Welcome!

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Me and my fellow blogger and quilting companion, Sassy.

Me and my fellow blogger Sassy the Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer

Thanks for visiting my blog and I look forward to your comments and thoughts on my posts.

My blog is focuses on the aspects of “A Quilter’s Life” and discusses topics such as sources of creative inspiration, what’s on my design wall, quality of life, quilting adventures, artistic growth, books that inspire me and all things related to handmade textile crafts!

The “Tierney” page shares my story and the Textile Adventures section  has links to my Exhibits and Shows, Art for Sale, and Gallery of my work.

My rescue miniature schnauzer, Sassy, the Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer now has her own blog Schnauzer Snips at schnauzersnips.wordpress.com 

If you have questions or want to contact me, please use the form on the Questions page, thanks!

I also manage the blog for Improvisational Textiles a collaborative collection of art quilts.

Fusing Textiles & Smiles!

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Seeds

In the mornings before work and before it gets too warm outside I try to go on a bike ride and listen to a podcast (no worries, I ride my bike in a safe low traffic section of my neighborhood and always watch for cars). 

Recently I have discovered The RobCast by Rob Bell (robbell.com), a former pastor turned author, coach, speaker. His podcasts focuses on minimalism, spirituality and quality of life. I discovered him through The Minimalists.

There are to date 157 episodes of his podcast, and I started with episode #1 after hearing him speak on an episode of The Minimalists Podcast. Although his message is based on his spiritual beliefs and he does share biblical quotes, the topics discussed in his podcast are not limited to/designed to appeal only to those with Judeo-Christian beliefs.

In my opinion they would appeal any spiritual belief whether what you consider “The Divine” is based on a higher being(s), a prophet, nature, science, or what lies within you. He discusses what I feel are universal truths that he makes accessible using real life situations and challenges we all face. There is no “bible-thumping” in this podcast (which personally would turn me off immediately).

The RobCast is now part of my morning bike ride routine and I today listened to Episode #3 in which Rob Bell explores being grateful for having employment to feed yourself/your family; and discusses the idea of an inedible seed turning into something that nurtures you:

“(A) seed contains within it the potentiality to keep you alive. It contains latent life-force, present but unrealized possibilities…you place a seed in the earth and you bury it and it somehow become something else…as it arises from the earth in a new form it is from that particular new form…provides you with what you need to live.

A seed only becomes the thing it could become…its potentials are only realized when it is buried…it is in the dark..it is under the earth, it appears lost to your sight…it is in the moment in which the seed is most gone that is actually when it is undergoing the most radical necessary transformation for it to be something that could give you life…” – Rob Bell, The RobCast, Episode 3|Receipts

Listening to the passage above got me thinking about something I created but have not shared on blog that has to do with SEEDS.

But let’s back up for a moment…

As a general rule I stay away from politics and religion as topics of discussion on my blog. I want to always respect my readers that may have different views on these very sensitive subjects. These are very personal types of beliefs.

I do however make a point to have people in my life who have different spiritual and political beliefs than I do. I like to be exposed to ideas and viewpoints that differ from mine. It is a basic requirement though to be my friend that you do have same general values about treating others with respect (sorry raging misanthropes we cannot be friends, ha!).

It is for this reason (staying away from politics) that I have not shared something I created for a certain march on issues that are meaningful to me as a Woman and as a Person of Color.  I am feeling inspired to now share and here a banner I created, all about seeds:

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This banner is based on a Mexican proverb and the banner is currently in a national traveling exhibit called Still They Persist: Protest Art of the 2017 Women’s Marches. It is featured in a book about the exhibit by the same title.

I think what Rob Bell says about seeds in his RobCast #3 and the general theme of my banner, could translate to any situation in which you feel buried, without hope and things are the darkest. If you have planted seeds,  although it is dark, there might be a period of incredible transformation happening underground that and will eventually bloom into something beautiful.


Postscript

Speaking of seeds and thus nature, I am definitely taking a cue from nature as I slowly work on hand stitching the letters on my Lao Tzu quotes themed wallhanging. As I shared in yesterday’s post, The Backstitch and the End of Tangled Floss, I am finishing up a wallhanging from an appliqué class I took in 2016.

I am in the process of stitching:

“Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished” – Lao Tzu

And it is obvious I am not hurrying (ha) but I have completed THREE WORDS (a significant improvement from TWO LETTERS I shared yesterday!

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It is a peaceful meditative process to carefully stitch on words, I like it! I plan to knock out another word or two this evening.

(Which will happen first: the acorn will turn into the oak tree or I will finish stitching the saying onto the quilt?)

Thanks for reading my ramblings…

 

The Backstitch and the End of Tangled Floss

Inviting the Backstitch into my Repertoire

Continuing my theme of cleaning out the old UFOs (unfinished projects) from yesterday’s post, this weekend I also worked on an appliqué project that I began in a wonderful class a over year ago (Adventures in Appliqué). 

I made progress on this piece while attending the annual retreat with my Quilting Sisters in May 2017 (Quilt Retreat Inspiration and Projects):

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To finish this wallhanging size quilt top, I needed to embroider the words that go with the image using a “backstitch”:

“Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished” – Lao Tzu

Hopefully it is obvious (fingers crossed) that my wallhanging contains an acorn which eventually becomes a large oak tree in time.

The concept of the wallhanging is based on the African Themed Bible Verses appliqué quilt that students had the option of making in the class.

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Bible Verses Quilt by Ugandan Women, Sisters of the Heart Foundation, Sisters Coffee House during the 2016 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show

I being the rebel, decided to use the words of an ancient Chinese philosopher as inspiration for my piece (also a rebel, I decided to make a smaller wallhanging with one block instead of a quilt with multiple blocks).

Although I have allegedly been quilting for 17+ years, sometimes I feel like a brand new quilter when I discover something else I do not know how to do: in order to stitch on the words, I needed to learn how to do the backstitch.

The wonderful instructor, Janet Storten (who is the Director of Sisters of the Heart Foundation) kindly offered to give me a refresher on the backstitch as she did cover it in her class (and I swear I did pay attention in class). I was tempted but I thought I would take a chance and try to learn the backstitch from YouTube.

YouTube is filled with awesome instructional crafting videos (and I have lost hours of time watching one right after the other). I discovered one by the talented crafter Lauren Fairweather:

As Janet had instructed in her appliqué class, I first lightly drew words in pencil on my fabric (see I did remember something). Following the video above, I slowly did my first backstitch letters!

This is another hand sewing meditative experience (slowing down and focusing appears good for the soul!)

In time I know I will get better, but here are photos of my progress so far (I had to put my work in a hoop to stabilize it until I get more experienced):

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So Tierney, you stitch on TWO letters and then post photos? Why yes, I am very proud of those two letters – ha! Of course when the whole top is finished I will post an updated photo.

A Tale of Tangled Threads

Actually a tale of tangled embroidery floss, but the words “embroidery floss” did not not provide the alliteration that “threads” did in the header to this section!

Last May when I took Janet’s class on Appliqué I discovered embroidery floss cards (Tierney – have you been quilting under a rock all these years, why do you not know about basic crafting items?!?!) Janet was kind enough to share some of her huge collection of embroidery floss cards with her students. She gave me this one that coordinated with my piece:

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I did not know such magical cards existed! I thought that she had discovered a mysterious and secret fountain of embroidery floss!

You see I have always purchased embroidery floss this way:

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Photo credit: Jo-Ann Fabrics and Crafts

And turned these nice little packages of embroidery floss into TANGLED MESSES.

Prior to learning to stitch with them, I used embroidery floss in various colors as the “string” to hold the chopstick on the miniature kimonos I make so they can become a wallhanging.

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Miniature Kimono by tierneycreates with red embroidery floss

Other crafters will likely cringe at this but I would just cut in the middle of a new package of embroidery floss in order to access a length of it for hanging the kimono. Then I would put the rest of the floss away in a small bag and it would turn into a tangled mess.

I would untangle the mess to try and cut more floss out for another kimono as needed.

Are you cringing, I mean really cringing? Do you want my “Crafter Card” revoked at this point?

Not able to find embroidery floss on these mysterious spool like cards, I just kept doing what I was doing until I discovered a large package of embroidery cards with floss and some EMPTY CARDS for $1.50 a couple of weeks ago at a thrift shop.

(Lightbulb)

So…you buy the cards and then you wind your embroidery floss onto the cards!

This weekend I sorted my thrift shop find into an old small plastic container with dividers and wound all my floss packages onto their own spool cards!

I went from this (note the tangled floss in small packages):

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To this:

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When I ran out of the cards I got from the thrift store bag, I used one of them as a template and created my own with some recycled cardboard.

Just think how much more basic quilting/crafting stuff I will learn in my next 17 years of quilting!

…let loose and HOWL

“Once in a while, you just have to let loose and HOWL” is one of the dog themed sayings on the wallhanging sized quilt I just finished on Saturday and hung in Terry the Quilting Husband’s (TTQH) studio (aka the Guest Room).

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No More Just Gathering Dust

My friend Lisa gave me dog themed wallhanging sized quilt top (unfinished quilt) a couple years ago. Since then it has in my closet (after sitting in hers) as an un-finished object (UFO), just gathering dust (yes quilters like to transfer their UFOs from one quilter to another to keep in storage at someone else’s house!).

Saturday I was rummaging through my UFOs and came across this quilt top; and spur of the moment decided to JUST FINISH IT.

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Lisa was very generous to give me this completed wallhanging quilt top. All I had to do in order to finish the quilt was to prepare the backing; machine quilt it; and bind it.

