Monday, January 31, 2011

I'm Back...

...sort of.  I'm still taking care of some personal stuff...aren't we all ;-) ...
...but wanted to check in since it is the last day of the month.

Have you been working on your Priority: Alzheimer's Quilts?  Leave me a comment telling me how it's going.

#6331 Scrappy Cross

#6342 Color Play
#6343 The Blues

These are the three quilts I registered this month.  They can be found on the Quilts Waiting Assignment page, and soon to be on my $1,000 Promise page.

Flea Market Fancy fabric

If you have registered a quilt in the month of January, please leave me a comment letting me know to be eligible for the Flea Market Fancy fabric, generously donated by Riel.

Have an amazing day!!!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

I'm Still Here

Not much sewing going on at my house, but I have a few things to share....

These two blocks are the start of a string quilt for my daughter.

I started sewing together strips for the liberated coin quilt.

This first strip measures 10 inches by 57 inches.

Mindless sewing is about all I can manage at the moment.
I may not be around too much for a a lot of things going on,
but I'm still here and will check in when I can!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Spotlight on Alzheimer's

In addition to the positive comments left on last week's post regarding my goal to make Priority: Alzheimer's Quilts, I also received numerous emails from quilters encouraging me towards this goal, offering to also make quilts for the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative, and promising to spread the word to others.  This confirms my belief that quilters are most generous!  If you need more evidence of this fact, go read about "Alzheimer's Discovery Financed With Quilts" and how the AAQI (a grassroots organization) has raised nearly $500,000 since 2006!!!

 In the spirit of "making a quilt at a time", yesterday I was inspired to start working on two more mini quilts.

The center hearts are a hmong applique block I found at a quilt show.  The tiny stitches are incredible!  I added borders from honey bun and jelly rolls strips I had on hand.

The idea for this quilt came from browsing my copy of Intuitive Color & Design by Jean Wells.  The batik strips still need some trimming {the curves aren't "curvy" enough}, and then the top section needs to be quilted and tacked on the white background quilt.
I'm looking forward to spending some time getting reacquainted with this many colorful ideas.

Flea Market Fancy
Soooo...... how many Priority: Alzheimer's Quilts have you made so far this year?
Anyone out there still up for a challenge?  Come back and let me know how you did...but don't wait until the last minute...sometimes it takes a couple of days for the quilts to be processed by the volunteers at the AAQI ;-)  Oh, and did I mention?   Riel has generously donated a yard and two fat quarters of Flea Market Fancy!!!  She says she will ship to anyone, quilting ;-)

I would like to thank Heather and Megan for sharing their experiences and helping motivate others to make Priority: Alzheimer's Quilts with this post.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Reflections on Quilting

I pulled my Retreat and Baby Boy quilt tops out to prepare them for quilting.

They have both been hanging around for quite some time.  The Retreat quilt just needed a border added, and the Baby Boy quilt just needed ... well, it just needed me to get it quilted.  If you haven't noticed by now, I don't particularly like the quilting part. 

A while back I came to the conclusion that I wouldn't get better at FMQ unless I actually quilted my quilts.  So that's what I did..quilted them all myself.  But my skills didn't improve quickly enough, I really didn't enjoy the process, and I only gifted two quilts at Christmas (and one was done by my longarmer)!

I used to hate hand sewing the binding on my quilts and now I love it!  I am hoping one day to feel the same way about quilting, but in the mean time, I am giving myself permission to occasionally send off quilts to my longarmer to be quilted.

So...the two I mentioned are on their way to Eagle Mountain Quilting.  I can't wait to get my Retreat quilt back (before the next retreat) and to send off the other quilt to Basics (I'm sure they are thinking it's about time).

I am also sending this little heart off to V for her friend.  I made this during my 45 minute 15 minute play time.  Hope she likes it!

Have an amazing day!!!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Wonderful Wednesday!

In keeping with yesterday's theme of Girls' Day Out...

is it summer yet?

Hope your Wednesday is wonderful!!!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Girls' Day Out

Hope y'all enjoyed the long weekend!  I sure did!

My weekend was spent with the girls....Sew Day with the Orlando Modern Quilt Guild and then a visit with my sister!

Here's Julie hard at work drafting another pattern.  She's so clever.  Wait until you see this one.

I brought my endless supply of solids and made progress on Solids #2 which is turning out to be a liberated coin quilt.

We had a great turn out for Sew Day...I just wish I could remember to take more pictures!

The trend of no picture taking continued at my sister's house, but I did remember to snap a few at the end.   It was great being able to chat quilts with my sister.  My daughter went with me, and my nephew was there, but they were both good sports about the day's agenda and humored us.

My daughter even took a break from her ipod to color on some freezer backed fabric I brought along.  I think I'll make her cat into a fun wall quilt for her room.

We mainly took advantage of what has become known as "my new toy".  After practicing with a few strips, my sister had the 280 two inch squares needed for her next quilt.

My new toy sure has gotten a workout this weekend!

 Sorry Michelle for the mess I left ;-)  Can't wait to do it again!

Friday, January 14, 2011

New Things

The new year brings new resolutions, but also new changes, right?

