Monday, June 25, 2007

On Holiday

We had beautiful weather here in/around the sunniest city in Finland over the Midsummer weekend and spent today on the M/S Jenny and the island of Tankar.

One guest leaves from Helsinki tomorrow and I'm traveling with the other a bit further east. Back in early July....

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Traveling with my guests this week, so just a quick post. I wanted to thank Karen for the great scraps she sent me as part of this swap. They are lots of lights in there and I am very short on lights! Thanks, Karen!!!

Monday, June 18, 2007

Quilts for Leukemia

Jenni (Fairybread Quilts) and I have been talking with Clare (Dordogne Quilter) about organising a way for people to help out with the batting and backing needed to finish the Quilts for Leukemia quilts. People have been so generous in donating blocks that we thought we might request a little more generosity from those who are able. Of course, the blocks are still more than welcome contributions!

After exploring several options, it seems that purchasing gift certificates from
Quilter's Quarter, an online store in the US, and emailing them to Clare, is the best option. Quilter's Quarter accepts PayPal (and credit cards, of course), and we agreed that quilters, if they were able to donate, could be confident that their donation would go toward quilting supplies and not toward a bottle of wine! (After all, Clare does live in France!)

There is a US$10 Gift Certificate, but if you'd rather donate less, we hope that Quilter's Quarter might be willing to accommodate a combined payment from 2 quilters. Jenni is hopeful that this might be possible given their positive responses to her inquiries. She has regularly bought fabric from them and says they have been very reliable about shipping to Australia.

Please don't feel any pressure to donate. If you haven't been to
Clare's Quilts4Leukaemia blog, please have a look. The young people that she has made quilts for have been very grateful to receive them, and many have blogs where you can follow their progress.

Thanks for considering helping out (and just for reading this far)! For Clare's email address please visit her blog profile. She will give you her snail mail address which is required by the store when purchasing gift certificates. If you're interested in donating actual batting or backing fabric, just contact Clare and she will let you know where in the world to send it (some of the quilting is being done by others who have volunteered).

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Fabric Christmas in June!

Fabric Christmas means visitors from the US! I met a friend and her sister in Helsinki on Friday/Saturday and will meet up with them again on Wednesday in Turku and we will spend Midsummer in/around Vaasa. They were very kind to bring some of my stash (especially much needed batting) from the US - along with a few extra treats!

One of the treats was this cool brown cotton bag from Vietnam. My friend has traveled there a few times for work recently. I photographed it with the two pillowcases she sent me from her last trip - both made from beautiful silks. (I think they look quite red in the photo, but they're actually orange.) All three came from this non-profit organization.

Finally, a couple pictures from Helsinki this weekend. (Can you identify the flag flying alongside the Finnish one? There was a special festival going on...)

Thursday, June 14, 2007


A while ago I posted about the diamonds that I try to make with bits of each project with the plan to put a kind of a journal quilt together someday. Passionate Quilter's recent post reminded me of this project, so here are two more diamonds (from the red and yellow strings and red confetti).

Another 1:30am photo, just as yesterday's rain clouds were dissipating. I hope this isn't getting boring for my Nordic readers - or the non-Nordic ones! I'm really getting into this whole light thing. I'm even dreading the moment next week when it starts getting a little darker each day. I'm heading farther north in July and August, though, so that will make it all last a bit longer! I'll have to post a companion 'dark' photo series in December this year!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007


Just a quick Wednesday update on two projects:

I've finished twenty-four of the forty-eight red and yellow string blocks.

I'm making these using this easy technique:

1. Make two square blocks with diagonal strips. (I foundation pieced them on muslin.) Place them right sides together with the strips from each square going in the opposite direction.

2. Draw a line across the diagonal and stitch 1/4" on each side of this line.

3. Cut on the line you drew. Open and iron. Voila!

Recent ferry rides have also helped with my 'Red Hots' progress. I'm hoping upcoming train journeys will lead to even more progress on this front. Still not sure what these are destined to become, but I'm having fun making them anyway!

Monday, June 11, 2007

An Important Anniversary!

I was excited to find this headline in today's Vasabladet (the local Swedish-language newspaper): Orange Classic Turns 40! (I love the orange and 60s turquoise in the photo, too.)

Fiskars was founded in Finland, although they are now headquartered in Wisconsin. (I didn't know about the Finland connection until I moved here last year.) Among other things, there are Fiskars potato peelers and garden rakes for sale here. The orange handles are a Fiskars trademark and they were the first scissor-handles that were made from plastic and were ergonomic. Apparently over 900,000,000 of these orange handled beauties have been sold! (I imagine that a few are owned by readers of this blog!)

I spent the weekend in/around Umeå, Sweden in part to do some genealogy research. It's just about 100km from Vaasa to Umeå by ferry. Below is a photo from Kont looking southeast back at Finland about 10pm yesterday evening.

Quilt update soon!

Thursday, June 07, 2007


I'm still struggling with how I should quilt Sing a Rainbow, mostly because the fabrics I used make this one of my favorite projects to date and I don't want to screw it up! I don't have much left of these fabrics, so I wanted to play around with the leftovers a bit together before the last bits end up in the scrap bag. There have been a lot of great doll quilts posted recently (including the May Whip-up challenge and this great Flickr pool) and I thought I could try a couple things. Who knows - maybe providing a little hand quilting practice!

The first (above) is a disappearing nine-patch, inspired by this quilt and using this great tutorial. It's 12" x 16".

The nine-patches:

The second one I made using this cool tutorial (Barbara gave instructions here, too) and using some strips from my red/yellow strip blocks. I decided to join the strips diagonally (like when making binding) thanks to inspiration from Judith. It's 11" x 16".

They're just tops right now. I'd like to piece the battings from scraps - does anyone have some tips (or even a tutorial) for this?

I had so much fun with these little tops that I think I'm going to join this doll quilt swap. (The last day to sign up is June 17th. Edited June 12: sign-ups were capped at 100, but there will be another swap in the fall!)

By the way, since Lily kindly asked, the nightmare editing is finished and this play was my celebration! Finally, one more 1:30am photo:

Friday, June 01, 2007

Confetti and Streamers

I finished the red confetti wall-hanging this evening!! Once again I used Ami Simm's cool wall-hanging anti-sleeve sleeve technique and Tonya's letter tutorial to write the recipients' names OANAMI (Oana and Nami) on the back. Thanks again to Anne for the confetti idea! The whole thing is 16" x 40".

I need a new project like a hole in the head, but all those string blocks out there on people's blogs have been tempting me!