Saturday, December 23, 2006

Fabric postcards

This is my first attempt at postcards. It looks prettier "in person". I was under the impression that the stiff material used in the middle layer was supposed to adhere to the fabric when ironed. I assumed wrong. Don't know whether the stuff I bought was faulty or it's the way I ironed it but never mind. The machine stitching around the perimeter holds it together.

I may try another one using thin batting and see how that goes, especially since I don't intend to mail them as postcards. If I mail them at all, it will be in padded envelopes.

Back to stitching.

4 day weekend -- woohoo!!

It's been a busy and stressful week so I'm really looking forward to the 4 day weekend. But more about that later.

Last weekend, I spent Saturday packing up my cq stuff for my presentation at the Guild on Wednesday evening.

Sunday was spent in preparation for the family Chanuka get-together at our place. It was a very nice evening. Menachem made delicous sufganiyot (jam filled fried yeast doughnuts) and latkes (fried potato pancakes) -- two kinds, regular and sweet potatoes. Add to that sour cream and Savta's homemade applesauce and that's a meal in itself. But Penina brought two salads and chumus, I put out a bean salad and some tomatoes and pickles. Yunkie and Mindy brought the drinks. And Sari and David brought cookies.

Who came? Savta and Ethel, Devora and Noam, Yunkie and Mindy and kids, Penina and Alain and boys, Alissa, Sari and David and Jojo. Shloimeh and Zena had a previous engagement. Mel is finally allowed back on his feet after having been off them since the wedding but was exhausted and feeling a little under the weather so stayed home. And Matty had just finished his third long shift in three days at the Hockey Hall of Fame so he also stayed home to recuperate.

So we had a lovely time, sitting around, talking and eating. I rarely use paper plates but I decided that since I was working the next day, I wanted to be able to finish the cleanup the same night.

This week was very stressful at work. A transaction which was supposed to close the previous Thursday kept getting extended and finally on Tuesday fell through. And we had another transaction which had been ongoing since the summer and kept getting extended and was scheduled for a final closing on Thursday. It entailed several mortgages and a ton of paperwork. So I stayed late Wednesday and Thursday and it finally closed yesterday at noon. And although the office officially closed at 3 p.m., we had a client who didn't come in until 3. I stayed until 5 because we went out to Boujadi with Joann last night and I figured that if I took the bus home, I wouldn't get home until I had to leave anyways. Menachem picked me up, we drove down Yonge -- it was totally not busy, picked up Joann and had a pleasant dinner at Boujadi. Then we went back to Joann's for coffee and dessert. Didn't stay too late though because I was falling asleep sitting up.

Wednesday evening was my presentation at the Pomegranate Guild. And either it went well or everyone lied to me... I had done a fair amount of preparation, making samples to show the methods I use, brought in my supplies to show how I lay out my stuff to choose from, and I brought in some finished pieces and works in progress. So I felt good afterwards and relieved that it was behind me!

Now everything is back in its place in my workroom and I can set about stitching again.

And that brings me back to the start of my post -- the 4 day weekend in which I plan to do very little other than stitch.

Now that I've finished the presentation, I can complete the fuschia, purple and pink blocks for shadow boxes. And I want to try my hand at making some cq postcards. And maybe even cq fridge magnets.

I have a few WIPs to work on and Gwen, my stair-climbing buddy, gave me an empty shadow box for Christmas -- I made her a cq tree ornament.

Sunday morning early Menachem leaves for winter camp for 5 days and I'm on my own. I'm invited for brunch at Shloimeh and Zena's on Sunday and then nothing for the rest of the weekend.

And Rotem and Efrat are coming on Thursday so we're really looking forward to that.

And now, I'm off to stitch.

Sunday, December 17, 2006


This is the finished block for my how-to demo at the Pomegranate Guild. Not too bad, eh?

This weekend I will not get any stitching done because:

a) I am preparing for the guild presentation, and
b) We are having a family Chanuka party today and while Menachem is doing all of the cooking and frying (latkes and sufganiyot), I have to give the house the appearance of being clean...

I am thinking about dividing my blog into two, that is, making an additional blog which will deal with family news while da veha will be specifically for my textile endeavours. Or maybe I should do the opposite -- make the new blog for textiles and call it something which will put my name out there.

I spent yesterday polishing the script part of my presentation and packing my stuff away in the order I need to take it out of the suitcases during the presentation. I have two of those small rolling suitcases to house everything I need. I also prepared freezer paper templates and demo samples of how I do my srecq'ing (simcha related embellished crazy quilting). I hope the presentation goes well and no one dies of boredom.

Off to continue cleaning.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Let's try this again

I tried posting these photos yesterday with no luck. I am currently working on a series of six blocks which are in various stages from naked to fully embellished. I'll be using them to demonstrate the cq techniques I use at the Pomegranate Guild meeting next week.

In my previous blog, I explained the source of the fabrics. These are two of the six blocks. You can see the difference between blocks made by rotating the position of the pieces within the block. And then the embellishing. I have finished one block but have yet to photograph it.

Once the presentation is finished, I will complete the other five blocks and frame them in shadowboxes and try to sell them.

In the meantime, I am working on a small (finished it will be 3" square) piece as a Christmas decoration for Gwen at my office. Gwen is the person who got me started on my stair-climbing. I find it really difficult to work on something so small -- the scale of stitches and motifs is way too limited for me. I should finish the ornament today or tomorrow and will post a picture.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Wind, snow, cq

Last night was so windy. Branches were breaking off the trees in the front yard and you could hear the wind whistling loudly for a good part of the night. This morning we woke up to everything blanketed in snow. Granted a thin layer of snow which has since melted but still -- snow. The first snowfall is always lovely.

So, no real plans for the weekend. I started off this morning but cutting out fabric for six cq squares/blocks. I use a sane quilting cutting technique (freezer paper) but not stack and whack because I want to get as many pieces out of as little fabric as possible. But I made enough for six blocks using the same colours: burgundy, fuschia, pink and three whites. The burgundy, fuschia and one white are dupionni silk. The pink is moire from Penina's bridesmaids' dresses, one white is from Bat-Sheva's wedding gown and one white is from Ruthie's wedding gown. Although the colours are the same in each block and the six pieces of each block are identical, the colours rotate among the pieces so each of the six blocks is unique.

I sewed one block so I could take it with me to Needleart, the thread store. It's actually a needlepoint store but they have so many interesting kinds of other threads.

Menachem and I started our errands today at Needleart. When I came in, the owner said "Oh here's the cq lady" and then she raved to the other customers about the work I do. Gratification, validation. I am hoping at some point she will say to me "Would you like to give a workshop here?" I think I will ask her to display a shadow box or two once they're finished. So I bought some threads in the burgundy, fuschia, pinks to add to the stuff I already have at home.

From there we went to Lee Valley to buy some more watchmaker containers. It was busy with Xmas shoppers.

And then the field trip. We went to "By the pound". It's the Goodwill "outlet" store. It has the stuff which didn't sell at the regular Goodwill stores and you buy it at $2 a pound. I think it was probably the first and last time I go there. I don't particularly care for rummaging around in huge bins when the clothing is new, so used, I'm not enamoured with. But I did find some nice lace, some interesting fabric, a few nice button, sequins and beads.

We were going to go grocery shopping but I was starved so we came home. I ate a bagel, something I haven't done since I started WW. So it will take a little longer.

We are now home and I will shortly go into my work room to organize my stuff in the new watchmakers cases. Then I will continue to sew the individual blocks. And I may just do the same with the blue fabrics to make some more.

From there

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

The colouring is weird on the yellow background square but it is the same block as the greener one. When the yellow was photographed, it was apparent that the cq part was swallowed by the border. So I added some lace and yarn to separate the block from the border. At any rate, I wasn't crazy about the block to start with and like it even less now. I will try to sell it so I don't have to look at it any more, lol. And from now on, I will only push the envelope in the direction I want to take it.

Sunday, November 26, 2006


Yesterday was a great day. The weather was so balmy that I didn't need a coat, just a sweatshirt cardigan.

We started off at the York Heritage (i.e. Toronto) Quilters Guild Show at the Japanese-Canadian Cultural Centre. Nice venue, plenty of room.

Most of the pieces were traditional style, most machine pieces, some hand quilted, some machine quilted. If we used to go the quilt shows, stand back and admire the patterns, now we go up close to examine the stitching techniques. And when I say "we", I mean both Menachem and I. I wouldn't be surprised if he does take up quilting. He certainly has the patience for it. And then he could use all the bright highly patterned fabrics he likes and I don't... Anyways, in the quilt show booklet there was an advert for the new quilting store which opened in Toronto. Cock-a-doodle Quilts. It's located at Castlefield and Dufferin which is near to my mother's so we decided to pop in to see what it's like. First of all, it's very spacious. They have a huge showroom and another large room in the back for classes. The class room has a gigantic cutting table, individual work stations, each with it's own ironing board. It's not quite finished but getting there. And because it is an industrial space, they have high ceilings so they have quilts on display which aren't obstructed by shelving.

I wasn't intending to purchase anything but I bought a pigma pen for writing indelibly on fabric for labels and three pieces of fabric which on second thought may be too loud for what I intend to do with it. Oh well. Something else for the stash.

Then we popped into California Sandwiches for lunch. They have a grilled vegetable sandwish with sauce on a Kaiser bun. The bun soaks up the sauce and is delicious. Those of you who know me well know that I don't like messy stuff -- I don't like working with clay or anything else with a liquid texture. I'll make an exception for the sandwich. BTW, the sauce comes in hot, medium or mild, they call the mild "sweet". People kept coming in and asking for what sounded to me like "the sweet deal". I kept looking for a sign indicating what the seet deal was. It was "sweet veal".

