Friday, March 6, 2009

Asked to make donations

So this past Sunday after church - I was honored by being asked to make some type of item or items that cold be sold at the church's annual craft bazaar. I was so tickled - I've not been asked to do such a thing before. Maybe some people would look at that as - oh, they want something for free - but I look at it as - I get to do something I love and donate it to something I love.

I looked through some of my books for ideas last night - that always stirs up the excitement and creativity in me. And then reality hits me and I realize I don't have a bunch of time to dedicate to my quilting. Many blogs I read the person gets to work on something everyday - I would love to do that... I just don't have the time. So I am hoping that after cleaning the house tomorrow I can carve out some time to start working on these donations.

Sunday we are having some friends over for the NASCAR race - that will be fun - but again means no creativity time.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Ahhh - Vacation

I'm back from Vacation - it was wonderful!

It's been a crazy few weeks. Between getting ready for and then going on vacation, having a son diagnosed with some sever food allergies (soy, peanut, dairy and eggs) and trying to figure out what he can eat, and now unpacking from vacation and getting back into the routine of life.

I sure have neglected my blog and my quilting. I sure want to get back on the horse but there is so many other things to do.

Right now I have to focus on what my son can eat - which is difficult with all of the allergies he has. I have unsuccessfully tried to make bread that Jack can eat that doesn't contain eggs, dairy, soy and so forth. Wow - what a task. I have been all over the internet looking for recipes but nothing has worked (meaning resembles bread and is edible). Does anyone have any suggestions?

Florida was great - we got to visit with lots of family, visit Mickey and kick back and relax on a boat on the lake. We all got sunburned - and then came back to the reality of Vermont - COLD! I'm just glad we made it back to Vermont before the snow storm that just came up the East Coast (which seemed to miss us in Western Vermont for the most part). I could have used more time in Florida - that sun sure felt good.

It is so good to be able to get away and recharge the batteries.

Friday, February 13, 2009

A week goes by

I was feeling horrible that I had not written on my blog - so tonight before writing this I decided to browse the 15 or so that I check and guess what - I'm not the only one! There are several blogs that haven't been active this week, so I don't feel so badly now.

It's been a busy, non-quilting, kind of week. I have only looked at my sewing machine, not touched it. Last weekend I help my hubby with a project which involved doing some button holes on my new machine, but that was it. This weekend, though, I have to get us ready for vacation. We leave in 6 days for sunny Florida. Going to see Mickey and some family. I hope I can find some time to work on my bee quilt.

NASCAR is back up and running this weekend with the Daytona 500 - we are looking forward to that. I need a quilt to hand quilt while watching races.... maybe that could be this weekend's project - come up with a small project just so I can have something to hand quilt during races. I think I have the perfecct project in mind.

In a quilt store in Chester, VT, I saw this neat idea. It was a wallhanging made up of small 2 or 3 inch squares that had collector pins on. What a great idea! I do have some of these collector pins and maybe make myself one of these wallhangings and start collecting more pins.

Okay - so who needs to pack for Florida - I got a quilt project I want to do instead!

Did anyone notice it's Friday the 13th? Does that bother anyone? I remember one year as a "tween" a bat appeared in our house on Friday the 13th! That really set the pace for the rest of them, but today has been fine.

On a sad note - let's keep the victims families of the flight that crashed in Buffalo, NY, in our prayers. Very sad story, especially so shortly after the heroics of the Miracle on the Hudson.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

My Stash

After reading other blogs who are participating in Sew Mama Sew "Tell us about your stash" I thought I should participate. Here are my answers to her questions:

