Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Giveaway and Celebrating 4 Years!

Four years ago today I started blogging! It was one of the best decisions I ever made and has turned into a very enjoyable pastime. Man, that makes me sound can read my first post HERE. I remember after I posted it changing things no less than 5 times, adding things and taking things out. It was only 1 paragraph long!

So instead of spending the day sewing I spent it watering the sod. It took almost 2 1/2 hrs to do the job. I am scared to death of being the one who kills it! I am taking my job seriously.

After the watering I had to go to the grocery store because we were out of everything. We ate very bad over the weekend, lots of crap and not healthy. I felt it yesterday and today.

This dog's name is Felony!

Most of you may not know I am not a huge animal person. We never had pets growing up and my kids had fish and outside bunnies. I know very adventurous....Some of you probably are animal people and you will love this article. A friend of ours is a canine cop and will be retiring soon. He is still young and wants to have another "job". He will be  working with dogs to sniff out cancer (ovarian cancer is on the list)and other medical conditions, how amazing is that. We had heard about dogs that sniff out blood sugar changes in diabetics but they are super expensive $10,000!
If you have ever seen a real police dog, it would scare the living daylights out of you. I never, ever, ever would like to be chased and caught by one of them. The ones I have seem are pure German Shepherds from Germany.

The article is in Philadelphia magazine. I also want to read this article on college and see the Fall Art they are not paying me and no this is not the giveaway....

A lot of people liked this quilt. It is already promised to my guild so I can't give it away. I will make another one for the winner of the giveaway, using whatever colors you like. Now mind you I don't have any reproductions or dark traditional colors. My palette is bright with clear colors, it's going to look more contemporary than traditional......I'm just saying. Think pink, blue, green, yellow, orange, aqua, red or black.....not really purple or brown.
So leave me a comment and tell me what is your favorite thing about Fall and be sure to tell me what color you want for a quilt should you win. The size of the quilt will be around 18 x 18 with a white background.
Good luck, I will pick the winner this Friday 9/5. This is open to everyone in the US or elsewhere.


Monday, September 1, 2014

Eat A Peach

Remember that album? How is it I can remember that was the name of the album by the Allman Brothers, but I can't remember what I did 2 days ago? We even looked it up and I was right, my husband was impressed.

Pies are not hard but are labor intensive, perfect for this weekend. I did learn a tip, put the peaches in boiling water for 1 minute and the skins slide right off, so worth the extra step!

My other tip, make the bottom crust a little bit longer than you think. When you make your edge, roll the bottom edge up and over to meet the top crust and it won't drip in the oven. Does that make sense? It was good.

I cut out 2 more blocks for the Moday Building Blocks. This is #6, I am not going in order. Even my phone coordinates!

Block #5. I am beginning to think I made the right decision to go with prints. It's not like I don't have any on hand, if you get what I mean!


Saturday, August 30, 2014

Gloomy Saturday

So this is the first block in the MODA Modern Building Blocks. It's huge! 36 x 36. I can't say I am in love with it but I will wait to see how it looks with the other blocks.

For most of the summer my front yard has looked like this.....pretty bad.

It's a swale that goes around the house to keep water from going into your basement. Depending on your yard, most people need this (and don't know it) and that is why they get water in the basement.

The big truck pulled up bright and early on Friday morning.

My husband and nephew, Macen spent the morning "carpeting" the hill. Instant gratification!

It looks so much better, but now the battle is keeping it watered so it doesn't die. Thank goodness it is overcast today with rain predicted for the next 2 days. I think we are the only ones hoping for that!
The dirt in front will be  new landscaping. I also want to replace the walkway and reconfigure it. So I guess we are putting the "labor" into Labor Day!

While they were laying sod, I was making pasta sauce with basil from my garden.....

and picking flowers. I love the combination of red and yellow!
Enjoy your weekend!


Friday, August 29, 2014

All Over The Place

There are some days that I believe I need medication! I jump from project to project and can't seem to focus on just one thing.
I have decided to make the Moda Modern Building Blocks from prints in my stash. I am going to follow their colorway. There might be a solid or two if appropriate.

This is the first block and it is huge! 36 x 36. I had to re-evaluate my fabric choices because I didn't have enough fabric for some of the larger pieces. I may try and do 1 a week or maybe 2 of the smaller blocks.

Does anyone remember this quilt? It has been sitting around for a while. I have decided to use the Quilt As You Go method. This is either going to be a really good idea or a nightmare! It is queen size so it needs to be manageable.

