Oct 31, 2006

Happy Halloween! No sewing going on today and just a bit yesterday.

I had planned to get back to work on the toad BQ that I showed you in my last post but with it being errand day I only got around to seaming a quilt back, making another quilt's worth of binding and then pressing binding for 4 quilts.

Jane and Sarah had dropped the quilt show entries off so those needed to go back up into the closet in some semblance of order. I mentioned that I was going to go over this morning to pin the tops that I will be sending up to TN and they offered to come help. Not going to turn that down--we got four tops pinned leaving three in my stack to pin at our next meeting. Or I'll go over sooner should I run out of anything to do before the 14th, LOL--not likely!

DJ came by the meeting place on his way back from golf to see how much longer I might be working---translation: go to Cici's for lunch or go home for leftovers. Who can time things like that? I told him to go out to eat. When we finished sooner than I thought, I did head over to the restaurant but I think I must have missed him by about 10 minutes. Oh well, I get to see his smiling face across the table often enough.

I did need to go out to Hobby Lobby though before I came home. The supply of muslin at the church was depleted as well as my own personal stash of it. We like to use stuff in the donation bin when we can for a "fun" back but that is not always possible when a top is oversized, wrong color etc. I prefer the Roc-lon stuff because it all goes together and the leftovers/cutaways can be used for piecing. Armed with a 40% off coupon, I found a 50 yard bolt of 36 wide (would have preferred the 44 but they only had it in bleached and I wanted natural). I didn't have to have the clerk measure it off and got it the whole thing for $31 and change. For my own personal purchase, it was best to let them order me a bolt and just buy a few yards for the time being. Dropped the bolt off on the way home, ran a couple more errands and back home again.

Since I don't have anything further along with my own piecing, here are a couple from the quilt show last weekend. I love doing embroidery and thought the child's redwork quilt was so sweet. This little monkey was a stitch!! I don't know if you can tell but the monkey on top has big red pompoms placed in a strategic spot across the bodice. A fun little quilt--nice and bright.

The other brightly colored on at left is a top that Finn sent us for the kids earlier this summer that I quilted earlier in the month. Sarah had been working on binding it at the sew-in. It is now finished so DJ got pressed into being quilt holder when he helped cart things in. Thanks, Finn! One of the boys will love this!

We don't expect any trick or treaters tonight. The neighborhood kids are big enough as are the grandkids of the couple two houses down. They are having a cookout on Saturday night and invited us to come down for chili, hot dogs and toasted marshmallows. I had run into Bob and Gwen at the grocery store yesterday with some industrial sized cans of beans, etc. DJ asked if the other families on the lane are coming too or they just asked us because I was standing there. Don't know and I am not going to second guess it either. I'll make a cake to share, show up at 6 and be glad for the invitation to join them and their family.

Well, I'm off to wind some bobbins and do some zoom lines on those Snuggle Ups. Posted by Picasa

Oct 29, 2006

a little of this and that

A little bit of sewing going on today. Last night I went on a treasure hunt for backing fabric for those two Snuggle Up tops---this is where having some stash fabrics around comes in very handy! I found a cute dinosaur print for one and another a fun star fabric that just needed to be seamed. Got the binding fabric sewn but not pressed.

I also cut out a BQ top using this cool toad fabric from Finn. There was not a lot of the fabric and it needed a pattern that would not require cutting it in little bitty pieces or you would lose the cute motifs of the toads. I had gotten this pattern after seeing it on Norma's blog earlier this summer. You may recall that she spotted it at a quilt show and wondered about the pattern source. Bloggers to the rescue! Debby Beaves of Maple Island Quilts. I guess that BQ stands for "Big Quilt". I was able to make a slight modification in the size of the blocks to make a 12 inch finished blocks. Three of the 12 9 inch finished toad squares had to be pieced but hey, if that worked for our quilting foremothers it is fine with me. Otherwise, the muslin and red pieces are from my stash---stashbusting again!

Cindy and Jan tell me that they had 10-12 people at the sewing event that I had to miss. That is terrific! 5 quilts were done and many took things home to work on. I am going to quilt up my two tops and the little nine patch to send onto Jan who has volunteered to finish up the binding. I hope that they do get 12 or more quilts out from their sew-in.

While digging through the stash bins, I also came up with some "go with's" for my eventual butterfly challenge project and a piece of "kit blue" that Theramae needs to finish her sail boat project from the sew-in. The red on red version is in toad block.

Ellen the founder of Wrap Them in Love had received a rather large donation of fabric from some company. There are two colorways that I know of: red and blue. At one point we wrappers could purchase kits of our choice of colorway for $5 and it had a yard of each of the fabric. Bits of it still show up years later but I think that she has gotten more from the same company again. I really liked the blue version but the red stuff, particularly the cobblestones and the yellow with red veins was/is hard to work with. Still, a lot of it has been quilt backs over the years.

Judy wanted to see a picture of my Slither quilt--this is a UFO finished earlier this year. Of course, the pattern was all the rage of the internet groups back in the late 90's when I first got online. The pattern is still on the Quilter's Online Resource site but now requires membership for download. Not sure that it deserved my husband's vote but it got two votes anyway. I have not heard from my group to know who/what was awarded ribbons or best of show on the viewers choice.

Guess that is about it---lost this post once so I hope I have better luck this time. This losing posts and error messages is getting mighty old fast..............

