Sunday, December 27, 2009

Frosty scraps

I had a whole snowflake block and lots of scraps left over from my various border plans on the quilt. (See yesterday's post.) So this afternoon I spent about an hour in my sewing room putting them together in this 24 x 24 inch square.

What do you all think? Should I make it into a big pillow to go with the quilt? Or should I just quilt it and turn it into a table topper?

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Snowflakes on the borders

After several changes in design, I finally added borders to my frosty blue quilt top. It only took me a month to finish this.

On the cover of the January/February edition of Quiltmaker I saw a half snowflake applique design. It was just what I've been looking for - especially since I didn't know WHAT I was looking for.

Yesterday afternoon and this morning I hid out in my sewing room working on the appliques and the pieced corner blocks. I ended up putting the snowflakes on just the opposite edges of the top right and bottom left. The pieced blocks went in each corner. I love it.

Now I need to find something for the backing and get it quilted.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Snowed in for Christmas

It has been a quiet, relaxing Christmas Day. We're snowed in and probably will be until sometime tomorrow. Neither of us really minded however. No point in pulling out the snow blower and shovels until the wind goes down tomorrow. I spent a good share of the day in my sewing room working on a couple of WIP. Dave spent most of the day on the couch, reading a book and watching movies. It was definitely an "R & R" day.

Talked to both girls on the phone. Jerilyn is snowed in at her future in-laws and feeling under the weather. Laura and Jamie both had to work. In fact Jamie was not allowed to go home from work last night, in case they had staff not able to get there (residential facility for youth) today. Laura got called in early because they were short handed at the nursing home/assisted living facility she works at part time. Took her quite awhile to dig her way out of the driveway.

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Happy Holidays!

Happy Holidays from our house to yours! It will be a very quiet Christmas this year - just my husband, myself, and my mother-in-law. We are in the midst of a winter storm with 20" of snow possible over the next couple of days. Luckily we hadn't planned to go anywhere.

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A quick wedding post

Just a quick glimpse of Laura's wedding. Here are the girls in the wedding party all together. When I get some other photos, I'll share them too.

Monday, December 21, 2009

A Mental Health Day

The wedding is over and it was lovely! I'll post a couple of pictures in a day or two.

Today I took a "mental health day" for myself and went to Sioux Falls with 3 girlfriends to shop and have lunch. Didn't do too much shopping - bought myself a sweater on sale. Ate lunch at a wonderful Italian place called Spezia. Had coffee at Barnes and Noble late afternoon. Stopped in some fun stores as well as Target and the mall.

It was a lovely, relaxing day - except for the drive home on ice. But Pam did a wonderful job of keeping us on the road safe and sound. It's snowing now and the prediction is snow every day this week, so I'm glad that I have nowhere I have to travel to - or from. If I'm snowed in I can sew and read. HMMMM - what a lovely thought! :-)

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Engagement pictures

Both of my girls are getting married. The younger one is getting married this coming weekend! The other daughter is getting married in April. Isn't that exciting?

Congratulations to Laura & Jamie!

I'm taking tomorrow off work and meeting Laura in Sioux Falls to do some wedding "stuff". Should be fun. I'm assuming she has a list already made of things we still need to do.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

A good read with a bonus

I "gifted" myself with a new book this week. Being a history nut - and especially early 20th century - this book just spoke to me. It is a collection of letters from farm wives in response to an essay contest about whether they wanted their daughters to become farmer's wives. The bonus is . . . patterns for 111 quilt blocks inspired by the lives these women led!

There is a CD in the back of this little gem with the patterns for every one of the blocks. These are all small blocks kind of in the Dear Jane style. It's a treasure!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Snuggled In

BRRRRR! It's cold outside - but warm inside!

My husband snapped this while Sammy and I were snuggled in last night in front of the fireplace. Guess I could have smiled - especially since I was so comfy and cozy! The Christmas quilt was a Saturday Sampler project from a couple of years ago. I love the colors in it - reds, golds, and greens.

I finally got around to pulling out my Christmas pillow, wallhangings and table runners tonight. I have 3 wallhangings, only 2 of which I made myself. And I have a couple of table runners.

The santa & reindeer wallhanging is something I made about 15 years ago. It is hand appliqued and hand quilted - all done while I was recuperating from some surgery. I needed something to do and decided to try applique. I found out that I love to do this type of handwork. It's very relaxing. I have it hanging above the piano from my quilt shelf/rack.

