Monday, July 23, 2012

Chalk Board

I keep making lists of my ongoing quilt projects to get a sense of what I should be concentrating on (and maybe to make me realize I don't NEED to start one more project!) but then I usually set the list aside and it gets misplaced.

I was thinking I needed a white board posted on the wall for my lists but just never got around to getting one.    Last week I walked past a display of chalkboard paint and decided that maybe that would work. 

It was easy to do.  First I taped off the area I wanted to paint (yes I taped all 4 sides)

Then, using a foam roller I painted 3 coats of the paint.  I probably didn't need to do 3, but I wanted to make sure it covered really well.

After removing the tape I found I only had a couple of mistakes

I read on-line that the board should be conditioned before use by rubbing chalk all over it and letting it sit for about 30 minutes before removing.  This is supposed to prevent ghosting.  It was interesting to see how the chalk highlighted some paint lines - lines that you don't see with the naked eye.

 I may wish I'd purchased the white board instead of painting the wall because I'm having the hardest time finding chalk!  I just want regular 'ole school chalk and can't find it anywhere.  I may have to search out a teacher supply store.   I stole a piece of Hayden's sidewalk chalk to prime the board.  Hope she doesn't notice.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Scarves redux

Back before Christmas I made a bunch of frilly scarves from a self ruffling yarn.  I posted about it here   I sent all those scarves to my mother thinking she could share them with the other residents in her retirement home.   Turns out she gave them as Christmas gifts to all of the female members of our family. 

When we were up visiting my mother last month she mentioned that one of the workers at the home had expressed an interest in getting one of the scarves so I stopped at the local Joann Fabric store and bought yarn to make several more while I was there.  (we don't have Joann Fabrics here so I always make sure I make a stop there every visit - after I stop at DSW Shoe Warehouse in the same shopping center!!)

When I got home my friend Joanne was visiting from her new home in Florida and she shared a new frilly scarf made out of a chiffon fabric rather than yarn.  I was immediately intrigued and went online that night and ordered several hanks of the chiffon.

It's really cool because there are holes in the top of the fabric that are used for the knitting.  See those black circles near the top?  If I had a drill press I could probably make my own "yarn."  (click photos for larger view)

This stuff knits up a little slower than the real yarn but is still easy to work with.  I like the way it looks as it takes shape.

The included pattern calls for casting on 8 stitches but on Joanne's recommendation I only did 5 and think it's a good size.

This is the name of the stuff.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Back again...

They did it again - changed up Blogger since I was last here to post.  Serves me right for being away so long!

So...what have I been up to? 

There was a quilt at our show in March from a pattern called "Ohmigosh" that I really liked.  It was pieced and quilted by Vicky McCormiack.  She did it scrappy similar to this one pictured. 

Well I decided that I'd like to try it but in a different color palette and this is what I came up with.  My intent is to do a gradation of the blues from light to dark and back to light.   This is not a hard quilt to piece but it's tedious.  Each block finishes 4.5"  Those little nine patches finish up 1/2".  It's mostly done with strip piecing.  I don't usually do this type of piecing so it has been an interesting experience.

In addition to the Ohmigosh quilt a few of us have been working on this Tucson pattern from a past Fons and Porter magazine.   This finishes up as a big quilt as these star blocks are 15".  A big change from my tiny blocks, but I'm actually having more piecing problems with the stars because I keep messing up the points.    These blocks are actually mine and Janice's combined.  We each have a lot more to make.

Last month Jerry and I took a quick trip up to Detroit to visit family.   Our trip started off with a bang when we pulled into the long-term parking lot.  Jerry opened the window to grab the ticket and the window wouldn't go back up.  The power window motor had died!   There were no tools in the car so he couldn't get the door panel off to manually raise the window.  We ended up covering the window with a Mylar heat blanket that luckily was in the car.  We caught our flight and then watched the weather closely hoping that Charleston didn't get rain while we were gone.  It was raining the day we got back, but we were pleasantly surprised to find a dry car. 

We went up mainly to see how my mother is doing as her health has been declining.  She lives in a large independent living retirement complex.  She goes down to the dining room for dinner every night and the distance has become too much for her to manage.  She's on oxygen 24/7 and now has a power chair that she uses when she has to go any distance.  She's kind of dangerous in her chair but she was always a bad driver so it's not a surprise!

My brother Ed takes a lot of the responsibility for checking up on mom

And my other brother Claude also pitches in

We had a family get together at Claude's while there.  He lives on a large lake.  They live on a secluded finger of the lake so they don't have to deal with the loud boat and jet skis (or snowmobiles in the winter) as much as those on the main part of the lake.  It's very pleasant and peaceful.   This is one of Claude's grandsons waiting for the s'mores!

I feel badly about neglecting my blog so much and will try to do better.  I wonder if there is anyone still out there!