Tuesday, November 23, 2010

When Goodies Come Home....

I have to scramble to find places to put them! I just love antique textiles. And I think of the hands that held these pieces, traced, cut, pieced, layered, quilted, and those that were covered by these works of love...put to hard use in their life-of-a-quilt duty to keep a family warm, and I just feel connected somehow.

Is that strange? Maybe just a bit. I also admit that I love looking through the old photographs in antique stores. Children, couples getting married, old ladies sitting on porches, all different stages of life. I can't make myself buy them as if they were family, but I feel like acknowledging the existence of each and every one of those individuals and wonder about the lives they lived. There was one box that had family photos all the way up through the children's lives as they had grown into adulthood and beyond.

Someone had taken the time to write on the back of each photo who was in it and when it was taken. But enough generations go by and it just doesn't mean so much to the future generations any more. Is it sad that these end up in an antique mall? Or is it a lovely appreciation and a glimpse into the lives of others? Better than in a box on a shelf in an attic? The jury is out. Makes me wonder if my photos will end up on a shelf in an antique mall some day! If so...I hope they leave out my 2nd grade pic, I really hated that one. Bad glasses, bad hair, a bump on my chin from falling off my bike... ;c)

Lemoyne Star! A TINY LEMOYNE STAR!! I've always wanted to hand piece one of these, but I know me. It probably isn't going to happen in this life time, or maybe this decade at least. But I am in love with all-things-small and this one just made me squeal right there in the store! Lois was holding it up as I turned around. I just about dropped my parcels and purse drooling over this. Yes, some many of the patches are shredded from hard use and age. But it hasn't lost its impact! It contains mid to late 1800's fabrics, some maybe a bit earlier. Let's face it, I have over 30 years worth of scraps in MY scrap bag, so did this quilter!

The little blocks finish at approximately 4.25". The points are PERFECT..no chopping and lopping going off on this quilt. It was pieced by expert hands. Stitches small and even..

I love how it was quilted...due to the small size, the maker simply stitched two diagonal lines through each block, corner to corner in both directions, and then did the same with the horizontal and vertical...8 lines sectioning the block like a pie, following the inner lines of the diamonds. So some of the quilting is in the ditch, some of it extends into the corner and side background patches, can you see it?

Simple but effective, she didn't feel the need to outline quilt a 1/4" inside each patch, and the quilt is stronger (probably why it survived this long) because the quilting CROSSED the piecing lines in the patchwork.

The blocks are also quilted in the ditch between the block and the sashing, and the 1" sashing has one long line of quilting down the center.

The backing is a lovely stripe, and it is turned over the edge and machine stitched down as binding.

Now wait for it...in case you think that this quilt broke the bank (or maxed my credit card!) Price? $28.00!! Now you know why I about fell to the floor! And I think Lois would have adopted it if I hadn't been there, but she thought that the guest-traveler should have first dibs. Dib I did! Thanks Lois for passing on this one!

You know, I really thought this would cure my need to MAKE a tiny lemoyne star quilt? What was I thinking? I want to MAKE one more than ever now! GAH!!! Someone help me please!

A bit of info on the home front:

We left the house at 5:15am this morning after waking up at 4:45am to get Dave to the hospital for his hernia surgery this morning. He was first on the OR schedule, and I'm glad...we could both pass on breakfast and catch something later since he had to be NPO since midnight. Everything went fine. He's always been a very healthy guy, very active. He doesn't smoke or drink, and hasn't had any anesthesia since he had his tonsils out at 6 years old...and due to this was classified as a total LIGHT WEIGHT when they put him under! He had the hardest time coming around, and feeling like he could move, get dressed, go to the bathroom, etc. I think he has a new appreciation for those of us who have had surgeries, borne children, and lived to tell the story!

He's a trooper, and is resting in bed with the remote on one side, and the dog on the other, entertaining himself with things like "Ice Road Truckers" and copious amounts of "The 70's Show" and whatever else floats his tv-watching-boat. I'm glad this is behind us. Any kind of surgery where they have to put you completely under is scary.

I did buy a turkey. I'm cooking. And basically the turkey was free...I went to Harris Teeter and bought all the "buy one get one free" type holiday items that I would have needed anyway. The turkey was even on sale, and by the time I checked out they said I saved $18.00 which makes the turkey MORE than free. So we are good. The only thing I need is some whipped cream for the pie, and some dinner rolls, and I don't want to buy those too many days in advance. My plan? Get the rhodes frozen whole wheat dinner roll balls and bake them myself to make the house smell good. Works for me...more time to sew!

