December 29, 2008

Returning to normal

Entry I hope everyone had a nice Christmas.  Ours was perfect, although I don't have photo documentation - I tend to forget to bring out the camera when there is too much going on around me!   Everyone of our dinner guests made it and dinner was divine.  The kids were all happy with their gifts and the house is at peace once again.

We did finally get 2 quilts hung in our entryway before our Christmas party - they certainly add some fun color to the plain, white walls!

Best of all, the snow has finally melted and I can finally leave the house and get back into my regular routine.  I went to work!  I went to the chiropractor!   Oh, the little things...  I now hope that UPS will get to delivering their backlog of packages that got stuck in the distribution center because of our weather.   I have a package from the Fat Quarter Shop that's been sitting there since December 22.   Don't they know I want my fabric???

December 23, 2008


IMG00004 This picture shows the house across the street - that's a lot of snow!  I've now been stuck at home for a week.  We usually do not get this much snow in the Seattle area, but boy we have been blasted this year.  We have about 15 inches and more is coming later today.  I don't remember the last time we had a white Christmas.  It's pretty to look at, but not so much fun if you have *anywhere* you need to be.  Lucky for me, I can work from home, I have all my Christmas shopping, wrapping and food shopping finished, and I have plenty of sewing projects to keep me busy without having to leave the house.

We may not make it to my brother's in Marysville for our Christmas Eve festivities.   I am hosting Christmas dinner again this year for 13 and hopefully everyone will be able to make it.  If not, we will have a LOT of food.

Bom I used my "free time" to make my Simply Sophisticated blocks for this month.  I'm still a month behind, but at least this gets me in the December drawing!   I love the 9-patch blocks!

December 19, 2008

Good, clean fun!

Soaps I'm sorry that my blog has been absent of anything quilt-related - our entire family has been immersed in making soap for a school project for most of November and December.  Our elementary has a Sixth Grade Marketplace every year where each student creates their own business to sell goodies to their classmates and parents to raise money for a 2-day Urban Adventure field trip in May.   We decided on handmade soap for our project, and making 116 bars of soap truly was a family effort!

Sadly, the weather interfered with Marketplace and instead of having 2 days to pitch and sell their products, my boys only had one day due to snow closing school the last 3 days before winter break.  They didn't sell as many as we had hoped, sadly.  But they looked awfully cute while doing it.  Here are my 2 boys (yes, they really are twins!) and you can see our handmade soaps hanging from the tree and on the table.

Looks like everyone I know will be getting soap for Christmas!   VBG.

December 7, 2008

Busy weekend

Kitty1 It's that busy time of year for everyone, I'm sure.  But I feel like I got a lot accomplished this weekend - most of my Christmas shopping, attending 2 parties, and even some sewing!  My quilt shop Thursday night partner, Liz, gave me the leftovers of this cute Christmas kitty fabric, so I whipped up a new tablerunner.  I used the Atkinson Designs pattern Waffle Time and had this done in just a couple of hours!

Kitty2 I didn't start my decorating, but maybe I'll pull some things out tonight and decorate a little bit each day this week.  I can't believe how close we are to the Big Day!

Thanks to everyone for your interest in my recipes.  I hope you will give Tastebook a try.  I can't wait to get a real, published book with all my favorite recipes in one place!

December 1, 2008

My new friend

Stew I recently replaced a vital piece of kitchen equipment - my crockpot.  The previous version had given up the ghost - it was no longer cooking properly.  A pretty inexpensive replacement, we got a new crockpot and all is well again.

While we had a truly marvelous family Thanksgiving dinner, it was not at my house and I missed out on any leftovers.  So Sunday morning I threw my Mexican Beef Stew in the crockpot and drove my family crazy with the amazing smell all day while I went to work at the quilt shop.  But then I was able to come home to this delicious meal!

My MIL and I have talked for years about creating a family cookbook of all our favorite recipes.  I have a pile of loose recipes and I'm constantly digging through them, searching for this one or that one.  I went searching online and found several websites that help you create and publish your own cookbook, so I'm trying Tastebook to create a recipe book for my family and perhaps a couple more for gifts.

