Friday, April 27, 2012

Little Lettuces

Last weekend, Tim and I planted pumpkin, zucchini, and two kinds of lettuce seeds in some egg cartons we had been saving for just this purpose. About a month ago, we planted two pots with basil seeds, which are coming along nicely. I also planted some sunflower seeds I had harvested from the wild sunflowers I planted last year. Those have begun to sprout, but so have the sunflowers from last year out in the yard. They are coming on strong! It’s nice to have it confirmed that they are, in fact, perennials.

Anyway, to my surprise, the lettuce is already sprouting! I had not expected it to show up quite so soon. But it is very gratifying to see the tiny green shoots poking out of the dirt.

This photo was taken yesterday, and already I’d say the shoots are twice as tall, if not more.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Extemporaneous Quiltmaking

Putting together this quilt top was a bit of a departure for me. My quilts tend toward the traditional, at least in the sense that they usually incorporate identifiable quilt blocks.

This quilt, on the other hand, is made from leftover strip sets, crosscuts and pieces from a wall quilt I made several years ago. The remnants had been residing in my studio, neatly folded, waiting their turn which finally arrived last weekend.

I took the individual units and arranged them on my quilt wall, with the goal of using them as efficiently as possible, with minimal trimming.

I'm pretty pleased with it. I especially like the bits of red fabric scattered randomly.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Floating Rocks

Tomorrow I turn in Project 1 in my Photoshop II class.

The biggest challenge on this project was using the Liquify tool to get some realistic-looking ripples in the reflections of the trees and rocks. I spent most of yesterday’s class and a good part of this morning messing around with it, doing and re-doing it.

I think I finally got something halfway decent.

I wonder what my instructor will say?

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Mystery Flower

The crocuses have come and gone. Here’s what they looked like at their peak in early March.

Now the daffodils are in their prime.

And the grape hyacinth are coming on.

The tulips will be blooming soon as well.

And then there is this flower.

It’s the only one in the yard, and I don’t know what it is. I just know that I like it.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Kokopelli Delectable Mountain Quilt

Spring quarter began this week, and it is shaping up to be a very busy term. I am enrolled in 4 classes: Photoshop II, Dreamweaver I, Typography and a class called Rights and Methods in Multimedia, which focuses on copyright issues.

Thus, my failure to put up a new post since last Sunday

I did finish sewing on the binding of the Double Wedding Ring quilt. Yay, me! There is still one task remaining with that project: I have to find an industrial-size washing machine and throw it in with some Color Catcher sheets.

During a period of time when I was not working on it and it was stored away, some of the fabric dyes bled or rubbed off. I'm not sure which. When I took it out of storage to work on it, I was dismayed to discover this. I'm still somewhat mystified, because it never actually got wet. Was humidity a factor? I'd never heard of that.

Anyway, I pulled out one of my favorite quilts to display in today’s post.

I made this several years ago at one of the few weekend quilt retreats I have attended. It was over at a then-coworker’s second home in Poulsbo, Washington.

I had purchased the three Kokopelli-themed fabrics at a quilt show. I think they were at least half yard cuts. I had already decided on a modified Delectable Mountain block, based on a quilt I had seen in a book by Judy Hopkins. The change I made was to connect the blocks by making them share a triangle.

I had originally planned to use a different fabric in the half-square triangles, but then I decided that it wasn’t working for me. So I visited the quilt shop in town, and found a different fabric that worked perfectly.

It’s a little hard to see in the photo, but it has a kind of granite-rock rough look to the print. It really did fit in better with the theme of the quilt.

That weekend, I think I made the Mountain blocks, and maybe even completed the rows with the background sky print.

But then I let it sit for quite awhile. Why? Because I was afraid to cut the fabric for the sashing and the border. Why? Because I had only the limited amount I had purchased and no way of getting more if I cut wrong.

When I finally set down to cut the sashing and border pieces, I measured and calculated at least three times to make sure I had figured it right. As it turned out, I was spot on. I did have to splice it in one place. If you look at the bottom border just to the right of center, you will see a single Kokopelli figure without his mirror image.

Most of the quilting is outline quilting, but I did put a sun design in the large sky triangles, that I thought was an appropriate motif.