Zig Zag Table Runner – Coffee Style!

Another finish finally :)  Feels good to be sewing again!  A few months ago I started a zig zag table runner based on a fun tutorial from the Missouri Star Quilt Company.  The pattern calls for a charm pack and some yardage for backing, but I made my own charms from some fabric I bought when I went to the quilt store in Florida last March with my mom and Katie from Katie’s Quilting Corner.

IMG_1759The tutorial was super easy to follow.  It was really interesting how Jenny put it together so I wanted to give it a try.  Basically you make the top with alternating rows at an angle.

cropped-img_1777.jpgOnce the top is pieced you layer the bottom and the batting and then stitch all around the edge, leaving a hole, then turn it inside out, sew up the little hole, then I straight line quilted the top.

IMG_0197My coffee cup likes it!

IMG_0199Here’s a pic of the backing.  Love this fabric!

IMG_0200There you have it!  In other fun news, we had a Halloween photo shoot with the fur babies this week.  It was a little challenging to corral 3 super heroes :)

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The End of the Travel Season…and a Baby Quilt!

So, this picture perfectly depicts how I feel after 6 weeks of intense, crazy travel and speaking engagements!  I am mentally and physically exhausted but oh so happy to be home.  I have one more speaking engagement this coming week, but it’s only an hour away so I’ll be home the same night.  Whew!  Bring on some sewing time!!!

Bubba Jr.So, when I left you in August, I was working to finish a baby quilt for my niece and her new baby.  He arrived soon after that and is super cute.  The quilt was actually completed when he arrived.  That could be a first for me, lol.

This is the little man himself! AlexReally, how cute is he?  Snuggle, snuggle, snuggle.  You want to know the disgusting part?  The quilt was DONE and ready to go and I STILL don’t have the label on it…sigh.  So now he’s almost 2 months old and his Auntie Lori hasn’t given him his quilt yet :(  Bad Auntie.

So, here’s the front of the quilt.

Quilt FrontAnd the back of the quilt.  As an aside, I need to do some brushing up on my WordPress skills and learn how to insert pics with text to the sides, etc.  Every time I try, it ends up all wonky in the “published” version.  Oh well, for another day…

Quilt back

And just for fun, I hung it from the tree.  Can I just say, trying to take a picture with the dogs and horses NOT in the picture was a bigger challenge than anticipated?  LOL

Quilt HangingSo, one of the many tasks on tap for this weekend is to finish little man’s label so I can actually deliver it to him (or have UPS deliver it) this week!  I have lots to catch up on, so stay tuned for hopefully more frequent posts in the near future now that I’m home :)

 

Busy, busy, busy!

Gosh!  I can’t believe that:

  • #1 – it’s now the middle of August
  • #2 – that it was 45 degrees here this morning at the barn and
  • #3 – I actually have a few days of “stay-cation” and get to do some sewing!

Score!!!!!

Emmie & Moose

Emmie & Moose

Work has been insane for most of the last month.  I’ve had my hands full being a business owner and managing all sorts of fun (insert silent scream here) that comes along with owning a 3-year-old, growing business.  Mom is ahead of me once again on our Farmer’s Wife blocks, but I have high hopes of catching up with her this week :)  We also celebrated my 48-year-old “man-child’s” birthday last weekend with 15 of his closest relatives.  I’m really not sure there is an emoticon that correctly portrays the emotion I have to accompany that statement, so I’ll leave you with these 2 images instead, lol.

