Thursday, February 25, 2010

Brainstorm: Title

Lily gets to spend all day napping...

meanwhile my brain hurts trying to offer suggestions of book titles to the publisher. Here is the current thought:

Say It with Quilts: Easy Techniques for Free-Pieced Letters

The word "quilts" needs to be fairly far forward in the title, due to all sorts of indexing, marketing, cataloging reason. The words "liberated (associated with Gwen), "lazy" (everyone complained these letters weren't for the lazy) and "unruly" (might have negative connotations, plus really hasn't been established yet) are all out.

Needs to be understandable and clear - no guessing what the book might be about. Can't be overly clever. What do you think of the title under discussion?

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Lajla's Quilts

I want to share with you a couple of beautiful quilts made by Lajla who lives in Australia.

This wordy quilt just glows and has a real warmth to it. I love it. This was Lajla's first time making letters. Woohoo, she did a great job!

This second one is a fun bright happy quilt:

Sorry it took me so long to get these posted, Lajla! You did fabulous.

This is a great time to mention that I'd love to put photos of your wordy/house/etc quilts that were inspired by my tutorials onto my website. Anyone who's interested, just contact me. I've realized just what I can do with a website that hasn't been possible on the blog. Find a permanent home for wonderful inspiration and work. Stuff on the blog just disappear into the archives. (Although that can be a good thing when I do something stupid!)

I finally got sucked into the FaceBook vortex and discovered I really enjoy it there. I resisted for a long time but discovering the SlowCloth and Liberated Quilters groups just did me in. I've had a bit of a learning curve (where did I send that, who can see this?) but I think I've got it now. I've been doing way too much learning of new computery stuff lately!

And once again I have to get back to work. sigh.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

UnRuly Quilter

I made my website name decision. UnRuly Quilter!!!! ta da.

Thanks to all who voted and shared their thoughts with me. The poll showed just one percent more of you favored UnRuly Quilter (40%) than Lazy Gal Quilting. The third favorite was Cat in the Lap Quilts with 13% of the vote.

I made my decision because a) I fell in love with the new name and b) someone else owns the domain name for the Lazy Gal option. Sorry, I'm not paying anyone money just because they bought up the name.

I researched and researched and finally came up with software that I feel comfortable using (Sandvox) and a webhost. Of course I'm still a novice and I've got a biiig learning curve. I've had fun and one of these days I'll actually have a website to share with you. Believe me, don't even bother trying to check it out right now.

Yesterday I helped out with the judging process for a local quilt show. I scribed and ran quilts from one part of the room to another. I had no idea how much work the whole judging process was.

Unsurprisingly I hate the standards by which quilts are judged. Originality and using your own fabric choices just didn't matter much, let alone enough. And the thing that drove me buggiest? Downgrading the quilt's overall appearance from Excellent to Good because of cat hair.  aaarghh.

I've always thought that was unfair, even before I had cats. Now I know there is just no way to get all the cat hair off. The hair is just imbedded in quilts, from kitties sleeping on the fabric, getting into the batting and sleeping all over them.

My favorite quilt of the day should definitely have placed higher than it did. It was original and wonderful. (I'll try to get a pic of it at the show on friday.) It wasn't the most precise and yes, there was cat hair, but it was fun and different. Overall, I thought the judge did a great job, the problem is in the RULES.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Identity Crisis Part II

Thank you all so much for your suggestions and thoughts about what my website should be called. You've definitely helped me rule out some options and come up with some fun ideas.

I really had to smile at the thought of Cat in the Lap. I have photos that were taken a few days ago that are so apropos.

Why am I having such a hard time hand-quilting Slither Eek Boo? (I have a needle clenched between my lips as I try to get thread snipped, that's the reason for the funny face)

Could it be the cat in the lap?

There's a Pokey trying to keep warm:

Little cutie pie stinker.

Anyway, back to the name game. I'm not sure about Cat in the Lap Quilting because when you do a Google search on "Cat in the Lap" it comes up with a lot of results already. Not to mention, it makes me think "lap quilts."

I love the alliteration of WonkyWords. But seems like I need to get "quilts" in there too. WonkyWordQuilting??? It would be a hoot to have WonkyTown just because it could be a subdivision in Quiltville. That aside, I do more than just houses... WonkyLetters? WonkyLetterQuilts?

There there's Pokey Quilting which I had not even thought of. To me, "pokey" just means slow, dawdling, stopping to smell the roses. It's not a negative word to me and it is close to "lazy" only not as negative, in my mind.

Free Spirit is out - that's the name of a fabric company. "Freestyle Quilting" is already taken, as is "Casual Quilter." Have to keep far away from anything "Freedom" - that's way too close to the Underground Railway thing.

I still like Free-Piecing to a certain extent. I don't mind do much if people searching for free stuff stumble across me. They might mind, but that would be more hits. hee hee hee. FreePiecedQuilting???? The Free-Piecer sounds like a superhero. Dun ta da. Wheeee!

I searched on "playful quilts" and ugh, it's all kid stuff.

I've been blogging for almost 5 years now under the name Lazy Gal Quilting. So yes, my blog does come up under that search. But it IS rather close to Lazy Girl. That was one reason for moving away from that. But yes, I DO like it. I am lazy, you guys just have no idea because you haven't been in my house.

There is a part of me that would like to have a adjective in the title that can also be applied to my style. For instance, "Lazy Letters" - but I've already noted the objections to that phrase. Wonky Letters, Free-Pieced Letters, Pokey Letters, those all work or at least the first two do.

Too Many Choices. Please, continue this conversation with me. I'm enjoying it. Plus I've put a poll over in my sidebar. Pick your favorite choice.

