Thursday, April 17, 2014

A Bonnie New Year Tradition

Each Christmas my best friend asks me what I would like for a gift.  I have told her that I do not want anything but she won't accept that answer.  In 2013 I got the idea that I would like a quilt class and it just so happens that Bonnie Hunter comes and does her NYE mystery in Plano.  So I asked for a Bonnie Hunter class!  I have received this gift two years in a row now! 

The 2013 mystery resulted in Lazy Sunday which was published in Quiltmaker later that year.  For 2014 she came up with her next mystery.  This too will be published in Quiltmaker.  We are allowed to share the block pre-publication but not the quilt.  I got to meet Allison who you see Bonnie refer to on her blog from time to time.  You will hear more about Allison very soon.  This quilt was meant to be rainbow scrappy.  I pulled neutrals from both my stash and my mothers.  I then pulled the rainbow from mom's scraps and stash.  I am glad it turned out that way because I will have another quilt from my mom and I couldn't help but think about her the entire time I was putting this together.

Sadly I got news that same day, New Years Day, that my father had fallen at home and was taken to the hospital.  He lived in New York at the time and there was no way for me to get there in any hurry so I stayed for the class.  Dad and I discussed it and agreed that we would act in the "wait and see" mode. 

I have not progressed on that quilt since the class but I truly look forward to getting back to it.  More to come on Dad, Allison and this Bonnie NYE mystery quilt!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Another Harley Davidson Quilt

I showed Ray's quilt to a lot of people.  I posted it on my Facebook page and a longtime friend of mine asked me to make one for her to give to her boyfriend.  I made a quote based on the same quilt as i made for Ray.  When I told Ray he asked that I not make the same exact quilt. He wanted his to be one of a kind.  This was after I accepted a check from her.  I sketched out a few designs and texted them to her.  We came to an agreement and I went to work.

I had to get another Harley flag only to find out they were limited to one per dealership.  I looked around the shop looking for an acceptable substitute.  One salesperson talked to another and word spread.  A manager came up to me and we spotted another flag just like the first one.  They sold it to me used at a discount.  I examined it for flaws.  Found none and happily purchased it.  I put this top together pretty quickly.  This quilt is now at the quilter.

During this time my Dad came to visit me.  He spent two weeks with me.  Ray was great with Dad and took him around whenever he ran errands.  I was at work but hurried home as soon as I could to spend time with Dad.  We went to different eateries that he had enjoyed in the past.  My mother had told me a story about Dad's pool playing prowess.  I wondered how I had reached my late 40's before ever hearing this story.  Of course we went and played pool.  He was really good!  He kept thinking I wanted to beat him when what I really wanted to see was him play.  I could picture him hustling someone in a game of pool as my mother told me he had done.  

He went to visit my brother and then headed home when there was a hurricane threatening my brother's area.  I think he was missing his dog Buddy too.  He safely made it home.  He used to love driving but I could tell it was getting harder on him.  I invited him back for thanksgiving and/or Christmas.  He opted to stay home.  Local friends and family hosted him for those holidays.

More to come.



Thursday, April 10, 2014

I've Been a Bad Blogger

Not long after I last posted I took a trip to Michigan to meet more of Ray's family.  I met his sisters and lots of nieces.  We also went to see a friend of Ray's and stayed with them for a day or two.  After that we travelled to NY to visit Dad and see how he was managing on his own.  He was taking good care of hisself.  When we left I took more of my Mother's things including her machines and sewing table.  Dad wanted all her clothing gone so I also took care of that leaving a stack for my cousin to pick up for her church.

I had continued to sew and have completed a few tops.  I have also been crocheting and have a few things to share.  I am going to catch you up over the next few days with multiple posts.

Here is the quilt top I made for Ray.  He had been asking for a quilt.  I began looking for a Harley Davidson something to feature in the quilt.  In my mind it was going to be a t-shirt.  I was pleased to find a flag, made of nylon, for the center.  I backed it with black 100% cotton.  The design is based on the Gettysburg pattern by Nancy Miller.

I wanted a bed sized quilt.  When I was figuring the math I kept thinking my blocks were 10" when they were only 8".  Ray said not to worry about it.  That's not my style. He wanted it for the bed and so did I.  I made the flame border to round it out.  I like the flame although it definitely looks like the after thought that it is.  The quilting will tie it together and the borders will be hanging down the side of the bed.  Ray is happy and that is what counts.

Glad to be back!


Sunday, August 11, 2013

Road to Brenham Sew Along

Judy L is starting her sew along of Road to Brenham tomorrow. I have been eagerly awaiting the start of this quilt. I wanted to make it completely from stash and can do so but maybe not in the colors that I wanted to use.

I really want to do it in the colorway that Judy shows but lack about 3/
4 of a yard of the yellow. My other option is to go with the orange.


1) start with the yellow I have and make do for the border that calls for yellow. I am looking to see if I can find another piece of that yellow.

2) buy a new piece of yellow.

3) just use the orange and get over it.

I have explored swapping with someone for a large enough piece of yellow but most people don't have that big of a piece. I WANT to buy more but I SHOULD use what I have. I can't start when Judy kicks this off so I will have to see where I am when I can start.

What would you do?