After

After

IMG_2276And then this was me…in the corner….IMG_1992And that’s all I’m saying about that :)  The only sewing that Scarlett and I have gotten done this past month has been on a baby quilt for my new great-nephew who shall be joining us any day.  He wasn’t due until September, but my niece has been having problems and went into labor early a few weeks ago.  They’ve been controlling it and this Monday she reached 37 weeks so now they plan to let her go whenever he decides to show up.  I’m finally stitching the binding down and then it will be ready to go.  Here it is before I quilted it.IMG_2217And the backing fabricIMG_2218So, as soon as I finish the binding and wash all the cat hair off of it (thank you Moose!), I’ll post some pics of the finished quilt before I give it to her.  Oh yes, and I need to make the label too.  That’s all I have for you as of right now.  Hope you all are doing well and enjoying the remainder of your summer!  I leave you with Mr. Moose, ever the eager helper…IMG_2228

 

 

Q3 Finish-A-Long Goals

dsc_02732b4It’s time to link up and post my goals for Q3 in the 2013 Finish-A-Long!  I missed Q2, but I was determined to get this linked up for Q3 :)  Here’s my list:

1.  First up is finishing the Fourth of July pillows that I embroidered for my folks and for us.  Yes, I know I missed the 4th (hanging head in shame here), but they’re both just in need of their backing and stuffing then they’ll make good annual decorations for us both.  Totally doable :)IMG_21052.  I want to finish this little table runner by adding the backing, quilting, and binding.  It’s made of some of the fabrics that I purchased in Florida when I was with my Mom.  I love it and it shouldn’t take me long to whip out if I can just get some darned time at my machine :)cropped-img_1777.jpg3.  Farmer’s Wife Quilt – 20 more blocks (June, July, August, and September).  Hard to believe we already have about 30 blocks complete!

4.  I haven’t named this quilt yet, but I really like it.  I want to get it sandwiched, basted, quilted, and bound.  Not sure if it will be living with me permanently, but I want to get it finished.IMG_1070That’s it for me!  Have a great weekend everyone!

Eye Candy! IQF Chicago June 2013

Sorry for the delay on posting the eye candy!  Life has been nuts on all sorts of levels here.  I guess that’s just the norm at age 45????  Sigh…sure as heck beats the alternative right?  :)

So, without further ado…here you go.  I give you IQF Chicago!  Warning…this post is very picture heavy.  Photos were permitted in the majority of exhibits with the specification that any photos posted on personal websites include appropriate credit for each artist and note that the photos were taken at the International Quilt Festival.  You also have my apologies for the formatting of some of the photos and text.  For the life of me, I would have them lined up beautifully and then every time I saved my draft in WP they got wonky on me…and I got tired of trying to edit them, so I figure you’ll like the pictures regardless.  Enjoy :)

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This was our first view of the show floor.  Mom had never been to an IQF event before, so she was really excited.  I have been to Houston and LOVED it, but this is the first time I was able to share it with Mom, thus making it just as exciting for me and something I had looked forward to for MONTHS!  We started planning this when I visited them in Florida in March :)

Family by Toshiko Maeda

Family by Toshiko Maeda

This quilt represents the artist’s family of 3 Boston Terriers and a Pug and their various antics.  It was crazy quilted, hand pieced, embroidered, machine appliqued, and hand quilted.

Family by Toshika Maeda

Family by Toshika Maeda

Family by Toshiko Maeda

Family by Toshiko Maeda

I apologize in advance…you’ll notice what tends to draw my eye are the animal related quilts, lol.  What do you expect from a veterinarian?  Seriously? :)

Crime Scene Investigation by Paula Salzman

Crime Scene Investigation by Paula Salzman

CSI by Paula Salzman

CSI by Paula Salzman

This quilt, based on the author’s two dogs was hilarious!  Quilted into the quilt were little sayings like, “I honestly think you left the steak on the kitchen counter for me.  I am a carnivore, not a vegetarian.  It would help if you removed the plastic wrapping.  That way there would be less mess to clean up.”

Crime Scene Investigation by Paula Salzman

Crime Scene Investigation by Paula Salzman

Or, even funnier…”What makes you think I tore up your underpants? Just because you found them in the backyard under the bushes with the crotch missing does not mean that I did the deed.  Remember when Fido came to visit?  I confess….he did it…NOT me!

