Friday, May 29, 2020

Friday: WIP on SIP

(SIP = Shelter in Place, obviously)

I fiddled and fussed with the arrangement of the house blocks so the light and dark frames alternated. I've sewn the bottom five rows together.

The letters turned out okay BUT I don't think I'm going to use them on the front of the quilt.

That's because if I use this as a bed quilt -- all 90 blocks with a border = approx. 82 x 90 -- I don't think I'd like Shelter in Place across the middle. 

Shelter in Place could go on the back along with other phrases that are now part of our every day vocabulary.

Or these words could be an entire quilt on their own.  ("Words to Live By, 2020.")

P.S. More masks!  (483 in all.)

Linking up with
Finished or Not Friday
Whoop Whoop

Monday, May 25, 2020

Weekly update: OMG finished + all the houses

I am an inexpert gardener, but I love to cook with fresh vegetables, so every year I buy tomato plants, seedlings, and seeds.  Ever hopeful!

It was in the high 80's Sunday afternoon when I walked in Spring Bluff Forest Preserve.  I saw a crane, five egrets, and many red-winged blackbirds.  Most of the people I saw were on bicycles, heading farther east to the marina.

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My OMG for May is finished.  It's a tote bag for the outgoing chair of the Illinois P.E.O. Home Fund . P.E.O.'s colors are white and yellow and the flower is the marguerite, or daisy.

I used the left over flying geese to trim the pocket.

I will send this to the other committee member who will add treats and send it to the chair who should receive it by the time we have our virtual (Zoom) meeting on June 6 -- since the state convention was cancelled.

I finished the Shelter in Place houses!  Here are all 91 on the design wall. (Those on the right side are just stuck there because the design wall isn't high enough to make them the bottom row.)  A 9 x 10 setting will be 72 x 80. With a 5" border, 82 x 90 -- which would work for a  queen-sized bed. But I have another design idea . . .

I tidied up the mountain of scraps and FQs I pulled out to make the houses.

Monday link ups:  Oh Scrap!
Monday Making
Design Wall Monday
One Monthly Goal

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The Southern Book Club's Guide to Slaying Vampires was a hoot!

Sunday, May 24, 2020

#thedailybrooch, part 4

(The latest installment of a Facebook project in which I select one pin from my jewelry box each day and recall how I got it.) 

May 14: A little Italian mosaic. Not sure when I got it but I’ve had it a long time.

May 15: One of my favorites. It’s glass and was a gift from my trustee friend and his wife. I saw one just like it in a shop on Nantucket (Road Scholar, 2003) but I didn’t get the name of the artist.

May 16: A pair of jolly little snowmen—scatter pins that I got in third grade. When was the last time you’d even thought of “scatter pins”?

May 17: Flying Geese in clay, stamped Veronique on the back. I have made hundreds of flying geese units over the years but never an entire quilt with this three-goose configuration. (It’s going to rain all day. Should I start something new?)

May 18: A seascape in miniature on clay depicts the sun shining on a boat in the water. There is a lot of flooding in the area after yesterday’s rain but we haven’t had to resort to a boat. (From my trustee friend and his wife who got it in Mineral Point, WI. (I still have the box.))

May 19: A silver feather from the Smithsonian shops. A gift from my husband.

May 20: Sunshine this morning! #thedailybrooch is a heart from 1970. I remember wearing it with a maxi-dress that had a white bodice and a black and white skirt. All polyester, of course!

May 21: Copper enamel, from an estate sale. I like the colors.........Mid-day update: when I was at the grocery store I heard a "plink" and discovered that the pin had detached from the pin back. I found the pin on the floor, put it in my purse, and completed my grocery shopping with only the back pinned to my shirt. 🙂

May 22: Felt, bought at the Fine Art of Fiber show at Chicago Botanic Garden in 2006. It was just right for the jacket I made from fabric I got that summer at the New England Quilt Show in Lowell, MA. (That was the Magpies’ biennial meetup.)

May 23: A shard of old Chinese porcelain set in silver, from my trustee friend and his wife. The jacket is made from South African indigo shweshwe fabric which I discovered at the Lowell quilt show in 2006 (see yesterday’s post). I've acquired a lot of shweshwe at subsequent quilt shows.

May 25: The sun rises on a book with a castle. (Faux ivory, caption The Joy of Books / K. Clelland.) The sun is shining at our castle (humble cottage) today.

Friday, May 22, 2020

Friday finish!