Someone asked awhile back why I was setting up a website, rather than just doing everything on a blog. Well, I need to be able to have a list of classes that I'm available to teach, a calendar, a place for my tutorials, and a shopping cart. Not that I'll be needing that last one until much later this year.

This is all part of my shifting from hobbyist to professional. eeeeek. I made business cards this morning. Can't believe how much work those silly things were.

My husband is out of town - again - so no more photos of me for awhile. whew. I've got to get back to my Olympics now. take care!

But wait - I'm editing this post to add another thought. I hate the rules, I hate using a ruler to actually measure (but as a straight edge for the rotary cutter it works great) - UnrulyQulting????

Friday, February 19, 2010

Suggestions for My Identity Crisis

Hi guys, I need some help. I'm trying to figure out the name for my website. And lots of other things besides. I'm having an identity crisis. Is this really me with Pokey? How did I get this old already?

I'm wondering if the name Lazy Gal really fits. I mean, I think of myself as a Lazy quilter, what with trying to never measure or be precise or anything else, but at the same time I hate using speed methods for piecing - I'd much rather do each little bit individually. Plus, plenty of folks have said my letters just aren't Lazy - they're work.

Plus, seems like maybe it would be better to not have a name so close to "Lazy Girl Designs."

So what do I name my website? My name is ridiculously hard to spell. Tonya Ricucci - who's going to remember that? TonyaQuilts - gack. Part of the problem is that I just hate having my name so prominent. I'm much more of a wall-flower than a "look-at-me" kinda person.

Maybe Free-Piecer? The Free-Piecer? I'd love to go with PokeyMom but that might just be too much of an in-joke...  hee hee hee

A Liberated Quilter? But.... I'm having an ongoing discussion with my book publisher about whether or not they'll let me even use Liberated Letters vs something like Free-Pieced Letters. Gwen's all for it, but the publisher isn't convinced it's the right way to go.

Anyway, would love to hear some suggestions. What would be easy to remember? And truly descriptive?

This trying to be a grown-up person is hard.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Whee, I won a giveaway from Jan at Be*Mused. She even sent me a valentine - what a sweetie

These Japanese fabrics are so fun and I have to admit I'm getting a smile from the typos - there are some stinning dlemishes.

Not that I don't have a problem typo-ing in my own language, let alone a different one.

Has anyone tried setting up a website through Weebly? How did it go? I'm thinking it's time to set up my own webpage so that Bonnie doesn't have to keep taking care of me.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Just Playing

I'm playing. It was easier when I was just sewing triangles. Trying to figure out what to do with them and what to make next is harder.

Maybe I'll do a Medallion, maybe it will be Bars. Dunno. I actually love the busy-ness of all these patterns jammed close together without sashing/borders. But then I think, am I going to hand-quilt this? aye yay yay. If I am going to quilt this myself, maybe I really do want some plain fabric...

And, because there can never be enough photos of Pokey, here's my sweet girl:

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Bibi and Howler

This is a non-quilting, kitty-photo post. I AM getting some sewing done (go check out my quilt progress in this post in the Liberated Amish blog). There is a lot of fun quilting going on in that blog - check it out.

Finally all the kitties have had their physicals. Habibi was the last to go and it was a bit traumatic. We didn't get a good capture and he got away under the bed. sigh. The good news is that he has no health problems and his teeth were in fine shape. Thank goodness for that. Here's a photo of him taken before he scraped his nose up sticking it out through the holes in his cage.

He was lying in the sunshine with his brother Howler:

Now Bibi gets to have extra canned cat food (the only way to get antibiotics in him). He's on drugs, Lily is still on them for her teeth... sigh. Howler is the only kitty who isn't medicated right now.

I've got more sewing and Olympics watching to do now!

Saturday, February 06, 2010

Sewing Little Triangles.

I've been sewing. Woohoo! I'm ignoring all the UFOs and playing with this quilt for the Liberated Amish class just because I want to. Feels good. I'm working on an Ocean Waves (although it may morph)

I've been doing that rather than the desperately needed house cleaning. I am in the mood to sew and feel an almost compulsive need to do it. The rest of this post is about kitties, feel free to skip.

I have been fitting in trips to the vet. Lily cat had to go in to the vet Thursday night so she wouldn't eat any food or drink water in preparation for a teeth cleaning the next day. There was no way we could lock Lily away in a separate room all night. First off she'd have been scratching at the door and cheeping madly and then Habibi would undoubtedly have crashed at the door all night, throwing all his weight at the door handle - he does it enough times and he will eventually get that door open.

So it was good that Lily had the teeth cleaning. She had a vile condition and yet another bit of nastiness... Two of her teeth had to be extracted. If they'd been left in there the ickiness would have continued to spread throughout her teeth - just like happened to Howler who also suffered from this and is now down to three teeth.

Lily would have been in a lot of pain but showed absolutely no sign of it. And weight loss or signs of trouble eating? Not a bit of that - the girl gained four pounds over the last year. That must be down to the special high-carb/low protein diet all the cats are on because of Pokey's health. It's the anti-Atkins Diet or as my vet called it, The Fatkins Diet.

Anyway, Lily bounced back really quickly and is doing great. I'm hoping she's going to be sweeter now to the rest of the cats.

Feeling like a baaad kitty parent. Had no idea about all this. Habibi is the next kitty scheduled for a vet visit and teeth cleaning...

The reason I can actually get Habibi to the vet is that my husband is home for an all too brief visit - I can't manage the big cats on my own. Anyway, husband is at the beach - not to make everyone in the SNOW states jealous.