Friday, May 27, 2011

For the last couple of days I have (once more) been thinking about how generous some people are to virtual strangers. Like when I found this
in the mail two days ago. These beauties came from Annika, the girl who got my extra O2 Horizon foot. The thing is - I love surprises, both to give and to receive, so along with the foot, I cut some pieces of some of the latest fabrics I bought and sent them too.

As long as I have been active online in several handicraft groups and forums, I have met truly generous people and all of them women. Botanical perfumery, handmade natural toiletries, soy candles, mineral makeup and now - quilting, where all girls willingly share knowledge and materials. I have got: books, I have got makeup brushes and flocked sponges, I got exotic botanical materials, lovely tinned jars, home grown and distilled lavender oil and waters. Some friends has acted as go-betweens when more substantial stuff has been bought - like a pool cleaner and tableware for the RV;-) And I have got threads, fabrics (ack you should have seen the immensely large zip locked bag filled with 2.5inch strips in blue, red and white that the Pickles had collected for me some year ago and hear a sigh of pure amazement) and I got nifty notions like a small 1/4in ruler in clear plastic. All this stuff that is almost impossible to get here. Everytime one of these packages has arrived, I've been struck with gratitude and couldn't help to ask myself "how is this possible"? That women on the other side of the world comes to a poor Swedish girl's rescue?

Of course I have reversed their kindness, trying to find typical Swedish things to send and that my friends are not exactly easy;-) since most things in our stores are imported. But one think I've been thinking of even more, is that this seem to be a female trait. Now, I don't have any experience from any male dominant groups, but The DH has his motorcycle club (M1800riders) and I don't see very many of his members sending him anything, only the other way around :-(

"Give and you shall receive" and know what - I'm positively sure that that's just the way things are :-D

Latest achievement

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

We needed new pillows for the couch in the living room and I had to think long and hard in what design to make the rectangular ones, not wanting to copy the old ones. At first I was lending towards some blocks from the Japanese Quilt Block book, but since I already used some designs from that book, I was not really up to it. And then it hit me - Cathedral Windows!! Maybe with bits from that latest FQ bundle? Nahh, to mundane...what I really fancy are jewel colors. Said and done - out with all the bags of scraps and start sorting through them and I ended up with one pile of reds, one of greens, some yellows and some in between.

This is the first time ever I think, when I have felt a twinge of joy in the middle of a project, but as I started to add these tiny bits to the windows, I felt pure joy. And - the end result bring me imense pleasure, now I just have to wait for more of the cathedral fabric and that mamba green/gold one to arrive, so I can make one more like it.

Right now we have some awful weather - heavy showers of rain and hail - gash. But here is something reminding us of sunnier times:
My sweet sunbathing Fiona :-D

In need of project

Well summer is approaching (even though todays weather leaves a lot to be desired for) and it's high time to start thinking what kind of hand sewing project I can bring along for our RV vacation. I do have some books on applique, the latest "Flowers, Hearts and Garlands Quilt" arrived in the mail the other day and honestly, I absolutely don't get it.....:-( I think I need to revisit my books on applique, including Dear Jane and some versions of Baltimore quilts, because as it is now I have no inspiration at all. But I do need to find some pattern so I can start audition fabrics and purchase the ones I need - yayy LOL. But I have found some usable threads, a small collection of YLi's silk variegated ones. I've said this before, but I do love variegated threads - they are like jewels me think and they are extremely useful. Since I dollar vs SEK exchange rate is so favorable for us right now, I might as well splurge :-o

Anyone with favorite applique patterns to share - please holler!

One of these days (bit of longish)

Thursday, May 12, 2011

I checked out Kviltstinas blogg yeasterday and my oh my what a miracle she has accomplished!! From a like unruly storage space to a quilt studio showroom - she must have worked like a derviche. And the now the studio isn't only a marvelous creativ working space, but it kind of mirrors Stina's blog as well - the colors, the layout, the feeling.....

