Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas

Can you believe Christmas is here and gone?! That sure came fast and was over just as fast. Seems like I barely had time to visit with the girls and they were off again. :(
Al and I are out to breakfast and I brought one of my Xmas gifts along with me. Jennifer's boyfriend (we're hoping he's family someday) bought me this book... she must have told him about my love of quilts from Japan. I love these neutrals. I'm so impressed with the talent evident in these quilts.
Santa was EXTRA good to me this year. My sewing room has lots of new additions... my quilt book, fabric (Kaffe!), a wonderful candle shaped like a spool of thread (how does Lisa always find these thing?!), fabric gift certificates, scented drawer liner to make my fabrics yummier and xmas lights shaped like threads. Then there was a BEAUTIFUL wall hanging from my BEST internet buddy. I'm hoping Al will hang it today so I can take a picture of it. The machine quilting is amazing... she is SO talented. Thank you, Rebecca! I also received some wonderful dishes to add to my collection of FIESTA... Jennifer picked out two pretty colors, yellow and green. Someday I hope to have almost all of the colors so that I can mix and match to do a colorful table setting. Our next home is going to be fairly modern (a big change for us) and I think these will add a nice touch of color. Another FANTASTIC present was my chocolates...mmmm... Godiva!! Lisa's boyfriend bought me a box of my favs, open oysters. I have to admit they're all gone. I KNOW, I'm so bad... but I just couldn't stand them sitting there staring at me... calling my name. After fabric, chocolate is my biggest weakness. Well, I could go on and on with the list of goodies but let me just say thank you to all my Santas... love you all! Wish the day lasted longer.....

Monday, December 20, 2010

This is for Jennifer :)

I thought I had lost a picture I took of a quilt I made for my great-neice. Cleaning out some drawers (something that has been VERY neglected) I came across a flash drive that had some old pictures on it... pictures I thought were lost and gone forever. I plugged it into the library computer today and found the picture below. I'm thrilled to have found this one because Jennifer loves this quilt and I hope to make another for her "someday" little girl. I didn't use a pattern so the only way this one was going to be remade was to get a picture from my neice or to find this picture. :) :) :)
Here it is, Jenn:

Hope everyone has a wonderful Christmas

Christmas Singing
Well, thanks to a suggestion by Jeannette, my hand is improving. I'm using the supplements she suggested and guess what?!!... I think it's getting better! I'm going to keep using these since they're an all over good idea. Thank you, Jeannette!

Yes, Rebecca, it is great to have a houseful at this time of year. I'm really glad that the two girls will be home together this year. Last year one came for Christmas and one came for Thanksgiving.. It's just not the same. Years ago we would get together at my moms... ALL of us.. my 4 brothers, my sister, our kids, grandparents.. that was really nice. But now so many of us live elsewhere.

Gerda, I admit, my hand is probably an age related problem... Al is always reminding me that I'm no spring chicken...LOL. I know I have a tendency to overdo when it comes to sewing. I could sew for hours and hours... and sometimes do. But cutting gets to my hand. Hope you're keeping warm up there in Canada. It's been so darn cold here, it must REALLY be cold up there. I know that can play havic with the old bones.

Now to say hi to my family... It's hard to get a chance to talk to all of you but I thought this would be a good time. Hello to all my relatives in CA... Rick, John, Uncle Russ and Reva, Laura, Keith, Alexandra, Natalie. Hello to Karl, Sue and family in WA, Larry and Ciera in N Carolina, Karl, MaryAnn, Keith, Angela, and Connor in southern MI and everyone in MN. I also want to say a special hi to Eric and Tori and their sweet little children... you have a couple of GREAT kids there. Hope one of these days we can all get together again. And an EXTRA big hello and HUG to mom and dad. I hope ALL OF YOU have a great Christmas! Christmas Cookies and Coffee


Saturday, December 18, 2010

Santa's workshop has closed!

I finished up the last Christmas gift and everything has been shipped! Putting the sewing machine away till after the holiday.... AHHHH... now to put up my feet.. OH WAIT, I forgot... now I've got to get cooking and baking.

Lisa will be here for Christmas along with her boyfriend (I think), and Jenn is coming with her boyfriend so were going to have a nice get together. But we need food! Lisa and Josh are vegans so I usually make two different types of cookies and snacks. It's a bit of a challenge to cook for vegans but I've found some interesting foods that I enjoy ... foods I probably wouldn't have tried if it wasn't for Lisa. Growning up, if someone mentioned eating TOFU I would have crinkled my nose up but now I've found some types I really like. I just have to remember to follow the recipes. I forgot to put the sugar in the pumkin tofu pie that I made for Thanksgiving... that was NOT good!

