Archive for December, 2007

Quilt Top in Just Over a Day!

Sunday, December 30th, 2007

Amelia\'s butterflies top

This is the closest I’ve ever gotten to a quilt in a day! As you can see, it’s a baby quilt and the pattern is very simple, but I’m still impressed that I did almost all of the cutting and all of the piecing except the outer border yesterday. I did the outer border today, and I’m very happy with how it looks. This will be for friends of ours, who had a baby girl about a month ago. Once this is done, I will move on to quilts for a baby girl due in early January and a baby boy due at the end of January.

Further on Green Christmas

Wednesday, December 26th, 2007

Diligent Crackpots may even be able to use the same gift bag twice for the same holiday.

gift bag

Note the addition of a new gift tag.

Also, one branch of the Crackpots lays claim to the record for the longest running continuously regifted and recycled gift enclosure. The following is ca. 1978.

gingerbread box

Green for the Holidays

Wednesday, December 19th, 2007

Green for the Holidays or Gift Bag Etiquette
By Not That Martha

We join together this year to give a Gift to Our Planet by limiting the waste surrounding our gifts to each other. Specifically, we consider the concept of re-gifting and the process of recycling.

Consequently, in order to prevent indescribable faux pas (somebody ask the French student if that’s plural—hard to remember from 40 years ago) during the holiday season, all giftees are asked to observe the following guidelines for Gift Bag Etiquette.

gift bags

1.Gift Bags may be re-gifted.
a. Gift Bags may be re-gifted the same year they are originally gifted.
b. Gift Bags may be re-gifted to another giftee.
c. Gift Bags may be re-gifted to the original giftor.
d. Gift Bags may be re-gifted to a new giftee who is not present at the original gifting.
e. Inscribed gift tags should be removed from the Gift Bag before re-gifting.
f. Gift Bags may be embellished before re-gifting. Beads, buttons, baubles, ribbons, rickrack, gilding, glitter, and embroidery may be used as embellishments. Other items, as deemed artistically appropriate by the re-giftor may also be used as embellishments. Chocolate, though quite acceptable as a gift, should not be used as an embellishment unless it is well wrapped.
g. Gift Bags made of fabric should not be re-gifted through the refuse collection receptacle unless the gift is intended for the refuse collector or for a fregan or for an anthropology graduate student conducting garbology research.
h. If the Gift Bag is to be re-gifted to contain an edible gift, the edible gift should first be enclosed in a food grade wrap.

penguin bag

2.Gift Bags may be recycled.
a. Gift Bags made of paper may be recycled through municipal recycling services.
b. Gift Bags made of fabric may not be recycled through municipal recycling services.
c. Gift Bags made of paper may be recycled for art or craft projects. Those under the age of seven should use blunt tipped scissors if any cutting is involved in the recycling.
d. Gift Bags made of fabric may be recycled by re-sizing. Those over the age of seven may use Dangerous Equipment, such as sharp scissors, seam rippers, rotary cutters, pins, and sewing machines to re-size the Gift Bag.
e. Gift Bags made of fabric may be recycled into other fabric projects, including quilts, clothing, fabric jewelery, fabric sculptures, or whatever the artist can imagine. Again, the use of Dangerous Equipment is restricted to those over the age of seven.
f. Gift bags (paper or fabric) may be recycled into luggage for playing Airplane or Trip to China.
g. Gift Bags may be recycled into refuse containers for playing Garbage Man or into shopping bags for playing Grocery Store.
h. Gift Bags may be recycled into accessories for playing The Firefighters Come to School, although exactly what the function of the Gift Bags would be is not yet clear.
i. Gift Bags may be recycled to carry clothing from one place to another. However, caution should be used when transporting one’s (previously worn) delicates through any airport in a Gift Bag, due to Homeland Security issues.
j. Gift Bags may be recycled into planet-friendly lunch bags. However, it is not recommended that one use the same recycled gift bag for one’s lunch that one used for transporting one’s (previously worn) delicates.

small bag

Angel and Armadillo

Wednesday, December 19th, 2007

Here is the angel ornament that Alice made for the Fiber Arts ornament exchange. I was the lucky one who picked it.

angel ornament

Alice makes paper, and the angel’s skirt is her handmade paper shaped over a shell. Last year Alice did a presentation at our guild. She brought many of her totally amazing projects and a slide show of her work.

Imagine a sculpture of a male torso (Upper body only! This is a G-rated site!). Now imagine this sculpture made of handmade paper. See what I mean? Amazing! I wish I had some more photos of Alice’s work to show you.

