With the grandkids at LACMA

Everybody was at LACMA last week, there was no parking anywhere.  So the visit included a nice long walk just to get there from blocks away.This is a sight to see. For years we were forbidden to call it The May Company – it became LACMA west and the language police were very strict with anyone connected to the museum, especially the docents. Then a deal was made and it will become a Hollywood museum and now one can call this the May Company again. I wonder if this museum will deal with the abuse of women and children that goes on in the industry or if it will be another puff piece that shows us the unreal veneer of the industry.

At least they are repairing the lovely gold tower, that is worth a lot.It is amazing to see what becomes an icon. These lampposts have certainly become iconic. Not so sure about the floating rock, we never even went to check it out. The Chagall exhibit was bright, colorful and fun. Shira said that she loves this costume and wants to wear it. That in my book in a big success.Aytan wanted to go visit the Japanese pavilion. He really likes these pots, go figure, one would think that he’d be interested in big bombastic things. But no, it’s the pots. Then I got smart and I gave him my phone.  He ran around and took pictures of everything, here are just a few.It is wonderful seeing something from a different angle. From my point of view I see the god more than the dwarf. I didn’t check out the label, but to me this looks like the Japanese version of Siva stamping out the dwarf of ignorance.I cropped this a little, what I didn’t crop out is the person, because it was part of the picture that Aytan took.He took this picture again, without the person,  he was going for the ceramic vase.  I love how he captured this man as well.Another image I love, just because I’d never take this, but he did.There was a special exhibit on Japanese cloisonne, what interested Aytan was taking pictures of the catalog, these are just two, but he did take quite a few.As well as many pictures of the painted panels. I think the theme is the atmosphere.  Even in this image, that waterfall is incredible, IRL it is all the more so.I think these are rocks, I may be wrong, they may be made of fabric. For me, this visit was all about letting Atyan lead the way. It wasn’t about reading labels.

Sometimes it’s not about learning something new, it’s about letting a child run around and capture what interests him.



Quilt for Eyal II

Laying out the quilt, I like breaking the symmetry.Here is the final top, you’ll notice that I have a section of the background in the gazelle block. I love that secondary design and it only showed up once, so I encroached on the gazelle.

Remember the problems I was having with my ruler work? I took a class with Becky Wilder, a new member in the VMMQG, she is a whiz with rulers. It took a lot of trial and error to figure out the problem. I needed to lower the foot a lot, much more pressure on the quilt was needed. The final item was using the purple Janome 90/14 foot. It worked.

Here is the result, nice clean ruler work, but what would happen when I go home and work on actual patchwork? Eyals’ quilt was the testing ground.See how nice and straight the outline is? I’m showing the back here, because the quilting is invisible on the print fabric I used.It wasn’t all ruler work, on the animals, I tried to highlight their shapes and then echo around them.Using the quilting to emphasize the owls’ eyes.On the dark brown chevrons, you can actually see the ruler work, on the green diamonds you can’t even see the quilting.

Yes, I still had some thread breakage, this quilt was great for practice. I still have a long way to go before I really conquer this technique, but working with busy prints is a good place to start, I’m getting the practice and you can’t see the mistakes. I still had some thread breakage, but that is to be expected, happens even when I’m doing regular free motion quilting.Finished! Well, except for a label that I need to embroider.How cute is the back? I used up a lot of my animal prints, a whole forest back there.I showed the quilt to the Dads and put Eyal on it, he is still small, it will be fun to take pictures of him on it periodically. Right now, I need to make a label, show it off at my guilds,  and then give it to Eyal.





Big News

Some people guessed, yup, I am a grandma again, we are up to five!  My son and son in law are adopting this adorable little peanut.Three years, ever since they got married they have been trying to get a baby and now they have their son. He is a preemie, so is still in the hospital in OH and I won’t meet him in person for a few weeks. Which is very hard, but he is here and adorable and healthy and before you know it I’ll have him in my arms. He is home! He is precious! He still doesn’t have a name. Well, all the officials know his name, but not the rest of us.

It is traditional to name a Jewish baby boy at his Bris, circumcision, usually, that is only eight days after birth. In this case, he will be 6 weeks old. That is ok, I understand the Dad’s wanting to wait. As long as I can hold him and love him, I can wait too.





