Sunday, August 28, 2016

I Think I Found the Perfect Fabric

When I admitted that the time might be  coming to retire my beloved Nancy Drew bag, I knew the hardest part would be finding the perfect fabric. It has to be something that I absolutely love, that I won't get tired of if I carry it around every day for a couple of years. Something that can compete with those book spines...

And it's got to be something from my existing stash.  I've got gorgeous fabric I still love years after purchasing it, but the ladies in vintage Barbie-style dresses are on a light background that would show dirt. The vintage school prints will scream "homeschool mom" just a little too loudly. The vintage circus posters (which get bonus points because they came from one of Grandma's thrift store bags) might be a little too adventurous for an everyday bag, but they reminded me of  this print....

I think I've got the basis for my new tote bag! There's only a fat quarter in my stash, but that's actually more than I had of the book spine print. And I've got red and black yardage that I bought when I thought this was going to be a wall quilt.

Weekly Stash Report

Fabric used this week: 0 yards
Fabric used year to date: 6 1/2 yards
Fabric added this week:  0 yards
Fabric added year  to date: 18 1/4 yards (+2 sheets)
Net added for 2016: 12 3/4 yards

Yarn used this Week: 0  yards
Yarn used year to Date: 4850 yards
Yarn added this Week: 0 yards
Yarn added Year to Date: 7366 yards
Net added for 2016: 2516 yards

This post is linked to Patchwork Times.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

{I've Been Reading} The Fabled Oak

About fifteen years ago, I read some horror novels by Simon Clark and really enjoyed them. At the time, most of his books were only available overseas and the budget didn't stretch quite far enough for me to order them off of ebay, not without cutting back on the cross stitch supplies.  Now, I've got more of a book budget and some of those books have been made available on Kindle. (Did I mention how much I love these e-readers?)

The Fabled Oak is apparently part of a series. Ghost hunter Byron Makangelo and his team have been summoned to a high-tech hippy commune to investigate "Tree Face" a menacing apparition that terrifies the group's children. I've been unable to find a list of the books in the series, but this definitely wasn't the first. It felt like I'd started watching a random episode of an established television series. Although I had to figure out who was who, the ancient oak with its centuries of offerings was interesting enough to pull me in. And the story behind the tree was truly haunting.

I can't recommend On Deadly Ground. It's one of the books I was trying to find a decade ago, so I was looking forward to reading it. The book is long, almost seven hundred pages, and I found myself skimming over pages and pages of graphic gore and sex that did nothing to advance the plot. The whole thing is told from the point of a nineteen year old boy and it takes forever for him to figure out and explain why the world is ending. All we know is that the ground has become hot and the members of humanity who aren't dead yet have been reduced to cannibalistic savages. The apocalypse does start to get interesting near the end, but for me it was too little too late.

So I'd recommend one book but not the other.  I'll definitely be downloading some of the other titles I missed when they were first published.

Disclosure -- the publisher provided me with ARCs. 

Friday, August 26, 2016

Let's Make Baby Quils! {8/26/16}

Let's Make Baby Quilts Linky Party Rules: 
Link directly to your post or specific Flickr photo. Your post can be about a baby quilt that's finished, or in progress, or you can be writing about what you have planned,  as long as it's about baby quilts. You're welcome to link to baby quilt posts that aren't brand new, but please don't submit the same post or picture more than once. I'd love it if you linked back to my site, either with a text link or the Let's Make Baby Quilts! button.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Another Towel That Can't Run Away

Having a kitchen towel that's stuck to the stove makes life in the kitchen much easier, especially now that I've learned the trick to making one that doesn't rely on velcro or buttons. 

The other night, I went through eight towels while making dinner. I can't explain how that happened, but it did.  Every time I reached for it, my towel was gone. I need more towels with big buttonholes in them. They're not a fool-proof system, but at least it's a bit of a hint that I AM STILL USING THIS AND DO NOT WANT YOU TO WALK OFF WITH IT...

After a trip to Hobby Lobby and a trip to Joann's, I used a coupon and bought myself a flour sack towel. Then I found another one at MECCA  for fifty cents.  When I got home and unrolled that one from its tightly taped little bundle I  found someone else's partially finished embroidery on one corner. Dang!

It was a free-hand embroidered circle with flowers. Definitely not my style and I couldn't have finished it if I wanted to, so I lopped off the stitched corner and did my own embroidery on the opposite end.

The iron-on transfer slipped and gave the spoon double lines. It doesn't show up as badly now that it's finished, but it sure was hard on my eyes while I doing the stitching.

Now I'm eyeballing my other store-bought towel and wondering if I'd rather gamble that my hand will stay steady while I trace a design or that my vintage iron-ons will do what they should.

Edited to add -- in a Facebook discussion that had nothing at all to do with embroidery, someone said that Target sold flour sack towels for a buck a piece. I got this four-pack for $3.57. They're not as huge as the ones I've bought in the past, but they're big enough to do the job. I'll let you know how they hold up.

And what I decide to stitch on them.


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