The mystery still needs the binding finished, so I think that a couple of movies and my behind in the reclining side of the couch stitching away is in order. There will be more goodies from the antique mall next post, I think I've probably stretched this post out as far as it can go, and if you are still here reading along with me, pat yourself on the back, get away from the computer and go DO SOMETHING! :c)

Happy Thanksgiving, Y'all!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Monday Motivation...

Anyone got any to spare?! I could use some!

First off, I need to thank those who have emailed and commented so gently and so encouragingly regarding my blogger-stranger-friend's choice to take her own life. I think the last time I felt this haunted was when Princess Diana died. Yes, someone we didn't really know in person, but someone we felt we did in some ways. It's a really odd feeling. When someone is just "GONE" in such a senseless preventable way. My thoughts and prayers continue to be with her real life family and friends. And I am renewing my efforts in focusing on my real life family and friends. I want to be more aware where I should be. There's just been a whole lot of thinking and regrouping going on.

I've just uploaded all my pics from my phone to my computer and there is a whole LOT of editing and uploading to be done! It's one of those "BUT WHERE DO I START!!" kinds of deals...so I'm just going to go with it! And if the posts over the next few days are a bit disjointed, you'll know why!

Today is my one day to get ready for this week. DH is having hernia surgery tomorrow bright and early (still don't know what time, and waiting on the doc's office to call and give all the particulars)and our whole week will depend on how he feels over the next few days.

We don't have any extended family here in NC, so Thanksgiving IS just the three of us this year. When I add in the cost of the food, the prep time, the clean up....we've had a better time going OUT for Turkey dinner and really enjoying the day, than for me to spend the entire day (or consecutive days) cooking to excess for 3 people. The one thing I do miss is the leftovers, so that is a toss up.

My dilemma? Not knowing how Dave is going to feel come Thursday, 2 days after surgery and maybe he won't want to get in the car and drive anywhere, so do I run out today and buy a back-up turkey? LOL! If that is the case, I should just plan on doing a low-key turkey dinner here, just PLAN it and do it.

Dave has lost 40 lbs. I've lost 30. We are in no way wanting to over do food in any shape or form, and the thought of making a big meal just does NOT turn me on. So if I do, it would be

*Turkey (no stuffing)
*mashed potatoes & gravy (Can't get by without them....)
*Baked yams (YUM)
*green salad
*fresh cranberry relish
*And a veggie of some sort....I'd opt for sauteed green beans at this point.

And yes, there would be pie, but I don't have to bake it. And I don't have to eat it.

As far as bread goes? If there has to be, whole wheat rolls can be baked or bought.

And that is about the simplest form of a Thanksgiving dinner that I can come up with, or have the desire for.

So..back to the pictures! I know I've shown great pics of inspirational quilts from my jaunts and haunts and I've got plenty of those to share, but instead, I thought I'd share some of the WEIRDER side of things you can find when traipsing through antique malls!!

You never know what you are going to find when you round a corner in a place with many booths, and this one really brought out the weird! Somewhere in PA..I don't remember which town or location this was but it set us off to laughing til we almost lost control!

Someone....had taken dolly parts, and assembled them with miscellaneous cans and tins and jello molds and all sorts of pieces and items. You wanna talk WEIRD?! It was like walking into that movie "Chuckie"....This stuff gave me the creeps! LOL!

How bout this little guy?! We just could not "GET" what it was supposed to be about..hmmm! It's like the little tin man in training? I suppose you "COULD" set him on your kitchen counter or on top of your fridge? :cÞ

THIS ONE?! I'm not sure if it is supposed to BE a functioning oil lamp or what. Opinions? All I could think of is when my brothers used to pull the arms, legs and heads off of my dolls and I was left with trying to find a way to put them back together. This is just plain weird..LOL! And SHE has no legs....just an oil lamp bottom set in a basin? She was sporting a price tag of $125.00 I'm not sure if that is a deal or a steal!

We rounded another corner and came face-to-face full front and center with two headless male mannequins sporting nothing but throw-rug togas! Oh yeah, more hilarious laughter, had to take a picture, and make a bee-line to get OUT of there!

