Topsy-Turvy Patterns: double the fun

The same yet different – that’s the way we roll.

sister sign

And that is definitely the approach we took when we tackled this Bloomin’ Wool, Bloomin’ Fall runner project.

We started with a basic runner layout featuring a large square in the middle and two side rectangles. One sister put a vintage block in the middle square and a wool pot filled with bloomin’ flowers on each side.

blooming runner

The other sister divided an antique block for the two side panels and filled the center square with the blooms of fall – wool acorns and autumn leaves.

Bloomin Fall Wool Runner

Our goal is to give you options – lots of options – for using the vintage linens and lace that you find at estate sales, uncover in boxes at the top of your attic or rescue from unwitting purging friends and relatives.

final bloomin wool sm

Any block can be used in the center of the runner

So, to give you a double dose of options we have packed these two patterns together.

Blooming Fall runner for printing

Most blocks can be made in two sections for the side panels

Think of it like you would the old topsy-turvy dolls. If you hold them one way you will have this …

topsy 1 sm

Little prairie Miss

Or if you turn them over you will have this …

topsy 2 sm

and her friend…

The same, yet different. And double the fun!

 

The patterns for the Bloomin’ Wool runner and the Bloomin’ Fall runner include the instructions for making both the vintage blocks as well as the template drawings for cutting all of the wool pieces.

Blooming Wool pkg front

We are not sure of the name for the vintage block we rescued from an estate sale box for the Bloomin’ Fall runner – we are calling it Falling Star. But, any block that divides up the middle will work just great in those side panels.

fall stars 2 sm

 

And the center block for the Bloomin’ Wool runner, made up of half square triangles and flying geese units, is quick to make. Or you can substitute in whatever you find in your own stash of vintage blocks.

center block

Here are some close-ups of both the projects:

autumn acorn sm

Flannel will also work well for parts of the acorn.

 

bloomin flower sm

This is the perfect project for using the smallest of wool pieces.

 

bloomin flower 2 sm

The final touch is the embroidery stitching to accent the wool.

 

And, if you would rather, you can get them in the PDF version. You will find them HERE in our Etsy store.

Blooming Fall Wool PDF front

 

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Design Challenge: Someone else’s Favorite Things

FL Sister id tag

Sometimes I think I’m forgetting more than I ever knew in the first place. So this week’s foundation paper piecing project made me feel really good about myself. Not because it is prize-winning work (although the points do match pretty well) but because I realized how long ago I first learned to foundation paper piece – and I still remember how to do it!

forgetful

Back in the days we lived in Utah I went to a foundation paper piecing class in Logan Canyon – one of Utah’s many beautiful spots. The teacher had great handouts, a logical and methodical approach to her explanations, and it worked! Wonder of wonders, I finished the project!

apple paper piecing

I hand quilted this one. With four kids at home at that time, I’m not sure how that happened!

And if you judge a teacher by how long the information sticks in the student’s head – she was a success.  Because here it is 25 years later and I’m still remembering the process! I wouldn’t say that it is my favorite method, but sometimes it is the only way to get where I need to go!

 

This month I needed this knowledge in a real way in order to “kill two birds with one stone” on my To Do list.

First goal was to prepare for a quilt show entry. The Pensacola Quilters Guild will host a show in the spring of 2018 and they have chosen Feathered Star as their theme block. You can be sure that the only way this stitching sister is going to do a Feathered Star is via foundation paper piecing! Before I commit to a whole quilt featuring a Feathered Star I needed to do a practice block. So some friends from guild met for a sew day to help each other get started.

paper piecing

It’s kind of like paint-by-numbers, only you use fabric. And PS – this is not a feathered star, it’s a tree.

At the same time,  my Red Hens sewing bee friends had started a design a mini-quilt challenge. This challenge is meant to stretch our quilting resume to include a project based, not on our preferences, but the preferences of another person – kind of a widening of our quilting perspective. We drew a name out of the hat to determine who we were designing the quilt for. In order to design the quilt we were to interview that person to find out their quilting history, their preferences, how they made quilting choices.

diane and vernell Christmas Party sm

Diane Carson and Vernell Savage, our Red Hen sewing bee leaders, at our Christmas party.

