Tuesday, July 26, 2011

I shouldn't tell you this

Good Morning!  I kind of don't want to tell you this because then you might get all the good stuff before me.  Recently I found this site that has an amazing deal everyday called Pick Your Plum.  They only have one item Mon - Fri and when they are gone they are gone!  It is usually some crafty item but the prices can't be beat.  Go on and check it out, and get some great stuff "before your neighbor does!"

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Great stuff!

I woke up yesterday morning feeling absolutely awful!  After a visit to the doctor I can tell you I have strep throat.  I have only had it one other time that I can remember and strep is worse than just about anything.  Laying on the couch, eating popsicles is what I accomplished all day.  My children ate as many popsicles as I did because you can't eat a popsicle around a 2 year old without giving them one, and if one child has one then the others have to have one too!  While I was camped out on the couch there was a knock on the door and when I opened it there was a sweet package from the people at McCall's.  I couldn't wait to see what they sent the 20 finalists from the Design Star Challenge.  Here is what arrived!

 It is kind of hard to tell just how much stuff was in the box.  Lots of fabric, thread, scissors, batting, rotary cutter, a few gift certificates and a few other items.  It really made my day.  Even though I felt horrible it was a little better after dreaming of what I could make with all of my new stuff!

I couldn't have a better helper to search through everything.  After showing my kids what had arrived my oldest asked if they could pick something from the stash, she already has a fabric obsession.
Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

New Projects!

Well the Design Star Contestants received the news if we would be moving on to the next challenge and sadly I am not (tear.)  I would like to thank everyone that put in a vote for me.  I have the best friends and supporters, thanks!!  I had a great time designing quilts and I wouldn't change one thing about them.  I know I will continue to design and vote for the next challenge.  Good luck to the quilters who are in challenge 2!
Now that I am not required to make anything in particular I wanted to show what I started working on a few days ago.

This is Pieceful Garden by Mary Sorensen and Jan Wildman.  I have had this for a few years and it has been collecting dust in a dark cupboard.  I am really excited to start/finish it.  Keep checking back to see the progress.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

First Attempts

Well there are only a few more days to vote for the Design Star Challenge 1.  Please vote!  I would be honored if I received your vote, but I know there are many beautiful quilts to choose from.
Today I thought I would share my first attempts at paper piecing and applique.   

First is my wall hanging named "Sleeping Beauty."  It measures about 48 x 48, it is made from various shirtings and civil war fabrics.  I have to say that I love paper piecing!  Once I had a little practice it was really fun.  This hangs in my entryway, finished!  Sorry, I couldn't find the pattern to let you know who designed it.

This quilt is named "Vintage Valentine " by Verna Mosquera.  I have always admired my friend Robyn that does exquisite applique work.  She tried and tried to get me to start on an applique project.  Finally I gave in and started with this quilt.  I know, this was not a beginner project!  But I thought I should start with a pattern I loved.  I tried different kinds of applique and finally decided I liked the freezer paper/starch/glue baste method (tutorial coming soon).

I started this when I was pregnant and finished when my daughter turned 6!  I don't know why it took me so long, probably because I like to start projects more than I like finishing them.  Each block has between 40-60 pieces and the center medallion has over 100.  It is not quilted yet because I'm not sure how to quilt it.  Any suggestions?

One of the reasons I love quilting is because there is always something new to learn, and something beautiful to create!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Meet Viola

My latest quilt design is named "Viola's Jewelry Box"  in honor of my Grandma Viola.

Grandma Viola with Great Grandson

In case you haven't read the info on my McCall's page here is a quick recap.  Grandma loved jewelry.  When I was little I would love to look through her jewelry box.  I can't remember a time when she didn't have on a piece of turquoise and red jewelry.  After she passed away I received a little turquoise and red ring.  The color combination of my quilt reminds me of her and all of the beautiful things she loved.

When I was younger I didn't know she was a quilter.  I just remember her crocheting and making all sorts of crafts.  (She made cats out of yarn that my kids still play with!)  After she passed away my mom gave me this quilt top she made.

It is definitely dated but I love it just the same.  Some day I will hand quilt it, I don't think machine quilting would be the right choice.

I love the fabrics she used for the dresses, they are the only prints used in the whole quilt.  Grandma embroidered all the black details.  

That is the story behind "Viola's Jewelry Box."  Remember there are only 4 more days to vote!  I know there are a lot of beautiful quilts to choose from, but I appreciate any votes and comments that come my way!!

Thursday, July 7, 2011


I would like to share with you some great tools that come from Westenskow & Sons.  My dad turns all of these by hand on a wood lathe using a variety of different hardwoods.  The tools are great for everyday use or they look great just sitting by your sewing machine. 

First is our Seam Presser.  This handy tool allows you to press seams while sitting at your sewing machine.  You just have to open the seam and roll it across.  It doesn't stretch the fabric and it will lay flat until you really "want" to go to the ironing board. 

Next is our stiletto, or awl.  This little tool helps guide fabric underneath the presser foot.  Instead of pinning your points together you can hold them together with the stiletto and release as soon as it hits the needle.

This is my favorite tool, probably because it is the one I use the most.  I hate to admit that I have to use a seam ripper, and it happens often!!  The tips are replaceable, so in case you use it enough that it becomes dull (I'm sure none of you use a seam ripper that much) we can fix it. 

Each tool is about 7 inches long, and the seam ripper & stiletto have a flat side so they will not roll off the table.  They come in 7 styles with 15 different hardwoods.  
If you have any questions send me an email!!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy 4th of July!

I love the 4th of July!  Being the granddaughter of a WWII soldier I am extremely proud of my heritage and I appreciate all of the sacrifices every soldier has made for us.  A BIG thank you to all of our vets and the troops currently serving!

Our little town celebrated over the weekend so we are relaxing today.  I just wanted to show you the cute shirts I made for the girls.  They were super easy!  I was thinking of making a tutorial for them but it was really late at night and I just wanted to get them finished.  They were make out of jumbo rick rack and cute little Kanzashi flowers.

Happy 4th of July!!