Thursday, March 11, 2021

More Birthday Cards

 March is a month filled with birthdays.  In my last post, I shared the cards I made for my son and my granddaughter.  This past week, I finished two more cards for friends.  I haven't done much sewing, but some is better than none, right?

I found these fish faces in a bin.  I'm not sure what I had planned for them, but I think this is effective, no?
Estate sales continue to be few and far between.  However one popped up last weekend, that had several nautical-themed things and kitties.  I LOVE this painted rock!!  I keep expecting it to begin purring.
My garden has a single iris bloom.  Hopefully it is a herald of many blooms to come.  This one is in the backyard, in an iris patch that has rarely bloomed over the past 10 years.  The neighbor cut down seven trees from the fence line, so these plants are getting much more sun than ever before.  I look forward to seeing what color iris I have planted back there.  
And that's all I've got for now.  Hopefully I'll have more to post later this month.
Happy Quilting!


Wednesday, March 3, 2021

Birthday Cards

 A couple of weeks ago, I had cataracts surgery, so I haven't been doing a lot of sewing.  I finished the Jean Impey class, but only have 9 stars on my design wall.  I'm not sure if/when I will get back to them.  There's so much to do, and I seem to be lacking time to get things done.

But yesterday, I took the time to make a couple of birthday cards.  My middle son, when asked what he wanted for his birthday, replied, "World Peace."  yeah, yeah, okay.  He's said this before.  I made a card similar to the one I gave him the last time he said he wanted World Piece.  Here is this year's card:

It should fit with the first World Piece, though I'm not sure what kind of map it will create.  In looking at the fabric, it does not seem to have the entire world, just a small portion of it, repeated again and again.  oh well.

The other card I made is for my oldest granddaughter.  Her tenth birthday is next week.  I can't believe she is ten years old.  wow!

And that's all I've got for now.  Hopefully my eyes will settle and I will become more productive as I get used to seeing intense colors.  I am amazed by how washed out I'd thought the world had become.  

Happy Quilting!!

Thursday, February 18, 2021

Quilt(s) for Sale

 A few years ago, I was a member of SAQA, Studio Art Quilt Associates.  As a member, I enjoyed participating in their trunk shows and fundraisers.  I am no longer a member, but I received an email from them earlier this month.  I kept meaning to post it, I'm finally getting around to it.

I made a little quilt for the 2017 SAQA traveling trunk show.  The trunks have finished their travels, and some of the little quilts are now for sale.  When I say "little," I mean 10"x7".  Very little.

"Sunset Sea"
This was my contribution.  It is now for sale on the SAQA website, through the end of February.  The remaining quilts for sale are listed in alphabetical order, by artist.  You can find them here.

I love seeing the myriad of designs and techniques that are exhibited in such a small space.  After looking at the web page, I want to make more small art quilts.  But for now?  I have a few larger, more traditional quilts on my cutting/sewing tables.  I'd best finish them before starting something new.

Thank you for looking!


Sunday, February 14, 2021

Be Mine, Valentine(s)

 For a change, I realized that Valentine's Day was quickly approaching...in early February.  I made plans to make valentines for my grandchildren, then realized I was running out of time.  Quick!!  Stitch those hearts!

