Sunday, December 5, 2010

A fitting time to change gears

As it has been many months since I last blogged I decided to close this blog, however one does that? As you know from my blog, a lot has gone on in my life over the last year and surprisingly I am healthier and feeling a little better, despite a recent acquisition of a broken wrist (thankfully my left one which is NOT my dominant one). One learns to be extremely grateful whatever positive things can be taken away from tragedies, however large or small they are. Maybe because I am healthier and because of my wrist (and many other excuses) I haven't been quilting much and very much want to REALLY start. One thing I am promising myself is not to be working on more than two projects at a time. I have come to grips with the fact that I do get to bored to steadfastly stick to one but when two turns to four turns to too many it means you don't want to finish them and that is no longer true.

I will open another blog again, probably in the spring and although it will hopefully focus on quilting it will also be a little more broad. I have met some amazing people through blogging, quilting and Etsy and I intend to stay in touch with them through their blogs, Flickr site and Etsy shops. Thank you all to the people who wrote a comment to cheer me up. You don't have any idea how much those meant to me. To the people whose blocks I did not finish I do apologize and I do have them more than 3/4 finished so I will be sending them back to you to put the finishing touches on. I didn't intend to burden you with yet another thing to do and for that I'm sorry but I know how important it is to have a finished piece of work and to have people at least try to be true to their word and not just abscond with your beautiful fabric.

Stay warm or cool, wherever you may be. I am sitting looking out at a very dark, cold, snowy day in Rochester, New York thinking about getting on the sofa, under some blankets and watching a movie.

My best wishes to you for 2011 and may your hopes and dreams ripen in the new year!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

YIP 365.208 :: Potholders

YIP 365.208 :: Potholders
YIP 365.208 :: Potholders,
originally uploaded by stitchindye.
These potholders are inspiring. The combination of colors and fabrics is terrific and so is the quilting. I would want to hang them on the wall. How about making each one a block of a quilt. I would hate getting them dirty or worse yet, burnt. I want to learn how to make them.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

I did it!

I am almost finished with my two blocks for my house bee. I am so excited that I actually finished them and I like them! Next month is my month and I think I bought enough fabric for about fifty people. What was I thinking? I love my idea although it is based on someone elses so it will be very interesting to see how 11 other people interpret it. I'm just so glad to be getting things done and I have so many ideas for the next few quilts and enough fabric for about 100 quilts and I keep buying more. I've become one of those crazy people whose stash is taking over the room. I just love the fabric and the colors and the way I start thinking about combining the fabrics. I wish I could do it all day, every day. Time goes so quickly when I quilt. Hopefully someday... Pictures to be added tomorrow.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Moving right along...

To everyone's surprise, especially mine, I've actually started a few quilts so I can feel even more scattered and overwhelmed than I usually do, but I actually like them all. Of course they are all for different people and different occasions and the occasions wll probably have long since been over when the quilts are done but at least they'll always have the quilts to remember them by. I have taken some pictures and as soon as they're in the computer you can take a look. I've started doing some crewel embroidery and hope to incorporate it into some of the quilts. It's a wonderful handy craft that's easily transportable. My youngest daughter is home for the week before heading back to school and I'm going to try to make her a skirt before she leaves, let's add one more project to the list. Does everyone do this or am I a small handfull of people who seem to get overcommitted very easily. To the person who wrote a comment on my last post, would you mind identifying yourself, at least by your blog name? Thanks. Enjoy the remains of summer. Winston got a summer haircut yesterday and looks like quite a handsome little guy. Pictures will have to be added. Saw "Eat, Pray,Love" today.
If you've never been to Italy,you have to go, even just for the food. There is not word to describe it, nectar of the gods. Oh what I would give for some pasta and Italian wine and of course, Gelato!!!

Saturday, July 31, 2010

A New Craft Interest

I recently saw a book on Crewel Embroidery online so I ordered it. This turned out to be a great book with beautiful, modern Crewel designs. I did what I usually do when I get interested in something. I bought more books. Luckily and by chance, Rochester, New York has a fantastic store just for embroidery. They had everything I think anyone could want. The owner was quite knowledgable and when I showed her the book she was interested in why I got interested in this kind of embroidery as opposed to the more traditional embroidery. I told her that it generally went along with my style and I thought it would be a great addition to some quilting projects so she started me off with a hoop and thread. Usually I begin to get too anxious to start something at this point, afraid I won't be able to do it but we were going on vacation and it seemed the perfect time and size to try something new and so I did. As you can see (pictures to follow) I'm just at the beginning, but it's pretty easy and the shapes are fun and there are hundred, if not thousands of colors and types of yarn. Now I'm anxious to add a little embroidery to a quilt I started. I'll try it out soon. If you're interested in it, try it. It's really pretty easy. The book I bought first is entitled, "the new crewel by Katherine Shaughnessy. Have fun if you try it!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Where are the pictures?

