About Becky Goldsmith

I am a wife, mother, grandmother, quilter, teacher, and author who loves her life!

Listen to your bits…

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I have spent 24 years drawing with my mouse on the computer. For the last several years, I used Apple’s magic mouse which is touch-sensitive and allows you to swipe across it to move the cursor and it has been wonderful — until a few weeks ago when I was doing a whole lot of drawing in Illustrator.

My right index finger (the mouse-finger) started to hurt, a lot. And it got swollen. And then it hurt worse. It is at this point that many people go into denial. I do not.

I treat my body like a used car. If warning lights start flashing on your car, you take it to a mechanic, right? We should all head to the doctor when our bodies send us similar warnings.

It may not be this way in your town, but here plastic surgeons are the hand guys. I visited Dr. Swamy who has been in practice here a long time and is much beloved. I took my mouse and asked if that was the problem. Yes, it was. I asked if rest would make it better enough to be able to use the mouse again. No, it would not. We agreed that I had to find a new way to draw in the computer and I had to also find a more ergonomic mouse.

 

 

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The mouse was easy. I got a Logitech M570. I’ll have to be careful not to overuse any of my fingers but I can do that.

I won’t be using the mouse to draw. I am, instead, viewing this as an opportunity to buy a tool that I have lusted after — a Wacom Cintiq tablet! (Imagine a quilt-y picture instead of a lizard.)

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The Cintiq tablet is actually a very fancy computer monitor that is touch-sensitive and that you can draw on. It’s similar to the iPad Pro, but you hook to to your computer and the Cintiq mirrors whatever is on screen. I’ll be able draw in Illustrator with a special pen. I’ll be able to use the pen in Photoshop as well, and I’m sure there’s more. I suspect that I’ll be able to move the mouse on the screen with my finger, much like you can on your smartphone.

On the advice of a friend (thank you, Amanda) I got the biggest Cintiq. I have gotten used to using a very big monitor and there isn’t any going back from there. Thankfully, this is piece of business equipment that I should have gotten a long time ago. I think it might actually make me more productive while also helping me to preserve my right hand – my sewing hand!

The bigger issue, and the point of this post, is that you need to pay attention to your body! Don’t ignore warnings, take care of your bits early rather than after damage has been done. Because I said so :-).

 

Wednesday Giveaway

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Congrats to Nettie Crain, this week’s giveaway winner of a set of Karen K. Buckley’s perfect tools: Circles, Ovals, and Stems. The Circles and Ovals are templates made of templar that you can trace against or use with an iron. The Perfect Stems are used to make bias stems with tubes of bias fabric and an iron.

Show and tell…

Lois Hall sent me photos of her fantastic Briar Rose quilt. Lois, thank you for sharing your quilt with us!

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Here’s what Lois said:

This is a quilt that has been a work in progress for several years. It is FINALLY finished!  I completed the last of the hand quilting last month so I could use it as a table topper when I was hostess for my book club meeting in May. There were several comments (and pats on the back) which pleased me to no end, but most assuredly part of the credit goes to you for your beautiful design. Pictures attached show off this treasured piece of work!

Click the photos to see them at a larger size.

Briar Rose is just one of the patterns in the Flowering Favorites ebook. Click here.

PS: Nothing against the members of my book club, but I’m not so sure that I would trust them not to spill on my quilt. Lois, you are a brave hostess :-).

Wednesday Giveaway

This week’s Giveaway winner is Kathleen Connolly who won a pair of Tula Pink’s Micro-Tip Scissors. They cut precisely all the way to the point and they have a lovely iridescent finish. If you didn’t win and still want a pair of these dandy scissors, click here.

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Leave a comment to enter the drawing. If you can’t find the comment box, you might see a little icon that looks like a thought bubble at the upper right at the top of this post. Try clicking that to open the comment section.

I’ll use a random number generator to choose the winner Thursday, June 8, 2017.

Good luck!

Fabric love at first sight…

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I love Alison Glass‘s fabric. That’s a fact.

You know that the fabrics in any collection, by any designer or from any company, are designed to work together. I have found that even though I may like a collection, there are only a few fabrics that I actually use. It is a rare thing to find a collection of prints where everything works together as well as these fabrics do. Why is that?

  • In addition to being just luscious, there is a nice mix of values.
  • These particular prints add texture without being distracting. That works really well in both piecing and appliqué.
  • There are both clear colors and gray colors. When used together, clear colors come forward, grayer colors recede. In a quilt, the combination of clear and gray colors adds dimension to the design.

This is what I have right now: a mix of Alison’s Chroma and Handcrafted Indigo collections as well as a text print. It’s a great start but I know I’m going to be adding more AG fabric to this mix because more is obviously better in this case :-).

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If you’ve been reading my blog, you know I’m working on a foundation paper pieced quilt. The first quilt top is sewn and I’m now making variations of the pattern in AG fabric. I don’t want to ruin future surprises but this gives you an idea of how these prints work together in a pieced block.

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One last thing: When I was in St. Louis last week I picked up some give-away scraps of vintage fabric from the guild table. Too many quilters are nervous about mixing vintage-style prints with modern prints. Don’t be! This is a happy stack of fabric that would make a great quilt.

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I don’t often go on and on about fabric on my blog, but these prints are special. You should consider adding them to your stash.

Happy fabric shopping (is there any other kind?).