Last night I put the binding onto the quilt along with a sleeve and today at lunch time, I managed to sew down about 15 inches or so of the binding by hand. Looks good so far. It's always hard with a really multi-color quilt to figure out bindings. I guess that's why some people avoid them all together.
Tonight - a more mundane job - clear off the sewing machine table. Clean up the sewing machine itself. Close all those pins on the nine-patch. Surely you didn't think that just because I'd committed to showing that other quilt that I'd lose interest in quilting this quilt, did you? :-)
After a chat with one of my quiltshow folks, I decided I was being unreasonable in my belief that I could actually quilt and bind my amish nine patch quilt. Yes I no doubt COULD get it done for the show, but the amount of personal stress, having committed myself to getting it done would not be worth the pleasure. So, what to do. I've always debuted a quilt at NYQ!. OK - so an opportunity to bind and complete one of the other quilts on the almost finished pile.
So tonight, being a good person, I first hung the nine patch back up, pins and all. Hold that thought. I didn't even close the pins. I then trimmed up the October Sky I quilt. a little off it was in measurement in terms of being square and equal on all sides. I tried steaming it into submission. No go. I went ahead and made the binding and the sleeve. Looked again at the two sides and they were still not equal. Ran a line of stitching and gathered that in the quarter inch or so it needed, over the long side of the quilt. That's like nothing to take in, but it will mean that the quilt will hang flat. Ah math. It's a good thing.
My recipes for this coming feast come from Sacramental Magic in a Small-Town Cafe by Br. Peter Reinhart. This book is circa 1994 and may not be easily found, but the recipes in it are worth keeping your eyes open for copies.
4/27/2002 06:53:00 PM
Definitely some "work" time today. In our arsenal of tools:
Appleworks, which I've used for years to do basic graphic design stuff,
Microsoft Office - new to me and my mac but have to admit is a powerful and well done addition. If only for the ease of sharing files with Windows users it would be good but it's nice to use.
Eudora - wonderful friend and companion for lo these many years on the net. The power of filters.
by the by, I hope you all got to see the full moon tonight. Wow. When I left work about 7:15, there was a small but pretty sunset going on. I caught a few glimpses of it in my rear view mirror and all at once, as I brought my eyes forward again, BANG- there was this HUGE pale moon hanging just above the horizon. At first it was almost sky color. Then it colored slightly as the sunset went down to dark pink.
As I drove on homewards, the moon rose and fell as I went over the hills and around bends, rising higher each time it reappeared, growing a bit smaller. As I came into our small village, a narrow, solitary band of cloud made a cap for the moon. As I pulled into the driveway, only a shred of the moonglow appeared at the bottom of the cloud. I went inside too.
4/26/2002 10:29:00 PM
whoooohooooo. Had an excuse not to do the computer work I was supposed to, and so I finished making all the pink strips into pink squares. oooooooooh, the call of the sewing machine.
Yup - long day at work. Wondered why my schedule was 11-8 but knew it was correct. Arrived to find the inventory guy working out front and wondering why he was there.
Came home, found my landscape quilt (The view from here) was returned with a huge red ribbon, a program book, judge's comments and a suggestion that someone might want to buy it. That's cool.
Meanwhile, in avoidance of other work I should be doing - I'm still cutting strips into squares. Almost to the end - I'm about to start into the medium-dark pinks. Do keep in mind that all these two inch squares are just for the pieced part of the thing - after those are done, I still need the larger plain squares that go inbetween. ooooh yeah baby.
This morning on the way to work - so much of that harsh yellow-green of tree buds against a perfect blue sky. Still some red buds here and there. That full full green that is new grass. I saw a group of deer and they were wearing their ragged winter coats. Must feel good to shed out all that stuff and wear the sleek red-brown summer coat again. What's not to like about Spring? And tonight - a bright moon looking down peacefully.
Last night I quilted the January journal quilt. Today I brought all four little quilts to work so I could show them at tonights NYQuilts! meeting. Very interesting seeming reactions to them. They're a little hard to explain... journal quilts? one each month? Why is this one January?March?April? February has hearts on it, so it's a little easier to identify with. And will you sew these together into one big quilt when they're done? Why are you doing this???
