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Sunday, May 31, 2009

The Auction Bag

I was asked to be part of a Celebrity Fundraising Auction to be held during Quilt Nebraska 2009. Following my mother's advice (don't talk so much!) I didn't tell Katy that I wasn't a celebrity! I just agreed to make an item for the auction.

Taa Daa! This is a version of my 1-Hour Shopping Tote, made using a technique I call Too Small To Keep, Too Big To Throw Away. The outside of the bag is made using a 12-step colorwheel of fabrics. It is lined with rusted fabric. It took me a little bit more than an hour, but the result is worth the time spent!

Jim Jaworski, an artist from Las Cruces, New Mexico, gave me a walnut needle case to go along with the bag. Jim makes beautiful needle cases using a variety of woods. No picture - I sent it off for the auction without thinking about a photo. If you are interested in buying one, Email Jim. They would be a great gift for a quilting friend!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Give Me A Child......

After the laissez-faire attitude of my younger days produced two non-Reds fans, I took a different approach with my younger children. I truly believed that strict adherence to the Jesuit motto "give me a child until she is seven and I will give you a Reds fan" would work! Note the mismatched, yet stylish outfit - a sunflower print skirt with Reds shirt and hat in this picture of Alyssa & Caitlin taken at Riverfront Stadium in 1997. Years later, my faith is shaken.

Caitlin competed in the National Catholic Forensic League Tournament in Albany, NY this past weekend. She had a great time, made some new friends, but didn't break (meaning she didn't advance to the next round). She was polite to others, chewed with her mouth closed, took a shower every day and was generally kind to babies and small animals for the entire trip. All this Good Behavior took its' toll. Before she got on her plane at the Albany airport, she bought a NY Yankees t-shirt!

O M G !!!!!!

Even worse, she has not shown ANY remorse! And she plans to WEAR the shirt to school tomorrow. Top layer of clothing, right side out. The logo of The Team We Love To Hate right out there for God & everyone to see. I may not be able to show my face at the grocery store for a month or more. And I can just imagine what my "friends" will be saying behind my back. Woe is me. The only bright spot in this otherwise horrific evening is that she had the good sense to pass on the Cubs t-shirt when they changed planes in Chicago. Thank God for small favors :)

In the spirit of locking the barn door after the horse has been stolen, I sent a strongly worded email to her Forensics coach, suggesting (nicely of course - Caitlin gets those manners from me :) that perhaps her chaperoning skills need some updating to prevent a similar ugly incident with an Atlanta Braves shirt later this summer at the NFL National Tournament. I remain a baseball fan by birth, Reds fan by the grace of God.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Quilted to Death!

Whenever possible, I have volunteered to help on Judging Day for my local quilt guilds. One often-heard comment, usually made when borders are quilted significantly less than the interior of the quilt, is "needs more quilting". I just returned from the Machine Quilters Showcase in Overland Park, Kansas. Few of the quilts in this show will elicit this comment.

The quilts are quilted. And quilted. And quilted some more. As the popular phrase says - "quilted to death". And while looking at the quilts in this show, it seems that, to some extent, this amount of quilting is excessive. Don't misunderstand me - the quilting is wonderfully executed, technically fabulous, incredibly beautiful.

But excessive because it causes the viewer (me) to think "Forget ever entering this show - I don't do this amount of quilting". And if I'm thinking it, so are many other quilters. Many of the attendees at MQS are professional machine quilters, running successful long-arm businesses. But they aren't entering a show created specifically for them.

It seemed to me that the exhibit area was heavy on Special Exhibits and light on actual entries. There was a lot of empty space - black-curtained bays without any quilts, extra-wide spaces between quilts in the Special Exhibits. Maybe some of that empty space might be filled if the standard for quilting wasn't "quilt it to death".