Thursday, June 28, 2007

Coming Up for Air!

I received an email from Linda today saying:

"I check your blog everyday and I am worried because you have not written in a week- I pray that there is not anything wrong and you are just gone on vacation or at least having a good time what ever you are doing-"

I figured I better check in! I didn't realize it had been that long, but it has!

I am still alive and kicking, it's just been a crazy week. I have finished a couple customer quilts in the past week, and I'm still working on more. My massage schedule has been full this week as well, in fact wednesday I took my last client at 6:45pm which put me home at close to 9pm. I was SO toast I didn't even check email until this morning, but also had clients today so I didn't have time to write a blog post.

My exciting news is I have been contacted by Quiltmaker magazine again, and they want my blue ridge beauty quilt along with an article on leaders/enders! I'm thrilled! I'll be sending that off this week, and it should appear in the January issue.

My BAD news is that Sadie tore up 3 antique quilts when left home alone :c( I'm so FRUSTRATED with her. From now on, she is kenneled if no one is home, or locked outside. It's not as easy as it sounds, as buddy has learned how to open the doggie door even when it is closed. But then he used to open the gates too until we put U bolts through the latches. So he opens the doggie door, and lets her back in the house. *pulling hair* And yes, the quilts are shredded beyond repair.I'm just sick about it. One of the quilts was the one that I bought with Lucy on our Paducah trip. That one I think I can repair. But the others....whhhaaaaa.

In my 15 minutes a day of cutting/sewing (I'm really trying to do a bit for myself each day..just HAVE to to keep my sanity) I am having to recreate another star struck quilt off the directions on my website. Now that I am doing trunk shows and teaching....I have to have a SAMPLE! My last ones went to hurricane katrina quilt drives. I think I have remade this quilt at least 6 times. All in different color ways. This time I decided to use those plaid shirts that are still filling up bins around here. So I've been cutting 2.5" strips from plaid shirts...and matched them up with pre-cut neutrals from the neutral 2.5" strip bin and have sewn them up into pairs. They are now ironed. The next step will be to whack them into 4.5" sub cuts. I think that is tomorrow evening's job after I get through the day. I've got 3 massages on the books tomorrow afternoon and am still quilting from home in the morning before I go into the office!

So....does that 'splain why you haven't heard from me in a week!? :cD I hope all is well with everyone out there in quilt maverick land!


Thursday, June 21, 2007

15 mins of sewing....test block..

This is my 3rd post today? I wasn't going to post this until later, but I wanted to show you the mock up sample block with the music fabric. The size quilt I decided to do uses 30 12" blocks set with sashings and cornerstones.

At first, the inner star didn't show, the fabrics were too neutral...so I brought in a brighter gold for the inner star. The outer star is the black with gold music stuff, and the 2"X3.5" rectangles are the sheet music fabric.

I'm not a big novelty fabric person....but when the fabric fits the person that I'm making the quilt for, it is fun to put something in that has personal meaning for them. I can honestly say that this has the "feel" of a Bonnie quilt, but the music is my choir director all the way!


Squishie Sent!

I marched down to the post office with my squishy in hand....a card....an FQ...

It costs $1.80 to mail an FQ to Lucy from the USA. I even took a pic to show you! :c)

And thanks to photoshop I was able to blank out Lucy's address so she doesn't freak out that I am posting it openly to the whole world ;c)

I have had so many responses already from those of you wanting to help shower her with squishies and hugs! I can just imagine how she will feel being on the receiving end of all this quilter type outpouring of hearts!


Squishies For Lucy

Hi everyone. I received an email from Lucy this morning to make a post on her blog regarding her father. He is nearing the end of his battle with cancer, and they think he only has a few days left to live. He has stopped all medication except for the pain meds, and hopefully they are keeping him comfortable and free from pain while he goes through this next step out of this life.

Lucy is very close to her father, so this has been a very hard journey for her as well, most of you who have been reading our blog ring since Lucy joined know that he has had multiple surgeries over the past few years and it really has been a long haul.

I am feeling particularly torn because my friend is so far away and there is nothing I can do for her from here but keep her and her family in my thoughts and prayers. Maybe you are feeling the same way!

I would really like to do something for Lucy, and I thought how fun it would be to fill her snail mail box with FQ's! She LOVES poison green and cheddar, along with all the civil war repros. One FQ in an envelope shouldn't cost very much to send to the netherlands. I'm going to mail one this morning, and will come back and report just how much it costs.

Would you be willing to dig into your stash and send an FQ and a card to Lucy to let her know she has our support?