So, I interviewed Diane Carson, one of the fearless leaders of our Red Hens quilting bee. This is what I found out:

What color scheme to you like? Not pastel, no brights or primary colors; Blues; Batiks

What style of quilting do you like? Not modern – more traditional with a twist; Applique is good; Dimensional is good

What scale of prints are you drawn to? Medium prints rather than large;

What was your first quilt choice? Log cabin

I learned a lot by asking what had influenced her as a quilter. She said: Dixie Hayward influenced her and changed her tastes

 

As I plotted and schemed I realized that I could achieve these two objectives in one project – a 24″ mini quilt for Diane with a Feathered Star center made from (not bright) blue batiks with a simple border that would accentuate the points of the Feathered Star.

I used my trusty EQ7 to print out the 12″ block that I wanted. There are plenty of choices since the middle of the star leaves space for lots of different options.

foundation pattern sm

Marking the squares with D for dark, L for light, etc. helps me remember what fabric goes where.

Using batiks added to the challenge because my batik stash is not huge. So the design of the sashing and border was determined by the amount of fabric left after the center was stitched.

f star ready for border sm

Now it’s ready for the border – simple so it doesn’t distract but still needs to echo of the center block.

And here are some of the other design challenge entries….

embellishments sm

for the embellishment lover

Herbie owl sm

for Herbie who loves owls

sunshine and flowers sm

for the quilter who loves sunshine and gardening

 

yellow and blue sm

She requested blue and yellow

linen lover

For the one who loves old linens.🙂

final star sm

And now I know I can do a feathered star!

 

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Hanky Folding – Origami Fabric

Tutorial Tuesdays header

“No! Stop! Wait!” When Sister uses that expression I know it is time to put down the scissors and listen.  I heard it when I was going through a pile of vintage handkerchiefs.  Not her cigar box treasures but very similar. I also heard, “DON’T use them for their intended purpose; launder gently; practice your pressing; and make them pretty.”  So I did my research and went to folding origami-style dresses.

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Origami dresses

 

These are photos of my “in process” work but the best tutorial I found was here. She has full photos and good tips.

 

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The folds and creases will guide you as you make each dress.

1-web

Take it step by step – side creases and center creases coming together – the dress takes shaper easier than you might think.

I did use spray starch before I began and it helped the pressing a lot.  So now what do you do with a dozen of these darling wardrobe items?  I began putting them into a birthday quilt for a precious princess who turns one this month.

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Layout

To applique, I sprayed with quilt basting spray and then used invisible thread and a straight stitch along the edge and across the middle.  I liked the “dimensional” part of the skirt and bodice; had this quilt been for anyone but a baby, I would have embellished with ribbon, pearls, buttons, etc.  Best tip: use handkerchiefs all the same size.

The background block was an 8 1/2″ x 10 1/2″ rectangle.

Sashing was a 2 1/2″ x 8 1/2″ (10 1/2″) strip with a snowball type corner.

Setting stones were 2 1/2″ squares to form a Friendship Star.

Baby’s mama wanted white in the border for birthday guests to sign each year so I extended the sashing and stars out to the edge.  It is lightly quilted with an echo around each dress and diagonal lines to mimic the angle of the star arms.

hanky-quilt-back-web

Quilting

 

Done and Done!  (even before the birthday!)

hankie quilt sm

Which one is your favorite?

God Bless you, and please pass a tissue.

 

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Birthdays and Babies

CO Sister id tagFrom my perspective, birthdays come too fast and too often.  I’m not even talking about mine.  I have earned every one of those and I’m just looking for an excuse to celebrate.  I’m talking about the birthdays of the next generation or even their kids’ generation.  I barely get to see or hold the “baby” before they are off to school.  A few more birthdays and they’ll be driving!  Slow down!  Which happens to be the title of a song with my new philosophy.

