Monday, September 13, 2010

September and it's finally cooler!

Hello, happy almost autumn, back to school or whatever it is you like about this time of year! I LOVE fall, it is my absolute favorite season, the smells, the colors, pumpkins & apples, shorter days and cooler nights when I can use my quilts again!
I've mentioned before that my daughter is getting married this fall and my son & daughter-in-law are growing a family. Our first grandchild is due to arrive in early November, right around election day! Our family is so excited!! We had a surprise baby shower this past Saturday and it really was a surprise! Andrea was shocked and happy, she settled into the baby's great-great grandfather's rocking chair to chat and open gifts. Our families and friends were exceedingly generous and the kid is off to a good start!
This is the Diaper Cake that I made for the shower, no calories and can be used for baby!

I've been spending most of my quilting time on baby items, a valance for the nursery, a dust ruffle for the crib and a diaper bag for my golfer son.

My friend Joyce just called, she was at the shower and gave me a beautiful brag book and storybook for me & the baby. She commented on how nice it was to watch my boys on Saturday, how they interacted with family and each other, all of the generations. It is nice to have everyone together, a lot of work but well worth the effort!

I had a dental procedure this morning which has caused quite a lot of pain so this is my limit for today, I promise to post some quilt pics next time!

Enjoy September!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Summer time and the living is busy!

Hello again, it's been awhile, please forgive me but my daughter is getting married this fall and we just had the bridal shower here at the house this weekend. What fun it was to plan it with her matron of honor and bridesmaids! I am truly enjoying this adventure and the adventure of my first grandchild arriving this fall as well! Life is good!

Quilting has been on the back burner in July, I did a lot of quilts in June and will post some pictures of them here. I did crochet 2 baby afghans and have a knitted one started. I need a cute but easy sweater pattern to knit! Any suggestions????

I have almost completed the wedding quilt that I've written about before. I used a jelly roll from Moda to make the quilt but added a couple of other fabrics, they were a bit richer in color and I thought that they'd make a nice accent, but NO! As I joined the blocks the 2 'read as a solid' prints just jumped out at me, overshadowing the soft florals and stripes in the rest of the blocks! Now some people could maybe live with that, I couldn't so it was time to FROG the blocks, rip it, rip it! I un-sewed the offending squares and now have to put my puzzle back together, soon, because I have so much more that I need to get done!

Can you spot the square that doesn't belong???

My friend, Donna Lynn Thomas writes quilt books, Stripples, Portable Patchwork are just t 2 that's she's written. She's written a new book that will be out this fall and asked her quilting friends to help with testing the concept and designs & for me to quilt 3 of her projects for the book....that was in January. I took the 3 quilts and had them done by May, but never got to finish choosing the fabrics for my sample. Time was running out so when I had my friends over for a stitch & bitch day I asked for some help with color choices. I'd decided to make the entire quilt using only my stash and my colors had to all be different from Donna's for the book.
When I asked Sally, Gina & Joyce for help they jumped right in, now who wouldn't love to play in someone else's stash???? They were terrific, each one added to my choices to make the colors shine as the sunflower design that I'd planned. Part of the quilt is pictured below. I pieced the top, leaving the borders until the end and that's where I got stuck again. Nothing in my stash was right for the quilt, it needed a frame, nothing to detract from the body of the quilt. My browns were all wrong, I fussed and asked my family but it just wasn't working for me so I called Gina.
Gina has a pretty large stash too and she lives 30 minutes away. My SOS got her moving, she gathered up a bunch of fabrics that looked like they might work with my quilt, (I'd sent photos).
Yes she had the ONE, THE fabric that this quilt needed, so it got finished using only stash fabrics, but just one wasn't from my stash! :) Who could understand this predicament more than another quilter? I love my quilting buddies!

I mounted the quilt to the frame, quilted it with leaves and sunflowers and then bound it. The hardest part was shipping it off to Martingale to be photographed. I tracked it and it actually arrived early, to wait for it to come back! The quilt is called "Brianne's Sunflowers" and I'll post when Donna's book is out!

I joined a group on the internet this summer, a challenge to make a 9 Patch block every day for June, July and half of August. I haven't been making them daily but in batches, here are the ones I've done so far-Many of these fabrics are from quilt made long ago and many memories! This is a great way to use up your scraps and fat quarters that you don't know what you were thinking when you bought them years ago! My friend Susan S. is making the 9 patches and is planning on using them all in one quilt sashed in black. Sounds like a good idea to get all of these different fabric combinations into one quilt!