From there, we went to my mother's. She has a collection of coins, or rather my father had a collection of coins -- Canadian, British Mandate Palestine, French and other. My mother wants to divvy them up among the grandchildren for Chanuka as gelt but wants to be sure that we're not sitting on some rare coin. Yunkie and I had made arrangements to meet at my mother's to go through the coins, Yunkie had already gone through some of them and catalogued them in an Excel file. Yunkie has a cold and didn't want to bring it to my mother's so he didn't come. I ended up brining the coins home and hope to work on them later today.

After we came home yesterday, I was just too tired to stitch or do anything else. I ended up having a nap, a light supper and going to sleep early.

But not before I had done my round of blogs I read. Sharon of Inaminuteago discussed the concept of being recognized as artists. She basicly said that if we don't recognize ourselves as artists, we can't expect others to. She said that we have to treat our art as work, putting in the hours in our studios, whether we are inspired or not, the same way that a writer sits and writes for hours each day. If we treat our artistic endeavour as simply a hobby, our creativity will not be sufficiently stimulated.

This makes sense to me and I am going to do my best to consider myself an artist and act accordingly. I'm not quiting my day job just yet but wouldn't that be amazing if I could?

Sharon's blog was particularly apt because I am making cq pieces for sale and am debating what price I can charge for my work. My work is highly labour intensive. I don't want to price myself out of the market nor do I want to underprice myself. It's an interesting dilemma and one I hope to resolve shortly.

Anyways, I did spend about an hour in my studio this morning, working on a WISP (work in slow progress). Some of my internet acquaintances have set themselves a goal to finish up WIPs, WISPs, and UFO's (unfinished objects). I don't have that many of them, but I too shall strive to work on and finish them. I also have the stash of fabrics I purchased to make a quilt from my Inbal's birth housecoat. It's technically not yet a WISP, but I should get started on it and move on.

I have a translation to do. I've done a lot of it but the last bit is a transcript from teacher's college. The names of educational concepts are different from those used here so it's a bit time consuming. I hope to get back to it later today.

And I want to do finish cataloguing the coins and then do some more stitching. So I will leave blogging for now and get back to working.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Not enamoured but for all intents and purposes finished

I've just about finished the block I started last week. Now that I've stepped back from it, I see how busy the borders are. And so to counteract the business, I am "framing" the cq square with white lace (machine sewn on already) and fuzzy light blue wool fibres (to be hand applied this afternoon). Hopefully it will create a division between the cq and the borders. Like I said, I am not enamoured of the project but it is done. I will post photos of the before and after later.

Now I have to prepare for my Guild presentation. This morning, I cut up some freezer paper squares and put them under a heavy book so they'll lie flat. I also cut up some muslin squares. In order to demo the cq block foundation, I am going to make six blocks, so I will be able to show the piecing, as each piece is added.

This weekend's plans? Did I mention that York Heritage Quilter's Guild is having a show? Hope to be there Saturday morning. Saturday afternoon I am going with Yunkie to Savta's to sort random coins for Chanuka gelt distribution. That's the definite stuff, so far.

And that's all for now. Maybe I'll get in a second post later on.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

I have broken 150

On the WW front, I weighed in this morning at 149. Now this may not seem all that important to others, but for me it's something. I plan to keep on the program and see where it takes me. BTW, I am not following the program fanatically and am, in fact, dipping into the Halloween chocolates and sugar cookies, but apparently in moderation. What I have cut back on is bread and bagels. And I miss those bagels...

On the CQ front, I am almost finished the cq'ing part of the block I started last weekend. I have embellished all of the pieces, except for one which I plan to needle-punch. Actually, needle-punching should be done first so that the fabric can be pulled taut over a small embroidery hoop. I will have to use a large hoop and keep adjusting the tension. Photos to follow.

Learned from this block: 1. Use only the colour combinations I like. Otherwise, stitching seems more like a chore than a pleasure.

Plans so far for the coming weekend: Visit Mom, prepare pieces for Guild demo, visit York Heritage Quilt Guild show, maybe visit Inbal and Itai to meet Noga, maybe get together will Joann for dinner.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Busier weekend than anticipated

The only plans I had for the weekend were to see the Morrisseau exhibit and to stitch. Ha ha.

We had been talking for a while about fixing up the walk-in closet in our bedroom. When we bought the house, it had minimal shelving which consisted of a 15" x 15" shelf unit in one corner, a high up shelf on two walls and two rods under those shelves. It was "enhanced" by two flimsy metal shelving units we bought from Canadian Tire a gazillion years ago. Last week were were at Home Depot for something else and checked out their offerings. The units were high tech and high price and not our cup of tea. Menachem suggested buying plywood and building something. I suggested looking for book shelves which could serve as clothing shelving. We found something in the Ikea catalogue.

So our weekend plans changed. Saturday morning, I started out by piecing a cq block with a colour combination which is fairly foreign to my colour preferences. I was really experimenting with time to see how long it takes to actually do a piece from start to finish. It took me about an hour, to draw the pattern onto freezer paper, to cut the paper pieces, iron them onto the fabric, cut out the fabric, machine sew the pieces into a block and sew the borders. I sew the borders on before I start embellishing because I find it easier to finish the piece that way.
I think it should probably take me less than an hours but I had to change the foot on the sewing machine, the tension was wrong, I forgot to use a muslin foundations when I started sewing the pieces -- you get the idea.

Anyways, after I finished piecing it, we went to Ikea. Ended up buying the Expedit shelving 150cm X 150 cm in beech. I don't like Ikea for one reason -- in order to exit the store, you have to walk all the way through all of the departments. It insults my intelligence and annoys me.

Then we stopped off at the fancy thread store where I bought a few more fancy threads.

By the time we came home, it was time for Devora to come and we went to the McMichael Gallery in Kleinberg to see the Morrisseau exhibit. I enjoyed it. His colours are extremely vibrant and his depiction of native spirits and nature are truly original. We had just missed a vocal concert at the gallery. I found that walking slowly and stopping at each picture was physically difficult. Afterwards we walked around Kleinberg for a bit but there really isn't that much to see there in the fall.

We had overnight guests last night. Two HH shlichim from New York came to Toronto for a seminar. They were originally supposed to stay with Itai, the Toronto shaliach but his wife had a baby this week so they came to us. They didn't arrive until late so that threw me with my 8 p.m. bedtime out of synch. That and our next door neighbours whose teenage daughter had a noisy party. I can't complain about the music, I didn't hear any, but what I did hear from 9 p.m. on was the banging of the bass. Oy. And then at around midnight, the party spilled out onto the street and teenagers can be very noisy and inconsiderate of neighbours. I know I sound like an old lady. I don't care. When I don't get my sleep, I am cranky.

This morning, we sent off the shlichim, and set about putting the shelving unit together. It wasn't that hard and it looks quite nice in the closet. I spent a few hours stitching. Then Mintzy called and asked if we wanted to go see "Three Mothers", an Israeli film, at the Sheppard Centre at 4. In my opinion, it was a very good film. Afterwards we went to the Pickle Barrel for dinner and Menachem just left to go classic Israeli-folk dancing at the BJCC.
I will check my email and get into bed.

Friday, November 17, 2006

This 'n' That

I finished the Heschel piece. I'm pleased with it and hope they will be too.
I haven't done much stitching otherwise. I've been fooling around with organizing my sequins, buttons, etc.
I like to clean up my work space between projects.

Wednesday night was the Pomegranate Guild meeting. I took in my shadow box for advice on how to close it in the back. I received some very encouraging comments. Now I have to prepare for the next meeting which I am presenting "Our Lives as Crazy Quilts". It will be a talk about how I approach crazy quilting to encompass family andJudaic meaning, and a sharing of my sources and techniques. I am a little anxious about the quality of my presentation, but only a little because I figure, what's the worst that can happen? They'll be sure never to ask me to speak again...

The weekend is fast approaching. Saturday afternoon, I am going with Devora to the McMichael Gallery in Kleinburg. There's an exhibit of work by Morrisseau, a well known Native-Canadian artist. In the morning, I want to make up some cq blocks to work on to be used as demos in my presentation. And perhaps to visit the thread store to get some silk ribbon and threads in colours I don't have.

No plans for Sunday yet but I can always stitch.

I am starting to get excited about our trip to Israel in January-February. Our main focus is to visit the kids, relatives and friends. But I would like to do some textile related things, visit some galleries, meet my internet quilting friends. I also want to visit the studio of a woman who does micrography and figure out how to incorporate it into my cq.

And speaking of quilting, Dee emailed me yesterday that my quilt is about 70% quilted and looks great. So I am looking forward to getting it back. It's kind of like finding money you had hidden but had forgotten about until you found it.

It's 4 a.m. I should be sleeping but have been waking up every night at 3 a.m. for no apparent reason and am unable to fall back asleep. Bummer.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Two posts in one day, trying to catch up

I finished needleweaving a flower on the Heschel piece but it looks more like a starfish so it's a starfish. Maybe I should also add some fish. Anyways, now that I understand the technique I have to fine-tune it to work for me.

I also tried the needlepunch. It's quite easy and produces a lovely texture. I can see the possibilites. But I don't think I'm going to use it on the Heschel piece because I want to get a better handle on the different needle sizes and thread sizes. Once I see the results and better understand how it works, off I'll go. Also, it has to be done on a taut fabric so I'll have to use a hoop and that means I'll have to needlepunch before I do any beading or really encrusted work because afterwards the hoop no longer fits...

I found a really good quote from Churchill "We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give." For me, it's tzdaka (charity) and tikkun olam (repairing the world) rolled into one quote.

I open my mouth...

It's Sunday morning and I've been busy.
Wednesday night I was at a meeting of the Pomegranate Guild executive -- I'm on membership.

