Wednesday, January 25, 2017


Last week I showed just a portion of my challenge quilts.  We presented them at the guild meeting last Saturday, so now I can show you!

My first impulse after hearing the theme was, of course, drinking.  (I'm not a bar fly, but anyone who knows me knows how much I look forward to my afternoon glass of wine!)
So I set about collecting fabrics with drinks on them.  I was a bit disappointed that so many were on black backgrounds.  Then the idea of famous bars came to mind as a way to have actual bars on my quilt.  I then collected images from the internet for bars I thought would be recognizable to fans of the movies and shows.  ( I left out "Cheers", feeling it was too obvious)

I decided it would be a nine patch design..  I found a modern nine patch quilt I really liked, so decided to use that as my base quilt.Now that it's done, I have decided that using the prints I did, this was a mistake.
  Such is life.  You can see the base quilt here, under the flaps.  This is where I put the name of the tv show or movie.  The logo of the bar is on a flap which covers it up.  So it's sort of a game.

This is the completed quilt.    Can you guess all the answers?? (they're at the bottom of this post.)
 I don't love this quilt, and will have little use for it once the challenge exhibit is over.  I'm thinking it will end up as a case for my knitting needles. The flaps will make great pockets!

My second challenge entry is called Alien Plant Life.  I had bought the pattern, called Shenandoah, by  Creative Sewlutions, a couple of years ago.  I hadn't really thought of it for the challenge until I saw the floral fabric.  I was on vacation, visiting Roswell, New Mexico.  We had toured the UFO Museum, and I had noticed a quilt shop just across the street.  Surely they would have fabric with aliens on it, and wouldn't that be the perfect souvenir?!?!!  Well, they didn't.  But when I spotted this fabric, inspiration struck!

 Since there are no aliens in the fabric, I quilted some on it.  The one on the ground is pretty tough to spot., so I blurred the edges in this photo to help.  He's waving to another alien...

...who is flying off to explore the stars.

This was a fun challenge.  I can't wait to hear the theme for the next one! (Of course that doesn't mean I'll have it finished before Christmas.)
You can see more of the quilts here- and soon, all of them will be at the guild blog.

Al Gore has made a sequel to "An Inconvenient Truth".  It won't be out until July, but I can only hope the sequel urges as many people to action as the first one did.  Climate deniers like to say the planet has undergone temperature shifts in the geological past.  True.  How many species survived those shifts?  The Earth will survive humans, but humans cannot survive if there isn't clean air or water, or food. 

I am grateful for:
The women who marched and gave a voice to those of us who couldn't.
I didn't fall off the roof.
A day with Jonathan
We've had almost enough rain/ snow so far this winter to recover from last summer's drought.
Only 28 days until retreat!!

The Gem: Deadwood
Rosie's: MASH
Moe's: The Simpsons
Boar's Nest: Dukes of Hazzard
Rick's: Casablanca
Three Broomsticks: Harry Potter
Long Branch Saloon: Gunsmoke
MacLaren's: How I Met Your Mother
Quark's: Star Trek Deep Space Nine

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Winter is the time for creating!

This part of winter doesn't bother me at all.  Let the wintry winds blow -which they have been lately!- as long as I'm home with my creating stuff, I'm never bored, or worried about being housebound.  (Of course with the winter we're having in western NY that isn't a problem so far!)

 This happens a lot these days.  I sit down to do something and suddenly there is a cat on my lap! I had to boot her off, because I can't type with the keyboard tray pushed in!  Note, I bring my other gadgets with me to the computer!

So, anyway, I'm keeping busy in my creative spaces the last few weeks, when I'm home.  I can't show the most recent quilt projects yet, because they are for the challenge to be revealed at the guild meeting on Saturday.  But here is a preview, just to tease the few who might see this before the meeting.

I finished another ornament.  My space for them is getting full, so I may take a break for a while when I finish the ones I have started.  People keep suggesting I sell them.  Here's a question- what would you pay for one??  The one pictured here is on a 6 inch  ball.  It used a box and a half of the pins (750 each), and that many beads and sequins!

 Here is my current collection.

I also finished a pair of socks I started in September or October.  I used two different yarns with subtle color changes. The odd green one was a leftover from a pair of socks.  I'm hoping a friend will like them, since she was in my mind as I knitted. 

It's a scary time in the world right now.  I think there is a collective holding of breath- and not just by Americans.  I think many lawmakers, emboldened by the potential for support from above, are trying to get legislation like this passed now.  We must be more vigilant than ever.  Keep your eyes open, and your voice always at the ready to be heard!  And stand ready to support the causes you believe in with yor money and your time!  Now, more than ever, we the people must stand strong!!

I am grateful for:
The caring professionals who got me through a recent emergency.
A wonderful evening spent with my grandchildren!
Creative time!
The Cowboys lost. 
Laughing with my husband.

Monday, January 2, 2017

A new year; another chance

I wanted to say Welcome 2017, but I'm not sure at all I can be optimistic about what is to come this year.    On the sewing front, however, I am starting out with enthusiasm! 
My online group is doing (yet another) UFO challenge.  I counted up to 36 before I decided to quite.  Last year I started with 12.  I did finish 7 of them, but 36 is a bit insurmountable!  How it works is the organizer calls 2 numbers a month. You get out those items from your numbered list and assess them.  Maybe all you will do is that much, but at least the project saw the light of day.
Here are mine for this month.

This one (#3) began as a swap with a different online group.  I wanted it to be queen sized, so I added the alternate blocks, but it still needs borders to make it big enough.  The second border will be pieced using the same sized squares as the four patches in the blocks- so a lot of small piecing.  That's where I got stuck before.  We'll see how far I get this time.

This is #20.  It's so old, I don't even know if I was using a pattern or not.  I have always enjoyed playing with fussy cutting for the kaleidoscope effect.  When I ran out of the focus fabric, I played with ways to make it a lap sized quilt and came up with this.  The big green spaces will be fun to quilt now that I have some free motion experience.

As always, at the end of the year, I have counted up the 2016 projects.  Here are this year's results:
14 knitted projects
12 general sewing
27 quilted items (this includes 10 things like the stockings from a panel and some placemats)
20 opulent ornaments
a few pieces of jewelry and assorted coloring pages finished, plus 26 kittens fostered.
A pretty good year.

I was thinking yesterday as I saw numerous "buy yourself another gift" advertisements, that this is how we are trained these days- to buy stuff we don't need because it's on sale, or because we deserve it, or...
It's sad that we as a society no longer consider need when we shop.  Everything is disposable.  Just one mindset that will have to change for the planet to survive the human infestation.  So, just once in a while, consider if you NEED it, or maybe the old one can be repaired (good luck finding a repair shop, though), or you can just make do with the same one a little while longer.

I am grateful for:
A lot of time with Kiara this week
Lots of kitties found homes for the holidays!
Some quality sewing time this weekend (it's challenge time!)
I had a gift for the sweet neighbor who stopped in Saturday with a gift for me.
Leftovers- not cooking gives me more sewing time!