Sunday, August 30, 2020

The Secret Place--a 2010 Book Club Quilt

Kitchen chair and rug
 Our book club read "Loving Frank," by Nancy Horan in 2010. Horan tells the story of Mamah Borthwick and her love affair with Frank Lloyd Wright. The passage in the book that inspired me to make this project was Mamah as a young girl. She made a secret place amidst the tall grass. She would sneak away to be on her own. She'd have to wait for the grass to grow tall enough for her to hide in it! She took a rug from the kitchen and a chair to her place.When her family had to move, she left a note under the floor boards in her room to alert the next occupant about the secret place.

When I was a kid, I used to build forts all of the time. If I was inside, I'd use blankets and sheets which I draped around the furniture. (My mom was not happy that I'd unfolded the clean sheets and used the clothes pins off the line to make my creations.) If I was outside, I'd use hay bales. For a while, I even had a place in the willow tree where I'd read or pretend the tree was a big pirate ship. I could relate to Mamah's secret place!

To create this piece. I started with the kitchen rug. The fabric that I chose for the kitchen rug was a scrap leftover from a vest I had sewn for my oldest daughter when she was

 about 13. I loved that fabric and she wore the vest often so she liked it too! I thought it was perfect for this project because it sort of had that braided rug look to it. I hand appliquéd it to the background.

I found free clip art on line that I used to make the kitchen chair. This was the first time that I used clip art. I also hand appliquéd it. If I were making this quilt today, I'd probably try to draw the chair. 

For the background, I had a piece of green fabric that had a subtle grass print in the background. When it came time to quilt the piece, I used a light brown-gray thread to outline the print. It was also a 40 weight Floriani polyester thread. I like the sheen this thread has.

I added the butterflies using machine applique to adhere them to the quilt surface. I've had that butterfly fabric for many years. Originally, I planned to make a blouse out of it; but there wasn't enough. I cut a few butterflies of various sizes and used a narrow zig zag stitch to hold the butterfly in place. I used thread that sometimes contrasted with the butterfly for more dimension. I was pleased with how smoothly the Floriani polyester thread stitched around the butterflies. Using a thread that showed was a new choice for me to try and I liked the results.

Detail of machine appliqué
For the border, I pieced a braid. I had wanted to try piecing a braid. I cut some scraps and Martha gave me some blue fabrics because I didn't have enough variety. She was right about my scraps. I fussed over the corners of the border. In the end, I trimmed them to fit. I remember that I liked piecing the braid; but, I haven't pieced one since!

This project was also one of my own designs. I was excited that I was able to bring my idea to a finished project! I'm sharing it now as I'm documenting projects that I finished before I started this blog.

Since this is the last post of the month, I'll share my teaching numbers. I assisted 64 people in earning their Healthcare Provider CPR certification.

Detail of braided border

Regarding Covid:

Worldwide: 25M confirmed; 16.4 recovered; 843K deaths

United States: 6.01M confirmed; 3.16M recovered; 184K deaths

Oregon: 26,293 confirmed; 454 deaths

In Oregon, this week there are still 252 cases reported each day. Our case rate is 43 cases/100,000 people. (This is below the 93 cases/100,000 people national average.) Positive test percentage is 3.8%; nationally the percentage is 5.8%. Some counties of Oregon have rising rates and the governor may require those counties to go back to closing bars and other businesses. Tomorrow, my daughter begins her school year. She will begin the year as 
Finished quilt
she ended it last year--teaching online. She reports that there are so many unanswered questions. I hope that what isn't clear will be clear soon.

Regarding the protesting, it continues. We are now in the 13th week. It also continuous that at some point, the protesting turns violent with items thrown at police and fires started on awnings or in trash dumpsters. No updated figures for the cost of the damage have been released nor has additional information regarding money spent for the police to cover/respond to the protests. 

This past week, pro police groups begun nightly protesting to stop the destruction. Members of the BLM group attacked members of the pro police group using rocks, bats and fists. It was reported that there wasn't enough police on duty to intervene. Last night, the residents of one of the areas that protestors have hit each night, went on camera and stated they wanted to sleep and to stop the destruction. A third group which supports the Trump/Pence ticket held a rally. The rally formed at the Clackamas Town Center and the group drove to downtown Portland. There was a clash with BLM members. One man wearing a patriot prayer hat was shot in the chest. He later died. Details of what happened are unclear. What a mess!

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