Quilt ADD in therapy

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Colorado, United States
Other than my family, the passion of my life is quilting. An eclectic, I love any and every style that makes me smile. Traditional? Awesome, especially with historic or family story connections. Modern? Fun! Free! Cheery! Paper piecing? How cool can you get?

Monday, September 15, 2014

BOMs Away Monday

Welcome to the Link-Up for BOMs Away Mondays!
We'd love to see the BOM you're working on lately.
This week's link-up is at the bottom of the post.
I did not work on Ruffled Roses at all (the second-Sunday BOM). Did get Preface & ch. 1 revamps worked out to my advisor's satisfaction and finished ch. 5 to send over to him.
Working crazily on ch.6 right now, which is a coordinated jumble of research notes and bits of finished draft. 35 pages at the moment to be smoothed into 20 or fewer.
Here's some eye candy for you, though. Brooches made by Japanese American WWII internees in the Topaz center in Utah. They got the shells from the surrounding desert, and used paints and fingernail polish to color them. Aren't they amazing?
This shot is from the book The Art of Gaman, by Delphine Hirusana, which is really terrific to browse through.

Have you done any work on your BOMs recently?

Monday, September 8, 2014

BOMs Away - Crunch Time

Welcome to the Link-Up for BOMs Away Mondays!
We'd love to see the BOM you're working on lately.
This week's link-up is at the bottom of the post.
Hey there! Bear with me over the next 4 weeks if I'm a little slow getting this linky up or not as social as I used to be. It's crunch time for the final draft of my thesis to be turned in, and I've got 4 chapters remaining to fix up.  This is this week's task:
These last chapters are in my "Throw Down" stage, where all research and analysis notes are pasted into documents that are organized by divisions of information. Meaning, with the chapter for this week, there are 55 pages of such info copy/pasted as I worked with the individual items (and there are thousands of them) into an organized Word file under appropriate Navigation Pane headings. But when you get to each heading, it's literally a pool of individual items/thoughts that need to be logically ordered and then massaged into coherent paragraphs. I expect this one will finalize around 9ooo words, something like 30 pages.
Sooooo - I was busy yesterday finishing the clean-up of footnote formats in last week's chapter, and the sum total of BOM work I got done was quilting the maze work on the dark half of THREE ENTIRE log cabin blocks in Kelly's quilt!  Woohoo!!  ;D 
But hey, something is better than nothing.

Have you done any work on your BOMs recently? Hope my U.S. friends are enjoying their Labor Day weekend!

Monday, September 1, 2014

BOMs Away & Colorado Balloon Classic

Welcome to the Link-Up for BOMs Away Mondays!
We'd love to see the BOM you're working on lately.bo
This week's link-up is at the bottom of the post.
(BOM work in a sec - gotta journal some family fun first).
We had the best time yesterday! Scott and Marissa and I got up before the sun to drive down into Colorado Springs for the 38th Annual Colorado Balloon Classic. We wanted to catch this unique bit of fun in Memorial Park since it looks like it's the last time it'll be held here. Not sure what I was expecting, but it wasn't an open free-for-all where crowds of people could literally walk right up inside the crush of densely-packed hot air balloon crews. Owners brought their balloons in pickup trucks and small trailers (sometimes just the trucks!), and they were literally being inflated within touching distance of each other. Some pilots didn't have enough crew members, so Scott and Marissa answered a call from the organizing staff to jump in. I would have been a superfluous helper, so I had fun catching snapshots of the process.
First you pull everything out - prep the basket, lay out the envelope, and then get to the big work.

Mr. Keller (owner and pilot) was very particular about the hoses being connected properly.

The entire envelope is in that canvas bag!

Hmm... not sure where the shot went of the top pulled out entirely -
it stretches out in a line maybe 20 yards long.

 Pilots "cold pack" the tops, which is blowing regular air into it first. As that is starting, folks up front hold the opening open, and folks in back attach the top to the top. (Don't know any more terms than "envelope.")  Somebody holds on to the tether line that is attached at the tip-top to keep the whole thing under control as the inflation process continues.
The fan behind Marissa is what fills the balloon in the first place.
Attaching the very top while the envelope fills
Once the balloon is full of cold air, the pilot oh-so-carefully sends jets into the opening to heat things up. It's amazing how fast the air in there responds, and very soon you control the tip of the basket as it all pulls itself upright.

