Wednesday, July 06, 2022

Losing My Mind.

This week I am celebrating SMALL progress - on anything.

This is a week of baby steps still moving us forward.

Sometimes we don't get to cheer the big achievements.  But that doesn't mean we should overlook the ones that still get us somewhere.

Don't let the perceived smallness of any task fall through the cracks.  It matters.  Everything we do matters as part of the whole.

And if you feel like you've been spinning your wheels, perhaps this will mean something to you too.

Tuesday, July 05, 2022

Quiltmaker July/Aug '22 Gift-Away!

I've been putting this off for a couple of weeks.

I had too many irons in the fire all at the same time!

And now that our long holiday weekend has passed, I thought I'd toss this up there and see if I can get you SEWING!

I wait eagerly for each issue - I'm ready to dive in to the next installment of Ruby Jubilee, celebrating Quiltmaker's 40th year of quilty existence.  And of course to see which Addicted to Scraps block they chose for this issue - because that is a surprise to me too.

Monday, July 04, 2022

Long Holiday Weekend At Hand -

This lovely shade of green!

I took a little walk through the side yard at Quiltville Inn to check in on our apple trees and look!

Baby apples are covering the branches of the three old trees.

There is also signs that deer have been trying to get to them already - we may need to find some way to rope them off.

Saturday, July 02, 2022

Leader & Ender Challenge 1! Triple Treat!

It's TIME!

It's finally time to pull out ALL the stops and issue our next Leader & Ender challenge - Triple Treat!

Did you know this is our 12th Leader & Ender challenge?

Yes!  We've been doing it that long.  Our first one was in 2012 with Cheddar Bow Ties, and all of our previous challenges are still found under the Free Patterns Tab at the top of the blog.

I get just this much giddy when I think of all of the beautiful quilts that have been made in between the lines of chain piecing other things, simply by using pre-cut pieces and making simple blocks, instead of sewing over and over and over that same folded piece of garbage scrap and then throwing all of that time (and thread) away.

Friday, July 01, 2022

Hello, July '22!

Lola thinks the gifted box of shirt parts that Nancy sent are just purrrrfect for her afternoon nap.

However - I have other plans for these and she is going to have to move aside and find somewhere else to plant herself!

Sometimes projects just go with fits and starts.  Have you noticed that?

Other things crop up and push aside, and it takes me a while to get back to them.  The most recent things to pull me away from the shirt quilt project were my purple blocks for Quiltmaker's Ruby Jubilee and the Unchained quilt that demanded to be put together and finished.

I'm now in the binding zone for Unchained, so I could get back to playing with these yesterday.

Thursday, June 30, 2022

Back in the Saddle of Connectivity!

Sometimes things just refuse to make sense.

Or more like - DOES NOT COMPUTE.

As in my braindead moment of non-realization since the internet was demolished in the great storm and power outage on Sunday, 

Hooray for the Generac that ran perfectly for 8 hours keeping the quilters quilting.

But what of the modem?

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Over The Rail, Between the Raindrops!

Meet the Gingham Girls!

I just love the example here - that though we are all different (colors and fabrics) as quilters we still stand together to lift and encourage each other.

And to go on retreat for a week and have a much silly fun as possible - because WE NEED IT!

I love that they each made these quilts to match - but they are still individual.  Fabulous display, ladies!

Monday, June 27, 2022

Run, Generac, Run!

This is last evening's dinner on the porch - accompanied by the hum of the Generac -

The moment we've been waiting for (and hoping it would never happen at the same time) came to fruition during a summer storm and power outage.

I always wondered just what would happen SHOULD this happen, and I was there to find out!

Saturday, June 25, 2022

Relax and Stitch!

The Sewciologists are kicking it up and pulling out all the stops at Quiltville Inn!

When I arrived yesterday morning - 8 had already taken off for the wild ponies, and another couple had just returned from a shorter hike up Round House Road for a walk along the river.

This is an ACTIVE group, and that thrills me to the gills!

Friday, June 24, 2022

Thursday with the Sewciologists!

Doesn't this look like a fun bunch?

And I'm excited that we have folks from as far away as Oregon and Canada!

You folks have put Quiltville, Virginia, USA on the map.   

And we have been having SEW MUCH FUN.

I spent yesterday enjoying the abundant creativity these wonderful ladies have brought to this space as well as try to get my own work done in the QPO next door.

In fact I think most of my daily steps came as I trotted between the things calling me at my own computer and sewing machine in my studio, to head on over every chance I got to just be in the presence of this group.

Thursday, June 23, 2022

Under Way on Wednesday!

How do you decide what color to pull in to an already "everything under the sun" scrap quilt?