Above shows the tops, below are the backs.  There is a bunny, for P, who was born in the year of the rabbit.  There are puppies for A, who LOVES dogs.  There are street signs for truck-loving J, books for F, and balls for the youngest, H.  Hopefully each will recognize his/her own valentine.  If not, I will.
Not wanting their parents to feel overlooked, I also made cards for my sons and their wives.  The boys will be here for breakfast with the children.  Two of the wives will be absent because of work.
As with the cards for the grands, I went with themed backgrounds.  Patriotic for A, cowgirl for A; strawberries for M, wood for A; woods for M, and measuring sticks for D.  A well-rounded bunch, for sure!
As I was sewing, I ran across this red background for a card, which I began in December.  I decided to finish it off as a valentine-ish birthday card for a friend.  I usually make winter-themed cards for her, since her birthday is in early February.  This one is quite different.
On Friday, I took part 1 of a Zoom class with Jean Impey.  The class is called "Twinkle," and it focuses on making Liberated Stars.  My design wall already had a UFO in residence.  hmmm.  These seem to play well together.  I wonder if they'll end up as a single piece?
Yesterday, I realized that with all of the valentines I'd already made, I'd yet to make one for my Valentine.  I spent the morning piecing this little house (the color of our big house), and trying to personalize it a bit.  Each year, I make a valentine for him.  You can see more of them here.  I'm sure I had another post with ALL of the valentines I've made for my husband, but apparently I neglected to tag it.  sigh.
In other news, I went to an estate sale on Friday, and had happy hunting.  I found this cement pagoda, that reminds me of my mom.  She had one similar, in her front yard.
I also found this pair of iris lamps.  I bought them for Cambria House, but may end up keeping them here.  I really like them!
And speaking of Cambria House, work continues.  I pulled up carpet last week, and found that the floor beneath the window is squishy and falling.  Not only does it need to be replaced, but the subflooring as well.  But first, the foundation.
All in all, the vacation home will be an adventure.  It may look like the above today, but that will change.  In contrast, it is a mile or two from the ocean, which also changes...but is always there, should we wish to visit.
And with that, I've got a breakfast to assemble before heading off to church.
Happy Valentine's Day!



Tuesday, February 9, 2021

And, Blink! It's February!

 Where do the days go?  I wish I had a pile of quiltie pictures to share, but I do not.  I have spent some time with fabric, but not much that has been productive.  Well, there was one old UFO, that was "fixed."

In 2014, we made basket blocks for our outgoing guild President.  I finished my basket, but did not find the time to fill it.  I turned it in "as is," and thought I'd either fill it later, or make a replacement block.

Last month, Leslie returned the basket, with the request to "fill it with flowers, please."  Alrighty then.  No more procrastination, (though you'll have to admit that 6 years was a pretty impressive delay, right?)

Above is the "before."  Below is the "after."  I think it finished well.  I am glad that I was given a second chance to improve it.  I no longer cringe when I see it.
I've been working on Bonnie Hunter's Grassy Creek Mystery.  Though the last clue was revealed a while back, I am still working my way through.  This picture was taken a few weeks ago.  I'm currently plugging away at clue #5.
Cambria House is a work in progress.  When we first bought it, I thought, "It just needs a bit of TLC."  But now?  It's not so much Tender Loving Care that is needed...it's Tough Love.
Following our noses, we've tried to find the source(s) of a lingering musty/mildewy odor.  When I pulled up the carpet in the front bedroom?  I think I found the culprit.  The floor and subflooring are collapsing under the window.  We have foundation experts scheduled for ASAP, which might still be a month out or longer.  Once the foundation is stabilized, we'll be hiring an expert to work on the subfloor and floor.  We'd like to replace the wood floor with another wood floor.  It really is beautiful, though it is showing its age.  (This part of the house is at least 80 years old.)

Our other big news is the recent announcement of grandchild #6, due in September.

Many people are ruing these days, but I've learned it is much better to learn to give thanks in ALL things.  When one learns to do that, eyes are opened, and abundant blessings are found all around.

Happy February, quiltie friends!

Friday, January 15, 2021

A 2020 Finish

 In looking through my "recent" posts, I see that I never posted about a fun Zoom class that our guild offered back in November.  The class was with the Material Girlfriends, and was called "Rosie Runner."  We had planned our annual guild retreat, but since that was cancelled?  We met together online via Zoom instead.

It was great fun to dig through my scrap box, rather than cut into new yardage.  I found that I had a LOT of scrap reds to play with.  woohoo!

I think I got this far on the project during the course of the day:
Here is the finished table runner:
Here is is, in context:
When a friend saw that I was making this, she called dibs.  I sent it to her, and she sent a picture of the runner in use.  I smiled when I saw that they liked the fabric on the back, as much as the top.

Other than that?  We continue to do work on our new property.  This week, the termites are being dealt with.  Next week?  The Mold Doctor will see what he can do to rid us of the icky stuff.  The job will involve removing and replacing dry wall and insulation.  Fun stuff!  But his expectation is for it to take a mere 2-3 days, so perhaps it is not all that involved after all...if you know what you are doing.  He comes highly recommended.  I'm so excited!!

And I guess that's going to do it for now.

Happy Quilting!


