Back to normal
What I though was going to be one day down with a stomach bug turned into about 6 days of total exhaustion. I'm not sure exactly what I had but there was definitely a stomach element but the main problem was a complete lack of energy. Seriously, I did absolutely nothing for 5 days. I haven't watched so much TV in over a year.
Finally yesterday I started feeling a bit better. I did a little yoga in the morning and then settled in for a day of football and stitching.
I finished the 4th border for the center of my quilt.
I even got 3 of the borders sewn to the center and 2 corners ready to applique. Hopefully I'll get the 4th border sewn on this week and will be ready for game watching next weekend.
Meanwhile this week I'll be playing catch up. I have lots of fabric waiting to be ironed and listed and lots more to get dyed.
Today was supposed to be my audiobook review post but I'll get it done for tomorrow. It's just good to be getting back into my normal routine.
It's not much but this is all I have to show for my weekend. I taught my ruler class at The Longarm Network Saturday and then woke up Sunday morning with a stomach bug. I then spent the day drinking ginger ale and watching football and got a little stitching done last night during one of the most boring football games ever.
Today Ian (one of my friends visiting from England) are going to a retiree luncheon at our old company and then we have another friend visiting for dinner. He's with the State Department and is on leave from his station in Basra, Iraq. He should have some interesting insights to share.
It's likely that you will not hear from me tomorrow because I don't even expect I'll get the newest fabrics ironed and ready to post so don't worry if this space is bare tomorrow.
11 down, 20 to go
I spent most of yesterday preparing quilt sandwiches for my Ruling Rulers class today but I did sneak in a few minutes to make some postcards. Only 20 left to do.
Although remote, there's a possibility that I would go ahead and make all 80 cards in this one design. I love playing with the little bits of color and there's something kind of zen about stitching these little trees.
Yesterday I mostly worked on getting things ready for the class I'm teaching this weekend but I did have a few minutes to work on the postcards in the evening. I'm cutting the fabric scraps into wonky triangles.
Here's the basic design . I figured out a stitching path so that I can do all of the stitching continuously. Chris isn't overly enthusiastic about them but he's quite traditional about Christmas. I think they are pretty cute and they will probably get a couple of crystals added for a little sparkle.
Speaking of sparkle, after I stitched a few of them I wondered what they would look like stitched in silver metallic.
Ah ha! It turns out that they look much better with the silver metallic (left). I'll stitch the remaining 26 in silver but I will not toss out the first ones stitched in black. The recipients will not know the difference.
Now you know what I will be doing for the next few days. I like to do 3 designs every year and I think If I set a goal to make a set every 2 weeks that I'll have them all done by December 1 and that would be fantastic. Hopefully while I finish this batch I'll come up with some genius idea for the next batch.
Time for the annual Christmas postcard panic
Actually it's way past time to panic. I make about 80 postcards for Christmas every year and I usually have a couple of design ideas and have even started making them by now. I looked at the calendar yesterday and realized that I hadn't done anything to start planning the cards for this year. I don't even have a germ of an idea.
Off to Pinterest and an hour later I have a few seeds of an idea and one rule. The rule is that this year's designs have to be fast and easy. I don't have time to stitch shibori trees like last year.
Sometime a card design starts with a design idea, sometimes (like the shibori tree) with a technique and sometimes it starts with materials. The first cards I'm working on are going to use these scraps from my Rainbow quilt. I have an idea of bright trees on a black and white background.
This is a high volume production operation so I start with my favorite bolt of Mistyfuse and a long piece of Stiffy stabilizer (much less expensive than Timtex).
I found this black and white fabric in the stash that looks a little like snow at night. I'm fusing the whole piece to the interfacing. I do this a little at a time spreading out the Mistyfuse and fabric as I go.
Within an hour last night I had 31 cards cut out and ready for embellishment. I'll get started on that later today.
