Not quilting, just playing musical rooms!

Not much quilting going on here, but lots of activity. We decided that we should move a few rooms around in the house, so that the girls would have a little more privacy and separation from each other. Their “rooms” were on the top floor of the house, and while the space is sort of divided into two areas, there’s no door in between them. There’s a hallway with a bathroom, but no doors except for the door that leads to the whole set of rooms. This setup was okay when the girls were 8 and 3 years old, but now they’re 15 and 10 and it really no longer works.

So, GuitarGirl (that would be DD#1, now 15 years old) moved into my office/studio, and LittleOne (DD#2, 10) moved into GuitarGirl’s old room, since it’s cooler in the summer. So far so good. Now, the biggest part of the problem (notice I said “biggest” not “only”) is that the only other room in the house that’s available to house all of my own activities is the basement, where ITMan hangs out. It’s not big enough to handle all of my machines, tables, shelves, and cabinets, not to mention my fabrics Continue reading Not quilting, just playing musical rooms!

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Shipping a quilt

Stars In My Hand Quilt

I had to take a break from my holiday recovery to repackage the Stars In My Hand quilt for shipment to the Road to California Quilt Show in January. When I received the quilt back from the IQA show in Houston, it was packaged in a long skinny box, rolled around a water noodle wrapped in acid free tissue paper. Very creative, that water noodle thing (and if you have no idea what a water noodle is, look here. We have a couple of the single noodles that the kids use in the pool at Garmisch when we go, but I had no idea what they were called. Google to the rescue.). Yes, you could roll the quilt around a cardboard tube from wrapping paper or something, but the water noodle is more stable, and won’t bend from the weight of the quilt when you pick up the roll to put it in the box.

I use the post office and have never had a problem. If I used UPS or FedEx, it would cost a small fortune to ship a box of this size and value internationally

This is one of those things that’s a bit scary, trusting the post office with an heirloom. I say “post office” because even though most folks ship things like this with FedEx or UPS since their tracking system is better (and maybe they have a better record of not losing things, though I’ve not seen solid stats on that), I use the post office because of where I live, and have never had a problem. If I used UPS or FedEx, it would cost a small fortune to ship a box of this size and value internationally, and if I declared it’s true value on the label, customs fees might be incurred either coming or going. Not cool to have to pay customs on your own quilt when it comes back from a show.

So the US Postal Service is the best option really, and it’s all in how you send the package. Continue reading Shipping a quilt

Houston or Paducah??

Quilt shows are always fun, whether big or small. For some quilters, getting to Paducah or Houston can be a once in five to ten years thing, and going to both is not an option. I’ve been to both, as well as to a couple of the Quilt Expo shows in Europe, and I thought a bit of a review might be in order. If your’re on the fence about which one to visit this season, you may find this useful, so here’s my two cents:

In Houston, there are more choices for lodging, so even if the “recommended and on the shuttle bus route” hotels are full, there are many other choices. However, this also means that if you’re not at one of the hotels on the shuttle route, you’ll either be figuring out Houston’s public trans system, Continue reading Houston or Paducah??