Saturday, May 17, 2008

This and That

I can't believe it's been two full weeks since my last post. Yes, I've been wrapped up in work again, but I've been getting in some needle-and-thread time, too. 

Last weekend, I couldn't ignore it any longer. Warm weather had arrived, and I had to start hauling out my really summery clothes. Discovering the alarming number of worn out and stained items spurred me to unearth several lengths of fabric I've been carrying around for literally 20 years, and make a duplicate of a favorite but very worn dress.

Fortunately, it looks better on than in this photo. But in any case, it's primarily a trial run for some better, prettier fabric that I hope to get to soon.

I've been working away on the hand quilting, still with my left hand. It's looking better and going faster, although "fast" is a relative term here.

Here and there, I've found time to make progress on getting the two star quilt tops ready for machine quilting. I made two more large blocks, and I have to transplant one more row of the sashing pieces from the large top to the small one. After that, the small one will need a simple border.

I'm still mulling how to get these quilts basted. Safety pins, straight pins, and spray adhesive are out. I was going to hand baste with small stitches, but the time factor is just too daunting, and besides, the quilting frame is otherwise occupied (forget the floor or even a table). Having a long-armer baste it is a possibility. Thinking a little further outside the box, I figured, what the heck, I'll try using a Flynn frame and water-soluble thread to baste by machine. I don't expect to have particularly good control of the frame, but it's just basting. It's going to be an interesting experiment.

Last but not least, here are a few photos of white-flowered crabapple trees on our grounds. They're really spectacular this year. You'll notice that many of our other trees still don't have their leaves fully out. Spring is on the late side, even for southern Wisconsin.


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