Just a couple calendar pages ago I flew to sunny California to be with the grands as their mama went off for an overnight “hotel” stay.  They came home with this wonderful bundle.  Eden Orion is the “star” of the day!

baby-web

Eden at birth

Now a blink of an eye later, she is ready to celebrate her first birthday.  Sweet mama asked for a birthday quilt that the guests could sign each year; one that Eden could love and grow with each year.  We all know who gets to pick colors and pattern (mama) so we went with the 1930s  reproduction fabric and began to work on the hanky quilt.

row-web

Selection is the tough part

 

dresses-web

Origami folded dresses

The complete tutorial will be given next week, but wanted you to share in the delight of working on a special gift for a special girl right away. Her cousin thought he was just as wonderful and he had already received his special quilt a few months before.

pair-web

Eden & Perrin (Cousins)

So we folded and pressed and stitched and now we are ready for cake and party time.  Happy birthday, Beautiful. Eden is now the proud owner of a quilt selected by her mom and stitched by her grandmother.  Wish I had one, too.

hankie quilt sm

Hanky quilt with Friendship Star

 

Eden-web

Eden-1 year

 

 

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Plan Ahead!

CO Sister id tag

The best intentions pave the way to …  well in my case they lead to panic!  I know I’m not the only one who does it (because even my sister does).  I’m not alone in my procrastination.  They even make a sign to tell you to plan ahead.  It didn’t really print so well but gets the idea across.  I’m putting away the unfinished 4th of July project (until June of 2017) and I AM planning ahead for fall.  Maybe because it reminds me of cooler temps!

tempI got out fabrics for the whole color palette and just feel cooler touching fabric of the yellow-orange-gold to brown color family.  OK, so they really aren’t in the same color family but it all says fall to me.  If you are looking for inspiration to begin  a project, check out our Etsy store here.  I’m going to start with the smaller items first (casserole cover and bread wrap) and work toward dressing up the table.

TG bread wrap

Don’t you love those pilgrim figures?  They are the cutest!  I just wanna put on that hat and buckles on my shoes.  Guess I’ll settle for the apron.  I’m not sure I’m ready for the whole primitive life style thing.  final TG apron photo for printing

If I’m ready and the bread is ready to eat, let’s take a look at the table.  The cutest combo would be a runner in the middle and mats along the edge.  Oh wait, we have that too.TG table runner

TG place mat

The thermometer isn’t going the direction I recommend yet but I’m feeling “thankful” that it is coming soon and I’ll be better prepared.  Besides I heard that this heat wave should be treated like a blizzard.  You just bury yourself in the sewing room and don’t come out.  While you’re in there, you might want to start on a wool project that won’t make you overheat-like this fall runner.  Use those vintage orphan blocks or make a new one on your own.  Blooming Fall runner for printing

Last but not least, if you only have a moment between swim lessons and mowing, then check out the free coaster pattern under the brag book tab in our PS Projects.  Happy Fall, Ya’ll.

 

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Extended Contracts & Cigar Box Treasures

FL Sister id tag

I’ve decided to extend his contract indefinitely. The list of reasons for the contract extension is very long. And this summer the list has just grown longer and longer.

You may already know about Dietz and his amazing feats making and setting up quilt racks

quilt rack Jim

He can make it happen – and he smiles while he does it!

and the old sewing machine he turned into a vanity

vanity m

He does amazing things to bring concepts into reality!

and the blue bird bath he found at an estate sale.

bird bath sm

He offered to paint it any color I wanted but somehow the blue was just right!

And now this summer he raised the bar way high with a road trip through the Smokey Mountains

which took us through Pidgeon Forge,

pidgeon forge

Look closely in the lower left corner. Yes, outside our restaurant that is a pigeon at Pidgeon Forge.

the Biltmore,

biltmore library sm

They didn’t have a sewing room so the library was my favorite room.

zip line adventures …

zip line sm

Yes, I did close my eyes the first time and after that I did scream.

and a lake boat ride.

boat ride sm

And the day ended with ice cold watermelon!

