Saturday, July 4, 2015

A Quilting Book Review!!

In an earlier post I mentioned that I won this book in a naming contest (the owner of the blog and author of the book, chose my suggested name for her longarm).  I received her latest book as my prize and received it a couple of weeks ago.  I have been reading and choosing quilts to make and because it is so different from the books I have purchased I wanted to share this with everyone.

How many books do you purchase that are over 100 pages long and you think, "Wow! lots of patterns"---but when you get it and begin to look, over 50% of the pages are "basic" information that is in every book on the market already.  I already know what a quilt sandwich is; I already have a scrap system; I already know how to put on a binding; I am not interested in designing or I would not have purchased the book; I know about quilting and why starch is used,  etc.  When you FINALLY get to the quilts, they are almost always really small and although they can be enlarged, I feel cheated.

This book is different.  It is a total of 64 pages (which is about the number of pages that include quilts in the "other" books, even though in one, the total pages was 143).  Quilt patterns begin on page 8!!!!!  in this book (as opposed to page 66 in my comparison book).  There is a total of 14 quilts in the book (the similar book I am comparing it to has 15). Only one I would consider really small (24.5 x 24.5).  The other 2 are actually baby quilts so I consider it a quilt that could be used.  The quilts are all scrappy and pre-cuts can be used (if you don't have a big stash) including the new Honeycomb's by Moda.  The directions are clear and each quilt has a "scrappy tip" to further enhance the creative energy associated with making a scrappy quilt.

I really like this book by Rebecca Silbaugh!  not only because I too am a "scrapper" and the quilts "speak to me", but because it is a book that acknowledges some of us already have some basic skills and do not need remediation before we begin a new quilt.  Had I not been fortunate enough to win this book, I definitely would have purchased it.  I am now on the look-out for her first book "Seemingly Scrappy".  Hope over to her blog and order one!  BTW--I am not being paid for this endorsement, I am just a happy quilter.

Friday, June 26, 2015


Like most quilters, I work on multiple projects.  The top is the quilt that I am making for the auction.  The picture only shows a part of two rows ---it will be 10 rows of 8 blocks ---about 64 x 80 finished.  I don't have a lot of variety in my blocks, using only what I have available of my handdyes.  I have to have it done by August.  The lower block is called "Flutterbug" (I think).  The original pattern was in a book I purchased a couple of weeks ago and was 10 inches finished...mine is 18 inches finished!  I cut all the pieces with my GO! cutter---had every die I needed to "biggie size" it.  It should be big enough for my bed, so I can switch out the "Trip" for this one.  No set time to finish it, but I am using only what I have----Not purchasing anything--only stash.

Just wanted to update you!  I have spent all day working and now I think I will turn in---no dinner for me---too fatigued to eat!

Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, June 19, 2015

My MAJOR Prize Arrived!!

One of my favorite Christmas movies is "The Christmas Story". In the story, the Dad gets a "major prize" which is a lamp with the base in the shape of a woman's leg.  The shade is her skirt.  He loves this since it is a "major prize" that he won, although his wife thinks it is a bit risque, and is happy when it breaks.

Well my "major prize" arrived today.  I won a contest sponsored by Rebecca at Ruby Blue Quilts in which I submitted a name for her longarm machine---Elvis.  She choose it and the prize I chose was a copy of her latest book, "Seems like Scrappy".  I received it today and have just barely looked through it.  I am about to get myself a "blue label" also known as Pepsi, and really give it a "once over".  Just from the little bit I have looked, I love it and know that the cover quilt is one I will definitely make.

Not a very good picture of the book--I can't seem to upload the pictures from my camera and so have to use my phone.  At any rate, you get the idea.

On the quilty front, I have started "ruler work" on my cheater.  It is hard!!!!  I refuse though to give up, I know I can do it!!!!!!  Practice, practice!  Plus, I have purchased several (not too cheap) rulers that I must learn to use.  I have looked on You Tube and really haven't found anything to help me, but I will keep looking.

At any rate, thanks for stopping by....stay cool!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

One Down--Many More to Go!!

