February 28, 2008

I was quilting away on the Monster this afternoon and I heard the mailman putting today's mail delivery in the mail box. I thought, Oh I wonder if my book arrived......I hope so, I hope so! Yep - it was right there in my mail box.
Yippee!!!!! I couldn't wait to rip the package open and pour through the book. I just had to make a block right away. I chose to do it with the foundation paper piecing method which was made so much easier because I could print the pattern off the CD. One thing to note about the CD that goes with this book: you must have the Electric Quilt 5 or EQ6 program in order to use it. I am so glad I got the CD. I think this will save lots of time in the end. This is going to be one fun project! I get to work with yummy Civil War reproduction fabrics and I think I will learn a lot about using little bitty pieces of fabric. Some of the blocks I was looking at earlier today have over 60 pieces to them - yikes! I think some blocks may have even more but I was afraid to count them! There are 121 blocks in total. Right now, I plan to make them all, but I reserve the right to change my mind along the way!

February 25, 2008

Making Progress

I have made progress on the Monster In The Living Room! I was able to turn the quilt down in the frame today. Yippee! I think I am a little past the half way point now in quilting the cross hatch lines. I have to remind myself that once the lines are all quilting the quilting part isn't finished. It is difficult for me to quilt away from myself while working on a frame because of carpel tunnel problems. Since I want to quilt around each leaf and flower motif I will do this after the quilt has left the frame. It shouldn't take as long to do the outline quilting because I won't have to measure and mark straight lines any longer. At least that is what I am telling myself! Someday!

I have Spring fever! I saw the seed displays the other night when I went to a few building supply stores with my hubby. They called my name so I had to go and look at them! Last year was the first time I attempted to grow flowers by seed. Before I had always purchased mine at the nursery. I was happy with my results last year, so I will try again this year with a few different flowers and some repeats that I liked. I bought two different types of Zinnias (two types in one package) and a different variety of Cockscomb (that is what I call it). I will start the seeds indoors in about 2-3 weeks. Yes, starting the plants from seeds does take a lot of work, but the savings in money is worth it. I can afford to have more flowers if I plant them from seed and I have more money available for fabric! *G* The weatherman said we could have six inches of snow by morning. I am SO ready for Spring!

February 22, 2008

Civil War Diary Quilt

I love reproduction fabric from the Civil War era. I have a large collection of it. When I saw that a group of fellow bloggers were going to make the quilt fr om this book I decided to join them. If you want to check out what the fellow members are doing you can check out the link to the blog ring Sew Many Quilts on the right side. I ordered the book/CD today, so it should arrive some time next week. Please Mr. Postman hurry!

I have been working on "The Monster" and have worked down to the opposite end of the quilt, so I will be able to turn the quilt down more on the frame soon. Yeah!

February 21, 2008

Carolina Crossroads Blocks

Today I finally finished the rest of my Carolina Crossroads blocks. Whew! That was a lot of seams to match! I don't want to think about all of the matching seams when I put the blocks together. Earlier I had to sew two of the blocks together to see what it looked like. I think I am going to like this quilt once it is finished!

February 18, 2008

I Have The Supplies Now....

Well, I took advantage of the President's Day sale at Joanne Fabrics today and bought the last of the supplies I needed to make the tote bag for my laptop. This will be a challenge. At first glance, the directions could be a little clearer, but I will know more once I get going on it. Another thing that will be different is the 1/2" foam pieces that will be placed between the lining and the main fabric. The foam is there to help protect the laptop. The directions say to use spray adhesive to hold the foam in place while sewing and it also says I may want to use clothepins to hold the layers together instead of pins. Hmmmmmmm I'm not sure when I will start this bag, but I hope to soon. I have been working away at the Monster. I keep thinking that some day it will be out of the living room - it will some day!

February 15, 2008

40's Comfort & Awards

I have been working on "The Monster In The Living Room" and instead of posting another photo of it I decided to post a photo of an earlier quilt that I made that is displayed in the living room. I named it 40's Comfort because the block's name is "The Comfort Quilt". I made this wallhanging to enter into Moda's Patterns of History Challenge in 2005. This contest required that you use one of five predetermined block patterns and use their Patterns Of History fabric line. Well, I love the 30's - 40's fabrics and the quilt patterns used at that time so I decided this was the contest for me to enter. This was the first quilting contest I had ever entered so of course I was so excited when I actually won an Honorable Mention (there were three Grand Prizes and 20 Honorable Mention Winners). My quilt was displayed in an exibit at the Houston Spring Quilt Market (2005), it was published in a book "Patterns Of History The Challenge Winners 23 Quilt Designs Inspired by Our Past" (Could the title be any longer?), and I received a copy of the book and a bunch of fat quaters fabric. So much fun!

Jessica gave me the Biggest Heart Award! Thank you so much Jessica!

I would like to pass it on to:
Charlene who has one of the biggest hearts I know!
Bren - who I really miss in blogland! Come back soon!
And Lea who graciously posts in English as well as in Japanese.

Charlene gave me The Spreader of Love Award. Awwwww thanks Charlene!

I would like to pass this award on to:
Linda who has such a giving heart!
Rose who is now handquilting a beautiful quilt for her daughter's wedding gift.
Sue who spreads her love among her family.

