Thursday, August 29, 2013

Some gifts and a quilt back

I used a Moda Bake shop pattern called "Giant Pin Cushion" to inspire this gift for Christine's daughter. She is going into a program at university in fashion design and I suspect this will come in handy! It is filled with plastic beads. I bought this fabric at last week's fabric party.

I also finished off the 5 pillowcases that I started last week.

The second one with the tea cups and tea bags is for me!  I love a hot cup of herbal tea in the cold weather!  The other pillowcases are all gifts for others. I have more people I would like to make pillowcases for so there will be more of these showing up on my blog soon.  They are great stash-busters!

Last night, Christine came over and we both worked on our 9 patch mystery quilts. Christine is still working on putting her blocks together and hopes to have her top together in time for the first London Friendship Quilters' Guild meeting for show and tell. It will be fun to see everyone's mystery quilts. I finally finished off the backing for my quilt so I can take it to Cathy next week for quilting. She promises me it will be done in time for show and tell!

I purchased a wide back for this quilt, thinking that it would be less work since I would not have to piece the back. In the meantime, I decided to add borders to the quilt top and the fabric I had picked for the backing made a great border...resulting in being short on the backing. The lesson from all of this...wait until the quilt top is completely done before purchasing the backing!  The upside--I got to use up the extra fabric and 9 patches leftover from this project... Yet another stash buster!

Here are a few more pictures from our family vacation.  This sewing desk belonged to Mary Todd Lincoln, wife of Abraham Lincoln. We toured their home in Springfield, IL. Of course, I was drawn to this particular piece of furniture!

Nice sewing basket!
I kept my eyes open for quilts as well. This one was on display at the Old State Capital Building in Springfield. During the civil war, the women made quilts for soldiers and to raffle off to raise money to purchase items for soldiers fighting in the war.
I will do another post soon about a display of civil war quilts at the Illinois State Museum.
Until next time...

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Still in the black...

After the fabric party on Thursday night, my stash report was starting to look like I might be heading for red I decided to do some sewing to make it look better!  I made this block for the Elgin Piecemaker's charity block for September. This block is a variation on one I saw in Tula Pink's new book, 100 Modern Quilt Blocks. (block #51 in the book).

I also cut out and partly sewed 5 pillowcases--one for me and 4 for gifts. (4 are shown here at the "sausage phase") 

I will show a picture of the finished pillowcases later in the week.

Early in the week, I worked on piecing the backing for my 9 patch mystery. It is still not quite done yet, but all of the fabric I have put into it so far is in the out column of my stash report below. I also counted the fabric I used to make the selvage stool in the previous post.

So, here it is...

Fabric used in the last week: 13.91 yards
Total fabric used this year: 128.26  yards
Fabric added to the stash in the last week: 13.25 yards
Total fabric added this year: 120.41 yards
Net fabric used this year: 7.85 yards

I should be able to finish that quilt back this week and maybe even get the next step cut out for the Lazy Sunday Mystery. I am not buying any fabric for the next little while!!! 

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Fabric and Flowers

I spent the morning outside weeding, deadheading and watering. The gardens are all looking much better now!  It is a beautiful sunny day, warm but not hot. A perfect day for spending time outside!  There is a bike ride planned for later in the day as well as some reading in the gazebo.

I took a picture of the fabric I bought at the fabric party...lovely colours and great additions to my stash!

My late summer garden still has lots of blooming going on...

Black Eyed Susans
White Phlox
Same Hosta, different perspective!   Lovely blue sky!
Pink Phlox
I will do another post soon with my stash report. I hope to do some sewing later today to add to the "fabric out" column!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Fabric Party at My House!

Tonight, I hosted the 2nd annual Mad About Patchwork fabric party at my house. I invited the members of the Elgin Piecemakers and several other quilting friends to come and share some show and tell, purchase some fabric and then enjoy a treat or two.

There was lots of eye candy on my dining room table and lots of discussion around what colours would look good together for future quilting projects.

Pam's baskets of solids are hard to resist!

It was hard to tear everyone away from the fabric feeding frenzy to share some show and tell!

A fall spinning four patch by Karen.

Cathy's Dresden Plate, recently finished.

