Monday, October 31, 2011

This and That

While I was in Elk Rapids, MI for the Beaver Island Quilt Retreat, I purchased some flannel fabric to make PJ's for my daughter, and my twin nieces. Actually, I just made the pj pants and purchased the tops. I have been using this same pattern since my daughter was very young and she will soon be 20! I just get the measurements of each girl and alter the pattern to fit. I have used this pattern so often that I can make them with my eyes shut! Well...almost!  My nieces just turned 12 and we celebrated their birthday this past weekend with dinner at their house. I also made them pillowcases for their birthday.
I think everyone in the family has a pillowcase now!  They proved to be popular birthday gifts this year!

The Elgin Piecemakers Guild charity project--quilts for adult chemo patients at our local hospital--continues full steam ahead. This block is my contribution towards the black white and green quilt. This block is due at our early January meeting--I am trying to get ahead a bit as I have some Christmas gifts to work on over the next few weeks.  This block is called "Get The Point" and is #291 in volume 3 of Quiltmaker's 100 blocks magazine.

We had our meeting last week and everyone brought in their blue and yellow blocks:

Two of our members will get together soon to add sashing and borders to make this quilt.

Last Spring, I challenged everyone to make a "Filmstrip" block for a charity quilt. I gave everyone the centre square fabric. The sashing looks great and this quilt top is now at the quilter's house in line to be quilted. The backing is in the lower left corner of the picture.

I made this raspberry apple kuchen for dessert one night last week. I picked the raspberries from our garden. It was delicious...there were no leftovers!  The recipe is a variation of Pineapple Nut Kuchen from the Company's Coming Diabetic cookbook. The key to this recipe is to serve it warm.

A couple of weeks ago, I entered a give-away on the Selvage Blog for this book "The Town That Drowned" by Riel Nason. My name was picked out of the hat and today, the book and some orange fabric scraps arrived in the mail from Riel!  Check out Riel's blog to see the wonderful quilts she makes for Halloween!  I especially love her Selvage Mummy quilt!  Thanks, Riel for the book and the fabrics!  It was perfect that this parcel arrived on October 31st!

Last week, we had our first hard frost. I had a few minutes to spare before leaving for work so I raced out to the yard with my camera to get some pictures.

I spent much of tonight working on putting more HST units into strips of 5 for my Roll Roll Cotton Boll quilt. Christine and I are getting together tomorrow night to work on this quilt.

Good Night, everyone!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

10 blocks done!

Thursday night, I had 45 minutes to spare and put together 4 more blocks for my RRCB quilt. I dug out my completed string blocks and started to lay the blocks out on the design floor.

Today, my husband made some delicious butternut squash soup for lunch. I did not take any pictures of the soup, but while it was cooking, I sewed some more RRCB blocks together. I have 10 blocks made now and the design floor is filling up!  I may be forced to move some furniture to lay out all of the blocks.

There are 30 of these blocks in this quilt.

This is a fun quilt to look at because there are so many different fabrics in it.

Christine has made me promise not to sew the blocks together until we both have them done.  Keep sewing, Christine!!!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

RRCB sewing

After a bit of a break, Christine and I got together for a couple of hours tonight to work on our RRCB quilts. I put some "fivesies" together using some of the 600 red and neutral HST units I have been making.

Christine was trimming and ironing her HST's while I sewed.

I got quite a few of these done. I was all excited to see what a completed block would look like so after Christine left to go home, I put one block together...

We can't get together to sew next week so we are both going to keep putting the 5 HST units into strips and also cut out the pieces we need for our borders. We would both like to have the flimsies of these quilts done before our next London Friendship Quilter's Guild meeting in November (only 23 days from now!). We are having Pam from Mad About Patchwork at our next meeting and both of us have signed up for her workshop where we will learn how to make two different modern quilt blocks. That means two more UFO's to add to the pile! 

Look what I got in the mail yesterday! 

This post card was made by Beth at the LFQG for the monthly postcard exchange. Thanks Beth for the postcard!

I also a package with this inside...

It's my ribbon for coming in second in the 2011 International Plowing Match block challenge! You can look at my block here.

It is that time of year here--the leaves are turning beautiful shades of yellow, orange and red and they are falling to the ground.  This picture was taken at BIQR at the Birch Lake Lodge beach a couple of weeks ago.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Sewing for Charity and some more Baskets

Last Spring, Chris and I got together to put together these blocks into a quilt top. Each member of the Elgin Piecemakers made a block for this quilt. It was quilted over the summer by Al and Chris came over to my house a couple of weeks ago to work on the binding. If you click on the picture, you can see that the sashing is made from white fabric with black dots on it. Later that week, Chris and another guild member delivered several quilts to our local hospital where they will be given to adult chemo patients as a reminder that there are people in the community rooting for them as they undergo cancer treatments. The guild has received a few thank you notes from some of the recipients and it just "warms the cockles of my heart" to know that they are appreciated and being used.

This year, we have been given a list of colour themes for each month and we are to complete a block each month using the colours on the list. We have been divided into groups of two to put each top together.  September's colours are blue and yellow (I missed the September meeting because I was away at the Beaver Island Quilt Retreat) so I leafed through Volume 3 of Quiltmakers 100 Blocks magazine to find a pattern to use for my block. I decided on "Vintage Spools" -Block #281.

