Thursday, September 30, 2010

Yabba Dabba Doo!

The Flintstones is 50 years old.  It is a cartoon from my childhood, so it made me smile to see that Google was celebrating The Flintstones anniversary today:

I am, admittedly, a fan of those Google doodles.  Read more (and see other notable Google doodles) here--Google Celebrates 50 Years of The Flintstones.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

What's catching your eye?

Lately, stitch designs seem to be catching my eye and capturing my imagination.  How about you?

I bought a red work pattern for some pillow shams at the quilt show over the weekend ... and I just fell in love with Lulu--the first of a block of the month on the blog La Cousette de Ninette.

Adorable, n'est pas?

Sunday, September 19, 2010

I FINALLY Do Something Quilty in Austin

Self-ExplanatoryYesterday I attended the Austin Area Quilt Guild's show, Changing Gears.   It's probably symptomatic that it's been too long since I've attended a show, a guild meeting or anything quilty because I completely forgot to take my camera along.

I did take a few photos with my phone, including this one, named Self-Explantory, made by  Martha Tsihlas ... yes, it does say "Keep Austin Weird," a slogan that celebrates Austin's unique culture. I loved the idea of creating a "postage stamp" quilt.

You can click any of the photos for a larger image–I apologize in advance for the quality–or see a slide show of my photos from the day on Flickr, here: Austin Area Quilt Show.

It made me smile to walk around a corner and see this familiar quilt, Tree Everlasting, by Nancie Voegele, alive and in person:

Tree Everlasting

Kathleen McCrady's Folk Art Lillies, which is based on an antique quilt, also me smile. I just loved the oversized Lily placed in the too small pieced basked block ... here's a detail photo, you can see my photo of then whole quilt here.

Detail from Folk Art Lilies

Overall, I was surprised at the number of traditional quilts made from kits, but, as always, there were still many many quilts, fabric combinations, quilting designs and other details to entertain and inspire.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

How to Draw a Liberated House

We're making liberated houses this month for the Block Lotto.  I know that even if you like the look of liberated or wonky houses, you might not be in love with the technique.  An alternative is to draw your house and use the drawing as a foundation for paper piecing.  Here's how.

  • When drawing a PFP pattern, remember that ALL lines must be STRAIGHT and that all lines must begin and end with a "T-intersection" with a previously drawn line.
  • Remember that a paper piecing template looks like the MIRROR IMAGE of the finished block.  If, for example, you draw a house with a door on the left and window on the right, your house block will have a door on the right and a window on the left.
Begin with a sheet of paper (or other foundation material) that is at least 1/2 inch larger than the finished size of the block you want to make.
  1. Draw a square that represents the FINISHED size of your block–for the September Block Lotto, that would be an 8 inch square. Remember when you are making the block, you will add 1/4 inch on each side of this square for the seam allowance, making a 8 1/2 " square.

  2. Draw the horizontal-ish line that will represent the top of the main body of the house and the bottom edge of the triangle which forms the roof.

  3. On the bottom half of your drawing, add two vertical-ish lines that will define the left and right sides of your house.

  4. Draw a line between the two lines in step three which will define the top edge of your door and window.

  5. On one side of your house, create the door by drawing two lines that begin at the line in Step 4 and end at the bottom of the square.

  6. On the other side of your house, create a window by drawing two more lines that begin at the line in Step 4 and end at the bottom of the square.  Then add the horizontal line between them to define the bottom of your window.

  7. Define the roof by drawing two, intersecting slanted lines.

  8. Now, number your template with the paper piecing order:

    1 - window
    2 - space beneath window
    3 - house section beside window
    4 - house section on the other side of window
    5 - door
    6 - house section beside door
    7 - house section above door and window
    8 - sky on one side of house
    9 - sky on the other side of house
    10 - roof
    11 - sky on the side of roof which does NOT extend to the top of block (MISNUMBERED as 12 in the drawing below)
    12 - sky on the other side (MISNUMBERED 11 in the drawing below).

Remember that the block you piece will actually EXTEND beyond the square 1/4 inch for the seam allowance. I usually cut out the paper pattern adding the 1/4 inch on each side of the square to make sure I DON'T FORGET.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Splish Splash

As I was driving home tonight, Splish Splash was the song that popped into my head.  The elevated highways on my way home had more water than I imagined could stay there without running off and when I got down to ground level . . . I felt like I was driving through a New Mexico arroyo filling with water from the downpour that is Hermine. The rain hasn't stopped for almost 24 hours and there are flood warnings in effect.

The weather forecasters predict two more days of this.  I haven't lived on the ground floor for a while and I am a little worried about flooding.  Time will tell. Stay tuned.

I am long overdue for providing my friends with an update, so since I am here:

  • Since moving to Austin, I regularly hear from recruiters about the possibility of jobs.  It's still competitive and I am no where close yet to something that feels like a "me" job, but it FEELS so much more normal for me that I am optimistic.
  • Unlike my move to Dallas, I haven't had a lot of time to explore (and blog about it) because I hit the ground running with a temp job soon after I arrived.  The pay is abysmal--my take home pay is a whole $20 more each week than my unemployment compensation--but it IS work.  The challenge is remembering that while it FEELS like I'm working, my expendable cash has not changed. It also IS a look inside a company that I thought could be an interesting fit for me.
  • On the quilting front, for me, right now, there's not much going on beyond the Block Lotto. A friend recently commissioned me to do some work . . . she owes me a photo of the project in practice . . . I will blog about it one day.   In the meantime, she's commissioned two quilts. So I will find a way to get back to quilting soon. 
  • The cats are fine, if a little changed from their stay at kitty summer camp. I'm still hoping they'll change back to the cats they were before . . .
Please keep me in your thoughts and prayers and if you are in the path of Hermine yourself, be careful out there.  I nearly missed being part of an ugly accident on the way home tonight.
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