Friday, February 28, 2014

I love the library!

Central Branch of the VPL in downtown Vancouver

Have I mentioned before that I love my public library? Did you hear that the Vancouver Public Library and the Montreal Public Library recently tied for best libraries in the world in a study from Heinrich Heine University Dusseldorf? I'm so proud of the VPL!

One cool thing my library offers is the Just Ask! chat system. When I have a question I can immediately chat with a library staff member from on of the libraries across the Lower Mainland. I did so today when I read Cheryl Arkison's blog post about "The Orenda" and decided I needed to read this book asap. I checked the VPL catalogue and there were 533 holds on 61 copies. I clicked the chat button on the VPL website and had a nice talk with a librarian about a variety of books I could read while I was waiting for my hold to come in. I also learned that the reason the VPL doesn't have the eBook is that publishers won't sell certain eBooks to libraries because they're worried about digital rights. Boo!

Oh, and those recommended titles? Here's the list of books I'll be looking for while I wait my turn in line for "The Orenda". 

"Three Day Road" by Joseph Boyden
"Where'd You Go, Bernadette?" by Maria Semple
"Me Before You" by Jojo Moyes
"State of Wonder" by Ann Patchett
"Bel Canto" by Ann Patchett

Do you have any recommendations for me? One of my favourite recent reads was "The Rosie Project" by Graeme Simsion (and not just because it had a red bike on the cover!) (but that didn't hurt!).

Friday, February 21, 2014

QuiltCon 2015: The Countdown is on!

Quilt in QuiltCon banner is "Fireworks" by Tara Faughnan

The Modern Quilt Guild has just announced that QuiltCon 2015 will once again be held in the city of Austin, Texas! The dates are Thursday, February 19th through Sunday, February 22nd, 2015. The keynote speech will be delivered by the quilters of Gee's Bend and many other inspirational quilters will be teaching workshops and giving lectures. This time next year, you'll find me at QuiltCon!

Me in front of Rachel Hauser's Oodalolly quilt at QuiltCon 2013

QuiltCon 2013 was an amazing experience for me and the best part was meeting passionate modern quilters from all over the world. I can't wait for 2015! Will I see you there?

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Happy birthday to my Janome Horizon!

One year ago today, on February 4th, 2013 (at 2:34pm, if you want to be precise, I remember this because I had just minutes to unpack the box before heading off to pick up my daughter from school) my new Janome Memory Craft 7700 QCP sewing machine arrived. I had been sewing on a $200 Singer since 1999 and this was a major upgrade for me. The major selling features were the 11" harp space, the beautiful stitches, fun features that I'd never had like an automatic buttonhole, and, to be honest, that snazzy red faceplate. Oh, and I got it for a great, hard-to-resist price thanks to a tip from some VMQG friends!

I promptly named my new machine Ruby and played around making my first automatic buttonhole. In the past year, Ruby and I have had some fun sewing adventures. I tried my first free-motion quilting in a VMQG workshop taught by Matt Wheeler.

 Free-motion quilting practice

 Playing with free-motion quilting designs. So much fun!

 In July, Cheryl Arkison came out to BC to give a Perfect Circles workshop and I was honoured that she used my sewing machine to demonstrate her technique. Fan girl moment!

 Here I am with Cheryl and one of the circle blocks I completed in her workshop.

 I absolutely love how this machine quilts and it did a beautful job on Rainbow Girl and Memories of QuiltCon, my two favourite finishes of 2013.

 As you can see, Ruby has become a part of the family and she's mostly found on the dining room table.

I can't wait to see what adventures Ruby and I get up to next!


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