I completed "Happy Eight" Saturday and completed quilting it yesterday.  Although I initially wasn't sure about the quilting pattern I chose, I am really glad I did.  It adds lots of texture and doesn't over-shadow the block patterns at all.  All I need to do is to make a label, bind it and give it to my friends little girl for her 8th birthday!  I enjoyed making it and it wasn't really difficult at all.  I may make it again, but I will not join the ovals into 8's.

Now on to the quilt I am making for the auction.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Current Work!

I still haven't began blocking "Crop Circles" so I haven't put the binding on yet.  It is my plan to have that done within the next couple of weeks.

I have started two new projects though:

  • The donation quilt for the silent auction for the fundraiser:
    • I started one quilt, but changed to a quilt made with my hand dyes.  It is comprised of 350 half-squares.  I have 125 made, so the cutting and sewing goes on.  The fundraiser is not until September, so I should be done at least one month before the deadline.  No picture to share yet.
  • I made a quilt for one of the nurses I worked with when her second baby was born, and to address the possibility of the older child being left out, I also made one for her (she was probably 2 at the time).  That nurse is still  working at the hospital and although I no longer work there, I take my students there for clinical and so see her frequently during the semester.  In a conversation a couple of months ago, she relayed how her daughter (who will be 8 years old in September) really loves that baby quilt.  She said although it is really too small, she wants it spread over her when she sleeps and sits on it when she is playing.  I saw this really cute pattern that was made of ovals put together to make an 8.  A perfect quilt (I thought for someone turning 8 years old).  I discussed it with her mother, who agrees, and so I am making it completely from my stash (including the backing).  The "8's" will be 6 different colors of polka dot fabric.  The picture is of a partial row, but I think you will get the idea.  The "8's" are staggered, and I am making a throw size, so it will be usable for a while.

  • I have completed quilting the most recent donation quilt.

I used a really simple pattern for the quilting and although I really do not like the light backing, I didn't have anything suitable and I really didn't want to buy anything.  I have more fabric to make another but I will use another color for the back.  As I type this, I just thought I had some red and some blue flannel that would have been better for the back.  Oh well---next time.  Maybe I will just hold on to this one and make a more suitable baby quilt.  Who knows!  It is cute though.

Well, that's it for now.  Hope you are having a great Sunday!  Take care and thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Happy Dancing---All DONE!!!!!

I am all FINISHED!!!  with the quilting on "Crop Circles".  That is what I think of when I look at the quilt and until I come up with something else--"Crop Circles" it is.  My knees and my back are confirming the "work" it took to get this done.  Even though precision in distance was not my goal, I still tried to make the circles evenly spaced somewhat.  Of course, the closer I came to finishing, the more "hiccups" I had and had to do some removal of stitching, but I was able to line it back up and so it isn't really that noticeable.  All in all---it isn't bad.  The circles are really nice and I think worth all the work.  Now to trim and bind and add to my pile of completed works.  I may enter this one though in a show.  I would really like the feedback.  We will see---anyway--following are some pictures.  Unfortunately, the texture of the circles doesn't photograph well, but take my word for it, it adds to the quilt nicely.

The quilt is lying on it's side.  The top and bottom are the wide solid orange borders.

 I still need to cut the "jump stitches".

The last one includes the back.  Sorta goes with the theme of "crops" doesn't it.

I have loaded a donation/gift quilt for my next quilting project, but the rest of the day will be spent resting.  I feel sorta good, so I may even make a "home cooked" meal, with biscuits, for Sunday dinner!  My family will think it is Christmas!!!!  Have a wonderful day and thanks for stopping by!!!!!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

MIssing in Blogland!

I have been remiss about posting on the blog I know.  Life has been very busy indeed.  Two grand-daughters (sisters) graduations---one from college, the other from high school.  As happens with most families at this time of year---I had lots of  family visiting to attend the ceremonies.  It was a time for me to reflect on how fast time had gone by.  I remember when each of these babies were born---I was actually present in the delivery room and was the first person to sing "Happy Birthday" to each of them.  They have both grown into really beautiful (inside and out) young women, and I was one proud Grandmother at the graduations!!!!

Things are settling down and I am getting back in the routine.  I have (of course) been doing some quilting:

I finished the Bargello and am now in the process of quilting it.  It is a VERY slow process, at least for me.  I am quilting concentric circles of different sizes.  I am overlapping so I don't have to be concerned with "lining" them up.  The first picture is a close-up of the circles (with "jump" stitches not yet cut).  The backing is a piece of African Fabric I have had for some time.  It is amazing how well it matches the top--almost as if I purchased it specifically for that quilt and at the same time.  I am about 50% complete so I should be done in a couple of weeks.

I have also made another baby quilt for our Guild charity I need to quilt and made a quilt from cheater fabric to practice ruler work.  I also need to work on the Moda Sampler one of these days soon.  Lots to do!  It is also getting warm and hopefully I can do some fabric dyeing this summer.  My garage is an absolute disaster and so will need a good cleaning and purging!  I purchased a new washer so my old one is going to be installed in the garage and I will use it to wash the fabric I dye.  Just have to find the time to get everything put into place.  Whew----just thinking about it makes me tired.  I think I need a nap!!!!  Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, April 20, 2015

Diane and I Won!

Diane entered a quilt she pieced and one I quilted in a quilt show in Florida and we won the "Mayors Award". The show was small (about 50 quilts), but was judged so we are proud.

For some reason I cannot post the picture of my quilting.  I will still work on it and post when I figure it out.  Anyway--isn't this "Paducah Nine Patch" pretty!  See how she has arranged her colors!  

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Checking In!!!

I have been very lax in keeping up with my blog---"almost" breaking my NY Resolution---but not quite.  So much has been going on in my world----renovations to the master bath (AGAIN)--that has left a layer of fine dust on absolutely everything--even areas upstairs.  Hopefully this will be a success but the work will continue since we have decided to redo all the baths.  That means the workmen will be here at least into the early fall.....gotta save money first for each one and then proceed; it is the end of school for me and so LOTS of papers to read and grade; two grandchildren are graduating from school--one college, the other high school; and the AQS show with my and Diane's eighth yearly trip there.  It might be a bit more complicated since my brother and his wife and kids are also visiting---making sleeping arrangements a bit more creative.

On the "Quilty Front"-----This is the completed "Mad About Plaid" quilt.

The back looks like a page from a book about birds.  It is a perfect (I think) backing.  When putting the strip strata together, some of the strips ended up a little wonky because the shirting's were so soft.  I really liked that looks and so purposely made it wonky.  This is going to my grandson.   He wants to redo his bedroom and so this will be the fourth quilt (I made one for his bed at his Mom's house) I have made for him.

Next in line was a UFO Kit from a couple of years ago.  It is made entirely of my hand dyes and so I plan to keep it.  I got the pattern from a web surfing expedition and cut out all the fabrics, even made a chart.  This is another "tedious" pattern.  It is like losing your place while reading a book--if you do, you sometimes have to start over to get it right.  I had to start over a couple of times even though I had been careful (I thought) to mark the strips.  Once finished it will be turned differently so as is, you are looking at the quilt sideways.  It is a Bargello---not sure if it is easier than the original pattern,  not really even sure if I will like it, but I am moving ahead.  I love the brightness of it!  It looks so contemporary/modern.

The left side of one section and a border is finished and I am starting on the right side of that section.  There are four sections (which make 2 sides) all together. From the lesson I learned with the first section, I am only putting three rows together at a time.  I am also going to carefully mark the top.  This will be a "sofa" quilt since I am changing the slip cover to a very light beige-grey and this should brighten it up.  Don't know how I will quilt it ---"it" hasn't "spoken" to me clearly yet.

That is my update.  I have to put my fun stuff aside, drink another cup of coffee and then read and grade some more papers.  Do have a wonderful Sunday.  At Guild meeting yesterday one of the members brought the most wonderful apple pie that was "store bought".  In a little bit I am going to go and purchase one for our dinner dessert.  Think I will take it out of the box and pretend I "made" it---LOL.

"Talk" to you later!!!!!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Almost Done!!!

I loaded "Mad for Plaid" on the long arm this morning and I am already half done.  I decided to not use the Baptist Fan but rather another CL board (see the second board).   The quilting fabrics and design make using a really complicated quilting motif unnecessary so this board will add just enough texture.  The backing is a moda print that I have had for quite awhile.  It is a combination of text and birds (from a dictionary).  The color is perfect for the quilt and "modern up" the very traditional pattern.  I should be done with it by the week-end!