And the armadillo, which doesn’t have anything to do with Alice or handmade paper or much else. Many of you will remember the incident of the stolen armadillo sculpture of several years ago. A local driver found a frozen (deceased) armadillo by the side of the road in the end-of-alphabetical-order town to the east of us. He hasn’t decided what to do with it. One does wonder what the options are…

You may already be a winner!

Monday, December 17th, 2007

I am! So it wasn’t the sewing machine…

It was the third prize–Free Limited Edition Scissors! Plus encouragement to come in and save up to $600 on a sewing machine, embroidery machine, or serger at our favorite locally owned fabric store.

I’m wondering if lightning struck more than once. Did any of the other wayward crackpots who dropped their names in the box at the after Thanksgiving sale win anything?

Nothing whatsoever crafty here

Sunday, December 16th, 2007

Jason and Betsy, who are friends of mine, just had a baby girl! Her name is Eliza, and she is almost as cute as James:


Congratulations, Jason and Betsy! Well done.

Eat Chocolate!

Wednesday, December 12th, 2007

Yesterday was an “Eat Chocolate!” day. WooHoo!

So here is a photo of the Eat Chocolate page from my fabric journal.


It’s not finished yet, but you can tell a couple of things. First and most obvious, all the chocolate is dark chocolate, the most powerful kind. If you could see the detail, you would notice that each chocolate is decorated with embroidery that shows what the filling is. I’m sure you recognize the brown with pink dots ribbon. It was purchased when we were trying to keep someone away from the balloon fabric. The fabric journal has been in a box for a while, so it was fun to get it out look it out. Some day I’ll finish it.

Now in the interest of full disclosure: While I was checking out, my driver was eating Hershey’s kisses. I had a peppermint. What was I thinking! So we stopped down the road at Culver’s for a dairy based lunch. The Turtle Sundae was good for the winter, but nothing beats a real Tommy Turtle. And when my book group went out to dinner last night, I had Tiramisu. Not all that much chocolate, but filled with other valuable goodness. 🙂

Fiber Arts Potluck

Friday, December 7th, 2007

Wednesday was the Fiber Arts Guild’s potluck and ornament exchange. It was great fun, with good food, good company, lovely art, and plenty of laughs.

Everyone brought a dish to share.


We were all interested in Jonetta’s Rice Porridge. In Norway it is traditionally served on Christmas Eve (or is it the day before Christmas Eve?) with butter, cinnamon and sugar, and dried meat. It was delicious. There was a certain amount of debate about Aron’s decorated cookies. Were they for decoration or for eating?


OK, we ate them. Yummy!

After dinner, we had show and tell. I didn’t get a picture of the most exciting news of the evening. Jennifer had her work featured in 500 Handmade Dolls from Lark Books. See for more of her work and information about the book.

Lynn brought mittens.


In 2006 there was a NATO Summit in Riga, Latvia. All of the delegates were given a pair of mittens knit in a traditional Latvian pattern. 4500 pairs of mittens were knit, and all of them were unique. See Lynn adapted a Latvian pattern for double knitting.

Jonetta brought hardanger. This is a traditional Norwegian craft.


Aron brought some of her felted dolls. Here is the Grinch, in case anyone needs a mood adjustment. Aron learned to make these felted creatures at a Fiber Arts meeting just over a year ago, and now she is selling them at a local shop.


Alison brought three dolls


and a wall hanging showing the same figures.


Bonnie brought a bunch of adorable crocheted finger puppets (sorry, no photo) and a woven ribbon pillow.


Some talent in this group, isn’t there?

After show and tell we had the ornament exchange.

This is the ornament I brought. A plain brown wrapper:

paper bag

The inner gift bag:

gift bag

The beaded ornament:


Coming later–a photo of the ornament I received.

Quilting Update

Wednesday, December 5th, 2007

A quick update on the quilting for Andrew’s quilt: I’ve finished the entire grid pattern now! I just need to quilt around the inner border, and then it’s on to the binding…

Half a Hat

Sunday, December 2nd, 2007

It’s not NaBloPoMo, and I’m still posting!

I’m over half done with the hat for myself.


It may look completed, but I’m working on the lining. The good news is that I tried it on after finishing the outer part, and it fits perfectly.

I failed in my goal to finish my Fair Isle cardigan in November, but the arrival of winter weather pushed hat-knitting higher on the priority list.