Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Dishtowel for Heike...

I embroidered this dishtowel for Heike. Mom made one for her too. We both did a "cappuccino" theme, because Heike loved to have her Cappuccino every day. I do a mouse theme because when Heike and Levke came to the U.S. her husband Jörg said something about his two little mice going to the big city. Moms towel has a cup of cappuccino and a cookie on a plate.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Continuation of the Sexy Librarian Embroidered Dish Towels

These are the last of the dish towels I made for Annie; the first one is at this blog post:
My Mom had a conversation with someone at work who said no one under 50 knows what a dishtowel is. Apparently nobody dries dishes anymore.
My quilt group buddies from Cave Women said the towel with the Library of Congress Classification number looks like something from a concentration camp!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Slipper design problems...

I've been working on fine tuning the design of making slippers with felted wool sweaters. I haven't gotten to the finish line yet.
Below are the slippers for Eric. Mostly done, but I need him to put them on to figure out what I can do to make them fit him. This particular design isn't working because it's too open over the top of the foot and the back of the ankle leans in too much (isn't 90º to the floor).
The positive point on this design is the pattern shape of the fabric it takes that is conducive to cutting it from a felted sweater. I have blue suede leather on the souls, hand stitched.
Now I've been proto-typing a different cut. A very simple cut using a long strip, which is not easy to find in a felted sweater and would need to be pieced in most cases. In the attempt below I am not using wool, but a 'quilted' style of upholstery fabric.
The strip gets the ends rounded off:

Friday, December 18, 2009

Cave Women Christmas Party

Sharon, she's always stuffing her bra... LOLOL! Can you guess what she's doing?
Below Edith waves hello...this was before she put her reindeer antlers on.

Above is Theresa, Sarah and Kathy, below is Peg, Wendy and Sam.
Below is Sharon B modeling her scarf she made with a recycled sweater and some sexy cowboy fabric! Modeling is such serious business.
We also had Wanda and Vivien, but I didn't take very complimentary pictures of them...hee hee hee hee.

Cave Women Christmas Party

Two Sisters and a Grandma having fun.

Cave Women...Row Robin

Some in the group are participating in a Row Robin, completing a row for each member. Above is Pegs. Below is Sarahs. Sarahs is now done, the blue and yellow rows being folded in half because of floor space. Sarah started her row robin with her red scrappy row. I believe this evening she told us that her own row is her favorite out of all of them (smirk). LOL!

These two don't have as many rows YET. They need to be passed around more. I think above is Sams and below is Kathy's.

See all that 'dirt' on Sharons carpet? Well, a bag of scraps was put on the floor for everyone to pick out what they might like. Have you ever seen a pack of hungry wolves over a dead animal carcas?

Monday, December 14, 2009

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Pillowcases for Jenna

I finally got a picture of the pillowcases today.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Ach Tannenbaum, Ach Tannenbaum, du bist ein edler Zweig!

The Christmas tune "Oh Christmas Tree" originates from Germany, all the way back to 1550.
I'm not saying my nascent postmodernism attempt at using ugly-fabric strips to create trees is any comparison, but heck, Minneapolis woke up to snow this morning. Not a big dump of snow by any means, more like a fart; but atleast it was pretty for a short time.
One of my memories of driving through the mountains of Idaho is when the sun and the mountains were at the right angle and I was looking into the sun, the mountain would be in the shade except all of it's pine tree tips and limbs would be highlighted by the sun as if beautifully luminescent against the dark. I've always wondered how I could interpret that in a quilt. This is my first attempt at figuring out some type of structure for the trees....obviously I haven't worked on the tips and limbs being illuminated by the sun and this form might not be conducive to that. But it's a start.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Christmas Gifts, Sharpies and Death!

I seem to be visiting my own blog just so I can check on the list of my friends blogs instead of blogging myself. I've been working on gifts, so I'm not interested in blogging about it until after I give them away. Karens blog, "Giddy Up" shows her use of black and white "Zentangle" drawings for the Art Every Day Challenge, and I thought they look pretty fun. I have always used crayons for drawing but being inspired by Karen I decided to break out my pack of Sharpies.
After each time I sat down to draw I got a headache; presumably from the fumes of the markers so I think I'm going back to crayons! The color won't be as bright but atleast crayons smell good.
While working on gifts I've been listening to cd's of Abbott and Costellos radio show...the whole "Who's on first, What's on second" and hours more. Being a live radio show, there were glitches and sometimes an ad-lib didn't quite work and the other would humorously say "What script are you looking at?"