What the heck is it all about? I'm sure not sure. OK, at times I'm sure I don't have a clue.
Tonight, I quilted the January journal quilt -- all 8.5 x 11 inches of it. Turned out quite ok, and I had fun playing with zig zaggy stitches. Hung all four of the completed little quilts up to look at. Hmmmm. Dark. Darker. Dark. GREEN/PINK. Next month is half way through this project. Dark. Darker. Dark.
I know from experience with fabric that the darkness makes the lighter fabrics, well, light. Lighter. Light against the dark woods. Moon against sky. Next month is May. Traditional beginning of spring or summer - May Day. Rebirth. Light against the dark. Building towards the longest day in June. Then to darkness again.
4/23/2002 11:10:00 PM
After such a wonderful rather strange upbeat kinda weekend, today was a big disappointment. Can't really go into it, but it was a let down, big and small. It was really grey and wet when I came out of work today and it totally matched my state of mind.
Came home, woke up the sleeping computer.... uh, hello - computer - wake up.... c'mon, time to wake up. Hmmm no sleep indicator. Nothing. It's warm but nothing. Had to hit the reset button for the first time ever. Woke up but icons missing in the dock etc. So I spent the rest of the night backing files up to CD (which I had planned to do on Saturday) and running Norton's blah blah blah.
The only thing most people can agree on today is that it would be a good day to have stayed longer in bed. Not sure if it is the business of the weekend, or the greyness of the morning or the prospect of **huh** snow and sleet on the morning commute. Yup. Nothing like New England weather.
Mrs. Robin was on duty this morning with the eggs. she flew only as far as the hedge so those eggs will be toasty today. Good thing since it's winter coat weather!
4/22/2002 03:20:00 PM
First off welcome Wanderlust visitors! You picked a good weekend to peek in here - earthquakes, robins, quilts, lots of blog posts.
I did do some of the things on my to-do list this afternoon, and it felt good to do that AND it was tiring too. As a reward, I started changing the two inch wide strips as shown below into two inch squares. I probably got about half the greens cut. Not very exciting stuff. So while I was doing that, I thought about the April journal quilt. I had stuck some stuff up on it and while I took a break from cutting, I stitched the stuff down. It's done.
We are worried of course, about worrying the mother robin too much and forcing her off the nest. What an internal struggle that must be for any bird - sitting in one place too long, wondering if fate is about to come and carry you off -- versus - the overpowering pull of those mysterious small ovals. The internal clock that pulls you back from food to keep them warm enough...
Today -- a fourth egg!
4/21/2002 03:04:00 PM
Wow, what a day! First the earth moves. Then a robin surprise. Then dinner. Then my April Journal Quilt begins, using the trimmings from all that green and pink/red fabric. Phew.
I've just finished cutting umpteen-dozen-plus strips for the new quilt. Now, mind you I shouldn't really be working on a new quilt, but I suppose it's one of those things that just has to happen when its time comes. So I cut out a pile of pink strips, and a pile of green strips and they're looking pretty good. All this despite the fact that I'm pretty much not thought of as a "pink and green" kinda person. It's not what you think. And it's definitely not the cute little pink and green you might imagine.
Anyway, it occurred to me while I was rearranging a few of the strips that it's really ALL about color. Robins' egg blue, sky blue, sky blue pink, rosebud pink, garden green, fields of gold. Keep your eyes open at all times.
4/20/2002 06:57:00 PM
First the earth moves. Then a robin flies away from the front porch to show this. Like a bit of sky on a grey rainy day. The world is full of surprises if you keep your eyes open and keep looking up.
And while we're looking up at the sky, how about this wonderful moon photo? Thanks NASA.
4/19/2002 11:53:00 PM
OK, silliness is down the hall.
Today was silly by some standards, and exciting by others. At work, the excitement was all about lunchbreak. During lunch I had my ears pierced again. Yes, now I have not one, not two, but four holes in my head. At least, holes in my ears. I feel very cool.
