Procrastination – Sometimes A Good Thing!

There are UFO’s in several closets and I rummaged around last week to find this quilt for our bedroom which I was calling the double nine patch. Sometime ago, I picked out the background fabric and then tucked it away a closet.

Double nine patch background

Procrastination was a good thing in the case of this quilt, because a few weeks ago, Peter and I bought a new mattress. The old one was 25 years old!!! The sales lady kept explaining the features of all the mattresses on sale and we just looked at her, because ours was so basic. The men who came to bring the new one and take away the old one had been doing that job for 20 years. “I’ve never seen a mattress like this one!” they told us. (Needless to say, we are very much enjoying our comfortable new mattress.)

The point of all this is that the new box springs are much smaller, but the mattress is much, much thicker; so much so that the quilt we’re using does not tuck in at the bottom. It’s annoying because it means that every morning the bed needs to be completely re-made. Thus new quilt needs to be a good bit larger.

I put the pieces I’d already sewn on the mattress and moved them around and determined that the best thing to do is to make 9 wheels, instead of 4. Using the original design, there would have too much border. So back to the machine I go…

Nine wheels


Schminky: the Quilt

Schminky was a gorgeous cat! Tortoiseshell patterned cats have always appealed to me but she was especially beautiful – she had such a riot of rich browns in her coat!  I adopted her in Harrisburg Pennsylvania and she lived with us in Singapore, Shanghai, Tokyo and Colorado. Here she is at the end of a trip, helping with the unpacking…

I never wanted to collect cat “items” (my mother kept trying to give me cat thises and thats!) or do more than photograph them until I saw Sharon Maelec’s machine applique animal quilt patterns. They are so well designed and I really wanted to make one. Schminky was gone by then, but with my “vast” collection of brown fabrics, she was an obvious choice to sew. Happily I actually took a class with Sharon and it was very helpful. One very useful bit of information from her was about cats’ eyes. She said that they were the most important feature in a cat and if you got the eyes “right” then everything else worked. The fabric she liked to use, and had brought along for us to use, was palm frond patterns! I placed the eye pattern over the frond in the correct way – and – voila – Schminky had a perfect eye.

Here is Schminky, the quilt! It was such fun to make that I was sorry when the top was completed. Schminky lived on my design wall for quite some time as I auditioned each fabric choice. You really need to do that to make sure the lights and darks are in the correct places  so the cat looks as she should. When I did the first ear and moved back, I discovered I had the lights and darks in the wrong places so the ear looked like it was inside out!

In Googling about for links for you, it seems that Sharon no longer does designing for commercial patterns and is moving her animal work in a different direction. This quilt store carries her patterns and I was there for a recent shop hop! I did notice that the patterns were hung all over the store. Contact them for more info.

On an entirely different note, I must say that I am very sad to hear about the passing of Steve Jobs. We have been Apple people forever and have been delighted and inspired by every product we have bought from them. Apple makes such fun, creative and delightful things and at the heart of it all was Steve Jobs. I have been encouraged to create things I would never have dreamed I could do, and Apple helped me along the way. Peter had the great pleasure of seeing him speak at a MacWorld and he said the man was incredible; that his passion and enthusiasm was palpable. Thanks so much Steve! You will be missed in our house!!!!