Saturday, June 30, 2012

Random: Getting there

to be continue.... { were out and about, but slowly and steady}

p.s. I do sleep, but move a lot when I awake! 


Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Random: from the beginning

{J`Adore Stella Paris  by dear stella}

{thank you. thank you} for sweet comments on the {patchwork wallet} and { the impossible quilt} again!  You made my heart dancing around and smiling all day long!  It has been a long, but fabulous day here! Finally, I went through the critique with my professor. It was long, but worth every minutes of it. If you wondered what a critique means to a MFA student. I would tell you, it can make you smile for a long time or tears dropping right in the crit. I have had both! I must defense my artworks and give reasons why I made the decisions or what's the concepts behind each little elements. I am glad it went well! I had moment of nerve as always, but I hold it as tight as I can. I provided all the information and answered all the questions. I really felt tried after I got home. I couldn't do any sewing today. I need a break! A break to recap all the crit. information and a little thinking break for my next project.  I have been seeing these J'Adore Stella Paris around. Finally I got some prints and loving them all! These are soft texture. I really like the birds and cages. It will be a great print for fussy cuts.

 After we got home! We both had fresh juice and some snack. I started to pull out fabrics for next quilt. I have been getting gray, mute prints lately and they have just arrived this week. These will pair well with rich and retro prints. I haven't decided on the quilt pattern. I am thinking a log cabin pattern.

I have been cooking everyday for every dinner meal! We were able to finish everything! No leftovers! S have agreed sandwiches or leftovers for lunch, but I promised her a fresh dinner meal for each night! We have been eating veggies everyday and I must admitted it was hard to get her to eat the celery and sweet peppers.

 A little bit of olive oil and mixed veggies and pinch of salt! very delicious!

 Our dill is one of very few plants survived!  I am waiting it to bloom!

The fabric finally arrived. I will be able baste the {patchwork sampler} and begin with the hand-quilting process. It will take me a little while to finish it.  I plan on write up a tutorial soon, but it might be another week or so.


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Patchwork Wallet

Thank you for the kind words about the { impossible quilt}. My w.i.p. projects are on going and I learn to set up a time to finish it! I work better with a schedule. I made another patchwork this weekend. It was fun to play with  new scraps/ colors. I added some new scraps into the bowl and got some new colors. This time, I made a patchwork style wallet.  I really like it! It is measured 8"x8" { open flat}. Two large pockets for bills and I added the inner zippered for coins. A few pockets for cards.  Lined with {Moda Love print in canvas weight} and Amy Butler's blue print { sorry I don't remember the name of the print} .

I love small project that I can finish over a weekend and additional day or two. It makes me feel more accomplished. I love how many of you have been playing with your scraps and make your own patchwork totes, bags, and pouches and lots more ! I love them all.  I love how one idea can be expended to many different ideas. I love how you come and stop by each day and just check out this space and keep me company!

so far so GOOD!


Monday, June 25, 2012

Random: { me and the impossible quilt}

What do you think of this quilt? I just finished hand-binding this afternoon and did the photograph.  If I tell you I didn't like it would you think that I am crazy? After spent all the money, labor, and time that I invested in this quilt.  Am I out of my thinking? I called this quilt { me and the impossible quilt}. 

Three years ago, when I met a local quilt lady we had this idea to used English paper piecing method and make a Grandmother's Garden quilt. Soon after we got our own fabrics, paper hexes, and cut the fabric. She had an eye surgery.  We met 4 times total for this project. Between then this project has been put away since! Three years later,  I did not any of these colors together, but I can pick a few prints that I still love.  I did not like these small packaged fabric were flowing around the storage room and I knew they were sad to be put away.

Two years ago before I moved away from Iowa and had a big garage sale. These fabric packages were once in the {sale} side. However, I packed them and move them with me. During the last two years, I never have any intention of finishing this quilt. I used the pieced hexes and made them into
{handmade napkins} and was really happy how they turn out. I sent them away for a swap and I hope my friend will love them as much as I do. The rest of the squares were still sitting. You probably have seen me post here and there about working slowly on this quilt. Again, I wasn't really happy about it! It almost became a labor quilt rather than a quilt that I love { does it sound just so negative about it?} 

As you see each nine patch blocks are different. It is not intentionally design differently. I changed my mind from the very beginning to the very end. The last assembling was pick up a square as I go. Not really paying any attention to the color matching.

Finally two weekends ago, I made my mind about making these blocks into a {quilt top}. Remember I talked about making it into a picnic quilt? When we were in the fabric store I had the hardest time to find the right sashing and corner prints.  I didn't like any darker colors or large prints. Then S insisted the green polka dot and I went with her idea and another 30 minutes later I decided the corner print.

