Tuesday, April 29, 2008

For me

Don't ya just love it? It's a post-it note holder that Dotti sent me. Yes, that's Dotti of the famous Zizzy-Dot Swap. She thought I could use some cheering up (she sure is right there) and sent me this adorable holder (with a hand made button no less) and the instructions on how to make my own. It certainly did brighten my day.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

I'm Back

Although my jaw still hurts and I'm still having trouble chewing, I am feeling a whole lot better than I have all week. Thank you all for your thoughts and good wishes.

After sorting out the fabrics that Elaine gave me, they seem to fall into two categories, brown and teal. I decided to start by making a log cabin with the browns. Added with some fabrics that Ann gave me, and some of my own, I think I have made a good start. I usually make the logs smaller than these but I was looking for something a bit quicker. The logs are cut at 2".

It was such a miserable week, that the dark browns were too boring to work with. I got a copy of Fons and Porters Love of Quilting magazine in the mail. There is a silly pattern called Summer Flip Flops. Put away the boring browns and pull out the loud obnoxious fabrics. That's just what I need to do, start another project. How many UFO's do I have now? I have no idea but this one is cheerful enough for now. It will just be a small wallhanging, something fun for the summer for my little quilt wall.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

I'll be back

Gruesome, isn't it, but it pretty much sums up the experience. Yes, I had a tooth pulled on Monday morning and I am still in pain. I don't feel like doing much of anything (which seems to be a trend of mine lately). So forgive me if I don't post much in the days to come. I'll be back, I promise.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Another R.A.K.

I have not specifically asked for fabric scraps, but I did ask the Romantic F8 swappers if I could keep the bits and pieces left over from their blocks. A few never replied, most said yes and then there are those who went above and beyond. Look as this fantastic collection I received yesterday from Elaine in Ma (QuiltingNewbie on the HGTV forum). How wonderful is this bunch of fabric. It is hard to tell from the photo, but many of these are brights (I love brights). There are lots of butterflies, teal and orange/gold. The smallest pieces are 4 inches wide, while some pieces are about 1/2 yard. I think I feel the funk lifting and some children's quilts getting started. Amazing what a little shiny fabric can do. But what should it be? Log cabins, strings, Chinese coins, D9P...decisions, decisions, decisions.

I got the blues

No I don't mean I purchased some blue fabric, I mean I am in a funk. I just don't feel like doing much of anything. I guess you could tell by the lack of quilty posts lately. But I hate when there are no pictures on a blog so I will show you one of my family favorites.

The lady and gentleman sitting are my great grandparents (Maria and Alphonso). The dark haired lady behind great grandpa is my maternal grandmother. I don't know what year this photo was taken but grandma was born in 1889. My best guess is somewhere around 1905. What I do know about this picture and find most interesting is that it is of my great grandparents 25th wedding anniversary. Poor GGma looks like she is really had a hard life while GGpa looks like her son not husband. What a different life they led.

My husband and I will be celebrating our 40th anniversary soon. I sure hope I don't look as old as great grandma.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Not much of anything

I was really tempted to title this and all future posts"String Quilts". I usually get around 20 to 40 visitors a day, but the other day when I titled the post "Another String Quilt", I got 233 hits. The majority of these visitors where searching for string quilts on Google. I have tried to Google string quilts but cannot find how it lists my blog.

I haven't done much of anything this week. I'm not sure if it's the fact that the weather has gotten much warmer or just a general lack of interest in anything, but the end result is me doing nothing.

But, I much prefer a blog with pictures so I'll give you two. This one is of a postcard I received this week. It is really well made and I like it alot. But it is 4 months past the deadline and I am having a hard time getting excited about it. It is so anti-climatic. I won't even tell you who made it as I would not like to embarrass her.

You remember that the city has been ripping up my neighborhood to put in sewers. This has created an enormous amount of dust. In addition, we have not had much rain and have been on water restrictions for months. It is amazing to me that this orchid has bloomed.

These flowers are only about an inch across and are the most gorgeous color.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Zizzy-Dot Challenge Swap #9

This challenge was to use water soluble stabilizer. I had never used it and didn't have any, so Dotti sent me some.

In my first attempt I used really tiny bits of fabric, there is some Angelina in there (although you can't see it) there is a feather, some over sized spangles and some eyelash yarn. It did not occur to me to use clear thread. Too bad, it probably would have come out alot better.

On the other hand there is Dotti's card. Once again, she has made a gorgeous card that left me speechless.

We will be using this technique again (so I can get it right next time)

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

There are thimbles............

................and then there are Thimbles!

Besides collecting thimbles, I am also a fan of Tinkerbell. So when my husband saw this on Main Street, in the Magic Kingdom, he knew he had to get it for me. My family was quite devious in distracting me while he purchased it and had it sent to my son's room. My daughter in law hid it and I got it as part of a Christmas present several months later. She stands 17 inches tall and is quite heavy. I usually keep all my Disney lanyards hanging off of her wings but removed them for the photo. My grand daughter has claimed this as hers also.

