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Archive for June, 2007

Global Warming Comes to Our House…

Friday, June 22nd, 2007

This morning when I was eating breakfast, I noticed that my yogurt was sort of lukewarm. I asked Mr C if his milk was warm. Yep! I got up and went to the fridge and took note that it felt quite warm for a refrigerator. I checked the freezer and it was hunky dory – everything was nice and frozen. Hmmm, what is going on. My first thought was that the lights were not going off. Checked that out – nope. I put a thermometer on the top shelf and it registered 72°, the same as the room temperature. This is not good,

Now, I am afraid to eat anything coming from the fridge, but I had already finished my yogurt and raspberries. Mr C got on the phone with a repairman — they can’t come until Monday. June and Terry are arriving soon so I must leave the fridge problem and get on with my whirlwind day.

We had a great critique session. They each had two pieces so I felt like a slacker! This exercise, which we try to do monthly, has been a very enriching experience for me. I feel as if I have learned so much from Terry and June. After critique and some gossiping, we were off to have lunch and more gossiping and commiserating about our relationships with our progeny.

I walked home from lunch — about mile and a half and found Steph and M & M waiting for me — yeah — nice surprise. Steph wanted to do some errands sans children. While M & M played with their scooters in the front yard. I cooked up some chicken that I bought last night, hoping to salvage it. I began throwing out suspect stuff and took food to the garage fridge that can survive a few hours in warm temps without going bad — I hope. Of course, I should have done all this in the morning, oh well — C’est la vie!

Milo became more enthralled with the buttons and mechanisms on the scooter that make it fold up and move the mar up and down than with scooting.



Mia, however, was sailing around the neighborhood.


She stopped for a refreshing glass of ice water.


She set the glass on the porch and Maggie promptly picked it up and carried it off and drank the water and enjoyed the ice cubes. We had never seen her do anything like this before.



I took Kristin’s advise and attempted to enlist M & M’s help sorting my fused fabric scraps by color. This did not last long. But they found other ways to amuse themselves while I did the sorting. Here is my scrap rainbow. This is only the start of my sorting.

Steph and Jack showed up around 5ish and we all went out to dinner at Sticker’s, the Asian restaurant near us that has a great medley of Asian food. I had chicken pot stickers and Vietnamese salad rolls.

Despite the global warming, it has been a very nice day.

Thursday This and That

Thursday, June 21st, 2007

I am so jazzed and elated. I finished the studio clean-up and reorganization today, just in time for a crit meeting with June and Terry tomorrow. I have one little room to work on. It is the little kitchenette. I need to reorganize my dyeing and painting supplies.

Here is one of my design walls. It has work in progress, work rejected from shows and other miscellaneous stuff.


In front of the design wall you can see a glimpse of my iron collection:


I have never used the cute little pink princess iron because I can’t find the cord. The one to the left of that is a non steam iron. It is an old Black and Decker which many people covet.

I have one other job that I want to accomplish. That is to organize my fused scraps by color. I think they will be more useful. Here are two bins of scraps.


Mr C has been working on the yard in the back of the house. He has dug out a pathway which is lined with bender board. It will have gravel added at some point. Today, he transplanted a Japanese maple, that had been in the front yard, to my studio patio. I have some nice plans for this area such as a cutting flower garden and a fountain.


Tonight, Mr C and I treated ourselves to dinner at ClarkLewis. I had a roasted beet salad that was sooo good and pasta made with squid ink and a heavily garlic sauce with grilled shrimp. We shared a delicious chocolate concoction for dessert. I tried two new wines — a chilled pinot noir rose with salad and a new white wine — a Fruili blend from Oregon’s Cameron winery. It was so smooth, not rich like a Chardonnay and not as acerbic as a Sauvignon blanc.

All in all, it has been a very satisfying day, but, of course, the rain is coming back this week-end.

Less is More

Tuesday, June 19th, 2007

Where have I been? Well, I have not been making art. I’ve been thinking about it though! I’ve been doing the “it’s almost summer, spring cleaning” of my basement compound. I am trying to reorganize some of my surface design goodies so that they are accessible, but not out of sight, out of mind. I rearranged and purged the grand-kids toy storage in anticipation of spending some time with them this summer.

Oh, and my big Bertha Mac crashed!! I have had the G4 Performa for 10 years or more. It has been giving me fits for awhile, but I can usually run disk utility and repair it. On Saturday, it could not find the disk to repair it. So, I thought I would be frugal and get a new hard drive. Mr C went to the store with me so that he could lug big Bertha. While I was dickering with the service department about the price for a new hard drive and the cost to retrieve my data, Mr C came over with some information about the Mac Mini. It would cost about twice as much as getting Big Bertha repaired and would give me much more memory and a more powerful processor. I am so glad he came with me because I came home with cutest little computer in the world. I put a Sharpie on top of it so that you can see how small it is. It takes up hardly any space at all and it is a little power house.


