Monday, December 07, 2009

::::Favorite Holiday Collection:::





After reading this post at Wisecraft, I had to share my favorite collection. They are tiny delightfully knitted mittens, socks, a sweater and a larger mitten. Four is enough to say it is a collection, right? They are hard to find, but I sure love them.


She will show you how to make your own miniature ornament. Make your own, why didn't I think of that? Especially after all the little outfits I made for these ladies. Oh well, I am excited to add to my collection of winter wearables eventually. I suppose that would fall under To Do. Ahem.
Blue and white cardigan for chilly nights.

One red mitten

Tonight I may get out my felt and started stitch'n!

High-waters no more



My pants were too short. Why? Of course it is because my legs are so so long. Or maybe it is that when my middle puts on a few extra holiday cookies- my pants seem to get shorter?
Anyway...I don't have a plethora of pants to choose from so being down a pair was not working. So I lengthened them. What do you think? Do they look silly or dated? You could say I up-cycled them. You could also say, judging by the above picture that I need a new ironing board cover! eek.




To Do::::::::

I have a To Do list. Today, I decided to start photographing the things I want to finish and posting them. I am sure, I am the only one who doesn't finish projects! I thought perhaphs that would help me to get in gear and get them done. Hopefully, I will be able to Coinside the to do's with the done's!

Lately I was inspired or should I say re-inspired by a commentar, Mary Lou, she is a fun and whimiscal designer. This quilt is full of her fabric designs, some of my favorite fabrics reside between the seems. This quilt is about the 4th one I ever made. I made it in 2003-2004ish. I finished it. I love it. There is a block for each of my children with their birthdate. I sent it to the quilter and she did it justice.
Then tragedy struck.

No sooner had I got it home, did I spill coffee on it. Quilting and coffee do go together but not literly. I cried. I ruined it, I felt. I had to soak it and soak it and subsequently some of the applique began to come up at the seams. I couldn't look at it anymore so I packed it away. 6 years ago.


Until today. I still love it and it just needs a little fixing, some minor surgery and it will be just fine. It is a little wrinkly, 6 or so years in storage does that, and the wings need tacking. But the binding is ready to go. I will try to post some better pictures on flicker and when she is done you all will be the first to know.
What do you have packed away waiting to be finished?

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Jones-en


sewing room
Originally uploaded by Rickrack and Ribbons.
My time for blogging is very limited. My time in general is very taxed. My ability to manage said time is poor at best. This fall I took two classes instead of one. Since these classes are condensed it is like having a full load for a normal college student. I also have my job, which oddly enough demands that I be there every day. Then I have my family who needs to be fed, and have their clothes laundered not to mention a bit of my precious commodity of time to enjoy, nurture, defuse them.

Me I need a creative fix; I am jonessssss-en for it. I crave it, require it along with my daily vitamins and the occasional chocolate bar (ha, I said occasional). So I lurk. I am a lurker. Lurkey lurkey loo, that is what I do. That side bar over there with the many great blogs, along with the ones that I have in my search bar- I get a fix from them. It is a band-aid to my bleeding creative side. Time to create is the medicine but right now, the time cost is too expensive. So, I live that part of me vicariously through the creativity of others. In the mean time I pop in here now and again, until summer that is, or until the demands of my time recede.

I just want to say thanks for that! To all of you incredibly creative people whom I have never met but truely admire!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Reflections

I am a parent. I am a parent of a senior in High School. When my youngest children (twins) turned 7, they endered mid-childhood and I realized I had crossed over from young mother with young children to an older, ermm wiser, mother of older children. This signified the ending of a season of my life and not without mourning. Now my eldest will graduate this year.

Having a high school senior is like reading the end of a long beloved book. Things finish, they conclude constantly. There is the next book to look forward to yet you have to let go of the one you have gotten to know so well.

Volleyball has been in our lives for a very long time. Lilli has worked and sweated and cried over her losses and her gains. She like so many other girls work and work for their senior season. This is the season that they shine. All their learning and strength and maturity intertwines in this year. They emerge strong and talented. My Lilli is no exception. She shined, she sparkled and she played like a champion.

Her coach was a big part of that growth. So to thank her for all she had done for Lilli and the team I made her a quilt.


This is the first quilt that I have ever quilted myself and I even did a little free form. We had all the senior players sign a block and presented the quilt to her on awards night. The center block and the block on the back are from their team t-shirts. All the parents and fans of the players also had these shirts to wear to games.