Knitting mishaps and successes

Using the yarn I bought in Virginia, I started a sweater. The pattern was recommended on one of the podcasts I listen to. I don’t think I’ll be taking their advice or do any more patterns from this designer.

p1170222It started out ok, I wasn’t thrilled with how the pattern was written, but I worked through it. Off the bat one of my problems was the complexity of the cable. I guess I’m just not into knitting complicated cables where I really have to pay attention to the chart. When the two cables are mirror image it is even harder to try and memorize the cable pattern.

p1170224I kept at it, the yarn is Sweet Georgia and it is a delight to knit with.

p1170478I finished the body, sure unblocked it doesn’t look very good.p1170479It’s not the irregularities in the cable pattern that bother me so much. (There are plenty of mistakes, I can assure you). It how low the back of the neck is. I’m not young, all the heat escapes from my body through the neck and back of shoulders. Which is why I have so many shawls. But I don’t want a low neck on a wool sweater.

There is a saying, knitting 20 rows beyond a mistake won’t make the mistake disappear. If it still bothers you, take the time, frog back and fix the mistake.  Well at this point I wasn’t sure, but I went on and tried to knit in the sleeves – it just wasn’t working. At this point I decided that this sweater wasn’t for me.

So yes, I frogged it, I will find another pattern. To finish a sweater I will never wear is worse than frogging at this point.

Not all my knitting has been problematic.15202695_10209669533352420_2554442933775435924_nI’ve knit Joel a few hats. Aytan wanted to be like his Saba and wear one of the hats.  Knitting a child’s hat out of bulky yarn is easy to do, so overnight, I made a hat.img_5966It is nice warm wool, good for when he goes skiing in December.

img_5965I put in my label, which is something of a problem, since he tells me it’s now my hat. Even though it’s too small for me.

img_5962One happy Aytan. (and Saba Joel)



I have been sewing dresses, these two are very nice, but the model of the first one is way cuter than the second  model.p1170308Having a granddaughter who really wants dresses is amazing. Doesn’t get better than this.

p1170306Showing off the dress, I think she was giving a curtsy, Sophia the First was a favorite show for a while.

p1170311Shira also announced that she only wants fabric with flowers. Luckily I have some that fits the bill.p1170319She is so photogenic it is scary.  She told me she likes eating the rosemary right off the bush. Ok, I like to use it as seasoning.

img_5907The pattern was for a party dress, I removed some of the fullness from the skirt, she is going to wear this on a daily basis until I make her another dress.img_5912The cumberbund detail adds some flair.

I also made myself a dress, with corduroy I bought at JoAnn.p1170275It is lovely, tiny wale and very lightweight.p1170274A dress with pockets! Always a good thing.

p1170273p1170286Now, onto sewing some skirts and tops.



Aytan asked me for a dinosaur costume.p1160265I found one! I ordered it from an etsy seller, but latter I saw that Simplicity still prints this one. I can highly recommend it.  Together we went to Joan’s and Aytan chose the fabric, green of course.img_5606He is an impatient little fellow, he thought I could wip it up in an hour. Of course he was happy to help stuff the tail. He was unhappy to go home without the costume.p1160267The scales are made from felt, I added strong interfacing, I really want them to stand on their own.p1160268A very well designed costume. with claws on the feet and a seperate hood. There also are gloves, but I skipped those. He will need the use of his hands.p1160270It was a hot summer day when I finished this. Let’s hope it is cool on Halloween.p1160286A very happy Aytan!  He immediately put it on and started roaring. Saba Joel does a good job roaring even without the costume.p1160281First it was a run around the yard.img_5616Then he took his matching dinosaur puppet and we had to go for a walk to the park.p1160288People stopped and looked, which was fine. Aytan just told them that it’s not dark yet, but soon it will be and it will be Halloween.p1160289I like the elastic under the shoe, it did help the foot stay in place.p1160295I just love this dinosaur proudly walking around.

Yes, there was a meltdown the next day when he couldn’t wear the costume to school. Luckily, soccer started that weekend and a new interest started. No, he hasn’t forgotten about the dinosaur, there is simply fun things in life to keep him busy.