Some (no names to protect their identities) were lamenting the fact that no one wants to step up to the plate to volunteer to carry out tasks. I totally agree BUT I know myself and know that certain tasks are not for me. I cannot delegate, I don't want to be in charge. But ask me to help, I'm your woman. I'll even volunteer before I'm asked.

So, we were discussing the problem of last minute changes to programming. December's planned program was cancelled by the presenter due to other commitments. I have no quarrel with the canceller -- she is working major-time on the Guild's 25th anniversary celebration and main project. So what are we going to do for December's meeting. Here's where the "I open my mouth" comes in -- I volunteered to do "Our Lives as Crazy Quilts" -- a presentation about how I translate family and life cycle events into textile "scrapbooks". I will demo technique and philosophy. So now I'm thinking about how I can translate something I do on my lap to a frontal presentation. It's challenging but I'm excited about it.

I am almost finished the Heschel wall-hanging. I have two motifs to finish. I finally figured out how to do needleweaving flower petals (I searched on until I found a demo) and have even made a kind of device to keep the sides from caving in on themselves. So the needlewoven flower will be one motif. And I have to figure out how to use my needlepunch so that can be motif #2. I hope to get them done today.

Last night we went to hear Liel sing. It was a benefit for SACH, Save a Child's Heart, a non-profit organization which provides heart surgery to children of the third world and cardiac training to third world professionals. I hadn't heard of the organization before so I was quite impressed. A little less so by Liel. She has an amazing voice but I had a problem with the decibals.

Anyways, today, aside from stitching, we will go out to shop -- Home Outfitters -- to buy new pillows and otherwise spend out Aeroplan miles rewards.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006


Haven't done any stitching but I have finished removing the beads from the fabric they were on. They are for the most part plain clear beads. But they were used to outline flowers painted on a silky type fabric so they took on the colour of the flower they were adjacent to. On their own, they're just plain clear beads. Gave me an idea of how to use them. I'm just sifting through them now to remove the threads which didn't fall out when I cut them off the fabric.
Yesterday evening I was at Weight Watchers so didn't get home til late and did not stitch.
This evening, I have a Pomegranate Guild executive meeting so again won't get any stitching done. Oh well, I'll just have to think about stitching instead.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Trip to Israel?

This morning, we decided to see if we could find a cheap flight to Israel this month. I called the travel agent and there is a really cheap flight $599 CDN plus taxes BUT it's only for 9 days. I'm sorry, 9 days just doesn't do it for me. I need a few days to recover from jet lag. And even if we decided to do regular price $1199, the timing isn't all that great. They need me in back in the office by November 24th. So, as disappointed as I am, I think we will defer travel to the middle east until January-February.

In other exciting news, my needlepunch kit arrived today. I have yet to figure out how to use it and I hate reading instructions but at some point will bite the bullet and figure it out. This may just solve my signature problems.

I haven't stitched much today. I think I sewed on a button. Whoopee. But I started detaching beading from fabrics my mother collected for me from Edith's, the store where she bought her outfit for Yoni's bar mitzvah. They do alterations so there are hems and other bits and pieces for my cq work. It keeps my hands busy (without involving my mouth...) and in the creative mode, if only passively.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Just stitching...

Yesterday, I started on the SRE on the Heschel piece. Only had half a day to work because in the afternoon, I went with Mintzy and Rafi to see a matinee of Steinbeck's "Of Mice and Men" at the Bluma Appel theatre. I was rather impressed by the set, rather minimalist but very inventive, including a water feature to replicate a stream. The acting was quite good for the most part. My only complaint, the seat, has more to do with me not being able to sit for long in one position, than the seat itself.
Afterwards, we went out for a bite to a vegetarian Indian restaurant at Bathurst and Dupont, more or less. The onion soup was delish and a baked potato and bean salad was just enough for me. Rafi and Mintzy continued on to Dori's to babysit and I took the subway home. So I didn't get home until close to 8 and didn't stitch at all last night. And I missed phone calls with both Inbal and Rotem. I'll call them on my own.
This morning we're up early and I've been stitching on the Heschel. It's coming together. I've just about finished the SRE, finished my final seam and now am going to do some embellishing with buttons, jewellry, etc. Listening to Mozart choral music on the radio with stitching. Does life get any better?
But now, after stitching, I'm having trouble focussing my eyes.
Anyways, not much else planned for today. Maybe a visit to Mom, maybe drop in on Alissa and Mel. Maybe stay home and do some more stitching.
Oh yeah, just before the Mozart, I heard Gordon Lightfoot singing a song and think I've found the words for my course piece in his lyrics.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Inching my way along

I've been working on the smaller Auf Simchas quilts. The first one I'm making for a fundraiser for my nieces' and nephews' school. It has three cq blocks -- I've completed the seams on the first block and am now doing the seams on the second one. The first one turned out great so I hope the next two will meet the standard set.

Menachem stained the shadowbox blue. I like the colour but am not sure if it needs another coat. And whether it should be a little shinier. Decisions, decisions.

I washed all of the stuff Judith gave me. The first load was O.K., the second shrunk quite a bit and I still have to dry two loads and iron everything. But I'm excited about what to do with the stuff afterwards.

I am hoping to make it down to the Textile Museum on Saturday morning for their fall sale not so much for the fabrics as for embroidery threads. And then in the afternoon I am going to see a play.

I am hoping that once Bat & Sandy return, I will be leaving the office earlier and will be able to spend a little more time stitching in the late afternoon/evening. We shall see.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Quilting gone wrong

Yesterday evening, I added a few beads to the centrepiece of my challah cover. Then I started free-motion quilting. It did not go so well. I'm still picking out the stitches. Teeny weeny ones. I remembered to put the stitch length to zero. I think I forgot to put the tension to zero as well.
Oh well.

This morning, I started embroidering seams on the first of the two small wall hangings I'm doing. It looks nice so far.

We have a funeral today. A woman my age who has been battling breast cancer for at least 10 years. But it was still all too fast. A few weeks ago, the doctor told her she only had a few weeks. And that's all it took. It's awful, and it affects all of us.

WW today. Don't know how I did. Don't particularly care. I know I'm eating better so that's really all there is to it.

I was hoping to do some stitching this evening, but I may just park myself outside the shiva house to tell trick and treaters to skip this house.

Monday, October 30, 2006

The mother lode

A while back I wrote about fabric I found at a garage sale. Well if I was pleased then, I'm thrilled now. But more about this later.

Yesterday was an errand day. We went to Penina's to drop off the gift. Ended staying for breakfast (that was our second breakfast because we're early risers).
From there we went to my friend, Judith's. Carmit forgot the charger for her camera when she left here and Judith is going to Israel today so we took it down to her.

Judith is a friend I met at university. She is very outgoing and while playing Jewish geography, we found out that her first cousin is married to someone I was with in the tnua (youth movement). So we hit it off right away and have been friends ever since. Judith loves shopping but not at stores -- garage sales, rummage sales, etc.
We often do this together but we haven't physically seen each other in almost half a year, if not longer. During the summer, I'm away weekends. During the week, we both work. And weekends since September, we've both been busy -- she with her grandchildren, me with my needlework and both of us with the holidays. So it was really nice to see her.

And then we popped in at my mother's for a short visit.

OK, now the story I referred to earlier. Judith bought some fabric for me at the Designer's Walk (google Toronto Designer's Walk) sidewalk sale several months ago. Books of fabric samples. In short, the mother lode. I spent the afternoon taking the books apart and sorting the fabrics. The only drawback is that some of the fabrics have glue on them. I washed one piece in the machine at high temperature to see if the glue was water soluble -- it wasn't. I guess I could have ironed the glue onto craft paper but I couldn't be bothered. So this morning, I trimmed off all of the glue-y bits and now I will wash all of it, see how it holds up to water (it's all cotton or synthetic, except for one book of "dry-clean only" which I have set aside in the meantime), then iron it and get started.

Yesterday, I also sewed the borders onto the two smaller Auf Simchas pieces. They're both ready to embroider/embellish.

I finished the challah cover centre piece. Now I just have to quilt it.

I also tried an experiment to engrave a small piece of metal with my initials and the date. It didn't turn out too badly but I'm not convinced yet. I'm also going to try printer printing on ribbon and see how that goes.

Anyways, off to work shortly.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Field Trip to Home Depot and Michael's

So we went on a field trip this morning to Home Depot (hardware) and Michael's (craft store). Home Depot for the blue stain which they didn't have and would only tint for us if we bought a large quantity. So we didn't get the stain.

Since we were already in that shopping area, we went into Michael's. I had seen in their flyer advert that certain wools were on sale. I bought two balls (2 for $5), one navy and one royal or lighter blue. I swear that is all I was looking for. But I just happened to see another ball of dark blue/light blue which I've used before. It has a nice pattern as is (I will post a picture later when I've used it) and it also crochets up nicely. I picked it up, saw the price ($9), put it back, then picked it up again. I'll use it and I may not find it the next time I look. I also notice that they had stain but not the colour I want. I also noticed that they have a very nice notions section -- they had variegated cotton threads. So I don't have to shlep far to find them. And then just before we were leaving, I noticed a bin with ribbons so I found two widths of royal blue ribbon which looks like grosgain (I think that's how it's spelled).

Did I mention we "popped" into Costco on the way there? I had to replenish my supply of socks, some of which mysteriously disappeared while Carmit was here...

On the way home we hit Food Basics and stocked up on WW-type foods. I've cooked my soup and cut up celery sticks to go with the baby carrots and grape tomatoes and I'm all set for next week.

Now I'm busy auditioning trims for my challah cover. Once I get those sewn down, I can quilt the cover.

