Friday, January 31, 2014

Baltimore Block Wall Hanging

A couple of days ago I showed my first applique' project. You can read that post hereThere was one area that was bothering me, so I re-did that part. Here is the before photo previously posted. 

I had re-cut the green for the calyx. I could not find the fabric that matched the stem so, I used a batik. The points were terrible. Then, yesterday I stumbled over the original green fabric. It was quite literally under my feet. Maybe it's time to clean the sewing room. LOL. Here is the end result.
It looks better, except now one rosy, red bud is larger than the other. I can live with that. It happens in nature, doesn't it? I'm trying to not be too hard on myself. Now, here is the wallhanging top all put together. It measures 28" square.
I'm still not sure if that blue inner border is too bright, but I like it. I'm quilting this wallhanging soon. Then, it is going to be hung above my sewing table for me to enjoy.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

What I'm Doing Today

Welcome to all my new followers! My "Grow Your Blog" party post had visits from people all over the USA, Canada, Switzerland, Austria, and Serbia. So many quilters and crafters are out there in blogland. I have a little giveaway going on and it's not too late to enter. Just leave a message on the previous post here and you have until February 14, 2014 @ 11:59 pm to enter.Winners (2) will be announced on Feb. 15, 2014. 

A few posts back I mentioned that I had purchased a Civil War Stars BOM from a LQS in 2011 and never put them together. Well, now I have put together the first 4 blocks (Jan, Feb, Mar, & Apr). Yesterday I accidentally left the May pattern and fabric in my friend's sewing room. I called today to see if she had found it and she had, thank goodness! When she ask if I needed it today to work on, I said, "No, I can work on Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov, and Dec. I think I will have plenty to do." LOL
March and April BOM's
January and February BOM's
I'm am still not happy with my experience with the Black Bird Lane BOM I ordered online. I think I will just stash the blocks as they come in and do them all at once since there is no guidance re: which fabric goes where. There are 9 pieced blocks in the center and the photo on the pattern is my only guide re: fabrics and where they belong. Won't purchase through this company again.

I have also been working on my Baltimore block wall hanging. I think my applique stitches have improved a lot. But, I do have some difficulty when it comes to corners. Not too bad for my first try. So, it wouldn't win any prizes. I still like it. 
I really should have chosen a fabric with a little more contrast for the bird wing. Aren't those little 3D rosebuds cute? I'll show a close up but don't dis my stitching. LOL
Those corners need to be more crisp. I'll just keep on practicing. Just have to finish appliqueing 4 more berries and then I can put it all together.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Grow Your Blog and Giveaway

Welcome to Quilted Chocolate and Vicki's second annual  "Grow Your Blog" party. If you click on her beautiful badge in my sidebar you can find 600 bloggers who are partying with me. There is something for everyone. Check it out!

My name is Prima Donna. Yep, it's right there on my birth certificate. My friends and family just call me Donna. I live in Music City, USA (Nashville, TN). Quilted Chocolate is my journal of needlework, crafts, occasional rants, and sometimes family. 
Since my retirement as a nurse 3 years ago, I have become an avid quilter. I am still learning new techniques in quilting everyday.We live in an amazing era where we can share our interests with others all across the world. I am so inspired by what other bloggers create. 

Here is the last quilt top I have completed. I am still trying to decide how to quilt it. It's called Spiral Bargello.

Now for the giveaway!  What's the prize? I am giving away 2 prizes. If you win you will receive 3 batik fat quarters from my local quilt shop. When you comment I would love to know what city or area you live in.
Here is the fine print:
You do not have to have a blog to enter. Just leave a comment and include an email address. If you are a no-reply blogger, please leave an email address in your comment. I must be able to notify you if you win. Any one, any where is eligible. Just leave a comment to enter.  This giveaway will be open until 11:59 p.m. CST on February 14, 2014. The winner will chosen by random drawing and will be announced here on February 15, 2014. You will be notified by email if you win.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Slow Sunday Stitching-1/19/2014

Last Thursday our quilt guild had our first Sit N Stitch for 2014. We not only sewed, but made some awesome plans for the guild in the new year. There will be more opportunities for stitching together. Do you stitch with friends? It is so much fun. The time just flies by. 

I chose to hand stitch some of the center circles on my Dresden plate quilt Thursday. I have put together the 12 blocks called for in the original Darlene Zimmerman pattern that came with the Easy Dresden tool. I showed it a few months ago.

But, I want a queen sized bed quilt. That means I need a total of 30 blocks. So, I have been slowly, but surely getting the additional blocks prepared. I got half a dozen centers hand-appliqued on Thursday. I will continue to work on those today.

I had not planned to cut out the fabric behind the yellow centers, but someone suggested it might be a good idea. Another lady at Sit N Stitch said she had made a Dresden Plate using antique blocks and she cut out the fabric and regretted it. What are your thoughts? Have you made a Dresden? Did you cut out the fabric underneath the center? 

