Friday, July 3, 2020
Thursday, June 25, 2020
My elastic came. The elastic I was going to use to make a mask a day throughout July. So now I have elastic but am back to being one-handed.
My sister sent flowers. So nice. I saw my wrist surgeon yesterday, and she was wearing a mask I made her. I have some gentle therapy and exercises to do while this humerus starts to heal.
I’m no longer in shock. And I just found out from a blog reader that quilter Pat Sloan broke both of her wrists! The last picture? Oddly enough it’s the only part of me that doesn’t hurt...
Tuesday, June 23, 2020
But then I tripped on uneven sidewalk about a mile away from the house. Nice ladies called 911. ER took care of facial lacerations and made sure there were no brain bleeds. I broke my proximal humerus and see my bone doc tomorrow.
Thankful I didn’t do more damage! But I’m incredibly sore - everything hurts.
I keep thinking of I Robert Burns and how the best-laid plans of mice and men “gang aft a-gley.”
Monday, June 15, 2020
It's been difficult to shelter in place. Not seeing family and friends has been hard. For the first two months we exchanged food with 2 of the grandsons at the base of the driveway. Then last month the 4 of us decided that the risks were minimal and we actually have had dinners at the dining room table. Son Mark has been in the house a couple of times. And like so many families, we are having discussions about whether to get together and how to get together. This month marked three milestones - Sam Mo graduated from Northern Michigan State, Ben Mo graduated from high school, and Brandon turned 21. Daughter Julie came in from Atlanta to celebrate with her son. And we had to have some sort of party, right?
I made masks for everyone, which we didn't wear. Everyone brought their own drinks. Appetizers were individual snack bags of various crunchies. A Mediterranean feast was laid out buffet style, but Mark was the only one serving. Cupcakes for dessert. Seems safe, no? But then the time for pictures came. No masks, standing close to one another, some of us touching - ***eye roll***
Is this all part of the process of opening up? Did we take a risk by getting together? ...to be determined
Two sad notes: Ben, the hs grad, just started a new job and couldn't come to his own party on top of not having a graduation ceremony or a prom. And the girls were in an accident (absolutely not their fault) on their way home. Both are ok (phew), but the car is totaled.
The next day I had coffee in person with quilties Eileen and Melissa. Between seeing people and almost have full use of my rehabbed wrist, normalcy seems closer. BUT we all know this is not a time to let down our Covid-19 guard. Be careful out there!
Thursday, June 11, 2020
created a pattern with darts for the nose and chin as well as some pleats.
Two of the grandsons have graduated - one from hs and one from college. Another grandson just turned 21. We are having a socially-distancing get together. 14 people. The party favor? Yes! A mask!
Saturday, June 6, 2020
In no particular order, I am very thankful for
1. my design wall
3. my sewing machine with the knee lift and automatic scissors
4. my Vietnamese friends and their cooking know-how
6. Quilty friends and Zooming
8. my sister Paula
9. new Quilty friends
10. Cristina and her sourdough bread sharing
11. my hand surgeon Dr. Urbanowski and my occupational therapist Eileen
12. being able to open jars and baggies again
13. my fabric stash and various supplies
14. being excited about quilting after tamping that down during February and March
15. an aura - albeit light - of political optimism about the possibility of political change this fall
17. my special WW buddy Cecilia
18. my generous friend Sarah S
19. my grandchildren
21. being able to hand quilt again. So soothing.
|This might morph into a quilt...|
23. A summer day like today with the studio windows open, the gentle hum of cicadas in the background (this is just a renegade brood, not the real thing which comes in 2024).
25. Emerging from the Land of Broken Wrist into functionality.
Saturday, May 30, 2020
Remember when Melissa, Holly, and Sarah returned from QuiltCon and brought me presents? (as if anything at that point would cheer me...) There was an additional set of fat quarters, some terrific surface-print fabrics. Special fabrics - the kind that are hard to find. One day last week I unrolled the pack and ironed them. And then I threw them down on the design floor. 10 fat quarters - each 18' x 22". Here they are below:
By cutting each quarter in half, there are 20 blocks. By using a wide sashing of maybe 4.5", each block will be set off nicely and create and great size - 80" x 98". And I found a wonderful grey linen-like cotton that will pair nicely. I might even try a shadow box type of design. I'll decide that later. These blocks, my tentative layout, and the grey for sashing are tucked away on one of the shelves, ready for construction!
