Friday 26 June 2015

Gravity Project: UltraViolet

Aah yes...Ultraviolet. The word itself summons worrisome thoughts of harmful rays but not in this case.

These 2 blocks are delightful in colour and form. You can bask in the glow of the groovy purples and sunny yellows all the day long and they'll bring forth no new suspicious moles or dodgy freckles and require no won't even need your sunglasses!

Linking up with Busy Hands Quilts for the Gravity Quilt-A-Long! 

Thursday 25 June 2015

Hey Kona Nerds...A Lil Help Please?

Are you a Kona Lover? A Kona Nerd? A Kona Badass?

If so, I need your help!

I'm on a mission to build a quilt celebrating our beloved rainbow of cotton-y goodness. Here's what you can do to help me out:

There are 303 shades of Kona. What's your favourite? Is it the name or the colour itself that sucks you in everytime? I find some words are more fun to say than Grellow for example, that's a fun word.  I'm asking you to think about this and then using that colour build me a block that says the name of your favourite colour. You can piece, paper piece, free piece, applique, embroider or cross stitch your Kona's name. Blocks can be any shape and pretty much how ever long they need to be to get all the letters in there- big, small, doesn't matter. No prints please.... use ONLY Kona solids in the blocks. Don't worry about squaring them up or letters being "perfect"...this isn't about perfect points, I'm an improv gal so whatever you come up with I can make it work.

Can't decide on one colour, make as many as you like! The quilt will be as big as the blocks dictate. When you're finished send me an email so I can let you know how to mail your block to me. Blocks are due in by mid August to allow me time to finish the quilt for the Maritime Modern Quilt Guild's show at the Fiber Art Festival in Amherst, NS this fall.

Feel free to grab the Kona Nerd photo above for your blog and link it back to this post so folks can see what we're doing. Maybe you could pass the word...tell your peeps, share the Kona love. The more words & colours the better!

I sure hope you'll help a quilty peep out...come on & play along, UNITE!!!!

Tuesday 23 June 2015

Robot Rebellion

Yesterday I spent four hours or maybe more trying to get The Robot to behave. We were getting along fairly well...he's always tested me with the odd long, skipped stitch but I always managed to catch them and fix things up as I went along...til yesterday.

Frustration grew into practical rage when I ran out of bobbin thread in the middle of a row just before noon. I wound a new bobbin, popped it in and things went downhill right then...a hard and fast slide to a brick wall of stitching woes. It was like the bunny hop...I'd  put stitches in and then The Robot would hiccup so I'd  rip them back out. Over and over and over. Two steps forward,  three steps back.

Having made it thru all but the last 20 inches of the quilt with decent results you can imagine my frustration...I wanted to stomp, spit, swear, throw things and cry. In fact I did some of those things. I quilted only another 10 inches of the current row in 4 or 5 hours and picked out enough stitches to last a lifetime. It just won't sew without skipping long stitches when ever the carriage moves toward the back. A trip to the store gave me no answers and increased my frustration. The lady there just doesn't know much about troubleshooting a long arm. I tried the few things she suggested and a lot of things I read on line with no luck. I have cleaned everything, tweaked the tension, changed needles multiple times, tested the encoders and called technical support with no luck. The tech person said she'd call back and didn't. The lady at the shop will help me, eventually...I know she will, somehow...but that won't get this super-special quilt ready in time for my super-special someone's big birthday.

I don't know where to go from here, or what to do. These horses might end up late for the rodeo on Friday...or they just might sit on the frame forever now... can't exactly take the quilt off before it's done and can't  seem to convince The Robot to play nicely no matter what I try. He's content to chew up my backing fabric with hundreds of tiny holes from that fast-as-lightening needle of his. It's a mess.

I'm frigged.
S. O. L.


I'm going to chat with Jack and Ginger shortly, nibble some (more) chocolate, maybe fondle a little Kona...that might help ease the frustration. Or, maybe I'll stick one of the 3 new needles I threw in the garbage yesterday into my left eye. That might take my mind off this load of crap too.


Why do I complicate my life so?
Why don't I just buy blankets like a normal person?

**On a positive note: I sure am happy with my new magnifying glasses! Couldn't have made it thru the day without them...

Monday 22 June 2015

A Cuppa & A Catch-Up

Mornin' peeps! Been a crazy week around here...
Despite having a hairy week in the shoppe, I managed to get in some quilty stuff.

