Thursday, October 31, 2019

SpooOoooky Halloween

 Happy Halloween! This witch needed fixing, so I was gluing her up and she ended up staying on my worktable to keep me company through all the power outages.
Someday I'll do a Maleficent costume for myself, but this is not happening this year. My daughter and her partner are coming over and we're going to wear all of my witch hats and go downtown to hand out candy.
Hope you have a SpooOoooky Halloween!

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Wandering Wednesday - English Countryside on my teacup

We took a load of donations to our local Goodwill and then we decided to look around. Just for fun you know. And what do you know, there was a bunch of Wedgwood china on the racks. The lovely and intricate images of the English countryside are very relaxing. The cups feel nice to hold.

 Two cups and saucers came home with us. Intentionally chose one that was a little different looking than the other.

I started looking into the potential age of the particular pieces we'd just bought.
 And it's all over the map. But fun to delve into all those china websites.
Each makers mark is different.

 So I haven't determined exactly, but it was fun traveling through the web and learning about Wedgwood and so forth.

Turns out the two saucers aren't even shaped the same.
One is more of a bowl.
This all made me think of one of the pitchers I inherited from my Grandma.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Sewing With Generator

 Well so our power did go out, at 9:12 pm on Saturday night. Five minutes and 39 second before the end of the movie we we're watching! If you haven't see it, highly recommend watching on Netflix: "The Man Who Knew Too Little" with Bill Murray. It's 1997 Bill Murray, and very very funny and very very 90's. Anyways...our power just went back on at 11:30AM today, Tuesday, so that's been a few days of running our generator.

I finally broke down and plugged my sewing machine and one light into the many many extension cords my husband ran upstairs for us to use. And what do you know it worked! I was a little hesitant because of blowing up the machine's brain in China due to different power wiring. But this was fine and worked very well.
It was so nice getting to sew a little, it's in the room furthest from the generator so I could enjoy a bit of quiet. I got about half of the back for the Kaffe Blue Squares quilt sewn together, but not pressed as I had no iron plugged in.

How do you like my Halloween manicure? One side is grey/black and the other is orange, you can tell I got bored with the power off if I'm painting my nails!

Okay, off to the sewing room to get what I sewed together pressed and carry on. We've been informed that our power goes off again tonight at 9pm for another "wind event". sigh.

Saturday, October 26, 2019

Body Double Binding

 I was deciding on binding fabric for a quilt I've working on finishing up, Body Double. It's sun-printed with Setacolor, gray, pink and a bit blueish. It has dark bits and lighter bits, and lots of shading. The grey tends to the brown side of things. So I decided on the Grunge Dots fabric as I thought it suited that color way a bit better than the more charcoal-fish one.
I think it looks pretty great so far before stitching it on the quilt.

And that's the last thing I'll get done on the sewing machine before the power gets shut off in an hour or so, depending on when PG&E decides to throw us back into the stone-age.

Friday, October 25, 2019

Binding Blue

All I got done yesterday was making the binding for the Kaffe Blue Squares. I think it'll work better than this picture shows, the colors are weird again.

Just heard that our power is scheduled to go out again(!) tomorrow sometime. Guess it'll be back to handwork. Fingers crossed for no more wildfires.

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Finishing Blue Squares Top

 Getting closer to done with the Blue Squares quilt top.
 Next up the top and bottom sashing and final border get added on.

Ahhhh, my second purchase of the Amy Butler fabric doesn't exactly match. At least it's all going around the outside edge so hopefully it won't be too noticeable.
And there it is all done! Once it gets quilted I'll try to take a better picture.

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Wandering Wednesday - Santa Clara

 Palm trees why why why, Santa Clara Convention Center? Out of all the trees you could choose from?
So much concrete.
And a surprise self portrait in the reflection.
 At least there were airplanes.

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

PIQF Purchases

I didn't go too crazy buying stuff at PIQF this year, but I did grab a few things. Right on top is a small-ish new ruler from The Stitchin' Post. It has the no slip dots and is a nice compact usable size. Do I have enough rulers now? Yes, yes I do.
Some Renaissance Ribbons, Tula Pink style. Aren't these fun? Their booth was very colorful and I wanted to buy everything. They had some of the designs printed out on this 3" wide velvet low nap ribbon. It was lovely but I refrained from buying any.
The grey honeycomb thing is a silicone mini-iron rest. Since I have one of those, I thought it'd be good to have a place to rest it when it's in use.
I've been on the lookout for a particular grey to use for a binding on the Body Double quilt, so I bought two things that might work. I just need to hold it up to the actual quilt and see how it looks.
Of course I had to get some of the Tula Pink purple monkey fabric to go with the ribbons. And another ruler fabric and a blue on blue interesting print.

Monday, October 21, 2019

Blue Squares Stages

 Here's a chronicling of continuing to sew the Blue Squares quilt together. I tried to take pictures as I sewed each border onto the quilt.
 It's starting to look like I was hoping for, yay!
 The lighting is so strange in this picture, half of the colors are perfect and the rest are??? I have no idea.
 Noooo, the purples ended up right next door to each other on the right hand side. Gotta switch it up.
That's better. Now to cut the very last border fabric pieces and finish assembling this beast.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Blue Squares Start

 I started in on my Finish-a-Long list by working on sewing together the Kaffe Fassett quilt
 I'm calling it Blue Squares (it's Red Squares in his book, Heritage Quilts) This is how it started, I only had one row sewn together but most of the other pieces cut out and sorted and labelled. (Wow, unusually organized for me!)

