Tuesday, June 29, 2010

My work is cut out for me.....

I received a phone call from one of the organizers of the community quilts program at my guild, asking if she could drop by this afternoon.
She arrived with a quilt batt and a bag containing some baby quilt panels for me to quilt.
After she left, I looked into the bag and found 5 panels, each matched with a backing fabric, so I guess I know what I'll be working on for the next while!
 I'm still fighting a cold with a horrible cough, so my energy level is really low right now.  I did managed to make 4 jars of apricot jam this morning (I make my jam in small batches in the microwave), and also a small batch of ginger cookies.  I also picked some parsley to dry, and some to go with the basil in a batch of pesto.  My son did all the prep work for the pesto, as I was running out of steam by then.  My favourite recipe for pesto calls for blanching the basil and parsley for 15 seconds, then dunking it in ice water.  It really helps the pesto from oxidizing and turning brown on the surface.  We seem to be eating the pesto as fast as we can make it this summer!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Design Wall Monday

I was putting away all my new fabric after giving it a quick press, and found a cute panel that I had picked up last summer.  Decided to use it in the centre of a quilt.

Since the blue and white print area is tiny sail boats, I hunted through my fabric for some that I had bought many years ago!

One print is all-over coloured anchors, and the other shows light houses - a perfect complement to the theme.  I decided it needed a splash of red, and the whole thing came together quickly.

Look for more links to Design Wall Monday on Judy's blog.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Final Flannel Rail Fence Quilt

I saved all the brighter coloured flannel to make on final quilt.  (I still have more flannel scraps, but they will have to wait for another day.)

This one is twin bed sized.  I added three borders, with the centre one pieced using left-over block pieces.  There wasn't always enough pieces to make a full block (needs 4 strips alike), so I saved them all and stitched them end to end, cutting the length needed for each border strip. 

The bright puppies on the flannel back was the perfect complement to the scrappy front.  I must have found this flannel on sale, as I know that I have used it before, and there was still enough left to back this quilt.  

The cotton binding was made from a bright stripe that was printed on the diagonal.  It mades a fun binding without having to cut on the bias!
I usually buy flannel fabric to back quilts on "black Friday" at Joann's Fabrics - a couple of years ago they had flannel on sale for $0.99 per yard, so I stocked up.  I can usually find one in my stash that will go with whatever current quilt I am working on.......

Friday, June 25, 2010

Baby Quilts 2 and 3....

I finished stitching the binding on the second and third baby quilt made from 2 1/2 inch scrap flannel strips.

More of the same faux rail fence blocks, but quilt number 2 has a yellow border with bears dressed as bumble bees.

I chose a white flannel backing with baby Snoopy, moons and stars and pastel teddy bears for the cotton binding. 
This was quilted by machine, stitch in the ditch.

Quilt number three was more of the same, but with a pastel star border. 

I used a blue flannel with more stars, for the back.

The binding is cotton in a light cream colour with multi-colour toys .

Thursday, June 24, 2010

First baby quilt finished.....

I've been busy machine quilting the scrappy flannel rail fence quilts.

 I kept the quilting simple, just stitch in the ditch along the coloured rails and the pink border.

I chose a pink backing for this one.   It is also flannel, with gingerbread cookies, hearts and stars.  The binding was made from cotton, in a pastel harlequin pattern.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Finally - a picture of Indigo Stars

Finally managed to find the correct combination of light, time and assistant to photograph the quilt.  I love to use natural light, but had to take this one in the house as it was too windy outside.  I plan to use it as a winter wall hanging in my living room.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Design Wall Monday

Another Monday with nothing on my wall - but I have an excuse, as we've been on the road for the past week!
I do have some fabric to show that I bought at many different locations while travelling......
 I began by choosing some yellows as that colour stack was a bit lacking in my stash, and of course some greens and oranges came along for the ride. 

Then I found these beautiful butterflies and a soft floral print on pale yellow...

The five 1 yard pieces were in a bundle in the sale basket at the quilt show - cute for kids quilts......

Then a few batik fat quarters came home to play.....

Fairy frosts were calling my name - a half yard of yellow and fat quarters of the rest.....


I had been looking for a great fabric to use as my "teaching aid" next winter, as I have a large number of quilters in my Florida group who would like to try a stack n whack, so this Oriental fills the bill.....


I'm always on the look-out for cute panels for kids and baby quilts, and the little animal print was calling my name.....


I  had been looking for some gradated fabrics for a while, and found these being cleared - fat quarters of some and half
-yards of others......


By then I wasn't looking for yellows any more, and these blues seemed to want a new home.......


These ten 1 yard pieces were tied in a bundle at the quilt show, and came to $3 per yard.......


And finally an unusual brown fabric that DH pulled from the shelves, along with some grey stone fabric, called Stonehenge.....

Total damage - 38 yards

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Home again....

We had a lovely drive  home yesterday, with weather that varied from sunny to light showers.  Unpacked the van and headed for bed!
Today I've been catching up on bills, mail, laundry, and returned home to find NO BREAD!
Decided to try the stone ground whole wheat flour that I picked up a Bonneyville Mills - haven't tasted the bread yet, but just took the loaves out of the oven.  My counter is cluttered because I have a tiny kitchen and I also believe that you only use appliances if they are out and readily available.  That's my story and I'm sticking to it!)
Tomorrow I hope to get my new fabric washed.....

Friday, June 18, 2010

Quilt Show plus......

