Susan got a wedding quilt and I decided to also make her a baby quilt! Why does Susan get two quilts when many people in my life have yet to receive one from me? I don’t know. Maybe I miss her, or feel guilty about not visiting her more? Most likely her big life events just happened to fall at a time when I had an open quilting schedule.
Again, I wanted to make something simple for her, in line with her taste for all things clean and minimal. I started with big stripes in soft tones. Then a friend at Chicago Modern Quilt Guild told me about making a quilt using shot cottons and wool batting, and how the quilt was so soft and had such a nice hand. Typically I don’t give a lot of thought to the hand of softness of the quilts I make, but in this instance it seemed like making a baby quilt extra soft would be a great idea. I had a gorgeous stack of shot cottons that I had purchased at a great price on Craftsy. I loved this stack so much that I decided to use it as it was, not changing the order of the colors at all. I paired the colors up as they came off the stack, cut them into pies and crusts, and sewed them into drunkards path blocks. I decided to add borders, and the phrase “Hello, world” to the bottom of the quilt. I wanted to make examples of the letters I had sketched out for a pattern (Simple Shapes Alphabet, hopefully coming out soon), and I thought it was a cute expression to welcome a new person into the world. I did not know at the time that this is a famous reference to computer programming. Even though I did watch Halt and Catch Fire. But I digress. By now I had come to think of the original front as the back, and this more colorful patchwork as the front. Of course Susan can use it in whatever way she prefers.
I sent this to Nikki Maroon for some very simple, open quilting. After it was bound I added a label made from a piece of vintage embroidered linen. I hope it’s getting plenty of use by sweet baby Nico.
UPDATE: Nico is the most adorable butterball and he looks perfect in his stripes on his quilt. This picture made my heart leap.
•Him going to a thrift store and him just not being able to keep his hands off the things on the shelves.
•Him touching the keys on an old keyboard piano
•Just imagine him going into a fabric store
•Him running his hands across all the bundles of fabric
•fidgeting with the smoothest one between his fingers
•Sitting there rubbing his hand on the softest fabric he can find
•Whenever a worker would ask him if he needed help he would momentarily stop but would start again without noticing
•Will tries to get him to stop and fails every time
•Just imagine him in the baby toys aisle- the clicking buttons and then running away when it makes sound
•… And then pushing the button again
•Him petting fluffy stuffed animals
•When they were in the department for bikes he’ll just strode down the aisle running his hands against the front wheels
•Him doing that thing where you wrap your arm around the poles in the grocery store and just spin around it
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Couch quilts hung up for the summer. Don’t really need them these evenings.
My Step Dad picked up this ladder at the tip shop stripped the paint off and stained it. My brother was given the other half to hang in his kitchen as a pot holder and I got this half for my quilts. :)
Have been looking at this stack of fabric I put together for a while now waiting to get some time to cut into it. :)
Killian was eyeing the bundle of fabric with an expression better suited to a man being offered Granny’s mystery lunchmeat special, or maybe one of Neal’s dirty diapers. Emma thrust it closer towards him and it jingled gently. Killian’s eyebrow, already high, made a break for his hairline.
“Come on,” she wheedled, “it’s traditional!”
“Traditional like the dwarves absconding with the Queen’s apple tree was traditional? Because I seem to recall you had a few choice words for such traditions then yourself, Swan.”
Emma winced. Not having Christmas as such in their own land, the Storybrooke residents had latched on to whatever aspects of a land-without-magic festive season most appealed to them. This had led to the dwarves discovering Wassailing, which had in turn led to Regina’s prize apple tree being dug up, strung with toast, and held hostage until Regina had come barrelling into the Sheriff’s station demanding a recipe for ‘figgy pudding’. Emma had spent very little time carousing and several hours on paperwork that night.
“Please? For me?” She wasn’t above batting her eyelashes.
Killian huffed and rolled his eyes skyward, and she knew she had him.
“Give up Killian, she’s going to win. She always does,” Henry groused, coming down the stairs with his hands thrust deeply in his pockets and an enormous woollen Santa Claus emblazoned on his chest.
“Hey!” cried Emma in semi-mock offence, “You loved your sweaters in New York!”
“Those memories were fake, mom. This… this is very real. As was my dignity, which I will never see again.”