Shirley's charity quilt finish.

Joanne's latest project--a quilt for her own bed!

A close up of the quilting.

Pam's latest project made from blocks she put together at a workshop in Houston, TX.

Jacqui's squares ...we all loved it even if she did not!

Heather's paper pieced baby rattles.

Heather's civil war stars for her grandson.

Christine's yummy Apple Crisp quilt.

My Swoon quilt with the binding just finished last night.

This is the table runner I made with leftovers from Swoon.
This is my latest selvage project...a sewing stool for Pam.  Thanks for making the trip to visit us and for bringing your fabric, Pam! 
Pam generously donated a percentage of the proceeds from the party which we used to buy flannel backing for the Elgin Piecemakers' charity quilts.

There were lots of homemade goodies and some fruit to eat after finishing our shopping.  Thanks Joanne, Jacqui and Karen for the cookies and squares (I did not get a picture of your delicious treats, but judging from the reviews I heard, they were well received!)

A couple more show and tell projects--this is Jacqui's strippy wall hanging.

This summery table runner had 3D bow ties.

Thanks everyone, for coming to the party and sharing your projects and for shopping 'til you dropped!

Sunday, August 18, 2013


Progress was made on a few projects this past week. Sometimes, it feels like it takes me an eternity to get from start to finish on a quilting project (and other projects around the house too!). I seem to have lots of things on my list which I would like to accomplish but time and energy run out before the item is crossed off the list. I will just have to keep plugging along and hopefully, finish a few projects along the way.

I finished adding the borders to my 9 patch mystery this weekend. I just have to piece the back now so that I can get it to the quilter's house this week.

She assures me that she will have it done before our guild meeting in September. I think the borders finish it off quite nicely, don't you?

Christine, Carol and I got together this afternoon to work on our collaborative project. Between holidays, family commitments and working, it takes a bit of juggling for all three of us to be free to work on this quilt at the same time!  Today, great progress was made with the addition of a floating leaf border...

The good news...we have a plan to finish off this project with the addition of some flying geese and a final border of the flower fabric. We all have some geese to make before our next meeting to complete this quilt top.

I did some had stitching today on the binding for my swoon quilt. I am hoping to finish it off in the next day or two so that I can show it at a gathering of quilting friends later this week. Only 1 1/2 more sides to go!

Now is the time to fess up to how much fabric came home with me from Quiltology in Chicago....

It is all washed now and most of it is ironed and ready to use in future quilts and a new pillowcase for me.

Fabric used in the last week: 2.85 yards
Total fabric used this year: 114.35  yards
Fabric added to the stash in the last 3 weeks: 12.0 yards
Total fabric added this year: 107.16 yards
Net fabric used this year: 7.19 yards

This will look better after I get that backing pieced this week!  Maybe, I will even get my pillowcase made too...

I will finish off this post with a couple of pictures from my vacation. While in Springfield, we walked down a street that had recently been streetscaped with planters, new sidewalks and pillars with sayings of famous people.  This one caught my quilter's eye...

Happy Sewing!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Back from Vacation...

I was here last week with my husband and my daughter. This pic was taken from the 94th floor of the Hancock Building in downtown Chicago.

It was a long way up but the views were amazing!

We did a few architectural tours by bus, by boat and by train on the "L". My favourite building was designed by a is called Aqua, for obvious reasons!

Tonight, Cathy and Karen came over for some sewing. It was the first time I have even looked at my machine since I got home on the weekend.

Cathy worked on putting her blocks together for her Lazy Sunday mystery quilt.  She got 1/4 of the top put together.

Karen worked on a thimble table runner:

I worked on attaching borders to my 9 patch mystery. Cathy will be quilting it before our September London Friendship Quilters Guild Meeting.

I purchased a wide back before I decided to add the borders so I may have to do some inserts into the back to make it big enough. I have lots of fabric in my stash so I should be able to do this without having to purchase any more fabric...

I will do my next stash report on the weekend...I did some shopping in Chicago at Quiltology... a very dangerous store for someone who is trying to reduce her stash! (Especially when everything was on sale!)

This bricks and mortar shop will be closing soon and going online only.

Lots of fun quilts on display and wonderful bright and happy fabrics!