Next up, “Ms. MacDonald Had a Farm”.  This quilt was stunning.  It’s the result of much work by Lynn Czaban and members of the Hanging by a Thread group in Vancouver, Washington.IMG_2013

Cantena by Timna Tarr

Cantena by Timna Tarr

And in case you think that the only quilts that I love are animal quilts, this one made me smile.  It’s called Cantena and the artist is Timna Tarr.  This quilt was based on an Endless Chain quilt from the 1940′s that belonged to the artist’s mother.  It was paper-pieced, hand-appliqued, and machine and hand quilted.

This quilt might have been my favorite in the entire show.  Perhaps because it reminds me of my own golden boy???  Hmmm…surely not!  Rusty’s New Teddy Bear, by Tonya Littmann, won judge’s choice by John Flynn in the art miniature category.  It was ink-jet photo transferred, machine quilted, and thread painted.  It depicts the death of Rusty’s teddy bear in less than 4 hours…a common “gutting” occurrence in our household.  Love, Love, LOVE!

Rusty's New Teddy Bear

Rusty’s New Teddy Bear
by Tonya Littmann

Sunburst, by Connie Watkins, was hand-pieced and hand quilted.  It was based on a picture of an antique quilt that the artist saw in the Folk Art Museum in New York.  She didn’t have a pattern, just a picture of an antique quilt from the 1800′s.

Sunburst by Connie Watkins

Sunburst by Connie Watkins

One of the exhibits was “The Naperville Modern  Quilt Guild Presents:  A Modern Spin On The Log Cabin Block.”  The Naperville Modern Quilt Guild had a really nice exhibit full of modern log cabin interpretations.  I love log cabin quilts…one of these days I’ll make one.  Here are a few that I really liked.

Off the Beaten Path by Nancy Lindberg quilted by Robin Adams

Off the Beaten Path
by Nancy Lindberg
quilted by Robin Adams

The Long Winter by Catherine Redford

The Long Winter
by Catherine Redford

Schwerkraft (Gravity) by Cheryl Sleboda

Schwerkraft (Gravity)
by Cheryl Sleboda

From Humble Beginnings by Lisa Winn Noonan

From Humble Beginnings
by Lisa Winn Noonan

Skyfall by Sharon Maroni quilted by Robin Adams

Skyfall by Sharon Maroni
quilted by Robin Adams

IMG_2047

Improv Logs by Svetlana Sotak

Enough log cabins for you?  LOL, I thought they were very cool.  Next up was an awesome quilt called “The Quilt Show” by Carole Corder.  It’s an 80″x80″ quilt from the special exhibit “Traditional Treasures 2013″.

The Quilt Show by Carole Corder

The Quilt Show
by Carole Corder

The Quilt Show by Carole Corder

The Quilt Show by Carole Corder

The pictures don’t do this quilt justice.  It was hand and machine pieced, hand quilted, and needle-turn appliqued.  Bits of fabric from her paternal grandmother’s quilts are even included.  This was truly incredible!

The Quilt Show by Carole Corder

The Quilt Show by Carole Corder

Check out the detail in this little Dresden Plate quilt!  Amazing….

The Quilt Show by Carole Corder

The Quilt Show by Carole Corder

And of course, I loved the detail of the kitty in the quilt shop window :)

And last but not least, look at the little yo-yo quilt.  Yes, these are real yo-yo’s hanging from the main quilt.  Note the cute little bunny at the base of the tree as well.  Sigh…so wonderful!

The Quilt Show by Carole Corder

The Quilt Show by Carole Corder

Moving on….

The next quilt was called “Convergence” by Latifah Saafir.  She took bias strips and appliqued them down onto a background fabric, then quilted it.  I thought it was very striking.

Convergence  by Latifah Saafir

Convergence
by Latifah Saafir

This next exhibit was one of the most interesting and fun to explore just because it was SO unique.  It was called a Quilted Yurt, made by Linzi Upton from Scotland.  Here is a link to Linzi’s blog explaining how the Quilted Yurt came about.  The pictures just don’t do it justice…really they don’t.  Mom and I really enjoyed taking our time and exploring the yurt, inside and out.

