Friday, February 25, 2011

About Those Stars

Just about a year ago now, I started working on blue star blocks.  Does anyone remember?  If not, you can go here, here, and here to refresh your memory.  Go ahead.  I'll wait.  [humming}

I can't believe that I finished that quilt and didn't show you!!!  Especially since I did not make one quilt but two!


About two-thirds of the way through this project, I decided that I don't really want to make full size quilts.  We have two beds (which already have two quilts apiece) and very few relatives who could use quilts.  So I plan to concentrate on lap quilts.  Yes, the decision required some ripping, but I've been doing a lot of that on these stars anyway!

So, with one lap size finished, I had some stars left over.  What to do?  Why, make another quilt, of course!


Hmm.  I think I like this one even better!

And now?  They are in the pile to be backed and quilted.  I notice that pile is not getting any smaller.  Rats!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Wednesday WOW - February 23

I've been so concerned about tomorrow's winter weather advisory that I almost forgot today is Wednesday!  Sheesh!  So, I am a little late in posting this.  Better late than never, huh?


I'm going to a class next week and today I started on the homework.  Starting to feel that excitement that builds up to creativity.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Traveling Coming to an End

Hard to believe more than a year has gone by!  But the Story of the Traveling Page is coming to its end.  (If you have not been following us on our blog, go here now to see what it's all about.)

I've finished and posted all the pages I made for the other participants.  And I've shown you each page as I received it.  Now, I am putting them all together.

First step was to create a cover page. . . sort of an introduction:


When you open that front door, you will see this:


I looked at a lot of quotes about doors and this one caught my attention.  I rummaged through my bead and charm stash and - lo - angel wings!  Since I am fascinated by wings of all kinds, that was no surprise.  LOL!

On the back of this page, I printed a brief explanation of the project and a list of the participants:


Very simple - because it is the lead-in for all those wonderful pages!


I have them temporarily strung together.  As you can see, it's rather loose!  I need to decide how to bind them and will probably do a page for the back, too.  This was really a fun and interesting swap.  I think I stretched my fiber skills as well as my imagination.

I can't wait to see how some of the other books turn out!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Wednesday WOW - February 16

I didn't get as much done today as I would have liked to.  This afternoon Sarge had an appointment which meant a trip to town.  That tends to take a pretty good size chunk of time.


Still, I had time this morning to get well and started on the cover to my Doors book from the Traveling Pages.  Can't wait to get back to it!

Monday, February 14, 2011

I Had to Try It!

Heaven knows there has been enough snow around here this winter.  And I've been seeing so many posts about snow dyeing.  Well, I had to see if I can do it.

Keeping in mind that I am not really very skilled at things like mixing dyes and such.  In fact, I try to stay away from processes and materials that have CAUTION written in big letters all over the place!  Anything that requires doing some sort of pre-treatment and wearing a safety mask is automatically not my cup of tea!!!


So it's not surprising that the first effort went from the above . . .


. . . to this.  Actually, it's not a bad color of green, just not what I was going after.  For this attempt I used Dyna-Flo paints - which I've used in small pieces before - and a range of fabrics that were not pretreated.



The relative amount of cotton made a difference - with the darkest piece (right, above) coming out of unbleached muslin - but there are very subtle shadings in all the pieces and I do have something in mind for using them.

And no problem - there's still LOTS of snow!!

So during a trip to Michaels, I picked up some soda ash and packets of dye made by Tulip.  Honest to goodness fabric dye!  And I actually mixed up the soda ash and (are you ready for this?) pretreated the fabric!


Once again I used various fabrics.  The pieces above are (left to right) a piece of cotton knit undershirt, man's handkerchief, Shout Color Catcher (from the wash out), and a small piece of polyester blend.


Here is where things get interesting.  This is a yard of white muslin.  I believe it is 100% cotton, although I can't be sure.  These fabrics were pieces I "inherited" from either my Mom's stash when she downsized, or MIL's collection.


This one started out as unbleached muslin - about 2 yards.  These pictures are a little paler than the actual pieces, but not by a lot.  So, yes, the color variations are mostly subtle, but with some bright spots.  I know I can find uses for these fabrics!

So, this was something new for me and, yes, I learned a few things:

  • A gallon of water is a LOT of water and it makes a LOT of dye!  Yeeks!
  • No matter how hard I try to make it different, fiber content is very important to how the dye works.
  • The hotter the water, the more intense the color will be (I know this because it said so on the packet!), so the purpose of the snow is to interrupt the dye action so to speak.  I dipped a cloth in the warm dye and then laid it on top of the snow.  The dye wicked away from where it touched snow.  Interesting!
  • I am a total klutz around this type of project.  Snow all over the table . . . salt on the floor . . . red fingers even though I was wearing gloves!  Good grief!

I will probably try this again some time (I have another packet of soda ash and some blue dye), but the snow is melting now so it probably won't be soon.  Now, I need to come up with a project for pink!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Wednesday WOW - February 9

I spent today at the local quilt shop and pieced the center of the peacock quilt.


It needs borders now.  And I picked up the starter kit for a new Block of the Month!  Apparently I am a glutton for punishment!!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Wednesday WOW - February 2

Well, I'm pretty sure the groundhog saw his shadow today.  If he could climb out from under two feet of snow, that is!  No worries.  I've got a nice, warm sewing room!


Getting ready to square up some peacock blocks.  Not all perfect, but I'm liking the overall look so far.