And I brought home a hummingbird for my back door.

humming bird bell sm

The perfect souvenir!

I need to mention the quilt shop stops along the way, too.

quilt shop sm

They had wool on sale!

 

quilt shop1 sm

This one was right next door to a quilt retreat venue!

And now in the middle of summer’s heat, he caps it all off with a cigar box.

box sm

I couldn’t wait to open it!

I know nothing about cigar boxes, Cuban or otherwise. But this box is valued because Dietz found it for me (of course!) – and because of what is inside.

box full sm

These are a few of my favorite things!

This treasure box is filled with hankies of all kinds! He knows what warms my heart!

hankie sm

Bouquets of flowers!

puppy sm

A cuddly puppy!

mono sm

Delicate simplicity!

What will I do with more hankies? Oh, the possibilities are endless. And the Colorado sister is giving me inspiration as she works on a quilt for her smallest granddaughter. It looks like a dress-up fashion show to me!

postponed

Photo cannot be viewed at this time by order of the Colorado sister. Check back in a couple of weeks.

I plan to sign myself up for a hankie project as soon as I finish the Sisters round robin and the August class I’m signed up for and the To Do list for the fall show …

But most important, I’m signing up for 41 more years with this guy!

jim small

I think he’s saying, “What is she going to get me mixed up in next?”

You can see more inspiring ideas on our Pinterest Old Linens board.

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Purged and Prepped – Story of a Stash

CO Sister id tag

We have all seen it.  The sign that promises total organization for your crafting area / sewing studio.

OrganizingSewingSupplies-web

Great ideas

I’m all for it.  I have tried several methods, several times.  I just can’t seem to get past the purge your stash steps.  How small is too small?  How big is big enough?  Which pieces do I pile and which pieces do I fold?   Do you put your pieces aside that “might” work for a project? And heavens-to-Betsy, “only keep what you’re working on right now” was the worst idea ever!  Has no one ever heard of a fabric “stash”?  The very word suggests a controlled type of hoarding.  I can’t give up the stash!

stash-web

No, it won’t fall. It is crammed in too tight.

I would consider myself an organized person.  Not really over the top OCD, but I do like to know where something is once it is put away.  My spices are alphabetized in the cupboard, my shoes are separated by season and style, and the medicines are in color coordinated containers.  But the fabric….well, there is no real way to describe it.

messy-craft-room-web

Not mine, but she is creative!

I have a pinterest board for helpful ideas for storing fabric.  I have a friend willing to give most of it a good home.  I have little boards to fold the remainder onto.  But no success story here.  I’m still waiting for the perfect solution.  Creativity can be VERY messy.

My daughter folded hers onto neatly hidden hanging files.  If I did that it would look like an old fashioned file room at the IRS office.  Not that many file drawers let in America.

file-web

File folded fabric.

I saw a cute color coordinated system that fit on one shelf.   LOL

sew_organized_web

Seriously?

The only one I thought might work suggested you empty everything out and only put back what you love.  I actually opened the cupboard doors to start that and realized I would never be able to get out of the room until it was put back.  That would take days!

empty-web

No creativity here.

I tried the “take one out when you put one in” method.  But when I put in a 2 yard piece of fabric, I was only taking out a fat quarter.  It didn’t seem to make much difference.  Go figure.

So I start to justify the importance, nay, the necessity of having a fully stocked stash.  Where else would I come up with setting fabric for the 3 odd blocks I got at the guild rummage sale?  Only in my stash.

fabric-web

Who knew?

Or where else would I get just 2 tiny squares of batiks in order to finish the baby quilt for grandchild number ten?!  Only in my stash.

batik-quilt-web

It could be the signature block.

I have come to grips with the fact that my sewing area will always look like I’m in the midst of moving in (or out). And as long as I can find the latest project pieces it will pass the organized test.  (There have been times when it couldn’t!) I’ve come to love the security of having a stash to choose from and it feels like a warm, comfy blanket…er, quilt.

