Posted in quilting, stash, Uncategorized

Be sure your sins will find you out …

there, THAT got your attention, right?

Quilter’s and crafter’s sins I now realize I’m guilty of:

Not cutting across the width of the fabric (WOF).  Silly me, I thought it made sense that if you have half a yard of fabric and you need a strip that’s 8″ by 2″ you would cut parallel to the selvedge, leaving 40″ of fabric wide by 18″ long.

2010 was the year in which I had the light bulb moment and realized it just doesn’t work like that.   I needed WOF for trading at our Guild’s retreat, and I needed WOF in significant quantities to make pillowcases for the million pillowcase challenge.

Several times I pored through my entire stash only to realize what I had been doing all those years, it finally caught up to me!  This led to a change in my evil ways, a gargantuan stash busting project, and (surprise!) fabric shopping for half-metre and bigger cuts.  Although for 2011 one of my watchwords is use what you have.

Have also resolved to be more attentive to thread.  Valdani is my favourite, and I do use what I have!  Actually had to buy a second spool of Gem Symphony when Andrea Hamilton was quilting my Shattered Angles quilt.  I look on Valdani as chocolate minus the calories.

Cindy Scraba is another amazing Island lady.  Her knowledge of threads is astounding.  Trivia:  Egyptian cotton is in the process of being protected legally, just like champagne in France.   It is so superior and they need to protect it.

Cindy sells Superior thread and I’ve started tracking in the catalogue what I have in the different lines.  The catalogue is great because it tells you which thread to use in every situation.

At the Guild retreat, I won a sample set of Wonderfil threads.

And I still have threads from my grandmother’s store that go back to the forties — on wooden spools with names for the colours.  They live in a case designed and built by my grandfather.  I use them for basting and minor embellishments.  After all this time I don’t trust them for anything that has to stay together.  But back then thread colours had names, not numbers, like Apple Green, Mauve, Primrose.


Posted in Art, beading, creativity


I’m reading Thr3fold 04 by Laura and Linda Kemshall, based in the UK and Catherine Nicholls, who’s in Vancouver.  Usually I get inspired by exercises in books but don’t translate that to action (Does anyone else have this problem?)

But the first challenge in the book spoke to me, so I’ve put together a jar of precious things.   Precious meaning cool, attractive, meaningful.

Determined not to overthink this exercise, I used Goo Gone to clean off the gucky label on a honey jar that I particularly like because when I was rinsing it out with hot water to get all the sticky honey out, the bottom buckled so now it sits on my desk like the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

Here’s a scan of the flattish objects from the jar:

Catherine suggests drawing the jar contents or some of them, or taking photos and manipulating them for use in mixed media.

I’m thinking there are various ways to classify the contents.

Flat vs. three dimensional

Bought vs. acquired

Colour — lots of blue and purple

Object type, several beads and buttons, some made by me and others mass produced, also two bracelets which I guess count too, one is beads with my name that the hospital put on my son when he was born (don’t think they would do that anymore!)

There are three spools of thread (2  are antique wooden spools from my grandmother) and one spool of jewelry wire

I love it when colours have names, one of my grandmother’s spools is Pale Rose, I snaffed a marker from my grandson called periwinkle, and I have a light green paint chip called Yucatan.

I can see this has a lot of possibilities.  Dumpr is one of my favourite sites for messing around and one way and another I’ve had good mileage from it.  Here’s a Legoized version of my photo:

Well, there it almost wasn’t because Dumpr wouldn’t let me post it directly here (it said it would but I couldn’t get it to work.  Downloading to the PC and then figuring out how to copy it to the right folder and upload was a challenge.  I’m pleased that I finally figured it out, but frustrated that things have to be so complicated.


I see this as needlepoint or a quilt design.  I see things in the composition that I didn’t see on the scan, such as the blue diagonal which is partly a bracelet and partly the couching on the brown bookmark.  And I think I like the colours better, tan with pastels is interesting.


How about you?  Have you tried anything along these lines (collecting objects) and where did it take you?