Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Susan Beal,  Pendleton Woolen Mills 

and a new book

 A log cabin quilt from Pendleton plaids
A couple of quilts that use the lovely Pendleton San Miguel fabric

 A couple of items made from the book, a wool pillow, the banner and the bag at the bottom of the photo. 

On sunday I had the privilege of attending an event for Susan Beal and her latest book "Hand-Stitched Home". The book full of projects made from Pendleton fabric. The projects are fairly simple but the use of the Pendleton fabric makes these beautiful & classic quilts and bags. I have always been in love with wool quilts but have not made one because I was a little afraid of the bulk that would come from working with wool. Looking at Susan's quilts and projects it's just a matter of matching some lightweight wools with the heavy blanket weight fabric. Susan had several of the projects at the event so it gave me the opportunity to see projects and feel the weights of the quilts. I think one of my next projects will be the easy zipper clutch designed by  Sarai Mitnik of Colette or maybe a cute Border Print Wool Tote…there is a quick tutorial on Susan's website about making the bag with about 1/2 a yard of a border fabric from Pendleton. 

Thursday, September 25, 2014

September 25th 

I was going to write something on wednesday but I was too depressed. You see a good friend was in a car accident and died on the scene, another good friend was in the car with him (they carpool to work) and she is in ICU. I spent most of the day wondering how this could happen to a couple of very interesting, funny, creative and caring people. Well it happens everyday, all over the world and when it happens to someone you know it really hits home that death is really part of life.  You see I'm reading a book called "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes & Other Lessons from the Crematory" by Caitlin Doughty. It talks about how society deals with death, how we try to ignore that death is part of life. Caitlin discusses how other countries accept death and how they process the loss of a family member or loved one. She also talks about the embalming process and what morticians have to do to a body to get it ready for a viewing. The work that goes into making someone look like they are not dead. My friend was a psychiatrist at the Oregon State Hospital, his passenger was a nurse at the same hospital. 

On a lighter note I made some more rugs..I think I have about 13 rugs. Now comes the process of how to market my product. The first photo is of the wool salvage and how I purchase it in large bags at the Pendleton Woolen Mills, the bags range from 6-11 lbs. 

I also have a new fun item in my kitchen. My husband installed a tap on the side of the refrigerator for soda water. I was hesitant at first because I did not want to drill a hole in the side of the fridge, now I'm glad we did…it makes it so much easier to get a glass of soda water. 

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

A Scrappy Quilt & Another Rug

Sunday my Husband left to go camping, leaving me with the house all to myself. At first I wondered around trying to figure out what I wanted to do. I knew I wanted to sew & I have about 10 patterns that I want to make but I was unable to pick one. I get a little overwhelmed some times and have a hard time making choices. I remember seeing this quilt on flickr and I thought I would just go to my studio and start sewing fabric together, I have a very large fabric scrap bin. About 4 hours later I had made twelve blocks that are 12.5x12.5. I now have 20 blocks and I'm out of my funk. All I have to do is sew the blocks together to make the top. I think I will make the backing a solid piece as the front is all over the place.
Monday I started the Pendleton White Rug (it's really red, green, yellow, black and white…but I call it the white rug). I really like this rug more than the others that I have made. I think it's because the scrap was larger, thus making the rug much thicker than the others and the colors are so nice and bright. The rug was made from Pendleton Wool scrap that is currently on sale for 1/2 off through the month of September. These rugs are sooooo easy to make, Pendleton offers classes to make the rugs. The class is about 2 hours long and you will leave with a lovely handmade wool rug. What more could you want for the coming winter months?

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Clothes I have made for my Husband

 This is some nice tiki fabric that my husband picked out at the fabric store. He's standing with Mitt Romney at the State fair…he's trying to look like Mitt that is why he has a strange look on his face. 
Down in Yuma by the Colorado River, the shirt is a nice tropical print. 

We are down in Mexico getting glasses for my mother and myself. My husband also picked out his fabric at the fabric store…sexy Cowgirls.  

My husband is wearing his Day of the Dead shirt and his friend John is wearing the travel shirt. I made both of these shirts for my husband, he was nice enough to share this shirt with his friend when he was in town for a book reading. John Law wrote a book called "Tales of the San Francisco Cacophony Society".

 My husband wearing the cowboy shirt & chicken pants I made for him last year.  

A simple black linen shirt that goes with everything…including his sexy cowgirl pants.

My Husband loves the clothes I make for him and often comes into my sewing room to see what I'm doing. It's easy to sew for him as I have a couple of patterns that I have altered to fit him and make the same shirt just using different fabric. He also loves what I call pajama pants, all I had to do was add pockets to the pants. There are many more shirts and pants I have made for him over the years, these are just some of the ones he wears daily. 

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Passion Flower 

The Passion Flower in front of our house is still blooming away. The bees love it!!!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Giveaway on Spoonflower

I love giveaways. This week Spoonflower is giving away the latest Gertie sewing book called "Gertie Sews Vintage Casual" along with 3 yards of a fabric of your choice. If you have not seen Spoonflower yet…check it out. You can design your own fabric and they will print it for you. There are some really fun and very strange designs, you can buy other customers designs if they want to share. 

Anyway…check it out and register to win a Gertie's new book along with 3 yards of fabric. 

The winner will be drawn on September 17th 2014.

One hot afternoon 

Last week it was quite hot so we headed down to Kelly Point Park past St Johns. It was nice to sit in cold water watching boats go past. I'm busy sewing to see what I can make quickly and is interesting enough to sell at a farmers market or on Etsy. I was talking to a friend and she told me she sells tons of reusable bags where she works. I decided to try my hand at making bags. I have made other recycled bags but I think vintage fabric and ribbon is a hit. These bags are about 20" tall by 18 " wide. They are easy to make, it's all about the gusset on the bottom to give the bag some structure. I used some scrap upholstery fabric and some really beautiful vintage ribbon for the handle. The thins is I have tons of scrap fabric that I can use to make a few of these bags, making all of them unique and one of a kind. Most of the time for me is spent decided on color combinations. 

Tuesday, September 2, 2014


It always feels like the weather takes a turn the day after labor day, there is a cool breeze in the air.  This year in my garden I planted a lot of tomatoes. I was able to preserve about 12 quarts of tomatoes, it should get us through the winter. I have a large braid of garlic and some pickled onions…all things that I planted and grew in the community garden. 

The one thing that I did not plant was sunflowers. This year they kind of took over my little garden plot, all the sunflowers were volunteers. I fell in love with sunflowers after seeing fields of sunflowers in Arles, France. I was on a tour called "In the footsteps of Vincent Van Gogh", we started in Nice France went to Arles, Paris and Amsterdam. In Amsterdam we saw one of the largest exhibits of Van Gogh's work ever to be shown together. That is how I fell in love with sunflowers.   

What post would be complete without a photo of a cute kitty in a box.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Home Accessories

I have been a little busy lately. I've been trying to make several of these Pendleton Wool Rugs in an attempt to sell some on etsy. I figured that I need to make about 15 rugs so I can have a full page of items. I love making them but have become bored after making only seven rugs. 

I started to make this blue quilt for my sister when she got married last summer but found out from several family members that my sister does not like the color blue. So I set this blue quilt aside and made a different quilt top for my sister and her wife. I have not finished my sisters quilt, I have to get up to Modern Domestic and use the long arm quilting machine. But I really wanted to finish a quilt this last week, so I pulled out the small blue quilt to see if I could get it done on my home machine. I feel good about finally completing this blue quilt.