased at Best of the Valley at least 2 years ago.  They've been set aside since then, waiting to be cut and pieced.  It feels good to put them together, but unfortunately, I pieced them with half of the 2" birds upside down.  oops.  The baby won't care, will she?

Lesson #7 for Katie Pasquini Masopust was turned in last night.  The assignment was to do a study in analogous colors, with one complementary color thrown in for pizzazz.  It is hard to tell, but all of the fabrics used are either bluegreen, yellowgreen, red, or 7 shades of green.  The way they butt against each other makes them look white and blue and all sorts of colors in between.  It's incredible.
This quilt has been quilted.  All that remains to do is to bind it, and I think I will bind it in the usual way.  I don't want those little strips to fall off the edge, which I think would happen if I faced it instead of binding.

I have another baby quilt pieced and ready to go.  Perhaps I will be able to get it quilted today.  Goals are good!

My eighth and final assignment from Katie PM has arrived and is under consideration.  I've got two weeks to complete it.  wow.  I don't know if you can tell, but this has been the most amazing, intensive, productive class that I may have ever taken.  I've taken wonderful classes that have taught me new techniques and others that stretched me, but this one?  It's run the gamut and shown me that I have good quilts within me.  All I needed was the incentive to sit down and sew them out.  I can't wait to see wait I come up with for Lesson #8.  woohoo!!

Saturday, October 1, 2016


Two very belated birthday cards are in the mail.  Two more check marks on my Guilt ToDo List.  woohoo!

The little houses were from a class I took sometime during the past year.  The class was a bust, but I did walk away with a couple of free form houses.  They look okay now, in fact, I think they're kind of cute!

Two baby quilt tops are half made on my sewing table.  Today's goal is to stitch them together.  Goals are good!

Thursday, September 29, 2016

A Bit o' Shopping

You may already know this, but if you do not, the SAQA Benefit Auction is currently happening online.  You can see the quilts for sale here.  They're in the second week, selling the second grouping, and the price right now is $250.  Tomorrow they will be $150, then $100 on the weekend.  And then, next week, Section 3 goes up for sale.  My quilt, "Big Fish," is in Section 3.  (You can also see "Big Fish" on my side bar.)

Last week, I enjoyed a bit of end of week shopping.  These two arrived on Monday:
 "Abstract #3" by Shoshi Rimer

"Green Fields" by Christine Hager-Braun

I may not feel comfortable making Abstract Art, but that doesn't mean I don't appreciate it.  And "Green Fields"?  I LOVE it.  I've seen Christine's work before, and I suspect you have figured out that I find it very inspiring.  She uses very little fabric, but oh, doesn't it tell a story?!

And that's all I've got for now.  I'm back in the studio, working on baby quilts and some birthday cards.  Just thought I should let you know that I may not be making art today, but I'm certainly enjoying it!

Wednesday, September 28, 2016


As you probably know, I'm a member of Postmark'd Art, an international postcard exchange group.  Actually, to my way of thinking, it's an international small art exchange group.  Our 25th round is coming to a close on September 30, and I had one more group to finish up.  These are my "Collage" cards.

I was a bit stymied as to what I was going to do, when I remembered a pile of previously woven "tops," set aside for something.  Five cards were just that something.  I knocked them out today, and they will go into the morning's mail.

They're all the same, yet different.

Since I was making postcards, I finished up three more, that I'd begun with some of the scraps of the Black & White assignment from Lesson #5.

Well, of course they are all tipped on their sides.  It's not like I didn't photograph them in EXACTLY the same manner as the collage cards!!

And then, there was one more, made from scraps from that Jean Wells class in Sisters back in May.
And there you go.  Nine postcards to sum up my day.

I also began work on sewing together two baby quilts, but they can wait to be shown on another day.  Goals are good!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Another Assignment Turned In...whew!

Yes, folks, Lesson #6 was due yesterday, and I squeaked in under the wire at 10:30pm.  whew!  Other than select the image I planned to use 10 days ago, the only time I worked on it was Sunday and Monday.  Yes, that would be days 13 and 14 of the two week construction period.  Life got in the way, doncha know?

The theme was Abstract Landscape, and we were to be sure to have multiple vanishing points.  I started with a photo, taken on our way to Glencoe, Scotland, in the pouring rain.
 I trimmed it down, and made a pattern, a la Ruth McDowell.
 I chose my fabrics, some of which came from Linlithgow, Scotland.
 And then I started putting up fabric.
 Here it is, partially sewn together:
And now, here it is, as I submitted it to Katie Pasquini Masopust.
 And, oops!  I just looked at the clock, and I need to be somewhere in 5 minutes.  Gotta jet!