Oct 28, 2006

no trip after all

No, I didn't make the trip up to TN to see my friend and my family after all. I awoke to pouring down rain that according to the hourly forecast projections on both I-59 and I-24 showed no sign of lessening. It would not have mattered if I had waited a few more hours to leave either. My friend confirmed that my drive would have been rainy, possibly heavy and thunderstorms on the TN side as well. I don't drive much in the rain at average speeds let alone at 65 or 70 mph.

So I stayed safely at home and will make the trip up at a later date--to be determined later. I decided to make good use of time that afternoon and get the borders on the little nine patch top I had left hanging for several days. DJ came in and asked WHY was I sewing---if I HAD gone on my trip, I would have taken the day off! I said, I had already piddled away Weds and Thurs that week and I was getting back to "work" He said "you act like it is a 'job" sometimes and it is supposed to be fun!" Well, that t-shirt quilt WAS a job, of sorts and as much as I am not fond of putting on borders, the process of piecing and sewing is still "fun" overall or I would not be doing it. I sew--that's what I do-- and he just doesn't get it. I don't know what he thought I should be doing instead of sewing.

I started sewing some of the strips I cut last evening while I watched Game 5 and chatted with Pam. I thought I might as well devote part of my weekend to what I had planned to do with Cindy and Jan and their guild friends--sew a couple of tops for the Domestic Violence group. I got all initial strip pairings together and then went to watch the rest of the game with DJ.

Yesterday was DJ's grandson's 14th birthday. Joshua had called Papa D to thank him for his birthday gift and told him that he was having the best day of his life that day. He had been honored with "student of the month" at his high school, had been "partying" that day at school, the Cardinals were going to win the World Series on his birthday and they were ordering pizza from his (our) favorite pizza restaurant. I assume his best friend was coming over as well---Scottie is Cards fan too (though his dad is a Cub fan--makes for a lot of good natured ribbing between the families) Well, turns out Josh was right---they DID win. DJ and I are thrilled along with a lot of other Cardinal fans.

So what are you looking at here? DJ went up to the Gadsden quilt show with me this morning. I drove and he paid for lunch, LOL. Given a viewers choice ballot, he got right into the spirit of picking out his favorites. Actually I had pointed out one of my own quilts--a Slither top that I had finished up earlier this year. Smart man, noted the number and started filling it on the category though I told him he should only select it if he thought it was one of his 3 favs in that category. About that time someone came up to me after they pointed her my direction and wanted to know the pattern source. I had submitted that information on all of the entries but Gary edited it off due to space concerns, he said. Anyway the woman she said she voted for it too---what else could you say but thanks for the vote of confidence?

The quilt at top left if Carolyn's mystery quilt. (Ignore the fabric at back as that is the quilt behind it on the racks. ) The stack and whack is Ada's from a long ago quilt class that several of us Belles took together we think in 2000 or 2001. The other at lower left is a neat-o cat quilt that I know was folded up at the bottom. I did not recognize the makers name. I DO recognize the cat head pattern as being one from Quiltmaker magazine as I have a few of these blocks made--and more from the Belles that can eventually be turned into a top. I would have taken a few more pictures but the batteries in my camera quit working about 6 pics into the process.

I DID finish up the 2 snuggle up tops just a bit ago and will send them onto Cindy---question being, quilted or not. I know they were planning on tying some. Probably birthing them first. I prefer doing the standard method and binding them--that's already cut anyway. Answered my own question, LOL.

Guess that's it for now........... Posted by Picasa

Oct 26, 2006

Coming or going?

“Are you coming??” She seems to be saying.

Lost a complete post earlier this afternoon---I think I chose to post right during the unscheduled Blogger outage and off it went to who knows where. If I am showing only a Pippi picture or two then you can about bet that I haven’t gotten much of anything quilt related done the past two days other than running the t-shirt top up to the long arm quilter some 30 miles north of here.

You can see how much Pippi resembles Nancy’s Agatha—featured this morning with two of her kitty compatriots atop the ironing board. Nancy commented that they might need a weight limit sign. I agree that my kitty probably has more white especially on her belly and of course, half light, half dark face—probably a good bit of tabby along with that tortoiseshell markings. As pictured she is doing her “follow me to the kitchen and the food bowl pose”. I had already been warned by the three previous circlings and then the “park it” in the doorway. The wet spot on the carpet was from pukers this morning. Poor DJ heard her doing it and had the honors. First time in weeks that she has done that.

The picture below or to the right shows her about to jump up on the pressing/cutting table and being a chair thief. Actually her true mission was heading to see if there was any water in the measuring cup to drink because her trip was short lived---down to the bowl on the floor when there was not to be had.

I took the day off yesterday, as I said, and did a whole lot of nothing really. After working with that t-shirt quilt, I felt like I had been wrestling with a bear. I couldn’t work up much enthusiasm for putting borders on the quilt that was hanging here either. Played around on the computer, some minor paperwork and the like. Had hoped to watch the World Series game last evening but they called it after a two hour rain delay though it looks like they may at least start the game tonight.

Today has been busier as I am hoping to go up to visit my friend Cindy who lives near Nashville, TN for a few days. Judy had asked for more details, LOL. The car is packed up, gassed up and my sewing machine and supplies are packed. Even baked a pie to take to my hostess—well, made two of them. DJ is not one to give up his treats very easily. If I bake he thinks he needs some too or at least the leftovers, LOL. As soon as the pies were done, it was time to fix supper. (meatloaf, garlic mashed potatoes (roasted a head of garlic, thanks to Pam), peas and carrots and a piece of pie)

The weather forecast is calling for wind, rain, possible thunderstorms on the Alabama side of the line for tomorrow. My plan was (is?) to leave here about 7 and be there by lunch time and help her set up for the sew-in she is hosting on Saturday. I am nervous enough about driving from Chattanooga through Monteagle area and west of there-—steep grades, winding road without less than ideal weather. I may have to cancel and make this trip another time.

