And Now for Something Really Different….

Another Hatchett Job blog, creative commons attribution, shoulder, shoulders, shoulder pain, rotator cuff strainSometimes, life just throws you a curve ball and apparently, it hit me hard in both shoulders this time.  Fresh off of my stress fracture in my foot, I have managed to come down with dual sports injuries (oh, the irony).  My wonderful doctor tells me that I have bilateral rotator cuff strain and has given me anti-inflammatory medication and pain pills to get me through the holiday and onward toward recovery.  She also gave me what she promised would be a couple of very simple, yet very effective stretches to help to regain my range of motion and begin to ease the pain.

After doing these stretches, I must say that they are very effective…and sadistic!  Oh.  My.  Word!  I could definitely tell that something was happening deep in my shoulder at the origin of my pain, something evil!  But, I must admit that each time I do them (and I am doing them about 3 times per day) they are a little easier to complete, a little better stretch, and maybe a tad less pain overall.

Which brings me to the incredible sport that I injured myself in.  Quilting.  Yes, quilting.  Hand quilting at that.  Doesn’t that just sound like a rugged, outdoorsy thing to do?  Competitively stitching up a storm with total abandon to one’s own safety?  Yeah.  I didn’t think so, either.  But, hand quilting with my Mom at our quilt frame did me in.  I am short and have short arms, so I was constantly reaching and overreaching both over and under that frame to quilt out as far as my Mom did so that we could roll that baby down for another round of Baptist fans.  Little did I know!

So, since both shoulders are injured, I am officially in a sling for the left arm for 10 days to 2 weeks before my re-check with the doctor to make sure all if progressing well.  Then, if it is, we move the sling to the right arm to let it heal for a similar time frame.  Not much of a problem, except that I am right in the middle of Christmas crafting and sewing season!  Ugh!

I like to make my gifts.  I mean that I really don’t feel like it is Christmas without some crafty, quilty, sewing fun.  And, here I sit and type (a no-no, by the way) wondering what to do.

I had some gift ideas in mind, but they require a bit more than I will be able to handle for the next 20-24 days and there isn’t time afterward to do much of anything else.  So, pretty much all of my Christmas ideas are out of the window for now.

Time for some creative brainstorming, I think.  While I ponder, perhaps you could help me out a bit…

What is your favorite easy, budget friendly, gift idea for an injured crafter?

Till next time,

Another Hatchett Job blog, signature, Jan Hatchett



Log Cabin Quilt Finish

Another Hatchett Job blog, log cabin quilt, log cabin living, quilting, crafts, sewing, quilts, hand quilting
Log Cabin Squared Quilt on the front porch of the Log Cabin

I finally got my log cabin quilt finished.  I hadn’t anticipated having 3 quilts achieve completion all within about a month, but it worked out that way!

In pure selfishness, this one is for my bed!   It just looks snuggly with the richness of the colors and as it was entirely quilted by hand sitting in the living room of a log cabin, I decided to entitle it “Log Cabin Squared'”  I used the superscript number 2 instead of the word, but I can’t seem to make that happen in a blog post, so….  You get the idea.

The quilt was the second quilt that I pieced together with instruction from Pat Wys of Silver Thimble Quilt Company fame.  Back when she had her Silver Thimble

Another Hatchett Job blog, quilting, log cabin quilts, quilts, hand quilting, log cabin living, sewing crafts
Close up of hand quilting

club/classes in McDonough, Georgia, I attended and fell in love with Pat’s wonderful teaching style, patterns, and cheetos-loving wit!  The fabrics were from a kit that the quilt store, A Scarlet Thread, made available to go with Pat’s pattern called, “White Chocolate.”  My first impression was that the colors made this so rich and warm and masculine looking.  And, even though I used the same type of cotton batting that I always use, it seems like this time, it came out of the dryer with a super crinkly appearance.  It just picked up that luscious, antique feeling from the get go this time.

I did use a more feminine fabric for the back.  It is little pink roses on a deep chocolate brown background that is the perfect little secret smile on the back.  I guess it is my

personal touch.  My guess is that the fabric is trying to mimic the types of prints that were typical in the mid-40s.  It’s just what I would call, “farmhouse cute.”

