Creative Prompt #243: Accessories






Accessory may refer to:

Post the direct URL (link) where your drawing, doodle, artwork is posted (e.g. your blog, Flickr) in the comments area of this post. I would really like to keep all the artwork together and provide a way for others to see your work and/or your blog.

We are also talking about this on Twitter. Use the hashtag #CPP

The Creative Prompt Project, also, has a Flickr group, which you can join to  post your responses. I created this spot so those of you without blogs and websites would have a place to post your responses.


car charger


external speakers

mouse pad

Definition: “ac·ces·so·ry  (?k-s?s??-r?)

n. pl. ac·ces·so·ries


a. A subordinate or supplementary item; an adjunct.
b. Something nonessential but desirable that contributes to an effect or result. See Synonyms at appendage.

2. Law

a. One who incites, aids, or abets a lawbreaker in the commission of a crime but is not present at the time of the crime. Also called accessory before the fact.
b. One who aids a criminal after the commission of a crime, but was not present at the time of the crime. Also called accessory after the fact.


1. Having a secondary, supplementary, or subordinate function.
2. Law Serving to aid or abet a lawbreaker, either before or after the commission of the crime, without being present at the time the crime was committed.

[Middle English accessorie, from Medieval Latin access?rius, from accessor, helper, from Latin accessus, approach; see access.]

ac?ces·so?ri·al (-s?-sôr??-?l, -s?r-) adj.
ac·ces?so·ri·ly adv.
ac·ces?so·ri·ness n.
Usage Note: Although the pronunciation (?-s?s??-r?), with no (k) sound in the first syllable, is commonly heard, it is not accepted by a majority of the Usage Panel. In a recent survey, 87 percent of the Panelists disapproved of it. The 13 percent that accepted the pronunciation were divided on usage: more than half accepted the (k)-less pronunciation for all senses. A few approved of it only in fashion contexts, and a few others approved of it only in legal contexts.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition copyright ©2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Updated in 2009. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.”

Aurifil First

Happy Colors by Lori Holt
Happy Colors by Lori Holt

One of the gifts I received for my birthday was a box of Aurifil threads, 50wt. This is my first box of Aurifil thread, though, as you know, I was part of the Aurifil Club at the Quilt Bear for awhile. I am starting to think there might be a conspiracy afoot to get me back to my sewing.

Yes, Happy Aurifil Colors
Yes, Happy Aurifil Colors

I didn’t even know this group existed and I was really excited when I saw it, because they are truly happy colors. They look like a box of candy!

When I saw them it made me think that I would have to start piecing with colors to match my fabric. I want to use these right away.

One the other hand, I might just want to look at them for awhile and admire them.

Current Projects – January Update (26 Projects)

I told you I was going to change this post to reflect the progress that I have made on the 26 Projects List. I really only have two “really old” UFOs left on my list – the Pointillist Palette and the Tarts Come to Tea. The others are old, but they have a different feel to me. I may be kidding myself, but that is what is in my head right now.

I am really pleased that I finished the Attack of the Hexies top and am feeling like I have made a huge leap forward.

Still WIPs

  1. Aqua-Red SamplerFrances and I are stalled. She has been talking about getting back to it. I am thinking about the next tutorial., because I can write it without her, though I am not that motivated.
  2. The Tarts Come to Tea: I still haven’t worked on this since April 2011, though, periodically, I think about working on it.
  3. Pointillist Palette #4: Fourth is a series of 6 quilts; needs tiny square patches sewn together. I still haven’t worked on this, though, every once in a while I think about using some of the squares as leaders and enders.
  4. See: needs satin stitching. Small, also a possibility for finishing before the end of the year, though with all the cutting I have done recently, perhaps not so much.
  5. Self Portrait: started in 2006 at a class at Quilting Adventures in Richmond, Virginia. I like the piece, but don’t know where to go from where I am. Mouth? Hair? The attitude I need to have is that I can’t ruin it; there is always more fabric. Possibility for abandonment.
  6. Under the Sea: class project; like the design, but not the colors much. Possibility for abandonment. I have to face reality.