I am not going to post her snail mail address here, but I will give it to you if you email me to let me know you are interested in sending hug-squishies to Lucy. Please mail me at bonnie@quiltville.com instead of just commenting on this post. I will send you her snail mail address.

I'll report back on the cost of sending one FQ! Let's BOMBARD HER!!!


Monday, June 18, 2007

Donation Details!

Cathedral Stars!

A Special Donation Quilt with a Special Purpose!

I designed, pieced and quilted this quilt as a donation for Trinity Episcopal Cathedral's 41st annual Trinity Bazaar to be held Nov 3rd, 2007.

100% of the proceeds of this quilt will benefit the following:

* The Children's Garden, a pre-school, day-care which provides childcare for children whose families are homeless or in need. The requested funds will partially fund an assistant teacher in the Toddler One classroom.

* The Cooperative Ministry, which was founded by five area churches (including Trinity) to verify need and give assistance to those who are at risk. It's clients are mostly the working poor but it also assists a large number of homeless individuals. Our funds will go to the Ministry's Emergency Assistance Program which helps with such things as rent, utilities, medicine, clothing, furniture, bus tickets, work boots and tools, emergency food packages and hygiene kits, etc.

* St Lawrence Place is Trinity's transitional housing program for homeless families seeking self-sufficiency and permanent housing. Our funds will go to rehabilitate the Children's Program Building.

* Salvation Army Kids 2 Kamp provides an opportunity for the poorest of Columbia, SC's children to attend a camp whose purpose is to serve the physical, social and spiritual needs of the camplers. Our funds will enable 20 children to attend camp.

* Young Life seeks to introduce middle school and high school students to Christ and help them grow in their faith. Our funds will provide full and partial scholarships for Columbia, SC's middle and high school students to attend Young Life Camp.

How you can help!

You can purchase tickets for this quilt at $1.00 each, or 6 for $5.00.

To purchase your tickets via snail-mail, you can send a check written to Trinity Cathedral for the amount of tickets you wish to receive. Include the check (it is a tax deductible donation) and a self-addressed, stamped envelope in your mailing envelope so we can mail your ticket stubs back to you. Address the mailing envelope to:

Bonnie Hunter
Trinity Bazaar Donation Quilt
124 Wicklow Ct
Irmo, SC 29063.

You can make a payment via PayPal by sending your payment to bonnie@quiltville.com. If paying by PayPal, please include $1.00 extra to cover the paypal surcharge, and the cost of stamps and envelopes to return your ticket stubs to you.

For instance, if you want 12 tickets for $10.00, please make your payment for $11.00 instead of $10.00.

In your information, please include your snail mail address so we can send you your lucky stubs!

I am also in the process of setting up a shopping cart with paypal for your convenience. Give me some time and hopefully it will be up and running soon!

Let's face it. SOMEONE is going to win this quilt for $1.00! It could be YOU!

Close up of the quilting! Quilted with Signature verigated thread.

No Quilt is complete without the label!

Thank you so much for your willingness in the past (and the future) to dig deep and give to those who are so much less fortunate than ourselves. You've been there through fund raising for the American Diabetes Association, and for the Multiple Sclerosis Society. This time all of the funds raised will benefit children and youth in getting a foothold up in life. I am grateful for what little I can do to help, and I can't do it without you! Without you, this quilt is just a quilt. With you and your donations, this quilt can be the catalyst to so much more!


Saturday, June 16, 2007

Quilted Reasonings....

The donation quilt has been passed off to "the committee" so they can start selling tickets. I wanted to get a good photo shot of the quilt with the binding and sleeve and label completed, but there is plenty time to do that yet. It was so rainy yesterday that I didn't dare do it.

Now that that is off my plate......we all know how empty plates don't stay empty for long! My choir director and canon organist is getting married in October. I have this wonderful music fabric just calling to me to be used in a quilt for him and his soon to be wife. I don't know her very well, and I don't know her tastes....so hopefully she won't go "ewww" and decide what I come up with just doesn't fit her decorating scheme, you know?

I had toyed with the idea of a signature quilt, where the choir members can sign, but I thought maybe I would do that with a panel on the back....

I pulled the yardage to get me started on the color scheme. The music prints are black with gold music notes and treble/bass clefs, etc...the neutral music print is very antiquey looking. Both have a bit of gold sparkle to them and look classy. I have another antiquey paisly print. I wanted a 3rd color because I didn't want a black/neutral quilt. I thought green would be nice! I haven't made a green quilt in a while, so it would help use some stuff.

