Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Holiday Layoff

Hey every one- I am up to my neck in children for the next two weeks, and so posting will be even sparser. Adding to that is the meltdown of my laptop and so no access to pictures until Mr Wooly makes all that magically appear on the new laptop, which will be RED!!!! but is not here, yet. Hve fun!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Dining Room Chair re-do

On the right- the striped stuff I put on last year. While stripes are period appropriate for a Duncan Phyfye style chair, the resulting grease stains, food droplets, and unidentified grunge are not appropriate. On the left, my solution. It's a laminated cotton table cloth from IKEA. I wish I had bought more, as it was cheap and I like it, and now I have cut it up to be chair covers! It can be wiped clean, and so hopefully will lead to less yuck factor.

This dining set is a bit of a problem. I bought it at the estate sale of a local artist. Although I did not know her, or know of her, I loved her immediately on reading a letter that had fallen out of a book. It said " Sidney WILL NOT do his arithmetic, and I am at my wit's end". She was a fellow traveler down my road. SO, on the plus side, it has a nice history of raising a family around it. It also has little metal feet on the table legs, and when I refinish the top, I found lovely solid maple. It came with two leaves, and we could seat twelve if our dining room were big enough to do so.

No, the problem has always been the chairs. I find them overly ornate- the shield back shape has a faux baronial thing going on that I do not care for. They really, really need refinishing, but will be an absolute bear to do so because of the intricacy of the backs. I don't want to refinish six chairs with a toothbrush being my main implement. I also don't love them, so i am unlikely to spend the money to have a cabinet maker re do them. Then there are the seats- I have recovered them six times in ten years, and never because I wanted to. No, the re- covering was because I could not face looking at them any longer. It is stunning the amount of food that two boys and their friends can spill. ( We have tiny kitchen with a tiny spot for two people to eat, so we use the dining room constantly.)

I feel like it is somehow wrong to separate the chairs from their table. They've been together so long. Doesn't that count or anything? I also fear getting rid of them, and then regretting it later. I made a few mistakes like that early in adult hood, and I know that my tastes and appreciation for things is evolving. We have a tiny house, and there is no where to store or use them otherwise. What do you think? Can I consider breaking up the set?

Saturday, December 05, 2009

friend Kitty!

From Mimi Kirchner's pattern, available here.

I am very happy with her. I made the dress by using the vest pattern that was included, but put the center front on a fold. The skirt I just gathered to fit bodice. The body fabric is a light weight upholstery fabric. Sweaters to felt are thin on the ground here in Northern CA. For a first effort, I am very pleased with her.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Black Apple Snow Baby

Here is a snow baby from the Black Apple Doll pattern. Pattern link here. Did anyone else have a snow baby doll? I had a doll like this with a fuzzy sleeper like body and a sweet plastic face. She's terry cloth, her hair is just cotton fabric, cut on the bias because I never have felt. The face is a combo plate of crayon ( cheeks) sharpie ( eyes) and thread ( mouth). I could not turn the legs and arms- the terry was too thick- so I just trimmed the seams. I have no I dea if she is stealth unraveling as I speak- I should have considered this, but it was after Midnight, so hey. Night Crafting- the crafting you do instead of lying in bed wondering if you have paid the electricity bill, and when.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

My Holiday Letter ( Not)

Dear Friends and Family- Wow, what a year we've had! DH remains unemployed, but is continuing on in his MS in a field that already has too many people in it. Yes, that's right, we will be a hundred thou in debt for a field that has too many applicants! But he's doing great, and besides the grueling daily commute through a tunnel or over a bridge, I have gotten to where I hardly notice that he spends his whole day with women half his age! ( Ergo, half my age!)

The older son has started his first round of psychotropic medications, and we have high hopes! The younger son seems more likely to need some, but he is such an over achiever- we've had to lay down the law and tell him he has to wait until adolescence for his first anti- depressant, just like his brother did. In the mean time, we keep his hair short enough that you barely notice that he is pulling it out!

