Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Miles of Binding

I have nothing new to show. I've been binding a king quilt every evening this week, and I shall be finished tonight! Why do I take on these jobs? Well, this customer doesn't quilt or sew, and the tops have been finished since 1988, I'm not sure when the hand quilting was done. The maker has passed away and no one is enjoying the fruits of her labor. So with a little help from me, I can get these hand made family treasures onto beds for the next generations to enjoy. I'm honored to be a part of this.

As crazy as it sounds, for a while I was the dead person's quilter. I must have gotten 5 quilts in a row from people who's mom had passed and they wanted the top quilted and bound. From all this, one lady became a quilter. I knew she couldn't afford to pay for all the work that needed done, so I gave her a lesson and she came back with finished tops. After quilting them, I taught her to bind them. Since then she has made several quilts for her own children. To me, that's the joy of quilting!

Sew a bit today,

Sunday, March 28, 2010

One down, one to go

I haven't been very diligent in blogging the past few weeks, hopefully that will change.  It just seems that I haven't had any time, yet that should mean I have lots to blog about. Not so much these days.  Maybe it's because I've been working on two king size quilt bindings for a customer.  The floral one is finished and packed and the second one is a work in progress.
These quilts are from the 70's or 80's. They were finished in 1988, all cross stitched and hand quilted. This one has high loft poly batting, I can't imagine how sore the quilters hand and wrist must have been. Now that they are getting their binding, they will be passed down to the grand children of the maker.
I'm so honored to be a part of peoples family treasures. I shall have the second one finished in time to hand deliver next weekend.

This is my first spring in my new home and there is lots of yard to clean up and get ready. Thank goodness for my gal pal Sandra. She's my longest friend on the planet, we met in Gr.2. She is also a fantastic gardener. We spend all day Saturday in my back yard. I got lessons in pruning and she went to work with the big tools. She had the saw and the ladder, I got the snippers! After 10 man hours I had 2 hydrangras done, 2 pear trees, two apple trees, the raspberry patch put into some order and all staked up, as well as the beds weeded and the kiwi vine trimmed up. This was a perfect way for me to learn how to look after things. There are a few bigger jobs that will require a team of guys, the one time jobs. We also went for lunch and did a little retail therapy. No, no fabric, but new tools. It was hard to find the quality tools and shop local, but I think we did ok.
My new years quilting resolution was to not start any new projects. Well, I did allow myself to start one new one, the hand applique mentioned in my last blog. I'm committed to finishing off projects that I've already invested in. Here is one more off my list. The binding needs to be stitched down by hand, but I have to get my tires changed after work tomorrow, so this will be a good take along.
This is the last of three of this pattern, I love this runner and have gifted 2 of them. This last one is for me. What a good feeling to cross one more project off my list!
It's been a three day weekend for me as I played hooky on Friday with my boss. We did a local shop hop and managed to find something that we needed in every single store we went into! Right now my purchases are drying and I'll share pics in my next post. Until then, sew a bit!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Back to Blogging

I've been missing in action here at my blog. It's not that I haven't been doing anything quilty, it's that I've had company for a week and am now getting caught up with a few photos. First off, I finished quilting and binding an 80 x 90 quilt for my gal pal who made it for the Cancer Center close to her home. Now it's all ready to deliver and I'll be taking it with me when I go visit her in 2 weeks.
I've been working on this project, my GOT swap (Gathered over Time) and I've got over half of the rows sewn together.
I'm the binding queen today, I've made 400" of floral binding for this quilt,
At Thanksgiving I picked up two king sized quilts that have been cross stitched and hand quilted. Now they need binding. I have the strips cut for the second quilt.   Here is 800 inches of finished binding and 400 more ready to piece and press!

And then I got motivated and pulled out a WIP that just needed borders. The fabric was all cut, I needed to measure the width/length and attach the borders. This was a mystery quilt, it's not my favorite, but I do want to finish it.  I think a floral and feather all over design will be perfect for this quilt and I've  got the binding and backing all ready to go.

Although I hadn't been in my studio while my company was here, I cannot sit with idle hands. I've got a good start on my hand applique. This is the first and only new project I've started in 2010, as I am committed to finishing projects that are lurking in my studio.
Here is a peek at the finished project. The blocks are 24" and after they are sewn together, applique is added along the seam line for a wonderful circular design. I'm making a 4 block wall hanging. I've got some ideas running through my mind for borders, I'll wait to audition some ideas when I'm done the applique.
 So I haven't gotten buried in an avalanche of fabric, I'm alive and well and quilting away. 

