Sunday, January 31, 2010

Red and White Slanted Star

I started this thing about two years ago, pulling five yards of white-on-white from my stash and gathering up a bunch of red scraps and fat quarters. Reported this busted two years ago. I thought I wanted to make it bigger, but I pondered it this week. I asked Jane one time when I would know a quilt was finished, and she said I'd just know. I added one more row that was already pieced together, and I'll call it finished, approximately 60" square. I pulled 4 yards out of my stash for the backing and binding, which I just finished piecing. That will go on next week's stash report.

I freed up a tub for a BOM.

And I successfully delayed the mitered borders for a while longer! :)

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Stash Report 2010 Week 5

Wow, I'm enthusiastic about the stash reports this year. Or up to this point I am. We'll see how the year progresses. :)

I sewed on three bindings today and pieced two backings. Just have to press the Prairie Paisley top and my weekend list is complete. I did find one more to add to the list that I'll be working on this coming week, Bears in the Barnyard that Judy had as a Quilt for an Hour. I just need to put the final border on, but I got stuck because I've never done a mitered border. I'm going to figure it out this week if it kills me. Those stripes really need to be mitered! Then I'll need to go stash diving for the backing! Hooray! The backing will be another bust!

Since last Sunday I've made three backings for a total of 15.5 yards.

However -- 3.5 yards of backing for the Civil War Tribute BOM from The Fat Quarter Shop came in, as well as 12 yards of Rouenneries linens. So 15.5 yards purchased.

15.5 yards in, 15.5 yards out. I'd call that a wash!!

Year-to-Date Totals:

Busted: 48.25 yards
Purchased: 31.375 yards
Net YTD: 16.875 yards busted

Nine Years in the Making

Botanika, a Robyn Pandolph pattern. I began this quilt in 2001, just a month after I started quilting. I wanted so badly to learn to applique. I didn't know I was supposed to start with something easy!

I had all the blocks made for years, but didn't assemble the top until about four years ago. Then I drug it out fairly regularly to look at it and marvel that I had actually finished the top. I still can't believe that I undertook such a "hard" quilt for my first one.

Finally I decided to get it quilted, and Judy did her fabulous custom quilting on it. I tried to get some close-ups of the quilting but Penny thinks she needs to be in every picture. I'll kennel her and get some close-ups when the binding is finished. Thank you, Judy!! Your quilting truly did make the quilt!

Oh, a funny story. I've been referring to this quilt for years as my funeral quilt. I figured it would take me the rest of my life to get it completed. I mentioned that to Judy when I sent it to her. When I got it back, she said that if she was at my funeral and saw this quilt in the coffin, she was yanking it out! I'm betting she really would do that!!! LOL

This was my learning quilt. I look at it and see things I would do differently now, but the experience was a grand one. All of the circles are needleturned. Some of them are teeny tiny - a quarter inch or less. I was working on this quilt when I was lucky enough to take a four-day workshop with Robyn in, I think, 2003. I had skipped over all the berries, and I asked her if she would show me how to do them. She suggested I practice needleturning them, instead of doing the drawstring around a template. She was right that the tiny ones are much easier to do this way. I'm so grateful that she spent some time with me doing the circles. I now needleturn all circles, big or small. Circles are my favorite shapes to applique!

I'm feeling sort of melancholy about getting this one finished. Why is that? Must be because it's been a part of my entire quilty life.

I guess I need to find another applique project to take to The Home with me!

January Last Weekend Tasks

I had a January goal of backings, bindings and borders. I've done pretty darn good considering the daunting piles of things sitting here in my sewing room.

Here are three quilts that need bindings sewn on. I'll definitely get those done. Then Prairie Paisley needs the million yards of backing pieced. I am NOT looking forward to that, especially ironing all that fabric. But, alas, it must be done.

Drumroll here ..... that leaves only two quilts to work on. One needs to be squared and the backing pieced. The other one needs to be squared, a border added, and backing pieced.

I started out with 16 quilts/quilt tops that needed work. I'm down to two. Not bad for a January, my busiest month of the year!

