Sunday, January 31, 2010

Angela's Carolina Christmas Quilt

This was quilted a few days ago but I didn't think it right to blog about it before Angela had it back, LOL. Angela has given it a more appropriate name it is "Hannah's Birthday Quilt".
Now you see the whole quilt didn't it turn out terrific? Nice work Angela, I love scrappy quilts!

Who would have thought to put that orange spark in with the lavender and purple and green?
But it works, it really lifts it into another realm.

Hannah's birthday is only a couple of weeks but time to bind and mail it-though Angela may be a little unwilling to part with it I suspect she loves her daughter more than the quilt when it comes right down to it! You can always make another one Angela.................

Partial view of the scrappy backing......

and more delightful scrappiness.
Freehand Dogwood flowers work well and the pale lavender thread is not intrusive.

Friday, January 29, 2010

My birthday- I have never wanted a fuss for my birthday, I resist it vigorously - in fact I told DH " Do not ever try to surprise me with a birthday party - when I am 80 you can have a big blowout, not before then! Or else........." You know that he is very afraid!
So what did I do?
Walked the Button dog, we covered a longer distance today.
Found some cool baby toys at "Other Mothers" one of those stores where they recycle out-grown baby gear.
Now I have to clean and sanitize them.

I think this is called an "Excersaucer".

Bought groceries, went to Pet Depot for dog food, ran by the quilt shop-I only bought half a yard of fabric- then to Costco.
Main reason I had to go to Costco, I killed the paper shredder!

I was really mad, you know all those obnoxious fat envelopes of ads you get in the mail? I know you get them too. I truly hate them with a passion-I have at times written "Return To Sender" and put them back in the mail! I get so angry, this paper pollution is an irresponsible waste and an uninvited burden on my life ! I just lost it, one too many pieces of junk mail, I tried to stuff the entire envelope through the shredder without separating the huge mass of paper garbage. All the while DH was saying "Honey it won't go, it will break the shredder, Honey it's not gonna work you'll break the shredder" and I continued to try to make it work, shove it down, hit reverse, shove it down some more, reverse again until I finally forced it through !
He was right, the shredder died!
You know the sound when a motor dies, it's a very sad sound but I was so angry I really didn't care! I wanted a better shredder anyway, a crosscut shredder, something that can handle an entire envelope of extraneous information, CD's, credit cards, floppies[does anyone have these any more?] and ten sheets of paper at a time!
Vroom vroom, I got one! My new paper shredder can do all this and not hiccup-at least that's what the box says I have yet to test it out, I'll let you know.
The day ended more happily, sweet DIL and DS#1 invited the rest of the family to celebrate at their home so we all met up there, we had birthday cake and singing and I got birthday hugs all around including from the oh so handsome grandsons, all three. Maybe there'll be some pics tomorrow
And that's my birthday blog.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

VTT, Vintage Bear And Baby Dress

This sweet old bear was on eBay and no one was bidding on her, poor abandoned, little orphan girl!

She was wearing an adorable vintage baby dress and was holding a piece of antique quilt in her hand! I rescued her, had to, you know, the quilt did it!

See the delicate embroidery on the front......

darling embroidered Peter Pan collar and wee buttons on the placket......

and even pantaloons, though these are not as old as the dress, they were added later for modesty no doubt.

I was so tickled to win the bid-but remember there was no competition- and she sits on the shelf above my sewing machine table along with the rest of the stuffed animal collection.

For more delicious vintage thrills head on over to Colorado Lady's blog and check out all the others.

Fabric Search

Wanting to use stash fabrics for the Monet's Wedding Ring quilt, I added this bright pink fabric for an accent. There wasn't much to begin with somethingaround a FQ, but it seemed as if it might be enough. It was enough for the body of the quilt but not really enough for the border, there are only a few little bits left.

Having searched high and low all over the internet going cross-eyed looking at hundreds and hundreds of fabrics without success, friend Loretta suggested putting a pic. on my blog, what a great idea!
So here it is a bit larger than life-size, a faux crocodile motif called "Designer Bag's Collection by Beverly Ann Stillwell of Lyndhurst Studios for Northcott".
I have posted it on and on a couple of the Yahoo groups.
If anyone sees this fabric please let me know! I don't need much I can do with a fourth of a yard but I would take more if available.

Having used selvedges in pot holders, I checked those I have left and fortunately found this one with a selvedge from the fabric so at least I have the name and manufacturer.
If I don't find more I will use up what I have and then substitute something close in color, it's a scrappy effect anyway, but I thought it was worth a try.
Oh, if you find the fabric I'll send you the pot holder!