“Come , lad,” Killian looked from Emma’s pout to Henry’s heinous sweater, clearly torn between cheering up his love and acknowledging the truth of Henry’s statement, “it’s not so bad.”
Henry quirked his own eyebrow in reply, before poking himself solidly in the stomach.
“HO, HO, HO,” said the sweater.
“Ho, ho, ho,” echoed Henry morosely.
Killian span back to face Emma, “My love, that’s cruelty.”
“That’s Christmas,” Emma countered, “now take your ugly sweater and suffer with the rest of us.”
He took it from her and allowed it to unfurl. From the back it was a sensible forest green knit, if a little conservative for Killian’s taste, but the front was decorated with a foot high stylized pine tree, complete with tiny bells and baubles stitched in place of decorations. He opened his mouth, but seemed at a loss for words.
“I think yours is actually worse!” crowed Henry, with rather more relief than sympathy.
“It’s perfect, put it on!”
“I would rather die. Again.”
“That’s a low blow and you know it,” Emma scowled, “Everyone else will be wearing one too, you should see what mom’s picked out for dad.”
“Is it worse than this?”
“Oh, considerably,” nodded Henry, whose opinion was the only one Killian was really interested in.
Killian took the sweater and tromped off to the bathroom to change with the expression of a man headed to the scaffold.
“Grandpa is never going to let him live this down, you know that right?” accused Henry.
“Your grandpa has antlers and a light up nose, he won’t be calling anybody out tonight I promise you,” Emma brushed her hands down her own sweater, the robin’s huge googly eyes determinedly pointing in entirely different directions, “and anyway, this is only the start of it.”
“What do you mean?” Henry side-eyed the bathroom door, from behind which was coming the sound of thumping and muffled curses, followed by a tinny electronic rendition of ‘Oh Christmas Tree’. The cursing grew louder.
There are no necklaces for lwa in vodou. We do not do elekes/collares, and anyone passing necklaces off to you for the lwa is doing you dirty. The only thing even resembling a necklace that we get–and it doesn’t go around our necks–is our kolye, which notes some of the spirit relationships we have and what sort of initiate we are. Those aren’t made any time except as part of kanzo and they can only be made by a priest.
Similarly, paket kongo can only be made by a manbo/houngan asogwe, period. They can be made for anyone, can be sold online, and do not have to made in Haiti, but they cannot be made by anyone but an asogwe. They are not pieces of folded paper ties with string. They are not short and small bundles of fabric.
If you are buying ritual items for vodou online–and paket kongo are just one of the things you can legitimately buy online–you should be asking the person you are buying from some questions, like who did they initiate with, when, where, and what their initiatory name is. Any priest worth what they are offering is happy to offer this information publicly–none of it is secret.
If they cannot answer these questions or refuse to, HUGE RED FLAG. Ask someone who knows about them, or seek services other places.
Further, as far as I know, 21 Divisiones/Dominican vudu do not make paket kongo. Neither does Palo or Lucumi or really any other religion–they are Haitian vodou specific, with a whole lot of very specific, non-public work going into them that someone who has not been made a priest can know. Buying fake paket kongo is not getting you what you want/desire, and can potentially fuck shit up for you big time. I have heard recent tales of people buying legit paket kongo and disassembling them to take the materials and make what they are passing off as paket kongo they made. Bad idea, totally fraudulent, and dangerous as heck.
Know who you are buying from and know what they are empowered to do. Please.
( tani’s song from the @the-gin-mill ‘s open poetry night tonight, set to salvatore by lana del rey. thank you for having me! )
The Miqo’te who steps on stage is diminutive; slender, lit utterly with glittering gold, and gentle lilac. His robe is a relative bundle of fabric strung about his lithe frame, gilded with pendants, brooches, feathered pins, bracelets, earrings, cinched necklaces, and far too many rings with ill-matching stones set fancifully into their silver bases upon his clawed, blue-painted fingertips.
Spun-gold hair threaded with peridot beads sits in a thick braid drawn over an exposed, freckle-dotted shoulder until the curled ends rest level with his navel; tethered by a white ribbon.
Cradled in those thin arms is a lyre— a pretty, delicate little lyre befitting of a male so thin. It looks as if it has been crafted from gold, with strings that reflect off the dim lights cast upon the willowy figure beneath, and a frame so opulent, and so elegantly carved that looks fit for a Thavnarian king; completed by a perched songbird spun from cedar perched upon the very tip.
