Sunday, September 25, 2011

New Sewing Toys

Last week I went to visit my sister in Oscoda. We did our own little fabric shop hop. I got lots of fat quarters and a few new toys too.

First is a new light for my sewing machine. I sew in my basement (or as I like to call it, the garden level) and it's hard to brighten all the shadows. I found this light at Delphine's quilt shop in Gaylord.
The light is battery operated and is on the end of a twisty coil (I'm sure the twisty coil has a real name, but I can't think of it). You can see the blue spot it creates on my throat plate.

From the back you can see how the coil wraps around the machine and what the light looks like. You can point it anywhere you want. The best thing is it cost $16. Most other lights like this cost $50 and are plug in.
 The next toy I found was at the Holly Hock Quilt Shop in Harrisville. It's a mini ironing board that clamps onto a shelf or table. I've clamped it on to my sewing cabinet.

My sister told me a 92 year old man in the area makes them. Boy, does he do a great job. It's easy to install and very sturdy and stable. I bought a hobby iron many years ago and never used it. Now it works great next to my machine. The iron gets very hot and does not have steam. It's great for small pieces and blocks. My current steam iron tends to chew up fabric in its steam holes. The best part, when I installed the ironing board and thought of my hobby iron, I actually remembered where I had put the iron years ago!

Here's a close-up of the ironing board.
I just love all the tools of sewing. I have tons of rules, scissors (all sizes), thread nippers, rotary cutters, and sewing baskets. The more the better.

Till next time......Happy Quilting!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Happening Right Now - Amish Quilts

The Flint Institute of Arts has Amish quilts on display through November 13, 2011. The quilts are from the private collection of Marsha and Tom French. The exhibit includes quilts from Pennsylvania, Ohio and Indiana. Click here for more information. See this link for a Detroit News review.

This is one I've got to make sure and see.

Till next time.....Happy Quilting.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Announcing some new blogs

I want to announce three new blogs. Two I contribute to and one is from the always wonderful Barbara Brackman.

Barbara has decided to blog once a month about the War of 1812, since next year will be the 200 year anniversary of the event and many quilters are asking her advice while making commemorative quilts of the era. Barbara has named her new blog Quilt 1812: War and Piecing. Since one of my favorite books is War and Peace (about Napoleon's war with Russia from 1805-1815)I love the name of this blog. You can find it in my blog roll. She promised her first post today.

The other two blogs are part of a research project on quilts and health. For those of you who don't subscribe to the Quilt History List, her is the post researcher (and my boss) Marsha MacDowell wrote about it:
A multi-disciplinary cluster of individuals representing the Great Lakes Quilt Center (Michigan State University Museum), the MSU College of Human Medicine, and other university partners have begun to examine the intersection of quilts and quiltmaking and health. Although we have done literature searches, we have uncovered precious few academic or general articles related to quilts and health. We would greatly appreciate input from list members about any published -- or unpublished - research related to this topic. We are aware of the recent article by Jacqueline Atkinson in The Quilter (issue 127, summer 2011) and a few that relate to the NAMES Project quilt.  Given the thousands and thousands of quilts that have been made, historically and currently, that are tied to individual well-being, health, patient advocacy, fundraising, education, and memorializing or honoring loved ones, we thought there would be a stronger body of scientific literature from humanistic, social science, educational, and medical perspectives BUT we are not finding much. We welcome any assistance in identifying related research.

I'd like to invite everyone to subscribe to the blogs. The above description is a bit academic, but I know there are 10,000s of quilters across the world who make quilts to donate to children's hospitals, raffle or commemorate a loved one. We'd love to hear your stories and welcome your participation. 

The blogs are Quilts and Health and Native Healing Quilts. You can also find the blogs in my blog roll.

And now for a picture of a quilt, just to keep the post pretty!
This is an antique from my personal collection. I purchased
it on eBay. What attracted me was the huge baskets that even
though they were very large, there was no room for the fruit!
The fruit was embroidered outside the handles.
Till next time......Happy Quilting!