Saturday, March 29, 2014

Positive Thinking.....

I know that title sounds like this post is going to be heavy... But I'll try not to go there!

However.... I just want to give those two words the credit they deserve!!

They can get you through some tough and not so tough times.

Think about quilting for example.... How many of us looked at a beautiful quilt before we became a quilter and uttered the words....." I could never make a quilt".

Thankfully we turned our negative thought to a positive thought and poof we became quilters.   Well maybe we became proficient in ripping (un-quilting) at first but that positive thinking snuck into our brains and again we succeed!!

How about the Little Red Engine..... "I think I can, I think I can".   Me I say... "I think I can, I think I can..... Use up all my fabric before I die".  Ok maybe I'm being overly optimistic but like my mom says... I plan on living to 120 to make all the quilts  I want to make!

So what have I been upto??  Well an unexpected situation took me out of town.  Thankfully I have a portable "Sanctuary".

Quilting not only fills down time but can fill your thoughts when ya need a break from the stresses of life.  

I was "positive " I brought to much with me but then again I was positive I'd be ticked off if I ran out of stuff to do!

Here's my set up.

I have been wanting to make the sailboat quilt from the Missouri Star Quilt Co tutorial.  So that's what I brought with me.

And so I begin.....

I added The Quilt Show while I was sewing.... Talk about leaving reality for awhile!
With Jenny Doan's method, it wasn't long before all my boats were made and the half square triangles ( used for the sails) were done!

If you haven't try it yet.... I'm positive most will love the half square triangle method from Jenny.  You take two squares, right sides together, sew a quarter inch on all 4 sides then cut it on the diagonal (or diangle hehe).  Very slick method!!  

 I also brought my leaders and Enders challenge from Bonnie Hunter... Lozenges.

 When I was cutting the half hexie for boat bottoms I thought the little wedges that appear to be waste looked a lot like the wedges for the Eleanor Burns swirling star.... So I sewed them together and will positively trim them when I get home!

So with a little bit... Well a lot of rain.... But it beats the cold and snow of Erie.... I had a few hours to spend in my traveling sewing room.

Rain rain go away!!

Sails and boats done.....

Ta Da......

Still needs a skinny white border and a wider printed border but that will have to wait til I get home.

I have manage to keep up with my hexies and decided I would start doing more than one a Day.. So I can start adding white around them....

Note the sandals!!!  I'm am absolutely positively ready for winter to be over!!  

Happy Sewing!


Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Hexie anyone???

Last month at our Stash Blasters gathering I demo'd English paper piecing and quilt Patty's. 

I had gotten the sample packs from Paper  Pieces and I told the ladies I wanted to see their rosette done for this month's meeting.  Unfortunately I couldn't make it to tonight's meeting. But.....

The ladies didn't let me down!!   Deb did a bunch (white outer ring) Melly and Cheryl did the green ones and Kris did a ton including the mug rugs!
WTG ladies!!!  Thanks Cheryl for the picture!

These ladies are phenomenal!  And always up to trying something new!  I wish I had a picture of tonight's demo.... My understanding is Patty had a beautiful quilt..... Maybe, just maybe someone can text me a picture so that I can share it with you!!

Happy Sewing!!


Sunday, March 23, 2014

Sarah's project....

When I wrote my post:  Charity Quilts.... on 3/13/14, I  didn't have a picture of Sarah and all the quilts our guild donated.  Yesterday, Pauline (awesome person and quilter!!) shared a picture she took that night.

Sarah did such a wonderful job presenting!!

I still am in awe of the generosity of those ladies!!!   Look at all those quilts....Thank you again North East Crazy Quilters!!!

Here's a sneak peak at the new quilt floating around in my head.   I hope to finish the top today and get it quilted this weekend.  There will be a hidden message in this quilt....I think it will be fun to see who will be able to figure it out.....

