Saturday, January 30, 2010

Egypt is now Good Earth

The Spirited Quilters of Duluth had a stitch in today, and I worked on the 2009 mystery challenge that should have been completed in December. I spent the year collecting brown and beige fabric for the quilt that was supposed to represent Egypt and not really stitching any of it, so today I cut and stitched brown/beige fabric together for 5 hours. I completed enough stitching for 5 rows of 36 pyramids (currently stitched in groups of 3). That makes 180 pyramids. The quilt calls for 1000. At this point, I need a nap. I don't know when this quilt will ever get finished, but I am calling it "Good Earth" or "Good Dirt," since that is what the brown stuff under my work boots is for goodness sake! (I like it best vertical, don't you?)

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Helping Haiti

Click on the Etsy shop link on the "Haiti By Hand" blog. I ordered my pin right after the earthquake, but they have lots of other really nice things donated by artists from all over.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

I picked up a "Crochet for Dummies" book at the library this week, and on the way home from work yesterday, I stopped at Yarn Garden on the Lawrenceville square. I picked up a skein of yarn and a crochet needle. At 2:15 this morning I finished this:
I am sure I don't hold the yarn correctly, nor do I turn the corners right, but man I love my new scarf. I think I am hooked. I want to learn more!

Oh, update on the shipping disappointments: 1 Ebay purchase was not insured, seller offered to refund price of item (.99), but not the shipping ($13). I decided to let this go. I need to work on my forgiveness skills though, this still registers on the anger meter. Haviland Limoges platter was insured and I have been fully reimbursed. Nice! The ironing board from Sears has now been returned to a UPS shipping store. I understand I will be fully reimbursed for that problem, too.
Note to husband: When wife gets a voice mail, and you listen to it, you might want to later tell her about it. Otherwise, when the UPS man shows up at the front door, you might find the item he came to pick up has been wrestled into the trunk of your wife's car, and is now sitting in a parking lot several miles away. I'm just saying.

Did I mention that I am taking two classes this quarter? I gotta go get ready to get to class.
See ya'll later.

Sunday, January 17, 2010


I got tired of cutting triangles, so I started a new project. As I was cutting this one out I originally planned to use all four of these fabrics, but did not like it, so now I have two smaller projects on which to practice my machine quilting. I am not sure if I should leave them as doll quilt or make them into pillows.
One of the tutors from school, Susan, gave me this lovely navy fabric.
And so now I am creating more UFOs and getting farther away from "Egypt."

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Egypt? Not even close.

Last year Spirited Quilters had a challenge. I showed you the winner of that challenge in a previous post. My quilt didn't get very far down the road to stitched. I kinda got stuck in the oh-I-need-to-purchase-brown-fabric phase. Honestly, I completely forgot to be a quilter and was quite happy to be a fabric collector.

But today I decided to dump the brown fabric collection onto my cutting table and see what I could do with it. Ah, now I have triangles. The mystery was that it was supposed to represent Egypt. I chose the all-colors-brownish to be the "Valley of the Kings." I think that was what it was supposed to be. Really my excitement over having to shop for fabric overcame any sense of mission to completion.

I hear we can still claim a finished quilt reward bead if we bring our finished mystery quilts to the January meeting. Nah, I'm not gonna make it. I decide to name this quilt "Good Dirt" for it's brownness.So now I still have this much fabric left to cut up. I am determined to cut at least a few triangles from each piece of fabric I collected for this quilt.
Then I remembered Brannock & Patek's Looking Back line of fabric for MODA. Yes! There are some beautiful brown fabrics in that collection!
I especially love this tobacco colored floral!

Haunting Reminder

Last night at Thimbles, I saw some beautiful quilt tops. Unfortunately, I forgot my camera. So in order to get this blog back to quilts, I am posting a vintage unfinished sampler top. I was delighted when I found it at the bottom of a box of misplaced projects. I had thought this was lost forever in one of my post-divorce moves.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Are You Kidding?

Oh goody, another package!

I can hardly wait!
Well, crap. Here we go again. Please notice the USPS "Ready Pack" carton.
The last USPS claim, on the previous broken platter, has been stamped "approved" on the USPS website. I have not received notification nor reimbursement, but it may be coming. I called Sears customer service to see what to do about the defective ironing board and was told to call back the "system is down." And I am sick with that coughing-sneezing-wish-I-were-in-bed-stuff. No more shopping online for me. EVER.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Ironing Board Drama

I wanted a new ironing board, so I went to Sears because I saw the one I wanted in their online catalog. Why wait for a delivered order when you have a Sears store less than 10 miles away? So I went to the store. They had none in stock, but told me I could go to the online terminal and order from there. I tried that, but the computer system was so ridiculous slow that I decided to return home to place my order. Two weeks later the ironing board order was taking too long, so I changed my mind and decided to cancel the back-ordered ironing board. My old one was was okay, and Christmas cost me more than I'd planned, so I called Sears to cancel the ironing board. I had not been sent a shipping confirmation, so I figured it would be no problem to cancel it. Oh, yes, it was a problem. The customer service clerk said "you may refuse delivery," or "return it to the store." So while I was awaiting the inevitable delivery, I changed my mind again and decided maybe I would keep it after all. I'd been wanting this particular ironing board for a couple of years, so okay now I was looking forward to it again. It came today. DO YOU SEE that it cannot sit level? Not EVEN A LITTLE LEVEL! OH MAN, now I have to go BACK to the store to return the darn thing. Who says online shopping is easy? I hate this. AND THE SHIPPING is NOT REFUNDABLE!? Are you kidding me?! SERIOUSLY!? Something that was not in stock at the store? That I could have tested for level before I took it home? I have to pay for shipping? REALLY. OH, I GUESS maybe you can tell I'm mad.STUPID DARNED PAIN IN THE A** purchased online DELUXE IRONING STATION.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Washing Machine Drama