Cindy has moved to a new home that has a gallery area for her to hang her quilts. She has many old quilts and of course, quilts she has made as well. Some have been exhibited at Paducah in the AQS show. Her husband is an avid flea market, antique shopper who collects poker chips and related items but John shops for textiles for Cindy as well. (The bowtie quilt on my bed is an example because I purchased the top from her.) They have set up a quilt museum area in the house and Cindy invited her quilt guild to see the set up and then sew comfort quilts for the Domestic Violence center in their area. We are using the Snuggle Up pattern on the quiltmaker.com site. This afternoon I cut out enough strips that I can make two tops for her.

My brother and his family live the next town over but I stayed with them when I traveled up for grandma’s funeral in August. Cindy claimed me for this trip. My SIL Jan is a quilter too and in the same quilt guild with Cindy. She will be coming to sew while my brother and niece head off to go fishing with one of our other brothers and his son who are driving down from IL. Cindy, John and I are going over to their house for supper Friday night.

That’s the plan anyway---wait and see tomorrow morning if I’m actually going. I am missing the Gadsden quilt show this weekend. Jane took my entries for me and will gather than up at take down. If I don’t go to TN, then I can take care of it myself, I guess.

The only other thing that was going on around here is our mini-blind saga. I had gone to open the blinds in the kitchen yesterday morning and the next thing I knew one over the left window was laying on the floor. The header had snapped off. Oh, oh. I laid it on the chair and more or less, forgot about it till DJ came home and asked if I was ready to go to Wal-mart. HUH? Oh yeah—the busted blind.

I commented that we should have brought one of the slats from that one with us so we got the right colors. Decorator colors change year to year so what color is it—ivory, cream, off white that looks gray, pinkish undertones, what? But no, we do not turn the car around once it starts out to its destination. We found the blind, came home and popped it right in without too much problem. You got it---wrong color compared to the window on the right. A blind man could see the difference---almost. It’s up, it’s staying and at four bucks a pop, get another one for the other window. Actually the new one does match the one above the sink—now that one got replaced because someone by the name of Linda had a small candle lit underneath the raised blind and the bottom warped---my bad. At least I think it matches—not checking really close to find out, LOL.

He went off to get the 2nd one while I ran off on my trip to the long arm quilters. I got home and he is trying to install it---oh, oh, right color, wrong size. Turns out the left hand side took a 36 blind while the right needed a 34 due to the bracket spacing. He had measured the broken one for the width but measured only the length on the one that was hanging. Old one back up for the night.

Today we start again—34 inch purchased and the last one in captivity at this supercenter. An eeny bit too wide but out comes the coping saw. Up it goes but as he lowers the blind there is one cracked slat about a 1/3 of the way up from the bottom. It’s staying. Ignore it? Tape it? Cut the other one out and slide another one on and seal up the cut? DJ finally takes off the bottom plugs, got the broken one out and worked over an hour getting it fixed. Later he admits that if he could not fix it or broke it worse, he would have spent another 4 bucks and ran up to the supercenter 10 miles north of us to get another one. Oh the joys of home ownership……………..

Okay, I’m rambling and the St. Louis pitcher apparently started believing his own press lately. Down 3-0, dang it. Detroit remembered how to hit or he is making it easier on them.

Guess that’s it for tonight. Posted by Picasa

Oct 24, 2006

Happy Dancing!

I cannot take a picture of it because it is just so big but the t-shirt quilt top is done as of a half hour ago. (You get a picture of Pippi kitty instead, LOL. ) The fabric I was waiting for arrived just before lunch so I got busy finishing the last row soon after.

Earlier this morning I met Lauren one of the girls in my round robin group over at Hancock's for a consultation. Normally she would put her head together with another friend but this time she has that's friend's top. Ada who just happened to have Lauren's this round had some fabric to pick up from her so once we all weighed in on what to do with Pat's then Ada and I conferred. Ada came by the house to pick up some stuff that I had used in earlier rounds that might work and went home with a book that had a possible idea and something I drew up and printed from EQ5 for her.

While at Hancock's I asked if it would be okay to use their tables to get a measurement for the top and bottom borders when I was ready--sure!! I was ready by about 4:30. LOL, ran into another friend also in the round robin group--the other group of 7.

Tomorrow I'll run this up to the longarmer and let her work her magic. Never did get the borders on the little nine patch yesterday--paperwork intervened but that's okay--it needed to be done too. No worries, mate--I'll find something to keep me busy. Posted by Picasa

Oct 23, 2006

Mail Call!

Just before lunch a horn honked signaling us that their was an oversized package waiting for us. Nope, not the fabric I was expecting from Hancock's of Paducah to finish up the t-shirt quilt. DJ said it looked like Christmas when I came in. Poor guy only got a mailing from our Ford dealership but I had a haul.

A mailing from Norma with a pattern mailer from "Quick Quilts" I had not seen---more ideas of what to do with plaids and homespuns among other things! Thanks, Norma.

Two priority boxes from Finn--stuffed to the gills. Three quilt tops, cut squares, blocks needing a new home, a book for me to sell for fund raising, more blocks that just need a few more blocks made. And if that were not enough, this one here was loaded with fabric that can be cut into squares or strips. I want to make another bowtie top or two and my cut squares are not necessarily appropriate for guys at this point. Thanks Finn and pal Betsy!