Recycled Batting

My friend Betty Anne who is a professional long-arm quilter has quilting batting leftovers from her customers’ quilts that the customers do not want. She saves some of the pieces for me to use for table runners or small projects. (I rarely buy package batting as for smaller pieces I have her discards and for larger quilts I get them professionally quilted which include the batting in the cost)

She also taught me how to piece smaller batting together to make a larger batting for a project – either by zig zagging the batting together or using a special tape to join them.

I did not have pieces of scrap batting to finish the dog themed wallhanging quilt. So I zig zagged two smaller pieces together:

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Favorite Saying?

Not only did I make the batting, quilt it and bind it all in one day, I also got it hung in TTQH’s sewing area (the entire Guest Room is dog…primarily schnauzer…themed)!

Summoning TTQH to the Guest Room…I mean his “studio”, to reveal the latest addition, I asked him which saying on the wallhanging was his favorite. He selected this one:

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Sassy the Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer would be very pleased with this choice of sayings!

My favorite quote on the quilt is this one I already shared:

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I am feeling fairly pleased I got a craft project finished and hung in a day (okay, okay the quilt top was already made by another quilter, ha!).

Happy Howling!

 

Fundraiser Quilt and Good Omens

Quilting Sisters’ Charity Quilt

One of my Quilting Sisters (see posts Quilting Sisters, Part II and Quilting Sisters, Part I) is a breast cancer survivor and asked at this year’s annual Quilting Sister Retreat, if each of us would make two blocks for a fundraising charity quilt to raise money for breast cancer research.

The plan is to make different “star” blocks in blues and whites. This past weekend I worked on my blocks, made from the same block pattern from the Ladies’ Art Company Block Tool – Four X Star:

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Here are the completed blocks, I used the same “white on white” background fabric and different blues for the blocks:

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The blocks are “nothing to write home about” but I needed to get them done (because I had procrastinated working on the blocks) in time for the quilt to get assembled by my Quilting Sister who is pulling all together and having it quilted for the charity fundraising event.

I like the blocks better turned on point and I do not how the quilt will be set. I will try and remember to share a photo of the completed quilt in the future.

Good Omens

I just finished an exceptionally funny and irreverent audiobook – Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett

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Photo credit: Amazon.com

The book is about heaven and hell screwing up the Apocalypse. It has two absolutely endearing characters, who are actually best friends, a bumbling angel Aziraphale and a demon Crowley (who actually secretly quite fond of humanity) who try to sabotage the Apocalypse.

The book is brilliantly narrated by Martin Jarvis who does an exceptional job with all the voices of the characters.

Filled with delightful bits and parodies of modern culture (well as modern as 1990 when it was published), I laughed so hard while trying to go on my daily walks that one time I actually stumbled! The authors obviously dislike telephone salespeople, tax accountants, and the fast food industry!

In addition it the awesome British humor and endless silly bits (The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse are actually “Hell’s Angels” bikers!), some of them with “Monty Pythonesque” humor, the book has some wonderful insight on humanity’s foibles and how we should try and be better to each other. It also is filled with heart warming sweetness of how much goodness there actually is in the world.

There are many wonderful quotes in the book. Here is one I found on QuoteAddicts.com:

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Postscript

The kale in my garden is ready to use!

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Hello Kale, I would like to invite you into my belly

Even though summer has started, I made my one of my favorite stews for supper: Bean and Chicken Sausage Stew .

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Used fresh tomatoes instead of canned

With some crusty bread, we had a very tasty supper last night! Check out my repost from  November 2016, A Girl’s Gotta Eat (repost), if you would like links to some of other favorite recipes.

All the topics on this post seem rather random, so I will continue to be random, and share the cover of a blank journal my friend Susan recently gave me as a gift. It makes me smile:

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Cabbage Rose Quilting & Fabrics, Ft. Worth TX

During our recent trip to Fort Worth, Texas, Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) and I stopped at a Fort Worth area quilt shop – Cabbage Rose Quilting & Fabrics.

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It is a lovely quilt shop with a great selection of fabrics, excellent prices (and a very nice sale section) and friendly/helpful staff. I got to chat with the owner a very nice lady.

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All around the shop were sweet little vignettes, here is one with a miniature antique sewing machine in the window, that I thought was darling:

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Quilt Shop Family Reunion

What made the visit to this quilt shop very special was it was also the location of a mini Hogan family reunion!

We picked up TTQH’s quilter sisters Susan and Diane from the airport and headed directly to this quilt shop from the DFW airport. Terry’s eldest brother Andy and his wife (also a quilter) who live in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area, met up with us at the quilt shop!

TTQH had not seen Andy in many years and they spent a long time chatting and catching up in the quilt shop while TTQH’s sisters, sister-in-law and myself shopped! I have some adorable photos of Terry and his big brother in the quilt shop (sorry many of my photos from the Cabbage Rose Quilting & Fabrics shop contain TTQH’s family members and to respect their privacy I have not posted those photos).

If you are ever in the Fort Worth area I highly recommend their shop. They also have a great website:

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A blog page: cabbagecorner.blogspot.com

And a facebook page: Cabbage Rose Quilt Shop

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Of course I bought something! I have to support local quilt shops when I am traveling! I was rather well-behaved and bought a couple of modern fabrics from the 1/2 yard precut sale bin:

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Postscript

Really Hungry, Willing to Take Chances

We took a red-eye (overnight) flight from Central Oregon to DFW (via a stop in Portland, Oregon) and arrived at 5:00 am in the morning. After waiting around a couple hours in the DFW airport rental car center (yes the airport is so huge the rental cars have their own HUGE complex off site from the airport) and picking up our rental car, we were tired and hungry.

We do not know the Dallas-Ft. Worth area and we could not check into our hotel in Ft. Worth until the afternoon, so we had to figure out stuff to do till then AND find some breakfast. (The rest of Terry’s family was not coming into town until Friday, which we did not realize until after we bought our plane tickets).

We stumbled upon a little “hole-in-the-wall” diner in strip mall and were so hungry we thought we would take our chance and try it – Mom’s Cafe:

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We had our finger crossed that “Mom” would not give us any gastrointestinal distress. Instead we were pleasantly surprised with EXCEPTIONAL Tex-Mex breakfasts!

I had an incredible plate of migas with tortillas for breakfast and TTQH had some type of breakfast burrito.

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We were very quiet while we ate as we were each having our own private moments of total-food-yumminess! “Mom” did good!

TTQH loves even more than quilting, historical war-gaming. After breakfast we found a Ft. Worth area miniature historical war-gaming shop before finally getting to our hotel and passing out.

Later that evening, we went to the Movie Tavern for dinner and a movie (we saw Guardians of the Galaxy 2, a very fun movie!). The next day, while visiting with Terry’s brother Andy, had worked on the building of this theater!

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Blogging Awards

Recently I have been honored with a couple more blogging awards (thank you so much One Creative Family and Dewey Hop) and I will do future blog posts about those but I am backlogged with other blog post topic ideas. I guess I have to try and do daily posts when I can to catch up with all the random stuff floating around in my head (smile).

Shameless Thrifting, Part II

Yesterday’s post featured a completed quilt to convince you that this is still a Quilter’s Blog, so now I am free today to post about some other non-quilting random topic!

This is post is a sort of follow up or continuation of my post from August 2016, Shameless Thrifting. In my “Shameless Thrifting” post I share how I overcame my aversion to thrift stores as part of my Minimalism Journey. I also share a secret obsession from my childhood discovered during an afternoon of thrifting.

Got Outfit?

In yesterday’s post (in which I try to convince you I am a quilter again), The Wedding Gift Quilt, I mention that I recent returned from a trip to Fort Worth, Texas for a family wedding.

Preparing for the trip I realized I did not have many nice warm weather outfits for Texas (90+ degrees F and high humidity).

I live in the Pacific NW and in general we dress fairly casual; and I am a telecommuter and I can work in sweat pants and a T-shirt all day. I used to have a lot of dressy clothes from when I worked in an office, but I donated most of them to thrift shops as I discussed in my series of posts on My Minimalism Journey (My Minimalism Journey).

I could not stand the idea of going out and buying NEW clothes. Anytime I think about buying new clothes, I think about an article I read last year on how “Fast Fashion” is creating environmental issues. This is not the exact article but it has the same message: Newsweek’s FAST FASHION IS CREATING AN ENVIRONMENTAL CRISIS

Several times I started to get into the car and go to the local Macy*s or J. Jill, or even Old Navy to see if I could find any cute outfits for the trip. I also thought of our local boutique shops and although I would like to patronize small businesses I was not sure if I wanted to pay their prices and I noticed many of their clothes are made in overseas.

Let’s Try Local Thrift Shops!

Thank goodness due to the influence of my sister, a very creative “thrifter” and my friend Betty Anne, I can proudly and shamelessly, go thrift shop shopping for clothes! There are many wonderful “gently used” fashionable clothes at thrift shops.

After visiting several thrift shops, I was able to put together a couple outfits for the trip I was very pleased with. Here is an example  of one of those outfits (note I already had the shoes – they are are Dankso dress clogs with ankle straps I’ve had for many years and they surprisingly matched perfectly):

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How much for the entire outfit including the jewelry (not including the shoes) – $9.

Yes $9 for the whole outfit: the $5 dress is a J. Crew dress, the $3 jacket is a boutique brand type item, and the coordinating necklace was $1. I received compliments on the outfit while on my trip!

And when I get tired of my “new” thrift shop summer travel wardrobe, I will just donate it back to the thrift shops!


Postscript

The Capsule Wardrobe

Speaking of clothing, a vlogger (video blogger), Casually Matthew, has a beautifully produced short video on how to create a Capsule Wardrobe:

I love the idea of a “Capsule Wardrobe” and first heard about this concept when I started following The Minimalists a couple years ago. I was going to add a link to provide more background on Capsule Wardrobes, but you can google this phrase and find many wonderful guides.