You can tell by the piles that I have a bin of neutral 2" strips, and a small pile of green 2" strips. I need more! And they need to be in the right shade of green....not too blue, not too yellow...I want them to blend with the one inspirational green piece of yardage I pulled out. So, I'm going to go through my FQs and cut more 2" strips.

This is the block I played with in Block base! I like it because I can strip piece the 4 patch units easily....the pieces are easily rotary cut, and I can do quick corners on the rectangles for the star points. I was thinking of using the black fabric with the music notes for all the star points to add some uniformity. It just LOOKS like a masculine quilt, doesn't it? My hardest part is how/where to use the sheet music fabric. It might look funny when I go to cut it. Will have to see.

Here is a pic of the quilt layout I drew in EQ5. I'm thrilled with it. The quilt doesn't have to be done til Oct..so I can work on it a bit at a time in small moments and have plenty of time to get it quilted.

Even though this quilt started by pulling yardage for inspiration, I can still work my scraps in. Working with yardage also is going to make NEW scraps to work into my bins as I trim leftovers down and feed them wherever I need them to go.


Thursday, June 14, 2007

Bonnie Does Burnsville ! :c)

Hey everyone! I am resurfacing after a wonderful trip to Burnsville for a lecture/trunkshow. Yes, you know how nervous I was before going..I just want to let you know what a wonderful time it turned out to be!

I met up with Fran and another guild member (sorry, can't remember her name!) at Bellagio's Bistro outside of Ashville. It was a wonderful cozy place and we had a great meal and got to know each other a bit better. Just before getting to Bellagios, it had started to pour and hail! Luckily by the time we were done with dinner, it had cleared up. The air smelled so clean and fresh.

From there it was about a 45 minute drive up into the mountains of western NC to Burnsville! The ride was very scenic up in the Blue Ridge. Lots of old barns, old country churches and church yards....just beautiful.

We got to the town center and unloaded everything. I had brought my lil red wagon to help haul the bundles of quilts. You know, quilts are HEAVY when they are all full to king size? The wagon made it easy to wheel from the car to the room where the guild met. I'm glad I brought it.

I met so many wonderful ladies..the show and tell was fabulous! They had also spent the month of may working on quilts for project linus. You can see all the quilts lining the walls....they are all so great and will be loved by the children who receive them.

I need to confess to something. When I am nervous, I ramble! To make things worse, I left my note cards at home on the computer desk, so I was flying blind as far as my lecture went. I'm afraid I jumped around a bit! But I had enough to talk about with scrap organization and how it works for me, the methods I use for piecing with leaders/enders, and showing quilts and answering questions, that we filled up more than my designated hour :c) I know where I need to slim down for the next time I travel to do this, and where to explain things a bit better. It's a lecture in progress, and I learned a lot!

Most of all I learned that quilters are wonderful anywhere you go!

Thanks to Fran and the Mountain Piecemaker's Guild of Burnsville, NC for inviting me!


Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Up With the Early Birdies....

I'm up early...4:30 am....flutters,you know? I've separated the quilts I'm taking for the trunk show/lecture into categories.... by strip size, by technique..whether it was leaders/enders or not...even Oscar thinks it is way too early for this kind of activity!

I've got sample blocks, a few unquilted tops (for fun....people need to know that even "pros" have tops that sit around for eons!)

I've pulled my favorite tools that make scrap quilting easy for me...

I've had a cup of tea and a slice of banana bread and it's not even 6 am yet!

Most of all...pulling out all this stuff and how I plan to explain it to people gets my juices flowing on why I love this whole quilting thing so much! When you prepare to "uncover" your passion about anything to a bunch of strangers, who hopefully have the same love and drive you do.....it just reaffirms that "Yes! This is who I am! this is what I love to do, and this is why I love to do it!"

My finale is the orphan block quilt with "Bonnie Loves To Play With Blocks" border. It's still in the hand quilting phase too, but it is a culmination of every technique I'll be talking about, so I think it is a good one to end on.

I've also got tickets for the raffle quilt...I sold $60 worth last night at my guild meeting in Aiken. That's not bad for a small guild meeting. I hope it does really well because 100% of the proceeds are going to local agencies...the homeless shelters, housing, child care, etc. It's a big "feel good" and help the community project.

I'm going to set up with pay pal to be able to sell tickets for it off my website and blog too.....That's on the agenda within the next couple of weeks.

Okay..here I go...time to shower!


Monday, June 11, 2007

Still Plugging Along!

I'm still chained to the quilting machine! Can you believe it? No piecing for Bonnie, and I have a gazillion ideas floating around in my head, and I have to focus focus focus myself to keep my priorities in order :c)

While I was quilting this weekend, I had good company! Don't ask me how Oscar likes being in such a tight space,but he was kind enough to slide out a paw and wave hello from time to time! He is on top of my scrap bin drawers underneath the quilting machine table, and there is NOT a lot of head room in there!

