Thursday, April 29, 2010

Step 2 for the Workshop

This is a soldier quilt that I quilted for Betty the other day. I really like the way she put this together. I played a little with the quilting on this. Instead of stitch in the ditch I used a wavy line, meandered in the solid squares and put a design (a la Pam Clarke’s methods of no marking) in the pieced squares. It took me so much longer than just an overall freehand design but I wanted the practice and I like the results.

This picture is Step 2 for my tessellating pinwheel workshop next month. We had to join all 49 squares together and then put a border on it that will become the background? Still wondering about all this.

Today I need to get errands run and get the house ready for a teenage sleep over tonight as they have no school tomorrow. I don't know if sewing will fit in the agenda anywhere but hope to get a seam done on some backing fabric and get that on the frame.


Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Soldier Quilt

This is the soldier quilt I pieced and quilted just back from being bound. I got the label on the other night so it is ready to be delivered next month. I had a personal goal of making two for this delivery and now that both of them are done including labels I feel good about that accomplishment.

I did well on my goals for last week completing all of them. I didn't set any goals this monday but have got two customer quilts quilted this week.

I seem to be slow to get going today. I think I might get the next quilt loaded, get a few errands done and then spend the rest of the day working on craft show items. I have been doing so many charity projects this year so far that I have not got my usual good start on craft show things. Since doing the craft shows pays for my fabric habit during the year I need to start getting in high gear.


Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Scrap Quilt Top

Finished the Christmas 4 patch lap quilt made out of left over binding strips. The quilt measures approximately 54 x 65, nice sized lap quilt. When I had the top done I had a bunch of left over 4 patches left so went ahead and made up a table runner top also. If I don’t use up the leftovers right away they never seem to get made into anything.


Monday, April 26, 2010

Design Wall Monday - April 26, 2010

On my design wall are a bunch of bright squares. As part of my day time guild next month we are going to have a workshop on making an interlocking pinwheel quilt. We have to do the first couple of steps at home. Step one was picking out 49 six inch blocks of fabric. Though some of these are similar colors I wanted to make sure that I didn’t have two of the same fabric so swapped some with a friend.

Step two will be sewing these all together and then putting a border on it, I think 3 ½ inches or something like that. Then when we go to the workshop we cut it all apart and sew it back together and by magic we have pinwheels. I am very interested to see how this all takes place.

I think I will look at these for another day to make sure I don’t want to replace any of the fabrics and then I will start sewing them together.


Sunday, April 25, 2010

Sunday Stash Report - 4-25-2010

I am happy with this weeks stash report.

Fabric Used this week: 3.5 yards
Fabric Used YTD: 90.25 yards
Fabric Added this week: 0
Fabric Added YTD: 60.25
Net used in 2010: 30 yards

A lot of good things. I stayed out of the fabric shops this week, am approaching 100 yards used and have a net used of 30 yards used now. Not as much cleared out as I hoped to by the end of April but at least it is progressing.

Our county had a small quilt show this weekend (about 50 quilts). The show had been rescheduled from February when the roof of the building we were going to have it in caved in due to all the snow.

It was a nice little show and I won a ribbon with my Monet's Wedding Ring quilt. Since the ribbons were handmade and didn't say what place on them I had to ask what a yellow ribbon was and was told it was a third place. I didn't expect a ribbon so was very pleased.


Thursday, April 22, 2010

Charity Day

Customer quilts are a little slow so I decided to take yesterday to work on charity projects.

This is a quilt top that Doris made and donated for hospice back in the fall. After many rearrangements this one finally was at the top of the stack. Isn't this a beautiful string quilt? I usually do them scrappy but this one with planned colors is great.

Like I said in the past when I get quilts donated they might get quilted next week, next month or next year but they eventually get done.

I also went ahead and put binding on this one last night so once I get the binding on the soldier quilt done I will have another hand project waiting for me.


Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Design Wall Update

I quilted up a few craft show table runners yesterday and then got back to working on my Christmas 4 patch quilt. I now have all the rows done, but none of them joined together. I am glad that I decided on the red cornerstones though I am sure the black or gold would have been ok also.

