GREAT dinner tonite

This has been a bumper year for squash and everywhere we go someone sends us home with one.. A friend gave us this little one (about 10" across)  and I stuffed it for tonight's dinner.... I used some of the squash from the top and added about 2 cups cooked Italian sausage, 2 cups bread crumbs (I used a seedy whole grain bread) 1 onion  chopped, 1 apple chopped and a handful of dried cranberries... I add a tad of orange juice for a bit of moisture... When it was baked I topped with grated parmesan cheese.  It was fabulous and now I need to find another one...  I baked it in the oven but the next time I fix it I'll pop it in the slow cooker.


I'm "hot", on the edge of a new trend, and in the right place at the right time.

Stopping at the quilt store in August and being accepted to offer a CQ class was a shock...  Having it fill twice and a waiting list is a bigger shock.  I had been schlepping my stuff around to quilt stores for years getting the proverbial cold shoulder. Now I discover I'm "hot", on the edge of a new trend, and at the right place at the right time.

One night last week the shop had a "teacher's" night to discuss submitting a proposal for a class, expectations from the shop and what they thought would meet the approval.. The presenter said there is a new trend with their quilt customers.  They want projects smaller in size than quilts and they are wanting "hand work."  And here I am...on the spot so to speak...

As usual I had taken work with me while I had attended the meeting and of course I had my chatelaine...  They felt a class for the chatelaine would fill instantly... so here I am making two more...actually one and pieces.  One for a display model for the shop and pieces of one for teaching aids.  Since it is a quilt store and selling cottons, these examples are cotton.  My stitchers were here yesterday and since they are doing the chatelaines I picked their brains on how many classes and how long the classes needed to be to finish comfortably.  It was great to get their input.

And one stitcher is making a CQ Christmas stocking and made this flower from gold sequin trim and a button the same way I did my black ones.  It is spectacular.

And to end on a happy note every evening when I go out to lock up the chicken house and check on the barn, I return to the house and see my lovely door all lit up with Christmas lights... It never fails to make me smile and what a great way to finish my day.. The photo is spotty as it was foggy and raining.


Did you notice the girls??

The reason I chose this particular image for the suffrage quilt was, except for the drivers, this gaily decorated parade vehicle is filled with young girls... "votes for us when we are women."  Over and over again I saw images of the inclusion of young girls in the movement.  They weren't old enough to vote, take a stand,   or protest but they were included in numerous ways.
Top right is finished now and I really wish I had a wall to put the blocks on at this stage.  In the other image on this block the suffragettes are literally tooting their own horns for their cause.  Those of you who remember the beginning of this project will also remember how I agonized over the choices of images from literally hundreds I had collected.
When all the blocks on the right side are put in place you can see the black border emerging....
Here is the detail of the button feature and the trim flower.  This flower was made from gimp.


"Side right" finished and problem block!

Along with the bicycle block this block is one of my most favorite  and its images were the first chosen.  The symbolism of the men lined up with their backs turned and the woman looking forward had touched me immediately..

The very last thing I added last night was the row of bugle beads on the ribbon below the men.. It accentuated their rigidity and made me smile.

Just Sunday there was an historic bit in the paper on this issue.  Men were quoted as saying if woman were allowed to vote men didn't have to be chivalrous.

This block has one of the "trim" flower that I thought most likely to be successful.  Surprise! I was able to use the amber beads which I bought in Seaside Oregon earlier this month..  They are the perfect color besides being my favorite gem stone.

And I loved every button is this feature... I'm going to have to do some research into how they made  glass buttons.

Every time I pulled "upper right" to work on it I sent it to the bottom of the pile... It just wasn't working.

First there just weren't enough opportunities for fancy seams as on the other blocks.  I also need to remove that delicate tiny rose lace on the left  and the stitching below it.

Second the black lace on the lower block encroached too far into the lighter section and was out of sync with the rest of the blocks..

I put this picture in photo editing and on the right replace the black lace (digitally) with lighter lace and do indeed like it. With that change the images work as a unit.  So I'll will be starting all these changes today.  Out of the nine blocks, it is the only block that I've had to revise.


Thread Ring Options

I mentioned my thread ring yesterday and I still had them hanging on the back of the door on a cup rack....but it was a really cheap cup rack and quite flimsy so I looked around a bit for a sturdier one or a better option.

One of these cast iron models would be great.  It has 5 folding  arms with a total of  15 hooks and they all fold back against the wall... but alas they are very pricy. If money were no object this would be my choice.

Other things I found include an under the shelf model which pulls out....great for someone using a closet for storage.  Another also goes under a shelf and swivels around... And there were many that you got only hooks but a shelf as a bonus...

I have a lot of vintage coat hooks in the barn and could have done something like this without too much effort..
But in the end it was the usual make-do with what I got.  One of my problems was the center of the door was recessed and the rack wasn't stable which added to the flimsiness. So I added a brace (arrow) to the back which not only fill the recess gap, it stabilized the whole rack.  The wooden pieces to hang the cups on were attached with nails  and I replaced the nails with screws which also helped greatly.  So this now my permanent home for my thread rings.  Now I just have to get the rest of the thread  on the rings...no small job in itself.
Had a bunch of green cherry tomatoes left and made green tomato chutney this morning.