Citizenship Birthday

Four years ago today I became a naturalized American citizen. Over the years friends told me "Ros, you need to become a citizen you are more patriotic than many Americans!"
For so long I had delayed this event because my parents were elderly in Australia and I wanted to be able to leave the country in a heartbeat without worrying about a visa. However September 11th. 2001 changed all that and I became very angry at the horrifying attack on America and decided that by taking citizenship I would make my statement of loyalty to my adopted country.
The path to citizenship was not smooth for me because my application was lost for years! You all know the insanity of dealing with government bureaucracy, so you will understand the countless letters and phone calls it took to sort it all out. When at last I had a date set for my interview I received another letter informing me that it had to be delayed but giving no future date?! Another year or so went by with more countless frustrating letters and phone calls until finally I had my interview.
Having studied American history and government with our four sons as they progressed through the school system, I felt fairly confident in taking the test but nevertheless I boned up on it so that I would not miss a single question! There was a total of one hundred possible questions covering basic history and government and I didn't want to miss even one! Call me OCD!

A few months later I received the official letter giving me the date of my "swearing in", scheduled for one day after Australia Day and two days before my actual birthday so we had cause for big celebrations that week.

Here I am in the red jacket taking the oath of allegiance.

Some friends and family after the ceremony.

And here's the proof, the certificate [with the very unflattering govt. photo]. I have covered actual cert. numbers etc. for security reasons!

My friend Vicki made me this little scrapbook to mark the auspicious occasion!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Australia Day

After all the years lived outside the land of my birth I never forget the major holidays there, the most notable being Australia Day, the Aussie version of our American Fourth of July!

Celebrated with the typical Aussie "barbie"[barbecue],
at the beach,
sailing, or one of the other many outdoor activities beloved in this "lucky land".

No celebration of Australia would ever be complete without a stirring rendition of the quintessential Aussie song "Waltzing Matilda" here narrated and sung by Aussie icon Rolf Harris.

This song identifies Australia even more than the official National Anthem "Advance Australia Fair" performed here by Julie Anthony and the Sydney Symphony Orchestra.

"I Still Call Australia Home" is played on Qantas each time a flight leaves or returns to Australia.

And last but not least, the very Aussie 'Men At Work' and their "Land DownUnder". The lyrics are wonderful!

I wanted to load the videos on my blog but Blogger is not cooperating and keeps giving me the same annoying error message, but click on any of the above songs and it will take you direct to Youtube. I spent waaay too much time trying in vain to "fix" this problem and now I give up or it will be 27th. before I post!

For your Australia Day entertainment!

Australia's National Flower, the Wattle, or Acacia of which Australia has more than 50o varieties from shrubs to large trees.

Aussie road sign.

Aussie paper currency.
And our very Aussie dog, Australian Terrier Button. Think I should offer her a Vegemite sandwich for tea? Nah she would rather have the lamb bones left from our dinner!
For more Aussie piccies go to Australia photo - Bing Images

Monday, January 25, 2010

Just because I haven't posted doesn't mean nothing's happening on the quilting front!
Carolina Christmas is bound, that took a while even by machine, it's a good sized quilt over 90" square.
Here you see the binding, made from strips trimmed off the pieced backing.

This sweet little baby quilt called "Simple Gifts" was my next job, quilted with "peacock feathers " all over and turquoise thread. Angela is speedy, the day after she got it back it was already bound and ready for gifting! It's such a simple effective design, don't you just love it? Her color choices, turquoise, white and brown create dramatic contrast. I don't know that I would have thought to put these simple solids together to achieve this effect.

View from the back! You can see more pics on Angela's blog.
Angela's Carolina Christmas is on the LA now, but I have the adorable baby Matthew today so there won't be any quilting progress at least not until tonight! He is a bit congested again but such a good little chap, playing upstairs watched over by GF.
Last night I got my Z blocks for Monet's Wedding Ring completed, only needed 24 for the smaller version of this quilt.

Here they are on the design board now I have to work on the border blocks.
If you squint you'll see the "rings" better!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

VTT And the Temperance League

My Dad [he will be 99 in May] and his family in England were all members of the Salvation Army, and as such were Teetotallers. As a young fellow my Dad signed this pledge to abstain from intoxicating beverages. I'm pretty sure the date is 1919 [it's so faded] he would only have been eight years old.

At his 90th. birthday party he was served a glass of champagne, he took a tiny sip and we all ROFL at the face he pulled!
There is some info. on the Order Of Rechabites here . I love the quaint old-fashioned wording and illustration.

