Monday, May 24, 2010

Booth Sighting from Quilt Market!

I wasn't able to make it to Quilt Market, but my quilts did! In a long round about way, the gals from Kansas City Star came to my lecture in Lawrence, and then spirited the 3 quilts you see here away to Minneapolis for Quilt Market...how cool is that? I can't believe how nice it worked out.

What you see are Crabapples, Bowdacious, and Nine in the Middle!

I wish I could have been there, but it turns out that Randy was meeting some other friends there, and I sent her with a specific mission to get a photo of the booth for me!

I'm really kicking myself because I was born in Minneapolis, I have aunts uncles, cousins and a grandfather still living there! I would have loved to have had a chance to visit with everyone, and hopefully that opportunity will come round again...

I'm post-dating this post....if you are reading this on Monday, I am on my way to Decatur Illinois for their Spring Party! Two lecture/trunkshows and a Pineapple Blossom class are scheduled...Throw the world "PARTY" into the mix, and I'm raring to go!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Antique Fever!

You know me and antique hunting....always on the look out for elusive lovelies!

This last trip did NOT disappoint as you saw in my last post, all the goodies that came home with me!

This Ohio star did NOT come home with me, but that didn't mean it was not photo-worthy! It's a 20's 30's quilt...Just LOVE that solid red especially set with pink and blue! I really love quilts that are not "too much white".

Great indigos...mixed with those lovely 30's prints!

Who says pink can't go with red? I love it!

This photo is a bit blurry, but I wanted to show that she also included some muslin star points mixed in with her pink print ones. Definitely a scrap bag project with some rhyme and reason thrown in. The setting squares are a blue/yellow/pink feed sack. I can imagine she had to hunt to find enough feed in the same pattern of sacks to get enough to set this quilt!

Sharon and I had a great time going antique mall to antique mall from Kansas to Missouri last Thursday! She even found a great little Spartan 128k to bring home....for $45.00! It works super. What a darling machine. If I didn't already HAVE one, it would have been mine..lol!

I DID find this lovely 6 point star with a pink background....is it not sweet? I get to love on it for a couple of months, and then it is going to my friend Randy who has had me on an antique quilt finding mission. Her reasoning? I have too many and I need to share the finds! *LOL* I do love 6 pointed stars, and I'll get to visit this one when I go to see her, so it works for me. Truth be told, I AM kind of out of room here :c| Of course, it is quilted in my favorite hand quilting pattern, all over fans...BIG ONES!

And I just noticed....two great quilts...that didn't require borders to finish them off! More and more I love quilts without borders.

Here's one that was great to look at, but out of my price range. That didn't stop me from oohing and ahhing and taking pics too! From far away I couldn't tell if those gingham squares were pieced in or appliqued..but to me it looks like they sewed a bunch of regular string blocks together and appliqued those gingham squares on TOP to give the blocks a snowball appearance.

Nowadays we would just do sew and flip corners....right? Who wants to inset those seams or applique them down? But I still love the look of unity it gives to this quilt. What a great selection of fabrics in it too!

Even if we don't find anything...even if nothing comes home....it is still a great day to be on a treasure hunt! You just never know what you will find out "junking". Keep your eyes open, what you see just might inspire you, even if it's just colors, or ideas for a border, or even just giggling at WHO would piece a giant grandmother's flower garden out of the ugliest double knits on the planet!! (Yes, we saw that too...more than once!)

And while all this hilarity was going on, I got to thinking...WHICH of my UFOs are going to turn up at an antique mall of the future, and who will be shaking their heads wondering who this crazy quilter was!? Maybe it's best...not to label everything after all! ;c)

Saturday, May 22, 2010

A Walk Through Lawrence, KS

I love old historic areas of towns, houses especially! So imagine my delight when I found that the Kaw Valley Quilters Guild was putting me up at the Halcyon House B&B for my stay with them! (Can you hear me squealing from here?!)

It was lovely. I'd never been to Lawrence before....and I spent the early mornings prowling the quiet historic streets before my pick up time to go teach for the guild.

A Walk Through Lawrence, KS

There are SO MANY neat old houses down there! Many have been converted into apartments for college students, because Lawrence IS a College Town, home of Kansas University..

A couple blocks away tho, it's all single family homes and manicured yards and just had my mouth GAPING as I went down row after row of gorgeous old beauties.

The one church you see has been turned into 4 apartments.....I cracked up when I saw the 4 mail boxes labeled as "Matthew, Mark, Luke & John!"

You'll have to click to my page to view the slide show. And I think the slide show only holds so many, so you might miss some if you don't click the link below the window to go visit the actual webshots album.