A wary smile drifts across the courtesan’s parted lips as he moves to the heart of the stage, as his right hand lifts to settle; poised, over the golden strings. “This-..” His voice wavers, he tilts his head to clear his throat; forcing a smile that does not quite reach his eyes.
“..this is gonna be the first time I-I’ve sung on stage.” He admits, words chased by an audible exhale. His gaze moves to the audience, drifting between unfamiliar, and familiar faces alike; silhouetted by golden light. “Please be gentle.” His smile falters. His entire frame is… unsteady. The antithesis to the performer draped in silver who graces the Elysium’s stage at regular intervals.
“..ah- this song’s-.. ‘bout spendin’ time in the Mist, when it starts to get a bit late, an’ everythin’s-.. sort’a-.. a hazy orange. It’s slow, an’ lazy. You can see the moon, and the sun’s still setting.” He offers. “It feels like time stops for a few moments. As if everythin’s… on pause. As if nothin’, and no one is in a rush. It’s still too warm to move awful fast.” He nods, slowly— narrowing his eyes, unsure if he’s making sense.
He drops his gaze to the lyre cast across the inside of his arm, and he swallows thickly— throat visibly bobbing under the heavy lights as he closes his eyes— and; up on stage, so unfortunately lit by the garish golden lights, the tremble to his fingertips is difficult to ignore. He’s -nervous-. His gilded, pierced ears slant low- pressing close to his sandy hair as the glitter doffed across his eyelids catches against the lights above.
The courtesan folds down to sit; until he is cross-legged, and oh-so-primly settled in the heart of the stage. He carefully lowers the lyre into his lap, clearing his throat one last time as he closes his eyes— as he steadies himself; heart beating loud enough in his chest as if to serve as some intangible baseline (and he wonders if his audience might -hear- it). Shifting his knees, his eyes draw open..
He lowers those clawed fingers to the harp, and he plucks three, melodic notes that ring out loud, and deep. He follows them with three more; repeating the velveteen verse a second time. His lips part, lush, red-painted and followed by a sweet, youthful, and ambiguous voice. It permeates over his lullaby-like notes, tentative, and soft..
“..-all the lights in La Noscea begin to gleam. Ruby, blue, and green ♪..” A pause, he looks up; a coy smile drawn over his lips in a faux show of confidence, as his head gives a single shake along with his words, adding - as if in afterthought, “Neon too ♪..”
His fingers sweep along, harp nestled neatly against an exposed, tattooed thigh as his opposing hand lifts to cover the last three strings on his sweet little lyre. His uneven gaze drifts over the crowd, as if searching for one figure in particular. As if seeking some validation on the tenor of his light voice. “..everythin’ looks better from above, my king. Like aquamarine, oceans blue ♪..”
Clearwater-blue eyes draw back to the lyre, eyes brimming with the looming presence of thinly-veiled aether as his hands dance back, as they sweep along his corded strings to accompany his iambic pentameter in sweet succession- a sound like a pleading, desperate siren, calling from her place on the jutting rocks for a sailor lost at sea, high, soprano, and so utterly -lovely-.
Petals drift into manifestation above him, fluttering, pink and apricot, over-ripe, and lush as they sweep down about him; falling like rain. They vanish before they might ever fall to the stage floor, an illusion borne of pure aether- and nothing more, but a highly convincing one. They dapple him in dark ribbons of colour like spilled ink over a tangerine canvas. His high note wavers, it trails off, his hands drift across the lyre; he visibly draws in a breath.
“..all the lights are sparklin’ for you it seems. Off the downward stream, shady blue ♪.” Another breath, his fingers drift. “Tempting an’ dancin’ in the summer rain ♪.” His voice rises, hinging on the note, drawing out the end of his word. “..loud and sweet he sang - jazz an’ blues ♪.” and he moves to stand, slender legs unfolding to draw his slight form back up to his feet as his left hand sweeps to cradle the lyre oh-so-lovingly back towards his chest.
The courtesan drifts toward the edge of the stage, and he steps down; movements punctured by the quiet pals of the bells tethered to the fur of his tail, and the hems of his robes; fingers still fleetly moving across his lyre until the succinct, and velvet-soft notes continue to ring out. His petals pause; hanging as if suspended in the air about him, frozen in place upon the stage, tabula rasa without their guide.
