Thursday, October 19, 2017

Strippy!




Another one pieced and waiting for a cozy winter of hand-quilting. 

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Oil Painting: Green Mums


Not done yet, but a good start tonight. Working on black canvas again--I like it!

Monday, October 16, 2017

This Year's Birthday Feast: Italian Farmhouse


Our annual feast to celebrate the Composer's father--this year it was all Italian farmhouse-style (inspired by a library book). 

Food centerpiece was a beef tenderloin roast. I patted it with chopped garlic and rosemary, laid on bay leaves, wrapped the whole thing in bacon, and (thanks to Daisy for the smart suggestion) pinned it all together with rosemary sticks.



Clara made an incredible arrangement of herbs for the center of the table.



Let's talk about this mad polenta. I used "Dixie Lily" cornmeal because the name is so charming. Made it up into mush, stirred in an unconscionable amount of butter in which I had sauteed garlic, then stirred in fontina cheese. After in cooled in a pan, we turned it out and Bella faithfully fried it up in some olive oil. I do not exaggerate when I say that Felix took a bite, then started crying.



Salad was farmer's market lettuce with tomato, hard-boiled egg, prosciutto, and Parmesan,


Here's the menu . . . 


And here's the family.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Pretty New Things for the Sitting Room


My mother's neighbor had a garage sale and passed on the leftovers--so I got this sweet hooked rug which Fitzwilliam loves to settle on.


And this big green platter which is perfect for all the mail that comes here for Felix and Molly. And anything els outgoing.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Daisy's Advice Column: Ask Miss Manners


This has been issuing forth from the typewriter lately. The cats submit their questions and Miss Manners answers. Above: "When can you bite a lady's legs?" (probably submitted by Fitzwilliam, who is known to turn on those he loves).

Below: "What are the rules for sitting on a hotpad?" (likely from Lucy Gray, who recently sat on my sewing project and covered it with bits and fur.)


Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Oil Painting: The Cake


Monday, October 09, 2017

All In


 I'm serious about using up all my scraps. It might not be this week, but it's happening. This is a gigantic quilt top to get things started. I pieced it using these instructions which of course I could not follow properly. I cut four strips, sewed them together, then cut them in half, then cut them into triangles. At that point, Clara looked over my shoulder and said, "You needed to sew these two squares together first. That's why it shows the fabric in the sewing machine. "

Who knew? Well, I know now. I'm probably about to make another one of these, not quite so big, and then take stock. Scraps, your days are numbered.



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Friday, October 06, 2017

An Array of Kale


At several plant nurseries this week in search of spirea and oak-leaf hydrangeas for the Stone House. This one had such a beautiful array of ornamental cabbages and kale!

Thursday, October 05, 2017

Scraping Out the Scrap Bin


My goal was to use up every single three-inch square that had been hanging around in my bin for ages. I used to cut huge quantities of these for my scrap quilts, but then I switched to strips, and was left with the less-desirable leftover squares.


I threw them ALL together and kind of like what came out. It's a large crib size (one day soon all these little quilts will go in my shop, with measurements).


Now I'm working on using up all my cut *strips*. And wouldn't you know it, there were a few squares lurking around in that bin. I'll make a hotpad with them.

Wednesday, October 04, 2017

Clara Studies



Dress from the thrift store last week. Early nineties vintage rayon, with tiny buttons and a wide sash

Monday, October 02, 2017

A Dainty Little Quilt


This is a crib-size quilt, just nine blocks of the tiny dainty prints you see here.


 Some of the fabrics are vintage, some are Japanese.


I did a second version of this quilt that's a little larger, but it's not quilted yet. I'm in the middle of a compulsion to use up ALL my scraps.


It's making for a lot of quilts.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Begonias: The Gift That Keeps Giving


I dearly love the grays inherent in the pot and leaves set against the gray of the sitting room walls.


This begonia won't stop giving to me. It sends a tall shoot up that I have to cut off, and put in water. And then it roots, and I have to pot it up. Repeat.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Log Cabin Quilt: Rose Window

Clara and I created this quilt for a friend of hers who is getting married next week. We hurried to get it done, then we ran out of perle cotton thread and had to wait for more to arrive. Still, we are getting much faster altogether.





 "I will open for you the windows of heaven and poor out for you a blessing until it overflows."

Friday, September 22, 2017

The Last Hydrangea Painting of the Year


One of the very last sprigs left on the bush.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

I Got All Boho in the Sewing Room


I started with a little 70s-style needlepoint of a fruit basket. It went from there.


The back has got a pocket from a dress.


Shop here!

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

"Glamorous Women Are Walkers"

" . . . Most glamorous women I know are walkers; they have made walking a pleasant habit and part of their busy lives for which they always find the time. And notice how each of them has developed an unforgettable graceful walk . . . Walking preserves health and lengthens life . . .Walking--free striding, free-swinging, rhythmic, unhurried and unharried walking--is the perfect aid to [everything]."

--Gayelord Hauser, Mirror, Mirror on the Wall: An Invitation to Beauty [1960]

Monday, September 18, 2017

The Lantana Was a Good Choice


In June I filled in a couple of holes in my front planters with lantana volunteers that had sprung up in my big circle flower bed. Now each plant is about five feet across and hosts a constant kingdom of moths and butterflies. Also the blooms are nonstop and number in the hundreds.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Daisy Shows Dulcie














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