I also love weird yard art, so this photo cracked me up:

Look at those eyes in the bush...hehehehehe!!!

I had a great time, and can't wait to head back to Kansas City in August!

I got lots of quilting done on the plane yesterday....my flight out of Chicago was delayed an hour, and then after we were all boarded and taxiing over to our runway (seemed to take 1/2 hour to taxi there!) we came to a halt and stayed there parked on the taxi way for ANOTHER HOUR because of weather and winds. I'd rather be safe than sorry, so it was fine with me..but you know it's not a good sign when the captain turns OFF the seat belt sign, tells us we are free to move about the cabin and use the rest room while ON the taxi way!

I did get into NC about 7 pm or so last night...just beat. Soup for dinner, and off to bed.

I'm getting caught up on mail order...and then plan to spend the weekend SEWING in my basment! I need some machine time, and there is a quilt calling my name that needs a border. Picture a productive Bonnie with her book on MP3 playing in her ears, making a complete creative mess at her own "at home" retreat for the weekend!

Come monday, I'm flying off to Decatur, IL....and we do it again!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Living Life Near Lawrence (and MO) Too!

Its been a few crazy busy days, and I haven't even had time to tackle much email, or even THINK of updating this blog..but let me tell you, the quilters in Kansas are incredible!!

But before Quilt Granny Sharon brought me to Lawrence, we had time to run around and visit a great Antique place where many goodies were found.

This little shed was just TOO DERN CUTE!! It reminded me of the little house in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang...remember the grandpa goes in, and gets carried off by the bad guys in the blimp? I so would love this in my back yard!

These are the goodies I found....can you believe it? The bricks top was all of $28.00 and the little octagon one with the inset squares was $35.00!! I knew I was never going to want to hand piece an octagon one like this, and the selection of fabrics in it is so fabulous...30's & 40's!

I also lucked out and found two rug hooked chair pads....BOTH for $12.00! Those sunflowers are my little bit of Kansas to take home with me.

And I love redware, so this deep dish plate just had my name on it too....there were some other goodies, but I'm saving those for a special occasion coming up so I have to keep you in the blind side for that for a bit ;c)

Here is a fun pic of me and Sharon just before my lecture....what fun! We've known each other for at least 15 years, have seen each other from time to time and it is always a blast. All because of this INTERNET thing...look how much it enriches our lives!

I want to show you this one fabulous show and tell...just look at this string quilt! It was made with the trimmed off Margins from squaring up regular string blocks! Is it NOT FABULOUS?!??? Oh...I am so inspired by this one. It was huge, used everything, and weighed a ton. My kind of quilt!

Here is the piecing detail..can you see all the bits? WOWWWW!!

Sharon is on her way to pick me up at the B&B where I've been staying in Lawrence, and we have plans to hit some more antiquey places today, as well as some quilt shops, and when i have more time to fill you in on more details, I'll write a bit more! As it is, I've barely showered, I'm sitting here typing frantically with wet hair and a half packed suitcase! Oh the excitement of life "on the road!" as a traveling quilter!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Kansas Quilting....

I'm having a wonderful time visiting with QuiltGrannie Sharon on the first leg of my trip to Missouri/Kansas!

Sharon and I have known each other for at least 15 years and have spent time doing quilty things from time to time as our paths cross.

When I travel, it is so wonderful to get to spend time with people in their homes. I love seeing how they display their quilts, what their sewing space is like, and seeing what life is like where they live. Let's face it...the inside of one Days Inn is much like another, and even though it is fun to sit in the center of a hotel bed, eating Chinese food from a box with chopsticks and watching Girly TV to my hearts content, it is really much MORE fun when you hit it off with other quilters and can talk a blue streak, see their quilts, share stories, laugh, and have someone even cook you a home cooked meal!

So this is what has been going on since I arrived yesterday! We even had a lovely dinner, family style, as Sharon's son and his two teen aged daughters, and her daughter's also teenage daughter, and one of their cousins-from-the-other-side-of-the-family joined us. Family dynamics are fun to watch...and I loved the sense of tradition of "Sunday dinner at Oma's house" followed by a wild game of Mexican Train Dominoes on the dining room table after dinner....

I was blissfully relaxing, finishing up the binding on "Love, Thy Name Is Mud" (Do I need to change the name of this quilt? LOL) while Sharon worked on some red work embroidery and Kevin clipped coupons from the Sunday paper.

Here it is, laying out on the kitchen nook floor..the sun was coming in the window just right to show the quilting detail!

