Monday, March 31, 2008

Four Seasons Quilt Swap - Spring Swap

Just HAD to post an update on my progress. I picked up this green dot fabric and the cream and pink fabric at the Quilt Shop Hop. I used the green for the small border (finished at 1/2 inch) and the cream and pink will be the backing of the quilt. The outer floral border finishes at 1 1/2 inches. The quilt finishes at 16 x 19, just under the guidelines.

Here is the top, all completed and ready for basting. Now, I have to make a decision on the quilting!

Edited: Here is the quilt, all quilted and now sent off to the recipient! :)

Happy Quilting!

More Shop Hop Treasures

Here are the fabrics I picked up to complete the Nine Patch and Hour Glass Quilt I've been working on using my Civil War Reproduction fabrics. The dark blue is for the small borders and the greens are for the applique leaves.

Here is a picture of the quilt to refresh your memory.

I also picked up a walking foot. Now I can learn to do some machine quilting....maybe. I have Dear MIL's placemats all completed and I decided to machine quilt them, since I know she'll be using them and washing them lots.

I also picked up my favorite hand quilting needles and some machine needles. Then, when I spotted this magazine I had to grab it. I saw a quilt that several bloggers were making using a pattern from this magazine and wanted to order it. I was having trouble getting my order in, so I was grateful when I spotted the mag for sell at the Quilt Shop Hop! Yeah me! Someday, when I start this quilt, I'll show you, 'til then, we'll all have to wait and see. I may do it in my old age!

I also picked up these three fabrics, just because I liked them. From left to right: I really thought that the Wuthering Heights fabric (by Three Sisters for Moda) would make a great focus fabric for a table runner. The brown fabric is Benartex Jacobean Joyeux/Provence. I bought it because I love brown and nice browns can be hard to find. The last one, on the right, is the Shangri la fabric from the last post.

And lastly, here are three fat quarters I found and just had to take home. They were on the sale table for just $1.25. See, I have learned to buy tone on tones, and they will look great in my scrap quilts someday!

Other than a couple of things I picked up for my 100th post giveaway, that's it! My giveaway is just around the corner, so keep popping in for the chance to enter!!!

The Quilt Shop Hop was a fun little "mini vacation". I'll definitely be signing up for the Shop Hop next year too!

Happy Quilting!

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Bonnie's Mystery - Orange Crush!

I've never really done a mystery....once I tried, but I cheated! It was an online mystery and I had to see what the pattern was BEFORE I made the commitment. I just couldn't make myself invest fabric in a pattern I wasn't sure I would like. Funny, I made the quilt but didn't like it. I think it was the fabric choices! Crazy, huh??

But, today, things are different. First of all, I love all the quilts Bonnie has made. Secondly, I've seen her first mystery and I liked the way it turned out and I've seen that she's quite capable of writing a mystery I can understand! Thirdly, I've been quilting long enough to like most colors, even ORANGE!!! And lastly, I know that if it's a scrap quilt, I'll love it.

So, I had put fabrics on my list for the Quilt Shop Hop, so that I could make Bonnie's mystery quilt. I didn't have any orange, and not enough black. While shopping, I decided I liked this blue and then I found the red and thought "Why not??"

I know that Bonnie said to pull from our stash, but I have to confess that my stash is inadequate. Ask my the beginning of my quilting life, she was always trying to get me to purchase tone on tone prints, but I was drawn to the florals, busy prints and such. Now, I don't have that much to work with in the way of yardage because most of my fabrics have been stripped for scrap quilts. I'm learning though and you'll see what I picked up while out shopping this past weekend in future posts!

So, here is the Orange in my Orange Crush Quilt: From the fabric line Meadow Song by Susan Ennis for Free Spirit.

The blue fabric is a Benartex fabric. Classically Home "Janelle" by Marianne Elizabeth.

The red fabric is Vintage Rose by Nancy Odom for P&B Textiles.

And the black is a Timeless Treasure fabric which I picked up for just $6 a yard and got the rest of the bolt....more than I'll need for the Orange Crush Quilt. I bought 4 yards.

Then, I found this really sweet tiny floral (it's still in my blood Dina!) It's a Moda fabric called Kristen. I'm not sure, but I think I only paid $4 a yard for this one and I bought 4 yards of it thinking it would be a nice border. When I got all my fabrics home, I realized that if the Orange Crush needed borders this fabric coordinates nicely.

