Friday, January 31, 2014

Snowy Friday

It had begun to snow lightly last night as we returned up the "hill" from dinner at Colorado Boy Brewery, but we were thinking the storm would slide by without leaving much evidence here.
Au contraire! This morning we awoke to a winter wonderland of the white fluffy stuff and it's still coming down gently.
DH went out and ploughed our driveway and the nearest neighbor's a couple of hundred yards down the ridge, one of them works night shifts at the Montrose hospital and got stuck trying to get back up their driveway so DH went down and rescued her!
The birds are at the suet blocks, I think this is a red headed woodpecker?
You can see I have been sewing, working on the Celtic Solstice borders.
 Bonnie showed a pic of a quilt  by Barbara that had a piano key outer border rather than the green and it looked smashing so that's what I plan.
Even though her colors are different, I think it will set off the inner design of mine beautifully and I do have plenty of the fabrics yet.
 The Celtic Curlz design that Bonnie used to quilt hers was very effective and I ordered the panto, should have my borders all done by the time it arrives-couldn't you guess that panto is back ordered?!
We will be driving back to AZ tomorrow, the storm will be done and all the roads ploughed. It will be kind of slow on the passes between here and Cortez, but the roads should be packed snow.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Colorado Mountains

A quick week in the mountains for us began at Colorado Boy Brewery, a cool glass of Porter on cask and a Rustica Pizza on order!
Spending a few days this week with my friend Gale, piecing on my DSM while she works at the longarm.
 This is a very modern quilt and had to be quilted in straight lines, a tedious task requiring much measuring, chalking and then ruler work! I think the chalking alone took about two hours.
The 25 Birthday Girl blocks for Celtic Solstice are all done and I will be putting the top together on Thursday when I get back up the mountain and have space to lay out the design.
 I discovered that I was short two of the little corner blocks but scavenged two HST's from an extra whirligig, and cut 4 neutral and two blue triangles from Gale's scraps to complete that final block.
 This chick keeps company with Gale, such a cute bird and a great way to keep scissors and tape measure handy don't you think? I want one! And yes, this is the same place that I got locked in the chicken coop, I suspect that someone here has a chicken fetish!
The two corgis that also keep Gale company, Gidget in front and Izzie in back.  Bossy girls they are too!

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Angela's Celtic Solstice AKA Green Bay Solstice!

Obviously Angela is a Packer's Fan, this is the second Bonnie Hunter Mystery that for Angela has become a nod to her home team! The first was Orca Bay which she gifted to a friend but this one will stay with her in "The Packer Room"!
 Here is a very happy Angela with her quilt which I worked on all day to get it done before we leave town for a week. She wants it all finished to show to Bonnie at the Tucson workshops we are attending next month. I think the design looks quite different in the team colors rather than the Solstice colors Bonnie chose, what a difference a little color tweak makes!
 Top and Bottom borders read "Green Bay Packers, Go Pack Go".
And no matter what I did to adjust color I still couldn't make the lettering show in the photos. Maybe Angela will get better pics in the daylight.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Playing With Jacks

Prep for this quilt was simple and relatively fast.
I have enough strips and squares cut for 80+ blocks. I want to make it larger than the pattern shows.
Pictures courtesy of Bonnie Hunter's free website pattern available at  
I think I might want to set the blocks on point as the one below done in EQ,  except that I don't like to make sashing! 
 The design below is the same as the actual quilt Bonnie made but with more blocks, it's also a mock up from EQ.
I think I am all ready for the workshops next month and it feels good to be prepared ahead- I have a lot going on the next few weeks. My little Aussie Terrier is in Agility training and we have some extra classes coming up and we'll also be out of town again at the Colorado house for a week. I will be taking some sewing projects with me and plan to stay with my LA'er friend Gale for a few days-that's the same farm where I locked myself in the chicken house!
At least now I know how to get out!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

My Blue Heaven Prepped!

Whew, I think I am now finished prepping for MBH with these…….
180 Flying Geese, 
180  HST's,
 and 174 hourglass blocks!
Now to prep for Playing With Jacks, all cut from 2.5" strips of red, black grey and neutral.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Bonnie Hunter Workshops

To get myself back into the rhythm of life in AZ I decided to continue prepping for the BH workshops next month. There's a lot of cutting to do and some pre-sewing I think I can accomplish to smooth the way and simplify the process during the classes.
For a start, to fine tune my fourth inch seaming I ordered half a dozen of these little seam guide thingies from Bonnie's website. Of course I only require one, but I have a few quilty friends who might benefit so I ordered the set of six and I will keep one in each of my Pfaffs so I always can check accuracy. It's easy to tell from my recent efforts that extra attention to the scant 1/4" seam accuracy really does pay off.
 One of the BH workshops we will do is "My Blue Heaven" and I made up a sample block- I am quite pleased with it. I will be using up a lot of my blues, rotating stock so I will feel justified in further purchases of fabric additional to any "must haves" for current projects! Want vs need ya know!
Lots of cutting as I said- 696 large triangles for 174 hourglass blocks, 90 2.5"x4.5" neutral rectangles to add to the hourglass blocks, enough HST's [formed while cutting the large triangles] for about 70 Flying Geese, the rest of the 180 FG I will make by the "4 at a time" method which is my preference, so fast and easy. I think I will make the FG ahead too, paying it forward so to speak! I can imagine that there is a lot of fun and distraction in Bonnie's classes and I don't want to miss any fun or get behind!
Off to do more prep now, while I watch my two favorite teams battle it out for a Superbowl slot!
Sadly, one of them must be cut.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Celtic Solstice Progress

