Thursday, February 23, 2012

Back home

Did you miss me?  I was in Phoenix for the yearly retreat I attend, if I can.  This was the 10th anniversary retreat.  We all met online on the quilting forum, and I've missed only two retreats...when we were in MN taking care of my mother-in-law and a couple of years ago when they had the nerve to schedule my total knee during the retreat!

I came home and Dale had finished the painting in the sun room.  I picked the color for our heat sink wall, the day I left.  It used to be the exterior adobe wall of the house.  Unfortunately the first gallon of pain was bad, thin and watery and he had to go back and replace it.  I love the end result.  It's quite a change from our usual white, but we wanted something that would absorb the heat, and not reflect it back.
 The rock step is something we brought back from one of our camping trips, which I blogged about here.  I remember pulling off the road and collecting this rock, which was a challenge to load into the truck.  I works perfectly as a step, the color, height, etc. 

The wind has been blowing and blowing.  Our weatherman explained that it's another La Nina year, and we can expect lots of wind.  I'm hoping not quite as much as last year!  Still getting some awesome sunrises.
When I left for Phoenix, I was working on this scrappy quilt.  I had been cutting the appropriately sized pieces from scraps and saving them.  The quilt needs to be totally cut out and then put together like a course of bricks.  I'm not sure I like this method of putting a top together, but I want to get it done and off the design wall.  I came home with lots of donated tops and blocks, and I need to get busy quilting on the longarm.  I'm anxious to try out the QuiltEZ boards I have on loan, and I'm considering buying from a longarmer that has gone computerized. 

Thursday, February 09, 2012

More thrift shopping

I was on a good thrifting roll.  We went to Santa Fe for a birthday outing and I thought a stop in Moriarty was in order.  

Look what I got:

A three yard piece of the great graphic design fabric, and some wonderful yarns.  The yarns were $1 a skein/ball, and retail for $7-10 each, Hempathy and Tahki Cotton Classic!  They also have just a wonderful feel.

Next week I'll be heading for the yearly retreat in Phoenix.  There's a Savers close to the hotel we stay in, and Phoenix has wonderful Goodwill stores.  It's birthday month celebration!

Also stopped at the new Wal-Mart in Santa Fe and they had a fabric department.  I picked up two 6+yard bolts of great quality cotton that I can use for backings at $2/yd. 

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Back to cotton...

When you know better, you can do better.  Saturday at our longarm quilters meeting, I was given a copy of On Track, a quarterly publication from IMQA (International Machine Quilters Association, Inc.).  It's a very good read, but one article made an impression on me, Safe Batting Choices for Baby and Invalid.  Follow the link to read the article online.  

I never considered the flammability of battings, but after reading this I'm going back to cotton.  I had been using an 80/20 blend because of the price, but since I predominantly make quilts for children, I will go back to cotton batting.  Some of the newly diagnosed diabetic kids I make quilts for are unfortunately infants, and I cannot in good conscience continue to use poly blend batting. 

On a more fun note, I stopped at Savers on my way home and scored!  I got the squash colored duvet cover, the buttery colored king cotton sheet, the twin plaid sheet, and the yard piece of striped fabric all for $17.  I love using sheets for backings.  I don't have to piece them have never had a problem stitching through them with even the highest thread counts.

I also finished this little wall hanging from a pattern I won on Painted Threads blog some time ago.  It's for a friend of a friend that loves polar bears.  Nice to finally use the pattern.