Emmy Lou likes it in there too......I think because the dogs (namely Sadie Jane!)leave them alone when they can't be found.

This quilt took FOREVER to quilt, or so it seems. It is feathered to death as you can tell by the pictures. I love the simple colors of this quilt, and the motion of the pinwheels. This quilt belongs to Catherine, and I am delivering it to her at guild meeting in Aiken tonight.She's been patiently waiting for it....I hope she likes how it turned out as much as I do.

Tomorrow is a big day for me! I am travelling to Burnsville, NC to teach a lecture on the Scrap User's System to a guild there, and do a bit of trunk showing at the same time. I'm nervous! My tummy is all in flutters and I hope I have everything prepared right. I don't have to leave here until noon tomorrow to be there in time....so I will have the morning to pack the car, and use the sticky roller on any quilts that have accumulated cat fur...*LOL*

I've also been asked to submit a schedule of classes/workshops/lectures for the 2009 North Carolina Quilt Symposium! I know it's a ways out there, but....it would be great to be on the staff there. They typically have 20 to 25 teachers on the faculty and have a yearly attendance of 350-400 students. Sounds fun, huh??


Saturday, June 09, 2007

Real Men Quilt!

I have some wonderful male quilters as customers! And because I am trying to be a "good girl" and work on customer's quilts to help me get caught up from time off during oral surgery, etc...I thought I would introduce you to one of my clients!

Jacque and Linda winter in Florida, and summer in Maine. Sounds lovely, doesn't it? I would love to go to Maine some day...it sounds so peaceful!

I met Jacque through the net, and I have quilted a few quilts for him. He does spectacular work....all pieced by HAND! Amazingly even stitches, and his color sense is terrific! Just look at what he did for the border of this dresden plate:

His latest quilt is in shades of blues...I love this quilt!

I finished the quilting last night, and it was hard to get detail shots when it is dark out. The full quilt shot turned out really blurry so I hope you can see the detail from these other shots.

I especially like the texture of the back! Way to go Jacque,I can't wait to see what you come up with next!

In Stitches - - -

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Putting It Back Together...

Thanks all for the sympathy (and letting me whine!) about my computer woes! Through this all, I've learned many things. Don't save all your saved emails in your email program! Open a folder in your documents and save it there. This way if email crashes, those needed files will still be accessible.

I still haven't uploaded all my programs, but will do that as I need them I guess. Time for computer dinking around has been short,so right now it's bare bones for me.

I got my stitches out from the oral surgery today. THANK HEAVENS! They were kind of itching me,and my tongue couldn't leave them alone...you know how it goes? So...everything is looking good in the tooth department.

My fun news is that I received THIS book in the mail! I thought...huhhh? I knew I didn't order it! But it turns out that a customer I quilted for had her quilt appear in this book, and she was kind enough to name me as the quilter! How cool is that? I'll have to scan her quilt pic so I can show you which one it is. She did a great job on it. It is on page 45..Stars Over Tuscon...by Sherall Donovan.

I'm running to dinner with my son Jason and his girlfriend...and his girlfriend's mother. (Hi Charlotte!) Charolotte is a quilter too! That is another fun thing for today :c)


Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Whhhhhaaaaaa computer wipe-out!!!!

It happened this morning...I've been having trouble for a few days with programs going "not responding" and I tried a "system recovery" trying to set things back to when they were working..but it didn't work.

This morning, I put in my password....and could never get to the desktop! It was just STUCK! I tried and tried and tried, but the puter would not start, and so I had to....GAAAKKKK...reformat my hard drive.

Which means...I didn't get a chance to back up everything...I lost mega pics and email addresses, even the info I need to restart my own email! I can't even remember the name of my webhost or the website address to get to their customer service dept so they can help me get set up again. I'm hosed. :c(

So....while I work this all out, if anyone needs to reach me, you can reach me at my alternate email: quiltville@yahoo.com

Judy L and I use the same webhost so I am hoping she can get to me with some info so I can get set back up again. If not....this is why I'm not answering your emails, I can't get to them!


Monday, June 04, 2007

Feather Frosting..

Bonnie needs to hunker down and get caught up on her scheduled customer quilts! I've had a lot of things that have pulled me away lately and I am re-dedicating myself to getting things finished as scheduled. It isn't easy when scheduling your life 8 or 9 months in advance. You never know what whammies are going to sneak up on you and throw your schedule off.

