Down With the Old… Up With the New

It was a ridiculously meeting-heavy day at work today so I was stuck at the desk in my dining room all day long. I did get out to toss the ball for my boys a couple of times, and then right back to the grind.

After dinner we took our evening three-mile walk and ended it with a glorious sunset.

I was pretty tired after my work day so I lounged on the sofa for about an hour and then decided to hit my sewing room to get a little bit done before I fall asleep on the sofa.

I took my sunburst jumble quilt off my retractible design wall, measured it and wrote it all down clearly so I know how big to make the backing.

Then I folded it up with it’s backing and put it in my pile of quilts that need backings to be made.

With that done, I sorted my Wensleydale blocks by value and started putting them up on my design wall.

The thing I love most about my retractible design wall is that I can raise it up to do the lowest blocks so I don’t have to break my back to do the bottom rows.

And then I just lower it to do the higher rows.

Here’s the 50 blocks I have done up on this design wall.

I’m really glad I did this before I made the final ten blocks I need to complete this top. My plan was to make ten dark blocks. But after seeing these blocks all up, I decided that I need five dark and five more white blocks.

I’m really loving this quilt! It’s fun to see it all up on the big design wall. This isn’t the final lay out. I’ll have to agonize over that for several days before I throw my hands up and say, “To hell with it… it’s good enough!”.

Several people have asked me about my design wall, so I decided to write a little about it again.

My friend bought this retractible design wall for me at a quilt show many years ago and had it shipped to me from California. I don’t remember the name of the maker, but I’m pretty sure they’re not making these any more.

It has two separate design walls that roll up into the wooden box that hangs on the wall over the closet doors in my sewing room. So I can use both roll-up walls at the same time. The fabric is a heavy flannel with a plastic backing. You can just roll one up, blocks and all, and then roll it down again. Well, that’s the theory. I never do that because it sort of makes a mess out of your blocks! But I could have left my finished quilt top on the back wall and used the front one for these Wensleydale blocks.

Here’s a video that shows how the walls roll up.

My sewing room is a pretty small room. So the best thing about this design wall is that it hangs over the closet and just rolls up out of the way when I’m not using it. I don’t have a wall that I could dedicate to a design wall.

Each wall is big enough to accommodate a generous throw size quilt. But not large enough for a queen quilt. So to accommodate a queen size quilt I made my portable design wall. This blog post shows how I made that and how I use it in combo with my retractible design wall.

Poor Rico has has some stomach issues the last couple days. He wouldn’t eat yesterday morning and had no interest in his dinner either. He as a bit of a sensitive stomach so I always have ground turkey in my freezer and rice and canned pumpkin in my pantry. The ground turkey and rice make a bland meal that’s good for bad tummies, and the pumpkin helps firm up loose poops.

So after our walk last night I dug some turkey out of the freezer and browned it up. I also cooked a big pan of brown rice. I was happy to see that Rico was VERY interested in a few pieces of turkey once it was cooked. I didn’t give him a full meal last night because I didn’t want to be up in the middle of the night with an emergency run outside.

He was very happy to eat his breakfast and lick the bowl clean this morning. And, his poops look a lot better this evening.

He’s a little horrified that I’m telling you about his poop. He thinks that’s a private topic.

Bender, on the other hand, will eat literally anything.

What a happy damned dog.

32 Replies to “Down With the Old… Up With the New”

  1. I searched the internet and found this retractable design wall. It’s not a double wall like yours, Anne, available in different sizes, kindof pricey, but it seems well made. The company travels to different quilt shows. If you go to the website, there’s a list of upcoming shows. They’re currently in Paducah, Kentucky for this week’s quilt event.
    Name of company: Classy American Design Walls
    YouTube video:
    Hope this might be of interest to some of your readers.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Your Wensleydale quilt looks grand. I am so happy to follow along with you. I needed a buddy to light the way. The pattern is so versitile. It’s fun to see other renditions. And I hear, the Aboriginal one is in
    the future.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I agree about both light and dark blocks, at first I thought just light but then realized the very dark are needed too. Your boys sure are cute.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Very sorry to hear about Rico’s tummy issues! He has the best Mom to make him feel better!. My Amira has a sensitive tummy too. She is very limited on what she can eat. I love your design wall. It has to make life so much easier! You have an artistic eye for design and color!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Hi Anne, Thank you for telling about your retractable design wall. It sounds like something we used to do many, many moons ago (mid-1970s) at a window treatment store I worked at in Lubbock, TX. We used the old type of pull-down shades, and decorated them to the customers wishes. We covered the front side with fabric, adding decorative shaping and trims. Another group built a box-like structure they then attached to the wall. Can’t remember what they called the box, but it looks a lot like yours – maybe a header box. The customized pull-down shade was then installed inside the box so the mechanism was hidden from view. If the box is big enough, more than one shade could be installed.

    I wish I could remember what we used to make the fabric adhere to the roller shade. Some of our current day fusibles might work. Thanks for the trip down memory lane! Ann

    Liked by 1 person

  6. That retractable design wall is a fantastic idea! I would have to be able to close the closet doors first 🤦‍♀️! I am a very disorderly creator.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I am a new subscriber. Just needed you to know your posts make me happy. Your dogs’ faces make me happy. Your quilts make me happy. Your energy inspires me. Thank you. Kate

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Given Rico’s sensitivity regarding discussing his poop in a public forum, I thought I’d use email. I give my dog what I call “pup supp” in small quantities. It’s good for bones and joints but also good for the digestive track bc of its anti-inflammatory qualities. It’s easy for me to prepare since I feed Kaboose a lunch of chicken thigh meat and I have the ingredients en masse. Basically, I remove the skin from a pack of Costco chicken thighs and simmer them in a veg stock until cooked. (Coincidentally, this yields the best chicken stock you’ve ever tasted.) I chop the deboned meat for Kaboose’s lunches, our chicken tacos, chicken soup, or whatever. I put the bones, joints, any meat left on the bones, and just enough of the cooking liquid to cover into a pressure cooker. Pressure cook on high until the bones are soft enough to break easily in your fingers. (For me, that’s 2 passes in the cooker on high for 2 hours.) Once cooled, all that goes into a blender to get liquified. For convenience, I pour it into silicone soap molds to freeze. The frozen blocks later go into Ziploc bags for storage in the freezer until I need them.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I really like your wensleydale blocks. When you showed them in close up pics I wasn’t totally on board but after seeing them on your design board I’m impressed. Thank you for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love some of the blocks one one one, others are not so great. But I do agree that they work really well together. It’s been a fun quilt to make.



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