Thursday, October 31, 2013

Quilt-Cam 10/31/2013

Happy Halloween, Everyone!

It’s a lovely last evening of October here in North Carolina, even warm enough to have the basement window in the studio open for a bit of fresh air with a chorus of crickets chirping away in the background.

Living in North Carolina, we get used to things being “LOUD” outside all through the spring, summer and into fall – and it seems weird in the winter when the outdoors falls silent for the winter.  We get so used to the cacophony of sounds that when it is silent, we really realize just how noisy it is to folks who are not used to it.

I don’t know if you’ll be able to hear the sound of cricket song during quilt cam, but listen close and you just might.

These pictures are from Ingrid who has been busily sewing crumb strips on her vintage Durkopp sewing machine.

I love seeing vintage machines with strange-to-me names from other countries.  Have you seen a Durkopp machine before?

Ingrid writes:

Hi, Bonnie,
today I treadled and treadled and ... I hope my back will not hurt me tomorrow. I sewed the strips on my 50 year old motorized Naumann-machine onto old telephone book paper (your tip), but I want to sew them together with my Dürkopp treadle machine from 1932. Do you see the ikea-lamp (also tip from you)?
I love scrap sewing!!
Ingrid from Germany


I spy the Ikea lamp!

I also notice the manual for the Durkopp treadle machine on the window sill.  Great that she still has that!  The lace curtains also remind me so much of trips I have taken to Europe –I’m looking forward to Germany again in December.  Not very far away now!  I also would deduce that this is a European photo because of the power strip—different voltage! So different, yet so the same, all around the world, aren’t we?


Here are her crumb strips, sewn into pairs on her 1932 treadle. Lovely!

As for me I’m working on these tonight:

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More Boxy Star block quarters are under way!

I haven’t touched them since we last had Quilt-Cam last week – and they’ve been calling my name – okay, MOCKING me – since returning on Monday evening, but I haven’t been able to much else than clean around them and tell them “Be patient! It’s your turn tonight!”

Ready to sew? Click the arrow on the screen below to start the feed.  I hope you brought a project – let’s kick some more productivity out of this lovely autumn evening!

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Mid Day Funny! Meet Grace, Super Quilter!

I’ve been sorting, cutting and cleaning in the studio today.

It might not sound like fun to you, but to have the freedom to do it now that the quilts have been shipped off for photography—this day is MINE!

And I also get the chance to share a terrific Halloween themed funny with you…

This email came from Grace, who writes:

Bonnie, I thought you might enjoy this..  We were supposed to be super heroes at school today, this is what I came up with.  I had a large piece of panel fabric that I had been given in a box of fabric..
I had no idea why I kept it till this idea popped into my mind and I used every scrap of it.
I haven’t made it to one of your classes yet but hope to after I retire next May..

Grace Moritz
Super Quilter

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Super Quilter to the Rescue!
Able to leap tall piles of fabric in a single bound!  Taming scraps and UFOs at every turn!  And still cooks and cleans and teaches school to boot!
Thanks for sharing, Grace, you ARE a Super Quilter in my book!

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A Tale of Three Choice Sisters!

Happy Halloween, everyone!

Halloween is one of my favorite holidays –it just brings a feeling of childhood remembered, of tricks, treats and the smell of an abundance of sweets all mixed up in the bottom of my plastic pumpkin trick-or-treat bucket!

Halloween will be quiet here – kids are grown, and there are only 4 houses on my cul-de-sac – not close together, and I think there is only one family with young kids.  It’s dark down our winding driveway and we just don’t get door knockers down here.

But we are doing Quilt-Cam to celebrate instead!  So I hope you’ll join me tonight at 9pm Eastern ---I’ve got some more Boxy Star blocks to cut out today and my plan is to keep working on those, along with my Split 9 Patch blocks as Leaders & Enders.

All that is left in the book writing department is the back page stuff ---the Resources page, and the About the Author.  I’ll hopefully get those sent off today, and be able to spend the rest of my time sewing.

