Friday, August 28, 2015

Goodies and a Giveaway

Last week Kathy who blogs at Empty Nest But a Full Heart mentioned a fantastic deal on civil war reproduction prints fat quarters. I had never heard of the Brooklyn Fabric Company before but, I would definitely order from them again. I got 30 fat quarters of quality fabrics for $50 and free shipping. I ordered on Tuesday and they arrived 2 days later. 
I may use some of these for my appliqued baskets.

Now, as I mentioned in my last post, my birthday is on Monday. Yep, this is a big one. It will be my 70th birthday. So, I thought I would have a giveaway for this event. One person will be a lucky winner of a fat quarter bundle of 34 fat quarters of shot cottons. Aren't these lovely?
Now, what do you need to do to have a chance to win? Leave me a comment on this blog post telling me what quilts are on your bucket list. You know, the ones you hope to make more than any other? The giveaway is open to International and US readers alike. It is open until 11:59 pm PT on August 31, 2015. You must make your comment on this post. Winner will be chosen by random number generator.

IMPORTANT! I must have a way to contact you. If you are a no reply blogger or a Google+ member, please leave you email in your comment. If I can not contact you, someone else will win. Don't know how to leave a comment? Bonnie Hunter of Quiltville recently posted a pretty good how-to here.

Good luck everyone!

May all your ups and downs today be with needle and thread.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

So, sew excited!!!

Yesterday I got a big surprise! My daughter told me that she had gotten a call from her ex-husband. He is the father of my grandsons. He was flying out to San Diego this coming week-end to visit his sister, his eldest son and the grandkids. (He lives in New York state.) Oh, and by the way, her younger son and his girlfriend were also flying in from Chicago. My daughter has not seen her younger son in over a year. He is attending LeCordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Chicago. 

Now, here is the really big surprise! My birthday is coming up on Monday. My daughter bought me a ticket to fly there, too. What a wonderful 70th birthday this will be. My daughter and I are beyond excited!
Now, I need to get busy and prep some more of my little basket blocks. I will have a lay-over for over 3 hours in Houston on the way out and a couple hours on the way back. Some are already prepped, but I need more.

Oh, and stay tuned. I am also having a 70th birthday giveaway. Details on Friday. Might as well share the birthday excitement! Right?

May all your ups and downs today be with needle and thread.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Scrappy Stars Revisited

Whew! What a busy week that was! I had a lot going on, most of which would bore you. One of those days I went to Sharon's and helped move furniture. Her last child moved into his own condo and she had painted his room. We moved the guest room furniture to that room. Without that furniture, we really have room to spread out in the sewing room.

On Thursday we went to our guild's Sit and Stitch and learned a new technique. I can not show that to you now because my project is going to be a part of my Santa Sack Swap. It will go to Terry in CA with other goodies later this year. I will be doing some slow stitching on that later today and linking to KathysQuilts.

My major accomplishment this week was to finish all 20 blocks of my scrappy star quilt. These blocks finish at 16" square. I love them! Jenny Doan made the star points with precut 10" layer cakes. I cut my own using stash and white Kona. 
The 20 blocks will be sewn together without sashing. Then a border of white will be added around the stars. A wider print outer border will also be added.
Here is a closeup of one of the blocks. Trust me, my points were only cut off by the camera. LOL.

May all you ups and downs today be with needle and thread.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Forever Projects

Today Kathy of Kathy's Quilts blog asked how we felt about long term projects. I had to laugh. Sometimes most of my quilts feel like long term projects. How about you? And, what is a long term project? I assume it is one that you work on with some regularity as opposed to a UFO. A UFO  (to me) is a project that has been put aside for a long period of time. So, I guess I have more UFO's than long term projects.

I deliberately began a long term project a few months ago. I had been admiring the Treat or Treat Baskets quilts and I was really blown away by Audrey's basket quilt that she called Worry Baskets. See her gorgeous quilt hereSo, I ordered the book "When the Cold Wind Blows: Quilts and Projects Keep You Warm."

I expect this quilt to take me several years to finish.
Here are a few of the baskets I have started. 

So, yes, Kathy. I do like to have at least one long term quilt in the works. Check to see what others are slow stitching today here

Monday, August 10, 2015

Stars in My Eyes

Remember the scrappy star quilt by Jennie Doan that I liked? I have been working on cutting and sewing the star points. First I cut my own 10" squares from different prints and 10" squares from white Kona fabric. I also cut the 4 ½" white squares with my Accuquilt Go. It requires 80 of the smaller squares. My Go made quick work of that. 

After I sewed each print square with a white 10" square, I had to cut them. I had cut almost all the squares before I realized I could see my stitches better from the print side than the white side.

Of course, I could really see it well on the one below. Can you tell why?  Yep, that is sewn wrong side up. At least I only did it on one. Wish I had noticed before I cut it. Oh, well.

Here is my stack of star points...all 20 sets.

Now, for the process I do not like. I need to open and press each piece and then square to 4 ½". Time consuming, but does make for a more perfect HST. 

While I sewed the 10" squares, I listened to an audiobook downloaded from my local public library. Sure made the time go quickly. Now, what is it about putting earphones in that makes husbands suddenly have to tell you something? Does this happen to you?

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Ergonomically Correct

For a few years now I have had my sewing machine on a oak desk that a sister and I shared when we were in high school. It was a lot better than the kitchen table, but far from perfect. My sister Karen had the bed and dresser that matched the desk at her house. I talked to her about taking the desk home so I would have space for an actual sewing table. Thankfully, last Friday she and my b-i-l came up from west TN and took it home with them.

Before they arrived I already had my sewing table delivered. Yesterday a custom insert arrived. Yay! Now my arms are at a right angle when I sew. This is a much more ergonomic set up. I have an adjustable chair, too.
The insert makes the bed of my sewing machine flush with my table. I love it! Maybe now I can learn to free motion quilt.

Well, what did I sew today? I began to sew together the strips of my bargello quilt. After 8 rows, it's very long and narrow. I think I like it so far.

May all your ups and downs be with needle and thread.