Which gave me a thought....maybe a give-a-way.....lord knows I have a few extra fat quarters in my stash.....stay tuned....and don't guess yet, because the picture I posted won't help you at this point!

Happy Sewing!!

Saturday, March 22, 2014

I'm Back......

Hope all is well with all of you!!  I have been busy with my "day job" so I haven't had time to post this week.  But I'm back in the land of quilting....where I love to be!!!

Today was a good day!!  Last night I got a customer quilt loaded and spent today in my studio quilting away.

  This was made by Melody (aka bestie and my very first and best customer!!).   Very nice job Melody!!  This quilt is the mystery quilt from Bonnie Hunter that started last November (2013) called Celtic Solstice.

I used Shamrock green thread which blended nice with the top.

Here's the back....again the thread blended nicely.

I used Celtic Curlz pantograph (just like Bonnie did!) from Urban Elementz.  Nice pantograph!!

Bonnie's mystery quilts are a lot of fun to participate in!!  If you have not done one before, consider doing one!  She announces fabric requirements in early November and the first clue comes out the Friday after Thanksgiving.  Normally runs 6-8 weeks!  She can be found at

Since her quilts/mystery's are scrappy, Melly and I have fun swapping fabric.  Bonnie say's it's not a race, but Melly and I try not to let the other once get to far ahead of the's all in fun...or is it......  

Well we still are friends and have done the last 4 mystery quilts.

I love ending my week with a completed Hexie flower.  I'm still debating over appliqueing them onto a solid square or making it all hexies.  I doubt very much I will hand quilt would it make more sense not to do it in all hexies? 

Here's my completed flowers so far.

Today is the start of a new flower!

Happy Sewing!!!


Saturday, March 15, 2014

World Wide Quilting Day

Good Morning from Erie, PA...that's my little spot on the world that I call quilting home!!!

How about you?  Please leave a comment and tell me where your spot on the world is that you are quilting in.

I decided this morning, since it's a "holiday" on quilting, I would reflect on my love of quilting and share some of my favorite things about quilting....

First and Foremost, there's my mom....She is the one who brought me into this world (and I'm sure while I was growing up...wanted to take me out of this world...hehe) and taught me how to sew, crochet, and knit.  What I love about quilting with my mom in has given us an avenue to take many quilting trips together and we have laughed and giggled like no other mom and daughter have!!  We still go on a quilt retreat twice a year with others whom are either family or who I consider family (I will post more about that in May ....out next retreat).

This is my mom with her Dahlia quilt.  She sews to perfection (to bad I didn't get that gene) and will tear out a seam until they match! (that gene skips a generation...that's my story and I'm sticking to it!).  I quilted this for her this year for her Christmas present.  I won't tell you when my mom started this quilt...if she wants you to know, she can leave a comment on that subject...

With all that said, I it's really being with family and quilting that I cherish a lot!  From my Aunt Martha, whom I call FAM (favorite aunt Martha), she is a very special person in my life...they should have her picture next to the definition of Aunt in the dictionary.  

Then there's my Aunt Mary and her family in West Virginia...that's my cousin Jeni's family that I have posted about berfore.  

Even my children have quilted with me at times.  The boys would sew with me when they were little and it was still cool to hang with mom.  My daughter Julie made her own quilt.  She hasn't sewn with me in years, but I cherish the memory of that quilt she made.  I am hoping to start the grand daughters on sewing string see if they will get the quilting bug!

Then there's friends...and as you all know by now...Melly is my bestie...We tell the story that we met at a quilt shop.  Sat down next to each other and started talking and haven't shut up since!!  Tho that may sound's pretty much a true statement!  

Boy we have not only spent many an hour sewing but have spent many an hour talking/venting about whatever has fussed us up, and many hours helping each other through some tough times....again...the definition of bestie!!    

