Thursday, June 28, 2007
Each block has some wording on it, either a poem, a bit of song lyrics, or a quotation. Having this in the works for such a long time has meant that I've learned new things in the interim. So after I sewed the blocks together and embroidered those seams, I had to add a button cluster, lace that I dyed, and some beading. Then I added a couple of charms, and the setting embroidery for them. It's still in need of something in the remaining three intersections; I have some huge buttons in mind for two of them, but I haven't decided about it for sure yet.
In order of appearance, these blocks are middle row right, top row center, top row right, bottom row right, and top row left.
Wednesday, June 27, 2007
Tuesday, June 26, 2007
The vintage lace collar will be beautiful in crazy quilts, that is if I don't attach it to a t-shirt and wear it. The only worn spot is in one upper corner, and it's wonderfully soft and supple.
Monday, June 25, 2007
I think I am done with Lauri's block for the CYOT round robin. I have beaded and blinged it more that I have ever beaded or blinged a block before. It now weighs about what Lauri's sample block does, so I'm thinking I must be done. It has lace that we dyed at Lauri's house one day this spring, beads in several colors, a button trail arch (which I'd never done before), and of course, embroidery.
The button arch was a learning experience. Before I had done much of the embroidery, I laid the block flat on the table and positioned the buttons in what I hoped was a pleasing arrangement. Then I did a quick sketch of what button goes where. As I sewed them down, they sort of rearranged themselves just a little, but I liked the way they came out. Sometimes you just have to listen to your embellishments; they usually know best. Except they didn't tell me I should have done the buttons last, as the embroidery thread kept catching on the buttons, and they made the block heavy in that spot and hard to handle.
The last thing I did on this block is a signature stitch. One of the Colorado Crazy Quilters, Leslie, and I have been thinking about and working on a small motif that we can use on any quilt project to "sign" it without using our names or initials. It needs to be small enough to stitch quickly, and generic enough to fit in with any quilt theme. The small heart in the blue patch is what I am thinking about using. For many years now I've used a very simplified version of that design in counted cross stitch projects, and thought, "A hundred years from now, when one of my projects ends up on Antiques Roadshow, they'll be able to identify it as my work!" Delusions of grandeur....
Friday, June 22, 2007
Thursday, June 21, 2007
Anyway, I intended at first to just put the book on my shelf with my other old books. Then I thought, maybe I should actually read it. What a concept!
The first part is made up of various stories told by a group of cowboys about cattle drives, branding, rustling, treasure hunting, etc. The last section is about Buck Johnson, owner of the ranch that most of the cowboys work for, and how his growing appreciation of the desert's beauty leads him to search out a wife via the personal ads in the newspaper.
I tried to read it as if I was living in 1907, and curious about the wild western US. White's descriptions of the desert landscape are vivid; but could I see it in my mind because of his painterly words, or because I live in the high desert? I'll never know for sure, but I did enjoy reading it. And now it is happily living on my shelf, having celebrated its 100th birthday by being read and appreciated yet again.
Wednesday, June 20, 2007
I posted a pic of this block before it had any embellishments on it, and now it is complete. The mask has a sparkly gem pendant on a gold chain, and the glyph reads "yesterday, today, tomorrow". The circle with the dot in the center indicates time, and there is a snake that is really a snake in "yesterday."
Tuesday, June 19, 2007
It also includes a 3 dimensional bodice (romance novels are sometimes called "bodice rippers") complete with a jewelled pearl drop necklace to nestle in the bosoms.
My block for this theme is a work in progress, but so far includes lace that Lauri and I dyed one day at her house, beads, a quote from Mr. Right, a button trail arch, and a spider from the spider print fabric that Lauri gave me, just so she'll know I made this block.
Monday, June 18, 2007
Wednesday, June 13, 2007
The second one pictured is almost done, just a couple more seam treatments to do. It has the gold thread outlining the discs that the men are carrying, and a red bead in the center of each disc. The glyph for "starry skies" is in the bottom right corner. The literal translation is "a thousand is its soul" which is very poetic, isn't it?
Monday, June 11, 2007
The items made ranged from wall hangings to table runners to a backpack bag to a convertible jacket/purse/pillow thing that was really imaginative. Mine was the only butterfly and the only crazy quilted item, though there were two wall hangings that were sort of free-form, but not crazy pieced. After we ate, we were asked to stand up one at a time, introduce ourselves and tell a little about what had inspired us to make the item we made. Then the recipient got up and said whatever they wanted to say (lots of oohing and ahhing and thank you's). I thoroughly enjoyed everyone else's "speeches", because it was sort of like when one of my on-line cqing friends tells about something they've made and what inspired them, except they were standing right there. That was so much fun.
My turn came, and my heart was beating so loud I was sure everyone could hear it better than my voice. I hadn't practiced what to say, in fact didn't know we'd have to say anything, but I got up there and said, "My name is Janet Popish and I don't do (air quotes with my fingers) 'sane' quilting. I'm a crazy quilter." In that second, I felt like an alcoholic attending her first AA meeting; introduction and confession in one breath. It got chuckles from the others, so then I was okay and explained what had inspired me. We were supposed to have the others guess what the "ugly" fabric was that we started with, but I pointed to it, so that cat was out of the bag.
Anyway, the recipient liked it, and it was well received on the whole. The store owner called it the "delightful" butterfly, which is a nicer name than ugly butterfly or even Mothra (Lauri's nickname for it). One lady asked me if I gave cq lessons, and I said, "Sure!" So that may be the start of something. The items will all be hanging in the store for 5 weeks to promote next year's ugly duckling challenge, so maybe more will get interested.
The ugly fabric I brought in was made into a lovely old-fashioned looking wall hanging by the sweetest little old lady. She'd written a poem to go with it, so it was extra special. All in all, it was great fun and I will probably do it again next year.