Monday, May 31, 2010

A Little Sewing-- A Lot of Relaxation.

It's Monday and here is my design wall. I think it has been like this for at least 2 months. But, I vow to finish both of my Patriotic Quilts before I get back to work on this one. Stop by Judy L's Patchwork Times to see what everyone else is up to.

Well, I didn't get the flag quilt finished yesterday as I planned. I actually spent quite awhile sitting out on the patio reading. After I got the "stitch in the ditch" finished, it took me forever to adjust the thread tension because the thread kept breaking. I changed needles twice and adjusted several times. Sometimes that just happens. Frustrating.  When this happens, I go to "Piecemeal Quilts" and go over her list of adjustments.

The "meandering stars" free motion went so well in the outside border that I decided to do them in the other two borders also. When I have a pattern such as this, I usually do not mark it and follow the stencil. What I do is, set the stencil next to me to visually use the stencil. This saves a lot of time in prepping the quilt.

Have you ever been just quilting along and everything going well .... you think

only to find out that your backing fabric has turned under and you are quilting on it also.  Isn't that frustrating! But, then again, I sure was lucky it was only a few inches and the area had light quilting. It was also at the very beginning of my quilting. So, it only took a few minutes to fix my mess.

I'm off to my sister's today for swimming, eating, and visiting with family. (She lives about 30 miles away.) But, I do plan to get home in time to finish this quilt. We'll see!!!!!

Oh, by the way, I am sooooooo excited. Only 3 more days of school until summer break. I love teaching and I had a great class, but there is a reason most schools have a summer break. :)

Happy snipping, stitching, and quilting.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

What a Great Relaxing Day!!!!!

So what are you doing today.

After working on pool maintenance for a little bit and then lounging on the patio reading a book, I have returned to the sewing room.

I worked all of yesterday afternoon on quilting the "flag quilt". I should be able to finish it this evening. Just simple "quilt in the ditch" for this one. I will probably do some meandering stars on the outside border. But that will be free motion without a pattern so it probably won't take long either. I really hope I have enough red fabric for binding. I think that will make the quilt.

I hope each of you are spending your weekend in the way that you want.

Happy snipping, stitching, and quilting.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Sewing Room or Quilting Studio

My daughter, Kelsey, chastised me for not updating my blog. She said it is "pitiful" because she doesn't have anything to read. Too funny, Kels.  Then I remembered that I had a draft waiting for some time when I didn't have anything to blog about. So, here it is. 

I've always envied all of you ladies that refer to your sewing rooms as studios. For some reason, I always felt only those that use their rooms for business purposes could call them studios. But I love how "Quilting Studio" or "My Studio" or "Sewing Studio" sounds.

So I have decided that after I get out of school next week, one of my first projects is going to be to clean up my "sewing room" and turn it into a "studio".

Here is my inspiration.

This is Anne Sutton of "Bunny Hill Designs" studio. I just love it. Couldn't you be creative in this room?

No, mine will not look anything like this. But, I do plan to make a large sewing area that will hold both of my sewing machines, add more shelving, rearrange and put everything in its place. Big plans. I just hope I don't fizzle out.

Do you need inspiration to clean up or re-do your quilting space. This link to Prairie Home Quilts  has over 100 links to sewing/quilting rooms.

It doesn't hurt to dream, does it?

Happy snipping, stitching, and quilting!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Happy Sunday!

Not much sewing going on today or probably all week. I am re-organizing my sewing room. I'm not about to show pictures until I at least get everything back into a place. That will probably take me awhile. I have added some new shelving and a larger sewing area.  Can't wait to finish and try it out.

Kelsey is moving from Fort Smith into our rent house. She'll be busy doing that this week. I'm sure I'll help at least some.

So, I just wanted to tell everyone "Happy Sunday". I hope you are spending it in a relaxing way doing what you want to do.

Happy snipping, stitching, and quilting.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Quilt Festival On-line

 After feasting my eyes on the first dozen or so quilts in the Quilt Festival hosted by Amy, I have decided to participate.

I decided to showcase my header quilt "Orange Crush".

This quilt is a Bonnie Hunter Mystery Quilt.  This was the first mystery that I took part in.  It was fun taking part in the mystery. This was not my first quilt but it was the first quilt I made that had half square triangles in it. They were not the easiest for me me. But I survived.

As some of you know, I live in a small town without a quilt shop. In fact, we have a Wal-mart that is not even a supercenter. Therefore, I do not have instant access to fabric. When I made this quilt, I used scraps that had. But I ran out of black and white fabrics so I visited Wal-mart and purchased what black and white fabric they had. It was all okay except the gray and white checked.

