Wednesday, March 27, 2013


Pink Lemonade is finished. I have to recant what I said about Mountain Mist Cream Rose batting a couple of posts back. I was having trouble not because of the batting but because glue from the tape I was using as a guide was gumming up the needle. Duh. Now that this little quilt is finished and washed - look how nicely it puckered up - I do like the Cream Rose batting. Best be careful using this batting for a quilt needing to be a specific size. I didn't measure before and after but I expect with so much puckering it shrank some.

I've moved on to hand quilting another little shoofly quilt.

This years challenge for my guild is to finish up as many UFOs as you can by May 28th, our end of year potluck meeting. So far, I've finished up five. I think I can do nine. It won't win for most UFOs completed but that's okay. I'm happy to finish things up.

This is a 'Lil Twister quilt I was working a few months ago. It was my trial run using the 'Lil Twister ruler before making the baby quilt for Ella. It also used up a couple of charm packs that had been sitting around for far too long. I had also machine quilted it as a warm up to doing Ella's quilt and then put it aside before binding it. I usually don't do that. Once the quilting is done, I move right on to the binding. I wasn't so excited about this quilt and wanted to get Ella's quilt to her before the weather warmed up. The binding is finally on and I can call this one complete, too, so now I'm up to six completed UFOs.
These two are ready for some machine quilting so I think they and the little shoofly I'm hand quilting will bring me up to nine UFOs completed for the year. That's my plan.

Last Saturday afternoon, Dave and I went out to Frying Pan Park, a working farm in our very suburban county. Doesn't she look like a happy goat? I hear goats are quite mischievous.

Look what came in the mail yesterday. It was a surprise to get this bookmark and a letter from my quilting cousin, Mary, in San Diego. She made this on her Bernina Artista 630. 
Thanks again, Mary!

Despite having a bit of snow here earlier this week, signs of spring are all around. The daffodils and periwinkle are blooming and there are shoots of green grass in the yard. The wind chimes on my front porch have continually made their music this month. I'm looking forward to a warmer April.
Happy Easter!

Friday, March 15, 2013

2013 AQS Lancaster Show

I was on a bus trip to the Lancaster show yesterday. I had a wonderful time with my friend Lesa. We hit traffic on the way up so we had less than 4 hours to do the show. We zipped around crowded aisles to see all the quilts and then hit the vendors. Regan and I met up for a few minutes before my bus left for Intercourse. She and her friends, Pat and Betty, are really doing it right. Ten days in Lancaster - plenty of time to see the show and enjoy the area shops and culture - if you are the energizer bunny! Just one day was enough for me. Wait till you hear how much fabric they've bought between the three of them. I told my husband about their adventures and said "consider yourself lucky". ; c ) Let's just say he converted the amount of fabric from yards to the length of a football field! I'm not sayin' how many! You go girls! Will the number go up?!?

We saw a lot of lovely and awe inspiring quilts. I can't show photos of quilts, it's against AQS rules, but I hope it is okay if I just share this blurry part of one quilt. It was made of Kaffe Fassett fabrics and 30 plus year old calicoes. I loved the combination. A great way to extend expensive fabrics from today with the old stash. Here are a couple more blurry photos. This area of the show was a bit dark.

I bought the end of the bolt, almost 4 yards, of this Judie Rothermel fabric at The Old Country Store. They also do online sales. I may use it as a wide sashing for these blocks. I started these blocks out of my precut strips with the thought of a quilt for my new grand niece, Abby. I've kind of changed my mind about that, thinking I'd rather use brighter fabrics and maybe a Jacobs Ladder block. I was influenced by the quilt I saw in the antique store I shared a couple of posts back.

I'm enjoying the hunt for fabric I can fussy cut for these hexagons. The three top fabrics are the same design from Barbara Brackman's Metropolitan Fair. I just love these little florals and I absolutely adore the green colorway.

These two fabrics were from Zook's. No designer and less than $6 a yard. I thought they would be great in scrap quilts.

It's always hard not to pick up at least one "just because" fabric. For some reason I always need reds.

And as you see I also hit the Paper Pieces booth at the show. They were very helpful.