It is so hard to pick who to give awards to! I love visiting many different blogs. I also like to reply back to those who leave comments on mine. If you have a no reply option it is impossible for me to do that of course. Lately I have had all of my email bounced back to me from aol.com. Hmmmmm maybe they are mad at me for dropping them as my server awhile ago? So, if you have commented lately and are on aol please know that I have tried to reply back to you! Nancy Rose asked where I found the pirate fabric I used to make Char's pillowcase. I found it at WalMart of all places! I just looked at my leftover fabric and it doesn't have the maker info on the selvage. Sorry!

February 13, 2008

I'm Still Here!

I have had a couple of comments as to where I have been lately. Okay - I'm still here! I realize it has been a while since I posted. Six days in fact since my last post. There are a lot of reasons why I have slacked off from my posting. Here are a few of them.

1. I spent a lot of time with dear hubby this past weekend. When I wasn't with him I was working on the Monster In The Living Room.

2. After I finished my Potted Posies and posted about it, working on the Monster seemed a boring topic to blog about. It's not like I haven't been talking about the Monster lately.

3. I have had the blahs the past couple of days. I am attributing the blahs to the gloomy gray days we have been having here and hormones. The past couple of days I was even blah about doing anything quilt related. On Monday I played with my fabric for about an hour. I was getting some of my recent purchases ready for the washing machine. I worked on the Monster for about the same time. Yesterday, I didn't even want to work on the Monster, but I did for about an hour. I then poked my finger pretty bad, bled, and called it quits for the day. I had no desire to do anything else quilt related at all. That my friends is very unusual for me!

Today the sun came out, and I felt like I needed to stand in the sun and soak it up! I did end up getting out and running some errands. It was actually fun to put on my sunglasses! I am more of myself now, and for that I am very happy!

I have been given a couple of blog awards lately and I will be posting them soon. Thanks Charlene and Jessica!

My dear friend Charlene has recently become a Disney Travel Specialist. She has been working very hard and giving a lot of quotes on trips to many Disney Vacation Wantabe's. Notice I said giving quotes. She was working so hard, but vacation seakers interested in a Spring trip were wanting information now, and not necessarily wanting to book yet. Well today, she received her first official booking - yeah! I am so happy for her! Another reason why I am so happy is that I was able to give her a gift I have been saving for her for just this occasion. I made this pillowcase for her.

Char loves pirates (especially one named Jack) and when I saw this fabric I thought of my friend!
How perfect is this? I also found some neat red fabric with Micky Mouse heads that I used on the cuff. Congratulations on your first booking Char!
Oh blogger - when are you going to fix the spell checker? Please excuse any goofs on my part. My dictionary is handy...but you know how that goes!

February 7, 2008

And The Name Is.....

My applique wall hanging has a name now! In my previous post I asked for help in naming my little quilt. I had been given a few names and there were two that I really liked. I couldn't choose between the two. Linda suggested the name "Potted Posies" and Wilma suggestd "Love In Bloom". Such problems! I ended up writing down the two names on separate pieces of paper and putting them in a basket. I then drew out a name. And...the winner is..."Potted Posies"! Thanks for such a great name Linda! I may just have to design another piece with the "Love In Bloom" name because I do love it too!

This is the label that I have made for the back of the quilt. I took some left over half square triangles and fabric strips and made the label.

Sunshine just hasn't existed here in my neck of the woods lately, and I have had a hard time getting the color to photograph just right. This second photo is a little closer to the true color. I also had a hard time getting the machine quilting to show up well so I took this second photo at a different angle. I machine quilted this piece on my regular domestic sewing machine. I used 100% wool batting and silk thread. The wool batting gives the applique a trapunto look (stuffed) without the extra steps needed to acheive that look. I used the silk thread because it does a great job of sinking into the fabric and batting and yet also giving it a sheen when the light hits it. It is a fun thread to work with. This little quilt will be going to a LQS (Local Quilt Store) tomorrow to be used as my applique class sample. So, thanks again Linda for the great name, "Potted Posies"! Note: Please excuse any misspelled words - spell check on blogger isn't working - yikes!

February 4, 2008

The Latest

I thought I would show my latest works in progress. This is one of my handquiting projects. I have lovingly called it "The Monster In The Livingroom." I really want to get the Monster out of my livingroom. I am hanging my head in shame when I say it has been there for one year now (Except for the month of December - the Christmas tree had to go somewhere!). I have been working hard on it again, so my fingers are crossed that it will be out of the livingroom by the end of April. I might not make that goal, but I am going to try!

The second photo is a progress report on the maching quilting of my applique project. I'm sorry, but the flash on the camera washed out most of the quilting. You can at least get an idea of what it looks like. The quilting is about three fourths completed. I have just realized, I need to name this project! Any good ideas? For a better photo click here. I am not the best at naming my quilts - help!

February 2, 2008

French Quilting Magazines

My hubby was on a business trip and look what he brought back from France for me! Three French quilting magazines! He said that he looked for a quilt shop but had no luck. By the time he was free each day most of the stores were closed anyway, so I couldn't give him a hard time about it. He did find a place that carried magazines and brought these back for me. Oooooooooo some of the treasures in them! The Ewa Patch magazine not only has quilting projects but tourism information and recipies. Hubby has informed me that there is an internet site that I can type in the French sentences and have the English translations pop up. Neat! Many of the quilt projects I can make from looking at the pictures and drawings, but I would like to know what some of the articles have to say. I am glad to have hubby home and glad to have the French magazines!