On the way home, I was surrounded by spectacular sky. Gold on the south west, towering pink edged thunderheads ahead in the east. whoa. I raced home and went out on the roof. Below are some of my shots.
Forsythia, shot from above I noticed how strange the forsythia looked in the odd evening glow, so I took a few photos. They weren't quite this odd, but I didn't adjust this photo's color, just the normal levels tweaking.
It's true that many people think I'm talented, creative even. Little do they know that when it comes to floral applique.... let's just say I'm working on four simple basket blocks. I'm directed to fill each basket with some simple floral fillings. I'm shown examples: roses, bee balm, cockscomb.... what did I end up with? Two things that my husband deemed were prickly pears -- I was going for some sort of cactus, so I guess that wasn't too bad. Although he did say if I put small eyes on them, they'd look like rabbits. Oh dear. My other choice was a very simple folded flower. Tried yo-yos. Nope. These came out looking something like mutant pinks. Oh dear.
oh yeah - whatta way to spend a saturday. I spent the entire frustrating day getting some cgi-sorta forms ready to go for NYQuilts! Yeah. I have to say that Adobe GoLive 6 really rocks. Very stable, some nice fixes from 5 beyond the stability issues. Little things that mean a lot like adding a table row above OR below the one you've selected. Doing the forms themselves was really easy. Making them work on tripod stunk out loud. Once I realized the problem it wasn't so hard, but getting to that point was frustrating. Of course, if I did form stuff more than once a year, it would be ever so much easier.
Last night I rummaged around in my "big pieces" pile o' fabric, looking for backing fabrics for the two quilts I'm ready to quilt. (see April 6th entry for other photos of the new quilt and the nine patch.) Years ago fabric used to be 44-45 inches wide. Narrow fabric was 36 inches wide. Now you're lucky if you get 40 inches of width to work from. Long story short, I did find some fabric and only had to piece one of the backs, in a very simple way. Moral of the story - aiming for smaller quilts? get them in under 40" in measurement in one direction so the backs are straightforward.
"Every Wednesday, the staff at Crazy Apple Rumors Site answers common help questions based on our vast experience with Apple products and our fervent belief that we know more than you do.
Q: My brand new 2002 iMac arrived last week and I've unpacked it and set it up. I have to admit, I'm a little upset. At no time has the iMac mimicked any of my movements, like it does in the ad. I feel that Apple has falsely advertised the features of this product. Am I missing something or should I initiate a class-action law suit?....."
Here's a nice surprise. In today's mail was a small envelope, and inside that envelope was another envelope and inside that -- a check for $75 -- my prize money from the Smoky Mountain Quilt show in Knoxville! whooo hooo! Nothing like a reward to keep you going.
My silly impulse reward? A new lipstick while waiting for my prescription at the drugstore. How girly is that?
4/09/2002 06:24:00 PM
there are only a few things that make me want to hang out with some other artists of various sorts. One is a question that bugs me from time to time. Am I totally nuts for sitting there somewhat mesmerized by my own work while I'm in the middle of it? I could stare at it for hours I think. What does this get me? Sometimes I think it gets me the ability to work in a more instinctive way on the next step/phase, but I have no real way of knowing this or not. Anyway, that's something I'd like to know from others.
Today I was off work, having worked on Sunday. Tomorrow, another early day so our inventory manager can have his day off. I did accomplish some things and now I'm heading out to pay bills, return yet another lexar smart media reader etc. Ah the exciting life I lead. heck, I even downloaded a new trial version of Freehand 10!
Totally pooped. Between inventory at work and going in early today and it being a long day and daylight savings confusion.... well, I'm pooped. I measured the new quilts tonight to see about backs. Then I cut out the pieces for the NYQ! raffle quilt blocks. That was pretty daring considering how pooped I am. Me - a rotary cutter, a limited amount of fabric and half a brain. uh huh.
I'm sipping a fine glass of port now and thinking about that nice soft pillow.
No need to worry about the whining anymore -- I finished all the long seams last night, sewed the two halves together (the final long seam) and figured out a way to hang the thing up in my sewing room. Top is DONE DONE DONE! Now to decide if it gets a binding or no and then I can layer and start quilting. The amish inspired nine-patch is also ready for quilting.
