Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Bits and Pieces

Where to begin? How about with another baby quilt? I finished one last night, after I finished binding my Ruth McDowell project. I promise pictures, I have not been able to set up a place that has enough light to take them. Cross off another UFO. hip, hip, hoorah!!

Today felt like a lazy day. I had a quilt-for-hire to work on (you haven't heard that for a while, have you?) but I didn't. Instead I puttered. I told you I finished my project. Finishing involved a lot of trimming in the effort to make it square. I saved the scraps and reassembled them to make this.

And this

The first measures approximately 4.5" x 9", the second 3.75" x 6.125". To find the influence in making these two unconventional items, check Deborah's blog. She does everything by hand, I did everything (except the beads) by machine, but she's my inspiration.

As I said, it was a lazy day. Edgar and Charlie spent HOURS sleeping on the cat perch. I had to take pictures. They looked adorable. (I think I got Edgar with the flash. Either that or he's winking at me.)

Finally, you'll remember that we redid the yard? Some of the plants in the back have bothered me since the day they were planted. I've waited months for them to "grow on me," but they haven't. There were 9 silver liriope planted in the back. yuck. They look like native plants or desert plants. They do not "feel" like the tropics, which was what I wanted.

Yesterday I bought some dwarf agapanthus (Peter Pan), today I replaced a few of the liriope.

Here are the three I pulled out:

In this picture, you can see the remaining liriope in the center. Directly behind it, at midnight and 10 o'clock are two Peter Pan replacements. ahhh. Don't they look SO much better?!!

I call this my "Dr. Seuss Corner." These plants just look Seuss-y. The sago had 5 liriope in a semi-circle surrounding it. I've replaced the first one (on the left) with a Peter Pan. Again, SO much better!

Until I replaced the plants, the first thing that caught my eye every time I looked out back was the shriveled up liriope. The Peter Pans? I don't even notice them, which is a beautiful thing. Tomorrow I will be buying 6 more. I can hardly wait!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Some Pictures

Malcolm is my inside cat. To put it simply, he's obnoxious. He is always complaining about something. His usual demands are for more food - he's a glutton - or to go outside. Sometimes we give him what he asks for, when he is being especially pestiferous. Yesterday was one of those days. The minute he was out, he wanted back in. Here he is, in usual form, with his mouth wide open. You are lucky this photo is not accompanied by sound. He's such a whiner.

He could have stopped whining and walked across the yard to see the Bird of Paradise that continues to delight with its plumage.

Inside, I've finished the quilting on my Ruth McDowell project. It was a bit warpy, so I washed it before binding. Here it's not whitewater, it's bathwater, haha. It didn't dry until Saturday night, and by then it was too late to do anything about it. It still needs to be cut square and bound. I will not be meeting the Houston deadline. oh well. Goals are good and the quilt WILL be finished this week.

Finally, I promised pictures of the quilt that Pat made for me. I love it. I saw it when she was putting it together, and apparently gushed a lot. She says it's the only quilt she's made that I like. She's wrong about that - I've even asked about buying another quilt that she made. But, if it was her mistaken impression that caused her to give it to me, well, I'm not complaining. I LOVE this quilt!!

You probably can't tell, but I had the camera on a table. I set it for 10 seconds, then ran over and sat down. I think the first one is the best one of the quilt, the second is the best one of me. Four tries, and we're done. We wouldn't want the neighbors to think I'm a narcissist now, would we?

Friday, May 21, 2010

A Link...

Sara just sent me an email telling me that my quilt is on The Quilt Show. Really? It is?!! Click here for a few pics from Celebrate Spring! Mine is the second quilt shown. I am blown away.

See me smile. :)

P.S. I've finished the quilting on the McDowell project and have washed it. It's now drying (I hope it's not very warm today). I will bind it tomorrow, once it is flat and square.

That's all for now...

