Thursday, December 15, 2011

A Book I Cherish

Although I am called Cat a lot, I really am only The Other Utah Cat.  Just ask my friend Cathy Baumgartner of Utah, aka Baumcat, or The Original Cat.   I don`t know how I found out about The Original Cat, but it was some time ago.  Cat was once a CQI (Crazy Quilting International) member and did a lot of work with the comfort doll project several years ago. And I know she and Gerry H were friends back in the days when Gerry lived here in Utah (a fact she doesn`t talk about too much, hehehehe).  

Anyway, I worship The Original Cat. No, really. I have pieces of her art all over the house, and I am always humbled in their presence. I don`t think she has ever sewn/quilted/crazyquilted/painted/whatever’ed something that I don`t love.  And I have been a big fan of her Etsy shoppe, too.

One of my most recent acquisitions is this lovely cloth journal that Cat made.  She actually made LOTS of them, but this was the one I bought. It’s made of muslin, so soft and scrumptious, then free-motion quilted. And a sweet scrap of muslin ties it closed. I would be happy to leave the book empty and just feast my eyes. But the pages beckon.

Cat free-motioned all of the pages in different styles - vertical lines, horizontal lines, circles, wavy lines, minimal outlines - each one ready to cushion some scrap of art, a memory or drawing, a tidbit or trinket.
But what to use it for? Well, my first idea didn`t work out because I needed more pages, and larger ones at that. But that is my story for next time. So this is what I decided.

The bobbin lace from Jennifer, 2011

Why not use it to store and protect those beautiful things that I cherish and that I want to use someday in my crazy quilting?   These beautiful pieces need a Place of Honor to wait until their purpose is realized. It’s just not fair that I should have them tossed jumbled stored in with the rest of the stash. 

Motif by Shirlee Fassell, Heart by Martha Green
Just a simple tacking stitch or two to hold them, and viola!  Artful storage!  :-)

This is the only scrap of fabric I have left from my trip to Europe when I was in high school.  In the summer of 1970, I went to summer school in Seefeld, Austria. One day we took the train into Innsbruck, and I purchased fabric.  I made it all up into dresses, and this piece, which was to be a pocket but was omitted, is all that I kept.  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve kicked myself for not saving all the scraps!  But it will be Cherished until I use it in something.

And as a side note, doesn’t it almost look as though it would be something you could find in a fabric store today?  This piece is 41 years old!

So, what about my idea for the Cherish journal that didn’t work out?   There’s a happy answer to that.

I had Cat to make a large book as a special commission and title it Lace. The pages are simple, not fancily-stitched, but will be a very important background for what is to come. And that project is my story for next time. Do you want a hint? (besides the word “Lace” on the book, hehe). Check out this post from 2009 and meet me back here in a day or two.  ;-)

Cathy maroon


  1. You got me Cathy. I went back to that post and do remember reading it at the time.

    I can hardly wait to see what you are going to do.

    Will it be all the lovely hankies or the lace?

    I still laugh when I asked you at one of the CQ retreats about your motorcycle. I assumed there was only one Cat from Utah but I was wrong unles you have bought one recently.

    Hugs my friend


  2. Oh how perfect! We all have treasures that are awaiting a place and this is a great way to keep them readily at hand and also serving as a lovely reminder that we have them in the first place. Most often little treasures get buried and lost.

  3. These are just lovely! Wishing you a Merry Christmas. blessings, Kathleen

  4. What a great idea to store your laces and other little cherished pieces in these breathtaking fabric books!


  5. I love this idea of placing unique treasure in a cloth album for future use! It's GREAT!!!!

  6. Cathy - we are tooooo much alike. I had decided that for my CQJP2012 that I was going to to work on two projects at the same time. One using my new love for the colors mix of purple and greens and the other to create a journal page each month for all the pretty laces that I can't part with... we have to be a little selfish now and then LOL! I figured after signing up for TAST that I would try and go for a 3rd journal for all the new stitches I plan on learning.... funny how we get in a rut and use the same ones over and over.

    Merry Christmas!


  7. Hi CAT!

    I'm the other Utah Cat - you are the famed Crazy Quilting Cat!

    Thank you for blogging my books! They are fun to make and it is exciting to think of how pretty they will be once they are full of lacy treasures!

    To Freda... I still love to ride my motorcycle!

    XO, Cat


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