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Tulare County Fair

I spent a few hours at the TCFair on both Friday and Saturday.  I didn't venture out of the Home Arts building, just sat and hand-quilted with other Valley Oak Quilt Guild members.  We are an annual "display," filling a corner of the building.  I think we were probably the largest exhibit in the building, since the number of entries has dropped to next to nothing.  What once was a building stuffed to overflowing now echoes with the memories of past years.  I'm not sure on the numbers, but the quilt entries have been decimated.  It's not that people aren't quilting, it's that the Powers That Be have made entering more difficult and costly, with very little reward.

Because I have a decades-long fondness for the Fair, I entered three little quilts.  Really, I didn't have anything more to enter.  I've made a dozen baby quilts this year, but every one that has been finished has also been given away.  Here's what I had left:
 "Inspired by Oceanside," "Oceans," and "Wheel of Color."  Can you see how empty the room is?  There used to be cables strung across the building, draped with back to back quilts.  Now?  They've taken down half of the cables, and the remaining cables are for the most part empty.  How far we've fallen!  What a sad sad thing.  Also stunning is the lack of people.  The Fair had been open for hours when I took this picture.  Do you see anyone looking at the entries?  No?  I don't either.  :(
In other news, I finished another baby quilt.  It will go into the possession of FedEx tomorrow morning, chugging its way to Washington State.  Baby Travis is already 5+ weeks old.  How did that happen?!!
 You can't see the print in the overall photo.  It's a cute little Noah's Ark goes to the circus sort of design. I chuckle every time I look at it.
And that's what I've been up to this week.  Lesson #6 mocks me, as I know that I have a mere 4 days to throw it together.  My daughter and granddaughter will be visiting this weekend, and there's a bridal shower for my soon-to-be daughter-in-law.  Lots to do, and most of it does not involve my Bernina.  Better get a wiggle on!  :)

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

As Done As It's Going To Get...For Now

I am astounded by the work that I am producing in this class.  wow.  I didn't think the pots were distinct enough with my nose 18" from the quilt top, but in a photo?  I think I did all right.  wow.  The entire piece is hand appliqued, which makes me think that it needs hand quilting to complement it.  Or compliment it.  My hand quilting is better than my machine quilting, and this piece is only about 15" x 18" or thereabouts.  It shouldn't take forever to quilt, should it?

This is just the top.  I cropped the raw edges from the image.

If anyone is looking for a major challenge to get their creative juices flowing, I have to say that Katie Pasquini Masopust worked for me.  I never thought that I would still be hanging in there at Lesson #6, but here I am.  Six more weeks and three more lessons.  I got my money's worth way back on Lesson #2.  The rest?  It is icing upon icing upon icing on the cake.  Sweet!  :)

Then again, the next assignment is Abstract Landscape.  There's that "A" word again, the one that makes me cringe and want to curl up in a fetal position and suck my thumb.  Or not.  I do get a very visceral reaction to the word.  To say it's a struggle for me is to speak truth.  But to say that the struggle is good for me, is also to speak truth.  Let's hope I have something good to show for that enlightenment, when the next due date rolls around.  Goals are good!

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Lesson #5

I seem to have fallen into a pattern with my Katie Pasquini Masopust class, and it's not necessarily a good one.  I develop an idea, I work feverishly on the idea, start chopping fabric and sewing...and then abandon the idea for a new one, with only a smattering of days left to complete it.  Lesson #5 is due tomorrow.

When last I left you, I was trying to make an iris in black and white.  This is what I had going:
 I came to the conclusion that I would never be happy trying to recreate nature in black and white.  It just wasn't working for me.  I went back to my photo folders, and found this pic, taken in Laguna Beach either last year or the year before.
 I cropped it, and made a new pattern.  This time, despite the time crunch, I am using only hand applique, not trying to piece it on the machine.  It's easier that way.
 This is what I had on Friday.  This morning, I'm down to cutting out two large pots, and sewing three together.  Oh, and the little table under the black pot in the center, that needs to be cut and sewn as well.  And I need to pick a background to set it on.
Working with black and white has proven to be a LOT more difficult than I expected.  I didn't think I'd like it, but I also did not think it would be such a challenge, especially using black and white prints.  I have a much greater appreciation for those who intentionally work in black and white, and do it successfully.  It's hard work!

And with that, I'd better get back to it.  Next time I check in, I expect the top to be finished.  Goals are good!  :)

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Oh, Fiddle!

I tried fiddling with the header yesterday, and now I'm in a state of frustration.  I cannot, for the life of me, figure out how to move the blog title, change the font size, or change the color.  If I could do that, I might be satisfied, but I can't, so, grrr.  SO frustrating!

Sorry about the gold on gold.  I can't seem to find my original image of More Glorious Than Solomon to revert to the green background, so gold on gold, it is. 