I did get a good start on hand stitching the binding on the split decision quilt last night while watching American Idol. I love that show, it is one of the few shows that the whole family will sit and watch together. Of course I think my daughter and I drive my husband nuts as we have to comment on everything from the singing, to the hair styles to what they are wearing but it is fun to find something that parents and a 16 year old will sit and watch together.


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Learning Time

You know how sometimes you hear that doing a certain thing is not a good idea but you have to try it yourself? I have always heard that you DON"T want to use a sheet for a backing on a quilt.

A customer made this cute 1970's looking quilt for her daughter. Her daughter wanted a white soft sheet used for the back. I had heard that was a problem but did it anyway. In a way I am glad I did it, now I know first hand what problems it creates and I also know that I won't accept a sheet as a backing again.

For anyone that has not tried it a sheet is a lot tighter weave and caused nothing but tension problems. When I finally got the tension fairly ok then the thread kept shredding on me and ended up breaking about every ten minutes. A job that should have taken just a few hours ended up taking up most of my day.

So unless you are as hard headed as I am and have to try it yourself I strongly suggest you don't try and recycle an old sheet into a quilt backing.

I am already making progress on my goals for the week as this was one of two customer quilts I wanted to get done and I also took time to get the binding on the split decision quilt last night. Now I have a nice handwork project to do while watching American Idol tonight.


Monday, April 19, 2010

Design Wall Monday 4-19-2010

Well the same old blocks are back up on the design wall. After debating about whether to use gold or black cornerstones I decided on I just sewed a few together to make sure I like it and that it definitely what I am going to go with.

Yesterday I quilted this soldier quilt (split decision pattern) for delivery next month. I made a committment to myself to make two for the delivery and this is the second one quilted. A friend is binding the first one for me so just have to bind this one and then make labels for both of them and I will be done ahead of schedule.

I was in kind of a lazy mood last week even though I ended up getting a lot done but feel I need some goals for myself this week. So.............

1. Quilt two customer quilts (the first goes on the frame today)
2. I had so many positive comments about our making up kits out of donated fabric that I want to cut out at least one more kit this week.
3. Get the binding on the split decision quilt
4. Quilt up several craft show table runners
and 5. continue to put the sashing and corner stones on the Christmas 4 patch quilt.

Hope you have a wonderful week.


Sunday, April 18, 2010

Sunday Stash Report - April 18, 2010

A little progress this week on my numbers. I did go by a quilt shop to drop off a charity quilt the manager is going to quilt and ended up buying but only 1 yard. I had scraps left from my mardi gras quilt and bought two half yard pieces to go with that. Figure I will add black from my stash and maybe make up some bright 9 patches with the left overs.

My current numbers are:

Fabric Used this week: 4.25 yards
Fabric Used YTD: 86.75 yards
Added this week: 1 yard
Added YTD: 60.25 yards
Net used in 2010: 26.50

I was involved in a cutting bee yesterday, to bad I couldn't count those numbers. One of the ladies had about ten boxes of fabric donated to her from a lady moving into a retirement home. One lady sat and organized the fabric into categories and three of us were cutting up kits.

I cut kits for 4 charity quilts while there and another one once I got home. I also brought home several large pieces that will be backings for hospice quilts and another couple of arm loads to be gradually made into kits.


Friday, April 16, 2010

Favorite Blogs

I love to read blogs and see what projects everyone is working on. I belong to a blog ring as part of the Heartstrings quilt group and try to take a peak once a week or so to see what everyone is up to. There are also several other blogs I love to read but some weeks I have little time to sit at the computer and get up to date.

I thought that I would mention my favorite blogs that I try and read if I really have the time or not. This is Judy L's blog. She has written a couple of quilt books and teaches quilting and conducts lectures. I love her blog from the patterns and recipes to the funny stories about her husband and also their pets (chickens). Mary Johnson's blog always inspires me. She is the founder of the Heartstrings group and she does more charity quilting than any two people. She also has lots of patterns for use and gets us motivated with special projects. Is Bonnie Hunter's blog. She is a very popular quilt teacher and has written two books on scrap quilting. I was lucky enough to take a class from her 2 or 3 years ago.

and lastly is Alycia is VERY heavy into Quilts of Valor and delivers them in person to the base. She has inspired people from all over the country to make and donate hundreds of QOV quilts every year.

I applaud all of ladies for not only their entertaining blogs but for all the charity work they all do.