If you are interested in seeing my family recipes, comment here and I will send you a Tastebook invite.  It's free to join and allows you to share recipes with friends and family.   You can also order a published cookbook, but that's entirely up to you, no obligation!   I hope you don't feel like I'm promoting this website - I really have no personal stake in it at all, I just thought it would be a fun thing to do and I would love to hear any of your family favorites - I am always on the lookout for yummy new foods to try!

November 27, 2008

With a chick chick here...

Chick I haven't done any embroidery for years and years, but when I saw these Buttermilk Basin Chickens thru the Year patterns, I just had to have them.  I will be piecing these stitcheries into a quilt in some manner.  I'm waiting on the teeny black buttons I ordered to use for the chicken eyes, but here is my first stitched block!

November 26, 2008

So you don't lose all interest...

Starcake We've all been working on a family project for school with my two 6th graders, so not a lot of quilting has been accomplished here this month.  I did, however, receive this beauty back from the quilter and wanted to share some pictures, although my pictures really do not do the quilt justice.

It's made with one layer cake, background and borders from the Simplicity collection, and the pattern is called Star Cakes.  It makes a huge (85x85) quilt with almost no effort.

I will always have fond memories of this quilt because I started it in April when I made my first trip to California to visit my dear friend Nicole.  In fact, I think I might call it California Dreaming.

Starcake1 I absolutely adore the beautiful free-form feathers that my quilter did on it.  It's certainly a breath of spring on a cold fall day!

Here's wishing everyone a very happy Thanksgiving!

November 9, 2008

Sorry to disappear!

Pam I was so busy getting ready to leave for retreat, I didn't even get a chance to blog that I was going!  I just spent the last 5 days at my guild's fall quilt retreat - food, companionship and lots of time to sew, uninterrupted by family demands.  Heaven on Earth, I must say.  Our guild is large, and this retreat hosted 85 quilters.

I feel like I got a lot accomplished - I bound a quilt that I just got back from my longarm quilter, pieced the backs for 2 quilts to get them ready to send out for quilting, and then I completely pieced 15 of the 30 blocks needed for my Starring Repros quilt, and got the second 15 blocks about halfway done.  Now that I'm home I can arrange and rearrange them on my design wall, which is hard to do at retreat because design wall space is very limited.

Cat Since I don't have any photos of my own to show, let me share with you something that inspired me at retreat.  One quilter, Pam, was working on this Midnight Silhouette quilt, and another retreater had the finished top displayed on the wall in her room.  This beautiful quilt by Blackbird Designs is definitely going in my "future projects" file.  The first photo shows how Pam reduced the size of the quilt by 25% and added extra pieced stars, which I think I would like to do when I make the quilt as well.  Beautiful, aren't they?  Now, if I could only master applique!

October 31, 2008


Faith In an incredibly short amount of time, the gals at my quilt shop all made blocks, one of them put all of the blocks together with sashing, a former employee who is now a fabulous longarm quilter quilted it, another gal bound it and Thursday evening, we presented it to our coworker Faith in time for her to have it with her during her first chemo treatment.  There wasn't a dry eye in the house as we presented our gift to Faith - a beautiful combination of pieced, appliqued and stitched blocks in the soft Lecien fabrics that she loves.  She will be in our thoughts and prayers through all of her treatments.

October 30, 2008


IMG_0479 It took FOREVER, but I finished my Web Sampler quilt!   Putting it together was a bit of a challenge, as I have heard from others who have had problems with their finishing kits.  I think the reason is that these finishing kit patterns were generated in EQ6 and there aren't really full "published pattern" instructions.  That's my personal theory, anyway...  I know I struggled with mine, and you can see the wonky points in the outer border.  There is no instruction for dealing with those.  I think I may have it quilted first, and then decide where to trim it off.

Anyway, I am glad to be finished, but also very happy with the result.  The quilt measures approximately 72x72.

October 20, 2008

Just in the nick of time!

Websampler This project has certainly been languishing.  I never thought I would finish the blocks, and of course I still have the sashing to assemble, but I'm FINALLY finished with my Web Sampler Celebration blocks.  If you are familiar with the project, you might notice I have a couple of different blocks.  I had a real struggle with accurately piecing a couple of them, so I picked 2 other 12" blocks and did my own thing.  I love how these blocks turned out, and when it's put together with the large paisley sashing and black setting triangles, I think it will be stunning.