Both of them still attend school on a daily basis, and both are well known by the office staff! Did I mention that both attend daily! Yes, daily! Next year, we hope the attend daily, as well!

My job has been quite the amusement park ride! There have been four deaths of co-workers immediate family members, as well as a co worker milking her on the job injury ( really) for a year! Got to love it! Add in the person who I offend by breathing in and out, and the management staff that has a revolving door, and yes sir, I am on my toes!

Well, what a year we've had! Happy Holidays to everyone, and have A GREAT new Year!

Love and stuff, the knitting nurse

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

swimming, keep swimming

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Monday, November 09, 2009


WHEN I was younger
it was plain to me
I must make something of myself.
Older now
I walk back streets
admiring the houses
of the very poor:
roof out of line with sides
the yards cluttered
with old chicken wire, ashes,
furniture gone wrong;
the fences and outhouses
built of barrel staves
and parts of boxes, all,
if I am fortunate,
smeared a bluish green
that properly weathered
pleases me best of all colors.

No one
will believe this
of vast import to the nation.

William Carlos Williams

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Matryoshka Number One

I finally figured out a place to take etsy pictures indoors. This house is blessed with many windows, which I love. But it makes hanging things on the wall difficult. I have a wall of book cases in the living room compounding the problem. I worried that taking pictures on the green background would mess with the colors of the work, but it seems ok so far.

I think that I will make more of these, which is why I named this one One. So Two and so forth will be forthcomong.

Work has been so freaking weird. The administration is messing with our work and hours, we're switching over to computer charting, and they are building a new hospital across the street. Change is in the air, and it is making everyone tense. I like my current job, and would like to keep it, but there are rumblings that my department may be dissolved. I guess I can do any kind of nurse work, but I actually prefer to not think about changing jobs until I have to.

I'm actually not sure if I want to continue being a nurse. It is interesting, important work, but I long for a job that fills my cup rather than drains it. I don't know if there is such a job out there, or if the earlier sunsets are getting me down, or what. Guess I'll go sew something!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Mother in Law Quilt

I have friends, long together but never married. They refer to each others parents as "the out laws". As in, My mother-out-law will be here for the weekend.I, however, having the good luck to be attracted to people of the opposite sex, was able to marry my beloved, and thus I have in laws.

This disappearing nine patch, made with 10.5 inch starting size squares, was conceived on a Monday, pieced on a Tuesday, sandwiched on a Wednesday, and meander machine quilted Thursday and Friday. My husband left on Saturday, and gave it to her on a Sunday. I hear she liked it. I just used every damn floral I had, and figure finished is better than perfect.

Shown above is the poodle Magic, serving as chief quilt tester.

I am experimenting with using batting squares as foundation. This came to me as I was ripping off the three million tiny shreds of paper from a paper pieced spiderweb block. I know lots of people have good luck getting the paper off through various methods- I don't. I've shortened my stitch, folded on the stitch line, misted the paper lightly with water, you show me some site on the Internet with a hint, and I've tried it.

I have been making a ton of doll quilts- my dismal selection in my Etsy shop to the contrary- and that has used up a lot of batting, but not as much as I would wish. The idea of a cloth foundation bugs me. I don't have any ugly fabric to use up. I never buy fabric I think is ugly. The fabric is lost inside the quilt, not enough to serve as batting but still a whole nother layer of expense. Cheap muslin shrinks terribly, and unevenly, and they is a giant pain to iron after prewashing. I have so little time to quilt as it is, I hate the thought of it.

But, if I use the batting as the foundation, the batting is already there. I cut the batting into roughly eight inch squares. This is using up large quantities of those strips of batting left on the sides of quilts. I'm trimming the squares to about eight and a half inches. The seams are mostly fabric to fabric, although some of them have some batting caught in them. With a nice pressing, the seam is fine on the right side. The quilt itself will need very little quilting, as the batting is well secured. I'll use a flannel back for coziness, and to mitigate any places where the batting does not quite meet. This method doesn't need the backing cut into squares as the quilt as you go method does, and needs much less precision overall. I like less precision. I also like making strip quilts.

