Tuesday, January 29, 2013


Introducing Beulah, a 1950 model 66 Singer. I found her for sale on craigslist and today my husband and I went to take a look. She came home with us and sews up a storm. She was formerly owned by the seller's mother-in-law, Beulah, a Swede from Minnesota who married a Norwegian! So, Beulah she is. The original Beulah is 92 years old and in ailing health. I wish her well and hope that she is happy that her machine has found a new home.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Grandmother's Choice: Jack's Delight

This week's Grandmother's Choice block is Jack's Delight. My version is as above. I did not cut the center butterfly print large enough and resorted to adding small strips of turquoise to remedy that.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Eulogy for Stan Musial

This is not even remotely quilt related, but Stan Musial meant a lot to St. Louis and Bob Costas gave a perfect eulogy today at Stan's funeral Mass: http://fox2now.com/2013/01/26/bob-costas-gives-emotional-eulogy-for-musial/#ooid=5saXVyODphCHeknci__UpTrCRIB58cqL

Friday, January 25, 2013

Fox Has Spots Alternate Block

Month 6 alternate block for Fox has Spots BOM. Feeling as though something useful has been accomplished already today, I will now resume the offensive tackle of my President's Challenge by attempting to sew on the fourth and final binding edge.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

The Fox Has Spots - Month 6

 This is the block for month 6 of the Fox Has Spots, a BOM by Quilted Fox. I have been busy all day sewing on various projects that have to get done before our guild's quilt show in March. There is plenty of time to accomplish what needs to be done but frankly, I want everything finished as soon as possible so that other more enticing things can be tackled.

A major part of the day was spent trying to master (although that is far too grand a term to use for what my results were) Ricky Tims' piped mitered binding technique. Despite the ability to call up his video, "Grand Finale", at will on my laptop for step-by-step instructions, the end product was not as spot on as I wanted it to be. With binding sewn onto three sides of a small quilt, I threw in the towel on that particular project for the day.

The project is my entry for the President's Challenge. Our guild president sets a challenge to members for every quilt show. This year the challenge is "Gray - the New Neutral." Any shade of gray can be used and as many as you like. The gray tones are to be combined with at least 25% of one other eye popping color such as lime green or hot pink. Mine will be gray and neon orange. The size of the quilt is 100" total perimeter, or no larger than 25" X 25" if making a square quilt. So as you can see, it is a small project, and hey, why not try out a new technique while you're at it? The wisdom of that idea is being questioned by moi as this is being written.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Songs of Africa

As promised, here is a photo of the entire quilt, Songs of Africa. It is entirely hand appliqued and embellished with embroidery and a few beads.

This is a closer view of one of the blocks and you can see some of the quilting. It was quilted by Jane Coons, a well-known longarm quilter in the St. Louis area.

Saturday, January 19, 2013


This week the Grandmother's Choice block is Parasol and it required a bit of applique. The polka dot background is in honor of National Polka Dot Day coming up on January 22, 2013!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Two of Us

Here are the fabrics I have selected for "Two of Us", the 2013 BOM at www.thequiltshow.com (TQS). I will be looking for more fabrics in the lighter shades of red violet. The red violet will appear in my quilt where the turquoise does in the TQS version.

Today I received an appliqued quilt back from the longarm quilter. The blocks are all hand appliqued and have an African theme. The pattern is "Leap Year in the Lowveld" from the book, "Quilts on Safari" by Jenny Williamson and Pat Parker.  The book is no longer in print, but copies appear from time to time on Amazon. Jane Coons, a talented longarm quilter in the St. Louis area, did a beautiful job of interpreting the individual blocks and making the quilt come alive. I will show a picture of the full quilt at a later date when the binding has been applied.

Monday, January 14, 2013

It's a Start.

TheQuiltShow.com project for 2013 has begun. The project is by the sister duo Sue Nickels and Pat Holly and is called "Two of Us." The first month's work is to make 16 sashing pieces, 8 short and 8 long. Mine will be a controlled scrappy look. One down, 15 to go.

