new employee at the LQS

Well, I'm off to the LQS for my second day of work. It's so much fun spending an entire afternoon there! May I roll you some fat quarters? May I cut you some fabric??



Got my June BOMs done. That's a 6" and a 12" above, the first being a smaller version of the regular BOM and the second being my own ongoing alternate version that has the same beige background fabric in each month's block and a different Westminster Kaffe Fassett-type fabric each time. I do not even want to tell you how long it took to digitize and machine stitch the 6" applique piece below. Maybe I should switch to hand applique, it would be so much faster. But I do love to digitize.

The little applique kit is available each month, like so:

Cute as can be, eh? Well, I forgot to buy one on LQS BOM Day, so made a trip back to get the kit. Haven't seen that darn kit since I walked out of the LQS with it. Where is it? I just cleaned up my sewing studio, so it should be out in plain view. Somewhere. Considered a third trip to get a second kit, but decided to recreate it myself so as long as I was doing that, I added a second bud and bird.

Watched episodes of Tales of Avonlea while doing this block. Has anybody watched these lately? I love them so much. Just finished Dark and Stormy Night, remember that one? That was done like an old overly dramatic serial story in a magazine of the era. Absolutely darling, and guess who played the romantic but dangerous male? Christopher Reeve in an unrecognizable voice. How did he make his voice sound so different? Very bittersweet to see him riding around so elegantly on his black horse and looking so, so handsome.

My treasured darling only son got a mammoth speeding ticket last night. He's had his license for like two weeks. I smoulder in anger.


A Kit

I got completely caught up on blog-reading earlier today. Such a pleasure to read everybody's posts; I have been so behind on them.

Made this little cell phone bag this evening with a pattern/kit from QuiltSmart that I got at my LQS (you know the one!). It's also a perfect fit for my camera. The pattern has fusible interfacing for three bags with the various markings on them, along with the black cord and velcro closing. It's really fun to make.

After jogging my little jog route twice early this morning and spending 5 hours during the permitted water rationing time, watering various plants and trees to try to keep them alive in this ferocious drought, I hid in the air conditioning away from the predicted high of 98 here in Atlanta. To torture myself, I looked up the weather for Door County: a high of 78. Oh, that sounds like heaven.


Friday Evening

Today I made this 2 1/4" x 2 1/4" needlepunch necklace. It goes into one of the little frames made for needlepunch and other small creations:

Last Tuesday was Stash Sisters evening. One attendee brought this pretty applique quilt she had recently purchased. Any opinions on the date for this quilt? Remember when the print that is in it was so widely available in the 70s (and is now being reprinted)? The ladies there said that the print was sold from the 40s to the 70s.

All of these were brought in for Show and Tell:

aaaaaaaaaar don't you love this pretty little Jo Morton??

This was one done in a class in which the motifs were customized for each quiltmaker; thus, the "donkey" in this quilt (in the center) to symbolize the ex-husband...

is this cute or what? I'm so glad they are reproducing some of these old graphics.
Isn't this a cute idea? Little Quilts sold these during the Olympics; the yo-yos symbolize the five Olympic rings.

This is a tote made from a kit. A 6x24" rotary cut ruler slides into the bottom and as you see, a cutting mat fits into the main part. Inside has lots of handy pockets. Fantastic!



First heirloom apple of the season! This one is Dixie Red. Description here says it is an old Southern variety, sold extensively long ago, is available again, and is a handsome, good keeper. Tasted pretty good. I don't get to taste many of my apples since roaming urban gremlins who did not buy, water, feed, and care for the trees think they deserve the fruits more than I do. Ah, the joys of uber-urban life. Hie me to the rare countree....

Another shot of the inside-the-urban-perimeter front yard, further showing how Karen continues to think she is still living out in the midwestern countryside, even though that was half a lifetime ago. You can't take the Pennsylvania Dutch out of the girl.

Ah, the Jo Morton class last night was fun, very inspiring. Lazy-minded as I've been, I forgot my camera so cannot show you the Show and Tells, Dear Reader, until our class leader emails hers to us. The subject last night was the Double X quilt, with plans to begin the little autograph quilt for next time, and also plans to work on the little sewing roll-up and needle holder. I believe we are to receive a little fabric surprise next meeting for a future project. Hot doggies, we love presents :-). My own Show and Tell consisted of the below, with me all inspired to fill in the center area with .... Something Wonderful. But what. Class leader suggested a weeping willow, using embroidery and wool felting. Sounds pretty good, eh? Me thinking a girlie with either a wool felted dress or an applique dress, maybe out of the bright cheddar showing in the photo? Birdies on branches? A Pennsylvania Dutch motif? Gotta think of something good because I'm dying to fill it in while the Quilting Muse is here. The central fabric is the same linen matka that the purse was made out of. After making that darling purse, I had to get my own little supply of matka. It is very, very cool.

