Friday, July 31, 2015

Red Sky at Night QAL

   Are you following "Tales of Cloth" with her Red Sky at Night Quiltalong?  I am and I love all the blocks we have done.

   Last week's block was called "Lady of the Lake".

The Lady of the Lake originates from the Middle Ages, a character starring in the myths of Merlin and King Arthur. She was as bewitching and mystical as the name suggests, yet her personality is split. In some versions of the legend, she used Merlin's infatuation with her to learn his magic, then traps him inside a stone, in others, she represents justice and wisdom and is the one to give Arthur his sword. Lord Alfred Tennyson rewrote these myths in Idylls of the King.

In 1810, Walter Scott wrote the poem, The Lady of the Lake that drew on the old legend. It became hugely successful through the 1800s, and is believed to be the inspiration behind the quilt block that was first published in 1900.

     This week's block is called "Prairie Queen".  

I found it interesting when I looked up the use of the term Prairie Queen to find that it didn't refer to youth or beauty or some kind of pageant, but to female leaders, the significant women running their households, providing for their families, creating heirlooms, and contributing to the community through their churches or charity groups.

Jodi researches the blocks and why they are called what they are.  

I'm anxious to see how all these red blocks will look when they're all set together.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Low Volume/Plus Quilt

     I haven't done a block swap in a long time.  I've done a one on one swap but not a "many block" swap in probably years.  I saw on Instagram back in the winter that a girl I knew was hosting a Low Volume/Plus block swap and having TONS of low volume fabrics I decided to join.   We could send as many blocks as we wanted so I did about 22 and made a few for myself from my favorite fabrics.  I have had them back for a few weeks now and have wanted to throw them up on the design wall since the day they came home but have resisted since I had other things on my plate...........Well, I decided on Monday that I HAD to see them all laid off I went and threw them up!

Look at those blocks!!!!!!!    And yes, your eyes are not deceiving you, they are all sewn together.
The quilt top measures 67-1/2 X 79-1/2.  Each block was 11-3/4 if I remember correctly.  

 Look at the variety of low volume backgrounds......  I was in LV heaven last night while sewing them all together.....

I didn't have anything appropriate for the back so this morning I went out and found this "WORLD MAPS" fabric by Sue Schlabach by Windham Fabrics.  It's going to look awesome with all the low volume fabrics!   I picked up the stripe from the same line to use as binding.  Now it's time to mail it off to my quilter!   

And here's a little Olivia sighting.....  Her aunt Sarah brought her that cute London onesie back from her vacation and I guess you can tell from the look on her face that she liked it :)

Thursday, July 2, 2015


     I've asked before but I'll ask again....Do you Leader/Ender while you're sewing?
I remember about 11-12 years ago at a quilt retreat I went to I heard 2 of my BFF's talking about what they were doing with their Leader/Enders and I was thinking in my head "what are you talking about?".   I did ask and got an explanation but I truly didn't "get" the whole thing so I didn't jump on the bandwagon.  I must also admit that I don't ALWAYS do it now either but I have a few projects I'd like to make that call for lots of small scrappy blocks so I have been doing some cutting and sewing.....

        I found a quilt on a blog and sent my friend Robin the link to it and asked her if she could "hook me up" thru her quilt program.  This mock up is probably 8 years old and has been used to make 2 quilts so far......with # 3 in the works.  

I have LOTS of 2 inch kona snow squares and every quilt I've made over the last couple of years has a scrap of it cut up waiting to be incorporated into this top.  

I recently took all my pieces and assembled 4 blocks with 100 squares in each block.
This was my long term project until this week.............

Bonnie Hunter announced her 2015 Leader/Ender Challenge.....TUMBLERS!
I love little tumblers!

I remember back in December or January I'd seen a McCalls Quilting Magazine with a Civil War like tumbler quilt on the cover so I started using my Go Cutter with scraps and figured I'd make one just like the magazine.  Well, one project led to another and the tumblers got put away and forgotten about  

I have a great variety of tumblers to use for the challenge so I'll work on them for now.  
Do you Leader/Ender?

And here's 7 month old Olivia.....cute huh?

Tuesday, June 23, 2015


     I was needing some bright, little girl friendly fabric for a quick birthday gift for early July so rather than make myself crazy pulling from my stash baskets I just used a fat eighth bundle of an old Riley Blake line called "Hoopla" that's been sitting on my shelf for YEARS!

     The quilt is for a cousin's daughter of my Son in Law.  My daughter requested churn dash blocks but with NO white background.  I LOVE using white as the background for quilts but when asked to forego it, I will use something else :)

I LOVE the way all of the fabrics go together, even though there are a few prints that are a little hard to see the actual block pattern after they're made up (ex. the light purple on the red wavy stripe)

I picked a purple and white print for the first border and then used all the leftover fabrics for a piano key border then the binding is the same purple and white.

The backing fabric is a white flannel multi colored springs that go perfect with the front.  
I think it's a Christmas print but I like it with this top.......

My quilter Sarah did an awesome job with a variegated purple thread !!!!

I have about a week or 10 days to get the binding tacked down and ready for little Mae's birthday......