I am linking up to Kathy's Quilts for Slow Sunday Stitching. Check what other are doing, too

Saturday, January 18, 2014

I'm Sew Blue

This year I decided to join Angela's (Soscrappy) Rainbow Scrap Challenge. "Challenge" is definitely the right word. First I was challenged to find a block I wanted to use. I chose the postage stamp basket I found here at Connecting Threads. I soon found out that this block works better if you use the templates for some of the pieces. But, today I started again and used the templates. This month's color is blue. I am using a natural muslin for the background. I love the vintage look. 
Here is my first completed block. I hope to salvage the actual first block I started. It's the basket base and the bottom corner pieces that need to be re-cut by using the templates.  The blocks finish at about 9 inches.

I have sort of gone a wee bit crazy where solid fabrics are concerned. Remember the fat quarter bundle of Kona solids I bought? I'll show them again.
I bought them on sale at Craftsy and with it came a 40% off coupon on next order. So, how could I resist this Kaffee Fassett shot cotton fat quarter bundle? I mean...40% off! LOL
I am linking up to SoScrappy. Check it out and see what other blue projects are in the works in the quilting blog world.

Monday, January 13, 2014

So Blessed

We went for a long week-end visit to see my mother and my "baby" sister. I had plans to post my Rainbow Scrap Challenge block on Saturday and Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching yesterday. But, I grabbed the wrong computer cord. Then, I realized ALL my images on my blog has disappeared. Took hours to figure out that when I got home.  Those posts will have to wait.

But, I digress. Yesterday my mother's brothers and sister came to visit her at her assisted living. We enjoyed spending time with them all. My mother has some dementia and in a wheel chair due to Parkinson's Disease.  She is almost 91 years old. Her 3 brothers and her sister are all in their 80's. This is an amazing family photo, don't you think? We are so blessed to have them still with us.
We had other blessings this week-end, too. My great-granddaughter celebrated her first birthday on Saturday. She lives 2,000 miles away, but there were lots of photos to share with us all on Facebook. My daughter (her grandmother) is an avid crocheter. Look at the cute mermaid blanket she made for Theia. Wish the tail was in the photo a little better.
My other sister, who lives in New York state, became a grandmother for the first time. Her son and his wife had a baby boy on Friday night. I kept hoping he would wait a few more hours and share a birthday with Theia. Isn't he cute?

And, last but not least, my other sister's 3 month old granddaughter was dedicated at their church yesterday. Little Ryleigh is so sweet and smiles all the time. 
Yes, our family is very blessed. 

Sunday, January 5, 2014

A Very Busy Year Planned

My goodness! I had no idea how many projects I had started...and not finished. Look at my list of UFO's on the sidebar. At my guild we are making a list and then a number is drawn. That is the project to work on that month. This month is project #5. On my list it is the Baltimore Block wallhanging. I will be doing some slow Sunday stitching on that today. I haven't worked on it in while. My goal is to finish it this month. Here is the project as it stands today.

You can also see that I have a BOM and a Quilt Along that I will be working on. I got this lovely stack of solid Kona fabrics in the mailbox Friday. I will be using them for the Delightful Stars quilt.

 And, I already had these solids (below) in my stash. I bought them over a year ago and then changed my mind about the project I bought them for. They will be put to good use this year.
I have plans for some new quilt projects, too. We can do this! What are your plans for 2014? What are you slow stitching today? Visit  Kathy's Quilts today for some slow stitching inspiration. 

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Welcome 2014

Welcome to the New Year 2014. I just know we are all going to have lots of quilty, crafty fun this year. I ended 2013 and started 2014 with internet issues. Hope that does not continue, because I would miss ya'll. 

I have been making new year's plans for a couple of weeks now. I have never set monthly goals before. But, a couple of my friends do and they seem to accomplish so much. I realize that things happen to prevent goals from occasionally not being reached. But, still, it's a good idea and I intend to do that this year. Besides, if plan A does not work, there are 25 more letters in the alphabet---204 if you are in Japan. LOL

I do have several UFO's that need to be wrapped up early this year. And, I have lots of new projects to start, too. Are you surprised? One of my new projects will be a quilt-along on the Delightful Stars quilt with Michele Foster of finished size it 92"x108". Isn't this a beautiful quilt?

 I received a couple of JoAnn's gift cards for Christmas and plan to buy the 6 1/2 yards of black Kona cotton I need to make it. It is on sale this week, but next week I can use a 50% off coupon and hopefully, it will not be on sale. I am using bright solids with the black. I already have some brights and I ordered more from Craftsy's sale this week. They are already on their way to me. 

This will be the first year I will participate in Angela's Rainbow Scrap Challenge. Check out her button on the right hand side of my blog. I'm thinking a basket quilt is what I will be making with my scraps.

I will continue some BOM's and start on an applique quilt, too. I will be posting my January goals before this week's end. I can't wait to see what you will be making this year!