Sunday, May 30, 2010

Remember I said it was spring?

Well, not for long. Look at that fresh snow up there. Can you see it? Last weekend, 16 inches fell on Bogus Basin. That's the ski hill right above Boise. And here in the valley it rained (and snowed a little) all day Saturday. No bike riding for us -- just a trip to REI to get panniers on sale and Dansko shoes and sandals (also on sale). We are planning several bike trips this summer to use up my vacation time and decided it was finally time to get some as we are just not back pack people no matter how hard we try. Ooh, and one of the trips is to Sisters, on quilt show weekend. Even though it is not all that far away I have never been!

I have been hunting the Danskos at a price I could live with and REI even beat Amazon. When I was young I thought that dermatologists and podiatrists were fringe doctors. Who could need them! Well, me, that's who. I LOVE my podiatrist and he recommended the Danskos. As well as Happy Feet insoles for my other shoes and, let me tell you, now that I am used to them I really miss them when I wear other shoes.

But I digress. The other thing that has been taking up all my time is completely re-doing my sewing room. I know I have been telling you that we are consolidating and remodeling at work. And that means we have an entire patio full of surplus office stuff. And I was offered (and accepted) threee 7 foot tall metal bookshelves. Yeah, not so pretty, but man, will they hold alot.

Of course, they had to be disassembled, hauled home, dragged upstairs, and reassembled. And everything in their path had to be unloaded and removed. Phew. I have been using a new website -- -- to help me lose a few pounds and yesterday I decided I had spent enough time moving things around and putting them away that I should see how many calories I had burned -- for 10 hours of that over 1000!!!

But I digress, again. Good thing this is a 3 day weekend. I am hoping to have the project completed before I go back to work on Tuesday. Look at this mess -- do you think I have a chance?
More mess. Of course I am probably making it take a little longer because I am massively rearranging where things are stored and also taking the opportunity to check my book list against my books as I reshelve them. I like to keep a list so I don't buy a book twice (never happened to you I am sure) but I get behind periodically and then it may as well not exist.
Now that you have seen the mess, I will show you some progress. My sewing room is over the garage and has two dormers. This is the shorter dormer. It has my original shelf (made from 3 old chicken coops) moved over a bit and one of the new shelves next to it. Opposite this is one of my metal kitchen shelf units from Costco that holds fabric. You've seen them before.
And here is the longer end. There are two of the new shelf units on this side. This end is not as close to finished as the other end is. This is where my laundry rack of waiting to be quilted tops used to be. Another Costco rack is opposite it and my new $5 computer desk is at the end. You can just barely see it.
And yes, I use quilts as window coverings over all 3 of my windows. And binder clips to open them up. Not very decorative but very efficient.
I'm kind of excited about all these changes. I will have enough space to bring up overflow cookbooks and other books that are crowding things downstairs. And even though these shelves are not country cool or cute they are going to make my sewing room much neater, better organized, and, dare we hope -- easier to work in. Yeah!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Don't have much to show for myself

while I have been gone. The weather has finally turned to spring so lots of time that would have been quilting time has been bicycling time. I finally finished this top -- it is one of those I cut from all my fat quarters -- remember that project -- when I was trying to use them all up? Anyway, appropriately enough the pattern is from "More Laps From Fats". The pattern called for 2 borders, a fat one and a skinny one. I managed to eke out enough from the red fabrics I used to make the skinny one.
Then I auditioned a green. No way I could get enough out of the green left overs so I was thinking this one might do.
But between when I took the picture and now I decided I don't like the red at all. The quilt has kind of a cottagey look even with some of these brighter colours -- I guess because there is so much of the cottagey background fabric. Anyway, I have decided I am going to take off the red border and trim it up a bit and then bind with the same background fabric.

So of couse now I am mourning the loss of the time it will take to rip it out, the thread (?), yes, thread, because even on sale thread is expensive. And most of all the red fabric. Especially one of them which is from an older group called Cowboy Rose Gingham. I think. I will still be able to have quite a few 2" wide strips of it so this is kind of silly but just the same that's how I feel. When it's a fabric I really love I really hate using it all up. Even though there are yards and yards of fabric just a few feet away. That must be the sign of a true "fabriholic" don't you think?

