Off the Needles

This little set will be winging its way South tomorrow. It is a cute little car-seat size blanket and newborn hat & booties in pretty grass green that I started knitting awhile ago, before I knew Zachary was on the way.

Welcome to the family, Zachary!

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Works in Progress

Have you been wondering what I’ve been doing in the evenings?

Well, I’ve been working hard at my Creative Writing class that I’m taking.

But also…

I’ve been making my six blocks for the 3×6 bee. Since I don’t have a sewing machine nor electricity to run it at the moment, I decided to applique hexagrams for my bee mates. Here they are, finished and ready to be mailed:

hexagon squares

I’ve also been working away on this little crib- or “blankie”-sized blanket. I saw the green yarn in Wall-Mart and was drawn to the colour – such a pretty, springtime green 🙂 It doesn’t have a destination yet…maybe it will be a Because You Matter blanket.

on the needles

I am also still stitching away on my sister’s quilt. This is an old photo, but it’s coming along nicely and I think you’re going to like it when I finally finish it and do the big photo reveal. I’m going to start pushing myself with the goal of finishing before I leave Whitehorse. I’d like to do the photos on the S.S.Klondike if Parks Canada will let me in during off-season…but before I can do that, I have to finish it, lol!

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And last but not least…here is the sunset from my deck last night. Oh, how I love living at Fox Lake!

sunset October 14 2013

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Linking up with WIP Wednesday over at Freshly Pieced

Sewing a Hexagon Quilt

There hasn’t been much in the way of quilty stuff on my blog lately. Probably because I’m living out at the lake right now, and no electricity equals no sewing machine.

But I wouldn’t let that stop me, eh?

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My friend Melissa had sent me a little care package containing (among other wonderful goodies) a jelly roll of Free Spirit Pirouette a month or so ago and I couldn’t wait to cut into it.  Her instructions were to experiment, play and enjoy. I took this literally and decided to do just that by learning a technique that was brand-new to me.

Misty with hexie flowers

I have always admired heritage quilts, and have always wanted to make a quilt entirely by hand.  One day I saw that there was going to be  Hexie-Queen Blog Hop, and since I had never made a hexie flower before,  it seemed like the perfect opportunity to learn.

hexie on windowsill

I took the jellyroll to my LQS and paired it with soft grass-green for the flower centers and garden path, and a creamy/buttery pale gold for the background. I loved the way the prints seemed to sink down and make themselves at home in these two complementary shades.

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Having decided to take the plunge, I looked at a couple of tutorials and then jumped into the deep end with the decision to start a hexagon quilt.

window light

I am slowly sewing 1.5-inch hexagons all sewn together into a Grandmother’s Flower Garden pattern. By hand.

hexie flowers in hand

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I carry it back and forth to town and work on it in the car.

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This antique glass butter dish is the perfect little container.

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hexies in a butter dish

It’s going to take awhile, but that’s okay. Handwork is relaxing. Why rush it when I enjoy it so much?007 I can already tell it’s going to be beautiful. 🙂

 

Today is the last day of the Blog Hop. Thanks for visiting, and don’t forget to check out the hexie-goodness on these other participating blogs:

Adventurous Quilter

Scraps of Life

Sew and Sow Farm

Kwilty Pleasures

Just Sew Quilter

Marjorie’s Busy Corner

Pig Tales and Quilts

Quiltscapes

Livinbluequilter

Sew We Quilt

Also linking up with Lily’s Quilts Fresh Sewing Day

Sunday Morning Sunshine

The sun has come out after a showery
Sunday morning
and I have taken my handwork
onto
the deck.

blog 6The air smells of wet wood,
soil
and lake
water.

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Quiet and still, I hear a gull calling in the distance.

The campers in the campground next door
have not yet emerged
from their tents
and their travel
trailers,
and I savour the moments
of stillness
before their children
re-discover the chill of the water
and dogs
begin the business
of chasing squirrels from the trees.

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Across the lake, a lone fisherman
drifts,
and I can hear the faint tick-tick-ticking
of his
reel.