I've got a rail fence made out of strips from the top of my cutting table and the sewing machine- piecing as a cleaning method! I'll take pictures for next weeks post, but I'm pretty darn pleased with myself. Course, this could be one of those things that every one does, and as the Lone Quilter, I have just never heard of it, but I'm pleased with it none the less.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Book Review

Well, since I haven't managed the complicated cascade of making something-finding the camera-taking a picture-downloading picture-blogging, I decided I could manage a book review.
Love Soup by Anna Thomas is the best cookbook I have read in a long time.

The book has the warm chatty tone I remember from the Vegetarian Epicure, but is a much lighter cuisine. I have found more recipes that I want to make than I do not, and for someone who keeps kosher, is allergic to seafood, and has strong opinons about vegetables, that is a rarity.

I am going to make soup on my next day off. Yummm.

Today at work I was three nurses all at once. ( Two more nurses in my office down with the flu. We are speculating that they are pumping it through the air vents to infect as many employees as possible, and thus save some coin on purchasing vaccines.) I await with anticipation the pay raise I shall receive for this. What, why are you laughing?

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Oh, Hai....

Still here.

not recommended:

Lumbar puncture ( spinal tap)
post tussive emisis ( coughing until you throw up)- quick, protect the laptop!
letting the dog on the bed before checking him for ticks ( will I create some kind of super Lyme/flu?)

Reading Insctructables.com
Having the kind of neighbor who takes your bored, hyper dog for the day, leave cold seltzer and hot coffee on the porch, and acts like this is all no big deal
sending the kids and husband to the sister in laws

Friday, September 18, 2009

Swine Flu

I has it. The CDC wants people to blog about it, so I am. They thought I had meningitis, so H1N1 is actually a much better deal. Yeah for little Miss Sunshine, always finding the pony in the pike of poo!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Somedays You're the Monster, Somedays the Gnome

Ugly or scary? Not much of a choice, actually, all though the odd little creature is actually very cuddly.

I am having bad nursing mojo. I am sick of my hospital and the weird things going on with management. I am sick of the doctors who put pressure on me to place lines, teach,and get the patients out the door. I am sick of the patients who don't realize that the fact that they are ALIVE and able to bitch at me is a modern miracle, that even ten years ago they would not have lived, let alone had the option to bitch at me. I am tired of the coworker with the chronic everything, bless her little malingering heart, and I am tired of the the coworkers who care less, more, or about different things than me.

None of this is any ones fault, really, but if someone were to come to me and say, wide eyed and earnest: "I want to be a nurse. I am going to help people, make a difference in people's lives, and give my all to humanity".

I would turn to them, and with a tone somewhere between a shriek and a growl " Run!!! Run for your life! You will be harmed by this profession, you will see horrible, haunting things. You will be treated like dirt, and you will be shit on. Literally. You will be mocked by doctors and looked down upon by many, many people. You will be back stabbed, you will be humiliated, you will try your best and be told that your best is not good enough. Run for your life. Find another job."

So, uhm, if you are a new nurse, or thinking about becoming a nurse, go find someone else to talk to.

Monday, September 07, 2009

More doll quilts

More dolls, too, but my camera went on a trip without me. When Mr Wooly brings it home, I'll photograph. While he was gone the boys and I watched two Harry Potter movies, ate out once, went to the bookstore and bought one book each, took the dog to the dog park, and ran the dishwasher twice. I also cleaned out the fridge and made bread pudding, sewed three totebags, finished one doll who only needed feet, started another, who only needs....feet, decided that the blanket I was knitting was big enough to be a baby blanket for afghans for Afghans, and atrted another baby blanket out of all the single balls of chinky yarn lurking around here. Not a bad weekend. Before he left I cut out, pieced, quilted and bound a lap quilt for my MIL ( disapearing nine patch with BIG patches). I'm not sure how it was recieved, as she didn't call or anything, but at least I made the effeort. Thank G-d I have a roomba!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Bending the Rules Thread Painting

Little honey bee- I like this a lot. Also his big sunflower friend.

