Stitch Craft

One more new design. I plan to play with the colors and layout on this one a lot more. But this is the first version. I was aiming for a design that I could do in a lot of colorways…I doodled these little icons.  I figure I can do just sewing, just embroidery and just knitting or combos, with and without the background circles, etc. And, of course I need to add a crochet hook, since I don’t even knit. Anyway, pretty versatile!

Stitch Craft by Moxywares

They’re actually really small – more like polka dots. Here’s the Spoonflower 8×8 swatch:

Stitch Craft

Hexagons, revisited again.

First I started out touting the miracle of paper piecing hexagons. Then I quickly figured out that basting in the little papers was double the work – for me, anyway. Many people swear by it. So I made this handy tutorial for hand-piecing with no paper. I still think this method is the best for small hexagons. Then I found this tutorial for bigger hexagons, machine-pieced together! And today, another awesome tutorial – this one video – by fellow LA Modern Quilt Guild member, Liz Harvatine. She’s also got a pdf of hex templates – bigger hexes than my pdf templates. And don’t you love the solids she used? Awesome.

So, there are no excuses now. Make a hexagon quilt already!

Some new fabric designs

These are in my spoonflower library now. I’m ordering swatches to see what the colors really look like.

I’m still fiddling around with layout. I can’t seem to get my vision of safari animals at the watering hole to work out. But the costume dudes are still fun. I’d love your feedback, you lovely multitude of reader :) (‘s’ omitted on purpose!) These are the fat quarter views.

Update – here is my first version. I didn’t include it in my initial post because I wasn’t crazy about it, but the concensus is a need for a closer grouping of the dudes. I’m not sure if it’s the green or the drop shadows I didn’t like, but I disliked this enough to leave it out. I think my real problem with these guys – closely grouped or not, is that I can’t see using them in a quilt. So while I like the idea of gathering around the watering hole, I probably wouldn’t ever use the fabric. That’s no good. So I need a way to use them in a design that is conducive to sewing.

Watering Hole Green

Watering Hole Peach

Tough Love

Very Brady Animals

But here’s a better view of the costume dudes – the spoonflower pics are always blurry and hard to see.

antelope_color

rhino_color

giraffe_color

Healthcare Reform means…

From my main man, Barack. I know lots of people got this, but it still made me tear up a little:

Abigail —

I’m writing to you on a great day for America.

This morning, I gathered with members of Congress, my administration, and hardworking volunteers from every part of the country to sign comprehensive health care reform into law. Thanks to the immeasurable efforts of so many, the dream of reform is now a reality.

The bill I just signed puts Americans in charge of our own health care by enacting three key changes:

It establishes the toughest patient protections in history.

It guarantees all Americans affordable health insurance options, extending coverage to 32 million who are currently uninsured.

And it reduces the cost of care — cutting over 1 trillion dollars from the federal deficit over the next two decades.

To ensure a successful, stable transition, many of these changes will phase into full effect over the next several years.

But for millions of Americans, many of the benefits of reform will begin this year — some even taking effect this afternoon. Here are just a few examples:

Small businesses will receive significant tax cuts, this year, to help them afford health coverage for all their employees.

Seniors will receive a rebate to reduce drug costs not yet covered under Medicare.

Young people will be allowed coverage under their parents’ plan until the age of 26.

Early retirees will receive help to reduce premium costs.

Children will be protected against discrimination on the basis of medical history.

Uninsured Americans with pre-existing conditions can join a special high-risk pool to get the coverage they need, starting in just 90 days.

Insured Americans will be protected from seeing their insurance revoked when they get sick, or facing restrictive annual limits on the care they receive.

All Americans will benefit from significant new investments to train primary care doctors, nurses, and public health professionals, and the creation of state-level consumer assistance programs to help all patients understand and defend our new rights.

As I’ve said many times, and as I know to be true, this astounding victory could not have been achieved without your tireless efforts.

