Saturday, November 29, 2008

Good mail!!

Looky what I got in the mail today!
From Quilty stuff

I won a drawing at Irene's blog site. I adore the fabric, the notecards are beautiful, the jewelry bag is darling and I can't wait to read my new magazine!

Thank you so much, Irene!!

Black Friday has come and gone

and I still have money in my checking account! I skipped the 4am shopping this year. I think I learned my lesson last year at Target. The checkout line went completely around the inside of the building. I realized that there was NOTHING I wanted that badly! I love on-line shopping and with free shipping being offered by a lot of companies I think that for the few things I am purchasing, buying via the Internet is a good decision.

I did take my daughter-in-law and granddaughter to a couple of thrift and consignment shops. The little girl's Christmas tea is this afternoon and Em needed something to wear over her shoulders. The theme is a princess tea party so all the girls are wearing princess dresses. My granddaughter is wearing the dress that she recently wore in her aunt's wedding. Spaghetti straps look pretty but we thought she might be chilly so a shawl or wrap of some sort was our search item. We found one that made her happy. I bought a few Christmas plates for 50 cents a piece. I will put cookies and fudge on them to use as "treat" gifts for my neighbors. We spent a couple of hours poking around at 3 shops and had a good time. Best thing - no crazy crowds!

I must say that I am getting a little twitchy having been unable to sew or cut or quilt in the studio. Next time I think I will give my son and his wife my bedroom and sleep up there. Even if I don't sew, I will be able to look at fabric!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. It is a day to remember and acknowledge all things for which I am thankful. Most importantly, it is a day that I take time to reflect on the fact that EVERYTHING in my life is a gift. Thanks be to God!

I hope you and yours have a wonderful day!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

A little distraction

Know how I keep talking about locking myself in the studio? I really do mean it...but there are just so many distractions! Julie (quilty sister) and I went to Lancaster County to go grocery shopping yesterday at one of the "cheap" stores. On the way back, we pass by one of our favorite quilt shops so we had to stop in. Then since we were so close to another of our favorites we stopped in there, too.

I really wasn't going to buy anything except some fusible thread. Then I saw a quilt hanging on the wall that I thought would be PERFECT for my son and DIL so I had to buy the pattern book. Thankfully, there were not any other quilt shops on the way home so I took Julie to her house to drop off her groceries and go through her scraps. I need to make a turkey place mat for my grandson to match his sister's. I got everything I needed and then Julie asked if I would go to the mall with her to pick up something and then to another place to get a gift card. When I said that I really needed to go home, she got that woebegone look on her face so I caved and went with her. Did I mention that there is a TJ Maxx near the mall? We went there, too. We got home about 3pm (I left the house at 7:30am) so I did not sew for one minute yesterday! So much for planning...

Today the Society of Sexy Sewing Sisters is meeting so I know that I will get something done. It won't be much but it will be something! I am taking the place mat and some fabric to fuse for the purse organizers.

Hope you have a happy and productive day!

Friday, November 21, 2008

What I did this morning

instead of getting ready for work!
From Quilty stuff
Isn't it just the cutest thing? I am going to make some big ones next that I may give as gifts...or if they are too cute to give away, they may end up all over my house! I think this will be adorable to hold cocktail napkins for our pre-Thanksgiving dinner appetizers.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

2 more gifts finished!

From Quilty stuff
Oh, don't I just feel so good about myself?! I have many more gifts to make but I really feel like I have made a dent...and BEFORE Thanksgiving! These little purse organizers go together really quickly. I hope my nieces like them. The pattern was posted by The Giving Flower. This link will take you directly to the PDF file if you are interested. (She has other patterns at her site!) Here's a close-up
From Quilty stuff

This Sunday S4 is getting together for our monthly meeting. I will probably bring gifties to make with me since none of them involve too much concentration. Saturday (while locked in my studio!) I hope to finish the quilt top of my star quilt. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

I thought I would get more done...

I really had good intentions when I got home yesterday but my eyes were so tired by 8pm that I did not get nearly as much accomplished as I had hoped. I did start to clean up the studio...
From Quilty stuff
...Think it needed some work? (This only shows one small section of the room!) I am a total slob when I am working on projects. Not to mention the fact that I tend to have 2 or 3 projects going at one time so that REALLY makes a mess!

I sewed across the entire center portion of my star quilt. Never one to stick to the pattern, I am having to think too much to make all the cuts. Why couldn't I just stick with one neutral? I think the quilt will be beautiful and, if it is, I will take a photo. If not...

Here is the table topper that I made for my nephew and his fiance.
From Quilty stuff
I like it. This is a closeup of the quilting though it is camouflaged pretty well.
From Quilty stuff
The quilting that I did in the white triangles isn't perfect but the stitches are fairly even and I am happy with that. I can free motion pretty well but following a pattern is more difficult for me.

I am hoping to get the fabric fused to the interfacing tonight so that I can start working on the purse organizers tomorrow morning. I love sewing at 4am!

Monday, November 17, 2008

No pictures

I know, I know - what's the point? I can't find my camera. I took it to the football game on Friday night and now it has disappeared. I know I didn't leave it at the game so it is probably in my BIL's car. I will search for it again this afternoon.