I've recently shown the red/grey/black quilt for grandson Jack. Sam, Nikki, Ryan, and Natalie have had recent quilts. Now it's Brandon's turn, and I think these fabrics are perfect for him. Then on to Benjamin!
Wednesday, May 27, 2020
The Canadian Quilters Association began this sew-a-long in January 2019, and I learned of this through one of my Canadian quilter friends. Each Tuesday of the year directions for a 6.5" block were released and shown in grey scale, one of my favorite palettes. Looking at my immense scrap collection, I thought it would be fun to work on this project, using only scraps.
By using 3" sashing, this quilt is a useable size 65" x 75". It just needs quilting! I auditioned a lighter background for these blocks but am happier with the darker background.
I enjoyed this little project and it's fun to have an almost-finished project. The overall look is one I don't treasure despite all my favorite little bits of grey and backs. This quilt will start looking for its owner soon.
One note: a friend pointed out to me that one of the blocks had a definite Swastika look. That block was immediately removed and replaced with one of my own invention.
Another note: Having two hands is terrific. The stitches come out today from the pin removal two weeks ago. Then real rehab begin to restore wrist flexion. My hand is sore - parts of it are waking up and all soft tissue needs intense stretching as the muscles develop. But I'm so happy to have both hands again!
Monday, May 25, 2020
The Internet was immediately full of mask patterns. Some of my Quilty friends have made hundreds. HUNDREDS!
I had elastic, I had fabric, and I could handle a rotary cutter with my left hand (well, I am left-handed...). So I tried making masks.
And I could sort of do it. But it hurt and took me all morning to make one. Kind of like trying to find an iron that is the hottest and steamiest, I was looking for mask patterns that were easier than the one I am wearing here.
I did find ones that were easier to cut. But then they had to be pleated, a manipulation that was almost beyond me.
Like so many others, I ran out of elastic. Everything was on backorder. So I found and tried this pattern. It was fairly easy.
Here my friend Cecilia models hers. But personally, I don't like to tie things behind my head - it's a hair thing.
My shipment of elastic came in just as I realized that mask-making just wasn't something I could do. And of course I felt a bit guilty,
But then something happened to assuage my guilt.
About this time my friend Jenny and I were out walking, with our masks on, when she mentioned she was thinking about a sewing machine so that she could make masks but the time just wasn't right to buy one. I offered her the most reliable and lendable machine I have - my mom's 1948 Singer Featherweight. I also sent over fabrics I new I would never us. And Jenny has gone to town making masks. She is one of the 400+ makers. I loaned her a second machine, a White/Singer that John's mom bought for me in 1982. A friend of the family's is working with Jenny making masks. They have even made masks for children! Here's Jenny's grandson modeling his.
Normally I spend Mother's Day sewing on my mom's Featherweight. This year my mom, and John's as well, spent the day in the most noble of company.
Sunday, May 24, 2020
I love PreCuts. I LOVE them. Buying fabric is expensive. Finding a fabric line by a designer might mean hundreds of dollars. But what if you really love the designer and the fabric line? Then PreCuts are the answer. There are Layer Cakes - a stack of forty 10" x 10" fabrics from the same collection - see above left, Chalk & Charcoal by Jennifer Sampou for Robert Kaufman. There are Charm Packs, a stack of forty 5" squares - see above bottom right, Modern Backgrounds More Paper by Zen Chic. There are even MiniCharm Packs, forty 2.5" squares. Hiding in the upper right corner is. Jelly Roll, 42 fabrics that are 2.5" x 42". I love Janet Clare's aesthetic and her fabric collections. This one is Weather Permitting.
But this layout wasn't anything I remotely liked. And sometime in the past few months I began to realize this quilt would be for grandson Jack Mo, now a senior at U of I. So I had to find something I would like working on and be proud to give.
I then started to play with making blocks from the various half-square triangles. Very traditional but my eye was liking this much better. And then the brainstorm struck: put these blocks on point and think about adding sashing:
I found the perfect background for these blocks, this terrific deep red from the first fabric collection mentioned in this post. Jack's quilt will be 89" x 112" - he's a tall guy so this size will be perfect for him. It is currently in my long-armer's queue.
All because of these wonderful simple PreCuts.
Note: my favorite PreCut enabler is Green Fairy Quilts.