They spin, mindless, disembodied— as if not even they can help but sway to his methodical beat.
The high rise of his voice returns, wavering so eloquently into a smooth tenor; the siren’s call resumes, sweet, and melodic. His hand shifts upon the strings, notes ringing louder, clearer as if he seems to gain some ounce of confidence as it tapers off. “..the summer’s hot, an’ I’ve been waitin’ for you, all this time. I adore you ♪..” His knees gently bend in a low -sweep-, moving to his idle notes. “Can’t you see, you’re meant for me ♪..?”
He turns, head tilting, drifting into a loose sway carried by fluttering sandy hair; as if in some broken waltz with his golden lyre as his only partner, framed with a songbird. His steps sweep him through the dwindling crowd as he draws amongst them, pausing as his fingers delicately pluck at his harp.
He draws in a breath, “Summer’s hot but I’ve been cold without you. I was so wrong not to tell, I’m in a haze ♪.” His petals begin to move anew, “Tangerine dreams ♪.” They flutter towards him, they begin to spread- billowing, fluttering about the lingering crowd until they settle atop shoulders, atop heads, within folded laps - they snag in short and long hair alike; greedy and lush— and gone before their time.
“Catch me if you can, workin’ on my tan, Salva-tore ♪.” He turns again, a smile finding its way onto his peach-pink lips, lush and full, kissing each word as it leaves him, left foot beginning to tap a rhythmic beat with the stiletto heel of his boot. “..dying by the hand of a foreign man, happily~..” Another turn; that thick tail of his sweeps after him as his index and middle fingers catch on the same two notes in rapid succession; an undercurrent to his pleading, sugar-glazed voice.
“Callin’ out my name in the summer rain, goodbye, my love.. you can wait. Now it’s time to eat soft ice cream ♪.” His heel lowers, his foot briefly -drags- against the pristine floorboards as his hand glides back into a delicate sway across his strings as his petals reverse, as they begin to retreat— floating -up- towards the ceiling one by one. His notes swell, amplified by a fresh undercurrent of aether; drawing louder, louder.
The petals rain outwards, like running water filtering through the crevices and rafters and -lights- above. They drift and flutter like something out of a dream, something as ethereal and otherworldly as Tani’s sweet lullaby. It’s a serenade, a pleading, a love song to the sun all in one- something twisted, something ill-spun by the voice of a full-blooded Keeper splashed with golden freckles.
He urges a clap, snapping his fingers just once before returning them to his strings as he tips his pretty head back, as his sweet, high, -wiry- notes come flooding past his lush lips anew. He turns, swaying, casting his song from skilled, glittering fingertips as his beat hastens for nought but a few bars as his iambic pentameter carries, humble voice filled with warmth.
Those petals slowly rise like an eerie waterfall tumbling in slow reverse, dashes of pink and orange striping the ceiling like the ice cream he sings so fondly of, transforming the room in what is a skilful illusion into some lush, fading oasis in no great rush to move under the familiar summertime’s cloying heat; the perfect dashed backdrop to his gloomy hymn.
The courtesan’s voice lowers, it sweeps down as his fingers begin to slow upon the strings, tugging them forth to urge each note to completion as his vibrant gaze settles upon the songbird carved from gold upon his lyre. His held note ends, and his voice tapers into a soft murmur as he breathes out his last, lingering three words. “..soft ice cream ♪..”
Delicate fingers pluck three short notes, once, twice, three times; knees slowly bending as clawed nails glide downwards until they meet the curved base of his prim little harp. His hand comes away, open palm sweeping out towards his audience as the aether dies behind his eyes; dulling them back to peridot as his blossoms slowly fade— dwindling from their slow rise, from their precarious covering blanketing the ceiling until they’re nought but diminishing pinpricks of glittering light.
They vanish, and that lyre is tucked gently beneath a slender arm as Tani sweeps into a slow partial curtsey-bow; tail coiling close to his opposing thigh as he straightens, a hesitant smile pressed across his lips as his ears slant down, parallel with the floor— and his previous uncertainty comes creeping, sluggishly back.
“Thank you.” It’s a permissive whisper, something filled with wariness, with surprise— as if he hadn’t expected to get through his song, as if he hadn’t expected anyone to -clap-. He offers another odd bow-curtsey, and he steps back, lifting his harp to hug close to his chest as he turns away with a coquettish, and hidden-away little smile.