So as we celebrate this great day, I want to invite you to add your name where it belongs: alongside mine as a co-signer of this historic legislation. Organizing for America will record the names of co-signers as a permanent commemoration of those who came together to make this moment possible — all of you who refused to give up until the dream of many generations for affordable, quality care for all Americans was finally fulfilled.

So, if you haven’t yet, please add your name as a proud health care reform co-signer today:

http://my.barackobama.com/cosigner

Please accept my thanks for your voice, for your courage, and for your indispensable partnership in the great work of creating change.

History, and I, are in your debt.

President Barack Obama

Weekend Sew!

Earlier this week, I finished the binding and the label on my sister’s crazy nine patch (tutorial from Oh Fransson!). So it’s officially ready to mail. But I wanted to bring it with me to the weekend sew to have a show and tell, and I still needed to flickerize it. So here are some photos:

crazy nine patch-1

crazy nine patch-4

crazy nine patch-5

I had a ball yesterday sewing with some of the girls from the LA Modern Quilt Guild. Did I accomplish all the projects I hoped to? Of course not. Too much talking, not enough sewing. But I definitely had fun, and I always over plan what I can accomplish at these things. So here’s what I did accomplish – I got a good head start on my hot cross quilt. I have been inspired by Latifah’s amazing color choices, and am doing all kona solids, using coal as my base. These are 6″ blocks, and they’ll be sashed with more coal so the crosses don’t touch. I may offset them also, I’m not sure yet.

hot_crosses

Over the weekend, I also assembled all the packets for my Bee Happy spiderweb blocks! Can’t wait to see how they come out. I’ve asked everyone to make one block each, and I’ll make the rest. So everyone got their 12.5″ coal square and 8 random strips. I tried to include some special fabrics – some of my prize Heather Ross prints and someone got a strip of FMF yellow seeds. Everyone got totally different fabrics, so I think it’s going to be great. I think I’ll need 20 blocks for a good nap size quilt. Also using coal on these – I’m going coal crazy, but I think it’s a nice departure from my white craze.

Bee Happy-2

Two audiobook recommendations

I just listened to two excellent audiobooks. Not at the same time, of course :)

First up, The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton. A fantastic story about a girl who gets put on a boat in England bound for Australia at age four. The story covers her life, her parents lives, her children and grandchild – who finally solves the mystery of why she was on the boat. It’s a little dark, and feels magical, although there’s no actual magic. It was excellent as an audio book – I know the paperback is on the bestseller list now. I think if you liked The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield, you’ll like this one.

Next up is The Whiskey Rebels by David Liss. So funny and interesting – the tale of disgraced Revolutionary Army Captain trying to save his first love and save the new nation from financial ruin. SO MANY parallels to today’s stock market and government. It’s a fun, fictional glimpse at Alexander Hamilton as the first Secretary of the Treasury, the men and women of the west that improved the Whiskey trade, the first government in Philadelphia. I loved every bit of it! Historical fiction at it’s most entertaining.

Audible has an awesome sale going on right now – over 200 books at only $4.95. I can’t get enough!

Introducing the Bee Happy Quilting Bee

Rather than maintain a group blog, we’ve decided to house our fun bee contributions over on Flickr. I hope you’ll visit our Bee Happy Bee photo pool.

Here’s my first try at our web button – which may change as the group hasn’t seen it yet :)

button

Members, you can copy and paste this code to put the button on your own blogs:

<a href=”http://www.flickr.com/groups/beehappybee/” target=”_blank” title=”Bee Happy Quilting Bee”><img src=”http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4001/4431874549_bfe6c5ba41_o.gif” width=”218″ height=”160″ alt=”Bee Happy Bee” /></img></a>

Summer of Making

As part of my full-fledged crazy excitement about attending Heather Ross’ fabric design class in Portland this Summer, I became a fan of the Summer of Making facebook page.

Today they sent out this link to the Museum of Contemporary Craft to download Denyse Schmidt’s talk from last summer’s program. You can right click on this link, or just left click on it to stream the mp3. Awesome! It’s also on the Summer of Making blog.

**Update – After listening, I think it would be a lot cooler if we could see the pictures. But it’s still great.