The GiveAway Llama Speaks….just a little lower on the page. Read on, lovely reader, read on…we promise you there will be Llama Drama. Part of the Drama is: How exactly does a Llama fit down a rabbit hole? Inquiring minds wish desperately to know.
Quilts: Crack for the middle-class crafter
I used to be a quilter. Took all the classes, including the super-precise block-pattern drafting class where we used protractors and radial grids to ensure the perfect points and Y-seams. I showed my quilts at conferences. I bought fabric like it was candy. I looked carefully for The Perfect Backing Fabric each and every time.
So, I used to be a quilter.
That, apparently, is like saying I used to eat chocolate, or I used to love cats.
Apparently, quilting does not leave your blood just because you sold your fabric stash, stored away your (three) sewing machines, hid your quilting books in the basement, and all the quilts you made have either been given away or stored in acid-free paper in a moth-proof bin in A Safe Place.
I know, because I tried all that.
Then one day, I went to a meeting of the Anglican Church Women (ACW) and helped hand-quilt a king-sized quilt. This was to be a Prize Quilt, a quilt to be raffled off [more info on this below!] to raise money to restore (and make safe!) our historic bell tower. I spent about three hours helping to hand-quilt one of the blocks, and by the time I left I was seduced back into the land of 1/4″ seams and blocks that fit together to tell a wee story.
Down the rabbit hole, Alice…
First, I started with the fabrics. Like this:
and also this:
For the sake of my modest soul, I shall stop there. Let us just say merely that I have once more obtained a wee stash of Very Pretty Fabrics.
And to get my skills back from the darkest depths of memory (the last quilt I did is the one above, finished in 1993), I purchased a couple of beginner-level quilting kits, the kind that result in sweet homey wall-hangings, the kind with painfully clear instructions, the ilk where you feel like if you go to another quilter’s home, you’ll find the exact same charming wall hanging or bed-cover.
However, practice is good for everyone, and I was determined to start off with A Beginner’s Mind, open and willing to learn new good habits and unlearn any bad ones.
Here’s just a couple of the quilts I’ve been working on:
Woolly Sheep Quilt Pattern
Kit bought online
AAAnnnndddd…..I may have gotten a wee bit ahead of myself and bought a kit for a queen-sized quilt. I was thinking of it hanging in our stairwell…or not.
Purchased on Etsy.com
It has colours. And rainbows. And that is absolutely all I need to say in my own defense.
So. I know I’m in trouble…but I simply cannot help myself.
Actually, I am not resisting very hard, as you can see. Reason: I think it is an excellent idea for crafters to switch media, to switch genres if you will, in order to revisit Beginner’s Mind. When you see things as a beginner would see them, your mind isn’t cluttered by all the posts on Ravelry about the merits or coolness of this or that, or the inevitable This Is The One True Way You Do It.
I don’t think it is weird that I’m choosing rainbow, or gradient, fabrics to play with as I restart my quilting habit. I’ve been working with colour in my knitting, and in my batt-making, and I have so many preconceptions and preferences and Opinions that I can’t seem to break out of the purple/rose/green/blue trench I work in. Fabrics treat colours in completely different ways than hand-dyed yarns, for example. And combining these different sorts of colours in an unfamiliar media means I don’t have a clue what I’m doing…so I just do what I want with what I have.
And I’m LEARNING.
I still want to finish my Hiro sweater by Rhinebeck, however.
The Llama Says: Shut Up and Get Back to the Prizes
Yes, Ma’am Llama.
For your winning pleasure, Ma’am Llama and I have two prizes for you this week: a book of 10 tickets (10 chances!) to win the lovely Bell-Tower-Saving Quilt, and, of course, some pretty yarn. Leave a comment on THIS post to have a chance to win. I will close the comments at early o’thirty on Monday AM, and announce the winners shortly thereafter.
Let’s Talk Yarn-Winning
Ms. Llama would like to give away some yarn. I haven’t properly scoured my stash for the goodies I have bought for you here and there during my many adventures this summer, but I did find this gorgeous skein of yarn for you:
I purchased this hand-dyed skein at Iron Horse Yarns/Fibres/And More in Natick, MA. The yarn was dyed by Deborah Smith, the proprietor of Iron Horse. (There may or may not be other goodies in with the yarn. I just do what the Llama tells me to do.) As far as the yarn goes, it is delightful. I may or may not have walked away from that shop with a double-digit haul of her hand-dyed skeins. (WHAT? They’re not for me, they’re for a colourwork sweater requested by my Loving Adorable Spousal Unit. NO, REALLY.)