Sister wants to know your best organization tips in an effort to help halt the hoarding.

 

 

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Singer Featherweight Class

Tutorial Tuesdays header

 

Learn to fix a featherweight? Well ….

ad3

Featherweights have an interesting history and have not diminished in popularity.

I freely confess that I am not the mechanically inclined sister. Matter of fact I’m not sure either of us would be classified as a master mechanic. But we both do have a very robust “Can Do!” gene that sits alongside a hearty “Why Not Try It!” gene. So, when I heard that Nancy Troyer of Long Arm Machine Quilting was coming to Pensacola to teach a class on maintaining your Singer featherweight machine, I thought that even if I didn’t master the process I would at least be better off than if I didn’t even go. (low expectations for myself)

 

Nancy is a wonderful teacher – she goes step by step and gives clear instructions so that everyone in the class feels like conquering  the challenge is possible. Even her class supply list is eye opening:

  • A towel – spreading it under the machine while you work means that if you drop a screw or other small piece it won’t go bouncing along the floor.
  • A magnetic pin holder – a great place to stash screws or bolts or other small pieces so they don’t get misplaced.
  • Paper towels – these are a must have since the gunk that accumulates inside a machine is surprising.
  • Old toothbrush – for cleaning gears with kerosene
  • Tweezers – for reaching small pieces of lint and grime
  • Screwdriver – for removing various plates and covers
  • etc.
lint brush - straw and pipecleaner sm

Hot tip for making a lint brush: straw and pipe cleaner

We started the cleaning and rejuvenating process by removing the bottom panel, cleaning the inside and replacing the pad. Then we opened every nook and cranny, cleaning and lubricating as we went. Nancy stressed the difference between oils and lubricants – lubricate gears and put oil in the oil ports.

hook assembly

The hook assembly – especially the tiny, minute screw – is to be treated with care. Expensive to replace and absolutely vital!

Next we took off the throat plate to clean by the hook assembly. Special care has to be given to the hook assembly which houses the bobbin case. It’s better to use a wooden cuticle stick instead of a screwdriver if you need to remove it. Even the smallest scratch can cause the thread to snag and break when the machine begins to stitch. The vital piece of information about cleaning this part of the machine is that the positioning finger must be in place before you replace and tighten the throat plate. The timing of the machine will be fine as long as the hook assembly and positioning finger is placed correctly.

And here’s a hot tip about vintage bobbin cases: they are stamped with SIMANCO. New replacement bobbin cases often do not fit well so guard your vintage case as if it were gold.

When we got to the place that the motor needed to be cared for, we learned that carbon brushes are what makes the motor run. There needs to be at least ¼” of carbon on the brush or the machine motor will not work.

checking motor carbon2 sm

In fact running it without adequate carbon can ruin the motor. Checking the carbon brushes should be done with great caution and care. Success depends on the pressure you use to remove the screw as the carbon brush is on a spring. And the screw is brittle, aged plastic which can break easily.

checking motor carbon3 sm

Remove the screw carefully as it is under pressure from the attached screw.

We did not open the housing around the motor but we did lubricate it using the techniques she taught us.

motor lub sm

 

A belt in good condition makes a difference in the efficiency of the machine. We learned some great tricks including the use of vinyl tubing over screwdrivers when changing the belt to allow for leverage without scratching the machine. The motor can be raised a bit if the belt needs to be loosened.

checking belt3 sm

Note the vinyl around the screwdriver!

 

Last but not least, the front panel needs to be removed so that the parts there can be cleaned and oiled.

front panel sm

Singer machine manuals are a great resource.

 

The five hour class was filled with valuable information and expertise. So, this is just a summary to let you know that it can be done. Remember Singer originally advertised that the machine was constructed so that “the average housewife” would be capable of caring for it and maintaining it.

