Monday, June 30, 2014

June ALYOF Goal Met!

A Lovely Year of Finishes
Another month, another goal met for A Lovely Year of Finishes! It's been so great to set a goal each month and work to achieve it. I usually set quite a few goals that have to be done, but my ALYOF goal is always one that will stretch me a bit. My June Goal was to finish my Amish Rubic Star, a quilt I've been working on for the past year.
Last year at this time I was still basting the pieces for my Amish Rubic Star hand pieced quilt, using the English Paper Piecing method.
At the beginning of the year I was still working on the borders, which I ended up giving up on. It was not going to get done because I couldn't make them work.
I had intended to hand quilt this one, but my friend shared with me how it's not really my style and wouldn't add to the quilt, so I gave up that notion and quilted it on the last day of last month. I love how it turned out and it feels so good to have it quilted.
This month my goal was to put the binding and hanging sleeve on and hand sew them down. I was able to finish it early last week.

It looks so blue on our fresh green grass this morning.
I love this wall hanging and having it in my office.
It even makes a great backdrop for a picture of me and my winning for employee of the quarter at work!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Lots of Finishes

Blogging has taken a back burner while I have focused on a few projects for samples for the store and more intense projects at work. I've stayed very busy and have a few finishes this week.
I finally finished the binding on the Amish Rubic Star quilt I hand pieced over the last year. It's now taken center stage in my cubical at work.
I also finished the Great Granny Square quilt which is a sample for a class I plan to teach in the fall.
I finished my Mini Radio Way quilt which is a class coming up in the late summer/early fall.
One night I needed something besides binding, so I pieced a few Trip around the world blocks. This quilt is slowly coming together, but I think I need to cut a few more batiks strips to add to it and make it bigger.
Yesterday I was shocked and surprised to be nominated and then win Employee of the Quarter at work. I simply couldn't believe it!
Such a fun day and so exciting to have so many people congratulate me.
I've got a few more projects in the works, but most I am simply cutting/piecing at this point. Hopefully it won't be so long before another post.

Needle and Thread Thursday

Crazy Mom Quilts Finish it Up Friday

Sunday, June 22, 2014

AMB Blog Hop Winner and Pattern

The AMB Blog Hop was a great success and I am so thankful to everyone who participated, either creating a block or visiting all the amazing sites. I really enjoyed highlighting SD. There are so many things I didn't even have room to mention.
Congrats to Tanya in CO for winning the fat quarter bundle from Clothworks. It's been such a great experience for me.
I am a novice at pattern designing, but I was able to create a PDF of the reverse Mt. Rushmore that I used to add Mt. Rushmore to the design and a copy of the license plate to make the top and bottom curves.
I used Steam a Seam 2 for the appliqued Mt. Rushmore and traced the design. I centered it on a 6 1/2"x 12 1/2" piece of white. I free handed the red and blue on the top and bottom and stitched them down with a blanket stitch. I embroidered the state name, created in software. I'd be happy to share the embroidery, but since everyone uses a different format, email me and I'll try to share. It would also work well to use the lettering that comes on many machines. If you have any questions, please let me know.
My family visited Roughlock Falls and my three year old took this picture of my husband and I on our anniversary. Happy 6th Anniversary to my husband Paul.
Camping 2014-06-07 057

Friday, June 13, 2014

AMB Tour - Welcome to South Dakota!


The American Made Brand blog tour by Clothworks is well underway and I am excited to bring South Dakota to the center stage today. Welcome to the beautiful state of South Dakota.

 When I began designing the license plate block I asked several other quilting friends what they would include. Each and every one said Mt. Rushmore. So I went to work, playing with the design until I thought it truly represented the most famous faces in South Dakota. I used red, white, and blue as they are the colors represented on our license plate. The lettering across the top includes the state name and our year of state hood. We're celebrating 125 years as a state this year!
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We are experiencing a very cool wet spring after a terrible October blizzard caused monumental damage across western SD. It seems we may never get warm weather, but the trees and grass are greening up.
Quilt 2014-06-09 008
The famous faces are appliqued on in a raw edge applique. I used 40 wt. Red and Blue Aurifil thread for the applique.
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South Dakota is most famous for the four presidents faces on Mt. Rushmore, located in the beautiful Black Hills of South Dakota. I feel fortunate that I was able to work there for six summers while I was in college and teaching. It's a very moving place to visit. While many tourists plan their visit to SD for the mountain, there are many other area attractions. Visit for more information about many of the destinations I mention below.

Crazy Horse is a life size mountain carving, still in progress, celebrating the Native American people. It is located a short drive from Mt. Rushmore.
Spearfish Canyon provides a unique look at the Black Hills. Roughlock Falls and Bridal Veil Falls are two of the scenic places to pull over, take a walk and explore the beauty up close. This is a picture I took on Saturday when we visited. We camp at nearby Roubaix Lake and get out to enjoy the scenic beauty with the kids. It's a great place to let the kids run.
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While visiting the Black Hills during the late spring, summer, and early fall are all amazing, there is one week to avoid... unless you love motorcycles! The annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally takes part the first couple weeks of August each year and a half million people descend on the state for this event. It's so much fun to see all the bikes and learn about the bikers who visit, but motel rooms and campgrounds are full as are the restaurants and every road. It's held for one week, but the bikers arrive early and stay later, so it usually ends up being the first half of August.