I finished just in time to start Web Sampler III.  I swore I wasn't going to sign up for another one of these projects, but the fabrics were just calling to me.  I love the Judie Rothermel Vicksburg colors of blue and brown.  The blocks started to roll in yesterday, so after I finish assembling the first sampler, I'll likely dive into the blues and browns next.  Nicole is going to join me on this one, but we're not putting any deadlines on ourselves this time.  I don't do well under pressure!

October 13, 2008

Lots o' Blocks

BOMS I feel like I haven't done any significant sewing in weeks.  I have a lot of little quilting "chores" to get done and haven't worked on one project straight through for quite some time.  This weekend was very productive - I got 2 bindings made and machine stitched to 2 of my older quilts that my friend Liz offered to hand stitch for me.  I put the borders on my Fig & Plum quilt for the shop so we can get that displayed and kits made.

I'm cutting out a couple of projects to take with me on my retreat in early November.  Oh and I made a few blocks!  You might recognize the blocks on the left.  They are from the Fat Quarter Shop's Simply Sophisticated BOM, which is the Moda U Selvages quilt.  The 2 blocks in the middle are the same blocks made with American Jane fabrics, which is one of the choices my shop is offering for our Moda U project.  I really loved how easy these blocks were to put together.  Vicky, the LA Quilter, is hosting a stitch-along for the FQS blocks - check it out.  If you finish and post a picture of your blocks each month, you are entered in a drawing for a FQS gift certificate.  If that's not incentive, I don't know what is!

I'm disappointed that my shop cancelled the Moda U class that was scheduled for Thursday nights.  There weren't enough customers signed up, so I could attend Moda U on Saturdays, but that doesn't really work for me, so I get the blocks, but not the fun of being part of the "club."

Oh and the blocks on the right are for a quilt we're making at the shop for one of our coworkers who is going through a medical crisis.  We're all making two 8" blocks out of Lecien fabrics and will put them together as a surprise gift for our friend Faith.  Everyone is picking their own block design, and I'm sure it will be a great mix of applique and pieced blocks in the beautiful pastel colors that Faith loves.

October 9, 2008

Merry Christmas, Y'all

Stocking Yes, I realize I just said the "C" word.   I know a lot of you aren't ready to hear it - myself included.   But one of our assignments at the quilt shop where I work was to make a stocking to hang in the shop.  We could use any fabrics in the shop, but I kept coming back to this cute Alexander Henry cowboy fabric (and yes, I realize the cowboy front and center is upside down... oh bother...).  I used some ultrasuede for the fringe, found the Texas Ranger badge and a real spur rowel on ebay and I think the stocking turned out very cute.  It sure was fun to make, and it will be fun to see what the other gals at the shop come up with for their stockings.

October 8, 2008

Halloween Swap

Runner My swap partner does not have a blog, but now that she has confirmed receipt of her package, I will show you what I sent her - a small kitty bag with Godiva chocolates inside, a spooky ice cube tray, 2 Halloween kitchen towels and a tablerunner that I made.  I must say, it was a very unpopular decision in my house to send away that tablerunner, especially since I don't even have one of my own (bad Mommy!).  I hope Ellen likes her goodies, and thanks to Susan at Blackberry Creek for hosting this fun swap.

October 7, 2008

I won't quit my day job!

Thanks to all of you for playing along with my little money game.   The total amount of money I found in a year was $9.33 - not nearly as lucrative as some of you guessed, unfortunately!  The winning entry was Shar with her guess of $9.23 - wow, Shar, you were almost right on the money (har har!).

Please contact me with your choice of colors for the batiks, or if you're not a fan of batiks, I can send you Civil War fabrics.  Let me know what you would like!

September 30, 2008

Care to guess?

Bank A couple of friends and I have a silly hobby of picking up pennies or other loose change we find on the ground.  I seem to have a knack for it, so I decided on October 1 of last year to keep all the money I found in a piggy bank, just out of curiosity, to see how much I actually found in a year's time.  So now is your chance to guess - how much money did Lisa find on the streets of Seattle in the past year?   To help you a bit with your guessing, I weighed my piggy bank - the weight of just the money was 1 pound, 8.6 oz.  So - care to guess how much I found?  Submit your guess by the end of the day October 7, and the person who comes closest to the grand total will win 6 batik fat quarters in your choice of colors.