Another Hatchett Job blog, sewing, crafts, quilts, quilting, hand quilting, log cabin quilts, log cabin living
Serendipitous Star in Log Cabin Squared

As for right now, this is truly a favorite.  Of course, most quilters just absolutely fall in love with whatever top they are hand quilting at the moment.  It’s an occupational hazard of spending so much time with a particular set of fabrics and stitches.  You can’t (or at least I can’t) invest quite that much time into a project and not fall head over heels over the finished result.  So, this rests on my bed as we face unseasonably cold days and nights here in Georgia currently and I enjoy snuggling underneath it (with my hubby) really nice!

If you would like to remember the other two quilts from this trifecta of fall 2013 finishes, you may view them here and here.

What is your latest finish?

Till next time,

Another Hatchett Job blog, signature, Jan Hatchett

How Do You Celebrate 50 Years?

I have wanted to share the progress and process of this quilt for so long, but I wasn’t able to because it was to be a surprise and my parents read my blog on occasion.

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150 blocks before borders added.
photo by Eddie Hatchett

To commemorate my parent’s 25th wedding anniversary in 1988, I made them a blue and white, Irish Chain quilt.  I didn’t know how to quilt it, so I tied it like so many of the quilts I grew up with were completed.  They loved it.  I was happy with it and glad that they liked it and for years, it hung on the balcony of the second floor of the family log home for all to see.  And the years marched past.

Now, with 50 years looming, I began wondering what, if anything, I could do that would be worthy of celebrating such an accomplishment as being married for 50 years in a culture that

Quilt top with borders added.  Photo by Eddie Hatchett
Quilt top with borders added. Photo by Eddie Hatchett

tends toward ditching a problem rather than holding firm and fixing it.  After much deliberation and secret plotting with a quilty friends (who is also one of my Mom’s quilty friends) I decided on making a signature quilt to commemorate the event.

I figured that getting 50 names might be do-able; one for each year of marraige.  However, the task became more and more daunting as I tried to track down people who would be significant to my parents.  My Dad’s family resides in New England, while Mom’s family is in the mid-West.  We are in the Deep South, so this wasn’t something where I could meet up with most of the people and get them to sign a block and just slip it in my purse to deal with at home.  We also all live together (which is wonderful in so many ways, but I was in constant fear of being found out).  My super sleuthing involved finding a friend of Mom’s on FB who helped sneak blocks into hers and my Mom’s 50th class reunion for signatures, old friends from when my Dad was in the Navy, and a few former church friends and co-workers that I could track down.

So this little project (it’s a quilt!  I make lots of quilts!  How hard can it be?)  officially became an ordeal!  My Aunt and cousin who live local tracked down family members addresses for me and helped get some of the semi-local signatures of former neighbors, friends that I don’t run into, etc.  My quilty friend let me use her mailbox to receive scads of blocks and let me know whose had arrived.  I could NOT have managed without the help of these friends.

Another Hatchett Job blog, photo by Ethan Hatchett, quilt, quilting, quilts, hand quilting, gifts, frugal gifts, frugal living.
Reading the Quilt Label. Photo by Ethan Hatchett

Many postal workers helped me get postage on return envelopes, outer envelopes and such.  I don’t think they really enjoyed being a part of my little surprise, but they at least didn’t roll their eyes at me while I was still there.  I will take that as support!

All told, the postage for this quilt cost far more than any fabric or supplies used. I utilized scraps wherever possible and even mooched a lovely piece of blue floral from the quilty friend to use as a backing.  Hand quilting didn’t cost a thing as I used thread left over from a larger project and needles that I already had used on other projects.

I am usually not one to make labels for quilts, but this time, I did make one in my own handwriting for posterity.  It reads:  Machine pieced and hand quilted for John and Judy Purdy on their 50th Wedding Anniversary, 11/2/2013, by their daughter, Jan Hatchett with the help of many family and friends.  We love you always.

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Celebrating 50 Years of Marraige. Photo by Ethan Hatchett

I don’t know that I would try to do this kind of surprise gift in about 4 months like I did with this one, but it certainly was worthwhile to see the look in my parent’s eyes when they opened it.  After appliqueing the final blocks on to the borders, we ended up with 158 blocks and one signature in the border.  I can honestly say it was a success!

What gifts have you made lately?

Till next time,

Another Hatchett Job blog, signature, Jan Hatchett

It’s Finished!