Altho' I did tire of hearing the ads for the sponsor: Camel Cigarettes. "More Doctors smoke Camels than any other brand." I wouldn't mind hearing the ad just once for historic sake and would have been happy if they'd remove the rest of them.
What today do we think is acceptable to put into our bodies that in 10 - 20 years we'll know as poison? Even the herbicide "Round Up" can claim their product will disappear when it dries but now we know that the "inert ingredients" will kill us. But our laws don't govern the 'inert ingredients', only the ingredients that directly relate to the purpose of the product.

I'd love to go on about antibiotics and hormones in milk, why we should be eating organic produce, the war of 1812, but I'd just depress you. Well, the War of 1812 isn't depressing actually (not the way I tell it) but I'm going to get back to creating gifts and listening to my next book on tape: "Abhorsen"
Do you know how to cut a paper 5-pointed star with one cut? Click here

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Trimming loose ends...

Yesterday I got the borders on that printed panel for Isaac. I would have finished it today, but I've been putting a sleeve on my "Another blue and white quilt" so that I can deliver it tomorrow to be in the White Bear Show in January. Tomorrow night is MCQ and our speaker is Tim Harding, and I'm betting it's gonna be a full house.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Auditioning borders

I'm auditioning borders for this pre-printed space panel.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Creativity Every Day IS WORKING! ~~or~~ I'M BAAAAACK!

My spirit is changing while trying to obtain creativity every day. Meeting up with quilt buddies like Sharon and Sarah and doing show 'n tell together, getting ideas, encouragement absolutely warms my heart!
Yesterday I went to Sharons and helped her start her blog:
I've just started reading "Ignore Everybody and 39 other keys to creativity" by Hugh Macleod and the first line already has me buzzing:
"The more original your idea is, the less good advice other people will be able to give to you."
It's so true, when you have something coming out of your soul, who else would know what you should do with it? Only you know what comes'll pour out of you. It's your story, only you can write it.
It kind of helps me loosely redefine something else too...I think that when you're starting a project, you might not always see the path it will take you, but that's ok, it will come to you.
A few projects I've started with a base idea and I go shopping for 'things' for it and I'm always amazed when I end up using all those 'things' in it...I felt the urge to buy it, not knowing what I would do with it and it ends up having a distinct purpose. Intuition?
For me, when I'm nearer the end of the project and I don't see the path that I start to feel disconnected from it. I start asking others advice on it...the end isn't in me, I have to search elsewhere. Maybe I'm done with the project at that time. I got what I needed out of it.
I haven't totally gotten rid of that negative anal-retentive part of me that thinks all projects need to be done and that I'm not a complete person unless they're completed. I do not want to investigate the fruedian connection of infant anal retention and hoarding....ignorance is bliss! Crowded, but bliss.
The other day as we were plowing through my UFO's with a bulldozer, Sarah said "I've only been quilting for 5 years, so maybe that's why I don't have any unfinished projects." My sarcasm thinks "Well you ain't doin' it right honey!"
But of course I have a huge lesson to learn from that...but I can't see the lesson all the way from the top of this alpine mountain of UFO's.
As for the book I haven't gotten past the first page yet, just because the first line rang so true for me. This is the guys website:

Monday, November 16, 2009

And Still Counting...

For a couple days now I've spent my creative minutes sewing these 6" quilts for Caron Lages project called "And Still Counting..." About 2 years ago Caron saw the number of Americans that had perished in Iraq, but astonishingly, for each American that has died, more than 212 Iraqis have also died.
So Caron decided to make a 6" finished solid color quilt for each American that died, and on each quilt put 212 black french knots or black seed beads to represent each Iraqi.
Above is a picture of some of the project while it hung at the Minnesota Quilters show in Duluth this past summer.
This memorial does not have any political point of view expressed, only a quilted interpretation of the numbers. It does not include names of those who died, nor any symbols of anything. Of course these numbers have changed since 2 years ago, hence the name 'and still counting...".
So far Caron has reached the 2,000 mark, but still over 1,000 quilts are needed. Although I have done the french knots on more than a few, I hadn't made any of the blocks for her. So that's what I've been doing the last couple days.
If you're interested in making some quilts or putting knots or beads on some, please see her blog for instructions:

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Creating everyday!

I'm still working on creativity everyday. Tomorrow I'll try to post some pictures.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Pillowcases for Jenna are completed

This is as far as I'm going on the's not going to be the 'lace' I started out trying to create. It's been 20 years since I made doilies with thread and now it's getting frustrating. So the pillowcases are done and they are going in the wash. Now to decide what to work on next.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Still being creative every day!