And I’m pinching myself that I have a complete week home yet before I leave for Texas and the Rio Grande Valley Quilters in Weslaco on the 7th of November!

This amount of time home is pushing me to do some deep cleaning too ---but not TOO much, a girl’s gotta sew!

I received a really fun email from Kathy last evening and I just have to share their story and photos with you.  If you had to choose one quilt pattern to make as sisters – what would you choose?  Sister’s Choice, of course!  If you are new here, the free pattern for Sister’s Choice is found under the free patterns tab at the top of the blog.

She writes:

Dear Bonnie,
My two sisters and I are quilters. We learned from our mother. For her 90th birthday we girls joined forces to make Mom a birthday quilt. That quilt gave me the idea that we should make a sister quilt. While looking on the internet for ideas I found your pattern for "Scrappy Sister's Choice Block".
 I proposed the idea to my sisters, gave them the pattern and each sister chose a color for her points. After we each created our 72 quilt blocks we traded 1/3 of the blocks to each sister. Each assembled the quilt top with our own vision and flair.
 My oldest sister owns a long arm machine so my other sister and I traveled to Texas from Pennsylvania for sisters' sewing camp to learn to use the long arm and finish our quilts. They are all bond with the same fabric and they all have the same pattern quilted on the border.
It is amazing to see how alike and different they are. Just like us.
Attached is the results.

Thanks for the pattern, Scrappy Sister's Choice. It was the perfect pattern for our project.
Kathy Wolff and my sisters, Jo Bookwalter and Anne Owens

SO, SO Cute!!  What a trio of great scrappy quilts from some very scrap happy sisters!  Thanks for sharing the photos and the story with me Kathy!
Time to get a move on, tidy the studio, cut more blocks, do some writing, and see you tonight on Quilt-Cam at 9pm Eastern!

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Wednesday, October 30, 2013

And They’re Off to Photography!

Exciting and nerve wracking – almost like sending your babies off to college!

Today I finished bundling up the quilts, making sure that they were as clean of threads ((and cat hair!)) as they possibly could be.

some had labels that weren’t even signed yet – how is that for procrastination?

Pigma pen located ---my labels are simple.  Name of quilt, my signature, city and date.  That’s it.  All in my own hand writing, I don’t do computer printed labels.

I love these large tubs for shipping.  These come from Home Depot and run about $10 each – they have tight fitting lids, and holes for zip ties.

They keep the quilts safe from snow, slush, water ---and can be shipped back and forth multiple times.

The quilts are also in large clear plastic bags inside, just in case.  I like clear, because no one will mistake them for trash.

When I think of the miles of binding, of the yards of fabric, of the hours spent piecing and quilting – I get really nervous dropping these off into the hands of FedEx, but it was time for them to go ----so off we went.

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Two on the counter!

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One on the floor.

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Addresses and other info typed into a computer system that will help direct them from here to there.


Dear FexEx!  You are carrying precious cargo!  I’ll be waiting ((Why do they say with baited breath? That is really a bad image?!)) eagerly to hear that they arrived in Missouri!

Photography time is exciting!  One step closer to a new book this coming Spring!

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A Capitol Walk-About!

Last Friday, after enjoying a leisurely catch-up lunch with my son Jason in Columbia, South Carolina ---we decided to spend some of the beautiful afternoon walking around the downtown area and continuing our chat while we enjoyed the sunshine.

It was a beautiful day – a bit windy as you can see by the confederate flag flying out in front, but a beautiful day none the less!  The monument with the flag was established after a big kerfuffle about the Confederate flag flying over the dome of the State House. The flag, originally placed over the dome in 1962,  was moved to its present location on July 1, 2000.

I moved to South Carolina from Texas in 2003, so missed that whole hubbub about the flag.

The grounds of the state house are lovely, and there are gardens and monuments worth visiting.  If you are near Columbia, SC ---do stop.  It’s worth it.