Penny needs some training about how NOT to help her Mommy while she's in her sewing room. DO NOT pull on the ends of the bindings as they're being attached. DO NOT run off with binding strips. DO NOT turn over the trash can multiple times in a half hour. DO NOT - well, enough said.

But she's so cute!

Sunday, January 24, 2010


Well, got the bindings machine sewn on four of the nine that needed them. Not bad for a Sunday morning. I might do one more now, and then I'm pretty much done for the day. I have LOTS of hand work to keep me busy for a while!

I decided to do two more before I pooped out for the day. Sitting at the machine putting binding on six quilts in one day has my shoulders all knotted.

Oh, yeah, Penny was a BIG help!

Stash Report 2010 - Week 4

Work is getting a tad bit back to normal for this time of year, so that might mean I can start sewing a little on week nights.

I had planned on working on two UFOs this weekend that only needed the blocks assembled. Then I poked buttons at The Fat Quarter Shop for some Rouenneries wovens and linen. Since those will be arriving next week, I figured some actual busting was in order this weekend. Gotta pad the stash report!!

I finished four backings yesterday. Granted one was a wallhanging but it needed to be done. Started with the smallest one and am working my way through the pile that resides next to my cutting table. Total busted, 12.75 yards.

No purchases this week.

Today will be spent working on getting bindings machined on to this other pile of quilts sitting here. The bindings are already made for most of them, but I should be able to bust a yard or two for the others.

Won't it be nice when the backings pile and the bindings pile are removed from my sewing room? Well, I think so!

Check out what others are busting at Judy's Patchwork Times!

Year-to-Date Totals:

Busted: 32.75 yards
Purchased: 15.875 yards
Net YTD: 16.875 yards busted

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Pennsylvania Dutch BOM Block 3 Winner

This month has gone quickly, probably because I was so dang busy at work. However, a bunch of you got your Pennsylvania Dutch BOM blocks made and posted a comment or emailed me a picture.

The name drawn out of the bag for the winner of this month's $25 gift certificate donated by Kimberly and Kevin at the Fat Quarter Shop is .......

Simone de Klerk in the Netherlands!

Congratulations, Simone! I'll email your gift certificate to you in a few minutes!

All of this fun wouldn't be possible without the wonderful generosity of Kimberly and Kevin at the Fat Quarter Shop. You two just get more wonderful every day!

And if you haven't checked out the Jolly Jabber blog recently, please head over there to see all the wonderful quilts that have been donated for an auction for Haitian relief. Please place a bid on one of the quilts, or you can make a donation by clicking on any of the sites listed. Also, a bill was just signed into law that any contribution made to Haitian relief between 1/11/10 and 3/1/10 can be deducted on 2009 income taxes! Just make sure that your charity of choice is a 501(c)3 charity to be able to take your 2009 deduction. All of those listed on Jolly Jabber are. (I checked them out to make sure.)

Simone, we can't wait to see what you purchase with your gift certificate! Congrats!

Thank you again to the Fat Quarter Shop!!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Rain and Oops!

Got up an hour earlier today to get this block sewn together. I didn't even notice the problem until I was downloading the picture from my camera. Guess it's back to the sewing machine tonight! LOL

For those of you participating in the Pennsylvania Dutch BOM from The Fat Quarter Shop, please leave your comments HERE about your finished blocks. I know you'll do yours correctly. It's a case of don't follow the leader!!!!!

It's raining and I love the rain. I love almost everything about it - the "almost" part being the freeways here in SoCal in the rain. I've noticed the past couple of days that most folks are driving like they're supposed to drive in the rain. But there are always one or two hotdoggers who drive like they're in the Indy 500. Yesterday one guy was so close behind me that I thought he was trying to use my draft. Then I saw red lights, and he was pulled over. Yuk yuk.

I've been experimenting with Penny. Leaving her out of her kennel. I had a long talk with her about the honor system, and she's done pretty good. She gets in her nest on the sofa before I go upstairs to bed, and she's still there in the morning - whining to go outside. I hope this works out because I hate that she's kenneled so much, especially with the long work hours going on right now.