I am doing various widths of straight line quilting. I am here to tell you it is so BORING! I had a hard time just finishing up one half of the first panel, there are 4 or 5.....goals will need to be set if I ever want to see this one completed.

Love all the green fabrics!


Thursday, August 28, 2014

August 28th

Happy Birthday to my youngest son, Colin! He is 33 today. He is getting ready to head out to the AT for a long hike. My friend Terry is also off, good luck to you both I hope you have great weather.

I "stole" this picture from the wall of their house. He has a magnificent view from this vantage point!


Yesterday I taught another Quick Curve Ruler class at the Quilt Block. My students were fantastic and very fast learners.

Betty is here for only a short while, next week she goes back to Japan!

Beverly got into the groove right away and made quite a few blocks.

Betty was going to match up her curves until we mixed them up and thought they looked pretty good this way!

Beverly was using up some old fabric to try out the technique.

Louise was gearing up for Christmas and got a good head start.

All of these ladies were a joy to teach. They promised to send me a picture of their finished quilt, I will update when I receive them. They also were very clever and took pictures of the steps they were unsure of for reference when they got home.

You may remember the start of this little quilt.

I gave it to my friend, Sujata for her birthday. She used it to keep her bull warm. The other one was a little jealous, so she made one for him!They are a colorful pair!!!


Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Remarkable Rectangles

I had the honor of making a quilt for a book by one of our guild members, Bob DeCarli. Bob is the only male member in our guild and a super nice guy. He puts up with all of us women quilters and adds a lot of fun to our meetings. Always the gentleman, he is there to help carry a sewing machine or 100lbs of fabric after a shopping spree at the annual getaway.
He is a former math professor and engineer who became interested in quilting when his wife asked him to help her make a quilt.

This was the quilt I made. It is named after his granddaughter, Charlotte. It is quilted by Charlotte's mom, Robin.
You may remember the other quilt I made for his first book Hill and Valley Log Cabins. Yes did I say he is an engineer???? He LOVES small pieces. You know the kind that are 1/4" x 1/4"!
Congratulations Bob on your newest book!

It's always exciting to see your name in print.

Today I sent out my 100 nine patches to Barb and can't wait to get my selection back in October. The wheels are turning as to what I will be doing with them. Have you made a quilt with nine patches that you love? I could be swayed!


Monday, August 25, 2014

Vintage Bowties Tutorial

Part of the fun of going away on a sewing retreat is that there is a lot of time to sew! I am not good about following directions or cutting in a group situation, so I try to pre-cut all my fabric and I can start sewing as soon as possible.
The fabrics shown are 9 of my favorite vintage fabrics. Most of them were bought in 5" squares or charm square size so I had to be careful cutting them, there was no room for error.
I thought I would give you the measurements in case you wanted to make one for yourself. They are super easy and would use up a good bit of your scrap basket.

These directions make one unfinished block, that measures 4 1/2"
Print fabric cut 2 @ 2 1/2" squares
                  cut 2 @ 1 3/4" squares

Background fabric cut 2 @ 2 1/2" squares

2 1/2" background squares
My vintage fabrics are in the mid to light values. I am using a lot of different backgrounds and want to make sure there is some contrast.

I am laying them out to check before I sew.

I know that some of them will not have a lot of contrast but I am ok with it. I like how vintage quilts have fabrics that fade in and out.

1 3/4" squares
Once you are happy with your fabric selections, draw a diagonal line on the back of the 1 3/4" print squares. If you use a mechanical pencil, it makes a very accurate line.

Lay the fabric  across the edge of a 2 1/2" square.

Sew on the line. This is a good project to chain stitch. You could get a lot made in a short amount of time.

Press and check to make sure it covers the square. If not rip it out and do it again......

Once it is perfect, trim off the inside pieces, leaving a 1/4" seam allowance. If it isn't perfect you will not have a square, which will not make the block square, so take the time. You will be happy you did!

Lay out the block, sewing the top 2 together and the bottom 2 together. Again you could chain piece these.
Press the seam with the fabric going towards the print fabric. Next sew the 2 halves together.

I pressed my seam open because it made it flatter, which is my preference, and it is a small block!

There you go, 1 bowtie block only 96 more to go!

Saturday was our monthly, Meanix Family Fun Night held at my son Colin and his wife Jenny's home. It was freezing but we had a good time anyway.

Jenny always comes up with something fun. How about donuts filled with ice cream!!! The Krispy Cremes were a hit. I think there will be more of these in the future.....