An original pic of my Dad as a young lad, 1926, age fifteen, in scout uniform, I looked exactly like this at age fifteen but he looks so much younger than that to me. I need to get it archival framed so while I have it out I will take it to the framer-after it stops raining!
I am running behind today so this is the extent of my offering for VTT but you can find lots more over at ColoradoLady's blog.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Wordless Wednesday-In Memory Of Todd

Taken from us January 18th, 2002

We love you Todd
Your Aunty Ros

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Back At The Long Arm-Carolina Christmas Quilted

Yesterday I felt well enough to stand and quilt- after a total of seven hours I was halfway done with the Carolina Christmas Mystery. Tonight it is done, and here are some pics. The binding will probably be red.

It's hard to see the quilting as busy as the quilt is so there are a couple of close-ups, this one of the front......

this from the back.
It's quilted with Dogwood flowers and leaves, that's the N. Carolina state flower and I couldn't think of anything else that would look nice. It's a bit of a challenge to freehand a busy quilt because the thread disappears and you can't see where you have quilted - I suspect that is why this sort of quilt usually gets a pantograph but you all know how I feel about pantos, LOL!

The back is randomly pieced 10" squares of leftover Christmas fabrics with a few others tossed in to make it big enough. I think it's a warm and rather primitive looking quilt back. I like to make quilts reversible, so that the back is as interesting as the front. You can actually see the quilting better on the back of this quilt, that often happens.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

VTT Antique Button Bracelet

This is a bit later than my normal VTT post, I slept in and today am feeling I think somewhat less awful and with any luck at all yesterday was the worst day!
A few years ago at the Sewing and Needlecraft show at the Fairgrounds I purchased this set of antique buttons and attached them to a bracelet. I wonder how great the craftsman's eye sight must have been to make them, I believe they are 19th. century and I think they are what is called "steel cut" but I know little about them and I welcome any further information.

I am very fond of it, I think the buttons are quite beautiful, if you zoom in you will see the detail on them is exquisite and they are only a half inch in diameter. Very sadly one of the buttons has been lost so recently I have been searching for a replacement, mostly through eBay. To date I have not been successful so if any of you eagle eyed blogging VTT'ers come across such a button would you please let me know!
This sewing show is due in Phx. again the end of the month so I think I will go just on the off-chance that this vendor or one like them may be there.
Now surf on over to Colorado Lady's blog to find the rest of the VTT participants.
PS my finger is OK, still tender but looks as if it will heal up nicely, PTL!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Wednesday, Not Wordless!

Probably it would be better if I were wordless today because I am feeling, as I told a friend, like the dog's breakfast! What I hoped was allergies and asthma has evolved into a full- fledged URTI, you know, "The Works" ! While I am not sick enough to stay in bed and sleep I feel poorly enough that I don't want to tackle anything major, but I am so bored! There's only so much reading and the telly-watching that is tolerable then I have to be actually doing something.

Monday night before this nasty virus hit me full on, I quilted up this little baby panel with the fast and effective peacock feathers.
Friend Loretta gave it to me for baby Matthew months ago and I just now got it made up.

Then for some mindless sewing I made a few more pot-holders.

There are enough tops awaiting quilting that I really want to be at the long-arm machine so this illness is really aggravating, hence the whining!
If I can do something productive it keeps me a little distracted from the symptoms and from feeling sorry for myself, so I need to go find a project I can handle, something that doesn't require enormous amounts of energy and brainpower since I am somewhat depleted of both!

Monday, January 11, 2010

PS. Ouch, I Sewed My Finger!

Forgot to include this tit-bit in the previous post-guess what happens when you sew into the wee small hours?
This is the second [only]occasion in all my life I can remember sewing into the nail bed, hope that doesn't gross you out! Today it is throbbing a bit so I need to watch it. I have managed to catch the nail only or the side of my finger a few times and I felt really foolish about this but it's maybe a lesson for me!?
The good news is that I only got a tiny spot of blood on the fabric which was red anyway,LOL.

The Shakespeare "Flimsie"

It is past one a.m. but the SITP is finally a flimsie - in quilter lingo that's an un-quilted top - and I just couldn't wait to make the announcement.
The red stars seemed to please my eye better than the black so artistic license prevailed. Now there are three large black and white stars and quite a few of the smaller size left that I may try to incorporate into a backing.

For now I am celebrating the finish of three quilt tops the past couple of weeks and I'm free to focus on long-arm quilting so stay tuned for quilting reports!
And try to keep warm all those of you in the freezing weather, we are fortunate that Arizona has remained fairly balmy.