When we unpacked all our goodies from the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival, this fellow
was one of the real heartbreakers. Isn't he beautiful? I can't recall his name just now. He is a Jacob, purchased at the Jacob Conservancy booth. I will have to give a lot of thought to just how to best treat this fleece...I don't want to just card him all up and have him end up being some sort of grey. Any suggestions from you?
Then at the festival, the first booth we hit was a rug hooking booth, "Hooked on Ewe". It was, when all was said and done, our favorite booth of the festival. Linda Harwood, the owner, is THE sweetest woman. She took loads of time to help us and has helped me since in several phone calls (she's not much of an internet person...I sort of applaud her choice, depending on what day I'm on and what mood I'm in). Here is my first ever rug hooking project, a country kitty.
I have since done my usual thing and spent countless hours googling rug hooking sites and buying a gazillion books on the different techniques and history of this craft. I fear this is terminal love. I fell asleep last night, designing my own project in my head. Sigh. You know what this means...next, buy the rag cutter. Then...start haunting thrift stores for woolen garments to disassemble and over dye. THEN...Mr. Sunflower figures out I've started rat stashing more stuff for yet another hobby and I start getting more creative on where to stuff things. Good thing he recognizes that all of this is cheaper than therapy!
Lastly, I was so inspired by the Gee's Bend quilts we saw in Santa Fe that I zoomed into Santa Fe Quilts the very next day to pick up some thread and a hoop. This past week, hoop in hand, I went spelunking through our closet shelves, looking for a king size quilt that I had pieced and pinned to backing 16 years ago, when I was working with some good friends at a quilt store in Encinitas called "Sew Bee It". I had dutifully packed it for the journey to NM, planning to quilt it, by machine, soon as I got settled. Well, so much for my intentions.
Yesterday I finally picked the darned thing up and smooshed one of the center blocks into the frame. Thread and needle in hand, I started to quilt it by hand.
Several hours later, I was still glued to my rocker, making very uneven but very happy little stitches in the ditches. This is when I remembered, once again, that this is the part of quilting I had always wanted. Not piecing on a machine, or quilting it on a machine...it is the hand work I crave. If you look closely you can see one and a half blocks where I've removed the safety pins as I stitched along. This is a story to remind you that you should never give up on yourself and your unfinished projects!