Monday, June 28, 2010

Design Wall Monday 6-28

It is still Monday, just barely, but it is still Monday.

My design wall still looks pretty sad.

The wind came in and sent several flying through the room and I had to get one away from Miss Emmie (the Hunter).

 
I have decided to do the applique stitching in black instead of the blending thread I used on the first few blocks. It doesn't show up much in the pictures, but the black gives the circles a border. So I have almost all of them done, just not on the wall. This is good, since I have to have this quilt done by July 6 for the Ark Animal Shelter raffle. Yikes!!!

Good news...The stealth project is secret no more. And it is DONE...

This great log cabin quilt was made by Lanette who some of you will know as The Gypsy Quilter. She sells the Gypsy Grippers that make it so easy to hang-on to your rotary rulers.



 I went a little over the top on the quilting, but I did get to use a new ruler for all those stars.

And of course there must be feathers...


This was my first quilt on wool batting. Boy, It will not be my last... I used the Dream Wool from Quilters Dream batting. It is simply be-ewe-tiful...great stitch definition, quilts like butter, doesn't hold a crease and is so light it is amazing. This queensize quilt was less than 7 pounds. The same quilt on cotton would be around 10 pounds! Other than being a little careful about washing, and a bit pricey this stuff is wonderful.

Well, off to bed, finally, but it will probably be Tuesday before I get there.



"Don't tell me not to burn the candle at both ends
Tell me where to get more wax!

Friday, June 25, 2010

My first stealth project

If you read Wendy Johnson's blog, "Adventures with Sticks and String" you are already familiar with the term. Wendy is a knitting designer and author, so there are lots of things she works on that can't "go public" right away. I just love the phrase.

Well, I have a stealth project of my own. And, obviously, I can't talk about it. Except to say it is a very pretty quilt that is taking lots of work and I will be showing pictures as soon as I have permission to do so.

Spending lots of time on a quilt I can't show is going to make for some boring blog posts, so here is a picture I can post...

Tera made this sampler.
It is just like the one we made in quilt class about a year ago, but she spiffed it up with the pieced border.


 
It is very patriotic and done just in time for the 4th of July...Way to go Tera!

Now, if I hurry I can accomplish my goal and get into bed on the same day I got out. Wish me luck. 


"Don't tell me not to burn the candle at both ends
Tell me where to get more wax!
leslie@theCraftyUnicorn.com
http://www.thecraftyunicorn.com/

Thursday, June 24, 2010

I won!

Back in early June there was a notice (probably Sew Cal Gal) that Patrick Lose had a new website up and everyone should go take a look. I went, I saw, I (almost) shopped, I entered, and today I found out I won! Four fat quarters of fabric from the man who put tone-on-tone fabrics on the map are on their way to me. The  new fabrics look great and the site is very tempting, so go check it out. http://www.patricklose.net/
Thank you Patrick (and whoever pointed me to the contest in the first place).

I just finished Ann's crib quilt.

It is very simple and classic, with just a bit of pizazz in the binding. Very cute.

The fabrics are from Connecting Threads. They have a soft silky feel and quilt up nicely. I may have to look into them.  The price is certainly right.

Now, back to work on the never ending quilt that I can't talk about...




"Don't tell me not to burn the candle at both ends
Tell me where to get more wax!
leslie@theCraftyUnicorn.com
http://www.thecraftyunicorn.com/

Clamshell Quilts

I am being surrounded by clamshell quilts! It's a pattern I really like and envy anyone who makes one. There migt be one in my future, but not the near future...I don't think.

Carmen (my Kaffe Fassett customer) is making one, by hand, with an unusual strip in it. She showed me her progress a couple of weeks ago when she dropped off a quilt.

Then a few days later, Linda Franz introduced a new Inklingo shape collection...You guessed it... Clamshells. Last week a second set came out in a different size. There aare 3 and 3.5 inch clamshells ready to print and sew. Hmmm is this a hint?

So today when I open my blog reader, the first blog is Barbara Brackman's post with an unknown pattern bassed on CLAMSHELLS- with a really cool triangle edge- Think clamshells and pickle dish. Sounds kinda gross as food, but great as a quilt pattern, but check out her blog.

Then the very next blog post is Cathi's Quilting Obessions featuring little pink CLAMSHELLS.

OK, I will take the hint from the Quilt Goddess and move a clamshell quilt up nearer the top of the list. Really, you don't have to hit me over the head... not more than a couple of times any way.



"Don't tell me not to burn the candle at both ends
Tell me where to get more wax!
leslie@theCraftyUnicorn.com
http://www.thecraftyunicorn.com/

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

All a-buzz last week

Yep, the last week or so has been full of unexpected adventure.