I haven't gotten around to getting my camera and taking pictures of what quilts I'm working on and what I plan to work on. I think I'm going to change the name of my blog and the banner picture to more accurately suit what the blog represents or what I want it to represent so keep your eyes on it, the photos are coming. I think maybe a new camera that can get closer would be more helpful too. We'll see....

Sunday, July 4, 2010

This Time for Real

To those of you who dont know (and that can't be anyone who reads my blog, which aren't many people), I've been in two car accidents where I was rear ended in 2007 and 2009. I won't go into all the gorey details but at age 58 I've ended up with a significant back injury which I only recently was told may not get any better than it is. I'm not the type to give up so I got a new physical therapist and contacted my old, wonderful Yoga teacher and my forever, terrific chiropractor and we're all going to work on building up my muscles which have forgotten how to work and stop the muscles which are working and causing me pain to stop working and give up their job to the muscles who are supposed to be working. My core muscles (meaning, now my very flabby stomach) don't even know they're supposed to be doing anything so they're in for a big surprise because it's their turn now! I feel after three years all of "my team" is on the same page and doing the same things to turn this body into the best body it's ever been. The injury will clearly never go away but it's the muscles that are the culprits now and with a lot of work (on my part) things can really turn around. It may take a while but I'm optimistic. I'm going to be one of those 95 year olds you read about doing all these miraculous athletic feats.

Onto quilting. I have taken three months off of work (since mid-May) since my back was getting worse and my doctor and I decided that my life, as it was, needed to be re-evaluated, which you can see that it was. I also rested and hoped to spend a lot of time quilting, which unforunately I didn't, not sure why, but c'est la vie. I now have several quilts started or fabrics and patterns picked out and I feel like I'm on my way. It's hard to stay focused since I'll never be someone who can make a quilt in a week (how I wish I could do that) and the most amazing quilts in the world at that and because new fabric keeps coming out all the time it's hard not to keep buying and buying and not doing anything but I've vowed to cut down my buying at least and start working on what I've got or I'll be one of those people on the hoarding show only I'll be buried in fabric.

I also promise to stop writing so much since no one likes to read all this stuff and start taking a LOT more pictures so today because it's a gorgeous sunny day me and my camera will show you what I've been up to.

I'm also going to change the format of my blog. This one just doesn't seem to work for me so next time you might not recognize me as the same blog but I'll just be an improved blog with a lot less words and a lot more pictures! For those few people who have read or read my blog, "thanks" and that's my other mission, to let people know I'm here so I can get to know more quilters. Since I had to quit the bees I was in I feel very isolated but not yet ready to rejoin the bee world, too much pressure since I wasn't doing any of my own quilting but I'll be back there next year, but will start with one bee, not three and see how that goes before I join any others.

For those people who have corresponded with me your emails mean more than you can know and if you've forgotten I'm here, I am and your emails are still the support that keeps me going.
Thanks to all those wonderful quilters out there who contacted someone they didn't know to let me know they were there for me.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

New Beginnings

I've been out of work for a month now, exhausted from all the responsibilities of my job, home, family, etc., after being injured. I wanted to take this time to assess the condition of my physical and emotional health and adjust my schedule accordingly. I feel like I'm still at the beginning of this process but I have learned some things. The injuries I sustained from my two car accidents will be permanent. What will that mean? I won't know for a long time, probably years so I have to focus on what I have control over and can change and improve. I have just begun this process as well. Most importantly I have to pay attention to my body and follow what it's telling me to do. I will be thinking about who has been working with me, doing what and what, if anything has helped. Who are the caring people, who have some investment in my getting better. I will need their support and energy to heal. I've begun to assemble this group and will slowly be adding and deleting people. I want as much as is possible to be surrounded by people who are helpful. Unfortuantely, I am forced by the system to deal with car insurance companies, disability companies and medical care providers who complicate my life and whose aim runs counter to my goals. I am lucky to have found an extremely kind attorney who I believe is my guardian angel. His mission, which he has undertaken himself is as much as possible to keep the negative people away from me and manage them for me (thank you Joe!!) and to support me in my efforts to get healed.