HOW TO WIN:
Follow the Rules of Llama Engagement, leave a comment ON THIS POST BELOW, and you’re in for a chance to win the yarn!
(Disclaimer demanded by lawyerfolk: I don’t work for or with Deborah; I’d never met her before the yarn-purchase. The yarn wasn’t a gift from her; I bought it specifically as a prize for the Llama to get all excited about. There. Whew.)
Because we are giving away two very different prizes, please specify in your comment which prize you’d prefer, in some clever way, of course. (Perhaps just leaving a comment that succinctly says “Yarn” or somesuch.) Yes, you may put both Yarn and Quilt if you wish to have a chance at both prizes. No, you cannot win both prizes. One prize per gentle reader.
Now For The Quilt-Winning!
Here’s a picture of The Bell Tower Quilt spread out on a bed…the bed is queen-sized, but the quilt itself is king-sized.
REGARDING THE QUILT RAFFLE
Feel free to skip this part if you don’t like this sort of thing.
There’s a raffle! You can win that pretty quilt above! Yes, even from Qatar or Germany or wherever you are! (I think the exception is Quebec, for some legal reason. I’ll check on that if I draw any names from that province.)
P.S. If you win and you are from Away, I am going to donate the postage to mail your prize to you.
As I said above, the proceeds will help us rebuild our historic bell tower. Yes, I know this is very charming, in an old-small-town way, but it’s a tiny town, and we have to raise $30,000, and this is literally the view outside my office window:
It was the first bell tower built in this farming region in the 1800′s, using brick from a clay bed just a couple miles away. (Chispa: The bricks were laid flat on the ground to dry on a local field; you can see critter tracks all over the wall and tower, including rabbit, raccoon, and KITTIES!) The bell was used to alert people to incoming tornadoes, floods, and functioned as the fire bell until Bolton had a fire department of its own. So it’s pretty special to our town.
RAFFLE and PRIZE INFO
There’s two ways to have a chance at winning the quilt: You can buy tickets from me, or you can win tickets from the Llama herself.
Buying tickets: I have permission from the church wardens to sell tickets to ANYONE who wants one. Price: 1 ticket for $2 CA and 3 tickets for $5 CA (Paypal can do the calculations for you). If you would like to buy a ticket or several, drop me an email or leave a comment or send a pigeon or something. I currently have 20 tickets for sale right here on my desk, but there are several hundred more right across the street!
How this will work: I won’t send you the physical tickets, because there’s no need, not really. I can send you pictures of your tickets, if you wish; otherwise, I will send you an email containing the All-Important Raffle Number(s) of the ticket(s) you have purchased. I’ll be at the raffle drawing, held here in mid-November; I’ll be holding ALL your ticket stubs so I’ll know if one of you wins. If it’s YOU, then you’ll get an email asking where you’d like the quilt sent.
The GIVEAWAY LLAMA is pestering me, just a moment please, while I go see what she wants…
Oh, duh. The Giveaway Llama says that she wants to Give Away a book of ten (10) tickets, worth ten (10) separate chances, to ONE lucky person, drawn by a random number generator. So, follow the Llama’s Rules, and leave a comment ON THIS POST below. Indicate if you are interested in winning the Yarn or the Quilt or Either One.
So there you are.
Prize One: Yarn.
Prize Two: 10 chances to win The Quilt.
I feel obliged to tell you that if one of you wins the quilt, I may have some ‘splainin’ to do to certain Church Ladies who have their sweet blue eyes on it for their own homes. It’s OK. I can handle those sweet ladies. You just think good Winning Thoughts.
I’ll keep ‘em short and sweet this time, because that was a heck of a long post up there.
☄ This is the cover of an incredibly beautiful and inspiring book:
Yes, that city was built out of Legos. Click on the link to see a few more Lego masterpieces.
☄ We all know how hard it is to take a good cat photo. Here are the results of what happens when a professional photographer encounters a less-than-cooperative kittenish subject.
☄ This baby goat doesn’t quite know what to make of himself. Goatish existentialism?
That seems like enough inspiration and enough blogging to ensure that you leave a comment…because everyone wants to be a winner, right? Right.