Once the organizers remove the "hold" flag, the pilot gives a little boost to his hot air, and he's up - up - and away! 
Have a great flight, Mr. Keller!
What a great random adventure to be able to be a part of that process.  :D
Here are a few of my favorite shots after that. They had 80 balloons this year, and sent them off in two waves. Check out how the spectators are packed right in with the balloons once people really started arriving!  Also, you can see in some of the pics how the pilots love to come down and "kiss" the little lake in the park before re-ascending for the rest of their flight. Oh, and don't miss catching the crazy man sitting in a "Cloud Hopper." Two of those were there, and they just sit on a little aluminum chair instead of in a basket!








Cheshire has a tail, just out of sight -
hangs down almost to the basket!

It was a superb morning - definitely worth the too-early rise out of bed and the $10 parking we paid to get into the lot the Boy Scouts could use for fund-raising.
So - for BOM stuff!  I didn't do much at all, cause the day at the Balloon Classic was too much fun and then I wanted a nap.  But I did do some hand work. 
The bottom of the first block for "Fiesta Mexico" is stitched now - that piece is over a yard long.
Navarre says to tell you it'll eventually have this design work stitched on it:

 And I hand basted the 48 berries onto the applique border for "Heart & Home."  But I didn't stitch them down yet - started to, but had to go take a nap!
Also, the second of my cousin Kelly's Joseph Smith quilts has been up to bat at the quilting machine for about 10 days. The stabilizing is finished and the stars are quilted.

The finish will be a lonnnng time coming, though - I only get two 20-minute quilting sessions per day as breaks in my thesis work, which is back at full-steam-ahead. Last semester!!

Have you done any work on your BOMs recently? Hope my U.S. friends are enjoying their Labor Day weekend!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

BOMs Away & Belt Boards

Welcome to the Link-Up for BOMs Away Mondays!
We'd love to see the BOM you're working on lately.bo
This week's link-up is at the bottom of the post.
Hey, how are you all?  If you're in California, I sure hope your property is OK. I don't miss the earthquakes of my teen years, that's for sure.
I pulled out Heart & Home again this week. Got all my sashing strips made, and did the bits of hand stitching that wanted doing before it was bulkier to hold:

Hearts floating from a chimney, rails on a rooftop. . .

But the buttons for the yo-yo tree and the panes of several windows were left for post-quilting finish work.
I would have made further progress in my assembly during the short sewing time I had today, were it not for this boo-boo:
(This picture has the best color representation of the fabrics.)
Got it ripped out and resewn, and now that project is at this point:

Before I insert this week's link-up for BOM work sharing, I wanted to journal this bit of family activity:
 August 2nd was belt-testing day again at the dojang. Everyone in the family now studies Taekwondo, and all but Marissa tested this cycle. Marissa didn't participate, because she'd just returned from her summer in Florida. Like: Literally! We pulled into the driveway from the airport with barely enough time to grab the uniforms and run to the school.
We've been doing up a fun scrap-boarding "thing" of our own to mark our journey through the belt ranks toward Black Belt. At each belt test, the last item is to break your 1" board doing the prescribed strike or kick of the cycle. (I hear there are multiple boards at higher levels.) You leave with your board pieces. 
Well, Devon and I somehow came up with the idea months ago to paint something meaningful on our initial boards, intending to hang the subsequent smaller sides on the bottom as we go. We finally got the last board sprayed a couple of days ago, and hook-n-eyes screwed in, ribbons tied, so that they could be hung as a group.
Devon painted a beautiful bonsai, because studying Taekwondo restored a sense of inner peace for her after a very difficult couple of years.
I researched Korean art and culture to find a way to symbolize that I study Taekwondo to battle for good health. Seriously, my main purpose of doing this sport is to keep my feet on my body despite severe circulation and peripheral neuropathy issues. In Korean classical art, a cat and butterfly together signify vitality and longevity. I can't remember how to pronounce the two words I painted in - seung something, but that's what they mean. 
Marissa chose a golden deer because it's a mythical creature in Korean culture that caught her fancy.
Heather went with a koi to represent perseverance in the face of adversity (they swim upstream) and academic success (she had just graduated from college). She fights a couple health issues of her own and has scoliosis that gets painful.
Scott wanted to do a dragon.  In fact, he went and bought wood-burning tools so he could do this the way he wanted after getting Heather to draw one out on paper for him. Well, I can relate to that as far as quilting tools go, so I just smiled.  :)   He was rather tickled that he broke his board into 3 pieces. The turtles represent the foundation of this new study for him.
This positioning should last us another year before we'll need to raise the nails for the rest of the belt levels. We'll be adding green, purple, blue, brown, brown-senior, red, red-senior, bodan 1, bodan 2, black belt eligible, and then our blacks. That's the full intention, and we'll see how much time it takes to get there!