I'll post some other pictures another day.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Cold weather quilting

Curled up under a quilt doing handwork - with the fireplace warming the room, the cat snuggled close, husband across the room with the remote control in his hand, and Christmas tree lights twinkling. Now that is relaxing on a cold winter evening!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Fall Mini Quilt Swap

A soft little package arrived in the mail from Stacey in Raleigh, NC the other day. It was my fall-themed mini quilt for the swap hosted by . These swaps are such fun. Stacey had emailed me earlier in the week to let me know that my swap quilt was in the mail, so I had a couple of days to anticipate its arrival.
It is so pretty. Each pumpkin has a lovely quilted motif in the center. Thank you Stacey! I can't seem to get the photo rotated correctly, so the pumpkins are tipped on their sides. Sorry.
Fall is my favorite time of year, and the fabrics for fall are so wonderful. Rich colors! I know I'm going to really enjoy displaying this little quilt in the center of a table during the autumn season.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Not very productive

I need someone to kick me in the rear and get me motivated to do something right now. I go to work, come home, veg out in front of the TV - and then repeat the next day. No sewing getting done since I caught a cold before Thanksgiving.

Here is one project that needs finishing. This is my fall swap mini quilt. The block is one I saw in a magazine. I love these colors. It just needs some quilting done on it so that I can bind it and mail it off to my partner. Hope she's patient.

I did get my Christmas tree decorated and hung the stockings by the fireplace in the living room. And we got some snow last night and today - to go with the cold weather that finally settled in. So - the holiday season is upon us whether I'm ready or not.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Red shoes & roller derby

It has been over a week without any sewing. However, on Saturday I went with Laura to her dress fitting, went with my husband to be measured for his wedding suit, shopped for bridesmaid's gifts, bought some red shoes, and went to roller derby.

Actually I was hoping to find a dress that I like better than what I already bought. But either the dresses were long, full of too many beads and baubles, or didn't come in "short and fat". So discouraging. But I did let Laura talk me into buying these red shoes to go with the black dress/red jacket. Payless for $28 - so I'm not out a ton of money if I decide they are just too uncomfortable.
Following the shopping hubbie and I stopped to visit some friends before heading to roller derby. The Sioux Falls Roller Dollz beat (whupped, stomped) the Rushmore Rollerz. Laura was glad her dad finally got to see her skate.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

I Need Help With Borders

I need some help with borders on my frosty project. I have the blocks all put together with a dark blue narrow border that will finish at 1.5". But I can't decide what to do for outside borders. As you can see, Sammy is checking it out - but didn't have any bright ideas either.

Should I just put a medium blue solid border all around? A white border all around? Seems a little boring.

Borders at just the top and bottom with dark framing? Add some snowflake applique to these borders?

I'm looking for some ideas that will make this quilt really pop. I have plenty of fabric left to play with - so . . . anyone have any suggestions for me?

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

My Frosty Blocks Are Ready

My frosty blocks are all done - 48 of them - and ready to be sewn together. The last 4 got done this afternoon. Then I laid them out on my living room floor because my design wall isn't big enough for them all.

Besides, this way I could look at them with a critical eye every time I walked through the room. After rearranging them a few times, I pinned them into stacks by row. I'm so tempted to take them down to my basement sewing room right now and start working.

Hopefully tomorrow evening I can get the rows sewn together. The 2 borders are cut and ready. I'm hoping to have the top done in time to take it to Show 'n Tell at Saturday Sampler this weekend.

What do you think? Should I put a fuzzy, cuddley backing on it or not?

Christmas Raffle Quilt

Just a quick post. It is all done except for a label on the back! My photo isn't the best, but it does show all of the blocks made by the 12 different gals working on this project.

It will go on display in about a week (after the City Council approves the raffle) in a local shop and raffle tickets will be sold. The plan is to draw the winner right before Christmas and the money is going to a local breast cancer foundation.

Everyone involved feels proud to make a small contribution to cause close to our hearts.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Indian Summer - in November?

It was a gorgeous 75 degree sunny day today! We had winter most of the month of October, and now we are getting warm days again. Very weird, but I'll take it. And I did take it - OFF. I left my office at noon today.

