Saturday, September 29, 2007

Hugs and Kisses

After making VOTE, I realized how much fun it is to make something really small in just a couple hours from start to finish. This is just a little (approximately 12"x12") gift for a friend. I used scraps from a couple projects like this and these, only the red and orange border and binding fabrics weren't scraps. (Yes, I actually used borders for once!) Check out these cool hugs and kisses quilts here and here and here and here. Small is definitely good, but I really need to get back to all my WIPs before starting any new projects!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Fish Update

I seem to be working on several different projects for Tonya's class... Work on the fish project (below) will continue when I get a little more of the background fabric (excuse the poor photography - it's actually the same fabric in each photo). In the meantime, I'm going to keep working on the 'places I've lived' project (and various other WIPs) and need to try to restrain myself from starting any new projects, large or small. Tough order.

And here are the fruits of my mushroom adventure on Friday evening! I broke in my cute new boots and found some non-poisonous mushrooms! I found several kinds, including these and these, and lots and lots of inedible ones! I think I'll need to take the class a few more times to really trust myself, but it was a good start!

Friday, September 21, 2007

Flags Flown

I can finally post real photos of this formerly secret project because it's arrived in Germany. A friend moved to Munich from Vaasa this summer and these little Nordic Cross flags are her belated bon voyage and early birthday gift! (Clockwise from the upper left: Åland, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Iceland, and the Faroe Islands.) Here are a couple closer up:

On the backs you can see a bit of my continued efforts at free-motion quilting. I chose fabrics that had some meanings for us - back in December, I made Olivia the Owl with this friend. The map is good for us both, as are the letters (she taught German here in Vaasa). The fish fabric is on the back of the Norwegian flag, where we traveled together this summer, and was purchased in Sweden, where we both studied! The hedgehog needs no explanation...

Thursday, September 20, 2007


Svampar is the Swedish word for mushrooms! I'm taking a two-evening mushroom course in Swedish this week - here's hoping the language barrier doesn't get me in trouble. (I do know that these (above) are very poisonous.) The season for berry picking is over, but there are still plenty of reasons to venture into the woods before the ground is covered with snow!

I even bought new gummistövlar (below) for our excursion tomorrow! I've been eyeing them for a while and this seemed like the right occasion.

It seems I'm not the only one posting about mushrooms. Kristin LaFlamme has a thing for them, too. (I had to get something quilty in here!)

I learned my ABCs in

Ferrum, Virginia, hence the ABC fabric. (Does anyone else remember the Letter People?) I moved to Ferrum from upstate New York just before starting Kindergarten and there were some words and letters I sure didn't understand when my teacher said them - the last letter of Ferrum was a strange one - sounded more like a kind of tree when she said it!

Just one quick one for my 'places-I've-lived' quilt. Vaasa was the shortest place with five letters - there are four more with six letters each, three with seven letters each, and then I need to start tackling long ones like Lyndonville and Washington, DC. Oy. (I'm still having fun, though.)

Monday, September 17, 2007

Tonya's Created a Monster!

I'm just bursting with ideas for quilts with letters now!! I was dreaming about them last night. I gave a lecture on geography of the US today and had to rush home to start a new project. I moved a LOT as a kid and seem to have continued as an adult so far. I thought I'd make a quilt for myself with places where I've lived. Stay tuned - it's going to be a long list of places! (And don't worry, I haven't abandoned the fishy letters, either.)

May Britt asked people to post seasonal quilts. After spending so much of the summer near the Arctic Circle, I no longer know what my favorite season is. I will post a photo of fall, though.

This soup is fall to me. I found the recipe on this awesome Estonian food blog. I've made quite a few of her recipes, but I'm not sure if I've linked to her blog before. I made these for a party two weekends ago, this savory pie in July for another party at my place, and this jam for some gifts back in May. Check it out (especially if you love beets and berries like I do!)

Saturday, September 15, 2007

More Letters

I was working in my office all day today, getting ready for the semester to begin on Monday, and have been thinking for a while that I needed a little something quilty to brighten up the place. One of my courses focuses on US government, so I have this little Gee's Bend postcard on the wall. (In case you can't see it very well, there is fabric with the letters VOTE printed on it.) I looked up at it today and was inspired to do a bit more letter exploration for Tonya's class when I got home. I used Ami Simms' cool little 'sleeve' corners again on this. The whole thing measures 12"x12".

I bought these fabrics at Maine Quilts during the Democratic Convention in 2004, but have never really known what to do with them. I'm not really the patriotic quilt type - maybe it's my dual-citizenship, maybe it's my frustrations with US policy at the moment, but this quilt feels okay. VOTE!