Quite bad storming while I was driving home from class. Car lifting from the pavement, to-the-ground lightning, stunning inky sky (and me without my camera). We had already had hail before class began. Through the nervousness, I thought about a quilt class called Quilt Studios or Stash Classification or Stash Field Trips or something like that, where for each class session, you would go visit one another's sewing areas. And discuss how the various ones are arranged, etc. Would that not be Totally Cool??



Jack and I are kindred spirits in the Lazing Around Like a Slug department lately (but seriously is this not the dearest, albeit rather eerie cat?). Tonight is the first Jo Morton class in two months. Am I ready with my quilt? Have I even started?

Here I am frantically trying to get at least the top together in the closing hours. And really, I just want to lay around and read the new Ann Rule book.


Punching Machine

In 24 hours my attitude towards embellishment machines went from, "uh? do those exist?", to "how utterly unnecessary I'll just do it by hand", to "omg I can't let the sun go down on my sewing studio without adding a punching machine to the inventory", and here is the addition, a HuskyStar ER10.

Hope I like this one. I drove for the second time up to where a Joann's and a Sewing Center were, fully intending to get the BabyLock I had tried out earlier in the day in the Sewing Center, but ended up getting the HuskyStar from the Viking folks inside Joann's, even though their model was no longer working (the receptacle where you plug in the power cord was loose and had evidently broken from its interior connection, so I'm going to be very careful when plugging in mine). The nice thing about the BabyLock is that it has a seven-needle array, while the other models that I know about have five. However, I liked the clear plastic safety guard on the HS.
Has anybody taken the Studio Makeover class on Quilt University?


almost fini

All done except for the purse handles.

Ah, the outline embroidery around the felted shapes really completes the picture. I can't wait to get some wool roving and felting needles of my own to do another project. I'll take these over to Little Quilts tomorrow morning.

To those who asked about the technique, once your design is drawn on whatever fabric you're going to use (wool or cotton or whatever), you take a (very small) bit of wool roving, lay it on the fabric with a square of foam beneath, and poke at the roving with a felting needle, which is a long needle that they say has a little barb on the end, but I can't feel it when I run my finger along towards the end. You poke poke and add more or remove as you need to. I cut a long piece of foam and squished it into the blue jeans leg; it's fun to have a craft to use on blue jeans where you don't have to take the seams apart. I found myself shaping the wool with quick moves of the felting needle in between pokes. There are also multi-prong needles. You know a few companies have sewing machines that only do felting. Wouldn't that be a kick now. Although I wonder with those how you do the fine shaping that I'm doing now with the needle by hand. The designer of this Heart to Hand pattern says that the felting in the blue jeans sample held beautifully through several washings, and eventually she had a little "re-poking" session to reset the wool.


Bird and Bluebells from Heart to Hand

Traced on to the blue jeans:

Finished felting on the jeans:

and the purse so far. It is on some very elegant, gorgeous fabric:

This darling pattern is from Heart to Hand. I'm trying to get this done tonight so I can deliver it to the shop tomorrow. Wish me luck, I'm not the world's best at actually getting things done :-).



Awk! Haven't posted in so long. I have 575 posts to catch up via Bloglines. Squeak! The last few weeks of school were so difficult to endure that I was unable to post. Then my computer utterly crashed this week. All is well now, but at first I thought I had lost my pictures, files, and designs (machine embroidery and quilt) for good. They certainly no longer showed up on the hard drive and HP online chat folks had told me that they were gone for good. Turns out there are File Recovery softwares readily available (did you all know that? that a later HP online chat gent clued me in on). I knew that forensic experts and various businesses have been able for years to dig into a computer's hard drive and recover lost files, but didn't know we could also do that ourselves. It worked (after hours and hours of effort) and now I have thousands and thousands of images to get reorganized (thank goodness, I was running out of projects -- not --) since the images fell out of their carefully organized folders and many lost their little filenames. My own images are mixed in with strange and unwanted images from software programs, visited web pages, spyware, and who knows what because there are scads of things I certainly have never seen before. It's like looking at somebody else's computer. A somebody else who is quite odd and bizarre and not interested in, shall we say, quilts and crafts. Heed this warning, backup your files.

An exciting thing happened this morning: I went to Little Quilts (when do I not?) and came home with all the goodies and instructions to make two items that may turn out to be shop samples if they work out. How cool is that? I'm sorry I have no photos for this post but really, really wanted to get posting again. Love you all and I will be looking forward to reading a few of your posts again on my breaks from this intriguing shop sample project.