All the tone on tone fabrics have really nice vine prints on them! I'm really loving them and they feel WONDERFUL!!!!

So here is the beginning of my Mystery Quilt, now I just have to dig through my strips and find what I need to get started on the mystery in just a few days. Monday will be my prep day for this quilt, but I'll have to postpone sewing until Wednesday. I already have plans for Tuesday.

Happy Quilting!

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Houston Bay Area Quilt Shop Hop!

Yesterday and today was our area Quilt Shop Hop. I went with my quilting buddy, Linda. We had such a great time. I can't take the time to post about everything in one sitting...but here's just a tidbit. I'll post a bit here and there and share with you what I bought.

Let me say this first, there were snacks and water at each shop! So sweet, it kept us going while we were looking toward lunch and held us over until we got home last evening. I am always amazed at the wonderful gifts each shop gives each quilter, until this year.....I won't say which shop gave what, half of them were really great gifts. Here is the picture of my freebies.

The red background fabric is an end of the bolt deal I got. It was just one yard, but I got it 20% off since it was the end of the bolt. It's Shangri la by Moda.

The red and pink kit is for a pincushion. It came with instructions, fabric, ribbon and buttons. Very nice!

The blue kit is for a needle case. On the front of the needle case are little tiny yo yos made to look like a bluebonnet, our state flower.

The red fat quarter is a Reproduction Civil War fabric. It's a Moda fabric.

The green fat eighth is a home spun, which was the only choice they gave...hmmmm, I got the nicest one.

The little yellow heart is a "keychain" which can be used as a template for quilting and/or appliqué. It has the shop's name etc. on it. I don't know that I'll ever use it.....hmmmm.

And lastly, the piece of paper. It's a "pattern" for a stitchery project. hmmmm, that's all I'll say. Interesting, huh? And this shop was in the nicest part of town.

Regardless, I did have a great time and I found everything on my list.....and then some!

Happy Quilting!

Edit: he he he....I just looked at the close up picture and you can plainly see where some of the freebies came from! Oh well, so much for trying to be discreet! LOL

Thursday, March 27, 2008

I forgot how much fun it was..

I've been sewing on the Off Centered Log Cabin Blocks and I'd forgotten how much fun they are! I've made 49 of them and decided to lay them out and try a new design. So nice.... I use two different computers and this one makes the darks look more bright. I wonder if the other computer shows the true colors? They are really a rich, dark color.... I'm really liking this quilt.

For those who want the patterns for the two Log Cabin Quilts I'm working on, here they are:

For the 3 inch, type in 3 inch log cabin in the search box. I don't know why the link to the page isn't working! Ughhhh!

3 inch log cabin
Off Centered Log Cabin

I found them free online and they are paper pieced. If you've never tried it before, go here and use Marcia's tutorial! My pictures show three different layouts for Log Cabin blocks. Here are more you can look at online.

Fun, fun, fun and a great way to use up scraps and strips. Happy Quilting!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Back in the swing of things/aka WIP Wednesday

Wow! Who knew I'd take a week and a half off from sewing! Certainly wasn't something I planned. It was a busy time, but we had fun too. Nothing super special, we didn't go anywhere, but we did get to spend time together as a family.

The kids had friends over all week, some spent the night, some just came for dinner and some just for dessert! I got to spend time with my new niece. And this past weekend, Dear Older Son came into town to spend Easter with us. We planned the day so that just the six of us (Dear Hubby, me and the four children) would have dinner together. It's the first time we've done that in a very long time! It was loads of fun. I found out that all of us put together is not necessarily a good idea. We feed off each other's goofiness and some pretty crazy things happened! My kids are fun people to be around. There are constant jokes, movie quotes, funny stories and good natured kidding around. Have I said lately that I like my kids????

Here are pics of what I'm currently working on. I got the Spring Swap Quilt Top done. The blocks are 3 inches finished. I really like the way it's turned out. Right now, I'm auditioning fabrics for the borders. I am going to several quilt shops this weekend, and will take this project along with me. I am really wanting to find just the "right" fabrics for this quilt. I only need four fat quarters to finish this little project! If I add a 1/2 inch border and a 1.5 inch border, the quilt will finish at 16 x 19 inches, just under the guidelines for the swap!

Here are the fabrics that a fellow blogger sent me in exchange for me picking up some fabrics for her. Wasn't that sweet? I can't decide which one I like best!