It was a fun filled day. It felt good to crawl into bed last night. The weather predicted for tomorrow is cold and rainy. Sounds like a good day to stitch in celebration of National Quilting Day. Yes, to my non-quilting friends who read my blog, the quilting powers that be say it is so.
 ; c )   Happy National Quilting Day!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Another Quilt Show Team Challenge

At our quilt show meeting in December, our leader, Cindy, gave each of us a half yard of a Bella Solid from Moda. Luckily, she let us each pick the color we wanted. I had a hard time choosing and finally settled on Cobalt Blue. I used it in the above alternate blocks for the triangles.. All the other fabrics are from my stash. I chose the sage like green for the other alternate triangles because I had a lot of it and I also liked how it went with the blue. I'll have to order more of the blue. I'll need 35 blocks total, each block will finish at 8 1/2" for a 42.5" x 59.5" quilt. Luckily, too, Cindy didn't give any other rules than to use the fabric in a quilt. The finished quilts will be shown in the 2014 show.  Bill Kerr and Weeks Ringle will be our speakers that year so I think the idea was to do something a little more modern but that isn't what I wanted to do. I wanted to go more Amish style. I hope to get the top done quickly because I want to hand quilt it and I don't want to be working on it near the deadline like I did with this years team challenge quilt. That's my goal, anyway. ; c )

What do you think of the black? I wasn't going to use it or the red at first. I think the black helps to ground it.

According to my block book, this is the Courthouse Square block. I've been enjoying all the Granny Square quilts so many quilt bloggers are doing now and this is similar. I took some photos as I worked. I like constructing one block at a time. There may be faster ways to do it. This just works for me.

For the triangles I cut 5" and 3" strips. For setting triangles I used the 5" strips and cut 5" blocks then cut on the diagonal both ways. I didn't take a photo of the corner triangles. For those I cut 3" squares and cut just once on the diagonal.

 Here is my sewing layout. The squares are cut 2 1/2".

Sewn into diagonal rows. 

Then the rows are sewn together. I purposely make the triangles larger than I need them and trim. 

 Trimming up the block, making sure I have 1/4" beyond the points.

A 9" block.

I'm trying to pay more attention to my surroundings as I walk my dog every morning. One day last week I was looking way up into my neighbors trees and spotted a very large bird in a tulip poplar. I'm pretty sure it's a hawk. We see them every now and then. They are impressive birds. Wish I'd seen it fly off.

Monday, March 4, 2013

A Finish, a Couple of Road Trips and What I'm Hand Stitching Now-

I completed my red and white just in time to enter it in my guild quilt show. It took me a while to do the individual blocks. I did a couple a day and this gave me time to think about what I wanted to do for each block.
I had a birthday a couple of weeks ago and my husband, Dave, took me to a couple of new quilt shops. Daffodil in Nokesville and Suzzie's in Manassas. We also stopped in at Old Town Needlecrafts in Manassas. This area has become a great place for quilters to spend the day. Aurora Quilts is also in Manassas and there's a JoAnn's right near Suzzie's. As you can see I didn't have trouble finding some treasures to bring home with me.

I'm finally quilting Pink Lemonade from Lori's doll quilt along last winter. I found Mountain Mist Cream Rose at JoAnn's and thought I'd give it a try. I'm not happy with it. Some areas are very hard to quilt through. I'll go back to using Quilters Dream Wool for my next hand quilting project.

This past Saturday Dave and I took a drive out to the Shenandoah Valley to the Virginia Quilt Museum. They always have an interesting display of quilts. Unfortunately, no photography in the museum. However, on the way we stopped in at an antique store and spotted quite a few quilts.

 This one was very hard to leave behind.

We are playing around with the idea of buying a farmhouse in the valley some day. We took a lot of back roads through the valley and stopped in at Polyface Farms to purchase some meats from pasture raised animals and eggs from happy chickens. 

This goose sure was honking madly as we checked out the hens.

It was a dreary day - even met with some snow flurries - so I'll only share this one photo of the countryside. We have reservations for a Polyface Farm tour in April so hopefully that will be a nice day and I'll get some better photos.