Tuesday, April 26, 2022

April's Mini Quilt

If you're like me 
and many others fabulous quilt bloggers
gathered under Wendy's wing
you know making a monthly mini
can be a challenge.

It  feels like the months
get shorter and shorter,
but it's still  a great way to explore new ideas
and create something small each month.

This month I went digging into a 
sewing cupboard and pulled out
a stack of vintage basket blocks.
When or where I got them
is unknown, but they
have been there for a very long time.


The fabrics are a combination of
30's and 40's prints with a bleached muslin background.
The 32 blocks all measured 
ROUGHLY 
10.5 inches.

I decided I didn't want a big quilt 
so I pulled out Jack the Ripper
and took the blocks apart leaving the 
hst's intact.


I wasn't surprised to find all of these units
looking very different from each other.
The blocks were mostly hand stitched.
There was no way these blocks
would fit together.

I resized these from 2.5" down
to 1.5" along with the center section and 
the rectangular side pieces.

The blocks would now be 
a quarter of the size, 5" finished.



The blocks went from this to that.


I ended up using 28 of the 
original blocks.


Vintage Spring Baskets
25" x 35"


I set the blocks together in 
sets of 4.


Then I added a simple border
of Kona Snow and


 machine quilted diagonal lines.
Bound it with a 30's repro fabric.


The backing is a piece from a flour sack
with one more of the blocks used as a label.


****

Then it was time to hang it out on the barbwire fence
along with the other vintage minis that have been 
reconstructed over the years.


All of the quilts are made
 from vintage 30's and 40's fabrics pieces. 

I was asked if I had any regrets taking
apart another person's work.
I would have to say no.
I feel like I have taken pieces that
were abandoned and left undone for a reason.
Maybe I've brought these to completion, finally.


****

The exciting news  is that
Running Man and I will be soon
gathering up our passports, 
vaccination cards and heading off 
on an adventure.
I can't wait!

So Until Next Time-Kyle



Friday, April 15, 2022

April Happenings

 Spring is slowly starting to appear
here in Colorado.

I've also been slowly working
on projects one day at a time.

And the results are beginning to show.  
There are a few projects that have been finished
and a few ongoing ones.
****

#1
A pair of springtime bunnies.

"Spring Delivery"

Scattered Seed Samplers
5" x 7"

And.....


"Spring Gathering"

Scattered Seed Samplers
5" x 7"


I changed a few thread colors and
changed a few design elements.
The first adorable vintage frame 
was from a thrift shop in Santa Fe.
I love it.

The second one was a shiny gold colored inexpensive 
frame from another shop here in Fort Collins.
Running Man got out his air brush and toned
it all down to a reasonable shade.

****

#2
This next project is far from finished.
It's a Mystery Quilt Along through 
Primitive Gatherings.  
I'll be the first to admit that quilt mysteries
are not my favorite.
My time and fabrics are just too
valuable and expensive to be working
on something that I might or might not like.

But I was caught in a weak moment
and Lisa B reassured quilters everywhere 
that she would not let anyone down!
hahahaha

So I've started.
31 nine patch blocks, scrappy, blue and white.
We'll see where the mystery leads me.


If you're in a weak moment too,
check out and sign up for Lisa Bongean Blog, 
to get the monthly mystery patterns
for O Say....Can You See.
This part will be gone at the end of April when
the May chapter is issued.

****

#3

Sometime ago I signed up for a
exclusively for Hobby House Needleworks.

I had never done one of
Nicola Parkman's vintage reproduced samplers.

This one is Rosa Ada Featherstone, 1894


Through the process of working on  a reproduced antique sampler
I came to several conclusions:

1.  Samplers done by young girls could have many errors.
If the sampler is designed to even include these flaws, 
I'm going to have to fix them.
I make enough of my own mistakes, that's for sure!  
I had to do lots of changes to make
this design work for me.

2. I like the style of many of these antique samplers,
but if I used Rose's name my family would be thoroughly 
confused as to who she was in relationship to us.
So I customized this sampler with my
maternal grandmother's name and date of birth.

3.  I decided while working on this sampler that Rose's heart wasn't
into this project or needlework as a whole 
or she had a poor teacher with limited supplies.
I changed many of the motifs because
I didn't recognize what they were.
I also changed and added more colors.
An example is that the ships 
were originally bright green.
I had to change that
 as well as a few other color choices.
Sorry, Rose.

*****

#4

I first mentioned this 
Grandmother's Flower Garden quilt
back in December,

Well, I'm still happily working on it.
The hand quilting is coming close 
to being finished,
A dozen more hexies to go
and then...

75" x 80"

I'll have to decide how to bind it
with the zig zag edge.

****

It hasn't been all work or stitching.
The other night we were able to go
to a live concert featuring
two of my favorite musicians,


They are on their final
US Tour as a duo.
I listen to their beautiful cello music
which includes classical, popular and rock music.

Stjepan Hauser and Luka Sulic'

They put on an incredible show
and we had fabulous seats.
The audience was a mix of young and old
and I loved every minute.


Check them out on you tube.

