Sunday, August 30, 2009

Zonnah has curves

{Plan A, which didn't come to be}

August is Zonnah's month for Snip.Sew.Send. She asked for 7.5" square blocks with curves and circle featuring the floral print and the red as an accent. Zonnah is putting the blocks together in a quilt for her sister. I sketched out several blocks, but decided on this half flower. It was inspired by a magazine ad for a spa in Savannah.

{The block that is}

Somehow the block ended up 7.5" tall but only 6.5" wide, thus the orange strips flanking the flower. This was my first flat work with curves. I've sewn curves in garments, but this was a lot different. Zonnah, you really stretched my skill on this block and I was very happy for it. I hope you like it!

Rogers' Rocks

As I mentioned last post, when we were on our road trip we went to Rogers' Flea Market in Rogers, OH. If you are ever in the area (Eastern/Northeastern Ohio) you MUST go to this flea market. It is only open on Fridays, but it is huge I tell you. Great vendors, very reasonable prices, Amish baked goods, fresh from the farm produce. It's awesome.
At the first booth, Dirty's dad got me (and himself) a Steelers hat. I was very grateful for it. I put it on right away and it saved my face from getting a sun burn while walking around the market for the next 5 hours. Yeah, it is that big.

{Zip it! Zip it good}

I stopped at the zipper guy and picked up 20 metal zippers in assorted colors for $10. And as he told me 6 times, you can't get zippers like that for $5 a piece, let alone 10 for $5.

{Are you joking me?}

Dirty's dad and his girlfriend, Phyllis, get the liberty to go to the market frequently so they kind of zoom through it. Dirty and I were always lagging behind looking at everything. On one of the many occasions that they were way ahead of us Phyllis spotted a box of fabric under a table and pointed it out to Dirty's dad who asked how much it was. By the time we got there he was pulling the box out saying, "Gimme $3. You just bought this." Dirty handed over the cash and we were half way down the aisle before I realized what happened. All that stuff in the picture was in that box. Eight sets of purse handles and 43 pieces of fabric ranging from fat quarters to 3 full yard cuts. There are quilting cottons, tapestries, corduroy, satin, polyester and home dec weights. I am a little overwhelmed with all the possibilities.

{More for the stash}

On top of all that, Phyllis gave me all these fabrics, too. She is getting ready to move and needs to clean out her basement. Last time we were there she gave me 4 big bags of yarn. This time it's fabric. Each of these is between 2 and 2-1/2 yard cuts. My head is spinning.

At Rogers' we also got a cool vintage aluminum double basin wash tub that "works with your automatic washer" according to the label on the back. That had to stay there since we couldn't fit it in the car.

{Cookies or cake?}

$3 seemed to be the magic price tag. This super cool mixer was negotiated down to $3, too. It works like a dream and looks like the Enterprise from Star Trek. I would love to have a whole kitchen of killer appliances like this.

What are some of your best thrift store/flea market'garage sale scores?


Sunday, August 16, 2009

Ruffleless Ruffle Top

{My version of the Ruffle Top}

Several months ago Sew, Mama, Sew! posted a Ruffle Top tutorial by Rae of Made by Rae. Right away I liked the top and had the fabrics all picked out for it. Then, probably because it was all ready to go, I put it on the back burner. Last weekend we drove to Dirty's dad's house so I finally had a solid reason to make it. Road trip = cute road trip clothes to brag about

The tutorial was really easy to follow and the top turned out better than I expected. I used about a half yard of Alexander Henry's Lola fabric from my stash for the main part of the top and a thrifted bed sheet for the top band and straps. I would have added the ruffles, but cut fabrics for the pockets first and ran out of fabric. The pockets never did make it on the top, but that's OK.

I skipped the armpit divots, but did do the shaping on the sides. That made a big difference. The top is still flowy, but not frumpy.

I am striking a pose at Ohiopyle State Park in PA. We just love it there. Dirty and I were able to slip away for about an hour or so right before dusk to walk around at the falls. We ate a few crab apples and played catch and release with the lightning bugs. Something we can't do here. It was a great weekend. We also went to a FABULOUS flea market in Ohio were we both made some stellar scores, but more about that soon. Well, soon to soonish. =]

Monday, August 3, 2009

Utterly Inspired

This weekend I was able to visit a local museum displaying an exhibit of Gee's Bend Quilts. All I can say is those ladies are amazing. Overcoming so much adversity and forever humble. A looping video of some of the quilters played in the back corner and could be heard throughout the gallery. So many of them had wonderful senses of humor.

{Gee's Bend Quilts Exhibit}

The quilts were quite amazing. This picture was snapped with a cell phone and I really debated whether or not to post it. It doesn't even come close to capturing the colors in the quilts. If you ever get a chance to see these quilts in person, go. Don't hesitate, just go.

Some of the other visitors would point out fabrics in some of the older quilts and say things like "My daughter had a dress with that fabric" or, "I have an apron with that print." Even one of the younger (my age-ish) ladies said that she remembered a lot of clothes and bed sheets she had with fabrics used in the quilts. I just love that the quilters happily grabbed up every stitch of fabric to make the quilts. And they are big! I would guess queen sized and larger. It was quite inspiring.

In semi-related quilting news, I am participating in another quilting bee. She is still looking for 7 members. If you know of anyone looking for a bee send them here.