I'll let you know how it goes.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Blue stain on shadowbox

I've decided to do blue stain on the shadowbox. The other option I was considering is just too complicated. I hope to buy the stain and get it done this weekend. I still have to sign and date the cq square which I find rather daunting. I'm not used to working in such small rounded stitches and will be unhappy if it doesn't work out the way I want.

Auf Simchas II is finished. I cut the sleeve this morning before work and stitched it on during work (slow day). I hope to give it to Penina this weekend. And then I may borrow it back to enter it into a competition.

Inbal is doing her charity bike ride starting Sunday. She is going up to Jerusalem tomorrow because that's where the ride starts. I am bursting with pride.

And that's all for today, folks.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Decorating the shadowbox itself

I took a quick look at the Textile Museum of Canada website. There's an exhibit of shadowboxes which are up for silent auction. I didn't pay much attention to the content of the box yet, but more to the box itself. I saw two that interested me. The first was stained in blue so the wood patterns showed through. This is what I had originally thought of doing. But there was another one which continued the colours of the contents onto the box. For example, where in mine the upper left corner of the cq is dark blue, the shadowbox would be painted dark blue too. Light blue painted to correspond to the light blue cq piece. I kind of like that idea. But I'm not sure yet.

I didn't get any work done yesterday evening -- too tired. I didn't get anything done this morning -- too tired. And I doubt if I'll get anything done this evening either. I guess I'll just have to wait for the weekend.

Decorating the shadowbox itself

I took a quick look at the Textile Museum of Canada website. There's an exhibit of shadowboxes which are up for silent auction. I didn't pay much attention to the content of the box yet, but more to the box itself. I saw two that interested me. The first was stained in blue so the wood patterns showed through. This is what I had originally thought of doing. But there was another one which continued the colours of the contents onto the box. For example, where in mine the upper left corner of the cq is dark blue, the shadowbox would be painted dark blue too. Light blue painted to correspond to the light blue cq piece. I kind of like that idea. But I'm not sure yet.

I didn't get any work done yesterday evening -- too tired. I didn't get anything done this morning -- too tired. And I doubt if I'll get anything done this evening either. I guess I'll just have to wait for the weekend.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Pomegranate shadowbox

This is my shadowbox for the Pomegranate Guild 25th anniversary. The theme of the exhibit is "Threads of Identity". The outside perimeter of the box is approximately 10" by 10".

I chose to make my colour theme blue and white because of my strong ties to Israel.

The upper left hand corner is assorted family buttons -- my mother's, my sister's and my aunts'-- which have been beaded. Just below that are five chamsot. A chamsa is a good luck amulet.

Below that on the left is a piece of my cousin Ruthie's wedding dress. The flowers in silver were original to the dress. I outlined the flowers in blue to go with the blue and white theme.

The middle piece, is a tree on a white background. The white duppioni silk is from my sister's wedding gown. The tree trunk is from one of my father's ties. The tree top is a "sandwich" of two pieces of tulle filled with snippets from family fabrics -- my wedding dress, my mother's wedding gloves, a tablecloth my mother had embroidered, and again my father's tie. The three birds in the tree signify my three children. The sandwich technique was something I saw demonstrated at one of the Guild meetings.

The right hand light blue piece is embroidered with silk ribbon, a technique I also learned at one of the Guild's workshops.

The blue piece to its left has two Judaic and biblical symbols -- the dove and the pomegranate.
(The shadowbox picture was taken flat on a table--the pomegranate is suspended by beads and should hang vertically).

The final piece, the white wedge at the bottom is from my wedding dress. It is embroidered with the Hebrew word "shalom" and I doubt any explanation is required for it.

I still need to sign and date it.

And if anyone has any suggestions how to decorate the wooden box itself, please let me know.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Challah cover

This is the challah cover I've started on. The centre will be cut away to accommodate a centre piece, most likely decorated but without writing. (I mean, if it's covering the challah, isn't it pretty obvious what it is?)
And today, while surfing at work, I came across Soduko quilts and thought that might be a neat idea for the back. I just have to do the math correctly.

Finished wallhanging

Not hanging properly because I haven't done the sleeve yet, but this is the finished product.


Here are the Auf Simchas square details.

Auf Simchas II -- Finished, well almost

So this morning I finished the binding on Auf Simchas, in time for Penina's birthday today. I still have to sew on a hanging sleeve and add a stitch or two to the mitered corners, but in general, I'm done. And it is a beauty if I do say so myself.

I think I will ask Penina to lend it to me. I may just enter it into a show if I gather up enough courage.

Now I'm thinking of backing for the challah cover I'm making. I may just use the some fabrics from the front but in a different configuration.

I will post photos later.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Pomegranate shadowbox stitching finished!

Yesterday, I put the final touches on my shadowbox cq square. On the white wedding dress fabric, I chain-stitched the word "Shalom", in Hebrew, and filled in the chain spaces with sparkly white and blue threads.

Now I have to decide what to do with the shadowbox itself. It is unfinished pine. Should I stain it blue? Paint it white? Cover it with quilting? I don't want to do anything which is going to detract from the stitching.

While I was mulling that over, I pinned the binding on Penina's piece. I actually am using a larger backing piece and folding it over for the binding. I was flustered with the corner mitering so I've left it for now.

And then yesterday afternoon, I had a spurt of energy and decided to make a challah cover from the blue and white cottons fabrics I had previously thought to use in my shadowbox project. I cut 2" and 3" strips, then cut them length-wise diagonally and arranged them radiating from the centre of a 20" square, alternating blue and white, and 2" and 3" pieces, so it's somewhat random looking but actually not at all. I started sewing yesterday and finished this morning. Now it's trimmed and waiting for the centre to be cut out and replaced with a centre piece. I don't think I will use lettering "Shabbat" or "Chag". I think the centre piece will be decorated with braiding, ribbons, or something similar to what I did for the twins. Not jewellery though because I want it to be washable.
Next project is to sew borders on the two cq hangings I'm making from the leftover squares from Penina's piece. And then embellish them.

You may have noticed that I'm procrastinating with respect to the homework from my course. I just can't get into it. I haven't found a theme or a saying yet. Once I have that, I should be able to catch up quickly.

We've been decluttering at home, mostly stuff that was downloaded from the internet for future reference. But by the time you go to check on it again, it is already redundant. I want to get the computer room set up so it can be used as a guest room.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

CSNF report

I was too tired to write yesterday evening after I came home from the Canadian Sewing and Needlecraft Exhibition. Hence this morning's post before I go into my studio to work.

Yesterday morning, I went into my studio, looked at the Pomegranate project and finally figured out what to do in the last square -- I wrote, in Hebrew, "Shalom" in script. Now I am embellishing it. And then I will be finished with the textile part. And start angsting over the frame...

At around ten, I left for the CSNF. Menachem took me to the Finch station and I took the subway down. (Yesterday was also the CN Tower climb in which Gwen, the friend from work who climbs stairs with me, participated. If I had known I may have gone earlier to cheer her on. Next year, I may just join her...)

Anyways, mixed reviews for the CSNF. There were fewer exhibitors and a lot of the same old stuff. I did find out that there's a quilt store in Stouffville on Main Street but I really don't need any more fabric until I use some of the stuff I have. I enoyed the quilts which were exhibited although I was horrified to see some of them hung with the bottom lying directly on the concrete floor. But no cq. I did buy some more blue beads, some blue and white variegated thread, and a pack of 4 fat quarters. I think I may have outgrown the experience. I can see (and purchase) new things on line and at the merchant malls at the local quilt guild shows.

Anyways, when I was finished, I was to meet Menachem at a board meeting at Davenport and Ossington. Having absolutely no knowledge of how to get anywhere downtown, I asked the TTC person at Union Station how to get there and he said there's a bus from Dupont Station. When I get to Dupont Station, the TTC person there says no bus. So I walked. In addition to the four hours I had walked at the show. So my feet still ache and I think I shall spend most of today sitting.

Off to work in my studio.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006


SRE is silk ribbon embroider, just in case you were wondering.

So this morning, before work, I managed to get a little SRE done on the shadowbox project. Between this post and my Pomegranate Guild meeting tonight, I hope to add my French knots, beads and stitches.

That leaves me with one piece of my wedding dress mileage/kilometrage from it) which is as yet unembellished. For a mini dress, made from less than metre fabric remnant, I've sure gotten a lot of needlework/sewing mileage/kilometrage from it. I have used pieces on numerous projects and still have some left over.

So yesterday I broke down and went to weight watchers. I have been unable to lose the pounds I put on since my last (and first) successful weight loss. I feel that now that I've got the exercise part of the health equation going, I should try the weight part as well. I find that by tracking points, it does keep me more aware of what and when I'm eating. I don't like the idea of being preoccupied with food all day, but hopefully it will fall into second nature status after a while.

I took off early from work today. Yunkie picked me up and we went to my mother's because Lenny and Eyra Fritsch are visiting from Israel and my mother had them, Joe and Yvette Podemski, Yunkie, Penina and me for lunch. Menachem couldn't come -- he has a bad cold, is feeling miserable and didn't want to spread germs. It was a lovely afternoon.

Anyways, off to stitch.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Snippets, continued

I had zigzagged the snippetted circle in dark blue (same colour as tie) and it didn't look good. Also, proportionwise, it was too big for the area it was intended for. So I cut a smaller circle out of it, finishing the edge in white and then added a white boucle yarn to the perimeter. It's smaller size allowed me to put it on a white dupionni silk background where it's definitely a tree top and I used another piece from my father's tie for the tree trunk. I then put 3 birds in the tree top and a few sparkly beads from a beaded bag my children gave me for one of my birthdays. I only used the bag once and decided it should go to better use. In the meantime, I have used the beads on several projects, including the family chuppah.

