I wiped away the weeds & foam. / I fetched my sea-born treasures home... Ralph Waldo Emerson

Friday, January 14, 2022

Mid-January Miscellaneous


                          Hello friends on this frigid Friday evening. Are you as cold as I am?


I dream of moving somewhere warm.

The Cottage is in its most drab winter season, just blue, white, mercury glass and drieds. Nothing new,  old faves, revisited.

This ruffled linen runner should be on the sideboard, replacing the red stripe. But I am lazy and here it sits so hopefully/

I use this runner a lot, a favorite of things I have made, a personally satisfying mix of seashell toile, vintage Japanese indigos/ kimono remnants, and tiny slivers of bright batik. 

No pattern, no angst, tossed together one day long ago. Its subconscious inspiration, below?---a snow day sky?

My bleached pine cones were so successful, I decided to experiment with the unattractive brown heads of leftover hydrangeas.

after, just one, a try-out

Mo and I went out just now and gathered a few more to work on tomorrow morning.

Gallon baggie filled with a lot of water and bleach, left in a bucket on the deck for a day or two. Be sure all the flowers are submerged. Wear gloves. Rinse, dry on paper towels. If long stems are needed, I attach bamboo skewers with hot glue.


Books: During the Time of Covid, I unfortunately rediscovered the allure of buying used books online! Buying books is an addiction of mine, mostly cured by an enormous clear-out maybe ten years ago now, and the use of a Kindle to read free or borrowed books. But then! Thrift Books! Abe's Books!, all via Amazon's resale offerings. The free shipping is a curse. Recent finds, old books:

I don't really click with the designs of Sue Spargo, too much embroidery, too folkloric, but this early work with Jan Patek is, on close inspection, quite inspiring.

I think I owned this one. below, before. Modern use of computer media to sell and show antique quilts makes this large beautiful book seem a smidge ho-hum. [been there, saw it, dime a dozen]. 

More finds....

Most years I buy a new Christmas book for my collection. My dad read The Night Before Christmas to us [even when we were adults, lol!]every year, right before we put out Santa's cookies and milk. 

And today's temptation. Instead of just click/ buy, I downloaded a free trial on my Kindle. Other people's essays may not be to my taste. here

And finally, random screen shots. Just to remind me of ideas I've saved for someday. Maybe, who knows, they'll become something tangible at some point. [remember these are screen shots and NOT MY QUILTS!].

Acorns: 🧡! Though I would do modern prints but deeper more traditional colors, do we really need a wishy washy pastel Fall? Maybe this group, without the bugs and rats? here


Out and about: Baby Mo enjoys a snowy morning.

And L and I did a fast run through our Dollar Store instead of going to Home Goods yesterday. This place is fun, but they need shopping carts, because like at the indoor farm market, I just can't juggle a step stool in Tiffany blue, a very large sticker book for a very small girl, polka dot sheet set, sewing stuff, pompom hats, faux fur throw pillows for Mo, cheap birthday cards and a dozen realistic but VERY expensive faux tulips at 2.oo a stem. Tulips like THESE, but cost more. Dollar Store?--all while wearing a huge parka, fogged up glasses, and the new unbreathable face mask.

I thought these real glass stemless wineglasses would be so fun for a birthday  party or new years celebration 3.99 each.

Have great weekend and coming week. 



gone to the beach...

our deck time sewing is curtailed til June,-ish how sad.

Sunday, January 9, 2022

Quilts ~ Looking Forward Looking Back

Hi everyone! What would  Quilt blogging be without the traditional yearly round up. My successes are quite meagre---I never really recovered momentum after my Nobody Loves Me/ My Quilts in May  HERE, exacerbated by poor vision and the shocking return of Covid.  My dream of doing a big Thanksgiving failed, then Christmas, New Years followed behind. And while the rest of the country seems fine, the NYC area is hard hit by both Delta and omicron , and friend after friend has become very ill. [You may recall I am immune suppressed, so it is an issue to consider, despite vaccines and boosters.]

I made/ completed only one  full sized quilt: Blue Pineapples. Machine pieced, machine appliqued, machine quilted [by Lori C.]

Some small quilts:

Brown doll quilt, using a postage stamp remnant of a 19th century quilt block. I dyed the binding to include it in my Lucky Series of small make do quilts.

Next an exchange with a friend who is far far away: "One for you, One for me.'' The plan was we'd each make two quilts from the TQC mini a month postcards of 2021, exchange them at Christmas.

I chose this bright cutie. I think its asymmetry creates a textile that could be useful, under a candle or bowl, for displays. Her quilt is at the top, somehow I lost all my photos.

 My friend wasn't totally on board, though I may challenge her again this year! She sent me and Mo a beautiful flannel lap quilt in prim Autumn into Winter colors instead of a TQC mini. We love it!

My Christmas mini treat project was inspired by Fun with Barb's IG and blog posts about the mini tree pattern from a few years ago. I loved the Swedish or Nordic Marimekko vibe of her colorway, and shamelessly copied for my little version. Tiny Trees

Isn't the backing darling! Fairy toadstools.

Teeny Tiny, the mini-est of minis 3" square:

Also, barely-there micro quilts, gifts for friends. 


I spent a lot of summer deck time working on my Welcome Pineapple wall quilt, then set it aside unfinished as Fall arrived, too soon. "The pleasant summer was a fading memory as September dragged us to Autumn." [you know I collect quotes: this is from a J M Dalgliesh book I'm reading, see below]

Pattern photo, NOT my work.


Deck time sewing.

Worked on and finally banished Silent Night. Really struggled with the dark wool applique, due to my vision difficulty. I need a bunch of boring pieced Stars, just can't face them right now.

Lori [Humble Quilts]'s antique block challenge: Madder Anvils [madder is the rust-red dye]

I keep changing my mind.

Two antique quilt tops are still in work. Cartwheels needs its borders.

And Watermelon Wine needs a good press and check for loose seams,

then I need to piece the green backing before it all goes off to be quilted. I needed 5 yards of green backing and was very happy to find the green at Keepsake Quilts catalog sale for only 5.95 a yard. It is Annette Plog's line for Marcus Brothers called, I think, Petite Perennials. [sold out now, sorry]  Check out the sale if you expect to need some yardage soon. SALE

This was the double pink from the same fabric line. Cute but too much pink.

And last I sewed these wool herb pillows. They were fun and fast and easier to see to hand sew.


Not quilt related but I spent a delightful if imaginary summer and fall in Venice Italy, reading the entire Donna Leon / Inspector Brunetti police crime fiction series.  here 

Now I'm reading a rather gory detective series by J M Dalgleish/ DI Nathaniel Caslin, set in the city of York in northern UK. here


 Upcoming, I have a special order to sew, then will get on with projects, hopefully finishing Cartwheels and beginning my winter version of When the Wild Geese Fly. Unless I have eye surgery I hope to start that project February 1st, I am basing it on Jan Patek's Morning has Broken, if anyone else wishes to make it with me. My version will be very low key, a personal utility quilt. Nothing fancy and OMG no embroidery! First blocks are the Crescent Moons. My colors are of winter, blue, grey, white, black. HERE

Book on Jan's website:


My dog walker has Covid and is out indefinitely, so Mo and I are on our own. I suppose the extra exercise is good for me, lol. Truth is, I only love winter if I am inside looking out, or rambling on the beach in many layers of warm clothes. The third winter of Covid has begun.



gone to the beach...

Fog sunset