There were more delicious finds of the quilt-variety, and I'll show those to you next post. I just chose to go through these today for a good laugh.

So today's to-do list involves copious amounts of filling mail order, doing the grocery shopping, a bank run, a post office drop off, I'd like to get to the gym, but I'm feeling unmotivated (but would probably do good if I could just GO!) and other things.

I've unpacked the car. I'm putting stuff away...I'm going through the motions...but I really want to get back to sewing on my pineapples!

In fact, I just got off the phone with a lady who called to ask if the pattern was available yet! LOLOL!!!! I just laughed and said, no, it is a project in progress, and the quilt has to be finished first. She said "Oh! Well get on it then, I'm ready!" Thanks for the laugh, whoever you are! I needed that call and it came at the right moment!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Part 1 PDF

SO, nothing is perfect as you are all sure to let me know!

There seems to be a typo/file issue with the pdf printer friendly version of part one and some of you can't open it. I can't fix it remotely from Maryland...until I get home and fix it, you'll just have to deal with what is in the previous blog post. Sorry about that!

I couldn't check everything as thoroughly when setting a post to send later....I couldn't make it go live to double check. But I'll fix it...just give me time! I'm driving home tomorrow and will get home tomorrow night. I'll see what I can do Monday to get that printer-friendly version more user friendly. Those of you who are having trouble, please be sure you have adobe reader installed and updated as well.

I'm having a great time at retreat, the ladies of the Southern Comforters guild have been fabulous!

My little pile of pineapple blocks is growing, my bucket of scraps is NOT going down as people keep doing a "drive by" to drop their cast offs into my bucket! But it is so fun....

I took this pic after our lunch break today. The retreat place is right on the West River, and I love looking out the window and seeing the boats moored there...Beautiful blue sky, lots of sunshine. At one point I didn't know whether I wanted to be in sewing, or out taking a walk and soaking up some vitamin D! (The sewing won out...)

Several of the ladies are also playing along on the mystery, and it was awesome to watch them making their strip sets and cutting them into units for part 1. I love seeing what everyone has chosen to use!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Playing Hookey!

That would be ME!

I spent yesterday traipsing around Pennsylvania with Lois, digging through antique malls!

Can you believe that we didn't even hit a SINGLE quilt shop? NADDA-ONE! But Oh, the lovely antique textiles were petted, fondled, appreciated (okay, some were hysterically laughed at!) and SOME...are coming home!

You'll have to bear with me...There isn't room (OR LIGHT!) to get pics of what I bought in this hotel room...but I know you will love my finds if you can just wait a couple days for me to get a good way to get them photographed!

I did, however, bring you some eye candy!

Look at this lovely Sugar Loaf type quilt with the great red setting triangles! This quilt was a "display only" and it must have served its purpose because we made a beeline for it. :c)

It must have been our lucky day because we found blocks and textiles everywhere. Even Lois said it was unusual to find such a bounty!

This was an antique mall in Strausburg, PA and there were lovely things around each and every corner! I just love the simple designs of these blocks, and the very very VERY Pennsylvania Dutch fabrics and colors. Yummy!

Oh I love the rusty-madder/pumpkin color of this album quilt! And it was in such GOOD condition!

Yummy reds were everywhere...this log cabin was wonderfully quilted! And what you see in the left of the pic was a HUGE spinning wheel, I couldn't get a good shot without that wheel being there!

Close up of the wonderful late 1800s fabrics!

There are more pics to show...but if I post them all here now, you'll be scrolling forever, so I'll save some for a rainy day!

Today I left Bel Air, MD..and drove down to Annapolis! I went to the visitor's center and signed myself up for a 2.5 hour walking tour, and it was the best choice I could have made! My guide was fabulous, all kinds of historical knowledge and walking these historic streets and thinking...Wow...George Washington really was here....two signers of the declaration of Independence attended this church, seeing the other buildings, and having the awesome opportunity to stroll across the grounds of the Naval Academy, wander through the naval academy museum, walk down on the water front, have a wonderful lunch at the coolest diner ever (I had a hot pastrami on rye and a bowl of Maryland crab soup! Mmmm!) was just....I can't put it into words!