Ready for Quilting

  1. New:* Wonky 9 Patch: needs quilting and binding. I am still thinking about quilting this myself and I am thinking about it more and more. I am wondering how far apart I can quilt it so that it has some drape. (Not on original list)
  2. Infinity blocks: blocks sewn together into a quilt top, borders on. Back and binding made; at the quilter.
  3. Spiderweb: Top is together, binding is made. This is at the quilter.
  4. New:* FOTY 2012: top, finished. Back and binding are complete; at the quilter.
  5. New:*Star Sampler: Top finished, back and binding finished; at the quilter. (not on original list)
  6. New:*Fresh Fruit: Top finished, back and binding finished; at the quilter. (not on original list)
  7. Flower Sugar Hexagons / Attack of the Hexies – Top finished 1/12/2014: I finished the top, back and the binding on January 12. It is ready to be taken to the quilter.

In the Finishing Process

None in January.

In Process
I decided that I had better put in an ‘In Process’ category. The difference, at least in my mind, between ‘In Process’ and ‘UFO’ is that I am actively working on a project that is “In Process.”

Hunting and Gathering

  • Spin Wheel: really not started, but supplies gathered. I probably have enough fabrics and just need to decide to start.
  • Windmill quilt: Still hunting and gathering. I will use a grey for the  background, because if I use more of the cut fabric patches, the pattern will be lost. The pieces are too oddly shaped and I don’t want to lose the pattern in a mass of scraps.
  • Stepping Stones #2 using Bonnie & Camille fabrics Bliss, Ruby, Vintage Modern: made two test blocks, but still in the thinking stage while I decide on the background colors. I want the contrast to be good.
  • Super Secret Project #3: working on color choices.


Nothing so far for 2014

Last update for the 26 Projects List. Read it. There’s some interesting stuff there.

I thought you might want to take a look at the first list I made, the one with the 26 Projects. I started the list in October 2011. I have made progress. I plan to stop this post when I have no more projects from the original list to write about. I wonder when that will be?

*New – Project started after I started working on the 26 Projects list


Disappearing Pinwheel

A week or so ago, before the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday, Sandy and AJ started ‘a thing’ on Twitter about the the Disappearing Pinwheel block. I have made a Disappearing 9 Patch (Food Quilt) and really like the disappearing part, so this ‘thing’ caught my attention.

Mod Century
Mod Century

I watched the video (see below) and found a layer cake. I also played around with the techniques on paper and then got busy and haven’t done anything yet. I have a Mod Century Layer Cake and thought the pattern would be a good use of the Layer Cake. I haven’t done anything yet.

A lot of people are working on the Disappearing Pinwheel, including many Twilters. While I was out of town for work and political wifery, Daisy already has a top done, Carole has her blocks done and Torie is close to having her blocks done. Jackie, Gretchen  and Valerie are close behind. It is awesome how dedicated they are and how they got to this project so quickly.

Daisy's DPW
Daisy’s DPW
Robin's DPW (via Daisy)
Robin’s DPW (via Daisy)


Gretchen's DPW
Gretchen’s DPW


Torie-Test's DPW Test
Torie-Test’s DPW Test
Torie's 2d DPW
Torie’s 2d DPW

Now, Carole is an interesting case, and I don’t mean ‘interesting’ in a derogatory way. Carole uses a bold palette that makes a lot of her work look really different than other work I have seen. Carole’s DPW is no exception. I don’t know where she comes up with these ideas, but she succeeds with flying colors. I am so glad she agreed to allow me to share these photos with you!

Carole Wool DPW
Carole Wool DPW


Carole Wool DPW
Carole Wool DPW
Carole Wool DPW
Carole Wool DPW
Carole Wool DPW
Carole Wool DPW
Carole Wool DPW
Carole Wool DPW
Carole Wool DPW
Carole Wool DPW
Carole Wool DPW
Carole Wool DPW




Marisa also pointed out a very good blog post about the Disappearing Pinwheel.