I mailed off all the Christmas cookies that I baked. I traded cookies for crab with one brother that lives on the coast of CA. He's a fisherman and he gets the BEST crabs. I've been dreaming of these for a while and yesterday a box of them showed up on my front porch. Al and I munched on cookies and crab last night. I don't want to think about how much butter we consumed yesterday... between going out to breakfast at The Original Pancake House (they use REAL butter and cream), having all that crab dipped in butter and then eating loads of butter cookies... well.. I guess this Mrs Claus is going to fit the image this year! We packed the last of the cookies up last night and Al is mailing those today so now it's time to bake for us.

Don't know if I've mentioned that I'm having problems with my right hand. With all the sewing, and cutting and rolling out dough and working, my hand has taken a beating. It's swollen between the knuckles and is burning. Hopefully after Christmas it'll calm down. I can hardly write so I'm having Al write out some Christmas cards... my handwriting is with my left hand and it looks worse than chicken scratch. Last night I took a couple of Aleves to help reduce the swelling and I think it worked... somewhat. I'm typing... slowly... hopefully I won't have to cut much fabric at work today.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Blizzard weather here in the north

This is a picture I took at noon yesterday... COLD!!! The winds were gusting over 50 mph. Today the wind chill has temps WAY below zero. Al and I spent some time outside cleaning the driveway, the porch and walkways. We got out to go to town but there isn't much happening. I think most people are staying inside.
So with this cold, windy weather I just stayed in and kept warm... sewing in my room. Finished up a few Christmas presents... now just a couple more to complete and I'll be done. I did a little baking... got the gingerbread men done. I need to have LOTS of cookies baked in the next few days because I send them off to my brothers in CA. Usually I wait till last minute so that I don't have all those goodies around tempting Al and I. If I make the sugar cookies too early, they all get eaten and I have to bake them all over again. :)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Getting a scrappy quilt made up...

This month it was my turn to receive scrappy blocks from many of the ladies at block central. I just love going out to the mail box and finding nice little fabric surprises in it. Three more are on the way and those along with the ones I'll be stitching up will be enough to finish up this quilt.
This quilt is going to be a gift for my neice. Her dad, my brother, just won custody of her and they're both very excited to be heading to North Carolina.... BUT she does need a few things and I think everyone needs their own quilt. I'm planning on using a flannel backing for this and it's going to be TIED, not quilted. I want it to be done fast!
Thanks to all my BC friends for the blocks :)

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving with the family

Happy Thanksgiving!! We are downstate at mom and dad's for the day. My sister and her family came along with my brother, my daughter and her boyfriend... other daughter went to Nashville (Al is taking the pic)
Hope everyone had a wonderful day!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Stitching weather

It's been SO COLD the last few days. It's been a busy fall but when I haven't had to work I head down to the sewing room, turn the heat on high and stitch away. Just can't believe how fast we went from fall to winter!
One of the projects I'm working on is this Christmas purse for my mom's bowling friend. She loved mom's summer purse and wanted something for her mom's birthday which is coming up fast. She said she wanted a "Christmas" bag and these cute santas with the animal print trim on their hats is the fabric she chose. I'm going to make 2 or 3 ties to go though the "belt" loops... one out of a coordinating animal print, one green and maybe one more in a creamy Christmas print. I still have quite a bit to do on this... the bottom of the bag is stitched but the band and ties are just laying there... got to add those on today.
Jennifer spent Sunday at our house and so we did some baking, cooking and sewing. She made a couple of really cute blocks using Figgy Pudding Christmas fabric. She's joining a block draw... Everyone is making a block or two and then someone's name will be drawn from all the block received. The lucky winner will get all the blocks made and will choose the next fabric line to be used in December's draw. This is a block she designed using the fabrics. Isn't it adorable?