I'm off to work. Wish me luck!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Summer Breeze

Summer Breeze is done. Just need to press it, square it, and I'm piecing the backing now. At least I got in on the tail end of Judy's Quiltathon!

Next up is a BOM block. Gumbo is almost done, and laundry is going. I'm going to sew as late as I can tonight!

Stash Report 2010 - Week 3

Subtitled: "I Survived Road to California Quilt Show"

I did. I survived without tanking my stash report too badly. Truly, this is a first!

A box from the Fat Quarter Shop arrived this week with Bar Harbor, a tower and a layer cake. Of course, the yardage hasn't hit yet, but I have a plan so it won't be too bad. Purchased 10.375 yards.

Now off Saturday morning bright and early to Road. I picked up some patterns, varigated embroidery floss and some Pigma pens. There's one more pattern that's being shipped to me. The fabric for every pattern here will be pulled from stash. I put a few back because I didn't have the right fabrics. I felt so righteous! :)

Then I headed over to Stars & Scraps' booth. They always have the cutest things. Honestly, I could have gotten one of everything, but I settled for "February Favorites." This is an American Jane pattern that was done up in Civil War fabrics. It was way too cute to pass up, and only 5.5 yards.

Oh, yeah, the quilts. Lots of pretty ones, but most of them didn't really appeal to me. I didn't take any pictures, but I'm sure that once the show is over, they'll be up on the website. Was looking for inspiration but came away a little disappointed in that regard.

That's it! It felt good to walk out of there with everything in one bag. Of course, *someone* - and I'm not saying who - purchased A LOT of fabric. I can't wait to see THAT stash report!!

Year-to-Date Totals:

Busted: 22 yards
Purchased: 15.875 yards
Net YTD: 6.125 yards busted

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Pennsylvania Dutch BOM Block 3

Okay, I'm probably the only one of the Pennsylvania Dutch BOM participants who hasn't made their third block yet. I have a good excuse -- very long work days. In fact, I'm on my tenth straight day of working. I do plan to get it made on Sunday and will substitute the block picture for this one.

I love this block! I love the fabric! This will be a fabulous quilt! I think I bought oodles and oodles of that blue. Heck, I bought oodles of all of it! I mean, it's Minick & Simpson!

The drawing for this month's $25 gift certificate from The Fat Quarter Shop will be held on Saturday, January 23rd, sometime around 6:00 p.m. If I'm a little late on the drawing, it's probably because I'm either working or, hopefully, sewing or doing something fun! But the drawing will definitely be held that evening.

All you have to do to be entered in the drawing is complete this month's block, post it on your blog, and leave a comment here directing us to your blog. If you don't have a blog, you can always email me a picture of your block to be entered in the drawing. Either way works!

Has everyone spent their gift certificate that The Fat Quarter Shop gave to all who signed up for this BOM? I totally forgot about it until this week. Yes, I ordered more Minick & Simpson, Bar Harbor. That was a nice perk. Thanks, Kimberly!

If you've fallen behind on this BOM, just skip ahead to this block and get it made by the 23rd! Who knows? You might be the lucky winner!

Thank you again to Kimberly and Kevin for the monthly prizes! You two are awesome!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


Brenda Riddle of Little Acorns posted on her blog that she was reducing her quilt stash and offered several beautiful quilts for sale. Wow, I wanted a Brenda quilt so badly, so I poked the link and found my way to the quilts. I pondered and pondered which one, but I kept going back to "Bailey." Those of you who follow Brenda's blog will know why -- Bailey is her adorable puppy! Yep, I just went with the singing in my heart and purchased that quilt.

It arrived today! I could barely walk Penny for wanting to get that box open, and wouldn't you know it - she was dawdling tonight!

When I finally opened the box ... polka dots!! And all tied up with a sweet bow!

The picture on her site was kind of small and I couldn't see details, so I unwrapped the bundle with trembling hands. Oh, my goodness! It's absolutely gorgeous!