Essentially a Capsule Wardrobe is a way to declutter and minimize your closet while curating your clothing into a coordinated collection of clothing you really love; and is flexible in its ability to “mix and match”.

I have a fairly casual Capsule Wardrobe for my telecommuter/Pacific NW lifestyle but I would like to evolve it to be a tad more stylish and plan to use thrift shop finds to achieve my goal!


Feature photo credit: Roger Kirby, free images.com

The Wedding Gift Quilt

Ah, this is a blog about a Quilter’s Life.

Quilters allegedly make quilts.

So occasionally I should probably feature a quilt in one of my posts (smile).

We recently returned from a visit to Fort Worth, Texas for a wedding. Terry the Quilting Husband’s nephew got married to a lovely woman. I gave them a quilt as a wedding present.

I do not know what I was thinking, but I did not take the best photos of the actual quilt before shipping it off. So before you get to my photos, I want to show you the official image of the quilt by the quilt designer.

The pattern is called JOY and the pattern designer is Whirligig Designs. The finished quilt measures approximately 89″ x 106″.

The pattern photo:

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Photo credit: Stitch ‘N Time Fabrics

And now my photos…

I used batik fabrics similar to those used in the sample for the pattern photo. The quilt was quilted by Betty Anne Guadalupe. Unfortunately I did not take any photos with the details of the quilting (or any photos with decent image quality, ha).

The newlywed recipients are currently on their honeymoon and perhaps at a later date I will ask them to take a better photo of the quilt and send to me. I am a pretty sure they did not take the quilt on the honeymoon with them!

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I made a nice quilt label for the back of the quilt and emphasized that the name of the pattern is “JOY” and wished them much joy in their life together. I sort of miss the quilt but they seemed pretty happy about it (I shipped it to them before the wedding) so I hope the quilt has a happy life the lovely couple who received it!

My wonderful Sisters-in-laws and Mother-in-law, who are also quilters, helped finance the creation of and professional long-arm quilting of this quilt. I included their names in the label. I was “assigned” to be the one to make the wedding quilt for the newly wedded!


Postscript

Normally I travel with a medium or large backpack. I am not a formal suitcase kind of person and I like to travel as light as possible. However since I was going to a wedding and needed to bring dressier clothes and shoes, I had to pull out the traditional rolling suitcase.

My rolling suitcase is a black suitcase and looks like the zillion other suitcases traveling through airports. One of my Quilting Sisters (see posts Quilting Sisters, Part I and Quilting Sisters, Part II) Lisa, gave me an awesome luggage tag that made my standard plain black rolling suitcase stand out:

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My suitcase was easily to locate in the crowd…and I felt like a “Bad *ss” when I picked it off the luggage cart!

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It’s Never Too Late to Say “Thank You”

Today we are traveling home from Fort Worth, Texas. Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH)’s nephew got married in a beautiful ceremony at the Hyder House in Fort Worth. I will have photos and stories to share in an upcoming post(s) about the Hyder House and a tour of a Fort Worth area quilt shop. I got to go fabric shopping with three of my awesome quilter sister-in-laws – 2 from NY and 1 from Texas!

TTQH and I are sitting in PDX (Portland airport) awaiting our plane to take us back to Central Oregon and I happened to check my e-mail. I discovered a recent e-mail from an Etsy customer that made my heart very warm and happy.

I made my tierneycreates Etsy shop inactive in late 2016, nearly 3 years after opening it in December 2013. I miss the interactions with customers but it was too much to keep up with as I work full time (and I would be very hungry if I tried to live off my Etsy shop). So I was very surprised when I had an e-mail on an Etsy Conversation (how Etsy customers communicate with Etsy sellers) from a sale in January 2015!

I used to collect special edition Barbies and the vintage ones I occasionally sold on Etsy. The sale that the customer was contacting me about occurred nearly a year and a half later ago and was for this Little Debbie Barbie:

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Here is what the customer said in her Etsy Conversation:

This is a long overdue thank you – the doll was beautiful and the woman who received it loved it. Her husband, who had passed away drove for Little Debbie and so this was a wonderful keepsake. Thanks again!

What a fantastic surprise – I have a huge smile on my face knowing that something that no longer brought me joy was able to bring someone else some major joy!

This was a great lesson that: It is NEVER TOO LATE to say THANK YOU!


Feature photo credit: LittleDebbie.com

Make Your Bed

If you have followed my blog for a while you know how much I love nonfiction “self-help” and “self improvement” genre audiobooks. The last couple of months I took a break from nonfiction and listened to several science fiction audiobooks – Cixin Liu’s The Three-Body Problem and The Dark Forest. These were excellent books/stories with excellent audiobook narrators, however I began to crave a little nonfiction audiobook in the mix.

I heard about the commencement speech by Naval Admiral William H. McRaven (retired) in which he shares life lessons from his Navy Seal training, beginning with “make you bed every morning”. When I saw my local library had his book on audiobook I had to reserve it.

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Photo credit: Amazon.com

10 Life Lessons from Basic SEAL Training

  1. If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed.
  2. If you want to change the world, find someone to help you paddle.
  3. If you want to change the world, measure a person by the size of their heart, not the size of their flippers.
  4. If you want to change the world get over being a sugar cookie and keep moving forward.
  5. If you want to change the world, don’t be afraid of the circuses.
  6. If you want to change the world sometimes you have to slide down the obstacle head first.
  7. If you want to change the world, don’t back down from the sharks.
  8. If you want to change the world, you must be your very best in the darkest moment.
  9. If you want to change the world, start singing when you’re up to your neck in mud.
  10. If you want to change the world don’t ever, ever ring the bell.

Here is a link to the commencement speech he gave in 2014 at the University of Texas at Austin – University of Texas at Austin 2014 Commencement Address – Admiral William H. McRaven, in which he addresses these 10 life lessons. In his speech he gives a very abbreviated version of each lesson – in the book he really fleshes out the story behind each lesson in a very engaging manner.  At the end of the book he shares the original commencement speech that led to the book but for me it did not compare to the richness and depth of stories in the book providing the background to each of his life lessons.

One of my favorites of his life lessons is: “If you want to change the world get over being a sugar cookie and keep moving forward.” You will have to either read the book or watch the commencement speech to find out what he means by “sugar cookie”! I have so much respect for those who can endure Navy Seal training in order to serve our country. It seems impossibly grueling!

We already make our bed each morning, as it just looks better up, made but Admiral McRaven opened my eyes to the true power of making your bed each morning!

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Photo credit: Lars Jensen, freeimages.com


Postscript

My art quilt, Jiko’s Robe, is in a month long exhibit at QuiltWorks Gallery.  Here is a post about the show on our Improvisational Textiles blog: Jiko’s Robe at QuiltWorks Gallery June 2017.

I will do a future post with photos from the exhibit of the other Asian themed quilts.

 

Versatile Blogger Award

The tierneycreates blog has been honored with another blogging award (see post Thank You for the Blogging Awards). Thanks so much to Dewey Hop: Feisty Froggy Reads Through the Library for the nomination!

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The Dewey Hop/Feisty Froggy has accused the tierneycreates blog of being “versatile, informative, fun, and original“!

In order accept this award, I must list the rules (slightly altered by Dewey Hop/Feisty Froggy per her confession, ha) :

THE RULES:

  • You have to thank the person who nominated you and provide a link to their blog!
  • Nominate bloggers of your choice.
  • Link the nominees and inform them about their nomination.
  • Share some facts about yourself.

NOMINEES:

I  (like Dewey Hop/Feisty Froggy) will do my best to nominate people who really are versatile, informative, fun, and original. Bloggers, please don’t feel that you have to participate if you don’t want to, but you do deserve this honor whether you participate or not.

(NOTE: I would definitely have nominated Dewey Hop but then this would be a circular nomination, ha!)

I follow many wonderful blogs and for this nomination I tried to focus on those with a very wide ranges of topics and/or uniqueness.

SHARING SOME FACTS (QUITE RANDOM FACTS):

  1. I constantly listen to audiobooks. I am never without an audiobook queued on my iPhone and usually I have two audiobooks going at once. Currently I am listening to Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life…And Maybe the World by Admiral William McRaven (U.S Navy Retired), which I will discuss in a future post. 
  2. I love dogs’ noses. When not kissing the noses of my two rescue miniature schnauzers, I am admiring other dogs’ noses. Cats noses are pretty cool too.
  3. For most of my life (age 11 forward) I have loved horror films. Classic horror films (Frankenstein, Dracula, Wolf-man…anything with Christopher Lee or Bella Lugosi); haunted house horror films; slasher-films, Japanese-style horror (The Grudge, The Ring), and silly horror films (like Nightmare on Elm Street, etc.). Then, suddenly about 6 months ago, I stopped enjoying most horror films and stopped watching the genre (except for the occasional classic horror film). It just seemed like there was too much horror already in the real world, I did not want to watch fictional horror on film anymore.
  4. A couple years ago I had decided to become a runner without listening to my sister who said I needed to get orthotics and good sneakers. I ended up with Plantar Fasciitis and a Morton’s Neuroma on my feet and had to wear a walking boot for several months. After my rehabilitation, I now stick with walking. I never really appreciated my feet until they were not working very well. Now I treat them very well – custom orthotics, high quality sneakers and shoes, and daily foot exercises to avoid a return of Plantar Fasciitis (or have to get another one of those icky foot injections to treat the Morton’s Neuroma).
  5. Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) and I are craft brews/microbrews aficionados. I never liked beer until we lived in Seattle and we met people who introduced us to craft brewing. In 2004 we traveled to Amsterdam, Antwerp, Brussels and Denmark on a beer tasting and friend visiting vacation. During this trip,  TTQH, who is also a Military History buff specializing in the Napoleonic Era, got to see Waterloo. This was definitely one of those “Bucket List” items for TTQH. To get to Waterloo battleground and museums, we traveled from Brussels via train and then bus; and I had to pull out my very rusty high school French to get the last leg of the journey to Waterloo (no one spoke English on the local bus)!
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Lion’s Mound, Waterloo (Photo Credit: European Traveler)

Thanks again to Dewey Hop/Feisty Froggy at Dewey Hop: Feisty Froggy Reads Through the Library for nominating tierneycreates: a fusion of textiles & smiles.

