Thursday, April 29, 2010


When I stopped at Fabric City on Monday for the cotton cording, Tammy was busy pulling out fabric for the new Charisma pattern. I was helping her pick them out and by the end I was helping cut them and had agreed to make the sample. I'm actually loving this pattern the more I look at it and it's super simple.  It's a center panel, narrow border, flange, and a variety of prints around the outside.

Here are the fabrics we picked out. The butterfly pink/white/yellow is the main big print and these others will go around it. The yellow and black are the border and flange. Tonight I spent cutting all the fabrics for it, so I should be able to sew it together tomorrow night or at least get a good start on it.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Virtual Quilting Retreat - Sunday

Sunday I started out slow with the quilting. I got sucked into the Nascar race with Paul and ended up napping till the last half hour or so, just long enough to see the best wreck of the day! Paul's guy Kevin Harvick won too, the first time in 3 years, so he was excited to say the least. I put away the Jewel box quilt and worked on the Grids and Grommets bag. I'm teaching it in May, so wanted to get the sample done soon. I did grid quilting on it using my walking foot and a 60* angle. I really like how it turned out.
By supper time it looked like this. With two layers of fusible fleece, it's got lots of body.
By 10 last night it looked like this! I still had to put the grommets in and make the handle. I just didn't want to do grommets so late, so I waited till tonight.
I got the grommets in with no trouble and the handle made up faster than I expected. I would have done it different, but it worked out. The directions were aweful to understand, but I worked my way through them, one step at a time.
I put in the option magnetic snap. It works great and adds that extra piece of closure that really helps in a purse.
I changed up the pockets and used a different fabric than the lining which I really liked.
I'm actually loving it now that it's done. It's so springy and fun.
It was a fun quilting weekend and I'm looking forward to my next project. I'm making the Charisma pattern out of yellows/oranges/corals/pinks/black/whites. It's going to be awesome. It's a store sample so I'll make it up quick and then get back to the purple jewel box quilt.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Virtual Quilting Retreat - Saturday

Saturday I slept in for a change! Paul fixed me breakfast and I relaxed. We did our shopping and were home by noon. I made 2 batches of pizza dough and then got to sewing. I quilted fabric together to make this binder cover. I used the Winding Ways fabric on the top and a light cream/tan on the inside since it wouldn't really be seen. I thought I had a green for binding, but Paul said no, and I didn't really like it, so I found a dark brown for the binding.
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It's a super thick binder, so I cut my quilted piece to 12 1/2"x 23 1/2" and then used the rest of my quilted fabric for the insides. I started with 17"x WOF and quilted it all. I used Thermore batting.
The inside was bound and I put a little pocket in for pens and highlighters. The inside pieces were cut 7.5"x 12.5". I bound it with 2" strips.
Then I started working on my big project of the weekend. My friend recently had a baby and I wanted to make her a purple quilt. I have tons of purple fabric left from the wedding, so I wanted something scrappy. Regina had a Jewel Box quilt on her blog recently and I fell in love. I've loved them for a long time, but my hatred of HST's has always stopped me from making one. I had planned to do a snowball/9 patch similar to the pink and white one I did for Colleen's baby, but decided the jewel box would work great for this quilt.
I searched on the internet and found 2 simple patterns. My biggest problem was combining the techniques and sizes used in each and I didn't figure correctly. One said the block finished 16", so I planned to make the quilt 3x4 blocks. Saturday afternoon I set to cutting this out. I cut and cut and cut. Finally I stopped and made individual stromboli for supper. MMM! I love to cook when I have time.
After supper I went back to work and started sewing together the 4 patches. I was working with scraps, not yardage, so I made a bunch and stopped. Then I made a few of the HST's. I got bored with those real fast and then I had to square them all up. It took me forever and I only did 12 of the 48 HST's I needed! By this time it was after 10PM and I was chatting with Regina and Jen again. I couldn't stand it any more I took what I had made and made 1 block. Then I made 2 more, but that's all I had enough pieces for! Three blocks took me about 7 hours. I do have a lot more cut out, but I'm not going to rush getting this done, so I gave it up for the night. It was midnight. I thought the blocks were awefully small, so I looked at the patterns I had. I had cut for the 8" finished blocks, not the 16" finished block pattern! No wonder each piece is 2.5"! That's when I couldn't do anymore on the Jewel Box quilt.
So I moved on to my Thangles BOM. I finished blocks 5 & 6 which were the ones I planned to do for April. I was listening to Breaking Dawn the 4th book in the Twighlight series and I only had 1 part left, so I wanted to finish.
Block 5
Block 6
At 1:15AM I was finished with both and headed to bed. It was a long day of sewing, but oh so much fun!