Sunday, January 10, 2021

Estate Sale Treasures

 One of my favorite things to do on a weekend is to poke through an estate sale, or two, or three.  2020 was a horrible year for them, what with the lockdown and all.  But I keep my eyes open and my ears to the ground, and every once in a while, one will come to my attention.  This happened last month...or was it the month before?  It's kind of blurring.  Anyway, one of our dear guild members passed away in the Fall, and her house was cleared out.  I heard about the sale, and off I went.

I was most interested in her quilts, primarily because I had quilted one of them several years back.  I put hours upon hours into it, and cringed when I gave her the bill.  But she LOVED it.  It was in the estate sale, for about 10% of what I charged her to quilt it.

Oh, look at that.  It HAS been years since I quilted that quilt!  This is an old picture, taken when I finished the quilting.  In the years since, I've peeled off that wallpaper, and painted the wall...purple!  I hadn't even thought about putting it on our bed yet.  I should try that and see how it looks.  wow!

Above is a close-up of the quilting.  It is an over-sized queen.  As I said, it took hours to quilt it.  I couldn't believe it was up for grabs at the estate sale.

Next is another quilt of Phyllis', that I bought at the sale.  This one is flannel, and oh, so cozy!  I had just washed it, dried it, and was letting it dry even more in this quick photo.  (A friend wondered if this was a quilt she had quilted for Phyllis.  It wasn't.)

On her bulletin board were her ribbons.  Beautiful memories!

And finally, the piece de resistance:  Her President's Quilt, from 1993.

Each year, our outgoing guild president is presented with a box full of blocks.  When Phyllis' year ended, I had been in charge of her quilt.  I had asked everyone to make their favorite 12" (finished) block, and to sign it on the outside, so that we would know whose block it was.  Then I set them together, in a way that would give us some space to quilt.

I love the variety, don't you?  The only problem with the plan, was that Phyllis did not do much hand quilting.  We began quilting it at one of the first Best of the Valley quilt shows, and I hadn't seen it since.  When I would ask her about it, she would shake her head and say she didn't know what happened to it.

Once I finish my "current" - and I use the phrase loosely - hand quilting project, this is what I want to tackle next.  It is actually close to half done.  Quilted in the 90's, it does not have the sort of elaborate quilting that you usually see nowadays.  It's more functional quilting, to hold the 3 layers together, with little more than stitch in the ditch.  I may finish it with that, and then decide if it needs a bit more.

So, that's what I've got for today.  Some older quilts, once again seeing the light of day.  There's nothing better than a quilt made with love, to wrap up in, on a cold winter's day.

Happy Quilting!



Friday, January 1, 2021

Happy New Year!!

 wow.  2020 is in the can.  It is certainly a year that got away from me!  I don't quite know what happened to the last few months, except that we continue to be blessed with good health and family nearby.  The days were filled with a LOT of babysitting, with grandchildren coming and going and lots of hugs shared each day.

Quilting?  Definitely ended up in the backseat of 2020, which is quite a surprise for me.  I took stock of my UFO list.  Here is what I completed in 2020:

6 quilts, 5 valentine toys (stuffed hearts), 10 potholders, 23 fabric postcards, 24 quilted cards

Apparently my priority was not finishing quilts, but finishing quilted projects.  My 2020 UFO List began with 40 quilts, and ended with 36.  My 2021 UFO List has 39 items on it so far.  I am looking through my piles of projects, so see if there are any others begun and then set aside during the year.  Not TOO many, so that's good.  I don't know that I've ever begun a year with fewer than 40 UFO's.

2020 was less about my UFO list and more about prioritizing the things that are most important.  I spent a LOT of time with our sons and their families.  I spent a LOT of time with the grandchildren.  I spent more time with my husband, and less time bemoaning the hours he spends working.  Instead, I've chosen to be grateful for all that we have been blessed with, rather than bemoaning desires unfulfilled.

The result has been more than I ever would have imagined for 2020. No more unrestricted travel, no more luxury dining, no more this, no more that, no more the other thing.  Turns out, the time was right for us to invest in a second home, something we've talked of for over a decade.  

The new home needs a lot of TLC, which has already begun.  The roofer has sealed the leaks, and I meet with the plumber, and, hopefully electrician this week.  The termite man is on call, as is The Mold Doctor.  As I said, lots of TLC.  But with the state of things in the State of California?  It's not like we have anything else with which to fill our days.  This new Project is just perfect!  And when the work is done?  We'll have a delightful getaway for our family and friends, for years to come.  