Sunflower, photographed in the blog classic "throw it on the cleanest spot in your house" method. I did this project from Amy Karol's new book Bend the Rules With Fabric. I like this book as much as the first book. Also check out her online tutorials on no swearing, no pinning bias binding and fold over elastic. Her aesthetic is a little more spare than mine. ( of course, my approach to color is similar to an explosion in a crayon factory.) Her directions, encouragement, and wide open attitude is the best ever, though.

As for me, I have rescued the shirt with the weird grease spot. ( Yes, Mr Wolly, I am very sensitive about grease spots on clothes. It's bad enough that I am a fat chick, but a fat chick with a weird grease spot on her shirt? ewww.)

Friday, August 21, 2009

Iraqui Boxes of Love

Here's the box the kids and I put together- the project specs are here. The only thing we bought was six yards of green fabric for $2 US per yard from the sale table. I had recently donated a bunch of bigger pieces to Goodwill, so I needed one to wrap the bundle. Everything else was stash- lots of cards of needles of the type I decided I don't like, hundreds of buttons from shirts and the like, four pairs of decent scissors that I never use, two boxes of pins that I bought before I found the ones that I love, and uses all the time, and six other assorted yards of fabric with no people depicted on it.

Well, I hope somewhere in Iraq, someday, a young man who is hearing that he needs to blow himself up because the Americans are evil pauses back to the day that the American soldiers gave his mom a bundle of sewing supplies, and how happy she was, and that the bundle was sent over by a regular American woman for his mom. Maybe she will be making her sons some nice little shirts for school out of that green fabric, and they will remember, and the world will change a little bit. I remain hopeful. My kids remain hopeful. I am so grateful to the US soldier who gave me the opportunity to reach out to a mother across the world.
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Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Quilt for a Wee Small Friend

Was meant to be for her first birthday, but I missed it by a few months. But the moment the binding was sewn on, I went over and gave it to her, and her mom. The Small is an admirer of my chickens and garden, so I made her a little garden of her own.
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Sunday, August 16, 2009

Rocky Road to Who Knows Where

Describes the process of getting this post done and the quilt. I am cutting my center kites from fabric I had sewn together into strata. Most of my strips are not small, and it is a lot of cutting to get them small enough to use. So I just layed out a template and cut them real close to each other. Then I will make the rest of the square on a foundation.

Here's the quilt in Bonnie's book and the strata, waiting to be cut. I can't remember what I was making when I first sewed it. I have to make a bunch of strip quilts, just to get the exploding box of strips back under control.

I have been working a lot. My cute younger son has lost his two front teeth! School starts in two weeks. Too bad, I love summer. I hate how school stresses out both my kids. I know, they need to learn the life lessons involved, but dang, it is so fun to have them home!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Really, it's OK

Someone emailed me privately, saying that my last post was such a bummer she didn't know what to say. It's OK, folks. Not every one is going to like me, and as much as I wish they did, especially family, there will be times when it it is more important to me to be true to myself than to be liked. This is one of those times. But feel free to post a relative or house guest horror story in the comments!

I'm playing with an idea for a quilt from Bonnie's book. I don't save very small scraps ( sorry, Bonnie!) so some of the construction techniques that are designed to utilize little treasures might not work for me. I am pondering a solution.

I have also started a granny square made out of those little balls of sock yarn that are left over. Sometimes I make baby socks out of left overs, but i have quite a lot more of yarn than I do babies at the present, so this should be a fun way to use the leftovers. I picked my favorite for the center.

