Saturday, February 28, 2009


Ok, well, first I have to say, I have really good pictures to share but I'm being LAZY! I finished my Autumn Cabins blocks and they just need to be sewn together...I've actually had them done for a few days! But you know it's been acting all spring-like outside and I've got plants on the brain. So I've begun winter-sowing seeds and am filling up the front and back porch with seed filled jugs and flats. Can't wait to garden! I've got the fever! C'mon spring, hurry it up already!!!

Anyhow, since I'm too pooped to get out my quilt, I thought I'd show off a little. Mom & I went to the quilt show today and of course the quilts were delicious as always, but oh the shopping was EVEN BETTER! I could not believe what wonderful shops were there this year...I didn't bring nearly enough money! Lol* Here's a few shots of what I bought...

For some reason I couldn't get a good picture of all of my loot together, so I broke them up a little so you could see how gosh darn gorgeous they are! Lol*** I've seen the wooly sheep around blogland and when I saw a few vendors offering them it was a good excuse to finally try playing with wool. Also picked up some pink-ish fq's for a spring quilt, and some folk art style 1/2 yards. I cannot wait to get sewing....darn quilts keep distracting me from my seeds! Lol*

Autumn Cabins: Leaf Block

12 " Finished Block

**Instructions are for ONE block, you will need FOUR of these to complete the quilt. This will allow you to test the block, then go back and cut for the remaining three.

From Green:
- cut 1 square 4 1/2 x 4 1/2

From Creams/Background:
- cut 1 square 4 1/2 x 4 1/2
- cut 2 squares 4 7/8 x 4 7/8 *Cut in half diagonally by drawing a line from corner to corner, to make 4 half square triangles.
- cut 2 squares 3 3/4 x 3 3/4

From Red/Orange:
- cut 3 squares 4 1/2 x 4 1/2
- cut 2 squares 4 7/8 x 4 7/8 *Cut in half diagonally by drawing a line from corner to corner, to make 4 half square triangles.
(**To make this quilt you will need TWO red leaf blocks, and TWO orange leaf blocks**)

Making the Block:
First, draw a line corner to corner on both cream/background squares measuring 3 3/4". Layer right sides together, one square on one corner of the green 4 1/2" square (as if to make a snowball block). Sew down the line drawn on the cream square. Press, trim seam to 1/4".

Tip: If you draw a line and sew 1/2" away from this seam line, you can get a bonus square of 1/2 square triangles from these.

Repeat this step on the opposite side of the green square, to make the stem of your leaf.

Next, sew 1 red/orange half square triangle to 1 cream/background half square triangle. Repeat for the remaining half square triangles to make a total of 3 half square triangle squares.

Use the following picture for placement of block parts, and sew together to make your autumn leaf block.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The number one reason...

...that it is a good idea to remove pins as you sew...

While babysitting yesterday, I discovered two of these, buried in a quilt that had been made for the 2 month old baby boy. Guess how I discovered the first? Little one yelled with a huge cry, and then I got poked too - oh break my heart! Whoever made the quilt obviously did it with a lot of love in her heart, and the very best of intentions, and I'm sure she would feel terrible to know that she'd left a few pins in the quilt. I was sure to tell Mommy about the pins, and I felt throughout the blanket only to discover a second one buried deep in the batting...folding the quilt just the right way it poked right into my finger. Ouch! No fun for me, and definitely no fun for poor little baby! So if you like to live dangerously and sew over pins, you may want to at least try using ones with a bright colored head so that you'll be less likely to accidently leave it in!

Been sewing up a storm but my progress isn't very much to look at yet...although I did manage to finally get the cabins done for my EQ quilt. I never get sick of making these.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Harvest Pinwheels: Borders

For this quilt I used a 3" wide green inner border, and a 5" wide outer purple border.

After sewing your blocks together into a top, iron your top nice and flat, and measure through the center of the quilt (as opposed to placing the ruler on an outside edge to measure - sometimes the outside edges stretch and cause you to add a little more than you need), the width and length of the top.

Your top at this point should measure 48.5" x 60.5". You will need to cut 2 border strips measuring 3.5" x 60.5". In my case, for both sides, I cut two strips of 40" wide fabric, from selvege to selvege, then pieced them together to make one long 3.5" x 80" strip. Then I cut it down to 60.5", and put leftover green in my scrap bin. Sew a border to the longest sides of your top.

Your top should now measure, with the two longest sides bordered, 54.5" x 60.5".

