Saturday, June 27, 2009


Oh my, this is an "Oops" on so many levels.  First is that I have the flying geese on the left side in the wrong direction.  But the "biggie", I think is that the middle flying geese aren't close enough in color to make the center look like a square.  I'll have to keep that in mind when I modify a pattern from only 3 fabrics to using varied fabrics in like color intensity.  In this case, the colors were not close enough to have the desired effect.

So I went back to my little box of precut pieces and found what I needed to remedy the situation.
I just hope that I will have enough of the precut pieces for the remainder of my blocks of the month.  This is September's, so I still have a few left to go.  But then I did cut WAY more than I needed, so I should be OK.

And speaking of months, my June Christmas project (The idea is to do something for Christmas on the 25th of each month so there won't be quite the rush come December.) turned out quite nicely, I think.  It's simply hand towels that I found on sale that I have added strips of holiday fabric to.  These will be gifts.

And this is for me.  It's not a new towel, just an old one whose color doesn't quite go anywhere any more.  But add a little Christmas bling, and it can go anywhere, come December.

In the meantime, lets enjoy the rest of June!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009


Well, I've decided to tuck away the vest I am making for myself.  I have it all done but the collar and belt. 
 Since it's a winter vest, 

I decided I should start on some other things that I'll need before that like a sweater for my soon-to-be 8 year old granddaughter for her August birthday.

Now that my evening knitting is all organized, it's time to organize for some day time quilting.  So here are the blocks for my next BOM (block of the month).  I'm doing pretty well as this is the August block.  Hooray, I'm ahead on something!

And remember that embroidery I was working on while I was at my daughters?  Well, I thought I needed to buy some more varied colored flosses.  But the other day when I was looking for something (an empty CD case to be exact), I came across a lot of old needlework canvases that I had forgotten I had.  AND in the bag, there was a lot of floss.  Another HOORAY!  So I have it all organized too.

And speaking of finding things:  in the cabinet where I found the floss, there was also a bag with this unfinished needlepoint pillow.  I'm am almost ashamed to tell you how long ago that was laid aside.  Let's just say that it was for my son (who is now pushing 40) and I was working on it for him when he was 8!
Not to worry, I think it will be a great gift for his son who will be 5 in March.  Certainly I can finish it by then as all that is left is the light green background.  Looks like a great in-the-car project for an upcoming trip to see our daughter and her family--including the new baby.  

And then, there's an 8 hour drive to the beach the following week--and another 8 hours to get home too, so that's lots of time for this particular unfinished project.

Just gotta get it all organized, after it's found that is!

Friday, June 19, 2009


I've been playing around with different gauges and stitches for the 6x9 rectangles that eventually made into afghans.

Currently I'm trying a needle that's a little larger than I'd been using, just so it goes faster.  This is worsted weight with a size 8.  I only need 22 stitches per row in garter stitch . . .

as opposed to 24 stitches on size 7 needles.

As I mentioned last posting, I was going to try my hand at crocheting.  As it turns out, I remembered pretty well.  The first night, though, I was so tense that my shoulder got sore!  With a little practice and relaxing, though, I've learned to really like it.
I crocheted in the car on the way and way home from South Carolina last weekend where we visited our daughter.  I don't like to knit in the car--sharp points, you know.  So it was a perfect time to try to remember my crocheting.  I only had one size needle with me though.
I don't know exactly what my stitches are called, I think double and triple crochet, but I'm not sure.
Since we've gotten home I switched to a larger needle and am  doing "double?" on a large needle . . .
as opposed to the smaller needle.   "Double ?" on the left was too tight and would be too heavy for an afghan, I think.  And the "triple?" on the right is a little lacier than I wanted.  So I think I'll settle for the larger needle above.

Oh, but I must share with you that you just CANNOT drive through South Carolina in the summer and NOT stop for some peaches on the way home.  We bought 1/2 bushel on Sunday.  Yummmm:    fresh, in a few pies, and today I finished most of them up with some jam.

