Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Heading Out....

Hello Quilters!

I haven't posted anything for a few days, been crazy crazy over here. I'm heading out again on Thursday, hitting Clark, PA for a couple days, and moving back into Ohio where I'll be visiting Ashtabula, Copley, Canton, and Warren!

I've got good friends in Ashtabula, and in the Akron Area, so it's going to be a reunion of sorts! FUN!

I've spent the last few days kitting up quilts from recycled fabrics for the next Scraps & Shirttails book...and I swear. I have GOT to be done buying clothing for quilts! Even after kitting these up, I feel like I haven't made a dent. It's a good thing I'm mad for plaid and the feel of utility scrap quilts. I'm going to be making them for a long long time!

Projects coming with me: In this bag...20 blocks inspired by the fun ironing board cover I picked up earlier this summer at the antique mall between Indiana and Ohio! I've even pieced the sashings and the pinwheel cornerstones. This just needs to be set together. I'll deal with borders once I get the top done. I'm thinking a sawtooth border thing to take the triangles to the outside edge of the quilt. I can never tell ahead of time what I want to do. And I'll probably deal with the borders when I get back home.

In this bag: Would you believe it is 156 blocks in shades of green/red/raspberry?! I spent many hours kitting this, but that's what Lifetime Movie Network is good for! Now I can just sit and sew these...it's going to be great.

In this bag: 252 2.5" X 19" strips for another quilt...all colors and values. I really DO like the "kitchen sink" variety of scrap quilt the best...it gives me so much to look at when putting colors together!

My ever bursting bag of recycled fabric strings! I'm working on some string blocks to go with some other blocks that I'm doing with 1.5" leader/ender squares also out of recycled fabrics and muslin. Of course, kitting up the other two quilts gave me even MORE strings to shove into this bag. A project for every bit of every fabric!

I really have learned that when sewing on the road....I get MORE sewing time in if I can kit up my projects ahead of time. With all the hours it took to cut these up, I have given myself that many more hours of real sewing time while on the road! It's like doubling the retreat time if you can do all the cutting ahead.

When I leave Ohio, I'll be heading up to Michigan to meet up with Lucy, Isabeau and Joes who are coming over from The Netherlands for Gwen Marston's retreat with me!! WHoowohoooo! We've had this planned for about a year, and I can't believe it is finally here. My car will be packed with not only my trunkshow stuff, but FOUR sewing machines so they each have something to sew with while at the retreat! My car has 3 feather weights, and I'm not sure if I am bringing Shotgun the Bernina or the Singer 301 I bought in June as my own machine. I'm thinking about it! What's a girl to do with too many machines? :cD

The theme for the retreat this year is applique combined with piecing. Not wanting to start a new UFO, I think it's time I do something with an old one. This is an Oak Leaf and Reel I started when I lived in IDAHO believe it or not...so that is what...10 years ago? Too much muslin, too many of the same fabrics. All the blocks are THE SAME. Yes, this is NOT a scrap quilt. I think I wanted muslin because I wanted the hand quilting to show...and it will when I get to it, but right now...BORING SNORING is more how I feel about it. So here is my applique part.

The question is....do I want to do some really amazing pieced border on it?(I've got my pieced borders book with me for design inspiration) or do I want to take the blocks apart, insert a really cool pieced sashing, put it back together and THEN border it? I need some life added to this thing. Feel free to send me suggestions! I've even got 3 extra blocks that didn't make it into this on-point layout. I think I was originally going to set them straight. So...I could add pieced sashing and reset them straight again! PS. The blocks finish at 16". I've got plenty of the red/chedder/muslin fabrics. I don't have any more of that same green, but I've pulled lots similar to it. We'll see what I come home with, aye?


  1. I got home 2 weeks ago from my first retreat! My car was pretty full with just my stuff although I'm sure I could have fit 3 or 4 more sewing machines in. I took lots to do too but only got one project done! I found I did more ripping than ever...could it be I was distracted?

  2. If you take apart this quilt - meaning picking out all that hand quilting and then rip apart the blocks to add in a sashing - I don't care how ... in your words..."really amazing pieced border" it is - you are NUTS!! INSANE!!!

    I can't imagine being this far along on any quilt much less this beautiful of one.. and thinking about taking it all apart to start over.

    Life's too short! :P Bonnie, you silly girl you!

    Love from Texas! ~bonnie

  3. Bonnie,

    I say take the blocks apart and do some of your truly amazing magic to the sashing! You are right, this is boring compared to what you normally do!

  4. LOL, got your reply email... guess all those wrinkles looked like hand quilting to me LOL :) If it's just a top then go for it! :)

    Also forgot to mention I love all the baggies of "Kits" :) I know you've been working hard on them... can't wait until S&ST part 2 comes out to see what they grow up to be ;)

    Love from Texas! ~bonnie

  5. I think a great border would seem out of place against all the vast expanse of muslin. So (are you anticipating this?) taking those big old blocks apart and inserting some sashing to be reflected in the border is the way to go...

