Sunday, December 27, 2009

Arts and Crafts Squares Quilt

It has taken me quite awhile to decide what to do with this fabric. I loved the fabric, but couldn't commit to a pattern. I finally took it to work and consulted a woman there who quilts. She suggested the pattern that I am going to do - it is a total of 25 squares, except they are squares within squares. Just trust me on this one. At any rate, the 9 squares inside the quilt will have brownish borders and the 16 squares on the outside will have blue borders. All of these will have another, differently patterned square within it. I cut all the interior squares but the blue borders are not done - I have to go to Bayside to pick up some more material. Luckily, I am not being a complete perfectionist on the blue squares and I will accept different patterns as long as they are a similar shade of blue.

In other news, the Packers play today and I am not ready to be hurt by them like I was last week.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Peace on Earth goodwill towards kitties.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Day of the Dead Quilt - Finale

Despite the fact that the Ancient Egyptians put a curse on this quilt, I managed to finish it without invoking the Book of the Dead. I cut the fabric wrong and then didn't have enough material to correct the fact that I had cut the fabric wrong. Then, the fabric that I ordered to fix the problem featured skulls that were three inches larger than the skulls in the original fabric. That wouldn't have been a problem if I had ordered enough fabric to complete the border with the big head skull fabric. Which I didn't. I ended up putting big head skull on the top and the bottom, little head skull on the side and creating my own corner pieces to make the transition between big head and little head a little less jarring. I quilted it over the weekend and it now resides in my closet, lurking in its evil quilt ways until next Day of the Dead.

Thai quilt - the verdict

I can't seem to let this one go. This is the Thai quilt before I packed it up and sent it to Wisconsin where it received rave reviews. I have to say, this was incredibly fun to work on and I may have to play with this color scheme again. Also note the tail end of the little girl cat in the foreground.

Friday, December 11, 2009


I'm starting to get the fabric together for the next project. It's
going to have a nice arts and crafts vibe.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


I'm going to call this a learning experience. Blergh. The border consists of 4 pieces - two of the patterned skull fabric cut vertically and two cut horizontally. I managed to cut one vertical and 5 horizontal. Seriously. I have to stop drinking wine while cutting my fabric. I also used all my spare fabric in precutting the binding, which I really didn't need to do until the very last step. So, I have no extra fabric and no way to fix this without buying new. I did that and I hope that the fabric arrives soon and matches what I have. Of course, on-line, you have to buy .5 yard as a minimum order, so I will have lots of fabric left over. Maybe matching pillows for next day of the dead? I'm beginning not to like novelty fabric.

In other news, I am home today because my pipes froze in last night's deep freeze. I only hope I get a hold of a plumber in time.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Day of the dead quilt

This is the part of piecing that goes fastest. The top row of three
blocks is together and the first two blocks of the next row are
together as well. Scout, however, has decided that the second row will
not be finished until she is done sitting on it.

Day of the Dead Quilt

With all of the excitement surrounding the Thai quilt, I've been ignoring my work on the Day of the Dead quilt. The center consists of 12 blocks, cut at angles that make crooked squares. The first step is shown above, and here is the next step:

This is repeated for the 12 blocks using different colors as shown here:

Now that all the blocks are done, I can start attaching them to each other and then add the border.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Cat army

The cat army continues testing the thai quilt.

Sleeping cats

The cat army approves of the new soft and warm quilt.

Thai quilt

The Thai quilt is done! In case anyone is wondering, it is extremely
difficult to bind a quilt while two cats are sleeping on it.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Thai quilt

I quilted the Thai quilt today at Bayside Quilting. I would show you a
picture of it, but as soon as I put it on the kitchen table Scout
jumped up on it and hasn't left it since. She is determined to claim
it as her own.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Day of the Dead Quilt

Technically, the Day of the Dead was yesterday which makes this quilt a little late in coming. However, I like to think of the Day of the Dead as a holiday we can celebrate year round. Now that we have justified the lateness of this project, I am starting my much anticipated Day of the Dead quilt. I have finished all the cutting (I did that on Halloween while waiting for trick or treaters, and nearly stopped when the grim reaper showed up - that will really clear out the plaque in your arteries) and am now ready to start piecing. The quilt is basically 12 squares that I am cutting at an angle to make them look crooked. I'm using an 8.5 inch square ruler and a 10.5 inch square ruler. This should be relatively easy to put together, but I'm not counting my day of the dead squares before they are hatched.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

more photos of the cat resistance movement

Scout really did do her best to keep me from finishing this quilt. Her consolation prize will be knowing that there will be hundreds of her hairs sewn into the finished product. She has also managed to take over the batting which is laying out on the spare bed upstairs. I want to get it to puff up a little from being in a bag, and she wants to get hair on it. We are both going to be winners.