In case you want to make your own Disappearing Pinwheel, here are the directions that Carole wrote out:

  • Start with 10 1/2″ squares of background and plaids.
  • Paired them right sides together, sprayed w heavy starch
  • Trimmed blocks to 10″
  • Sewed around edges, 1/4 seam
  • Cut block corner to corner both ways
  • Carefully pressed seam toward plaids
  • Mixed up fabrics to make pinwheels
  • Sewed pinwheels using 1/4″ seam, using a pin to mark centers
  • Carefully press pinwheel seams toward plaids
  • Trim all pinwheel blocks to 12″. Using center seam to align ruler squarely
  • Trim each pinwheel into 9 patch, 4″ squares, using center seam to align ruler squarely
  • Create block sets by Finding sets of 4 matching HST, pair with 4 matching HRS, add pinwheel to each “block set”
  • Play with all options before sewing.
  • Sew 9 patches together as desired.

Nota Bene: use starch or Mary Ellen’s Best Press!!!


Check out the video to see how the Missouri Star Quilt Company makes the block. Use starch!

Disappearing Pinwheel Posts in which you may be interested

Sandy’s Blog – January 13, 2014: initial post explaining the concept and linking to the video that shows you how to make the block.

KnittyAJ’s  post on the Disappearing Pinwheel




Discovery of Gold

Metal Sculpture
Metal Sculpture

I was not at the quilt retreat with my CQFA peeps this weekend. 🙁  I was off in the Gold Country with my darling husband. He had a Native Sons event and wanted me to come along. We arrived around 2:30 and wandered the town after checking into the National Hotel, a historic hotel with a bathroom in the bedroom! The toilet had its own space, which was good.

DH saw the above sculpture as we walked around, which reminded me of the sculpture I saw in Toronto in 2005 when I was there for work.

The main drag (think small town main street) was really, really busy on Saturday and cars kept driving by as the Natives were gathering on the stairs of the National Hotel to recreate a photo taken in the last century. It was an issue, because the photographer was set up in the middle of the street!

The main street has a lot of empty shops, which is sad, but the rest are filled with antique and vintage items. The prices are really good. I saw 4-5 really beautiful cake plates. There is a FANTASTIC candy shop on the main street. It has a lot of old fashioned types of candy, a soda fountain, a cooler with drinks I haven’t seen in years, like Bubble Up. I bought a chocolate fizzy drink in a bottle. It was yummy!

They have a small section of hobby materials as well. Most of the time, though, I spent smiling at the members and their wives and being a nice supportive wife.

Jackson tile
Jackson tile

As you know, I also like tile. I saw a great bit of tile at the entrance to one of the shops that would be a wonderful quilt border. I wasn’t quite tall enough to get the full repeat, but you get idea. Who will be the first one to make it into a quilt border?

I am back on the idea of doing and embroidered quilt of California land marks to raise funds for the Native Sons Cleft Palette effort. I spent some time collecting  images, not to copy, but to use as inspiration, if I ever do it.

Magazine: Quilt with Scraps

Threads Publication: Quilt with Scraps
Threads Publication: Quilt with Scraps

My local grocery store has a lot of interesting magazines and they change them up quite frequently. I saw one called ‘Salt’ once and then never saw it again.

Last Tuesday, I was doing the weekly shopping and saw this magazine at the checkout stand. Of course, I had to buy it.

It is a publication by the same people who make Threads. Scrapitude is on my mind, so I grabbed it to see what quilty loveliness was there.

It is actually more of a book in magazine format, though here is no title page.

The whole magazine appears to be written by Joan Ford and discussing her Scrap Therapy program/system. I was interested in the various sections (they weren’t really articles) and how she presents the system.

One thing she does is cut her scraps into 2″, 3.5″ and 5″ squares. She explains how much can be done with those sizes, including how well they fit together. It occurred to me that I could test this on a donation quilt at quilt some point.