Mourning Wreath

This is the latest in Barbara Brackman's Grandmother's Choice Block of the Week, Mourning Wreath. No mourning going on here!

After a Monday morning of dealing with a computer virus and a clogged toilet, I have finally been able to find my way into the sewing room. Relax. Breathe.

UPDATE: The actual name of the block is Memory Wreath, not Mourning Wreath!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

I have been busy with quilting related things, but there hasn't been much really interesting to post, photo-wise. I changed out the quilt hanging in our bedroom last night, so for lack of anything better to show, here is the quilt:

Here are some close ups of the great quilting by Sandi Wagner of Sew Fine Machine Quilting:

This quilt is the pattern "Stars for a New Day", which was the BOM from thequiltshow.com in 2009. It consists of fabrics predominantly by Kaffe Fassett, hence the name of the quilt, "Kaffe-inated."

Our guild meeting was Friday evening and we kitted up fabric for our charity quilt project for 2014. On Saturday guild members met to sew drapes that will be used as backdrops for the upcoming quilt show in March.  We made 64 new drapes so now we are set! In December we repaired over 250 drapes.The channels were too small and tight in many instances to easily pass the display rods through. They should be much easier to hang and with any luck the job of erecting all the drapery standards will be much quicker this year.

This morning I pieced an easy strippy top from plaid fabrics that have been in my stash forever. This will be the first of two or three quilts that will be donated to the charity project. A lot of floral and otherwise feminine fabrics get donated for charity quilts and it seems that quilts appropriate for boys are in the minority. This will help to tip the balance a bit.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Sine Curve

While looking for a specific piece of orange fabric (which I never found), I began rummaging around in my plastic project boxes. This is where UFOs go to hide or die, as the case may be. I found this partially completed piece, dating from years ago when Louisa Smith held a workshop at our guild's "Under the Influence" retreat. She is the author of "Strips and Curves". We had the most fun making fabric strata and cutting them up into curved pieces akin to Drunkard's Path. Now the top is finished and will be quilted for entry into our guild show in March.

As regards the never-found orange fabric, tomorrow will necessitate a run out to one of the local quilt stores for a replacement.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Almost There!

The "big reveal" to Bonnie Hunter's Easy Street Mystery Quilt was posted on New Year's Day. Since then I have been sewing furiously on a daily basis to get the top completed. There are three blocks left to sew, then several long seams and the top will be nearly finished!

A decision has also been made as to border fabrics. A narrow inner border of Kaffe Fassett's Aboriginal Dots and a wide outer border of an Anthropologie batik will be the order of the day.

Here is where you can see what everyone else is doing on this quilt.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Old Maid's Ramble

This week's block at Barbara Brackman's Grandmother's Choice is Old Maid's Ramble. A bit of rambling occurred in the form of reverse sewing while putting this one together. Late night sewing is probably not the most recommended activity, but I never got another chance to sew today and just couldn't face yet another of the Easy Street blocks this late in the day.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Slow Progress

Although I have only been sewing on the Easy Street (no longer a) Mystery Quilt, progress has been slow. The blocks are 15 inches square and consist of 25 sub-blocks. It is very easy to get pieces turned around or upside down when sewing. I have been working with the block diagram at my elbow to try and head off some of the inevitable reverse sewing. This has only been a marginally successful strategy.

By the time a project gets to this stage, 99% of the fun and usefulness of the project is over for me. I like the design stage, but by now what is left are merely the mechanics of the process. I will not take this off the design wall until it's pieced, though, because if I do, it will become yet another UFO. I would like to have it done by next Friday to show at my guild's January meeting during show and tell. More fun stuff awaits once this behemoth is done. Some of what beckons is peeking out from under Easy Street.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Easy Street Revealed

The last step in Bonnie Hunter's Easy Street Mystery Quilt was revealed this morning. It's going to take a few days to get all the blocks pieced together from what has been made so far. Here is a look at my progress: