Friday, December 31, 2010

Box Number 3

I have been feeling really good about making a quilt out of the fabrics in box number 2, getting the binding made and the backing fabric picked out and washed, and hanging all of them on a hanger waiting to go to a longarm quilter for basting.

With that machine work done I went back to hand quilting on my 4 patch quilt from box number 1. That quilt is now over half quilted.

Since I am on such a roll I decided to see what else I could find in the basement. This time I came up with a box that contained twenty-two 6" squares from the Lasting Beauty Collection of fabrics by Classic Cottons. A few years back I sent some money in and, as I recall, about every three months I was send a packet from Classic Cottons that contained 6" fabric swatches from one of their new collections, plus a pattern for turning the blocks into a quilt. Well, their pattern made a quilt 37 x 41 inches. That would be way too small a quilt for me to make so I played on my EQ6 and came up with a design that would finish at 58 x 81 inches. Much more my size! I had also pulled 4 fabrics to use in the blocks.

It will be interesting to see how closely I follow my own design or if I end up making changes.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Scraps From Under the Cutting Table - And Now They Are Neat

All done! Note the empty basket.

I think I stated before that I like squares much better than strips so most of the fabric was cut into squares of various sizes. I did cut some short strips (approx. 7") that I use to make 9-patch blocks. And I cut some long strips because someday I am going to make another strip pieced quilt.

The odd scraps in the lower left corner will be made into hexagons and will go into a shoe box with other basted hexagons that will (someday) be turned into another scrappy hex quilt.

The rest of the day was spent quilting and starting a new project from a box in the basement.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Scraps From Under the Cutting Table

The last thing that anyone who knows me can call me, is organized. But I keep trying to keep chaos under control. To this end, I keep a small basket under my cutting table to keep project leftovers in, you know, the pieces too small to go back into my fabric cupboards.

That little basket has been full to over flowing for a few months, so yesterday I decided to dump it and begin cutting. Please note: this is not one of my favorite things to do. I get bored with it and being the old lady that I am, my knees start to ache from standing. But start I did. No, I didn't get very far but I left it on the cutting table so I will get back to it today. I spent most of yesterday avoiding it by quilting a bit and working on the computer. Well, yes, I did do a lot of eating, also, especially the leftover Christmas cookies.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Old Projects

One box from the basement totally empty. Do I feel good or what! Yesterday I finished up the doll quilt and have it nicely folded and tucked away for next Christmas season. It is a 24" square with flannel on the back.

Yes, you that know me well know that I do not like applique very much but I used the Quiltsmart preprint interfacing for the hearts. On the doll quilt, I machine sewed them on with a small zigzag. That's the way the Quiltsmart people do it and it worked really well, plus I even like the look. I had better watch out or I may end up liking applique after all.

And here is a picture of the finished quilt top. It is 53" x 79". I will probably take it to a long-armer to machine baste for me, then I will set it aside until that "someday" when I have time to quilt it.

Don's ask me why but I just had to put a flower in the lower right corner. It will get a button in it's center after it's quilted.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Sometimes I wonder just what kind of a quilter I am? If anyone out there has a clue, let me know.

I am having so much fun with my latest project. I was getting bored with making the log cabin blocks out of the shop fabrics that are on sale, so I sat that project aside and went to the basement to find something new to work on.

What I brought upstairs was a plastic container with 2 yards of a dark (blue) green fabric. A couple of hunks of red with spriggy leaves and some fabric that was red and green preprint log cabin blocks. The log cabin fabric had been cut into 17 squares matching the design with each square having 4 log cabin blocks. Each equaled 11 inches square. Well, I would like to say they were square but they were lopsided, of course, just like any preprinted fabric, it had been stretched funny in the printing.

I should have taken a picture at this point but I didn't.

Now, I will let the pictures I did take, speak for themselves.

But it wasn't long enough! I had a strip of blocks that had been next to the salvage. So new top and bottom borders were born!

Next came the applique, something needed to be put on those BIG RED SQUARES! I'm working on that part right now.  Besides the hearts in the blocks I am going to add them in the corners of the quilt. Something to help fill up the corners.

And here is what the log cabin blocks look like close up. It really makes you wonder when and why I bought this fabric. It must have been years ago, my taste in fabric has changed.

So that brings me back to the question of what kind of a quilter am I?

I have had so much fun making something out of a little bit of nothing. Like seeing if I can make a "silk purse out of a sow's ear". No, the quilt definitely is not any kind of silk purse/show winner, but it has been a fun journey to make something that is sorta' pretty and very useful.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

View from my window.

This was my view, out the front window of the shop, of the snow we received yesterday (12/11/2010). We had big, beautiful snowflakes in the afternoon.

It is so much fun to sit by the front window of the shop and sew when it is snowing out! More later on the quilt I was working on.

Please note: This is not a black and white picture. It was really that gray outside!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Good morning, good afternoon, good evening, good night!
It's up to you to pick the response that best suits the occasion!

I'm in a happy mood. Buying new fabric seems to do that to me.
I got a good deal so I am passing it on to you.
The following fabrics should be arriving in approximately a week to 10 days,
and they will be priced at $6.99 per yard.

I'm having fun thinking about how I can use these fabrics. As the main fabric and/or borders for a new quilt. Or as the inspiration to pull colors for a new scrap quilt.
Or, to use as the backing for one of my pieced tops.

Put your mind to work and I bet you can figure out a good use for them, too.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Another quilt done! Title: Hearts Together

It's done! Yes, it took way longer than it should. All quilts seem to do that for me. I guess I just have too many other things I want or need to do.

Since the front of the quilt was so plain I decided to jazz it up with an interesting print on the back. 

Yes, the quilting is all done big stitch.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


I ordered some new quilting stencils.
This is "Simple Flower" Circa 1850. It fits an  8 inches block.
Price is $3.35

Next is "Sunwheel" it comes in both 7" and 9". I can't wait to quilt this design. In fact, I have just redesigned the scrap log cabin blocks quilt I am making. I think now I will made every other block a solid one and use this design for quilting in the plain blocks.
Price is $3.00 and $3.75.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

My next big hexagon quilt.

I have to tell you, when I got done with my Grandmother's Flower Garden hexagon quilt I was at a loss as to what project to have in my traveling hexagon box. Not to mention, what project to work on at home in the evenings watching TV. Well, after a couple of days of sitting around twiddling my thumbs, I decided to dig out an old project and make it work.

What I found, while digging around, were 17 diamond shapes that I had made sometime between the years 1997 and 2002. Each diamond has three small flowers with a solid yellow center. The center flower is surrounded with a white print and a neutral finishes off the diamond. Next question to ask myself was, do I have any of the white fabric? I thought I had but, where! Good news, I found the white, almost a whole bolt of it. Considering it was bought before I opened the shop I have wondered where I got it.

While looking for the diamonds I found a cigar box with precut squares in groups of six for the flowers. It's nice to have a head start with the flowers. Then I started wondering if I still had the soft yellow for the centers. The first thing I found was a small piece that would cut about 100 squares. Not enought! Last night I just happened to glance in the fabric stash cupboards and guess what I saw, yup, a great big hunk of the yellow. One more ingredient ready to go.


 Then it was on to the neutrals. My original plan was to have each hexagon using a different neutral. This must have been on my mind when I've gone shop hopping with friends. I found a bunch of  fat quarters in the cupboard, also. Add to that a group of 2-1/2" strips of neutrals from Blank Quilting and the 2-1/2" strips that I received in an exchange with the Mississippi Valley Quilters Guild, that will give me a very good start. In fact, I think I will have enough

 So now we come to the design. My original idea was to lay them next to each other. I laid out the 17 finished blocks and said, "No, I didn't like that." Then I laid them out another way, I didn't like that either.

Then I thouht about laying them out and putting a new diamond between them. That appealed to me so I went into my EQ7 and came up with the new idea. 

I like this a lot. The new diamonds will have only two flowers but I will be adding three green leaves. The green will be all the same fabric. The neutral border will be made scrappy using all of the neutrals. This will be a combination of planned and scrappy. Always my favorite. 

This is 1/4 of the quilt. I was too lazy to color a whole quilt!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Shade Cascade quilt

I decided to show you my current quilting project.

Shade Cascade was a collection from Blank Quiting. I loved it and sold a bunch in the shop. It consisted of four shades of a one color on each bolt. Finally, Blank Quilting told me they were out of the fabric and would not be reprinting it any more. With only a few bolts left, I decided to see what I could come up with using the end of brown bolt. I ended up with a rail fence block. I used the lightest and darkest shades for the outside rails. I used the light-medium shade for the centers of half the blocks and the dark-medium for the other half of the blocks. Then, when I laid them out all the horizontal blocks had the lighter fabric centers and the vertical blocks had the darker fabric centers. What I like best is the larger area in the center of the block for some nice quilting.

A closer look.
Please note: The blue that is showing is the blue water soluable pen I used for marking. It will soon be washed out.
And, of course, I hand quilted it using the "Big Stitch" and Presencia's Size 12 Perle Cotton.

Since I did not have enough of the fabric to make the quilt as long as I wanted. I added a 2nd & 3rd border to the top and bottom. (The white is batting since I have not finished the quilting yet.)

Sunday, October 31, 2010

My large hexagon quilt #2

Yes, my second large hexagon quilt is now completely pieced.  Also, I will add, the quilt has been nicely folded and put away in a box awaiting the year 2012 when (hopefully) it will be brought out and quilted.

For those who might be wondering about how long it took me, I think it was started in the year 2005. It is made with the 1" hexagon, using approx 3,564 of them.

Since it is so big, it was very hard trying to figure out where to photograph it. Finally, I just laid it on the bed.
Corner view

End of bed view (our bedroom is very small. This was as far back as I could get. :-)


When I think of a traditional Grandmothers Flower Garden quilt I usually think of each flower surrounded in white. So you ask, why didn't I put my flowers totally surrounded in white? Because I figured that was just too many white hexagons to baste. I think I got by with a lot less. Then again, maybe I didn't. What do you think?

Saturday, October 30, 2010

The travels of a JoQuilter Fabrics bag.

Wow! This time my "shop bag" has gone to Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah. Wow! What a view.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Another hexagon quilt visits the shop

Barb B. brought her hexagon quilt in for me to see. The quote is, "Bloom where you're trans planted." I think Barb quoted that her family has lived in 29 cities, that includes the cities where their daughters have lived. And to think that I thought the 9 places Fred & I have lived was a lot!

A close up of the flowers.
Note, the leaves on each flower are dimensional and loose (only attached on one side).
Way to go, Barb.

Friday, October 8, 2010

The mural is done.

The mural in the shop entry is done. I love it! And it is definitely getting attention.
I had a husband tell me he noticed the mural and stopped so his wife could shop.

How about these details!

I just love my entry mural. You have to admit that the artist, Barb from The Cellar Urchin shop, did a great job! I love being unique and my entry is now different that any other shop in town. Have a great day!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Block of the Month

I can't believe it has been so long since my last conversation with you. Tonight we are going to focus on the Block of the Month for JoQuilter Fabrics. I believe my last update was to show you blocks 8 thru 11. I did get block 12 done but I did not take a picture of it alone. You will find it in row 2, second from the left.  Notice the half blocks in each row. I loved making those. Someday I am going to make a whole quilt of those blocks (a four-patch in a square in a square setting), they are so much fun!

This is not the final arrangement for the quilt. I will try to get a picture taken and get it posted in a few days. In the meantime, stop back and see the final pictures on the mural. Take care, and have a good day!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

BOM blocks 9 to 11

Yes, I did get a little more sewing done on my Block of the Month. My goal is two a day but that hardly ever happens. Now you must remember, you will be picking the colors for your blocks. Or, I suppose, you can use the colors that I have used but my guess is you will enjoy picking your own colors. Have a good day!

Block 9

Block 10

Block 11

Saturday, September 18, 2010

My Mural

Barb (owner of the Cellar Urchin) was able to work on the mural for a little bit on Wednesday morning before she opened her shop.  And again, last night (Thursday) after she closed her shop.

End of day three.

Close up of quilt back and stitching.
See, even my painted quilts get "big stictched".

End of day four.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

My mural

Last year I had out of town people telling me they had a hard time finding my shop. I guess my hanging sign wasn't noticeable enough! So, what to do?

Some have told me to paint quilt blocks on my pillars. Well, when I found out I had textured limestone pillars under all that stucco, I made the decision that I was not going to paint the pillars but I would start picking off the stucco as it became loose. That's why my pillars look so weird, but someday the old pillars will be exposed again. You have to remember that this building was build sometime in the mid 1850's.

So, back to the problem of how to make the shop more noticeable. In the spring, Barb at the Cellar Urchin, the shop on the corner, was telling how she was going to the Sioux City area to paint a mural for a friend. Light bulb time! My funny entry would be a perfect spot for a mural! After much chatter it was decided to make it a go. Following is the work as it progresses.

End of day one.

End of day two. How fun is this!
Keep watching for the final product!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

New Fabrics

I received two new fabrics last week that I am excited about.

This is Isadora from Blank Quilting #5924 Wine.

This is Paloma from Blank Quilting #5954 Multi

Go to Blank Quilting's website at and check out the free patterns that go with these fabrics.