Aside from the sizes, her system seems to include the concept of Scraps+1. Fortunately she has the sense to point out that it is fine to buy a background fabric to go with your scraps. She considers design when she is discussing laying out the scraps, which I appreciate greatly.

Included is a sensible approach to some of the basics. She has a section on accurate cutting and shows a slightly different way to hold the ruler to keep it in place. In places where she does things slightly differently than the assumed norm, she explains why she does it that way.

The projects are interesting, too. One thing that s a given is that more fabrics are better than one. Many of the projects are inspired by the Infinite Variety show, but do not mimic the quilts in that show. One of the quilts inspired by the show is blue and cream. I love that! I love that she shows how to expand beyond what the pattern shows.

There are a lot of photos and diagrams, which helps explain the techniques. Applique’ as well as piecing is included and Ms. Ford marks the patterns by difficulty. She does not shy from intermediate and advanced patterns.

If you see this magazine, it is beautifully done and well worth the money.

Various & Sundry #1 2014

What I am Reading

  • I plowed through, via audiobook, a number of the Jo Beckett series of mystery novels by Meg Gardiner while I was home over the holidays. They novels are a little formulaic, but I like the characters and the relationship of the characters to one another. The latest one, The Nightmare Thief, is the best, I think, though I liked the character development in the others as well.
  • Quilty as Charged by Spike Gillespie

Want some free audio books, so you can listen and sew? Try They have a lot of public domain stuff.


We moved the blog to a new hosting site. This will alleviate, with any luck, the 500 Internal Server errors that were recurring with some regularity. If you are reading this, you have gotten through the worst of it. If you commented before the move, but not since, your comment will not show up until I confirm you are not a spammer. I try to be very quick about it, but if you are on the East Coast and commenting at 6am, you’ll have to wait until I get up a few hours later. 😉

We have noticed a few missing posts. If you commented on one of the missing posts, we will have to restore it and then I can respond to the comment on the blog. I’ll try to send you an email sooner, though. Polly, you leave such fabulous comments and  you are one of the ones in this bucket. So sorry! Data conversion is a *itch!

Projects, Patterns & Tutorials

Quiet Play blog has a very appealing BOM called Sew Kitschy. It is appealing for me because of the turquoise and red. The imagery consists of 1950s looking kitchen accessories. I am not sure how the artist will create some of the patterns, but I look forward to seeing what you all make.

I found a pillowcase pattern that might be more my speed. I haven’t tried it, but there is nothing about selvedges, which might be a blessing. Thanks to Pam for pointing me to it.

There is an interesting Blog Hop going on called Dreaming of Stars. I saw it on the Magnolia Bay Quilts blog.

Scrapitude Step 4, Part 1, the Block has been posted on Sandy’s blog.

Now I know what crumb blocks are. Daisy mentioned it on her podcast and I had a minute to go look up the explanation on Bonnie Hunter’s site. I know it as mosaic quilting! I do it all the time and make new fabric from like colors.

I really like the Super Size Castle block from Sew Mama Sew. After the Swoon and Round and Round, I am thinking that blowing up some of these blocks with 85 pieces is a good idea and a lot of bang for my buck.

Joyce, over at Quilting Adventures, has a blog post up about making Hearts. It came about because of the upcoming Valentine’s Day. She acknowledges that many do not celebrate VDay and this project transcends those people to be all inclusive. It is a really sweet idea and an easy project – really good for TV time, or doctor waiting room time.

Helpful Hints, Tips, Traps & Tricks

If you need to know how much yardage a layer cake has in it, take a look at this page of quilt terms. I didn’t check the math, but it is a start.

Robin has a great, temporary, but not lame, tip for preventing your rotary ruler from shifting while you cut. You can find it and a brief overview of other more permanent methods on her blog.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Guggenheim has 474 free art books available online. There is excellent access to catalogs, bulletins and other hard to find art materials. thanks to Timi for pointing that out to me.

