Friday, June 14, 2013

Too hot to handle

Faithful readers might remember one of my first attempts at pot-holder-making, my Cthulhu potholder:

I love pot-holders, and it's a wonder that it's been so long since I made some. They're the perfect project - small, quick, useful, and give a great feeling of satisfaction. They're also just the right canvas for using applique. I don't usually use applique on my quilts because the many layers start becoming stiff, but nobody's bothered by a stiff pot-holder.

I gave myself the month off from deadlines and expectations, but once again, cancer has been on my mind. It's hard to want to help out, but to be too far away to walk or volunteer or buy tickets to an event. Like the Walking With Jane quilt from last month, sometimes the only thing I know how to do is throw in an item for a raffle. I know an awesome couple named Jeff and Sarah, and they've been battling with Jeff's metastatic seminoma, and all the effects of the treatment. Instead of the usual demure cancer themes, they express their strength and bravery by flying the flag of "Jeefstrong", which reflects Jeff's love of Marvel superheroes and a vow to beat down his cancer with green fists of fury:

Jeefstrong and its members are holding a fundraiser at the end of the month, a volleyball tournament with t-shirt sales, a bake sale, karaoke, and a raffle. When Sarah put out the call for raffle items, I had to get my sewing machine in gear. I decided to go with something small and raffle-able that's also fun and goes with Jeff's personality. And thus, a set of Avenger pot-holders was born.

 Represented are Captain America, Iron Man, the Hulk, and Thor. There are two Hulks...

 ...a fist and a muscular form. Did you notice that the quilting on the fist is the word "SMASH"? The reason there are two is Jeff asked that I make an extra for him, and I figured he can just pick whichever he likes best. (And he ended up liking Captain America and Thor best, so maybe I'll be making duplicates of those later.)

Not that I can blame him for liking Thor best - it's pretty awesome. The chevron quilting is supposed to represent lightning.

Plus, the white fabric glows in the dark!

If I end up making a second Captain America, maybe I'll make the white star and stripe with the same glowing fabric. But it's pretty sweet as it is.

And, of course, Iron Man, represented by a minimalistic version of his helmet.

I like the backs just as much as the fronts - they're made with coordinating fabrics, and have a handy pocket to stick your hand into when you're handling hot stuff.

I might have caught a pot-holder bug - these guys hanging in my kitchen were making my personal pot-holders look really old and busted. Plus, it's summer - who wants to work buried under a giant quilt? Maybe I'll be making some more for myself in the coming months (probably not superheroes - my girls have suggested princesses and ponies...I don't see that happening either.) But in the meanwhile, I've got a vacation coming up in five days, and I swear this is the last thing I'm going to sew. No, for real....

And today was my favorite part, putting them in a box and shipping them to their new home in Nebraska. I hope Jeff and Sarah love them, but more than that, I hope the fundraising goes well, and hope for a quick recovery for Jeff.