Monday, March 15, 2010

Photographing quilts

One of the hardest things to do is have proper photos of your quilts. I have one quilt that I want to enter into shows and the photos have been the drawback for me. One show had a deadline of the Monday and it rained all weekend, so no outdoor shots!
I have finally got my act together and ordered a proper stand from here.
My gal pal Muriel went halfer's on this purchase and this was the best price I've been able to find. Not only was the list price sharp, there were no shipping charges. It arrived in a timely manner from UPS. I haven't taken it out and set it up yet, but there is a video on YouTube and it looks straight forward.
I've had company so not much to report on the quilting front. I did get one customer top quilted and their second one loaded and ready to to. I have also started my applique project, photos will come later.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

......he had it comin'

What a great way to spend a Saturday.  A car full of women on a road trip to Seattle.  First stop.....

Fantastic! I've seen this show before, but it did not disappoint on the second time around. I listened to the sound track last night and could visualize the whole play. Just fantastic.
The play ended and we had to walk past Nordstrom Flagship store in downtown Seattle. I got sucked into the vortex of the shoe department and left with these in my bag!

and these made their way into my bag......

And I almost bought another pair but thought I better put the brakes on.....and leave a few more choices for another trip to Seattle!

On a quilting note, I took my hexagons with me, got 5 more flowers with their pathways, and finished the rest of them Sunday evening. They are now on the design wall at work!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

It's Official

I finally have a "finished flimsy" to show. I've been picking away at many different projects, not feeling like I've accomplished much at all. So last night I took a look around and picked the project that was closest to finished. This is made from 1.5" strips, 7" blocks, set 12 x 12.  Finishes at 84 x 84. 
Well, I'm using the word finished quite loosely. If it was really finished, it would be quilted, labeled, bound and on my bed, right? It's finished living in my sewing room. Now it can be moved over to the huge plastic bin under my longarm that hides holds my finished tops with backs.  Yes, there are a few of them, crying to get stitched!  This year, I promise.  I plan on using this quilt on my own bed this summer. I don't have a quilt on my bed. What's the saying.....a cobblers child???
I'm off to Seattle to see Chicago.
Have a great day; the sun is shining here, hope it's shining where you are today!

Friday, March 5, 2010

No Photo Friday

Wow, I can't even believe it is Friday as I feel like the week just went by without any accomplishments. I did manage a haircut and highlites one evening, a movie date with my gal pal Maizie, and a little bit of piecing.
First my movie review! Crazy Heart. Wow, emotionally exhausting and draining, not what I expected, but one of the best acting roles I've seen in years. Simply amazing and if Jeff Bridges doesn't win a gold statue Sunday night, well, then we need new Oscar judges!
I have pieced a bit. Making progress on my Log Cabin. I have all the blocks sewn into rows. The last 5 rows need to go together, then the two halves will make a whole. My pressing direction needs some improvement. I got mixed up and, well, I was unhappy with myself putting some rows together. Right now the 5 rows that are pieced have not been pressed. Tonight!
My Gathered Over Time (GOT Swap) is starting to come together. I have 5 rows sewn together.
Blue Pineapple Blossoms from Quiltville, Bonnie Hunter, is up on the design wall at work. I need 5 more blocks to finish the layout.
Oh, and I'm still stitching away on my hexagons. I decided I'm too close to getting it to the design wall, so I'm persevering.
Saturday is a trip to the theatre to see Chicago! I'll be doing my hexi's on the road trip to Seattle!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


Quilty friends arrive with some of the best surprises. Muriel made her way down to my place Friday night and we had our ritual Friday night dinner at Costco. We are a pair of cheap dates, what can I say. When we came back to my place, she pulled out this amazing book cover that she made for me. Red is my fav color, and her embroidered lady with the sewing machine is all sparkled up! I LOVE this book cover and will cherish it.
It's not so much what it is, but knowing that she spend a lot of time working on something for me, and thinking about me, well, that just makes my heart swell! And look at the pin tucking and beads!
Here is another example of quilters helping quilters. I signed up for this block swap and the organizer of this is simply amazing. If you are interested, click here. This winter we did a Gathered over Time swap along with Nickels and 8" squares in shirtings. I sent off 64 blocks, 8 of each combo and this is what I got back.
I thought I was getting 32 pairs back but I got 64 different 9 patches, and every one is 5". No skinny blocks, no thin nickels. Just a pile of piecing perfection from all the participants. When I included the prints I made and kept for myself, I only needed to make one more 9 patch and cut 5 more nickels.
I can't wait to start sewing this together, my goal is to have the rows together by the end of this weekend!
Thanks to all the swappers, this was fantastic. Let's do it again!