Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Lotto Blocks

I made 9 blocks for the block lotto yesterday, but since they are January blocks done from the sneak peek, I can't show pictures yet. Suffice it to say they were easy, fun, bright and colorful. I'll post pictures on January 1.

I thought I'd get a skirt sewn today, but I haven't made myself get moving on that. I really need to get dressed and head into town to pay our property taxes. The skirt will wait for's already been cut out and waiting for a month already.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Last minute gift

Since money was a bit short this year we tried to keep things cheap and I think we did pretty good. I sewed a driving cap for picture because it is at work with him. Christmas Eve afternoon RoseE mentioned she needed a wallet that would hold coins as well as bills. So I googgled and found this tutorial/pattern. I know it isn't perfect. some of the sewing is a bit is hard to sew neatly through so many layers of fabric and interfacing. But it is rather cute and functional and most importantly, RoseE likes it!

Monday, December 13, 2010


Getting the house straightened up for the party and Christmas is coming along nicely. Today I cleaned the vent-a-hood. Whoever designed it ought to be shot. So many nook sand crannies to collect grease and dust that are impossible to clean. At least it is better now. Then I did 2 loads of laundry...nearly froze my fingers off hanging the first load. Then I tackled the sewing room. I thought I'd just make a start, but I actually finished! I think I will reward myself with some sewing time this evening. Doesn't it Look nice and inviting working on a project?

Wednesday, December 8, 2010


...No, not the sewing! I don't know why I'm so stressed out lately. Hopefully it will get better. We are looking into some financial stuff ...hopefully it will all work out like we want. I hate waiting to hear about things! Mimi's graduation is in 10 days. I think maybe the house will be presentable by then. I've been working on getting rid of clutter...where did it all come from? I'm afraid I'll have to stash the mess in the sewing room in the closet to go thorough later, but should be able to get the room reasonably neat. Now I need to go...

Monday, December 6, 2010

Time Flies....

...even when you're not having fun!

No more sewing done since the last post. Life is overwhelming. House is a mess and I desperately need to de-clutter, especially the sewing room. But how to decide what fabric i will or won't use in the future? Meanwhile, Mimi is graduating from St. Gregory University in just 12 days and we are having a party here to celebrate, so I really do need to get the house presentable.

On the sewing front, I have a few ideas for Christmas gifts for the kids that would use up some fabric, if I can find time to get them done. I just don't seem to have much energy for things lately.

Gabe wrecked Denny's car yesterday. Fortunately no one was injured and the car is fixable.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Finally sewing again!

After a summer and early fall spent fixing up Mom and dad's new house and then having surgery that turned into a major event with long recovery I am finally getting back into the swing of things and starting to get the sewing room back in order. First project to get things cleared out was to finally get Kathleen Burn's sampler quilt quilted. Her mom asked me to quilt it because Kathleen found that the spray baste made her hands break out when she tried to work on it. It as been sitting in my sewing room for over a year. I had to do a few repairs to faulty seams before I could begin quilting. I was free to do whatever I wanted and I felt the quilt needed each block quilted differently...a perfect opportunity to practice free motion quilting (FMQ) filler designs. I felt rather dense quilting was in order as some seams were still a bit weak and quilting will hold the quilt together. It turned into a major undertaking! each of the 20 blocks took 45-60 minutes to quilt. When those were done i pondered what to do about the sashings and cornerstones. Four inch wide sashings definitely needed a fair amount of quilting to keep balance in the quilt. I considered a few FMQ designs, but by that point I was wanting to just get it done, and I didn't want the quilting in the sashings to compete with the blocks. Denny suggested just simple straightline quilting crossing in the cornerstones. I decided 4 lines would be dense enough. It turned out to be just the right thing, and straightline with the walking foot goes so quickly. I am quite pleased with how it turned out and I hope Kathleen and Carol like it when I deliver it next Thursday....after showing it off at Guild Monday! Here are closeups of several of the blocks.


did manage to make some lotto blocks for October and I won! Blocks have been arriving and I've started arranging them. 48 nine inch blocks should make a couple of quilts for community projects.

Here is one grouping...not all the blocks have arrived yet, but these seem to play together nicely. But before I will allow myself to work on quilts i need to get 4 skirts/dresses made for Ginger.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Where has the summer gone?

