Monday, May 31, 2010

When I am crabby....

The fix for irritabililty take my trusty Bernina 1230 to my cool and awesome screened-in porch with a basket of scraps. Turn on the ceiling fan, get the dog a bone, and sew those strips together in random delight (for my purple "X" block quilt)...not a care in the world is left!!

I almost never use my Bernina anymore since I bought my beloved Janome 6600. But, since it is lonely and since I am bringing it to my thread class at the Charlotte symposium on Saturday....... decided to kill two birds with one stone...the crabby bird and emptying the 10 bobbins required for the class. My husband was more crabby wife!!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Join Snowball night

http://sewmanyways.blogspot/2010/05/lets-have-a-snowball-night.html is having a snowball night. Here are my snowball quilts. Just love that snowball!!!

Moonlit Path has three surprises...see if you can find all three stars!!

This large snowball is made from my African and Australian prints. I used the corner block leftovers for the back flying geese. This quilt is big stitched with pearl cotton, machine quilted and tied. I am not quite finished with the embellishments yet. Now all these fabrics are from my collection, but...... I used one new one...guess which one:)

This quilt with small snowballs using 30'/40's repro fabric also is incorporating some of my grandmother's embroidery. The top is together but not pictured and I am working on a border using more of her doilies.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Blogger's Quilt Festival entry

We loved Johanna. She was a member of the Charlotte Irish Quilters and a special friend. In September she was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer...not a good thing. Did it keep her down?? No it did not. She had a sense of humor coming to the booksigning saying, I thought I had better show up before you all had me dead and buried. She came to quilting, she came to book club, she had outings with her lovely family and wonderful friends, she went to a wedding. She had a smile on her face in public, despite the private pain.
The Charlotte Irish quilters made this quilt for her when she was diagnosed. We sat at the machines and tables at my house and organized the squares and sewed the strips on the blocks. Johanna had painted two water colors for me which hang in my dining room. My husband scanned the paintings and printed them on Timeless Treasures computer fabric. I cut that fabric up to incorporate into blocks. The fabric was added to show who Johanna was. Since she was from Northern Ireland, sheep fabric was a must. So were the shamrocks; music fabric since her husband and son are for the garden club, a yoga monkey for her yoga, the dog label for the dogs she loved etc. She was a healthy eater so I latticed it with cucumbers! I quilted the quilt and delivered it in three weeks time for her to enjoy with chemo and all. She died last month. Johanna's quilt is my entry for this festival...for love, for dignity and for her memory.

Family tradition

So, when my children were young, I taught them how to sew and had them make a few cuddle quilts for the hospital. My daughter hated it. When she left our house for college, not only did she insist on a store bought comforter for her dorm room, but she said that she never wanted to look at a sewing machine again. Sad words for a mother's heart. And now...and in my heart. At age 27, she has become a master at the sewing machine creating purses and quilts and all. Here she is finishing off her picnic quilt. She bought a dress from the children's section of Target in the Liberty of London print, cut it up and incorporated it into this quilt. The family tradition goes forward. Great grandma would be just as proud as I am!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Basic quilting tutorials for the beginner

Wonderful site for the basics....Thank you Amy.

Using up those scraps

So here they are...the finished, all caught up cuddle quilts...and from scraps!! Voila...the scrap busters if there is such a thing. Looking around my quilting room I do not think so...and then what did I do to celebrate this today?? I went to IKEA and bought some fabric from the kids dept. I really really really did need it.......... It was just there and there was so much and really who else would get it.....and it is adorable. The cars for my latest grandboy....and ...and...

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Spiders in the Circus

I am sooo behind on donation quilts for the guild. I had promised myself to finish one cuddle quilt a month for children with cancer or women with cancer or the soldiers. So far I have done one and it is May. So here is the second and I have basted the others now and they are ready to quilt. My favorite fast quilting is the wiggle stitch....soooo relaxing. But in this quilt I only used it twice. I just love scrap quilts.

I used the tutorial here for the baby spiderweb block from

Sunday, May 2, 2010

The cactus and and the cat

My friends.....Jerry, the farmer and Muggs, the farmer's wife gave me a cactus. Why? I do not remember. Maybe it was because I grew up in Arizona? Maybe they were telling me that my personality was a bit prickly? But, I think it was because they are just plain nice. My 13 year old favorite cat, Milo has decided that the kitchen bay window is the new place to be. And, he has evidently decided that cuddling up with a cactus is nice too.

Red Scrap Bear's Paw Variation

Making this quilt was so much fun. My friend, Norie decided to do a scrap triangle workshop in her home back in October of 1995. She adapted the instructions from a scrap challenge by Sharyn Craig in Traditional Quiltworks, Issue 30, February 1994. We were instructed to bring 100 triangles, 50 dark and 50 light. People spent alot of time searching for just the right fabric only to find out that when we got there, we put all our triangles together in a big bag, one for darks and one for lights. The bag was passed around the room and we each randomly chose a new set of 50 dark and light triangles. The challenge was to make large and small triangles into a quilt using all the triangles, ugly or not. This is the quilt I made. I hand quilted it and named it Celebration because it was finally finished. The judges in the show said that I didnt quilt enough on it....OMG...They were probably right in retrospect, but I was so done at the time. We have enjoyed using this quilt on our bed.

Yellow and Red scraps from the scraps quilt

This quilt was made from the scraps of the above quilt. The yellow used here is at least 40 years old. My sister and I got it from the fabric store at Christown Mall in Phoenix, Arizona. It has always been a favorite. When I ran out of the left over stars, I just added blocks from my stash. The back fabric is from Arizona too. It is when my father died and my sister and I went fabric shopping inbetween hospital visits to destress. The quilt therefore has memories. I have it on the back of the rocking chair in my office. I finished it in 1995, big stitching it with pearl cotton.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Antique pineapple blocks

A few months back I was cruising an antique show in Concord, N.C. with my daughter. We were looking for buttons and odds and ends when I saw some bags of old quilt blocks with no price on them. I asked the man why there was no price and he said because he didn't know how much to charge....hmmmm music to my ears that was!! Of the random bits he had, I spotted these. There are 8 pineapple blocks about 100 years old. I think that they are cut out of an old quilt. The eight I have here are in good condition. He first asked me if they were feedsacks and to offer him what I thought that they were worth. I told him that I could offer him $10 and that they were not feedsacks. He hollered to his wife that I was trying to rob him blind. So then I offered him $11.. It was in great fun and in the end I paid $15 for the lot telling him that it was only his charm that let me pay so much for so little. I am delighted with them and am pondering their use...ha ha...a bargain for my collection and I am looking for their purpose.