Monday, November 1, 2010

New spicy tablerunner and the start of a new quilt

This is a new sample I just finished up last night for the local quilt shop. I think it's called Spicy Spiral tablerunner... I don't remember the designer's name. The pattern makes a 42" runner but I adapted it to use a shorter wedge so it's 36"... perfect for my coffee table. It's going to be hanging in the quilt shop for quite a while so I might just have to make another one. I used mostly batiks in greens and brown. If anyone wants the pattern, contact Sue at www.heartstoholly.com.
I started a new quilt... just the center is done. This is another sample piece for the quilt shop. It's a baby quilt with a medallion center... lots of black and white with dusty aqua and gray. I know I wasn't going to start any more new quilts....BUT... this one will be pretty quick and easy. It'll be displayed at the shop for a year or so and then I'll probably give it to my mom for her church auction or donate it to the hospital up here.. I don't know anyone with a new baby boy..darn.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Finished up with this years round robins

This is Rebecca's quilt top. The last border is the one I added and now it's off to the last person from our group. This was a JOY to work on... such pretty colors and fabrics! I found lots of pinks, burgandy, teal and browns to use with it. Hope you like it, Rebecca!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Halloween Quilt


Here's a little SNEAK peek at my halloween quilt. I appliqued some spiders onto the top and this one block. Don't you just love him?!

Update 5-1-12: This spiderweb fabric is available at Hearts to Holly Quilt Shop in Charlevoix Mi. Contact Sue Miller- heartstoholly@yahoo.com 
She has the black fabric with the eyes on it ... the eyes glow in the dark!
Some of the other fabrics are a few years old and not available anymore.

Batik Pillow Pattern

Thought I would show you my newest project. I just finished making a pillow that will be a class and a pattern. I took a break from some of my current projects to get this done so that the shop could have the sample. Now it's back to working on round robins and a Halloween quilt (hope it's done for THIS Halloween!). BOY, you should see the MESS in my sewing room... a disaster!!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Working on blocks and pillows


Finished up a block for BC. This is our October block swap and I really should have been done with the two blocks by now... but... I had a bit of difficulty with this one. UNTIL I read something online about how to do curved blocks. Pie goes on the bottom, crust on top... Curved pieces fit together MUCH better if you follow this rule. The piece that looks like the pie goes down... and the other fits in nicely on top. Glald that's done!!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Quick and Easy Placemat Pattern

Here it is.. my first pattern! Hearts To Holly Quilt Shop (231-547-2729) has them for $6 . You can also get them directly from me.. my email is on this blog. We sold 3 the first day... I'm so excited :)
If you look back a bit on my blog you'll see them on my kitchen table. I made 4 of them for Thanksgiving but since then have made 8 for Christmas and 4 for spring. They're SUPER easy. I use one large "focus" fabric (I fussy cut part of it) and then lots of leftover strips and squares. The only quilting I did on them was around the edge... wanted them to have a more contemporary look (and make it easy on myself!).

Friday, September 24, 2010

Check off another finished project...


The bathroom wallhanging is finished!! YEAH! All quilted and bound and ready for hanging. I'm still working on the crocheted rug but it's almost there... Just needs to be about 6" bigger. I've decided to do a white shower curtain with blocks of color.. plaids, solids and prints that are in the wallhanging. It's going to have a large sashing of white... kind of like "happy blocks" but bigger. I think this will give it a more modern feel but still cottagey (spelling?..is it even a word?).

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Finishing up some LQS samples....

So the other thing keeping me VERY busy is working and making samples for the shop. I have quite a few samples to finish up but I thought I would take a picture of two of them. These were quick and easy. The gingerbread pillow is called cookie time. I found the perfect brown at the store that looks just like gingerbread cookie dough. We're going to sell the patterns and some kits. And these placemats are a class I'll be teaching. One large D9P (disappearing nine patch) plus some strips make these very quick. No hand sewing AT ALL! No binding! I could make dozens of these... but lots of other projects waiting to get finished up. Sew, I'm off to the sewing room again!

Working on the bathroom extras



Al is determined to list our house this fall so I need to get the bathroom finished up. We painted it a nice neutral medium beige/tan and are installing a new mirror. This mirror is much larger and will make the bath feel bigger and brighter.
The wallhanging is going on one wall above the towel shelves. This rag rug is going in front of the sink but since it's only 1/4 of the way done, I've got to get going on it! I also have to make a shower curtain... something to go with this cottage look. Haven't decided on the perfect one yet... any ideas? I might bring in the bright homespuns... I know for sure that I want it bright with lots of white.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Busy finishing up the cupcakes

