Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Barn Quilts and Paperwhites

What we refer to as "Christmas Holidays" passed rather uneventfully here in Hattiesburg. Weather was warm and humid, reminding me of living in Corpus Christi, Texas. But we finally had a few days of teens temps and icy roads. My geranium and croton plants had to be covered, but we're back in the 60-70s.
Linda and I planned to eat Christmas Dinner at Cracker Barrel since they are always open on holidays for travelers. Not! So we warmed up homemade soup and worked on her barn quilt patterns. She has become fascinated with this idea and plans to rotate her signs seasonally. She doesn't have a barn, so the quilts are for the front of her house. The Noel/Christmas tree hung during December.
The Friendship Star is up now, with the Star of the Orient ready to follow.
She bought an 8' square of 1/4" plywood and had it cut into several pieces. The Noel/Christmas tree is 2' wide by 4' high; the two star blocks are 3' square.

Meanwhile, back in the studio, I've been having lots of fun working on my Indian Orange Peel design by Karen K Stone. Here are some of the parts laid out on the table, not sewn yet--just working with color placement. These little arcs are addictive! They create a huge mess of fabric on the floor.

I had six bulbs of paperwhites last fall that made a beautiful show of flowers. Doubting that it was worthwhile, I dug up the bulbs (which had multiplied into lots of smaller ones) and stored them in the refrigerator until around Thanksgiving. I brought them out and planted them in fresh soil and began watering. My garden center guru mentioned that gin would cause the foliage to only grow about 1/2-1/3 as high while still producing regular-sized flowers. I researched to be sure I heard him correctly, and after some growth took place I began to water them with 1 part gin to 7 parts water. Here is the pot just beginning to put up leaves in mid-December. Next picture is today, January 10.
Mid-December when I started the gin/water

I'll report back later.


Jenny Lyon said...

Gin for paperwhites-who knew? Sounds like a perfectly lovely Christmas. And that paper pieced New York beauty is gorgeous!

Tierney Hogan said...

Really enjoyed this post! That Indian Orange Peel quilt is so cool! My heart skipped a beat when I saw all those scraps on the floor (I tried to reach through the computer screen and put them in my pocket, I have a thing about scraps). Paperwhites are a nice way to get through the non growing season (do you even get a non growing season where you live!?!?) :-)

Martha Ginn said...

Thanks, Jenny. I've heard from several people who back up the gin advice, saying they have had good results with it. Of course, I've had several funny remarks, too, like asking if I make them drink alone. I've also learned that rubbing alcohol will work also and it's much cheaper.

Martha Ginn said...

Tierney, I'm absolutely crazy for this Indian Orange Peel design and am really having fun making the arcs. Dreading having to remove the paper foundations, though, I have printed the designs on a "leave-in" material called Do Sew (learned of this from Linda Fiedler and bought it from Nancy's Notions). Several of my friends are using something called "bridal aisle"--the floor runner material.
About the mountain of scraps created from making the arcs, for now I have been putting them in a box; you just can't throw something like that away, at least not without holding on a while!
Our winters come in spurts--several days of below 20 degrees, which will kill nearly everything, followed by several weeks of 70s-80s when things begin to leaf out again. Keeps us on our toes to protect a few things.

janice pd said...

I love this quilt Martha! I have just never had the patience to make one.

Linda K Ginn said...

I have since named the barn quilt signs officially. The two square ones pictured are Winter Star (Barn Quilt Seasons #1) and Spring Flowers (BQS #2). Summer Sun (BQS #3) has been painted. Spring Flowers and Summer Sun are painted on one board, one on each side. The one for fall is still under consideration but will be painted on the other side from Winter Star.