Three and a Half More Days

OK, so the guests have gotten challenging. They are my husbands people, and I had no idea he came from a family with such long memories and strongly held beliefs. It is a bit like being a hostage, except the captors will be going away. Too bad- prior to this trip, I thought I liked the adults. After this trip, I will not likely see much of the children. Heartbreaking.

Never again do I have guests and not move my sewing machine to the bedroom.

My husband carried up a big plastic storage box of fabric to the bedroom for me.I dumped out my giant box of strips of fabric and started sorting them into a new plastic drawer thingy I got at Target. Those of you who have done this are probably chuckling wisely about now. This must be some kind of quilting rite of passage. I sorted and sorted and sorted and filled my new drawer thingy with fabric strips- darks, lights, and mediums- and the bin did not get any closer to empty. Not a bit. Irritable and annoyed at my lack of control over the thing, I petulantly tossed the strips I had sorted back into the original bucket. They did not fit.

The space time continuum warped. They used to fit. They don't fit. The fit only an hour ago. I stood on them. I sat on them. I cried a little. Nope, not going back. Put them back into the drawers- they were still mostly sorted-and realized that there are some things in life I can neither understand or control, and that laughing or crying changes nothing.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Day One, Nine to go

We're having guest here at Chez Wooly, which is nice. What is not nice is that there are so many of them that some are staying in the family room, aka the sewing cave. My access to my sewing machine is cut off. CUT OFF PEOPLE!!!.

Breathing deeply. I hve hand quilting. I have knitting. I have books. I will be fine without ten days of sewing ARRRGGGGHHHHHH I'mmm MELTINGGGGGGGG!!!

Think good thoughts for me, folks. Calm, good thoughts. I am taking deep breaths. I am hand quilting the doll quilt up in the photo.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Flowers and Birds, Hand Quilted

A close up.
A far away up. It is the biggest thing I have hand quilted. My hands hurt ( I sew with both left and right hands.), but I think if I were more measured about progress, I could do some- a little- every day, and not get hurt.

The embroidery store on my Island has perle cotton in a hundred colors. Very appealing in the little drawers it is sold from.

I have to say I am pretty pleased. I need a better name, though. Suggestions?

Sunday, July 26, 2009

This Elderly House

This is the swinging door between the kitchen and dining room. I has been down for about fifty years, based on the paint color on the kitchen side and the wallpaper in the inset. The last picture is the closeup of the very vintage wall paper. During the latest painting, we found evidence of this paper on every wall and the ceiling. In a small dose, it is quirky and a little cute. Covering the whole room...vertigo, people. The green color is a very close match to the first color the kitchen was painted. I also happen to love this color, so it was an easy choice.
I went to a garage sale this weekend, and the lady was selling a large number of doors that belonged to her house. Notice I said belonged to her house, not to her. I love old houses. I do not love people who refuse to consider that thier house has already lived loger than they have, and will outlive them.
I think that houses start to be an entity unto themselves, absorbing some of the life that we do- or do not- bring into them. Old houses have to put up with a lot- we change, modify, re model, paint over, scrape off and so on. Sometimes our efforts are for the better, respecting the spirit and form of the house, and making it an even better house. Sometimes, our efforts are for the worse, trying to make the house into something it is not, was not, and never will be. There's a poor bungalow down the block whose owner, in the Nifty Fifties, wanted to live in a ranch. Instead of moving to a ranch, they re-mangled the house in the image of a ranch. They failed. On a block of neat little bungalows, it was always the house that didn't quite fit- something was wrong, but it was hard to put your finger on it. The owners since then- there have been four families that I know of- have each tried, with varying degrees of dedication- to make it back into a bungalow. It is a long haul back, but the one before this one had a woodworker as a husband, and he made a lot of good progress. The current owners are building nicely on this, and it is possible that the house will some day look like it was supposed to look.