That material was thinner and, oh my, how it stretched when I sewed it. (I then realized how important it was to purchase good fabric.) But as you can see, I worked with it and ended up with a stunning quilt. I gave it to my husband but you know how that goes. It is on display in my home all of the time, so it really still is mine.

And a mosaic.

I finished this quilt before we had snow but waited to photograph it because I was looking for the perfect setting. I actually sat down, wrapped it around me,  and "took in the view" for 10 or so minutes before going back into the house that day. Don't you just love the "stillness" of snow?

Glad you stopped by. Be sure to check out all of the other quilts in the Quilt Festival. And I hope you stop by to visit another day.

Happy snipping, stitching, and quilting.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Stormy Weather

I made it to my sewing room last night around 7. The red, white, and blue top (Bonnie Hunter's Ohio Stars and Rails) is pieced.

I didn't  start on the borders because I stopped to start the borders on the flag quilt. I added one border that is just a 2 inch pieced border using some of the blues in the quilt. I plan to add an off-white border and then a dark blue to complete it.

It was storming a little last night so I decided to sew through it. My sewing room is downstairs but the back part of the downstairs is underground. (Not sure if that makes sense to you.)  I am safer down there than upstairs. So I just sewed away and ignored the wind and lightning.)

Have a great day!

Happy snipping, stitching, and quilting!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

What a Mess!

Sometimes I go days without entering my sewing room. I really expected to have both of my patriotic quilt tops finished by today.

It could be because it is a mess right now. I still have my patriotic quilts laying on my floor.  And fat quarters are still on the table crying for me to choose them for my "Be Attitudes" applique quilt.

Or it could be because I spend way too much time looking at everyone's blogs which gives me way too many ideas for new quilts.

Or it could be because I found a beautiful quilt that I really, really want to make and I know it will be a difficult challenge. And I love challenges. So I spent a few hours last night looking on line for fabrics. But, I just can't do it. I really want to see those fabrics in person and feel them. So, it will be another trip to Mama's Log House Quilt Shop. Probably a summer project.

On another note, I just realized it is only 3 weeks until our cruise. This is our first and we are excited. Our kids and their friends are going with us. I think we'll have a blast. If anyone has any suggestions on what to pack or what NOT to pack, let me know. We are newbies at this.

Have a great day!

Happy snipping, stitching, and quilting.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Design Wall Monday

 Thanks Judy L. at Patchwork Times for hosting Design Wall Monday.

Here was my design wall (floor) at 7 a.m. Sunday morning. Two projects going at once.

Here is my design wall (floor) at 5 p.m. One flimsy complete and waiting for borders.

Here is my design wall (floor) at 9 p.m.

I have about half of it sewed together. Three more rows to piece. And 7 rows to sew together.

I'll have pictures of the quilt tops later this week, I hope.

I'm off to decide what I am going to use for the bindings. They may have to be scrappy borders because I am running low on the blue fabrics used. But, I have two large pieces of blue that have not been used in the quilt that I may use.

Decisions, decisions.

Happy snipping, stitching, and quilting.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Busy as a Bee

I actually feel like I accomplished a lot today.

Have you ever just wanted to get out and do something? That's how I felt this morning. So I decided to make the drive to Mama's Log House Quilt Shop  to look around. I was really surprised because when I arrived there were no cars. I went in and had the whole shop to myself for about 1 and 1/2 hours. Well, not completely. A couple of other customers came in but only stayed a few minutes each. The last time I went there were 10-12 people there the whole time I was. The reason they were so slow was that there was an "Airing of the Quilts" going on in Greenwood. I'm not sure exactly what was involved in that but apparently it was a small quilt show. Although, it was only 10 miles away from the shop, I decided not to go.

Let's see, what did I purchase. A bundle of 4 fat quarters (red, white, and blue) for a 4th of July mini quilt. A package of applique pins, a pattern for a sunflower mini wall hanging, and a few other odds and ends.

I got out my blocks from Bonnie Hunter's "Ohio Stars and Rails" quilt pattern. I decided to at least get them laid out to see if I needed to make any more of them.  I had 3 extra blue star blocks and needed to make 6 more rail blocks.

I sewed three rows together and decided I wanted to start my wall hanging with the new fat quarters I purchased today.

I picked out this pattern to use. I decided it would be faster than me designing one in EQ.

It is from a Leisure Arts Publication called "Quilts by the Calendar".

