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Mkay, my post title might be a little misleading. I don't think I am a full-fledged hoarder but I think I am exhibiting the early signs of one. These are just two of my doll collection. Such cute 1974 vintage Stupsi dolls, I think they are a bonded pair so I am selling them together.
I finally have broken through the inertia to start listing some of my collectibles. Resellers know the effort involved in listing items for sale. There is the photographing, the listing, the monitoring and the mailing. 

Previously, I sold used textbooks, ones that I had used in my college courses. I didn't have any emotional attachment to them so they were easily resold.  

What took me by surprise was my emotional reaction to selling something as simple as pins. I was anxious. I was worried. What the h**l?  It seems that once a thing is in your possession, it becomes part of the HOARD. I am truly perplexed by this reaction. 

When I thrift shop I have used the "I can always resell it" excuse to buy a particular item. Gave myself a pep talk, I have been using that excuse forever

I even tried the one bag in/one bag out rule. Sad to say, there are more bags coming in than going out. A lot of it is clothing and I do shop for replacement kitchen bowls and such. But still, there is no reason to keep these items when I could gain money for value.  

I will post from time to time on my progress. Wish me luck!

If interested,
Items are listed on Ebay under tam_gonza. 
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I love stories about coincidences in thrift shop finds. Maybe it is wishing and hoping for some kind of clue as to the previous owner. 

My recent find was a sterling silver charm bracelet. These types of bracelets were all the rage beginning in the 1960s and continued on into the 1970s. I had lost the bracelet of my youth. I started buying single charms and then bought a bracelet with a few charms. When I called my jeweler to inquire as to the cost of adding charms to a bracelet, he said it was $15 per charm! 

Sometime later, I had located my mother's bracelet. 
In addition, I bought another bracelet from an online auction site. I think I paid around $30 for it. This one reveals it was Berta's, born on 7-26-67. 

This bracelet was priced at $18.50, reasonable. I saw that Lois had engraved her name on the back of one of the charms. When I got to the cash register, I told the cashier, "I am going to wear Lois' charm bracelet." Then said, "Let's see if she put her birthdate on it." It was a common practice for charm bracelet owners to have their name and birthdate on one of the charms. 

I then asked the cashier, "What is the date today?" She replied, "July 14th." I got the chills, engraved under Lois' name was the date "7-14-67." 


My first thought was that a wonderful charm bracelet such as this landed in the thrift shop because its owner had passed on. I told the clerk that it was karma that the bracelet came into my possession on the day of Lois' birthday. I said aloud, "I am wearing your charm bracelet Lois, in celebration of your birthday!" Lois was(or is) a mere 8 years older than me. 


Another thing I do is honor mystery quilters who have donated their fabric. I incorporate recently scored secondhand fabric into my current creations, usually as bindings. That has been the case with the last two quilts. The bindings have come from my box of feedsack fabric.  

Another find with Lois' bracelet with a Bailey Blue dress modeled  by my ever-trusty Sally stand-in. I like the detail of the built-in ruffled slip.
I am making progress toward listing some of my collectibles on Ebay. I figure it is time shake loose some of my valuable items. They will be listed under tam_gonza. One item going up for sale  are these set of 4 Field & Stream Honor Badges.  
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This post will highlight some of the fine art from the California State Fair. Having attended the fair for a number of years, I can be certain of a few things: 

There will always be a very large installation piece.

At least one stunning painting, again - very large.
Requiem for a Wedding Cake by Alexandra Lown, Sacramento
Juror's Award,  Award of Excellence, and Sacramento Fine Arts Center Award
Quite a few delightful surprises.
There is the very odd
And somewhat derpy
At least one hands-on exhibit in the fine art pavilion.
And on to furry animals
Lion head rabbit
Watching the baby goats frolic
I also bumped into a sheep judging competition, complete with one parent consoling a disappointed competitor. 
So many things to see and experience at the California State Fair!
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One of my yearly traditions is a visit to the wine garden at the fair and this year was no different. 
I was granted a Media Season Pass for a second year in a row to the California State Fair. While I am not a creative arts participant this year, I did want to check out my competition for 2020. This post will focus on mainly fiber art. Tomorrow's post will feature fine art and furry animals. But before we get to that, a shout-out to the team that created the Amador County exhibit. The panels are painted, one depicting Preston Castle. They hit it out of the park, it is placed at one of the entrances in the county exhibits building.

And on to the quilts and fiber art.
Birth of Venus by Alissa McBain, Sacramento
Modern Quilts - First Place


Circle Sensation with Swags by Marianne Mulheren, Mendocino
Appliqued Quilts - Fourth Place
I like how the purple mannequin is pointing in the quilt's direction.
I did not get the names of the artists on the hanging quilts.