Well, Mom is having her tea party in October so I thought I better finish up the last of the cupcakes she'll need. She's putting one at each place for a nice take home gift. I sent her 3 already and just had 5 to do... so with the help of my daughter, we finished up the last 5. Now to get them in the mail. These are SO simple. The pattern is called Hotcakes... not sure who puts it out. The hard part was finding the round buttons for the "cherry on top". Mom got lucky and found some downstate... we are out of them up north. Now I'm on to my next project which is to finish up the wall hanging for one of the bathrooms. We're repainting it and I need to get this quilted and done so that I can take it to the paint store... need a color that "pops" it... but nothing bright. I'm thinking a light or dark tan/beige. The bathroom only has one small window so I don't want to darken it up. The wallhanging is nice and bright with a tan border. I'm also working on a croched rag rug to use in there. I'm cutting all my selvages and scraps into 1/2" strips and with a large hook, I'm crocheting an oval runner. So far so good... I worked on it last night for a few hours and got a good start on it. Just need to cut lots more pieces. My hands are a little sore today so I'll give it a few days before getting back to it. I'll post a picture in a couple of days... forgot to take one.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Southwest Round Robin Quilt

My quilt top came home today and IS IT BEAUTIFUL!!! Al and I just love it. All the ladies in my group need a HUGE pat on the back for such nice work. I can't wait for the next Round Robin.
Al and I are taking this down to the sewing room to start planning the next few borders to bring it up to queen size. This will be a quilt for our bed in Arizona.

Monday, August 23, 2010

The next projects to finish up...

So now that one little project is finished up, I need to get going on three others.

First one that needs finishing is the last rows on a strippy scrap block that goes to someone on block central. I sent the block out to her but cut it a 1/2 inch short... THAT'S NOT GOING TO WORK! LOL

Then I have 2 purple and cream blocks to do. I'm making the "Rob Peter to Pay Paul" blocks. This is for the BC October Favorite Block Swap. During shop hop, I bought a template to cut these out quicker. It makes a 6" block so I need to make 8 of them so that I end up with 2 - 12" blocks. When I was digging through my civil war fabrics today, I found the perfect purple and cream.

The final project that needs working on tonight and tomorrow night is a gift for a friend that lives in Arizona. I found some cute oriental fabrics (some vintage, some more recent). I'm going to make her a surprise using these... just haven't decided if I should make a small wall quilt or a pincushion. I'm leaning toward the wall quilt since I have a cute pattern in my latest two copies of Quiltmania. I know she love oriental fabrics, so either will probably be good for her.

Making a miniature civil war quilt


I decided to finish up a few projects that were hanging around the sewing room. This was one of them. I started making a bunch of mini 9 patch blocks when I was in Arizona in the winter. I have lots of small pieces of civil war fabrics and they're all so cute, I hate to throw even the smallest bit out. Today I put them together with the green patches and then added the hst border (1/2" blocks). I fussy cut a few of the pieces so that some of the prettier parts show in the quilt. There's a bee, a cat's head, some star flowers, and a few other "I spy" pieces. The quilt is 7" square. This was a challenge to make but lots of fun... just have to add a label to the back of it.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Weekend trip to see Quilt Exhibit and more

Al, Lisa and I took a long weekend and drove into the UP of Mi and then down into Wi to the Milwaukee Art Museum. They have a quilt exhibit going on (that was for me to see)....Lisa wanted to see the buildings. Al just went for the drive :)
The museum opens it wings at 10am so we had to be there for the opening. It was a sight!


Since Lisa is a vegan, we had to find a few vegan places to eat. This one with Al and Lisa pictured was the BEST! Al and I enjoyed it as much as she did. I had meatloaf, Lisa had a vegan salisbury steak... not sure what Al had but he said it was good. Lisa took home a german chocolate cupcake (yup, that was vegan also). She ate half in the car and told Al he could have a bite later to taste it. He thought it was so good, he ate the rest while she was at the pool. WAS SHE MAD! Next time we'll have to buy one for each of them :)

Lisa and I bought lots of fabrics on this trip and bought a few quilt books. I'll post some pics when I get home and can spread everything out. We stopped at Yoders in Shipshewana for most of the fabrics. I love solids and they have TONS!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Making cupcake pot holders



My mom has a tea party coming up in the fall at her church and she needs table decorations and party favors. The theme of her table will be cupcakes ...inspired by this cupcake pot holder pattern. I've stitched up 3 so far, one for the local quilt shop (this will be a Saturday "make and take" class) and 2 for mom... 6 to go for her. Jenn made the top one, isn't it a cute fabric?! These are SOOOOO easy.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Pincushion I made for Gerda