September 22, 2008

Happy Fall!

I love Fall - I'd have to say it's my favorite time of year.  Just the weather to make you want to throw something in the crockpot and work on a quilt!

I don't have any progress to show for my weekend.  I'm working on a Halloween gift for my swap partner, so while I did finish it (except for the quilting), I can't show it quite yet.

We're all supposed to make Christmas stockings for the quilt shop where I work.  I chose a fun Alexander Henry cowboy fabric and plan to make mine with suede-like fringe at the cuff.  But I haven't started my stocking, so I can't show that.

I finished the binding on my 4OT/Portobello Market quilt and dropped it off at the shop on Thursday.  I hope they get it up on display and when they do, I will snap a photo, but for now, I've got nothing.

Doing the binding in 2 days really did a number on my shoulder - that old rotator cuff injury flares up at the most unexpected times.  This is not good news, as I have about 6 quilts that need bindings.  My buddy at the quilt shop, Liz, agreed to a barter - she's going to sew a binding for me in exchange for some fat quarters.   This may be a good solution.

September 10, 2008

Move along people, nothing to see here.

There is not much being accomplished in my sewing room of late.  I am starting to get some projects ready to take to my guild retreat in November.  I try to have simple projects all cut out and ready for production sewing, but long sessions of cutting really aggravate my rotator cuff injury, so I have to do it a little bit at a time.

Stars I picked up a new magazine at the grocery store last week, McCall's Quilting America Makes FAST Quilts  This magazine is great and has 4 quilts that are now on my "must make" list.  My favorite, though is this Starring Repros quilt.  I love everything about it - the fabrics, the size, the star blocks.

You can buy a kit to make yours just like this, but since I wanted to be able to choose my own background fabric, I ordered a fat quarter bundle.  The fabrics are from a collection by Pat Yamin called Come Quilt With Me.  These 1940s reproductions are so unlike me, but I just fell in love with the picture in the magazine, and the fabrics in person are prettier still.  Even the few prints that I wasn't in love with grew on me as I began to cut them up.  These big, scrappy stars will make the perfect retreat project!

September 2, 2008

Two steps forward, one step back

Websampler2Wow - it's been a week since I last blogged!  I should have a lot of progress to show for my week, but no, I don't, really.   I didn't get a lot of sewing done over the long holiday weekend, so I'm a little grumpy for not having spent much quality time in my sewing room.  I did finish these 3 Web Sampler blocks, so based on my last blog post, I should only have one left, right?  Well, in theory.  But, the setting I'm using requires 13 blocks, so that one on the right in the photo is my extra block.  I also decided to re-make one of my earlier blocks.  When I first started this sampler, I was planning to use 2 different background fabrics.  I guess I forgot that I planned to do that, and all of the blocks except one have used the same background.  The odd-ball block looks out of place because the background was quite a bit lighter than these Civil War Classics fabrics, so what's a Type A quilter to do, but remake the odd-ball?  So 8 + 3 -1 equals 10 and that means I still have 3 blocks remaining to finish the sampler.  Oh and a fafillion sashing blocks.  Best get started on those as well.....

August 26, 2008

Back in the saddle again

Websampler I finished 2 more blocks of my Civil War Classics Web Sampler quilt.  So now I have completed 8 of the 12 blocks - the finish line is in sight!  I dropped out of the official challenge with Perry, Cindy, Nicole, Beth and Carol, so I harbor no illusions of finishing this by their September 1 deadline, but it will get finished before I start something new.  The blocks have so many pieces and take a really long time to cut out and piece!  But I do like the fabrics and colors in this quilt.

August 19, 2008


Bom I still haven't figured out which quilt project to dive into next, so in the meantime, I decided to work on 2 of my BOM projects.  I finished Block #3 of the Designer Mystery BOM from Fat Quarter Shop.  And I completed the first 5 blocks of my Let's Go Dotty/Mary Engelbreit BOM from Inbetween Stitches in Livermore, CA.  The blocks are cute and I like the ME fabrics, but I am disappointed that the shop is making a lot of substitutions that are *not* Mary Engelbreit fabrics.  I took a photo of the quilt when I was there and made an 8x10 print of it, so I am able to see which fabrics were used in the shop sample and replicate them with my stash.  Still, I am receiving and paying for fabric that I will not use and it chaps my hide that this quilt was misrepresented.