Now here is the surprise package. Nadine had posted that she was looking for a particular copy of APQ. I had it on the shelf and told her I would be happy to send it to her just for the mailing costs in return. Look what she sent me as a "thank you"! What a cute cat wallhanging that reminds me of yin and yang. Does she know the key to my heart or what?? That cute little kitty card came with it--that is almost like a present in itself and I am sticking that right up on my bulletin board in a minute. Can you tell that it is like dimensional--that cat in raised relief over the cathedral window background?? Thanks to Nadine as well! I would say that I got the better end of this swap.

The quilt behind is the nine patch blocks of Finn's that I put on point yesterday afternoon and evening. It is a bit small so I wish I had made another block to add one more row of blocks. I certainly could have done so. I have a bright green that I will use for an inner border and binding and will use that yellow daisy strip for the outer border. Two for one picture, LOL. I'll finish this up after supper tonight.

My digital picture prints came as well. I get two copies--one for whoever made the quilt and one for the photo albums that we keep. We had those dug out at the sew in the other day to show examples of what a "Leap Frog" pattern looks like---nope, no frogs but that's what the designer used for hers. (Like my Kitty quilt with the woven bands of color from earlier in the month or last month.)

Oh, and I got an unexpected phone call from Pam yesterday. Color me happy and grateful for my friends both near and far! I can't wait for her to be able to show you all her first EQ designed quilt and the quilt she made from that design. It is way cool!

This was errand day. The sun is out but the wind is pretty brisk and just barely hit 50 by 2:30. DJ and I waited to walk but that first lap was not very pleasant---reversing directions helped a bit. It would have been way to easy to blow it off but tomorrow is expected to be worse. Almost November so we can expect that. More changes in leaf color are seen and when I travel to TN Friday through Sunday, I can anticipate admiring that. Best hit the kitchen--tacos tonight so some chopping and dicing are ahead in preparation with the leftovers slated for other dishes this week. Posted by Picasa

Oct 22, 2006

sewing and sewing some more

Getting some production done this weekend. I ran out of sashing fabric for the last vertical row of the t-shirt quilt so am waiting for my order to come in early next week. Yesterday I added one long side border the half that is done, joined rows 4 and 5 and squeezed on one more sashing strip from the border cut away fabric.

What to do, what to do? Since yesterday afternoon I have prepped the backings for three quilts and added the borders to the bricks quilt. With the larger quilts we are shooting for that means two length of backing and splitting it to get the proper width. I went through the muslin bolt we had at the church and polished off most of my own bolt as well--good thing that Hobby Lobby just opened!!

This is not the best picture in the world shooting across the room and passed the desk but there it is. The one piece of plaid on the right edge looks nothing like this check that I am seeing on the photograph. The top finished right at the target range of 50 x 70 and I believe it will be a good one for the boys since it looks like a bunch of flannel shirts and men's oxford cloth shirts. Some pieces remind me of an old favorite pair of my flannel pj's, LOL.

Just finished cutting out the binding for this top and one other top so that's where I am headed next. Then I think I will get started on the nine patch top I had hoped to assemble at the sew in. Norma will probably tell me that I am wearing her out again but I happen to know that she had been busy quilting all week, LOL and fitting that in around a full time work schedule.

Nothing much else to say--just wrapping up the loose ends of things from last week that I had hoped to get done. Not much help on my goals list but things that needed to be done so we can pin at the next meeting.

Hope you all are having a wonderful weekend in whatever you chose to do......... Posted by Picasa

Oct 20, 2006

Cards and tees

Go Cards!! A nail biter to the end but World Series Bound!

Okay, I am not getting anything remotely quilty done today but was up too late because of the ball game and then could not get to sleep once I go to bed--reading for a bit didn't help.

I have half of the t-shirt quilt done--vertical rows are even joined. I sewed later in the evening than I normally do just because of the nervous energy of the ball game. I wanted to know what was happening but not necessarily "watch it", mute the sound and look when I wanted to or follow the progress on MLB gameday like I often do. (By now the talking head announcers have drove me around the bend, one in particular.) So I kept cutting and stitching and it got closer and closer to 11 p.m.

What you are viewing is Finn's "Strip Twist" quilt that she sent us for the WTIL. This is one of two of hers that I hurried up and quilted last weekend. Jane got busy with the binding on this at the sew-in so it was ready for its closeup, LOL. Her mom Sarah was not quite done binding the 2nd one. Love those scrappy quilts as it is so fun to see the bits and pieces here and there. She has nice pile at work on her blog today.

As I was looking through the latest Fons and Porter magazine last night there was a flannel bricks quilts! Great minds must be thinking alike here. First Norma had directed me to a pattern for one online a few weeks back as a possible thought for the kids. Then our own Mama Koch showed her wonderful bricks and cornerstones made with plaids in her Sept. 28 post. Around the time I cut the fabric for my version. I was interested in two things--what size had they cut theirs and how did they quilt it. Answer: 3 1/2 by 6 1/2 or the same as I did and they used an elongated x so it made a diamond pattern---that will work!

Then in the hints columns--most of the time I think like "who didn't know that?" but one of the hints would have been beneficial. They suggested using spray starch or sizing to the back of flannel (that part I knew as Cher swears by it for her flannel quilts) or the homespuns to stabilize the weave before you cut it. Well, too late--mine will just be casually off grain though there is still time to do that on the borders when I get "round tuit" Cher will definitely get her t-shirt quilt done before I do---Eileen tells me she has one to do as well, a commisioned piece. That time of year with Christmas around the corner, would be my guess.