This is the first quilt that I've made for our grandbaby, I used a panel by Deb Strain for MODA called Love U. My DIL Andrea loved her snail fabric from this line so we are going to use it in the nursery and I wanted her to have the colors so that she can match them to other items for the baby's room. I just added charm squares from the same fabric line to make the panel wider. I used 2 layers of batting, Dream Wool and Dream Cotton to make it thick and puffy. I wanted a quilt that the baby can lie on and not be on the hard floor.

This is Barbara D's Fig tree strip quilt, very soft muted colors. Cross hatch quilting in the borders, which she wanted scalloped and Sally did a wonderful job on! The body of the quilt is free motion leaves and loops. It's a very pretty quilt!

Time for me to get to work on Joyce's tan, beige & black quilt which I loaded on the frame last night! Enjoy the day!

Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day 2010

Remember that our Freedoms don't come from our Government but from the Military personnel who pledge to defend them every day all over the world!

Hello, it's been awhile again! I spent most of May catching up on my customer quilts and getting ready to go on vacation with my husband. We had a glorious time cruising to Bermuda on Celebrity's Summit.
I did get several quilts quilted and sent home with their owners as well as making a panel for the Parkinsons Disease World Quilt Project. The panels had to be 2'x2' with 6" added around. I chose to show my husband's family and his hobbies past & present. It arrived in NY last Wednesday.
I have a new toy/tool for my Millie, it's the Quiltazoid. Think of it as a spirograph for quilts! I haven't tried it yet but this week I will finally have time to get to it, look for pics as soon as I can get them done!

Did you know that Bermuda doesn't have a Quilt Shop? or a Yarn Shop? How sad is that! I know it doesn't get too cold there but imagine life without being able to go and pet fabric or yarn! Oh NO! Those poor Bermudians need a quilt shop, they just don't know it!
Here are a few pics from the latest quilts....

Thimbleberrie's 3's Company, a combination of pieced and faux applique blocks. It was a BOM at Country Quiltworks.

This is Joan W's wedding quilt for her son & his wife.
There were 3 more but I can't show them to you yet as they are going to be in Donna Lynn Thomas' new book...I'll keep you posted as to when it will be published and then post my pics of the 3 quilts that I quilted for her!

Have a safe Memorial Day!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Happy May!

Yesterday was my sister's 50th birthday and we all helped her celebrate at the Windlass Restaurant in Lake Hopatcong, NJ. This cake not only celebrates her b-day but her first year of being cancer free. Celene had a double mastectomy last January(09) and completed her chemo last May. At this point she is doing great, her reconstruction was amazing and we all pray for her to remain healthy and for a cure to be found for breast cancer.

Now as to quilting I was going along, getting quilts done for my customers when LIFE interrupted. Family is important and when they need you, you need to be there for them. My husband's parents are now living in a senior apartment looking out over Red Bank, NJ and the Navesink River. It's a huge change for them but a necessary one, here's to hoping that they enjoy a healthy and happy life together there!

These are pics of several quilts that I managed to get quilted before the bump...
Above is a strip quilt made with a Jelly Roll, very happy and bright, Dream Wool batting was used and very small stipple as my customer wanted the quilt to be squishy.This is a cotton and Minkee quilt with Moda's Snuggle on the back, Snuggle is Moda's version of Minkee. It's very cute, I used Dream blend batting and outlined the bunny with meander in the body of the quilt to support the Snuggle's weight.

Below is a basket quilt made by my friend, Marcy as a gift for her friend in Nebraska. It's made with traditional colors and custom quilted. I stitched a trio of leaves in the center of each basket, did a small meander around the baskets and a sunflower in the setting blocks which run along the center of the quilt.

This is a large twin sampler made with all Batik fabrics, Fairfield Bamboo batting was supplied by my customer. I'd never used this batting before and was pleasantly surprised with it's stability, softness and how well it looked after quilting. The second quilt in the teals is the same sampler just done in different fabrics, they are college graduation gifts.
Notice how the contrasting fabrics in the cotton quilt show the blocks more clearly than the busy batik prints do. They are both pretty quilts but the cotton really shows the piecing.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

March is marching on to spring and April!