I had to take the subway/bus home from work yesterday and since the subway station is at Empress Walk, I popped into the Fabricland store looking for variegated blue and white thread (which they didn't have -- I will get some, I hope, at the Canadian Sewing and Needlecraft Show this weekend). They were having a sale -- aren't they always? I bought some trims, not in colours that I can particularly see myself using any time soon but they were made from tiny shiny square sequins. And one blue wispy thing that isn't really a match to what I'm doing. Oh well.

Monday, October 16, 2006


So I'm excited. I'm in the midst of trying out a new technique for the Pomegranate shadow box.
I took snips of fabrics from family stuff: my father's tie, my mother's wedding gloves, my, Bat's and Devora's wedding dresses and made a sandwich of them between two layers of blue tulle. I arranged them in a circle which will now become either a tree top or a flower. It's not as polished looking as I would like but it still is interesting, unique and meaningful. And blue and white.
I like the tree top idea because I can then put 3 silver birds in it, one for each of my children. And embellish with beads from Penina's wedding and other beads. I just have to figure out how to make the edges which are now just zig-zagged more polished looking. Perhaps blanket stitch?

Sunday, October 15, 2006

A little creativity every day, somedays very little

So it's the weekend and that's the time I get most of my needlecraft done.
Yesterday, we went to my mother's in the morning because someone came to appraise some flutes. Then we came home and went to Mintzy's to remove a small desk attached to the wall in her kitchen so she can put in a new piece with three double drawers in where it stood. It took all of 15-20 minutes to remove it. The wall behind it was damaged so Menachem did a 10 minute plaster repair which requires 24 hours to dry. Mintzy and Rafi went up to Dori's mother-in-law's in Orillia and we decided to put together the Ikea piece. Those things are complicated. No wonder people pay to have them assembled. (We're putting it together as a symbol of our friendship).
I did get a little stitching done -- in particular a button cluster on the Pomegranate Guild piece.
This morning, I took out stitches on the centre of the same piece. I didn't like the way it looked. I am now trying to figure out how to incorporate fabrics from my father, mother and siblings without straying from the blue and white colour scheme. And also, I want to sew them together some how using my grandmother's hand cranked sewing machine. (The theme is Threads of Identity).
I also bit the bullet and am in the midst of my online course homework. I finally chose two fabrics that I don't particularly care for their colours and decided to go for it using embroidery threads that I have but will never use because I don't like their colours. Perhaps my embroidered motto should be something to do with negativity -- and I usually am very up and positive.
I also would like to put the backing on my blue Auf Simchas and finish it in time for Penina's birthday (the inspiration for the piece was the trims from her sons' bar mitzvahs.
So instead of going on and on here, I will go back to my drawing, or rather, sewing board.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Short post -- not much to say

I started couching down a lovely white thread/wool using a contrasting blue thread to couch it but I didn't like the way it looked nor the "wave" for lack of a better word at the moment to describe the pattern. I am too pooped to stitch tonight but maybe tomorrow morning, I'll get in a stitch or two.
I'm off to watch Coronation Street and then make some phone calls for the Pomegranate membership committee.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Blue period

It looks like I'm having a blue period. The wallhanging is not finished yet. The center cq is. I am still debating what backing to put on it and whether I should free-motion quilt the borders before I bind it. And what colour (i.e. shade of blue) the binding should be.
The other photo is of the materials I have gathered for the Pomegranate shadow box. The cq square is not terribly visible but it is sort of in the middle, surrounded by the various threads, findings, beads and other stuff I will use for embellishing.
I actually got started on it this morning and embroidered several of the seams. I'm on a roll...

Monday, October 09, 2006

Not too bad for a Monday

I just noticed that I started blogging a year ago, more or less. I should try to keep up with it more regularly.

So, since the plan for this weekend was to sew the borders on Auf Simchas II, and I didn't do it yesterday or the day before, I am pleased to announce that I got up early today, bit the bullet and voila -- borders. I always procrastinate when I'm not confident that I will succeed to sew straight lines... It looks quite impressive and once the digital camera is juiced up, I will post a photo.

I also pieced the Pomegranate cq piece. I will perhaps also post the naked square and some of the threads I purchased on Saturday. I'm not sure if I'm using ribbon trim on this one. That's what I like about cq. I let it dictate to me what needs to be done.

Tomorrow is lesson 2 of the online course. I usually do the homework immediately upon receipt of the lesson. I'm stalling on this one. First of all, I'm not sure where we're going with it and that will probably influence my fabric colour choice. Secondly, I'm not sure I want to make a full three piece sandwich. I may make an "open faced" sandwich because I have a problem with the messy back showing.
We have to come up with ideas for sayings or designs. I came across some Jewish Haiku. "Lacking fins and tails, the gefilte fish swims with great difficulty". Or perhaps just a phrase in Yiddish. I'll see.

Anyways, pictures later and if anything else blog-worthy happens, I shall write again.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Show and Tell

This is what I've been doing so far this weekend. Saturday, I purchased all of the fabrics for $4 (Canadian!) at a garage sale. I have now washed and ironed them. The bluish fabric on the right is actually a lovely white batiste. I'm not sure what I'll do with the zig-zag fabrics but cheap is cheap.
This morning, Joy came over with her mother-in-law's costume jewellry. The colours, especially of the beads, don't show too well but there are some interesting and challenging pieces. And the price was right... So I'm happy.
Tomorrow I will tackle the Auf Simchas II and maybe start on some other cq squares. I have already sane pieced them but I want to gather threads, and bits and pieces so I can take them to work and work on them, time permitting.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Long weekend

So in Canada this is a long weekend -- Monday is Thanksgiving. So that's a short work week to look forward to.
Yesterday evening was Erev Sukkot. Menachem picked up my mother and we had a quiet dinner together. My mother is having dental work done (root canal, new crown, etc.) and is limited in what she can eat (chew). Menachem made lentil and rice soup, garlic mashed potatoes, and sole almondine. He also made a gorgeous "soccer ball" challah substituting silan for honey. It was delish, as usual. And my mother took home leftovers...
The Thanksgiving weekend we usually go up to Perth to do some maintenance work at camp and then do the Autumn Studio Tour. This year, Menachem went up last week so there was no point going all that way (3.5 hour drive) just for the tour. And since Carmit went home and we don't really feel like doing much, we decided to have a low-key weekend at home.
This morning, we woke up late (8 a.m.), Menachem surfed, etc. I fondled my fabrics.
We had plans to go down to my mother's place to try to fix the lights in her basement. On the way, well really out of the way but not far from our house, we went to the needlepoint store which sells all kinds of embroidery threads, silk ribbons, etc. I wanted to show them Penina's Auf Simchas hanging because I had purchased some threads there. I received some very encouraging comments. There's nothing like being validated by people who know how much effort goes into making these pieces of art.
I stocked up on threads for the Pomegranate Guild shadowbox. I am calling it Kachol v'lavan (blue and white). My starting point is two pieces of blue dupionni silk left over from Dori's chuppah. I'm not sure yet which whites I'll use but I'm getting ahead of myself. More about kvl in another post.
We went down to my mother's and Menachem fixed the lights.
From there, since we were already halfway downtown, we thought we'd drop in to visit Judith (she wasn't home) or Corinne (she was home but was busy). So we headed north to visit Mintzy and Rafi who were entertaining/being entertained by grandson Noah.
On the way, I asked Menachem if he was hungry and we decided to stop in at home first and have a bowl of soup and some challah. (The last sentence is only relevant to explain how our hunger resulted in me increasing my fabric stash.) As we turned onto Snowshoe, we saw that there was a garage sale. We stopped and it turned out there was a suitcase full of fabrics at 25 cents a "piece", a piece being either a meter or more, or several pieces attached together (factory samples). I bought eight pieces. Then at home I reconsidered -- for that price, I should pick up any others that looked half decent. So we went back for seconds... So now I have a whole basket full of fabric which I will launder, iron, fondle and get ready for use (and post photos I hope).
And now we are back home and vegging.
Tomorrow morning, one of the ladies from my office is coming over with her mother-in-law's jewellery box. She saw my first Auf Simchas piece and offered me the stuff. She was thrilled that someone can put it to good use. I can't wait to see what goodies there are!
Monday afternoon, I am meeting with the Pomegranate Guild president to go over the membership lists. I am the official keeper of the list because I know how to update it in Excel and I can get Menachem to print labels. Since she lives near Alissa and Mel, we may pop over there for a visit too.
OK. So my plan for this weekend is to finish sewing the borders on the Auf Simchas and maybe quilting it, and to start/continue some other cq projects.
And did I mention the weather is fabulous? A little chilly but sunny.
Off to take a nap.

Saturday, September 30, 2006

More plodding

I haven't written for a while. I come home from work exhausted. I stitch for an hour or so each evening and an hour or less each morning before leaving for work.
So my current project is coming along nicely, but nothing so exciting that I feel compelled to write daily. It's six sane crazy squares (i.e. pieced sane, embellished crazy) inspired by my nephews' bar-mitzvah invitations. I am just about finished with the embellishing and perhaps tomorrow will have time to go to Fabricland to buy the border and backing materials.
I was at Fabricland this week to buy fabrics for the Pomegranate Guild's 25 anniversary project. The theme is threads of identity and I have decided to do a strip quilt in blues and whites and then embellish and/or quilt. Since I prefer to work on small pieces in general and the guild project is an 8" (or is it 6"?) shadow box, I really didn't need a lot of fabric. I only bought 25 cm. of each of five patterned blues and 3 patterned whites. But now that I have the cotton fabrics, I'm wondering if I should perhaps stick with the "fancies" I have: royal blue and powder blue dupionni silk and a whole bevy of white fabrics from various family wedding gowns and sources. The fancies would be better suited to embellishing with fancy threads. Don't know. I will finish embellishing project "a" before starting on project "b".
Last week, Menachem and I went up to Newmarket to Evelyn's to look for the blue and white fabrics and avail myself of on sale really price slashed fabrics. I bought a bunch, none of which coordinated with each other nor with most of the fabrics I have at home. But good quality cotton at $1.99 or $2.99 Canadian a metre was just too good to pass up.
I really must stop buying fabric and start using what I have.
I got my supply list for the Fiber Collage online course from Joggles. I must say that the supply list really doesn't give much idea of what we will be doing. So I will wait to assemble the supplies until after the first lesson is posted. Hopefully it will give me a clue as to what fabric I should use for the base. I may just use a natural colour muslin or white linen.
Yesterday actually marked the end of nine months that I have been stair climbing. Someone told me that they can see a difference. I can't. True, I have muscles that I never had before. And muscle weighs. Especially since I've added in a morning walk of 20-25 minutes. But would it hurt the scale to pay me a compliment?