Virtual Quilting Retreat

This weekend most of my closest blogging friends are all at a quilt retreat in the WI Dells. I had planned to join them, as I did last year when I got to meet them all for the first time when we went to OH. With the challenges my family has faced this year, I decided it wasn't meant for me to go this year. I made the decision in early January and things have significantly improved, but I had already decided not to go. I miss my blogging friends so much!
Jen and Regina wouldn't leave me out though! I decided I would do a virtual quilt retreat with them. Friday night after work I got started. I made 4 red project bags and 3 mini black project bags. These will go to my dear quilting friends. I've had them cut out for months, but just got around to finishing them. The Keep On Quilting logo was from fabric I got at retreat last year.

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Then I made a bigger project bag for my UFO's. It's already been filled with my latest UFO from Sat. I used the Winding Ways fabric for the applique. I also used the teflon foot to sew all these, including the applique and zipper and it worked great!
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Then I moved on to my snowball/9 patch blocks. I needed to get my April ones done and ended up making 15 which is what I had cut out. I ran out of the gray rock candy, so I guess I won't be making any more blocks. I figured out I needed 2 more after I layed it out, so I quickly whipped those up with the few leftovers I had.

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Then I layed it out on my design wall. It's 5x7 and I think will make a nice throw quilt for playing I Spy. It's so fun to look at all these fabrics and remember the projects I've made with them. I piled them all up in order so I can sew them together in May.
I really wanted to play with the new 60 degree ruler I got, so I used the scraps I had from the Al Fresco line and started cutting. I'm really not sure how I'm goint to lay them out. I was going to go with random and then I layed them in the hexi's. Not sure I like them this way either. The pattern I saw had them all random in a tablerunner. I'm thinking mine will be more short and fat like a table topper.

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Throughout the evening, I was texting with Jen and Regina and keeping up with their projects and showing them what I was working on. It was so good to hear from them even if I couldn't be with them. I finished up a nice pile of each, so I have plenty to play with. I saved enough backing and binding, so now i just have to figure out how to set them.
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It was after 1AM when I finally called it a night, but it was so fun to sew again for once! It feels like I haven't been doing much all month.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Keep On Quilting project bags

Today at lunch I was near Thimble Cottage quilt shop running errands, so I stopped in and picked up the 2.5" 60 degree Strip Ruler by Creative Grids. When I first saw this type of ruler on the shop hop, I didn't know what you would do with them. Since then I've found a couple patterns to use it with, so I wanted to pick one up before they were gone. I'm hoping to play with it this weekend and maybe make a tablerunner. I have the 4.5" one on order since I think it would be great for making another One Block Wonder. Has anyone used this ruler or have any patterns they really like using it? When I took a picture I layed it on the black Grip & Grip. Have you seen these things? It's like an applique press sheet and shelf liner in one. It's grippy so when you lay applique pieces on it, they don't move, but it also is heat safe. It's awesome!
Last night I was busy ironing on these little Keep On Quilting Logos to the project bags I was making. I put the vinyl on the Grip & Grip and then my applique pressing sheet on top so as not to melt them. I appliqued the logo on 10 bags and was able to get 5 of them completely finished with the zippers in place. I needed to change the thread to put the rest of the zippers in, so that will be my project tonight. I think they turned out super cute! I'm hoping to send them to a few close friends. They will always be a reminder of my time at quilt retreat last year as that is when I bought the fabric. Since the girls are at retreat this weekend I felt motivated to get them done finally! They've only been hanging out for 3 or 4 months.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Fast & Furious Weekend