I haven't helped matters much with getting so side tracked! So here I am...putting priorities back in order and aiming to get back where I should be.

This is a customer's flying geese quilt. All the open spaces seemed perfect for "frosting" it with feathers, and it does have the texture of a wedding cake!

I love this picture of the back....more frosting :c)

I've got clients lined up through the day for massage, and I have the raffle quilt with me to work on the binding in between clients at the office..so that should keep me busy for a while.

I have a guild meeting tonight, so I won't be home until late! Busy Busy Monday.....


Saturday, June 02, 2007

Quilting Fool :cD

I've been at it all day. This quilt has driven me to distraction. I feel the need to get it together as soon as possible so the other ladies and I can have as much opportunity to sell tickets for it as possible. The fall bazaar is in November, and that is when the winning ticket will be drawn.

But in the mean time, there are lots of functions that we can take the quilt to, and give other people the chance to win this quilt for $1.00 too!

In a bit over a week I'm traveling to speak at the Mountain Piecemaker's Guild in Burnsville, NC. I really think this quilt needs to come with me as part of my demo of the "Scrap User's System" don't you? :cD The only fabrics in this quilt that were yardage and not scraps are the blue star points, the red/black half square triangles, black setting triangles, and the red and blue border fabrics. The lights were all 2" and 3.5" strips, and all the jewel tones were 2" strips, all from the pre-cut scrap bins.

However...EVERYTHING came from stash! Even the backing! So I am feeling quite righteous with this quilt going together the way it has. Of course, this again proves that I have just too much fabric. :cÞ

I used the "Fay Feathers" Panto, sticking with my original thought that I still need to simplify my life and still get the job done. The quilt was SO busy, and I really wasn't wanting to outline in every 1.5" square in this thing. I used verigated thread because no matter what one color I could have chosen, it was going to contrast against most everything, and I didn't want white or cream over the whole thing...

For those asking, Yes, this pattern will go up on my website as soon as time allows. I'll also have a way for you to purchase tickets as the time gets closer. I was thinking of setting it up with paypal..has anyone done that? I'm not sure the percentage they would take or if it would be worth it. Other wise, I think sending a check for the tickets and including a self-addressed-stamped-envelope with your check would work just fine and that way I can return the ticket stubs to you.

But for now...it's onto the binding/hanging sleeve/label. And I'm still thinking of a name for this thing? So far the only thing that sticks is Stars & Ladders.


Friday, June 01, 2007

Getting There.....

Pain meds make me loopy. Without pain meds, I have too much mouth pain to function...so it has been a fairly loopy day! Most of my swelling is in my upper lip and on the underneath side of that lip...and goes up behind my nose. Hard to explain...and definitely hard to get an ice pack where I really need it to be.

I slept a good part of the afternoon again, and then decided after a soft rice and chicken dinner that I could start sewing the star blocks together for the raffle quilt. it went fairly fast since all the pieces were cut and I was mindlessly chain piecing, just feeding things pretty brainlessly underneath the presser foot. Man I love that seam guide! Even loopy sewing turns out straight with a good seam allowance!

Here I have the blocks laid out on the floor. I need some more solid black for the setting triangles, so I can't get any farther than this right now. Is it starting to look like the diagram??


Little Swollen, but not bad.....

Yesterday was my dreaded oral surgery for the extraction/bone graft/implant...

It wasn't as bad as I feared. Actually I would choose this over having my cervix frozen any day! Someone said that after 40 it's patch patch patch,and they are so RIGHT!

I came home, took pain meds and slept most of the day.....I woke up after 5pm! My face is a bit swollen...my upper lip and to the right of my nose, hard to smile, but other than that, not a lot of pain, just some discomfort. So it should even get better from here. I'm so glad I had it done and didn't wait to do it later. I'm on soft foods for at least a week. Maybe I'll lose some weight? I doubt it...the soft foods include ice cream! (good for swelling too)

Last night I sat and watched TV and finished the binding and the sleeve on my Shirt Tails quilt. I took pics this morning. I really like how this one turned out...even the back! Several years ago I received a quilt top for machine quilting that was too fragile to quilt, but the pattern was sooo cool I had to replicate it before sending it back. It was for a large star that made a 4 block quilt. Well, you know how it goes, I only got two done and I never got back to it. So I decided that these two large blocks were going to go on the back of this quilt. I think I like the back as much as the front and it sure makes things interesting!Again, this one was perfect for the baptist fans.

I'm taking it easy still today and through the weekend per docs orders....

Oh, and while I was taking quilt pics, I snapped a shot of Jeff's car....