Monday, August 29, 2011

Sweet Hearts

Now that I finished my son's quilt for college, many other projects are calling to be finished.  
So, what did I do?  I started a new one!

I needed something small to work on.  This little Priority: Alzheimer's Quilt is the result.  The idea for Sweet Hearts came from quilt photos shown on Make it a Wonderful Life.  Stephanie's quilting group is quite talented, and I enjoy seeing pictures from their get-togethers.  This particular inspiration was shown back in March, thanks to Pinterest though, I knew exactly where to find it when I needed it.  I'd really love to make a large quilt like this!

I also spent some time today cleaning my studio.  The next couple of days I will be retreating online with the Lib-Quilters Yahoo group, so I wanted a clean work environment ;-)

I added a Command hook to the side of my sewing machine for keeping my little scissors handy, so I can be like my friend Michele!
Cool idea, huh?  Quilters are very generous with their ideas!

Have an amazing day!!!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Finally, a Finish

I was beginning to think I would never finish this SuperStar quilt!!! 
 I  really think little quilt gremlins worked in the middle of the night piecing stars and adding to the size of this quilt, because it seemed the more I quilted, the more remained to be quilted ;-)

If you are a regular reader of my blog, you'll know that I went back and forth on whether to quilt this one myself or to do my usual ship it off to the longarmer.  
I really, really wanted to do the quilting on my son's quilt myself, but I also really, really didn't want to mess it up!  I knew with all that negative space, the "mess ups" would be highly visible.  However, I took a deep breath and set about quilting.  (More about that here and here.)

Hours before packing up the car and taking our son to college, I was still auditioning binding strips.
Nothing like waiting until the last minute!   
For the binding, I went with strips of garnet and strips of gold (FSU colors) for that semi-scrappy look ;-)

Pieced backing...before basting and quilting
The hand stitching of the binding took place while on our headed-to-college road trip!  Thanks to my husband who prefers to do the driving, my newly-purchased handy-dandy headlamp (for stitching at night), and a layover along the way to visit oldest son (providing a chance to visit with him and nice break for my sore fingers) the binding was sewn in place just as we exited I-10 in Tallahassee with plenty of time to spare!

SuperStar quilt and son are now comfortably settled in the dorm! 
While the roommate was out of the room, we did a quick, mini photo shoot of the quilt, my son with his quilt, his dorm room, etc.  I promised none of the pictures would appear on Facebook...however, nothing was said about pictures on my blog ;-)

Eric was really cute with his quilt (I won't share the picture of him in his FSU PJ's)...insisting that the quilt looked more "legit" with it tucked in (even though some of the stars are hidden that way)....worrying that it would get dirty during the photo shoot....and basically making me feel very proud that he didn't seem embarrassed moving in with a quilt his mom made! 

As I mentioned before, I quilted swirls inside the star centers with variegated thread, and used cream thread for FMQ loops and various sized stars throughout the huge areas of negative space.  One reason the quilting took forever (besides the fact that I'm still a newbie when it comes to FMQ) is that it is pretty densely quilted.

I love the way the quilting looks on the front, and it really does blend those different shades of neutral fabrics like I hoped (even though it doesn't look like it in pictures).

The backing, however, is another story.  Every stitch is seen clearly on the back which makes me nervous ;-)  I do like the way the free motion stars show up better on the back though.  

If you recall, I pieced the label into the backing by using a leftover star.  My daughter suggested adding the "Go 'Noles!" part which I believe is a nice touch!  So not to distract from the wording, I just quilted a large star in that area of the label.

I have to say I love how this quilt turned out!  It has become one of my favorites!  
As so many of you predicted, I am happy that I decided to quilt this one myself!  I still have a lot to learn and there are plenty of oops, but overall I think I did a pretty good's that for modesty!

I'll leave you with one last picture taken in front of the dorm.
 The outside of the dorm looks exactly the same as when I lived here as a freshman, but luckily for Eric, the inside has been gutted, remodeled and improved.  "Back in the day" this was an all-girls dorm with no air it is a co-ed Honors dorm with modern conveniences such as internet...not to mention air conditioning!

