Sunday, June 24, 2012

Miss A's new dress

We were testing the pattern for her bridesmaid dress to wear in her sister's wedding.

Update on that oil lamp - good news!

I just received this email from Dan Stout of Accrete Hardware:

Thanks for writing.  I will ship the order to the new address tomorrow.
I will include with the order, the collar and the collar putty you will need...
You have a beautiful lamp. It was made about 1880. The jagged edge on the neck of your lamp is original. 
It is never a good idea to use epoxy. If the collar ever needed to be replaced in the future, trying to remove the epoxy would destroy the neck of the lamp.


Saturday, June 23, 2012

Garage sale score: Tall glass parlor lamp

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Tall glass parlor lamp, a set on Flickr.
Yesterday after work Miss A and I hit a few garage sales in La Crescent on our way home. She got a shoebox full of LEGO, which made her very happy. I found 6 stems of my crystal pattern, which used to be el cheapo stuff at Target but is now hard to find (Cristal d'Arques Longchamps), and some bed linens. I also bought this lovely old antique parlor lamp from my friend Karen's sale. It belonged to her great uncle. (Karen, did I get that right? Great uncle?) She no longer uses it and wanted to pass it on. I made sure she was certain about this before snatching it off the table.

It's damaged at the top of the font, where the collar should be. Looks like the collar broke off and took some glass with it. I have a email in to a lamp restoration expert on whether I can just epoxy a new collar onto what remains of the glass so that the burner will stay in place. It's a nonthreaded Queen Anne burner, a #2 I think. I am ordering a very tall chimney for it too.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

PBS Frontline - Sick Around the World

In my evening class we have been studying who pays what for health care around the world, hoping to come up with the perfect solution to the health care crisis before the end of June. (Still working on it.) One of my assignments is to watch a PBS Frontline special that I'd like to share with you if you have not already seen it: Sick Around the World. It looks at health care systems in five capitalist democracies (so we're comparing apples to apples), seeing what is working and what isn't. Interesting stuff, believe it or not. And my final paper was about the effects of international adoption on family health care.

Monday, June 04, 2012

Keeshond therapy dog

Here's a story about a rescued Keeshond who is now a therapy dog.

We keep thinking Bosley would make a great therapy dog if we ever took the time to send him through the training. He's a natural. You should see him at Village Creek Bible Camp. He wants to visit with each and every child there.

Saturday, June 02, 2012

Penguin caterpillars

These were the guys that were all over our campsite last weekend. (Not my photo, mine were all blurry.) See what's on their backs? - Teeny tiny penguins! I was amazed. Every one of those bazillion tent caterpillars at our campsite had a row of teeny-tiny penguins marching down its back.

Sewing a Ribbon Hem

I have a skirt that I bought ready-made that has an interesting hem treatment using a ribbon. I tried doing the same thing with a heavy cotton skirt I was making. Here's how it works

1. Mark your hem. On the wrong side/inside of the skirt, pin the ribbon along the marked hemline, wrong sides together. Edge stitch the ribbon to the skirt at the hemline, stitching the edge closest to the top of the skirt.
2. Trim the excess off the bottom of the skirt, close to the stitching, taking care not to cut the ribbon.

3. Turn the skirt right side out. Turn the ribbon up to the right side, making the fold line right at the edge of the ribbon. Press. (I actually had to do this from the inside, because my ribbon was a synthetic and wanted to melt at a temperature that was good for pressing my cotton skirt fabric.)

4. Edge stitch the unstitched edge of the ribbon all the way around. 

Here is the finished hem. If your fabric and ribbon have pretty much the same amount of body this should still hang okay for a casual skirt. And it's easy.

Dresden Plate quilt

This little sweetie came from a garage sale near my office in La Crosse on Friday. The seller said it was made by her great great aunt and given to her by her great aunt (daughter of the maker), her Great Auntie Marlys or maybe Marlis (I did not get the spelling) of Hillsboro, Wisconsin, and that the family name Markee is involved somewhere, possibly the last name of the maker. She has my phone number to call me if anyone in the family remembers more.
It's a cute little Dresden Plate, machine pieced/appliqueed in individual squares which were then machine sewn together and then hand quilted. It was self bound and the binding is worn. The backing is a printed cotton. It was dirty when I bought it, and I thought it started as white and had darkened with age and use; however, when I removed the whisker guard, I found that it had originally been a nice yellow and had faded. The top of the quilt where the whisker guard was is at the bottom of my photo. See the difference?

I soaked it gently, rinsed it carefully and dried it on the freshly mown lawn (backing side up, I only flipped it to get this photo). The 1930s prints are still vibrant. Only one fabric deteriorated. I'm thinking of using the fabric from the whisker guard to rebind the quilt. Not certain about that.