We came home and I still had questions about these prints that I just bought. I was not confident about the three prints that we got.  I went back to the sewing room and started cutting the pieces. I worked very late that night and got most of the sashes and corner squares sewn together. The next day spent another day  assembled the quilt top together. The edges were well matched and the back seams were all pressed open. Even though I knew I didn't like this quilt much, but I knew that I should give the same respect to it. 

After some hours in basting, quilting, and binding. This quit came to alive and I didn't like it until I saw the last two photos S took for me with the impossible quilt.  The quilt color scheme is so soft which is so different from what I have been working on last few years. The colors aren't eye catchy. It is a very simple quilt nothing special about it.  But I have some appreciations about this quilt! What I appreciated about this quilt is that I could see the frustrations that I have been through last three years; changing ideas and wanting to give up this quilt making.  What I don't see from last three years were I grown into a better quilter and committed myself to become better!  My professor always tells me when I get frustrated that's the time I grow the most. Quilting seems is a habit to some extend, but I see it as a person growth as well. 

This quilt is on my bed now and it is a perfect summer quilt for me! I deleted the idea of turning this quilt into a picnic quilt and will appreciated it and put it in good use now on. It is still a { me and the impossible quilt}. I love W.I.P { work in progress} projects, but I won't wait for another 3 years to finish another quilt. I should enjoy each making process and take the time to make each project in the positive and committed way. All the investments that I put into need to be respected. No just money, but the original motivations and goals. Although the hex quilt never happen in life, but I still have it on { to do} list. It will be the first quilt I will make after finish school.   Do you have one of { you and the impossible quilt} around?


Sunday, June 24, 2012

Random: me and the impossible quilt preview

My day has been going really well. The quilt is bound and photograph. A few editing here and there are needed. S claimed milk is out, Bisquick mix is out, eggs are low, half loaf of bread left, one apple left to share. A run to grocery store is must and my mind is a bit full at the moment! I will be back with { me and the impossible quilt} tomorrow. 


Saturday, June 23, 2012

Random: Weekending

The week went fast and I  we have lots accomplishments! No to mention crazy raindrop days and some great gatherings with friends. It is truly a blessed week and great time to work with S over last couple of days. We basted the new quilt together { I will talk more about this quilt later}. She learned  some new terms in quilting and she asked many fun questions that I would never though of. I enjoy the time that we spent together! {Some of the pins didn't get through three layers as I was quilting, but it didn't really bother much}.

Summer meals are hard to prepared.  Sandwiches are "no! no!" and leftovers are " not again!". I started to cook smaller amount of food each day, so we can have fresh food for each meal and it has been much better. Do you love curry rice? It is one of quick and simple food to make and S always ask for more.

We had chance to visit our friend's garden again yesterday. The flowers don't smell much, but I love how tiny they are and they bring some colors to our kitchen table. Fresh herbs for cooking and tea.  Have you try fresh mint with your summer tea? It is delicious! It is actually my favorite drink now! I prefer the raspberry tea than anything!

My fabric finally arrived! I had a little trouble with the fabric company. As you can see, I am collecting gray prints ! These prints are just simple and soft. They are different from the rich and retro colors that I have in the stashes.  My plan is getting a good range of color schemes in the stash. I am lacked of brown, purple, green, and red. It will take some time to build up, but I am glad I have notice it earlier when I was organizing fabrics. Another lucky found was the wire basket! I am obsess about these wire baskets lately.

 YES! quilting....

I just love this! We visited the local farmer market this morning and ran into our friends. We sat down in the near by coffee shop and had coffee. S asked Jess { one of the friends} if she knows how to write in cursive. Jess pulled out this envelop for S then taught her some cursive writing. S has been {wanting} to learn how to write in cursive, but I told her to wait until the teacher teaches her in school. It seems like cursive is a grown up thing to do and she just can't wait!! Do you remember the first time you work on your cursive writing?? My first cursive lesson was in middle school. We had to do a-z connected together.  I am not very good writing in cursive that's why I hesitated to teach S. 

These fingers have grown longer and stronger! Each song she plays has a story to go with and these firm fingers dance on those keys everyday. I try to be the best audience each day. I give applause and compromises how much the music pieces improved,  yet I am also a picky audience if she is not fully working on her songs.
A new quilt is born and waiting to be bound and snuggled with. I tried the new quilting patten and will talk more about this quilt when I finish binding!  It seems like it is going to rain soon! The air is really heavy and humidity level is high! The fan is kicking, but didn't really cool off much. Some cool raspberry tea and fresh mint might help..