And I get somewhat jeleous...I want something like that too.  No the coloring and such, but the space and the possiblilities that comes with it. Today I have a rather small studio that was originaly set up for my natural toiletries and botanical perfume making with a small desk (posstivily overrun by glass bottles holding tinctures and various old perfume blends, nailpolishes and other clutter), 3 IKEA Ivar bookshelves, two cabinets, one armchair and a couple of glass shelves holding my dilluted essential oils, absolutes and concretes, forming a small perfumers organ. When the quilt bug hit me bad, I cleaned out the middle IVAR and a lot of Rubber Maid bins went down into storage in the basement and now it holds my fabric stash. Well at least part of it - opened Jelly Rolls and bags of scraps, IKEA fabrics for pillow backs, a fleece blanket, a couple of meters of T-shirt fabric (pink :-o what did I think of??) and some VIP that never will be finished are all piled upon the armchair, boxes of threads sits inside one of the cabinets, rulers here, stabilisators and freezing paper there.....and  - nailpolishes in the very small spaces in between. Needless to say, that place is impossible to work in, at least sewing no matter how much I would clean up the mess - there isn't simply enough room for all three passions of mine.

Sooooooo - I have a plan :-9 Even though our house is quit large, the layout is done in a strange way, leaving us short of bedrooms but with big open spaces in between. As it is now, John has the large den on the topfloor as his room,but he starts to long for a real room with a door to close behind him.

So if I clean out my studio, paint the walls, manage to fit in a closet and somehow convince The DH to draw a lot of cables and install outlets for TV and internet, then Sam can move down there (he will get a bit larger room than he has today then) and John can move into Sam's small room (but is has a door and a small walk-in closet). Sell the Italian corner leather couch (now that is going to be a hard nut to crack with The DH) and the sofa table, clean out all the medium high Billy bookshelves in the "hallway" from kiddy stuff and then - I will have a large space just for me, lighted wonderfully. A verraaahhhhh large space in total :-D

A cutting table, an ergonomical sewing space, nice shelvings for books and patterns, the Billys to hold the fabric stash and my collection of lovely tin boxes (from my overly generous friend Lisa in USA) to hold all notions. Maybee I can even convince The DH to make me thread holders and - I think I keep the armchair for handiworks in comfort. Thus the dining room table will be free of the sewing machine and what ever ongoing project I'm working on, all little notions that sits on the bookshelves will be gone and so will the quilting books and magazines, holders filled with clippings and whatnot....

Ack ack, maybe it all will just have to wait until Sam leaves home? But in the meantime I dream a little dream for me LOL.

More strange animal owners

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Yesterday I took Fiona for her "every 3 week" manicure at the vets and just inside the door sat a woman with 3 Chinese Crested/Powder Puffs. One of the started to bark at Fiona and that women went "oh she is an alfa, thats why she barks, she don't know she is small". Normally I don't get in clinch with these types of persons, but this time I just glared at her and went "I hardly think she is alfa bitch to Fiona". The girl got all flubbery and changed her version to that the barking ninny was alfa to the other of her dogs. 

In the waiting room we met a gorgeous BIG male dog who I thought was a cross Ridgeback and Rotweiler, but he was a Rotweiler Amstaff mix at "only" 90lbs at 11mo old. Oh he had the kindest sweetest eyes and was calm as a cucumber. We sat there doing small talk when an elder woman came through the door carrying a cat cage, looked us over and said "oh how many dogs there are". Many dogs? Heck it was just two of them there, the tinis resided at the bench inside the door. She got singed in, looked at us again and went "there are so many dogs here today". I just couldn't help myself but blurted "oh is he allergic to dogs then??" "Oh no, but dogs usually bark at him". Here she had us big dog owners in titters (and no, don't get me wrong, I have  nothing agains small dogs nor cats) and neither of us had ever had our dogs barking at a cat...chasing them - yup, but never bark and especially never barked at all at the vet waiting room. One of Leo's (the big boy) three "mothers" whispered "but please feel free to let him out and he will certainly be well exercised" and we giggled like silly little girls LOL. Sorry, I know it isn't nice beaviour, but sometimes you can't just help yourself, specially when other animal owners behaves is such silly ways.

Well Fiona was reluctant to go with the vet assistant but came back after a little while having behaved very well and got her her piggy treat ear - as usual:-) Finally it turned out that her claw pulps are very long (even though I take her every 3 weeks for a mani) and maybe it's because of that that she always hated to have her claws done by us?? That even tiny bits of claw fix has been bordering on painful?
Well, one thing is for sure, we will never go back to do her claws ourselves. 150SEK every 3 weeks is cheep for a painless (for all) beauty treatment ;-)