Next, you'll want to cut 2 borders 3.5" x 54.5". If you are cutting your borders from a fabric piece going selvege to selvege, you may again have to piece together a piece to 54.5".

Now, your top should measure, 54.5" x 66.5".
Using the same method as you did for the green border, you'll now want to add the 5" wide purple border. Cut 2 strips, piece if necessary, to 5.5" x 66.5". Sew one strip to each long side of your top.
To finish the top, cut 2 strips, piece if necessary, to 5.5" x 64.5". Sew one strip to each shorter side of your top.
The finished size of your top should be 64.5" x 76.5", before quilting or binding.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Harvest Pinwheels Top Progress

Got my blocks together and sewn for my Harvest Pinwheels top. Just need borders - but my house needs a cleaning first. Lol* I love this quilt so far. Really quick and easy.

Harvest Pinwheels: Whirlwind Pinwheel Block

12" Finished Block

*** These cutting instructions are for ONE block. You will need 10 of these blocks to make this quilt. This will allow you to test one block, then go back and cut for the remaining nine blocks needed to complete the quilt.

From Orange:
- cut 1 square measuring 7 1/4 x 7 1/4
- matching corner to corner, cut this square into quarters, leaving you with 4 quarter square patches.

From Cream/Background:
- cut 1 square measuring 7 1/4 x 7 1/4
- matching corner to corner, just as you did with the orange square, cut this square into quarters, leaving you with 4 quarter square patches.

From Purple:
- cut 2 measuring 6 7/8 x 6 7/8
- matching corner to corner, cut each square into halves, leaving you with 4 half square triangles.

Block Assembly:

Use the picture below to place your pieces for assembly. Sew the orange triangles to the cream triangles first. Then sew the cream/orange units to the purple triangles. This will leave you with 4 cream/orange/purple units. Sew them together to make the whirlwind pinwheel block.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

4-Patch Posey Finished!

Yay! My second finish for 2009! Yay! It's a small one, but still, it counts, right? :)
Here's the front...

Here's the back...

A little closeup...I'm awful proud of that stippling. It helped that this is small - but check it out, not too many over-sized stitches! Most of them are consistently of a reasonable size. Woohoo, go me! :)

One more for posterity...

I used all Debbie Mum fabric from Jo-Ann's for the top, back, and binding, except, the brown in the cornerstones are from a fat quarter I had laying around. I'm a little disappointed because those adorable little cornerstones came out a bit wonkey. I didn't realize until I had nearly all of them sewn that my needle was over a notch and so I wasn't using a true 1/4 of an inch. Poop. I'm not a ripping type of gal unless I really have to. Mistakes add character, right? That's my excuse anyhow, and I'm sticking to it. Lol*

This is going to my Mom. She and my Dad are still waiting for quilts they can actually snuggle with, but I'm working on that! Until then, they'll have this to look at. Lol*

One last picture I thought was awful cute. Here's my girls holding up their quilts, don't they have the cutest little tootsies? Lol* :)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

The Windy City & a Thank You

Thank you for all of your comments on my bow tie finish. You all made me feel so good about my quilt! :) My daughter loves it, which makes me feel even more good. :) Although I still can't seem get out of making the Care Bear & My Little Pony quilt she's been requesting, so I have squares cut for that and set aside in my little sewing nook. I cut lots of them, with the hopes to get a throw for both girls to bang around with.

The line of storms that ripped through Oklahoma the day before yesterday and produced that deadly F4 tornado finally came through to our neck of the woods yesterday. I had watched the weather all day - any of you who know me in "real life" know that I have a bit of a tornado phobia! I kept thinking, where's this terrible storm we are supposed to get? I thought just maybe we had somehow been passed over, but, no such luck. It came. Just a little behind schedule. I spent much of the night watching the weather and looking out the window for signs of falling trees. About 5am I heard a crack and I ran to the bedroom to wake up my Husband and get him out of there before a tree fell on our bedroom roof - but we were SO lucky, as one of my favorite backyard trees had split in half, and fell only a few feet away from the house.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Blue & Yellow Bow Tie Quilt Finished!

This is rare kind of post for me! Lol* :) My first finish for only took me a year! LOL*

This went to my oldest daughter. She's been sleeping with it the past few nights so I haven't been able to swipe it away long enough to take a picture. It is backed with flannel and some fabric my Mother gave me when I first began quilting. I ran out of fabric for the binding so I alternated strips of the same fabric I used for the border backing, and some blue & yellow floral fabric I had in my stash. I like a 1/4 inch binding on my quilts, so you can't really even tell until you get close.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Bow Tie Quilt & Ramblings

This is what I worked on during the superbowl last Sunday...

and a little bit every evening up until yesterday. That sewing cabinet is now my absolute favorite place to machine quilt. This blue & yellow bow tie quilt top that I made nearly a year ago now, is the second project I've machine quilted using the cabinet.