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Where does the time go?

A week has gone by since my last post. Since then:
a) Carmit, middle child, arrived for a three week visit on Monday
b) Had lunch with Carmit on Tuesday and started catching up a little on what's happening in her life
c) Wednesday evening was the Pomegranate Guild's first meeting for this year
d) Planned for Rosh Hashana and invited guests (the kind who wait for an invitation because our policy is "kol haba, baruch haba" (whoever comes is welcome). So far, we're expecting 16.
e) yesterday spent the day with Menachem, Carmit and my mother at Niagara Falls and Niagara-on-the-Lake

Niagara Falls is only about an hour and a half from our house. No matter how often we go, summer or winter, we never fail to be amazed by it. Yesterday, unfortunately, although "promised" nice weather, it wasn't very nice. There was little to no sun, it was windy so the mist from the Falls was almost like rain and we couldn't really see the Horseshoe Falls because of the mist. And although I wouldn't have minded standing longer in the rain, Carmit hadn't dressed appropriately for the weather and I didn't think my 85 year old mother should stand outside in that weather very long.
The ride to Niagara-on-the-Lake was nice but the main strip was disappointing. There were no bookstores and most of the other shops were very touristy. And no quilt or fabric stores that I could see...

Today, Sunday, we have the following planned:
Menachem is at Chaim L's for a meeting about camp expenditures made this summer, then in the early afternoon we're going to Yunkie and Mindy's. Yunkie, Carmit and I will pop over to Roselawn Cemetery to "visit", as is the custom before major holidays. Then we'll shmooze at their place.
I had wanted to get to the Evelyn's (quilt shop) in Newmarket this weekend and perhaps Needlearts (embroidery threads) but both are closed on Sundays. Bummer.

I am plodding along on Auf Simchas II. It has six cq blocks, two of which are pretty much finished -- for the first pass.
I wanted to get fabric for the borders to be quilted.

I also wanted to get fabric for my the Pomegranate 25th Anniversary members' shadow box project. The theme is "threads of identity". Our meeting was about decorating the shadowbox frame itself (i.e. gilding, painting, staining, etc.) and it struck me that I could do something like the diagonal bat-mitzvah wallhanging in blues and whites with touches of silver (for the 25th) but with embroidered and embellished seams (instead of machine quilted). I need to make the "naked" project before I can start tinkering. Don't know when I'll make it to a fabric store now. Maybe I should try online shopping.

Anyways, I'm off to try some "Word" manipulation that I can use on fabric, maybe even some word clouds, so that's all for now.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Bat-Mitzvah wallhangings

So I (i.e DH) changed photos from img to jpg so I could post the photos of the wallhangins I made for the Bat Mitvahs. They look very orange in the photos -- they're more brown, rust, and gold.
I (i.e. DH) also hooked up my new cheap ($30 CDN) colour printer and started printing out the class lessons from Sharon B's Encrusted Crazy Quilt course. (If you don't know about cq and would like to learn, or if you know and would like to learn more, I highly recommend the course.) Mid lesson 3, the black ink from the colour cartridge ran out. Have to buy another so we can continue printing.

Did I mention that Inbal and I registered for "Fibre Collage",another online course at I have taken university courses with Carmit but we were both in the same city at that time. Here we'll be taking the same course but on different continents. I find that pretty amazing.

I am also making progress on a second Auf Simchas wallhanging, inspired by the lavish ribbons and tassles on my nephew's Bar Mitzvah invitation. It is actually an encrusted embellished sane quilt. I also found in my hang onto that trim it may come in handy some day drawer ribbon and a tassle from her older son's Bar Mitzvah.

If she likes it, I'll give it to her. If not, I will donate it to my brother's kids' school (Heschel) for their annual fundraiser. And I have material left over to do another one. I will try to post a photo soon. I have to buy fabric for the border, backing and binding. We will probably travel to the quilting store in Newmarket to look for some because I'm looking for something blue, gold and silver and doubt if I'll find it locally. The Newmarket quilt shop has an amazing array of fabric.

Today is garage cleanout day because Wednesday is no tag garbage day. So that should take care of all the stuff we have been putting in the garage until we decide what to do with it for the past two years...

Friday, September 08, 2006

Has it been that long?

I can't believe that it's been so long since my last post.
My summer was hectic. Working four and a half days a week, taking the 4 hour train ride up to camp for the weekend, working at camp, train ride back -- exhausting.
Then I spent two wonderful weeks at camp, babysitting the site while it was rented out. I had hoped to do some stitching but got very little done.
Since I'm home, however, I have been busy.
Remember the twin bat mitzvah gifts? Well, my original plan didn't work out -- I couldn't get the printer to print properly so I partially scrapped that idea and made two small wallhangings which are now completed and will hopefully finish uploading shortly. And now that they're finished, I figured out how to print on fabric... So I made labels. Once the labels are attached, I will be ready to send them to the bat mitzvah girls. (So what if the bat mitzvah was last weekend...)

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

July 25, 2006 -- 11,703 steps

Yesterday, I decided to up the number of steps. Instead of taking the subway from Finch to work, I walked. In addition to my up and down the office building staircase, I walked down an additional 18 flights.
Alissa invited me for dinner so after work, I walked to Sheppard to the bus station and instead of standing and waiting for the bus, I kept moving by walking around the station until the bus came. Then there was a four block walk from the bus to their house. All in all, my steps increased by about 2000. I figure a half hour walk on the way to work and a half hour walk on the way back, and maybe another round of stairs, I should be able to keep the numbers above the 10000 and closer to 12000. The true test will be what I do on the weekends...
I had a lovely dinner at Alissa and Mel's. Just very relaxing. Their new kitchen isn't finished yet but the laminate floors and cabinets are in so it looks lovely. Alissa drove me home afterwards and I gave her Sari's chuppah and the family fabric quilt (auf simchas). It feels weird, kind of like when a child leaves home...

Monday, July 24, 2006

Inbal -- easy come, not so easy go

Inbal went home Saturday. It was lovely having her for a while but mostly because I can see how great she looks and the confidence she exudes.
I hope she had a good time. I tried not to be too clingy, not always successfully but hey, I'm a mother.
Yunkie took her to the airport and I tagged along. Then after a short visit at my mother's, he dropped me off at the subway and I went down to Union Station to catch the train to Perth. It was a later train than I'm used to but I slept a little, read a little and time passed. I may have passed up on what was left of the weekend and stayed home but it was Isais' bar-mitzva party on Sunday and I didn't want to miss it.
Sunday morning I put in a few hours in the camp kitchen doing mindless pot-washing. But someone has to do it and I don't mind mindless. I can think about other things, silently hum songs in my head and the time flies. I did have a bit of a problem with some of the background music -- they don't listen to classical... And I left when they started making bug juice. I cannot stand inefficiency and laziness and the current camp way of making bug juice irks me.
The bar-mitzva was great. David and Dee have a farm with a large yard. They arranged for food which kids like -- pizza and a chip wagon, a snowcone machine, and cake. They arranged for entertainment that kids like -- inflatable sumo wresting outfits, inflating jousting stages, and an inflatable obstacle course. That's in addition to their regular pool, swings, and trampoline. And did I mention the water cannons? Anyways, the campers from Isais' group and older were all invited and had a ball.
I know that Isais likes music so asked Dee if she thought he might like a darbouka (drum). I was able to get a great darbouka through my mother's (and late father's) musical connections.
And Dee was at camp today and told Menachem that he really likes it so I'm happy when someone gets something they can use and enjoy.

10000 steps a day

So I see my cq mentors/friends joining the 10000 steps a day program and think here's an excuse to do a little more exercise. (Right now my daily weekday exercise consists of climbing 22 flights of stairs and then descending them again, something I started in January this year and have fairly compulsively doing.)
So I buy a pedometer. Of course it requires programming and I have a mental block against reading instructions. (We had a power outage of several hours about two weeks ago and all of the lights on the electrical appliances -- video, microwave, oven, clocks, radios, etc. -- are still flashing. My "in-house" technician is away at camp so they'll continue to flash until the end of August...). I took the pedometer to camp this weekend and he set it for me.
This morning, I clip it on. Without altering my daily routine, I did 9500 steps! Just the stair climbing and descending was 1200. I figure any shortfall, I can just walk down the office building stairs several times.
It turns out I do a lot more walking at work than I realized. And it's an office job!
But seriously, I will consider upping the daily number of steps in order to have health benefits from the endeavour and justify the cost of the pedometer ($25 CDN).

