Sunday, February 28, 2021
Friday, February 26, 2021
Thank you for your guesses / votes about the rainbow geese layout. Here is a sneak peek. Come back Monday morning to see the final arrangement.
It's Purim (last evening through this evening). My hamantaschen get more triangular with each batch. I have a tendency to put too much filling on each round so they lose their shape. I used the recipe on the Solo label--essentially a short, not-very-sweet cookie (2 sticks of butter and 3/4 c sugar).
It occurred to me that hamantaschen would be a good technical challenge for the Great British Baking Show. I'm not the only one who thought that -- this post is a hoot!
Linking up here: Can I Get a Whoop Whoop? Finished or Not Friday
Wednesday, February 24, 2021
The latest WITB ("what's in the box?") project uses the 4.5" unf HSTs I made for last year's Rainbow Scrap Challenge.
Can you guess which of these four layouts I chose? (I have assembled the flimsy and I'm auditioning backings today.) I'll tell you the answer in my post on Friday.Linking up on Midweek Makers
Sunday, February 21, 2021
My One Monthly Goal for February was to put labels on finished quilts. One evening I went to work and got them done.
I print multiple labels on printer-fabric sheets. Some include my name and others are just Hilyard Studio. I write the name, date, and occasion when those are relevant. When a quilt doesn't have a destination I don't include that information. (If I donate a quilt that I made in 2017 to an event in 2021 I don't want it to appear that I dusted off an old project, even if that's pretty much what I did.
Here's the stack. The February OMG Finish Link Up is here
I surprised myself and quilted two flimsies this week. (I labeled them, too.)
The zigzag pinwheels were shown in last week's post. (I used the rest of the blue-green check [see it in the labeled stack, above?] and dipped into the endless supply of mini 9-patches for the pieced back.
I used a variety of blues for the back of the jewel box quilt. I made the top in early January as part of the Civil War Repro Stash Reduction Project.
I think this one has a name -- New Tricks, because the setting demonstrates that you can teach an old block new tricks.
Anne Youngson's debut Meet Me at the Museum is a lovely epistolary novel about two lonely people in late middle age. Tina is a farmer's wife in East Anglia. Anders is a museum curator in Denmark. Over the course of sixteen months their correspondence allows both to articulate their innermost feelings. The ending is unpredictable, which is a good thing.
Desolation Mountain is #17 in the Cork O'Connor series. I've now listened to all of them -- in order -- with the excellent narration by David Chandler. (If I ever hear William Kent Krueger speak I'm sure I'll be surprised that he doesn't sound like Chandler.) It's been great to see the O'Connor kids grow up, to see Cork and Rainey's relationship deepen, and of course to know that the Ojibwe mide (wise man) Henry Meloux is still around.
Sunday, February 14, 2021
|My lucky envelope had $2|
|Kathy, Regina, and me|
I so enjoyed Monica Wood's memoir When We Were the Kennedys (review here) that I looked up the other books she's written. How did I miss The One-in-a-Million Boy when it was published in 2015? Well, I'm glad I discovered it. The boy is 11 and socially awkward--more comfortable with numbers, precision, and the Guinness Book of World Records than with people. His Boy Scout troop service project is to help the elderly with household chores. He is assigned to 104-year-old Ona Vitkus. Each week he records an oral history conversation with Ona. Together they plot to earn her a place in the Guinness record book. When the boy suddenly dies of an undiagnosed condition his father Quinn steps in to complete the chores. Quinn, a guitarist whose gigs provide sporadic work, is attempting to compensate for the years that he wasn't present in the boy's life. Quinn, like the boy, is pulled into Ona's orbit.
Redemption. Hope. Indomitability. Enchantment.
All these positive terms describe this utterly wonderful novel.
Wednesday, February 10, 2021
The Quilt Show posted the news that renowned quiltmaker Roberta Horton passed away on February 4. Their tribute is here with a link to a TQS episode featuring Roberta and her twin sister Mary Mashuta. [It's a 57-minute show, so allow yourself some time.]
I met Roberta and Mary in person in 2001. Here's the tale:
(Note: QFALA = Quilters' Forum of ALA. Now we are the ALA Biblioquilters.)
I have two of Roberta's books -- in fact, I have managed to acquire two copies of these two. There is a definite appeal to the array of fabrics used in her quilts and those of her students and colleagues. Scrappy but without jarring contrasts. Nothing trendy, just comfortable. That's a style I like!
. . . And maybe I will cut into those woven plaids from so long ago . . .
Sunday, February 7, 2021
|(c) Jen Kingwell|
In 2019 I made 360 pinwheels for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge. They've been in a box waiting for the right opportunity to become a quilt.
That opportunity came when I read Jen Kingwell's book Quilt Lovely, I bought a copy after attending the virtual program she gave for NSQG last month, The strong vertical columns on neutral really appealed to me. Note that hers has three different kinds of pinwheels.
Each column of 6" pinwheels turned out to be about 80 x 18 inches. I had enough neutral (subtle plaid) homespun for the setting triangles and three plain columns. There's not much contrast between the homespun and the design wall but if you look closely you can see the difference.
I was able to get enough setting triangles out of the cut-off neutral columns to make a third pinwheel column. With a horizontal orientation it's 80 x 90.