Here are the final blocks for Shelter in Place, my quarantine quilt.

For my Monday post I'll have a photo of all 91 houses on the design wall.

But first!  I *must* get to work on that tote bag. I will send it to one of the other committee members who will add gifts and treats. She will then send it to the outgoing committee chair. Hopefully it will arrive in time for our Zoom meeting on June 6.

Linking up with quilting friends at
Finshed or Not Friday
Can I Get a Whoop Whoop?

"She always sticks her nose into business that doesn't concern her."   From the Nancy Drew fabric line.

"Rotary Cut and Chain Sewn," by Patchwork Madness (band name of the day!).

Monday, May 18, 2020

Weekly update: more of the same

We took advantage of the sunshine Saturday to harvest rhubarb from a church acquaintance's yard. (She offered it last year and I took her up on it. I called her again and she said we were welcome to it. She's 94 and isn't leaving her house these days.) 
I trimmed it outside.  
Each quart bag
holds 4 cups.

We also bought geraniums, petunias, and other flowers at the garden/produce stand just over the state line.  I'll go back next weekend to get tomatoes.

Just as forecast, it poured all day Sunday.  Our sump pump drained just fine, thank goodness.

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I pushed to finish Rainbow Rail Fence last week.  It felt so good to have a finished quilt! (The previous finish was six weeks prior.)   I made some progress on other projects.

I made 60 masks and cut pieces for 40 more -- my commitment to the library.

Here are the next Shelter in Place houses.  My first plan was to make a house for each day from March 15 to May 31 to represent the Illinois shutdown.  As we all know, reopening dates are not firm.  I'm still having fun making the blocks (fun in a pandemic!) so I'm going to keep going to the equivalent of June 15. That's 93 blocks which will work for a 9 x 10 setting (extras on the back) -- 72" x 80" without borders.

This is as far as I've gotten with the tote bag that's my May One Monthly Goal.  I will get going this week!

Monday link ups:  Monday Making
Oh Scrap!
Design Wall Monday
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The QueenReading report:  I finished listening to Vermilion Drift, #10 in the Cork Corcoran series by William Kent Krueger.  By listening (or re-listening) to them in order I appreciate the character development and the arc of the story.

I'm nearly finished reading The Queen's Secret by Karen Harper, published in April. I got the ARC at ALA Midwinter.  It's about Queen Elizabeth--the Queen Mum--during World War II.  We've seen enough PBS shows about the Windsors and we've watched The Crown so some of the story is familiar territory, but told from a different viewpoint. (And, yes, Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon had several secrets.)

Friday, May 15, 2020

Rainbow Rail Fence is finished

It is a good thing I put the quilt up on the design wall last night, snapped the pictures, and then took the quilt down.  This morning when I went downstairs to start the laundry I discovered puddles on the floor.  There was some water at the baseboard of the design wall. (On the other side of the design wall are the basement stairs and on the other side of the stairs is the laundry room.)   I traced the source of the water to the window well on the east side of the laundry room and I've called the contractor to come have a look. (It's the second time this season that there's been a leak.)
UPDATE:  the problem turned out to be that the end of the outflow hose was wrapped incorrectly. That led to a backup.  The backup filled the window well -- we had 2" of rain yesterday -- and that leaked into the laundry room.  The plumber redug the drain trench and the end of the pipe is OPEN.   Relief. 

. . . . BUT, ta-da!  Rainbow Rails is finished. It's narrower than I intended (blocks were lost when I trimmed it up). It's really long because I felt the sashes needed to be 3" to balance the 6" rail fence rows.

I auditioned many fabrics for the back. Nothing clicked until I looked in the box of vintage fabric. The long piece on the left looks contemporary but it was just 36" wide. The others are new (within the last year!) but worked well. The green print is one I just loved but found really hard to work into anything because the motifs are big and definitely directional.

Meanwhile, I'm back in the mask business. My neighbor received her backorder of elastic and gave me a 100-yard spool. That's enough for 257 masks. I gave 15 yards of elastic and some fabric to another friend. (She came over to get it and we had chatted for 20 minutes. It was so nice to have an in-person conversation!)  I got a request from the library business manager saying they hope to open June 1 and need masks.  I leaped into it and said I'd make 100.  When I finished Rainbow Rails I started cutting.

