Archive for March 2017
Interesting Information: March 23, 2017
What to believe about salt?
I wrote at least one essay (see Mainely Tipping Points essays) on the salt wars.
We actually eat LESS salt now than people in the generations before canning and freezing. And, most of us are less healthy today.
There are some people who have genuine salt intolerances, but my understanding is that they are somewhat rare.
Anyway, the potassium and salt ratio is important. I eat a lot of salt, so if I get leg cramps, I take a potassium pill. Salt washes potassium out of one’s system.
Salt is crucial for health in all kinds of ways–see the essay I wrote
And, here is a very recent piece you might want to read from Dr. Mercola:
Source: Why the War on Salt Is Dangerous
Turkey Tracks: March 23, 2017
“Crossed Kayaks” quilt
This cutie baby quilt got mailed recently.
The 12 1/2 inch foundation pieced blocks are from a book by Lynn Goldsworthy, THE ULTIMATE QUILT BLOCK COLLECTION. She actually called this version a “Bento Box” pattern, but I’ve seen in other places a similar pattern called “Crossed Kayaks.” Likely that pattern did not have the colored square beneath the kayaks.
The fabrics are from a collection by Riley Blake called “Crayola.” I pulled from my stash to add more solids. I bought this collection in Coastal Quilters’ fund-raiser auction last November. I’ve always LOVED crayons. As a child, nothing much was more fun than getting a new box of crayons–each with their tips still pointy and new. That was probably the first realization that I loved the whole range of colors. This suite of fabrics also comes in girly pinks.
The secondary patterns are neat in this quilt. The center makes an Octagon.
Here’s the back. I stole from the backing fabric to get the front border, so pieced to fill in. That’s always fun.
March 16, 2017
Tula Pink’s 100 Blocks
I have been totally enjoying making my March and April blocks, plus a few, for our year-long Tula Pink project.
I’m using Cotton + Steel fabrics for the most part in my blocks.
Here are the ones I just finished:
These blocks are addictive. They’re easy, and they’re all about the fabric.
Turkey Tracks: March 14, 2017
Zipper Bag Nutty
It all started with two of these little pouches, made by Coastal Quilter Margaret Elaine Jinno for our auction fundraiser last November.
Margaret Elaine used a clear vinyl front so one could see the inside. The top has a zipper. You can see one of the ones I purchased is stuffed full of EPP templates all ready to go. The other one is too, but with a different EPP project. How did she make these anyway?
Then Tori Manzi, also a Coastal Quilter, showed some of us the craft bag she made using pet screen, which is easily located at any large hardware store. And, yes, it cuts and sews easily. I did not get a picture of Tori’s bag, but then Becca Babb-Brott (Etsy Store Sew Me A Song) made one as well and it was so nice and roomy. I had immediate bag envy. I knew I had to make one of these bigger craft bags that stored EVERYTHING. I didn’t get a picture of Becca’s bag either, but Becca sent me a tutorial on how to do it. This tutorial uses clear vinyl, but you can easily substitute the pet screen. It’s from So Sew Easy and is easy to follow: “How to Make Clear Vinyl or Project Bags.” Just google for it if this link does not come up
On the way to the So Sew Easy Tutorial, I saw a blog post on a “52 zippers project”–one a week for a year. Hmmm. Until I put the big zipper into my “Aeroplane Bag,” I had not put a zipper into anything for probably 32 years. Maybe I better take a look?
Here’s the introduction
52 zippers project: All the zips! In 2017 I have a few lofty goals. One of the bigger ones is to undertake a project I’m calling “52 zippers”: this year, every week I will sew a new zipper pouch and post about it. I have kind of the perfect storm of reasons for doing this–I have too many zippers, too many cute fabrics that I’m not using because I don’t want to cut them up, lots of fabric embellishment ideas that I want to try out but not on a whole quilt, and of course a lack of organization. My other thought is that while I know many people have mastered zipper pouches, I think it is a common thing to fear the zipper. I’ve written up a set of basic lined zipper pouch instructions, which you can download for free! As the year goes on I will be adding more modifications and techniques to add to the simple zipper pouch. Look for more handouts to come! These handouts will be free for a limited time; at the end of the project I’ll be compiling all of the handouts into a comprehensive zipper pouch pattern.
Before I knew it, I had these two pouches and had printed out instructions for how to install a “D” ring, a wrist band, and make a “dumpling bag.” Pouches lend themselves to showcasing bigger pieces of fabric, like this fabric from Anna Maria Horner.
These bags are LINED, and doesn’t my zipper look nice?
At this point I was using zippers I already had in storage.
Ok, now I had more confidence, so I went back to the So Sew Easy tutorial. I had a pale lavender zipper, and here is what emerged. I love the look of the hanging outside zipper technique.
Then, this one happened with a white zipper I had on hand. You can see it in relationship to the lavender bag in terms of size.
How fun is this!
More googling and I discovered that Sew Michelle sells COLORED pet screen in lots of colors. So this package arrived the other day.
And Zip It (Etsy store) sells all things zipper, including fobs and what are, in bunches, really reasonable zippers in many sizes and colors. So this package arrived, and I chose the colors of the zippers.
I have a real soft spot for these zipper fobs, but there are all different kinds at Zip It.
Also, it seems that there is a way with plastic zipper teeth to separate the two sides for easier sewing–which also means you can use the smaller pieces of a zipper you’ve cut off by adding a new pull–which, of course, Zip It has. You could mix and match zipper pull colors with the zipper itself, like putting a blue pull on an orange zipper.
It’s clear my go-to present these days will be zippered bags of some sort. They are just so much fun to make.
Turkey Tracks: March 14, 2017
The Farmer’s Wife 1930’s Sampler Quilt is FINISHED
This project–99 foundation pieced blocks–many of them VERY DIFFICULT and time consuming–took a year to make. A group of us at Coastal Quilter’s (Maine) took on this project in January 2016. We decided on 9 blocks a month, and if it weren’t for the encouragement and stimulation of these other quilters, I don’t think I would have ever finished this project. All of us have completed all 99 blocks, two of us have totally finished, two of us have quilts at longarm quilters, one “very busy” of us with a larger family has all her blocks finished, and one of us elected from the beginning to make a smaller quilt and is finished with her blocks. I call that a roaring success.
Each of us used different fabrics and different backgrounds, and all of the quilts are GORGEOUS! We will bring them all together at a Coastal Quilter’s meeting when everyone is done, so I will get pictures to share of the others then.
Here’s mine–and I’ve even washed it. This is a BIG QUILT.
Because I used this zig-zag setting, I could either “halve” four of five of the blocks or chose a different setting. No way was I cutting any of these blood-sweat-and tears blocks in half!!! And I thought this setting made the quilt too long and narrow. So I added two rows on either side and floated the extra blocks. I did have one extra block, to make 100, and it went into the body of the quilt. I love this setting. I had visions of quilting down the length of the zig-zags from the front of the long arm, but that would have meant quilting each of the blocks individually, and that would have been way too time consuming for me. And would have probably involved a lot of thread changes. I decided it was way too involved for me, so I used one of my favorite pantographs, “Simple Feathers” by Anne Bright.
Right now, it’s living on the living room couch where it totally perks up the room.
I chose this bird fabric for my backing and used a darker (than the front) teal blue/green solid for the binding.
I quilted with a thread that matched the teal/green surrounding fabric that just disappeared into the quilt. I didn’t want anything to take away from the blocks themselves. I washed it, which I almost never do until needed–I wash all my fabric before quilting with them as the chemicals in the fabric bother me–so it is all crinkly and cuddly.
Here’s a pic of a few of the blocks.