And, lastly, I picked these up online at Connecting Threads. I ordered the Cosmos in Bloom fabrics. I've been wondering about the quality of their new fabrics. They are $5.96 a yard, but these I got on sale. Of course, after I purchased them, they marked them down again.

I order fabric every month for the ladies in our Bee. We call it a Fat Quarter Club, although sometimes, I order something a bit different. This time around, I ordered this set. And I ordered myself a yard of the dark green plaid, just for me! I really do like the quality of the fabric, it seems to compare to the other manufacturers. I think that the reason I don't absolutely LOVE these fabrics is because I ordered something I thought looked a bit springy. And, springy fabrics are not my favorite! I'm trying to get out of the box though, and try new things! Being in the Spring Quilt Swap helped too! Definitely not my favorite colors, but I love the way it looks. I need to find a pattern and make something from this Cosmos in Bloom collection. Any ideas???

I'm going to heat up the iron and turn on my machine and make a few more Off Centered Log Cabin Blocks today. I made a few more yesterday, and I've really enjoyed being at the machine again!

Happy Quilting!

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Resurrection Day

He is risen!

He is risen indeed!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

WIP Wednesday

Nothing to report. I'm on "Stay at Home Mom" duty. Grandma is gone and I'm in charge of everything!

Ok, it's not THAT bad, but I will admit, I sure miss mom's help around the house. This combining of households was a benefit to us all and now that she's gone to her sister's, I'm seeing just how much she does! BUT, it's her birthday, and who could begrudge her that???? Only a TRULY selfish daughter!

So, Happy Birthday Mom....have a great time...and HURRY HOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Happy Quilting to all my blog friends, even if I may not get to sew, I hope you all accomplish a lot this week!!! LOL

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Too busy to sew!

Boy, weekends like this one will make a quilter batty!! (Pun intended!) I haven't sat at the machine in so long, and I'm missing the time.....

Saturday was consumed with errands. And not the fun kind. Vehicle maintenance, I know it has to be done, but..... Just too much to mention and nothing really interesting. Sunday, we did go to church. Dear Younger Daughter is feeling so much better, just the tiniest little cough remains. But, we were so tired, we came home and slept all afternoon and I don't know what I would have done, if I hadn't gotten a nap! Love Sunday naps, don't you???

Yesterday, I drove Dear Mother about 2 1/2 hours away to meet her sisters. They live about 5 1/2 hours from us, and with Spring Break this week, I know they are enjoying themselves. It's very interesting when you see three women 68, 72, and 78 years of age behaving like the little girls they once were! They were a hoot! Giggling, laughing, tears running down their faces, and talks of the younger one taking care of the "old ladies". I drove away with a smile on my face, knowing they will have a great time this week!

Today, is the day of the Weekday Quiltathon. I didn't spend any time preparing for this day, but I have a couple of projects sitting on the table and I am going to start working on them in just a bit!

I am waiting to get the call from the dishwasher installer this morning...if you expect them early, they show up later, if you decide to sleep in, they call early and say they are 10 minutes away!!! I can't wait to dirty up some dishes and see how it works! JAS.......hey, he just called and will be here at 10:30 this morning!!! "Speak of the Devil!" He he he........

With the busy weekend, here is what my sewing table looks like. I just walked through the room throwing things that are semi quilty on the table top and now, I have to pay the piper!! I suppose I'll have to dig my way down to the bottom before I can get started sewing today! Well, at least dinner will be easy tonight! Baked potatoes.....and as soon as the installer leaves, I'm sewing!!!!

Happy Quilting!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Granny's Strings is DONE!!! Yippee!!!

I did it! Last night, I sat in bed with Dear Hubby, watching movies and finished sewing the binding on. I finished up somewhere around 1:30 this morning. I told Hubby, "I really want to put this one in the washer tonight and stay up and dry it, but I'll wait!" So, this morning, I popped it in the washer and dryer and it's DONE!!!! Yippee!!!

It turned out nicely, and I love all the quilting on it. The concentric lines are quilted about 3/4 of an inch apart and then I quilted a couple of wavy lines in the outside border. The binding was given to me by a elderly lady at our church who is cleaning out her quilting stuff, she's no longer able to sew, but hopes to finish quilting all her tops!

And, another bit of good news, Old Red Barn is now open to having comments left for the chance to win a quilt. Hop on over and leave a comment. It's a really cute quilt!

Happy Quilting!!!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

WIP Wednesday

Today has not been a quilting day....well, not really. My last post showed 8 little log cabins and today I have 12. So, that's progress. I did them this morning.