I feel like life has been too crowded with things I have to do. And things are changing around here. Mom and Dad have purchased a house in Sulphur, OK and Mom will be moving there in the next month or so. Meanwhile guess who volunteered to paint the whole interior of the house and needs to help get things ready to move in....yep! Me!! No way Mom would be able to do all that work. One room left to paint: the kitchen, currently dark red with black trim on the soffits, being changed to light yellow walls and we'll see if the soffits can stay red and black. Denny still has electrical work to do and also some trim work in the bathroom where we put in linoleum. And another toilet to replace. Then deep cleaning the kitchen and it will be move in ready.
I have a sewing project I must get done on Saturday. KC Garage sale is next week...I'm hoping to paint early in the week then work the Garage Sale. And then we want to go visit Jamie and Annie Aug 25-30...still need to plan for that and make arrangements. And possibly Mom and Dad will move before our trip....Maybe in September things will settle down...until we start gearing up for wedding prep next year!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

UFO Finish!

This quilt top has been awaiting my quilting for quite some time. I did not piece/applique it. Mom had it from her Escapees group and it was too nice to not have some special quilting, so I said I would do it. I finally got going on it this weekend and finished it today. I like how it turned out.
I quilted the background of each quadrant with a different quilting filler design, My favorite is the hook echo design
This really adds a nice texture to the quilt surface. I found the design at She has lots of great designs. H2O is another one I used:
The other 2 quadrants were just a loopy meander and a square loopy meander.
I finished the quilt off with a red binding to bring the red from the applique out to the edge of the quilt. the binding was attached to the back iof the quilt then turned to the front side and stitched down with a machine buttonhole/blanket stitch to mimic the handstitching around the applique. Inside the light borders I did simple ribbon candy quilting. All in all I think it turned out quite nicely!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Wedding in the Works

Katy is engaged to Chris Jay. Wedding is in planning stages for early August 2011. I'll have lots of sewing to do. Wedding gown, bridesmaids' dresses, flower girls' dresses, accessories, and a wedding quilt. And something for me to wear too! 15 months to get it done!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Block Lotto...

I won the Wonky floral shoo fly blocks in the April Block lotto... I'm looking forward to squishies in the mail!. Here are the blocks I made, which I decided to keep as part of my winnings:
Last evening I was home alone in a quiet house and decided to try the May lotto block. Sophie is calling this one "Reeds" Black, white, or black and white for backgrounds. lime greens for free pieced reeds. A great exercise in fabric manipulation...

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Katy's Engaged!

Katy is engaged to be married! The date is not set yet, as they have to talk to Father Boyer and get on the church calendar, but probably sometime in August 2011...Chris will be graduated by then for sure. Long ways off, but I will have lots to do. I want to make Katy's dress.

Meanwhile I am taking another pattern making class. This one is the upper torso sloper (bodice). Then I'll need the sleeve class and the lower torso (skirt ) and I'll be set to draft a pattern of Katy's own design for her wedding dress. I need to work on the class work today, fitting myself for a pattern.

Quilting has been not happening around here, but I did just win the Block Lotto for April.

I spent 6 days in Colorado with Jamie and Annie and have been trying to get things caught up at home since Wednesday. The garden needs more planting. Green beans are sprouting and I had a salad of garden greens yesterday...but those may be gone soon as some are starting to bolt to seed...too warm and sunny! I will plant squashes, cucumber, melons, okra, and Swiss chard this week.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

A Dress for Gigi

I saw a instructions in Sew Stylish Magazine, Spring 2010, for a simple dress that I thought I could adapt for Gigi. The one in the magazine was for a woman, and had 10 godets. The instructions given for drafting the pattern were faulty (I e-mailed the magazine about that and I was right!). But i forged ahead using what I know about pattern drafting and design and the basic idea given and made this dress for Gigi.
I designed the pattern using 6 godets rather than 10 and added 2 casings with elastic to hold it in at the waistline. I like how it turned out and will probably use the same basic idea again. I used 1 yard of the pink fabric and 2/3 yd of the green and beige gingham. Total fabric cost was under $5.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

UFO Sighting...