I brought it home on Sunday, but I couldn’t connect to the Internet. So I took it back on Monday. Today, I picked up a new Mac Mini and am now connected.

Tonight Terry and I went to our High Fiber Diet Meeting. We are making plans for the annual show and sale at the Japanese Garden. It will be in September. So I must get some wabi-sabi pieces done — that is our theme. For those who don’t know, wabi-sabi is the Japanese philosophy that embraces a beauty of things imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete. It is a beauty of things modest and humble. So I guess I will make a quilt that is half-done, with imperfect stitches and will disintegrate after someone buys it!!

Could It Really Be Friday?

Friday, June 15th, 2007

This will be a multi-purpose post. I have a few things to catch up on.

First of all, I have posted new photos on the Virtual Iraq War Protest. Click on the Endless/end this war bumper sticker in my side bar. Hope all of you who have not taken photos yet are looking for something really interesting for us.

Here are photos of the finished fence for my son in San Francisco. We added these wonderful Stainless Steel post caps which makes it look quite elegant, don’t you think?



I had lots of queries about wanting to know more about Trisha Hassler’s work. There is a link to her website in my previous post. She is this skinny little thing who drives around Portland looking for rusty metal pieces. She says that if she can pick it up, drag it to her car and fit it in the trunk, it is hers. She has a studio where she does her sewing, but the metal work is done in a shop owned by some guy who does metal work. She has her own piece of equipment for cutting the metal into shapes and making holes. She had a slide of her in her work garb — heavy duty boots, big gloves, leather apron and one of those helmet face guards. She makes exquisite little pieced quilts in a variety of shapes which she then finds a way to attach to metal frames. The metal is finished with a polyurethane before the quilts are attached. She found a guy in a hardware store who has been helping her with fasteners for four years. He specially orders stuff for her, but the funny thing is, he has never asked her what she is doing with it. In her other life, she is a photo stylist for her husband who is a professional photographer. Her work is even better in person because it is so textural. She has started rusting fabric to use and said that the fact that pieces of metal become permanently attached to the fabric is very synergistic for her.


This is one of the images that Mr C and I saw at the Body Images 3 show at OMSI, here in Portland. I had always thought that I would not enjoy seeing these exhibits, but it was just fabulous. I especially loved seeing the intricate nerve and capillary/vein systems — really mind blowing. Most of the bodies did not have an ounce of fat on them, but they did have a sliced section of an obese person, which gave you pause. Must get rid of that adipose tissue!!

Here is a thread doodle that I did today. I didn’t quite get the roundness of the vase or the correct clustering of the lavender. This is a vase with lavender that Mark and Jayme gave me. I think I will try this one again.



Hope you all have a great week-end.

Satin Stitch Quilt Edge Tutorial

Wednesday, June 13th, 2007

Some of you asked about the satin stitch edging I did on the last cruciform quilt. This is an edging that both Sue Benner and Charlotte Yde do on their quilts. It requires a fairly stiff surface. Sue’s fused quilts provide this. Charlotte uses tear away stabilizer between the batting and the backing. It is not torn away and does leave a stiffer finished product, but for a wall quilt, sometimes that is better.

To show how I do this, I will use a post card as an example. I work on two opposing sides at a time. The first pass is a simple default setting for the zigzag stitch. On a large quilt, I would use a beige or gray thread so that I don’t waste good thread which will be covered. It is important to leave fairly long tails of thread on each end of the stitching.



After you have done two sides, zig zag the other sides, leaving tails.

Then set the zigzag stitch for satin stitching. On my Janome, I set the width slightly larger than default and the stitch distance at .50. Again, do two opposing sides at a time and use a thread that enhances your design. I usually use a variegated thread that has the colors of the quilt. It gives a stripey look to the finished edge. Be sure to hold the threads from the first pass out of the way. They actually help you to get a good start from the edge on the satin stitching.


After you have finished two sides, do the other two sides. On a post card, I call this done. On a quilt, I usually do another pass, that is slightly wider. When you have stitched all the sides, tie the threads together. I usually use a needle or stylus to help me get the knot close to the edge. Then trim the threads to a pleasing length for the size of the quilt.


That is it! Let me know if anything I said is confusing!!

Here are a couple of thread doodles that I did a while ago and decided not to post. But, here they are!! The first is a true “thread” doodle.


Judy quilted some beautiful circles on one of her quilts recently, and I decided that I needed to practice quilting circles because I love them.


I was doing some sorting and cleaning in my studio and found this button that my good friend Pat gave me a while ago. It seems even more apropos now that I have added skin cancer to my list of crappy stuff.


I had the little bitty surgical removal of the skin cancer cells yesterday. I’m happy to have that over.

Tonight is the quarterly meeting of Columbia Stitchery Guild at the Interstate Firehouse Cultural Center, the location of our show. Trisha Hassler is the guest speaker. If you want to be wowed, click on her name to see her work.