But, today, instead of quilting, we bought a dishwasher. I hated to do it, but Dear Brother replaced a part in November and in December, the motor started making a weird noise. By February, we knew the old dear would have to be put down. She was suffering, and frankly, so were we. We waited 3 weeks in lethargy not deciding what we should do. Or rather, in shock, because we knew what we had to do. So, today, we bit the bullet.

It's no easy task to shop with my hubby. No, he isn't a terror in the store....he comes with that has to be disassembled, loaded, unloaded, reassembled, disassembled, reloaded, unloaded and reassembled. Can you see why we put off buying a dishwasher? That wheelchair weighs 200 lbs. and even some of the parts when disassembled weigh about 40 lbs.

I know, REAL women buy their own dishwashers, but I don't like spending $500 on my own! Call me nuts, I like input. So, thankfully, Dear Younger Son, 19, went with us to the getting place and did all the work with the wheelchair .....and we purchased a dishwasher. (We also looked at flat screen tv's and discussed which one we needed for the bedroom and which one for the livingroom, but we came home with just a dishwasher on order!!!) Whew! We did it. It will be delivered next week and we'll have sanitized dishes once again.

I have a feeling this dishwasher is going to cut into my fabric money!!! Oh well, thankfully, I DO have a stash!

On a quilting note: I've had this book FOREVER! (Quilt in a Day book by Anne Dease) And right after I got my new sewing machine, I pulled the book out and grabbed some old fabrics. I just wanted to see if I could follow directions and make a quilt. I chose the crib size and when the top was done, I loved it. It's been sitting in my closet resting among other quilts....until this week. I pulled it out and asked grandma (my mom) if she'd like to hand quilt it. She's needing to keep her hands busy....just like we all like to do. So, we're off this week to purchase batting and some backing to make the quilt seem like something special. (We'll probably buy backing at Walmart since these fabrics are really old Walmart fabrics, but I still like the quilt!)

Happy Quilting!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Four Season's Quilt Swap

I've been sewing away today on these sweet little Log Cabin blocks. It's a lot of fun to work on and they aren't taking as long as I thought they would. They are turning out cute and I'm really hoping I'm going to like the little quilt when it's done.

Happy Quilting!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Just stuff on a Sunday!

Well, we've BEEN going to church again, since the handicapped restrooms are up and working....and REALLY enjoying it too, I might add! Last night, though, we knew we wouldn't be going to church today. Dear Younger Daughter has a fever and some cold symptoms. I don't let my children go to church (and infect everyone there) until they have been clear of fever 24 hours.

I had two family members volunteer to stay home with her, but a sick child NEEDS her mother!!! When I asked Dear Younger Daughter if she wanted someone else to stay with her, she said she wanted everyone to stay with, for obvious reasons, Older Daughter so they could veg out and watch girl movies, Younger Son so they could play XBOX.... no deal, she just gets me and daddy!!! So, since I'm home, I decided I would take it easy, read some blogs, sew a tiny bit and watch preachers on TV and internet.

Hmmm, here is the breakfast of champion quilters! Don't ya just love coffee and biscotti???? Stop on by, and we'll have a nice little session of coffee and quilting!

Remember, yesterday I mentioned the Four Season's Quilt Swap? Well, last night, at 2:00 a.m., inspiration hit! I know, too late to sew, but I did some searching on the internet....and found a free pattern for this.

Isn't it too cute??? It's a 3 1/2 inch Log Cabin!!! Sure, it's paper pieced! Do you really think I would even TRY without a paper pieced foundation. So, this morning, when all was quiet....I started sewing. I only printed one last night, just to try it.....should have done more. The printer is in my bedroom and I finished the first one and wanted to make more. I just had to wait until Dear Hubby got out of bed to print them....we'll see if I finish enough to make the swap quilt!

I was reading Niki's Ventures and she has a post (same title - I stole it!!!) and she took some pictures of her house. So, I thought I'd copy her. No, I didn't clean my house either....but having Grandma living with us, it's rarely dirty....just the sewing room!!! LOL

I took a picture of the sewing table. See all the little scraps for the Log Cabin block? To the right of the sewing machine is the printed rules for the swap. I don't want to make a mistake!