The ending of this particular season was sad, or maybe I should say bitter-sweet. Not only was it the last high school volleyball season, it signifies the ending of another season of both our lives. Endings that have to occur to open the way for the new seasons to begin.
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Monday, September 07, 2009

Inspired hand work


I was so inspired by this ultra talented lady. I have followed her blog for a few years and she is always amazing me with her creativity. My fabulous niece called it a "fabric doodle" and that is exactly what it feels like!! Pick up a needle and doodle away! It is also a great way to get in the embroidery groove before you start a project, just like anything hand stitching takes practice and momentum and a few stitchs on a 'doodle' is enough to get you warmed up for something else!

I am not crazy about how well the pics came out but you get the idea.


The great thing about this type of work is it is totally random, spontaneous and (the best part) I can incorporate all the bits and pieces that I have-and can't throw away- such as the garter thingy in the first picture!



Not to mention it is so relaxing to sit on the couch at the end of the day and bury myself in floss, buttons and do-dads! I still want to fill in a bit at the bottom and then figure out how to finish it off!

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Saturday, September 05, 2009

My First Quilt

I am usually late in the game and have seen several 'first' quilts' in blogland, so I thought I would share with you my first quilt- I haven't shared it here before have I- anyway it is a string quilt that I made for Lilliana. She was in the 4th grade at the time, she is a senior this year, that tells you how long ago it was. Her and I did the piecing on a foundation, I remember my eyes going a bit buggy from the brightness of it!! The 'strings' were just strips ranging from 1.5 to 2.5 inches wide. The pillow top has stars that were cut from the blocks and appliqued on.



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Thursday, August 20, 2009

Dear Fall,

Dear Fall

You are so funny, you fall you! You blow in here early with your wild winds and sheets of rain.
You’ve cooled things down to a crisp briskness. You think you are fool’n us to think that summer is waning. But I got your number and I am not going to succumb. Silly fall, who do you think you are pushing your way in when summer is still working its lovely magic. Summer is not ready to give up, I know she isn’t, she is still working on her garden- reddening the tomatoes, greening the peppers, and encouraging the squash. So do not think that for one minute we are going to fall for your fall like ways, no sir, not this time; so pack up your cooler temperatures, your harsh winds and your sniveling rains, so summer can finish in peace.

Thank you

The summer lover

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Exercises in small motor

This is Ash and he is 9. He is tactile. He is bright. And he loves his blankets. I call them that because at 9 you no longer sleep with a 'nigh nigh' but a blanket. He still has and sleeps with the one he received as a baby- well both considering he also confiscated his brother's.


He wanted a new one to replace (erm, in addition) to his. So we went to the fabric store and after much dilberation, he picked out his fabric. He wanted it just like his other, fabric top and bottom and tied. AND with wide silk blanket binding. After the initial sticker shock of store bought binding...a whooping $6 a package, we made our purchase. I am so spoiled by buying most of my supplies second hand!

The deal was, he had to help. He was great and such a trooper! Watching his little fingers trying to manipulate needle, thread and fabric was amazing and as stated in the title a supreme exercise in fine motor skills!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Road Trip

Early...oh so early Monday morning my sister and I hit the pavement for the American Quilters Society Show in Knoxville TN. It was a very long day of driving. 19 hours long. We will stay the night in Nashville. I love Nashville and TN as a whole, such a gorgeous state. Then we headed for Knoxville.


I needed a new bag for the trip. Something to hold all my gear in the van and to tote around at the show....just in case... I find a lovely piece of fabric I need to have. Yes I said need...what?

When I was a junior in High School I bought a messenger bag by Esprit. Remember them? I loved anything Esprit. Last fall the strap broke, mind you I have had and used the bag for 20+ years. Mostly for travel and for school. I was so sad. I loved that bag for these types of trips. I would forgo a purse and put everything in the bag, including a book to read and my water with plenty of room for small purchases.

I had to make a new one. Ahem. That means a pattern, of which we (the pattern and I, that is) have a long history of a love/hate relationship. Mostly it is the cutting out of the pieces, it seems that every time I unfold the thing I am under some sort of physical tissue paper assault.


Look on the strap....See that buckle? You may have seen it in Time magazine, that is if you read it in 1942 because that is when it was featured. It is a 'self-covering' buckle and can you believe the sticky still worked like a charm?

We now have two days of the show under our belts. We have been doing a demo of a this really great ruler for making bias binding. It is fantastic. I am not quite Vince Shlomi but I am getting close!! Have a happy Friday!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The 32lb fish..You know the one that got away..