From ResearchBuzz “Wellcome Images is releasing over 100,000 high resolution images under a Creative Commons license (CC-BY). “The earliest item is an Egyptian prescription on papyrus, and treasures include exquisite medieval illuminated manuscripts and anatomical drawings, from delicate 16th century fugitive sheets, whose hinged paper flaps reveal hidden viscera to Paolo Mascagni’s vibrantly coloured etching of an ‘exploded’ torso.” Good morning, Internet…” I am sure you’ll find some inspiration for your quilts there.

I heard a recent lament from a quiltmaker friend who hadn’t followed her own advice and put the kind of information on her label that she really needed. Yes, she put name and year, but not whether the quilt was from a guild challenge or made especially because of some specific inspiration. What if we all put QR codes on the backs of our quilts? Then, we could tweak the related page infinitely. I saw an article recently about prettifying QR Codes. There are Android & iOS versions to play with for free.

Fabric, Supplies, Tools & Jewels

I popped by the CraftSanity blog and was thrilled to see a feast for the eyes. The fabrics shown are gorgeous and I feel the first stirrings of interest in buying some fabric that I have felt in awhile.

Timeless Treasures has a hilarious vampire fabric. You don’t often see hilarious and vampire in the same sentence, I know, but this fabric made me laugh.


Weeks Ringle and Bill Kerr will have an exhibit of Modern Quilts at the Wisconsin Quilt Museum from now until the beginning of April. If you are a reader from Wisconsin, I would love to hear what you think.

The California State Parks are celebrating the 150th (WOW!) anniversary of the system with a quilt contest. Make a quilt, make history. The contest will include an online show of quilts created by quilters throughout the state to honor our state parks. The theme of the quilts is any aspect of California State Parks that inspires you. There are no restrictions as to quilting style, fabric, technique, size, etc!!!

Other Artists

Friend Julie has a new website and her own domain. Check it out at I am jealous. I really need to work on, but haven’t done it. Yes, I am putting it on the list.

Have you seen Pam’s English Paper Piecing Project? It is stunning. I love the fabrics she chose.

You can still read Libby Lehman’s CaringBridge site. She went home last week, which is great news. You have to log in to leave a comment.

Frank's Lovey
Frank’s Lovey

I am in an online quilt group and periodically a member will have a really terrible year. this happened to a member recently. We all made blocks and one of the members put them together into a ‘lovey’. I no longer remember which block I made, though I suspect it is the Sawtooth Star with the black on white background to the right of the center. I think I made it during my Star Sampler craze last year.

I was interested in the way the author of the With Strings Attached blog calls quilt tops ‘flimsies.’ I have never heard that before. She has a page with all of her flimsies listed (no links, though) so you can take a look.

Quilty Fun

Most Interesting Man
Most Interesting Man

I do think that quiltmakers, for the most part, are funny people. Recently I saw this posted to Instagram by MissouriMel and retweeted by Alex Veronelli of Aurifil fame. I wonder if the most interesting man knows?

Not Quilt Related

Check out some interesting youth art on a site called DeviantArt.

Some of you read of my computer woes last summer. After reading a brief article about Windows 8, I feel a bit vindicated in my frantic search for a Windows 7 machine when Windows 8 was taking over the world.

Are you interested in cheesecake (@HQSuz??). I met a librarian at a recent conference who bakes cheesecakes in his spare time. Then he writes about them in a blog. He is a librarian, after all, and that is what we do. You can see the regular blog as well, which has interesting bits of information, things about life, books, etc.


Creative Prompt #242: Rain

Purple Rain by the Artist formerly known as Prince (or does he have a name again?

acid rain

Definition: “Rain is liquid water in the form of droplets that have condensed from atmospheric water vapor and then precipitated—that is, become heavy enough to fall under gravity. Rain is a major component of the water cycle and is responsible for depositing most of the fresh water on the Earth. It provides suitable conditions for many types of ecosystem, as well as water for hydroelectric power plants and crop irrigation.

