Sunday, August 31, 2014

tie dye....er day


it's a gray day here, hot and humid too, so no beach but no problem!  baby quilt is ready to tie.  due to space limitations, this is the way it gets done.  start in the middle of course and then work out either side.  the binding fabric is at hand also...the orange polka dot...so should get completed in the next day or two.  then some swap squares and i can move on in UFO land.  the peek of the pinwheel quilt on the right is the end of my bed, yeah it's THAT close.  i have about the same amount of room on the other side of the bed as well, but formulating some plans to generate some additional sewing/sleeping space.  this quilt plus some applique on the hawaiian are on my list today...and who knows what else....call it serendipity!

Saturday, August 30, 2014

10 quilting secrets





ok, have seen this around blogland and decided to jump in....confession, they say, is good for the soul and these may or may not be new to those of you who follow and read sort of regularly.

1.  yes, sew over pins and yes, i do occasionally break a needle.
2.  don't believe in using fusibles on my quilts....they are too new and who knows what the long-term result will be
3. not a perfectionist quilter; occasionally points don't match, seam junctions don't match; not worth losing sleep over
4.  don't square up my quilts as a rule, occasionally yes but not regularly
5.  yes,  do have too much fabric and yes i do buy more...have slowed down but not stopped
6.  yes,  do like aurifil best; use others but prefer aurifil for its thinness...all my girly machines love it
7.  no longer trek to many quilts shows; don't have to, internet fills that void nicely
8.  not a big fan of hexies....even tho i am making an amish honeycomb (hexagons) quilt but they are big ones, like 4"....little and teeny tiny ones take too much time for me
9.  would never make a yo-yo anything in my life
10.  no fan of "turning twenty" or similar boring patterns

there you have it....so you can continue to read or not, your choice.   so what is on my quilty plate?  tying the baby quilt....all ready to start first thing sunday...hawaiian progress continues at snail's pace.  then some batik swap squares and i can move on to another UFO.  so are you ready to confess?


"sister" swap goodies


so how great is this...one day after my actual birthday, this lovely package of goodies comes in the mail from kathy over at qreative quilts for the "it's a sister swap" thing.  apparently she has been reading my blog in order to choose these beautiful items so perfect for me.  first, a kaffe fassett pillow that goes in my sewing chair, some nice civil war fabrics, an adorable journal with angel cover and the delish beach bag that is nearly all paper pieced.  this gal is a wizard at paper piecing, i tell ya!  the two photos show back and front and i cannot decide which is better.  course, having my name on it makes it ultra personal and absolutely perfect for just about anything, almost too nice for the beach, know what i mean?  it has a large zipper pocket on one side and 2 open pockets on the other when you peek inside.  check out her blog for other beautiful items she has made....thank you, kathy, for such wonderful surprises!  **** i mailed my package yesterday so once it's revealed, i'll post photos of what i sent, which i hope will be equally well received.  i don't do many swaps now because of prohibitive postage rates, but this is one i'd be happy to do again.  thank you, michele, for being such a super hostess!  *** well reality bites and my 3-day birthday weekend has come to an end. now i get to work for 3 days while others relax, but no matter, i had a terrific "weekend" and it won't always be this way.  i'm grateful to have a job with so many positive aspects.  just hoping i'll be able to find another when i move.  **** and last, it's 57 days to retreat...coming fast now and gonna be busy until departure getting stuff ready to take.  ooohh lancaster at harvest time...how great is that!

Friday, August 29, 2014

the past lives on.....



on a lark, went to google this morning to look up the previous owner of my antique sewing table.  it belonged to my ex-husband's grandmother, lila, and was given to me by my ex-father-in-law on the death of his wife, lila's daughter, maud erminie.  this is what i found.  top photo is lila at age 9 in 1886 and bottom photo is lila and her daughter, willena.  the spooky thing is, the top photo is a close resemblance to my own daughter, miss B.   also of interest, when i was married to miss B's father, his aunt, willena (above left) gifted me with a box of fabric scraps, patterns and patchwork pieces that belonged to lila, most of which i used to fix/create some vintage things.  and no, miss B did NOT inherit the (ahem) large nose, though she thinks hers is too large.  could have been worse, my dear!  anyway, i think lila would be happy to know her sewing table and scraps have been put to use....