Thursday, May 20, 2010


I think one of the reasons I am smitten with irises is because I've studied them for years. I've watched them push buds and grow spectacular blooms from what looks like nothing. The more I study them, the more fascinated I become.

Bird of Paradise is new to me. Oh, not in the "look at this plant that I've never seen before" sense, but in that "this is the first time I've seen more than one of these bloom!" experience.

It's taken me until the third bloom to realize that this plant springs its blooms up from a single stalk, with each fresh flower pushing back the previous bloom. I thought I had different varieties, even though they all looked like Strelitzia. Now I know that the "hairy" ones are actually stalks that have had multiple sequential blooms.

I see a Bird of Paradise quilt in my future...

In the meantime, I am quilting rocks, rocks, and more rocks. I should finish by tomorrow, and be applying a binding technique by Saturday. Goals are good, progress is better, and this is one deadline I might just meet.

Come Tuesday, I should be back to a regular posting schedule. The best laid plans of mice & men...

Oh. And the applique is just about complete on my 2010 Hoffman Challenge. By tomorrow, I should be working on some of the embellishment, and by the time the McDowell quilt is finished, I'll be ready to baste my Hoffman. Goals are good!!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Today's List...with pictures

7:30-9am Work on applique for 2010 Hoffman Challenge.

9:30am - Head to Thimble Towne for thread to continue quilting Ruth McDowell project. React to news that Mettler and Sulky are being closed out of inventory by buying more thread than planned.

10am - return home. And discover a big fat nail in my tire. Get back in the car and get that fixed.

noon - finally get to work on quilting water. Blogger is not impressed, ergo flips my photo.

4pm Turn quilt over, to see if the back looks okay. yay. It looks okay.

5pm - rain stops, take time to smell the roses. And get a belly laugh from the Bird of Paradise that most definitely reminds me of a surprised bunny rabbit.

Now it's time to cook dinner. And this evening? At 8pm? Pick up Hoffman Challenge and get back to work.

Tomorrow? More of the same, only - hopefully - without the nail in the tire!!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Working on a Wearable?

It's true. A long time ago, probably at least 3 or 4 years, I began a vest. hmmm. Actually, it was the year of our 30th high school reunions, which would have been 2006, good heavens! Anyway, I made a skirt and worked to put together a vest, Rosemary Eichorn-style.

I didn't get very far. I think the class met 4 times. I made it to one or two meetings at most. As I said, I didn't get very far.

I kept intending to get back to it, and today I did.

I was actually in a class to make a wallhanging and learn some embellishment techniques. I thought this would be the perfect canvas on which to practice. I did not need another UFO. :)

I did make progress. At this rate, I'll be done in 20 years. This was definitely fun, I'll have to say that.

Here is the front - if I remember correctly, the point on the right side holds a button hole.

This is the other vest front. I put all of the applique in place before I realized that this is almost completely covered by the waves and turtles. Oh well. It was good practice.

As I said, at this rate, I'll be done in 20 years.

And now, I'm going to do a bit of beading, because it will be a nice change of pace. I'm weeks behind on Flash Forward, and I'm going to try to play an episode of catch-up. Wish me well.

Tomorrow I will be quilting water all day long. Promise.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

A Few Finishes

I know I promised a picture of the quilt that Pat gave me. I haven't had a chance to take a decent photo. Instead, I'll entertain you with these.

The first is Cat Detente.

Charlie is on the left, NotMyCat (now aka "Buzz") seem to have come to an agreement. A four bush barrier between the two of them does wonders. Without it, Buzz has a hissy. He's not a fan of cats, unless they are him.

I actually made a birthday card this week. Unfortunately the birthday was last month. I completely missed several April birthdays. They're still on the list, but I'm trying to focus on quilting my McDowell project.

So she says as she shows another just-finished baby quilt. *sigh*

The way I cut my Double 4-patch quilts, I end up with 32 blocks. It only takes 30 to make a quilt. Every 15 baby quilts yields an extra quilt, of the scrappy variety. I was right. There have been a lot of babies born recently!!!