The Quilted Yurt by Linzi Upton

The Quilted Yurt
by Linzi Upton

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The Ceiling of the Yurt

IMG_2054

Inside the Yurt

And last but not least, the exhibit that had me giggling so hard I was snorting sometimes…ChiCOWgo.  These quilts were all inspired by the various artists’ take on the pattern in a book “Out of the Box with Easy Blocks” by Mary Lou Weidman and Melanie McFarland.  All of these quilts were based on interpretations of the Purple Cow.  The embellishment on these quilts was phenomenal.  I swear, I looked like a loon strolling the aisles smiling, giggling, and pointing things out to Mom.

Micro Moo by Melanie McFarland

Micro Moo
by Melanie McFarland

First up is “Micro Moo” by Melanie McFarland.  this was 15″x15″ and so cute.  If you click on the picture and look closely you can see the little beads on the udders and the little jeweled horse shoe hanging from her nose.  Precious!  Then the original Purple Cow by Mary Lou Weidman.

Purple Cow by Mary Lou Weidman

Purple Cow
by Mary Lou Weidman

Next up was “COWculator” by Connie Donaldson.  This quilt featured cute little sayings like “cows>bulls” and other things incorporating mathematics into the quilt in a very fun way.

COWculator by Connie Donaldson

COWculator
by Connie Donaldson

COWculator  by Connie Donaldson

COWculator
by Connie Donaldson

Next up is PoCOWdot by Blair Halbrooks.  Dot made me smile with all of her fun, cheery fabrics and embellishments.  My favorite part was in the description where Blair says she doesn’t mind loaning Dot out, but she’ll be happy when she travels back home :)

PoCOWdot by Blair Halbrooks

PoCOWdot
by Blair Halbrooks

Then there was the fun “And The Cow Says Boo!”, by Peggy Baldwin-Clayton.

And The Cow Says Boo! by Peggy Baldwin-Clayton

And The Cow Says Boo!
by Peggy Baldwin-Clayton

Seriously, check out the face on this cute girl!!!!

And The Cow Says Boo! by Peggy Baldwin-Clayton

And The Cow Says Boo!
by Peggy Baldwin-Clayton

And the last in our little cow exhibit…Vino COW, by Sandy Thompson.

Vino COW by Sandy Thompson

Vino COW
by Sandy Thompson

See the corkscrew udders?  So flippin cute!!!!

Vino COW by Sandy Thompson

Vino COW
by Sandy Thompson

Well crew, that’s it!  I hope you enjoyed the eye candy…I know Mom and I had a blast.  I’ll do a separate post showing you my haul from the show in the next week or so :)

IMG_2055

Q2 FAL aka Q1 FAL complete :)

dsc_02732b4OOPS!   So, I never managed to get my act together for the Q2 FAL with Leanne at She Can Quilt and get my goal post up.  I know I don’t get to join in to win the prizes, but I did want to share that I have officially finished everything that was on my Q1 FAL list, lol….oops :)

Here was the original post:

1.  Montana quilt – Done!!!!!!!!IMG_01472.  Farmer’s Wife Blocks – complete for April, May, and oops…NOT June yet.

April 2013 FW blocks

April 2013 FW blocks

May Farmer's Wife Blocks

May Farmer’s Wife Blocks

Be sure to check out everyone else’s Q2 FAL accomplishments (especially the one’s that really did have their act together and got their post done on time, LOL, over at Leanne’s blog.  Q3 – watch out!dsc_02732b4

Montana Quilt Finished – Finally!!

Like I mentioned last week, I have a bunch to tell you guys but I just need to find the time to get it all written down, lol.  Last weekend I went with Mom to the IQF in Chicago and I have tons of pics and fun things to share from that as well.  But for now…onto the Montana Quilt.IMG_0151So, Jim bought me this quilt kit on a trip to Montana back in 2011.  It sat in my closet for a long time because it’s not really “me”, but it was still special because he took the time to go to a quilt shop on a business trip and pick something out for me…not my typical husband, lol.  In June of 2012 I had the opportunity to go with him to Montana.  He had a business trip and I tagged along for a change.  I never get to do that :)  We went out 3 days early and played in Montana.  Here’s the post about that vacation if you’re interested.IMG_0147

Before we left, I decided it was high time to start piecing this quilt and then maybe I would get the backing from the same quilt store that he purchased the kit from and the entire quilt would be a “Montana Quilt”.