I'm now writing to you from Cambridge, MD...I have plans tomorrow to do some more sight seeing here, and in St Michaels, and perhaps on into Easton if there is time. The Southern Comforter's retreat doesn't start until 3pm, so there is a nice opportunity for me to do some more wandering and browsing.

Yesterday and today have been total medicine for my soul. You know, the internet does strange things. Blog reading and email lists and forums and facebook and all a sundry make us think we "KNOW" people. I'm going through a bit of a difficult time trying to find balance with how much of "ME" to put out there. No matter what you think you know about me ((or anyone else for that matter)), just know there is an awful lot that isn't said. That goes for any of us.

A couple weeks ago, a blogger that I had been reading for a while took her own life.

It's sad. It's senseless. It has made it really hard for me to try to be chatty on superficial things. And I don't know the story. All I knew is I had followed her blog, and then for a long time there was no update, and it was from someone else that I found out what happened, but not really what happened. I don't know why she did what she did or how or anything. It feels surreal that she is gone. I couldn't have stopped it, and by her blog you would have never have seen it coming. She was engaged to be married to a great guy...she loved her dog and posted about her doggie adventures all the time. Life seemed to be good, so what happened? I'll never know. There is no way to find out, and I think I'm not supposed to find out. Why are we so enthralled with the details of someone else's life? I'm just sad. She was a beautiful person, and no matter how public her blog was, evidently she was suffering behind the scenes and it has just made me think so much. What could have been different?

So...no matter how perfect someone's life looks like on the outside, we've all got our hurts and challenges and struggles on the inside. I love this pic. I think it's a good thing to remember especially through the upcoming holidays. Be Kind. For everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle~~ Plato.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Quilt stolen at Festival

I'm sharing this post because I think it is important to get the word out there! I hate hearing of stolen quilts, and this just puts all kinds of knots in my stomach. SHAME on whoever would do this! I hope they can get this quilt back...it's a beauty for sure.

Read the original post that caught my attention here below:

Quilt stolen at Festival

Let's all help get the word out!!

Maryland Road Trip!

So here I am in Edgewood, MD, kind of half way between Churchville where my workshops are, and Bel Air, where the guild meeting and my lecture was last night. I'm tucked in all cozy, and though yesterday was crazy busy with a workshop that ended at 3, and a dinner that started at 5 and a guild meeting that started at 7, getting me home about 9:30, all is good!

Before I left NC on Sunday, there had been a few emails flying back and forth that a group I've met with before was also having their retreat this coming weekend, just a couple days after I finish here in Bel Air!

So, just to be prepared....I packed a couple extra projects ;c) One must be prepared, you know? I will be retreating with the Southern Comforters of Bowie, MD this coming weekend! They have their retreat at the West River UMC Church camp which overlooks the river and is just lovely. I'm looking forward to some sew time and me time! ((Thanks for letting me crash the retreat, girls!! LOL!))

The driving up here was beautiful...in NC and Virginia, the colors were still radiant and I was amazed at how everything glowed against a crystal blue sky and a warm autumn sun. Temps were about 70! This is so nice for November!

I stopped in Richmond at the Fine Arts Museum to see the Winterthur collection. Oh man...there was one quilt that blew my mind! My pics aren't great..but...I couldn't help myself!

I just fell in LOVE with this quilt!

AUUUGHHH!! I could have stood there for hours and studied it!

So much work and perseverance! There were other delicious quilts too...several white on white beauties that really showed needlework skill. I've never seen stitches so tiny. I wish I could just sit and watch someone sew like that..see how they managed it. I know I try to get my stitches small and even, but maybe my hands are just too big? Hand quilting is like your own signature, you might not quilt like your neighbor...but I wish I could quilt like that!

The museum gift shop had this book for $40, but I also had my phone with my amazon app, and found it was only $26.00 on amazon with free shipping....so...I promptly ordered it from amazon, and it will be waiting for me when I get home. There is a huge difference between $26 and $40. A girl has to draw the line somewhere! I can't wait to read it and find out more about the quiltmakers!

I've been set up in my hotel room, but other than Sunday night ((I arrived about 5pm and had a few hours before bed)) I haven't had much time to sit and sew! But I've sewn a few pineapples while watching Law & Order and Bones :cD

I brought the janome because I am paper piecing and I need NEED the thread cutter feature for these projects, so because I was driving, the big beast came along! I'm glad I also brought my not-quite-ott-light because the lighting in hotels is dim at best!