The major cause of rain production is moisture moving along three-dimensional zones of temperature and moisture contrasts known as weather fronts. If enough moisture and upward motion is present, precipitation falls from convective clouds (those with strong upward vertical motion) such as cumulonimbus (thunder clouds) which can organize into narrow rainbands. In mountainous areas, heavy precipitation is possible where upslope flow is maximized within windward sides of the terrain at elevation which forces moist air to condense and fall out as rainfall along the sides of mountains. On the leeward side of mountains, desert climates can exist due to the dry air caused by downslope flow which causes heating and drying of the air mass. The movement of the monsoon trough, or intertropical convergence zone, brings rainy seasons to savannah climes.

The urban heat island effect leads to increased rainfall, both in amounts and intensity, downwind of cities. Global warming is also causing changes in the precipitation pattern globally, including wetter conditions across eastern North America and drier conditions in the tropics.[citation needed] Antarctica is the driest continent. The globally averaged annual precipitation over land is 715 mm (28.1 in), but over the whole Earth it is much higher at 990 mm (39 in).[1] Climate classification systems such as the Köppen climate classification system use average annual rainfall to help differentiate between differing climate regimes. Rainfall is measured using rain gauges. Rainfall amounts can be estimated by weather radar.

Rain is also known or suspected on other planets, where it may be composed of methane, neon, sulfuric acid or even iron rather than water.” Wikipedia

Jung Ji-Hoon (born June 25, 1982), better known by his stage name Rain, is a South Korean singer, actor, songwriter, dancer, model, producer and designer.

no rain on the way

Rain, rain go away come again another day

1932 movie

Who stopped the rain?

Rain is a full-service digital agency, comprised of storytellers, designers, developers and bright minds from every corner of the creative space.

A bank is a place where they lend you an umbrella in fair weather and ask for it back when it begins to rain.
Robert Frost

Rain (Registered Trademark) Handcrafted Vodka.


rain delay (baseball)

Rain” is a song by the English rock band the Beatles, credited to Lennon–McCartney and first released in June 1966 as the B-side of the “Paperback Writer.”

It’s raining men

Radio and Internet Newsletter

There is more to sex appeal than just measurements. I don’t need a bedroom to prove my womanliness. I can convey just as much sex appeal, picking apples off a tree or standing in the rain.
Audrey Hepburn

2006 movie

Post the direct URL (link) where your drawing, doodle, artwork is posted (e.g. your blog, Flickr) in the comments area of this post. I would really like to keep all the artwork together and provide a way for others to see your work and/or your blog.

We are also talking about this on Twitter. Use the hashtag #CPP

The Creative Prompt Project, also, has a Flickr group, which you can join to  post your responses. I created this spot so those of you without blogs and websites would have a place to post your responses.

Birthday Report

I feel somewhat self indulgent by sharing my birthday report with you. I had such a great day, though, that I can’t help myself. I love my birthday and really strive to savor it every year. I think I would love to have it more than once a year, but then I would get really old, really fast and it wouldn’t be as special. The bonus was that I had a day off of work!

First, I got up and wrote in my journal and drank my tea. The boys got up and DH made us an omelette (I didn’t even have to ask!), then I started opening gifts. I couldn’t believe the generosity of my friends and family. I couldn’t even open all the gifts at once.

Granary Fabrics
Granary Fabrics

Later, I went to pick up my sewing machine and out to lunch with Maureen. Our favorite lunch place is right near the Granary, so while I waited for her, I looked at fabric. Julie and I are going to do a block project with the 100 Modern Quilt Blocks book by Tula Pink and I saw the perfect background. My mother-in-law gave me some money and the fabrics are the result. I really like the Granary. The fabrics are all commercial and most of the ladies there tend towards non-art quilts, but I like the busyness and the variety of products in the place. They have a lot of fabric that is well organized and it is clean. They have lots of everything as well.

Birthday Gifts
Birthday Gifts

And then there was the birthday box! OMG! TFQ out did herself this year and sent me the most luscious quiltmaking fabric and supplies and inspiration. If I don’t buy anything else this year, I will be all set.

