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

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...