This is the bin of crumbs I am working with! It's chock full of goodies and snippets....and I also found myself digging through people's cast offs and trimmings at yesterday's Sisters Choice workshop! It's amazing how far those little corner triangles can go with these blocks, and the more variety the better!

I better run or I'll be late for today's crumbs workshop!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Feeling Further North....

Or at least driving there!

The car is loaded with 3 duffels of trunkshow and workshop quilts. 4 cases of books. wheelie trolley cart. photographer's backdrop/quilt hanging stand.

Suitcase is almost packed, waiting on last bit of laundry. It goes like this....wash the clothes, fold them.....leave them on the bed for packing later, come back and find that OSCAR has lain all over everything and got them all white and furry (We are talking Navy Blue and Chocolate Brown pairs of brushed denims...you get the picture!) and it was easier to just re-wash them than to deal with mega-sheets of sticky roller removal tactics! ((You've done this too!! I know you have!!))

I packed up the hand quilting project...and the hexagon project....for my nights at the hotel.

When I travel there are things I bring with me to make my space **MINE**. My own insulated tea mug comes along. My external travel speakers for my ipod so I can have my own music. Good snacks like nuts, fruit, trail mix and granola or protein bars.

Often I will pull one of the quilts out of the trunkshow bags and have that on my bed too.

Because I have my own car this time....I loaded up more books on the mp3 player so I can listen as I drive.

And I also made a plan to stop at my half way point...Richmond, VA! Look what is going on at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts!

If I leave here around 8am like I am planning...I should hit Richmond by 12 or 12:30pm....perfect time for a lunch break, a fuel stop, and a walk-about seeing the quilts, don't you think?!

I worried that they wouldn't be open on Sunday but the info says "Open Daily 10-5" So I am assuming that means Sundays too.

I spent today de-cluttering. I had a stack of sterlite drawers that were stuffed with notions, rulers, pieces, parts, markers, template plastic, just EVERYTHING and they were a mess. I condensed 4 drawers down to 2! YEAH!

Someone tell me why I had 5...count them...5..packages of thread heaven all in different places? Was there a big sale or something that I can't remember?

And take it from me....glue sticks are not a long term storage item. Dried up glue sticks do NO ONE any good, so don't think you can stash them ahead of time. Believe me.

This clear-out spread like wild fire to another area....all the stationary/office supply type stuff that was in a 3 drawer wheelie cart. I cleared that out, threw a bunch of stuff away, and moved on to the two drawer office supply dresser that holds things like extra manila folders, mailing envelopes, tyvek envelopes, printer paper, post it pads, all that kind of thing....condensed everything down into those two drawers and now the 3 drawer wheelie cart is completely empty. Boy! Does that feel good! I have 2 large sterlite drawers and a 3 drawer wheelie cart EMPTY!

I'm thinking I don't even want to fill them back up with anything right now. I think they need to STAY EMPTY. And I need to move on to do the same thing in other areas of my basement studio down here.

I need to stop adopting all the ink pens from all the hotels I stay in. That's going to be a hard habit to break! *LOL*

So I'm ready. Ready for a good night's sleep...and ready to hit the road in the morning.

The Hexagon Quilt That Wasn't --- Quite!

One of the fun things for me in traveling around and visiting other quilters is the show and tell they bring to ME!

Last Saturday ((Yes, could it have been a week ago already?!)) Mary Jo brought a very special quilt top to class with her.

The story goes ((Correct me if I'm wrong or missing anything, Mary Jo!)) that Mary Jo spent days and hours pawing over this quilt top on Ebay. And who wouldn't!? You should see the fabrics in it. From what she told me, it dates from the 1800's, was made in England, and it IS in the English paper piecing method. Her hubby took pity on her and bought it for her as a gift. WHAT A GUY!! :cD I think he would be a keeper, don't you?

The funny thing about it is...it starts with "lozenge" shaped hexies in the center...and moves out to regular sized hexies somewhere towards the ends, but they are all different sizes than each other and believe me....this is one quilt that will NEVER QUILT OUT! :cD

Just for sheer perseverance, the maker of this quilt deserves a round of applause! The pieces are SO small, and you should see the prints in it. Just for that reason alone, it is a vintage fabric lover's dream. A catalogue of thousands of prints.