I have actually begun to quilt. Of course in my spare time I've ordered more and more fabric but I have a few quilts I am actually working on and I'm feeling so happy about that. I had everything around me to get going but I couldn't. Now I am ready and I know I need to take this slowly and not start ten projects at once or they'll never get done. I do get bored easily and I know that it's okay to spend small amounts of time on a few extra squares or a drawing but not more than that. My focus is on getting quilts done, from start to finish, maybe working on two at the same time but no more!!!

Tomorrow pictures of my new beginnings. I think you'll like them. This feels right. I couldn't have done any of it wihout Winston, my true guardian angel who is with me always and when I feel desperate has kisses and snuggles ready to freely share. What a great little guy! Someone special brought him into my life. I can't help but smile and laugh out loud at his hysterical behavior and poses. He'll get me through this and I freely repay with kisses and snuggles as well.

I am not a religious person at all but I do believe that the goodness in people is what sustains us all. Why they are like that, why some of us can gain access to them and others don't seem to be able to, I have know idea but they have the power and as long as we leave ourselves open to receive their goodness

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Taking a Break

I decided to withdraw from my bees with a lot of mixed emotions. I was getting farther and farther behind and because I wasn't quilting I wasn't seeing any of my own ideas get done either. Fabric kept arriving in the mail and got added to the piles on the bookcase but nothing was getting done. Now I'm slowly getting started again. I've cut out a lot of block of animals prints that will probably just be a block quilt. I've cut out smaller blocks of different fabrics to make a nineblock quilt and I've used one of my favorite Heather Ross fabrics that will be combined with a solid so at least I'm starting. I'm happy with that for now. My life has been hectic with my daughter home from college for a month and then off to New York City for a 10 week summer internship. When she leaves there's a baby quilt all cut up for a friend and my daughter's quilt that was supposed to be done for freshman year that I want to be done for graduation! On the days when I feel awful I just take a break and say I hope it will be a better day tomorrow. It is a glorious summer like week in Rochester in May so something has to be pleasing whoever is in charge!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

New Beginning

In case you haven't noticed I haven't posted in a while. My life has felt like a whirlwind mostly centered around my health problems. I will be out of work for the next 6-8 weeks to "reorganize" my life and plan out what I need in my life and how to fit it in. While getting my health back is the most important goal my life cannot be just focused on that which means; working a reasonable work schedule, seeing friends regularly, reading and quilting. Next post will be pictures of fabrics and my ideas of what to do with them. I'm always open to suggestions. In there will be the quilt I started for my daughter when she started college three years ago. Well, it obviously wasn't ready for her to move in so now my goal is that it's ready for her first apartment. When I look at it now and realize how easy it is I'm not sure why I didn't keep working on it but we all have those quilts hidden away somewhere so we dont have to see them and be reminded. It's a Kaffe Fassett quilt with Kaffe Fassett fabric. I love it and always did. Now I look at fabrics and can see what shapes and what other fabrics would go best with them. Aside from my now large stock pile of mostly collections I want to do a green quilt, a grey and yellow quilt and... I'm not sure what else but there'll be plenty more. I welcome all suggestions, ideas for revisions, etc. Thanks.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

What a pain!

Some of you know that I have back injuries due to being in two car accidents within two years (on the exact same date in 2007 and 2009) where I was rear ended while standing still. I herniated two discs in the first accident (waiting at a red light) and was recovering very slowly when I got hit again (waiting to make a turn). The accidents were in November. I hadn't been given the okay to return to physical therapy until about a month ago and I lost so much strength and stamina in the intervening time that for days after my second therapy session in a week (I go twice a week) I am in a lot of pain. Unfortunately what would make me feel better (aside from a hot tub) quilting, is also hard to do (sitting on a stool) when your back is hurting. Standing feels the best so I have a number of quilts cut but not much sewing done. I think I have some answers how to feel better so this week (thanks to a great physical therapist and chiropractor)I hope to get caught up on the three bees I'm in. Sorry guys, I'm doing the best I can. Actually knowing I need to get these done is a great motivator to do my best to feel better. Once I get going and get my hands on the fabric I already start feeling better. When I was lying around a lot I ordered a lot of quilting books (a LOT) so now I have even more ideas of what I want to do and more fabric (thank goodness for the internet) to do it with so here's to hoping to maybe a slow but eventual full recovery, although you'll probably never see me on a snow board or roller blades. Winston is the best medicine. The little guy just hangs out wherever I am giving kisses and lying down near me, keeping an eye on me. Looking at his sweet face just makes me laugh, what great medicine.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