Sister PurpleBoots has given into the the pull & started her first
quilty project, a dog bed cover. I say it's a matrimonial quilt for
Izzy and The Mexican...see their pictures? She chose, cut and
pieced these squares without any alcohol or temper tantrums!
She's got a way to go yet, but I can't wait to see it all finished!

I figured it was time for The Robot to start earning his keep. A friend told me I could do whatever I wanted to this scrappy string quilt so in the end I settled on this edge to edge pattern called Starlets, designed by Lisa Calle. It seemed to work because I was really drawn to the red star sucks me in every demands my attention. It's really rather bothersome to me, I blame it on my ADHD.

Other people scraps are so entertaining! 

Sounds pretty simple, right? Well, it was...after I ripped out a whole row of robot stitching from the first design choice that I absolutely hated. order to do hours of said stitch ripping I had to swallow my pride and dash out for a pair of magnifying glasses. Why? Because I couldn't see a damn thing! Apparently this is a cruel joke that Mother Nature plays on the 40 something crowd; bitch steals our vision! It's official, I'm old.

After I got the Scrappy String Quilt finished up I figured it was time to add the last of the bits and pieces to The Robot: an idler rail.  This piece took its good ole time coming in and then I took my good ole time getting around to installing it. Such a great feature, I wish I had been motivated sooner to open that box! A little help from Mr. PurpleBoots got me back up and running in no time! This means I no longer have to adjust the take-up roller as the bulk of quilt accumulates on the roller...and what a difference it makes! I loves it!

A super-special someone is having a super-special birthday so I am quilting up some ponies for her. She loves her horses, even though they try to kill her occasionally! At least now she will be able to wrap herself up in a cozy hug next time she gets hurt. It's possible I may have just ruined the surprise but I was just so excited by this and these fancy dudes are too cute not to share!!

On Saturday I went to a paper piecing workshop that the Maritime Modern Quilt Guild was hosting; not so much because I needed to learn but because I love hanging out with my quilty peeps! I even brought my buddy Miss Maime along so she could meet some of my guild mates.  We always have so much fun together laughing, stitching, know how it goes, right? I made this sweet 16" block that looks an awful lot like the one Linda made! We swapped fabrics so we'd have more variety and now we have matching pillow tops! Afterwards, we shopped at Atlanic Fabrics for a some new stash additions and popped in to rescue Anja who was having a Wee Wiggler emergency. 

Well peeps, my brown holy water is all but gone and The Robot beckons. 

Happy Monday!

Monday 15 June 2015

Poking Around Lahave

Went for a Sunday Drive with my boys... poked our way along the South Shore past Bridgewater and came back thru Voglers Cove and Lahave. Seemed strange to do it on such a sunny day in the truck, but it was lovely.

We stopped at a little museum on the Lahave Islands out past Cresent Beach. It is in an old church perched on the side of the bank overlooking the harbour. Lot's of neat artifacts in there but I was most taken with this old quilt:

I was glad to see that it had a place in the museums collection but sad that it was folded and wrapped in plastic (a little archival preservation research might do the curators good!) and more, it was hanging up so high it was hard to really see it or get a good photo of it. Each little square has a hand embroidered name and the amount they donated to the fundraiser. Everything from 10 cents to a dollar!

Mr. PurpleBoots tells me we've been down this road before, but I can't recall all of it. I remember parts of it...I do know we picniced on that beach the day after we married so I guess he's right; he doesn't forget things like I do.

Salt air, delicious bakery & cafe, antiques shops, galleries & studios, curvy road, good pavement, little traffic, beautiful scenery....pretty much the perfect road for purple boots and pigtails. If I ever get brave enough to get back on the Fatboy and feel the wind in my face this will be high on my list of must-ride-routes. I have to admit that I actually felt my riders spirit lift a little yesterday, so there is hope for me yet.

Thursday 11 June 2015

Gravity Project: Celestial

Time again for a little Gravity report.