I have to thank Tonya again here for her inspiration!! If you haven't found her tutorials, check them out here!!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Something Fishy

I've finally starting sewing for Tonya's class. I love fish - especially eating them, but also just being near water, especially salt water - so I chose to begin with the word FISH. I drew a bunch of free-pieced fish designs while in a long meeting conducted exclusively in Finnish last spring, so maybe I can combine these letters with that idea in some way.

I played around with this for inspiration.

neongreen s H


Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Karin Continues to Create!

This is what happens when you hang around my apartment for too long...

You start quilting: (free-motion stippling, clouds, cursive and even labels on the first try!!)

You bake (these are for her colleagues):

Karin of Marimekko pillow fame is finished with her two-month experience at Wärtsilä in Vaasa and heads back to Germany this weekend to finish up her engineering studies. Maybe she'll be back for a quilt-retreat weekend!

Monday, September 10, 2007

Elisabeth Glasgow

Couldn't resist...

The Name Game

1. YOUR ROCK STAR NAME: (first pet & current car),
(no current car - kind of a Madonna/Sting thing)

2.YOUR GANGSTA NAME: (fave ice cream flavor, favorite cookie),
Half-Baked Tollhouse
(sounds more like my garage band name)

3. YOUR “FLY Guy/Girl” NAME: (first initial of first name, first three letters of your last name),

4. YOUR DETECTIVE NAME: (favorite color, favorite animal),
Green Hedgehog (image from KMC Cleaning)

5. YOUR SOAP OPERA NAME: (middle name, city where you were born),
Elisabeth Glasgow

6. YOUR STAR WARS NAME: (the first 3 letters of your last name, first 2 letters of your first),

7. SUPERHERO NAME: (”The” + 2nd favorite color, favorite drink),
The Orange Gin and Tonic
The Turquoise Smoothie
The Red Espresso

8. NASCAR NAME: (the first names of your grandfathers),
Arthur Robert

9. STRIPPER NAME: ( the name of your favorite perfume/cologne/scent, favorite candy),
Happy Haribo

10.WITNESS PROTECTION NAME: (mother’s & father’s middle names ),
Joanne Douglas

11. TV WEATHER ANCHOR NAME: (Your 5th grade teacher’s last name, a major city that starts with the same letter),
Sponnenberg Syracuse

12. SPY NAME/BOND GIRL: (your favorite season/holiday, flower).
Winter Lupine

13. CARTOON NAME: (favorite fruit, article of clothing you’re wearing right now + “ie” or “y”)
Blueberry Raincoat

14. HIPPY NAME: (What you ate for breakfast, your favorite tree),
Yogurt White Pine

15. YOUR ROCKSTAR TOUR NAME: (”The” + Your fave hobby/craft, fave weather element + “Tour”),
The Patchwork Blizzard Tour

Thanks, Happy Zombie!

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Lucky Strings

Just a quick WIP photo. I started these string block back in June and posted a little tutorial here. Once I get this together and send it off to it's recipient, I'll post a little more about the project. Its wonkiness is good practice for Tonya's course - I'll try to post photos of my sewing for that this week!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Friends and a Funky Foot

I've done something funky to my foot and am supposed to stay on the sofa for a few days with my foot in the air. Fortunately, I can prepare my courses for the fall from the sofa. Unfortunately, I cannot iron or cut strips for my current project from the sofa. Luckily, though, my Bernina has not been lonely! Two friends decided to try their hand at some patchwork. Katrin made a nine-patch potholder from a friend's mother's curtains (hope I've got that right) and says she's coming back for more. Karin turned a precious Marimekko remnant into a great pillow - complete with zipper! I love the looks of concentration on their faces:

Monday, September 03, 2007

Sneak Peek Collage

I have to wait a bit to post proper pictures of this project because it's a gift, but I couldn't resist sharing a little sneak peek. I actually had two finishes this weekend!

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Blue, Blå, Bleu, Blau, Sininen, Albastru

I spent yesterday turning my entire kitchen blue - after picking lingonberries and blueberries in Sundom, I made seven jars of blueberry jam and nine jars of skogbär (forest berry) jam. I think this is the last jam making session of the year, but I'm left with liters and liters of lingon. I'll freeze most of them, but if you have good lingon syrup or chutney recipes (or good cranberry syrup or chutney recipes), please send them my way!

Sticking to the blue theme, I finished up the quilt for my cousin's little one. The second quilt I've made for a baby named Paul this year! I even made a label for this quilt - inspired by the label requirement of the doll quilt swap. (Thanks many times over to Amy for the hedgehog fabric!) The finished quilt is 46"x46".