Detail from "Rain Dance," an original quilt by Sherrie Spangler

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Color in L.A.

Just got back from a quick trip to L.A. with my daughter to visit my parents and brother. Every time Julia and I go, we take pictures in the tiled hallway at LAX. Much to our dismay, a worker who saw us said that the iconic mural is going to be destroyed during renovations. I hope he's wrong. 

Here's a link to an article about the mid-century modern mosiac hallways: wall-mosaics-in-lax-passageways-lead-travelers-home

Speaking of vintage, check out Julia's colorful dress -- it's one I bought for myself almost 40 years ago and saved because I love the colors and cool cotton weave. The vintage look continues with her straw bag from Mexico. (She sells vintage items in her DesertSpring Vintage etsy shop.)

Cliffs along the Palos Verdes Peninsula.
The next day we went for a walk with a friend along the cliffs of the Palos Verdes Peninsula, where my parents live. (No, I didn't get to grow up there. Darn. I grew up in Pittsburgh and they moved after I flew the coop.)

We rested at a shady picnic bench
while this raven kept a watchful eye on us.

The next day we hit the town, including a stop for this colorful açaí bowl in Torrance to fuel Julia's thrift shopping ...

... and avocado sandwiches on walnut bread with veggie/tofu bowls at the Green Temple vegetarian restaurant in Redondo Beach.

This sign was in Redondo Beach,
a town that always delivers on color.

After lunch, we parked ourselves on the beach for an hour (on a towel that Julia thrifted that morning), listened to the surf, felt the cool salty breeze and soaked up the sun. Ah, I wish I was back there. One hour was not enough time, but we were starting to burn and our parking meter was running out.

From the sunny beach to the moon at night,
here's a shot of the full moon on our trip.

Back at the homestead, we took family photos. My beautiful mom is 86 and loves sitting on her patio, surrounded by flowers and birds.

While we were out there, a neighbor's Siamese cat came to drink from the pond and then retreated to stare at us with those glowing blue eyes.

Thanks to our selfie stick, we were able to get family photos without messing with tripods and timers. Plus, everyone smiles when crowded around a selfie stick.

The day of our departure, we were heading into the airport and Julia said, "They should have outside areas where you can sit in the sun at airports." And as we turned the corner to our gate, there one was! I've been flying to L.A. for over 30 years and I never noticed it before. So we spent another hour out in the gorgeous weather while waiting for our flight. Much nicer than the crowded, noisy gate area.

Waiting in a courtyard at LAX.

Good-bye California, good-bye beach.
After we landed at Sea-Tac, we had another wait for the shuttle bus, and that waiting area has comfy wooden rocking chairs. Welcome home!

Have a colorful day

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Summer Solstice

Happy Solstice!

Although it's cloudy and chilly today -- pretty typical for June in the Northwest -- we are blessed with extremely long days in the summer. Today we will have about 16 hours of daylight! I took the photo below in the harbor after 9 p.m. a few nights ago. At 10 p.m., you can still see outside. It makes for some very late dinners in the summer.

Even though the days will start getting shorter now for the next six months, the best of summer is yet to come in our neck of the woods. July, August and September are the warmest, sunniest months here. Tradition says that summer in the Northwest starts the day after the Fourth of July.

I took the picture above yesterday during a walk along Tacoma's waterfront with the Feet and Forks. Afterward, we ate on the deck of Duke's Chowder House overlooking the water. Nancy's birthday is in a few days, so we celebrated by sharing a sinfully rich piece of pie with a chocolate crust, an espresso ice cream layer, a chocolate layer, whipped cream, nuts, chocolate sauce ... yummy!

And below is a photo of my son and daughter-in-law at an outdoor wedding in Asheville, N.C., over the weekend. What a beautiful day for a wedding! Sunny summer smiles for a solstice blog post.

 Have a colorful day

Thursday, June 14, 2018

STITCH show and tell

Our June STITCH meeting was full of great show-and-tells, but first I'll show you Karen's colorful food spread. The tablecloth, plates and glasses are all from the '50s.

Besides fruit, brownies and candy, Karen made a rhubarb crisp with rhubarb from her garden. Delicious!

After we loaded up our plates, we settled in the living room for our meeting. The first thing I noticed was that Linda's bag (she's made about seven of them) went perfectly with Anne's outfit. Too bad Anne got rid of her purple hair, because that really would've pulled it all together! She showed us pictures of her one week spent with purple hair, but I forgot to get a picture of the picture. 

Anne's show-and-tell, besides the purple hair adventure, was this gorgeous whole-cloth quilt -- which also goes with her outfit. She made it by tracing an enlarged picture onto white cotton and then coloring it with Derwent Inktense pencils. After using the pencils, you wet the ink and the color intensifies and blends. A google search will give you lots of info about them.

Linda's show and tell was a queen-size needle-turned applique quilt top bursting with bright colors. She worked on it for about a year and a half. The pattern is "Flower Pots" by Kim McLean. Fabulous!!!

Linda really has a fun sense of color.

Karen presented her latest fantastic wool applique quilt with bright wool popping on the black background. The pattern is "Summertime Sampler" by Erica Kaprow.

Here's a closeup of Karen's embroidery.

Karen also showed her latest one-block-wonder. Maxine Rosenthal has a series of books out on the technique.

Here is what the fabric looked like before it was cut up:

And I showed my May color block, which you've already seen on the blog but here it is again. It's a collage of colors gathered from nature photos that I took throughout May. I'm doing one for each month this year.

 All in all, it was a very inspiring meeting!

Have a colorful day

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

The Home Made Cafe in Pt. Orchard, WA

I picked up on three themes at The Home Made Cafe in Pt. Orchard last week, besides great comfort food. They are: the color purple, reclaimed old doors, and Buddha statues. My kind of place!

My vegetable omelette was delicious and healthy.
My friend Sherry and I were looking for a good place for lunch after her p.t. appointment, and the receptionist recommended it. Great find! It's small in space but big on atmosphere and food.

Sherry's salmon burger was colorful enough for the blog.
Here is the story of the cafe, 
which is in an old church:

As noted, there is a lot of purple:

... and old doors:

Even the art is of old doors.

... and Buddhas:

Have a colorful day

Saturday, June 9, 2018

New recycled clothes project

My last post talks about how I saved my old patched and embroidered clothes from the '70s, and today's post is about cutting up a pile of old favorite clothes to turn them into a quilt.

I wore these favorite linen shirts over the last 20 years until they were literally falling apart. I love the rich colors and the loose, comfy fit. Same with the soft, cotton batik print robe. The denim dotted dress is another favorite from 20 years ago that I didn't want to give up but I knew I'd never wear it again, even though it's still in good shape.

I thought about artistically patching the shirts, but most of the holes were in the arm pits or under the collar.

So today I cut them up, allowing room around the seams and pockets to sew them into the design and make them design elements.

They're filling up the floor of my studio!

I'm thinking of a wonky, free-form design, sort of like the Gee's Bend quilts. But I have to think about it for a day or so before proceeding.

In other news, look at this photo my daughter sent of Bunners and Charlie! It's the yin-yang of bunnies. 

Have a colorful day