Saturday, February 14, 2009

Quilters' Tools

Many times Linda comments that today's quilters have so many wonderful tools at their disposal it's hard to keep track of all of them. And there are constantly new innovations hitting the market.

Quilters seem to be divided occasionally over whether or not it's "truly" quilting if an item is machine-pieced and quilted versus hand-sewn and quilted. I say "poop" to that argument. Both have their place and it completely depends upon the joy that the person who is doing the work receives. What a silly human debate! We cats would never sink so low as to denigrate another cat just because she shows a preference for dry food over canned. And if our foremothers had ways of making their jobs easier, you can be sure that they would have used them.

Today's rotary cutters, mats, sewing machines that will also bake a cake, automatic shut-off irons, templates, quilt designing software, the list is endless. In addition to the above, one of our favorite quilters' friends is the audio book.

Audio books are a godsend when you're cutting, ironing or chain-piecing. Those tasks are repetitious and don't require a lot of brain power. There are times when we're chain-piecing that Linda prefers just my purring and the hum of the sewing machine. She feels in tune with God and the universe. It's a meditative time. But the audio book is a frequent companion.

Linda's tastes are pretty eclectic, and she's an avid reader by nature. Always has been. She can read just about anything but romance novels, and even some of them have drifted their way into our listening pleasure.

We've enjoyed the entire Outlander series by Diana Galbadon, all of the Dexter novels by Jeff Lindsay, When Character was King by Peggy Noonan, Shiloh read by its author the late-great Shelby Foote, and we're going to be re-listening to Max Lucado's It's Not About Me. We've listened to plenty of others as well. Murder mysteries, biographies, inspirational stories, everything.

The skill of the narrator can make or break how engaging an audio book might be. The narrator for the Dexter series for instance is beyond perfect. Having non-fiction books read by their authors is a distinct pleasure. I Feel Bad About My Neck, written and read by Nora Ephron is a riot and any lady nearing or in middle-age can relate to it.

We always get our audio books from the library. For those of you with IPODS or MP3 players, there are a lot of services you can download.

In our queue right now are The Almost Moon by Alice Sebold (The Lovely Bones was fantastic) and Body Surfing by Anita Shreve.

The rest of the day will be spent organizing the stash by color and working on a log cabin quilt. Our CD player is ready and waiting for us.

Have a purr-filled day.


Char said...

I love my quilting gloves best of all my tools. I took a class at Cabin Arts in Burlington and she talked about the machine vs. hand quilting. She said when the sewing machine was first invented the best were the quilts machine quilted because it showed the quilter was rich enough to afford a machine. And so many quilters who could not afford a machine poo-poohed that and since they were the majority that argument started! My favorite books are mysteries and I am working my way through Anne Perry - her World War I series was excellent. I'm not a cat lover - I have a Westie and that may lower me in your opinion. I am Cordelia's sister - does that lower or raise your opinion of me - she has some gorgeous cats!! I'm across the river so maybe we can talk quilts sometimes!!

Bethany said...

Best quilting tool? The computer..LOL. I couldn't live without EQ6, blogs, internet shopping, meeting new people..all of it.

jillquilts said...

OK, I have taken some of your advice and have a couple of new authors to try out. I also found some on one of my favorite sites - It lists a lot of mystery authors and all of the books that they have had published. I LOVE it!