Thursday, June 30, 2016

More Sewing for the New Stove

This is something I probably should have made for my kitchen a very long time ago.

As soon as I drape a kitchen towel over the handle of the oven, it's gone. With five other people walking through the kitchen, most of the time I don't even know who to blame. Half of the time, Hubby is blaming me when I've got the towel in my hand because I'm using it. 

Over the years, we've had a couple of different hanging towels with velcro. Those were a pain and got stuck to the other towels. I wound up throwing them out. 

Pinterest is full of tutorials for hanging towels with cute buttons, but I don't do buttons without a very good reason. I also don't have the patience to make bows in cute little ribbon ties....and you know someone would tie it to the oven with a double knot and I'd wind up having to cut it loose. 

A few weeks ago, I saw some hanging towels that used a big buttonhole to secure them in place. No buttons to fall off. No velcro. I love buttonholes about as much as I love zippers, but I was willing to give it a shot. 

This is not a buttonhole. It's a big slit with two layers of zig-zag stitching around the raw edges. (So yeah, it's pretty much a buttonhole. But I didn't use the magic foot or worry about what size it was going to be, so it doesn't count as one.)

These are the tutorials I was inspired by and then was too lazy to pull up and actually follow:

Buttonhole Hanging Dish Towel  -- This one is easier than what I did and the method I think I'll use if I make more of these with real dish towels.

Fancier Hanging Dish Towel  -- This one is prettier than mine and would make nice gifts, especially if the towels were embroidered.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016


After Sock Madness forced me to learn to cast on toes the right way, I thought I was a convert. But I'm still happily using my cheater method. It works just fine and doesn't require me to think as hard and once I'm wearing my socks, no one sees the tips of my toes but me.

These days, I read as many thrillers as I can get my hands on, so as soon as I saw Since She Went Away by David Bell it went on my list. Wanting to recapture some of her old spontaneity, Jenna Springer called her friend Celia and arranged to meet her best friend at the park at midnight. Events at Jenna's house delayed her and when she reached the park the only trace of Celia was a single diamond earring.  For months, Jenna has blamed herself. The media, which latched eagerly onto the story of the "Diamond Mom," blames her as well and when, at a particularly stressful moment, she verbally lashes out at a reporter, they start to ask if she knows more than she's telling. I immediately liked the characters and wanted to know the rest of their story. They felt like real people and felt like their secrets were as plausible as secrets in this sort of book can be (except for one scene near the end which I just couldn't suspend my disbelief enough to accept.)

I suppose it's a sign that you like a mystery series when a news story about a local glass company being forced to stop production makes you wonder where the fictional characters are going to get the supplies they need to keep teaching their classes. The third Webb's Glass Shop mystery, Cracked to Death, is out and this time Savannah is teaching a class on how to melt glass bottles into useful objects. A pair of bottles brought in by one of her students catch her attention. They're obviously old, so she wants to do some research before putting them in her kiln. When the student's body is found on the beach with the remains of a third bottle in his dive bag and one of her employees becomes a suspect, the local police rely on Savannah's glass expertise. So far each of the books in the series hasfeatured a different glass technique which always ties in with the murder mystery. There's plenty of vicarious crafting and an intriguing mystery.

Tracing the Bones by Elise A Miller is another of those domestic thrillers I love so much. An unhappily married woman whose writing career consists of jotting ideas on whatever scrap of paper she can get her hands on becomes entangled in the tragedy that strikes the perfect couple next door. The plot kept me asking questions and turning pages, but was never believable enough to me to shake that "it's just a book and this could never happen" feeling.

Disclosure -- I was provided with advance review copies by the publishers. All opinions are my own. This post is linked to Patchwork Times, Yarn Along, iknead2knit 

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Lozenge Update

Either this is most of the lozenges, which means I need to cut a bunch more pieces....or I've got more lozenges in a plastic box somewhere and need to figure out what safe place I put them in. I counted while I was cutting and I'm sure I started with enough for a 60x60" quilt.

I love long term scrappy projects like this one, but they sure make it easy to forget what you've already done and where you put it.

This post is linked to Jo's Country Junction. 

Monday, June 27, 2016


A couple of years ago, these three lantern blocks appeared in my sewing room. They're scrap bag orphans, not my own handiwork. And, while I'd love an entire quilt made of them, I know I wouldn't want my blocks set on point or assembled exactly that way. 

Last summer, the half square triangles appeared. There's a strip of eight of them -- maybe someone's abandoned border? -- and I put them in the pile of orphan blocks that I'll find a use for one of these days. It wasn't until much later that I realized the lanterns and half square triangles might play well together.  Then I found the blue stripe.

I think I've got the elements of a pretty little quilt here! There's enough of the blue stripe to use some for the front and also have a coordinating backing.

Since there's no way I'm going to fuss with stripes for the setting triangles, would you go with white or solid black?

This post is linked to Design Wall Monday at Patchwork Times.


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