I peeled a few more than I needed for my jam and they are in the "fridge".  Hmmmmm, I think I'll go have one.

Friday, June 12, 2009


Why on earth, you may ask, am I still making totes instead of getting on with my other unfinished projects.

Well, here you have it:  not enough room in my current totes to get all the groceries.  AND, I'd like not to use that yucky plastic one at all. (The sunflower patchwork one, by the way, was a gift from my daughter several years ago.) 

So, with the help of my last three "would-be placemats" I made my final shopping tote.  At least for now, anyway  there may be more in my future for gifts from upolstery sample patchwork.


But, while I was in the groove of things, I decided to make a beach bag (complete with eyeglass case) for a birthday gift for a granddaughter who we are going to see this weekend.

All from stash.  Can't beat that!

Now I think I'll go try my hand at remembering how to crochet and work on some of those 6x9 rectangles for afghans.  I'll let you know if I can remember or if I'm going to need tutoring.

Saturday, June 6, 2009


What, you may ask, do food and flowers have to do with quilting and knitting.  Well, I must admit, it's a bit of a stretch.  But one of my latest projects will bring quilting in to the realm of grocery shopping--you know:  "going green" by taking your own bags to the grocery or market.
I just happened to have a start on some totes (not planned that way) in the leftover fabric from last summer's picnic quilt.  I was going to make place mats, but decided perhaps they would be just the right size for shopping totes.  The fabric was already place mat size, sandwiched and basted.

My first is just a little big (side panels added to the edge of the precut "placemat"), but not bad for light weight items.

The second is a little small (two placemats just sewn together), but perfect for heavy items, or a small shopping excursion.
I have had lots of fun practicing my free motion quilting, and have gotten relatively good at the "meandering" method.  That also gives lots of "body" to the fabric, making a perfect "bottom" for my totes.  I might try the next one a medium size.

And since I mentioned food, I guess I gotta show you what else I've been doing these last few days:
Blackberry and mixed berry jam.  (This photo was taken before the strawberry was done.)
I must admit that seeing a good stash of fabric or yarn probably takes a second place to the pleasure I get in seeing a new stash of home canned good on my pantry shelves.

As for flowers, well, just thought I'd share a couple with you.  I dug this shamrock out of the ground a couple weeks ago.  Seems it doesn't mind being in a pot.

And this Oak Leaf Hydrangea finally (after several years in this spot) has  decided to look good!  Perhaps it's due to the unusual rainy spring we had.

Oh, as for knitting:  well, I did get by the LYS the other day for them to explain a direction in my vest pattern that was confusing me.  So perhaps I'll get back in the knitting mode sometime soon too.  I'll let you know.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009


. . . another man's (BIRD'S) treasure!  --or fishing spot.

Our view of the Tennessee River is wonderful, especially at sunrise.  Today there was an extra surprise:  lots of "trash" (mostly logs--quite a hazard to fast boaters or skiers).  But the herons (some Great Blues and some Night Herons) didn't seem to mind.  Perfect spot for their early morning fishing!

While I haven't gotten back to very much needle work since getting home from daughter's home and fun with her new baby, I thought I'd show you that the 30s repro baby quilt I made last year is NOT just for babies.

Young Eleni stayed with us a few days last week and this was her favorite spot for watching her favorite movie "The Little Mermaid".
We miss her; she was such a joy to have around!  Ah well, we'll visit in a few weeks.

Monday, June 1, 2009


Many of you have seen the photos of my daughter's new baby Roman, by himself and with each of his parents and siblings.

But I wanted to show you a photo of them all together, so here they are!

I've not had much needle time; I stayed with them for a few days, then brought Eleni (the 5 year old) home with me for a few days, took her back home, stayed a couple more days and came home Saturday evening.

Maybe this evening I can get back in my groove.  I  have some quilted fabric pieces that I was going to use for place mats (my practice free motion quilting last summer).  I think instead of place mats, though, they are going to become grocery shopping totes.  After all, it's the leftover fabric from my picnic quilt, so it's all about food!