Saturday, June 13, 2009

sunny Saturday

What a glorious day!  Not only do Bob and I have the day off, with no appointments, events, obligations, but it also is just about perfect weather.  Sunshine and 70's, just what I like!  I admit that I do have kind of a narrow range of tolerance when it comes to temperature, only worsened by my "maturity", but this day hits the nail on the head!  I did finish a quilt first thing this morning, it is destined for a fundraiser for Susan G. Komen via Bear Patch Quilting Co.  The blocks were made by volunteers, fabric donated by BP, sewn together and bordered by Leisl and Maggie, and my next task is to find a volunteer for the binding, which is cut and ready to go.  I'm pretty sure if I send out a message to my guild members, the Ham Lake Piecemakers, I will find a volunteer for that.  I used a new pantogram on this, it is called Splash and is from Willow Leaf Studio.  I saw it on a quilt displayed in a booth at the Paducah quilt show, and tracked it down so I could buy it and use it.  As pantograms go, it is a good one.  Kind of medium in skill level and density of quilting.  One lesson learned in this project--it has a narrow flange sewn between the blocks and the border.  This can be a problem for quilting if not handled correctly, which I didn't realize at first.  The flange is actually a narrow folded strip inserted into the seamline, so the folded edge is free.  The flange is dark pink and shows up in one of the photos below, sewn between the pieced blocks and the floral border.  It's very narrow, but when quilting back and forth, it can easily flip backwards and, well, that's just not right!  If I were doing freehand quilting on this, I could watch the strip all the time and avoid the flippage.  But when doing a panto, my eyes are on the paper diagram on the tabletop, away from the needle, so I don't see the flippage until it already happens.  So after ripping out a few stitches, I thought I better find a better solution.  First, I experimented with a little 1/4" masking tape to hold down the flange, and that works, but I didn't like picking the tape off the fabric.  Funny how it doesn't seem so sticky when I put it on, in fact, low on the stickometer, but after sewing across it, becomes ultra sticky!  So then I had a brainstorm and realized I just had to run a basting stitch along the flange as I advanced the quilt, and that worked great.  Should pull out easily (I hope) while sitting on the patio sipping fine wine!  The backing is black, so the white basting stitch will be easy to spot, no matter how much of the wine is consumed!
Bob just got back from the Green Barn Garden Center with the news that we have pine sawflies.  They are nasty caterpillars/wormy menaces that have infested one of our pine trees for the second year.  Just the really long needled pine.  They eat off a bunch of needles, leaving a stripped branch, but not killing the tree, then they go through their life cycle, I guess.  So now he has something to spray on the tree, no, we are not organic when it comes to this, we will use what it takes to kill these nasty suckers, short of a shotgun.
Bob has relocated the garden this spring, and got a bit of a late start with his planting because of that.  The spot it used to be has become progressively more shady, so that is not back to being part of the lawn and the garden is on the south side of the house where it gets a lot of sun.  It is right next to the little waterpond, which has a bit of an algae growth at the moment, but I am sure Bob has something to treat that, too.  The lawn looks pretty brown out there, due to a dry spell, but it might green up now that we had rain earlier in the week.  Squash, cantaloupe (muskmelon), green beans and spinach are starting to show.  A few tomato plants are taking root, although they could have been planted deeper to give them more root power, but I can't really complain since I was not a participant in the planting!  My sewing and quilting have knocked gardening down on my list of interests, so mostly Bob does it now, and I am thankful for that.

A few years ago, he built a pergola over one end of the patio ( I think this was done when Brita graduated from HS, so that was 10 or so years ago) and transplanted some of the wild grapevines from our wooded area to grow up the posts.  It took them awhile to get established, but now they make a lovely cover over the beams, and cast a good bit of shadow on the blocks of the patio.  The 2 chairs in the picture belonged to my Grandpa and Grandma Irvine and we repainted them over the rust and light green peeling paint, but I would kind of like to go back to the green, I think.  They are great old chairs. 

Just one more thing to share at the moment--I am finished with this striped scarf, I wrote something about it awhile back, and it is washed and laying on the table outside to dry.  

Thinking of my kids today, too, this would be a great day to go out in the boat with them.  Brita and Ben are in the windy city, having great fun with friends and Cubs, I'm sure.  And Dan is in Sioux Falls, the place of his birth, to celebrate a friend's wedding.  Strange to think they are all in the midwest but not here!  
So that sums up my Saturday so far!  Hope yours is just as much fun!


SewCalGal said...

All are beautiful. Love the quilt for the Susan G. Komen Fundraiser. Excellent choice of colors and design. Absolutely lovely. Very nice of you to do this. I too have helped with making quilts for raising funds for Komen (great cause).

Thank you!


MissesStitches said...

Pam, I loved seeing the pix of your backyard. It's been a while since I've been there! Nathan put in a koi pond this spring--maybe the two guys should compare algae notes... I remember when Bob built the pergola and you were starting the grapevines. They look really good now. Glad to see you have given G&G's chairs a new life. How do you follow a new quilting design? Are you looking at the paper with the drawn design and run the quilt machine handles "by feel"? Or are you able to program designs into your machine? It's a beautiful design.

Pam said...

Hi Jan! Your questions made me decide to do a little photo session with my machine so I can better describe what I am talking about. Stay tuned!

MissesStitches said...

Thank you!