Today I can FINALLY post a picture of the pincushion that I made for my swap partner, Gerda. It took over 2 weeks to wind it's way along the postal road from my house to hers. I was just starting to sweat and wonder if it was lost but it arrived. Thank goodness!
Gerda is always saying how much she like greens and reds so I knew I would have to use those colors. The undersides of the leaves are shades of green wool that I found in Chicago a the quilt festival in April. This pattern is from Sue Spargo (Peony Bloom) but I shrunk it down and kind of did my own thing.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

OOPS!


I was working on pinning my blue scrappy quilt and Al found a mistake... how did I not see it?! Well, I fixed it and am now quilting it :)

Friday, June 18, 2010

Garden scraps

The tomato plants are out and needed a bit of help standing up straight so Al cut me some stakes and I whipped out the pretty fabric strips scraps I've been saving. Nothing like a quilter's garden, you know?... Amy Butler ties, Kaffe Fasset scrappy strings, Moda bits... so pretty :) I also left a small pile of tiny pieces out in the early spring for the birds... I figure they might like a little color as they decorate their nests...

Working in the yard...



I've been trying to get a little gardening done lately but with so much going on with family and health concerns, it's been hard. I've scheduled myself to do a little gardening EVERY day so that it doesn't get out of hand... It's also wonderful exercise and I need that.


The strawberries are coming in like crazy. But then again so are the weeds. We've had quite a bit of rain, which we needed since we were on high danger for fires in our area. Seems like it's feast or famine with the weather.... no rain for weeks... then no sun for weeks... what can you do? Today is beautiful... it rained a bit this morning but now the sun is out. We're supposed to get more storms later in the day.
Al built me this strawberry bed and last year he put the chicken wire cage over it to keep the robins from getting a bite out of each of our beautiful berries. While I was collecting a quart yesterday, I had a robin on the post watching me.... I just laughed!! They're all mine this year! MMMMM

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

a bad few weeks....

This last week has been very busy and also very sad... one of my cousins passed away. He was only 56, a year younger than Al. It came as a shock... We last saw him at Grandma's 100th birthday party/family reunion. He was a wonderful man, intelligent, cheerful and very understanding... he listened. When we visited San Francisco for the first time in 2000, he came with his family to show us around, took us to a wonderful Hunan resturant, took the girls on a trolley car, and to Giradellis for ice cream. He was full of interesting facts about the area... what a tour that was! But the best thing was just sitting and talking to him... he would let you ramble on...without interupting and then offer his advice. He was always willing to give us a hand with arrangements for grandma... help with her paperwork (even though he's half a continent away). He was my uncle's oldest son, my oldest cousin. I'm going to miss him.....

Friday, June 4, 2010

Luck of the non Irish?


Well, I'm not Irish... I have LOTS of nationalities (7) but that's not one of them. BUT boy have I been lucky lately! First getting all those wonderful old fabrics from my daughter, then heading to the resale shop and finding a HUGE bag of silk threads in the 1/2 off bin (45 spools of silk thread on wooden spools for $3!) and then heading to the library and finding a tall stack of free quilt magazines. And they wanted me to take all I could because they needed to make some room! WELL, of course, I just had to help them out with that request! This pile above is just a SMIDGEN of what I took home. I thumbed through about 10 of them last night... think I'll fill the tub with bubble tonight and put another pile next to it.... Take of my record setting baths!

Friday, May 28, 2010

Another round robin border completed!!


Today I finished up the border I was adding to Rebecca's medallion... YEAH!! It took me a bit longer than I thought it would but I sure love it. Rebecca did the New York Beauty center, Denise did the Delectable Mountains and then I turned it on point with the applique.... Now it's off to DebbieAnn. I'm excited to see this one finished up!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Working on round robins and pincushions