Thai quilt

Despite an admirable amount of resistance from the cat movement, I was able to finish piecing the Thai quilt. The backing is cut and ironed and ready to go. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to rent the long-arm machine at Bayside until Friday so it will have to wait until then to be put together. I did play around on my home sewing machine to see if I could take care of it here. However, my stitches are erratic, apparently I have no hand-eye coordination, and I really don't want to do stitch in the ditch for this quilt, so no home quilting of this. I am very hopeful that I will be able to quilt it and get the binding done next weekend before I leave for Wisconsin, but we will see. I am very happy with the colors and how bright this quilt is. The last strips I added do demonstrate that things aren't quite as straight as they should be, but I plan to keep my head up and not focus on the imperfections.

Next up, my Day of the Dead quilt!

Puny human

Puny human, I am amused by your attempts to finish piecing your quilt. Now, scritch my forehead. Scritch it!


These pictures are late in coming, but last week's hike to Staircase was wonderful. It didn't rain, which is always a plus at this time of the year, and we managed to hike around 10 miles. Most of the hike goes along the Skokomish River and is relatively flat so it is easy to get the miles in. There have been some dramatic landslides over the years there, but the trail is very passable. I have some picture of those landslides and of the hike here.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Vampire kitties

A little vampirism is normal in cats this time of year.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Thai quilt

The towers are completely done! You can see that they have a green-gray border and have a purple background at the top and bottom. All I have to do is piece the towers together by adding purple strips between the towers and also at the top and bottom. I will probably be able to do that today after I finish cleaning and making a sun-dried tomato pasta sauce. And all this because the NFL insists on showing games today that I have no interest in.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Little girl cat

A little known fact about Scout - she has vampire fangs. I will
continue efforts to document them. In the meantime, we should all
appreciate her efforts to eradicate the feather on a stick.

Also, Sammy has received a clean bill of health from the vet and is
ready to continue his pirate ways. Whew.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Thai quilt

I'm getting a lot done because the packer game seems intent on hurting me as an individual.

Thai quilt

They say homemade quilts are made with love. Because I'm watching the Packer game, I think it is safe to say that the towers are made with stress.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Cat army

Seriously? How cute are these guys?

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Thai quilt

One tower down and three to go!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

nice colors

I think this might be my favorite of the colored blocks. The pictures still don't bring out all the brightness, but this is pretty darned close.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Thai quilt

I've finished about half the squares and they seem to be coming together pretty well. I will try to take some pictures tomorrow so I can share their colors. The cat army has been remarkably hands off during the process, but it was nice today and they spent a lot if time outside. They had to take naps while I was piecing this evening. Scout did manage to wake up and demand some attention.

I also made it to Ballard and explored The Quilting Loft. I can't say it was that much more impressive than Bayside Quilting. The Loft had more modern prints and some great day of the dead fabric which I bought. But their batik and blender selection wasn't that great. Still, there were some nice show piece fabrics and they are close to Cupcake Royale so it might be worth a return visit.

Friday, September 25, 2009

thai quilt

I have completed all ten strips for the blocks. The next step is to cut these down and rearrange them into squares and triangles. This should be a pretty fun process and I am really hoping that the lines match up. The color did not turn out well when I took their pictures. When I get the squares done, I'll try to find some natural sunlight and take more pictures. Needless to say, this is a very brightly colored quilt.

In other quilting news, I've decided to go on a field trip tomorrow to some of the quilting stores in Seattle. One is close to a cupcake store. Well, six blocks away from a cupcake store. But after eating cupcakes, I'm going to need a walk.

Skyline Trail

Technically, this isn't an invisible marmot because you can actually see him - just not very well. This little guy was happily munching away at something on the Skyline Trail when we walked by. He did raise his head when I put away my camera, which proves to me that marmots are evil and must be stopped. Despite the evil marmots, the day at Rainier was amazing with clear, blue skies and temperatures in the 80's. I actually thought it was too hot - and at 6300 feet, that is saying something. You will also notice that the mountain feels the same way and could use a good dusting of snow to pretty it up. More pictures here.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

what's blooming now

It's been a while since I've posted pictures from my yard. This is mostly because I don't have a lot of summer flowers because of the whole "I live in the dark woods" thing I've got going here. I was mowing the dandelions today when I noticed the fuschia and hydrangea blooming in the side yard and got very excited. Also exciting is the orchid that chose to bloom again this year. You can't really tell by the pictures, but she is a very pale green with pinkish/purplish stripes. I'm amazed that she is blooming because she really needs to be repotted - she is almost falling out of her pot - and she doesn't get a lot of light where she is. She is, apparently, a trooper.

In cat news, Sammy is back from his extended visit to the vet. He is still running a slight fever, but it is way down from the 105.5 that it was. I am very happy to have him home even though I am extremely worried about the fact that we do not know what caused the fever in the first place, and he is sleeping his little butt off on the bed right now which tells me that he doesn't really entirely feel better. At least he is home and okay for now. I'll watch him tomorrow and take him back in on Monday if need be. Who needs a savings account anyway? I kid. I'm not worried about the costs of this so long as Pirate Kitty returns to his pirate ways. Let's hope that is soon.