Saying good-bye and letting go (of my son...not the quilt...haha) was more difficult than I imagined.  As I was hand stitching the binding on the trip, I realized this was a big factor in my putting this quilt off until the very end....I wasn't ready for my son to go away to college....sigh

Good thing I have plenty of quilting projects to keep me busy!

Have an amazing weekend!!!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Wonderful Wednesday!

It's college move-in day!!!!!

Don't think I'm ready for this...where does the time go?

Have a wonderful Wednesday!!!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Latest

It's not much, but here's the latest around here...

....latest 36-patch block.  Did you know there's a Flick group for these?

....latest in sewing fashion.  Do you own one of these sexy headlamps for sewing/quilting?  
This isn't the model I wanted, but it caught my eye at I can be as cool as Terri and Toni ;-)

5,500 Quilt Block Designs

...latest on my always growing list of quilting books to buy.  Amy is making a sampler quilt with blocks from this book and using some incredibly cool fabrics!

....latest quilting photo.  Took a little break from quilting to spend time with the recipient ;-)  

What's the latest with you?
Have an amazing day!!!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


No...that's not a typo....I'm actually having some fun with this FMQ thing ;-)

I'm only three bobbins into the FMQ part of quilting SuperStar (not including the quilting already ripped out), but so far, so good.

Remember, I already quilted spirals in the star centers.  Now, getting back to the background space, I am doing free form loops with some stars quilted in here and there.  Once I decided to switch bobbin thread, adjust my tension (the machine tension, that is), relax, and take periodic breaks, the process is going much smoother.  

I have still have a long way to go...not only with this quilt....but also with FMQ in general....
....better get back to work!

What are you working on today?
Have an amazing day!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Colorful Leftovers

After months of meeting my AAQI-QAM Club goal by purchasing a Priority: Alzheimer's quilt, I finally made a quilt for August...yay!

AAQI Colorful Leftovers (still waiting for registration number)
Purchasing mini quilts to help fund Alzheimer's research is a no brainer, but I want to get back into making them to keep my $1,000 Promise ;-)

I used solid white for backing and binding this mini.  I'm in the process of updating my AAQI page to include quilts I've purchased as well as made

AAQI #6082 Flower Power by Susan Chambers

Here's the one I purchased in July for my sister.  It is titled Flower Power, but I call it Happy;-)  It was the perfect quilt to give as a "happy" after our retreat weekend.  I love reading the Artist's Statements of each quilt, and this one is no's like the quilter had Michelle and I in mind!

Have a Happy Monday!!!!

Friday, August 12, 2011


Those who know me well, know that I.DO.NOT.LIKE.TO.EXERCISE!

The subject of exercising has come up a lot lately in my house.  Yes, I know all about the benefits of daily exercise....blah blah blah....yes, I know I need to set a good example for my daughter...blah blah blah....yes, I know I am getting older and my metabolism is slowing....blah get the idea ;-)

Once upon a time....for a VERY short period of time...I exercised regularly and completed my first (and it's looking like my last) half marathon.  This was SO not me, and I didn't even tell anyone what I was doing until a week or two before the race, and then I wouldn't let my family come out and watch....but all that's a story for another day ;-) 

However, I have been doing some quilting exercises!  These kind of exercises I can do all day long!  My plan in joining Amanda Jean's 36-patch quilt along is to work on my matching seams skills.  Yeah, I know this is a basic concept which I should have already mastered, right?  Well, sometimes I'm not so patient with those details.

Listening to, talking with and watching my sister who recently started quilting has inspired me to pay more attention to the basics....not to mention the not so basics...such as actually quilting my quilts.
  (I deleted a whole bunch of mushy sister love stuff that I had written here...ha..ha)

Anyway, I am having so much fun with these exercises, that I have three different 36-patch block quilts going on!  One thing I am dealing with though is that I have used three different machines for piecing these and the 1/4" seams are not all the same 1/4"...does that make sense?  I started this quilt along in Montana on my baby Janome....continued in Orlando on my Bernina...switched to piecing on my going-to-sew-day Janome while my Bernina is quilting Super Star....think I need to name my machines ;-)

The first one is my "practice" 36-patch.  This quilt is being made following Amanda's tutorial exactly.  I have completed all of 5 blocks now...and they are still on the wild side ;-)

The second 36-patch quilt is my Postage Stamp quilt.  I am still following Amanda's tutorial, but with a few changes.  I'm using 1.5" squares instead of 2.5", and instead of sewing pairs of strips, I am cutting up scraps into 1.5" and piecing as leaders and enders.  For that reason, this one is taking longer.  I have three blocks more scrappy pairs waiting....