In my case it usually involves pulling many strips of various colors and shades from the scrap stash and laying them up against the quilt I am bordering to decide which one - if any- stands out more to my eyes and gives the effect I want.

And then - the search through the yardage begins in hopes that I have enough of any one thing to do the color job at hand.

Wednesday, June 22, 2022

Sew Many Purples!

It was a purple kind of Tuesday yesterday.

Monday I was all about getting the Unchained top center together - too may paws had gotten in my way during the layout phase.  Once that was done and I could contemplate borders - I took a day away to work on something else.

Part four of Quiltmaker Magazine's Ruby Jubilee!

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

With Paws & Design Floors -

You know me - 

There is always two or more projects being worked on behind the scenes - we are hitting mid summer, and you know what that means?

There is a Leader & Ender challenge to be released the first week of July.

And if our Quiltville Winter Mystery colors are going to be released by Halloween, someone better get a move on and decide what the heck we will be doing about now!

Monday, June 20, 2022

Big Quilt Wash Day!

I know washing big quilts is a thing that many of us put off.

But the time had come - 

We had a ton of rain on Friday, leaving standing puddles through the weekend, and SOME DOGS decided that they'd come in, jump up on the bed, and proceed with wet bellies and muddy feet to show their love as they rolled and played all over the bed.

I generally have a second quilt as protection on top of this one, but  - well, you know how it goes!

Saturday, June 18, 2022

Was it Only Friday!?

It has been a completely discombobulated week!

I went nearly all the way through yesterday thinking it was Saturday,  even going so far as making posts about Happy Caturday, and even a video I ended up not posting to Instagram/Facebook because I plainly said "Have a great SATURDAY!"

 How did my week get so screwed up?

I think it's because I didn't have a group arriving on Wednesday to remind me of what day it really is.  LOL!

Friday, June 17, 2022

BEAST Quilters - Over the Rail!

At 7am this morning it was over 70 outside with 99% humidity.  Acccckk! Welcome to summer in the Southeast!

We had folks from New York and Indiana that understand humidity somewhat, but I bet those Utahans are glad to be back where it's simply a DRY heat.  LOL!

No matter the humidity, it was a beautiful morning for displaying quilts over the porch rail at Quiltville Inn.  The cool of the morning shade - the blue of a June morning sky - 

It doesn't get much better than this!

Thursday, June 16, 2022

Biking Down the Creeper Trail!

We did it!

We watched the weather all week long, trying to fit in everything - ALL THE THINGS - that everyone from the BEAST Quilters wanted to do while they enjoyed their stay at Quiltville Inn.

When they came last year, it was the same week I had fallen down the stairs at home, so I was pretty much out of commission when it came to things like walking, hiking to the ponies, or especially biking - I couldn't sit on my tailbone, remember?

It took MONTHS before I was able to lie on my back to sleep.

Wednesday, June 15, 2022

A Hike Amongst The Ponies!

I'm backtracking a couple of days to fit it all in!

The BEAST Quilters made their departure yesterday, and wonder of all wonders, they turned a 3 hour flight delay that moved them from a 7pm departure to a 10pm departure into a quilt shop hop day.

They left with a list of customer-favorited shops in hand and I'm sure they slept all the way to Utah, arriving in the very wee small hours this morning.

Sleep in, sleep late friends - you deserve it!

Tuesday, June 14, 2022

Flag Day Solidarity Gift-Away!

Happy Flag Day to my USA Quiltvillians!

On June 14, 1777, the Second Continental Congress took a break from writing the Articles of Confederation and passed a resolution stating that “the flag of the United States be 13 stripes, alternate red and white,” and that “the union be 13 stars, white in a blue field, representing a new constellation.”

Over 100 years later, in 1916, President Woodrow Wilson marked the anniversary of that decree by officially establishing June 14 as Flag Day. 

Flag day for is is the kick-off day for Summer and everything red/white/blue in my world.

And so I present to you, Solidarity!

Monday, June 13, 2022

Out & About - Like a BEAST!

Happy Monday, Quiltvillians!

What a weekend!

It's only 8am as I write this, and I already need a nap.  LOL!

I thought I would start this post with something quilty in a bit of an inside-out narration - we filled in every waking moment of Saturday with something fun for everyone -

And the icing on the cake was a road trip up to Wytheville to visit Batiks, Etc!

I think everyone shopped until they dropped.  I know I did.  That bench you see in front of the house behind the porch rail was a spot of respite while we waited for everyone's fabrics to be cut, bagged, and paid for.

Saturday, June 11, 2022

Quilting, Quilting & More Quilting!

I love it when I walk into the Hen Den at Quiltville Inn and find relaxation, conversation with a side of stitching going on!

Yesterday was a busy day, but we somehow managed to fit it all in -

A morning walk, more sewing.