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I sit in the hot sun
until I begin to feel the trickle
of sweat
behind my knee
and behind my neck,
under mblog 1y hair.

Eventually
the quilt becomes
too hot
to hold on my lap.

I put stitching daisies
and feathers
aside
until the cool of the evening
entices
me to return
to it
once
again.

blog 3

Six months of sewing by hand

Getting ready to live without my sewing room for the next six months has required a fair bit of advance planning in the quilting/craft/general handwork department. I’ve decided to concentrate on things that do not require a sewing machine. So I’m keeping my collection of knitting needles and the supplies I need for hand quilting, hand piecing and applique out. I’m working on Heidi’s quilt (which has quite a way to go yet), and I’ve also been finishing a couple of other tops that are next in the queue to be hand quilted.

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This is the top from the In Colour Order block-of-the-month I participated in last year (only she spells it the American way without the “u” – probably because she’s American, lol!)

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And this is the top from my We Bee Canadian group this winter.

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And of course the never-ending Orange Peel quilt.

There is one more (maybe two) that I’m going to try to get put together this week, and whatever doesn’t get done, isn’t going to get done…because the U-Haul leaves one week from today!

A new creative space

I made a new friend last fall when I attended a workshop at The Haven on Gabriola Island in BC. Her name is Patricia. I was drawn to her, not just because she is a generous, kind and funny woman who is a lot of fun, but also because of the fact that she retired early, as I will be doing soon.  We had a conversation about how, when she recently married and moved into her new husbands home, she felt displaced and as though she didn’t quite belong. She lived there in body but not in soul. Her solution was to take over the guest bedroom and re-make it into her own personal creative space. She didn’t take anyone else’s aesthetics but hers into consideration. It is totally and completely, 100% Patricia’s room.  I absolutely love this idea. It has consumed me for months.

I have a sewing room. Like Patricia, I live there in body but not in soul. In the back of my mind it has remained Michael’s bedroom. It was a cobbled-together room, a place where I practiced my “make do” philosophy as hard as I could. I used the sideboard that was my mother-in-law’s as my sewing table because my husband, bless his heart, couldn’t bear to part with it. There was, quite literally, no place for it to go in the house except into the sewing room.  In order to use it, I have to put the foot pedal inside one of the cupboards and sit with my foot stuck inside to run the machine. I actually grew to like the old thing, but it was only a stop-gap for a real sewing table: it is too low and my back gets sore when I sew for any length of time. But frugal is as frugal does, and I made do.

And then I bought a treadmill.  I’ve always wanted a treadmill, but there was never any place for it to go, so guess what…yup! I put it in my sewing room. It was a terrific solution, but as far as a creative spaces go, the room fell kind of short.

And now that we are moving to a new house with none of our history in it,  I have been consumed with the thought of creating my own personalized space with no restrictions other than size. My creative space in the new house is a tiny 9′ x 10′ and faces east.

I  don’t want to “make do” any more.  I want to outfit the room with the proper equipment that I need to be creative in it: a good sound system.  A good sewing machine and a serger. A place for my laptop. Room to twirl a cane, a veil, or myself. I want it to be bright and airy. I want a bit of floor space in the middle of the room to set up my yoga mat or do my bellydance practice.

There is a window on the east wall which I am going to have opened up to install sliding glass doors. I love that these doors will take up most of the wall! Kelly will build a small deck  so that I can step outside, and it will also be our “shade” deck for hot summer days.  On the second wall, I am going to remove the closet doors and turn the closet space into a writing/office space…my computer desk will fit in there perfectly, and I can install lighting and put up funky wallpaper and shelving. I want to devote the third wall to a bi-level counter space – the tall portion for a cutting/crafting surface and the short portion for the sewing machine(s). I will put shelving above and below the counters for storage and a peg board where I can hang my tools.  The fourth wall will hold a large mirror and a ballet barre, and somewhere in this room I want to put the perfect chair for reading.

Maybe I’m asking a lot from such a tiny space, but I believe it can be done and I can’t wait to start creating my creative space!