Quilt Retreat Inspiration and Projects

2 weeks ago today, at this time, I was on a bus back to Central Oregon after a relaxing 4 day/3 night quilting retreat at Sew N Go Retreats.

So I think I better finish up my series of posts on the 2017 annual quilt retreat I attended with my Quilting Sisters. I have a backlog of other blog posts ideas in my head and unless I finish this series I will not get to them.

If you are starting here, below are the links to the previous four posts in this series:

Relaxation Can Lead to Inspiration

For me it was a mellow and laid back quilt retreat experience. I did not even bring my sewing machine, only hand sewing projects. I did not drive, I took the bus (see post The Road to Retreat (via Bus!).

And, I spent a bit of time here, instead of in the quilt retreat center:

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My special “quilting retreat seating”

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I can see the quilting retreat center from here, does that count?

Looking at this:

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Hello, impossibly blue sky with a couple fluffy clouds over Portland, Oregon region

Or this:

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Hello, beautiful sunset!

I also spent a lot of time going on walks (see post Quilt Retreat Animals) and found inspiration in nature, surrounding farms, and a stump with moss and fungi! (see post The Beauty of Moss and Fungi):

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Area farm

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Lovely little shed, tree and old bike vignette discovered on a walk

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The infamous NW slug

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The beauty of moss and fungi

Sewing did actually occur, primarily by my quilting retreat sisters, however I have a couple projects to report.

Quilting Sisters’ Projects

Before they were projects, they were this nest of sewing machine, fabric, patterns and supplies! (one of my quilting sister’s stations):

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Here is a montage of the projects the other quilt retreat attendees worked on:

One of my quilting sisters was working on a project she found on Pinterest and reverse engineered how to do it (she is mighty crafty!) The project involves scrappy log cabin piecing of roses, set in scrappy pieced green log cabins:

I got a kick out her workstation as she worked on the quilt, it was highly organized with scraps of various colors:

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Inspired by Others

One of my quilting sisters worked on this quilt, with a lovely collection of bee themed fabric:

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The fabric line of the fabric with the printed designs is Bee Inspired by Deb Strain for Moda Fabrics and it was very darling:

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Photo credit: Moda fabrics

She gave me her scraps, which I turned into English Paper Pieced (EPP) hexagons during the retreat:

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I had so much fun trying to “fussy cut” the scraps into hexagons with specific images. I have many more hexagons to make before this can become a future project; and I will do a future blog post on this project (like in 2018 when I get to working on these again?!?!).

The same quilting sister was working on another project that I got to benefit from, this time on an even larger scale. She brought several “UFOs” (unfinished objects) including one from a class she took many years ago involving a mixture of embroidered blocks and non embroidered blocks. She did not select the fabric for the class it was part of the class kit. Now revisiting it, years later, she was not sure she liked the fabric or the design of the quilt:

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Small sampling of the blocks, not all blocks put up on wall

The fabric did not match her home decor and she did not have someone in mind to make the quilt for as a gift. I offered to take it off her hands and she gave me the blocks already made and all the remaining fabric/scraps.

Now it has become a “Challenge Bag” (see post Basket of Challenges) and I will feature it in a future post when I finish redesigning it into a different piece:

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Challenge Bag added to the “basket of challenges”, hoping to become a quilt someday

Tierney’s Projects?

So Tierney, besides fleecing one of your quilting sisters for her scraps and even an entire project, did you work on anything??!?!

Why yes I did. I worked on my stack of EPP rosettes (getting the rows between each hexagon sewn together:

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And I worked on an appliqué wallhanging that I started in a class in 2016 (see post Adventures in Appliqué):

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I really enjoyed blanket stitching and the more I practice the better I get (at least in my mind). Blanket stitching and other hand stitching is very relaxing and even meditative.

I might be tied with another quilt sister (she knows who she is) for the title of “Least Productive” but I had an incredible and relaxing time. The quilting sister who shared my lack of productivity was also the one going on wonderful walks including the one in which a local farm invited us over for a visit!

Inspiration All Around the Quilt Retreat Center

The Sew N Go retreat now has two classrooms: 1) the original retreat center/classroom which is a separate building on the farm property; and 2) a brand new classroom which is the converted garage to the main quilt retreat house.

Throughout the quilt retreat house and in both classrooms are many quilts, quilted wallhanging and little sewn projects. Below is a montage of some of the inspiration that surrounds you while you are quilt retreating:

Nancy, the quilt retreat hostess, did a demo on how to make a gift wine bag from a pair of old jeans:

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In addition to quilted/sewn inspirations, there are also wood crafting inspirations (Nancy also holds class in her barn on making wood working crafts):

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She also had a very creative way to display Lori Holt’s Farm Girl Vintage blocks (one of my other someday to finish projects, see series of posts  Farm Girl Vintage Blocks)

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I did have material for a Postscript section but this has been a very long post and I am sure you are exhausted now from slogging through all these photos (but maybe you are inspired to go create something!)

Thanks for joining me as I recapped the annual May quilting retreat with my quilting sisters. For me this year’s retreat was a very laid back. There was no “Floor Show” this year or stand up comedy (see post Quilt Retreat May 2016: The Tools & The Stories) but it was still exquisite to hang out with my quilting sisters and enjoy the beautiful Vancouver, WA countryside.

I did learn about a “new tool” for quilters at the retreat and I will close this post with the adorable information I found on this tool posted on the edge of one of the design walls at retreat:

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Special thank you to Quilting Sisters Lisa and Kathy on providing additional photos for this post.

 

Quilt Retreat Animals

Continuing my series of posts on the annual Sew N Go Quilt Retreat in Vancouver, WA I recently attended. If you are starting with this post, here are links to the previous posts:

I am not sure if Sassy the Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer would approve of this post as there were on dogs at the quilt retreat, only horses and cats.

The Horses

Sew N Go Quilt Retreat is located in a very rural area of Vancouver, WA. The retreat center itself is on acreage and is surrounded by farms. Several times a day some of the quilt retreaters, including myself,  would go on walks around the area – up to 4+ miles per day walking!

While walking we would visit with several groups of horses we discovered hanging out in pastures in area farms. The first day we ran into the horses, we were surprised how the boldly they came over to the edge of their fence to see us. So the next day we were ready with apples!

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(Several of my fellow quilt retreaters were on Weight Watchers and watching their “points”. We joked as we fed the horses apples: “No worries horseys, zero points!”)

A horse from the pasture/farm next to the one above:

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Next thing we knew, we had two horses, from two different pastures side by side visiting with us and greeting each other through their fences:

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The long walks and the visits with the horses were are delightful break from our sewing marathons at the quilt retreat!

The Cats

On one of our walks, we were invited by owners of a local farm to come onto their farm and chat. It turned out that several of them were originally from NY like my quilting sister Kathy and myself.

On their farm we met “Heshe” (he-she) – a cat of unknown gender. I do not remember the entire story but when they adopted Heshe as a barn kitty, they could not determine if it was a “he” or a “she”! Heshe was a very sweet a friendly orange tabby:

But the cat star of the 4-day retreat weekend was my beloved “Abbey the Quilt Retreat Kitty” (she should have her own blog!)

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During the retreat, Nancy the quilt retreat host, needed to give Abbey some medications.

Cats, as explained by one of my quilting sisters who is a veterinarian, are difficult to get to swallow pills. Cats do not fall for the tricks dogs fall for (hiding pills in peanut butter, cheese, etc.) and so you have to find a way to get the pill to the back of the cats throat so they will automatically swallow it.

So Abbey was made into a “kitty burrito” to restrain her paws as she was given meds. She calmly and quietly accepted her kitty burrito status but still found a way to spit out her pill! It might have been because a group of quilters were standing around cracking up laughing at how adorable Abbey looked as a burrito!

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Each year at the retreat I look forward to hanging out with Abbey, and she knows it. She knows I am “one of her people”. I always find time to snuggle with her and give her lots of attention.

Abbey and I took a lovely nap together, with her sleeping behind my pillow and quietly purring against my head. I could not believe how soothing and meditative it was to listen to her purring.

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Okay there was a dog

There was one dog at the quilt retreat, but it was not a live dog. It was a dog quilt – an adorable pattern – “Dogs in Sweaters” by Elizabeth Hartman:

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Next post, how about some evidence that actual sewing occurred during the quilt retreat? Maybe (smile).


Postscript

In yesterday’s post I shared about my purchases of a vintage Singer sewing machine while at a fundraising garage sale in Sisters, Oregon. Check our Sassy the Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer’s post Saturday Schnouting (Schnauzer Outing)! for information about our outing this past Saturday in Sisters, Oregon.

Quilting Sisters, Part II

This post continues yesterday’s post Quilting Sisters, Part I, sharing the story of how I ended up part of a group of quilters based out of California, Oregon and Washington.