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Boy can that 830 quilt!

And I have been quilting. Funny how it is though. I like to make the binding when I finish the top and put it in my binding drawer. But some of these quilts were so long awaiting quilting that I couldn't remember what binding went with what! So I spent some quality time with my leftover binding box to get the job done. Believe it or not this was about twice as full when I started. So what have I quilted on her? Well, this is the biggest one I did. You know how I feel about blue. This one was made quite some time ago trying to use up lots of old blues. And I was determined to use up partial spools of blue thread, too. Unfortunately some of that thread was too O L D and it kept breaking. But even with all the not too polite words that accompanied each break I managed to finish the quilt and finish the spools. This will be used as a utility quilt. Right now we use the sleeping bag I took to college with me for this purpose and I think that any time now it will come out of the washer in pieces, not as a whole unit.
Now back to my regularly scheduled colours! This was a jelly roll. I copied the pattern from a picture I saw somewhere that I thought would be a great jelly roll quilt. This is Bound to the Praire some number I think.
Here is a bit of a departure for me. I don't know why this citrus-y fabric appealed to me so much. But it did. The orange border was a little too bright until the quilt was washed. That soothed it down a bit and the quilt is really cute I think. Great for a summer table topper and that is how I intend to use it.
You might remember I needed a Christmas quilt for over my pantry doors. I must tell you the Thanksgiving quilt is still up there. This one will have to wait for next Christmas. Meanwhile I guess I better make a spring or summer one.
Again, back to my regularly scheduled colours. I am not playing the Year of Schnibbles but this is a Schnibbles -- Plan C I think. And I think it was another Bound to the Prairie. This time as charm squares. I have now used up all my pre cuts and I am actually happy about that. I just prefer choosing my own fabrics and mixing up lines. I love this little quilt though, even though it is just one line!
Now, ahem, the next two. Originally I started out to make a Kim Diehl quilt. Well, actually I did make a Kim Diehl quilt. But somehow I managed to get the two different blocks two different and incomatible sizes. I set it aside for a while and tried to convince myself that the lumps would "quilt out". But, you and I know they never would. So, I took it all apart and made two small quilts, one out of each style block. And they look good, don't you think?
I really like this square in a square pattern with all different fabrics. In fact, as I quilted this one I was admiring the fabrics in it. Is that weird?
I always have lots and lots of 1 1/2" strips and I was just messing around using some up here. Periodically the baskets just overflow and I have to do something.
So all these little quilts in my favourite colours actually have a purpose. I want to fill up this little cabinet by my front door. I took this pic before I finished quilting on a couple of them but you get the idea. I still need a few more.
Remember I told you I missed some of my Easter decorations when I was taking them down? Right, they are still there. I really like these little eggs. I got them at the thrift store but they are Pottery Barn. That certainly improved the price. But they do need to be put away. Soon.
Speaking of thrifting. Well, not quite. In my office we have a tradition of putting anything you don't want anymore in our breakroom. Currently we are remodeling and consolidating. We used to have 6 offices spread throughout the complex we are in. We are now down to 2 but soon we will all be together in one space. So there have been lots of items up for grabs in the breakroom. I saw a little truck like this in a country decorating magazine with dried flowers in it so the minute I saw this one I knew it had to be mine. It only took a couple of seconds to peel off the LP signs on each side of the rails on the back.
Isn't it just as cute as it can be?
Well, it was a pretty productive week for me. My basting pin bowl is full to overflowing so I am now able to make backs and pin baste the stashlets. There are only 2 quilts left that are ready to be quilted. One requires my walking foot for the quilting design I want to use so it needs to wait a bit. The other one is the one that I never get to. It is big so and that is intimidating. But the blue one was big so I have recent experience now with big. That should make it easier, but somehow it doesn't. I think I bought the fabric 8-10 years ago, finished the top about 6 years ago, and it has been pinned and waiting for at least 2 years. Hmmm, has it's time finally come?