You know, even though I love machine quilting...there is just something so satisfying about the texture of hand quilting that even machine quilting can not duplicate. I think this is why I am such a schizophrenic quilter...I want it both ways...Sometimes this way, sometimes that way...love it all, want it all, can't get enough of either! So traveling with something I can hand quilt takes care of one side of my brain, while zooming through something with a big machine at home for something that will fit the bed satisfies the other!
Later in the evening, after everyone left, I celebrated the finishing of the binding by pulling out Creamsicles (The orange quilt from yesterday has a name!) and commencing on the hand quilting on it. This is as far as it went as we watched the finale for Survivor....

I just LOVE quilting with this Hobbs wool. It needles so easily, and I can really tell the difference between the Love quilt and this one, because I was quilting on them both in the same day. I LOVE THIS WOOL! Even though it is more lofty, my stitches are so much smaller and so much more even even with the same needle/thread....I'm a wool batting lover!

What a great day!

Today my chaos starts. I'm meeting with my editor from Kansas City Star for lunch. I have a lecture/trunkshow tonight....so we are going to head to Lawrence early enough that I can set up for that before meeting the other ladies-in-charge for dinner at 5:30.

I'm really excited to be here, to meet people I've been working with for the past 2 years from a distance....putting faces to voices and names and strengthening friendships new and old!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

It's a Quilt Emergency!

So, if you read my last post, you'll know that I've been scrambling trying to get another hand work project together, because *tada* My flight leaves for Kansas at 6:25am Eastern time...TOMORROW (Sunday) ACCCKK!

AND. I've been having fun since my son and his significant other showed up last night..around 11pm!

I looked through what tops I had....all too big....or boring. :c|

I was going to give it up and just take the hexagon thing, until I woke at precisely 4:15am this morning in a tangle of sweaty sheets and hot flashes...bleehhhh. My tummy was also hungry, I was thirsty, and in the midst of taking care of everything,I found that I was fully awake. So what's a girl to do...but go down to the basement studio!

Remember these blocks? You all sent them to me after we did Orange Crush mystery I think....all these 6" blocks with orange in them, do they ring a bell to you? Look closely! You just might find your block!

I had this all set aside as a PIG. Project In Grocery Sack! I was going to sash them, I was thinking of alternate blocks, put them on point, something..and nothing would jell!

This is an inspiration from sleep deprivation! A little voice told me to stitch them block to block to block as is....and put a border of strings around them from the bin of leftover 3.5" string blocks...because that would help unify the different shades, and pull in REASONING for why some of the blocks had other really-not-orange colors in them!

I had the whole top done by 9am...just in time to join the family for french toast!

It just seemed to come together SO QUICKLY. So this is maybe why some projects need to "percolate" a while before we know what to do with them.

After sewing the center together, I chose a yellow inner border fabric from my stash.

The little string blocks have anything and everything in them, and you know what? I have decided that there is NO COLOR ON EARTH that does NOT go with ORANGE!

I pieced together a backing, loaded it in the machine with a wool batting, and basted it all together, it is ready to travel!

Does anyone recognize the corners of the border as 9 patches from their Carolina Crossroads quilt? They fit perfect there too, and I was happy to have a place to use up goodies you've sent me over the past couple years!

I'm going to quilt it with red thread....it just seems like a good compliment, plus the red thread was already in my travel bag from the crumb sampler that I'm still finishing up....I'll finish that first, 1/2 of the inner border left to quilt...and sew the binding down (which I also put on today)and I'll have plenty of projects to keep my hands busy during the next week.

All my bags are packed, I'm ready to go *singing John Denver*....The alarm is going to go off stinking early at 4:00am, so I better get to bed.

Kansas, Here I come!

Friday, May 14, 2010


I'm an excited Mama!

This afternoon about 4:30pm I got a call that my Son and his girlfriend Kim are coming from Columbia, SC to spend the weekend!

Now, Columbia is not all that far, but it's just far enough that it makes it a bit difficult to get down there and back in the same day.

Quite often we will meet them half way and just have dinner somewhere around Rock Hill, SC....that way it's about 1.5 hours drive each way for each of us. Sometimes, if we need them to...this also involves passing off the dogs to them for a week while we go somewhere together.

This time..they are coming ALL THE WAY to spend the weekend and I am just tickled.

Of course, that means putting lots of things on the back burner, like uploading another little Sew and Tell post of quilt pics people have sent in. I wanted to do that before I head out for Kansas on Sunday, but it might not happen.

But even *I* find out time to time that there are instances in life where it is important to put first things first, and the kids are coming for the weekend...that is definitely a FIRST!