I like having two quilts to quilt on at the same time. One often sparks new designs for the other. I have a larger plan to do the nine-patch and only a couple ideas to start with for the new quilt.
Titles are always interesting I think. Rarely, the title is there at the beginning and stays put. Sometimes the quilt gets done with no title or with only a "working title." The nine-patch had a title in Sept as it was my guild challenge entry and had to have a quote or motto to go with it. So I chose "Order from Chaos" to reflect the orderly 9 patches in the center and the random, disorganized ones along the outer edges. I was looking at it recently and knew its real title is Summer Seen From September, 2001. I completed the top for this quilt on September 11, 2001. The other day I was thinking about this quilt and its quilting and I realized that both titles say sort of the same thing. Order from chaos takes on a different meaning though - a view of order (Summer) from Chaos (September). A little different from my original idea of looking back at the profusion of summer's bright flowers.
I've been pondering a title for the new quilt which has had not even a working title. After I hung it up and could see the whole, huge thing it seemed to me that the title might be something like "reflection and echo" since there seems to be some areas that are faint echos of other areas and the whole seems to reflect around the center black horizontals. Since this quilt is a descendent of my 9/11 quilt that title might be more than appropriate as well. I'm open to suggestion.
4/05/2002 02:51:00 PM
I've done the math twice now and according to my calculations, I will have sewed over 400 feet of seams by the time I finish the last long seam. yeah, I know - you'll be so glad that my whining is done about this you will think that it seems like about 400 miles of seams. Seems that way to me too.
If I push myself tonight perhaps I can finish the last 6 long seams.....
On a different note an interesting exchange with a co-worker has me still thinking.
I brought in matzo for Passover and have been sharing the box with my co-workers. This has brought about some interesting discussions about my being Jewish.
One asked me if I "practice my faith." My immediate response which might have sounded flip to some was "I don't need to practice my faith -- faith isn't something you practice." He understood and we chatted a few moments longer about observance etc. But I keep thinking about this - faith is what you hold as an essential belief. You can think about it, ponder it, examine it, doubt it -- but practicing..... What you do with your faith is act on it -- live it in other words -- use it to shape what you do. And so a simple box of matzot has made me think about my life and being Jewish and what that means.
while I'm pondering deep things, I can't help but wonder about all the conflict between Israel and its neighbors. To me, the nation of Israel is the community bounded by faith, not one determined by geographic boundries.. Why fight so hard and use religion as a reason to kill. As the passover story tells, the trip to the land "over the river Jordan" was as much (or more) about the journey - away from slavery and captivity - as it was about the destination. I realize that Israel is not the only country to use religion as a reason for killing.
On a different note - a huge file of favorites posted to photographica - well worth looking at, especially if you have a high speed or steady connection.
I posted some new photos to photographica myself tonight - including some shots of Mr and Mrs. Bill.
4/02/2002 02:31:00 AM
Gentle readers, you may have noticed a slight rearranging here tonight. I wanted to add a link to ARTproject and you'll find that link to the right. This is a gathering of art that has been ongoing since the attacks of September 11, 2001. I'm honored to say that my own quilt is listed there in Image Grid 17.
While doing that I spruced things up a bit, removing a few links, updating some others and tightening things up a bit. Wasn't too bad a job, using GoLive 6.
After that I sewed the first three seams on the second half of the new quilt. I'm officially half done with that part of the piecing. uh huh.
Wow. I have 14 of the 30 horizontal rows sewn together into one hunk that's approximately half the new quilt.
Took forever. Wasn't particularly fun. Lots of thread everywhere. Worry about seams popping open too far. Nothing much good on the TV. Seam after seam after seam. My practice: to use the clover seam ripper to open about five seam connections at a time. Align and sew for that distance, an inch and a half at a time. Open the next bunch. Sew those. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.
Darn what an exciting life I lead!
Had a nice day at my parents visiting with my brother and his family and my folks. Made PB cookies for my brother as a belated traditional birthday present. Thank goodness for the Kitchenaid!