My gratitude for the former owners of the house for putting these doors up in the rafters of the garage is boundless. After seeing the house who's owner was selling it's bits, I decided the day had come to tackle re- hanging the door. It was actually less of a job than I thought. I had needed the hardware for the top hinge, as it was missing, and I finally found it on sale at Rejuvenation I didn't know if the bottom hinge, and it's spring, were in working order, so I was glad to have the whole set. As it turned out, the bottom hinge was just fine. I replaced the top hinge, sanded the bottom to account for the new sub floor in the kitchen, sanded the top and the side to get it to swing freely, and cleaned the wood side with Howard's finish restorer. Since it was easier that I had thought, I had time to paint the kitchen side. Someday I will find someone to bleach the two doors that have been re-hung to match the color of the trim, but for the meantime, they can grow old together. It was a nice morning's work.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

A Flurry of Doll Quilts

All about 12 by something. "Making doll quilts is like eating candy" Mary Schaefer, as quoted by Gwen Marston. I can't think of a better way to say it!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Small Quilt Number Two

Here is how I make a free form bag:

Cut a square of any size. Cut it in Half on the diagonal. The long side of the diagonal becomes the bottom of the bag. Trim the corners and the top of the bag. At this point, decide whether it will be pieced in to the background, or appliqued on. Do so. Now, cut a bias strip from the bag fabric, following the same diagonal- about two and one half inches wide, or so. Baste the bias piece, pin to bag in a loopy way with glass head pins, and steam press it to set the curve. Gwen Marston taught me that. Sew, pulling out the pinsa as you go. Admire your not-so-Prada-bag.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Small Quilt Number One

I am re reading this book and trying to make myself work small. The house is getting overwhelmed with quilts. Some small ones would be a good thing. Plus, It will be fun to just have to make one block- like this star- and see if I like making that kind of block. I gave this one to my husband, and he hung it on the wall right away.

Monday, July 06, 2009

Hand Quilting with perle cotton

The back, and the front. I find it not so bad. I do not love it, and get lost in doing it as I do with machine quilting, but I do like the look of fans.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Bridge's Up

We won't be going anywhere for a while. This is the drawbridge near my house- the one that leads to the mainland. The small bridge to the left is a pedestrian bridge. Kind of makes you think about things.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Chicken Adventure

Wow! There's an inside to the outside! Where's that lady with the corn? I'll just walk on up to these steps to the kitchen....

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Father's Day

This would, on a normal person's blog, be a nice warm post about the lovely day spent with the father of her children ( which did happen) and the fond memories of childhood with their own father. The second bit never happened. My father ran away one day, and never really came back. Through some stupid twist of fate, I chased after him for a while, living under his roof for two of the most frightening, demeaning, and ill cared for years of my life. There's no point detailing what a wreck of a human being he was, you all have newspapers and Internet, and know how to use them. Suffice to say that if I were to discover that he were sick, or hurt, or needed help in anyway well, I piss on him. Really.

I was, actually, quite surprised at all that a father could do for children, watching my husband and my children over the years. Just tonight, they were all guiltily discovered playing Tetris ( a video game) on the computer, and it was the sweetest thing, ever, seeing them all huddled together. I think that fathers who do show up, and do so sober and sane, are a odd thing. But, that said, I do not like Father's Day.

Lots of people don't have one, have never had one, and will never have one. Same for Mother's Day. Presumably, people who have a Father, as opposed to having a sperm donor, know what they have, and all the cakes with shirt and ties made out of frosting in the world is not going to do anything to increase their knowledge of this fact. Those of us without fathers.....

Monday, June 15, 2009

Sumer Tiii-iime

Here are the two storm doors, converted to screen doors. I had to sand, paint, pick out broken glass, make screens and hang. I could have never done this pre Humeria. I hope it lasts.

Need to make a screen for the windo to the right of the door, and I will have a screened in porch! Pretty cool, huh?

The tree is one I planted, seven years ago. It is wonderful beyond all expectation.

The custom here is to paint the front steps. I am not so sure about this. They are currently peeling grey, and a little more paint comes off every time I sweep. I think red would be pretty, but I notice that the people who have really nice painted front steps seem to paint them every spring. I will have to confirm this with the nice guys at the paint store. I may just let the paint finish peeling, and live with the fact that they are concrete.