Happy Dance, New Class and Necklace Upcycle!!!

I do a little happy dance every time I'm choosing threads.  I couldn't be happier since I now keep my thread on the large rings.  It is such a joy to lay the ring of threads right across the block to make my choices....

And remember in September when I told you I had a new workshop coming up at a quilt shop  using a new format.... an introduction rather that a series of classes.?  It's only a one-day workshop and I asked for only 7 people.  Well 9 have signed up and we've added another date in Dec. and that has filled up and now there is a waiting list for after the first of the year...  Mine you they are not really learning anything ....just seeing if they think they would like doing something with no directions, time consuming and addictive... If they like it, I can have sit & stitch at the shop or they can come to the house.  We meet here the last Saturday of the month and a couple Wednesdays during the month.. It's informal with everyone working at their own pace.   It works best here at the house as I HAVE STASH.... Wish me luck...  Here is how the workshop was advertised.

 Sunday Nov. 3 - 12-4
   "Introductory Workshop  to Crazy Quilting"
by Gerry Krueger

Crazy quilting is free-form and embraces all aspects of various needlework skills. 
Each piece is one-of-a-kind.
The afternoon  will begin with a slide show on crazy quilt history and various styles of crazy quilts..     Lots of samples of crazy quilting will be available to fondle and discuss.  Time will be spent on how to build multiple-layered seams, the hallmark of crazy quilting. Finally the construction of a block for a first project and a guide to the steps for success in crazy quilting. Lots of eye candy, freebies, and handouts. 

Although the jazzy red necklace upcycle was not on any to-do list , I just had to drop everything and do it...  It's been a long time since I've done any jewelry and I noticed I had a bunch of brooches waiting to be upcycled... Maybe this winter.  I lost touch with my beading buddy so I'll have to track her down.... I can hardly wait to wear this...

I used old beads, an old brooch, parts of another necklace and various beads and findings...plus the necklace I bought and disassembled...of course.


Lower right!

As I've on the finishing end I have been jumping from block to block trying to keep things balanced but the last step is always the buttons...and they're on here.  I'm sure there will be some last minute tweeting at assembly time but for now this block is done.

The fancy stitches are done on all blocks and I've just been beading ....and quite heavily but only tone on tone... It doesn't detract from the images but adds depth and complexity to the block..

I love to include tiny beads, button and jewels to fill out a trail of buttons... something learned from Sharon B..  It's so exciting to be using all the buttons I've been collecting for this project for the last three years.  You can see in this closeup that the beads on the brown gimp match it exactly.

Almost 2 years ago I went to LA to visit Susie and bought lots of trims, etc. for this project in the garment district.  One was this "rhinestones-by-the-yard" trim.

When I use a piece of trim from that trip I can remember the store...the smell, the diversity of items, the excitement of each find.... it is sewing on wonderful memories as there is certainly nothing like it here in Spokane.


UPCYCLE -Sparkles and red to boot!!!

Red is my most favorite color and you would only have to look at my closet to know that. It's always a mood elevator for me. Yesterday my dear friend (and my driver) took me to a thrift store in a neighboring town and I found this precious necklace.

Beside the red glass beads there is a lot of intricate enamel work.  Even though I fell in love with it I immediately realized it was much to delicate for my ample bosom as I am a woman of substance.

So when I got home I went to my stash of red and sparkly   jewelry bits and parts.  The very first thing I'll do is mount the pendant on a larger piece of filigree to give it some weight. I love the pendant on the filigree but it overwhelms the rest..

So I'll enhance the other parts from my stash.  I've been wanting to use this large red stone in this brooch for some time and I think the bracelet parts will be perfect....maybe some heavier chain ...a fun challenge for sure

Then I looked on Etsy and found two pair of vintage earrings that will be perfect..


Back Again!

We took our first "together" vacation since 2006 and went to a duplicate bridge tournament on the Oregon coast.  You can't blame a low score on bad cards in this situation. Every person in this picture sitting in the same direction is playing exactly the same hand of cards (hence the term duplicate).  You just have to play it better. The group is divided into sections of various abilities (hence the L, N, etc.. This is just part of the main floor of the convention center and the second floor was full of tables as well. Over the 6 days almost 3000 tables were in play. DH is very competitive and loves this. I do it because I love him...
But one doesn't expect this kind of weather on the northern Oregon coast in October.  We shared a condo facing the beach with another couple and each morning I watched the sky turn from night to shades of pinks and finally blue.  I was able to stitch a couple hours each morning with this view.

I did manage to find a small bead store  and bought some delightful  tiny  topaz beads which will be perfect for the suffrage quilt which is moving along nicely.  I was hoping to have it ready to assemble by Christmas and I do believe I'm going to make it.

And of course a person having a rainbow door couldn't resist these outrageous gypsy earrings. They are huge and I plan to combine  and "redesign"  them   into a pendant for a necklace...

The dogs welcomed us home with much enthusiasm and by tomorrow things should be back into "getting ready for winter" mode...
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