Louisa Enright's Blog

Mainely Tipping Points

Archive for August 2020

“My `On Point’” Quilt Top is Done

with 3 comments

Turkey Tracks: August 24, 2020

“My `On Point’” Quilt Top is Done

Messy photo, as there are two other projects on my design wall, but this last project from season 2 of The Color Collective is done. Denyse Schmidt, as a guest designer for a 7th month, designed this big, graphic block (20 inches) and curated the color palette.

At 60 by 60, it is a good lap quilt. This block is tricky to make. I found that the seams around the grey center needed to be VERY scant, for instance, to get the 20 1/2 inch trim right. I’m wondering if that grey square should be cut just a bit bigger??? Precision is everything on this big, graphic block. There are two colorways for the block. I emphasized the warm block. If one emphasized the cooler blue block, the quilt would have the blues as intersecting lines in the middle.

I’ll quilt this one on the longarm with something curvy and likely a dark grey thread, but who knows… And I need to organize a backing. I don’t have something in my stash that will work. The binding will be the dark brown as I did order more of it to get the 9 blocks. Thank heavens I ran out of fabric…or I’d be making at least one more row.

I would still like to make ME a “Stacks” as I gave the one I made as a wedding present. I think “Stacks” and “On Point” will appeal some day to my two grandsons as they are more masculine in nature. But who knows. I love them both myself.

Summer is winding down now up here in Maine. Temps are dropping into the 50s at night, which makes for great sleeping. The days are warm enough for shorts and so clear. And we did get some rain this past week, but not nearly enough. The growing season this summer for vegetables has been very, very slow. For instance, the glut of tomatoes has not yet arrived, even if the plants are inside hoop houses.

It is way past time to clean up the garden. The deadheading chore is badly needed to be executed. This summer just flew by…

Written by louisaenright

August 24, 2020 at 9:10 am

Deer Love Hosta

with one comment

Turkey Tracks: August 16, 2020

Deer Love Hosta

Oh yes, deer do love hosta.

And I have a lot of hosta.

I knew they were snacking on the hosta in the bed where I had the overgrown river birches cut down. And topping off numerous other plants as they strolled by—like the flower part of the Borage. But I kept thinking I would spray all the hosta as soon as the next predicted rain had come and gone. Only, that rain has not happened.

When I put AC out for his morning run a few days ago, we both saw that a deer was standing in this garden bed, I presume eating more of the hosta.

AC put the deer up the side of the mountain in short order, and I got out the sprayer later that day. Leslie Smith swears by “orange” Listerine for deterring deer—used full strength. She also swore that it would not hurt the plants. I found the “original” Listerine at our local drug store—and it is “orange” colored, so I bought it.

Time will tell…

But I don’t see more deer damage since I sprayed. And, that was an easy task. My little $14 sprayer worked just fine. And the spray didn’t seem to hurt the plants.

Here’s the “deer” chasing dog yesterday:

He can go up the side of the hill back of me in about 3 seconds.

And he loves to swim even more this year, but still doesn’t like to get over his head.

We have had some blessedly cool weather these past two days. A late summer treat for sure. But no rain. And it is terribly dry.

The light is changing now. And the hummingbirds are feeding up in preparation for their upcoming flight south. I have to refill their feeders every day or so.

Repair and cleaning projects are making the house “sparkly.” One never finishes with a house, but the obvious projects will wind down this next week. It’s been really good to get this work done.

Written by louisaenright

August 16, 2020 at 9:12 am

“My `Bedrock’” Quilt is Done and Hung

leave a comment »

Turkey Tracks: August 13, 2020

“My `Bedrock’” Quilt is Done and Hung

I love this quilt!

The method comes from Tara Faughnan and is part of this past season’s (2) The Color Collective online class hosted by Amy Newbold of Sewtopia. Tara also selects the color palette and teaches the method in a video. She called her own quilt “Bedrock,” so this quilt below, which is my improv version of the block method, is “My `Bedrock.’ “ I think I did a good job of balancing color and taking the eye around the quilt.

It is quite safe to say I never would have made this quilt without this class. My improv skills are growing, as is my confidence with improv.

I am using up stash pieces big enough for backings. I’ve always liked this one.

