The Lily Pad: The Journal of White Lotus Quilting

New staff member MacCloud

Posted in Sheltie staff by whitelotusquilting on February 28, 2012
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What to do when you haven’t posted to your blog for a very long time — hide under a quilt!Especially if you’re a white-factored Sheltie puppy whose ruff matches batting — perfect camouflage!

New Kona Bay fabrics are here!

Posted in news,Sheltie staff by whitelotusquilting on November 21, 2010
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Here’s what just arrived in the studio out of the new tone-on-tone ‘Rainshadow’ line by Kona Bay:

Rainshadow tonal fabrics

Aren’t they yummy?  I love tonal prints because they’re so versatile.  They can act like solids (we call them solid-ish) or become more print-like if used with solids.  And the color gradation of the neutrals is wonderful, too, a nice palette to complement just about any color scheme.  Be sure to check them out if you come by to pick up or drop off a quilt, or if you’re here for an open studio night.

Kona Bay is also running a website fabric special on their six-yard bolts.  For a limited time you can purchase these bolts directly from Kona Bay (which is a company local to the Puget Sound area) for $36 each, which works out to be $6/yard.  This is a great backing size for a twin to double sized quilt so if you’re looking for backings you might want to check out this special.  Normally these fabrics go for $9 – $10/yard.

If you use the coupon code 7068 it lets them know where you heard about their special and also gives you a bonus gift with your purchase.

And of course it wouldn’t be fair to mention Kona Bay fabrics without showing a recent picture of Kona Bay the dog :).  Finally, a picture of her without her ears back!

Kona Bay the Sheltie

Rayon scarf day in the studio

Posted in Arts n Crafts,gadgets,Sheltie staff by whitelotusquilting on October 13, 2010
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Well, we finally did it.  After two years of talking about it, we got a quorum of stitchers together, sliced and diced a whole bucket of rayon, and viola!  A whole deck-railing full of rayon scarves.  Which the dog is admiring.  Mostly.

Day of rayon scarf production

These scarves are fun and easy, if a bit time-consuming.  Always more fun with fellow sewists!

A few years ago I got a kit to make one, then made a bunch for my friends, who always wanted to know how I did it, so I posted a tutorial on flickr to try to show them.  The photo above and below are both a part of the same set so click on either one, and stroll on through the album if you want to see more about these super fluffy — and warmer than expected — scarves.  They drape beautifully, and it doesn’t matter so much if they shrink, which rayon tends to do.  Plus it’s a great way to recycle rayon sarongs and other clothing you might be done with.

If you plan to try a few on your own, I highly recommend investing in a chenille cutter first.  I love the Olfa one but everyone swears by their favorite brand.  You need one with a channel guide — preferably an adjustable or interchangeable one — and a way to rotate the blade angle when the blade gets dull.  Which it will do, quite quickly.
cutting chenille channels

They look so different before and after washing, yes?  Maybe that’s what Kona is staring at in the first picture :).

Here’s one more pic, of Margret’s Juki set up on my worktable, getting ready to finish the channel stitching on the teal and orange scarf draped on the table.  Gotta love those Jukis — they stitch super straight and fast, and have a thread-cutter built into the food pedal.  We had the walking feet on both of them — and boy was it loud in the studio with both of them cranking!

Rayon scarf production day

You can see my longarm in the background, holding a multitude of things (including some freshly minted scarves) on its frames while I ignored it for the day.  Oh, well, even if I didn’t get any quilting done, I did get some Christmas gifts made!  Hope your day was just as fun — or productive — or both!

Meet the new staff member

Posted in news,Sheltie staff by whitelotusquilting on March 5, 2009

When I first started my business, I jokingly added a ‘staff’ section to the navigation bar on my website.  If you click on it, there’s a whole section of dog pictures.  They’re my administrative assistants, order-takers, greeters, and sometimes take over the filing too.  They insist on frequent snack breaks :).

We’ve added a new puppy to the mix.  Her picture is featured on last week’s Kona Bay Fabrics blog, because her name is, well, Kona Bay.  And we definitely need some kind of caffeine to keep up with her!