Had lunch with my oldest daughter and then both of us went to visit my mother-in-law in her assisted living apartment. My MIL had asked me to take her to a 4:00 doctor appointment, so we spent most of the afternoon visiting before going to the appointment. We even got her to go outside and sit on the patio to enjoy the beautiful weather. I think the sunshine and fresh air were enjoyable for her. I know they were for me. And I know my MIL enjoyed having her granddaughter there this afternoon.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Handwork is relaxing

Marilyn brought our raffle quilt over to my office this afternoon so that I can work on hand stitching the binding down. I only got a quarter of the way around it this evening while watching Survivor and then got distracted watching the news on the tragedy at Ft Hood. My niece's husband is assigned to Ft Hood, so we have them in our prayers.

Once the binding on this quilt is done, I'll pass it along so someone else will put a label on it. But I'll try to remember to snap a photo before I give it up. We really want this quilt ready to go by this next week. Since it's a Christmas quilt it will be good to display it for interested "ticket buyers" as long as possible before the actual holiday.

This makes me want to get my set of blocks put together too. But I've promised myself that I won't start another quilt top until my frosty quilt is put together. Promises are hard to keep sometimes.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Sunday quilting

I joined Pam and Marilyn at Sylvia's house this afternoon to work on quilting our Christmas Challenge quilt so it's ready for the raffle in the next couple of weeks. We quilted it with an all over holly leaf design using "Christmasy" variegated thread. Very pretty! This is the quilt made with 12 blocks from 12 different friends, all using the same holly fabric in the block. The raffle money from this one will also go toward a local breast cancer foundation.

Pam was also working on the binding for 2 quilts she is making for grandkids. Her grandson wanted DOTS - lots of dots. So she has been collecting dotted fabric along with just a couple of stripes to add some contrast. The binding is striped. This quilt turned out so FUN - and will be really cuddly because it has a red minkee back. Her grandson is going to love it.

Friday, October 30, 2009

No quilting until Sunday

My sewing room will have to remain dark until Sunday afternoon. Last night I met both of my girls at a bridal shop in Sioux Falls to watch Jerilyn start the dress hunt. She found one that she loves, but we have a couple more appointments at other shops tomorrow. And she had Laura try on a ton of bridesmaid dresses while we were there. We found a couple of fun bridesmaid dresses and she'll have to make a decision quickly since one of them has to be shipped to Australia. Her cousin Steph will be the other bridesmaid and is coming from the other side of the globe for the big event.

The girls have such different tastes, and are having very different weddings. Laura's will be fairly formal at Christmas (coming very soon). Jerilyn's will be small and informal on the beach in April. Both will be beautiful brides of course!

I have to say however that the planning is backwards. We should be going to Jamaica in December and Sioux Falls in April. Oh well . . .

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Lunch & a Giveaway

I came home to have leftovers for lunch and sat down at the computer to get caught up reading the blogs I enjoy. And I found a wonderful giveaway at Canton Village Quilt Works.

You MUST go check it out.

Not much sewing has taken place this week so far. But I've been lucky to have had the opportunity to spend a couple of evenings with good friends over a glass of wine and a little game of pinochle, so all is well.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

On my design wall

Here is a glimpse of my frosty quilt blocks up on my design wall. I have approximately half of the blocks sewn and have been placing them up randomly, which is my plan for the final design. My flannel wall isn't large enoug for the whole thing however, so when I get all of the blocks done I'll probably lay them out on my living room floor to make final decisions about placement.

So far I'm loving it. My thoughts are that I'll add a dark narrow border and then a wider border of either the white or a light blue. Maybe even add a little snowflake type applique to that border.

Taking a break from sewing blue and put the binding on a Christmas table runner while watching the Vikings game on TV. This little table runner pattern is done with a border print cut on a 60 degree angle. It takes a yard and a half of fabric. The border print on both selvage sides makes the runner and the center section of fabric will do the back and binding. I have a couple more border print fabrics that I plan to use to make more.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Just a little tweaking needed

After I got home from work today I sat and looked at my first frosty block with a more critical eye. It just wasn't interesting enough. So I added a half square triangle at the bottom.

Lot's better, right? I just finished making 2 more sets of 4 blocks from 2 more frosty fabrics. These are a medium blue and the other set is a light blue - almost like a glacier blue. 8 more fat quarters to cut into and then the solids. And I should have lots of sewing time this weekend.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

And my choice is . . .