Thursday, April 15, 2010

Finished Top

I pieced these blocks at the retreat and they put the top together a little bit every evening after taking care of customer things.

I like the way it turned out. This is the Take 5 pattern. I think it might be a little bit of a boring pattern out of some fabrics but with all these brights I like the results. The border fabric reminds me Mardi Gras decorations so that is what I will call this quilt.

This is a picture of a little bit of the customer quilt I did yesterday. I mainly wanted to show this fabric, isn't it cute? She said she got it at Joanns. I don't remember seeing it there but I AM NOT going to go look, I have PLENTY of fabric and am trying to make a little better headway on my stash busting.

I was also going to post a picture of the patriotic quilt I quilted the other day for delivery to a wounded soldier project next month. A friend of mine stopped by and I sent it off with her to bind before I remembered I had not taken a picture of it after quilting. I will be sure and take one once it comes back.

Another busy day on my agenda (non-sewing related stuff) but hope to at least get the next quilt loaded on the frame and a backing pieced (only a couple of seams) for the other patriotic quilt I made.


Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Hospice Quilt #13

At quilt guild the other night I had a quilt returned by Kathy V after binding it. This quilt was definitely a joint project. Kathy V made partial blocks and then didn't want to finish up the quilt and donated them for use in a hospice quilt. I completed the blocksm put the top together and quilted it and then Kathy finished the binding.

I really like how this quilt turned out.

I was back on a roll yesterday. I got a small customer job quilted in the morning and a charity soldier quilt in the afternoon.

Today I need to run some errands including picking up some items for my daughters english project. What is it about this time of year that every teacher seems to assign projects that include lots of research and homework all at the same time? I also need to pick up some neutral thread at JoAnns for piecing while it is 50% off.

Before running out I am going to get the next customer quilt on the frame so it will be ready to start later in the day.


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Last Retreat Pictures

Only have a couple more pictures taken at the weekend retreat. All these quilts are raffle quilts. They had a raffle boulevard of quilts from every organization in the area just about. I bought some tickets for the teal quilt, that is to raise funds for the local fire department. Other quilts were for Hospice, local quilt guilds, Project Linus and Habitat for Humanity.

This line of quilts was a mini quilt show in itself.

After being gone the last two weekends in a row I was having a hard time getting back in gear with both my customer quilting and general housework. I did get a quilt quilted yesterday and another small customer project this morning so feel back in the swing again. I need to get a couple of quilts delivered and then I think I will load a charity soldier quilt on the frame.


Monday, April 12, 2010

Design Wall Monday 4-12-2010

Prior to going to the weekend retreat I had cut out a Take 5 lap quilt from the bright fabrics that I purchased at the quilt shop at a big sale a few weeks ago. I spent a lot of my free sewing time putting these blocks together.

I spent awhile yesterday playing with the blocks, spinning some of them etc. but went back to the setting on the pattern as my favorite one.

At the retreat a friend of mine was giving a scrap quilting class. She saves every scrap and makes quilts she calls "use it all" quilts because they use up all these little pieces. Having quilted some of them for her I call them “quilts of a thousand seams.”

I wanted to show you a couple pictures from her class. The sailboat quilt is what the students were working on. They were learning to use up small scraps of all sorts of sizes and then make the free form sail boat which was very appropriate since our retreat was right on the water. I wish I had taken her class, I am definitely going to have to try and do one of these sail boats.

The other picture is her display around the room of all sorts of examples of easy scrap quilting. Didn’t she do a great job setting up her class area?


Sunday, April 11, 2010

Sunday Stash Report 4-11-10

Well my stats make it look like I did nothing all week. I did sew a lot this weekend but since the fabric had been cut and made into kits a couple of weeks ago I had already reported them. The good thing is that I managed to stay out of fabric stores this week (was mainly because I was to busy) so didn't add any fabric to my stash. My stats are the same as last week.

Fabric Used this week: 0 yards
Fabric Used YTD: 82.5 yards
Fabric Added: 0 yards
Fabric Added YTD: 59.25 yards
Net Used in 2010 23.25 yards

I spent the weekend at a Fiber Arts Retreat and had a fantastic time. Probably 3/4 of the activites and classes were quilt related but there was also knitting, beading, needle punch and a demo on weaving.

