Wednesday, June 30, 2010

... bainbridge weekends

my beloved rotary auction was held last weekend, so it was an excuse to spend the weekend on bainbridge enjoying all the goodness the island has to offer.

veggie kabob

like veggie kabobs at emmy's vege house.

lynwood theater

and movies at lynwood theater. i have such fond memories of this being the only movie theater on bainbridge, and having many a date here in my teen years. now that there is a cineplex in town, lynwood theater shows independent movies, which are always introduced with a few words and applause from the crowd.

i know, right?!

mora ice cream

and ice cream at mora.

mora ice cream

and, ok, how about ice cream at mora again the next day?

and, of course, no trip to bainbridge is complete without an excursion to the beach down the road from my parent's house.

dog at the beach

and you must--MUST--take the dog with you. it's like your enjoyment is compounded simply by throwing and watching the dog run repeatedly after the ball.

beach

there was a very, very, very low tide on saturday. i have never seen so much marine life before. was this a minus tide? crazy!

seastar at the beach

i mean, look at this seastar! this is just one of many we spotted.

baby octopus on the beach

there were even several baby octopi creeping around through the kelp and barnacles.

beach art plastic

the community beach has a new project where they are asking beachcombers to collect plastic they find on the beach and add it to this artful collection. i love how someone organized it into rainbow colors. somehow this trash has been transformed into something so very beautiful. love.

rotary auction fabric

as for the rotary auction, i had a few nice finds, including a bag of vintage fabric scraps that please me immensely.

foos ball

and somehow, what with the frenzy and excitement of the morning, i managed to take no other photos of the auction itself except for this one of all the foosball tables lined up at the preview the night before, ready for new homes. godspeed, little plastic soccer guys.

godspeed.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

... a quilt for me

feet and quilt again

with just over a year of quilting under my belt, i have finally made a quilt just for me. though i should say "us," considering i will most likely be cuddling with c under this quilt.

quilt front

i finished piecing the quilt top almost a year ago, but this poor thing has sat neglected for so long in the face of quilts i wanted to make for others.

quilt on the bed

i call this my deep sea quilt. but after completing it i'm going to give it the nickname, the wabi-sabi quilt. because while i do love it, there is so very much wrong with it.

up close on the quilting

some things i learned:

  1. trim your thread from your quilt top before you make your quilt sandwich. especially when you (inexplicably) decide to piece everything with bright pink thread. what i wound up with is vague strands of pink visible under the white blocks. but in my effort to put a good spin on things, i'm trying to imagine these as ethereal jellyfish floating by in the background.
  2. basting, basting, basting! i swear i am usually a thorough and good baster, but maybe i got cocky on this one? i don't know, what i was thinking, but what i do know is that i did not baste nearly enough for this kind of quilting, so there was a disturbing amount of shifting going on.
  3. and that leads me to something i learned about myself: i don't like to undo work i've already done. i had already quilted about a third of the quilt before i started to notice the shifting. but since that represented five to six hours of work already, i just couldn't bring myself to rip it out. c'est la guerre, non?


quilt back and feet

but, boy howdy, do i love the back of this quilt! one of the first fabric lines i fell in love with after i started sewing last year was heather ross's mendocino and one i used a bit on the quilt front. so i knew i wanted to feature it even more boldy on the back. i was inspired by this gorgeous quilt, by erin from house on hill road with its large, bright, happy squares.

quilt back on bed

mermaids! fish! octopi! sea horses! oh my!

quilt with dramatic lighting

some quilt specs:

  • it measures 60 x 84 inches, by far the largest quilt i've attempted so far.
  • the front is a simple four-patch with solid borders. each square is 4 inches finished and the border measures 2 inches, so each finished block is 12 inches total.
  • fabrics on the front include mendocino, joelle hoverson's cake rock beach, some alexander henry, and a bunch of other stuff i can't for the life of me remember. sorry.
  • solid fabric is all robert kaufman essex linen/cotton blend in colors i also don't remember.
  • backing fabric is almost entirely mendocino with one yellow alexander henry floral.
  • binding fabric is cake rock beach.