I'm still working on the pillowcase's going slow but steady.
I finished listening to Three Cups of Tea by 'Dach-tor-Gah-RRR-ek' Greg Mortenson. It's amazing what one person can do for others; and to think it wouldn't have happened if he hadn't gotten lost climbing down off of K2!
Last night was Cave Women, at Sharons Cave. An evening full of laughter can not be turned down!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Third day of November

Todays creativity was spent looking at crocheted lace edging patterns for the pillowcases, and messing around the sewing room.

Monday, November 2, 2009


The second day of the month and I didn't create any art today. :-(
Too stressed out about health insurance.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

A new day, a new month...

Today I'm going to start the challenge on this blog: which for November is to create art everyday.
I'll be loose on the definition of how much to do every day so I can enjoy the creativity. Today already I have worked on the lace edge of the pillowcases I'm making for a gift. And I'm still listening to the audio book "Three Cups of Tea".

Ok, so I've added the picture of the pillowcase(s)'s one of those kits you can buy at the craft store that I bought in Watertown SD when my niece Jenna was with (she said she'd like them so I'm making them for her). The kit doesn't include putting edging on. I bought some variegated perle cotton and I'm crocheting it on. The row that's there is just for attaching it to the pillowcase. Now I have to make up a pattern for the crocheted lace edging. Hopefully they'll turn out just like my Grandmothers made.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Only a quilter!

* Only a Quilter would spend more hours sewing several hundreds of buttons on a quilt to embellish it, but wouldn't take five minutes to replace a button on a pair of pants.
* Only a Quilter would give the gift of a wedding quilt two months after the birth of the couple's second child.
* Only a Quilter would put hundreds of dollars worth of fabric into her fabric stash because she might find a use for it sometime, but wouldn't replace a 50-cent needle on her sewing machine.
* Only a Quilter would let three later-arriving patients go ahead of her at the doctor's office because she is on the verge of completing a block.
* Only a Quilter would rush to finish a gift quilt. Not so it's done in time for the recipient's birthday, but so it's done in time for Show and Tell.
* Only a Quilter would make a special quilt to give to her son, who would then have to attend quilt shows just to see it.
* Only a Quilter would use freezer paper in the production of something to keep someone warm.
* Only a Quilter has a welcome mat at the door to her home and an "Enter at Your Own Risk" sign on the door of her sewing room.
* Only a Quilter invites everyone to see her sewing room, then says, "Don't look at the mess."
* Only a Quilter says, "I really don't need another project," then offers to make a quilt for a friend.
* Only a Quilter will buy more than she'll ever need of one fabric for her stash, but slightly less than is needed of another fabric to complete a project.
* Only a Quilter would give a quilt book to the guild auction then bid on it to get it back.
* Only a Quilter would drive 40 miles in a hurricane to attend a quiltshow, but call out to have her dinner delivered because it is drizzling.
* Only a Quilter's family would put up with, understand and love a quilter.

If anyone knows the actual origins of these I would like to know.

Projects start out as WHIMMs (Works Hidden in My Mind).
When you make a purchase of fabric you have a FIG (Fabric in grocery sack).
When you make the purchase of pattern and fabric you have a PIG (project in a grocery sack).
At this time it may also be a brazen HSY. (haven't started yet)
Once you start,it is a WIP. (work in progress) A WIP is worked on until completion.
Once you lose interest and set it aside it's a UFO (unfinished object).
Then you're encouraged by your quilty friends to FIUP (Finish It Up) and then you can loudly shout TGIF (Thank God It's Finished)!!!!!!!!

And you can post the picture in the photos section or in the monthly contest for finished projects.
You'll also get much praise for those projects that you've FINALLY finished.
The collection of fabrics you'll use to complete your project is yourSTASH (Special Treasure All Secretly Hidden)
Occasionally you'll need random SEX (Stash Enhancing Xperiences) after finishing a FART (Fabric Acquisition Road Trips)or a WOMBAT (Waste Of Money, Batting, And Time).
And the final most important thing is to leave a SABLE (Stash Accumulation Beyond Life Expectancy) to your fabric-loving heirs.

Friday, October 9, 2009

I'm still here...

I've been working on something, but it's a secret!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Binding is on.

After having a couple weeks of no productivity I have the binding on the quilt. Next is washing it.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

10 Years of Goodness

Ten years ago today I made a decision that made my life change from bad to fabulous!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Kids these days....

I took Isaac to AxMan. He was NOT impressed.
Isaac: "The only good thing in there was the rubber chicken."

