Monday, October 24, 2016

Socks and a little trip!

I started the first pair of these socks in early September so I would have something to take along on our road trip to Lake Tahoe and Truckee. I was originally planning on working on my Lucy Boston blocks but found there wasn't adequate lighting in our accommodations to enable me to see to do hand stitching. So I knit instead. It's relaxing and very enjoyable anyway so I didn't mind at all. This pair is the Tesserae pattern by Anne Hanson that I love so much. Such an easy knit!

The second pair is a pattern called the Roger Sock also by Anne Hanson. I love her patterns as they are always so easy to read/understand. I much prefer written directions rather than a chart and that's what she provides.

Both pairs of these socks will be in the shop shortly.

Our trip to Lake Tahoe and Truckee was fun and both Donner Lake and Tahoe (below) were gorgeous. We had wonderful weather while we were there... it was in the high 70s during the day and really cooled off during the evenings. One afternoon/evening there was a rain/snow storm which left the mountain tops in South Lake Tahoe covered with snow (quite a bit which melted the next day). And, believe it or not, it was 19 degrees the next morning as we left to head home. As luck would have it, we had our nice warm jackets with us! :) It was just so nice to get away for a few days.

Take care,

Saturday, October 22, 2016

My Maker's Tote is done!

My friend Pat was here recently visiting from Boston, and during her visit we started our Maker's Tote bags (pattern by Noodlehead) but didn't get them completed. We had only the binding and handles remaining when she left to go home. We were planning on completing them at the same time from our respective locations, but her schedule is far too hectic and she encouraged me to go ahead and get mine done.

Take care,

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Time flies!!

I'm always a little surprised and shocked at how quickly time passes these days. And, for the life of me, I cannot remember what I did yesterday! :) I'm not quite that bad, but almost. Ask me what inconsequential thing I was doing four or five years ago and I might remember, but not yesterday. As my friend Pat says, "retirement is supposed to be the golden years, but it's really the rusty years".

I didn't work at all on UFOs/WIPs last month. I did work on my Lucy Boston blocks, but only to sew a couple of them together. Pat came out from Boston and was here for three weeks so we started a new bag together. This is the first bag I've made since January and it was surprising to me just how many little tips/tricks that I've forgotten in that short time.

When Pat left to go back home, we were just at the point of sewing the binding on so I went ahead yesterday and got it sewn. Now I only have the hand stitching and handles left to do. It's the Maker's Tote (the large size) by Noodlehead. Nice and roomy for all the good stuff I'm going to carry in it.

Pat and I spent her three weeks sewing on our bags, visiting Quilt Emporium, Superbuzzy (twice), going out to lunch, having our makeup done at Bare Minerals, and meeting up with our friend, Johanne, in Palm Springs for Quilt Fest. I enjoyed every minute of it!

Take care,

Friday, September 09, 2016

Lucy Boston blocks 1 - 4

I've hopped onto the Lucy Boston bandwagon after watching all the gorgeous blocks being put together by Alewives Fabrics. I fell in love with the shop when we visited a couple of years ago. It's one of the best shops I've been to in a very long time and it's located in the beautiful village of Damariscotta Mills on the shores of the Damariscotta River/Salt Bay.

Anyway, I've put together these first four, unsewn, blocks so that I'll have handwork when I need it.

I do have to say that I don't find these blocks all that easy in regards to fabric choices even with the h-u-g-e stash of fabric that I have, but they are definitely fun to make!

Take care,

Friday, September 02, 2016

An accounting of sorts...

I have finished 12 projects so far this year! Although I finished these three mug rugs (on 8/31/16), I'm only going to count them as one project since they were all squirreled away together in the UFO pile. I'm giving myself a huge pat on the back for getting this much done already this year.

These two will be in the shop soon...

 And, this one I'm giving to a friend!

Of course, my UFO list is still quite long and, for sure, will carry over into 2017 and possibly 2018, but that doesn't matter to me because I'm making progress. As the saying goes, I "can see light at the end of the tunnel". Admittedly, it's a very long tunnel!! :)

Here's the accounting:

Started the year with UFO projects: 38
Found YTD:  +13 more
Started YTD:  +1 new
Gave away YTD: -3
Trashed YTD: -3
Sold YTD: -2
Finished YTD: -12 (I don't have a specific yearly goal other than to finish as many as possible)

Remaining total YTD = 32 as of today!! By doing the math, you realize that I was up to 51 UFOs at one time, don't you? Who knows how many more I will find along the way. Apparently, I've hidden them away all over the house. :)

Linking up with Colorways by Vicki!

Take care,

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

I started (& finished) something new...

I told myself I would not start anything new this year, but I needed a portable project and I did not feel like working on my Route 66 embroidery project. So I gave in and started knitting another scarf. And, finished it!

I'm counting it as another "finished project" for the year (#11), even though it wasn't a WIP to begin with. I'm willing to do anything that keeps me motivated!! :)

It's in the shop, if you're interested.

Take care,

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

In the garden...

The light was so beautiful last evening that I just had to grab my camera and take some photos out in the garden. There's a large fire north of us in Santa Barbara county that's producing lots of smoke in the air, which makes for lovely color as the sun sets. 

Hydrangea's are always fun to photograph and I sorely need the practice. It's been ages since I photographed anything sheerly for the fun of it. I feel like I've forgotten more than I knew! :)

The following three photos were taken in the back part of the yard and in deep shade.

I pruned all of my hydrangeas way back last fall - perhaps too far - since they didn't grow much in size this spring. But there are lots and lots of colorful blooms, that's for sure! One of my favorite flowers. The only thing better would be being able to grow Peonies!! :)

Take care,

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Tuesday fun!

It's Tuesday and that means my quilting group meeting. I didn't take much to work on today so I helped Katie draw/cut freezer paper templates for her orange peel blocks. She only needs 60 more and the ones she's already done are gorgeous. Of course, I didn't think to take pics of them. :) She's making them with Kaffe fabrics so you can imagine how great they are.

But, I did take pics of Jane's NY Beauty block starts.

This one, below, is my favorite so far...

She's making enough blocks for two wall-hanging sized quilts... one for a daughter's new apartment and the other one is for a church auction. She's generous that way!

I always enjoy seeing what's going on with my quilting friends.

Take care,

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Six years in the making... and it's finished! - #10

Yippee!! I finished my NY Beauty quilt on 7/28/16... only six years after starting it.

I loved making this quilt since it was a first in so many ways. I tried paper piecing for the first time... I found free blocks online (here) and printed them off onto bond paper. And, at first, it was a real struggle to wrap my head around how to paper piece since it seemed as though I was wasting a huge amount of fabric! :) But, I got over that and with practice, I came to quite like paper piecing. I also used some batiks and a lot of my own hand-dyed fabrics - something I've not done before this quilt although I have a huge stash of batiks and quite a lot of my own hand-dyed fabrics.

As you can see, I quilted it using organically straight lines about 1/2 inch apart since I wanted a more modern look than these quilts are known for having. I agonized for quite some time trying to decide how to quilt it, but kept coming back to the straight, vertical lines. Even as I started it, I wasn't sure it was the right choice. But, I love the way it looks so I'm happy I went with my instincts. And, it's the 10th WIP I'm able to cross of my list for 2016... I'm on a roll!

Progress shots along the way are here, here, here, and here!

When I showed it to my husband he said, "Wow... that's a work of art!" That made my day!

I've finally caught up posting finished projects and from now on, I hope to keep them in order! It got confusing (even to me and I knew what I was doing)!

Take care,