As to resolutions?  I resolve to post more frequently.  I resolve to sew more, to take more pictures, and to share them with you.  Here are some Christmas presents that can be shown, now that they have been gifted:

There was a 4th set of potholders.  Somehow I lost a set, plus a potholder.  If I ever get the Studio under control, I hope to find the missing items.  One thing I did find was the panels to make these books.  I bought them at PIQF 2019, then promptly forgot about them.  I daydreamed about in person quilt shows while I stitched these darling books.
But what I've been daydreaming about the most, is the coast.
Expect to see more pictures like this in the coming year.  I plan to spend more time renewing my relationship with the Pacific Ocean.  And there you are:  Goals are good!

This sign was given to me by my daughter-in-law.  I am hopeful that there will be a lot more sewing taking place this year, in my little kingdom.  Again, goals are good!  In looking at this picture, Clean the Studio should be high priority!

Happy New Year!!



Thursday, October 29, 2020

This n That

 Ahhh.  Another post before the end of the month.  That is good news, because it means that I've spent at least a few minutes communing with my sewing machine.  I don't have a lot to show, but I have finished a few quiltlets and postcards.

First, the postcards:

For these sets, I cut up a panel, added a back, and zigzagged around the edges.
This one was made from scraps in my scrap pile.
These quiltlets were quilted and embellished, before adding the self-binding backing.
Yesterday, we celebrated two birthdays.  One for Henley, one for her mama.
Other than that, last weekend, I hit another estate sale.  I do love to find good embroidery, and I'm a sucker for pillowcases.
And these Sunbonnet Sues?  What was the quilter thinking, when she chose that orange for the arms?  What was it called?  Coppertone QT?  for quick tan?  In high school, I remember a lot of girls with that bright orange skin.  Then again, I do not remember them dressing like this!
Finally, I found 5 beautifully embroidered basket blocks, sporting pink ribbons.  I'm hopeful that they will wash up beautifully.  I might also put them in Retroclean, if the background remains discolored.
And I guess that's going to do it.  I am happy to report that I've been interacting with fabric.  I'm hopeful, that with the holidays ahead, I'll get even more studio time in the not too distant future.

Happy Quilting!


Friday, October 16, 2020

Still Here

 This COVID stuff.  The days run together, along with the weeks, and now months.  Days are filled with this, that, and not a lot of anything.  It is hard to come up with content for posting.  One would think that with all of this time on my hands, I would be uber-productive.  Not me.  sigh.

I did make a couple of little pillowcases this week, for two little pillows that had been on my studio floor for almost a year.  Imagine how much space that left behind!  yay!

My DIL asked for a green mask, to match a dress she plans to wear to a wedding.  She indicated that embroidered flowers would be really pretty.  I made a plain mask, an embroidered mask, and a third mask with a floral print.  I'm sure she will find the opportunity to use them all.
Over the past month, I learned to cure olives.  yummy!
I made my first cheesecakes in decades.  I mean, since Costco, who bakes their own cheesecake anymore?  I have to say, these may be ugly, but they were tastier than Costco's!
I was quite happy when estate sales began opening again.  Lots of mask and entry restrictions, but sometimes?  The amazing deals are still available.  I bought this shell collection for $5.
Last weekend, I stumbled in at the end of a sale that had a table full of shoes left.  The shoes were all size 42.  If you've ever looked for 42's, you know that they are not easy to find.  When I chose the boots and a pair of flip flops, they offered me the entire collection for $25.  wow!  I feel like Imelda Marcos now!!  Only a couple of the thongs are uncomfortable.  The other shoes?  Are now residing in my closet, waiting for an opportunity to be worn.
I've also spent a lot of time with our local grandchildren.  Tea party, anyone?
These cousins are 2 months apart.  They are as different as can be.  One is all into physical activity, the other will sit for hours, as I read book after book after book.
And our grandson?  Is a busy boy.  Here, he's helping his dada by loading the tractor.  Such a good worker!

And finally, the project that keeps my attention.  I have been hand quilting this one since April.  I am closing in on the last portion, which is just amazing.  I truly thought this quilt would always remain a top.
Happy quilting!!