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September 25, 2013

Back to Normal??

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. Life is ever so slowly returning to some normalcy. I’m trying to plan visits to my mom as just one more thing to do each week and to not worry about them so much. We’ve been lucky to find a great crew of aides who are taking very good care of her. …But it’s my mom so you know how that goes. Our guild seminar went well. Pat Sloan was a hit among all who took her classes. Even several ladies who said they didn’t really quilt in Pat’s style came out at the end of the day having loved the class. Just shows how if you go into a class with an open mind, you are hardly ever disappointed. (Many of you missed a great opportunity by not giving her a try. Don’t make the same mistake with next year’s guest: Bonnie Hunter of […]
September 17, 2013

It’s starting

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. Heading out to the museum to set up for our fall seminar. Classes begin tomorrow with a lecture by our national guest, Pat Sloan, in the evening. All of the preparation is finishing up, and in the morning the fun starts!! Still not too late to join us–come on, you’ll like it! I was checking out Pat Sloan’s blog this morning and she shared a link to a wonderfully redesigned sewing machine. Not only does it have great new features, but it is a beautifully designed piece as well. Almost looks like structural art. Have a look and watch the video. Click here.
September 14, 2013

long time gone

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. It’s been a long time since I’ve posted. I’ve been dealing with some health issues for my mom. She had a stroke this summer and has been in the hospital, rehab and a nursing home. We are now moving her back home (2 hours from here) with full time aides. That has consumed whatever “extra” time I have had this summer. Here’s hoping that with her at home, and good help from the aides, that things will get into a groove soon. Our guild seminar starts next week Wednesday. Still have room in most of the classes (check our guild website in the sidebar) so you still can join the fun. It’s going to be great-you shouldn’t miss it! You definitely can come hear our national guest, Pat Sloan, give her lecture/trunk show on Wednesday evening. (7:00 p.m. at the Buffalo Niagara Heritage Village) The […]
August 28, 2013

e-mail find

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. Are you all set for the new year to begin? After all my years of being involved with education, I still think of  September as the start of the new year. Shortly after I retired, I ran into a colleague who also was a former student of mine in Wegman’s. At some point in the conversation, he asked me “Does it seem odd not to be teaching?” Don’t get me wrong, I loved being a teacher but, truthfully, I do not miss it. But here is my answer to him: “This is the first September in about 60 years that I have not been going back to school. That does seem a bit odd.” I’ve been retired for a few years now, and it still seems a bit odd not to be returning to a classroom. It takes me about the amount of time my […]
August 23, 2013

still more modern

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. Still cogitating on those modern quilt ideas. Got an e-mail today from Craftsy.com about a Joe Cunningham class called Pattern Free Quiltmaking. Hmm… Went over to have a look. Signed up for it. I have always been a rule bender. Not so much a rule breaker, just a bender. I never, even as a kid, wanted to blindly follow rules unless I could see the point. (I have a terrible time with speed limits!) I think this is caused by the other hemisphere of my mathematical, analytical brain wanting equal time. This appears in my quilting from time to time, as it does in all of the other parts of my life. Sometimes the perfectionist geometer is in charge wanting perfect points, symmetrical layouts, and precision in the measurements. Other times not so much. Love to create with random width selvage strips, like to make […]
August 22, 2013

more on modern

Hello all Mary Ellen here. Since our guild meeting last week with the “modern” visitors, I’ve been looking at my latest magazines and blog subscriptions through a different lens. I’ve been thinking, as I shared in an earlier post about the show and share projects at that meeting, that many “standard” or traditional projects have a modern look, or could easily be modified to look “modern” with just minor tweaking. This link to a “tweak” of Dresden Plates, one of my favorite blocks, illustrates my point well I think. Before you click on the link get a mental image of a dresden plate block. I’ll bet it’s a fairly “traditional” image you have in mind. Now click on the link to the modern dresdens. Whole new look, but still very recognizable as a dresden. Cool beans, I think. Modern Dresdens: click here. Still gathering celebrants in our 40,000 visits party. […]
August 16, 2013

It’s time to celebrate!

Hello all, Mary Ellen here again. We had a very nice presentation by the WNY chapter of the Modern Quilting Guild at our regular guild meeting last evening. Many of us had some of our questions about “modern” quilting cleared up for us. Those of us who consider ourselves to be “traditional” quilters have more in common with the “modern” girls than we might have thought. Several of the quilts that they brought along to share didn’t look “modern” to me at all. Some of the fabrics used looked like repros to me more than brand new designs, which is not to say that others of the fabrics did not have a really fresh new look to them. The use of solids in many of their quilts reminded me, and perhaps many of the others in attendance, of the days of old (now I’m really aging myself) when solids and […]
August 8, 2013

More Joe

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. Not too long ago I mentioned quilter Joe Cunningham in a few posts (search for Joe if you didn’t see those posts). We also have been mentioning modern quilting quite a bit of late. Today I came across a posting at the Generation X blog (August 7 posting) interviewing Joe. There is an upswing in the interest in hand made work, and in many of the “traditional” quilting patterns. Will hand quilting be the next “new” thing? Read Joe’s thoughts on this, from his 34 year history as a hand quilter. Click here. We’re coming down to the wire for our fall seminar. Please sign up soon to join us in the fun. All classes still have spaces.
July 31, 2013

just a smile opportunity

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. Do you know what yarn-bombing is? I’ve never seen a yarn-bomb “in person” but have viewed many posts about them in my internet travels. Yarn-bombing is the placement of knitted works in surprising urban settings. For example, putting a knitted sweater on a fire hydrant along a busy street. Just introduces a pop of color into an otherwise gray environment. Maybe one would call it knitted graffiti? But somehow I don’t find “yarn-bombing” to be damaging to another’s property. After all if the owner or caretaker of the property doesn’t want it, the yarn-bomb is quite easily removed. Disagree? Personally I would love to come across one of these installations of yarn-art. That brings me to a loosely tied group called “Dispatchwork”. They install Lego art in surprising places. Again it doesn’t seem to be vandalism in my scope, but you might disagree. I think […]
July 28, 2013

looks too good to resist

Hello all, Mary Ellen again. Was trying to catch up on my e-mail and blogs this morning and came across a photo of this recipe at Pat Sloan’s blog (our upcoming seminar teacher). (BTW have you signed up for your class yet? We’ll be mailing supply lists out soon, if you want to get yours the easy way please register this week!) Anyway this recipe really appealed to me. I have loads of fresh basil in the garden waiting for the right recipe, and have been overdosing on fresh spinach in my toss at salad bars. If you made your own bread crumbs from Fiber 1 cereal (click here), this could be a very WW friendly recipe. Have a look at the photo and see if you can resist. click here. The text in the blog entry that goes with it is amusing too. I think the ingredients will definitely […]