My Guardian Angel by Mary Boyer, Sacramento
Other Technique Quilts, Best of Division and First Place


Loving Amsterdam by Jan Soules
Art Quilt, Juror's Choice, Best of Division and First Place
It was a shame the Loving Amsterdam piece was behind glass.  It  was hard to photograph. The image below is another creation I would have liked to been up close and personal. The glass and lighting interfered with viewing the amazing artistry. 
Lady in Red Portrait by Joan Schlinkert
I think it was called Counted Embroidery
And on to some fun stuff, you can guess which caught my eye.Question for quilters: Do you keep finished quilts to give as gifts? We recently had guests from out of town who had two ten-year old twins, boy and girl. You never know if people will like quilts (some don't), so when the visitors exclaimed their delight at one of my quilts, I promptly gifted it to them (quilt shown here). While it was not my best work, it felt good to be able to send them home with a homemade gift. 

Finally, I have decided to sell some of my fabric. I see there is a "used fabric" category on Ebay. My goal is to sell enough fabric to cover the cost of the new sewing machine. 
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A year has now passed since I committed to the Money for Quilting Challenge hosted by Val at myplvl.blogspot.com.  
My intent with this challenge was to save money for longarmer charges but found one that is reasonable and have sent her three quilts so far. 

Back to the original intent to purchase fabric. I wanted something cool and zoomy. My piggy bank savings totaled $40 in bills, $22 in change. Not the most stellar savings total, but admittedly, I kept forgetting to put money away. 

Nearly every month I participate in the FabHopShop. While looking for certain icons, I check out the quilt kits or new arrivals or fabric collections. 

At first, I was not a fan of color coordinated fabrics. I discovered certain fabrics are coveted. Once stock is bought up, it is gone. On a wing and prayer you may be able to find a specific fabric on an online auction.  

Back to my reveal of how I spent my piggy bank savings, this is the first time I have bought a bundled fabric collection, this one being Palm Canyon by Violet Craft for Robert Kaufman Fabrics. In addition, the first time I have bought a pattern for the Atomic Starburst quilt. I've purchased quilt patterns at thrift shops, but not a full fledged retail pattern.
Other retail fabric purchases I allowed myself were 4 yards of midnight blue batik. I use that fabric for binding and think it might marry well with the blocks shown here. I had also used up all of my low volume fabric on recent projects so I supplemented my stash with Champagne fat quarter bundle by Art Gallery Fabrics. 

Love all these new fabrics and my new sewing machine. I'm set for whipping up some wonderful creations. 

On another topic - let's talk about Quilter's Guilt. That is when you have promised someone a quilt and a long time has passed between the promise and the creation (sometimes years). The group was split on the topic when it came up in my American Patchwork & Quilting FB page. Some said gift the promised quilt, others said - make a different quilt (the poster wanted to keep her promised creation), or just let it slide. It had been over 8 years since the quilt was promised and both women had moved on to different jobs, etc. 

I am pretty good about giving away my promised projects so I won't suffer from Quilter's Guilt. 

Be sure to visit the others on this hop to see how well they did in the yearlong savings challenge. 
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Much to my delight, one of my fav thrift shops was open and offering a 50% off day. Part of my tub of fun purchased for a total of $14, included a Hawaiian print dress that I will wear to work tomorrow. Restarting my Friday's Frock for the summer.

Sally Stand-In is modeling my squee of a find. I am also shamelessly showing off my 1/2 off plant I found last week.

Garnered nine more records, four yards of fabric, one packet of remnants and a large packet of quilt pieces. 

I am experiencing project overrun again. I think it is time to start up my Etsy shop and list some of these fabrics and projects. 

Gardening update:

Deer deterrent ratcheted up to Level 3. In a desperate attempt to keep my grape vines and actually have grapes to eat, I have enclosed the vines in chicken wire cages. 

Yep, in the second image that is a close up of deer nibblins. The doe returned that afternoon and I saw her wistfully looking through the garden gate at the now-unattainable vines. I am going to continue the chicken wire cages until they meet at the arch. 

The Piggybank Savings blog hop is on the 6th, so I will see you then!
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June is always a sweet month for me, being my birthday month and all. I have two requests pending, one for a media pass at the California State Fair, and the other an analyst certification presentation at work. 

While I await these approval processes, here are some state fair approved images. The first is the demonstration gardens. 
My arugula has gone to seed so I've decided to plant corn. I'm using tomato cages to keep the cats out of the garden until the corn gets some height. 
The last three images are livestock mug shots from the state fair website.


While none of my creations were entered into the fair this year, I am shooting for the 2020 competition. 
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The American Patchwork & Quilting UFO Challenge reveals the prompt for July is

Which for me is my basket block quilt. I was going great guns on it around the end of the year and then switched to the prompt schedule.



After buying my Baby Lock machine, the log jam of creativity let loose and projects are getting finished. That is why I am singing the Hallelujah chorus. Still quilting away on the monster that is the art with fabric block hop quilt. Would love to have that one done in July *fingers crossed*.