Kona Bay the tri-color Sheltie puppy

Kona Bay the tri-color Sheltie puppy

Meet the Staff

Posted in Sheltie staff,White Lotus Quilting studio by whitelotusquilting on October 17, 2008
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White Lotus Quilting staff meeting

White Lotus Quilting staff meeting

Humor for the day, of the pet kind :)

Posted in Not Quilting Related (NQR),Sheltie staff by whitelotusquilting on October 17, 2008
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Here’s a great link to daily humor if you’re a cat lover: LOL cats

Here’s another great link for more humor if you’re a dog lover: LOL dogs

Powerless in Seattle

Posted in Quilts,Sheltie staff by whitelotusquilting on December 19, 2006
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Snow Frosted Penny
Okay so this isn’t really a story about a snow-flecked dog returning to the warmth from the cold outside — but it’s not so different.  I’m about as graceful as my dog without the heat and light (and hot water) that power provides.  And that’s an uncomfortable if not inconvenient truth.

The recent wind storm knocked out a feeder line to our island, and the whole place, even our little downtown district, went dark.  And cold, very cold.  The first night was a little romantic, and even though I wasn’t able to work on my sewing machines, I was able to knit by warm yellow candlelight.

By the next day I was missing hot water and followed my husband to work like the proverbial lamb that followed Mary to school.  I took a shower and felt human (ewe-man?) again.  The second night was more difficult.  We have only a fireplace for heat and frankly more of the heat goes up the chimney than in the house.  So we shivered under piles of wool blankets, got very little sleep, and went back into my husband’s work on the weekend for heat and hot showers.

And found a hotel for the third night.  One that would take four dogs and had power.  I never thought a warm room would feel so good (or that there could be so much dog breath in such a small enclosed space).  Or that so many other power-less people would be our companions in the other rooms of the very full hotel.

I became, suddenly, uncomfortably aware of the dependency we have as a family on our power, our heat, our light, our Internet provider (they were out of power too), our cell phones.  You can’t charge what you can’t plug in, eh?  And my heart opened for the people who suffer day in and out on the streets, homeless, their warm rooms and hot showers rare occurrences to be treasured.

Maybe it’s because of the coincidence of working on Kendra’s “Global Warming” quilt , but it also made me more determined to become carbon emissions neutral as a family, and to find a way to wean us off the power grid, one appliance (or sewing machine?) at a time, so there is more for everyone to share.  Hope you’re feeling power-ful, warm, safe, healthy, happy and at ease this holiday season.  And make sure you have enough batteries, flashlights, and well, of course, dog kibble.

It must be something viral

Posted in Arts n Crafts,Quilts,Sheltie staff by whitelotusquilting on November 6, 2006
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Tidepool quilt 2

I’ve been a voracious (okay compulsive) knitter for a dozen years now, and have taught hundreds of people how to knit.  So it may not be obvious why I’m quilting so much at the moment.  But there is a direct connection.  Sort of.

One of my knitting students, Leslie, happily took her skills to her quilting group in Seattle and slowly but surely turned the group into a knitting group with her passion for the craft.  I was a regular member when I traveled into the city several times a week.  They call themselves ‘Fiber Fiends.’  Of course.  I’ve also been a member of a group called ‘Fiber Fairies,’ and I suppose ‘Fiber Fanatics’ would describe the group I’m currently in.

Yes.  The key word is FIBER.

It could easily be suggested that the Fiber Fiends turned me into a quilter — just by association.  Leslie pursed her lips when glancing at the Tidepool quilt on my bed.  “It must be something viral,” she said with a sly grin.  She was of course relieved that I wouldn’t be pursuing quilting with the same compulsiveness that I have approached all the other fiber arts with.  Ha ha.

If it’s fiber, it’s in our house.  Thread, yarn, fabric, raw wool and alpaca for spinning, batting, felt, and so forth, with of course the enticing embellishments like beads, sequins, buttons, angelina (fusible iridescent fiber, yum!) and of course glitter.

Ooooh, shiny.