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Monday, November 23, 2015

DWM: fabric finds me, finishes, and pieced backs

The week began with sunshine and ended with the biggest November snowfall in 120 years. The storm was forecast well in advance and behaved exactly as predicted: heavy, wet snow from Friday night to mid-afternoon Saturday.  The United Methodist Women had a table at the library craft fair Saturday. I drove on slippery, partially-plowed streets for my 1:30-3:30 shift.  Usually the craft fair is a bustling event but we packed up our table at 2:30.  The baked goods were sold at coffee hour after the Sunday service. The craft items will be packed away for next year.  (Of my contributions: the five
table runners sold and seven out of twenty potholders sold.)

I hosted  P.E.O. on Monday -- a nice coincidence for me because I was initiated 30 years ago this week (November 19, 1985).  The program was a report by Pat W., our delegate to the international convention. Each delegate represents seven chapters (I was the delegate  in 2009).  Pat is a member of a chapter in the southwest corner of the county and she's also on a state committee with me.  I made this mug rug to thank her for her presentation.

I needed a tablecloth for the dining table to serve Monday's refreshments. I opened the bottom drawer of the butler's desk, which I don't open very often. I found the autumn-theme table runner that I wanted to use.  I also found this tablecloth.  I made it out of five yards of cotton print (cut in half and seamed lengthwise)  for a barbecue-themed dinner we hosted.  That was in 1981 when we lived in Pittsburg, Kansas -- many years and many miles ago!  I think we used the tablecloth just one other time.  This week I looked at it in a different light -- that's five yards of fabric, already seamed, just right for a quilt back!

I put my Block Lotto winnings on the design wall.  The straight setting looks okay, but the on-point setting looks better!
 I have an idea for sashing . . . stay tuned.

I appreciated last week's comments about the pieced backing I used on the t-shirt quilt.  I did the same for two flimsies this week -- yep, two finishes!  Add 6 yards to the "used" column for the backing and binding of these scrappy quilts.

This is the October HeartStrings (2.5" strips) here . The front is folded over the back. The backing fabric is a 36" wide vintage print.  I used 2.5" strips for the insert.

This is the 9x9 postage stamp ( here ).  Again, the front is folded over in this photo.  The backing is another vintage print, 44" wide, by VIP.  I made a stack of "Mary's Triangles" units years ago. I thought this would be a good way to use some of them.

I'm linking up with
 Patchwork Times
 Oh Scrap!
Love Laugh Quilt

P.S. The butler's desk closed, and opened. Stevens' grandmother bought it from a neighbor in St. Johnsbury, Vermont, sometime before 1920.

Sunday, November 15, 2015


I wrote earlier how I'd been procrastinating about the t-shirt quilt I needed to make. (Did I write that about this quilt? Actually, I think I have procrastinated about each of the four t-shirt quilts I've made.)

 I bought 6-1/2 yards for this project (sashing, border, backing).  All I have left are pieces from the border, totaling about 1 yard, and two 2-1/2" strips of sashing.

There wasn't enough backing fabric so I inserted an 8" extender.

I outlined the flowers to quilt the border.
The problem with t-shirt quilts is "blooping" with heavy plastic-y motifs.

I'm adding this to the lime green projects at So Scrappy !
I'm also linking up with
Patchwork Times
Quilting is More Fun Than Housework
Love Laugh Quilt
Cooking Up Quilts

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Throwback Thursday: Y2K charm quilt

Button charms: Pinterest
In the 19th century many girls swapped buttons to make "charm strings."  It was said that if a girl had 999 buttons on her string, the young man who gave her the 1,000th would be her true love.  This article describes button charm strings.   
Quiltmakers have their version of charm strings.  This article describes several waves of charm quilt fads. In late 1998 I joined in one of those waves with fellow quilters on the Rec.Crafts.Textiles.Quilting newsgroup. I sent and received dozens of packets of 25 assorted 3" squares of quilting fabric and a signature square. Our goal was to have 2,000 different fabrics by the year 2000.  Mickie, one of the RCTQers, designed "The New Millennium Quilt," a pattern that incorporated 24 fabrics in each 4"  block.  In the fall of 1999 I sewed, cut, trimmed, and assembled. The quilt was finished (quilted, bound, labeled) that November.  (The design produced lots of cutaway triangles that I later gave away.)   My design idea was to keep similar colors in each block. I didn't intend to make a watercolor quilt, but that's how it turned out.  