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Minnesota Contemporary Quilters

Last night we had a hilarious time at MCQ. Edith Dalleska tried to give us a presentation of how to make a "Disappearing 9-Patch" but I'm afraid her friends in the audience were quite rambunctious, I think I heard cat-calls! (me? I never behave like that!) You'd think your friends would be the most supportive attentive people in the audience... In the end, everyone was amazed how she turned a 9-patch into a complicated looking block. Vanna White, er, I mean Sharon Englund was her humorous assistant...well, maybe she thinks she was assisting...she was definitely humorous... :-D

An MCQ member from the past, Laurie Brainerd was there visiting from San Antonio so we got caught up on her...The state of Taxes, uh I mean Texas might be big, but they score a big "F" for Art Quilters! Some day in the future when art quilting makes its stamp in that big state there will be a bust of Lauries head in the entryway as the leader of the posse of art quilting.
Show 'n Tell was so huge, I think every person there had something to show except me. Everyone has been getting a lot done this summer. I didn't catch the name of one gal who was watercolor painting, then scanning the image on the computer, and altering it, then printing it on fabric, she embellishes and frames them. They were awesome!

Leaning Tower of Pizza was our next stop. I always feel sorry for our waitress, Liz ("as in lizard" she said), she gets over a dozen middle-aged ladies laughing and chatting all at once and when our food comes she might say loudly: "Medium Pepperoni!" and nobody is listening to her.
Sharon Baker showed us a promotional ink pen from Levitra that folds in half, but then with the press of a button it erects itself to a normal pen.Is everyone aware that Wanda said the pen comes with a warning? "Please see your doctor immediately if you write for more than 4 hours".
In the end Sharon had the last word...she gave me a large cucumber.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Weaving some years ago...

A few years back I was a member of the Weavers Guild of Minnesota. (Fun guild, btw.) On this particular loom I was making two chenille scarves.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Machine quilting straight lines...

Thank goodness for audiobooks...they pass the time while sewing straight lines across the quilt.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Vivacious Lady starring Ginger Rogers and Jimmy Stewart

Last night Sarah Gannett and I went to see Vivacious Lady at the Heights Theater. It was a really cute movie.
Best Quote during a 2 woman catfight:
Helen: I'm going to give you a piece of my mind...
Francey: Oh, I couldn't take the last piece!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

This is freakin' hilarious!

Listening to while machine quilting the blue and white quilt...

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Melange a Michael Jackson?

I'm trying to think of the next MCQ Challenge called "Melange a Trois"...atleast I think that's how it's spelled. I've jokingly called it "Melange a Twat".
I think I should do 3 figures in bed saying "We thought you said 'Menage a trois'."

Friday, July 24, 2009


Isaac Svedberg helped me baste the quilt at Stephanies studio.
At home I showed Eric this picture on the camera.
Eric: "Quilt Boy."
Me: "QUILT BOY! That's great, I'm going to put that on my blog!"
Isaac immediately says to Eric: "I'll get you in your sleep!"

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Melange a du plus grand nombre

I crazy pieced a back for the blue and white quilt top. Why buy fabric when you can use a melange of ugly fabric? Along the lighter fabrics on the top you can see the quilt top is underneath.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Gettin' there...

It's so big and my sewing room is so full of junk that I can't even get a picture of the whole quilt!
The blue and white quilt has it's borders on now and is ready to be ironed. I finished it last night but I didn't feel very excited about it. It might be because I have a whole 'nother set of blue and white 9-patches to make a 2nd quilt with.
So do I put those away or do I trudge on and complete that one too? It has been a long time since I've worked on anything else but these little badly-sewn, miss-shapen, raggedy edges little homely blocks. 263 of them.
Why do today what you can put off until tomorrow? I think I'll just do laundry today.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

A glimmer of light...

I'm starting to assemble it into rows.
Although it's almost a high when you create something of your own art, just the act of sewing is pleasant and soothing to the mind.
Now that a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel is appearing I'm getting excited about completing the top.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Blue and White Quilts

Maybe this is why I like blue and white quilts...the sky and clouds.
I'm still working on the latest one, but have been out of town to a family reunion.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Quilters at the Englund Cottage on Lake Minnetonka Part 1

Theresa and Janet folding potato chip bags into purses! Janet was teaching us how to do it based on this blog: It's the way we folded gum wrappers when we were kids, making rings of those and then stitching the rows together.
It's the 'in thing' to do.
The sun on the leaves was an electrifying green.

Quilters at the Englund Cottage on Lake Minnetonka part 2

Anne coming down from the cottage to us who are sitting on the deck in the picture below.
Theresa, Mimi, Marilyn, Sam, Wendy and Melissa.

See that little 'thing' in the lake in the picture above?
It's Sarah floating in the picture below.

Me thinks all she needs is a wheelchair and she'd be set!