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A Project Revealed

On March 27, I made a quilt block that looked like this:
In fact, I made quite a few blocks in this pattern, albeit with different fabrics. Well, the pink and white small blocks stayed the same, but the larger blocks were varied. Because I happily give my quilts away, when my sister Nancy expressed interest, I said I would be delighted to make something for her. Although she is an excellent seamstress, both she and Carol are more accomplished than I, she actually has to work for a living, leaving little to no time for sewing. She sent me a photograph of her preferred colors, and I went shopping.

After making about fifteen or so of the above block, I decided I did not like it as a whole. The idea was solid, the overall picture not so much. How about some pinwheels? Good idea Gail. I went to work making pinwheels using the technique I learned from the video and things began to take shape. I then arranged them to my liking, followed by sewing the blocks into row,s and the rows into what you see below. My next dilemma was finding a backing material which adds so much to a quilt. Digging through my fabrics I found a lovely light pink striped fabric from my estate sale find. Not wide enough? I can fix that. Once it was sandwiched, I used another method I learned online, clamping it to my table, pinning it all together. Because it should be super tight, you leave the pins open until unclamping. I used a whole lot of pins!
What I love so much about the pinwheel pattern is that by putting them side by side you then get another pinwheel with four different colors! Love those patterns within patterns!

Here's what I did with the earlier block which looked just fine when not combined with 25 others of the same ilk.
The quilting went better than any I've finished to date...here's what it looks like a little closer:
I was so excited to send it to her in Tennessee that I did not even wash it first, something I always do because it makes it look all the nicer. Now that it is in her possession, having received it Friday afternoon, I can share it with you.

So, I was pretty pleased with my efforts until this morning when I received a text message from Matt--they visited a quilt gallery in Japan, and oh my, oh my! The skill those quilters possess puts my humble efforts to shame! Not only were the quilts they saw hand quilted, but hand pieced as well! Definitely a lost art. He told me the ladies were delighted when he said his Mom made quilts and he even went so far as to show them one from Camera Crazy--how about that? I do love hand quilting, but oh my goodness it takes SO long. Having spent more than a month quilting a small throw, I am bound and determined to improve my machine quilting skills.

At the moment the only thing I have going for me is a pretty good eye for color..the rest, I hope will come with practice like I did with my photography. At least with quilting I have some background skills unlike photography which I knew nothing about. I can still remember Matt showing me how to access menus on my first baby Panasonic which launched my business. For eight solid years I took photographs EVERY single day looking to improve. Crazy, right?

I still take tons of photographs, just not every single thing I see! That said, I still spot things that I will stop my car, wherever I am to photograph. The latest was this huge bloom which I presume is in the lily family. Driving along Pershing I spotted it and drove around the block to find a spot to park. The bud was so sturdy it almost looked like plastic.
Unlike other lilies I'm familiar with this one grows on a bush...really such a lovely shade of yellow.
And while we are on the subject of yellow, let's have one more look for the season at the goldfinch who have now moved on for the year.
Aren't they something?

The other morning, Thursday or Friday I made my way over to Sweetbriar hoping the owls would be out early. Arriving around 7:30, there was one of the owlets perching in golden morning light.
Needless to say I was ecstatic! Not only is it difficult to spot the owlets but most of the time the lighting is just plain wrong as it was on Saturday, around lunch time when one of my spies, called saying she was amongst many looking up at the two owlets! I hopped in the car and flew over. I tried every angle I could to get the shot and finally came away with this.
The fluffiness of their chest feathers just kills me!

In other news, the amaryllises are blooming in so many yards...not mine but others are kind enough to share. Our neighbor Wanda has about fifty or so blooming....
I do love the red, but I'm pretty partial to the two tone as well. There's that contrast thing we've been talking about.
I hope you are still reading because I have some exciting news to share. Our niece Katie, posted on fb about how some messages are hidden from you. Following the directions, I, indeed, found it to be true. Some old ones from folks photography related, and one dated last November from a woman who said she was our Grandpa Stahl's granddaughter. Say what? Immediately I responded to her message, and she did as well. Giving her my phone number, I asked that she call me, and call me she did, yesterday afternoon. Having worked on her family genealogy for a long time, she found our Mother's obituary, and then began her search for me. To make a long story short, here's the connection; her Grandmother married my Grandfather after he and Lottie, (remember her?), divorced. Joelle lives in North Carolina now, but there was a time when she lived very close to "her" grandparents, spending most weekends at their farm in Missouri, as she did when she went to college nearby. When my Mother's parents divorced, by all accounts, she was devastated, and although we, as a family, went to visit him, I knew him not at all. Imagine how great it was to hear tales about him from Joelle. It really is astonishing how the internet has changed our world, don't you agree?

Always looking to improve my skill sets,

Gail

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