I include my Y2K quilt in my quilt history presentation. When I got it out for last week's program I took time to write down the names of all the contributors. One signature block was too faded to read. One person swapped twice.  At least one is deceased.  I'm in online contact with several others.  Here's the list (last names omitted to provide a little privacy):

Angela Tustin CA
Anja Almelo Netherlands
Ann Tuscumbia AL
Barb Grants Pass OR
Barb Willow Grove PA
Beata Svenberg Denmark
Beth Marietta GA
Betty Hillsboro NM
Bev ON
Beverly Bright, Victoria Australia
Carol   Dayton OH
Carolyn Natick MA
Cathy Oshkosh WI
Cheryl Omaha NE 
Cheryle Sault Ste Marie  ON
Christine Stow OH
Connie Anchorage AK
Cori Bremerton WA
Cynthia CT
Deane Cary IL
Debbie Savage MN
Debi Fox River Grove IL
Denise Strongsville OH
Diane Conyngham PA
Dianne Chicago IL
Donna Steilacoom WA
Donna Escondido CA
Dorothy Powell River BC
Elaine Suffolk VA
Elaine Montgomery AL
Flornce Tucson AZ
Genevieve Natchez MS
Gillian Beaverton OR
Gillie Oxfordshire England
Ginny Barre VT
Gwen Brooklyn NY
Irene Creston BC
Jane  Ashland OH
Janet Portland OR
Janet Garland TX
Janice Okanagon WA
Jennifer Greenwood SC
Jerrica Lewiston ID
Judith Fort Worth TX
Judy Tampa FL
Kapi Escondido CA
Kathy Grand Blanc MI
Katie Norfolk NE
Katie Ames IA
Katrina Seattle WA
Kimberly Chewelah WA
Krysia Tyne & Wear England
Laura Dale City VA
Laurel Belleair FL
Lisa Los Angeles CA
Lisa Bloomington IN
Lisa Olson AFB Korea
Lori Troy MI
Lori Troy MI
Lu Ellen Newport NC
Maarit Ottawa ON
Margie Canon City CO
Marilyn Tampa FL
Mary Birmingham AL
Mary Kay Port Huron MI
Maureen Ottawa ON
Maureen Medicine Hat AB
Mechele Seoul South Korea
Megan South Holland IL
Michelle Iowa City IA
Mickie Cranberry Twp PA
Miriam Cumberland ME
Monique Bilbao Spain
Nadine Warrensburg MO
Nancie Houston TX
Nina Marie Albion PA
Pamela Helsinki Finland
Pixie Tyler TX
Rhoda Moorhead MN
Ro Brea CA
Robin Baldwinsville NY
Robin Howell MI
Roseann Millersville MD
Rowena Nashville TN
Sandy Burlington MA
Sharon Lansing MI
Smeggy Little Falls WV
Sue Niles MI
Susan Phoenix AZ
Susan Indianapolis IN
Sylvia Clinton NC
Theresa Covington WA
Tutu Cape Town South Africa
Urchi Germany
Vickie Casper WY
Vickie Youngstown OH
Vivien Auckland NZ
Yvonne Carlsbad CA

Did you swap charm squares for the millennium?  Did you ever sew them into a quilt?

Monday, November 9, 2015

DWM: a finish and a start on the November list

I have two must-do projects for November. One is finished and the other is begun.  But first: here are the X Plus blocks for this month's Block Lotto .  Aren't these great?

"Winter Berries" is my contribution for our P.E.O. holiday ornament exchange. (Ornaments don't have to go on the tree.) The pattern is by Pat Sloan.  It was published in McCall's Quick Quilts and republished in McCall's Scrap Quilts. I had marked both magazines with post-its which I took as a sign to make it.  10" x 37", 1 yard, all from my stash.

I offered a t-shirt quilt for the Rotary Golf Outing auction last May. Mom and daughter brought the t-shirts in August. I said I'd have the quilt by Christmas . . . which is just around the corner. Mom said daughter likes dark green, but I went a tad brighter for the sashing and border fabric.  T-shirts are cut and stabilized.   This week will be somewhat less-meeting-filled (see previous post) and I hope to get the quilt assembled.

I'm linking up with other quiltmakers at
Patchwork Times
Quilting is More Fun Than Housework
Love Laugh Quilt

A busy week!

The first week of the month is always busy, with P.E.O. on the first Monday evening and quilt guild on the first Wednesday evening, Zion Woman's Club at lunchtime the first Tuesday and Coalition for Healthy Communities at breakfast the first Friday. (Rotary is every Thursday.) To add to those recurring events, I gave a book review to the Alpha Gamma Delta alumnae club on Tuesday evening and my quilt history program for the Downers Grove AAUW branch on Thursday evening.  On Saturday morning the Zion-Benton Leadership Academy graduated its fourth class.

"Greatness Explained: the Great Lakes" was the ZWC program. Dr. Norman Moline is a retired professor of geography at Augustana College. He gave a thorough overview / review of the Great Lakes -- geology, biology, strategic political/social position.  My husband was among the guests. We agreed that it was an excellent presentation.  (The presentation was underwritten by the Illinois Humanities Council Road Scholars  speakers bureau (not the Road Scholar (singular) travel company).)

Patricia Sanabria Friedrich was the guild speaker. Her book is "Mosaic Tile Quilts." She is originally from Costa Rica and the tiles in churches, schools, and other buildings are the basis for her designs. (She now lives in Cedarburg, Wisconsin.)

Though I've been a member of this Alpha Gam alumnae club for many years, I don't attend many meetings. My book talk featured some of my favorites, some older, some newer.

 Cheri Neal and I received plaques with photos of the four ZBLA classes and a lovely poem. We're shown with the current ZBLA coordinators Colette Davis and Jiquanda Nelson (both of whom are ZBLA grads).