 I like the way the centre of this block looks like a windmill.

The colours for October are purple and green. I decided to get ahead of the game and make this block too. I picked Block #285 from the same magazine "Magic Squares".

The darker purple fabric in the squares in the center was from Erin at My Patchwork Life--I won it in a give-away on her block a year or so ago.  I have more plans for this fabric but that will have to wait for a little while.
I also made 4 more little basket blocks yesterday. I have some more fabric picked out for more baskets and will keep working away on these as time allows.

Each block is 4.5" square.  I have 20 little baskets so far.

Christine and I plan on getting together later this week to work on our Roll Roll Cotton Boll quilts. We had to take a bit of a break from this project because life got in the way.  The blocks will start to come together this week so stay tuned.

My brother's birthday is this week and I made him a pillowcase with boats on it. He is into bathtub boat racing in a big way--I could not find any bathtub fabric so these boats will have to do.

Take care eveyone and happy sewing.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Show and Tell at BIQR

Wednesday night, after feasting on pizza, each of the quilters at the Beaver Island Quilt Retreat showed off one or two of their recently completed quilts.
This quilt was hand pieced and hand quilted--it took several years to complete and each star was a different fabric.

This applique quilt was made as a gift.

Gwen quipped that the border on this quilt was a bit "muted" (!!???) It was a wild and fun quilt!

This quilter also knits and made this doll for a new baby. The skirt and hair are made from purchased black gloves.

This quilt looked like stained glass.

Amazing applique and a wonderful pieced sashing!

This quilt was inspired by a photograph of the quilter's son and grandson. WOW!

Christine showed her Carolina Christmas quilt. (mine is at the quilter's right now). Beautiful!

Carol showed her recently finished "Test Pattern"quilt. She hand quilted this a little bit each day over the summer.
I loved this Frank Lloyd Wright inspired table runner.

Gwen was very interested in everyone's quilts! 

I showed my "Liberated Selvage Wedding Ring" Quilt that I made last summer from one of Gwen's patterns. I don't have a picture of me showing my quilt. Perhaps Carol or Christine could send me their picture and I could post it!  (Hint! Hint!)  I was very pleased that Gwen liked my quilt. She told us that Karen Griska of the Selvage Blog had attended one of the BIQR events.

This past weekend, my husband, my in-laws and I went to Ottawa to visit my daughter. On our way home, there were lots of Fall colours to admire and I shot this picture out of the car window. I was wishing I could get out of the car to take some close ups of the milkweed fluff in the foreground.

In my last BIQR post, I will show pictures of some of the sketches made by other quilters at the retreat.

Tonight, I made three liberated basket postcards --one for Pokey who correctly guessed that the picture in a previous post was of wagon wheel hubs, one for the London Friendship Quilter's Guild monthly postcard exchange and one for Gwen Marston.

Monday, October 3, 2011

BIQR: What I Made...

As I mentioned in the previous post, Gwen did several demos on how to make the various elements in her "37 Sketches".  Above, she is showing us how to insert a curved line into a piece of fabric. Gwen does all her sewing on a Featherweight.

You can see my version of the curved line in this picture. It was not that hard! Most of the strips for the parts of this sketch were cut at 3/4" wide so that only a 1/4 inch showed when the peices were all sewn together. I have never used such skinny strips before!  On most of Gwen's sketches, she added at least one print fabric--you can see my green and yellow print fabric above. I considered my first "sketch" to be my chance to make at least one of each of the elements she taught us. It is not exactly "artistic" but I learned a lot making this first little quilt.

At the lower right, you can see my (mostly successful) attempts to insert pointy bits into the stripey element.

Gwen did several demos on how to do this ...
This is Christine's first sketch--She used some neat owl fabric in one of the trees--click on the picture to see their little faces!

My second sketch used some new birch tree fabric that I purchased at one of the local quilt stores. Once the other quilters saw this fabric, there was a mad dash to the quilt store and it was soon sold out! There is a black binding on this sketch--the gallery wall for all of the completed projects was black so the binding did not show up in my picture.

If you have been reading my blog for a while, you might remember these little liberated fruit and vegetable baskets and "FRESH" letters that I made at Quilt Til You Wilt in February. I had put them away after that day, not really knowing what to do with them. I brought them along to the BIQR and with some guidance and ideas from Gwen, I put them together, added some more words "U-Pick" and a liberated churn dash block and voila, a completed wall hanging flimsy!

Now, I will have to decide if I want to add a border or just quilt and bind it... What do you think?
This black and white sketch with some green and red touches was made for my husband. In this one, I made some liberated log cabin blocks and some liberated 9-patches.

For my last project, I made some 4" basket blocks from these fabrics purchased at one of the local quilt stores.
I made 16 baskets and hope to make lots more!

We sewed all day from about 9am to midnight most days, except for our field trips into town to go to the quilt stores and the orchard for apples.

Christine worked on a quilt for her daughter, made one more sketch with more owls in it, and finished sewing her 30's spin blocks together.

Here's an Elk Lake sunset to close off this post.  In my next post, I will show some of the sketches made by the other quilters at the retreat.