I also put the books that Julie gave me and some gifts that DH gave me in the picture. I am not tall enough to include them all.

One item I received was a FitBit. I have been wanting one and am pleased to finally be able to see where I am in terms of fitness. My first morning workout was over 2,000 steps, which is amazing!

Black/Grey Donation Quilt

2014: Black/Grey Donation Quilt
2014: Black/Grey Donation Quilt

I am back on the donation quilt bandwagon with the Black/Grey Donation Quilt. I was afraid this would be a little depressing, but I think it will be great for a teenager.

I used the patches as a leaders and enders as I was working on Scrapitude.

It isn’t turning out exactly the way I thought, but I like it. I have four other blocks around somewhere, but they are misplaced. They’ll turn up.

Pink Spider’s sister

Amy's Group Project
Amy’s Group Project

Remember last week when I showed you the Pink Spider Looking at the Stars? Well, Amy and I are friends on FB and she chimed in about her version of the quilt. She was in my quilt group and made another quilt with the same fabrics. She sent me a photo and gave me permission to post it. I am posting it here.

This is a great example of the same fabrics being used in completely different ways. I really like the white background as it gives the quilt a lightness.

Scrapitude Continues Again

I went to Memphis for work last week and really missed sewing. I arrived home on Saturday around 8. No sewing that night, but Sunday, I got to it. Sandy posted the next clue on Scrapitude sometime last week and people were already finishing up their blocks – yes, that clue included the blocks layout – and I was chomping at the bit to sew. As soon as I got some Sunday chores out of the ay, I started laying the blocks out.

Scrapitude: Don't Do This
Scrapitude: Don’t Do This

I realized pretty quickly that I would have to rip out the units I had sewn with the large plain triangles and the complex corner units, because that combination was completely wrong. Duh. I didn’t rip them out before, because I was hoping I was ahead and not wrong. Sadly, Charlotte has another plan in mind and I was wrong. I ripped a little and sewed a little and finally got enough of the Jester Hat blocks (I’ll have to look up the real name sometime) to make up 25 blocks. I slowed down on the ripping and started to sew in earnest.

Scrapitude: Missing Jester Hat blocks
Scrapitude: Missing Jester Hat blocks

As you can see, I laid out the various parts into blocks. Most of my Jester Hat units are not 4.5″ and that really bugs me. I think it is because of switching machines, what feels like, several dozen times.

As I arranged the layout, I did a the pieces around to maximize the colors and spread like colors across the piece. Mostly I just laid them out. There is enough variety so, for the most part, no two fabrics are next to each other. Still I thought the piece looked like a bit of a jumbled mess.

I went and got my machine on Monday and used it to make some of the blocks, but after about two hours of sewing, it is acting up, so I didn’t get as much done as I would have liked. 🙁

I can’t be too upset, because I did get quite a bit done. I also had fun on my birthday, got back in the workout saddle AND I was thrilled to be back and playing with fabric.

Scrapitude: Too dark?
Scrapitude: Too dark?

I am still thinking about the piece as a whole. With Mystery Quilts, it is hard to figure out a cohesive look for the whole when you don’t know what the whole will be. I guess that is the nature of Mystery Quilts. Rather than exciting, it is causing me some anxiety. I think, because of the amount of the turquoise and pink that there is an element of cohesion. Or I might be wishing strongly.

In terms of the scrappiness of the piece, I have been concerned all along. It is easy not to be too concerned while grabbing fabrics and cutting them up. What could go wrong, right? There are a lot of different fabrics and, though most are really clear, there are some dull ones (see that yellow with sailors towards the bottom of the above photo?). I think they are ok in the grand scheme, but I would be happy if they were gone.

I think the dots-as-background pull the piece together, even though the background is made up of a lot of different dot fabrics. Still I have some concerns about some of the darker fabrics. I have arrows pointing to the fabrics that are really B List fabrics, in terms of this piece. There are some others. I am going to leave them, because Maureen said they would be ok. I also don’t want to rip anymore. I am trying to spread them out so that they do not clump together to create a dark spot or hole in the quilt.