It's About Time

For the past two evenings I cut out small blocks for what will be my next quilt, I think. Meanwhile I have to finish my two blocks for the Fussy Cut Bee and my two minis for the Doll Quilt Swap and my first one for the NKOB (New Kids on the Block). I kept looking at my stash and at all these pattern books and just wanted to get going on something else. Getting these blocks done for the bee is so hard, I'm not sure why. I think I'm so anxious to get my hands on some of the bookcase full of fabric that I have. I picked out a book to write down my ideas for quilts and what fabrics I'm thinking of using. That way it seems real to my as if this is going to happen next, and then this one. I'm just that kind of person that feels more comfortable knowing what's happening in the future but then I'm just as likely to change my mind so I think it's just having a plan and of course I've bought more fabric in the meantime and you know how you just want to get your hands on the fabric when it comes in the mail so maybe it's just that phenomenon. Anyway, I cut up almost enough squares to make a baby quilt so maybe I actually will work on that next although I had promised myself to work on a quilt I started for my daughter when she left for college and next year she'll be a senior so now I promised myself it will be for her first apartment after she graduates. It's all Kaffe Fassett fabric so it's very bright but I do like the design a lot. I'll take a pictures of the squares I've got done and post them along with this post tomorrow and I'll take a picture of all the little squares I cut out too. Do you think when you're 80 your houses will be filled with all these quilts you've made and you've bought or swapped filling every closet and spare dresser, etc., I hope by then I will have given them all away except for the very special ones that I will want my children and grand-children to have. How'd I get onto this topic? The weekend is almost over and it's back to work tomorrow and I didn't get as much quilting time in as I had wanted to and I'd like just one more day. The day will come later in the week and I can be patient until then and keep looking at the cut out blocks and think about how I want to arrange them. There's always ways to change things and occupy yourself with different ideas. Hope you all had a wonderful weekend.

Sunday, April 4, 2010


I was already to get up and go but my body wasn't. As some of you know in the past two years I was in two separate automobile accidents where I was rear ended. I had back injuries from both of them and back surgery after the first one. The first one was two and a half years ago and the last one was in November 2009 on the same date as the first one! Isn't that creepy. I have good days and bad days, good weeks and bad weeks. The last few weeks have been bad ones. I'm okay standing to cut material but sewing has been too hard on my back. I'm looking for a chair that will give me back support but be low enought for me (5'1") and my sewing machine. I think I have finally found one. I have been in and out of all kinds of rehab but I hadn't been back to physical therapy until last week since the second accident so I've been really hurting this week but after a week I may be hurting but I'm moving more so I'm imagining how much better I'll be in a few months. I had hoped to get all caught up on my blocks this weekend but it didn't happen. I'm almost finished with my March fussy cut block and then I can start on April's. I have two doll quilts cut out and I just got the material for NKOB so I hope in two weeks I can get them all done aside from working on my own quilts. So if I'm late for the swaps and bees forgive me, I'm doing the best I can and don't worry I wont desert you. They will get done. If I thought I couldn't I'd let you know. Send good karma, prayers, chants, whatever you do my way. It would be much appreciated.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Time to Get Going

My older daughter raided quite a bit of my stash of fabric. She is not working in the career she was trained to work so money is quite tight. She has an interview this week at one of her ideal places to work so please keep your fingers crossed, pray, whatever you do on her behalf. The bookcase I had built for me by Dave of

I thought I'd show you some of the fabrics I've accummulated.

Busy, busy, busy

This has been such a busy month. We've had family visiting the last three weekends and so although I had time to organize my fabric and buy some new there hasn't been much quilting going on. Last week our younger daughter came "home" for four days and this week our older came "home" for four days. Three weeks ago my sister came to visit for the weekend. We still all call it home although especially for my older daughter it will probably never be her permanent home again. This summer both daughters will be together in New York City. The older one lives there and the younger one will be doing an internship there. They haven't lived in close proximity for a long time and since they are six years apart when the older one left for college the younger one was only twelve. I'm glad they are looking forward to being near each other and developing a relationship on an adult basis now.