There is a picture of our piano. All three older children and I play, Younger Daughter is wanting to learn, but Older Daughter and I are so busy, I may have to pay for lessons....again!!! LOL Notice the quilts on the piano bench. They are just there temporarily. The top one is the table runner I just finished and under that is the Granny's Strings quilt I am just about done with. It's so big and heavy, that I try to keep it out of the way when I'm not quilting it.

A picture of our china hutch....which has old dishes, tea cups and tea pots in it. A family member commented that it looks like an old lady lives here, but I love to look at them and so, there they are! You should surround yourself in the things you enjoy!

Every quilter needs lots of books for inspiration and here are mine. Maybe I need a few more!!

And lastly, our comfy couch! Here is where all the visiting goes on! Notice the sick person essentials, remote and Kleenex!

Happy Quilting!

Saturday, March 8, 2008

A Mini Finish....

Here is the little "pincushion" that I made into a mini quilt. I think I really like it better as a mini quilt than I ever would have as a pincushion. And it's finished!!! Yeah!!!

And, I forgot to show a picture of the fat quarter collection another Dear Friend gave me recently! It's so pretty.....I just have to decide what to do with it. It may have to "stew" a while until I think of something.

I have been doing a lot of thinking about my Four Season Quilt Swap - Spring Swap. I got my swap partner's name and she likes modern, folk (primitive) or traditional pieced. So, pretty much, anything I make, she'll like. Boy! That makes it easier...but, I just can't get my brain into gear on this one yet. I've been looking at patterns for inspiration, but thus far, nothing has struck my fancy. I have to mail the quilt by May 1st, so I have some time. The quilt's size must be between 16 x 16 inches and 20 x 20 inches square or any rectangular size in between 16 and 20 inches. I can't decide if I'll do some appliqué, pieced blocks, or something with a bit of redwork embroidery here and there.....

Well, 'til then, I'll just keep working on other projects until inspiration hits! Happy Quilting!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

WIP Wednesday

I almost let the day pass before I posted my WIP's....which are now "Another Finish" projects! Yippee! I don't think I realized just how close I was to finishing all these recent projects!

Here is a picture of the pillowcase I made today for Hannah, the older sister who lost their father this past weekend. I hope to find out what the older brother likes and will make him a pillowcase too. Just a small thing to do for them....wish I could do so much more.

I also completed the table runner I have been working on for a friend who moved to Michigan to serve with a ministry there. I got to see her this past weekend, but alas, the table runner was not finished and will now have to be mailed to her. Maybe I'll include some chocolates to refill the candy jar we sent her to Michigan with. She said everyone keeps "helping themselves" to her jar, but she does limit them to one a day. Maybe "they" should replenish it....but I'm not going to let Laura suffer!!! So, decision made, she will be receiving a table runner and some chocolate in the mail....maybe this week???? We'll see how the rest of the week goes.

One fun tidbit about the took me a few hours to decide to do a Baptist fan (kinda) pattern for the quilting. I didn't want to mark the top, like I normally do. I'm into "easy" right now. So, I decided to free hand it as I went. No marking, just making random fans here and there. Some are "bigger" than the others, but I like the overall affect. Besides, I had a great time doing it and time flew! And now, it's done.

And now, an explanation of the squirrel pictures. Dear Younger Daughter likes to take my camera and make videos ( should hear the things we've deleted!!!!!) and she likes to take pictures. These two were shot through the back windows of our house.

Marcie will understand, but we had a squirrel in our attic. Loved to make noise when we went to bed. She must have been making a nest or something. I don't know. But it sounded like we had an elephant in the attic. The guys (son and friend) replaced some rotten facial boards and ran the squirrel out of the attic and caulked. Just the painting is left. But today, something very strange happened......

I kid you not, this squirrel was knocking on our windows! Tap, tap, tapping. Climbing up the screens on the windows. Jumping from the shrub INTO the window. Running across the brick ledge on the outside of the window. For a brief moment, I wondered, "Where is Alfred Hitchcock?" and "Are those birds I hear??"

I said to Dear Hubby, "Do you think it's the mama trying to get into the house??" His very smart answer??? "It's been 4 days since we've closed up the attic access for her, surely by now, she would have realized she can't get in." "Maybe it was the daddy squirrel coming to find his wife and looking for his house. Maybe he forgot where it was while he was out looking for food", answers Dear Younger Daughter.

It's really bad, Dear Friends, when you start wondering how squirrels think and making conversations for them! But, I really feel badly for them.....if just a bit frightened! Ok...the pictures seem innocent, but don't let that little face fool you! He/She's MAD!