Until Next Time-

Kyle


Monday, March 28, 2022

Green Isn't Always Second Fiddle

 When you think of the color Green
in relationship with another color,
it is usually included as the second color
in the sequence.

Red and Green
Blue and Green......

I wonder why that is?
Green is a lovely color that can
stand strong by itself.

This month's mini 


Green Isn't Always Second Fiddle
Shades of Green

21" x 24"


Using Green as the primary color
can be a challenge.
I usually purchase greens for
applique stems, leaves or
to mix with another color. 
So most of my green fabrics are small
prints to add a little bit
of texture to a project.


In this case, different shades of green got to be the stars
with tiny red and white shirtings settling for  the 
second fiddle position.


I noticed three of my old favorites ended up
side by side.
The first one is from the Sarah Johnson Collection and 
the Shelburne Museum 
The second one is part of the 
Smithsonian Fabrics collections, but I'm not sure 
what antique quilt.
The third one is all used up
so I don't remember the designer.

Red just couldn't let Green be the star
and just had to be the binding!



A March Series

The month of March can be thought
of spring gradually finding its way
and even possibly seeing the beginning of a hint of green.

For now, the only green I can 
see is clipped to the fence.

Be sure to check out the rest of the 
Monthly Minis listed on Wendy's blog,
it's always a treat.


Until Next Time-
Kyle

Friday, March 11, 2022

A Quick trip to Santa Fe


 
A couple of weeks ago 
we were able to get away 
and spend some time in
Santa Fe, New Mexico, one of 
our favorite places. 

It's a quick 6 1/2 hour trip
depending on the traffic 
through Denver and Colorado Springs. 


But once passed those cities
 the highway 
opens up and the traffic
almost disappears.

Santa fe is such a unique place.


Hard to think of it
as the state capital. 



We have favorite places 
that are always on our list 
to stop and enjoy.


Kakawa Chocolate House 

Their passion is
authentic and historical
drinking chocolate elixirs and 
our passion is always to come by
for a taste test.

We might include
a visit to the 136 year old


Cathedral Basilica of Francis 
Of Assisi located
right off the central plaza. 

Running Man 
seems to fit right into
the Santa fe vibe.



Our main reason for this particular visit
was to check out our daughter's new work place.




It is so nice to have her and her husband 
so much closer.  
They waved Florida goodbye and 
have now settled into the high desert of New Mexico.

Her job involves managing 1000's of objects
in the International Folk Art Museum.  
If you have ever been there, 
you know what I mean by their massive 
collection.


We were given a private tour of the
multiple rooms of onsite storage. 

First stop, peeking down 
the aisles of preserved quilts.



Each one labeled with it's providence 
and history.


Each one archivally stored for a future displays.

 They are rolled in an inert nylon film called dartek which
acts as a barrier against pests, dust, etc. 


There is so much more that makes this museum so unique.

face jugs



Mexican cartonerĂ­a


Can you tell what this horse is made from?



aluminum can pull tabs.


One storage room was filled with some
interesting and unusual animals.



Peek-a-boo, we see you!




Lots of folk people from
every country and nationality


just waiting for their turn to go on display.

Everyone is labeled
indexed and accounted for.

Some don't mind being in a cupboard,
but others get pretty grumpy.

  
Most museums only can exhibit about 5-10% of their collections at a time.

One of the current exhibits is called
"Dressing with a Purpose"
which examines three Scandinavian dress traditions.


The hand embroidery is exquisite.



Examples include
 the traditional on the left

to a modern interpretation on the right 
using shopping bags from Ikea.


Santa fe is a wonderful place to visit.




Hopefully, some day your travels will 
take you there.

Until Next Time-
Kyle

Monday, February 28, 2022

A February Mini, 2022

 One of my favorite games
as a kid was Pick Up Sticks.

The object was to pick up each stick
without wiggling another stick.

That led me to 
dig into my overflowing strip basket
and pick up  pink, brown and light strips and


 see what I could make with them.

My February Mini

Pick Up Sticks
33" x 30"

My February mini reminded me of that game.
Lots of narrow strips, side by side, with me
 trying to sew them together
without wiggling the strip next to it.  

To give me some sense of order and control,
I precut both light and dark strips,
then randomly picked up pieces,


sewing them into the alternating light and dark combinations.


The "sticks" created a zig and zag pattern when 
stitched together.


All those tossed strips 
that were pulled from my basket
were fun to stitch together for this month's mini.


I kept thinking as I was machine quilting in the ditch,
why can I sew perfectly straight in the light areas
and then wiggle so much in the dark areas.
Always a little bobble, just like playing 
"Pick Up Sticks".


In keeping with my January photos,
I realized I had another series.

Browns and pinks,
a classic combination.
 

Yes, I trumped through the snow again
to reach my barbed wire fence,
but for the sake of art, I did it in 6 degree weather!
Oh, what  mini makers will do.
Check out the other hearty makers on 
Wendy's blog, The Constant Quilter. 

*****
Our world feels much smaller today
And filled with sadness and apprehension
Until Next Time-
Kyle