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

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

The Cranky Quilter

Sometimes I wonder if I should do like my friend H and just stop quilting. Make some origami cranes.
My mother was a very happy, intelligent woman---and she never sewed so much as a button. Maybe I should emulate her, not my dad?

But I carry on despite my woes and mistakes. I put the last stitch into the Porch quilt a few weeks ago. This was a Humble Quilts project from two years ago.
It was at the quilter for about six months. She had a hard time quilting it due to my ineptitude, lol.

So I spent quite a long time pulling out her stitches and redoing, then binding it, adding eyes on the birds, on the kitties...some bees, some ladybugs.



The quilter's comments on my first big applique project kind of spoiled the quilt for me? No, I love it still.

Here's the large folky label I designed for the back. I had to hand sew it on and hand quilt it.


Then came January quiltalongs. These are the blocks for Lori's doll quilt. Humble Quilts I made all the blocks in one day, all day Sunday. No way am I gonna fall behind this time. :-)


I love choosing the fabrics for her quiltalongs. This one needs nine blues, nine creams, nine browns. Stash city time.

Sashings and cornerstones: Faded robin's egg blue, or indigo?

Here is The Lost Quilt, so far.

I like the baskets okay. But the overall effect is too new, too bright. It needs to be hung out on my oceanfront deck for a few years to age it.

And last: many block of the months begin in January. A few years ago ''everyone'' seemed to be making a quilt called Beyond the Cherry Trees. I was in awe and I so wished I could be a part of a sewalong. But these projects are perhaps not for slow quilters like me?
I had two projects in mind, the gorgeous Benjamin Biggs quilt here...  or Noah and Matilda's wedding quilt here. I decided on the quirkier N and M project even though I knew immediately I could never do FOUR blocks of hand applique each month. (I am downloading the BB quilt blocks for the future).
below, Noah and Matilda's Wedding quilt.

I set my goal at 2 blocks per month. BUT the day after the first set of blocks was published, quilting bloggers already had finished blocks to show. Wow, is that intimidating or what?
Now January is over and I am still mulling over my background fabrics, waiting for some scraps of antique poison greens and turkey red  from my quilt dealer friend.* I think this will be a project for ''someday''---it will be the most rewarding if I work at my own pace and enjoy the journey. Quilting isn't a competitive sport! Is it?

*Oh boy! He didn't send fabric yet but he sent quilt blocks! All 19th century. I can't wait to show them to you.



gone to the beach....



Sunday, January 26, 2014

Hint of Spring and A Giveaway

Hi! I don't usually do this but my blog recently had a big milestone or birthday! Yes, 500 posts. So in honor of all that rambling by me and reading by you guys, I am having a birthday celebration giveaway. I sure hope someone wants to play!?

Here's the plan. J
ust leave me a comment and you'll be eligible for a chance to win an Anything Goes gift from my etsy shop, see sidebar. That's right, you'll get to choose any item you want, even an angel or a quilt!
[excluded are: the 100 Hearts Necklace and the Sea Stars quilt].
If you tell me in your comment that you follow this blog and how, you'll get two chances.  Drawing will be on Valentine's Day. US readers only eligible to win but I love to hear from everyone.

I hope you'll play!

And now for some Spring time....
A stock-up-for-more-snow trip to the big supermarket reminded to start my winter bulbs. I always get them going on Martin Luther King's birthday since that is usually when I finally get all the Christmas stuff put away.
The market had beautiful tulips. Wonder where they come from? South America?

And these pretty potted flowers. Love the forget me not blue one.

Tiny daffs and crocuses too.

I chose what I thought was a bunch of tightly furled white tulips buds. But No! They are palest shell pink. But I love them anyway...

I was only able to find narcissus bulbs this year, from two sources.

I used beach pebbles to anchor them.

It's hard for me to use my pebbles, I have painstakingly collected each rock and many I can remember finding. They're like old friends! I only keep the most interesting or most perfect, special finds.

But I was out of fake sea glass so the pebbles got used, along with some not so gorgeous real sea glass. All the rocks and glass can be reclaimed after the flowers are done. Just put them in a bowl of Clorox water and they come out good as new.

The paperwhite narcissus should bloom in about two to three weeks.



I am still stuck indoors. It is very icy out. I miss my beach walks, but even if I were so inclined as to brave the cold wind and snow, I somehow injured my leg on the bathtub edge last night! Huge gash---eeeew.  I am hoping no one will say the word ''stitches'' unless they're talking about quilts!

Puppy update: we had to postpone out planned doggy adoption, so sad. The weather is just hopeless here for a tiny baby puglet to venture out. I will try again in March or April....



gone to the beach...



always click photos to enlarge/ see sideshow.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Snow Beach

Ugh. Just...ugh. This snow is not what I had in mind.

Hi! I suppose many of you have snow too. I expected snow over the weekend. But No. On Monday evening, this was the view. So soft and serene-looking. Howling gale winds though, a harbinger of things to come.

These are the big and bigger dredging barges!

They're digging out the channel to the east. Lots of shipwrecks lie under that water, and many boats have travelled these waters over the years. So maybe, just maybe, the barges will suck up and spit out some good treasures? Sure, it may take a couple years for the stuff to wash ashore but I am hopeful
So this is what I saw Tuesday when I got up!


And all day, all night...

This was yesterday morning.

Remember, a table is about 34" high!


These not so great photos were taken by me sticking my arm out the deck door. Because that drift is perhaps 7 feet tall and its base is blocking the doorway.

And the windows.

Time to be smart and stay in.

Here's a big batch of hearts ready to go to the post office, Don't they look cute!
By today they were on their way west, no doubt hoping they'd land in a warm and sunny spot.

Stay home if you can? I ventured out in my grippy soled snowboots and second hand ski pole. I made it to the post office and back...but quaking in my Timberlands all the way !



gone to the beach...

Monday, January 20, 2014

Farmhouse Linen Hearts etc

I love when I finish a big batch of my hearts.

I pile them up in the biggest bowl or platter I set my hand to.

This is why I buy the big servers and wooden bowls (lol, what's your excuse?).

I love how the hearts look ---

and sometimes I wish someone could have them all, just like this.

Details are important to me!


above/ sold


                                                                     above/ sold

And remember this thrifted piece of 70s crewelwork? Finally got to use it!


Lavender / chamomile/ rosemary mini pillow sachets.

The deck was cold and windy, but there is nothing like natural light for taking good photos....

Snow is coming! And another Vortex thing? Cold-cold-cold, anyway. So bundle up and drive safely.
gone to the beach ~~~~~~~~~~~

 PS Hearts are in my etsy shop, on sidebar above right. Or click here