I hung this quilt outside my quilt room. It does hang straight; the camera distorts a bit. I think the matchstick quilting in a very soft cream with darker overtones came out really well. It does not distract from the quilt itself at all.

My quilt room is at my back in this picture. The door to the right goes to a bedroom/office where (LOL) I’ve taken over the closet for quilting “stuff.” I also have a sewing table and my serger in this bedroom.

Here’s the cotton 12-weight thread I ordered from Sulky for under $2 each. I had the pale blue on hand. And I filled more color needs from my size 8 perle cotton stash. I want to keep the thread color to the blocks of color in this “Give and Take” quilt top.

I’ve started THE LAST project from season 2, so pics to follow soon. It’s a BIG and GRAPHIC BLOCK (20 inches finished), designed by Denyse Schmidt as guest for a month 7 project. Tara curated the color palette.

It is now Queen Anne’s Lace and Rudbeckia time of this summer. Both are so hardy and cheerful.

Written by louisaenright

August 13, 2020 at 1:18 pm

Curtis Sittenfeld’s Deliciously Wicked and Interesting Books

with 2 comments

Books: August 8, 2020

Curtis Sittenfeld’s Deliciously Wicked and Interesting Books

I totally enjoyed Curtis Sittenfeld’s novel AMERICAN WIFE, which writes an imaginary “history” of Laura Bush and her life with “W.” I’m sure I blogged about it here some years ago.

I just finished listening to RODHAM where Sittenfeld reimagines an alternate life for Hillary Clinton—one in which she does not marry Bill Clinton. The New York Times reviewer liked it, but noted that the novel covers much of Clinton’s life that others have detailed and that Clinton herself has covered in her memoirs. Since I have not read any of this material, I was not bored with the book. On the contrary, I really enjoyed it. Sittenfeld is capable of a deliciously wicked sense of humor. She flays out Bill Clinton repeatedly and holds up Trump for outlandishly funny mocking.

I’ve read SISTERLAND and enjoyed it, but it didn’t really stick with me the way these books on American presidents’ wives has.

I’ve put her ELIGIBLE into my Audible feed. This novel is a rewrite on PRIDE AND PREJUDICE. It should be fun.

There are other Sittenfeld novels as well…

Written by louisaenright

August 8, 2020 at 9:54 am

Rainbows and “`My Give and Take’ ” Quilt Top

leave a comment »

Turkey Tracks: August 5, 2020

Rainbows and “My `Give and Take’ “ Quilt Top

The ”I” tropical storm—who thought up THIS name anyway—more or less missed us here on Mid-Coast Maine. We got some rain and some wind last night, but that’s it. This one headed inland north to the Montreal area, though I am hearing that southern Maine had more trouble with it. We’ll take whatever rain we can get here on the coast. And, thankfully, the storm created some COOL weather, for a bit of time, anyway.

Last week, friend Marsha Smith sent me this pic of a double rainbow, taken from her porch, which is on a hill that looks out over the town and the harbor. Wow.

So, here is my finished quilt top “My `Give and Take’ “—which is the 6th project from season 2 of The Color Collective. Tara Faughnan designed this improv quilt method and curated the analogous color palette to start us off.

I’m thinking hand quilting with 12-weight cotton thread in green shades that are in the quilt. Tara used a grid on her bigger quilt, and I think that works to NOT take away anything from the quilt top itself. It just needs something really plain. I’ll use that dark turquoise on the upper left to bind. I had to cut that binding straight grain rather than on the bias, but this quilt will be a wall hanging and is not large at all so a straight binding will be ok. (I think bias binding is easier to manage and wears better over time.) It finishes at 28 by 47. I planned that size to fit where I’d like to hang it.

Here’s where Tara went with this method:

How fun! I really enjoyed this one, but I’ve enjoyed all the projects from both seasons and will sign up again for season 3 this October.

To see more of Tara’s quilts, go to tarafaughnan.com. It’s worth the visit. And her ongoing work is on Instagram. She’s a good teacher, for sure.

Now, on to the LAST project, which looks…complicated. I’m sure more “stretching” of my abilities will be involved. Denyse Schmidt designed the block for project 7, but Tara chose the fabric palette and made a video showing how best to make the blocks.

Written by louisaenright

August 5, 2020 at 9:45 am