We left off with Judy and I meeting Linda and Lisa at the Oasis Resort Quilt and Cast retreat. Linda lives in Oregon is one of those people you meet and immediately love. She is a retired 2nd grade teacher and she must have been the most wonderful teacher imaginable. A truly warm, kind and authentic person. Lisa lives in California and is a brilliant woman, a veterinarian and Renaissance woman of many talents besides quilting. We immediately connected and became friends.

A couple years later we met Donna from Sequim, WA, another wonderful teacher-person and her sisters (who attended once) and her lovely mother Shirley (who we all fell in love with as the social media/blogger and web savvy 80-something year old). In addition to Linda, Lisa, Donna, and Shirley I met other cool quilters including my friend Joan, however only Lisa, Linda, Donna and her mother Shirley became part of our regular quilt retreat group.

The retreat was also open to quilters who did not bring their husband for the “cast” part of the retreat. Judy and I attended the retreat without our husbands once or twice also (the cost of the quilting part of the retreat was significantly less than the guided fly fishing part of the retreat).

Beyond “Quilt and Cast”

Eventually we stopped going to the Quilt & Cast retreat due to significant increasing fees for the husbands to participate in the guided Deschutes river fishing. Also interest in the quilting retreat part of the Quilt and Cast retreat was waning.

Peggy, who ran the quilting retreat part of the Quilt & Cast retreat started her own retreat with Linda and for a couple of years we attended those retreats.

Eventually Peggy and Linda gave up their quilt retreat business and we began attending a quilting retreat in Vancouver, WA run by a lovely woman Cathy and her husband:

At some point Lisa, who attended the new Peggy & Linda retreats, invited her close California friends Debra and Kathy. Kathy is originally from NY like myself and actually grew up in a town next to the town I grew up! So there was an automatic connection.

Since I had moved to Bend, Judy felt it was time to lure another friend into quilting and convince our mutual Seattle friend, Barb to start quilting (Judy is very convincing!)

Birth of the Jelly Rollers

A jelly roll is a 42 piece collection of pre-cut 2.5 inch quilting fabric strips and are very popular among quilters (for the non quilters reading this). In the late 2000s to early 2010s jelly rolls were gaining huge popularity with quilters. Numerous jelly roll fabric collections and books with patterns on creating quilts made with jelly rolls were flooding the market.

Our gathering of quilters at the retreat hosted by Cathy in Vancouver, WA were obsessed with jelly rolls in the late 2000s. At one of the retreats at Cathy’s we decided to develop a core closed retreating group that would always attend an annual quilt retreat in May each year. Additional members could only be added by group approval (several of us had past experiences with attending quilt retreats with quilters with “challenging personalities”). We would call our group the Jelly Rollers!

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A “Jelly Roll” (photo credit: Missouri Star Quilt Co.)

Cathy stopped hosting retreats and referred our group of retreaters to another woman in the Vancouver area, Nancy. Nancy’s Sew N Go Retreat became the new permanent home for our annual May retreat.

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Sew N Go Retreat Classroom (Photo credit: Sew N Go)

After moving to Nancy’s Sew N Go retreat, Dana started attending and became a regular member of the Jelly Rollers. Dana was voted in as she grew up with Judy’s daughter and is an unofficially adopted daughter of Judy’s. Like Linda, she is one of those people you meet and immediately adore.

Dana is another person like Barb and myself that Judy convinced to start quilting. We tease Judy that she makes her friends start quilting whether they wanted to or not – ha!

My friend and Central Oregon quilting mentor, Betty Anne joined us for a couple retreats and is an honorary member of the Jelly Rollers.

Near the time of creating the Jelly Rollers, “Jelly Roll Races” (a way to make a quick quilt top with one jelly roll in an hour or so) were popular and we used to jokingly make that the initiation requirement for joining – complete a “Jelly Roll Race”.

Other Retreats

Some of the Jelly Rollers attend other retreats together during the year in California and in Washington. I used to attend another retreat with most of the other Jelly Rollers in Monroe, Washington but the sleeping accommodations are like dorm rooms with thin walls and I have trouble sleeping. When I do not sleep, I do not enjoy retreats.

Also this retreat had a lot of additional people I did not know and occasionally there were quilting retreat attendees with “challenging personalities“.

I seem to be a beacon for strange people to want to befriend, so this is not always the best environment for me. I ended up trying to courteous to needy and strange people and they stick to me like glue for the whole retreat!  My quilting sister Lisa is also a beacon for strange people and has shared interesting stories of “unique” individuals who have unsolicitedly attached themselves to her at quilt retreats.

I truly enjoy attending quilt retreats with people I know, it is a safer and more comfortable experience for me.

For those of you with experience with attending quilt retreats, I would be interested to hear in the Comments section your thoughts on quilting retreats – meeting strangers vs. quilting with established friends.

Friends for Life

We are at least in our 4th or 5th year as a formal group. Keeping our core group of annual quilt retreaters together has strengthened our bonds and we do many thoughtful things for one another.

A couple years ago, we put names in a hat and whichever name you picked, you had a year to make that person a lap quilt. Many of the quilters in the group never had anyone make a quilt for them. This exchange  was a way to further connect us and to ensure every quilter has the experience of having someone make a quilt for them rather than they just make quilts for others.

It was very awesome during the following year’s retreat when we surprised the person whose named we picked the previous year with their lap quilt!

In addition to that special quilt exchange a couple years ago, Judy made a special quilt for Lisa last year and at this year’s retreat, Lisa surprised Judy with a machine embroidered “crazy quilt”, the featured photo on this post:

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Embroidered quilt by Lisa M.

Although we do not see each other we have a strong connection to each other and stay frequently in touch. We are like a family sewn together special threads!


Postscript

Oh my what have I done?

My Impulse Buy

Perhaps I was influenced by Elena’s Vintage Sewing Machine blog or by the fact that sewing of my Quilting Sisters have antique featherweight sewing machines that they bring to retreats.

Saturday I went with my friend Susan to the Kiwanis Club’s fundraising garage sale in Sisters, Oregon and ended up impulse buying at vintage Singer sewing machine:

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The machine was listed for $25. One of the volunteers at the fundraiser sale saw me looking at it and said: “You can have it for $10”. How could I turn it down (I know, I know, I could have said “no thank you” and walked away…)

It is not a featherweight and it is quite heavy but it still works and runs quite smoothly. I called Betty Anne, who knows about vintage sewing machines and she gave me the name of someone in Central Oregon who can check out the machine for safety, clean and service it. It is also missing part of the footplate. You can still sew with the section missing but the bobbin is exposed.

Today I researched the serial number using the Singer Sewing Machine Serial Number Database website.  and it was assigned in 1910 so I think that sort of dates the machine. I am going to do some further research and see if it really is that old. Also I need to watch some YouTube videos and check out some websites on how to thread the machine and do basic maintenance.

It seems like it would be really fun to use on a sewing project or two and would make an interesting piece of art in my studio.

What I did not buy

Next to the Singer were these two vintage sewing machine which I am sure the volunteer would have sold to be also for $10:

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If I had a large sewing studio, they would have made for an interesting display on a shelf, but I had no excuse to buy them. I had of course no excuse to buy the Singer but I suspect it was meant to be…

Before Susan and I went to the fundraiser garage sale in Sisters, we stopped at the Stitchin’ Post quilt shop and I bought this fabric:

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Yup those are vintage Singer sewing machines, a very similar looking model to the one I bought. Was it kismet that an hour later I ended up with an actual vintage Singer sewing machine?

What I tried to convince my friend to buy

Here was something hysterical I did not buy at the fundraiser garage sale, though I tried to convince my friend Susan to buy it – a PUG PURSE!

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Susan was kind enough to model the Pug Purse

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I do not understand how she left the garage sale without it?!?!

Next post I will continue with more stories from the 2017 annual quilt retreat I attended.

Quilting Sisters, Part I

Yesterday’s post The Road to Retreat (via Bus!) began my series of posts on the 2017 annual quilt retreat I attended with my quilting sisters at Sew N Go retreat center in Vancouver, WA.

For the past 10+ years I have attend quilting retreats with at least some of my quilting sisters (even before they were formally my quilting sisters). Before continuing to share stories from this year’s annual quilt retreat, I thought I would share the story of how we formed our quilting retreat group consisting of quilters living in California, Oregon and Washington and became “quilting sisters”.

My beloved quilting sisters range in ages from late 40s to late 80s and their names are Judy, Barb, Dana, Linda, Lisa, Kathy, Debra, Donna, Shirley and Betty Anne. Honorary quilting sisters are Dana’s daughter Kaitlin, our current annual quilting retreat host Nancy and our previous annual quilting retreat host Cathy.

It all began with Judy

My friend Judy, who have I known for 20 years is my “Quilt Momma”. She convinced me to start quilting in the late 1990s when I lived in Seattle, WA. I mention her my story “The Tierney” and an April 2015 post “Creative Inspiration: Quilting Mentors“, in addition to references in other various posts.

I owe the start of my quilting journey to her encouragement to take the first step and mentorship through my first quilt.

I would love if the quilters reading this post, would share in the Comments section who got them started in quilting (or any other type of crafting). It is the kind of gift you can never repay, you can only just keep appreciating it!

A couple of years ago Judy made me this sweet wallhanging with Jody Houghton fabric:

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I keep it in my studio and I get a kick out of the quilting related details in the photo – note one of the quilters has thread spools for earrings:

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So Judy was my first “quilt sister” and from there the family grew, thanks to a little place called Maupin, Oregon.

Quilting and Casting

I moved from Seattle to Central Oregon in 2005. We rented a townhouse before buying our house and near our temporary townhouse was a quilt shop called BJ’s Quilt Basket (I will feature BJ’s Quilt Basket in a future blog post on Central Oregon Quilt shops). BJ’s was where I participated in my first “block of the month” club and where I found a flyer in 2006 about the Quilt & Cast Retreat at the Oasis Resort in Maupin Oregon, on the Deschutes River.