DH and I attended the NQA show in Columbus OH Thursday.  As always, we visit all the quilts first, and there were lots of them!  They had a special exhibit of tree quilts that were varied and wonderful.  Best in Show was awarded to the same quilt that won at Paducah - apparently she turned down the $20,000 prize so she could keep the quilt!  We had a quick snack then visited the vendors.  My tote bag was getting heavy by the end of our visit, and the last booth we visited was one selling packages containing 5 x 1 yard pieces of coordinating fabric.  I spotted a sale basket, and scored a 5 yd bundle for $10, and an odd assortment of leftover yardage that held 10 yds for $30.  I wish I had visited earlier when there was more variety, but then I would have had to carry it around.  Between the show and various quilt shops that we have visited this week, I have quite a selection of fabric to add to the stash!
Today we visited the topiary garden in the the School for the Deaf park in downtown Columbus.  They have recreated the famous painting, Sunday afternoon in the Park with George" in topiary.  They have some resident ducks and koi in the pond, as well as an albino squirrel currently living in the park.
From there we headed to the Ohio Craft Museum.  There was a wonderful display of art, including a few quilts, with lovely items in the gift shop.
By this time we headed out of town to visit the Longaberger Homestead in Frazeysburg OH (about an hour east).  The site is beautiful, and we enjoyed the factory tour.  I don't collect Longaberer, but have a good friend who does, so I sent her a couple of pictures.
We'll be heading home early tomorrow morning.  I'm looking forward to some home cooking again!  My fingers are itching to get some quilting done as well!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

And More.......

It rained overnight, but today was a lovely sunny day for driving.  We left Elkhart IN this morning, and meandered our way to Columbus OH, stopping at a few quilt shops along the way.  A few fat quarters hitched a ride....
Tomorrow we are off to the NQA show in downtown Columbus!

The quilt gardens were quite interesting, and will be beautiful when they are in full bloom.  The last picture was taken in the garden in Elkhart.  The Rotary Club has sponsored a garden make-over in the well field in the city.  There are 13 wells and many ponds that provide all the drinking water.  The gardens are still under construction on the north side, so there was a piece of heavy equipment at the top of the quilt garden.  There were a large group of volunteers planting annuals when we were visiting the gardens.

Each sign lists the plants used in the garden as well!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

More Quilt Gardens

We had a lovely day touring the heritage trail from Elkhart through Middlebury, Shipshewana, Goshen, Nappannee etc.  Hunted the quilt gardens - found almost all of them.  Some are planted on a slope, but many were almost flat, so difficult to photograph. DH often held the camera over his head to take the picture.  A few places provided a viewing platform as well!  
We also visited Bonneville mill, which is usually closed on Tuesday, but a church group was having a special tour, so we joined in.  I bought some corn meal, whole wheat flour and some buckwheat flour, all freshly ground!  Stopped at a couple of quilt shops and a few more yards followed me home!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Design Wall Monday

Nothing on mine 'cause I'm still on the road!
My family reunion was wonderful on Sunday afternoon.  We had about 75 attendees, and the games, run by my husband and two sons had great participation.  The rain held off and it wasn't too hot.  The pot luck was great, and my 3 nephews and one great-niece were there for the first time.

We made it to Indiana today.  Started looking for some of the quilt gardens around Elkhart, Shipshewana etc.  The ones we found were pretty, but not in their full bloom.  They should be spectacular in another month.  Made a quick visit to Yoder's Dept. Store and Lolly's Fabrics in Shipshewana.  Didn't need anything but DH found some interesting fabrics, so a yard or two had to come home with me!

Friday, June 11, 2010

I stopped making blocks when I had 35, so used a five by seven layout for this brighter scrap rail fence quilt.  I like the higher contrast of these blocks, as it shows the pattern much better.  I never realized that I used so much green flannel for backing quilts!  I am planning to use three borders, a plain one, then a pieced one, made of leftover pieces, and then a final plain one.
After this is stitched, I have to concentrate on laundry, then packing for our week of adventure.
Hopefully, I'll have internet access while on the road, so I'll be able to report on our trip and quilting opportunities along the way.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Still Stitching

I finished 3 scrappy flannel rail fence baby quilt tops, all with similar blocks but each has a different border.  I'll be doing lots of machine quilting when I return from my trip!
  Now I'm working on some brighter colours to make another quilt top, this one will be larger than the baby tops.  I still have a few more blocks to complete before working on a pleasing layout.
It has been raining here for the past two days - great for the garden, but not for taking pictures of quilts outdoors.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Design Wall Monday

Since finishing Indigo Stars (picture to follow), I looked around my sewing room to see what other areas needed work.  I had a half a shelf full of flannel trimmings.  I like to use flannel on the back of baby and kids' quilts, but always have a few inches left over.  I saw a picture of a nice 
scrappy rail fence quilt, and thought this might work for the flannels.  
I began by cutting 2 1/2 inch strips, then into sets of four pieces 2 1/2 x 4 1/2 inch rectangles.  After cutting for a couple of hours, I began matching darker and lighter rectangles, then stitching them into blocks.
This is the first quilt centre, waiting to be stitched, and I have enough leftover blocks to make two more!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Quilting the Final Border

I fell back on my old favourite "Hooked on Quilting" feathered hooks.  I began by stitching a curved line, using the blocks in the sashing as guidelines. 

Then I quilted the feathered hooks on the right side of the line, changing the size to fit the space.
This was followed by the left side.