I spent most of this morning finishing up the first of my "tiny" pineapple pincushions... at least tiny compared to the huge things the pattern makes. This one is VERY small... so small I decided it needed a nice little pedestal to stand on. It's all finished and ready to take to the quilt shop for the swap. I have two more little ones to go..
I've also been working on a round robin that will be Rebecca's in the end. I'm turning it on point and doing some applique so it's a little slow going. I have two sides done and I'm halfway finished with the third. It should be finished up by the end of the holiday weekend and then I can post a picture. My daughter stopped by the house when it was spread out on the design floor and she thought it was for her... she has always loved New York Beauty quilts and that's what Rebecca did for a center... plus they both have the same love of pinks. I told my girls that when they get married I would make them a quilt in what ever pattern they would like.... Jenn wants circles for sure.. and this quilt seems to be on the order of what she would like... HOPEFULLY I have a few years before she gets married! Lisa will probably want something vintage looking... oranges, yellowy greens, brown... but who knows, she might surprise me.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Pin cushion Exchange

Here is an a portion of a newsletter I received from Hearts to Holly Quilt shop. If anyone is thinking of joining a pincushion exchange this is a nice one. This is an adorable shop in downtown Charlevoix, just off the lake. Some of the pincushion are already arriving and ARE THEY CUTE!! I'm working on my next pineapple pincushion... the one that will be in this exchange... SO JOIN THE FUN!! Contact Sue at www.heartstoholly.com. She has some wonderful wool fabrics too, if you're doing that kind.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Working on a summer COVERLET

Here's a picture of the scrappy 30's coverlet that I've been working on, here and there. It's really quick and easy but I don't have much time to spend on it since I have so many other things going. When I'm in the mood for some mindless sewing I pull this one out. I just love the summery colors. Aren't 30's the cutest? I put a white (not quite pure white) strip in the center of each block and then just use any size strips I have around... there's quite a few leftover 30's pieces in my sewing room. I also added in solids cut from a FQ pack I bought at Heart to Holly.
They have the nicest FQ packs of solids I've seen.

Gwen Marston is going to be having summer classes and a retreat up here in northern MI and this year I heard it will be using solids.... I've got to get signed up for a class! And check out this book of hers... Liberated Quiltmaking II . You can see some of her wonderful quilts at www.gwenmarston.com. I sound like an advertisment for her but I think she's very talented and has a great eye for color.

One Pincushion done... THREE to go....

One down... three to go. I finished up the first pincushion for the swaps and just can't part with it. I love the colors of the wool and I love the base I found (at a resale shop). If I'm going to keep it, I have to make two more for the swaps plus I decided I'm making one as a gift for someone that has a birthday coming up in July.... so... I have a lot of work ahead of me.... Story of my life! I stopped by the LQS today to pick up more wool and she dragged a box out of the upstairs that I DOVE into... oooohhhh... nice wools! I put a special piece aside for myself for the next pincushion. It's a soft yellowy/gold plaid that would be perfect for a pineapple. BUT, at $72 a yard, I need to be VERY careful with how much I use. I also picked up a few more pieces of some of the more REASONABLE wool. They're just solid colors but very pretty.

I shrunk the pattern down from 14" to this which is about 9". I think I'll shrink the pattern a bit more for the next one. It still seems a bit big to me. The only problem I may have with shrinking it some more is being able to work with such small pieces. BUT, I'm going to give it a try. PLUS, wool is so expensive, I would like to use less of it per pincushion.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Working on Pincushions for swaps

Today I had a chance to work on my pineapple pincushion (Sue Spargo pattern). Yesterday I took the pattern to the pinter and had them shrink it by about 65% so that it wouldn't be the size of a table centerpiece (LOL)... The pattern said the finished pincushion measured 14"tall and although I just LOVE this pattern, I didn't want to make that large of a project.

I have the base picked out... I had Al cut the base off a candleholder and am going to glue this to it. Right now I'm working on getting all the little decorations attached to the main part of the pineapple. Tomorrow I'll add the top leaves and glue on the base. I'm using old buttons to decorate the pineapple instead of beads... mainly because I don't have many beads at home but I have LOADS of old buttons. Well, back to work.....

Friday, May 21, 2010

Possibly 1800's Fabric?!!!

I was at "chatter time" this morning here in Charlevoix and had a chance to show my beautiful old fabrics to the ladies. One of them is very good at dating fabrics and believes the brown, grays and purple hexagons date from the 1800's... and quite possibly from the MID 1800's! One of my friends has an original civil war quilt passed down through her family and she said the fabrics are VERY similar to what she has in that quilt! I think I need to take a trip to Lansing, MI or to the Ann Arbor area to see if I can find someone who could tell me for sure what I have here. Apparently the thing that gives it away is the patterns plus fading of the fabric. Some of the purple has faded to brown. Also the whole group is mostly drab... and they are getting brittle (some, not all). Well, if they are proven to be that old... I'm NOT going to cut them! Not sure what I'll do with them...