Monday, July 10, 2006

Weekend in Lanark

Further to my previous post, we arrived at camp in the early afternoon. After spending a little time down at the waterfront, we decided to go into Perth itself, for a walkabout and then dinner.
Perth really is a lovely town. Stewart Park, the main street (Gore) with its boutique stores, the Tay River running through town, the fountains, old stone buildings -- quite charming. And the weather was gorgeous. We finished off with a nice meal at Goodwood Oven. They headed for their hotel in Smiths Falls and we (Ami, Menachem and I) headed back to camp.
The evening/night was not restfull. Friday nights are "no curfew" nights. There's a noise curfew and the kids were quiet -- no yelling or noisy running around BUT the cabins' wooden screen doors have springs on them and unless you hold these doors as they close, they bang noisily. And 150 campers and staff going in and out of the cabins, it's a constant concert of banging doors. We tried putting felt tabs and weatherstripping to soften the noise but it doesn't help. I have to figure out something or I'll go crazy.
Saturday morning, we met the Smiths Fallers and headed off to Merrickville. It's a town about half an hour from Smiths Falls, again on the water and with nice shops. It's uniqueness lies in the hand-operated locks in the centre of town. There are 3 or 4 of them. It was another leisurely day, watching the boats using the locks, visiting the shops, etc. We drove down to Gananoque, gateway to the St. Lawrence seaway, but by the time we reached it, my mother was tired (and cranky). Ami, Menachem and I headed back to camp. Bat, Sandy and my mother took another drive along the Ivy Lea Parkway and returned to Smiths Falls.
Yesterday (Sunday) morning, they picked me up at camp at around 9 a.m. and we drove the 3 hours back to Toronto, in time for the final game of the World Cup.
And it's a good thing it's over. Enough already.
Now we're back to a "regular" work week. Inbal's coming back on Tuesday, Bat and Sandy are off to Rock on Wednesday for three weeks. I'll be busy at work and then weekends going to and from camp. I'm tired just thinking about it.
I'm finding it difficult to get into stitching mode. And I did want to tr the 100 stitches in 100 days "challenge". At this rate, I doubt if I can get caught up, but I will try.
Off to work for now.

It's been a while

I can't believe three weeks have gone by. Life's been hectic and I've been busy. Since I can't remember most of the lost time, I'll start from Inbal's arrival.
Inbal arrived a week ago Thursday and with no time to recover from jetlag was catapulted into our family's life cycle events.
Friday night, Alissa hosted a dinner for Sari's out of town wedding guests. (Inbal was the guest, I just tagged along.)
Saturday morning was the Aufruf (synagogue service where the groom is called up during the Torah portion reading), followed by a kiddush luncheon at the synagogue. We got home in time for Inbal to take a decent nap.
Sunday was the Sari's wedding. Inbal and I got up early and went to the synagoue to hang the chuppah. It looked lovely and I am quite proud of it. From there we went to Sobie's (local kosher grocery store) to meet Bat and Sandy and buy the food for Monday's 80-85-90. More about that later.
The wedding was at 6 p.m. at Pride of Israel synagogue. The sanctuary was beautifully decorated and because the chuppah was on a raised platform, it was visible from down below. My only problem was that it was over lit from above and the stray fuschia and purple threads were visible from up close. Of course everyone was looking at the bride and groom so the only one concerned with the stray threads was me...
The dinner and dancing was great. The band was really good and had almost everyone on their feet. I had had a long day so left at around 11 p.m. so I wasn't there when a wedding guest tripped and fell through a plate glass window. She's OK, but it's the kind of excitement you don't need at a wedding or any other time for that matter. Luckily, the bride and some of her guests were doctors and the patient was well cared for while waiting for the ambulance.
Monday afternoon between 2 and 4 p.m. there was a birthday party for my uncle (80), my mother (85) and my aunt (90) at the party room at my aunt's condo. It was thrown by my cousins, my siblings and me (there's 9 of us).
Bat came over to my place at about 10 a.m. and we started cutting up fruit for the fruit platters. We had been shopping the day before and the food was in my fridge -- I have two fridges standing side-by-side in my kitchen from the days when we had a house full of children and entertained more frequently. Now the second fridge is only used on the major holidays. At noon, we rushed over the party room to set up.
Did I mention that instead of renting tablecloths or using paper, I sewed and iron fifteen of them from an old bolt of fabric I found? Did I mention that the fabric was apparently cotton, the kind that you look at and it wrinkles?
Anyways, we set up the room, decorated and kudos to Inbal. She used crepe paper to decorate the table where we had the three birthday cake slabs. And we sprinkled the tables generously with shiny confetti. The kids made the wall decorations including signing boards for each of the honorees guests. And Judy, a cousin from New York, brought photo boards.
Anyways, it was very nice. The speeches were short and each of the three honorees received a certificate from the organization to which a donation had been made in their honour.
In all, it was a pleasant although hectic weekend.
On Tuesday, I was back at work, but on Wednesday, Inbal and I went on a craft excursion. We started out by going to the needlepoint store up in Richmond Hill. They have all kinds of velvet theads and shiny threads and silk ribbon and embroidery flosses. I loaded up for my current project. From there, we took the subway downtown and went to Bead Junction, a bead store on Roncessvalle way out in the west end of town. It's a really nice store and the stuff is displayed really well, all set out according to colour and type. Needless to say, we bought stuff. Then we hopped on the streetcar to Queen Street and hit the fabric, button and bead stores there. Not to mention the art supply stores. Inbal is into the paper crafts but hasn't purchased any supplies yet. By the time we finished with a late lunch, Inbal's feet had gotten the best of her and since she was leaving the next day for Vancouver, we called it a day and went home.
Thursday Sandy and Bat took Inbal to the airport and then we went into work.
Friday, Sandy and Bat took my mother and me up to camp. They stayed at a hotel in Smiths Falls.
Oops. It's getting lat and I have to get ready for work.
I'll tell you about the weekend later.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Off to camp, again

If this is what my whole summer is going to be like, it's going to be hectic. So things may not be chronological but as I think of them.

I went into Fabricland to buy a backing for my Auf Simchas. I found a purple material, a shade or two darker than the border from Elsie's mother-of-the-bride dress. I sandwiched the cq and the backing with a polyester batting I had and used the backing as the binding. I had variegated purple-mauve thread and I just machine sewed two parallel rows of stitches to bind and sandwich at the same time. It looks fine but note to self: learn how to do proper bindings.

While in Fabricland, I saw this amazing trim with tassels in the colours of my cq class project. So I finished off the cq block and it looks pretty amazing.

So I am ready for next week's Show and Tell at the Pomegranate Guild. I have Sari's chuppah, the Auf Simchas, and the cq block finished and ready.
Now I can start on other projects and finish up a few WIPs and/or UFOs.

Flannel materials were on sale with patterns so adorable that I couldn't resist, so I bought three different metres to make receiving blankets. I hope the colours aren't too gender specific for whomever will receive them. I already finished one and will do the others next week.

I've booked my train ticket for today (Friday) at 12:20 so I'll only be in the office for an hour or so. Then down to Union Station and a 3.5-4 hour train trip to camp. We'll probably go out for dinner tonight -- Perth has some very good restaurants. And tomorrow, weather permitting, I think we're going to the Orchid Festival. There's a wetland area with natural setting orchids not far from camp and the height of bloom is around this time of the year and they hold a festival to boot. Sunday, I think I'll just relax at camp. Maybe finally venture down to the lake.

I'm thinking of photo transferring onto fabric a photo of the lake and embellishing, embroidering it.

And I really want to start on the quilts with the fabrics I have been collecting, so I won't feel guilty about buying more...

Monday, June 12, 2006

Back from Camp

I got back last night from camp, late and tired. We got a lot done getting camp organized but my plans to work on cq fell by the wayside, mostly because I didn't really have the room to spread out my stuff. I guess cramped quarters aren't really conducive to cq.

Anyways, it was lovely in Perth as usual. The weather wasn't that great -- there were one or two nice days and the rest it drizzled, poured and was cool to cold. As far as Ami is concerned, it's winter and he's having a hard time adjusting to that. Hopefully it will heat up soon.

We did go to Almonte to the Crazy Quilt exhibit. There was very little cq in it (and the sane quilting wasn't all that outstanding either...) I asked the curator about it and she said "The quilt group's name is "Crazy Quilt". I was worried that someone may be misled". Oh well. I was miffed, so much so that I didn't even visit the local quilt shops in Almonte or Perth.

I want to finish several projects before next week's Show and Share at the Pomegranate Guild. After work, I am taking Auf Simchas to Fabricland to find her a suitable backing. I need binding for for the cq online class project. Of course, did I remember to bring it with me? No. Either I will guess at a binding colour match or have to bring it in tomorrow and hit Fabricland again. It's a good thing (or bad, depending on how you look at it) that it is on the way home.

Having been away for a week and a half, I also have to mow the lawn, water the plants, do some shopping, read my mail, do some cleaning, etc., etc. So I will leave the office early today
(3 p.m.) and get started on all of the above.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Off to Camp

I may have mentioned that my DH, Menachem, is the technical coordinator for a summer camp. So today, we're off to camp. Camp doesn't start until July 2nd, but the camp is boarded up in the winter and needs to be reopened and the water, gas, electrical, etc. systems put in place. He is also supervising some construction work done by a local contractor. I usually go up with him for the first week or so, so that he isn't overwhelmed by the physical work and the administrative aspects. This year his brother, Ami, has come from Israel to give him a hand so it looks like the month of preparation in June won't be totally hectic and we may even have a chance to enjoy the lake and the area.
There's a town, Almonte, not too far from us (we're near Perth, Ontario) which has a textile museum. I haven't yet had a chance to see it although I've been in Almonte several times. But this time there is a crazy quilt exhibition on and I absolutely must visit it.
I've taken some cq work to do in the evenings. It's a six square navy/ blues and gold/beiges inspired by the ribbons and trimmings on Yoni's bar mitzvah invitation. I've already pieced it here because I'm not taking my sewing machine up to camp but I've taken a whole bunch of beads, embroidery threads, charms, silk ribbon, etc. and hopefully I'll be sufficiently inspired and not too tired to stitch on it.
When I get back, I intend to finish my "Auf Simchas". I am pretty much finished embellishing and now need to find a suitable backing, sandwich it (with polyester I already have at home) and find a nice binding to finish it off.
I'll be back in town on June 11th and then will go up to camp every weekend. I hope to have computer access but may not.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Sari's chuppah -- finished!!

