Friday, October 14, 2016

Knoxville, TN

This week we are taking a little trip up the Tennessee River from Chattanooga to Knoxville and back. We were both itching to get moving on the boat, and my physical therapist thought I would be fine without any treatment for a week. That little white dot in the center of the river is us, as seen from a restaurant on the 27th floor. It's been a lovely trip and I got some sewing done, too.

Isn't that an impressive dragonfly? It was almost as big as my hand, and let me take several photos before flying lazily away. It landed on the boat as we were locking up through the Fort Loudoun lock.

I making a little quilt for the granddaughter of some dear boating friends. The girl is six years old and is scheduled to have some major surgery next year. I've been told that she loves dogs and bright colors, specifically hot pink, turquoise and yellow. Here are three of the twelve blocks. I'm pretty confident I nailed her preferences!

The dog fabrics are all by Laurel Burch, a line called "Dogs and Doggies." The darker pieces are cut from a panel. Here's a close up of one of them. The panel sections are all different sized rectangles, so I surrounded each piece with bright fabrics from my stash and then trimmed them back to 9.5" squares. Then I added another round of uniformly wide pieces to give this chaos of color a bit of cohesion. Not that I think I need to reign it in too much: most six year olds are wildly enthusiastic about their favorite animals and colors. At that age, if you love pink, YOU LOVE PINK!! Would that we all embraced our loves so deeply.

As I was slicing the blocks to size, I discarded the usual pile of trimmings. But when I was cutting straight, single layers of pieces, I noticed these odd, tiny strips kept showing up. It took me a while to figure out that I had accidentally installed two rotary cutter blades into my handle!

The two blades were less than a thread's width apart, but as I kept cutting, tiny slivers of threads started accumulating in between the blades until they became parallel cutters. Mystery solved and good thing, too. I thought I was down to my last blade but now I still have a spare.

The weather is finally getting cool enough for all three of us to actually be using my quilts. Here is Angel, curled up on her two quilts and the special pillow I made for her. When she does this, it reminds us of a pearl on display and she hears one of her nicknames, Pearly Girlie.

I was tickled to find out from Muv that she featured Ocean Portal on Free Motion Mavericks this week. Thanks, Muv! If you are doing any FMQ at all, even beginner stuff like I do, please consider linking up with her. I always enjoy looking through all the linky parties.

Today is my birthday, and I'm going to celebrate by finalizing the layout the twelve doggie blocks and finishing the quilt top. Most of the day will be spent cruising peacefully down the river, watching the fall color roll past on the shoreline. We'll most likely be at anchor and nowhere near a restaurant, so we'll have a quiet dinner at home with a nice bottle of wine. And that sounds like a perfect day to me!


Kat said...

Happy birthday! I have done that with my rotary cutter blades before. Makes a mess! I love your bright quilt for the little girl. Looks perfect!

Mystic Quilter said...

Happy Birthday Louise! Enjoy your time spent on the doggie blocks, the little one is sure to love her quilt. What a great photo of your home on the water, it does look tiny perched on that mighty wide river. A lovely cosy spot for Angel, what a lucky cat having two of her own quilts and a cushion

Claudia said...

Happy Birthday! Know you all are glad to be cruising again. Knoxville is a pretty town. We enjoyed a month stay in the area a few years ago. I think your 6 year old will love this quilt!

Unknown said...

lovely quilt. glad to see its not just me who has done the double blades thing. living aboard, do you have a stash or do you buy as needed? which Juki model , do you have?

Louise said...

Hi, Brenda:

I have a small stash on board that I add to when I find a good deal on eBay. It's rare for me to buy fabric for a particular project. My Juki is a 2010Q and I love it!

I'm responding here because you are a "no-reply" commenter. But that's OK, I'm happy that you dropped by!

Sue said...

Happy, Happy Birthday!!! I hope you two have a great day on the river. You deserve it! Love your newest quilt(and I think I see a few familiar pieces of fabric!LOL). I always look forward to seeing your new projects!