I want to show pictures because I was really busy this weekend and got the Christmas table topper for my nephew & his fiance finished. I struggled with thread breaking but I emailed the guru, Jen, and she gave me some advice which worked like a charm. I also cut out the fabric for my big star quilt and started piecing it. I think I am really going to like this one. I think it will hang in the living room when it is finished. I may (or may not) take it down after the holidays. The colors are perfect for my living room and I really like displaying my quilts.

I also went shopping this weekend and got the fabric and interfacing to make purse organizers for my nieces for Christmas. I think they are going to go together pretty quickly so maybe I will knock out a couple of those tonight.

I promise - photos tomorrow!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Where on earth???

This past Saturday, I made a quick run to Burkholder's with my sisters. I am not even sure I remember exactly why I thought I needed to go but someone says "Burkholder's" and my butt goes directly to the car. Anyway...I bought a piece of fabric to make a big, easy star quilt that my sister made this summer for her beach cottage. It is from "Quilter's World" and is supposed to be super easy and super fast. I thought I would like to make one for the holidays. OK - so I bought the piece of fabric that I needed and also got a couple of other 1/2 yard cuts. Now, what did I do with it? I cannot find the package anywhere.

Nevermind - I just found it.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Ugly rumor

There is an ugly rumor going around that Christmas is 6 weeks away. Oh, good grief! How can that be? The mystery quilt that I started for my son and his wife (to give them for Christmas this year) is still a mystery. I know I have all the fabric cut out but have NO IDEA where it is. My other son and daughter requested a large wallhanging for Christmas. They made the request around February so that I would have plenty of time. Have I started that one? Nooooo.... Do I know what I want to make? Noooo.... Michelle sent me a pattern that I just had to make. A sweet table topper. I was making it for myself. It has now become a Christmas present for my nephew and his fiance'. I still have to make 6 purse organizers, 3 pair of polar fleece lounging pants and 8 pair of flannel pajama pants.

I am pretty sure that I don't have anything "booked" for this Sunday. After about noon, you will find me locking in the studio and chained to the sewing machine.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Nothing exciting

My niece's quilt is finally finished. Well, I am guessing it is finished since I attached the binding and gave the quilt to my sister to sew down the binding. I swear, as soon as I get some time I am going to learn how to attach binding the Sharon Schamber way. Anyhoo...I did all the quilting on this one. I was a little nervous about FMing the flower design but I figured that if I could doodle them on paper, surely I could doodle them on fabric with the LA. The thread used was Sew Fine in the bobbin (pre-wound) and King Tut but I don't remember which one. I was a little concerned that the quilting would be too obvious on the red blocks but I think it looks pretty darn good!
From Quilty stuff
From Quilty stuff
I think I have used up about 2/3 of my "Vienna Nights" stash. I have a lot of the yellow colorway still in my basket and I think I can probably get another lap throw out of what is left. There was roughly 1/3 of a yard of fabric left over from the backing. It is the blue floral from "Roman Holiday" that Julie found on sale at Burkholder's. I love it so I am keeping the scrap! I have some other pieces of Roman Holiday in my stash so if I keep it really simple, I believe I have the makings of a Christmas gift.

Which brings me to a thought. I truly am concerned about local quilt shops. Just last week, I discovered that one of my favorite shops in Pennsylvania closed their storefront and are now just an on-line operation. Our group used to go there and shop for HOURS. I never saw any evidence that they were having financial difficulties so I guess we won't know why they closed but it did make us sad. With so many of us using up stash in an effort to keep spending under control during these crazy economic times, I wonder how many shops will make it through? There is a shop about 5 minutes from where I live. I rarely go in there since the fabric selection is limited, however, I would hate to see the shop close. The shop only opened about a year ago and I know it was a dream come true for the owner. Maybe I will go there this weekend and see if I can find some Christmas fabric or something. Better yet, maybe I should sign up for a class!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Shop Hopping

From Quilty stuff
A few members of S4 went Shop Hopping yesterday. We drove all the way up to Stroudsburg and worked our way down to Allentown. We managed to hit 5 shops in 5 hours and that was pretty amazing! I decided not to participate in the quilt block purchases so I was basically along for the ride...even though I did the driving! (BTW - I am not in the photo as I was the photographer.)

I did end up with some fabric...go figure!
From Quilty stuff

The top two pieces were discounted by 40%. I don't know what I am going to do with them but I couldn't pass up the price. I am thinking a table runner for the spring. The two green pieces in the center were 1/2 yard cuts for $2.75 so I HAD to buy them. The gold and green pieces are to finish the outside of a Christmas panel I bought last year that I have not even started. I bought the red batik because I thought it would work for salmon bellies. (I have a huge collection of fabrics that I call "fish fabric" because they work great for fish backs, bellies, fins, etc. for McKenna Ryan quilts.)

Every shop on the "hop" does their own quilt design with the blocks from the shops. This quilt was at Allentown Sewing Machine Outlet.
From Quilty stuff
It was our favorite by far. The coloration is off a bit because I was trying not to use the flash but you get the idea.

I have a stack of stuff I want to get finished by next Sunday. If only I could take a week off from work and lock myself in the studio!!

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