The temperature has dropped about 25 degrees from what it was yesterday. Cold and damp but let's face it 75 and humid as all get out is not fun in the middle of October. Mid 50's is far more seasonable and you can see the starts of the leaves beginning to change--more than a tree here or there. The stew that I put in the oven for supper is starting to waft its aroma out in the house and neither of us will mind the oven being on for hours today.

Well, Pippi decided to let me have the cutting table back so I can at least cut some sashing strips and get a little sewing done anyway. Hope you all have a good weekend ahead.............

Posted by Picasa

Oct 19, 2006

Turkeys and T's

A little of this and that and then I have to get back to work on the t-shirt quilt. First let me thank you all for your comments about the Bama Belles sew-in. I know just how much I am blessed to have them to sew with. We have fun and get a lot done. I know I hear them say "I get more done at home" and heck, I've even said that myself a time or two but the point really is, I sew by myself all the rest of the time without eating someone else's cooking and the fellowship involved with working with a group.

Here is the cute little turkey center quilt that Veronica sent me for the quilt base of my calendar themed wallhanging. Isn't it adorable? I guess she has made 4 of these now??? Going like hotcakes for her clients! Thanks again, Veronica!

Here is what I am really working on--not sure how well the whole thing will show up but I have the first column done. I switched things around a little bit on the first one due to the colorations of the shirts. I already sewed the "wrong" one on twice leading me to think that it was going to be a long day at the machine. Fortunately things straightened out a bit.

I have wondered when I was joining sections of shirt to shirt if I should go buy some heavier machine needles or even a ball point needle since some of it is knit but that doesn't seem as problematic right now either. I can already tell that I am going to have to go over to the church to put the borders on as there is absolutely no place in this house to spread this out to measure it once the other rows are added. You really have to watch out that the iron doesn't get too close to the rubbery printed on stuff on the shirts. Mostly I have been finger pressing-- a lot but I do that anyway.

At right is the EQ sketch that I worked out for the placement and sashing bits. I am probably going to pre-sash the block though before I join it with its mate. I drew it up that way because it was easier for me on custom set. It was also the reason why I didn't want to re-set the center square of the quilt---don't want to re-size each and every blessed strip and square. I just cropped it for the snapshot and the heck with the illusion of binding on the right side--probably won't be black anyway. The color blocks will just help me with "what goes where" as I cannot replicate the t-shirt motifs.

The khaki color sashing was NOT my idea but I supposed it does work on everything but the gray. Black was my first choice but Mom suggested something that looked like the son's pants--khaki that would go with any future decorating scheme. Then later, some black shirts were tossed into the mix so it probably was the better choice after all. My husband is being oh, so supportive about the quilt---NOT! He took one look and went "ugh" or "yuck"--not his cup of tea but then he never wears t-shirts other than the plain ole white ones under his shirts. Gee, thanks for the vote of confidence. Only been working on it some aspect of it for over a week now minus the sew in days and one day to recupe--what a huge waste of time seeking your approval. SHEESH

Oops almost forgot--someone asked me about the table that Lois had around her machine in my previous post. (Sorry I don't know who off the top of my head and I am sooooo behind on reading blogs and emailing). Her talented husband made that for her. He is also the guy I need to see about getting the wooden handle replaced on my favorite "grandma" pan (nice big heavy saucepan) as he does wood turning too, LOL. Thing is, I can't be without my pan long enough or it is in the dishwasher when I think about it.

Back to work............ Posted by Picasa

Oct 18, 2006

day two sew in report

Theramae had set her sailboats aside as she needed some fabric from home. She is in the process of making a "Road to Ireland" top from M'liss Rae Hawley's book Fat Quarter Quilts . To the right in the picture is a Snuggle Up that I cut for her (actually I cut two--Sarah said she would sew the other and I cut hers a bit wider). We had been looking at a bunch of fabric that had been donated by Cher, Antoinette and Finn with boy motifs---when 5 of them seemed to go together and there was plenty of it, this pattern seemed to be a natural, LOL.

Here is Lois at work on her butterfly challenge quilts. I told her that I tried to upload a shot on Monday but "lost" the pic. She got one of her 24 blocks done just so I could show you what her log cabin blocks will look like. I think she had 8 rounds of the 10 done on the other 23 so good progress was being made. Gotta love those pinks, purples and teals!

Carolyn and Ada teamed up to make 24 nine patch blocks that I will probably sash and cornerstone to finish up. I drug along my 3 1/2 inch cut squares box and suggested they pick out the non-girly ones. Carolyn manned the machine while Ada cut if needed and pressed for her.

Jane took this one of me finishing up the last few rows of the bricks quilt. I left the border fabric at home so it is not quite done. Nor did I get to the other top that I hoped to assemble--a stack of nine patches in an on point setting --but it will be there when I am ready all kitted up. I had also planned to get the backings ready for my mom's John Deere tractor tops but that didn't happen either. The muslin bolt came home with me so I'll get to it.

Pat ended up with a stack of 24- 16 patches by the time we quit. Betsy was probably half done with all her sale boats shooting for at least 20 or 24. Jane had the binding done on Finn's Strip Twist (I'll post a pic of that in my next post along with that darling turkey from Veronica), Sarah was almost done with the Rails with Alternate blocks one she had been binding. Pat was binding Betsy's Pioneer Braid. I think we pinned two tops??--one for sure. I would have done a third (second?) one before we left but the backing appeared to be a couple inches too short--always next time.

