Sunday, January 30, 2011

BOB, v. 2011

The Sew Many Swaps Yahoo Group has an annual "bag of blocks" swap.  Each participant rounds up blocks that she hasn't gotten around to setting.  She sends them to the coordinator who sends them to another participant.  That person sets the blocks and returns them to the first person.  I got L.S.'s blocks:  20 12" sampler blocks in bright-and-black.  I used 18 of them to create this top, which measures 73 x 90.  I didn't want to accentuate the black by using black setting fabric.  The motifs in the border/sashing fabric are outlined in black.

Here is what K.E. created from the 9-patch hearts that I sent.  It's about 61 x 72.  These blocks came from a Block Swappers' exchange.  I really like the border!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Dead Dog Creek Ravine, January

The pictures were taken at 2 p.m. when the sun was behind the clouds. After I climbed up the hill out of the ravine the sun came out again.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Hawthorn Mellody memories

Friday afternoon as I was en route to the AAUW-IL board meeting in Bloomington I stopped at an antiques mall in Braidwood, at the southwest corner of Will County.  Here's what I bought. This milk box would mean little to anyone not from Lake or northern Cook County.  It brought back many memories for me.
Hawthorn Mellody Farm  "This was a unique experience for families and school children who lived a city-dominated life. Hawthorn Mellody Farm became a destination for the “baby boom” families to come to have fun and get out of the city. Tours ended with the families enjoying a glass of milk or ice cream. It was Cuneo’s opportunity to influence the family’s purchase of the Hawthorn Mellody brand milk . Cuneo was a master promoter. In 1951 Cuneo added a children’s zoo to the farm and in 1955 added a Wild West town. There was also a small-scale train ride and wagon rides. There were tours of poultry, hog and horse barns. It was simple fun, but the 1950’s were a simple time, and the farm just fit right in. ....The depiction of a modern dairy was an accurate portrayal to the public. The dairy was a state of the art facility, that was copied by other leading dairies in the years to come ....The Hawthorn Mellody brand was well known and sold in stores until the early 1990’s."

We loved the zoo!  There was a pair of bison named Penny and Nickel.  I remember the false fronts of the Wild West town.  And I remember the milking parlor. (However, our milk came from Sun Valley Dairy, not Hawthorn Mellody.) 

Years and years later: the farm is now Westfield Hawthorn Shopping Mall.  The Cuneo mansion is a museum and special-events venue. 
Oh, yes--the milk box will be put to use to store bird seed.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

RRCB up to date!

Here 'tis: steps 1-7. 

I should have "proof-read" the blocks before I sewed them. There are three strips of triangles placed the wrong way.  I'm not sure if that will bother me sufficiently to go to the effort of ripping them out.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Final piecing for 2010, and the Annual Reckoning

I opened the orphan blocks box last evening (that is, Thursday evening--by the time this post gets published it will be after midnight) and  found 48 nine-patch blocks made from 2" squares of bright prints.  I put them on the design wall and pondered how to set them. Eureka!  The funky "save the planet" fabric was a thrift-shop purchase a couple of years ago.  I had just enough for the setting squares and the border.  A nice way to end the quilting year! 

(Well, truth to tell, I'm working hard on Step 7 in Roll Roll Cotton Boll, the mystery quilt, but I'm not finished yet.)
And, now:  the Annual Reckoning.

Every year since 1998 I've tracked how many yards of fabric I have used and acquired. Since 2004 I've tracked how much I've spent on fabric.  My rules are my own: "used" means sewn into something or given away or sold.  "Acquired" usually but not always includes gifts as well as purchases.  I don't keep track of what I spend on notions, patterns, subscriptions, or books.

In 2010 I used 481 yards and acquired 743 yards--a ratio of 65%.  I spent $1511, or $2.03/yd.  That's more than last year.   The 13-year average is 275 used; 629 bought; $1948 spent. 

Highlights: I spent $140 at an estate sale and got 372 yards.  I bought about $5 worth of tickets at the NLCQG raffle and got 60+ yards.   I sold 121 yards and many patterns and books through ads in "Quilter's Flea Market" and "Fling-It-All."

**I finished 21 quilts..  Of them: 3 were professionally quilted, 2 were commissioned, and
1 was sold.  I donated quilts to several community fundraisers.
**I created 4 flimsies (unquilted tops) -- just 4? That was a pleasant surprise!
**I made 9 draft stoppers, 67 Christmas ornaments, 73 Care Bags, 2 jackets, 1 skirt, and 2 pairs of pants.

It was a productive year!  And I hope that 2011 will be as well.