Most of the fabrics are 30's and 40's which is wonderful... I just love that era and am going to enjoy making a quilt to show these off. I may work a few into my "seven sister's" quilt... it would be nice to have some REAL 30's mixed in.... and the quilt is going to be totally handmade so I'll feel I've done them justice. Not sure if it will get finished in MY lifetime... I'm really not all that quick at hand quilting!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

My BIRTHDAY came early!!

Today was my birthday!! Well, not really, but it sure felt like it! My daughter, Lisa, was shopping downstate at estate sales and garage sales when she came apon a wonderful box full of old fabrics ..... FOR $5!!!! She told me she would be sending me a little bit of some of the yummy things that were in it but she wouldn't tell me what they would be. WELL!!!, the package came today and was filled with wonderful 30's fabrics (some feedsacks!) in all kinds of pretty patterns and colors. AREN'T THESE THE MOST DELICIOUS FABRICS?!!
These are just some of them... there were lots of diamond pieces (I will hand piece these together then applique the stars onto white blocks), hexagons (these look even older than the 30's so I'm going to see if I can find someone who might know) and lots of strips and pieces.

How cute are these dancing kittens?!!
And these were some of 4 patch blocks in the bunch... she kept the bowtie blocks. She's planning to sew the bowties together for her own vintage quilt.... and ALL this plus lots more that she has for $5! She said the box was PACKED! Oh, I think I need to hit the garage sales instead of the quilt stores :)

Can't wait to get sewing on these... but first I'm going to drool a bit more.......

Monday, May 10, 2010

Mother's Day Weekend

These are the fabrics that Lisa gave me when I went downstate to see my mom on the day before Mother's Day. We didn't have much time... it was a REALLY rushed trip but at least I got to visit for a few minutes with Lisa, give her the cool, retro chairs we found her and then spent some time with my mom and dad. Lisa thought these fabrics would work for this quilt... CHICAGO QUILT SHOW QUILT I can't wait to give it a try. I'm going to dig through my solids and see what I have that will also work with this. NOW, I KNOW I shouldn't be starting ANOTHER quilt..... BUT I JUST HAVE TOO!!!! This one is too cute to pass up :)

Mom and I went out to see "The Backup Plan"... it is definately a women's movie... don't think any guys would enjoy it. It had a few good laughs that I think only someone who has already had children would appreciate. It's not going to win any awards but it was entertaining and mom and I enjoyed it ... We went to BIG BOY's afterwards and had strawberry sundaes and tea...mmmm, then off to Borders to look at cooking magazines (her) and quilt books (me). We got home just in time to turn on the RED WING'S GAME. Very depressing though... Al stayed up to watch a good portion of the game but since we were leaving at 6am (he had to be at work at 11am), he couldn't see it all. He said it was a good thing he didn't try... they lost :(

Monday, May 3, 2010

What a BEAUTIFUL day!

It sure is nice out....spring has arrived! Our spring blooming trees are LOADED with blossoms. Lots of bees hanging around... I hope they find the fruit trees in the yard. The peach trees have lots of flowers and so do the cherries. The apples don't have as many yet but they're just a bit behind. This flowering crab smells wonderful! Al is going to order some mulch delivered so that I can get these beds fixed up... I got some of the weeding done last night and today I'd like to finish up the ones near the house. I think we're going to need a truckload of mulch... I need it for the garden, the landscape by the road and all these smaller landscapes. I think I see ALEVE in my future!
Here's my favorite spring flower, my lilac. This one was given to us by a friend that owned a nursery and was closing it down. We helped him clean up and do some final landscape projects and he paid us with plants. This was kind of scraggly for a couple of years but look at it this year! It's finally taking to it's new home :) And mmmmmmm, it smells FANTASTIC!

I'm going to try to get lots of yard work done today and tomorrow... Wednesday I'm heading out to the U.P. to do some quilty shopping with some friends. We're planning on visiting some galleries and shops. Then in the evening, Al and I are heading into Traverse City to have dinner and see a show. It won't be until Thursday before I have a chance to do some more sewing....

Almost Christmas

I'm still in hexie mode... These pretty Kaffe fabrics are going to become hexagons that I will appliqué to background fabric. Sashi...