I don't usually do this for meandering, but I attempted to keep from having loops suddenly end by pulling my bobbin thread to the top, knotting, and burying the ends - as opposed to using smaller stitches to secure the threads. I like this method because it can make stops and starts nearly invisible.

Something else that seems to work for me is to keep a straight pin, all-purpose needle, and seam ripper on a magnet close at hand, along with the safety pins that I remove as I go along. I use the straight pin to pull bobbin thread to the top of the quilt, and sometimes use the needle if the stitches were too tight and I wasn't able to pull it up. Of course, sewing machines do goofy things at times, and you are then faced with a mess of stitches to rip, so I like to keep a ripper handy too.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Harvest Pinwheels: Framed 9-Patch

12" finished block

***These cutting instructions are for ONE block. You will need TEN of these blocks to make the quilt. This way, if you choose to, you can test one block, and then go back and make the remaining nine you will need to finish the quilt.

From Gold Cut:

- 9 squares measuring 2 7/8 x 2 7/8

From Cream Cut:

- 4 squares measuring 2 7/8 x 2 7/8

- 4 rectangles measuring 2 7/8 x 7 3/4

Block Assembly:

Sew together your 9 patch unit first. Sew 1 gold square (2 7/8 x 2 7/8) to the top, and 1 to the bottom of 2 rectangles (2 7/8 x 7 3/4), giving you 2 gold/rectangle units. Then sew 1 rectangle (2 7/8 x 7 3/4) to the top, and 1 to the bottom of your 9 patch unit. Matching seams, go back and sew on the two gold/rectangle units to the 9 patch/rectangle unit finish the block.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Goodies of All Kinds :)

Yesterday was a day full of surprises. :) In the morning my Dad called me to help him move some things home from his antique booth. On the way I asked if he'd mind stopping at a quilt shop for me...and boy was it the right day to stop! Apparently, every now and then to make room for new bolts of fabric, the owner will bundle up 3 yards and sell them for $10 just to get them out. (Yay for me!) I bought the golden floral fabric (Benartex/from one of Eleanor Burn's Season's lines), and the purple with teensy golden flowers on it (Thimbleberries, 2006). Yay! There were a bunch of bundles, but I'm trying to buy things I know for sure I'll use. Trying...well, that and I've already bought nearly 40 yards of fabric for 2009. In the middle is a more solid purple, it's a yard and half of Thimbleberries Subtle Solids I picked up from another quilt shop - also on sale - 40% off. Woohoo! :) I LOVE me some bargains!!!

My Dad also let me swipe these two things from his antique booth...isn't he generous? That's one thing about my parents - they would give you the shirt off their backs if you needed it...or even just thought it was really cute and wanted it!!! I am always coming home with goodies from our visits. My Dad does some amazing woodwork that you should check out if you haven't. He makes these garden benches, and over the summer gave me one (aren't I lucky! I love it! So do all my neighbors! Lol* They have all popped over to make comments about it, and ask where I got it!), and ever since then I think my Husband is hesitant to see what I might have in the trunk when I've come back from my parents house. Lol* My parents are collectors too. We like old things, and espeically people's old junk. Lol* But back to the goodies Dad gave me...

a gorgeous vintage floral print...
and a little pitcher (or creamer?).

In case you're curious (and even if you're not), the little pitcher (Or is it for creamer? I don't know but it's cute!) is resting on one of my many collections...

Among other things, I collect McCoy Pottery. I am from Ohio, and if you're not all into pottery, McCoy is an old Ohio pottery company. They seem to be really popular these days, I'm always seeing them in Country Home, and Country Living magazines. I like them because of the Ohio history, and they just look so darn cute in a grouping. I pretty much only collect vases & planters, though I do have some other odds and end pieces. I think I have about 35 McCoy pieces so far. I have some Hull, Hall, and Shawnee too, but I am drawn more to McCoy. I find it so interesting that they are so collectible too - the McCoy - because my Grandmother tells me they weren't considered anything special at one time. Isn't it funny how things change? OH - and when I purchased my very first Thimbleberries book, guess what I noticed Lynette Jenson decorates her home with? Lol* McCoy!!! I was so happy, I thought, gee, I must have good taste! :)