Friday, March 26, 2010


originally uploaded by sweetlibertygrace.
I saw this today on Flickr's doll quilt swap 8. What an inspiration. I wish I could put it on my wall next to my sewing machine. It has everything done to perfection. The sizing, colors and patterns and perfection in the cutting and quilting. Fantastic. I will at least print it and hang it on my bulletin board. I would LOVE an enire quilt of this. That would be awesome!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Triangles and stars

originally uploaded by Butternutlake.
Last night I stayed up late looking at various peoples tutorials on making triangles and stars. There are so many ways to make them. These are the first things I saw when I got on the computer this morning. They are great and I hope I can get the instructions so i can begin to practice making them. I have a great idea to make a big quilt out of one or two of them. Congratulations Butternutflake!

Monday, March 15, 2010

It doesn't get much better than this

Thank you Red Pepper Quilts

You even find things underneath the quilts!

originally uploaded by ruthiequilts.
This was designed and completed by my special quilting guardian angel. She knew I needed someone looking over my shoulder and giving me a pat on the back and out of nowhere... there she was. I will be forever grateful to this marvelous lady.

I Spy Stars- Finished!

I Spy Stars- Finished!
I Spy Stars- Finished!,
originally uploaded by MimiPark.
Definitely one of my favorites. Thank you MimiPark, whoever and wherever you are. You are a talented lady. Sometime this year... I wil attempt this and now that I've written it down for all to see I've taken an oath to myself to keep learning until I can do this.

The First Block is Almost Finished

After the few days of frustration last week when my machine wouldn't work and being unable to find the notes about the Fussy Cut Block I finally started sewing it and it will be finished tomorrow! Of course I did all the stupid stuff you do at the beginning like sewing the wrong sides together, measuring and cutting wrong and it is QUITE lopsided but by tomorrow afternoon it will be finished and the pieces are all cut out for the Doll Quilt Swap so I get to start on that tomorrow. It' also my birthday (but I don't talk about that anymore, I don't like the numbers,but I took the day off from work) I'm getting closer to actually starting on a real, normal sized quilt! Now the biggest problem is, what quilt to make and what fabric to use.

I've never had stashes of fabric before. This is great and frustrating. What do I pick? An email informed me that Kaffe Fassett's new book has been shipped. Many aren't nearly as hard as they look, so it could be something totally brand new!

Sunday, March 14, 2010


Just as I accepted my fate of a non-working sewing machine I asked my husband (who knows nothing about sewing machines and is not very mechanical) to take a look at it and try to help me figure it out. I don't know what I was thinking, that because he was a man the y chromosome gave him some extra power over all appliances. He just stared at it so several hours later I decided to just start from the beinning and I got new thread, a new bobbin and redid everything again and turned it off and went to bed. The next morning I got up, turned it on and found some scrap fabric and ... it purred beautifully. The sewing machine guardian angel had helped me during the night so tomorrow I start sewing. It's my birthday on Monday (we don't talk about the number anymore) and at the last minute (very last minute) my TWIN sister decided she would come "up" which is what people from down state say, to Rochester so we could celebrate together but this means it will cut into my sewing time. I couldn't say no but hopefully I can get sometime in before she arrives tomorrow (it's 12:06 AM) so I guess I should say today and leaves on Monday. I have a really hectic week scheduled so not much time for sewing so it'll have to wait until the end of the week when my youngest daughter comes home for four days. I haven't seen her much in the past year so I can't wait to see her but you can see where this is going so if my blocks are late for the Fussy Cut Block Group and my Doll Quilt is a few weeks behind you'll know why but tomorrow I'll take some pictures (only a small portion of the actual fabrics will be showing) so you know they're cut out and ready to be sewn!!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Tangle of Thread

I cut out a lot of fabric during the week and I'm ready to start on several blocks and doll quilts and my sewing machine isn't working. I can't get the tension right. I haven't used it in a while but it's a Viking and only nine years old so it should be going strong, plus it hasn't gotten much use so tomorrow I'll bring it over to the dealer and hope I just need an adjustment to refresh my memory because it's supposed to rain all weekend and I've got enough cut out to sew all weekend so keep your fingers crossed they don't say we'll have to send it out. Do they rent sewing machines? What do you do when you've got a handful of tangled thread...

