Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Northern lights in progress

The guild chunk of the month top was finished in time for the June meeting.  Mary and Elaine did a good job of design this.  No hints as to what they have in store for us come September.  Elaine has lots of pictures from guild night on her blog here

 Late last year I read about a lady in Toronto who is organizing people to cross stitch the Torah.  We signed up and I spent some time this month stitching.  The pattern indicated to start in the bottom right of the first row.  I did stitch that row from right to left but I don't read Hebrew and found it difficult to stitch that way so I switched and started working from left to right.  Eventually I found a Hebrew/English website to help me understand what I was stitching.  My sister has the stitching now and is finishing off our section.

For this year's monthly quilt, Northern Lights, I did decide that I wanted the smaller blocks but big enough to fit my bed. Means a lot of extra blocks. I've got the blocks for the September class done and have been piecing the parts of the star blocks.  Lots of piles on the end of the cutting board to make stars.  I debated about getting the templates for this quilt but ended up getting them.  I have really enjoyed using them.  Its nice to be able to cut strips and then use the templates to get the correct shapes.  The pieces are going together really easily. 

I ran out of the brown I was using for star points. Fortunately I think I found a good go with and needed to make enough stars for one round. Need to remember to place them correctly when I get there.

I made a list of blocks to be the extras and have started creating cutting charts and piecing those.  The original list of blocks I picked didn't work because I suddenly realized the blocks all needed to have a half square triangle piece of a specific fabric to continue the pattern in the original layout. The new list will let me do that.  There are some blocks in the pattern that are left as half or quarter blocks for the borders.  I think I'll make them again as whole blocks for the centre.  These are all the assembled parts so far -- not in any particular order.

Linking up with Esther's Weekly WOW

Sunday, May 11, 2014


One of my favorite quilts is a one block wonder.  I look for the at quilt shows and love to see the original fabric and what it came become when chopped into matching 60 degree triangles.
I bought the first book a few years ago and some flower headed pins the book recommends.  Last spring I bought a fabric to make myself a one block wonder quilt.  Its was a shinny fish fabric

Its been sitting on the corner of my cutting table or in a box on the shelf ever since waiting for me to get a round to it. 
Earlier this year, the guild announced a One Block Wonder workshop in May with Maggie Butterfield Dickinson  So I signed up.  Yesterday was the day. 

In the morning we cut our six matching sections and got everything pinned and lined up nicely.  Then trimmed edges and cut strips.  I took a 60 degree triangle I bought for a workshop with Jackie Black many years ago.  I was thinking this was the first time I've used it since that workshop but I think I did use it for a group exchange as well.  Anyway it got a good workout yesterday.  I cut 2 of the 3 strips into triangles and all 34 sets got sewn during the workshop.  I had them on a piece of flannel at the workshop (the last bunch didn't fit).  This morning I put them back on the design wall (the red triangles are pat of the guild BOM that's to the left of this one)

I'm so pleased with this.  I did see a couple of near identical ones that I may take apart and twist the triangles -- or not.  I'll have to see once the whole thing is coming together how much it bothers me.
Some of my favorites.  I think I'll makes some cubes as well (I borrowed book 2 from the guild library)  Between that and the class notes from Jackie's class I should be good.  An underwater wonder. :)  

I'm Happy Dancing :)

Saturday, May 03, 2014

Behind the Scenes

The Royal Ontario Museum is celebrating their 100th anniversary this year.  Today (and tomorrow), they are offering free admission and two behind the scenes tours -- a chance to go into where the collections are stored and cared for and see some of the work.  It felt like the behind section was bigger than the front section.  In some places they had 10,000's or 100,000's object in the collection.  It was interesting to see the way some of the things were stored -- surround by acid free paper, cushioned by foam, flat in drawers, carefully wrapped up or hung from shelves. 

I didn't click the members link soon enough so all the advanced member tickets were gone and I had to line up in the non-ticket holders line.  The line started at the main doors and went along Bloor to University, turned the corner and went to the old main entrance -- or at least that's where I joined it at 9:30.  I think it ended up down by the Planetarium before the doors opened at 10.  Sketched on of the Guardian Lions while I was waiting.  Later I found a Greek pot with a really nice design on it.  

It was almost an hour later when I got inside.  Picked up tickets for both tours -- one at noon and one at 2:30. 

The first covered Epic Civilizations.  There was an Egyptian statue waiting on a trolley for some work in one spot.  It had foam blocks and a bungie cord seat belt to try to ensure it stayed where they wanted it.  The subway goes under the museum and you can sometimes feel the shaking. The textile section were preparing a collection of outfits for a new exhibit.  I'm looking forward to seeing that. 
A short break with a peek at the Greek and  Nubian (?) section and a little of the Oriental section then on to the Wild Wonders

There was someone to explain how they get the fossils out of the rocks and plaster jackets, lots of beautiful crystals and bug, insect, bird and butterfly collections to peak at.  One lady had a tube about 3 feet long containing one very large worm from South America.  It similar to our garden worms only much bigger -- No robin would be able to take that back to the nest to feed the little ones.

No photos or sketching was allowed.  In fact we weren't even allowed to take our purses and bags into the back area.  I knew the no purses part from the website but it covered waist pouches too. They provided bags to seal your possessions in while in the back area. 

 These bugs and butterfly are from the Stair of Wonders but similar to some of the samples they had on display

Before the first tour, I had a chance to see a hands on table in the Egypt section.  There was a Jackal head from a Canopic Jar.  It was much heavier than I expected it to be. 

A very interesting day.  I hope they don't wait another 100 years to let us take another peek behind the scenes.  Wtih free admission, the museum was really busy today.  It was nice to see.