Kids are off school. As relaxed as I think I am, being with kids all day makes me realize that I expect a lot of zipping around in my life. It took us three hours to walk/scooter a mile to the library, pick out three books, drink a soda at the library cafe, and scooter home. Huh. Three calm, enjoyable hours, but three hours none the less. Alone, I would have allotted an hour, and that is mostly for the walking. I need to adjust and enjoy. Tomorrow, we leave for two nights of camping. We shall see how I do sleeping on an air mattress. Details to follow.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Singer, How I love Thee

A mere $15US in a junk store. Works. Works well, even. Spent a happy day oiling the machine and polishing the cabinet. I think it is my pinnacle of junk shop shopping. Of course, I have no where to put it- I live in a doll house. I am eying all the other furniture, trying to decide who will get thrown off the island to make room.

I notice in all these old machines- both the ones I buy and the ones I do not- that it never looks like the owner intended to stop sewing. The bobbin is wound. The machine is threaded. The drawers are full of notions and buttons. In a way, this comforts me. When I am too old, or too arthritic to sew, I won't know when the last day of sewing is. I'll just leave my bobbin full.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Chair, Part Two

This is the glider that my dear Grammie bought me when I was expecting my first child. She did not live to see him. At that time I was very into soft floral and tapestry fabrics, sort of a country garden thing. The upholstery fit right into that. Well, I rocked both boys in this, but it really did not fit my current tastes. New cushions can be ordered, but they were pricey, and none of them really were much better, in any case.

I wasn't sure I was a technical enough sewist to make new cushions, as they attach to the chair with some very specific snaps and clips. I had decided to take the plunge, and had layed the back cushion down on the fabric to ponder, when I realized that I could use the hardware that is there. At first I thought of cutting it off, and sewing it onto the new fabric, but then I realized that if I just covered the old cushions, I could make a button hole opening anywhere that the hardware had to come through, and there you are. The fabric is upholstery weight from IKEA. Twelve bucks, total. I call it a success!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Another Chicken Quilt

Well, here they are. A lot of chickens, mostly out of Marimekko fabric. I scored a pile of it at a close out place. I am so in love with the background fabric. It looks like a crayon drawing.
Here's the finished top:I am pretty pleased. I like the chicken in the middle row that looks like she's walking really fast.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Spring bird

I was noticing that the finches that come to my feeder are yellow, now, and in winter and spring they are olive. I thought they were a different kind of finch, but when I looked in the bird book it says that that is what goldfinches do- change color season to season. Who knew?

The flowers are magnolia. The branches were done by cutting and then inserting the black strips. I bought this black fabric at a close out place, and after I got home I loved it so much that I went back and bought all they had. They didn't have much, though- only four yards. It looks like the fabric is colored with wax crayons, and I love it so much.

I was thinking of making these quilts in a series. It is supposed to be good for artists to work in a seres, so I will give it a go. Right now I am on an appliqued chicken kick, though, and I will take some photos after the sun comes up. I can't decide if I should piece all the chickens into one top, or make a seres of wall hangings. Hmm.

Sunday, May 10, 2009


Mary's first independent quilts. They are about twelve by twelve. She pieced and free motion quilted them.
This was the gateway drug- er QUILT. I made what she told me to make. M made the color decisions in the small blocks and most of the decisions in the applique. She has to sew her own binding.

Yes, folks, i have ensnared another quilter. ( It's double bonus points, because I also got her addicted to knitting.) My best friend M was in town, and said she wanted to see me sew. I didn't really teach, I just talked as I did things and she took it and ran. I miss her very much. She is a much better person than I am- right now she is backpacking with a bunch of high school boys from the school her husband's biology class. Nerves of steel, that girl.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Now I Know...

Why the dog likes to lay with his nose under the couch. A joyful reunion with his toys resulted.I really should move the couch more often.