Slow Sunday Stitching Mid-August

Kathy at Kathy’s Quilts hosts a Slow Sunday Stitching party that I join up with most weekends.

She usually has some good advice in regards to slowing down, taking a rest, a deep breath, etc. Slow Stitching is a respite for many from the frantic pace of their everyday lives.

Slow Stitching can involve hand quilting or applique, cross stitching, rug hooking, or English paper piecing, and of course there are many other examples to add to the list.

The main idea is to just relax in to your project that isn’t going to get done in a week, or maybe even in a year.

Kind of like my grand dog Koopa here who was over for a sleepover :)

In the past week or so,  I have created three Slow Stitching scenarios for me to work on in any given day.

I can hand stitch binding to the back of my Scrappy Granny quilt.

I can continue on with the tying of my 1857 Album top. When I posted about this a few days ago I had a request to show the tying process.

  • I purchased a set of curved needles at Joanne Fabrics ages ago.  There are four needles. Two are large for tying with yarn, and two are smaller for tying with embroidery thread or crochet cotton.
  • I put a very long amount of thread or yarn onto the needle and proceed with getting it through the three layers.
  • Cut and continue on until the thread runs out.
  • I tie a knot four times, and then trim.

Tied quilts hold up amazingly well. If you want to pick and choose what you hand quilt, but do not enjoy machine quilting, they are a nice option.  There are tied quilts in my family that I have made that have held up for 20 years now, being washed on a regular basis.

I have a book here titled “Quilted All Day, the Prairie Journals of Ida Chambers Melugin” by Carolyn O’Bagy Davis, and in the old days, tying a quilt was very common, according to the various diarists in this amazing book.

As to my third option, traditional hand quilting,  I created a quilt sandwich of my Botanical top and began to hand quilt it. Very slow going thus far, outlining and echo quilting a bit, having to turn the hoop constantly…. and then I decided to follow the musical notes as filler in this block.

There are six large blocks and I am thinking to do echo quilting and wavy filler in three of them and crosshatch in three for a contrast. I showed the quilt top in an earlier post ( HERE )

Back to the tying for a moment :)   Several years ago I completed a quilt ( Snowball )  where I hand quilted the center but tied the border with yarn for a contrast.  I still love it :)

Finished Snowball Quilt

Some new blooms around here….this gladiola was not a bulb that I planted this year;  rather I’d planted some last year!

I am glad that I took a picture because even though I had it propped in the front a bit, since it was so tall, it toppled over and broke.  It was going on 6 feet!   It’s in a vase now.

Do you enjoy surprises in  your garden ?  ( and I don’t mean the weeds! :)  I only purchased 3 tomato plants this year but I have 5 going strong….2 are ‘volunteers’ and they were just as pleasant of a surprise as this gladiola. One is just starting to get tomato flowers now so I don’t know if I’ll see any tomatoes from it prior to frost, but the other is loaded with cherry tomatoes…still green, but there will be a harvest down the line.

The other tomato plants have started to provide one or two per day and I am enjoying each one.

NOTE : I had this post written up between Friday evening and Saturday morning, to post on Sunday.

And then Charlottesville happened. I actually had clicked on a news site ( Raw Story ) where they had an onlooker’s cell phone video of the car plowing into people and bodies flying…shortly after it happened.

Many of the other news sites didn’t know if it had been accidental or not at that time.  Let me tell you, it was no accident. It was horrific ; at high speed and planned. My youngest son was here with me at that time and was just as shocked as I was.

As of this writing it is being reported that one is dead and 19 injured.  There was a rally of ‘alt-right’, Nazis, KKK, etc. and counter-protesters. There was violence between the two in some areas,  but in this case a group of people were simply marching down the street, harming no one. And someone full of hatred and sickness mowed them down.

The “Unite the Right” rally, which was organized by members of the so-called alt-right, were supposed to be protesting the planned removal of a statue honoring Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee in the city’s Emancipation Park. ( NBC )

While he is often trigger happy on Twitter, Trump never said a word about this rally and the violence until his wife Melania said something, then another person wrote up a Tweet for him that clearly was not his own. His own came later where he said what was going on there was ‘sad’.   He gave a speech later ; there are many opinions out there on that. You can probably guess mine. He left out condemning a few things, you see. Such as white supremacists, Nazis, the alt-right and statements like this :

David Duke of the KKK saying that the event represented fulfilling the promises of President Trump.

“This represents a turning point for the people of this country. We are determined to take our country back, we’re going to fulfill the promises of Donald Trump, and that’s what we believed in, that’s why we voted for Donald Trump, because he said he’s going to take our country back and that’s what we gotta do,” Duke said.

Granted, it was a rushed situation but in case he forgot in the hastily prepared speech, he was given the opportunity afterward, but he refused to denounce white nationalism when asked several times by reporters.  He simply left the room, turning his back on them.

I almost forgot nuclear annihilation with North Korea! It’s been quite the week. Thank goodness for Slow Stitching and don’t worry, bee happy.

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Baking & Binding

All of the 6 inches or so of snow shown in the last post melted, then mid-week we got another round…just enough cold and wind and swirling snow to give us a light ground cover. I baked cookies in the early morning….two baking sheets worth here in the photo and more in the oven. I generally keep a dozen here and send the other 3 or more dozen down to the kids.

I have always used the Nestle Toll House recipe BUT add 1/2 extra cup flour + a handful of oatmeal to the mix. Sometimes I’ll do a mix of chocolate chips and butterscotch chips. If you purchase generic chocolate the Nestle recipe can be found HERE.  Trust me, if you add that extra 1/2 cup of flour to the recipe your cookies won’t flatten and the oatmeal is just to tell yourself “this is a healthy mid-morning snack” :)  Seriously I think it just adds some nice texture.

As to the grandson in the middle of the picture above ( courtesy of my DIL on FB ) he has been asking for me to bake bread, so that is next on the agenda when I get in the mood. As to the one next to him, we were pleased to see this award from January at his school! :) My DIL took a photo of it when she was there.

He has no clue why he got this. Maybe they just pick kids out of a hat, who knows :)

Awhile ago I mentioned that I had finished tying the Gradient quilt and binding was needed. I finally started that.  The back has some skulls & roses ; my youngest is a Grateful Dead fan.

I have resolved to stop all applique and *fun* hand stitching until this binding is completed.  I will continue to take breaks ( I hate to sew binding ) and get a little hand quilting in, however.

I have finished the blue block in Scrappy Granny and am ready to move the hoop again.

SUNDAY MORNING UPDATE : It went up to 64 degrees on Saturday in the weirdest winter ever…:)

I am about halfway through with the binding and may be doing my Slow Sunday Stitching at Kathy’s Quilts out on the porch on Sunday afternoon if this weather continues!

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