Well, it was a UFO but it isn't anymore! I finally quilted this. The quilt is a row robin swap quilt and my request was for orphan blocks of whatever size put together with whatever filler was necessary for a 12" x 48" row. I really like how it turned out. I received lots of interesting blocks. The top row is the row I made. 2 of the blocks were test blocks for 2 different recipients in a birthday swap (Lantern and paper pieced spiky block) The star in a circle has paper pieced curves for the star background Then the circle with star was set into a square of fabric with a circle cut out. ...I had seen the technique in a magazine and wanted to try it out.
I decided to try different quilting patterns on the various blocks. All was done free motion marking whatsoever.

this is just a sampling...I don't want to spend all day taking pictures and posting them!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

No more quilts done

I haven't been sewing much, and nothing new is finished. I attended a string piecing workshop taught by Elsie Campbell and started some, but haven't even sewn the blocks together yet. I have 3 trial layouts....actually I will either do the alternating dark/light kites for one quilt or do 2 quilts, one with dark kites, one with light. These are just what I had at the time, not enough for the whole quilt. But these are on hold for a while.
I need to make some clothes for myself and RoseE for Easter. And I need to finish some of the quilts I have already started. Towards that end, I readied pattern and fabrics for RoseE's dress today, and I layered and pinned a quilt that has been waiting for quilting for about 3 years. The weather was beautiful today and I was able to get 4 load of laundry washed and hung out to dry as well. We are working on a garden area, but it was still a bit too wet since the weekend's snow to work on today. Next step is a bit more tilling and leveling and then we put up a fence and frame the beds with landscape timbers.
Johnny turned 10 on Sunday...just one child left who is not in double digits Ginger will be 7 May 31st. While she will always be my baby, she isn't a baby anymore. She's getting to be a young lady.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Quilting again!

I have completed 3 of my unfinished quilts since January 1, 2010. And quilted one other top someone else made and donated to Community projects

The first was given to my dear friend Donna for her 70th birthday. She loves flowers and loves the quilt!
Next was the one I quilted that I didn't piece. I think the quilting really added a lot to this one! I did a free motion, variation of the Baptist Fan quilting pattern on the solid squares and various freemotion flowers on the 4 -patches.

Next I went to Houston for a week of babysitting and took with a stack of half square triangle blocks I had started to make Broken Dishes blocks. This was an exercise in value and started with a pile of 196 four inch squares of randomly different fabrics cut while cleaning up in the sewing room a few years ago. I sorted the fabrics from darkest to lightest and then split them into 2 stacks still in order from dark to lighter. The darkest dark was paired with the darkest light and so on down through the stackes to make the half square triangles. Once I had these trimmed I paired 2 sets of HST's to form the broken dishes blocks. Then I waited until I was home with my design wall to settle on a block arrangement. Here is the finished quilt. Careful placement of the blocks resuted in a built in border effect.
And last, but certainly not least of my accomplishments thus far this year is a quilt I have named "Encouragement". It was started as a block I wanted to try out that became the centerpiece for a nesting round robin I joined. For the those unfamiliar with the round robin concept Each person picks their starting block and others in the group add to it in rounds, passing the quilt from one to the next until all have contributed to the quilt. In a nesting round robin each participant does all the work on their own quilt, but what is done on each round is chosen by a different participant. In the is case the first instructuion was to do a round of triangles. Next was just add a simple strip or two (plain border). Then I fell behind a bit and I combined the 3rd and 4th round instuctions which were a stop sign border and a rail fence border. Next was add applique, then a checkerboard border. The final instruction was to add some stars, which I did in the applique border. I really liked how it looked, but knew I wanted to do something different for the quilting, and so it was set aside. After finishing the Broken Dishes quilt I had momentum going and finally decided it was time. I covered the quilt top with clear plastic and used a dry erase marker to get a few general ideas of what I needed to do. I decided there was too much white and so the quilting was done mostly on the white patches with a jewel tone variegated thread. I am very happy with how it turned out and will be entering it in my guild's quilt show this summer.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

12th Day of Christmas

Today is the 12th day of Christmas. It's about time I posted here with some sewing up dates. For presents I made an apron for Kristi (no picture taken), pot holders and a potato baking bag for Josh (no pictures), pajama pants for Nick (n.p.), a purse for Jackie with a matching purse for Seri,

Jumper and shirt for Seri,

purse for Annie (no picture, but same pattern as Jackie's but made of denim and batik fabrics), skirt and vest for Mimi(no pic yet), skirt for Katy(no pic), driving cap and scarf for Gabe, (no pic) quilt for JoeE,

Skirt and top for RoseE (no pics), Robe for Johnny,
Pants and shirt for Ginger,
and a housedress for Mom
and another is promised.