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Photo credit: Adventures in Rafting

Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH), who was not TTQH in 2006, is a fly fisherman. The Quilt & Cast Retreat features for the husbands guided fly fishing with a professional Deschutes River tour guide. For the wives, a quilt retreat! The accommodations are historic fishing cabins and all meals are included.

I immediately contacted Judy, who still lived in Seattle. Her husband is a fisherman too and it seemed like the perfect retreat for the four of us.

And it was. They even let us bring our two miniature schnauzers at the time Fritz and Snickers. The cabins were definitely “historic” fishing cabins (years later they renovated) and included bathrooms that were a shared shower/toilet area, but they were cozy and comfortable.

Below is a montage of photos from several of our Oasis Quilt and Cast Retreats:

In addition to quilt retreat activities for the wives and guided fly fishing actives for the husbands, we went on outings and picnics to enjoy the beauty of Central Oregon. One of those outings was to White Falls in which I took photos of the abandoned White Falls water power plant, which lead to the art quilt, Abandoned Water Structure.

The wives would giggle to themselves in the mornings: at “o-dark-hundred”, when the husbands would get out of bed to go on a guided fly fishing trip on the Deschutes River, while the wives stayed in their cozy beds. Later in the morning we would mosey out of our beds for breakfast and then start out day of sewing.

Judy and I, along with our husbands, attended this retreat annually for 3 – 4 years. At the retreat we met our future quilting sisters – Linda, Lisa and Donna.

Tomorrow I will continue the rest of the Quilting Sisters story but let me close this post with images of friendship themed decor from the Sew N Go quilt retreat:

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A very nice plaque at a quilt retreat

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The cup I had my tea in each morning at the retreat

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A very good reminder

The Road to Retreat (via Bus!)

The next series of posts will be about the annual quilt retreat I attended May 18 – 21 at Sew N Go in Vancouver, WA.


Each May I attend an annual quilt retreat in Vancouver, WA (outside of Portland, OR) with my “Quilting Sisters” from Washington, Oregon and California. I have shared my quilt retreat adventures in my series of post in the category Retreats which include my annual road trip experience getting to the quilting retreat.

This year I decided to do something different – take the bus, the Central Oregon Breeze from Central Oregon to Portland – to get to the retreat. It is approximately a 4 – 4.5 hour trip and totally worth the $95 roundtrip price!

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Photo credit: cobreeze.com

Yes by not driving I missed out on having “car buddies” (see 04/20/15 post “Road Trip“), but I traded that experience for a relaxing and productive trip to my retreat!

Listening to audiobooks and music, I worked on my English Paper Piecing (see series of posts Adventures in English Paper Piecing) and watched a pre-downloaded video on my iPad.

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My lap – making EPP rosettes on the road!

All while enjoying the beautiful scenery (well through UV coated window) of the drive from Central Oregon to Portland:

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The Central Oregon Breeze makes several stops for bathroom breaks to include one stop at a deluxe gas station convenience store. I wear a wrist pincushion when working on hand sewing projects while traveling. I forgot to take my pincushion off during one of the breaks so I looked pretty weird heading into the bathroom stop with pins/needles coming out of my wrist! Just some crazy quilter on the bus!

The bus has several stops for passengers and I got off at the Portland Airport (aka PDX). One of my quilt sisters picked me up from the airport and drove me to Vancouver, WA for the retreat at Sew N Go.

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Where Abbey the Quilt Retreat Kitty awaited to manage me for a couple days in place of Sassy the Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer who stayed at home with Terry the Quilting Husband.

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I will take over managing you for the next 4 days

More on Abbey in a later post. If you would like to see previous photos of the Sew N Go Quilt Retreat in Vancover, WA check out this post – Sew N Go Retreat in Pictures.

Lots of photos and stories to come, hope you have a wonderful Saturday (yay it is the weekend!)


Postscript

Melancholy

My original plan was to start blogging about this year’s retreat last Monday after I returned from the retreat last Sunday. While the stories and experience were fresh.

However I had some struggle with a bout of melancholy. Initially over the sudden suicide of the musician Chris Cornell and then over the terrible tragedy in Manchester, UK.

I get so overwhelmed thinking about it but my heart completely goes out to the parents who lost their children at a concert in Manchester due to an unthinkable event.

As far as Chris Cornell, I was a huge fan of his music with the band Soundgarden and as solo act. We lived in Seattle, Washington during the tail end of the 90s Grunge music era. My husband Terry ran into several members of Pearl Jam hanging out in front of a house in the late 90s and said hi.

I ran into Chris Cornell at Cafe Minnie’s in the downtown Seattle area one day. He said hello and gave me a warm smile. He seemed down-to-earth. Luckily I remained calm an said hi back! I think it took awhile for the Seattle Grunge scene musicians to get used to their national and then international fame, and some did not do too well with it (Kurt Cobain, etc.)

Here is a link to great post by the blogger Rich Larson, thefirsttenwords, that sums up my shock and feelings about his suicide and provides an insight on why his sudden death is so rattling to those of us in Chris Cornell’s generation: It’s not what you think

Some Happier News

I discovered earlier this week that my collaborative piece with Betty Anne Guadalupe, Abandoned Water Structure,  which was purchased by the City of Seattle for their Portable Works Collection, is on display in a show in downtown Seattle (Seattle Municipal Tower Gallery, 700 Fifth Ave) called Your Body of Water, Part II. 

Check out this link from our collaborative website/blog, Improvisational Textiles for more on this story: Your Body of Water Exhibit, Seattle Municipal Tower Gallery. As you will see in the post, the exhibit’s curator with the City of Seattle’s Office of Arts & Culture was kind enough to e-mail me some photos of my piece hanging in the show.

Returning to a Wonderful Surprise!

I just returned from the 4-day annual May quilt retreat with my Washington, Oregon and California Quilt Sisters. The next series of blog posts will be about that retreat. When I walked in the house yesterday, suitcase laden with partially completed projects and some new fabric picked up during the retreat (oops), I had a package waiting.

Inside the package was my birthday gift from my Danish brother Torben (see 04/15/17 post The Library Stack and Hygge) from a quilt shop in his current country of residence, Austria!

The goodies inside included a “layer cake” (collection of 10″ precut coordinated fabric squares), information about the fabric line, information about the quilt shop, and other treats!

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The fabric line is Véro´s World by Gütermann and my wonderful Danish brother, picked up the fabric (and other goodies) at a quilt shop, Quilted, in Vienna.

Check out the link for the Quilted Quilt Shop website for a peek inside a Viennese quilt shop! Note – everything is in German on the website, but you can get a general feel for the website’s navigation if you do not speak/read German.

I have visited Torben a couple times in Denmark, but not in Austria. I guess since they have quilt shop, I will have to visit – ha!

In addition to the treats from the Austrian quilt shop, there was a birthday card in Danish (just to mess with my mind). Most of the words I recognize from absorbing Danish from 20 years of friendship.

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Just wanted to share my wonderful surprise, it was a nice way to return home from a wonderful relaxing 4-day quilt retreat (my next series of posts).


Postscript

Here is a card someone sent me years ago that I framed and keep on my studio wall. It is a good reminder when I get discouraged about the slow progress of my art quilting journey:

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I am still working on finding my “song”.


Feature photo credit: www.quilted.at

The Flags Outside My Window

Every morning I look out my kitchen window at a set of Tibetan-Prayer-like flags as I put on the kettle for my pot of tea.

These six (6) flags have Kanji (Japanese Chinese-inspired characters) symbols and an English language inspirational quote.

This morning I thought I would share with you the text the “flags outside my windows”  that I read to start my day. (Kanji character images from kanji-symbol.net).


HAPPINESS

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When one’s spiritual needs are met by an untroubled inner life. Happiness comes when your work and words are of benefit to yourself and others.


LOVE

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An inspired form of giving, love breathes life into the heart and brings grace to the soul.


COURAGE

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Not the absence of fear or despair, but the strength to conquer them.


WISDOM

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Knowledge, intuition and experience combine to guide us in thought and deed.


PEACE

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To bring peace to the Earth, strive to make your own life peaceful.


TRANQUILITY

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The peace that comes when energies are in harmony, relationships are in balance.

 

 

 


Looking at these flags is a grounding way for me to start each day.

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Vegan Split Pea Soup

Tierney! You are not a food blogger and this is not a cooking blog, what are you thinking with this post?

Well I wanted to share one of my favorite food recipes (and what I am having for lunch today)  – Split Pea Soup with Cumin & Orange from the 01/19/11 online issue of Portland Monthly.

I am not vegan, though I do enjoy vegan cooking – it feels so “clean and pure“. I love a thick hearty traditional split pea soup simmered with a ham bone with tender ham meat simmering in the soup. I also love this vegan version and find the flavor equally as satisfying!

In the link above from Portland Monthly you can find the original recipe, but below I will share my version of the recipe and photos:

Split Pea Soup with Cumin & Orange

Adapted from Portland Monthly onlineSplit Pea Soup with Cumin & Orange

Serves 6

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp cumin seeds
  • ½ tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 large carrots, diced
  • 3 celery stalks, diced
  • 2 jalapeños, seeded and minced
  • 3 cups split peas, divided in half
  • 8 cups water
  • 2 tbsp orange zest, minced
  • Salt to taste
  • Your favorite hot sauce

COOKING DIRECTIONS:

(1) HEAT olive oil in a heavy saucepan on medium and add garlic, cumin, and black pepper. I have burned the garlic in the past, so I always make sure I do not overheat the olive oil before putting the garlic. cumin and pepper and then I stir them constantly on medium heat. 