We arrived back in balmy AZ early hours of Tuesday morning. DH has spent the week fixing leaks, one in the fridge filter and also a flood in the back yard from the elderly irrigation system, which he has now updated to state of the art equipment!
I have been attempting to catch up on all the life issues that go on hold when one is away for any extended period, and now feel as if things are settled back more or less to normal!
There is more prep work for Bonnie Hunter's visit next month in Tucson so I am working on that, I have designated homes for both My Blue Heaven and Playing With Jacks, makes me happy to know I will not be adding to the current collection of quilts that is taking over my house!
I once visited the elderly mom of a friend who lived in Sun City AZ, a prolific quilter. My friend told me to ask to see her mom's quilts and the lady took me into the guest room where she proceeded to unveil quilt after quilt layered on the twin beds in the room!  I was stunned, but then she said "there is more"!
The large ?six foot linen closet in the hall was stacked floor to ceiling with completed quilts, every one pieced on her Featherweights and hand quilted! I have no idea what my friend did with all of them, she is an only child! This mom made quilts into her 90's I think and the very cool thing about this is that I have one of her Featherweights, it's the pale green model made in Edinburgh Scotland circa 1960.
Below are the star blocks [50-40 or Fight] needed for construction of Celtic Solstice, the Birthday Girl blocks will have to wait until next week.
We sent a large box filled with snow gear and miscellaneous [including my sewing supplies] back to AZ via USPS, it was a fraction of the cost of an additional suitcase on the airlines who are gouging for luggage now- it was supposed to compensate for high gas prices but those have settled and the airlines have discovered another way to empty our pockets- the prices for our necessities to accompany us are continuing to escalate! One airline is now charging for carry ons, watch for all the other companies to follow suit.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Fuller Craft Museum

This past week we visited the Fuller Craft Museum in Brockton MA. In addition to regular exhibits the Museum hosts various other collections, current exhibits include basketry, Korean Bojagi art and Studio Furniture of the Bay State.
I took plenty of photos there were so many fascinating, unusual and beautiful objects d'art some functional and others just whimsical!
Above, examples of tools used by carpenters. 
The following pieces are all by local Bay State artists.
 The top of the beautiful cabinet below.
 A gorgeous harp.
 Beautiful inlaid spice cabinet
 Hall table
A decorative storage cupboard!
This piece was superb, perhaps that and the harp were my favorites in the furniture division simply for their beauty and fine craftsmanship though it was hard to choose.
 A very contemporary and colorful chair.
 This was called a "side table"
 "My Mummy Made Me Do It"!
 This elegant example of modernity does not look comfortable!
 Guess what? A music stand very lovely though I am not sure if it's practical!
The "Splash Cabinet"  is certainly unusual.
 This Grandfather clock is a beauty!
 The Lion Seat.
 Folding Chair!
"All Things Considered" is a Juried Invitational Exhibit of basketry.
 Some amazing pieces, like this  one, which I appear to have omitted from detailed description.
There were too many items to photograph individually or I would have been there all night!
 Fine work in this lovely basket
 Another hmmmmm…..
 This looked somewhat like Battenburg lace but it was enormous, easily four feet across and the "lace" itself was about 12" wide!
 Just gorgeous!
"Night Sky" 
This was the only piece you could call a quilt. 
 The fiber art below is by Korean Bojagi artists.
The item below is made from paper.
"The Jury Box"  by Jerry Alonzo a retired judge who constructed this after his many years of observing jurors and their "quirks!" His comments on the piece are illuminating and are shown below.
Our niece, an attorney found this very interesting and I thought it most clever!
The brass plaque on the front spells out our National Motto "In God We Trust"
Below are a few items that did not fit any category, but were interesting.
This one is glass
I don't remember the details on this.
Sculptures hanging from the ceiling in a hallway.
"Seated Lady"!
Most unusual, made up of scraps from various machines, autos and other  miscellany collected by the artist a longtime member of "The Dumpster Divers"! The most memorable and quirky thing I saw.
A globe of the world was cut in two, one half became a breast the other a part of her backside!
The legs comprise baseball bat and crocquet mallet handles, the toes are little wooden people!
"New Transit Chair", recycled traffic signs, champagne corks etc.
The museum is definitely worth a visit, it includes a venue for wedding receptions and a gift shop with lovely exclusive handcrafted items mostly from local artists.