Last weekend we were at my parents. My dad was in the community play. Don't Stop for Daisies. It was set in Britain. Three old ladies move into an old house, where the owner dies and they hide him in the dried up well. They have all escaped from the old ladies home and are believed to be dead. The handy man comes and inspects the well and finds the body. He's just seen the body. The old man is an uncle to the young girl. IMG_0007
She's convinced her uncle was murdered by the 3 old ladies and is freaking out. My dad is the policeman and it was at night, so he has his robe on.
The good dr. in his robe too. They think she's crazy because the old ladies gave her sleeping pills to shut her up.
The guys think she's just crazy so they aren't too concerned.
Paul and dad helped my bro & SIL tin the barn roof all weekend. Ed & Jessie came on Sunday for the play and Ed helped them finish up the barn. Paul and Ed were cutting the last piece to put on the barn.
Here the guys are installing the last piece.
 Paul rode down with my mom Fri. night, so they could get an early start on Sat. I worked on Sat. and then came down after work. We all went to the play Sat. night. My niece is just starting to say words very clearly, so when the guy had a gun she said uh oh. Then another time she said oh no. It was histerical! She would say it when it was dead silent, so everyone would hear her. When my dad came on stage she said papa.  The play was very funny and it's really great that the community comes together to put the performance on 3 times. On Sunday mom and I went with the guys and watched my niece. She's such a cutie. Mom played with her while I wrote my paper. I got a good start on it, but spent most of the night working on it after we got home. I got a 99% on it! I was so excited since it was my first paper for my graduate class.
This weekend I'm off work and hoping to sew for the greater majority of it. I need to start on my next paper, but I plan to do lots of sewing. It's retreat weekend and since I didn't go this year, I'll be sewing virtually with my blogging friends who are there. The use of IM and the webcam will keep us all up to date on our progress. I'm planning to work on a Grids & Grommets purse, my snowball blocks for the quilt along, and a binder cover for my school binder.

Fabric Books

At Christmas I made my niece some fabric books. I was so excited to see her "reading" them when I was at her house. I loved this book as a child, so when it came out in fabric I just had to have it. I ordered a couple. One for my niece and one to keep.
Since they live on a farm, I thought this one was really appropriate.
This by far is my favorite! I found it at the quilt shop and it's all about sewing and numbers. She's going to be a budding seamstress someday.
I embroidered the back of each of the books.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Shop Hop

Thursday afternoon mom and I headed out on the second half of our shop hop adventure. We each visited the Rapid City quilt shops during the week on our own to save time.
At Thimble Cottage I picked up this 60* pattern. The designer Karen Montgomery also designed the 60* strip pattern that I've made several tablerunners from. I'm excited to try this pattern, but I didn't buy the 2.5" Strip On ruler. I'd really like to get the 4.5" one first and see if I like it. I had no luck finding this ruler on the shop hop though.

At Fabric City I picked up fabric to make a new Grids & Grommets purse. The big flowers is the outside, the white with specks is the lining and the small flowers are the pockets.
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At Fabric Junction I didn't find any fabric or patterns that grabbed my attention, but this 6.5"x24.5" Creative Ruler was calling my name. I love the CG rulers and this is one ruler I use a lot.
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We had never been to the Tri-State Bakery, which is a quilt shop in Belle Fourche. I was surprised at the amount of Moda she had. There were several jelly rolls, charm packs, and fat quarter packs. She had lots of Blush which I hadn't seen in the area before. I ended up with yardage of L'Amour. I just love this fabric!
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Then it was on to Spearfish to Dakota Quilt Company to pick up the Riley Blake stripe from the Wanna Be a Cowboy line. I really wanted to do a bias binding, so I got extra to make binding with.
I have a cousin's wedding to attend this summer and I've been looking for a dress to wear. I ended up with this print to make a skirt.
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I'm hoping to use this pattern. I'll probably add a pink top to go with it.
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Mom and I had a great time doing the shop hop and we definately went to some interesting shops that we had never been to before. I'm looking forward to going back to several of the shops.