Wednesday, September 8, 2021
Thursday, August 26, 2021
This summer has been one of transition - buying a condo in Oak Brook and selling our house of 35 years in LaGrange. It’s been a time of good stress. I haven’t been doing much sewing. But I have almost finished a project I started during QuiltCon 2021.
This is a pattern of Yoshiko Jinzenji. It has bits of meaningful fabrics and a lot of hand quilting. I will just do something interesting in the middle of the enclosed squares, but I’m saving those parts for colder weather. I think the back of this quilt is equally interesting.
Here are some close ups…
I have loved this LaGrange studio. It is large and has the best light. My new studio will be good, just different. My tables are in there already, just waiting for new carpeting and the rest of the furniture.
Thursday, July 22, 2021
She had so many children she didn't know what to do. (Well, not children. Just quilts. And more quilts. And then even more quilts.)
In preparing for a move out of our current house, we took down ALL the quilts. And I'm not sure we will rehang them. Mostly because I keep making more quilts. So I am destashing my quilts. If you see a wall hanging or a quilt you would like in your house, make a donation to Sew Powerful and the quilt is yours. Ready? Here goes....
Wintersection. 34" x 32" x 42" This is my only piece which doesn't have four 90 degree angles.
SOLD to Brenda Rowley Grey, Ann Arbor. Needle-turned appliqué on Yoshiko Jinzenji fabric with sashiko stitching. 43" x 44"
SOLD to Linda Bushkofsy. CityScape. 39" x 41" Hand-quilted on peppered shot cottons
SOLD to J.R. Relative Moons. 37" x 48"
SOLD to Catrina Dorsey Study in Black, Gold, Grey, and Silver. 88" x 88"
SOLD to Jennifer Benoit Bryan Glamorous Clamshells. 88" x 88" Hand-quilted peppered shot cottons
SOLD to Carol Conway. Elliptical Drunkard's Path. 72" x 70". Hand-quilted peppered shot cottons
Circles in Squares. Hand-quilted. 88" x 88". see back of quilt below
Study in Blacks and Whites. 95" x 114". Half-square triangles set on point.
SOLD to Chris Hicks. Homage to 8 1/2 " x 11" with text prints. 74" x 61"
SOLD to Beth Kovacic. Piano Tuner's Daughter. 58" x 70" Forks made by members of my
Christmas Bargello. 40" x 46"
A wonderfully odd napping quilt - 60" x 75" - with lots of hand-quilting.
Saturday, July 17, 2021
Moving is stressful. Leaving a house after 35 years is stressful. The actual moving process is stressful. Lining up proper documentation is stressful. None of this is distress - it’s all eustress. Nevertheless it’s stress. So of course I have to sew.
Saturday, July 3, 2021
After 35 years in this stucco bungalow in LaGrange and 15 years in this lovely studio, we are moving. We bought a condo in OakBrook (we thought it was in Westmont) and this house is on the market as of this afternoon. The past few weeks have been busy, but of course I've been sewing with a deep appreciation of what I've had for the past years. These final days in this studio are sweet ones.
I have always loved log cabins, and this bundle of Japanese canvas linens seems perfect for this block. I’m making this quilt for grandson Ben. I think I may want to hand quilt it. Since I have no deadline with this quilt, it can just stay all basted and wait for the winter weather. I hope our nee place is as cold as this house - perfect for winter quilting. This is not what John is hoping for at all.
Niece Laura is having her fifth baby and her first boy this fall. That’s who this quilt is for. That crooked vertical line represents a the path this little guy is going to have to walk among his 4 sisters! His oldest sister will be a sophomore in hs. That’s the same age I was when my little brother Doug was born! I may have to baste this one with actual thread since all my pins are in other projects. I’d like to have this hand quilted by September, but who knows? I think things might get busy…
Saturday, June 12, 2021
I know, I know. All babies are special. But this baby really is. Cristina learned to quilt with me when she was in 7th grade. She is now 30 and having her first baby. Significant facts:
1. In exchange for studio space above her parents' garage when we were popping the top of our house, I gave Cris 40 of her 50 behind-the-wheel hours.
2. Sunday afternoons when she was in high school she would come here to work on essays. That's where she learned some terrific vocabulary while John was watching the Bears.