What a great time. A weekend right on the water, great food (from a culinary school), friendship, classes and lots of sewing.

They had two featured quilters (local sisters) that had a large display of their award winning quilts for everyone to see. I only took pictures of a couple of the quilts but these were my favorites.


Thursday, April 8, 2010

Some Days

Don't you wish on certain days that you had just pulled the covers over your head and went back to sleep and just stayed in bed? I think today should have been one of those days.

The day started off ok but racing around trying to get weekend chores done since I will be gone friday and saturday. I had a scheduled cleaning at the dentist where she proceeded to tell me that I need a crown ($$$$$).

Mid day my daughter sent me a text from school asking if I would come and get her as she wasn't feeling well. I am hoping it is all sinus related with our high pollen rate and a weather front moving it this evening.

When we got home I checked the mail and there was a safety recall on my car! Now doesn't it sound like a good day to have just stayed in bed?

At least there is one good thing today, I will be spending the afternoon packing up all my sewing stuff (oh yea and a few clothes) for my retreat weekend.

I have my box (cake carrier) of thread, pins, etc., 3 projects and my iron all set to go.


Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Wonderful Wednesday

I guess it really is wonderful wednesday. Here in Southern Maryland we have had several days of bright and sunny weather. It was a little to hot (94 degrees) yesterday for early April but hey after all the snow we had this year I will take it!!

Today I am off to my daytime guild meeting. I really enjoy these ladies and always come home inspired. Also as part of the meeting we have a luncheon provided by five different ladies each month and it is always fun to try new dishes.

Here is a picture of the fabrics I purchased while in Boston over the weekend. It probably seems strange to most that I would be purchasing Christmas fabrics in April but since I have done fall craft shows for the last 8 years or so I buy and sew Christmas projects all year long.


Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Tuesday On the Frame

This is a picture of the current customer quilt on the frame. 9 patch blocks of different butterfly fabric with sashing strips. Very spring looking. I am quilting it with freehand triple tear drops.

Once this quilt is done I need to gather up everything I need for a quilt guild meeting tomorrow and tackle some more housework.

Even when you are gone for just a few days it seems like everything is in a rush when you get home trying to catch up on things.

I also need to decide how many projects to take to my upcoming retreat this weekend. Part of the time will involve classes so I don't actually know how much free sewing I will be doing. I want to take kits with me as I don't want to worry about trying to cut yardage, just sewing.

I have a lap quilt kit made up and a kit containing fabric to make six blocks that will become 2 table runners. I am trying to decide if I need to take another project or two.


Monday, April 5, 2010

Old Churches

Saturday before our niece's wedding we had some time to kill. In addition to going to a quilt shop and having lunch we walked around the town center for one of the small towns in the area.

I love all the work that was put into some of these old churches. My dad was a carpenter most of his life so I can really admire all the time and talent that went into these buildings. I am not sure now which town it was I took the pictures in but I think it was Westminster, Mass.


Design Wall Monday - 4/5/2010

Well my design wall this monday is very boring. I cut out a fabric kit last week to make a "Take 5" quilt out of some recently purchased fabrics. I just tacked them on the wall to see what it is going to look like. I have never made the take 5 pattern before and look forward to sewing it up at a retreat this coming weekend.

I have not added to my blog in a few days (or done any sewing) because we were out of town at a family wedding outside of Boston this weekend. Thank goodness we missed all their rain and it was a beautiful weekend.

Since I was not home sunday for my stash report I will go ahead and post the stats here. I did add fabric this week. How can you go on a trip and NOT hit new quilt shops. I couldn't, with a google search and a GPS in the rental car we managed to find two quilt shops. One had the best selection of 1930's fabric I had seen. Other than that the seemed to have mostly fabric I can ony discribe as looking like what my mom had aprons made out of in the 1950's. Nice but not my taste.

The second shop was VERY small but the owner must have the same taste in fabric as I have because I had a very hard time getting my purchases down to a reasonable (both for cost and room in the suitcase) level. I picked up mostly pretty reds and greens I had not seen before which will make great additions to my Christmas craft show projects.

So the numbers this week are:

Fabric Used this week: 6.5 yards
Fabric Used YTD: 82.5 yards
Fabric Added: 9.5 yards
Fabric Added YTD: 59.25 yards
Net Used in 2010 23.25 yards