Hello again, I hope that you all survived the winter to end all winters and are enjoying this little taste of spring! Bandit Queen of the Quilting Studio, above sends wet kisses!
I've been busy with family, planning a wedding and birthdays. I've quilted a couple of quilts for customers, two for grandkids, Grace and Emily. They were both bright, happy quilts and a pleasure to quilt for Joyce H. and Betsy P.
No photos yet, I took pics of Emily's quilt without the data card in my camera! I will take some at my guild's quilt show this weekend at Archbishop Wood High School. County Line Quilters are having their bi-annual show, it's all members quilts with no judging just a lot of beautiful quilts with the stories of why they were made.

Below are 2 quilts that I finished, the first is Ruth's Spring Birds stack'n'whack, a very pretty and well made quilt. In order to not detract from the designs created by the fabric we opted to do continous curves in the stars and then stipple the background to make the stars pop.
This is part of a layette set made by Millie, she used Winnie the Pooh fabrics to make a quilt, a quilted pillow cover and a wall hanging. I quilted feathers in the pinwheels and cross hatched the center of the quilt. It's a very sweet baby quilt!
Happy Spring!

Rainy Days & Mondays by Melimba & Beccabury for Riley Blake Designs - Fat Quarter Shop's Jolly Jabber

Rainy Days & Mondays by Melimba & Beccabury for Riley Blake Designs - Fat Quarter Shop's Jolly Jabber

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

February--Groundhog Day, Sally & Mary's birthday!

Good Morning, it's cloudy here and we had a red sky this morning so I guess Phil was right and we are going to have more winter! I am not surprised since spring is on the calendar for late March anyway! :)
I am happy to announce that Julie of has her first quilt published in Quiltmaker Magazine !
Congratulations Julie! Cornflower Fields is beautiful and I was fortunate to be able to quilt it for Julie last fall! It was marathon quilting!
I worked with Julie at Country Quiltworks in Montgomeryville, PA and she is so energetic and excited by all things quilty!
Julie has several Moda Bakeshop projects on their website as well as quilts that were hung at Fall Quilt Market in Houston. Her Hunky Dory pattern is being kitted and sold by Fat Quarter Shop and Hancock's of Paducah! Way to go Julie! I am looking forward to see what else Julie has coming!
I was pleasantly surprised to receive an advance copy of Quiltmaker in the mail, just because I was listed as the quilter! How nice is that????

On my to do list are several baby quilts, I need to sew the last 2 rows of my Farm Fresh quilt that I am going to teach as a beginner class at Country Quiltworks this spring. It's so bright and happy, all fruits and veggie farbics with had dyed solids, makes me yearn for my garden.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Happy 2010

Hello again, it's been awhile. I spent a good part of December finishing up my customer quilts, decorating, baking and getting ready for Christmas and my nephew's wedding the day after up in CT! It was crazy hectic but fun. Christmas was different with a blizzard here the day before we were to go to my sister in laws so we missed out on that! We did a quick exchange in the hotel the morning after the wedding. The bride was beautiful, the groom very handsome and the reception was fun!
For New Years we crashed John & I. We stayed home in the quiet and took care of the pups, all 4 of them.
New Year's started off fantastic after that as our daughter became engaged at midnight on the beach in Honolulu! We'll soon have a new family member as the wedding will be this October!

I don't make resolutions but for my quilting I'd like to finish as many WIPs as possible and with that goal I spent last Weds at my friend Sally's cutting and pinning several projects. I put the borders on a Pumpkin wall hanging that's been languishing for a few years! Now to back it and quilt it! I am almost done with the binding on Flower Show, a kit from Benartex that I bought at spring quilt market a few years ago, it's going to my daughter-in-law, Andrea to add to her collection. So that's 2, I cut out a veggie fabric quilt and the hand dyed solids that go with it, I can't wait to sew it! I also cut up Kaffe Fassett fabrics that really aren't 'me' to get them out of my stash and they will make bright quilt for someone! That's four!!! I am giving 2 flannel quilts to a friends 7 &9 year old daughters and the labels are ready to be sewn on. I machine sewed the binding on a Thimbleberries tree skirt that needs to go to Alaska and the newlyweds which just needs to be hand sewn down.

So far 2010 has been productive, I've made a list of what needs to be done for birthdays, weddings and other special occasions. Here's to getting them done! Keep warm and keep piecing!