1/2/17

Eight is Great

When I finished yesterday's blog post, I was seriously on my way down to the sewing room to work on Quiltmaker's Garden. Then, I paused on the stairs because I remembered that it was the beginning of Season 8 of Project Quilting. This is one of those challenges that can be so much fun, but me...with my long list of goals...I never feel as if I have enough time to participate. Well, as I said when I posted January's goals, mean, slavedriver, quilt til you wilt, finish-those-quilts-or-die me is a thing of the past. And this gives me a whole new lease on my quilting life.


So I check in on Persimon Dreams where all the news about Project Quilting is, and sure enough, the latest theme is posted. If you're not familiar with Project Quilting, it's a fun little challenge in which participants have a week to make a quilt, post to the linky party, take a week off, and on it goes with a new theme. This first theme of Season 8 happens to be "Eight is Great." Quilts have to incorporate "eight" in some way.

Well, don't you know I sat myself down with my friend Google, and we searched out phrases with eight, poems with eight, images with eight, etc., until I happen upon the phrase "eight-eight keys on the piano keyboard". Well, that's all I needed to see. And since I was a classical pianist in a former life, it only made sense to do something piano-related.

So I found myself an image of a keyboard to use for measurements...


and I hatched a plan. This is why it's so much more fun not to have goals ruling your life. My project engendered so much enthusiasm for sewing that I did the whole thing in a single afternoon. When I needed to quit yesterday, the only thing remaining was the hand sewing.


As of about five minutes ago, it's finished. From idea to completion in less than 24 hours. No flies on me.


It's simply quilted with the black lines delineating the white keys serving as the quilting. Also, I quilted a black outline around the entire keyboard. I used the triple stitch on my sewing machine for that. I'm calling this quilt "An Octave in Ivory," but I have some alternative names for it given my former life as a classical pianist. It could be called "Living My Father's Dream," or "The Hated Eight," or "Do, Re, Me and My Neuroses." That's the story of my youth in a nutshell.

It measures 14 x 19 inches. Here's how it looks from the back. 


You might remember the backing fabric from the quilted wall-hanging I made a few years back for my musician son Matthew, called "Perfect Harmony."


Here's my little quilting buddy. Don't know what I'd do without my lapful of cat in the morning.


She has stars in her eyes for our newest finished quilt.

My favorite winter weather set in here at the Three Cats Ranch. We had about 4-5 inches accumulation of snow yesterday morning before it stopped. When the clouds began to burn off, the landscape was positively breath-taking. You can see the wind chime Santa brought me off to the right there.


Looking out into the valley, it looked like this:


Our temperatures are forecast into the teens this coming week, and so it's going to be cold, clear, and crisp.

Today was the day I was supposed to be baking bread for the Virtual Bread Bake, but there will be no baking here. My starter never really took off, and it remains nothing but bubbly soup. I've done some reading about this, about how it looks, and about how it has looked over the past week. It seems that the initial bubbling I'm seeing is probably from bacteria, rather than yeast. The bacteria grows faster than yeast, and it can actually inhibit the growth of yeast. One solution is to use pineapple juice instead of water to mix with the flour in the beginning. It seems the citric acid in the pineapple juice will inhibit the growth of bacteria while encouraging the growth of yeast. I'm going to continue working with my current starter and try to get it to take off. In the meantime, I'm going to try the pineapple juice. My quest to bake a perfect loaf of sourdough is only just getting started. The more it resists, the more I persist.

29 comments:

  1. Super fast and super clever. Piano was included in my brainstorm so I am glad you went there! Lovely!

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  2. Wow, I love the quilt, would you give the dimensions of the pieces? My grandson wants to learn to play the piano so it would be a great gift for him. So clever!!! and what a beautiful place to live, like a winter heaven on earth, so clear and crisp! sourdough is great, I hope you find the solution to your starter. I made bread a lot when I was in my 20's and then stopped at some point, that same grandson and I are going to take a crack at it the next time he comes. He would like to learn how to bake things. Happy New Year! from Iowa

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    Replies
    1. Melody, you are no reply, and so I am hoping you will see my answer here. The top portion of each key is 5 inches long (unfinished) the white keys are one and a half inches wide, black keys are 1 inch wide, and the double whites are 2 1/2 Inches wide. The lower strip is 3 inches wide. My keyboard came out to approximately 12 1/2 inches in width. If you have more questions, please email me using the address in my right side bar. That will give me your email address so that we can correspond directly.

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  3. That sounds fun and love your piece. Will have to check out the site.
    Looks like you got quite a bit of snow, just rain here.

    Debbie

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  4. What a great little quilt, you are so darned clever, seriously. And a lovely pawtrait of Sadie, she is much less camera shy now, perhaps since she could see her beauty reflected in the lovely quilt you did of her. A good sourdough is worth the effort, clearly, and I am so grateful that some of you are willing to put it in so that I can eat the stuff wherever I find it. :)

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  5. Love the little quilt. I've always wanted to join in the project quilt but no point whilst I'm still working. Your winter weather looks beautiful, we've just got rain. I've got my fingers crossed that we get some snow this year.