So, with that out of the way - have you been able to work on your BOMs recently?

Friday, August 22, 2014

Flimsy Alert!! Wait! Make that TWO!!

I'm so excited for this week's Friday, because I finally have some finishes to share! For an entire calendar year, my double wedding ring has monopolized the priority spot at my machines. Now that it's machine work is completely finished and it's overtaken the hand-work station, other things can run through the machines.  :D

(Isabeau just LOVES this quilt. Every time I unfold it to get some more tissue cleaned off and ends tied/tucked, she tears into the room and tucks herself in or under it.)

My "finishes" to share today are flimsies still, but when you work with big quilts almost exclusively, this state qualifies for Finish link-ups in my book. 

The first one is "Modernology."

This was a straight-up kit that I fell hard for when I saw it in Hawthorne Thread's newsletter (really great shop, by the way). The fabric collection is "Modernology" by Pat Bravo, and the pattern is "Quiltology," also by Pat and available free at this link. Until last week, this quilt had been in progress strictly as a leader-ender from December until I finished piecing the DWR. I got maybe seven of the rows made that way. Then it just sat and looked at me sadly for when it could have attention again.

(Marissa and Dev kept giggling at the breezes that made it challenging to get a full-on shot. Made us all smile!) 

But once the machines were cleared, I went to town on finishing the rows and assembling the whole!!  These fabrics and the modern, clean design seriously made my heart sing. I even have the exact backing that the original was done up in - see it in this Art Gallery Fabrics promo photo here (fabulous fabrics that feel so wonderful)? Seriously - how can you look at that picture of this lady wrapped up so snuggly with that sun-shiny back peeking out around the crisp, fun hexy front and not have to buy that kit?  Not one single regret here about that impulse purchase!

(photo from the kit shoot, not mine)

I'm not sure what to use for batting. The fabrics are so lusciously light - like voiles, and I want a nice, soft handle for this quilt. I also need it to be the pure white of the bleached choices. I can't decide! cotton? silk? (is there even bleached silk batting to be had?) a super thin and high-quality poly?  I'll probably go with 80/20 cotton/poly and a not-dense quilting theme. But I'd love any input on the batting.

My second finish is "Fireflies in the Meadow."

And while we're admitting to impulse purchases, let's address this year's indulgence! A couple weeks ago I fell head-over-heels for the quilt Kate made (of Katie Mae Quilts blog), and when I asked if she minded if I made one too, she not only said go right ahead, but provided me with a link of where to find the fabric! 

I really loved not only the mitered border from the hem print, but the way Kate had sewn the companion fabrics in clean rows with feature inserts. But I didn't want to completely copy her, so I split my rows randomly instead of straight down the middle like hers. I can't decide which way I like better - they're both super cool. But talk about whizzing along - after all the intricate projects I work with, this zoomer was a joy to fly through in about 4 hours flat from fussy-cutting the Wee Wanders inserts to connecting the miters at the corners. Joy, joy, joy!  :D

Isn't this quilt perfectly at home in front of our common meadow area? Too bad we're at way too high an altitude for fireflies! Wouldn't *that* be an awesome photo shoot?

Hope you're enjoying the end of summer. Now that I've worked out some of my feelings of constriction from the longest priority project of my life, my machine time will be refocused on finishing up long-standing UFOs. I'm antsy to get back around to both of these, though, so hopefully you'll see them again before year's end.  :D

Linking up at: