Thursday, September 19, 2013

Searching the Web

I can always tell when fall has come by looking at the number of views of my blog. Come fall, the numbers really rise because knitters are visiting the Reversible Cable Scarf page (Which Way is Up Scarf). The scarf has been #1 or 2 frequently on some of the free pattern search sites so a lot of traffic comes from those websites. Last week I had a major change in the numbers so - it's official - fall is here.

Since I don't have any pictures to share with you I thought I'd spent a little time talking about one of my favorite topics - researching on the web.

I love to go hunting through other people's blogs and websites to find pictures, inspiration and how to's for my current interest. Right now I'm back into quilting; so, many of the websites I've been hanging around are about quilting.

My favorite research tool is One of the things I like to do is type in something into Bing and click on the Image button. Try going over there and typing something like "Blue quilts". Suddenly you have many, many pictures of just blue quilts. If you find one you like, click on it to get a bigger image. At the bottom right of the bigger image window should be the link to the source and you can go over there to see the full blog post or shop website where the picture came from.

My latest search was Native American Quilts. Whenever I do a search on this I notice the Star of Bethlehem/Lone Star is a very popular quilt design. From what I understand when the missionaries first came to the different groups, they women taught quilting to the Native women and the star was popular because of its symbolism. I live in an area with Lakota and Ojibwe and I've noticed may of the quilts are the Star.

Through this searching I found an artist named Gwen Westerman. Her quilts often include the Star with a contemporary look. Search Gwen Westerman Quilts and take a look. I think you'll enjoy her work. Check out her quilt - Night Wind. I'm not going to link to it so you'll have to have a little fun and do some searching.

If you want to have a little fun - search "Tristan Quilt" and click on Images. This quilt was made in the 14th century and is quite an amaing quilt.

Maybe next post will have some pictures of what I've been working on lately. Stay tuned.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Controlling Obsessions

In the past I would "discover" a new craft of pattern and suddenly become all involved in it. When I took a stained glass window glass with my friend, I had to buy all the equipment and lots of glass to use. (I still have plenty if I get back into it!).

When I started machine knitting, I threw myself into it and within a few months I had the best machine on the market and was asked by one of the national instructors to take over a class for him out of town because he knew I had everything figured out and he needed to back out of teaching that weekend.

When I started crocheting, I bought all the hooks and ended up teaching at a friends shop after a year. Same happened with all my obsessions. But this time something happened.

I've been reading a lot about hexagons lately. Quilters become obsessed with them and take years to make them and ultimately a huge quilt. In the past (like maybe last year) I would have gone head first into buying a ton of fabric and hexagon templates and a fancy box to keep them in while sewing hexies and maybe even a new Ott lite with a magnifying glass to see the hexies better.

Last week I went on line and found a 1" hexagon template. I print out a limited amount. The I got some fabric scraps from a quilt I made for my cousin's little girl. The current game plan is to make SOME hexagons. Not a whole quilt. I'm going to make a small wall hanging with some hexagon flowers and maybe a hexagon sun. It will be bright and cheery and most important, small.I plan on using the hexagons like applique rather than a whole quilt of hexagons, we'll see... Maybe this will get the hexagon bug out of me without taking over my life. I'm hoping I've learned to control some of my obsessions cause my house can't take too many more!

A Fearless Young Woman

My other cousin's daughter (model for Jan's Shawl pattern) is in Africa for a few months for college. She is writing a blog about her experience. I haven't asked permission to post the blog so I won't but, I have to tell you about her. She is an amazing young woman who will change the world. She is absolutely fearless in her devotion to our God and living the life He wants her to live. Her blog is well written and lets me feel as though I am there experiencing the country with her. I hope she won't mind my putting just a small piece of her blog here. She wrote all about the small buses called trotros that she uses to get around. She wrote about the people she is meeting on the trotro in a way that gives me hope for the future. With people like my cousin's daughter coming into their own, the world be will a good place in the future.
" I find immense peace on the trotros, sharing in the journey with my Ghanaian brothers and sisters. I feel the presence of the Lord within those vans. My pulse calms, my eyes open, and my heart dances. Jesus provides me with His peace, which is so much greater than what the world can give. In those hours on the trotro everyday, my prejudices begin to melt. My frustration from the day dissolves. And I enjoy the journey with people whose lives have coincided with mine, if only for a few minutes.
Isn’t that what it’s about? Sharing the journey together, dwelling in peace together, learning together. The trotros with their confined spaces showed me this. The trotros keep showing me this with every day that comes. And Ghana just keeps blessing me.
…welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God. -Romans 15:8"