A lovely lunch on the porch, more sewing.

An afternoon of sewing interrupted by plenty of snacks - you know, because we hadn't eaten since lunch, and more sewing up until dinner time.

Friday, June 10, 2022

Hanging With the BEAST Quilters!

Can you hear the hum of the machines from where you sit?  

I bet you can imagine all of the sounds of sewing, chatting and laughing - 

Throw in the smells of breakfast coming from the kitchen and you've got a good idea of just what welcomed me when I walked through the door yesterday morning.

Many members of this group didn't arrive until after dark, but they had a good welcoming committee on hand with those who had arrived earlier.

My time for hugs all round came yesterday morning!

Thursday, June 09, 2022

A Bit More Bloomin' Blue Ridge!

Where oh, where are the ponies?

A few of us headed up to the Appalachian Trail where it runs through Grayson Highlands hoping hoping HOPING that we'd see mamas with new foals out and about.

This was Monday - the last day of retreat with the June Quiltvillians, and I thought our chances would be greater on a non-weekend day than during a busy weekend.

The ponies seem to move further into the brush the busier the trails are and I get it. I don't blame them.  But I had hopes!

Wednesday, June 08, 2022

June Quiltvillians - Off The Porch Rail!

This is the result of a fabulous retreat weekend with the June Quiltvillians!

Just look at these beautiful finishes!

And a sneaky flame azalea trying its best to occupy a spot.  (It's always been spindly, but we keep encouraging it to flourish.  LOL!)

I look at these ladies and can't help but smile that over the past 3 years they've not only been guests, but they have become my friends.  My heart is as full as the inn!

Tuesday, June 07, 2022

Time Out For Ice Cream - And Barn Quilts!

Is there anything more fun than a group trip to a local general store for ice cream and last minute souvenirs?

Summer is here!

Our little Corner Market is the hub of our community, and I love taking visiting retreaters here to say hello and find something fun to bring home.

Usually it involves a pair of handcrafted earrings, a necklace or bracelet from local artisans.

Sometimes it's jams, jellies, or local honey to take home.

Monday, June 06, 2022

In the Cool of the Morning -

All the pretty wildflowers!

I am filled with wonder as I watch nature bloom around us.

What a pretty color palette, don't you agree?

We got out early on Saturday morning to take a walk down Bear Branch road.  I was eager to see if we could still smell the scent of wild roses on the breeze - 

What else had bloomed in the passing week?

Saturday, June 04, 2022

All the Pretty Little Pieces!

Who here loves fussy cutting??

I am fascinated by the effect it gives as seen here in Kathy's gorgeous hexie quilt in progress.  

Llamas!! Strategic placement of floral motifs, and do you see the darling pinwheels?

Each little fussy cut hexie brings so much to look at.  Such a delight!

Friday, June 03, 2022

Quilting, Walking, Baby Goats & More!

I've got goals!

And those goals include getting out for walks/hikes with the dogs in the morning before the day gets to warm through the summer.

You want to talk about lush and green?  Come to Southwestern Virginia - this kind of green runs through my blood and settles in my bones and I can't get enough of it.

Thursday, June 02, 2022

As Seen In The Wild!

When the nearest town is 30 minutes away in any direction - I find ways to fit in as many side jaunts and errands as I can when life makes it necessary that I actually have to GO to town.

Being in our now 3rd year of this pandemic, and war and other global situations putting inflation on the rise, and gas prices at jaw dropping prices - I drag my feet as much as possible to NOT have to go unless I can do it all in one fell swoop.

At the same time I hear my grandmother's voice telling me about WWII when her boys were young and her husband was at sea.  How ration coupons were a way of life, and that included gas for the car, and I'm so glad that we are not at that point.

Wednesday, June 01, 2022

Butterflies & Wild Roses

This is another of those "If only photos had smells!" posts.

Four of us took a walk on Monday morning - yes, our walks have now switched to the cooler hours before summer heat and humidity make hiking miles less palatable.

But the morning hours? BLISS!

And to my great delight - the wild roses down Bear Branch Road were putting on a show.

Unlike their domesticated cousins - wild roses have the most delicious fragrance, and it permeated the air in every direction.

Tuesday, May 31, 2022

Wrapping Up the Weekend!

And this is how we spent Memorial Day!

It started off with an early morning "Over the Porch Rail" quilt sharing delighting passersby - we even got a beep or two!

A few folks were bugging out yesterday morning on their long journeys home up the eastern seaboard.

I was a bit worried about the backlighting from the sun being in morning position and still shining from the east - but if we were ALL in the shade, with the sun a bit blocked by the leaves of the tree, we actually did fairly well!