IMG_1862Somewhere along the line, Mr. Moose adopted this quilt as his own.  I couldn’t piece it, quilt it, or do anything with the damn quilt including getting a picture without his furry butt being on top of it.  This quilt was a Q1 FAL goal…well, I was only 3 months off :)  The ironic part about this is that Moose was named after we came back from that 2012 trip to Montana and we rescued his stinky, ringworm infested, ulcerated left eye self.  He was scrawny, sick, but you could tell he was going to be a fighter.  The day we brought him home, we were both wearing our “Moose’s Saloon” t-shirts from Montana, so he became “Moose”.

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So, this quilt has been a few years in the making.  I tried lots of “new to me” techniques with the free motion quilting.  There were definitely loops, swirls, and stippling, but I tried to do some outlining of fur, rocks, etc to give them some definition.  I also tried to quilt waves into the running river.  This quilt is meant for snuggling under on the couch…originally for Jim, but I think Moose really owns this quilt.

The quilting was all done with monofilament thread.  Not my favorite to quilt with by a long shot, but I couldn’t find a thread color that I really liked and I didn’t want the thread to stand out on the back.  The backing is just a wood grain fabric.  I inserted a small strip of a scene from the panels that I cut up to make the front just to make it a little more interesting.IMG_0157IMG_0154It was super windy the weekend I was taking pictures, but it just didn’t seem right to take pictures of this quilt inside.  I wanted it outside in “nature”.  I had several helpers for the photo shoot.  Running beneath and over the top of the quilt seemed to be the name of the game.  Or, if you’re the old golden boy, just falling over and laying on top of it is a good game too.  They finally wore themselves out long enough for me to shoot the quilt.

IMG_0158

So, that’s it!  The Montana quilt is finally finished and everyone is enjoying using it on the couch…especially da’ Moose :)IMG_0170

Ruler Review and a New BOM

Are you terrified that perhaps the apocalypse is upon us because I’ve posted more than one time in a week, lol?  Never fear…just trying to catch up on some things I’ve been meaning to update you on and I thought one LOOOOOOOOONNNNNNNNNGG post would be über boring.

So, a few months ago, I did something I swore I wouldn’t do again…and signed up for another block of the month club :)  Now, I swore these off in 2011 when I had just started quilting the year before and went a little, well how shall we say it, …batsh*t crazy signing up for BOM clubs?  Oh my goodness, I may never finish some of them.  I still have one of the FQ shop christmas ones to do.  Bad Lori…  And I did a good job of not signing up for more until 2 months ago.  Have you seen this quilt by Julie Hermann from Jaybird Quilts?Toes in the SandOh, if not, you have GOT TO click on the link above or on the picture and go to her blog and look at how beautiful this quilt is.  I fell in love with it immediately, so imagine how simply ecstatic I was when Fat Quarter Shop started offering it as a block of the month!  They recommended you buy Julie’s ruler, the Hex N More.  Now, I love new toys as much as the next girl, so I said, heck yeah…sign me up and send me the ruler too :)  The ruler is pictured above or you can click on the link and go see it on Julie’s blog.

I’m always a bit skeptical about rulers for this and rulers for that, but after trying this ruler this past weekend…I AM SOLD!  I will probably never use another ruler for triangles again.  My triangles have never looked so pretty or had their little points line up so easily.  Wow Julie, you sure got it right with this one.  I “heart” it :)

Not only does this baby make 60 degree triangles, it makes hexagons, half hexagons, and “jewels“.  I’ve linked each of them so if you click on the word, it will take you right to Julie’s blog and you can see the instructions for cutting each shape.  I’m telling you…easy peasy!  You’ll love it!