Note to self: Do not cut the sweaters apart before you machine felt them. Well? How the heck was I supposed to know? The wash-machine repair guy was quite happy to unclog the machine. You know. For a price.
This is Kitten-safely-out-of-my-way-because-she-is-in-the-fish-tank.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Just Do It

Yeah, yeah, I know; that phrase is taken, but it is what I decided: Just do it (already)! I have been whining about not having a flat surface to quilt on. I really thought DH would get me that sewing cabinet for my Bernina (I've almost paid it off) as a Christmas gift, but he is immune to incessant hints and complaints. So I got money for Christmas. One-third of what I turned around and gave to my boys for Christmas. Isn't adult responsibility grand?
Oh, it is my sore throat talking. I have been struggling with it (my throat) since Friday. I am tired and cranky. But I am QUILTING! I don't feel as pitiful when I am laying down straight furrows in layers of cotton. I don't. It is like a tonic.
My tools are primitive: gardening gloves from the Dollar Store with the fingers cut out ala Peggy Barkle's suggestion, fancy printed bifocals from Tuesday Morning and painter's tape from Home Depot. This is Samurai Squares (see history of this quilt by clicking here) from a kit I'd purchased at Share the Spirit Quilts in Duluth before they closed. I had pieced it, layered it and quilted stabilizing lines then pretty much forgot about it.
I need practice at machine quilting because I have allowed myself to get stuck when I come to that point. Tonight I decided to jump right in. I will even attempt free motion on the large white areas. Yes, I will. I think I will. Maybe as soon as next weekend.

Back in the day, I did all my quilting by hand. So tedious. I really like this fancy new machine stuff. Really. I just need to jump in and DO IT. Below is an example of my hand work from the first quilt I ever completed (entirely by hand).

Friday, January 8, 2010

Spinning my wheels INDOORS

Remember this little gem that I started at church, and I could never get a good picture of it? Well I still can't get a good picture of it, but I have added a shape I found in a book. It is supposed to be a flower on the quilt it came from, but I thought it looked pretty good on this quilt. You know, to break up the solid areas. Now, after I've sewn on an orange one by hand, I am not sure I like the orange ones. I like the floral ones though. Should I just remove the orange ones? Or carry on? MOM, I need you. Why do we live so far apart?
Oh, and this week I have been getting packages from Ebay. I am putting plates on the walls of my plantation pink guest room, and I found a Haviland Limoges platter that had "Kansas City" stamped on the back, so I was excited to win it. But when it arrived it was in pieces. I took it to the post office to see what the procedure was for filing a claim, and the supervisor told me the despite the numerous (6 or more) layers of bubble wrap, the box was "too flimsy." Now wait just a minute. You mean there is fine print to that "if it fits, it ships" claim on boxes from the USPS? Really?
56 words


On the SECOND time I took the test. On the first attempt I got 12 WPM.

Snow Day! Yippee!

My Aunt Katie, of Primitive Woolens blog, was showing how much snow they have in Missouri, so I thought I'd post a photo of the snow that has shut down Atlanta area schools for today. It is not so much the snow that causes problems here, but the ice that forms when snow melts on contact with warm streets and then freezes as the temperatures drop during the night. Last night the wind picked up, and it was frigid cold and icy this morning. Not too bad now though (11 a.m.). I find that Crocs make good all weather slippers and match whatever sleepwear I happen to slide into after work. These pants are part of my pink-flamingo-trailer-park-flannel-jammie ensemble.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Thinking about quilts

Once the kids left, I decided to lay out my old quilts so they can breathe. I hate to have them folded up, so I decided to stack them on the bed in the guest room. Here are the birds from Andy's baby quilt:
and bumble bee detail:
Then Kitten claimed it as her own:
She was playing too rough with my oldest quilt, and when I asked her to move (very kindly asked her to move),
she copped an attitude. She was quickly ejected from the room.
On both Andy's baby quilt and the princess feather, since I had started them way back in the stone ages, I used both hand and machine quilting to finally get them finished in this (past) decade. I didn't have a clue how to free-motion, but I think the grid was the right choice anyway.
This is one of Mom's smaller quilts. It is called "Star of Hearts," and it is a pity to leave it folded up in a closet. She gave this to me last summer.
And this is the "Advanced Sampler" Mom used to teach (also way back in the stone ages). My husband fell in love with this when he saw it on the bed. It actually goes real well in this room with the "plantation" pink walls even though the quilt is more red.
Tomorrow it is back to work.