I spent a lot of time last night looking online at block patterns and pouring through books of patterns in my sewing room. I wanted something that had fairly large pieces in it so that I could showcase the beautiful fabrics for my "frosty" quilt. I had to test drive a couple of blocks, but finally settled on this one. It's simple and quick to make, and should showcase the fabrics nicely. This sample will finish at 8 inches. I have 11 frosty fabrics plus I bought 3 different blue Fairy Frosts (a Michael Miller fabric) to go with them. They'll all be paired up with the white Fairy Frost. Yum!!!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Frosty fabrics

I absolutely LOVE these frosty looking fabrics. The bottom one is a 1 yard piece I picked up last winter - without a plan. You know how it is - you just have to have some!! The 10 fat quarters I bought in The Quilt Shop in Chamberlain 2 weeks ago. All have the frosted effect. They're just beautiful. I love the play of blues across the collection.

Now I have to decide what pattern I'm going to use with them. I know that I want to keep some of the pieces large enough to see the beautiful designs on the fabrics.

What do you think? I'm open to suggestions.

Monday, October 19, 2009


On Saturday, I finished my little jack-o-lantern hanging quilt. This 12 inch block and the metal stand it hangs in were part of a kit I ordered this summer from Fons and Porter. The only real changes I made - changed the green fabric out and eliminated the 2 spiders. The simple block went together in less than a half hour. Then the machine appliqued jack-o-lantern and letters were added.

I took the finished block with me this past week while on a "road trip" for work and did the hand quilting in my motel room at night on Monday and Tuesday evenings. Saturday afternoon I put on the binding. Another project done!! I love the way it looks on my hearth next to my painted pail of fall foliage.

Pumpkin Patch Giveaway

Hop on over to the Pumpkin Patch Primitives Quilt Shop's blog to check out their newest giveaway. It's a fabulous set of fat quarters! Wouldn't you just love to win these pretty fall fabrics?

Sunday, October 18, 2009

2 Daughters & 2 Diamonds

My daughter Jerilyn is engaged! Darin popped the question a couple of days ago and she said YES. Her engagement ring is beautiful, with a triangular diamond. I've never seen one like it before. Congratulations to both of you - and welcome to the family, Darin!

Now both of my lovely girls are getting married in the coming months. That means I need to start planning another signature quilt. FUN!!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Saturday Sampler

I have to show off a previous Saturday Sampler project - this one from a couple of years ago, that I just got quilted a few months ago. This particular quilt is done is Christmas fabrics and quilted with a pretty gold thread using an edge to edge design.

I have to tell you that it's a very small world. When I did the giveaway about a month ago, Sandi, at, won the Halloween kit. A few days later, she posted a photo of a quilt that she had finished - and it was this exact pattern but done in black and white. I commented that it was the same as our Saturday Sampler - and it turns out her mother lives 25 miles away from me and it actually WAS the same Saturday Sampler project. Isn't that just crazy? So Sandi - here is my version.

More about the Saturday Sampler . . . . . . Our local quilt shop, The Pin Cushion, has been doing the Saturday Sampler for quite a few years now. I've particiated for about 6 of those years. On the second Saturday of the month, we go to a 9:00 AM demo of the new block. We pay for the first month, and then if we return the next month - on time, with our block done - then we get the current month for free. We get the fabric and the pattern for one block. It's always a surprise to see what the block will look like. And the participants are encouraged to bring Show 'n Tell projects to share with the group. There's often standing room only.

Each year the theme has been different and the fabric choices are different. The one pictured above was a choice between Christmas fabric and black/white. One year was a row quilt done in either 1930's reproduction fabrics or Thimbleberries fabrics. Last year was baskets and I chose the batiks. Another year was all star blocks.