So far I’ve finished months 1 & 2 and am eagerly awaiting the arrival of month 3.  Look at me all caught up and all, lol.

IMG_0121 IMG_0118 IMG_0116

IMG_0117

 

Fun huh?  If you’re in the market for a new multi-purpose ruler, I highly suggest you give it a try!  I want to say I paid $23.95 through Fat Quarter shop.  Enjoy!

And I “might” have signed up for another block of the month too… :-0

Farmer’s Wife – May blocks

I was running a bit behind with the May blocks due to all the golden drama at our house, but I managed to complete them before the middle of June (that still counts right???? )  :)

Here they are:

May FW blocksIndividually they are #96 – TulipTulip#91 – Strawberry BasketStrawberry basket#74 – RibbonsRibbons#23 – Country  FarmCountry Farm

#1 – Attic WindowsAttic Window

So, now I just need to get started on the June blocks since it’s now June 17th…eek :)  Here are pics of Mom’s blocks as well!

Attic Window:

Mom's

Mom’s

Country Farm: IMG_1986Ribbons:IMG_1988Strawberry Basket: IMG_1985and Tulip is missing.  That’s it for the May blocks.  June blocks coming soon :)

Life Update – $$$ aka Bubba Jr.

Notice the $$ signs?  His royal golden self has been quite a project since the beginning of May.  Bubba Jr had surgery on May 17th to repair his torn ACL on his good leg.  It was a rough weekend, but he did pretty darned good for an old golden man.  The next week was spent trying to convince him to eat.  He had no appetite whatsoever.  I cooked for him, we tried all kinds of “low-brow” dog foods that as a veterinarian just made me shudder.  Apparently he has very discerning tastes, but by Friday the 24th we were eating dog food again and I was no longer getting this “look” when I said it was time to eat!

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And then, I went out of town for 36 hours to speak in Toledo and everything fell apart.  Jim called me Thursday morning to say he wouldn’t eat and I figured it was just because I was gone and had been at his golden beck and call for the last month.  I got home really late Thursday night and couldn’t get him to eat.  Then the vomiting started.  By Friday we were in ICU and he spent the weekend there with vomiting and bloody diarrhea (sorry if TMI).  I honestly thought we were going to lose him that weekend.  But my old man rallied and I brought him home Sunday night with his catheter still in place so I could give him fluids at home.  IMG_1945

Since then, it’s been a steady battle, but we’ve been moving in the right direction slowly but surely.  The first week we spent fighting to get him eating (I’ve done more cooking in the last month then in the last year…guaranteed, lol).  You’ve never seen two dog parents get so excited about normal poop!   The first day we didn’t have diarrhea was a milestone, then the day we didn’t have blood, another milestone, then solid poop…well, that was a reason for a par-tay!

Bubba's BuffetFor the last week, golden boy has been good.  Happy, wagging, and acting like Bubba again.  I still can’t get him to eat dog food, but he loves anything with beef or bread.  He’s lost almost 13 pounds since the end of April and he didn’t have 13 to lose, so I figure, he’s an old man, we’ve already beaten the golden odds at 13…he can eat whatever he pleases.  The current choice is white bread with Beneful Beef Stew.  We are operating a Bubba Buffet.  His discerning golden tastes no longer like anything involving turkey and chicken…sigh.  He “might” have my number…IMG_1949I have lots to update you on quilting wise as well!  With so much time at home with the old guy, I have finished the Montana quilt (yeah!!!), finished my May Farmer’s Wife blocks,  finished the first 2 months of the Toes in the Sand block of the month club, and started on my Wind in the Whiskers block of the month club.  So stay tuned for more updates!  I just wanted to dedicate this post solely to Bubba since you guys have all been so sweet checking on him :)

Happy Father’s Day to everyone!  Bubba Jr got his daddy a special card that he intends to give to him later.  More soon!IMG_1951