Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Fabric... Welcome to the Patriotic Quilter where I like to share all things quilty as well as red, white, and blue! Please feel free to look around and enjoy yourself! I would love to hear from you.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

At Home

Hi Everyone,

I'm so glad it is finally February!  January never is my favorite month.  This year was no different and I spent most of it holed up at home, doing some quilting.

If you have been following my blog, you may recall that I love listening to audiobooks while I quilt.  I recently finished a couple that I enjoyed.  The first one was the newest Mitch Rapp book.  Vince Flynn started these books and tragically died a couple years ago--before I discovered his books.  The newest one was ghost written by Kyle Mills.  He did such a good job that I had no idea it wasn't "discovered" in Vince Flynn's computer and published posthumously!  (I recently listened to the new Girl With the Dragon Tatoo which was ghost-writed and I really didn't like it--the new author didn't stay true to the originals at all.  Characters had the same names, but were totally different people.)

The next book is different and by an author that is new to me.  One night a few weeks ago, my husband and I were bored with tv and so watched a movie "on demand."  We chose "Into the Woods" with Robert Redford and Nick Nolte.  It was really good.  At the credits, I saw that it was a true story and had been written by the man portrayed by Redford, Bill Bryson.  Interested, I checked him out and saw that he has written many books, one of which, "One Summer, America in 1927" I have had on my "too read" list.  Intrigued, I went to my Overdrive (libraray audiobook) app to see if any were available.  They do have several, and I put "One Summer" on hold.  As I was looking, I discovered that one, "At Home, a Short History of Private Life," was free to check out, so I did.

  Bill is known as a bit of a travel writer, but for this book, he was inspired to travel around his house.  At the time, his family lived in England in a former Victorian parsonage.  As he traveled through the home, he examined the history of nearly everything associated with home.  I found it fascinating!  History is mixed in with the story of the development of so many things that I had no idea about.  Corn:  scientists to this day have no idea how ancient MesoAmericans developed corn.  Its most closely related plant is a form of grass.  In fact, corn is dependant on people--it cannot resow itself and would disappear if it was no longer planted.  Concrete:  Initially "cement" (a ground up limestone) was mixed with clay and fired in a kiln.  One man experiemented with it, mixing it with aggregate and not firing it, and figuring out that it would harden on its own.  Cotton:  did you know it was once more valuable than silk?

While listening to these books, I was able to finish a few things.

I got my free BOM from Stacy West at Buttermilk Basin together.  It required nearly 240 one inch finished HSTs for the lattice.  I love how it looks, though.  I had some trouble with choosing the border fabric.  I auditioned many and even asked friends opinions.  I decided if I needed help with the decision--it must not be the right fabric, so I continued to audition and finally settled on this one.

I also finised piecing another of her patterns, Vintage Tree Farm Quilt.  I widened it a bit and shortened it to fit above my mantle for Christmas.

The "red truck with the tree in the back" has been a Christmas motif for the past couple years.  I'm sure it will disappear after a while, but I like it--especially as my husband drives a red truck.  (not vintage, though.)

I've got another big finish to share, but I'm waiting for another post for that.  I have some pictures but they aren't the greatest.  I'm wishing for good outdoor conditions for better photos, but so far, that's not happening.

Meanwhile, I started another project.  One of the reasons I avoided making a list of quilts to make this year was that sometimes fun projects just pop up out of nowhere, and this new quilt is one of them.

The Moda Bakeshop is celebrating their 7th anniversary with a Quilt-Along using the Spell it with Moda patterns.  I read about it, briefly considered something--making a quilt with patriotic words, but then dismissed it.  Then last week, I read a quote on facebook that I loved and wondered if I could sew it.  I got out graph paper and began sketching out designs, wondering if the quote would fit into a lap-sized quilt.  It would if I shrank the letter blocks.  The pattern calls for using 2.5" jelly roll strips, but I am using 1.5" strips.  Here is my first word.

As you can see, I'm still sticking with my usual theme!  I had a fat quarter bundle and some yardage of Sandy Gervais' Red, White, and Free, so I'm using that.  It's such an exciting project!  I can't wait to see it come together and turn into a great design.

Have a great day!

Monday, January 18, 2016

"I Pick You"

Hi Everyone,

So while I was on "hiatus" from blogging this past year, we had a major event.  My daughter and her boyfriend went to my parent's house for a weekend in late September.  They toured wineries and also went apple picking.  A fun time was had.  They went home and began unloading the car.  My daughter went to carry in a container of apples and found this.

Her boyfriend said, "I pick you!" (and some other romantic stuff.)  Anyway, he is now her fiance and we are in the middle of wedding planning!

The date is set

and it is coming up quickly!  We had a whirlwind of planning late last year.  They looked over options of venues and decided on the Children's Museum in their city.

They will have the ceremony in the atrium and then have the reception in the Dinosphere--so its going to have an elegant, (wait for it) dinosaur theme!  The colors are what I call "kiwi, cocoa, and khaki," acutally a moss green, medium brown, and biege --elegant earth tones.

We considered making her dress, perhaps including bits of my mother's dress (it was way too tiny for my sister and I or my daughter to wear) but when we went looking at patterns, we just couldn't find one that seemed right.  I must confess that I'm more than a little relieved to not have that project and all the stress it would create!  We went shopping instead.  I think it was amazing!  She tried on dress after dress and they were all beautiful; and then she tried on The Dress and that was just IT.  There was no question about any others.

She scoured Pinterest for dinosaur wedding ideas and came across a pair of shoes.  They were really expensive, so she made her own.

The heels are T-Rex dinosaurs!  She has been practicing walking around in them.  Her dress will cover them during the ceremony, but they will peek out during the reception.  She ordered the gold pumps and then purchased two dinosaurs the right size, carefully cut out a hole for the heel, and spray painted and glittered them.  They fit on so well, that they don't need to be glued, so they can be removed if desired.

Her dress is still here at our house for safe-keeping.  Today my project will be this:

Back nearly 30 years ago, when my older sister was getting married, I bought a card of three blue, heart-shaped buttons.  I sewed one on her dress.  A year or so later, I sewed this one on my dress.  I carried the third one around, kept safe in a a box in my cedar chest, for just about 15 years until my younger sister got married, when I sewed it on her dress.  Today I'm going to cut mine off my dress and put in on my daughter's.

Have a great day!