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(2) SAUTÉ until garlic just begins to brown (about 5 minutes).

(3) ADD onion, carrot, celery, and jalapeños—stir well and cook until onions begin to soften (5–7 minutes). I also add the celery leaves and I always put in a little extra carrots and celery than the recipe calls for.

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(4) ADD water and half of the split peas, and bring to a simmer.  I do not add the water first, I add the split peas (1 1/2 cups/half of them) to the sautéed vegetables and sauté the peas a little in the vegetable/spice mix to add a little extra flavor to the dried pea. Then I add the water.

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Stirring occasionally, cook until peas are tender (about 45 minutes).

(5) ADD remaining split peas and orange zest and cook on a low simmer, uncovered, until all of the peas are tender (30–40 minutes), and season to taste with salt and pepper. I use my microplane to zest the skin of one orange. Usually what I will do is have an orange at breakfast and save the skins for orange zest. If you do not have a microplane (or you are terrified of this very sharp cooking instrument in which you can also zest off your skin, been there…) then you can just use a grater and lightly grate off the orange skin/zest (I know the culinary purists are cringing right now).

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After I add in the orange zest and remaining split peas, I also add a dash of hot sauce instead of just adding it as a garnish is step #6.

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(6) GARNISH with toasted cumin seeds, orange zest, and hot sauce.  I only garnish with a little extra hot sauce after serving into my bowl.

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This soup freezes beautifully and I think it makes more than 6 servings. I am a telecommuter so I am always trying to plan my lunches out ahead of time. I love just pulling out a serving of this soup in the morning to thaw before starting my workday.


Postscript

Being Stealth

I am getting ready to leave for the annual quilt retreat in the Vancouver, Washington area I go on with my quilt sisters from Washington, Oregon and California. Sassy, the Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer, gets very stressed when one of her humans is leaving her sight/management for a while.

She becomes very anxious when she sees suitcases, so I am having to do stealth packing for the retreat. I pack a couple days early and keep them hidden (behind the sari curtain in my studio):

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Why yes, that is all I am bringing to a 4-day quilt retreat. I decided to just bring hand quilting projects. I did bring a small project I could use a borrowed sewing machine on if I suddenly become overwhelmed with the need to sit at a sewing machine.

Also I packed minimal coordinating clothes and figure I can repeat an outfit (if I start to smell, oh well, I am at a quilt retreat – ha!)

A Couple of Cool Blogs

I follow several non-crafting blogs and I wanted to share a couple very cool blogs I thought some of you might enjoy:

  • The Tiny Potager: Self Sufficiency and Sustainable Living – with a family of six – tinypotager.com – this blogger is out of the UK and posts wonderful photos of farming, farmlands, hikes, road trips, etc. I feel like I am on a relaxing virtual mini-holiday when I look at this blog.
  • I’ve Read This: Looking for something good to read? – ivereadthis.com – this blog is for people who love to read and love cats! The blogger posts adorable cat photos and great book reviews. The latest post is on a book called The Lion in the Living Room by Abigail Tucker; and has a great video on why cats love boxes!

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    Example of “kitty in a box”, my friend Wendy’s darling cat

Rosettes! (Adventures in EPP Continued)

This blog is about a Quilter’s Life and there is more in my life than just quilting. I have so many non-quilting blog post ideas floating in my head, but today is another quilting related post. I so appreciate my non-quilter readers in addition to my quilter/crafter readers!

Making Rosettes

So is an activity equally or perhaps more addicting than making little English Paper Pieced (EPP) hexagons (hexies) – making rosettes with the hexies!

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But first let’s recap (full stories in the series of posts Adventures in English Paper Piecing):

Here is what I started with (a collection of free 1/8th quarters from the 2016 Central Oregon Quilt Shop Hop):

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Here is the book I used to teach myself EPP (All Points Patchwork by Diane Gilleland):

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I turned the fabric into 250+ hexies:

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In order to make something like this:

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Photo credit: Quiltfolk.com

And, so far I have made 18 of these – rosettes:

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But, now the (sort of) bad news

I counted and I only have enough hexies to make 36 rosettes and the quilt I want to make has 99 rosettes (9 x 11 row quilt). I used all the free fabric from the 2016 Central Oregon Quilt Shop Hop and I wanted the hexies to only be made from that coordinated fabric (I will have to use other fabric from my stash for the background/setting fabrics).

So either I change my rules, or I accept that I am making a 36 block (6 x 6 row) quilt with my rosettes. I think that is what I am going to do, as it would be a huge commitment to make a zillion more hexies to turn into 63 more blocks!

Sometimes you got to be flexible and change your original plan…

Closing this post with my favorite rosette so far (I have 18 more rosettes to make so we’ll see if this one wins the Rosette Beauty Contest (soon to be an annual event held in Atlantic City, ha!):

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But I love all of them!

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Finishing out the Challenge Bag of shot cottons

This post is a continuation of the recent posts – Basket of Challenges and Experimenting with Foundation Paper Piecing.

Mondays am I off from work so last night I decided to do a “Late Night Sewing Session”. I sent Terry the Quilting Husband, Sassy the Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer, and her adopted brother Mike off to bed; put on a Nova documentary on YouTube; and settled in for a late night sewing marathon.

I decided to just finish out the “challenge bag” of shot cotton scraps from my friend Dana (see post Experimenting with Foundation Paper Piecing) and continue making little pillow tops that I plan to hand quilt.

Here is what I started with from the “challenge bag” of shot cotton scraps:

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So here was the first piece I had made the other day with the scraps, experimenting with foundation piecing:

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And here are the improvisational pieces I made with the rest of the scraps last night during my Late Night Sew:

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Here is all I have left from the “challenge bag”:

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These are fairly small scraps, so those that were larger than 2″ x 2″ I put into general circulation, by color, in my fabric scrap collection. The rest (not very many) had to unfortunately head for the landfill…sigh…can’t save them all!

So what am I going to do with the little pillows I make? Well I am thinking about participating in my first Craft Fair in late Fall 2017. My employer has an annual Holiday Craft Fair in the Portland, Oregon office. I am thinking about taking my leftover items from my former tierneycreates Etsy shop and new items I have made and selling them at the craft fair. More to come on that in the future, still mulling it over.


Postscript

I think Smart Cars/mini electric cars are adorable! I enjoyed looking at them when I was in Europe years ago and I have sighted several when visiting Portland, Oregon. Yesterday on our dog walk, we came across an adorable Smart Car in one of the neighborhoods next to ours. I was so cute I wanted to put it in my pocket – ha! (They are like toy cars!)

So I will close out this post with the photo of this darling eco-vehicle:

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A Chicken Named “Tierney”

Wishing you all a Happy Mothers Day whether you are raising/have raised little humans, or you care for furry creature! Check out my fur kid’s latest musings in her Schnauzer Snips blog.


How do you know you have really made it in life?

You know when a chicken has been named after you!

My friend Marla started raising hen chicks and she has named them after her close female friends and family members. She is raising several varieties and I have been honored with one of her Dominique Chickens being given my name.

Here is “Tierney” the Chicken:

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She and her husband began raising the chicks in their bathroom in a specially heated set up. Now the chickens are moved to a lovely outdoor coop her husband built (I hope to remember in the future to take a photo and share, maybe when little “Tierney” is all grown up). Here are a couple of photos of the chicks while they lived in the bathroom:

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So what do you feed chicks as snacks? Well you give them Happy Hen Treats: Mealworm Frenzy!

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It is both disgusting and hysterical. I think I will stick with dogs and dog biscuits, ha! I hope to remember to post another photo in the future when chick “Tierney” becomes full grown egg laying hen “Tierney”.


Postscript

One of the cool things about being a quilter is when many years later someone thanks you again for a quilt you made for them (that they have been enjoying for many years!).

Out of the blue I received a text from an old friend Colleen, thanking me for a quilt I made her 6 or so years ago after he husband passed. She sent me the photo below of the quilt, on her bed:

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What a wonderful treat it was to be reminded of this quilt and how much it meant to her!

Experimenting with Foundation Paper Piecing

A series of words I never thought I would write in a blog post: “Foundation Paper Piecing”.

If you are not a quilter, foundation piecing is using pre-printed paper/specialty papers to sew precise shapes using a sort of “flip and stitch” method. Foundation piecing allows you to work with tiny pieces of fabric to get precise shapes.

Yes that sounds kind of complicated and I have avoided it for years for this reason. Of course I never thought I would attempted English Paper Piecing (EPP) but as you can see from my series of posts – Adventures in English Paper Piecing – I am addicted to it.

I had one previous experience with foundation piecing and I keep it in a tiny frame in my studio.

My extremely talented quilter sister-in-law Sue attempted in the early 2000s to teach me to foundation piece while visiting us when we lived in Seattle, WA.

We made a little sailboat block:

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Tiny little sailboat block in a tiny frame in my studio

She was a very patient teacher and I keep the framed block as a special memory of our time together working on a project. However it is now 2017 and I am returning (like 15 years later?!??!) to trying foundation paper piecing again!

As a crafter, you learn through experimentation (sometimes it feels everything I work on is an experiment, ha!) and if you don’t push yourself to take risks you will not grow as a crafter. So experiment I did and here is the story.

Foundation Paper Piecing Experimentation

A couple blog posts ago (Basket of Challenges) I wrote about my “challenge bags” – collections of coordinate scraps given to me by other crafters. Since taking them out of closed storage containers and putting them into a large basket in my studio, I am inspired to open them up and do another “challenge” (see what I can make with them).

