The new hip is great and I am really enjoying moving around with so much less pain. While my dancing style is closer to the gal in the background here... the possibility of moving like Miss Plaid is on the horizon.
There is a very good chance I owned this pattern back in the day. I know I made a couple of tops in this style with a keyhole neckline. Hopefully that pattern is not still part of the sewing dungeon's inventory.
The good news is that I sold "Put a Bird on It" from the 1109 Gallery's latest show:
The bad news is that the gallery is now closed and out of business. The Art Guild just couldn't keep up with the rent. I blame Kansas Governor Brownback for this set-back! He cancelled the Kansas Art Commission and all state support of the arts. Small grants from the Art Commission helped finance things like the rent on a community gallery that was built by volunteer hands. Mr. Brownback wants so badly to be president, and he is sacrificing most of what was good about Kansas in order to create a conservative Republican utopia where taxes are low, children are poorly educated and community infrastructures are crumbling. He hopes when his mission is accomplished here that he can use it as a resume for national leadership. I don't know why people who hate government go into it as a career. Here is an editorial obituary for Kansas from my hometown newspaper that sums it all up very well:
By Jason Probst
TOPEKA - The Great State of Kansas passed away on March 31, 2013, after a long and difficult battle with extremism that became markedly more aggressive in 2010. The struggle left the state so weakened it could no longer fight against the relentless attacks by the fatal disease.
Kansas was born on Jan. 29, 1861.
The state is preceded in death by fair taxation, good highways, strong education, family farms, a good public parks and wildlife system, open government, neighborliness and belief in helping each other out, freely elected public servants, and political moderation. Kansas is survived by widespread poverty, low-wage jobs, high property taxes, pollution, poorly educated children, outmigration and rural depopulation, foreign land and farm ownership, lobbyist-funded legislators, chronic mistreatment of the disabled, a maniacal hatred of government and children who dream of living anywhere else.
During its early years, Kansas played a pivotal role in the Civil War by staking out a strong progressive stand against slavery. Despite repeated raids from border ruffians, Kansas held firm to the belief of free men and free soil.
Throughout its life, Kansas often aligned with leading progressive causes. William Allen White, one of the state's most notable residents, once wrote that "if it's going to happen, it happens first in Kansas." That once was true. Kansas was the first state to ban the Ku Klux Klan, and the first to elect women to public office - one as mayor and another as sheriff.
It was the birthplace of the populist movement, rising as farmers and ordinary people grew weary of the Gilded Age politics of the late 1800s and early 1900s that favored investment interests over those of landowners and laborers.
Kansas was a leader in public education, with one-room school houses dotting the plains. A full 12 years before it was a national concern, Kansas established child labor laws that restricted employment of children in potentially dangerous industries.
In the 1950s, Kansas laid the path to civil rights for African-Americans with the historic Brown vs. Board of Education case - the first in the country to rule against a policy of segregation in public schools.
Despite its compassionate nature, Kansas proved to be a state teeming with inventiveness, ingenuity, determination and a savvy sense of business.
Cessna, Beech and Stearman helped establish Kansas as a center of the aviation industry. Coleman launched an international company from Wichita that became a household name. Pizza Hut and White Castle - two iconic eateries - both got their start in Kansas, and the man who helped establish the American automobile industry called Kansas home.
Kansas' history is filled with vibrant, dynamic people. Settlers who claimed land once described as a desert and turned it into the world's garden; immigrants who came by the train-load and brought with them the hard winter wheat that germinated the state's prosperity. Throughout the years, Kansans endured drought, grasshopper plagues, depression and fierce weather, yet its people worked to hold tight to their land and the belief that there was goodness in Kansas. In spite of those hardships, the state produced world-renowned artists, writers, inventors, business leaders, astronauts, even a president.
Kansas was a strong-willed state whose hands were calloused enough to turn up the hardest sod and tender enough to calm a crying child.
Despite its strength and vitality, Kansas couldn't survive the influences of outside political machines that sought to use this fertile ground and its people as a test plot for an ambitious political experiment.
The elections of 2010 and 2012 brought the poisoned pill that would bring about Kansas' untimely end. The first election seated a governor who tossed aside Kansas' storied history and replaced it with a vision of his own design. In 2012, record setting campaign contributions from out-of-state donors financed the defeat of those moderate Republicans who had spent the last of their political careers keeping Kansas alive.
One by one, the things Kansas had spent a lifetime building were dismantled, until the state was rendered as empty and uninviting as it had been in those early days when the first settlers eyed its endless expanse.
Along the way, the state's defenders - the farmer, the laborer, the property owner and the shop keeper - stood mute and passive, hoping for a day when the state would spark back to life, as it had always done before.
They remained silent too long.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to the Kansas Chamber of Commerce, the Kansas Policy Institute, or Americans for Prosperity all in care of Gov. Sam Brownback, Office of the Governor, Capital 300 SW 10th Ave. Ste 241S, Topeka, KS 66612-1590.