3. She earned a degree in Fine Art at Iowa State and has a certificate in Graphic Design from College of DuPage.
4. She met and married Joe. I wasn't sure he was good enough for her. One night John and I along with Cristina and Joe went to a Moth story-telling competition at which we were judges. That night changed my mind. I love him ALMOST as much as I love Cristina.
5. Cristina started a new job - art director at FCB Global, and Joe is in nursing school at Rush.
6. Their first child, a boy, is coming soon!
Cristina's mom requested a book, even one gently used. But I couldn't just settle on one book. The upper left hand corner book is a series of short Turkish tales/parables. I think they are perfect reading for the little guy right now. "The Little Ghost Who Was a Quilt" is whimsical and pretty and nails the nature of quilts. "Woodland Christmas" is a charming little pop-up book with hidden images. And of course Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, a great little rhythmical ABC book.
I could never decide whether Cristina was an honorary daughter, granddaughter, niece, sister, cousin, or friend. I'm just happy to know her and excited for this new Mom chapter of her life.
Friday, June 11, 2021
I did a similar thing on the sleeves and on the hem with some grey peppered shot cotton. After washing it, the hem was kind of kershimmelled. So I quilted it! Now it’s fine. And then I remembered I would need a loop for hanging this on the back of bathroom door. And a pocket! Of course I need a pocket. So I added one of those.
I got happily lost in this project because I wasn’t obsessing over how much fsbric I have and all the projects I want to do and how small my new sewing space will be wherever we move to. And should we ever have chilly mornings again, I’m all set.
|The hanging hook|
|The quilted hem|
Monday, May 10, 2021
|Piano Tuner's Daughter - 58" x 71"|
Part 1: When I was little, my parents lived at 64th and Stewart. My dad tuned factory pianos for the Kimball Piano Factory at 26th and California. But when they bought their house in Western Springs in 1956, my dad became an independent piano tuner working with my mom, who made his appointments and kept his books. My dad was a musician, an accordionist/entertainer who knew he would always have to supplement his income with tuning. As he build his tuning business, his regular gig was at the Edgewater Beach Hotel, a drive he made from Western Springs 6 days a week. Eventually, with the help from agents, he was able to cut back from tuning and focus on gigs. But the tunings were his financial ace. Just as I would open his accordion case and sniff how horrible it smelled of smoke, I would look at his tuning case and sometimes play with his tuning fork.
Part 2: I love my Chicago Modern Quilt Guild and always want to be a team player for whatever activities suggested. Although I am an independent sewist, the group activities I've been involved in have always been fun and taught me things. With this spirit I joined a quilting bee, headed by Bill Keller @kiltedquilter67 . There are 9 of us in this bee - Bill, Amy Struckmeyer, Debbie Pine, Natalie Holtz, Jenny Grover, Laura Hartrich, Adamandia Kapsalis, Jennifer Quick, and me. We have taken turns asking bee mates to make blocks for one another. Adamandia has finished hers, and its' wonderful. Check out the hashtag #chimodbee for examples of blocks and completed projects.
I need a better picture, but the last thing I want to say is that I faced this quilt, rather than to bind it. The front design just runs right off the edges without a binding to interfere with that line. I do like this facing technique that I used -
Such a fun and meaningful project! Thanks, Bill and bee mates!
Part IV: I love this quilt because it makes me think of my dad and his work ethic. I'm amazed that he and Mom were able to pay for half of my college. I still borrowed a sizable amount and didn't pay it all back until I was 32. After I had taught for a year, my dad helped me with my taxes. I made more money my first year teaching than my dad did. So this quilt reminds me of my parents' financial brilliance as well as their work ethic. Such a good visual memory.
Sunday, May 2, 2021
John was in the hospital for 4 days with internal bleeding, Our trusty GI's were on the case, gave him blood, cleaned him out, and all is well. Amazing place - LaGrange Hospital! and of course this week was all about John rather than the studio. I've been trying to get to some blocks for a really special baby quilt, and here are the blocks. Tomorrow I'll play around with layout. Each block is 14"x18" I'm thinking I may put each block into an offset square. But that's for tomorrow.
During the week I was thankful that I have a to-go quilt kit packed. I made 35 12" blocks of mostly selvege edges and have each one basted with wool batting and a backing. So these five blocks are what I did in the hospital.