My friend and quilting-sister Dana made me the lovely bag for my yarn/portable knitting:

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Photo does not do it justice, it is lovely!

The picture does not do it justice. She reverse engineered a bag she saw on Pinterest (she is a crafting-goddess) to make this bag from a collection of shot cottons.

In addition to the bag, she also gave me her scraps from making the bag:

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Fresh out of the challenge bag

I had them of course sitting in a “challenge bag” and decided they would be perfect for my experimentation with foundation paper piecing.

Looking through my archives of patterns of “projects-I-am-really-going-to-make-someday”, I found this pattern with pre-printed pattern paper (sort of the texture of tissue paper but stronger, like used for clothing patterns):

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The copyright is 2001 on this pattern

You can tell how dated the pattern is  – how many of us read small paperback books anymore (you could convert this pattern into a cute kindle cover though)? I think I bought it in the very early 2000s. The pattern comes with enough tissue foundation paper to make twenty-four 3″ blocks.

I began with cutting a bunch of the little foundation papers from the pattern; and ironing the scraps:

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There are 6 different patterns: Odd Fellow’s Star, Mosaic, Pinwheel, Starry Path, Square on Square, and Dutchman’s Puzzle

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All nicely pressed and ready for experimentation!

The next step was to watch several foundation piecing videos I found on YouTube. My favorite, and the one that really made things click in my mind, was Paper Piecing Made Easy Tutorial by the CraftyGemini.

I decided to work on the “Square on Square” pattern, so it was time to start the experiment. I am happy to report it worked, though I struggled a little with removing the paper from the back of the piece when I was done foundation piecing:

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I used tiny stitches as the videos instructed in order to perforated the template paper to make it easier to remove, but still it took a while to get all those tiny pieces off the back

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The completed block – I added a little border to it as I was not too sure about the stability of the edges of the paper pieced block

You can see just how small this little block is in this photo, imagine trying to traditionally piece (via sewing very tiny little pieces together) this block:

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I bordered it with more of the scrap shot cottons from the challenge bag:

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With a 1.5″ border added

I plan to make a little pillow out of it, like the little pillows on this post – More Creating – More Art Pillows. I plan to hand quilt it and I am trying to decide between two quilting threads, but I am leaning towards the very light and thin DMC embroidery thread in brown:

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Likely going with the DMC thread on the left instead of the Aurifil

Am I going to do another one (I do have 23 more blocks I can foundation piece with this pattern set)?

Not right now, I need to emotionally recover as honestly it was kind of stressful to make the tiny little block via foundation piecing. Also shot cotton might not have been the best fabric to work with for foundation piecing as it is thin and friable. I might make the rest of the blocks with batik scraps.

I think foundation piecing will be a great skill to have in my “quilting toolbelt” but for now I am happy to have made just one!

The Beauty of Moss and Fungi

Scrolling though my digital photos yesterday, I came across a group of photos I took last year during a rainy Portland, Oregon trip of several fence posts and tree stumps covered with interesting moss and fungi.

I thought I would post a couple of those photos as part of my ongoing series of posts on sources of Creative Inspiration. I think these compositions could be inspiration for an interesting art quilt:

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Nature is beautiful and magical and an endless source of inspiration, eh?

I took several photos of fence posts in B&W and here is one of those photos:

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“Nature doth thus kindly heal every wound. By the mediation of a thousand little mosses and fungi, the most unsightly objects become radiant of beauty. There seem to be two sides of this world, presented us at different times, as we see things in growth or dissolution, in life or death. And seen with the eye of the poet, as God sees them, all things are alive and beautiful.” – Henry David Thoreau

Speaking of nature as inspiration, I am currently toying with the idea of creating an art quilt for a local nature-themed exhibit based on some photos of the Central Oregon. More to come on that project, along with more details.


Postscript

In yesterday’s post, Basket of Challenges, I shared that I was inspired by my art quilting mentor, Betty Anne, to appreciate fabric scraps and curate a collection of coordinated “challenge bags” of fabric scraps. (I also have a collection of uncoordinated fabric scraps, see post When all else fails, reorganize your fabric scraps). 

Betty Anne has been busy lately working through her own “challenge bags” of fabric scraps and if you check out the link to the post below from our collaborative art quilting website/blog, Improvisational Textiles, you can see one of her latest creations made from fabric scraps, saved from the landfill:

Improvisational Scrappy Explorations

Basket of Challenges

My friend and quilter mentor Betty Anne taught me to appreciate fabric scraps, especially coordinated fabrics scraps shared from other quilters’ projects.

Like her I have gathered a collection of coordinated fabric scraps donated by quilting friends such as herself, my original quilting mentor Judy, my quilting sister Barb or my friend Susan.

Each collection of scraps is organized in a plastic bag, which I call a “challenge bag“. Each bag is a challenge to create something from a fabric scrap collection otherwise destined for the trash.

I had these challenge bags stored in two storage containers:

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I decided to move them into a large basket in my studio where I could see them all the time and be reminded of the fun challenges to work on:

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While going through the challenge bags to move them from the storage containers to the open basket, I figured it was time to work on one of them.

My friend Susan gave me a collection of brown batik scraps and partial fat quarters that she had started making little wallets out of – she also gave me the pattern and the templates she had cut. I think she thought I would just use the fabrics/scraps as part of a scrappy quilt. Instead I used nearly all the fabric/scraps she gave me to make a collection of little wallets:

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Little Wallets, pattern by Valori Wells

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Perfect size to hold business cards

I am looking forward in the future playing with another “challenge bag”. We’ll see what I make next…


Postscript

Yesterday I hiked Pilot Butte (miniature mountain with 360 degree views of Central Oregon and surrounding region) and nearing the summit I took a photo of a controlled burn off in the distance. The US Department of Agriculture Forest Service has to do controlled burns in the Deschutes National Forest to control forest fires.

Prescribed Fire in Central Oregon

I used the zoom on my iPhone and although it is not the clearest photo it gives you a sense of the scope of the controlled burn:

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If you are new to my blog and wanted to read more about my Pilot Butte adventures, check out this link: Pilot Butte Adventures.

For those of you who have followed me for a while – yes, on my hike yesterday, another Senior Citizen dusted me on Pilot Butte. At least the 80+ year old (maybe even 90) was kind enough to wish me a “good day” as he effortlessly walked around me on the hike back down the Butte!

Adventures in English Paper Piecing (Part III)

A recent post in a blog I follow, Coloring Outside the Lines (quiltingismything. wordpress.com), on English Paper Piecing (EPP) – “EPP – my tips and what I use” by Kris R., reminded me I should post an update on my adventures in EPP.

You can read my prior post, Adventures in English Paper Piecing (Part II), or you can check out my category Adventures in English Paper Piecing, for all previous posts related to my adventures in EPP.

Not sure if I would use the word addiction…but..

I started making EPP hexagons (aka “hexies”) to have something to do with my hands, other than play games on my iPad, while I watched TV in the evening with Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH). I seem to need to do something while watching TV, my mind is unable to just “veg-out” in front of a screen.

And EPP hexies I did make…and make…and make. I have made over 225 EPP hexies so far!

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So many hexies!

The fabrics are from the 2016 Central Oregon Shop Hop – a collection of fat 1/8th that TTQH and I got as gifts from each quilt shop we visited.

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The original collection of free fabrics

I used up all the fat 1/8ths (all 14 pieces) to make the 225+ hexies and then TTQH suggested I might need some white hexies in my grouping as some of the prints also have white in them. At first I was annoyed, as I wanted to be done with this collection of hexies and move onto making my next collection!

After a little grumbling, I realized he was right, and found this white fabric in my general fat quarter stash that I think will work:

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Making More Hexies

Now you might find this to be abusive, but I have trained TTQH to make my paper templates for my hexies. As mentioned in an earlier post on EPP, I found at a craft store, a paper punch that makes hexagons.

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TTQH making hexies with the paper punch

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A nice new pile of hexies!

TTQH likes a challenge and I caught him playing a game to see just how many hexies he could get out of a section of card stock. (I have a lot of card stock from my paper crafting days…I might return to make handmade cards someday…maybe…)

So what am I going to do with my first collection of hexies?

I fell in love with the EPP quilt on the cover of a new magazine, Quiltfolk:

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Photo credit: quiltfolk.com

I plan to make my EPP hexies into rosettes and make a quilt similar to the one on the cover.

The premiere issue of this advertisement-free publication features the state of Oregon and stories of quilters and quilt shops in Oregon.

The premiere issue of Quiltfolk magazine (01) goes on a road-trip around Oregon and when they get to Central Oregon, they feature a very talented art quilter, Shelia Finzer, who is in the SAQA art quilter group I belong.

Shelia and her art represented Central Oregon very well – this place (and Portland, Oregon) is a major nest of art quilters!

I know, I know, you are thinking: “Tierney, didn’t you post a while back about downsizing? Why are you buying more magazines?” I am not just downsizing my life to live as an extreme minimalist. I am CURATING my life to have only those things that truly make me happy. Quiltfolk magazine is one of those items.

The next issues (02) Quiltfolk magazine features quilter stories from the state of Iowa and I am looking forward to delving into that issue with a pot of tea!

The EPP Nest

I created a spot for my EPP activities (and any other portable crafting activities such as coloring or appliqué, etc.) in the living room in an old IKEA end table. Inside the end table are various crafting supplies for “crafting on demand” – ha!

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This is a continuation of my “whole house crafting” expansion that I discussed in the Jan 2016 post, Whole House Crafting,  when I realized that I did not have to confine my crafting activities to one room (3rd bedroom turned studio) in my house!

Well today is Monday, and I am going to try and get in another Pilot Butte walk, so I better stop blogging and go enjoy the sunshine and mountains.

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