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As we walked through the gardens and the trees, the state house came into full view.

Text below is from Wikipedia – but the photos are all mine!

The South Carolina State House was designed first by architect P. H. Hammarskold. Construction began in 1851, but the original architect was dismissed for fraud and dereliction of duty. Soon thereafter, the structure was largely dismantled because of defective materials and workmanship. John Niernsee redesigned the structure and work began on it in 1855, slowed during the Civil War, and was suspended in 1865 as Sherman's Union Army entered Columbia on February 17. Several public buildings were "put to the torch" when United States troops entered the city.

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As you walk around the building, you will see shell-damaged areas marked with stars.  This is a close up of an upper window.

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See the star above? Same window!

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Close up of pillar damage from shelling.

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If you look close, you can see the same star between the two pillars on the left.

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Here’s one close enough for me to reach!

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Close up

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Reading these historical markers always puts my mind back in time – what would it have been like to witness the burning of Columbia?

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We walked up the steps and checked out the architecture, only to find out you can’t get in that way!  The tourist door is on the lower level.

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Beautiful from every angle!

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George Washington stands proudly in the front.  
 This is one of six bronze replicas created in 1857 from the original marble statue (1789), which adorns the capitol in Richmond Virginia. The State of South Carolina purchased the bronze replica in 1858 to be placed in the newly constructed State House. The walking cane was broken during the move to its current location outside the State House.

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Beautiful architecture!  I’m amazed that this building survived!

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Sign on door says – visitors enter lower level!

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After emptying pockets and going through a security check point, we entered the building and followed these beautiful stairs up to the main level.

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The inside is as beautiful as the outside….and the underside of the dome caught my eye.

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There is something cool about standing right under it and looking up!  Hard to capture with a camera ---

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I really wanted Jason to see this…it’s the declaration of succession:
It reads: We, the People of the State of South Carolina, in Convention assembled do declare and ordain, and it is hereby declared and ordained, That the Ordinance adopted by us in Convention, on the twenty-third day of May in the year of our Lord One Thousand Seven hundred and eight eight, whereby the Constitution of the United State of America was ratified, and also all Acts and parts of Acts of the General Assembly of this State, ratifying amendment of the said Constitution, are here by repealed; and that the union now subsisting between South Carolina and other States, under the name of “The United States of America,” is hereby dissolved. 
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The House was not in session, so we got to peek in!  LOVE that carpet!

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The Senate wasn’t in either ---so we looked around!

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The sun is in the wrong spot, I just wanted to catch the palm trees with the Capitol building in the background ---Look at that blue, blue sky!

Yes, I know it – I am a history nut and I find the stories of things that went on here long before I was born just fascinating.  Chances are, if I come to your town I’ll be interested in what happened there too!

If you made it this far into this post, let’s talk about Quilt-Cam!

I’m under some pretty heavy deadlines, so I think I’m going to have to shoot for tomorrow evening, HALLOWEEN ---at 9pm Eastern.  I know that might cut into some plans for some of you, but it will be archived on YouTube so you can always catch it later.  Today it just isn’t going to happen, I’ve got too much on my plate – including packaging up all the quilts for the next book and getting them off to Fed-Ex since I wasn’t able to get that far yesterday!

Have a great Wednesday, Everyone!

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Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Testimonials Time!

When a book is close to being published, I’ve asked in the past if you would share any testimonials with me, with the possibility of them being quoted within the book itself, or on the back cover.

This is your chance to participate!

We certainly can’t post them all ---and what you post here will be turned over to my editor for their choice in quotes and  placement.

Our next book is also on the subject of Leaders & Enders.  If you are a Leader & Ender convert – if it has changed the way you sew, if it has made a difference in your quilting drive and productivity, would you like to share a few words below?

Your full name will not be given, but your first name and first initial of your last name is what we need, along with your city and state (and country if applicable!)

As they say --- The Pen is Mightier than the Sword – let your thoughts be heard!

