Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Try Something New

I am the first to admit that I can get very stuck in my ways. If I find a method of doing something, and am comfortable with it, I tend not to be very receptive to trying a new or different method. Take half-square triangles for example. I am still making them the way I first learned: layer two squarees together, draw a diagonal line, sew 1/4" on either side of the line, then cut on the drawn line. Voila! I can make these guys all day long this way. I've seen demos for various triangle papers but I couldn't figure out how that method could be any faster, cheaper, or more accurate than my old tried and true method. I've sewn together strips of fabric, then cut them into the squares. This actually is a fairly good method, but the few times I've used it, I've had to find the book with the directions and virtually re-teach myself.

So, now I am in the process of preparing the applique pieces for a vine border to go on a reproduction quilt I'm in the process of designing & making. And my friend would be proud, I'm trying a new method. It's a method demonstrated in a book by a very famous quilter in one of her books on applique. She has very detailed instructions in her book, so I'm not having a problem executing the method. Although, right about now I'd like to execute myself! My normal applique method involves freezer paper and occasionally starch. Famous quilter X's method requires a heavy foundation material. Then you trace your shapes on the foundation. Cut out the shapes. Glue your shapes to your fabric. Turn the edges and glue them in place. Do the edges of my shapes look cleaner and crisper than my freezer paper method? Is the method cheaper? Is it quicker? Will I use this method again? Am I inflexible? Do I have a problem trying new methods? Can I honestly answer all of these questions. Hmmm. . . . back to the glue!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Life is a Series of Dogs

Comedian George Carlin had a routine I loved called "Life Is A Series of Dogs". My first dog, Punky, was a character who lived to be 15 years old. He survived being hit by a Suburban, but had to have his front left leg amputated and steel pins held his pelvis together. His vet, who did his surgery, said he was a miracle dog and, in fact, wrote an article for a veterinary medicine journal about Punky's cutting-edge surgery. After Punky, I thought I would never get another dog. But I am adept at eating my words, and less than a year after Punky went to dog heaven, we brought home a ditsy Shepherd mix named Daisy. She's a rescue dog--the best kind--and she's a love. The other day I took her to the groomers and when I picked her up the girl at the front counter said. "Oh Daisy--sigh--she's a sweetie. She's been talking to everyone all day and giving everyone kisses." That's Daisy! She doesn't bark, but she's a talker. Trust me--I've had entire conversations with her. Plus I get a thousand kisses a day from her.

Long Beach Show

Oliver and I are back from the Long Beach Quilt Festival. We've finally managed to get everything unpacked and in its place. In fact, I'm feeling pretty good because our inventory is the most organized it's ever been. Naturally, I over-prepared for the show. I brought too many kits, too much fabric, too many patterns, etc. My dear husband loaded and unloaded all of my stuff, helped me set up our booth, and served as cashier. I could not have done it without him and his unending support. He remembered the camera and took several photos of our booth. I managed to snap one of him though--he's the handsome man in the third photo!