Judge George Bridges administered the oath to this year's class "to swear to be great community leaders."  (For more about ZBLA: here .)

"Every Quilt Tells a Story" is my work-in-progress quilt history program. I show vintage quilts from my collection and some of my own work. I invite group members (in advance, of course) to bring quilts they've been given, inherited, or made.   Several of the Downers Grove AAUW members brought lovely quilts but I didn't take any photos. Those shown here are by Kate from DG-AAUW. ]


Scrappy Forecast, 2015

AAUW 2014 notecard winner 

Monday, November 2, 2015

DWM: beach, blocks, runners, and HeartStrings

We had about 50 trick-or-treaters on Saturday afternoon. The morning rain had moved on though it was still overcast. By contrast, Sunday was Kodachrome-bright.  We went to Hosah Park for our afternoon walk.

We could see the Chicago skyline -- there's a tall building in the far distance behind the concrete pier on the right (in the water).

Shirtsleeves in November

Beach glass bonanza!

Vintage prints
Stash report, October:
Fabric acquired: 63-3/8  ($52)
Fabric used: 31-7/8
Fabric acquired: 162-5/8  ($376.60)
Fabric used: 283-5/8
Net decrease: 121

52-3/8 yards of this month's acquisition came from Lillian's legacy -- free! The other 10 yards were batik FQs purchased at a quilt show.

Vintage woven plaids and stripes
I sold four sets of blocks through the FB group Quilters Virtual Yard Sale. They'd been in my box o' blocks for years. Now someone else can put them to use.

Lime is the the color this month at the  Rainbow Scrap Challenge .
Here's my bubble block.

And, speaking of blocks, I won the Block Lotto! I will get 42 Twinkle Stars to add to the six that I made.

The United Methodist Women will have tables at two craft fairs this month.  I made five table runners using 6.5" crazy-pieced Christmas blocks left over from this project back in 2010.

Each runner has a different back.

I'm making Christmas potholders from blocks-on-hand, too.

 I've used different colorways, fabric genres, and strip sizes for this year's HeartStrings quilts.  A back issue of "Easy Quilts" had a pattern that inspired me to try a different design for the 11th HS quilt. I assembled it Saturday. I'm a month ahead!

I'm linking up with other quiltmakers at
Patchwork Times
Love Laugh Quilt
So Scrappy
Quilting Is More Fun than Housework

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Title IX: Fair play on and off the court

My column, published in the Zion-Benton News on October 29. 

When I mentioned that I was going to write about Title IX a friend commented, “Oh, that’s the ruling that opened up college sports to women.” Well, yes, but that’s only part of the story.

To state it succinctly, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 prohibits gender discrimination in education programs and activities in schools and colleges that receive Federal funding for any purpose.   It applies to students and employees, and applicants for admission or employment.  It means that an institution may not “exclude, separate, deny benefits to, or otherwise treat differently any person on the basis of sex” unless the regulations specifically authorize.” (Title IX Resource Guide, 2015.)

Title IX is not an entitlement program.   Yes, it benefits girls and women – and it also benefits boys and men.  It is gender-neutral, ensuring equality in education for all students. 
1.  It protects all students and all staff, male and female, from sex-based discrimination.
2.  It requires schools to provide equal opportunities for male and female students to participate in athletics. It does not set quotas or demand equal funding.    In the forty years since Title IX, girls’ participation in high school sports has increased tenfold and six times as many women participate in college sports.   Over the same period boys’ and men’s participation and athletics has continued to rise.   Competitive cheering and competitive dance are now classified as sports.
3. It mandates equity in career and technical education programs.   Boys take home ec and girls take shop.         
4. It protects equity in scientific and technical education, including equal access to institutional resources.   Examples include science laboratories, field research, art studios, or music practice rooms.
5. It offers both male and female students protection from sex-based harassment from teachers, school staff, other students, and school visitors.  Claims cannot be dismissed as being trivial or “boys being boys.”   
6. It sets limits on programs that segregate girls and boys.  Gender stereotypes are challenged in textbooks and curriculum resources.
7.  It protects students from being refused enrollment or excluded from school activities because of pregnancy or parenting status.  Programs for student-parents must be comparable to the normal school curriculum and enrollment must be voluntary.
8. It requires schools to adopt and disseminate policies prohibiting sex discrimination and develop procedures to address grievances. Every district must designate a compliance officer.
Winthrop Harbor District 1, Beach Park District 3, Zion District 6, and Zion-Benton Township High School District 126 have compliance officers.
9. It protects students and staff from retaliation for reporting violations.

Title IX has been in area news recently.  A transgender student in High School District 211, Palatine, who plays sports cannot use the locker room. The school provides a private dressing room near the gym. The ACLU has filed suit saying that the she should be treated like any other student, not given “separate but equal” facilities.  The Chicago Tribune editorializes that a simple solution is privacy stalls in the locker rooms, available to any student.

Title IX is not a restricted, narrow path. It opens up the roadway to students, faculty, and staff so that everyone can achieve the best.  We all gain with fair play!

Sources:  “Title IX at 40,” NCWGE, 2012; “Title IX Resource Guide,” U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, 2015.