Sunday, September 30, 2018

New Table

I think we're officially grown-ups now, because we've bought a dining room table and chairs. I'm thrilled with them, they're quiet when I sit down. They feel sturdy and solid and just ahhh lovely.
The chairs have this great curve that fits the lower back just perfectly.

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Colors Caught

 So I washed the Solstice Quilt before I gifted it to my niece. And I knew there was a chance that the dark purple batik fabrics would run, because they had during the block construction.

Many many Color Catchers were thrown in the washer.
And it worked, thank goodness, no running at all!

Friday, September 28, 2018

Solstice Completed

Here is how the Solstice Quilt turned out!

My niece was very pleased with it, which made me very happy. 
It just barely fits in my design wall at 95" square. 

Here's a close-up so you can see the lovely work the long-arm quilter I used did for me. It was an overall swirly pattern, and it looks great. Highly recommend Minaret Designs in Felton.

 I'm so glad that I did this project, I learned a lot about accurate piecing thanks to Pat Sloan's great directions.

Thursday, September 27, 2018

This Is Just To Say

I was eating these cold plums out of the fridge the other day, and just had to post this poem and picture combination. 

This Is Just To Say

I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Wandering Wednesday - Random California Highways

 Pictures taken while passenging.
 My speciality.
 Not bad framing for eighty miles an hour.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Starting Square Dance

 Starting a new project, using the Sizzix die, Square Dance. (By the way, wow good prices on Sizzix dies on Staples)  And there's this much fabric left over after the cutting process.
 Given the need to have the fabric be a bit larger than the die surface there ends up being a lot left over. And when it comes off the machine in a nice big aligned stack, it's irresistible to not cut it up into useable pieces.
 So I did.
 And I took process pictures to remind myself how I got those pieces.

Here's how it all looks when it's cut apart. Look at all those nice triangles. And those strips. The rest goes in the put under the felting machine needle bucket.

Monday, September 24, 2018

No Driving Fabric

 No driving required fabric acquisitions are so nice, always like getting a surprise gift in the mail.  Because you never know exactly which day it'll arrive. Darn Good Yarn sends a block suggestion/instructions each time, which I've diligently saved. I think I might try doing all of those now that I've been getting them for a year. It would be A Darn Good Sampler in essence, and hey, there's my title.
Most recent Culcita box, again a great mixture of fabrics. Just a few I wouldn't have chosen if I'd be shopping in a fabric store, but they really go well with the other ones. I really like the freshness of this color range. My only probably is do I store them together, or put them into my color boxes? So far I'm keeping them together since it's kind of a curated selection that'd word for a quilt.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Wandering Wednesday - Santa Cruz City Hall

 While waiting for my husband to join me to see David Sedaris speak, (he was so hilarious and moving, go see him live if you ever get a chance!) I took the time to check out the courtyard at the Santa Cruz City Hall.
There's an old fountain in the center of the courtyard which isn't being used as a fountain anymore, perhaps to save on water usage? I like how they've repurposed it, using it as a platform for four blue planters.
Oh it's a plant that I'm trying in my garden this year, Blue Honeywort.
 There's a lot of low-water use plants in the garden, which is great to see in a municipal setting. "Walking the Talk" and all, right?
 I think I need to try and grow some kniphofia next year, these are really cool looking plants.

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Mutant Madeira

 Oh, I forgot to post this when I was going on about the Pride of Madeira taking over our front yard. When I was weeding, I noticed this weird thing, can you spot it?

 It has a pretty small stem, especially given the size of the thing it's supporting. It's about the size of my two hands side by side. We looked it up and it turns out that this is pretty rare, it's called fasciation. Basically when the stem is growing, something intervenes in the usual process of growth (can be bacteria, virus, etc) and causes ribbon like growth instead of the regular tunnel form. How weird huh?
My husband said it reminded him of a Dr. Seuss tree. I think he's onto something there. It looks highly improbable. Hey, at least it managed to grow some flowers.

Monday, September 10, 2018

The Palm

 This is a picture of our palm tree, taken from my studio window.

 On the second floor (see the light reflections?). This thing used to be a smallish houseplant, one that I though was dead. We made a planter at the edge of a new deck in front of our house, and I needed a lot of dirt to fill it up, so I threw the container full that had the seemingly dead palm in there and also planted a tea tree bush and a dwarf cypress. Flash forward ten years, and this thing is almost as tall as our house! Moral of the story? Never assume presumed death is truly the end? Or something like that.

Sunday, September 09, 2018

Making the Back and Covering My Table

 While making up the backing for the Solstice Quilt, I found I needed some more yardage that would match the other blocks of piecing I'd completed. It ended up king-sized, so I had to keep adding on.  I found some batiks that would fit in with the other colors I'd already used.

And then there was this beautiful plaid. I don't always like plaid, but sometimes they have the right colors or the right size differences in stripes. This one had a gorgeous hand and once I touched it, I knew it needed to be a tablecloth. So now it is.

Saturday, September 08, 2018

FabMo in Santa Cruz

 FabMo selection event in Santa Cruz is always so fun to volunteer for, and they're coming back again on September 20th and I will definitely be there. I love seeing all the teachers scooping up materials for their classes, or college aged folks working on art projects for school or community events.
Here was my selection, I'm putting them up against the greek key lime/cream fabric I'd bought to re-upholster an ottoman. I think they go well enough to make up some good pillow covers.

Friday, September 07, 2018

Darn Good FOTM

 I'm continuing to receive a monthly Fabric of The Month package from Darn Good Yarn.
It's really different from month to month, sometimes silk, sometimes cotton, but always interesting. And the box it's packaged in still cracks me up. "I craft so hard, I sweat glitter." Words to live by, eh?

Thursday, September 06, 2018

Spring Flowers

Some flower pictures from earlier this year.  Echium aka Pride of Madeira is taking over the front yard. It is a really big big plant though, that easily self sows.
 But it is hard to take it down when it produces these glorious spikes of Purple!
 Sourgrass, doesn't grow in our yard, (not wet enough) so when I find it, I always pick a stalk or two. Just to be able to chew on it, brings me right back to a childhood spent doing the same.
 Rhubarb stalks, not ready to be picked. This picture is from months ago, and now it's ready (I think, first time I've grown the stuff!)
 Sometimes I'm tempted to re-classify the dandelion as a desired plant rather than a weed, at least as far as my own yard goes.
The lilacs vs. the wisteria vs. the roses battle this spring was almost too much. I think the lilacs won.

Wednesday, September 05, 2018

Camp Joy

 I love the gate at Camp Joy, it's not complicated or super fancy or over-done, but it's unusual and beautiful.
 We were there for the annual plant-sale, they always have great selections of pepper and tomato plants.
 The beautiful and enormous farm-sized greenhouse.
This purple Salsify (aka Goat's Beard) is very striking.
 The wisteria sprawling around with controlled abandon.

 The sides of the wisteria/grape arbor. I like the old grapevines bent into circles.

 Grapes above, iris below.
 View from below the new rose arbor.
We were then under the gun to get the new garden beds made so we could plant out the new plant starts.