Thrifting update: Well, first a declutter update. I did a clothes closet purge and donated a number of jackets. I don't wear a jacket unless it is downright cold or if I have an interview and neither one of those things happen very often. 

I moved my winter wardrobe to a family storage unit I have on another property. I have quite a collection of maxi skirts which the majority are too warm to wear in our California summer. California summers extend into October. 

Back to the thrifting score, it wasn't a huge lot of fabric like the box last week but they are pretty remnants that look to be all in the same colorway. I will put them in the project bag lineup.  

Now off to quilting and spinning the vinyl!
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Not afraid to admit that I have made it to the Big 60 - now known as Level 60! 
Child of the 60s. 
I am the model on the right circa 1971
Teenager in the 70s. Parent in the 80s/90s, working/attending college in the 2000s. 

It has been quite a ride. With my mom alive and well at 91, I hope to have 30+ years to make my mark on this world. 


Thrifted fashion news:
From the blogosphere is a movement I have joined. A challenge at slow-fashion-summer-2019 described as "3 months, 10,000 people, no new clothes." 


In the summer of 2018, we took on a big issue: the (fast) fashion industry. With 2625 people across the globe, we didn't buy any new clothes for three months. And now we're back! Join us for the biggest crowd act to date and buy no new clothes during the summer/winter season of 2019 together with 9,999 other people!
The fashion industry has an enormous negative environment and social impact around the world. Did you know that it takes 2,700 liters of water to make your cotton t-shirt? And that fashion is one of the most polluting industries in the world? It produces more greenhouse gases than international shipping and aviation combined. Time for action! Or better yet: inaction. We’re taking a stance and pledge to not buy any new clothes for three months! So, get creative - dig up your old shirt, trade your outfit in the CollAction #sharechain, or get your favorite pair of jeans repaired, because slow is the new black!

The fashion industry is responsible for enormous amounts of water consumption (32 million Olympic size swimming pools per year) and CO2 emissions (8% of global greenhouse emissions - and growing fast). If 10,000 people participate, we will save up to 360 million liters of water and prevent 1,4 million kilograms of CO2 being emitted. Also, textile dyeing is the second largest polluter of clean water globally, only after agriculture. Then there is the enormous waste creation (148 million tons by 2030) and land use (115 million hectares by 2030), and we haven’t even started on labor conditions yet...Enough numbers, time for action. Time for Slow Fashion Season!


The rules: you’re allowed to trade clothes and buy second-hand - just no new clothes. A great opportunity to get creative with the 80% of clothes that you never wear (if you’re anything like us).

Follow us on Facebook and Instagram for updates on the Slow Fashion Season. For example, we’ll be launching the #sharechain - the largest online clothing swap of all times! Offer your last year’s outfit and trade it for someone else’s.

Quilting/sewing news - what a difference a machine makes!

I had been struggling along with a Brother quilting machine and the thing was down more than it was "up."  I broke down and bought a Baby Lock Jazz II. The only problem I encountered is because it is a new machine, there are no YouTube tutorials on running the thing. This my first Baby Lock so I wasn't used to their unique machine setup. Their written instructions and diagrams leave a lot to be desired. I am considering posting tutorials on the Jazz II because not everyone can take the classes. 

I was able to figure out how to thread the machine, after trial and error. One project finally to completion is the vintage fan quilt. I purchased the denim print wide backing from another quilter in my area, and had it professionally quilted by a longarmer. 

This quilt top has waited at least 75 years to come to fruition. It will now be used and loved. 

Next up is binding the Wedding Quilt after I receive it back from the longarmer. In the meantime, I am quilting Composition Quilt, a king-sized project I have been working on since last year and hope to complete prior to summer's end. 
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The sewing machine that I chose to upgrade to was the Baby Lock Jazz II. I am trading in my Brother quilting machine for this one. 
Image from the Baby Lock website
What I am doing differently is taking a weekend class on the new machine's operation. I also think online Baby Lock classes are part of the new machine bundle. 

Gardening update: It took me quite awhile to figure out this hopeful fix to this grapevine problem. If the birds didn't get the fruit, the raccoons and deer did. The deer would also decimate the vine, eat it down to the nubbins. 
Here you can see the backside of the greenhouse. Last year, I tried putting tomato cages around the vines. The year before that I tried bird netting. I have inverted the tomato cages to train the vines upward. 



My first thought was to try pool noodles because they are flexible but didn't want it to look tacky. When I saw we had two packets of bamboo poles, I zip tied 4 poles together and zip tied the poles to  the green metal poles. 

We will see if my experiment works. Gardening is hit and miss, especially when you have to deal with competing animals. The Mr. doesn't think my fix will work as the deer can rear up on their hind legs to eat the grape leaves. 

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