Scrapitude detail
Scrapitude detail

And so, I ended up with these blocks. To the right are the completed blocks. they are bright and cheerful and I am glad I used my dots for the background. I think it needs to be the Year of the Dots, a year where I will use my dots.

I have also made some of the triangle units designated in Clue #4 part 1 and Clue #4 part 2. I think this piece will be set on point, but I am not sure how as there are still sashing strips. I do like the look of the two triangle (corner??) units.

Scrapitude: Large Triangle Unit
Scrapitude: Large Triangle Unit

I had to finish ripping the rest of the wrongly sewn blocks in order to make the piece above. It looks fairly complex, but is pretty easy to put together.

One good thing about a Mystery Quilt is making all the units upfront. I didn’t like all that cutting, but it really makes this step go fast.

Scrapitude: Small Triangle Unit
Scrapitude: Small Triangle Unit

These also look fairly complex, but the same applies. I am getting a lot of bang for my buck!

Previous Scrapitude Posts


We give bags of gifts to the officers of the guild. Some of us make tote bags and then all the guild members bring a gift for each officer. It is a lot easier than making a quilt. It also allows people to contribute in a way that makes them comfortable.

Needle Cases
Needle Cases

We encourage people to bring small gifts, such as spools of thread, packs of pins, needles, Pigma pens and WonderClips. We also encourage people to make small gifts, like zipper pouches. Some just write heartfelt cards and I know that is appreciated.

This time I made needle cases. As I mentioned in previous posts, I found the needle case pattern in a magazine and modified it to suit my needs.

I used, mostly, scraps for these needle cases. I like this project and am pleased with the modifications I made to the pattern. It is something I can make quickly as a gift.

I wasn’t able to make the meeting yesterday as I just returned from a work trip. I hope the officers liked them.


Book Review: Quilty As Charged

Quilty as Charged: Undercover in a Material WorldQuilty as Charged: Undercover in a Material World by Spike Gillespie

This is a hard book to categorize. When I borrowed it from the Library, I thought it was a mystery. When I started to read it, I thought it was a memoir. As I read it, I realized it was full interviews. The only thing I can call this book is a memoir full of interviews. I am okay with it not being a mystery, but I wish there had been more memoir, influenced by the interviews.

I thought the interviews were, mostly, out of context, not to mention poorly edited. In some cases the interviews were repetitive and nearly incomprehensible. I know that the author was trying to give us a sense of the voice of the interviewees, but I would have rather had more editing.

People say what they think, often, but not always as clearly as they would if they had the opportunity for a second draft. I think Ms. Gillespie should have cleaned up the stream of consciousness. I don’t think it adds to the book and verges on distraction.

With that criticism out there, the interviews were interesting. It was nice to read about Ricky Tims’ background and how he got started. One quote from his interview, which sticks in my mind is “So whatever I was doing in my freeness as an ignoramus, I ended up leaving that behind so I could learn to do it right. I went into the box, I learned to do it right, and for years that’s the way I sewed. (pg.47)” Later, he follows up with “Once he mastered traditional quilting-the technique for which he wins awards-he revisited his original style and began teaching classes in which he encourage students to cut without the aid of rulers.” These two quotes warm my heart, because they show that knowing how to perform accurate work (I won’t say “piece the right way”) matters and had value as does styles like Tims’ Caveman style.

Later, the interview with Tims has him saying “I wanted to learn to do it right. There were two reasons why I wanted to do it right. Number one, I wanted to challenge myself to excel. Why do things halfway? Number two, I think, comes into the dynamic I really often want to play down-that I’m a guy in a woman-dominated field. Because of that, I thought there was a need in me to excel, because my work was going to scrutinized more.So I needed to do a better job so that if they looked at, I had a little more respect. Now that’s a blanket statement; that not everybody. (pg.51)”

Quotes like the above and gems about Gillespie’s life make the book worthwhile.

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