I have a favorite antique-type haunt. It is a big, huge place with tons of vendors and lots of fun stuff. I rarely run into something that is outrageously priced. A few months back we were browsing about the place and I found the greatest quilt. It was different then any I have ever seen before.
It was like it was pieced together with bits of other quilts but in no particular order. If a crazy quilt left its fancy stitching at home and married a quilt of the the month. Well, that is close to what this quilt was like. It had blocks and then just pieces, top-stitched down in places. No batting, maybe flannel in between. The back was bigger pieces pieced. It was the truest 'use what you have' quilt and don't let anything go to waste.

I really wanted it but it just wasn't the time to spend $25. Yes I know $25. I was really filled with regret, after, because the fabrics and textures were so amazing and so filled with history. I went back 3 days later, I had to have it. Oh you already guessed? Yeah, it was gone. Swoosh. Just like that. I was so so sad.


A few days ago, 'the quilt' was swimming around in my brain. I have a few odds and end blocks. Most are vintage. Some are from my mother in law....


Some I made, but never did finish that quilt of the month...


Some more from my mother-in-law. The hexagons are all hand pieced...


Not to mention a ton of single hexagons...


And a few that I have purchased...




I also have feed sacks and vintage fabric hanging out...


So I decided ,that in the spirit of the beautiful piece of patchwork that is now only a memory, why not put together my own . Use what I have, rescue a few blocks here and there and put a few together. Then I could actually keep that 32lb fish...you know the one that got away.


Tuesday, July 14, 2009

What a Guy


My sweet 12 year old has been gone for 12 days fishing with our neighbors (surrogate grandparents). He brought everyone home a gift and the above was for me. How sweet and how truly well he knows his mother!!! Now I just have to figure out what to use the little pot for? Any Ideas?

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Sunday, July 12, 2009

Charmed

I'm sure!! I LOVE :: love charm packs because well frankly, they charm my pants off. They are cute and square and bound by a simple wrap. I know, I am easy, but really what is not to love. There is little cutting involved. True, true I did cute these. But in defense of Charms it was really quick.

This little quilt is lap or a cuddle size. Big enough to take off the chill! The back is mostly the flowers- a print I adore- with a section of pieced fabrics, because I never do a solid back, never have, I like the element of surprise in it.

The borders are a cozy chenille that really brings the whole thing together. I think anyway. I also think these pictures are a little blurry. {shrug} My camera's flash went kaputz so I do what I can.

What I did do with this little lovely that I don't usually do, or have only done once before, was tie it. The quilting part of quilting has a tendency to bug me. I admire those who love it and therefore, feel it is my duty to support their craft. But with the man of the house layed off and me not working this summer, I had to take matters into my own, capable hands. So I tied and I tied- oh my God did I tie.
Sorry I digressed into 90's music. I do that. Now I have it playing in the background and that is not helping my train of thought at all.
To make a long story short. I like how it turned out and I think now, that the sassy little pink ties only add to the charm of this little number.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Last Weekends Festivities Posted a Week Later

We had a blast last weekend at the lake. The food was fantastic. The show of fireworks was unbelievable- apparently if you live or weekend on my mother's lake (well it's not hers technically, but she lives there) it is imperative that you try to out do your neighbors with your fireworks display. This is great for those of visiting although you may experience whiplash from trying to look all over the place and right in front of you at the same time. The fireworks incidentally, lasted about an hour and a half between our own and everyone else's!!


There were also games to play, such as Egyptian Rat slap a game that should not be played while anyone is trying to sleep within a 5 mile radius! The laughter is too fantastic.



And of course more creatures brought to me for inspection. How cute are these little guys. We also found a plethora of tadpoles and poly wogs.

In light of yesterdays post, I thought I would also share today's discovery of all things gross smuggled into my house by my own little naturalist. I was cleaning the downstairs and noticed an inordinate number of fruit flies, this is odd because not food is allowed in the lower level. (she laughs to herself) I investigate the boys bathroom further- yes my first mistake- boys, I have found are HORRIBLE about their bathroom!! Low and behold the sink held a huge- dead- stinky- (colossally stinky) fresh water clam! smuggled home from our weekend at the lake! Said child was explicitly told to return the large clam back to it's habitat to live its life and make pearls or beads or whatever- but do not bring that home! It came home anyway. A zoo I tell you. A zoo.
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