One thing for sure

I’ve been thinking of you all a lot lately – just haven’t had a chance to post.

More blank journals are in process. I’ve been having fun developing the cover materials – odds and ends of fabrics that I’ve had around the house, some mudcloth, some sheers, playing with layers and what shows through or not, adding graphite for interest, ‘quilting’ the whole lot of it. I keep forgetting to take pictures – sorry!  Will need to get some posted soon.

The whole idea of making a ‘fabric’ is quite consuming right now. Even with the gourds in the way, begging to be finished. The thought of making new, reusing, recycling all the fun stuff around the house into new ‘cloth’ – I get a bit antsy to try it all out to see if it really will work. Will show some pics of the various ‘fabrics’ after a few more trials.

Some energies have been directed in other areas, too – volunteer interests are taking more time, unexpected health issues popped up in the family, last minute decisions to enter shows put me into scramble mode.

It all works out, though, in the end. Or at least I’m counting on that, since I’m not expecting to get to the end anytime soon.

The only thing I know for sure is that my bass playing is improving.

Blanket redo

For all that we did to Dan’s old t-shirt blanket, we should’ve just started from scratch and made a new one! The remake is finished and isn’t too bad.  A tad stiff at the moment, but I’m sure it will soften up with use.  A softer fusable interfacing for the shirts would have been better, but…

The holey areas got covered up today with a shimmery blue nylon sheer fabric and some stitch witchery. Didn’t need the shimmery part, but there wasn’t much in the selection of sheer fabric that wasn’t shimmery or somehow otherwise fancy. It does dress the whole piece up!

I was going to throw it in the washer to start the softening process, but Dan said “Enough!”  I think he wants to cuddle with it.  <g>


All the knitted gifts are finished! Well, the knitting is all finished. I still need to finish felting one pair of clogs to fit the recipient. My love wasn’t quite sure what to make of them… still not sure the clogs will get him to the hot tub any more often, but at least we will have extra feet protectors when friends come to visit and soak.

The arm socks for the boys and their girls turned out well. The two pair that went over the elbow need to be tried on to be sure of the fit – those boys haven’t made it home yet, but I think they will work.

Almost felt sort of lost last night when I didn’t have anything to pick up to work on! Then I sort of made up for that today.

About 10 years ago I made a blanket for my eldest son out of t-shirts he had aquired from various cross country and 5K road races. At the time, I really didn’t know how to work with t-shirts in a large project like that, nor did I really know anything much about quilting; I sewed the shirt tops and sleeves together and then sewed a backing around it – no batting and no stitching to hold the two layers together. Over the years it became quite battered. Some of the shirts developed holes and rips and the backing shredded. Dan was ready to throw it away.

After a wash and a ripping off of the backing materials that was still hanging on, we started over. Fusible interfacing was added to help stabilize and strengthen the knit shirts, flannel backing and bamboo/cotton batting were added and made into a self-binding. I thought I would do some machine quilting in each t-shirt section, but boy, did that idea get changed rapidly while doing the first section! On a quilting frame with a long arm it would work great, but…. Ties of embroidery thread look just fine! I’ll finish the remake with some sheer fabric fused over the holey areas tomorrow.

We figure after another 10 years of so, we’ll replace the shirts and keep the backing/batting going!

A full day

Chocolate peanut butter cups surrounded by warm, chewy peanut butter cookies.

Sounds of an electric bass playing tentatively with a more assured hand on the piano.

Green threads, and off-white and blue and black and tan matching the various materials.

Sewing machines whirring, different speeds, different patterns, different results.

Snatches of seasonal songs over speakers, hummed, jazzed, reverent, words forgotten, silly.

Scents of vanilla and peanut butter nudging into the domain of garlic and tomatoes.

Small tree lights involved with shells, willows, baskets, plants, vases.

–Some of the things that made up my day. Tomorrow will include dirty socks.

“Crazy Quilt”

I have been remiss lately – totally forgot to report on the final two pots of cooked paper fibers.

The corn husks turned out okay – still better with cotton linters added than just plain. The Christmas cactus was such a limited amount that I didn’t even try to make a sheet of just that pulp. I added cotton linters and it made a nice sheet with chunks of leaf showing. Don’t know if it would be different if the leaves had been fully hydrated naturally.

Yesterday I hung some really nice quilts at the Weavers Guild house as theme decoration for the play “Crazy Quilt”. The Guild house is being used as the venue for this play by local playwright Alan Jowaiski (sp?). The quilts are a combination of member-made, group-made and made by relatives. Some are very old and lovely; some are very newly minted and full of vitality.
“Crazy Quilt” went off without a hitch last night  with a small but enthusiastic crowd.  At times humorous and serious, and loosely based on a couple of fairy tales, the play portrays two of the myriad of events that can change the course of lives, causing people to ‘stitch’ their lives back together in a less than perfect pattern. According to the director, and possibly since our venue permits an up-close-and-personal feeling to the performance, last night’s audience was more responsive than at the performance in Indianapolis.

The final performance is Tuesday, October 16, 7pm.  Tickets are $10 either through Enjoy the Arts (513.621.4700) or at the door. Limited seating. Approximately one hour in length without intermission…but then, who was watching the clock?!