Monday, May 25, 2015

The Lorax

I never cease to amaze myself at what I find in my sewing room when I'm not looking for it.

I was actually looking for a piece of fabric to make one of the "One Hour Bags" that I've been seeing on Instagram but found this kit.....

I have a long list of quilts that I need to make for some babies that are coming later this year so while I had the kit at hand I decided to cut it out....figuring I could assemble it a little at a time.  Well, I HAD to make one block to see how cute it was, which turned into making all of them.......

You got it.....I assembled the whole thing and this weekend pulled some yellow and white minkee like fabric from the Dr. Seuss line and got the backing ready to mail to my quilter this week.

I LOVE when I something unexpected like this project comes together super quick and is really cute too!

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Here is a view of my kitchen standing in my living room.    We'd built this house in 1992 and at the time the blue linoleum looked "awesome" LOL.  About 10 years ago we changed to the oak laminate which gave the room a nice updated look.  

 I loved having the L shaped island.  It helped lay out food when we hosted large groups, but we started having issues with the cabinet doors not closing and I also had an unfortunate accident with an electric skillet igniting the countertop on fire!  

We opted to not have a kitchen table anymore, we moved the fridge to the wall on the left and the wall where the kitchen table was now has cabinets, a countertop and we put 2 wall ovens up.
I always felt like the kitchen was pretty big but look at it now..........

I had the contractor put glass doors in these cabinets so I can showcase my red and polka dotted dishes.  

The two looks are totally different and every morning when I wake up and go down to have breakfast I can't believe it's mine, all mine!   I find myself standing staring around just taking it all it......

We still need some trim installed, our sliding door to the living room needs painting and since we replaced all the doors, we need new handles and some painting done.  We are able to work in the kitchen again which makes me happy, and we work around the builder during the day coming and going doing his thing.  

I'll update with other room fixes shortly....



    Pillowcase burritos that is  :)

    I've written before about my quest to use up some of my old fabric yardage and I've found the Con Kerr Pillowcase challenge to be the best use of my fabric.    Giving sick kids a reason to smile, one pillowcase at a time.  

     I've made about 40 for this cause in the past year or so, and as sad as it sounds, it barely fills the bill for the amount of sick kids that are out there....

    One of my goals for May was to make a few more pillowcases so that when my local quilt shop, Quilting Possibilities, has their monthly sew in, I can drop them off for delivery.

     I like making this pile

into "burritos"

then finally into pillowcases

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

"Spider Legs"

This week's block for the Red Sky at Night QAL is called Spider Legs.  When I saw the name I thought to myself hmmmmm  I don't ever remember seeing a quilt block with that name....and then I read Jodi's blog .   Jodi explains that she has lots of spiders, doesn't mind having them around and even named one Charlotte :)
I on the other hand have quite an aversion to them!  I don't think I always did but about 23 years ago we sold our house and for about 6 months lived in a rental in the woods where there were spiders a plenty!  YUCK!

So, here is my Spider Legs block......  I know, it's a lotta dots, but I LOVE red and add dots and I'm in heaven!   Those little hst's in the upper left corner are trimmed to 1-1/2 inches!!!  I'm telling you though, I could not have trimmed them and gotten such a nice result without my little Bloc Lock trimming template pictured on the white 2-1/2 inch square!    
I did good not cutting off my star points but I see I may have to take some spray starch and hot iron to the bottom right point so it lays flatter.

I'm really loving this QAL and can't wait to see as the months go on what other fun blocks Jodi comes up with.


Sunday, May 10, 2015

Happy Mother's Day

Did everyone have a good Mother's Day?  I know I did.

We are "this" close to having a working kitchen again so once again, making a reservation for Mother's Day happened.

We wanted to try a new to us restaurant so I threw a few names out there and let my oldest pick one for us.

This is where we ended up.  
I wish I'd taken pictures inside but you know how it is, you get inside, start ordering food and drink and then start eating, so all thoughts of pictures go right down the drain.  

We live at the Jersey Shore so we can pretty much go an hour any direction and find awesome places.  
Asbury Park, NJ is in the midst of a face lift.  A lot of the old buildings in the downtown area have had a ton of work done to them over the years, and surprisingly, it's the first time I've ever been to this area to see what it looks like.  

Here's my family standing outside waiting for our turn to eat :)




My son took a picture of me with my 2 girls and Olivia.  WHY I didn't get a picture of the men is anyone's guess....  Next time we are all together I will insist on a picture!

A great meal and enjoyable conversation was had by all!

Monday, May 4, 2015

Sew Along Update

I hit a dry spell with my sewing the last week or so but I did some sewing today to catch up.

First up is the new "Farm Girl Fridays" using the new "Farm Girl Vintage" book by Lori Holt of Bee in my Bonnet.

Week one's block is called Apron Strings.  

This week's block is Autumn Star 

I was going to use Kona Snow for the background blocks but I'm thinking I might use some dots and other small prints for the blocks also.

The next sew along is my Red Sky at Night with Jodi Godfrey at Tales of Cloth blog.  These will be just red and white blocks.  

