Sunday, September 20, 2009

The Creative Process, IX

The top of the cabin quilt is done. If that's not enough, the quilt has named itself. I usually find that the name of a quilt comes to me without much conscious thought, and that was the case with this one. I just have to hope that the English language skills of the Norwegian brothers to whom the quilt is going are such that they get the humor. What better name for a quilt destined for a mountain cabin owned by brothers than "Sibling Revelry." That said, I still need to pin the layers of the quilt together, which is not an easy task and, then, quilt it and do the binding. It's not done yet, and it won't be for a while. But here's the top, a bit less than six feet by six feet. If I were making this quilt again, I would make the cabin image smaller and more subtle. I'm not about to change it now, though. Somehow, I find it difficult to imagine that the recipients will look at this and say, "Gee, it would have looked a lot better if the cabin image were smaller."

The creative work isn't over yet, because I still have to quilt this. I'm thinking of doing some black lines on the porch to acentuate the diagonal direction of the boards. The original photo had space between the boards, which I did not show here, and the black lines might serve as a reasonable replacement. I may quilt some detail into the grass at the base of the cabin of the trees to each side. We shall see. When it's done, I'll try to post some close-up shots that show what I did. In the meantime, I need to piece the backing and then do the layering and pinning. I've already cut the binding strips though I have yet to sew them together and press them.

Since it also comes under the creative heading, I have finished working in all the loose yarn ends on what I called "the amazing thing" in an earlier post. Here is it, finished and laid out in my foyer. For reference, it is approximately 9.5 feet long and 3.5 feet wide. Next up is felting/fulling it. If you're not familiar with the process, I'll put it in the washer, with detergent, on a hot temperature but low volume setting, with a couple pairs of old blue jeans and let the heat, soap, and agitation shrink it. I'll stop and restart the process until it has shrunk to an acceptable degree, after which I'll let the wash cycle finish. Then, if it's shrunk to appropriate dimensions, I'll see if I can craft a sword bag out of it. If it's too large, I'll see if I can shrink it some more. If it's too small (which I doubt it will be), I'll use it as a rug or throw. Hey, there's always a use for things like that around here.

My newest project is a muff. Remember muffs? They look like a tube. Your hands go inside and stay warm. My friend the artist and art teacher gave me a rather large bag of yarn she spun and dyed years ago but never used. Because I think the yarn should go back to her, I wanted to make her something that showed off all the different kinds of yarn. Here's the pattern I'm using. It's not going to use up all the yarn, so I may try to make three, one for my friend the artist and art teacher and one for each of her lovely daughters. The muffs are knitted on circular needles, and the first one is knitting up fairly quickly.

Finally, coming up in two weeks is the Fall Fiber Festival at Montpelier, home of James Madison. I'll be working there on Saturday, at the booth of Mangham Manor, my friendly neighborhood sheep farm. I'm not a bad salesperson when it comes to a product I believe in, such as Girl Scout cookies or Mangham Manor yarn. I will take various bags, shawls, and a sweater that I have knitted with their yarn, which reminds me that I really need to felt the jacket I mentioned in the last post, since that's also made from their yarn. The best part? I work for fiber, which means that I may well leave with all the yarn I can handle for the next year if I hadn't just discovered New Zealand possum yarn, which I absolutely must have just for the heck of it. I'm going to order some of that right now, as soon as I proofread this post and publish it.


Running Amok With An Ax said...

"Sibling Revelry" looks great! And, ooh, possum yarn, too cool :)

Debi said...

You posted this a week ago? How the hell did I miss it?!! Oh my poor, pathetic brain. Anyway...the It's so gorgeous, Jean. I think the siblings in question will be reveling when that arrives at their doorstep!

Ellobie said...

Adding this to my blog check!

The crazy log cabin quilt looks awesome! I love spins on traditional quilting patterns. How did you do the trees in the middle part? Is it part of the fabric pattern?

I love the Leonard Nimoy research!

mmmmm, muffs. So handy and cute. As a little girl in northern Illinois, mine always had a string that went around my neck in case I needed to use both hands.

The amazing thing's alternate name: overwhelming thing. That thing is huge!

I love going to Montpelier. Maybe I'll have to plan a trip home around next year's festival... I think my mom & sister would also enjoy Fiber Fest.

Ellobie said...

Ah, I see now (after reading earlier posts), it is pine tree fabric. Very fun!