We are home to several National Parks, including Wind Cave, Jewel Cave, and the Badlands. At the entrance to the Badlands is the small town of Wall, home to Wall Drug. Have you seen a sign?? The Wall Drug signs are everywhere, including foreign countries. Such a cool stop and a way to relax after the long drive. In SD we do not measure in minutes, but rather in miles. If it's a 30 mile trip, it will take about 30 min.

South Dakota also boosts a lot of farming and ranching. I grew up in the country, attended a country school with 8 students, K-8 grade, in Milesville. If you can find it on the map, you're doing really well! It's about 80 miles west of the state capitol of Pierre, which is directly in the center of the state. We also have a lot of good fishing in the lakes, rivers, and streams.

Custer State Park in the Southern Hills is famous for the Bison herds. Each fall the annual bison round up brings thousands of people to the Hills to experience this unique event. With several lakes to choose from, there is good fishing, hiking - including to the top of our highest point Harney Peak, and camping.

South Dakota is divided almost evenly down the center of the state by the Missouri River. This creates the eastern and western parts of the state. East River includes our largest city - Sioux Falls. Below is a picture of Falls Park, one of the most incredible places to visit. Also on the eastern side of the state are the Mitchell Corn Palace - a one of a kind attraction, completely covered in corn. The Laura Ingalls Wilder homestead is located near DeSmet, SD and includes a pageant and tours of the home. Such a fun way to experience history.

Another favorite part of South Dakota is South Dakota State University in Brookings. On the eastern edge of South Dakota, SDSU is the home of the Pride of the Dakotas Marching Band. As an SDSU alumni, one of my favorite memories of college was playing at a Green Bay Packers game and at the Bicentennial Parade in Washington DC on the 4th of July.
 SDSU is also home to the Campanile. It's tall structure is seen for miles across the prairie of SD. While it has many nicknames, the Campanile is well known as a landmark on the SDSU campus. SDSU is the land grant university of SD.

Thanks for stopping by to visit SD on the AMB blog tour. Today I am sharing the tour with Terry Stegmiller of North Dakota, our neighbor to the north. Please visit the other bloggers on the tour and enjoy the scenery.
They very generous folks at Clothworks are giving away a fat quarter bundle of the AMB fabrics. To enter the giveaway, please tell me what you found most intriguing about the SD places I described or a favorite memory of SD. I will keep the giveaway open through Tuesday and then select a winner. This giveaway is only available domestically.
I'd love to have you follow me as I regularly blog about my prolific sewing, quilting, and teaching as well as sewing with my 3 1/2 year old daughter. I look forward to reading your comments and making new blog friends! If you're planning a visit to this great state, I'd love to share more details about anything of interest to you. I'd be happy to be your partner in crime for finding a few great quilt shops to visit as well!

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Needle & Thread Thursday

This week I've been busy getting ready for the quilt show. To help out the store I made a few table toppers. They are with new Christmas fabric, so lots of fun.


Needle and Thread Thursday

Needle and Thread Thursday

Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Embroidery Sunday

I have wanted to make some embroidered towels for quite a while, but finally got them bought about a month ago. It took me another month to get the embroidery stuff out and make them. So long in fact that my computer had to be re-booted and I lost the software and had to re-install it. Luckily all the stars aligned and on Sunday I got to spend about 3 solid hours embroidering.
I made Uncle Tom a towel for camping, since we made Aunt Jane one a while back.
A towel for me for camping this weekend
A towel for Grandma
A towel for daddy
A t-shirt for Grandma Leslie (she has a sweatshirt, but I wanted to make her a t-shirt).
Then I just had to make Grandma Ann a new t-shirt since Payton was born after I made her sweatshirt.
My friend Pat gave me this stand for graduation and our professional picture fits in it perfectly! I just love this picture and the great saying on the stand.

Crazy Quilting Saturday

Saturday night we went to my dad's house to pick up firewood for our camping trip this weekend. I luckily got in an hour or so of quilting time. I was able to load two "quilts" at a time, use the same thread and get them done in a quick fashion.
I quilted a panel for hanging in Mikaela & Mathew's room. One says "Why God made Little Boys" the other why He made little girls.

Both were quilted with a cream King Tut & a cream Bottomline
At the same time I quilted this wall hanging for Mathew that is a growth chart. It's super cute and since I could use the same thread it went really fast.
I did a large stipple on both quilts.
The second time I loaded the frame, I put on my bargello placemats. I used a backing that had gold metallic to it. I used scraps of batting, so that is why they are on there funky.
A close up of the quilting.
At the same time I loaded my Amish Rubic Star. I quilted it with the same teal/purple/ lime green thread as the place-mats and got them all done in one fell swoop.
It was so nice to be able to get these quilted and be able to mark a few more projects off my quilting list. I now only have 1 quilt left on my "to be quilted" pile!