P1150346We have great beaches in Los Angeles, even if I’m not much of a beach person, and certainly not one to go into our frigid waters.P1150368I’m happy to go and be the photographer, while the young uns have fun.P1150364This year Cameron is in Mommy’s arms, by next year he’ll be right there in the water with his brother.P1150375This needs to be on a greeting card.13654298_10155023528138696_4373776791536798562_nOk, I wasn’t even here, I took the pictures from my Dils feed. But it’s a great picture of grandma and Shira heading to the ocean.13620280_10155023529083696_2046588395318681502_nWhile Atyan plays in the sand.P1150488I did go the the beach with Yish and Yoch, we just walked along the water. And burned our feet on the sand during the 1/4 mile hike down to the waters edge. Not only are LA beaches beautiful white sand, for the most part they are pretty wide. Not sure how they prevented development right up to waters edge, but in Santa Monica they succeeded.P1150369Santa Monica Pier on a hot July weekend. We rode the new Expo line from Palms to Santa Monica, it was lovely. The train was full of weekend beach goers.P1150345Somebody got very creative. I understand someone does this on a large scale up in Ventura.P1150343What a balance, not only in the structure, but in the shape and textures of the rocks. Better than many an art piece I’d find in a museum or gallery.P1150493Sometimes it’s nature that provides all the beauty all on it’s own.


Best reaction ever

The weather is getting warmer, its dress season not just for me but for my granddaughter.P1140646I’ve had the fabric in my stash for a while and enough trim left over from the skirt I made for myself.P1140649Even from the back it’s cute. I’m never quite sure which way to overlap the fabric when installing the zipper, oh well.

As cute as the dress is, this is exactly the kind of reaction I was hoping for.P1140705Ok, maybe not sticking out her tounge.P1140706P1140710 P1140711 P1140708 P1140707But this kind of joy and exuberance.P1140713 P1140716Oh yes, this kind of appreciation will guarantee many more cute dresses.



Woodland critters

I just wasn’t happy with the bear-fox, so I went ahead and did some surgery and he became a fox-bear.P1140204Nose is a little sharper. Also gave him a bandana, which he will probably lose as soon as the baby gets its hands on him.P1140205This is an improvement but I”m still calling him a fox-bear because he is simply too bear like. I looked at the photo on the pattern and realize that so be it. Their version looks very similar. I was so excited to find this fox pattern I didn’t look closely to see that it wasn’t that fox-like.

So back to Barbara Prime, her animals are very well designed.P1140202This little fox, who looks foxy got his bandana.P1140203The shape of the head, the ears. I should just stick with her patterns.P1140206Two friends, now, I’m thinking that the bandanas need to be a tad larger.

I’m having so much fun with these animals, and they will make wonderful centerpieces at the baby shower. I’m making more.P1140199Raccoon is in the works!  I have sewed something as well, that will be for another post.  Not sure what I’ll do with all of these when the lunch is over. I may keep a few, I have a feeling the older grandkids may want some of them.  That is yet to be determined. Meanwhile, it’s back to knitting!


Quilting news

P1120046I don’t know if you remember this quilt that I finished in the summer. I never said what happened to it. It is a gift for a special person, there were reasons why she only got it now.P1130579Yup, it’s for Shira!P1130578She does love it, even if that means walking all over it with her shoes on. She slept very nicely under it as well.P1130581Sometimes it’s scary how photogenic she is.

I have been working on quite a few quilting projects lately. Both guilds I belong to now do challenges. Valley MQG asked us to use th

Kona cotton color of the year, highlight Yellow.  It wasn’t easy to find, it still isn’t, it is selling out everywhere. Maybe because it is a much better choice than making a political statement with baby pink and blue like Pantone did.  Anyway Sew Modern did have charm packs and I split one with a friend.P1130050I also had a charm pack of rainbow solids, which is perfects since LAMQG is having a challenge with solids only. Score! One quilt for two challenges.

I like the idea of using one block and making changes by playing with the colors. I decided to use a tried and true block, one that doesn’t have too many half square triangles. P1130051Churn Dash. I made this out of charm squares I won as well. I really wanted to see how this block will work using a 5″ charm pack. It works very well as long as your goal isn’t a 12″ block.  It comes out more like 11.5″ which is fine for me since I’m repeating the same block, not making a sampler.P1130052Ok, I’ll admit it, it is very hard for me to stick to just one block, so every so often I threw in a checker board.P1130079I gradually moved onto the other colors.P1130089I am not a big fan of the rainbow. I wouldn’t have chosen this if I were buying fabrics for the project. On the other hand, aside from buying the Kona Highlight, I set my own challenge of only using the other charm pack and not including any other solids in my stash.P1130208I ended up being very pleased with the final result, now to figure out how to quilt it.