Who wouldn't call someone your bestie, who will keep you up late sewing and then at 3am before you go to sleep has the need to lay blocks out so that she can pick them up the Eleanor Burns method and have them ready to sew together first thing in the morning (mind you, it was already morning....but None The Less).  Oops...forgot to took her  approximately 20 minutes to decide which block should go in the top left hand corner (don't forget..this was 3am).  I guess I get the bestie award on that one...but would do it all over tomorrow if she wanted !!

Again, I plan on posting about the ladies I "retreat" with...but I did want to mention that Myra, Arlene, and Heidi are just the most beautiful ladies to spend time with!!  I know I will probably forget to mention let me just say here...If I have met you and we have quilted and spent time together, I appreciate and cherish you!!!

This picture has Myra (top right), Arlene (bottom left), and FAM (bottom right).

Then there's the guild that I belong to, North East Crazy Quilters.  What a great bunch of ladies!!  I have learned so much from these ladies.  Isn't that what's all about...sharing!  

One of the perks of the guild is that they have "weekend sew".  Anyone from guild can come and sew.  It's all day/evening Friday and then again on Saturday til 5.  I don't make it out there as much as I'd like, but I did make it last night.

Bring whatever you want to work on and if you don't know how to do something..there's usually someone who does and is willing to help!

Jennifer is showing us her progress on a quilt she's making.  This picture isn't doing it justice!  She is putting her own twist on the pattern.

Here's Kay and Judy...Lee is in the back ground knitting.

Kris's table is busy working away

This is Kris's project....she is hand appliqueing wool leaves on her quilt.  It is turning out really nice!

Cheryl missed the guild meeting and was showing us her "Sudoku" quilt....very nice!!

Melody put the binding on this quilt and was showing it completed.  This is one of the Project Linus quilts that was donated to Sarah's project.  Group effort....Barbra made it, Waynna quilted it, and Melly bound it....Done!!  WTG girls!!

Here we all are checking out Kay's progress on her stack and slash! 

It's it beautiful!!!!

I forgot to mention all the great food I have has along the way as a quilter.  From meals at sew days at my house, to retreats, to weekend sew....I don't know if I'm just lucky or all quilters are great cooks...but I have never had a bad meal!!!  I'm surprised I'm only slightly over weight (slightly is my opinion...keep your opinion of my weight to yourself...hehe)

I've already posted about Stashblasters which is another group that is mostly our guild members...but again another group of ladies I cherish!

Through the years I have met some "famous" quilters, Eleanor Burns, Bonnie Hunter, Angela Walters, Alex Anderson, Jenny Doan.  Some I have actually got to spend quality time with!!  I don't tell you that to "name drop" but I say it because I feel blessed to have met them and shared the love of quilting with them!

Icing on the "quilting cake":  Getting my longarm quilting machine!  I have wanted one for over 10 years, so 2 and a half years ago, I  took the plunge!!  I have enjoyed that journey and absolutely love free motion quilting!!  

I have to give a shout out to Innova, who is the manufacture of my machine!!  I believe it is one of the best out there and the customer service is none like I have ever seen!!  Not that anything goes wrong with the machines....but when it's late at night and you can't figure out, say tension, you can call get a call back and be all fixed and up and running!!  No waiting til morning to figure out "operator errors"!!!

Then there's Virginia Longarm Network.  Valerie is the owner and she is so in tune to the quilting industry!!  She understands the quilters need and provides an avenue for the quilter to grow and be the best they can be!!  

The new owner training she provides is just what every new longarm owner walk away feeling like you aren't such a newbie at all!  This is due to her trainer Michelle...I can't say enough about Michelle...what an awesome trainer!!  Vicky who also works there is awesome!!!!  They have taught me a lot in the short time I have know them!           Check them out!
 I walked away from that training not only more knowledgeable and confident, but Made new friends from those who attended!!  Win win in my book!!