Wine bottle trays
Oh, I'm catching up on so many things this week! Now I am officially caught up on posting new glass with this new collection of slumped wine bottles. They are all in the shop and ready for gift giving!
Gradients back in stock
While our friends are off exploring DC for a few days I'm catching up on chores and things. I'm doing exciting things like caulking, laundry and ironing. Fortunately the ironing part involves fabric and not clothing and now I have the shop caught up with the fabric I dyed 2 weeks ago. Most of it was custom ordered but I've got 2 of your favorite gradients finally back in stock!
Sassafras is the most popular gradient of all and to think it simply started as "What if I mix these 2 colors?" I loved the result but wasn't sure anyone else would.
Patricia, The Butterfly Quilter, used it to great effect for the background in this art quilt inspired by her new home in Arizona.
Another of my favorite gradients is Gray Skies and it's back in stock too.
Don't like either of these? There are over 50 gradients to choose from in the shop!
Applique and Fireworks
There's nothing about those 2 words in the header that have anything to do with each other but they are the 2 things that I have to talk about today.
The good thing about having a hand sewing project while watching football is that your time isn't a total waste. I didn't make much progress this weekend but at least I got this one flower done while both of my teams lost in spectacular fashion. This is the 4th border so I'm getting close to sewing these on and getting ready to applique the corners.
To be honest, I'm not getting much of anything done. Our friends from England are still here and we are having a blast having them around. Last week we took 4 days and drove to Niagara Falls. Nether of us had ever been and it seemed like a fine idea...and it was. We stayed on the Canadian side for the better views and it was the right thing to do. We stayed at this Airbnb property and it was the perfect walking distance from the falls and rapids.
The views really are better from the Canadian side and they've done a great job of mirroring the activities (mist ride, behind the falls, hike on the rapids) on both sides. The area near the falls is all neon, casinos and tourist traps. We spent one day exploring the falls and the second day touring Fort George, Niagara-On-The-Lake and a castle in Hamilton. I'll have more photos later this week but I was most excited to get my first ever fireworks photos and that's what I'm going to leave you with today.
Pleiades and Fabricadabra
How's that for a confusing title? Let me see if I can sort it out.
Last year Paula Nadelstern contacted me about a book she was writing. She wanted to include the sample quilts that I had made for her and wondered if I'd like to do another. The specific direction for this quilt was "simple quilts, complex fabrics". Use a very simple pattern with complex fabrics and see what happens.
Pleiades was the result of my efforts and I've been waiting over a year to share this quilt! You can read all about it on the gallery page. I'm able to share it now because the book is finally out.
I first took a class from Paula about 10 years ago at Houston. I was immediately hooked and I was very impressed with her as a teacher. She's very thorough, calm and supportive and she makes sure to spend some individual time with every student....even in classes of 25 students. Her books are just as good and I especially love this new one, Fabricadabra.
This isn't a pattern book. It's a technique book. It's for those who love the kaleidoscope effect but have found the previous books to be a bit overwhelming. In this book Paula shows you how to make spectacular quilts combining simple shapes with complex fabrics. She shows you how to see and buy fabric and then the basics of cutting and construction. There's a gallery of over 35 quilts with diagrams to show you the piecing structure. You can make any of the quilts in this book.
This butterfly quilt is one of my favorites in the book. Each butterfly half is only one piece of fabric.
It's very exciting to see some of my own quilts in the book!
While Laura is quilting I like to be nearby to help but not hover so I started cutting a new quilt block suncatcher. I still have 4 more pieces to cut for the 4 corners. They will be in the stringer glass. It doesn't look like it but there are four triangles around that center square. They will fuse to a bright yellow. There's still a lot of grinding and fitting to do before this one is ready for the kiln.
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I'm Vicki Welsh and I've been making things as long as I can remember. I used to be a garment maker but transitioned to quilts about 20 years ago. Currently I'm into fabric dyeing, quilting, Zentangle, fabric postcards, fused glass and mosaic. I document my adventures here.