Friday, March 5, 2010

Moving faster

The sun is shining and it's supposed to be near 50 degrees, a virtual summer day in Rochester. I don't have to work today but I have some appointments out of the house but enough time at home to cut out the pieces I need for my two blocks for the Fussy Cut Block Group (I decided to do two instead of one) and to get started on the first Baby Quilt Swap with my partner. If I have time I'm going to make two of those also. I have the entire weekend with nothing planned but quilting and the usual weekend errands. My new bookcase is filled with fabric and I'm ready to go! The sewing room is just about all redone, except for hanging up some quilts so there's nothing to do but quilt! Still finding blogging frustrating so I'll wait until my blogging daughter comes "home" for a visit to help her mom, so no blogging for a while. I still can't get used to not saying "home" for when she comes here. She has her own "home" now, even if it's an apartment in New York City but that's where her home is now.

A Really Terrible Day

Lsst week I had a really terrible day and I was really upset and didn't know what to do with myself and my back was hurting a lot (I've been rear ended twice in two years and have a lot of ongoing back problems because of these accidents, which included surgery for two herniated discs) so I took my pain medicine and took a nap. Winston was so worried about me he just kept circling around me and kissing me and looked so distraught(as dogs can) and ended up curling up next to me on my bed (which he usually doesn't like to do) and slept with me until I woke up. He is the best dog and I am so lucky to have a dog that takes care of me when I'm feeling down or sick. He got a lot of kisses and a few treat for that. Trying to be mindful!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Everything is Beginning

I am so excited to think that in the next three days I will begin working on two of my Doll Quilt Swap8 quilts and two of my Fussy Quilt Swap blocks. I thought I had them all picked out and then of course later last night I went through more of my fabrics and decided to change some, well a little on some and make an entirely different one on some more. Is this what keeps happening that the more time you have and the more you look at other peoples the more you keep changing your own? I really like my ideas so for the next three days I'm going to try not to look at any other blogs, groups, postings, etc., or else I'll have about twenty by the end of the month. Everyone's looks so much better than I imagine mine to be that I am easily swayed when I start looking around. I have to keep focused on "mindfulness" the NEW phase of the year in psychotherapy which basically means notice the things around you and enjoy them and so I will try to be mindful and remind myself that I am a beginner quilter and in ten years (when I'm really old) I could be a great quilter and it all doesn't matter anyway because I really love quilting, every aspect of it to looking at patterns and fabrics to haning them on the wall or putting thm on a sofa or a bed and that's what this is really all about anyway! Right!? I still hope mine don't look immediately like the "new person who hasn't done much quilting and boy can you tell, ha, ha," person. I want to at least to be identified as the "new person who put a lot of time into thinking and planning her blocks and her doll quilt and did great for a beginner quilter." It's my new mantra. Tomorrow I'm going to take pictures of my new bookcase and all my new fabrics and glimpses of what I've picked out for my blocks and my swap. My swap person and I are very different so I'm going to try to incorporate a little of her and a little of me so my swaps (I'm going to try to make two) show us as we are together because she has really been a part of me so far and will always be because I'll remember that she did this for me and wasn't I so lucky to have someone volunteer to do somethng so nice for someone (me) she didn't even know and she must bee quite a lady and I hope we get to meet someday. Tomorrow there will be a lot of pictures. Can someone tell me how to make those boxes made up of about twelve to sixteen smaller boxes? The really cool people have one at a time kind of pop out at you. Mindfullness, keep focus on right now and how happy I am to be part of all of this, which I am!

Doll Quilt Swap 8

Many of the dolls from the Doll Quilt Swap 8 on Flickr are starting to be posted. They are all so different and so wonderful. I feel privilege to be some part of this swap. I feel I have learned so much in the last few months just looking at everyones postings and reading their blogs. I have such a profound appreciation for the imagination and craft that goes into making even a tiny quilt. Here are just a few:

Fig and Me

The dolls from Fig and Me are my favorites, maybe it's the freckles! The doll with the hat is another doll from Fig and Me but unfortunately isn't mine.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Waldorf Dolls

One of my favorite category of dolls are Waldorf Dolls. They are simple dolls made for children to play with but they have adapted with the times and many now have dreadlocks and colored hair. They all have a certain similarity yet they are also different. I have two from "Fig and Me" on Etsy but many people make them. The one with the hat unfortunately isn't mine :(

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

My "private" doll swap

Picture above also by silly boo dilly

Pictures on the left from work of silly boo dilly - they are fantastic!