Lastly, I have to mention my husband, Duane....who not only puts up with me (which gets him a spot in heaven for that feat alone) but allows me to grow and encourages me in all my quilting endeavors!!  Not to mention he really doesn't complain when the Daily Deal package (or whatever I have bought) shows up at the front door.  I wish I had a picture of his face the first time a roll of batting shipped to the house.  He tell everyone that the box was the size of a refrigerator!

I hope you all have a great quilting day not only today, but tomorrow and so on!!

Happy Sewing!!

P/S...still on track with my hexies!! 


Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Charity Quilts.....

I can't believe it's Wednesday already!  It's been a busy week but I haven't been able to "play" until today.  Before I talk about that....let's talk charity...

I am working on quilting a charity quilt.

Kathy from the quilt guild I belong to (North East Crazy Quilters) made this beautiful quilt and she donated it to Melly's niece Sarah.

Melly, me(in the middle), and Heidi (Melly's sister) have been friends for approximately 16 years.   They have really become sisters to me and I cherish our friendship!!  (Translated....they put up with all my quirks and still love me!  that's sisters in my book!). In the time we have been sewing together, we have made over 500 quilts for either our local Shrinner's hospital or Project Linus.  

Sarah, at a very young age has "helped" us.  She was doing the best a 3-6 year old could do to "help" and be one of the girls.  I can remember vividly Sarah picking out blocks and laying them out on the floor.  She would lay them on the di-angle (as she said for diagonal) (to this day...we still say di-angle, she doesn't, but we do).  Melly taught her how to pick them up the Eleanor Burns method to chain sew.  We would sew them and she would be so proud of her quiltie!  We were very proud of her and still are very proud!!!!

Over the years Sarah was able to do more and more of the quilt process.  Sarah has a younger sister Kate (I/we call her Katie Kate) Katie Kate was exposed to the making of kid quilts at day 3. Yes at age 3 days old!   God love Heidi, she got home from the hospital and hosted a sew weekend at her house.  Katie Kate was in her play pen just absorbing the fun!!  She too has helped along the way and  also helped with Sarah's project!  I believe Katie's job was to hand sew labels on the quilts donated and help tie some of the quilts. 

Sarah is a senior this year and choose Project Linus as her project for the Girl Scout Gold Award.  Sarah went around to different organizations and talked about her project, which was to help Project Linus and donate 150 quilts (I believe over the next 3 years). 

Sarah, Heidi, and Katie came to our guild meeting in January to talk to the ladies about her project.  Little did Sarah know, Kris from our guild put the word out and ask the ladies to bring a quilt to donate.  It was so awesome to see Sarah, this beautiful, poised, young lady speaking to a group with such ease!!  Where'd our little Sarah go??

Now for the praise to our guild.....

You'd figure that several ladies would bring quilts and help....but who would of thought that at the end of the night, Sarah would end up with 85 quilts.....85!!!

Part of me wasn't surprised because we have such generous members!  They rose to the challenge and several of the ladies donated more than one quilt!!  Talk about exceeding expectations!

I believe through all Sarah efforts, she ended up with over 150 quilts and we still have a few to finish! 

Sarah has recently found out that she earned her Gold Award and will receive it in the next month or so.  WAY TO GO SARAH!!!

Now on to what going on in my head....

Here's a sneak peak at what I'm working on:

I'm using up my 1 1/2" strips and white background fabric to make a new modern quilt that popped into my head.  I can't wait to reveal it...well that is if it turns out the way it looks in my head.

Side note:  While looking for my container of 1 1/2" squares....and yes I said LOOKING because you know I can never just go and get what I want without having to "look" for it!!!  But that's not always a bad thing because I usually find something I hadn't seen in a while.  It like a treasure hunt!!!  Today I found the Missouri Star Quilt Co. Charm Pack sized Tumbler!  Being that I forgot I even owned was twice the surprise!!  But as you can see, I found it and it already had my initials on it's mine...

Lastly....I'm still on track and have been doing my hexie a day!

Happy Sewing!

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Where'd this weekend go......