  6. Oh yeah..pull those blocks apart and get some good sashing going on with shades of greens, it will definitely make those blocks sing.
    Have a great time with Gwen and friends....sounds divine!
    Safe travels and Happy Sewing :0)

  7. It's hard to believe that that quilt is yours - it is so uniform! I vote for taking the blocks apart and adding pieced sashing and borders. Perhaps even a strip quilt setting. How neat to not have to start from scratch with your retreat quilt! Have fun!

  8. Yep, I've with Aloha Joe... if you add sashing... it would be what you need to give it a really great border! Have fun! Too many machines... such a terrible problem! Isn't it?! LoL....

  9. I am with Patti and Aloha Jo, take that baby apart and work your magic! Can't wait to see what you do to it....I love how you prepare for your trips, no wonder you accomplish so much. You were living in Idaho 10 years ago???? Me too, LOL...I know we keep having Idaho conversations, but heck I love the place and would do just about anything to get back there...
    Have a fabulous trip/retreat/show

  10. Safe travels and have fun with your friends on the retreat. Hope they bring you some Dutch treats!!

  11. Hope you have a great time with Lucy, Isabeau and Joes (I know Lucy and Joes from their blogs but don't think I've come across Isabeau yet)- can't wait to see what all you talented ladies come up with.
    Happy Quilting to you all!!!

  12. I love it the way it is!!!!! Just shows a lovely work well done! Don't take it apart - it represents where you were at the time this was done. Nothing wrong with that, your quilting style changes and matures over the yrs. What a beautiful piece of work!

  13. oh I love the quilt the way it is, I am sure you can add some awesome quilting in those "white" spaces!
    I think you should just do an awesome border and call it a quilt.
    if you don't like it you can always send it to me
    I LOVE it already.
    Have a great trip and oh How I wish I was in this class too would be fun to meet all of you!

  14. I too, love all the white spaces and would hate to see it taken apart.

    However, I think you could find a way to repeat the leaf shapes in a pieced border. The large leaves look like a diamond shape connected to a long rectangle (the stem). Set those in a row divided by cheddar triangles outlined with red strips. It would give the quilt unity without losing the lovely floating motifs.

  15. This could use some scrap'n up...go ahead and take it apart and go to town! Can't wait to see what you do with it!

  16. So fun to read what you are up to! Great idea to make up kits before retreat... I will benefit from that suggestion in February.
    I think you should take apart those applique blocks and make some really funky sashings and borders to liven it up. Look forward to seeing what you decide!

  17. Don't take apart anything! Why not applique on top of the plain areas? Even better, use scraps to piece a shape... an oval, leaves, tear drops... and then applique them. Life's too short to UNdo. Make a blah quilt awesome with something unexpected. I know you have it in you!

  18. Anonymous6:49 PM EDT

    You sure have some work with you, hope you get lots done.
    I loveeeeeee your applique quilt.

    Safe travel.

  19. The instant I saw that quilt, I thought it needed a border of green/muslin HSTs. That's all it needs! 8-))) OK, that's pretty sensible but ...

    Hope to SEE YOU in Casper, WY in January! Brrrr I'm making my plans! 8-)

  20. I say go for it. Cut that baby apart, and put something unexpected between the blocks and in the borders. Update it and make it the way it suits you today, not 10 years ago.

  21. take the 301. World's best machine! I want to take a Beaver Island retreat someday....sob. Be sure to tell us all about it!

  22. Wow Bonnie...you are smart for
    'kitting' up. I have a question...do you cut standing up or sitting down?? Sometimes I just want to sit but I can't seem to see the measurement marks as well and can't get 'muscle' behind my rotary cutter???

  23. I'd take it apart.
    I can see it with a border of isosceles triangles ('spike') in cheddar and green. Make 'em wider than in a contemporary quilt, rather: like 19th century.

  24. I find this a little dull although the work is gorgeous, sorry. I like Linda's idea of adding some scrap applique (like where the 4 corners join). This would jazz it up and put your signature on it. If that doesn't work for you, take it apart and make it so you Love it.

  25. at last! someone has found a really GOOD use for the Lifetime Movie Network; as for the applique project? i envision sashing made of thousands of little flying geese....go ahead, you're up to it bonnie...

  26. I love how it represents your progress as a quilter (even though you never made it to the finish line). It would look nice with simple sashing. The white areas are perfect for some of your fabulous quilting. Triangles in the border and sashing would be great, but I think the color pallette needs to be stable. I would love to see some type of swag in the border. On a second look, I see the teardrop leaves. Perhaps you could alternate the applique blocks with the honeybee block.

  27. I kind of like the quilt middle, I'd just add a nice border to it. It reminds me of one I saw on my Great Grandmothers bed when I was young and she just added a nice border to it and some amazing hand quilting to it (I believe it was a feather and leaves pattern).

  28. Oh Bonnie, I'd like to help! Just send it to me and get it off your mind. It is beautiful. You amaze me with your talent. I would have never thought of doing a thing to this beauty!


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