So now both BOMs are caught up until my September blocks arrive.  Whee!  This is the first time I've ever been on top of a monthly program and I feel almost giddy!  Since I still don't have a clear idea in mind for my next project, I'm seriously leaning towards finishing my Web Sampler quilt - GASP!   Stay tuned for that one!

August 14, 2008

New accessory!

BracesMy DD got braces yesterday!  Things have sure changed since I was a teenager and had braces.  Now they start them much younger (she's only 8).  And it's not silver bands surrounding the entire tooth like in the 'old days.'   She even gets to pick the color each time she goes to have them adjusted.  She started out with her favorite color - blue - and is already planning her seasonal orthodontic wardrobe (orange & black for Halloween).   She already has a winning smile, doesn't she?  :)

August 10, 2008

A little bit of sewing

Bom Well I can't say my enthusiam for sewing is back completely, but I did a little sewing this weekend, and I thank everyone for their suggestions of things I could do to spark my interest again.

I did get a new collection of fat quarters and I have a new quilt project cooking in my brain, but I need some background fabric before I can begin cutting it out.

In the meantime, I made the first two blocks of the Designer Mystery BOM from Fat Quarter Shop, using Moda's Peace on Earth fabrics.  The August block should be arriving any day, and I also started work on a Mary Engelbreit BOM that I signed up for in April when I visited In Between Stitches with Nicole.

Oh and I did sneak in a few hours at the APNQ quilt show in Seattle last Friday.  The show was very inspiring - the quilts featured are a real work of art, nothing I could ever hope to accomplish with my ordinary quilts!

August 5, 2008

There is No Joy in Mudville

MudvilleHere is a "near finish" - my Fig & Plum Jelly Stars quilt.  I say Nearly Finished because I will need to wait until our Fig & Plum bolts arrive in the shop in September so I can choose a border and add it before this goes up on display.  After sewing two back-to-back shop samples, I find myself in a huge slump.

None of my gazillion piles of fabric or patterns is inspiring me right now.  I had planned to resume work on my Golden Memories Sampler, but I have no patience right now for cutting out a fafillion log cabin strips.

Last night I started to assemble the first of my Designer Mystery blocks from the Fat Quarter Shop and managed to finish half the block, but even found no joy in that, although I love the Peace on Earth fabrics.  Maybe it's the weather - much too hot for a delicate Pacific Northwest flower such as myself (snort!).

Here's hoping I can find my Quilting Muse, and soon!

August 4, 2008

Exciting new website!

Carrie Nelson of Miss Rosie's Quilt Company has launched her website with a blog soon to follow!   I know her site will be well received - the majority of searches on my blog are looking for Miss Carrie, so I know she has a lot of fans.  I am a huge fan myself!!!  Go visit her site and tell her Lisa sent you!

August 2, 2008

Welcome home!

Quilt4 Quilt1_2 My Roman Holiday quilt made it back from the longarm quilter and I am just thrilled with the work she did.  It's very detailed and each star has a pretty spiral snowflake pattern in the middle - that's 36 stars!  It's more beautiful and detailed than I could have imagined.  The pattern is Opening Day, another terrific pattern from  Miss Rosie's Quilt Company.  Despite the number of pieces, this one went together in a SNAP - truly.   Everything fit together perfectly - no pulling or tugging to get the borders to fit.  Really, I promise.

IQuilt2  met with a new longarm quilter today to drop off my Portobello Market quilt - another Miss Rosie design called 4OT.  She showed me some amazing samples of her work so I let her have free rein with the quilting design.  I am anxious to see what she comes up with.

But for now, enjoy these pictures of my beautiful Opening Day quilt.


July 24, 2008

Summer's Arrival!

Summer1 Well yes, of course, summer has *been* here for a month, but my little slice of summer arrived yesterday from Tucson.  My swap partner, Jo-Anne, made me this wonderful little summer quilt - isn't it beautiful?   I love the design and the colors.  It just screams summer to me.  Thank you so much Jo-Anne!