Can you see the center how baggy/saggy it is? LOVE IT! In fact, if you look closely, it bags in the shape of a heart. :cD ((Or is that my eyes doing tricks on me?!))

The papers used on the back were from old letters and such, you can read some of the hand written words. She said she found a date somewhere in there, but I can't remember what the date is.

Believe me...my 3/4" per side hexies looked ginormously gargantuan compared to the pieces in this quilt.

Until I uploaded these pics, I didn't even notice that it is set in what appear to be alternating rows of dark/light/dark/light! Do you think she had a plan for this pattern?

So this leaves us to ponder. Was there one maker who started it? And someone else who tried to finish it? The edges are not even, it was clearly still a "work in progress" How many pieces? I have no idea! How many YEARS did it take someone to do this? Where did her fabrics come from? Her own scrap bag? Family, friends...other quilters....trading perhaps? We'll never know!

What a wonderful piece of quilt history and I'm so glad I had the opportunity to handle it, to fondle it, to read the words on the backing papers, to question and ponder and smile and wonder about the maker and who she was, what she loved, who she loved, what her dreams were, her fears were. What other quilts did she have dancing in her head while she worked on this one long-term project?

It's not about how LONG it takes, really, is it? Again, it's about the wonder and the pleasure and the joy and the journey. Just piece it. Don't worry about the time frame, just do it. Even one hexagon a day...is progress!

Friday, November 12, 2010


I knew I couldn't close the drawing until at least midnight--HAWAII time! SO, instead of waiting up until something like 5am eastern time to do it, I just decided to do it when I woke up! Sounds logical right?

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!515 COMMENTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ((Yes, I'm still in shock!!))

Our first winner....ARLENE in California!

Arlene has won a signed copy of 100 blocks, volume 2, from me!

Congrats Arlene! Please email me at quiltville@gmail.com with your snail mail address so I can get it right out to you!

Our second winner...Linda in Illinois!

Linda, your copy will be coming directly from Quiltmaker Magazine! Please email me at quiltville@gmail.com with your snail mail address so I can pass it on to them.

I am just so thrilled for both of you, and overwhelmed with the response. Shoot. I should give away things more often! *LOL!!!*

Happy Quilting, Y'all! :cD

Mystery Prep!

Welcome to the new-bees, the old-bees, and the excited-bees! I've had emails asking what else there is to do besides gather the fabrics for the Mystery.

Other than gathering your fabrics, there really isn't anything you need to do to prep, without me going into a whole lot of detail and opening up a whole lot of questions that would take much more explanation than if I just do it per clue! So that kind of prep will come with each step of the mystery. It's just easier that way.

It's only a few more days, I know you can wait!

But here are some things you CAN do:

*Be sure you have a new blade in your cutter.

*De-clutter your cutting surfaces and your sewing area.

* Clean and oil your machine, and change the needle.

* Wind a bunch of bobbins.

*Buy yourself your favorite smell-good candle so you can bring MOOD AMBIANCE into your sewing space!

*Make a menu plan and shop ahead so that you can throw things in the crock pot and immerse yourself in sewing and not have to worry about dinner.

((Here is a great recipe for Crockpot Chicken Cacciatore!))

*Get your CD's ready, or download books to your MP3 player so you can enjoy a good "read" while sewing! Those who watch TV while you sew...get those DVDs out and pick the best ones that you can "listen" to and not have to look up so often.

*Plan on washing the sheets and bed linens the day before....so you get a good night's sleep on the 18th in a freshly made bed. Okay, this might sound silly, but that is the best sleep in the world to me, new clean tucked-in-tightly sheets!

Do you have a leader/ender project ready? Even if I am doing one step repetitively while chain piecing, I don't chain lengths of pieces together any longer than my ironing board. When I get that long, I run a leader/ender through.

Otherwise....big long long long chains of pieces get tangled and twisted and it's a mess. Ironing board length means I can lay the whole chain up there, press, cut apart, de-dog-ear if needed and go sew some more. It gets me out of my chair more, which is what we need. It also helps me breeze through those leader/enders more often than once every 500 pairs of triangles O_o !

Are there any other things you like to do? Think of this as our Holiday Stay-cation At Home Retreat! What other ideas give you the best, most relaxing, most fun "at-home" sewing experience?


Thursday, November 11, 2010

Quiltmaker Blog Tour!