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  6. So awesome! I read about "8 is great" and didn't come up with any inspiration, so I'm not going to worry about this week. Plus, I have plenty of quilts to make for gifts this year...
    I love your cat - looks like my nieces kitties!

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  7. I love your "An Octive in Ivory" quilt!!! The colors are so...fabulous!
    I seem to have taken off in my quilting obsessions. YAY for me! Finally! I'm doing a quilt top now that I will call the learning quilt, because I learned and practiced the art of de-stitching and re-stitching! I have also learned to pay attention to what I am doing before I am tearing it out!
    Loving your landscape! It is beautiful, thank goodness there is no place pressing you to get out of your nice warm house. It's a bit chilly here north of you, but not nearly as cold as you have it. The ground is frozen which turns out is my ground of choice after just dry ground. (no slipping and sliding!)
    I'm going to go check out that Project quilting thing, because O rerally need more things to sew! (yeah, right!)

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  8. This is amazing! Perfect little quilt! I hope you had fun with the challenge;)

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  9. I hope your piano mastery is much better than mine. I was so bad that I played the same recital piece, 2 years in a row. Great quilt!

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  11. Oh so cute! I love the piano keys!! Keep on with your persistence of the bread I know you can do it! Keep warm in your frigid temps!

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  12. That is a cute little quilt. And quick, too1

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  13. Such a lot of snow! All we have here in Portland is cold and wind, no snow at all. We had a few flurries but nothing stuck. You must be pretty high up. You are such a quick quilter. It would have taken me about month - no matter how small! Cute idea.

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  14. How fun, to make whatever you want! Very cute project. The last of the family left on Saturday. Sunday I pulled out my sourdough starter from the fridge where it had resided while the children were here. I replenished mine with potato water and flour. It's bubbling away, I don't know if it is bacteria or yeast. I'll bake some bread Wednesday. Have fun working on whatever project is on the schedule today. villacrestfarm@gmail.com

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  15. Lovely little piece and perfect for the theme. We had a little more snow over night (to add to what is already on the ground) with more to come during the day.

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  16. Your piano keys would make a fun placemat, and I suspect nobody would object to your dropping a few crumbs on the keys of this one! Beautiful clear days there, so pretty.

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  17. Very cute. I love the green accent. It really makes it pop. No snow here, but they are talking about it for the weekend. We'll see.

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  18. The piano keys are so fun and you're already enjoying your new goals of do what you want. As usual I love the snow pictures although I'm not sure about temps in the teens.

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  19. I love the piano keys! Former life concert pianist, huh? You constantly amaze me with your talent (I suppose you were the concern pianist "Artist formerly known as . . ." too? Sorry -- from MN and I couldn't resist!). Sorry to hear that the starter never really took off. I haven't heard about the pineapple juice, but it makes sense. I'll have to remember that when I decide to tackle sourdough starter again. Your snow is dazzling. We are having a weird winter of freezing rain. Bleh. Give me snow! Wendy at piecefulthoughts@gmail.com

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  20. Lovely blue skies over the snow!
    Great job on the Octave quilt, and you did it so fast!! I crocheted 2 Happy Bowls and a cat ear beanie this weekend. And I am joining in another postcard swap called "Liberate Your Art". Have to take pics to have printed on postcards. Should be fun!

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  21. As a musician, I applaud your piano keys quilt. Very nicely done. Making bread is a lot like learning to play the piano--practice makes perfect;-)

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  22. Good for you, not giving up on the bread. I like your motto. I will offer my motto for 2017 to keep it company: In defeat, defiance! On with the pineapple juice!

    I've been meaning to tell you that I made your roasted cranberry sauce for Thanksgiving, and it was delicious. About a week later, when there was far too much left and I was feeling guilty about letting it go to waste--two people can eat only so much holiday food--I made pasta, and put the cranberry sauce on it, along with some cheese and nuts. It was a leap, but it turned out wonderfully good! It's going to be my day-after-Thanksgiving meal from now on. Heck, as a vegetarian, it might be Night-of meal. So, thanks for sharing!

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  23. I love, love, love your quilt! It's always so much fun to see how everyone interprets the challenges. Brava!

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  24. A very inspired mini! Love the simplicity and it fits the theme to a T! Congrats on a quick, but pretty finish.

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  25. Octaves hadn't occurred to me, I'm so glad you thought of this. It's adorable.
    Janie from isabellaswhimsy.wordpress.com

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  26. I love your little keyboard quilt and hurray to you for enjoying more and stressing less this year.

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  27. So many clever ways to express 8! Who knew? Love your piano keys!

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  28. How fun! And a unique expression of '8'! And love the other quilt as well with your backing fabric!

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