A week ago Friday (the 11th) I got a call from Ellen at The Ruggles House warning me about a swarm of bees in the parking lot. She said they had been there since Wednesday and the Orkin man would be there on Monday. I told her I would bring my equipment and try to get the swarm on Sunday when I came to clean.

I have had bees before and would hate to see a colony lost simply because they were in an "inconvenient" place. Well, Sunday morning I'm there dressed like someone from outer space and no bees. Has the swarm moved and where has it gone? There's no sign in the gardens of the Ruggles house, so I go in, take off my bee suit and start to work.
One of the docents had mentioned seeing a few bees in one of the rooms of the house. That room happens to be the entrance to the attic. You don't suppose... do you? YEP, open the dooe to the attic and look up and this is what I saw...

That cluster of bees is about the size of a soccer ball. There is a gap between the wall and the roof and the bees found it. So to make a long story short (sort of) I scooped the bees into a garbage can and covered it with a towel and took them home to a hive I had set-up.

After just over a week they are still in the hive (they would have left if I hadn't gotten the queen) and seem to be happy and doing little bee things. See...



Unfortunately the Orkin man did come and take care of the ones I missed (and there were quite a few) but I saved about 3/4 of them. Maybe next year there will be home-grown honey.

On the quilty-side of things, I have FINALLY gotten the tote bag finished for a friend's birthday (in late APRIL).  It wasn't entirely my fault, I didn't get the pictures until early May. It is in the mail to her right now. I don't think she reads the blog, but I don't want to wreck the surprise if she does. Although the birthday mention probably gives it away.

There are four different pictures- a loon, moose, and two coastal scenes. I have some other pictures, I just have to get them off the camera.

Mostly I have been working on the new website and a quilt I can't show pictures of yet. You can check out the website at  http://www.thecraftyunicorn.com/ but please be kind. It still needs some work, the newsletter sign-up link on the contact page is functional, so feel free to sign-up.

Now it is off to bed, Once again I have failed to get back into bed the same day I got out. I guess my niece Shelby is right...Sleep is for the weak.


p.s. I promise to stop messing with the page format. I think simple is best.




"Don't tell me not to burn the candle at both ends
leslie@theCraftyUnicorn.com
http://www.thecraftyunicorn.com/

Friday, June 11, 2010

Whooooosh

That's the way the pages are now loading on my laptop! I just installed an additional memory chip (all by myself) and it works!!! There are no pictures to accompany this feat because I was a bit nervous about messing with the computer inerds and all. I only added the 512MG chip, I can only guess what it's like with the 2 gig chip...can you say Ferrari? But hey, this will do for now.

Just so this is a quilty post and has something pretty in it, here are pictures of the customer quilt I just finished. Mrs. P.  found this in a trunk in her house.


She doesn't know who made it or when. All I can say is someone was a whiz with a needle. The decorative stitching on this is amazing.

In case you are wondering, there is no real machine quilting on it. I didn't think I could do anything to improve the top so it is simply tacked or tied in less obvious spots about every 4 inches.

If you click on a picture you can get upclose and personal with the stitching.


 I know, I could lose my machine quilter's license, but if I can't improve the quilt, I'm not gonna do it. Call it "artisic morality".

So, tonight the plan is to take this increased computer speed and see if I can FINALLY get the the new website up and running. If I do there will be an announcement tomorrow.





"Don't tell me not to burn the candle at both ends
leslie@theCraftyUnicorn.com
http://www.thecraftyunicorn.com/

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Where did May go?

Yep, another month snuck right past me. Look at the calendar, it's May, blink and suddenly it's JUNE. Well, here in Maine, June really is busting out all-over. The lilacs are just about to go by, and the peonies are ready to explode. And for once, I have my garden planted. 

We had a new area turned over last fall and tilled this spring. I have had peas, potatoes, onion sets and carrots planted for about 2 weeks and put in the tomatoes and pole beans over the weekend. So now instead of fresh dirt, it looks more like this:



It is kind of hard to see, but there are 44 little tomato plants and 4 tee-pees for pole beans. The potatoes are on the far end. You can't see the onions, but they are about 6" tall. The only disappointment so far is the carrots. Zip, zero, nada. I don't think I kept them moist enough. Oh well, I have more packets of seeds.

Just so you don't think I have spent all my time in the garden, here are a few quilts I have finished for customers recently...

Gail will be teaching a bargello class and this is the sample. Hard to beleive there are only staight seams in this quilt- no curves.

 She also made this full-size quilt . Still a bargello, but a different pattern. 

 This is Carmen's Jiggery Pokery from one of Kaffe Fassetts books. It is as bright as usual. I wasn't sure about them at first, but now I am really starting to like them. I guess they are an "aquired taste"

I really like this border- simple, but fun. 

OK, now back to work...




Don't tell me not to burn the candle at both ends
Tell me where to get MORE WAX!

leslie@theCraftyUnicorn.com
http://www.thecraftyunicorn.com/