Monday, August 21, 2017


Yes, I am back in the throes of packing again. One last hop. I have to remind myself that the hardest part was getting Molly and Buddy across the country. They've stayed in a cabin, flown in an airplane, stayed in a hotel, and are now living in a pet-friendly apartment complex surrounded by other cats and dogs. So only one more upheaval to go.

And because I have no quilts to show you, Molly would like to perform a magic trick for you. First, look closely at the empty plastic bag on the floor.

Ask a random stranger from the audience to inspect the bag. Oh well, he only wants to know if he's on TV.

Ta da! It's Molly.

I'm sure you are so amazed that you'd like to see a close-up.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Design Wall

I did find all the Alternative Jane blocks. Here I have them on display on the design wall at the new (to me) house.

Did I say "design wall at the new house?" Yes, and that's what I did today. I am setting the design wall up in the living room because it is the room with the most light. This may change in the winter...but right not there is so much sun I had to close the shades...and the lighting for the photos is off.

In any case, I can show you how I put the design wall together.

I bought 10 foot lengths of 1 inch PVC piping. I cut three 3 foot lengths and nine 4 foot lengths and laid out a four patch design. The PVC piping is held together with corner, T and + joins.

There is a ratcheting cutting tool that makes cutting the PVC pipe a snap. Literally.

I use a king size flannel sheet for the design wall. I put the top PVC section together (corner, 4 foot length, T join, 4 foot length, corner). Then I opened up the side seam so the top of the sheet becomes a sleeve. Then I slide the top PVC section into the top "sleeve" of the flat sheet.

I also opened the seam in the middle so the middle T join could poke through...and then I slide the middle section of PVC piping into that T join.

I also open up the seam at each end and attach the end sections into the corner joins.

And this is what it looks like with the entire frame put together and the flannel sheet attached through the top "sleeve." At this point I also realized I had made a big mistake! When I cut the lengths of PVC piping, I had planned on having the design wall be seven feet high. However, I didn't take into account that the joins add length and now the design wall almost goes all the way to the ceiling.

When Molly runs up the new design wall she might hit her head. Happily there was an easy fix. I just took off the bottom rung of piping and cut six inches off the three vertical supports. Phew!

That should be plenty of room. The next step is to pin the sides so the flannel sheet is taut across the design wall.

I have shelving units behind this design wall, and I attach the design wall to the shelving units with bungee cords. This setup is preliminary though. The shelving units and design wall are in front of the fireplace and mantel. I don't plan to use the fireplace, but in this current arrangement, I can't reach the shelves easily.

Also, Buddy liked to sleep between the fabric in the shelves and the flannel...forming a bulge at the bottom of the design wall. So I have to fill the shelves and tuck in the bottom of the design wall so Buddy can have a hidey/sleeping spot if he wants.

Okay, its more feline furniture than design wall... and design walls are down right boring without a cat running up it and sending all the blocks to the floor.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Quilting Catch up

Today we learned that our quilts (Pigs in a Blanket and Plaid Bunny Hop) were accepted into the Northwest Quilt Expo. So Molly got to work helping me finish up the hand quilting on the Plaid Bunny quilt.  Her head is right over the quilting needle as she tries desperately to rub her cute onto the quilt.

And here she's trying to add an artful conceptual framework that considers the diversity of plaids used in the quilt combined with the endless march of bunnies.

But let's not forget Buddy who is still detoxing on his digital time-out. He did walk across my keyboard a couple of times though.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Alternative Universe

Okay. It's official. Molly and I have decided to keep Buddy off of Twitter permanently. If his mental state improves, we might let him back on Instagram.

Meanwhile, I am still in the process of moving...and yes, given how long it's taking, let's pretend there is method to the madness and I'm part of the Slow Move movement.

And last night, the quilt guild had Lori of Humble Quilts as the guest speaker and she mentioned that she is taking a long time to quilt her Dear Jane quilt. This made me remember my Alternative Jane quilt and to wonder where it was. (In case you don't remember, these are blocks that Jane Stickle made, but did not include in her infamous Dear Jane quilt).

I think this is where I left off. And I think I decided to include all of the applique owls.

I will need to check the Alternative Jane Universe Almanac to see if she made a speedy chicken block.

Or a lion head.

Although I didn't sew much today (just Plaid Bunny hand quilting), I did get all the necessary ingredients to make a new design wall. Unfortunately, I will have to put it up without Molly's help.

Another vintage butterfly block

Molly is trying to cheer me up by making me sew a vintage butterfly block with cats.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Fabric Bins Assembled

The fabric bins are assembled and accounted for. There is still a lot of sorting to do, but I will wait until I have Molly to supervise. And yes, its a bit odd having fabric in one place and cats in the other. Which would you choose?

I used that wall to take a photo of the large plaid bunny quilt. It's 90 inches wide and 84 inches long. The very long pole was used for a very heavy window treatment that hung over the top of the windows on the other side of this room. My sister thought I should show my haphazard setup.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Molly Wants Your Vote!

Molly welcomes you to enjoy her submission for "Pets on Quilts 2017" the Plaid Bunny Hop. She worked very hard on the quilt and would like to teach you how to make a quilt just like hers.

This is what the quilt looks like without a cat. Very boring, so let's move on.

Designing and planning is the first and most important step in making a quilt. This is what it looks like.

Next, pick out the fabrics for the quilt. This involves lots of cuddling.

There is also a lot of sewing. Molly suggests that you delegate that to staff.

The plaid bunny quilt required lots and lots of bunny ears and tails for the border, and Molly collected these herself.

 Here is Molly layering the quilt. She prefers a wool batting.

Next Molly delegated the quilting to staff who machine stitched around each block and then hand quilted interior details.

Molly was responsible for chasing Buddy off of her quilt so he wouldn't get doggy cooties on it.

A last crucial step is posing on the quilt. Professionals prefer a sophisticated look with a touch of nonchalance.

And don't forget the head shot for the agent and your fan base.

For successful quilt making, Molly suggests getting plenty of sleep, preferably on a quilt. Right now Molly is dreaming of you voting for her as your favorite pet on a quilt.