This post almost qualifies for Blast From the Past status.  Almost.

Another Hatchett Job blog, hand quilted, hand quilting, quilting, quilts, homemade
Quilt in the frame
Photo by Jan Hatchett

I made this quilt top, purchased batting, backing, binding fabric, and quilting thread and gave it to my parents as a gift for Christmas 2010.  Actually, I had started stalking sales of charm packs, discontinued patterns, and other precuts months in advance to cut costs on this project.  Gotta keep it frugal!  Mom had been mentioning that she needed to make a new quilt for her bed, but wasn’t about to spend money to get one started.  She really wanted to hand quilt it and she had mentioned wanting to quilt it together, so she could have something we both had worked on.Another Hatchett Job blog, photo by Eddie Hatchett, hand quilting, quilts, quilting, sewing, crafts

So, I made the top and provided all the supplies.   All I asked is that she help me baste it and pick out a quilting pattern that she would like for it.  I would mark it and we would baste and put it in the frame so we both could sit and work on it.

But, I had not accounted for one thing.  Mom had a really hard time deciding what design she would like for it.  Finally, she decided that I should decide.  So, I did.  I picked an all over design of angular lines that complemented the angles in the pattern.  We went to the church fellowship hall to mark the top on tables pushed together (the quilt was about 83 inches square and we didn’t have room here at the cabin).  The heat, however, didn’t work and we nearly froze while I marked the pattern and basted and shivered.Another Hatchett Job blog, photo by Eddie Hatchett, Pecan Swirl Turnover by Konda Luckau for Moda Bake Shop, quilts, quilting, crafts, sewing, hand quilting

Back at home, we attached the quilt to rails and Mom rolled them up to keep because by this time, it was nearing Christmas again and we could not have a both a quilt frame and a Christmas tree in the living room at the same time.  It was summertime when we unrolled the quilt and rails to put them on our homemade frame and…all the carefully drawn markings had disappeared!

The top was already based and attached to rails, so I just re-marked the design the best I could on this less than stable surface and we got to work.

Another Hatchett Job blog, photo by Eddie Hatchett, quilting, hand quilting, quilts, sewing, craftsSuffice it to say that the quilting is imperfect, as are the quilters.  And just last night, the binding was finished and the quilt washed and dried.  Just in time for the holidays, 2013!

This one took a while, but it is certainly pretty on Mom and Dad’s bed!

Have you ever had a project that seemed to take forever?

Till next time,

Another Hatchett Job blog, signature, Jan Hatchett

Blast From the Past: Gift For a Friend

A short time ago, in a blogosphere far, far away, a little red headed blogger got in WAY over her head with a self hosted blog and one day–POOF–it refused to publish or save any more posts.  Even her techno savvy friends and family members (hi, Dad!) couldn’t save her beloved blog.  Sadly, the girl (who loves to write, but is only minimally techno savvy, by the way) restarted her blog on WordPress (but not the self hosted kind).  But, hating to lose her previous 800+ posts that wouldn’t be seen, she came up with a brilliant idea (!) to institute a feature to bring back some of her older posts that she wanted to keep or thought were good.  Hence the new feature:  Blast From The Past!

So, if you have followed my blog in that other, sadder blogosphere, you have probably already seen this one.  But, you might like it even more now…  Hey, you never know!

So, from January 15th, 2013….

Edited to add:  With cooler weather beginning here in the Deep South, I thought this post was appropriate.  I need to make myself one of these scarves!

Another Hatchett Job blog, photo by Jan Hatchett, scarf, sewing, quilting, crafts, Moda Bake Shop
Scarf from Moda Bake Shop pattern

Every once in a while, I run across a pattern that I just have to make.  This pattern by Moda Bake Shop is one of them.  I simply fell in love with it’s patchwork charm and casual grace.

I made this one for my friend, Bev (who doesn’t blog, but I do show off her work here sometimes), who has a New Year’s Eve birthday.  I used most of a charm pack of Moda’s

Another Hatchett Job blog, frugal gifts, sewing, quilting, scarf
Bev in her new scarf

Double Chocolat line by 3 Sisters and some dark, chocolate brown flannel for the backing.

She really seemed to like it and sent me this photo of her modeling it.

What patterns are really calling your name this year?

Till next time,

Another Hatchett Job blog, signature, Jan Hatchett