And look at the cutie pie label she made for the back too!  Oh boy, I hope my partner can forgive the fact that I didn't label mine, nor did I include a method for hanging (this was my first swap, I'm a newbie!).

Jo-Anne also included 2 crocheted dishcloths, which my daughter covets as blankets for her Webkinz.  I also got some cute notecards and some bath stuff.  Mmmmm - I think a relaxing bath is in the cards for me tonight after a rough week.

Summer2 Thanks so much Jo-Anne, this was a lot of fun and the little summer quilt will look awesome on the end table in my living room - it's the perfect size!


July 22, 2008

Third time's a charm

Star3Jelly Star #3 was a success!   I tried to be extra cautious about not stretching anything while sewing or pressing my seams open, and this one turned out pretty perfect.  My blocks are finishing at 25-3/4" - they would be 29-3/4" if I used the jelly roll strip.  Still a nice sized block - even one block framed with a border fabric would be pretty as a wall hanging or table topper.  I have 2 stars that I need to remake, and as I wait impatiently for my Fig & Plum jelly roll to arrive from Canada, I'm cutting and sewing the checkerboard sashing.

While this quilt could definitely be made with just one jelly roll, using 2 will give me the opportunity to use more strips of my favorite prints from the line and eliminate some of the darker plums, which are very pretty, but take too much focus away from the lighter prints.  I've got my fabric choices for the 2 remaining stars all sketched out.  Did I mention I'm waiting impatiently for the mailman?

My Four Seasons Swap partner down under, Soo, received her quilt from me.  I'm so happy that she likes it.  And hey - that means I should be getting a quilt in my mailbox soon.  Another reason to stalk the mailman!

July 19, 2008

Two down

Star2My second Jelly Star didn't go together quite as nicely as the first one.  The points match pretty well, but the seams in the corners of the background squares are a little off.  Still, I really like the colors on this one.  I may redo it when I get another jelly roll, or if the third star proves it's impossible to make these stars "perfect," I may just go with them as is.  Stay tuned, I'm working on Star #3.

July 15, 2008

Know your limits!

StarOK, I'll admit it - I do not like jelly rolls.   Those pinked edges just aren't for me.  They stretch and I cannot get the accuracy that I always strive for in my piecing.  What was I thinking, volunteering to make this sample for the shop with 45 degree strip pieced diamonds?  Yes, it was not a good decision, but I so wanted to work with this Fig & Plum jelly roll that my shop owner brought back from Portland Quilt Market.

This is my second attempt at making a Jelly Star.  Looks pretty good, doesn't it?  I will not show you my first attempt.   It's in a wad in the closet.  I've never had so much trouble lining up seams and having poofy seams - ever.  I'm so ashamed of it.

For my second star pictured here, I trimmed the pinked edges off the strips, leaving them 2-1/4" wide rather than 2-1/2" wide.   My stars will be a smidge smaller than the original pattern intended, but they will be accurate and will not make me cringe every time I look at all the seams that don't meet.  I can just add an extra wide border if I want a bigger quilt.

But this looks dreamy, doesn't it?   And these new Fig Tree fabrics are certainly drool worthy.   Ok, I'm off to make more stars while I'm on a roll!

July 12, 2008

Does this look like summer?

Swap Here is a finished quilt top, ready to mail "very far away" (hint...) to my Four Seasons Quilt Swap partner.   I hope my partner will like this little quilt made out of Moda's Swell fabrics.  I think based on the color preferences mentioned that she will.

July 6, 2008

No OT required!

Pe_2Carrie Nelson's little story of the name of this pattern of hers - 4OT - is something about finishing this quilt while watching an exciting hockey game that went into 4 overtimes.  Well I'm here to tell you, there were NO OVERTIMES required with this quilt.  It was definitely one of the fastest and easiest quilts I've ever assembled.  Nice big pieces and everything fit together nicely - it was a real pleasure to work with this pattern and these fabrics.  I have a quilter lined up who will do this for me at the end of July, so there will be plenty of time to bind it and have it in the shop when the fabrics - Portobello Market by 3 Sisters for Moda - arrive in September.

