Friday, February 24, 2017

what have I been doing??

Last time I was sharing here, I was on vacation, and now that seems like so long ago even though it hasn't really been that long!  I have been trying to make the most of my time at home for sewing, but that has become more limited as I have been working more at the store.  We have needed to rearrange some hours and duties there, and some of that has come my way.  It's all things that I enjoy doing, I really love being a part of the quilt shop.  

We are adjusting to the absence of one of our key players, as she recuperates from a devastating injury.  This is the kind of injury that strikes horror in the heart of anyone who loves to work with their hands.  She took a bad fall on her stairs at home, and ended up with multiple fractures of wrists and a shoulder.  For weeks, she was incapacitated for anything involving upper extremities.  Now, 4 months later, she is in the midst of constant therapy and exercises.  She has regained limited use of her hands, and can sew on her machine for brief periods and slowly knit with big needles and chunky yarn.  The physical ramifications are a huge challenge, but also the mental and emotional hurdles.  Loosing the ability to do what you love to do (sewing and knitting), loss of independence (unable to drive until a week or so ago) and just feeling like everything has changed without wanting it to change!  We all express encouraging words, but can't truly identify with her situation.  We just want her to get better!  It takes a lot of determination and work for her on a daily basis to do even some of the basic things that we take for granted.  

So, as I share with you about the things I work on, it is good to be reminded that I am lucky to have the ability to enjoy this big part of my life and creativity.

In January, I started making blocks for Urbanology by Sew Kind of Wonderful.  It's a 12-month plan to create interesting shapes and designs with the Mini Quick Curve ruler.  I've used the ruler before, and now I'm a big fan!  These feathers and arrows are my favorites from the whole quilt.  I still have to make the last section, the antlers.  And then, of course, put it all together and quilt it!  I would love to teach this at the store starting in the fall, so I hope I get it all together by then!

My little grandsons, Ian and Jack, like to help with a little stirring and mixing in the kitchen.  So I am making them some little chef aprons with a Mickey Mouse theme.  I found the fabric at the JoAnn's store, they have a lot of licensed fabrics of all kinds to choose from.  I know these guys like Mickey, so this should be a good fit.  I had enough fabric to make 4, so that's what I'm doing, and they can share with friends.

The directions are from Mom and Me Aprons by Atkinson Designs.  It's a straight forward and well-constructed design.

One of the things I do for the store is help with designing and organizing the little make-and-take projects that we use for retreats.  I altered a free online design to make this bag, and have written up the instructions for my modifications.  I get inspiration from all kinds of places, but with something like this, I always feel it's important to give credit to the source that I took that inspiration from.  We make up little kits to hand out to the 54 women at the retreat.  I'm calling it My Tiny Treasure Bag!

I'm also preparing for Grandson #3, arriving in March!  The nursery has the colors shown below in the chevron, arrows and feathers fabrics.  I just spent a little time pulling out some colors of solids in my stash to go with them.  I have some more work to do to get the combinations just right, and then do some sewing.  I'm thinking sheets, changing pad cover, boppy pillow cover, name pennants, diaper storage box and a couple other things if I can.  Better get busy!  Glad I just have to deliver these things, not the baby!

I've had little time for my English Paper Piecing project, Glorious Hexagons.  But I whittle away at the blocks and eventually I hope to have enough to make a quilt.  I have decided that I am going to simplify things a bit and instead of making several of each of the 54 blocks, I am going to make multiples of the blocks that I really prefer.  Those are the blocks with less pieces!  Here are 6 that I have basted and ready to hand stitch together.

And that's all for now!  Have a great day!

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