If a class is offered close to where you are, I recommend that you take advantage of it. Or contact Nancy and see if she is available to travel to your area to give the class. It is worth every penny!

 

Nancy Troyer sm

For class information, you can get in touch with Nancy HERE.

PS – Just a couple of weeks after the class Dietz and I were on a vacation/business trip in Tennessee and we stopped at Pickers Paradise where I saw a small black case stashed under a table behind some other things. I knew without looking inside that it was going home with me when I saw the price tag. When I opened the lid the first thing I saw was a tray holding a box of attachments! And the 1934 featherweight will give me a great chance to practice all I’ve learned.  

new case sm

Now I need to apply what I learned from Nancy to this little prize!

Come on, Sister, we can do this!

(NOTE: This is not a comprehensive guide to maintaining your machine, but rather a summary. Contact Nancy for expert advice or research the process via YouTube videos.)

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To Recombobulate or Not: that is the question

FL Sister id tagI’ve been accused of inventing words. Like I would DO that!  Like there aren’t enough words in the dictionary already. Or like I would try to improve on Mr. Webster! Really! The very idea!

Okay, put away the truth serum, I will reverse that denial. I hereby plead guilty! But the title of this post is not evidence of that creative word quirkiness. I have proof that REcombobulation is a real word and I found it in an airport – St. Louis, I believe.

REcombobulation area sm

OOOOPS! Sorry about that. Let me REcombobulate …

 

REcombobulation cropped sm

Yep! There it is in plain English …

The huge sign was there just after the part where I had to unpack the carry-on of all “hazardous, explosive and noxious materials” as well explain the seam ripper and needle threader to the TSA man as I stood there in my bare feet holding my scarf, my sweater and my laptop while trying not to drop my watch, my bracelet and the zip lock baggie of 3oz grooming supplies. I desperately NEEDED to be REcombobulated!

Becky with RE sign sm

See, I even have my scarf on straight!

Now, the DIScombobulated verbage – and status thereof – is not unfamiliar to me but this RE sign was a new encounter. Never having seen such a sign, I had to investigate its origins. So as I sat waiting in the gate area I googled “combobulate” and here’s what I found:

(Verb) To put together in a somewhat mysterious manner. To manufacture by some unusual or novel means.

Very helpful. Especially the part that gave me an example of usage: Usage: We must think out-of-the-box in order to combobulate a solution to overcome all these seemingly impossible challenges.

After reading that, I realized that much of my life has been spent combobulating! I am a combobulator! I have combobulationary gifts! And now, after going through the St. Louis airport, I had taken it to a new level – I had achieved REcombobulationary success!

I felt validated and affirmed beyond what any sign maker might have imagined!

dictionary

Dictionaries can be a wonderful tool for establishing self worth!

As far as I’m concerned, the DIScombobulated part is so much easier to achieve! It comes without any effort whatsoever. I think it has something to do with the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics – that part about everything falling apart instead of improving.

You, too, may have encountered “discombobulation” in conversation before. Or maybe in your sewing studio. (that word sounds so much more productive and efficient and organized than “sewing room” – know what I’m sayin’? I mean, “studio” sounds like a step away from DIS and toward RE – combobulation, I think.)

So I carried my new identifying word home with me. I would now not only be a master combobulator but I would also pursue REcombobulation in multiple areas of life! Here’s my thinking: however quirky my original combobulation might appear to be, if it can be REcombobulated after life causes it to be DIScombobulated then it becomes a pillar in the stabilization of my arena of life and it is therefore to be considered valid and real and wonderful – and not quirky at all!

Ah-ha!

thC1WEATTX

This is NOT my studio. I just keep the picture to feel better about how my studio gets when “creativity” is at high levels.

My first challenge to the REcombobulation Transformation was, not surprisingly, my STUDIO. It had fallen out of combobulation in a major way. Fortunately I could consult Pinterest where I found the following advice from popsugar.com.