Monday, May 30, 2022

Memorial Day 2022

I've been enjoying my long Memorial Day weekend with this wonderful group of quilters!

I'm so happy this has worked out the way that it did.

I've got a full house of quilters, bakers and more - and the creativity and laughter is ever flowing.

Not only that, the weather has finally cooperated to give us a gorgeous weekend to enjoy the out of doors as well as inside.

This is how I'm saying "Hello!" to summer, with the Quilters of the Night!

Saturday, May 28, 2022

Quilting With Friends!

It's Maymont PDF Pattern & Fabric Roll Gift-Away Day!

I'm so happy with how this pattern has been received - I love seeing your blocks going up on design walls, seeing your fabric pulls, and hearing the stories of just where those scraps came from and the memories that are surfacing as you sew them up into such a fun (and so easy!) quilt!

And as promised,  I'll be choosing TWO winners who will each receive a Maymont PDF pattern AND a Skittles color roll from  Cotton to Quilts!

Friday, May 27, 2022

Busy Round Here!

Things were already busy at Quiltville Inn when I first walked through the door yesterday morning.

I am so excited to watch these projects grow up on the design walls over the coming Memorial Day weekend!

What started out as a family retreat now includes a wide variety of friends and we've got some new faces participating with the Quilters of the Night this year.

Why Quilters of the Night?  Because while SOME of us fall asleep  by 10:30pm - others like to sew until 2am - 

Wherever your creativity muse leads you to your personal best time to create - follow it!

Thursday, May 26, 2022

After The Washing!

I forgot to write about this!

In rapid fashion, I finished one hand quilting project, moved right into the next - amidst the busyness of a full retreat house and all else that is going on over here - 

And I forgot to post about this!

This quilt was my big experiment with the Crayola Ultra-Clean Washable Markers. (Original post about these HERE.) and I admit - if these weren't going to wash out, I wasn't sure just what I would do.

How did it go?

Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Graduation Quilts!

I have two beautiful nieces who are graduating from high school this month.

Boy did those 12 years of school pass by quickly!

So quickly that as graduation announcements came I had to do a double take.  

How could this be?

I remember vividly the moments I spent making their baby quilts - and now they are 18 and graduating high school?

Aunt Bonnie went into hyper drive to choose quilts that would suit the personality of each young woman - and thanks to FedEx picking things up at my location, they were on their way to their new destinations.

Tuesday, May 24, 2022

When it Rains - We Quilt!

We waited and waited for the rain to subside - 

It began in earnest around 1pm., and never stopped.

It poured.  And it poured.  And it poured.

Summer rains are not like fall or winter rains - it's quite lovely to be out on the porch, so that is exactly where we gathered.

While there were no "over the rail" photo ops...we did what we could on the porch so everyone could get a photo of whatever they worked on, finished, or brought to share from last time.

Monday, May 23, 2022

Tantalzing Table Toppers with Pat Sloan: Gift-Away!

Good Monday Morning, Quiltvillians and visiting friends!

Today is a day I've been waiting for for months - ever since Pat Sloan asked if I would like to participate in the release of her new book Tantalizing Table Toppers

Oooooh!  New things!  And small projects - so fun to make.  I could hardly wait to dive in.

And you can dive in too!  There are 12 projects, and 12 blog hops along with 12 chances to win your own copy by following along!

Saturday, May 21, 2022

Sew a Lot, Eat More!

I have often said that when I contemplated having a retreat venue of my own, the thought of people feeding ME was never a part of my business plan!

Heaven knows it has wreaked havoc with my diet - it's a constant struggle - can you see why? LOL!

Yet, there is power in embracing my 60s and no longer having to strive for some perfect body size or shape - to embrace the kind of anonymity that entering that just-beyond-mid-life brings, and letting go somewhat of what society deemed important.

I am letting down so many barriers.  From what I choose to wear, to the fact that I don't feel the need to put make up on before leaving the house every single day. (We leave that for weddings, funerals and special occasions at this point!)

Friday, May 20, 2022

Porch Sittin' Time!

This was last night's end to a very busy quilty day -

The May Quiltvillians enjoying a delicious dinner on the back porch at Quiltville Inn.

Many of these gals are first timers - their first time staying at the inn, and the first time meeting each other!

Of course, we have repeat offenders attenders as well.  (LOL!)  It makes for a happy mix of new friendships, as well as old home week for those who already know each other.

Thursday, May 19, 2022

Hexagon Quilt Basting Day!

The time has come!

The finishing of the hand quilting on my 2008 string star is only a couple days away from reaching the finish line.

If you are like me - the next project is already in your head before you finish the one you are concentrating on - so it should come as no surprise that I made myself ready for the next hand quilting project destined to fill my evenings (and my hoop!) for the next many months ahead.