As I stare at the incredibe, endless number of doll quilts in the Doll Quilt Swap 8 on Flickr, it is very clear that it is not appropriate to put myself in the same league with the quality and creativity of this artistically profound group of quilters. One brave soul among them as offered to act as my mentor and help me along although my status among them seems vague,clear in a below theirs. She may not have known what she's in for! I have spent weeks thinking of ideas, blocks, colors, etc., and have finally decided on doing two because one didn't seem to capture what I wanted to portray, so the fabrics were finally decided on after taking a few fabrics from Purl and a few from Hawthorne Fabrics and a few from a rather old stash. I will post pictures of bits of them, some hints later today along with some of the collections from my fabulous new bookcase.

I like to think of this kind soul as my guardian angel who will guide me slowly through projects until I feel among the "privileged", those whose quilts do not seem of man or woman made. Some of them are listed as some of my favorite doll quilts. Do have a look and marvel in their brilliance. There are many more of you who fall into this category so consider these few listed merely just a subgroup. The rest of you, you know who you are, the lucky elite of the quilting world. We do gaggle at your work, hoping someday... someday we may consider ourselves one among you.

My "new" work room

Several months ago I ordered a bookcase from Dave at Back Mountain Furniture on Etsy. He made me a beautiful, solid oak bookcase with five shelves. When we put it in the work room it fit perfectly where I had wanted to put it. As it turned out, the fabric fit better on four shelves rather than five I ordered I stacked most of my fabric by designer collection or color and the bookcase is almost already full. Tomorrow I will post pictures of the bookcase and the collections of fabrics that are neatly lined up on the shelves. Stacked on the top are quilts I've purchased from other quilters (mostly on Etsy). I love to just stare at the neatly, stacked rows of fabric. I don't want to use any, it looks so perfect as it is. I'll just have a reason to buy more (like I need a reason).

Saturday, February 20, 2010

These would be mine in my other life. WOW!! There are so many things I'd like to do. Maybe I could learn to live without sleep, nah. At least I can admire the creativity of others!
Uploaded from Craft and Creativity's Photostream

Friday, February 19, 2010

I realize that I haven't posted in a while. The week so far has just been awful. Everything that could go wrong (not the major stuff like the roof caving in but all the small stuff like the toilet overflowing stuff) did and any faith that I had in humanity was just about gone. It seems (ed) as if you just can't count on people anymore to be reliable, honest, trustworthy, etc. The worst part was that Winston and I got locked out of our house yesterday after our walk in the freeing, sleet we were having in Rochester. Our neighbor had our old key, there was no one at the fire house (what's with that?) and finally after almost one and a half hours and no other options that I could think of, wet and tired, I called a locksmith who in another half hour drove into the driveway and with a few little tools opened the lock. He was no James Bond, but we heard that wonderful "click" as it unlocked. Winston and were both soaked and freezing so he proceeded to lie down on a heat vent and I changed into some warm gym pants and a sweatshirt and went under the covers. Then afer complaining A LOT, I got an incredibly lovely note from someone in the Doll Quilt Swap who doesn't even know me but has been emailed me before with words of encouragement. The kindness of a complete stranger was so amazing to me and so incredibly nice to get I couldn't believe how different these few sentences made me feel. I've found the nicest people through Etsy and the virtual groups. There must be something unusual about creative people who are as in tune with the emotions of others as they are with the colors, textures, whatever, of their crafts. Thank you all so much for kind words and understanding. I am so grateful to have found this communitiy of people who clearly see the world in a different way and share their goodness and exuberance with others. So... tomorrow a good friend whom I haven't seen in over a year (who has been quilting for almost 30 years)and has had her share of BIG heartaches, is coming over for the day to chat, have lunch, share quilting tips and meet Winston. I have nothing planned for the weekend and so I plan to practice my fussy cut blocks and get started and hopefully finished on my doll quilt. The world seems like a good place to be again, at least for today and all week long I've had a chance to see the incredible quilts that members have submitted to the doll quilt swap. They are all magnificent to me and so far from my abilities but there were a couple that left me speechless - see what I mean.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Meanings of Quilts