Here is my progress so far. I also have the large squares cut out so tomorrow I can easily sew my triangles and complete the piecing on it, unless something else catches my fancy.

Hopefully, I'll be back tomorrow with more progress. My eyes are going shut.

Happy snipping, stitching, and quilting!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

New Friends and Good Food

I enjoyed a wonderful early evening getting to know fellow Arkansas bloggers, Karen from Quilts, etc. and CJ from Created by CJ.  Isn't it amazing that we can make new friends through technology. And quilters can always find things to talk about.

Thanks CJ and Karen. I hope we can get together again soon.

Latest Finish

My latest finish is this "Let it Snow" First Friday Freebie from Kaaron at The Painted Quilt. I decided to make it into a quilted pillow to match the"Snowflake" Quilt that I still haven't quilted because I cannot decide what I want to use for the back.

I have not embroidered in years so I was surprised when I watched a tutorial on the backstitch because I thought I always made a backstitch, but apparently not. I was taught to embroidery as a child by my mother. I like the way mine looks, so I am not worried about learning the "real" back stitch. I'll just keep doing it my way.

Happy snipping, stitching, and quilting!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Late Greetings/Design Wall Monday

Design wall hasn't changed. I've been working on other small projects.

I hope everyone had a Blessed Happy Mother's Day with their families.

I am the only lucky person in my immediate family that did not have to work. Larry is currently doing a 48 hour shift, Craig worked the 10:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. shift and Kelsey worked the 6 a.m. to 11 a.m. shift.

Kelsey, Ismael, and I spent some time with my family. After lunch, we played chicken foot (dominoes). It is always a wild time when we get together--9 siblings and their families.

I got back home around 4:30 p.m. and headed straight for my sewing room. What to do now? That is a problem when you have 4 or 5 things going at once. Not!!!! You can always start something new! Not that I did that this time. I worked on a pillow. I'll take pictures to show you either this afternoon or tomorrow.

Sometimes it is hard to get up and go back to work on Monday mornings. But then I always remember that my job is, for the most part, 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and I have most of the summer off. AND, I am thankful that I do have a job and am Blessed to be helping children.

If you haven't stopped by Judy L's "Patchwork Times", be sure to do so.  I always see some amazing work and sometimes we just need a little inspiration. 

Talk to you later . . .

Happy snipping, stitching, and quilting.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Another Christmas Stocking Finished

As many of you may have figured out, I am a Christmas fanatic.  I think part of the reason is that I am not a cold weather person. I really, really need the sunshine to feel my best. So, when the Christmas holidays come around, I really spruce up the house. It cheers me up and it helps me to remember and focus on the reason for the season.

I have been making wooden Christmas items for over 20 years (in spurts, of course) and the past couple of years have added quilts and table toppers made from Christmas fabrics. My goal is to have a Christmas quilt for each bed in my house at the end of this year. I have 3 of them made and need one more. Although, my son really gets attached to his quilts and does not want me to put a different quilt on his bed at Christmas.

Where is this all going? I finished a second icy, blue Christmas stocking. I couldn't stop at just one. There are four of us, after all. Plus 2 extras.

And both of them . . .

I plan to make each of them a little different. But then again, I may just make two and use them in the bedroom with my snowflake quilt that is also made from these fabrics. And then make 4 or 6 out of red Christmas fabrics.

Decisions, decisions.

When I made that decision, I'll know whether I want to hand embroider our names on them or embellish them with decorative hand embroidery.

And that, Larry and Craig, is why I make Christmas items all year long. lol

Happy snipping, stitching, and quilting!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Home Again, Home Again, Jiggidy Jig

My design wall has been the same for the past couple of weeks. Other things keep grabbing my attention. Sorry, Becca!

As you probably read on a past post, we spent the weekend at a "Corp of Engineer Park" about 20 miles from my home. Although stormed on Friday night, we had a lot of rain with a little thunder and lightning. I hear the towns around us were hit a lot harder. I have posted about our trip here, if you want to read about it.

I did accomplish a little bit while I was out having fun. I finished my first "Be Attitude" block, "Be Warm" and started the 2nd block, "Be Positive".

I also started an embroidery block to make into a pillow. The pattern is a "free first Friday freebie" pattern offered by Kaaren of The Painted Quilt  It is called "Let it Snow!" Drop by The Painted Quilt to see the other "freebies" she is offering and to see her great work and ideas. Thanks Kaaron!


I have a little more work to do on it and then I'll iron it and re-post a much better picture.

I'm off to walk.

Happy snipping, stitching, and quilting!


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