Thursday, March 29, 2012


Quilt As You Go table runner.

I'm going to make the deadline with this gift, yeah for me!  I loved working with these batiks. I just wish I'd purchased more of the tiny dot I used for the first sashing, I really wanted to use it for the binding as well.  Such is life. And when batiks are purchased on a shop hop, I have no idea which store I found this one in.
 Now to turn the binding and hand stitch.  I'm certain there will be some hockey on tv this weekend. This will make 2 that only need the binding.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

18 months later....

Block 25 of BTCT
 Can you hear me squeal with delight? No? that's because I'm still on the mend. I'm definitely on the upside of this cold, it just hit me out of no where, not even a sniffle or cough for a warning. I actually had this block finished last Friday and just didn't have the mojo to even post it! But here it is, the final block for my Beyond the Cherry Tree.  Slightly modified from the pattern, it's a little quirky.
The blocks need the cherry stems embroidered, and then I will square them all up and sew the center together. I've got my cherries all ready for the border, the strips of fabric are cut, and I've got yards of 1/4" bias ready to glue baste and stitch. The perfect hand work for the Stanley Cup playoffs. That's hockey for you non hockey peeps! Playoffs will run from mid April to mid June. Surely I should have 2 borders done in that time!

Here is my latest block in the JT2. I believe I will remake this block, making a slight modification to honor the Infinite Variety display. Stay tuned for that.
The push to finish a few more blocks in this project is that I have been asked to speak at my guild about the Red and White show, bring my blocks and my own small collection of red and white pieces and also share some of my hand quilting pieces.
I'm honored to be asked, excited to talk about the show and nervous all in one.
Thanks for following along my BTCT journey, I feel I'm about 1/2 way to finished.  It's only been 18 months, what's the hurry?
What have you finished lately?

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Winter is Over

I know the calendar says spring, but here in the Pacific NW it has been anything but.  I've scraped my car windows this past week, slipped and fell down the front stairs off a frozen step and I've had to mow my lawn. I've even been quilting winter quilts!
I love this block.

The whole quilt is just too darn cute, but alas, it must get boxed up and shipped back to its rightful owner. ;-(

Shop Hop was fun, we had great weather and I stuck to my plan. I bought some batiks to make a few gifts. I haven't worked with batiks much and always say I don't even have them in my sewing room. Here are my purchases for the day.

I like to make sure I spend some money in every store that I visit. Funny how that only relates to quilt shops! Seriously, the shop owners and staff go to great lengths to welcome us to their home away from home. By the time they get everything together for the shop hop, they must be exhausted! And then they open their doors and hundreds, if not thousands, show up to see what's new and exciting in all the shops in their area.
Since I was on a mission with a purpose, I came home and washed all my goodies. Then I pressed them, and then I looked to see if I had any other batiks that would work, as I knew there were a couple of pieces in my stash  resource room. Yeah, I had a piece or two.
Some of these pieces are 2 - 3 yards. I wonder who tucked those away in my sewing room?

I woke up Saturday with a horrible cold, I couldn't swallow and then my nose has not stopped dripping. I'm achy and tired and am going to hit the couch, so I can finish Block #25 for my BTCT. 

Friday, March 23, 2012

and then there was one

Yes, there is always a time when you only need to make one more block, and that time has arrived.
One more block for my Beyond the Cherry Tree quilt center.
Thank you Liz, I love this block pattern.  I did a little improvising with the circles on the vase, it just seemed too big with the fabric choice I made.
Tomorrow I'm heading out for the local shop hop, it goes as far south as Everett, WA but we will probably get to Smoky Point, over to Anacortes and then work shop our way back north.  I will be shopping for a set of batiks. I like to focus on these shopping days so I keep projects in mind while out on tour.
Happy Friday to all!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012


 (click to see youtube of the last day)
 651 pieces from the collection of Joanna Rose.
A year has passed since I packed my bags and took the red eye to The Big Apple.

It was a trip that included a lot of firsts. The first time I dared to take a trip like this.
People thought I was crazy, travelling across the country to NYC to see some old quilts.