We closed up shop about 3:30 or 4'ish. I know I walked in the door at home about 5 or close to it. We had to put all tables I had drug out away in the storage closet and rearrange the chairs. Small rant: the church has bought new, shorter, lighter molded tables for the fellowship hall but we are not supposed to sew on them per request of the donor. Pinning, I could see having to use the old ones but sewing?? Come on, we are adults and can take care of someone else's property! Just makes things harder on us and then no one wants to bring their machines to the regular meetings.

Carolyn, bless her, vacuumed the strings up. Normally on a meeting day we don't have to bother with this but with two days worth of sewing, it is better that we hit the high spots. Also the kitchen needed to be straightened up, dishwasher run and trash out. etc, etc, etc.

By the time, we left the sun was blazing and it felt like an absolute sauna outside (rain and high winds overnight) so that made for a sticky job loading and unloading the cars. All my muscles ached and I needed some Motrin. Once it kicked in, I felt more like myself. DJ even commented that I must be feeling better--when I came home I seemed like I had the weight of the world on my shoulders but by 8, 2nd wind kicked in. I got all my stuff put away and was working on my entries for the quilt show. Then was too revved up by bed time to get to sleep--doesn't it figure??

Well, errands await--once that's done, it will be back to the t-shirt quilt which I would like to have done by end of the week, if possible. Everything but the sashing bits are ready to roll.

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Oct 16, 2006

Day 1 Fall Sew In

Just got home from day 1 of the 7th Annual Bama Belles Fall Sew-in. We had 9 of us there today including our friend Pat is who back in Alabama. Another friend who is still working came for a bit after dinner so good to see her as well.

Jane, Pat and Sarah helped on binding and label detail and Jane pinned up a top that Cher had sent us and that I put a top/bottom border on. Aline was working on 9 patch blocks today--sorry that I didn't get a picture taken of them before she left as the fabrics were wonderful--all from her stash.

The picture at left shows the plaids and homespun bricks quilt that I have started. I'm going to keep piecing at least four more rows--six if I have enough rectangles cut. The pile is diminishing fairly quickly. After supper, the four of us who remained pinned by Kitty quilt. I think I have enough of the pink kitty bling from the cutaways on the back and the little bit of yardage I had left that I used on the back to make a "girlie" quilt for WTIL.

The two Pat's were busy sewing 2 1/2 inch squares together so I can make a Road to St. Louis top. Getting a pretty good stack of blocks there! Not sure how many cut squares are left in the bag to work with so I may have to bring one of my scrap boxes tomorrow and turn them loose on those.

Betsy was off trimming when I took the picture but both she and Theramae were working from a sail boat pattern that we had used from a past issue of Fons and Porter's "Love of Quilting" I didn't get a picture of Theramae's version before she left for the day. Betsy has a few blocks that you can see a little better in the picture below. She plans to use this neat lighthouse fabric for the borders and will fill the center with sailboats.

Lois got started on her butterfly challenge quilt and decided to use the b.f. for the centers and go with pinks, teals and purples for a log cabin set. She said she had just enough fabric for the 4 inch finished centers. Dang, I just lost the picture I took. I'll get another tomorrow when she has more done, I promise.

So we had a productive day--good food and good company. Our newly opened Hobby Lobby is a few miles down the road from our meeting place so right after lunch 6 of us piled into Pat's van and went on a short shopping jaunt. Aline had already made the trip first thing this morning so we left a few behind and basically went to check out the fabric department, etc. Place was packed!!

When I got home, I had two parcels waiting for me. Veronica knew that I was admiring the turkey table runner she had made recently and took note of my comment that I should figure out how to incorporate a turkey made from a dresden plate like hers into my little calendar quilt. She made me one!! I'll post it in a day or two on the calendar base. Too cute! AND my mom sent two John Deere tractor quilt tops that we can get pinned tomorrow--one is in a double attic window set and the other is in a churn dash variation (N029 Brackman number) that reminds me a bit of Windblown Square or something. Thank you both!

Guess that's it for now---I'll report in tomorrow or Wednesday. Posted by Picasa

Oct 15, 2006


Today I am sharing pictures of two special quilts that were sent to the Bama Belles by Libby who wanted these to go to the Boys Big Oak Ranch. They are even better in person and already quilted, bound and everything--we will just attach the WTIL labels. I asked Libby if she was going to post pictures on her blog and she replied that she had not planned to and they had already found a new home. We thank her again for her generosity and direct any compliments her way. Aren't these wonderful!?

Because I was waiting for my Hancocks order to be delivered, my t-shirt quilt was put on hold. That's okay though--Friday afternoon I decided to put my time to good use and pulled out one of the pinned quilts in my stack. Finn had sent two tops a month or so back but I knew they were going to the boys and there was no rush when round robins and other quilting intervened. I got an email from one of the Belles who said to save her some handwork for the sew-in. She can have the binding detail and sew the labels on Libby's two quilts.

I finished up the quilting on the Strip Twist last evening (I think that is the right name) with enough time leftover to do zoom lines on the polka dot rail fence with alternating blocks. I'll see if I cannot get these linked up to the pictures she may have shown on her blog before she sent them off to us. Otherwise I'll post the pics once the binding is done.

I need to cut binding for one of the quilts yet and get it attached this afternoon. Only other thing on the sewing schedule would be to add the missing fabric to my cat quilt back so we can possibly pin it at the sew-in. Then it is off to the kitchen as I need to make some food items to cart to the sew-in.

I plan on concentrating on getting the homespun bricks top pieced. We will be working both Monday and Tuesday from about 9-5. If I should manage to get the top finished in one day, I can possibly do 3-D bowties or put some nine patch blocks into some sort of setting for another top. As always there is never any shortage of things to do!