Last week's block was called "T" block.

and today's block is called "Album".

You should check out all the wonderful blocks on Jodi's blog!  You won't be sorry!


Sunday, April 26, 2015

Revisiting 2004

     I don't normally go back 11 years to an old project, but this one was necessary.

     I can remember seeing the January/February 2004 Fons & Porter Love of Quilting magazine and NEEDING the quilt on page 28 called " Housepatality".  I remember ordering the kit for it and adding some fat quarters to the mix that I'd pick up whenever I saw something I thought would go good with it.

By about August/September I was ready to start making my houses.  Back then I was working full time so my sewing time was limited to weekends.  I'd take a few days and I'd cut the entire thing out at one time so when I did have time I could just sit down and sew.  I took it to my first retreat that October and sat and got to know all the girls and sewed up all of them.  I wish I had a picture of me back then sewing on this project but I don't.  I think a friend does so I'll have to ask her to send me a copy  :)

Anyhow....I finished it and it hung in my laundry room for 11 years, until last month when I took it down to start our remodeling.  As I took it down I examined the quilting I did on it and I decided to take it all out and send it to my quilter Sarah so that it hangs nicer and just get it freshened up like the laundry room! 

I'm so much happier with it now!  

You will notice that I didn't add the final pieced border, I just added a black and white polka dot border and was happy with it like that!

Here's an up close look at the quilting my friend Sarah did on it.....

We just got back from Florida on Friday so I've been catching up with laundry and attempting to get the house in order.  This morning I decided it was time to get the binding ready and sewn on....  I am using a black and white stripe for it, which I think will be perfect.

The laundry room is almost finished being remodeled so I need to get this on and sewn down NOW!  AND, I need to figure out a unique label for it so I incorporate the old top with the new quilting.....
Thanks Sarah for updating this quilt!


Sunday, April 12, 2015

Beachplum Quilters of the Jersey Shore

      Yesterday I had the pleasure of meeting up with my BFF Robin for The Beachplum Quilters of the Jersey Shore luncheon and Trunk Show with Jackie Kunkel of Canton Village Quilt Works.  The luncheon was held at Jack Baker's Lobster Shanty in Point Pleasant, NJ.
Robin got up at the crack of dawn to drive down to my house from Long Island and after chatting, visiting my sewing room and checking out my renovations to the house, we went to the luncheon.

It was a gorgeous 66 degree day and with the restaurant right on the water, we had a wonderful day.  

Jackie is a joy to meet and chat with.  WHY I didn't get a picture of us with her is anyone's guess.....  This picture is the only one I snapped  :(

After a delicious lunch, Jackie had a trunk show and also brought some kits, patterns, magazines etc. with her.  

I took more pictures than these 3 but some just didn't come out right.  Her quilts are absolutely gorgeous and the work that goes into them is phenomenal!

I have to say, the girls from the Beachplum Guild were sooooo nice and very accommodating.  When we got to the venue we were given a ticket for some of the door prizes, a free fat quarter and a bag of M&M's with a really cute MODAFABRICS Emergency Kit label.  I won the 6-1/2 inch ruler and a wooden ruler holder.  

I did have to drop a few bucks along the way and bought a Judy Niemeyer kit for a quilt and also bought some fat quarters and 2 bags of pins that are exact replica's of Jackie's quilts.

We met 3 really nice women that we shared a table with and at the end of the show I actually met one of my online friends Carolyn.  I had no idea she was going to be there but one of the girls from my LQS brought her over to introduce me.  AGAIN, no picture  :(

In closing, we bought raffle tickets for the guild's quilt raffle.  NO, I didn't win, but it is a beauty isn't it?

I'm not a member of this guild YET....but I can tell you that I'm going to join when they start back up in September!  They don't meet over the summer and since I have a ton of stuff on my plate in May and June, I'm just going to start out fresh in September.  What a nice time we had with a LOT of wonderful women!

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Catching Up on Tuesday

It's rainy here today and workers are downstairs spackling so I thought I'd upload a few pictures of what I'm doing and then I have an appt. with my favorite hairdresser for some color and a haircut for our trip to Florida next weekend for a very special wedding.

First off, who's doing this?
                                         I can tell you I am!  I preordered my book and then after it came I noticed Lori had a bundle available using almost the same fabrics as she did so I ordered that bundle, a full bolt of Kona Snow and I'm set and ready for May 1st when the Sew Along starts.  

Yesterday was too nice to stay in, with temps hitting almost 70 in NJ so I went outside and sat on the steps of the deck with Luna and we soaked up a little sun.....

After a little afternoon shopping I came home and made my Red Sky at Night Sew Along block.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE the red fabric line I'm using for this project and I love this Crown of Thorns block Jodi picked for this week.

I had a small package of Bonnie & Camille fabric in my mailbox too yesterday for a B&C Bee I'm doing this year.
I am in love with each one of these fabrics.....a few I never saw before but with the popularity right now of Bonnie & Camille's fabrics, some shops are pulling out their older stash and you can really get a nice variety!

And here's a quick shot of Miss Olivia on Easter Sunday.  She had the cutest little socks and ruffly outfit on........