I finally got the finished chuppah hung up so it could be photographed. Here it is. It's doesn't really show that well but the tree trunk has the wording "simcha, sasson, chatan, kallah, gila, rina, ditza, chedva, ahava, achva, reut, shalom" appliqued and beaded onto it. The berries in the tree top are beaded, and the flowers on which letters spelling out "mazal" and "bracha" have been appliqued and beaded. The whole chuppah perimeter has ribbons which will be tied into bows on the chuppah frame. The photo doesn't do it justice.
I now have to finish the "Auf Simchas" crazy quilt but that shouldn't take too long and then I can stitch to my heart's content without deadlines looming.

Saturday, May 27, 2006


This morning was Yoni's Bar Mitzvah, at least the religious portion of it.
It was at the Kehila Centre, the main Sephardi synagogue in Thornhill. It was very interesting because although the prayer text is the same for both Sephardi and Ashkenazi Jews, the melodies, traditions and even the synagogue's architecture and decoration are very different, and that's even without going into the Orthodox (which it is) vs other Jewish religious streams.
Did I mention that I had to go out and buy a skirt for the event because women don't wear pants to Orthodox synagogues and the last time I wore a skirt was at Rafi's Bar Mitzvah a few years back. And shoes because my runners and black loafers didn't go with the skirt...
Water under the bridge. Yoni had a very long and difficult parsha (Torah portion)and also read the Haftorah. He did a great job and I'm sure made his parents and grandparents proud.
The only thing I didn't care for was the Kiddush luncheon. Food is set out on long tables in the most unappealing manner. There aren't enough plates, cups, cutlery and the food was all greasy. I'm sure that the party celebration tomorrow night will be organized much better because Penina put a lot of work into it.
Wednesday after work, Menachem took me to Fabricland and I bought the right colour thread for the chuppah and some fabric for Ami's curtains. Thursday morning before work I put the final stitches into the chuppah and it is ready. Sari might come over this evening to see it but she has such a busy schedule, I'm not sure she'll make it. And this morning before shul, I sewed Ami's curtains, so that's one less thing to do.
I didn't find fabric at Fabricland for the Auf Simchas perimeter and it's a good thing because I realized that I have enough fabric left from Elsie's mother of the bride dress so I cut the pieces and sewed them on.
I also sewed on Elsie's buttons. And now I am adding a few sequins here, a few beads there, and I think I'll forego the silk ribbon and maybe just quilt the perimeter instead.
We've started putting all the stuff we have to take up to camp in the living room and it's starting to pile up... I am doing laundry and getting all the bedding, blankets, pillows, towels, etc. ready too.
Anyways, it's gorgeous outside so I'm going there to sit and soak up a little sun.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006


Last post, May 10th? I hadn't realized it's been so long. I do have a valid excuse, however. I had a very bad cold, sinuses, cough, etc. which totally zapped my energy. I came to work because Josh and I are alone in the office but I didn't last more than half a day each day. I'm finally almost better -- still the occasional cough, blocked head, etc. but much much better.

Friday afternoon we went up to camp. We usually go up the Victoria Day weekend, do some work and enjoy the surroundings. This weekend was raining, cold and miserable so scratch the "enjoy the surroundings". But we got our room set up so when Menachem goes up June 1st for the summer, we're all set. Our primary aim this weekend was to get the floor in the room next to ours (it's a duplex) painted. And we did. We also made an inventory of what needs to be done to have the room in good working order so that Ami, Menachem's brother who is coming from Israel to help him this summer, won't be roughing it too much.

We also did a few other things in preparation for our going up June 1st. But the weather was just plain miserable so we were out of there by noon on Sunday and home by late afternoon.

Monday morning, I got up bright and early because I wanted to finish Sari's chuppah. I got the ribbons and backing sewn on. I had hoped to take it with me in the afternoon to Sari's bridal shower but I need to put a few rows of stitching around the perimeter and on the fuschia bands so the backing is connected in the middle as well as at the perimeter and didn't have the right colour of thread. Never mind. Sari and David are in town next weekend for Yoni's bar mitzvah so we'll get together at some point and I can show them the finished piece. Quite lovely, if I do say so myself.

I would also like to finish the "auf simchas" crazy-quilt to give them for the wedding. I need to buy fabric to sew around the perimeter of that one too. I'll try to do that this week and take it and the embellishments up to camp so I'll have something to do in the evenings and also because I'm running out of time. While I'm at the fabric store, I have to buy material for curtains for Ami's room. Nothing fancy, but something to give him a little privacy.

My mother and Devora and Noam and Charles are going to Israel right after the bar mitzvah for two weeks. Mom and Charles will be staying with Inbal. I hope she enjoys them and isn't too stressed out about having them.

OK. Josh isn't here right now but I still have to get back to work.

And I'll try to post more often to keep myself on track.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Yes, I'm still here

I haven't posted in a while because I wanted to post photos but it just hasn't worked out.
Had a very productive weekend. Did I mention I finished sewing the borders onto the chuppah top? Well I did. And I beaded it as well. The lettering on the tree trunk was a little pale so I beaded it in golds, silvers and bronzes, both round and bugle beads. Then I beaded the mauve petals of the flowers and the flower lettering. And I finished it off with beading the berries in the tree. Does this make sense without the photos? Of course not, but this is a journal for me more than for you so I'll have a record of what I've done. Now I have to find ribbons for tying the chuppah to the poles. Not sure what colour or width. I guess I'll know when I see it. I want to have it totally finished for the bridal shower on Victoria Day. Guess what I'm doing this weekend...
I also did all the cutting for the blue cq quilts. One fabric I cut out backwards so I had to recut and had almost enough fabric. One piece out of the six will be wrong side, hopefully not terribly visible.
Oops. Gotta run to work. I will post photos. I promise.

Saturday, April 29, 2006

End of April

It's been a week since my last post and time has flown. I can't believe it's already April 30th.
Last weekend, I "framed" my class block by sewing a 1" burgundy/rust trim around it and sewing the block as a diamond on a similar coloured background. More on this later.
I also worked on Sari's chuppah. I sewed the three panels, separated by two fuschia duppioni silk 2" strips and added purple side borders to bring the width to fit the 72" chuppah frame. I pinned the top and bottom borders (same purple) and pinned the whole thing up on my design wall to see what else to do with it. I was going to drape ribbons from the birds' beaks across the top of the two white side panels. I was auditioning ribbons and Alissa was over and said she didn't think they added anything. I wasn't sure so I removed the ribbons and left the "canvas" blank. I still wasn't sure but Mintzy was over today and I said that I thought it looked a bit naked. She convinced me it didn't. So tomorrow I will take it off the wall, sew on the top and bottom borders and bead the tree top and trunk and flowers. I'm not quite sure yet what fabric to use as backing. Probably just plain lining material. I am going to attach coloured (fuschia, purples, pinks) ribbons at 12" intervals all around the perimeter for tying the chuppah to the frame. I may attach metal charms -- birds, chamsot, etc. to the ribbon ends.
I also decided to finish the second baby quilt. I had machined quilted a few rows of "waves" previously and decided one evening to finish it. It wasn't until I had finished sewing about 2/3 of it that I realized my waves were going top to bottom instead of side to side. Oy. But I wasn't about to pick out the stitches, so top to bottom it is. Then I made the border but didn't make it wide enough. Oy vey. I mean it was wide enough to sew on the quilt but another 1" of width would have made a more pleasing proportion. Never mind. It still looks quite nice because the fish fabric is lovely.
I will try to take and post photos.
Let me try to remember if anything interesting happened at work this week. No.
Friday was my mother's 85th!! birthday. We had a family dinner at Devora's house to celebrate. Penina and family were there for a quick visit before Shabbat started but couldn't stay for dinner. It was very nice. And in July, the day after Sari's wedding, we're going to have a joint birthday celebration for Shloimeh (80th), Mom, and Ethel (90!!!) in the party room at Ethel's building.
Today I picked out the stitches of my class block "frame" and removed it from the backing. I had machine stitched it and because of the encrustment (encrustage?), the trim got sewn down crooked. And the background was too dark. I think I will presew a frame from a lovely damask type off-white fabric I have and hand sew it to the block and then embroider the seams between the frame and the block.
Once that's done, I will allow myself to start on the blocks using the fabrics I bought to match the trim from Yoni's bar-mitzvah invitation.
I also did some organizing of my stash. Menachem hung a dowel last week to hold my ribbons and this week made me a thread holder which sits above it. So there are a few less containers lying around on my tables.
I also edited a bit on my shelves -- found the instructions for the correct border width... Reviewed my UFO's (WIP's) -- I really don't have that many.
I also am reworking (i.e. letting out the seams) of a black floor length skirt to wear to Yoni's and Sari's affairs. I need to buy black lining fabric. Or maybe I should buy something sparkly -- the black is a sheer type fabric. Then I still need a top -- probably something goldish because I have a lovely black and gold shawl which was Aunty Nechama's. Note to self -- make sure it doesn't have holes in it!!
This afternoon, we are going down to Queen's Park (Ontario legislative building) to attend a rally for Darfur. Aside from the importance of taking a stand for the cause, the rally is being organized by members of hadracha and we want to support their efforts. Afterwards, we're going to Shaul and Malcah-Margaret's.
And that's about all for now.

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About Me

I am in my mid 50's, have been married (happily) for 38 years, have 3 adult children who live an ocean away... By day I am a legal secretary. The rest of the time I play with fabric but I still won't run with scissors...