Now I warn you, this is some hard core stuff. This writer surrounds her organizing posts with layers of other organizing posts. Like: 11 Things you need to throw away. Which is right next to: 100+ Cleaning and Organizing Hacks. 100? 100+? I feel like I should put a big red D on the front of my shirt. (For DIScombobulated, of course! And DISmayed! And also for DISaster!)

But, the ideas I found could be a giant step toward studio REcombobulation!

Questions to Declutter Your Studio:

  1. Have I used it in the last year? (Tools)
  2. If I were shopping right now, would I buy it? (this one brand)
  3. Is the only reason I’m keeping it because I don’t want to waste money? (you already did if you aren’t using it)
  4. Am I holding on to it for sentimental reasons? Someone gave it to me?
  5. Do I have a similar item that serves the same purpose? That I like better?
  6. Do I have a realistic plan for using it? Bag it as a kit
  7. Does it really fit me or my living space? (brights and I only use homespun)
  8. Is it broken and I plan to repair? Sharpen? Mend?
  9. Is the project FINISHED that I used it in? (backed, bound, labeled, etc.)
  10. Can it be cut into a pre-cut scrap? 2 1/2″ strip, square, charm, layer cake

Does all of that help you at all? I surely do hope so because I feel better just thinking and writing about getting my studio REcombobulated. Even though now, after all this talking and writing, I need to go make supper and I don’t have any time left today to actually get REcombobulated.

But at least now I have a partial plan for it. Kind of. Starting soon. Maybe.

orderly studio

This is NOT my studio either. It’s just my inspiration, motivation photo. Can that count as REcombobulation Step1?

Wait – didn’t someone once say “DIScombobulation is the mother of creative genius” ???

I was sure I saw that embroidered on a pillow somewhere. Or on a cool pallet board sign in a cool font with a cool decorative flourish in the corner.

No? You could be right. I think that was “Begun is half done.”

Does talking about REcombobulation with blog friends count as having begun? No?

Would you mind leaving your best REcombobulation tip here while I go combobulate something for supper?

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The Language of Quilts

Tutorial Tuesdays header

Cecilia is continuing the business her mother started, Pat’s Sacks.  Her booth is filled with vintage fabric, sugar sacks, and all things 30’s – including great music playing.   I enjoyed time in her booth very much and loved this handwritten memo she had hanging.

cajun quilt language

Cajun Quilt Language

 

Cecilia’s memo reads:

Before telephones, Cajuns spread news by hanging quilts over the balustrades of their houses.

Each quilt had a special meaning.

 

A red quilt – political victory

A yellow quilt – quarantine

A blue quilt with a big white star – wedding in the making

A patchwork quilt – a big celebration – Mardi Gras, New Years, July 4th

One quilt hung out with the wash – a child has eaten too much watermelon.

 

It reminded me of the book I enjoyed reading a few years ago —  Hidden in Plain View, written in 1999 by Raymond Dobard, Jr., an art historian, and Jacqueline Tobin, a college instructor in Colorado. I found their assertion fascinating that quilts may have been used to send coded messages to run away slaves.

Reading that book, and again when I saw Cecilia’s memo, I stopped to ponder – if I used quilts to send messages, which quilts would I use on different occasions?

During the NCAA basketball tournament –

KansasTrouble

Kansas Troubles

When I just happen to look at the calendar and remember a commitment at the last minute –

MyLuckyStars

My Lucky Stars

When I back the van out of the garage and forget the Jeep is parked in the driveway. (#fenderbendermyself)

PatienceBlock

Patience

When I get to the end of back to back traveling commitments –

NoPlaceLikeHome

No Place Like Home

When I proudly make a grocery list – and stick to it –

TheFrugalPatch

Frugal Patch

 

When The Sister and I pass our 5th year in business Anniversary mark-

Memory

Memory

When something gets checked off the UFO list.

ShiningHour

Shining Hour

What quilt message would you use most often?

Thanks to the Quilter’s Cache for their line drawings.

Categories: Inspire Me!, Tutorial Tuesdays | Tags: , | Leave a comment

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