Linking up with Finished or Not Friday
Whoop Whoop Friday
  Scrap Happy Saturday

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

The Daily Brooch, part 3

May 4:  Dancing pigs from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. The image is taken from an illustration by Randolph Caldecott. (My husband raised pigs when, for a short time, he had a hobby farm.)
Right: Caldecott's The Cat and the Fiddle was published by Warne in 1901.

May 5: “This design is derived from the portal gate at St. Philip’s Episcopal Church c. 1835 in Charleston, South Carolina,” says the card that I have kept all these years. It’s a souvenir from our first Elderhostel trip to Charleston in August, 1996.

May 6: An architectural design element from the Library of Congress, another ALA conference souvenir. (I’ve been to DC about 15 times. Only once (1974) was the trip not for library or AAUW business.)

May 7:  From a quilt show a few years ago. I could replicate the hairstyle on my own head with very little effort right now.

May 8: Last of the butterfly series. Danish sterling. It was among my mother-in-law’s jewelry, so I’ve had it for 30 years and a few months.  I found another one on eBay with this description:  1943 sterling silver brooch by Arno Malinowski for Georg Jensen, Denmark. Very scarce piece” and prices from $350 to $750.  When I wear it I will be sure the clasp is closed!

May 9:  35 years ago this month we had a family wedding in San Diego. My parents, Stevens, and I went to Tijuana for a couple of hours—the border crossing was no big deal then. I bought this at one of the shops. 

Right:  on the Tijuana streetcar

May 10: Mexican jade (onyx) and silver from the 1930s, one of Grandmother Blaine’s. In the 70s I wore it on the lapel of a black velveteen blazer that was sturdy enough for this rather large (2”x3”) and heavy piece. (There are many in this style on eBay and vintage jewelry sites.)

May 11: I remembered that this dolphin came from a museum exhibit about Vatican art but I couldn't recall when or where I saw it. I learned that it was The Vatican Collections: The Papacy and Art, curated by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 1982. Since that was the year we moved from Kansas to Maine I know that I didn't see the exhibit. Ergo, my mother went to see it at the Art Institute and bought the pin for me. (When I looked it up I found out that "reproduction museum jewelry" as a search term turns up much temptation.)

May 12: Ceramic (the clay is heavy and dark). One of the trustees at one of my libraries was a charming, courtly older gentleman. He and his wife brought this back from one of their trips. (This is the first of several. Stay tuned.)

May 13:  A filigree key—I think from a museum exhibit with Spanish art. Another gift from my mother.

Sunday, May 10, 2020

Weekly update: masks, houses, and how it turned out

Tulips, 6 a.m.

Tulips, 11 a.m.
What a variety of weather we've had!  Two warm days (first lawn-mowing of the season) followed by near-record chill with a touch of frost Saturday morning.  The parking lot and trails at the Camp Logan unit of Illinois Beach State Park were still flooded from the April 29 rain (3.37") but Saturday afternoon we tried Hosah Park (the one patch of lakefront that belongs to Zion Park District).  But where's the beach? Somewhere near Indiana by now.  Last summer there was sand at the end of the boardwalk and the walkway to the overlook was clear.   The severe erosion is due to the highest lake levels in 17 years and to the breakwaters constructed to the north (to mitigate erosion from their beaches).

The beach ridges are very obvious when the swales are full of water.

Now -- Sunday afternoon -- it's drizzly and gray. No gardening today!  We'll get hanging baskets and annuals at the garden center next week.

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In the studio:

This week's masks:  I gave 30  to a local nursing home in response to a FB post and 40 to the local agency that helps the elderly and confined-to-home get food and supplies.  I have more to give away.  I've made 349 and there's enough elastic for 14 or 15. I'll have to decide if "end of elastic" is a stopping place or if I'll need a round number (say, 375 or 400) to say ENOUGH.

Shelter in Place:  Fourteen more blocks. So far I've made 70. At one-a-day, I'm up to May 23.

Rainbow Rails is a flimsy!  In Thursday's post I asked for opinions about which fabric to choose for sashing.  The votes were pretty evenly distributed.  It turned out that I didn't have enough of any one of them -- three to five inches too little -- but I found a 2-yard piece of another light gray on white that would work.

I've made 200 of the 346 five-patches I need for the next scrappy quilt.

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Singing in the choir at this morning's virtual church service.

Our last Mother's Day with our mother, 2001.
(Was I practicing for this year with that hairdo?!)

Weekly link  ups:

Scrap Happy Saturday
Oh Scrap!
Monday Making
Design Wall Monday