The third 36-patch quilt is my Cowboys & Cowgirls quilt.  Remember when I asked what to do with this fabric?  If you have Kaffe's Glorious Patchwork book, turn to page 129, and that will give you an idea of where I am headed.  The colors in my picture above are off...they are shades of purple and green shot cottons.  I will use Amanda's tutorial for the 36-patch blocks and then frame fussy cut squares of cowboys/cowgirls in shot cottons and stripes.

Yep.....I'm sure loving my design wall right now ;-)

Now, it's back to quilting....ugh!

Have an amazing weekend!!!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

What's Up Wednesday

What are you up to today?  As I mentioned, my youngest starts school today, and her headed-to-college-brother and I are going to see a movie...."R" rated!....guess who's not happy about that ;-)
I-373 Puzzling Memories by Peggy Mages

Today is the last day to place a bid on selected quilts from the Alzheimer's: Forgetting Piece by Piece exhibit.  All proceeds go to fund Alzheimer's research. Any day is a good day to buy a Priority: Alzheimer's quilt...visit the Quilts for Sale page! | spreading seeds of hope one stitch at a time

I saw Craft Hope updated their website with their latest crafty news.  Project 14:  Christmas in Dixie is providing handmade stockings to 12,000 families that lost everything in the tornadoes. The deadline for this project is September 23 so head on over to read the details.

Why Quilts Matter: History, Art & Politics is a nine-part documentary series airing on PBS this fall.  I have bookmarked this site to watch the trailer when I have more time, but it seems very interesting.  The DVD is already for sale on their website.

Since I haven't been online much lately (big surprise, right?), I'm sure there is much more going on in the quilting world that I am not's up?

Have a wonderful Wednesday!!!!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011


School starts tomorrow for my youngest so been busy with back-to-school shopping and preparation.  Managing to find about fifteen minutes to sew and wanting a quick project,  I looked into my basket of orphan blocks.

Leftover strips from Solids Quilt #3 (see WIPs on sidebar)

I found a whole stack of solid pairs for a project that I wasn't feeling anymore and chopped up this wide strip.  By sewing the resulting thinner, shorter strips to gray sashing, a mini quilt is created ;-)

This future Priority: Alzheimer's quilt is ready to be quilted.  I'm not so intimidated about quilting this mini if I could only feel that confident about getting my son's quilt done!

Another benefit of these kinds of projects...there are always more leftovers ;-)

Have an amazing day!!!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Swirls and Loops

Finally got the courage to start quilting SuperStar....

...and already am having second thoughts about not sending it out to longarmer!

I quilted swirls inside each star with variegated thread.

The quilting shows up more in some stars than in others.

I started quilting loops in the negative background space with neutral thread.  I didn't get too far (but far enough) before realizing my tension on the back was all wrong...these stitches will have to come out!  Ugh!!!  I'm determined that I will one day love FMQ....but this is not that day!

Have an amazing Monday!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Fabric...lots and lots of fabric

So I guess my whining mentioning about not winning any BOMs worked because look what I came home with Wednesday!

25 Disappearing 4-patch blocks made by OMQG members!

 Our guild is also participating in the Habitat Challenge with Jay McCarroll's new fabric line from FreeSpirit so I also came home with these six lovely fat eights.

Michele made me one of her famous mini quilts!!!  Love her house minis and this one is ALL MINE now!  Also included in my gift of goodies was this scrumptious stack of solids and little baggie of cute squares.

Don't you just find this selvage strip the perfect ribbon for wrapping?

A young woman donated these boxes of her mother's fabric for our guild to case you didn't know....fabric is heavy!

I'm still going through the boxes, but seeing this group of fabrics gave me the idea to make this quilt.
Don't you just love fabric and the unlimited possibilities it provides?!

Have an amazing weekend!