Thursday, April 25, 2013

A Quilt - or...

Despite being in carpet factories in Turkey, China, and India - where we have always refused to even look at carpets - we both looked at this Kilim carpet from Morocco and wanted it. With the help of a local guide/minder secured by our tour guide to help us navigate the tricky passage ways of the medina in Marrakech, we did some hard negotiating and carried this 6' by 9' carpet home in my suitcase.  Hexagons are quite the rage in quilting.  This split-hexagon design could make a lovely quilt.  Hmmm....

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Soothing the Savage Breast

One of my teacher/guild friends is an emerging quilter. She pieced these two quilt tops and has given them to me to quilt. She will then do the binding. I love the combination of fabrics on the front of these quilts, and the elephant backing is just perfect. Today, basting these quilts and starting the quilting is just what I need to be doing. There's great solace in simple activities as a foil to the sadness of my parents' slow decline.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

The Studio Took Second Place...for a while

While we were in Morocco, we had our kitchen updated.  I thought I'd come home to something completed - you know, like those kitchen reveals on all the HGTV shows.  As I lugged in my suitcase and spied the dishwasher still in the front hall, I immediately had to revise my expectations.  Then jet lag and a sinus infection hit.  But finally - things are almost complete, the kitchen is absolutely functional and beautiful, we are happy, and we are both feeling healthy.  Nice.

Our designer, Sheri Sauer from Premier Design and Cabinetry in LaGrange Park, was instrumental in helping me decide on a budget and then sticking to that budget while still getting the look I wanted.  Sheri also recommended a contractor, John Klich, of Premier Contstruction Services.  To be able to be out of town during the lion's share of this work and know that the house was in good hands was invaluable.  There was an unexpected issue with a support beam, and John made it right.  There was an issue with the electric, and again - John made it right. 

By moving the refrigerator to the East Wall and creating some pantry space, the kitchen now have a fully function U-shape with two clearly defined work areas.  John and I can now be in the kitchen at the same time without snarling at one another.  A good thing.

Now it's time to get back to normal - with workouts, with the parents, with the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative quilt scanning, with the studio projects I want to do, and with a couple of small commissions.  (Also, I owe my grandsons some Easter Lamb cakes, so this year we are celebrating Orthodox Easter on May 5.)

Monday, April 22, 2013

Project Night Night

My fabulous guild, The Chicago Modern Quilt Guild, directed its Sew to Serve Chicago charity efforts to Project Night Night, an organization that provides basic items for the children of those needing shelter. At yesterday's meeting  over 40 quilts and stuffies were collected.  While the thought of making stuffed animals terrifies me, I was willing to make two quilts.

Since I don't have light and bright fabrics, I bought a jelly roll of these bubble pastels and an accompanying packet of fat-eights for the back of the quilt.  It's 50" x 60". It's the cover quilt from Weeks Ringle and Bill Kerr's Quilts Made ModernHere's the other quilt I put together, made from blocks that were improvisationally pieced at the January CMQG meeting.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Pranked on April Fool's Day

I know I have written about how influential Eleanor Burns has been in my development as a quilter. I must give equal credit to Alex Anderson and her years as host of Simply Quilts on HGTV. So I pay attention to these women when they talk about something new and revolutionary. Did you see this link posted by Alex? My QFF Wayne also sent me the link, and he too is someone I pay attention to. So I watched Alex's video. Really? Seriously? All we need is a smart phone, a downloaded app, and a USB on our machines to plug the phone into. And magically unsewing happens. I asked Wayne if our Husqvarnas even have a USB port. Wayne pointed out I must still be sick (and apparently without a sense of humor) because this was a prank. As I said to Wayne, I'm such a dork...