This year the blocks are all done using 2 1/2 inch strips - and called "Favorite Things". We got our second-to-last block this weekend at Saturday Sampler. In November we'll get the final block and a book with setting ideas. In December the shop will host a tea, and everyone brings their finished tops to show off. Quite a few of the ladies will actually come with a finished quilt - quilted and bound. The fun thing is that no 2 quilts will ever be identical even though the blocks and main fabrics are the same. Everyone puts them together in a unique way. It's so much fun to see how others put the same blocks together.
Here is my Saturday Sampler from about 2004. The setting was so easy to do and shows off all of the blocks nicely. This is one of my favorite quilts - especially after it was quilted. I kept this one for myself and it is on the bed in my guest bedroom.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Wedding Shower quilt

The future in-laws of my younger daughter Laura had a lovely bridal shower for her on Saturday in Redfield, her fiance's hometown. I believe she is going to enjoy being part of Jamie's family. She was able to meet lots of new people who knew Jamie as he grew up - such as a catechism teacher or a neighbor. Naturally they also shared some great stories about him with us.
Instead of bringing the traditional guest book, I made that little signature quilt for her. The guests all signed it and there is still room for more signatures if she has another shower. Or she may decide to bring it to her wedding reception too. You can see the quilt on the table in this photo.
Another great idea from this shower - every guest addressed the envelope for a thank you note. That way she had everyone's correct name and address.

Monday, September 28, 2009

New swap!

There's a new fall-themed mini quilt swap and I can't wait to start working on my new mini quilt!
I just LOVE these mini quilt swaps that Quilting Gallery has been hosting. It is so much fun to make these connections with quilters around the world. Since doing the spring and the summer swap, I've been reading the blogs of the ladies that made me a quilt - and also the blogs of the ladies that I was quilting for. (bad grammar, I know!) I feel like I've made new friends.
So go to the link above and register for the fall-themed swap and join the fun.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

My reward for working on Sunday

I hate working on weekends when I've already put in a full week, but sometimes it can't be helped. I had some projects I really needed to get done today in order to keep up this coming week. And since I sewed and relaxed all day yesterday, I made a deal with myself - no quilting today until I had that statistical profile DONE.

The good news is that the profile got done, along with some other things I needed to do for work. Six hours worth of my Sunday - but I'll feel less stressed during the week now.

And to reward myself for a "job well done" - I started hand quilting a red, white, black dresden plate table runner. Here is a sneak peek. I'm kinda liking it already!!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Bits & Pieces

I'm pretty excited because my summer swap mini quilt arrived on Thursday afternoon all the way from North Carolina. The colors are so pretty and most of the fabrics are batiks - one of my favorite things! The quilting stitches are done with a soft greenish thread and are different in the different strips. Some are wavey lines, some are echo lines, some are decorative stitches. Thanks so much, Sandra! Check out her blog at .

The other reason I'm excited is that I finally had a day that I could spend sewing. I blogged awhile back about the "someday" file of project ideas that I have. And I showed a photo of a blue and white signature quilt that I saw at the Quilts & Vines in August that was done with a pattern I had in my "someday" file. Well . . . here is my version of the signature quilt, done in the bride's colors. I finished the top this afternoon and it's ready for signatures at my daughter's bridal shower next Saturday. Hope she likes it.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

And the WINNER is . . .

OK - it's 6:30 Thursday night and I just couldn't wait to draw the lucky winner of my Halloween quilt kit. Thanks to everyone who signed up.

My hubbie picked the lucky winner a few minutes ago. So - why wait until morning to post the news? The winner is . . . "Call Me Crazy" at So this fun little kit is going to travel to Washington state.

Email me your snail mail address (look in my profile) and I'll drop it in the mail to you. Enjoy!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

My 1st Giveaway - Just Because

I'm having a giveaway - just because it will be fun. Some lucky winner will receive this Halloween applique pattern and kit.

I bought this kit a couple of summers ago because I just loved the crazy cats in the center panel and the fun colors. But time is my enemy and I just couldn't get started on it. I've been trying to get my sewing room organized lately and felt guilty about so much fabric sitting in drawers just waiting. So I've decided to share with someone who will love it enough to make it.

All you need to do to enter is leave a comment on this posting. I'll have my husband (who doesn't care how much fabric I buy and stash) draw a lucky winner on Thursday night and announce it here on Friday!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