Please, don't anyone be intimidated by a Miss Rosie pattern if you haven't made one before.  It looks like a lot of pieces, but the effort is definitely worth the result.  The hardest part of this one will be waiting until it's finished being a shop model so it can come home to live with me!

June 30, 2008

Fill 'er up!

FillerWork is progressing on my 4OT quilt (you can now buy the Miss Rosie's pattern of your very own!).  The blank spaces in the alternate blocks are where the large star points will fill in, and I will use all the darker reds and blues in the collection.  This one is shaping up to be another gorgeous design, and it's going together so quickly, there will be plenty of time to have it quilted and bound to hang in the shop by the time the fabric arrives in September!

I finished the quilting on my Four Seasons Swap quilt, now to sew down the binding, wash and embellish it (I'm thinking some flower-shaped yo-yos).  I hope my partner will like it!

June 23, 2008

New Project

First, I would like to thank all of you who offered me such lovely words of comfort about my grandmother.   I apologize for not thanking each of you individually.   It's just too painful right now.  I hope you understand how much I appreciate all your kind thoughts, though.


After an incredibly busy 2 weeks, I am finally back at my sewing machine.   My new project is using a Moda fabric designed by 3 Sisters called Portobello Market, which won't be in stores until September.  I'm using a FQ bundle my quilt shop owner got at Market to make a shop sample.

The pattern is also new - it's called 4OT and is designed by my very talented and creative friend, none other than the heart and soul behind Miss Rosie's Quilt Company - Carrie Nelson.  I emailed Carrie asking for her advice about a pattern of hers that would be suited to this line of fabrics and she showed me this one that she designed around the very same fabrics.  The pattern will be in stores soon, but I got a special advance copy so I could get started right away, and I'm enjoying the new design very much.

There will be some larger stars that surround these 12" blocks in gorgeous reds and darker blues.   And alternate blocks with a smaller 9-patch inside a square on point.   Stay tuned to see my progress on this beauty!

June 18, 2008


Granny My Grandma Lois passed away on Friday.   She and I always had a special bond and I have been in a complete state of emotional turmoil since I heard the news.

Grandma Lois was my mom's mom and always so much fun.  She loved kids of all ages and spoiled all of them.  She had a late in life baby that was just one year older than my oldest brother, and I think that kept her young at heart all her life.

We had some fun times together.   One of the most memorable experiences - and one we talked about nearly every time we were together - was when she came to visit us in Seattle and took me to see the movie Blazing Saddles.  Just Grandma and me.   My parents were horrified that she took me - age 12 - to see an R-rated movie, but we had a rip-roaring good time and laughed until we cried.

I will never forget another time she came to visit and we went to see a movie with my mom (she loved to go "to the show").  My mom asked Grandma if she wanted some candy, and Grandma replied "Does a ball bounce?"  She always had a sweet tooth (we shared a love of black licorice) and a very funny sense of humor.

Grandma, Mom and I took a trip to Reno when I was in my early 20s and that was such a fun time.   We played one particular slot machine in our hotel lobby that consistenly paid out - no big jackpots, but enough to keep us entertained.  We were always disappointed if we came downstairs and found out someone was playing our "Watermelon" machine.

Grandma loved to travel, whereas my Grandpa Claude was more of a stay-at-home guy.  She would often plan a trip and wait until just as she was leaving to tell him about it.

Mom and I were always chuckling about her penchant for malapropisms - she always came up with some very unintentional funny sayings.

She had the most beautiful porcelain skin and snow white hair.

My daughter's middle name is Lois, after my grandmother.  Last summer when we stayed with my mom, Lily was down at great-grandma's one evening and I went to pick her up, but I wasn't allowed to take her, because the "girls" were in the midst of a rousing game of Gin Rummy.   I'm glad I got a picture of it.

I miss you, Grandma.   :(

June 16, 2008

Incredible giveaway

I read this morning about a longarm quilt blogger who is offering a chance to have one of your quilt tops professional quilted by her, just for guessing in her contest.  So go to Jackie's blog and check it out!

June 9, 2008

I Brake for Quilt Shops!

QuiltzI used some of my birthday loot to buy a personalized license plate for my new car.   Cute, isn't it?