  • What do you usually sew?
I just established a "quilters nook" in my bedroom. For Christmas I got a new sewing machine and sewing table and they fit perfectly in a nook in my bedroom. My stash however is in the basement (2 floors down). I sew quilts.... I have sewn pajama pants, that was fun, but I love making quilts!
  • When you shop for fabric, what size cuts do you usually buy? (i.e. If you see something beautiful, but you don’t have a use for it right away, how much do you buy?)
I usually go for whole yards of something I don't have plans for. I do this because I'm so afraid I won't have enough when it comes time to use it.
  • Do you buy on impulse or do you go out looking for something you need?
Both. I will go shopping for something I need and find impulse buys. I love looking at the sale fabrics while I'm there.
  • Are you a pre-washer? If you are, do you wash your fabric before you need it, or only when you’re ready to use it?
I've read about the pro's and con's about pre-washing. I have the fraying that happens. I also hate pressing all the wrinkles out. So I do not pre-wash. I think that today's fabrics don't run as much. I also use a Color Catcher in the wash when I do wash my quilts and that collects any colors that might run.
  • Do you iron it?
I try to remember to... other wise my quilts have creases in the fabrics.
  • How do you sort it? (color, print size, collection, etc.)
I have it sorted mostly by color or type of fabric. If I have certain fabrics for a specific quilt project I keep that together.
  • Do you have any special folding techniques?
Nope - didn' t even know there were techniques to folding fabric. I just want it to fit in my cabient so I guess my technique would be to fold it so it fits!
  • How do you store your fabric?
For the most part, in a converted gun cabinet. This cabinet was my mother-in-laws and it was a gun cabinet which was converted to hold and display fabric. I love the glass door so you can see through at all my fabric (although after seeing other stash's I don't have that much). Some of my fabric for special projects I store in plastic bins.

  • What tips do you have for building up a well-rounded stash?
Look for fabrics that can be used for many different projects, like plain colors to match prints. Also - have lots of what you love.
  • When do you say enough is enough?
I don't but my wallet and my cabinet say enough is enough.
  • What are some of your favorite stash-busting projects?
Quilts - scrappy quilts. I need to de-stash so I think a scrappy quilt is next in line!
  • Do you have a current favorite print in your stash? Let’s see it!
I love purples and I love my bee fabric collection (for my current project the Bee Quilt)

  • What’s your definition of the perfect stash? (Consider sharing a picture or two of your stash & storage, or direct us to a pic on Flickr!)
Well organized, well folded, easy to get to, easy select from and most of all - full of fabric you love!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Steelers Won and No Quilting Done

Well, as are other Steelers fans, breathing a breath of relief after holding our breaths for the longest 2 minutes ever Sunday night. Congratulations Steelers.

However, no quilting is getting done. I'm kind of stuck - in the middle of working on my bee quilt but wanting to do something else. These times always slow me down and I end up not getting anything done. I am looking forward to Saturday though - I think I just might get an hour or so to myself at home and I plan on doing something quilt related. I hate that feeling of wanting to finish old projects but also wanting to start something new.

Wyatt is using my old sewing machine, set up right next to me at my new sewing table, and sewing up a storm when I am as well. As much as I want to encourage him it slows me down because I have to stop what I'm doing and help him with whatever problem he is having. I also tend to lose my focus and make mistakes. I do love seeing his enthusiasm though... and he loves my scraps!

Stay warm!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Go Steelers!

Superbowl Sunday - GO STEELERS!

I've taken the week & weekend off - Thursday was Jack's birthday, in-laws arrived Friday, birthday party Saturday and Superbowl today!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

I Survived The Ripping !

for now....

I got all of my Bee Quilt top ripped out yesterday - took me almost all day (including numerous interruptions).  At the time I hated it but I sure felt great when it was over. 
Today I started putting it back together and fixing what was wrong.  It's starting to look much better.  Amazing what happens when you slow down, measure correctly, and take your time.

Saturday, January 24, 2009


So my Year 2000 quilt is on hold until I can get a space large enough to sandwich it all together.  I have done nothing but look at my next unfinished project this week.  It is a partially finished bee quilt top.

When I pulled out earlier this week, I discovered that what I do have done I am not happy with.  I can tell that I rushed through it and there are seams that don't match up and there is puckering. I know what I have to do -- the dreaded seam ripping..... otherwise I will not be happy.  I HATE seam ripping.

I'm sure that when I was just sitting on my bedroom floor thinking about this project and looking at it it might appear that I was doing nothing.  But actually I was trying to figure out "Now what."  I considered throwing it away and start over - I have enough fabric.  I also considered leaving it alone and just finish it.  But today, I won't do either, today I will start ripping and rethink how to put this together better.

That is the problem for me when I am not following directions. This quilt is in my head - derived from 3 other quilts that I took a little of this and that from.  So there are no directions and that is my problem.  I get frustrated because I don't feel I know what I am doing and then I just get impatient.  

I also considered putting it back away and doing something else - Lord knows I have enough projects I want to do.  I might still consider that as I go pick up my seam ripper.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Year 2000 Quilt Ready To Put Together

I'm so excited - while watching history in the making today on TV - I got my Year 2000 Quilt all pieced, front and back, and ready to put together and quilt. I got to stay home today from work and watch our new President be sworn in... then off to the sewing machine I went.

