Flannel & Denim…Done!




I started this with blue flannel and red sweatshirt fabric. I was moving happily along when I ran out of the blue flannel!  I had other flannels, but didn’t want the edges to look out of place, so I cut up a bunch of old jeans and finished up the quilt that way.  I used white cotton for the hand tying, but I’m not sure I like it.  I may have to learn to machine quilt.  What do you think?  Does the hand tied look take away or add to in this case? IMG_7773

The Gift of Fabric!

I recently scored the Jackpot when I was granted a “have at it” over a huge selection of vintage fabric. I have been in a quilting daze ever since! Here is my first quilt top.  I fogot to take the finished photos, as it is off in a package to my neice who decided to give birth a bit early. But you get the idea..







O What FUN

IMG_6091Brown paper packages, tied up with string…naw…too grown up.  Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes?  Sure!  Warm woolen mittens?  You bet!  But the warm fuzzies that these glassy ornaments bring is a WAY favorite thing!  I have seen photos of them on etsy, or pinterest and thought, Why yes! I must have them.  And WHAT to my WONDERING EYES did APPEAR?  IMG_6102

But lots of them everywhere! As basement finds, gifts, and thrift store loot! Oh Merry Christmas to ALL and to ALL a GOOD NIGHT!





The Quilt Saga Con’t

I was up before the sun. With the time change, that’s not hard to do. But for me to get up while the house is dark, start some coffee, and pull out the sewing machine, something is truly amiss. But last night I decided to iron the pin job I did on the edges of the quilt and see if I could build my confidence to just finish it! The quilt is an ebay find. I lusted after it and sent the listing to Anne telling her that birthday, Christmas, Mother’s Day, or any other occation would be complete with this quilt. To my surprise, she actually bought it and brought it to me as a housewarming gift last spring!

IMG_4016It was even more beautiful in person. But I quickly realized it was a quilt top, and not a finished product. I was still thrilled, and planned to ask my talented quilting friend, Shelly, to complete it for me.  But then a twist of fate (and a new job) introduced me to another quilter.  She assured me I could finish this myself, and volunteered to help me.  She bought all the batting and backing and pins and sandwiched it for me. And I got busy tying.  The tying was fun and easy and I couldn’t wait to take the pins out.  Finally the big day arrived, and I unpinned the beauty.  Then I messed it up.  I sewed around the outside of all the ties, and was none too pleased with the result. So the quilt sat for a while. I was afraid if I finished the edges I would wreck it even further.  But one night, watching TV, I started pinning the edges together, and last night I ironed the edges where  I had pinned, and when I awoke this morning, I knew that if all went smoothly, I could finish this sucker once and for all before my first cup of coffee!  And that is just how it happened.

As I sit in the wee hours of the morning with the sewing machine rumbling, I think of my mother. I think of all the quilts on our beds when I was a kid. I think of home-made Halloween costumes.  The back yard grows lighter and lighter, while the hot air kicks out from the furnace.

I’m not much of a sewer, I think to  the woman who sewed this quilt top. I imagine she winced at the thought of it being finished on a machine. But as much as she hates the idea, she’s  grinning because her quilt didn’t end up on a garage floor somewhere, or in a box in an attic, but instead it’s adored and appreciated, even if the new owner is completely inept.

I think of the word “domestic” and I become an Indian descendant: determined to keep the traditions of his fathers alive, and preserve a way of living that is vanishing from the modern world. But it’s my mother’s tradition: the way of the home; industrious, creative, and skillful; refinishing furniture, sewing curtains, knitting socks, baking bread.

The coffee beckons as I finish up the last side. I am not thrilled with my work, but I am thrilled that it is finally finished and I can throw it over a bed.  I am also excited to finish two more quilt tops that I found over the summer.


But mostly I am ready for coffee!

Thanks Anne and Jess!

Before the move, I spent countless hours browsing and dreaming about the details of the new place.  I came across this quilt on ebay and sent the link to my daughter.  What the heck.  Mother’s Day, or  a birthday, or Christmas would be here eventually.  I really thought she would chuckle and dismiss it.  But when she was here for her visit she gave me a huge gift bag with wonderful housewarming card and sure enough; the dream quilt was mine!  What a gal!

The chairs were a gift too!  A beautiful set of four from the new “step mother-in-law” (?) .

What a difference sixty four pictures can make!

Settling in

The kitchen: I didn’t think I liked it, but it’s quickly becoming my favorite. If only I could find those Cape Cod’s to fit!

These are garage and basement finds! The oak table doubles as an island for now, and the shelf sitting on top has been pretty happy where it is!  But it will find a wall somewhere after it’s painted WHITE!

Laundry/Mud room.

The basement is awesome. Check out the Christmas lights. Weird what can make me happy. I was so glad she left them!

And for those cold winter nights…

I see wallpaper in this room’s future.

And this is my favorite little room. For now, a guest bedroom, just as soon as I spy a old white metal bed frame.

Found a whole box of these in the basement.  Score.

Front door has some old hardware too.

Even found a home for those groovy curtains that reminded me of a quilt I had on my bed as a kid.  Gotta love ebay.

Found a whole box of Atlas jars to fill with bath salts!

All Things Vintage

I have noticed since I first started my own family twenty-seven years ago that I had one basic philosophy: to take what I liked from my life up to that point and try to recreate it for my kids.  I enjoyed being free all summer to wander around, and stay up late, and have bonfires, and sleep outside.  So I let my kids stay home from school, and be free like lambs for most of their childhood.  I have memories of quilts on the beds, wallpaper on the walls, warm meals in the evening, football on television, and fires in the fireplace.  And the feelings of warmth and comfort are so strong, that I collect all kinds of things trying to recreate it for the rest of my life.

One of those things is vintage sheets and pillowcases.  I love the bright colors, and floral designs.  I never think new ones are quite as pretty.  And I like mismatched things.  I don’t think my mother could ever afford to buy sets of things, like bedding, so there were just piles of colorful pillowcases, sheets, blankets and quilts folded up in the closet.

I have a few mismatched collections of my own now; old wool blankets, teapots, vintage linen tablecloths and of course, the sheets and pillowcases.  These gems showed up on my doorstep yesterday.  I’ve been trying to curb my thrifting, but then ebay is just a click away!

I also browse wallpaper endlessly.  I cannot get enough of these fantasies.  I imagine wallpapering a bedroom, or a kitchen, or a dining room.  And I laugh inside realizing I have inherited my mother’s taste.

The wallpaper at our cottage was a green metalic floral with glitter in the pattern, and she chose a psychedelic bicentennial color fest in an upstairs bedroom.  My brother even had brown and gold paisley velvet wallpaper.  Mine was just a big playful pink  floral pattern.

I’m thinking I could recreate that too, with a modern twist of course.