I have a left over column of 8 Scrappy Trips blocks to piece into the back or use for something else. And there are 310 pinwheels in the box hollering that it's their turn now.Linking up with Oh Scrap Monday Making Design Wall Monday So Scrappy
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I read two good books this week.
Recently we watched a PBS program about Agatha Christie's 1926 disappearance. This book is an imagined retelling of what might have happened. Chapters alternate with past--going from the time Agatha met Archibald Christie in 1912 -- and the "present" meaning December 1926 when the police arrive at Archie's door wanting to know if he knows where his wife (by then a best-selling author) is. The story has usually focused on Agatha's side. Here Archie is the "unreliable narrator," a literary device that Agatha used in several of her books.
This is a good tale -- but I do encourage you to watch the PBS show narrated by David Suchet who played Hercule Poirot.
David Heska Wanbli Weiden's debut novel has received critical acclaim. It's a thriller set on the Rosebud Reservation in South Dakota. Narrator/protagonist Virgil Wounded Horse is a thug-for-hire. Got a grudge? Virgil will punch the guy out for a fee. When his 14-year-old nephew and ward Nathan becomes a pawn for the local node of a drug cartel, Virgil is determined to get the dealers. His girlfriend Maria, the daughter of a tribal council politician, enlists herself in the effort. The tale is gritty, at times violent, and ultimately hopeful. I hope that Weiden will write more about Virgil and Maria.
Friday, February 5, 2021
Here it is! The quilt I've coyly called "Code Name Welcome Home" has been sent to and received by my friends B and K. Its real name is Labyrinth Walk.
|Labyrinth Walk, 84 x 84|
The backstory: B does not sew. Not buttons, not hems, and certainly not quilts. Five years ago a picture of the Labyrinth Walk quilt popped onto her Facebook feed and she was teased about "her" quilt. It went viral--she says 40,000+ reposts--even though she clearly stated that she DID NOT MAKE the quilt. Last fall B and her husband K suffered from a house fire. They've been living in temporary quarters.
I have wanted to make the Labyrinth Walk quilt ever since I saw the pattern in Quilt Magazine (circa 2008). This was the perfect opportunity! It was not hard, but it was very, very fiddly. Mis-piecing one unit would throw the entire design off. I cut all the pieces in one session and put each piece in a plastic bag labeled with the size and the number of units so I could keep track.
The other challenge for me was working with a limited number of fabrics. I bought all the fabric in one trip to the LQS. The shop personnel helped find just-the-right tones and contrasts.
It was my One Monthly Goal for December. Barb-the-quilter put it on her calendar last week. I picked it up Friday, added the binding and the label, and mailed it to B and K on Monday. They got it Wednesday.
I used a thrift-shop cotton sheet for the backing (on the left in the photo).
B wrote to say they were completely surprised ("gobsmacked," she said) and they are very grateful. They hope they can move back to their townhome in three months.
Their cat likes the quilt, too.
Now I can cross Labyrinth Walk off my want-to-make-someday list!Linking up with Finished or Not Friday and Can I Get a Whoop Whoop?
Sunday, January 31, 2021
Just a year ago I'd heard of Zoom but I'd only attended one meeting. It does it much easier to convene groups of people who live both nearby and far away. A perfect example: on Saturday morning AAUW-Michigan convened a regional meeting with participants from 18 states. There was lots of good information and idea-sharing. Few would have been able to afford the time or the expense to travel (let alone risk winter weather conditions).
Saturday evening the Magpies had their first Zoom meet up. We all agreed it will not be the last. (And we've begun -- with optimism -- planning for a 2022 in-person meet up.)
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I took Code Name Welcome Home to Barb-the-quilter on Wednesday. "A friend gave me some quilting things she isn't able to use," Barb said. "Can you use any of it?" I told her I'd be happy to make it disappear.
The top photo shows all the loot before I began to go through it.
The original owner's name was on some of the things. I know her both from the quilt guild and AAUW, but I haven't seen her for a long time. (Barb said she is all right but slowing down and has realized she won't be able to use all of what she has. Sounds familiar, doesn't it?)
There were four different mini-irons, a bag of fiberfill, and notions -- including an unopened 6.5" square Omnigrid ruler that I actually had on my shopping list. There were a couple of magazines and books. And there were UFOs, and un-begun kits, and fabric.
Fabric? 58 yards by weight! The photo shows the pile of batiks on the right and all the "regular" fabric on the left.
Look at the prices on these Keepsake charm swatches. [Tiny print at the bottom of each label.]
[I am not showing the kits or UFOs because I am finding new homes for them.]
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How did the gift affect my stash?
Here's January stash report, short and sweet:
Fabric IN: 58 yards, cost: zero
Fabric OUT: 61-3/8 yards
Net: 3-3/8 reduction -- the right direction
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(You can see what my swap partner sent me here )
I pulled out a finished quilt to donate to an online auction and realized it wasn't labeled. It turned out that I have a stack of finished quilts that aren't labeled. My February OMG is to sew on those labels!
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This week's reading: The Searcher is a very absorbing mystery. Retired Chicago cop Cal Hooper moves to a small village in Ireland to get away from it all. He finds himself back in the detecting business when a local kid asks him to find his missing older brother.
P.S. Six inches of snow Saturday night/Sunday morning. Glad we didn't have to go anywhere today!