Hope you all are having a good weekend---

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Oct 14, 2006

No Name Nine Patch Duo tutorial

Google Documents and Spreadsheets may have made it possible to post this handout I had once shared with my quilt group. This is an experiment on posting a document on hand to my blog. (It may have messed up my sidebar temporarily, from what I could tell before editing). This might open up another way of sharing information on my blog!!


One of the Bama Belles saw a picture of a quilt that I had made several years ago from some donation fabric and wondered how to make this. It is technically called “No-Name Four Patch Duo” and the original pattern was found in Marti Michell’s book Quilting for People Who Still Don’t Have Time to Quilt. Publisher: American School of Needlework ISBN 0-88195-863-8 .

I did not follow the directions, however as it makes more sense to me to do this as an uneven nine patch. I renamed it. There are two separate blocks that comprise this graphically interesting quilt.



I made my blocks 7 inch finished but really you could make them any size you wish. You may want the smaller strips a bit wider and it is your quilt so feel free to do size. If you want to do yours as shown cut 5 ½ inch strips x width of fabric (WOF) in three colors, light, dark and a contrasting colored fabric. Also cut 1 ½ inch strips of each one. If my calculations are correct, four strips of each color and in each size should do it. You will probably need at least a yard of each color to make the body of the quilt as shown EXCLUDING borders and binding.

My quilt as pictured featured 5 blocks by 7 with a 2 inch inner border and folded inset border and a 3.5 inch wide outer border and finished about 50 x 63—right in range for our donation quilts or a lap quilt.

Basically you need to make four different strip sets and then cut into 5 ½ and 1 ½ inch sub-sections. Join the sections as shown to make the blocks shown on page 1. 18 of one (light-dark-light) and 17 of the alternating block (dark-light-dark)

Do the same thing with the dark-light-dark combination to form the alternating block. There you have it!!

Oct 12, 2006

more cutting, no sewing

Pippi this morning on her most recent "favorite spot". DJ tried like anything to get the cat hair off it and changed out the towel but that was an exercise in futility.

I had spent the better part of the day either trimming up the fused t-shirt blocks and working out a design in EQ. The sizes roughly fell into into several width---some square, some rectangular. Workable--with some spacers of various sizes around them but roughly arranged in rows at this point. I've got them separated out by size, by row in the order I want them and clipped with binder clips. When the sashing fabric comes, I will be ready.

By 4:30 I knew that I am going to need 3 more shirts. I called the future owner's dad to see if he can dig a few more to fill that last approx 36-40 inches. I was just sure when I picked up a few more earlier in the week that I would have too many and the quilt would be huge! As it is I will be around 92 x 108 with borders. It was a little surprising for me to make that call. He had some other shirts ordered that will be used to represent Vanderbilt in the SEC quilts--I've got to pick them up as well a few other errands to run while I am it.

Look who is sitting on the t-shirts this evening and keeping me company as I write this. She has not been up on the table for months--occasionally on the two WTIL quilts I have pinned atop the basket but NOT on this table. LOL, you would think that I put them up there just for her! That little kitty face looks like "what! you mean you didn't?"

I totally forgot that this was Thursday---that's is what happens when you do not work outside the home and there is nothing distinguishable about the day to day activities. Oh, oh-- tonight was the round robin pass off. Here I was leisurely starting supper about a half hour later than usual. I knew that I needed an hour of cooking time for our meal but getting up to Jacksonville by 6:30 was going to be a little iffy. I ate quick, left DJ to clear and deal with the dishes and got up there about 10 minutes late but fortunately I was not the only one who was lagging a bit behind. I'll share the "before" picture with you soon as I need some suggestions. The "rules" for the round, as usual, are leaving me cold---last round. Commit me if I say I am doing another one, other than my own ostrich one??

Is blogger behaving tonight? I tried to leave a comment on someone's post this morning and "could not find the server" and a bunch of computer gobbledygook. Bet I wasn't the only one either. Hope you all have had a good day doing what makes you happy............... Posted by Picasa

Oct 11, 2006

still dreaming of quilts

This is another quilt going through my head--"Road to St. Louis" from Trudie Hughes' Even More book. I have a stack of 16 patches started, possibly for another "Whatever"/Chiclet type but this one also appeals to me. We have some cut 2 1/2 inch squares around with more coming and a 2 days sew-in next week. One of the girls called to see if we were working on a "community" block this time and was hoping she could pair up with a buddy---sure, make me some blocks and I'll take it from there!! So basic really---4-four patches and hour glass blocks in between them.

I found this from an internet search of images for this quilt-- from the Fernie (BC, Canada) Quilt Show 2000 where there are many nice quilts to view. It does look like they all took the same class with several of the same quilt popping up. (Like one I recall in Macomb, IL with tons of "Around the Twists"--also by Trudie.)

BUT I see that Bonnie of Quiltville fame had a "Road to St. Louis" that went for Katrina relief and our own Evelyn showed one last month in mid September. Subliminal messages again.

So what have I been up to since I last posted?? Monday was errand day and by afternoon, I had made my Hancock's run. 5 yards of interfacing for the t-shirt quilt, no khaki colored fabric that would work for the sashing though except one piece that I thought looked a little girlie that did not "do" for me BUT I did find the black tone on tone and a white on white for the two SEC quilts. Oh, and some more Bling Kitties for the back of my kitty quilt since I didn't purchase enough on the first go round--this time it had to be the reverse coloration though. I came home and ordered some Moda Marble in mushroom that should work---I am using it anyway, regardless. Looks as close to the requested "khaki" as I am going to get. Forget the yellow undertones, Mom.