Collections -Part 2

I had heard about Tommy Lane thimbles. From what everyone had said, I just had to have one. There on the left is my TL thimble that I got at one of our annual quilt shows. It is silver and the lady fitted it for my finger. But the truth be told, I'm not all that crazy about it. It is very thick and feels heavy on my finger. My fingers swells a little when I am hand quilting. Because of the thickness of this thimble, it suddenly feels too short and keeps falling off my finger.

Second from the right is a thimble my husband bought for me as part of a Christmas present. It too is silver. It is the correct size, fits nicely and is great for when my nail gets long. But, I just can't seem to get the hang of it. That open finger thing is just weird.

So, you might ask, what thimble do I use when hand quilting? I am afraid to ruin my first silver thimble, I have put holes in all my Mom's brass thimbles that leaves the one on the right. It is a cheap, run of the mill, bought in Joann's when it was on sale, totally replaceable, did I mention cheap thimble. Yup, as Goldilocks said, it is just right.

Oh, and I found the closeup button on the camera. It's amazing what you learn when you read the instructions.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008


Do you collect things? I mean besides fabric. I have had several collections over the course of many years some with good results, some not. There was a time when I collected US mint postage. My family never noticed the US or the mint part of the phrase and only heard postage. So I was always getting foreign, used postage stamps from my family because they were "nice lookingstamps".

Among other things there was my miniture bulldogs. I had a real live bulldog at the time and started collecting itty bitty ones that were not to be bigger than an inch tall. My Mom never quite got the gist of it and kept buying my great big , bigger than my head big, weighing 5 pounds or more big, bulldogs. I stopped collecting them too.

But for some reason, no one ever remembers that I collect thimbles, any kind really, even ones that are not usable. Here is my thimble case (sorry about the flash). As you see, there aren't that many thimbles but then you don't see souvenir thimbles much anymore. My case also has a few of my littlest bulldogs, an antique button hook, some antique silk thread, and a sterling silver bodkin.

About ten years ago, a lady I worked with's mother had died. The lady knew I did a lot of sewing so she gave me her mothers sewing box. It was a large metal candy box which appears to be from the 1940's. There was some really fun old stuff in there including the sterling silver bodkin, and this very small brass thimble. It looks like it is meant for a child and my 5 year old grand daughter has claimed it for her own. That is the thimble on the right. On the left is my first sterling silver thimble. I really did use it when hand quilting but I was afraid I would put a hole in it from overuse so I started using the brass thimble next to it. That is one of my Mom's from the 40's. I really like that thimble the best for quilting because it has deep dimples. Sadly, I put two holes in it and I cannot find another "just right" thimble.

Tune in tomorrow and maybe I will show you some more photos, that is if I can figure out how to take a close up without it being so blurry.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Yet Another String Quilt

As I said last week, I have no ambition or inspiration at all. I want to make something spectacular, but I have zero ideas. So when all else fails, I'll either make some preemie quilts or a Heartstring Quilt top. Here is the result of this weeks work. I read on one of the websites that most donated quilts are feminine looking. So, I tried to make something more masculine. It contains mostly fabrics that have been given to me in the last few months. It's kind of hard to tell but the center strips are a black print and the dark strings are blue, green and brown. This top will go to Mary once she has moved into her new condo.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Romantic F8 Swap

The deadline on this swap has gone by and I am still waiting for 2 more blocks. From what I read, I doubt I will ever see them. Here is a picture of what I have received.

I had requested that everyone please use pale colors that look romantic, soft, delicate, feminine, shabby chic and/or blended. There are a few bits of medium colors but all the colors are great and go together quite well.

I had hoped to hand quilt this one but many of the blocks are paper pieced. They have lots of intersections coming together that I would never be able to quilt through. Two of the blocks have holes where the fabric was not big enough to cover the paper. I have no idea how to fix the problem.

I really love this quilt (or what I should call the makings of a quilt) but I have no idea how I want to finish it off. I had hoped to make it Queen size, so besides the 2 I never got, and the 2 I can't use, I will have to make a bunch more or add really big sashings and borders. I think I'll let this one sit awhile.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Zizzy-Dot Challenge Swap #8

Flour resist.

Here is Dotti's card. She says that besides the flour resist, she used water color pencils (got to get me some of those) and embossing. The picture doesn't show the embossing but there is a gold misting effect all over this card. Once again I like Dotti's card better than mine. She also used a different type of zig-zag on the outer edge that I have got to try.

Here is my card. I started with a hand dyed pink fabric, put on the flour resist, and let it dry. Then I tried crunching up the fabric and painted on some watered down blue dye, hoping I would get purple, but it didn't work out that way. I did a little machine stitching on it and then got to use those hot-fix metallics I got at the quilt show. I like the way it turned out, but no where near what I envisioned when I started.