You know how you have all those little time consuming projects you want to get done but none of them are very important - well I got some done today - mostly getting photos in the photo album. I had about 8 months worth of photos that I needed to get organized an in the photo album. Today was a great day to get that done. Sit in front of the TV and get the photo album fixed up. One problem, I ran out of photo album, so I have to go get a new one - so the project didn't get totally done, but it is much closer and I don't have photo's laying around everywhere.

Now I just have to find a place big enough to lay out my mammoth Year 2000 quilt to sandwich it together!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

My Little Helper

My little sewing partner, Wyatt, is using my old sewing machine, now that I have a new one, and is sewing up a storm. Yesterday I sewed for several hours and he was by my side a good bit of it making his own stuff, and learning what the machine would do. He sewed some 2 inch blocks together, he sewed some scraps together and made his own pillow. It's so cute!

Meanwhile, I have almost the entire backside of my Year 2000 quilt done. I need to add 2 more boarders and I will be ready to put it together to quilt. The problem is, it is so huge that I need to find someplace large to be able to lay it out and put it together - I don't have that kind of space at home unless I move stuff around. I cannot wait until this quilt is done, I am so ready to move on to another project. So many projects in my head and so little time!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Cub Scout Pinewood Derby Time

Okay, I have to brag for a minute.  These are my two fella's and they are in cub scouts.  I am the den mother of Wyatt's den.  Last night we had our annual Pinewood Derby Race.  Jack (in orange) came in 2nd place in his Den.  Wyatt (in yellow) came in 1st place in his Den then went on to race the other 1st place finishers in the pack and won!  We're so proud!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Pajama Pants Marathon

Guess what I did this weekend, nope, didn't quilt - I made pajama pants.  Three pairs!

Wyatt's pair of Jeff Gordon NASCAR pajama pants...

Jack's monkey pajama pants...

And then a pair for me.  I think my hubby felt a little left out so I will have to go find some fabric for him.  He's 6'5" so his pair needs a lot of fabric.

I had gone to JoAnn Fabric because they were having a huge sale on fabric and I got all these fabrics for 70% off.  I think I understand how to make them now.... took me a little bit but by pair 3 I didn't have to look at the directions.

Unlike quilting directions, clothing directions assume you know a lot.... which I don't.  Quilting directions tell you 1) do this with the fabric, 2) sew these 2 pieces together this direction, 3) do this and cut here or sew this way....  However, clothing directions are like 1) sew this seam 2) sew this seam 3) sew this seam and that's it.  Sounds simple except when I got to "sew outside seams together" it didn't tell me how the fabric should be and I totally sewed it wrong the first time, ripped it out and had to figure it out on my own.  I guess they assume you need to put one leg in the other leg and so forth - I didn't know that - but I figured it out!

I think I will stick to quilts, and maybe a few more pairs of pajama pants now that I got the hang of them.  They are cute and easy (once you figure them out) and quick!

I should be getting my sewing table Tuesday - according to an email sent to me.  I can't wait!

I'll have a busy week this week, I have a cousin coming to crash at our place while he ski's Vermont.  It will be nice to see him.  Have a great week!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Year 2000 Quilt

I am so close to having my Year 2000 quilt done.  I have so many squares left to use that I am piecing the back but to make it easy I am doing a row of pieced and then a strip, as shown below:
This quilt is getting so big - I want it to fit my queen size bed and it just seems to big.... but when I lay the top on my bed it fits and really could use a few more rows on the sides.  

You'll notice in the next picture how I incorporated my Year 2000 fabric: (okay I can't get that picture to upload - I'll try later).

I am thinking that since this quilt is so big I might try my hand at machine quilting.  I found places that I can rent time on a long arm machine and I would like to learn to use it.  Not that I want to stray from my fondness of hand quilting - just get this quilt done quickly and learn something new.  It will be so easy to quilt and it will be done!

I'm still waiting on my new sewing table to arrive - it's taking so long (or I'm just being impatient.)  I can't wait to get it and get everything organized and start having a good system, working on the bedroom floor just isn't working anymore!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Family is the Music of Christmas

This one was made for Beth's Mother and Father. It's approximately 30"x30".

God, Grant me the Serenity

Beth made this quilt for my mother this year for Christmas. I really like the border's print. It's approximately 30"x30".

Thursday, January 1, 2009

QuickLink - Free Patterns

Happy New Years!

Looking for a new quilt pattern? Head over to this site for a few free ones. This place links to thousands patterns available in down loadable .pdf format.