Purchasing was as far as it got Monday though. Yesterday I finished cutting up the last 10 t-shirts pairing them with interfacing. Still not enough! This time I got smart, measured up the rough cut pieces remaining and then based on that number I went back for 6 more yards of interfacing. With what I already had on hand for another project, I think I went through about 14 yards of the stuff for a queen/king. File that factoid for future reference, Linda. Here I had not darkened the door of Hancock's for about a month and a half and BAM, twice in two days.

A count shows that I have already stuck down 15 pieces of shirt--with 36 more slated for today and beyond. Once that's done, I can start the design work in EQ to make it fit together. In most cases there is some wiggle room for trimming. Oh the creative process, LOL.

So how do I remember every quilt, block etc, some of you asked?? Obviously I don't but I have had a reputation for a good memory for some time--not a "photographic" one but maybe a little above average. Selective perhaps. Also I am the record keeper almost from the beginning for the donation quilts. I photograph them, log them into the document, match the picture with the description so I guess that reinforces the information. Plus, I truly love the subject of quilt history and quilt blocks. Couple that with the curiosity to know more about the blocks name or the patterns origin and I suppose some of it sticks. When looking for a photo as I did the other day, start searching my own computer for the correct logging document or whatever.

I am going to be asked if I am ready to walk any second now--and of course, I'm not, LOL. Yep, there it is--right on cue. That's it for now..............

Amended note
Okay, back from our stroll and I remembered what else I was going to post today. One of the quilting blogs (maybe Juliann?) was looking for crockpot recipes the other day. This time of year with the weather turning colder I think our thoughts might turn more to hearty stews and soups--mine does, I know. I have a suggestion that you might want to consider for a slew of recipes--crockpot, WW, diabetic, lots from the cooks on Food Network etc are posted on Mad's Recipe Emporium. They are zipped files formatted for Mastercook software (which I do own) but you don't HAVE to have that to view the recipes. They also have a free (and small) utility viewer (scroll down the left menu bar) that works with notepad so you can still access the recipes. Literally 100's (1000's) of recipes at your disposal.

I should probably add that I collect cookbooks and have far more than I will ever use for the space allowed. There is already have one tall bookcase in the kitchen and another bookcase that used to hold my stereo equipment years ago and books years ago. It still holds my old, can't ditch albums, LOL. My grandmother gave me a bunch more cookbooks as well before she died so those are stored in my bedroom entertainment center for now. My favorite one to look at is the clippings one that belonged to my great-grandmom.

Okay that is really it for today----I promise, LOL.

Oct 9, 2006

So many quilts....never enough time

Yesterday as I was cutting up t-shirts and fusing interfacing to the backs in preparation for the commissioned quilt I have been asked to do, my mind wanders to quilts that I would like to make and haven't yet. The Tile quilt at left is one of them and the one shown is one of my Mom's quilts from 2002. This is just so happened to go to Paraguay when my niece/godchild Allison went there with a mission group from her hometown. Pretty, huh?

I have also heard this same resultant quilt called "Cubic Turtle" in Marti Michell's Quilting for People Who Still Don't Have Time to Quilt but I think where I first saw it was from Bonnie Domeny at Thread Love. The directions for her version are given as I found when I went looking for the website. My surprise was that my pal Cher has one shown on the same page!! Actually she approaches it a little differently than Michell does but it sure looks the same to me! From a distance, the backside of my perpetual calendar atop the computer "March 24 Rocky Road" sorta reminds me of it---that might be where the subliminal message snuck in, LOL.

Bonnie also has other patterns listed including one for a Blockade quilt, foundation pieced. The link is HERE or HERE if you want to take a look. Now that one I HAVE made but did it using traditional piecing methods. The pattern is an old KC Star pattern from 1938. I saw it my Sew Precise 1-2 software years ago and made one up clear back in 2000. It was donated WTIL, as I do a lot of my quilts. Finding the picture of it was a challenge though as I think some of my pictures are missing or are on that CD that I just cannot open. I should have just left some of that stuff on floppy discs or kept the discs just in case when I burned the CD.

BUT, I am not without resources, LOL. Knowing about what year it was made, I could look back on the documents I keep for the Bama Belles. Definitely early 2000. Off to the Wrap Them In Love gallery pages and about 13 pages in, there it was. Joy made one as well with a piece of navy blue with red strawberries print. While looking through the gallery pages, I could spot quite a few of our old favorites--things made at our first sew-in's and so forth. My husband doesn't call me "Mrs. Columbo" for nothing.

I forgot that today was Columbus Day (observed) so that post office is NOT open. A package I had hoped to mail out today won't go after all. We walked this morning. DJ gets atta boy points for doing all the laundry. My grocery errands are done and a few more t-shirts picked up from the Dad's office. Now I need to make a run for some more interfacing. I had some on hand but with this many shirts and a queen/king in mind, not near enough to finish the job. I need to look for sashing fabric while over at Hancock's. It may still take a run to Birmingham or an online order to get what I need---so best to get that question answered.

I was going to add one more picture but will need to publish and try to put it in on editing---or knowing, blogger skip it, LOL. (just as I thought :-(--no go!)

Post note: Hanne commented in regards to my last post about the Tessellated Leaves from my previous post. She found them in BlockBase #1440 called by various names but let's go with "Maple Leaf Design" for the fall season. Brackman attributes it Ladies Home Journal and the year 1900. She also mentioned that she had seen the block in "Foundation Factory" software which amazingly, I don't own, LOL. Thanks, Hanne!