So I've been working on adding some changes to my blog.  Can you spot them?

But first, let me show you this wonderful table runner my friend Hope made me.  I just love it!!!  It matches the place mats and napkins she made me a little while ago.  I'm telling you, there are unexpected benefits to encouraging your friends and siblings to quilt!!  {grins}

So did you see I added a tab at the top labeled AAQI?  I wanted a central location to list by numbers the Priority: Alzheimer's Quilts I've made.  It also serves as a reminder that I need to make more!

I also added a Follow me on Twitter button and revamped by Twitter profile page.  Every once in a while when I'm not sure what I am doing on Twitter, something will catch my eye to justify my Twitter time.  Something like this tweet by American Quilter which said:  We are all connected by a single thread of hope and love. Quilters Newsletter Blog pays tribute to one of our own... which took me to the following picture and article:


Still need to update my Bucket List, Quilts, About Me and Links tab and remember to change my Picture of the Day photo thing at a time.

This isn't really a new thing.  As a matter of fact it is an old thing, but I want to make it new again.  Since the above picture was taken, this liberated amish top has been basted, partially hand quilted and partially machine quilted.  Now it is hidden in a closet.

It. is. a. mess!!!  

I won't even show a picture.  But I loved it before I messed it up.  So here's my question.  Do any of you have experience in ripping out the quilting stitches and starting over?  I'm worried about the original holes left by the stitches showing if I use a different quilt design.  Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.  I would like to rescue this quilt top from it's current miserable state.

Oh, and I think Monday is my 300th post!  Have an amazing weekend!!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Keeping those resolutions

One of my non-quilting resolutions for 2011 was to make time for and connect with my friends.  {Last year I heard some complaints about me being anti social....of course, most of those came from my friends who don't sew!} Yesterday, I got to work on that goal by having coffee with a friend and lunch with another friend.  It definitely was a Wonderful Wednesday!!!  This morning I have another coffee date and tomorrow I have plans to meet two friends for lunch.  Who knew I was so popular?! back to our regularly scheduled program ;-)

I forgot to show this scarf I made as a Christmas gift.  The plaid fabric is from my daughter's old uniform skirt, is pieced with solids and back in red flannel.  Paired with gloves and a winter hat it makes a nice teacher's gift.

I need to get to work on my patriotic string blocks.  The Orlando Modern Quilt Guild is collecting these for a charity quilt.  As you can see, some of our members have already made theirs.

I've been giving some thought as to what I should make with these solids Robert Kaufman donated to our guild for a challenge and am getting closer to coming up with an idea....I think.

Future blocks for a future quilt thanks to more play time with my AccuQuilt Go toy!

This cute house block arrived in my mailbox from Beth.   Thanks Beth for being such a good neighbor!

Now to get back to my quilting resolutions ;-)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Wonderful Wednesday!

I found a little bit of time to play with my new toy.

The AccuQuilt Go was much easier to use than I thought....and I haven't even watched the DVD yet ;-)

In under ten minutes, a charm pack was transformed into 86 triangles!  Brilliant!!!

I can't wait to play with my other dies...
...but for now I'm off to have coffee and lunch with friends I haven't seen since last year ;-)
 Have an amazing day!!!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

More Made by Others

Shortly before school started, I took a quick trip to visit my sister.  The plan was deliver a sewing machine, give a brief quilting lesson and enjoy a mini sew day together.  Well, you know what they say about the best laid plans....{the adventure is described on the Just for Michelle post}.

Obviously, my sister didn't need my help in learning to quilt!  I'd like to share with you the four {count them...four} quilts she made for Christmas gifts.  Oh...and did I mention....she quilted them herself!

Fruitcake Quilt
I was not with her as she presented her gifts on Christmas.  
My husband, kids and I disappear to Montana for the holidays, and our families refuse to visit us there in the winter.   (I'm from a family of GRITS {girls raised in the south}, and we don't do snow!)  
However, the recipients were kind enough to share their photos.

Whimsy Quilt
My sister and I have always talked (a lot) on the phone.  I don't know what we talked about before, because now we just talk quilting!  It sure is fantastic to share our passion for quiltmaking.  It didn't take her long before she was using the terms jelly rolls and bali pops with ease and learning the difference between a charm pack and a layer cake.

Colors of Nature
Here's my sister with my mom and the lovely batik quilt she made for her.  It's gorgeous!  I think the pattern is called Strip Search.  I know my mom treasures her quilt.  My mom is happy too, because now she has two daughters to make her quilts ;-)

This fabulous quilt was made just for me!!!!  I was blown away to receive this shortly after I returned home.  With all the phone calls back and forth discussing the ins and outs of quilt making, I never guessed one of those quilts would be mine!

Exchange of Flowers quilt
I am so impressed with Michelle's craftmanship!  This quilt is just wonderful!!  Can you believe, this is the first quilt she ever pieced, first one she quilted and first time hand sewing the binding?! No way!

I still can't believe how straight her quilting lines fair!
This quilt is super soft too.  It has already passed my high standards for nap taking;-)

We are not even two weeks into 2011, and my sister is almost finished with this quilt top for her son.  Now, that's a compliment when your boys ask for their own quilt!