How Did We Begin? and have posed a question for their followers: Where did we begin to sew and/or quilt?
My paternal grandmother was a quilter and was very talented at embroidery, although she lived in another state 500 miles away, so I can't say I was influenced much by her quilts. I have one small doll quilt she made for me as a gift, and also have some pretty embroidered pillowcases. Wish that I even had some pictures of her quilts!
My maternal grandmother knitted, crocheted, and tatted beautiful lace. She did a little sewing as well, but wasn't into quilting. Three of her 4 daughters also grew up loving fiber art of some type. My mother was the oldest of the girls and she earned her living working in garment factories during WWII, and later did a lot of custom sewing for people as I grew up. In fact, most of my clothes were made by her until I was old enough and accomplished enough to sew my own. She made lots of quilts - but kept them simple and all were tied, not quilted. She didn't like working with intricate patterns.
My first sewing lessons were making doll clothes with needle, thread, and scraps of fabric Mom would let me have from her sewing projects. I was around 6 at the time. But I didn't get to use her sewing machine until I was about 10 - and was pretty proud when I finally reached that goal. I was hooked!
My first real "quilt" interest came from seeing a gorgeous cathedral windows quilt being made by one of my mother's friends. That quilt was all hand stitched, so I watched it progress over a couple of years. It was so pretty and made me hope to own a quilt like it some day. And someday I will.
My first quilting project of my own was a little over 20 years ago and inspired by my sister-in-law Kathy. She is a terrific quilter. She got me started sewing some log cabin blocks for a quilt top she was working on for a friend. That little project led to some making a quilt for myself. And the rest is history . . .
Now - how did you get started quilting?

Sunday, August 30, 2009

My "someday" file

I've blogged before about the wonderful displays of quilts at the 2009 Quilts & Vines show (and wine tasting). And since I've not had any time to sew a single stitch in the past week, I'm going to show you another favorite from that quilt show. This particular quilt caught my eye because it is a pattern I have in my "someday" file.

I especially loved this signature quilt - partly because of the color but also because the blocks were so cute. The quilter made these signature blocks for a bridal shower. The bow pattern was in a magazine about a year ago and she just made them smaller. I have the pattern tucked away in my "someday" file just waiting for the right occasion. And now I've been thinking about making the blocks for my daughter's upcoming bridal shower - only using her colors. Wouldn't these blocks be pretty in a dark red batik?

Sunday, August 23, 2009

It's been awhile . . .

Can't believe 10 days have passed since my last post. Work certainly gets in the way of sewing and blogging . . . and golf, and reading, and . . .

However, I can't feel completely sorry for myself. Last Sunday my husband left at 6:30 am to play in a golf tournament and I couldn't go back to sleep - which had been my original plan. So I got up and dressed, put on the coffee, and ventured downstairs to my sewing room to find a UFO to work on. I found a fun little Christmas kit I bought 3 years ago on a little road trip to visit family in Minneapolis. I think I bought it because I liked the slightly funky colors (lime green at Christmas?) and the navy blue cats on ice skates in the tan print. And I loved the border print that came with it.

I actually finished the top last Sunday - and also managed to put in 5 hours catching up on a project for work later in the day!! This should be a lesson learned about how much I could accomplish when I get up an extra hour early.

I found the perfect backing fabric for it and have it all pinned together and ready to quilt. I plan to hand quilt this as it is only about 45 inches square.

This weekend I'm working on the hand quilting on an autumn themed wall hanging (another UFO), so now I have a reason to finish that quickly so that I can start the Christmas one! This was a Thimbleberries Club project from several years ago. I made the top at the time, but just never got around to quilting and binding it. So that top was hanging in the sewing room closet along with several other UFO's. I pulled it out at the beginning of August and started quilting, although I haven't made as much progress as I had hoped. There are pieced leaves and pumpkins in the center that I'm quilting with a pretty simple pattern. But the border is getting a large leafy design quilted in. When I finish it, I'll post a picture.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

In The Good Ole Summertime Quilt Swap

It's done and went in the mail on Monday. The flip flops are hand appliqued, with little duck buttons holding the ribbons down that make up the straps. I hand quilted the blue border.

I have a larger version of this pattern, with 4 sets of flip flops done in a wall hanging. One of the bathrooms in my house is done in a beach theme and has the big flip flop quilt hanging in there.

Ironically - they are just my size!!

The label on the back is a footprint. And the fabric on the back was such fun. I thought about adding a second border on the quilt with this sandpail fabric . . .

Sunday, August 9, 2009

2009 Quilts & Vines

The 2009 Quilts & Vines quiltshow was a wonderful experience - just as good as the 2008 one, but with a bit more heat and humidity!