On Friday, I decided to take it easy this weekend.  Now that it's Sunday night and I'm recapping my weekend...I think I don't understand what it means to take it easy!

Saturday I got up early, got dressed and out the door I went to pick up my friend Sandy (she's the excellent knitter and quilter from previous post.).  We were off to Meadville, PA.  It's a small city that's about 45 miles south of Erie.  I grew up in Meadville and it always makes me smile when I go there...lots of wonderful childhood memories!  Well not all....I do have two brothers and we all know boys drool and girls rule!!  Actually, my brothers were pretty cool...but don't tell them I said that!

Why Meadville you ask (or if you didn't I am going to answer it anyways)...I had a coupon.  That's not totally the reason...but close enough. 

Fox's Sewing and Vac is a great quilt shop!!  The selection of fabrics is awesome.  They have a huge a variety of fabric,- whatever your fabric preference, I believe they have it!  Not to mention a great variety of pre-cuts, fat quarters and a huge selection of panels.  Almost forgot the "sale table"....can't forget to check that out!!  Last time I was there, I signed up for their rewards program.  I had a $10 off coupon that was about to expire....I really don't need a reason to go there, but it's always good to have a reason to tell your husband!

This is Tammy Fox.  Tammy is the owner of the store and is very helpful and friendly, all the staff are.  When Sandy and I got there (9:30am ish), I think we were the only customers in the store.  We started looking around and picked out some fabrics and all of a sudden it seemed to get louder in the store. 

While we were standing in line to get our fabric cut, we found out why.  They asked us if we were part of "Marge's Group", I said "No, but can we join in if it's fun?"  They laughed and explained the ladies that were around us were having a retreat at Marge's.  We met them and they were really nice and funny.  I have to say...I love meeting quilters...we always find something to giggle about!  One lady, like me grew up in Meadville, but doesn't live there anymore.  She shared the end of a bolt with me.  She told the funniest story about her boss being English and thinking they were going to get chickens...I can't do the story justice, but trust me with her doing the English accent..."We aren't getting chickens" was funny!   I believe most of them were related and were there for the weekend to sew.  They appeared to be making a dent in the inventory!! 

The store had a ugly fabric challenge.  I think you bought a bag (sight unseen) with a piece of fabric in it and you had to make something out of it.  The entries were very nice!  Sandy and I voted on the ones we liked. 

After that fun, we headed over to the Yarn Vault.  They have a great selection of yarn and notions that would make a knitter/crocheter very satisfied!!  Sandy made her purchase and we were headed back home.  I got home just in time to make lunch.

Here's my purchases.

They sell "mystery bags" for $ know me...I love a good mystery package!!

Sophie decided she wanted to see what was in the bag...

4 fat quarters and a pattern....for $5 .....I LIKE it!!!!

Check out Fox's at:

Ok....I had to focus on the goal of the day.....finish quilting the wool quilt. 

The quilting on back showed up much better for the picture.

Front of quilt 

Ta Da!!!  I got the binding, a sleeve and a label on it....just needs to have the binding hand sewn. 

That was enough for Saturday...besides we were turning the clocks ahead, so I went to bed a little early to help adjust.

Got up this morning and decided to make a list of "stuff" I need to get done today.

That dang Sophie needs some warm weather so she can run and not be my Siamese twin all day!!

I am going to add a skinny border then a piano key border to finish this quilt top.  I'm planning on giving this as a charity raffle quilt.

As of this writing...I got my list completed with time to spare...I even managed to wear out Miss Sophia!! what's next...well I had another idea for a new modern'll  have to wait for the reveal, which maybe a little while...I have a few things on my list a head of this...but knowing me...I'll squeeze it in some how!!

I am still on target for my hexies!!  I have been thinking (and would love opinions!) of either making a whole hexie quilt or appliquéing the "rosettes"  on a plain block and assembling the blocks to make a quilt.  hhhhmmmmm what to do, what to do.

Happy Sewing!!