Monday, June 21, 2010

... hibernating

hst in orange

i don't know what my deal has been lately. maybe it's been the cold seattle weather, of which i am usually the most enthusiastic cheerleader, but may finally be starting to get to me, after months and months of the same cold wet sameness. maybe it's been the fact that i've been reading like a madwoman, motivated by the aforementioned weather and the comforting thought of hunkering down with a good book and a hot mug of tea. or maybe it's the fact that i've been slavishly working at the same quilt for almost a month now and have had nothing new to report. just more of the same same same same quilting.

though i'm happy to report that i just finished sewing the binding on this afternoon and soon there will be pictures to prove it! and did i mention that this is the first quilt i've completed for myself? so, so thrilled.

so to prove that i am still enthusiastic about this process pledge, i will show you some things that have been knocking around my brain and my creative space of late.

waves

hst sketches

some quick sketches i've been doing in some of my idle moments.

catan

bonus points for any fellow geeks who know what this quilt sketch is inspired by.

stack2

stack1

some stacks of fabric that i've pulled recently, though not quite sure what they will become yet.

do-good-stitches-button

and i was invited to take part in this super cool charity quilting bee, do. good stitches, by the lovely rachel over at stitched in color. i'm really excited at the prospect of working with a bunch of talented quilters and donating our end results to charity. can't wait for this to get started in a couple of months!

until then, it's back to the comfort of my sofa and a warm blanket. now, where's my tea?

Sunday, June 13, 2010

... studio suze

studio suze

i have been so good at forgetting my camera lately. all these wonderful events have slipped through my fingers--though they are happily stored in my memory--just because i was too spacey to remember to put my camera in my bag when i went out. my stepfather's wonderful 70th birthday celebration last weekend? yup, no camera. the delightful seattle modern quilt guild meeting yesterday? totally forgot it. (though, if you head over to katie's blog, you can see some evidence of our sew-in, along with the wonky stars we made for a quilt for a guild member's new baby.)

studio suze

and last night, as c and i ventured down to georgetown for our friend suze's studio opening, i was especially sad when i realized that, yet again, i had forgotten my camera. fortunately, c reminded me that we might be able to get some good photos out of my iphone, and i'm happy to report that these aren't the worst pictures in the world. which is good news because suze's studio is a spectacular space and one that i want to share with anyone and everyone in the world.

studio suze

suze is one of those friends who can make something beautiful out of anything you give her. she is constantly creating and recreating and her little condo is an ever-evolving display of these ingenious creations. she is the friend who can cover a ripped up old settee in camo and fake fur and make it look like you would pay $20,000 for it. she can make a storage wall out of old file cabinets and trunks, paint poems in italian in gold around her bed, decide to make an enormous bookshelf out of old pipes, or cover a shoe rack with a classic italian painting. she is the friend who decides to take up letterpress and the next thing you know is printing up the most amazing cards. she is constantly combing shops in seattle (and around the world, in fact) looking for treasures and inspiring objects that she can turn into something even more amazing. she is, simply, one of those people who can just do. and for that, i am truly envious.

studio suze

so last night she unveiled her new little world, studio suze. i am not one to describe a place as a magical wonderland, but this is the kind of place where i might actually use those words. she has only been occupying this space, located in georgetown's old rainier bottling plant, for just a month or two, but in the time has managed to turn this plain and simple loft into a tiny world of beauty.

studio suze

suze is the kind of person who can pair a white dickies jumpsuit with black heels and make the entire thing work.

studio suze

suze is the kind of person who thinks to collect a swarm of insect and butterfly broaches and pin them into entomological displays.

studio suze

suze can take a collection of hand mirrors and lay them out on a table and suddenly they take on a completely new feel.

studio suze

and so i am so very delighted that suze has found a space where she can work on all her creations and show them off to the world.

studio suze

yay, suze!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

... my yellow watch

my yellow watch

did you think i was lying when i said that i loved yellow? do you think i would purchase this ginormous yellow watch if i was not entirely smitten by the color yellow?

my yellow watch

yes, i love this watch. and i love how great it looks with the quilt that i am (still... ugh) quilting.

(ignore my weirdly scaly hands. it is only because i wash my hands, like, a bazillion times a day, which you would thank me for if i was your acupunturist.)

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

... awesome etsy sellers

ships

i adore this fabric. don't you? it seriously tickles me every time i look at it.

it's from a lovely etsy seller, aunt june, who also has the most delightful blog over yonder. i found this ship fabric via flickr and once i laid eyes on it i knew i had to have it.

ships

i mean, come on... ships!

so i ordered a couple of fat quarters, and one shipped immediately along with an apology that the second would be along shortly. well, turns out that spoonflower was backed up and lauren was in the process of moving house, so it took a while longer than she anticipated, so when she sent the second fat quarter she also included a bonus gift of this most adorable bird fabric! and honestly, this whole timeline was only a couple of weeks, so i wasn't put out at all, and yet she was sweet enough to think of me and send a little something extra with my order.

birds

and this is why i love etsy so much. not only is it a place for me to find delightful, independently designed fabrics like this, but also a chance to interact with the sweetest, loveliest folks ever.

thank you, lauren! i can't wait to start sewing with your awesome designs.