Brenda told me the story of getting this quilt finished for market, and her precious mother helping by hand stitching the binding on it.

Brenda, your beautiful "Bailey" quilt with your mother's hand stitching will be cherished by me forever. Thank you for the opportunity to have one of your quilts in my collection. It's very special to me.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Stash Report 2010 - Week 2

I worked 60 hours this week so far and have to work again today. Good news is it's good for my stash report.

Year-to-Date Totals:

Busted: 22 yards
Purchased: 0 yards
Net YTD: 22 yards

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Panasonic Iron Review

I think I'm in love!! Yep, you heard it here first!! Don't start any rumors yet! I'm in love with an iron!

It's the Panasonic NI-W450TS. Quite an impressive name, and quite an impressive iron!

First, I really like the big sturdy dial for temperature settings. Not those slides and hope you've got it in the right place - a real dial.

I like the legs it sits on. No part of a hot iron touching the ironing board or touching the cord that I've been known to tangle (and burn) under the butt of the iron.

But the absolute best part .......

It has "a titanium-coated totally curved soleplate that allows for nonstick ironing in any direction for faster results." I copied that from the literature because I could never describe it that succinctly! It's pointed on both ends and the darn thing just glides over fabric. 360 degree ironing!

It has a nice "hand," not nearly as heavy as those big Rowentas, but heavy enough to do perfect pressing. It turns off when unattended but heats back up really fast when you pick it up. I used it all day Saturday and Sunday, and never once felt like I was waiting on the iron to heat up.

I'm not going to use the steam feature because I've been dry ironing for the past couple of years and like that much better. No distortion of my blocks. If I need to get some really stubborn wrinkles out, I use Mary Ellen Best Press, Downey Wrinkle Release, or just a spritz of water from a water bottle on my ironing board. The reason I don't use steam any more is because of a nasty leaking problem one day from my old iron and I had to remake a block because of it. No more for me!

Anyway, I hope everyone goes out and gets one of these. I give it my highest recommendation. I know Amazon has them, and I'm sure other places as well. Jane's DH actually found an article on this iron in one of his engineering magazines.

Thank you, Jane and your sweet DH, for a wonderful Christmas present! The best present a quilter could ever get!!!!! ILY!

Note: To answer the question, the soleplate is curved, but it's so slight that you can't see it or feel it. But it sure makes a difference when moving the iron from side to side.

Monday, January 04, 2010

Plumb Worn Out

It was a long, hectic day, and I'm feeling my age tonight. Let's just say it's nice to be home and unhooked from the "contraption," if you know what I mean!

I was going to try to finish up this quilt tonight, but I kind of messed up on the borders and will probably redo them. I'll have to think about it a bit. I mean, I thought they were Vicky-proof, but I found the loophole in that theory!

I like the way it's turned out. Should have given it a good pressing before I snapped the picture.

Speaking of pressing .... I have a review that I'll get up this week on the iron that Santa left at Jane's house for me! I love it! I'm just too tired right now to think straight.

A hot bubbly bath is calling to me right about now!

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Stash Report 2010 - Week 1

2010 is off to a good start because I sewed! When the quilt I'm working on is finished, hopefully today, then I'm tackling backings and borders. I made a plan and I'm sticking with it.

Summer Breeze from the book "Scrap-Basket Surprises" by Kim Brackett. I really like this book, and have marked three or four quilts I'd like to make. All quilts are jelly roll friendly. It will be my first finish for the new year, although yardage was counted in 2009.

Packaged up some yardage to send along to a friend, 22 yards. Hey, a bust is a bust! No purchases this week. I'm determined to end this year with a positive number! I know myself well enough to know I'll buy fabric this year. In fact, reviewing my reserve list at The Fat Quarter Shop, March will be brutal. The only solution is to sew faster!

Check out Judy's blog to see how other stash busters are doing.

And on a doggy note, here's Penny and Skippy on New Year's Day. They were all tuckered out from playing so hard!

Year-to-Date Totals:

Busted: 22 yards
Purchased: 0 yards
Net YTD: 22 yards