When I first cut this out at a CQFA retreat in 2017, I didn't have the central image fabric on hand. As I'm not following the fabric formulation exactly from the book, I did consider using something else entirely, but then I found it in the right color way. I like it a lot, the formality of the still life in the unusual colors is just great, very Kaffe, right?

The border fabric I'm using is an Amy Butler print, and after putting that on the central square, I had to try out fabrics for the larger second interior border. I had the basket swirls fabric in two color ways and one other to try. Time to "Make Visual Decisions Visually".

Here's the lighter color way of the basket swirls. I thought it was too light compared to the majority of everything else. I didn't want that much contrast at the center of everything.
 Then I tried this fuchsia/blue large polkadot, it's the right colors...mostly, but it doesn't go with the stripes and solids well enough. It fights too much.

With it filled in more with the smaller squares, I really don't like that fabric as the large border, it jumps out as too different to the rest. I'm going with the first one, the darker basket swirls.
Now back to sewing all these squares together.

Saturday, October 12, 2019

Finally Fall

 It's not really fall around here until the Poison Oak turns color.
And all of a sudden: **Pow!** the brilliant red shining in the forest.
And the birds are apparently making dried figs out on our deck railing. Maybe they're storing them up for the winter??

Friday, October 11, 2019

New table

One of my two tables has never been ideal. It’s a drafting table and I’ve always liked the size of it, but the height isn’t adjustable. It’s too tall when I’m sitting down. And it’s way too short when I stand up to rotary cut. But now there are these newfangled height adjustable tables. I talked myself out of splurging on one, but then my husband insisted. Primarily because he saw one for sale at Costco and secondly because I was complaining about my back hurting after doing a bunch of cutting.
 So here it is at standing and rotary cutting height, it can remember four heights and has usb charging outlets. It’s glass topped and the controls are on the lower right hand corner. Like a mini built in touch screen. It feels so space age!

And here it is lowered down to sitting level. It’s not the same size or shape of the drafting table so I’ve had to move a lot of stuff around. But it’s a huge improvement in my workspace. Now if the power would come back on! It’s been a couple days and I’m itching to sew again!

Thursday, October 10, 2019

One Batik Block

A friend in an online quilt group I've belonged to for a Very Long time asked for a block. As a group we used to do block swaps way back when and she hadn't gotten quite enough of one to actually make a quilt. Batiks was the only requirement.
It's a very easy block, just rectangles and squares, and makes for a great scrappy quilt.
 I hope she likes all the new blocks that are coming her way.

Wednesday, October 09, 2019

Wandering Wednesday: Needles Studio

Last Saturday was a CQFA meeting and we met at Needles Studio in Palo Alto. It was a great meeting and a very nice space. It's nice to try out new places like this with friends.
This is a picture of one of our members, my friend Sonja (Colorific on instagram) who is meticulously dyeing all the fabric she needs for an upcoming Nancy Crow class. She wheeled in a giant suitcase and showed us her efforts, very impressive right? Can't wait to see what she makes at the workshop.

There was a lovely amount of sunlight in the shop, a bit much at one point, which made me think this would be a nice place to come in the wintertime.
The space is set up very well, a huge counter height table with comfortable stools, and many sewing machines, one of which was an industrial strength type. There are clothing patterns, a small amount of fabric and notions for sale too. 
I bought this embroidery kit, the picture makes it look like it's already done, doesn't it?

Tuesday, October 08, 2019

Finish-A-Long 4th Quarter List

Time for my list of proposed finishes for the fourth and final quarter of the 2019 Finish-A-Long,

I'm adding some things from previous quarter's lists, adding some new things and taking one off last quarter's list. Ten is the total number again, because that worked well for me last quarter. Not too big of a list, but enough things to choose from at various stages. Sometimes I feel more like quilting instead of sewing bindings and I go to the list and pick something that works.

1. Body Double - I got the quilting done on this big piece last quarter. At least I think so, it may need more quilting. And then it needs a binding, sleeve and label.

2. Stripes -Finish piecing the top, quilt, bind, sleeve, label.

3. May You Ever Return - Finish assembly of quilt top, quilt, binding, sleeve and label.

4. Celestial Round Robin -Baste, quilt, and then add a binding and label.

5. Between The Cypress - Design on remaining appliqué, finish quilting, embellish, binding, hanging sleeve and label.

6. Kaffe Fassett Blue Squares - Piece top, make backing, have quilted, bind, and label.

7. City Sampler - Piece top, make backing, have quilted, bind, and label.

8. Color Box - Square up, binding, hanging sleeve, and label.

9. Griffith Park Skirt - Hem and waistband.

10. Four Living Room Couch Cushions - Piece cushions from Fabmo, and other upholstery fabrics, assemble, install closures.

If you're interested in getting stuff done, making lists, checking things off and seeing what other quilters and makers are working on, come join in the finishing magic.