What was I thinking?

It’s a new year and there are some new readers here, so I thought I’d do a little looking back … and then forward.

My original blog started out as a way to provide recipes for my newly-wed daughters and a record of our epic move from Virginia to Texas back in 2009.

It languished after a while, but found new life when I discovered Jude Hill’s Spirit Cloth in 2014. At that point the blog became a record of my stitch adventures interspersed with the joys of living in the Texas Hill Country and grandparenting six great kiddos (please note, those were two separate activities).

More recently, around the time of our move to the Austin suburbs, I migrated over to WordPress so I could more easily compose posts using my iPhone. However, I do still maintain the old blog, chiefly for its sidebar list of Kindred Spirits in Cloth …

Which brings me to the here and now. I’m currently trying to finish hand quilting a baby clothes coverlet for out youngest granddaughter, Ellis …

Even so, I’ve also got my mind working on a dormant work in progress: a bed cloth titled my heart’s compass. The base for one side is done and ready to be embellished …

but the middle and the other side have a long way to go …

and the top edge is completely blank, which is where my current patch-a-day project called Looking Up comes in.

I woke up at 4:00 this morning, my head buzzing with ideas for Looking Up. Why stack the patches into weeks and months when my days flow in one long, continuous stream? What if I just keep stringing the patches together until they span the width of the cloth?

And what if I just appliqué the resulting strip of patches onto my heart’s compass and then start another strip of patches, and then another and another until I have a whole year’s worth of Looking Up patches?

And what if I put this wonderful gifted batik cloth underneath the strings of patches, sorta like this?

Last, who am I trying to kid by not talking about the individual patches? Of course I want to tell their stories … although I think it might be better to tell them in clusters rather than individually.

So without further ado, here are the patches to date.

January 1-4 … the dawn of a new year … followed by three sunny, blue sky days (taken on my beloved soumak rug, which provides the backdrop for most of my photos) …

January 5-8 … two nights of the waxing crescent moon (called the banana moon in our family) as seen from the back porch … followed by two rainy days when only short glimpses of blue sky were possible …

January 9-12 … a mostly cloudy day … the appearance of the first quarter moon (aka the taco moon) … a golden dawn that brought the sad news of a dear man’s passing (rest in peace Adrien) … and Parker’s moon from this Wednesday …

And then (drum roll please) yesterday’s patch for Logan

who received an early acceptance letter from James Madison University, home of the Dukes and much beloved alma mater of her mom and her aunt.

To say going to JMU has been a life-long dream of Logan’s is not a stretch …

So I guess it’s appropriate that my golden gibbous moon (aka the lemon moon) in a perfectly purple sky looks more like a football …

Go Dukes!

[With thanks to Deb Lacativa for the artistry of her dyed damask and cotton cloth, not to mention her always amazing Dirty Threads]

ELLIS REID

I thought I might stitch Ellis’ name into the blocks of her quilt, so I tested out my idea, whilst thinking of Fiona’s post about versals (even though I ended up not filling in my letter) …

and liking the result, stamped up some nine-patches (click to see full images) …

As is my wont, I started in the middle with a patch of Tina’s cloth and a strand of Deb’s thread, worked in Jude’s split backstitch …

It takes a village, y’all.

Then I stitched a couple more patches from my Inktense shibori trials …

But I saved the best for last: patches of Parker’s Inktense handiwork

Then pieced everything together to create the top edge of E’s coverlet, which currently measures 14” x 38”…

New on the art blog …

https://ackertart.blogspot.com/2021/11/gistav-baumann-print.html

Because

July 30, 2021 – Square peg, round hole

I’m looking forward to another class I’ve signed up for …

for lots of reasons: because I wish I had gotten more out of the art classes I took years ago … because I admire the composition and color-sense of so many Kindred Spirits … because I’m endlessly fascinated by watercolor paintings … because I want to know more so I can do more.

That’s really the crux of it, I guess … the wanting to learn thing. I hope my grandkids get that about me, that I always want to know more.

But the most important “because” is having fun. Something I fully intend to do when we head out to St Louis to celebrate Jace’s 7th birthday and Jackson’s 9th birthday.

And if, as I suspect, they’re not exactly thrilled about getting a set of World Book encyclopedias (because, after all, they’re perfectly normal kids), I do hope they’ll have fun playing backgammon and drawing together …

I know I will …

Process note: That amazing thread was dyed by Deb Lacativa.