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

shameless promotion

have officially arrived on the cusp of the 3rd act of my life.  hoping all i have experienced and learned thus far will stand me in good stead, and that God will allow me many more days here with my dear family.  it's the big 65, retirement age for some but not me.  i don't feel 65, hoping i don't LOOK 65 either.  when my grandmother was 65 she wore hairnets, had white hair, took daily afternoon naps and wore clunky, laced, thick-heel orthopedic shoes.  the naps i understand as i often don't sleep long enough or get up very early, but the other stuff is totally foreign to me.  and what might a maine girl have to celebrate her birthday?  you guessed it....lobster!


these just came out of the pot and are begging to be tasted, so one must bear up!  LOL...have a wonderful day, even if it isn't YOUR birthday!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

you probably don't....


EVER buy fabric that you just love without any idea at all how to use it, but confess that i do.  case in point, this piece....a half yard.  pretty colors, nice jacobean-esque print and outlined in gold....it called to me like a siren song and i caved.  i was playing in the stash the other day and came across it again, still loving it and thinking i should pull some fabics that "go" with it and think of a project, or at least cut off some strips to include in some scrappy projects going on right now.  but time was short and i just left it in the stash for another time.  i felt quite rich indeed with my stash and all the colors and patterns.  much like a fingerprint, it's mine alone, a collection born out of things i chose, others that were gifted....i can't wait to see it all neatly stacked in a cabinet like fine wines to inspire me and bring those project ideas swirling around in my head to life.  making my fingers itch already! 

Monday, August 25, 2014

M is for....

monday and mending too!  exercised my frugal gene and did some much needed repairs on not only some "unmentionables" but also an old drunkard's path quilt i made in the 1980s.  for this i had to fire up the old viking and her super zig-zag stitch.  now, i love phoebe and her perfect little stitch but she does have limitations, first of which is the sheer weight of the machine.  when i sew super fast on phoebe it feels like sometime she might just fly off the table, but not with the old viking.  this ultra-heavy, solid steel plaything is no lightweight at all.  she and trudy were constructed to last a lifetime and it may well be several before either gives up the ghost.   trudy and her treadle trappings were not meant to move around at all, and even though the old viking is considered a portable machine, one wouldn't want to carry her very far at all.  whereas phoebe, the little darling, is able to move anywhere quite easily.   so it seems i have the best of all machine possibilities, doesn't it?  **** summer is BACK!  i predict some beach time this week, at least 2 days and what better way to herald retirement age than lounging in the sand and playing in the surf......now time to check the list!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

birthday goodies!

after a long 8 hours at work on saturday, arrived back at the dungeon to find some birthday goodies in the mail.  first, from my dear kiddos these birthstone earrings PLUS a magazine subscription...aren't they lovely?  i think so too and will be wearing them on my birthday for sure.  next up is a squishie from vic in NH....and she made an adorable little repro quilt for me plus some gorgeous fabric to fondle.  we love the same fabrics so it's easy to find ones we both love....these will get popped into the washer today.


as for us in maine, we are still chilly at a brisk 53 degrees here this morning.   i have heard summer is coming back this week for a few days, so hoping there are more beach days in our future before fall arrives permanently.  *** busy making lists for fall retreat and planning which projects to take.  oh, almost forgot, one more birthday surprise to show....


a pair of karen kay buckley serrated scissors for precision fabric cutting....i had a small pair that evaporated somewhere which were super for applique, so i replaced them.  ***  my sunday to-do list is made and hoping to get a few things finished so can continue on busting stash!






Saturday, August 23, 2014

up to date!

yep, the block for week #4 is done so i am current with this sew-along.  this is very good indeed.  i've also been doing some secret sewing, which i will be able to share very soon.  plus the hawaiian...despite working on it nearly all month, i am only about half done with the third quarter of getting the top basted.  i may just continue on with it, hoping it's ready to baste by the end of the year....maybe?   ****  we are in a cool spell here, this morning was 59 and has now climbed up to 61.  fans and a/c units are off, and i'm actually wearing sweat pants today.  **** it has been a tough week overall but not so tough it couldn't be tamed.  still suffering negative effects of an unnecessary surgery in 2010, which cannot fix itself.  but finding a provider who will facilitate this here in maine is nearly impossible.  until then will hobble along and be grateful it isn't worse. 

Sunday, August 17, 2014

then there were 3....

week 3 of the marcus bros sew-along and voila, 3 blocks done!  have even amazed myself with the way keeping up with this short-term quilty event.  getting plenty of applique done on the hawaiian too, but still a ways to go.  here is a photo of the 3 blocks together...this is gonna be a cute little quilt i think!


a gray and fallishly cool day here in maine....summer will be back later this week but for today the slate is clean and just planning on doing some sewing  and relaxing.   ***  the lexington stash is all washed and dried and ready to use.  think i'm gonna just look at it for a while and enjoy...