Monday, July 22, 2013

Orca Bay Love

This is what is on my design wall.  I had been gifted lots of extra hour glass blocks and parts.  I think I had 187 of them to start.  I decided to look for something to do with them and happened to have Bonnie Hunter's latest book in my hand.  I landed on Pfeffernuse.  The onlly issue is my hour glass blocks are 2.5" and the pattern calls for 3.5".  I am going to make the quilt using these and just make a lap/throw size.  I am also going to lengthen it so I will need 336 total.  I have more made and need an additional 100 with pieces made for about half of those.

On July 6th I completed my second Orca Bay top.  Shown here is the first one completed over a year ago.

Here is the second one just completed.

Here they are side by side.  If you really study them you will see that I used an alternate layout for #2.  The red triangles with wings are accentuating the white block in the second one making the black color more saturated.  Also, all the color really makes the black pop too.

Head on over to Judy L's to see what is on everyone else's design wall.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Play Date

I had a play date Sunday!  I was invited to go to Laurie's to play on her longarm.  I brought tops, backings and batting to play.  We decided Laurie would go first as the first top is intended for Renee's grandson and we wanted it done right.  We then decided Renee would go second and I third.

We watched Laurie work her magic and got our hands in there a little too to try and learn for our turn.  Half way through, the thread started breaking and ultimatly we could hear the machine sliding and stitches were not forming.  Laurie nursed the machine through the first top and then we loaded the second hoping it would go more smoothly.  If did not.  But all was not lost.

While Laurie fiddled I rifled through her project boxes, her stash, her bags of stuff here there and everywhere.  Renne and Laurie couldn't help but laugh at me.  I found Laurie's Orca Bay in progress and corrected a few Ohio stars with Renee's help.  That involved a seam ripper and my playing on Laurie's Janome 6600. 

Once the two errant blcoks were repaired I then pawed through the other projects to see if there was something else Laurie needed help on.  I didn't sew anything else for her but moved to her stash and looked that over then found the pile of orphan blocks.  Those were fun to look at!  She has some nice little projects in there I think.

What captured my attention for the remainder of the date was a bag of scraps she had under her longarm that needed to be sorted and pressed.  Renee sorted out the too small for pet beds and I pressed the rest.  We saved selvedges in a separate pile.  They were Japanese prints in turqouise, red, white and grey.  Oh I wanted to play in those.  Alas, Laurie had her own plan and they stayed with her.

Here is the first top all quilted.  I will add a binding and send it off to Renee's grandson Porter.  The pattern is McCall's super size 9 patch. You just take 3 yards of fabric and cut them all the same way and shuffle the pieces then sew back together again. Just need 1 yard of fabric for each backing. Super easy and fast! I remember making these and laboring over the cuts needing to be "right". If I make these again they'll just all be cut the same without so much worry about exactness. Who will know?

Here is a close up of the loops, stars and moons.

I hapened upon this kit while nosing about in Laurie's sewing room.  My eyes must have been extra sparkly as she offered it to me and I happily accepted.  This was donated to her guild.  I will make the top and return it to her for their charity that makes quilts for hospice.  Just a quick fun project!

We had a great time and agreed that we needed to do it again.  Laurie kept the other two tops and agreed to quilt them for me.  At this point they are destined for Project Linus.

Quilty Hugs!!

Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Sewing Room

Here is the promised tour.  I am taking these on my iPhone so the quality isn't the best.

When you step into the room to the right is my bookshelf.  I have most of my quilting books on here and have to finish putting the rest up.  The bottom shelf holds paper patterns in pattern boxes.  There are several plastic bins with notions in them that will be moved elsewhere.  Down below are my quilting magazines.  On the floor is assorted stuff that I need to find a home for.  More than likely I will be stacking my project boxes near here.  I plan to limit the number of boxes to 6 or under.  I am a fan of FAB 4 that I have talked about on here before so 4 may be the magic number.  It dawns on me that this might be the right place for my tote of "kits".

On the wall to the right I have my quilt rack.  I have two types of tops here.  Those that are completed and waiting for quilting and those that need more work.  Those "in progress" as they all are really in progress are on the front where they can easily be seen.  The tote underneath contains my kits that I mentioned previously.  To the left of that is a bin that contains fabric and scraps.  I need to sort, fold and put away the fabric in my stash cabinets and put the scraps in the scrap bucket.

My design wall will eventually go up here.

The wall you see as you enter the door is the where the stash cabinets are located.  I had the guys slide everything to the right a little so the wire racks could be put along side the cabinet on the left.  This made a good spot to keep my rulers as well.  I plan to store all my sewing notions in these racks.

This is the wall to the left as you come in the door. The location of the machine. I have it sitting on a drafting table which works well for me. You can't see it but tucked behind the door to the left is my cutting table. I moved it there to make it more easily accessible. It used to live where the wire racks are now kept.

What sewing room would be complete without a sewing assistant? This is Sadie, She is my son's dog and whenever I go in to sew she is right there. Making her a mat to lie on is in order.

This is a little stack of QSTs that I just finished sewing into hour glass blocks. These were gifted to me and I have plans of making a version of Bonnie Hunter's Pfefferneuse quilt. I am trying to decide what color pinwheels to put with them. Watch this space for more news!

Quilty hugs!!