What I didn't know at the time was how this trip would change my life. I, like most of you, are passionate about quilts and quilting. To see a show of this magnitude was amazing and beyond words. Reflecting back on it, it almost seems surreal.
This show has sent ripples through the quilt world. Yes, world. Linda from Quilts in the Barn is working hard on a Red and White exhibit for her annual quilt show. Just Takes 2 is working hard at reproducing blocks from many of the displayed quilts. All over the world, R and W quilts are quietly being made again, all because of this one show.

My version of Just Takes 2.  A work in progress that will deviate from the published patterns. I just don't know when that will happen, but I'm sure it will.

Making 1/2 square triangles that finish at 1"  I really like using Triangles on a Roll
Can you guess what block I"m making?  So far I have one of 4 sections togher for the corner squares. 
 Slow and careful will win this block.
I had to stop for this!  I wind 10 bobbins at a time. 
Aurifil, can you please make pre wound bobbins for my machine?
Then I do this.  10 bobbins and it's time for a new needle. 
And for one last shot, here is my next block, #23 of 25 for my BTCT. 

I hope you take some time to reflect back on this show, it was truly an amazing experience.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Coming up for Air

I've been following along with other blogs, but I haven't seemed to have much to post to my own.  I'm going through a phase where I'm working on so many things at one time that I have no finishes to show. 
Here's what has been so engaging.
A sneak peek at something that is nearly finished, 10 years later!

This is a top I started in the first year of quilting. I'm now getting it quilted. When you hear Quilting makes the quilt, well, that will be this one. I'll expand on this more when I'm done and show full photos.
I'm working on the JT2 in red and cream, my blocks look just like everyone elses, so I won't bore you with them. I do like this block though.

There's my Liberated Homespun stars that is a two'fer. I could have had one top finished, but I'm making enough blocks for 2, so this too, is taking a while. I have had some fun with the blocks though.
The last three BTCT blocks have all been started, I prepped yards and yards of 1/4" bias for the borders and I'm still making cherries for this project. I'll show the progress in a few days. I'm getting close to cutting the border fabrics.
It's time to walk my dog!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Taking a Back Seat

It was a busy weekend for me. Saturday our JT2 group met at Fabric Etc. We all did a show and tell, Tracey demo's foundation paper piecing, and many ideas, tips and tricks were shared with the group. Thank you, everyone! (Sorry, I forgot my camera!)

Last week my boss and coworker called to see if I was available this past Sunday. They purchased tickets for Cavalia  It can be best described as Acrobats and Amazing Horsemanship.  The show was in Seattle, a 2 hour drive from home.  I volunteered my co-worker to be the driver and I happily took a back seat.

We got settled in and I opened up my bag of projects and by the time we arrived, I had the binding on a baby blanket!

One the way home, I got all the paper torn off my 1/2 sq triangles for my JT2 blocks and I also got the 12 petals prepped for applique for another JT2 piece
.  Now if only I had as many arms at Durga, I could have finished the hand quilting on a table runner that was also in my bag of projects.


Thursday, March 1, 2012

My Retirement Plan

I know, retirement is 15 years, 3 months and 11 10 days away for me, (not that I'm counting) but it's not something I ignore.  Health, finances, and activities are the three main objectives for my retirement plan.  I now have the activities lined up thanks to these three new books.
The photos and research in this book is fabulous, I've been reading it before I turn out the lights every night this week. 

Since I have a few years B.R.(before retirement) I can practice all kinds of drawings. I do not consider myself to be creative, but I'm a really good copier. If someone leads, I can follow along. When I started longarm quilting, Pam Clarke opened my eyes to design. It truly is A to B to C to D. Connect the dots and you will have beautiful designs. When broken down like this, most designs are very mathematical and this works for me.

 This last book shows, step by step, how to create paisleys, spirals, hearts etc all using specific calculations.  This makes it easier to get consistant designs.  Freehand with guidelines, now that works for me!

I've been drooling over admiring all the hand quilting that Pippa has shown on her blog Welsh Quilts.  I love the history she provides, to me this makes the pieces even more appealing.  Amish quilts, hand quilting, working with solids, and appliquing with civil war fabrics have all moved to the forefront of my quilting.

Between these three books, I've got great design elements, the history behind many of the quilts and quilters, eye candy to inspire, and the instructions on how to execute these amazing designs.  Plenty to keep my busy through my retirement years!  A spool of thread, a few needles and a thimble and I'll happily stitch the day away.