Jason and DH have plans to golf. Kim and I have plans for pedicures, maybe shopping, definitely lunch and whatever other girl trouble we can find ourselves in while the guys golf! LOL

At some point..I need to find another project to baste or prep to take with me on the plane to Kansas Sunday. I'm out of small tops waiting to be quilted..can you believe it? I don't think I have time to piece anything...so...I'm thinking..yep..it's time to complete the border applique on a top that has been hanging around for way too many years. and then, I can get THAT top basted for quilting while traveling.

OR....*thinking*....I have that hexagon medallion that I started umpteen years ago that has reached some stage of boredom and unfinished glory. Maybe that one? small hexagons are easy to travel with....

Anyway...that's what's going on here over this weekend! I hope yours is just as splendid!

Australian Homespun Shout Out!

When I'm gone on long trips....this is what tends to happen!

I come stumbling in after being picked up at the airport around 11pm and manage to dump my luggage on the floor of the master bedroom, if it makes it beyond the front hall at all. I peel off clothes, crawl into bed and sleep until after 9am the next morning!

It never fails, I feel like I've wasted half the day, if not the morning...until I realize that my body is still on California time and in California it is only 8am so it really isn't all that bad, is it? :cD

I wander into the kitchen, make a cup of tea...and start looking around for changes that might have occurred while I've been gone. Hey! Someone cleaned the kitchen! So far so good!

And then I see it....the PILE....over there on the desk. Yep. That's the mail that has stacked up over the past 12 days, and now it is my turn to go through it! Sort, sort, sort, shuffle....throw away the obvious ads and miscellaneous junk mail spam, sort into piles again (Usually by size of item..can't help it!)and START, putting bills in one stack, book orders in another, and other wise over sized WHAT IS THIS packages in a third pile.

I saw this one big envelope and had to rip into it right away! I wasn't sure when this was coming out, but I am so happy it is here!

Months back, Christine Cohrs had contacted me about submitting her quilt "Majestic Mountains" made from my tutorial "Scrappy Mountain Majesties" to the magazine. I was thrilled! Her quilt turned out beautifully and looks just great in the magazine photos.

I turned the page and found that they had also given me a huge shout out on Adventures With Leaders & Enders! I don't know if you can read the picture here, so this is what it says:
Bonnie Hunter has established a reputation for making wonderful scrap quilts that allow you to use up all the bits and pieces in your stash.

She writes in her latest book: "My favorite scrap recipe is of the 'kitchen sink' variety, which means anything and everything is thrown in!" What is fascinating is that her quilts are gorgeous, making their construction seem quite magical. Bonnie also prefers to make big quilts.

In this book you won't find any wall hangings, table runners, or baby quilts: the smallest project is 70 inches square. Bonnie shares her tips for getting your scrap stash under control and her "leaders and enders" method, which sees you making these quilts while working on other projects. A book that is bound to become a much-used favourite of all those who love scrap quilts.

Thank you AUSTRALIAN HOMESPUN! And thanks Christine, for submitting your gorgeous quilt for publication!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

My Mom Made This!

I had a lovely little visit from the postman this morning.

A BOX! For ME! And it was from my mom who lives in Idaho...which I was not expecting! I mean, I should be sending HER things for Mother's Day, not the other way around, right?


I think I've mentioned before that my mom is a new quilter. I've been so excited that she has finally succumbed to the bug and thrown herself right in! I mean, I've been addicted to this for nearly 30 years, and I finally wore her down? :cD

She lives in a VERY RURAL community, and there happens to be a darling quilt shop there. I've met the ladies, they are wonderful, and they love my mom, so that just makes me feel SO GREAT. I know when I can't be there, they are watching out for her and showing her all the ropes of this quilting thing.

She has joined a GUILD! She has even gone so far as been on an "away" retreat complete with overnight lodgings!!

Yep, I think she is well on the way to becoming fully one of us....A QUILTER. I couldn't be more proud!

So..you can imagine my tears this morning when I opened this box and found this wonderful wall hanging....made for me...by my mom.

Just look at this! This is a foldy log cabin, with such texture and intricacy...layers and layers and tiny (YES!) strips...and buttons and recycled fabrics and....I just bawled!

In fact, the full picture is probably blurry because I was still teary eyed as I hung this and took pics of it out on my front porch. Don't worry, it's not staying there...the light was better out there. I'll find a place to hang it inside.

I absolutely love how she adorned it with buttons. Some really fun ones!

The funny thing is...she said she has already given one to each of my sisters, and others have been made, but she saved MINE for last because she wanted it to be perfect. I mean, honestly? She should know me better than that! Now I feel like she has been holding out on me all along. I love things better if they are NOT perfect. It's perfect in its imperfection, as are we all.

Thanks Mom!! I love it! (And you..immensely!)

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Hello, NC!