For most of us it seems that quilts have a very important meaning to us. We make them for people we love, especially. It's as if each time we give away a quilt we are giving someone a piece of use. Below are very different qults. The first quilt someone made for me and introduced me to quilting, the first quilt that I made I gave to my niece when my grandniece was born and I just have a picture of it. I have the second quilt that I made and the third quilt needs to be bound and is going to be put away for my first grandchild. The quilts in my home have different meanings to me and I become attached to the quilts and the the people who made them, even if I don't know them and even if I paid for them. I try to connect with them in some way and often do and they seem to do the same. They often email and want to know how I like the quilt. It's interesting to me now how quilts have become a way that we quilters try to care for complete strangers in all the new humanitarian donations we give with our quilts, as if we want to comfort those in the world who need comforting. I'm sure that the people who get them are comforted and again we form a connection to someone we don't know; we don't even know where they live, how old they are, we just want to help in any way we can and a quilt seems to be a wonderful way to do it.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

My work room

I thought I would try to add some pictures of my work room since I posted about it and spent so long setting it up. I'm always interested in people's work spaces. It gives you some ideas for your own and allows you to learn about the way other people work. Some I'm in awe of! I haven't had much luck putting pictures where I want them to be so we'll see if this works?

My "baby" is 21 now!

I won't say it like everyone who is a parent does but.... my beautiful baby who was born with pink cheeks and delicious toes is 21 years old now. It's just another birthday but somehow there are those special years when you expect to look in the mirror and see some visual change and when it's not there you're perplexed but it's there somewhere inside of you, signaling something new is going to happen now. How exciting to be 21. The world hopefully even in these hard times and you're, feels like it's yours, as it should be so take off again as you have so many times in the past for paths unknown but to be discovered. Enjoy

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Plush Toys, Softies and Dolls

Some people will wonder why I have all these dolls and critters at the top of my blog. As a child I loved dolls. Charlotte was a fabric doll made of red fabric with white hearts. Some of the hearts were outlined in white and some were filled in with white. She had white yarn for hair and if I remember correctly buttons for some facial features, like eyes. You won't believe it but she is somewhere in my attic and when the weather thaws here in Rochester, NY I will go up to my attic and try to find here. She has patches all over her now when she began to tear so she's not very recognizable, but she is to me. My parents bought her for me on a trip to Nantucket Island in Massachusetts on a day trip there from Cape Cod. They usually didn't buy things so "special" so she meant a lot to me. Butterball was a doll I got for my tenth birthday. My twin sister told me I was too old to get a doll for my birthday but she was the last doll that was ever bought for me. She was a typical baby doll from the '50s and '60s and her bottom lip curled under like she was going to cry. When I got into my 30's I started buying collectible dolls. They weren't porcelain vintage dolls but very high end vinyl dolls that were being made largely in Germany and Spain. I stared at one for months before I spent a ridiculous amount of money on her but each year after that I bought myself one. My husband bought me an armoire to store them and there they sit with a couple of Steiff animals I bought on a trip to England. I haven't bought one in many years but I'm sure I will again. I'm going to try my hand at making some. I admire them on Etsy all the time and have bought several from there but they stay hidden, for my grandchildren someday.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Winter in Rochester

Today it is snowing and cold. Although this is a typical day here we haven't had one in a long time. My first appointment at work cancelled but instead of using the time productively I sat in my pajamas at the computer staring with amazement at the blocks and quilts on Flickr and some of my favorite blogs. I got another wonderful bundle of fabric from Fabricworm, one of my favorite places to buy fabric on Etsy and I'm so anxious to dive in and decide what I want to do but I can see that I'm already doing what I do when I knit. I get so excited about the next project that the one I'm working on never gets done. So I'm going to get dressed for work or I'll be late and come home and finish cutting out all the pieces for a baby quilt I'm making for a friend who had a baby and finish that first. This weekend I plan to hang some of he quilts I've bought on Etsy so I can finally look at them on the wall instead of folded up in tissue paper. Baby steps I keep telling myself but the sewing room is calling me and I have to plug my ears and wait until later.

Finally started!

Last night I finally laid out the scraps for one of the blocks and I'm really happy with the way it looks. Next step is sewing the pieces together to make the block,