Saturday, August 22, 2015

My (New) Old Kentucky Home

Oh my!  The roller coaster ride continues!  Get this...I'm moving to KENTUCKY!  I can't believe it! My husband very recently accepted a job with UPS and so we'll kick the Texas dust off our boots and head to Louisville, Kentucky.  It's all very short notice and things are moving so quickly.  We've found a nice rental house in Louisville.  Get this... it's only 990 square feet! Yikes!  Oh well, it will work while we look around and get a feel for where we want to put down our roots.



There's a semi-finished basement that is not included in the square feet and will become my quilt studio.   The really nice thing is that it has a little half bath in basement... convenient, huh? It will be soooo hard to leave Texas because my kids and grandbabies live here but ya gotta do what ya gotta do, right?



So, I'm in this state of "HURRY HURRY HURRY!  Get things done by the end of August because after that its moving time!"  If you'll remember, I started May Flowers at Jo's Country Junction Retreat in West Union, Iowa at the end of July.  Well, I finished!  This isn't the greatest pic... I had to stand on a counter to get it... I'll take some outdoor pics tomorrow but I just HAD to share it!  It is really different for me.  I tend to do more traditional patterns with "civil war' fabrics and colors.  I had to really dig in the stash to get these brights and truth be told I did buy about 8 one-third cuts of fabric to have some variety.







I pieced together the back using leftover block fabrics and a star block that I had Kelli Hanken and Jo Kramer, the designers and instructors, sign. You can see Bobbins Hunter, my cat, inspect the quilting.  He's very particular.









The star was placed into a 'rejected' flower that I made for the top but decided that it didn't work... not enough contrast between the hot pink flower and the red center. I had planned to put the signature star on the front but forgot about it as I was constructing the top!







I pulled the embroidery machine out and made a label and incorporated it as part of the back.  I thought I was being clever but I didn't consider that when I quilted the top, the label would get quilted too.  It actually worked out ok and I didn't have to hand stitch it to the quilt so, yea for me!  If you look closely, you'll see that I used some Iowa fabric I found at the LQS for the label.








I also want to share this quilt that I quilted for a customer.  I don't usually share customer quilts but I really love the way this one came out.  The quilter is a new quilter and likes to incorporate hand embroidery into her tops.  This quilt is for her son and is just the center of the quilt.  I love the way Spidey looks like he is jumping out of the quilt.









So, I know this is getting a little long but one last thing.... a little tip from me to you. I was making the binding for May Flowers and needed to measure the length to make sure that I had enough.  I feel like I always need to measure at the ironing board.  Sometimes it's binding, sometimes it stash. Anyway, I have a measuring tape and rulers but they always end up in the way or on the floor. My solution?  I took my ruler and marked my ironing board  cover.  Yep, just grabbed the Sharpie and problem solved.  I marked a full yard along the board using the most common measurements.   Works like a charm and I'm not wasting a bunch of time looking for my tape measure or ruler.  Score!

Well, I have so much to get done this weekend so I better get to it!

Piece and Joy

Irene

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Scrappy Bargello 2


I did it!  I finished another Scrappy Bargello quilt! This one was commissioned by my Uncle Frank and Aunt Gloria.  They were here for a visit over the summer and the room they were in had my Scrappy Bargello on the bed.  They really liked it and asked if I could do one for them and so I did. This is a really great pattern if youv'e crossed that fine line from pre-cut stash builder to jelly-roll hoarder.  It looks really intimidating and like it has lots of layout and planning but Bonnie's pattern requires only 2 ½ inch strips!
  
The secret to success here is in the cutting instructions.  You can find them on Bonnie's blog along with the Braided Border instructions which are here.  
  

And don't worry, I made sure to give Bonnie the credit for the pattern

There is so much going on in my world right now, it's absolutely crazy!  Lots of new adventures that I am dying to tell you all about but until things are on solid ground I have to hold them to myself just a while a longer. Believe me when I say, keeping big news to myself is not one of my fort├ęs so as soon as I can I'll be sharing :-)
In the meantime, I'll continue working on my many many ongoing projects.  Currently on my design wall is May Flowers which is a quilt from the book Country Girl Modern.  This is from the class I took in Iowa with Jo Hansen and Kelli Hanken of Jo's Country Junction.  I have to say it's a great quilt that goes together very quilckly as there are no seams to match; an excellent choice if you are a beginner or teaching a beginner class.  I have all the pieces and parts done EXCEPT for the oodles of little star blocks. The stars are of the sew and flip variety which means drawing diagonal lines across a billion squares. I know a lot of people like to "aim and shoot" when doing these but I find that it takes me longer to do that because I am constantly ripping out the ones where my aim was poor :-{ 


One thing I do when I take a class with the designer of a quilt is to have them sign a block.  In this case, I took one of the star units and made the center neutral instead of blue so Jo and Kelli had a nice signature space. Once I get it all laid out I'll decide if this will be part of the actual top or if it will become part of the label.  I'm leaning toward the top.


Well, I better get on the stick.  I have a ton of stuff to do in preparation for all those big changes I mentioned earlier and I'm already waaaaay behind the power curve!  

Piece and Joy!



Irene


  

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Oh What a Night Part 2

I can't believe it!  My first give-away and what do I do...lose track of time!  I thought TODAY was the 4th of August.  I figured out it was the fifth when my dad called and talked about the birthday dinner he had YESTERDAY!  Yep, my dad's birthday is on the 4th and I missed it, too!  Yikes!

So a day late but the winner of  the copy of Country Girl Modern is Danita Baylis!  Congrats Danita!  Please make sure you email me with your snail mail address so I can get that out into the mail right away.   It's a great book with a good range of beginner to intermediate patterns and I know you'll love it!

As mentioned in my last post, the first half of the trunk show was done by Jo Kramer and Kelli Hanken of Jo's Country Junction fame, and the second half was Bonnie Hunter of Quiltville fame.
I have had the pleasure of stalking following Bonnie to several of her trunk shows and classes and I learn something new every time... yes, EVERY time.  I love her Scrap User System and she does such amazing work and does so much while traveling...it really is an impressive thing to behold.  What's really amazing, though, are her quilts and we had a wonderful parade of color and design to behold as she talked about her quilts.  Forgive the lighting...my flash wasn't quite strong enough.


Explaining the Scrap User System

Hawk's Nest

Midnight Flight

Tumalo Trail

Lazy Sunday

Smith Mountain Morning

 This photo is of her paper piece project that she works on when on the road and it is really amazing!  She is designing as she goes along!  Amazing!


I had such a good time at this retreat and there are a ton of pictures.  Stay tuned because I'll be sharing them in the next few posts.  

Until then,

Piece and Joy!

Irene