So much for trying to update.  I should have stuck with what worked.  grrr.  My apologies to those who find the change less than satisfactory. 

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

WooHoo! I'm a Winner!!

 A few weeks ago, Vicki Welsh, of Colorways by Vicki, had a week filled with daily giveaways.  I love reading her blog.  One day she's quilting, another day she's dyeing, another day she's doing glasswork, and on another day she's working on a full-wall mosaic.  Never a dull moment with her, that's for sure!  I had no expectations when entering the giveaway, but wow!  I won Monday's bonanza!  It arrived yesterday in my mailbox.  Thank you, Vicki!  Thank you SO much!!  :)

In other news, I'm working on Lesson #5 for my Katie Pasquini Masopust online class.  groan.  The current assignment is to be achromatic, i.e., all done in black and white and greys.  Not being a fan of b&w&g, this is really a struggle for me.  I began by choosing a photo, cropping it, and then drawing a pattern.
 Next, I made my freezer paper pattern, that I will use to cut pieces and follow to assemble the quilt.
 As I was working, I realized that what I really needed was another design wall.  I've been wanting one for a long time.  I went to Lowe's and bought some insulation.  It wasn't until I was cutting it that I realized I bought the wrong stuff.  What I wanted was foam sheathing.  What I purchased was styrofoam.  I didn't think it would make a difference, so I taped on the flannel surface.
 Here it is, looking beautiful.  Unfortunately, my pins do not like the styrofoam surface.  I am going to have to go back to the hardware/lumber store and find the right stuff.  I think I'll go to Home Depot, as I only saw styrofoam at Lowe's. 
At this point, I've got 1, 2, 3, 4...5 days left before my Lesson #5 deadline.  Today's job:  to see if I can cover the pattern with all of the cut pieces needed to complete the quilt.  On Monday, I thought I would make the iris grey and the backgrounds black and white.
 Once I had some of the background up, it was clear that it was a mess.  Yesterday, I tried to switch, using the black and white for the iris and grey for the background.  Neither is pleasing to me, but perhaps I'll be able to work through this and get the thing finished by Monday.
Goals are good!

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Knock Off Another UFO

In the lull created by the completion of Lesson #4 and the contemplation of Lesson #5, it seemed like a good time to finish quilting a half-quilted baby quilt.  It's been pushed aside since when?  Probably November.  I don't do "modern" very well, and this was a half-hearted attempt. 
 I thought it would be fun to take pictures of it the way I used to.  Nice legs on that quilt holder, eh?  The top picture is of the front, the bottom is of the back.  I put together that pink color run, set in pink, back at Asilomar YEARS ago.  I'm glad to finally put it to use!
wow.  Afternoon lighting makes the yard look tropical.  It's actually mostly dry bark.  I kind of like the way it looks in these pictures.  It's all an illusion.

Finishing this one makes me feel worthy of the button Elaine bestowed upon me last week.  (She bought a variety for our little group, and let everyone else pick theirs.  Mine was assigned.  :)
 Yesterday as I was driving through Tulare, I saw 2 of these guys gliding over the corn.  Where did they come from?  Where were they going?  When I finally looked at the image on my computer, I was relieved to note that they have fans attached to their backsides...much better than thinking they'd jumped from an airplane!!
And that's all I've got for now.  I'm working on my pattern and have selected the fabrics for Lesson #5.  All I'll tell you at this point is that it's ACHROMATIC.  The lack of color is doing a number on me.  I've got 9 days to complete the top.  The clock is ticking!

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Lesson #4 Complete

whew!  After ditching my original idea for Lesson #4 in the online Katie Pasquini Masopust class, I found myself with 4 days to work my second idea.  It went together fairly quickly, once I just started sewing.  The main idea of this assignment was disappearing lines.

For starters, I clicked through some photos from a trip to the Monterey Bay Aquarium.  I settled on this as my target image:
 I quickly pieced together the background, and started trying to make jellyfish without using transparent fabrics.  It was an immediate fail, so I pulled up this piece of inspiration in its place.
 I appliqued some kelp in the background, but it needed something more.  Last year, when we were in Oceanside, we(I) collected a bowl of mussel shells.  Perfect!
My son tells me that "Kelp is green, Mom," but I tell him he is WRONG.  I grew up fighting kelp in SoCal beaches, and it's always been that orangey-brown color, not green.  harumpf.  Anyway, this is what I came up with:
 I was particularly smitten with the mussel, and will be making some more in the not-too-distant future.  (The color of the full quilt is accurate.  The color of the detail is washed out.)
And in other sewing, I made a card for my husband's birthday, which he celebrated over the weekend.
He's into cows.  hubba hubba.