Jason Probst is news editor at The Hutchinson News. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
If it was the first of April I would think this news was part of a joke. However, it has been a few days since I saw this online and no one has retracted it so... NASA astronaut Karen Nyberg is scheduled to be the first quilter in space. (Or maybe the first to admit it.) When she is launched into space she is taking four fat quarters, needles and thread along to do some stitching. She was excited to learn that there might be some second hand fabric available to her on the space station since flight suits are worn for only one week and then discarded into a trash bin.
In addition to the regular challenges of quilting, Karen will have to keep carefull control of all thread bits so they don't float into someone's eyes. She will have to find some way to brace herself and her work too in the zero gravity. For the rest of the story click here. I am looking forward to seeing what she makes!
I saw an interview with Jimmy Connors last night that mentioned he now plays tennis on two new hips. He seemed to be able to run around the court like the old days...which is encouraging to me as I limp along with my cane, babying my single new hip. Not that I could play tennis before, but I did manage to walk without support in the old days. Here is just about all I have accomplished lately:
An infinity scarf done in a fairly simple double crochet stitch.
Have I mentioned my family history of debilitating arthritis? No? Good. It is a boring tale that includes a lot of whining about pain. I'm breaking from family tradition (not the whining part) and starting out on what will probably be a series of joint replacements. Everyone else has just toughed it out.
The plan is to replace this with some smooth moving hardware:
I try to make at least one quilt a year that could be considered bed-sized. Usually this results in a quilt that is too big for the wall and too small for any bed we have around here. But since most days I make quilts for the joy of sewing and the dent it might make in the fabric hoard, I just go ahead and crank these out. Here is the latest, which I call "Cutting Corners":
It was inspired by this 1960s quilt made by Marjorie Childress:
The prairie points on my quilt were made by sewing around two face to face 2.5 inch squares, cutting the result in half diagonally and then turning those two pieces right side out. There are about 900 points on my quilt. I think Marjorie has me beat by quite a bit. The fabric I used for the sashing is a misprinted version of the border fabric. It has white spaces where the printing process failed to get enough ink or paint on the fabric. I think it gives the center of the quilt a little bit of light. (The white blob on the right is a label-this picture was taken at a quilt show.)
No,not Easter chicks. They are catnip stuffed cat toys to be sold at my guild's Boutique at our quilt show next weekend. (More info here.)
I think they turned out pretty cute.
One of the items donated to the general cause was a very textured wool weaving done in 70's colors. It had been folded and sewn into a bag shape. Probably because I had the catnip out... I filled it with batting scraps and catnip, added some eyes and sewed the final side shut. It is an extra large cat toy for a multiple cat household that looks like a cross between the Wichita State Shocker mascot and Oscar the Grouch.
We are celebrating Pi day at my house with a delicious chocolate pie that arrived on our front porch last night as a delayed birthday present for my husband. It is great to extend these events this way...we ran out of birthday cake a couple of days ago. I'm still sewing even though I don't seem to be blogging. Here is another mini quilt that will be auctioned off at my guild's quilt show:
A while back I saw this great quilt on the internet:
The label called it Marjorie Childress's 1960s quilt. I don't know if Marjorie made the quilt or just owns it, but I decided to make one like it. Instead of the traditional method of making prairie points, I used 2.5 inch square "quilter's candy" squares that I had acquired over the years. I placed one square right side together with a second randomly-sized (but bigger than 2.5" square) piece of fabric and stitched all the way around the square. I then cut the result once diagonally from corner to corner. Turned the triangles right side out and pressed. So you get two "prairie points" for each 2.5 inch square that you cut...which seemed like a time saver until I was doing the right side out turning and pressing...that took a while. I'm 900 or so points along now and I am beginning to have trouble remembering what I liked about this quilt. But the top is finished, so lets get it quilted in time to be in my guild's show. Stay tuned.
There is a new show at the 1109 Gallery in Lawrence, and the theme is "Sweethearts". It runs through Feb. 17. This may be the last show at the gallery since it is having difficulty paying the rent. Artists seem to be abandoning the ship as there was a struggle to fill this show. I decided this would be a good show to enter the maximum number of pieces and all of them are good sized. The newest of the three is an appliqued quilt I call "Spring Flowers":
My quilt "Wake Up Call" is part of the window display:
Go see the show, but call first...just in case they haven't been able to find anyone to staff the place that day.
Included in the items donated for the upcoming "Boutique" at my guild's quilt show was a small quilt top. I finished it up with some machine quilting and button embellishment. If I had pieced the top, the buttons would be hiding missed intersections in the piecing.
Sadly, these buttons hide perfectly matched seams but they also do a good job of highlighting the quilting, I think.
This quilt will be in the guild's mini-quilt silent auction to raise funds for local, very worthy, non-profits.