Two carloads of us drove the hour from Mitchell to the Strawbale Winery near Renner on Saturday morning. A wonderful quilter from Winner, SD gave a trunk show during the day. The Poker Alice Band played music. Food, wine tasting, music, and quilts!! We took our lawn chairs to sit in the shade. And we brought our cameras.

Over 400 quilts were on display at the winery. Most of them are hung right in the vineyard among the grapes. But some are also hung around the farmsite - on the sides of the barn, draped over an antique truck, etc. Talk about EYE CANDY!!

It was lovely strolling between the rows of grapes and looking at the lovely quilts. What a stunning setting! The quilts are clipped (with a protective backing) directly onto the wires holding up the grapes. This particular section of grapes was right along the driveway as you entered the winery and had 3 long rows of quilts displayed. Another - even larger - section was on the other side of the buildings. And in between was the barn, the winery building, a food tent, the stage, and a huge tent set up to sit in while watching the trunk show.

This was one of my favorite quilts in the show this year. I loved the colors and the fabulous applique on this one.
Every quilt had a tag on it telling who made it, and I must apologize to all of the artists who's quilts I photographed. I didn't write down any names.
I'll share more photos later in the week.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Christmas Block Exchange

This whole idea was hatched by 5 of us over coffee on a Saturday morning last winter . . . getting 12 people together to make blocks for an exchange and use a "focus" fabric to tie them all together. So we went shopping and bought 12 yards of a beautiful Christmas fabric with holly leaves on it. And we put together a list of people to invite to participate. We ended up with 10 local ladies from Mitchell, 1 from Minnesota, and 1 from North Carolina.

Each of us got 1 yard of the focus fabric and the instructions to choose a 12 1/2 inch block pattern. Using the focus fabric, we had to each make 13 of that block. Then we planned to get together in late summer - have a party - and exchange our blocks so that everyone ended up with 1 block from each person.
What about the 13th block, you ask???? We are going to put that set together and donate the quilt to some charity to raffle or auction as a fundraiser. Well . . . last night most of us got together at Deb's beautiful home and had our exchange party. Mary in North Carolina even joined us via cell phone. Marilyn would describe each block as we traded and tell Mary who had made it. (Mary's set had already been given to her.) The blocks are all gorgeous, by the way!!Kelly brought cheesecake - YUM!!! And Yvonne had a wonderful idea for our charity quilt layout.

What is better than quilting friends?

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Fat Quarter Bingo

Tonya ( is hosting a Fat Quarter Bingo game. I've mailed her 2 fat quarters, so I'll receive 2 bingo cards from her via email. She'll determine the bingo pattern needed, and draw numbers at random and all of those playing will be able to keep track. The person getting BINGO first will receive the fat quarters.

The deadline to let her know you want to play is August 10. She is hoping to start playing on August 15.

Friday, July 31, 2009

One week until Quilts & Vines

One of the highlights of last summer was attending Quilts and Vines with my friend Sylvia. This is an annual outdoor quilt show held at the Strawbale Winery, near Renner, SD. There were hundreds of quilts hung outdoors IN THE VINYARD and on the winery buildings. It was such fun! There was music, food vendors, wine sampling, and quilts, quilts, quilts. We took lawnchairs and set them up in the shade of the big trees so we could relax and could come and go as we pleased. So the afternoon was spent listening to music, sampling wine made by the Strawbale Winery, and looking at all of the beautiful quilts.

This year I think several of us plan to attend on August 8. I'll let you know how much fun we had. In the meantime, here are a couple of pictures from last year.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

"Good Ole Summertime" mini quilt top

Here is the mini quilt top - ready for quilting. Thought I had the perfect stencil for handquilting "ocean waves" around the blue border. However, it was too narrow, so I'm searching through my stencils for a better choice.

Then it will mailed to _______ .

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Supper guest

We are very fortunate to have a beautiful back yard, full of trees and lush grass - and it ends at a shallow ravine. That all adds up to a bounty of wildlife coming through our yard. Wild turkeys, hawks (see my post a couple of weeks ago), and deer. Every day we have deer come through - in the morning and in the late afternoon or evening. And they usually stop to nibble at my bird feeders. Tonight we had a beautiful big doe spend about a half hour in our yard. I sat next to the window and shot several photos of her. Another smaller doe and a fawn came through just a little while later, but they didn't stop to eat. I never tire of watching these lovely creatures - even when they are cleaning out my bird feeders!