The fifth block in the project is called Celestial. The Jaybird rulers made cutting the jewel shapes slick as sh*t...and because everything is cut so well it pieced up like a dream. These were one of the few blocks where I actually bothered to press a couple seams open. That whole open seam pressing is a bother to me...takes too much time, ruins a good ditch in which I might like to one day stitch and I tend to burn my finger--every single time! But here, that one long center seam where all those jewel points intersect really needed it so I gave in and opened 'er up.

These are by far my favourite blocks in the whole quilt. I am especially drawn to the peachy pink one... weird and unusual colours for me, I know. What odds? I must have hit my wee head recently... it's a little on the girly side for me.

I've been plugging away on the background pieces too...remember I mentioned I might have jumped ahead of the Quilt-A-Long? And so I just had to put some of the sections together. It was kinda exciting to see how this is coming together. It's also kinda tough to hold back and not just finish the darn thing.

"Slowin' my roll" is not easy for me.  I cut background pieces twice last week, couldn't do it all in one session. It was agony with my banged up body, it may or may not have involved some tears, but if I wanted to sew I had to cut. I managed. Funny how we take for granted simple movements, postures and activities...things we do mindlessly that we never consider might one day be difficult for us. Like cutting fabric, pulling open a door, getting into a bed, or sneezing for example, all suddenly that "make-me-want-to-throw-up" sort of difficult.

There's been a lot of down time for me the last two weeks.
I'm not good at down time.
I don't like down time.
I need new shoes.

Linking up with Busy Hands Quilts for the Gravity Quilt-A-Long! 

Friday 5 June 2015

Cutest. Mail. Ever.

Could there have been a better time for this super cute package to land in my lap?

The Pointy kit is in the house! 

The prescription for retail therapy was filled exactly the way Doctor Kaufman & Nurse Hartman recommended. 

Now, if my ribs would allow me to cut all this yummy Kona up with a little less complaining I'd be all set. Maybe Jack will help a girl out with that part of the treatment plan?

Wednesday 3 June 2015

Colour Me Kona!

It's official. 

I am a card carrying cult member of the Kona Nerd variety.

And, in case you were ever to find yourself needing to know: 
a yellow potted mum is Kona Kandy #1077, Citrus. 

 (*Yes, I did just rip a petal off my plant...but Miss Maime would understand the importance of this wee mutany and forgive me...only because she's happy I'm alive...and she knows what I'm like...and she loves me anyway! )

Monday 1 June 2015

Oh Deer!

Life has a way of tossing out reality checks now and then. I've had several life changing moments thrown at me over the years but this last one might have been the most terrifying 30 seconds yet. Friday night this beautiful deer crossed my path and ended up trading her life for mine.

Broken, like my heart.
I am so sorry.

Deer are plentiful in my neck of the woods and normally I enjoy seeing them, but I prefer not to be riding my Fatboy at 80km an hour at the time. We were headed home just around dusk when this big doe happened to cross the road just as I was passing leaving me no time to panic, swerve or brake. Perhaps that's what saved me, maybe it was a troop of guardian angels riding with me or maybe the devil's not quite ready for me yet?

What ever the reason, I am grateful.

When I saw her leap out of the ditch, knowing I couldn't stop, I instantly pegged myself for dead. This was it, my greatest fear suddenly realized. In mere seconds I thought about my son, my husband, my family.

But I got lucky. I got a chance to tell the people I care about how much I love them. I got to wrap my arms around my child, my husband, my dogs and wake to see another day. I walked away from a motorcycle accident and that my friends, is a rare gift, the magnitude of which is not lost on me.

I walked.

Can't help but think of my friends friend who hit one near Truro a couple weeks ago who will spend the rest of his life in a wheelchair, paralyzed. Can't help but feel sorry for that animal who lay broken and afraid until the RCMP Officer arrived to bring her peace. Can't help but feel good about the kindness of countless people who stopped to offer assistance. Can't help but feel gratitude for that one friend who came in a heartbeat to help get me & my bike home and asked no questions, offered no opinions or advice...just came. Can't help but wonder if I might ever be settled enough to actually enjoy riding my bike again.

I walked away.

I am hurt but not badly.
My bike is messed up but it can be fixed.
The deer keeps running in front of my minds eye but eventually the image will rest and so will I.

Life is short and it can change forever in seconds.
I already knew this.
But I am reminded.

So now, because I can, I'm reminding you:
Life is short.
Follow your joy.
Tell people you love them every chance you get.