June 5, 2008

Beauty in a box


I always LOVE getting a quilt back from the quilter.  Seeing that  transformation of my creation into a finished, quilted state is always a magical moment for me.  I got my blended quilt back yesterday and I'm just delighted with the results.

The pictures, of course, do not do it justice.  My quilter outlined each star and did a little loop-de-loop pattern inside each alternate block - most of which were a solid square, but some were 4-patches.   In the pieced border, she did a serpentine crosshatch through all the patches -  which were mostly small 3-1/2" squares, with some half-square triangles and some 3-1/2" x 6-1/2" rectangles in the mix.

Blended2_2 The second photo shows the back - almost as pretty as the front with her pretty quilting design!  The quilt is really beautiful - I couldn't be happier!

June 2, 2008

Finally, a finish!

Ohs_2 Hot Off the Press - I finished my Jelly Ohs quilt last night.  I love how faded and vintage this quilt turned out.   I had a couple of errors in judgement along the way.  For instance, my idea to use the apricot gingham for the sashing was a disaster, it was much too bright for this soft quilt.   Often the designer DOES know best and I stuck with her choice of the soft brown gingham.  I also made one block where the background fabric was too strong, so it will likely end up pieced into the back of the quilt.

I got word that my Blended Quilt is on its way back from the longarm quilter in Idaho.   I am so excited to see it.   I'll probably get it on Thursday and will share a picture then.

Next up, I need to decide on a pattern for a shop sample I'm making with the beautiful new Moda Portobello Market FQ bundle my quilt shop owner brought back from Market and gave to ME to use in a sample!   I promised to make a Miss Rosie's design and have tentatively decided to make Two Step, but I'd still like to see the new Carrie Nelson designs from Spring Market to see if there is a better choice (Carrie did tell me she designed one of her new patterns using Portobello Market, so using that pattern would be pretty perfect for my shop sample).  Stay tuned!

May 23, 2008

Jelly Ohs

Jelly This is my new project.  I'm making the Fig Tree pattern Jelly Ohs using their Dandelion Girl line of fabrics.  This is the first of 2 quilts I have planned using these fabrics.  They are very soft and vintage looking!  There are a lot of half-square triangles in this one, so it's taking a lot of time to piece these blocks.

Woo-hoo for a 3-day weekend to spend time with the family and sew!  And I don't have to work at the quilt store either.  Have a wonderful weekend everybody!

May 20, 2008

Thousands of Bolts

NellsHave you discovered this fabulous online shop yet?   It's called Thousands of Bolts and they have an amazing inventory of fabric at blowout prices.  TONS of Moda fabrics - my favorite.  Fabrics are arranged on pages by color or theme, or you can click the search button and look for fabrics by manufacturer like Moda or Timeless Treasures, or search by the name of a specific fabric collection.

I bought these cool prints from Moda's Nell's Flower Shop line for a mere $4.15 a yard - is that incredible?  I have plenty for borders and backing and a background at a price that was too good to pass up.

You do have to buy a yard at a time, but at these prices, wow - build the stash a little!  Check them out, they might have the perfect back or borders for your quilt and you could save some money too!

May 11, 2008

Batter Up!

Opening_9Finally, some quilty progress! I just finished piecing the top to a project I started last fall - the pattern is Opening Day by Carrie Nelson/Miss Rosie's Quilt Company, and it's made using Moda's Roman Holiday line of fabrics. I love the way this quilt top turned out. There were many pieces, but it came together perfectly, I had no problems at all with the construction, and I'm just thrilled with the results. A great pattern and a great group of fabrics.

May 10, 2008

Happy Mother's Day!

Lilsews1_2What better way to spend the eve of Mother's Day than in front of her new Hello Kitty machine, teaching my daughter how to sew! Here she is in deep concentration.

She picked out yellows and pinks from the Strawberry Lemonade collection and she's going to put together a simple 9-patch, but for now, I'm just having her get used to the feel of the machine and practice on the leftover pieces to practice sewing a straight line.

Lilsews2And here is the result - her first seam!

Here's hoping all the Moms and Grandmoms out there reading this find a special way to spend Mother's Day with your loved ones. Happy Mother's Day, one and all.