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New Things & Thoughts on Being A Country Mouse

Once again time has slipped by since my last update. I wish I knew why I lapse so...but it is what it is.

I have found a few new treasures, made a couple of new clothes and had a wonderful time with here are few of the highlights of my recent ramblings and musings...

New books that I love:

Yikes ...could not find a larger image...
but it is a wonderful, beautiful book!
This is a block that I made in a class with Patricia
a few days before the book was released.

New duds made:

PJ's made from a a fitted queen sheet that developed a hole...better than wasting fabric. I made them just to see if I could..

...and a new dress/tunic made from some
luscious brushed stretch cotton twill fabric (cinnabar color).
Showing my usual "match-the-pattern-on-the-pocket" play.

New tools and gadgets:

Coats and Clark's. I imagine that most of us who sew know about Coats and Clark's...especially their dual duty thread. Not many us use it anymore our tastes for fine quality all cotton threads have been spurred along by the likes of Aurifil, Sulky and Superior (hummmmm they all begin with the letter 's'!).

As a history buff I tend to love and respect companies that have been in business for a long time. After 262 years Coats and Clark's fits that bill, but I have been a bit sad that many of us seem to have a perception that their thread is somewhat lower quality than the more modern brands we seem to gravitate to. I was so excited to hear that they have come out with a couple of new and unique threads that I just have to share!

Coats "Secure" thread is for using on buttons. Good enough. The big news is that this thread is specially made to be heat set. Setting the thread with the heat from your iron locks the thread making it unlikely that the thread will come undone....making your buttons more secure and less likely to fall off!

Their other new thread is called "Eloflex" and is made specifically for sewing with knit fabrics. When I bought a spool I was so curious to see what made this thread special...and Shazam! It flexes and stretches and is a great new choice using with the plethora of knit fabrics we all love so much!

Another new-to-me tool is one I was introduced to is a Precision Point Turner. Before I saw it in action my thought was "I am happy with my bamboo, custom-ground-by-me point tool". Then I tried this little gem..
The rounded top makes inadvertent "poke through" a thing of the past. This "Precision Point Turner" is made by RTC and it appears that Floriani of stabilizer and thread fame is the sewing market distributor. I purchased mine through Quality Sewing...but if you Google "Precision Turning Tool" you will find a lot of options.
As with all tools and gadgets that I affiliation etc etc...
Last week was our quilt groups annual "camp". Over the years we have tried several places with varying degrees of comfort (or not) and amenities (or not!). This year was the second that the group has gone to "The Firs" in Bellingham, Washington. It is by far the best one yet. Bellingham is a doable trip for us islanders. It still requires the ferry and a 45 minute drive north, but it is not bad. Last year, after my fall from the ladder I had been unable to go, but had heard only great reviews. I was happy to be there for an unusual (for me) 4 day stay. It was an exhausting but happy time for 32 island gals.

We had some high winds as we headed for the ferry home, but first we were enchanted by a rainbow to guide us.
and then a stormy ferry crossing
Of course camp entailed some retail therapy. On our island we are rather starved for fabric so we all get rather glassy eyed and overwhelmed when we hit a fabric shop, let along browsing through places like Trader Joe's (I had never been in one before), Joann's, supermarkets etc. I was reminded how much living on an island has changed my point of view.
I grew up in New York City and the surrounding metro area and I often felt like a country bumpkin in the big city. Now that I am a certified country mouse any city-sized location makes me feel overwhelmed with all of their myriad choices and I easily become frazzled by the constant rushing and tremendous energy of more densely populated places. I guess that I have always preferred the slow lane!
Which brings me to this wonderful article that I read on the ferry as we rocked and rolled our way home on the ferry....

It really impressed me. Maya Angelou (the author of the original article) always does. It made me realize how truly grateful I am to live is a small, supportive, community where we DO look each other in the eye, wave to each other on the road and greatly enjoy our slower life on a rural rocky outcrop in the sea. My father always admired people who were "big fish in a big pond", and, perhaps understandable, he wanted that for me. I was always happier being a tiny fish in a very small pond! I found my way home when I landed here many years ago.

Until I write grateful, be happy and be creative...every day



  1. I always enjoy reading and veiwing the deepth and variety of your posts !
    the PJ's must be soft.
    and a thread update, very informative!! Be well, sonja

  2. I always look forward to you checking in and this post doesn't disappoint. I love the block you made. I think we had the same Home Ec. instructor when it comes to matching prints/stripes on pockets. What did you think of Trader Joe's? I have a list on our fridge for our next trip to the big city so I don't forget things that we have used up. I know most of our groceries would come from them if they weren't 200 miles away. Be well and keep having fun! xoxo

  3. I wish that you blogged more. I love to read your blog because you REALLY say something .


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