Thursday, June 21, 2012

hop in

Hop in and want to say HI!! I'll be back soon.. with lots photos and some thoughts!


Monday, June 18, 2012

Patchwork Sampler

I finished the patchwork sampler a few weeks ago, but forgot to show it to you. I selected 26 of my favorite prints and transferred each print into an alphabet. I love embroidery, but have very limited knowledge about cross stitches. When I tried the cross stitches for J's quilt. The process was very simple and wondered why I never give it a try! I have always been feeling a bit green when I see someone have a cross stitch sampler up on their walls { maybe not very green}. I have loves about alphabet samplers. I have been looking for one in thrift stores and garage sales, but no such luck for me.  Somehow I knew I have to have one! I though patchwork sampler is such appropriate method for me. I did a little research and look up some cross stitches on Google. I kept each little square in 1"x1" and math out what I need for each alphabet!

The backing is undecided! At this moment it is hung next to S' bed. She seems loving it and I think soon she will claim it, hers!  She wants one that's written in her name I think she might be able to achieve it herself, since she began to sew again {perhaps a little help from mama}.  Maybe she can pick out fabric first then I can help her cutting. Wouldn't that be another fun sewing project for her?

I will be dismiss myself this full week! As a MFA student, I continually working on my thesis pieces during the summer time. Since I have had so much fun in the first part of the summer. It is time for me to get back and pay extra hours to the work before I meet with professor in a week. My goal for my last year is not stress myself out too much, but have a great last year in school, forever!   I should be around, but just not able to post daily until I finish the work. The last minute production doesn't fit my working habit, but I let it happened.. oops!   see you in a week then...


Saturday, June 16, 2012

Random: Weekending

Weekend randoms!

We came up with the berry biscuit idea this morning and went ahead try out: 2 cups of biscuit mix, 1 cup of milk then mixed well together. Roll the dough out to 1/4" thick. Cut into 3" squares then add your favorite berries. Wrap the berries inside the dough then sprinkle some sugar on top. Bake 450 degrees for 10 minutes. It is delicious and healthy! 

The fresh dill is great for Ina's shrimp salad  and it is fabulous. We did the half recipe and added pasta.

My FWAQ blocks are added up to 47 blocks, almost half way through!

The little girl accomplished her embroidery stitches today and she does have full mouth of metal when she smiles now. She began our collaborate project today and I am sure she will be taking a little long time before she gets done.

I like to think I am taking an easy action here. It's weekend and I like to sit and read a little... until then I  am sure I will pick up my sewing machine and think about my next few projects...


Thursday, June 14, 2012

Random: Make it work together

We tried a new drink receipt and it was delicious. Fresh lemon and lime juice and added some fresh mint from out little garden. It is fresh and sweet! Replaced the regular sugar and substituted with local farmer's honey. mmm.... We need some more of this drink for the incoming hot weather!

My revisited of the Farmer Wife Quilt Along was great. It is always fun and challenge for me. Sometimes, I try to go outside the box and do some odd color matching, but not always success!  I look at this project as a project that allows me to play with colors and go outside with my comfort zone. Are you done with yours? 

30's reproduction prints are getting pieced together!! I plan on making this into a picnic quilt instead. Our two picnic quilts were made few years back and both were pretty beat up! It will be great that we can take this quilt with us when we go on trip next time.

S shows more interest in sewing and even embroidery again. I drew some simple lines for her to follow, so she can practice the stitches before she hop on the mini quilt that we are working together.
Took a few hours and finished one side of the mini quilt embroidery. I tried not to alter S' drawing much and stay with the images she drew. They are small. She asked to fill in with the flowers. I am loving my needlebook and mini pincushion. Now I can find my needles and they are in the same place and I know where I can find them!! 

 This is the barn and farm house that we will be living in someday.....  I love the doors and windows...

These colors are the new matches for me.  The little rose buds print brings two other prints together well nicely!

Fresh veggies from friend's garden. Nothing better than these fresh veggies!  Strawberries are so sweet.We have been picking these veggies everyday when we go check on Shoney. It has been fun and the weather has been cool off! 

I shall take off from here and running my morning errands! 


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Random: my little affection

My little affection is  affections are not just fabrics, quilts and talk.  Lately, my little affection is making these mini zakka style needlebooks! They are small and about the hand size! As you know my another little affection is hand-quilting on small projects to give another handmade touch. These needlebooks are all hand-quilted and use high quality of fabric. Each needlebook is arranged with different print. The needlebook is lined with canvas weight cotton and attached with 100% wool and 100% linen for the needle placement. I have just listed these needlebooks in the shop. Thank you for supporting~  xxC