It's my turn to be on the Quiltmaker Magazine Blog Tour for 100 Blocks, Volume 2!

The 100 Blocks, Volume 2 Blog Tour is running Nov. 8-12, 2010. Get the inside scoop from over 60 designers with lots of exciting prizes all week long! You can check all the fun things going on now at Quiltmaker's Blog: Quilty Pleasures!

But don't click to go there YET! Finish THIS post first, THEN go surfing :cD

The issue should be available near you on or around November 16th...can you feel the excitement building??

My Block is called BIRTHDAY GIRL! Because...I designed it and sewed it up on my last Birthday, January 23rd. I think it was the BEST thing to do on my birthday, don't you? A commemorative block. Spending the day at my machine...perfect!

You will find my block, #174 on page 58 of the issue.

Those of you who know me, know I "LOVE" a challenge, and I LOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE digging into my scraps to make things happen!

In my patchwork I am always looking for a design that will use up things that I have on hand, left over half square triangles from other projects, bricks, squares, strips of pre-cut this and that and everything to pull it off!

This block was no exception. The only HARD part for me was to design this in a 12" block, because....well.....you know....I like things SMALL! So the only way to combat the GINORMOUS size of the blocks was to fill it up with lots of little pieces so it didn't look clunky. LOL!

I dug into my bin of 2.5" X 4.5" bricks and pulled out the purples. I dug into my 2.5" Precut square box for some random neutrals, yellows and golds! And I dug for extra half square triangles from other projects and pulled some red/yellow-gold ones, and some red/neutral ones too! The fill-in neutral triangles also were cut from scrap strips..the only thing BIG I had to cut was the corner triangles.

Having scraps cut into usable sizes meant that I could assemble this block from a multitude of fabrics on the quick!

I've even played with a sample layout! If you set the quilt with scrappy neutral sashings (I cut these 2" wide so they finish at 1.5") you get an alternate look of shoo-flies that appear where the block corners come together with the red cornerstones. COOL! ((I love secondary designs!))

The Quilt as shown, with 30 blocks, an inner border cut 1.5" and an outer border cut 5" Will give you a quilt that finishes around 80.5" X 94", a good size!

So, now the fun part! Would you like to WIN a copy of 100 Blocks, Vol 2?! All you need to do is leave a blog comment here, and please say something about WHY you like to visit me here at Quiltville! I'll use a number generator to pull not one, but TWO winners! Someone will win a signed copy from me, and I will mail it to you personally! A second someone will win a copy directly from Quiltmaker magazine!

Ready? Set? Comment! ((And please be sure to include your email address if you don't have that visible in your settings so that I can contact you back about your win, and to get your snail-mail address!)) Scroll down to the bottom of the post, below my signature, look for the link that says "SNIPS BY OTHERS" That is where you click to comment if you haven't been here before!

And DON'T worry about how many comments there already are! Everyone gets an equal chance! I want to hear from you :c)

If you haven't clicked to "FOLLOW" ((In the sidebar, down the page)) Please do so, so you can keep up with the doings here...if you didn't know yet, The Roll, Roll, Cotton Boll Mystery is starting on the 19th! You won't want to miss that!

If you are a facebooker, please "LIKE" the Quiltville Friend Page! We are having a lot of fun you won't want to miss!

And if you are NEW here, welcome! Please be sure to check out Quiltville.com and browse through all the free patterns, tips, techniques and other quilty stuff.

I'm also honored and thrilled to have a regular running column in every issue of Quiltmaker Magazine called "Addicted To Scraps!" Each issue gives you a block design to help use those precious scraps in your collection. You won't want to miss a single issue! Keep On Scrapping On!

The Best Things in Life are Quilted!!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Set The Date!!

Tomorrow is MY date for my blog to appear on Quiltmaker Magazine's Blog Tour....for the 100 blocks by 100 designers volume 2!

There will be a giveaway of TWO free issues of the magazine (You don't want to miss this issue!) and more info on my block and how it came to be, along with a sample layout!

All you'll have to do is leave a comment on tomorrow's blog tour post, and I'll use a random generator to pick the winners. Please be sure to include your email address in your post so I can reach you. Not everyone who comments has their addresses visible in their own blogger settings, and I NEED to be able to let you know if you won!

Y'all come back now, y'hear! :cD