Join Us on the City Quilts Blog Tour

107222 Join Us on the City Quilts Blog TourWe are thrilled to be hosting a stop on our friend Cherri House‘ blog tour for her beautiful book, City Quilts, published by C & T under their new “Stash” imprint.

Each blog host will also feature a Q&A with City Quilts author, Cherri House. Here are the participating blogs and dates–there’s a great mix in here.

10722 CityQuilts ImageGrid Join Us on the City Quilts Blog Tour

Images from City Quilts (Image Courtesy C & T Publishing)

Cherri’s book is a wonderful for non-quilters (or seldom-quilters such as ourselves), because she pays so much attention to concepts such as color values and the way fabrics interact with each other. Furthermore, city-lovers will adore how Cherri translates the urban environment into cloth and stitches. We’ll be talking with Cherri about her book, men who quilt and stitch and the joys of running a business built around your passions.

We also have a sweet giveaway on this–and every–stop on the tour.  C & T is giving away a copy of the book on each stop and Robert Kaufman will be awarding the lucky winner a gorgeous stack of fat quarter solids (yum!). We’ll be adding something to this giveaway as well.

We’re looking forward to seeing you on the 20th–and make sure to visit all of the stops on the tour while you’re at it.

~S & J

Cool PDX Event – Laura Gunn at Modern Domestic

index trio Cool PDX Event   Laura Gunn at Modern Domestic

Laura Gunn's new Poppy Patterns made up in fabric from her Poppy collection from Michael Miller.

Gina, the owner of my favorite fabric shop ever–Bolt in northeast Portland, emailed me this week about an awesome event at Modern Domestic, the new sewing studio down the road from Bolt (Gina’s a partner in that business as well).

Modern Domestic is hosting a talk by Laura Gunn, who designed a beautiful new fabric collection, Poppy from Michael Miller, next Thursday, July 8th. I’m usually not a huge fan of fabric that’s so painterly, but I just love Laura’s work, it just makes so much sense translated into textiles. The colors are clear and bright and designs are the perfect scale for fabric. Gina tells me that Laura will be talking about her fabric design process, which should be fascinating!

The event starts at 7:00 (at Modern Domestic on Alberta Street) and will last until around 8:30. Gina tipped me off that not only will there be snacks and drinks, there will also be some sweet giveaways!

See you there!

~Sarah

Recipe: Sarah’s (Somewhat) Healthier Mac ‘n’ Cheese

Macaroni and cheese is one of my all-time favorite foods, hands down, and when I make it, I always make it from scratch. However, it’s not exactly what you’d call “healthy.” I recently devised a somewhat less terrible for you version of Mac ‘n’ Cheese that’s relatively quick to make and extremely tasty, and I thought I’d share it with you.

4691959590 b2c4c638e9 Recipe: Sarahs (Somewhat) Healthier Mac n Cheese

What You’ll Need

  • One pound whole wheat shaped pasta
  • Five cups chopped vegetables such as bell peppers, broccoli, corn, onions
  • Two cloves chopped, fresh garlic
  • Two tablespoons olive oil
  • Two cups grated cheddar cheese (you can substitute other cheeses, according to your taste)
  • Two cups skim milk
  • Two tablespoons butter
  • Two tablespoons flour
  • Two bay leaves
  • Handful of breadcrumbs (optional)
  • Salt & pepper

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This & That: Catching Up

It’s amazing how quickly time goes by… This poor blog has been horribly neglected, and it kind of stinks, because we had so many folks we loved hearing from via Sewer-Sewist. I can’t promise that Josh and I will blog here every week–because, frankly, we don’t always have anything to say about sewing, crafting, printmaking or the other creative stuff you come here for–but we’ll make more of an effort when there’s something we’d like to share.

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Fremont Bridge

This spring, along with my friend Bryan, I took a wonderful digital photography class through PNCA’s continuing education program. (Shameless self-promotion alert: I’m still teaching there–check out all their wonderful, high-quality courses for the community over here.) I loved, loved, loved it–I did photography a million years ago back when I was in high school and it was one of my favorite things. (Okay, it wasn’t really a million years ago, but it was the early- to mid-nineties, before google and all that other snazzy stuff.) It’s remarkable how much I’d forgotten, but I have to say, I much prefer the digital darkroom to the “real” one I learned when I was a kid. Of course, now I’m jonesing for a fancy-schmancy DSLR. (Hey, Nikon! I’d be happy to “review” the D5000! And while we’re at it… Hey, Beats by Dre/some other headphone company! I’d also love to “review” some noise-reducing earbuds! [I obviously screwed up and never hopped on the blogger free stuff gravy train of the mid-2000s. Damn integrity...])

Some of my favorites that I took during the class are over here, if you care to peruse them…

mom1 This & That: Catching Up

This photo of my mom is one of my favorites I've ever taken. She looks pretty hot in that hat, right?

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Best of ’09: Blazers Letterpress Project

I’ve spent a lot of time dwelling of how awful 2009 was for us–which is probably not all that healthy, but it was bad at an epic level. However, in my continuing effort to be more positive, I thought I’d take the chance to write about my favorite project of the last year. Amazingly, it wasn’t sewing or screenprinting, it was one of my first letterpress projects. I realized I’d never really shared this project with “the World,” though all my Portland buddies have seen the results in person.

3639293351 8c15c3fe2c Best of 09: Blazers Letterpress Project

I was never able to print this type, but it was for the back of the Brandon Roy card--the header read, "The Reason." Because, when it comes down to it, B-Roy is the reason that many, many people came back to the Trail Blazers, after the team had some very dark days.

What I really loved about this project, is that I got to experiment with photopolymer and the results of using different ink and paper combinations. My original goal was to print an entire team set of basketball cards, complete with back descriptions. However, between limited access to printing facilities and my workload increasing, I didn’t make my goal. However, I was very happy with the prints I did make. The red were printed in open editions, but I limited the silver to a small run of 12 each. The cards are around 3×4, printed on acid free paper, with round corners. The silver ink is actually made with silver–so the metallic quality has a lot of depth, and I suspect that it may be oil-based–given how long it took to dry and how difficult the clean-up was. The variations in the red are due to mixing the red at different times (I have to hand-blend the rubber ink), I also learned that if consistency is important, you need to mix all your ink at once. I ended up only writing a few descriptions, again, because I ran out of time with the letterpress studio and hand-setting all that type is extremely cumbersome.

So, with all that said, here are the results (please keep in mind that these are based off of the 2008-09 team, not the current team)

4304685304 02f635c3b7 Best of 09: Blazers Letterpress Project

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1949 American Fabrics Magazine

I had a meeting over at PNCA, where I’m teaching a few classes this spring, and Josh showed me the library while I was there. He’d recently discovered the most amazing collection of a vintage magazine, American Fabrics. I actually don’t know much about this publication, or even whether it’s directed at the trade or consumers. But it’s fascinating, nonetheless.

4246456384 d3a0561fd9 1949 American Fabrics Magazine

Up on a high shelf, there's something pretty awesome hidden in some inauspicious cardboard magazine holders.

Anyway, the magazine is an extremely cool snapshot of textile–and cultural–trends. I spent a bit of time thumbing through an issue from fall of 1949 (I snagged this one, because I love post-war fashion–the hats were just wonderful during that time). Check it out my mediocre cell phone shots of some of the highlights.

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