I got home last night! It is SO GOOD to be home....Hello house, I missed you! Oh, yard...your trees are so green and lovely! And oh....SUCH A HUGE PILE OF MAIL! 0_o

My last post was on Sunday..and here it is Wednesday! Can you tell that I was having just such a super time with my friend and her family that the blog took a back seat!?

I will need to back up even before my Sunday post. Saturday was such a fun full packed day, that I can't leave it out!

We started out nice and early with a drive to Napa for picnicing and wine tasting, the whole clan. There were 8 of us to start with, if you include Ryan, the cutest 5 month old you have ever seen.

AND...since it was a 2 hour drive in the car to Napa from Scotts Valley, I of course worked on THIS in the car...it's getting done! All I've got left to do is finish that inner cheddar border, and it is DONE! (I'll need to find another project to baste and take to Kansas with me on Sunday....adding that to the list of must-dos this week!)

Have you ever had Paella? If you haven't.....you've missed a treat. Our picnic sat languishing in the car because this amazing paella was being served at the wine tasting. Just LOOK at this! Of course, I am seeing things in vivid quilterchrome (Remember kodachrome? LOL) color!

There were succulent VERY LARGE shrimp...and mussels, cod, chicken, peppers, onions, rice..just simmering away in big huge wok type pans until it was ready. There was music...it was so lovely and festive out on the patio. YUM!!

Here is a pic of Gerard doing his THANG...and he does it so well!

Of course, Napa is all about the scenery. Growing up in California, I can honestly say that somehow I missed out on the wonders of Napa because I left when I was 19. But it was such a beautiful day for a gorgeous drive..these are all pics I took from the car as we were driving:

Napa California May 2010
If your browser or reader does not view the slide show, you can click to the link to my actual webshots album to view them.

It was SUCH a gorgeous day!! The hills were still green...and I love seeing them that way the most. In the summer they get dry grass brown, but it was so lush and lovely...oh California, I missed you! I hope it is not another 15 years until I get to go back.

And that wasn't IT for the day...we had HOCKEY TICKETS for the Stanley Cup Playoffs game...The San Jose Sharks vs Detroit Redwings! GO SHARKS! I was so excited to be there. My Minnesota relatives are very hot and heavy into Hockey...but honest to truth? The last hockey game I watched was when I still lived in Idaho, and my Oldest son Jason was about 12-14 and playing on a street hockey team! Still...Hockey, I can get into and understand a lot easier than football. And it was a fast paced exciting game...down to the last 5 minutes...can they pull it off? YES! And Sharks win!

It was so exciting, even leaving the stadium and hearing the crowds just cheer and cheer and pennants flying and cars beeping and it was just SO FUN! So needless to say, I am now a Sharks fan, got the tshirt :c) And I had no voice for the next couple of days!

There is so much to catch up on here....so I'll call this good enough for today and resume with you next time!

Sunday, May 09, 2010

A Drive Through The City....

Friday was an errand day! A very important errand...because Randy and I drove to San Francisco! We were on our way to pick her son Ben up at the airport, but we left extra early just so we could see the Amish quilt exhibit at the De Young Museum! What an AWESOME exhibit! I was especially excited because these were the quilts from the collection of Faith and Stephen Brown.

YES! The same quilts found in the book Amish Abstractions that I wrote a review for a while back! Having the book at home, and then seeing these quilts up close and personal was SO INSPIRING. First off...you can't really tell the size of a quilt by a picture in a book. Second off...there is no way a book can show you the depth and detail of the quilting stitches and the texture,the phenomenal color choices, and the artistry in these quilts. We were just SO thrilled to have gotten there early enough that we were nearly the only ones in the gallery at the time.

And yes, the docents DID have to tell us to "BACK AWAY FROM THE QUILTS!" I guess our noses were too close to the stitches as we marveled..lol!

Since I already had the Amish Abstractions book, I bought this one! And I can hardly wait to peruse through it and see what goodies lie within. Books on antique quilts feed my soul like no other!

From there we took a driving tour through the city, bypassing all the regular touristy spots, because Randy wanted to take me to an awesome bakery down in the Mission district. More on that to follow....

San Francisco Drive By
The weather was so lovely that we had the top down, enjoying the sun and the oldies music coming out of the car stereo.

As with all slide shows, if you are reading this in a reader, you might have to click to my actual blog to view the pictures. If you can't view them in slide show format, click the link under the photo box and it will take you to the actual album on webshots.

We left the city behind to head for the airport to pick up Ben. I just had to get a pic of the sign as a momento!

And what's not to like about sitting behind the wheel of a convertible in California in MAY!? Just call me "Goddess on a Highway!"