I spent several hours yesterday quilting on my big quilt and another couple of hours today. If I could get 5 days of serious quilting time, in theory, I could get this quilt finished, or at least to the binding stage. Now that goal is not just good, it's Tony the Tiger GRRRREAT!! I really do want to see this quilt finished and submitted to shows. Seriously. What good is setting a goal repeatedly, if I just put it back on the shelf? Not good at all. This time I'm going to REALLY try to meet it. Goals are good.

I couldn't help myself. ;) If I don't post, hopefully I'm engaged in some hard core quilting. ;)

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Tuesday's List

1. Mark last section of applique on Hoffman Challenge. check.

2. Get hair cut. check.

3. Go to lunch with Pat. check.

4. Sew 2 show labels on quilts. check.

5. Quilt baby quilt. check.

6. Take pictures of Mother's Day flowers and haircut for blog post. check.

I like my face in this one, but you can't tell I'm leaning on the counter so my body looks a tad distorted.

Take two. Body looks better, face, not so great. Oh well. It's not like there's a lot to work with. ;)

The two bouquets on the table were from my College/Career kids, the big one on the counter was from my husband. A girl can never have too many flowers!!!

For tomorrow: Pat gave me a quilt!!! (I just need to take pictures.)

Monday, May 10, 2010

Today's List

1. Sew together blue/gold Log Cabin blocks to finish top. check. Lay aside and deal with border decisions later.

2. Make labels, one for DNQF, another for baby quilt, "This quilt made especially for..." check.

3. Zip over to Thimble Towne and baste two baby quilts. check.

4. Zip home and sew label on baby quilt. Wrap package. Put by door so that it will be delivered tomorrow. check.

5. Go to Art Group meeting/dinner. I have nothing to share, unless you want to see my "to do" list. check.

6. Come home, catch 24 - Jack! WHAT do you think you're doing?!!! - and put in an hour of hand applique on my Hoffman Challenge. check.

That's why I'm not posting much. I'm running around in circles, not making a lot of visible progress.

My rafting quilt? I haven't touched it since Thursday. Good thing tomorrow is another day!!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Quilting and Shopping

I've already put 2 hours of quilting into my May project today, and it's not yet 1pm. yay! I will probably (hopefully) get another couple of hours in before dinner time. Right now, I'm taking a break.

First thing this morning, I zipped by the quilt store. As I was chatting, a quilt on the shelf caught my eye. "Seriously?!! She's selling this quilt?" I love this quilt. Although it was made from a pattern, and I don't do patterns, I can appreciate a good quilt when I see one. I sat across the table from Kathy as she pieced this top at retreat a few years ago. I loved it then, I love it now.

I checked the price tag, dropped my jaw, and whipped out my checkbook before they could change their minds.

I know. I don't need any more quilts. But this one is a lot of fun, and it's nothing like anything I make. I guess that's my criteria for buying a quilt. Do I love it? Would I make it? If the answers are absolutely and never, and the price is right, I seem to come home with it.

Del? Were you contagious? I think I caught the collection bug... ;)

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Another Finish!

Over the weekend, I put together another baby quilt. Yesterday, I attached the binding. A few hours in front of the TV, and voila! It's finished!

Once again, it feels REALLY good to finish something.

However, finishing UFO's in general, is not my current goal. My current goal is to finish my Ruth McDowell project from 2007. I'm trying to quilt a minimum of 2 hours each day, beginning yesterday. Yesterday, I was able to exceed that goal by an hour. I'm not convinced that I'll finish before the end of the month, but that's my goal. Finish this quilt!!

I have other projects that will also be in the rotation, but when I'm quilting, I'll be quilting on this one. I haven't touched it today, but I did clean out a cupboard trying to reclaim my studio. I'm off for a bite of lunch, then back to the Studio to log those hours.

Stay tuned. I'll be posting progress reports. :)