((Oh this is getting exciting!))

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Give-Away! An Elm Creek Quilts Companion!

Oh, how many of us love the Elm Creek Quilts series by New York Times bestselling author, Jennifer Chiaverini!

I remember an evening a bit over a year ago when teaching for Quiltmaker Magazine at their Block Party in Williamsburg, VA, how star struck I was to be speaking at the same function as Jennifer!  I have loved her books from the very first one!

I was contacted a bit over a week ago by the publicity department at Plume/Penguin books asking if I’d like to review a copy myself – and offer up a give-away to blog readers –how could I say no?!  YES, of course YES!

The book is due out in November and will be found in book stores near you then – but we have an EARLY copy!

About the book:

An Elm Creek Quilts Companion: New Fiction, Traditions, Quilts, and Favorite Moments from the Beloved Series
A beautiful keepsake volume to accompany the beloved New York Times bestselling series:
Over the course of the bestselling Elm Creek Quilts series, readers have expressed a longing to visit Elm Creek Manor, meet the quilters themselves, and admire their beautiful creations. Jennifer Chiaverini’s An Elm Creek Quilts Companion is the next best thing to a guided tour.
Inside, readers will discover a treasure trove of delights, including the Bergstrom family tree, character biographies, quilt block illustrations, full-color photographs of quilts featured in the novels, and "Behind the Scenes at Elm Creek Quilt Camp," an exclusive short story inspired by questions from real readers.
No Elm Creek Quilts fan will want to be without this indispensable guide to the cherished series.

All 285 pages are packed with information.  If you’ve forgotten who was who, or needed a refresher on someone’s background from novel to novel – you will find the answer between these pages!
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There is also a large section on traditional quilt blocks to inspire you into dreaming of your own Legacy Quit!
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The back cover features quilts from the novels!
Do you have a favorite Jennifer Chiaverini Title?
Or perhaps a favorite character from the Elm Creek Quilts series?
Leave me a comment below telling me!  We will draw our winner on Sunday,  November 3rd!

***PLEASE*** Be sure your email address is visible in your profile so I can contact you.  If you aren't sure, just leave your email address in your comment.  If I can't contact you, you can't win!
Good luck, Everyone!

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Monday, October 28, 2013

We all need a Jordan Now & Then!

We just arrived home from the cabin – van unloaded, email and snail mail being sorted and tackled after being away since Wednesday.

I had an AHA moment when I was in South Carolina.  I thought my trip to the Rio Grande quilters in Texas was THIS coming Thursday – it’s NOT!  It’s a WEEK from Thursday!  Oh happy day!

I just sat down at my big desktop computer and found Candy’s email.

It brought the biggest smile to my face!  I asked if I could share it with you and she said yes.

She writes:
I just had to share. Meet Jordan. He is 18 and has been a family friend for 12 years. Jordan has autism and a few other challenges as well.  He spends school breaks with me. This usually means a trip or two to a fabric store.
Jordan never complains! I asked him today to help sort my scraps by color. He worked for well over 30 minutes putting the fabric bits for Pineapple Crazy into plastic containers  for me.


Jordan, the king of color – hard at work sorting Candy’s scraps for her Pineapple Crazy quilt!


Pretty crumbs sorted by color family!

I think he could be hired out he did such a great job! Now as I work on this mountain of a challenge quilt, I will remember my special friend!

Have a blessed day!
Thanks for sharing this little bit of scrap-happiness with us, Candy!  Tell Jordan if he has any spare time on his hands and finds himself anywhere near North Carolina, I’ve got a job for him too!

I have been tossing emails back and forth with my editor, Jenifer since this morning – it’s time to get this book put together for a spring release!  Photography is being set for mid-November –and sections will start going back  and forth for re-edits and tweaking ((A very technical term, but most necessary!  Book writing takes a village!))

I think the rest of the desk work is going to wait until morning.  The hot tub is calling, followed by an hour or so of kindle reading ---

 G’night, everyone!

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