Saturday, January 23, 2010

Pillowcases, Snowmen, Quilts for Kids, Ice Storms

Doll club was last Saturday. Can't believe a whole week has passed We had a great time with only five attending. Weather was part of the concern, other factors were family gatherings and illness. The five of us got stitching done on 28 pillowcases! Cuffs and trim strips were sewn on, only needed to straighten the edges and sew the end and side seams. I kept thirteen of the sixteen Mom and I had cut out and they are now done.

Here is a pic of the five of us that DH took for me.

My friend Connie and Mom and I all finished our Snowman hangings. Don't know why we need snowmen in the house. There seems to be plenty outside and it is very slow in going away.

The Quilts for Kids are all finished, too. Got them ready to send out on Friday. These are the three that I made for them. The one on the left in the picture is the "extra" one. Quilts for Kids would like you to send in one additional quilt for each kit that you receive from them. I ran out of time and the box I send them back in would not have held another sheet of plastic let alone another quilt. Maybe in the future I will make more.

Here is the Quilt Mom made for QFK's. She did a nice job also.

I've tried a couple of times, now, it get this blog posted. We are having a terrible time with electricity, ice, wind, rain, and snow! I took this picture out our west window because I have never seen icicles on the deck railings like this before and we've lived here for thirty years. You can also see the ice on the tree branches. This was frost first and then the rain came and turned it all it ice. The rest of the yard looks like a war zone and we will spend many hours getting all the branches cleaned up. The old soft maple trees look like they might not survive the winter there are so many branches gone now. If we do remove them, we will plant some hard wood trees that will last for a long, long time.

While the weather has been non-cooperative, I have been working on other sewing and quilt projects as well. At least two days each week I have been missing work because of the icy roads-that makes for lots and lots of creative time. But I think I will leave that for another day.


Sunday, January 10, 2010

More on Katie Squares

Here's the latest on my "Katie Squares" quilt top. I've added the sashing strips and cornerstones. Next will be a black border. The options are a three-four inch black border, or a narrow border-1" or so, and then another narrow border also 1" or so of a color and then the wider black border. I suppose a third option is to just finish it as it is. One width of fabric would about do for a backing if I did that, otherwise there will have to be a pieced backing. I have some blue plaid shirting I am thinking of using for the backing. I had almost given that piece to the Salvation Army until I saw a pattern for a shirting quilt. Now I am happy to have saved that piece. But that brings up the questions, how do you get over wanting to save EVERYTHING? I love my stashes. Finding them and what is in them is a subject for another day.

It's Sunday and doll club day is here on Saturday so there won't be too much sewing the rest of this week. I need to finish a Bleuette apron for the apron challenge and get the house ready. January is the first month of the apron challenge and the hostess gets to chose the apron to be made each month. We did not specify that a sample had to be ready, but of course it would be nice. And of course, there is work. This is a busy week at work. We will be putting up the full Valentine run of cards on Monday. Then I will training a new hire on Wednesday and Friday and we have an installation on Thursday. So free time will be limited.

So for now-stay warm and safe-


Friday, January 8, 2010

Snowman in the House

Can you imagine? It's COLD outside. It's cold inside after dark. Not really cold, but cooler. Why do we need a snowman inside? Well, because he's cute and he looks warm with his had and muff and because he's cute! (Yes, I know I said cute twice. Is there a better reason?) This is the first of two and the first to be completed and it's my Mom's. She did the embroidery and helped with the layout on the snowman's face. Some of the rest fell to me.

The pattern is from The Wooden Bear. She does lots of fun things, and this is the second of what I want to do from her repertoire. The first was a hanging that goes on this same rack for Halloween. I call it Boo, but that's not the right name. I believe that was Happy Jack and was in the Fons and Porter Quilt magazine.

When the second Snowman is completed, I'll post pictures of both so you see the differences between them.

I've also been working on a project I call "Katie Squares". That's because the beginning of this project came from my friend Katie. She gave me a bag of small squares ranging in size from 4 7/8" x 5 " to 5x 6". They've been squared up and sewn together and here's a preview of what the quilt top looks like now.

In a day or two, I'll post another picture of the progress made on this quilt. It will be a donation quilt and I think it will turn out nicely.

Keep warm!


Tuesday, January 5, 2010

First Finish for 2010

It's already January 5, 2010. Even tho I know it is really early in the month, it still seems that the month is passing quickly. Part of that is because I will be hosting my doll club meeting on the 16th. Everyone knows how hard it is to keep your house picked up when you would rather be quilting or at least doing something besides housekeeping. So this morning I set my goals to vacuum two rooms plus the hall and a few other "rugs" before I could sit down and sew. When that was done, I remarked the stitching lines on my last "Quilts for Kids" quilt and got busy. I used a silver marking pencil because the border and some of the blocks were black with brightly colored salamanders and the marker I used before would not show up on the black. The problem is that the silver was wearing off before I could get the stitching in. Between marking, and moving the Christmas tree and the table with flowers, I finally finished the quilt up about 10 minutes ago! Hurray! When the last one comes back to me, these will be sent off for a good deed for 2010. Here's a picture of the quilt--

Looks like a good quilt for a boy to me. Now on to the Love in Bloom wall hanging from McCall's Quilting-Jan-Feb 2010 issue and some potholders started from some remnants purchased a year and a half ago.

Happy Quilting!


Friday, January 1, 2010

Pillowcase Project

My doll club has been doing a charity project for the last few years. Two years ago we made up cabbage patch type dolls,

and in 2009 we made lap quilts.

This year we will be making pillowcases. Today Mom and I pressed, cut, and organized the supplies for 16 pillowcases.

These will be sewn on doll club day which is two weeks from tomorrow. Looks like a good start for 2010. I'm hoping that others in the club will enjoy this enough that we will be able to do one or two a month per person-that could be as many as 176 pillowcases for charity! Wish us luck!


Winter in Iowa

This year, winter has been tough. This first picture was taken at my Mom's house. Lots of snow! Of course, we all expected this would melt away and everything would be back to winter "normal".

HA! Winter just keeps on coming! This next picture was taken the day after Christmas as I was leaving to go to work. What isn't showing well, is that we have ice underneath all that snow on the tree. This is a Redbud tree and I have been trying for years to keep this one and a few others alive. Since it is now Jan 1st and the trees still look like this, there is a good chance they will have to be replaced and new ones planted. Originally, I had planted four of these trees to honor each of our four children. Eventually, we went to two Redbuds and two Red Maples. We'll have to wait and see what Spring brings this year!

This next picture is of the Evergreen trees along the road. Even they seem to be weighted down from all the snow.
Come Spring there will be a massive clean up around here to take care of the results Mother Natures storms of Winter 2009.

Lastly, there was so much snow on the highway that the snowplows could not see our mailbox. The mailbox was knocked right of the upright and now it is sitting on a snowbank. And while the postman is placing our mail in the box at the moment, when the snow does melt, I don't think he will put mail in a box sitting on the ground. And it is so cold-0* today, it will be a long while before any new posts will placed in the ground. Oh the joys of living where it snows!

Take care-Spring will come (I hope)!


Star-Flag Wall Hangings

In my last post from Christmas you saw a group picture of my family. Every part family unit is holding a wall hanging. The story here is that I came across a kit for this item at my local quilt shop. The kits are called Snap Sacks and there is a new kit put out each month. This wall-hanging was the July offering. I purchased one to make for myself because the price was right, it looked like a fairly quick and easy project, and it would be a good July 4th decoration.
As it turned out, this project did go quickly, and I liked it so much that I felt it would be a good gift for my children for Christmas. I hurried to the LQS (local quilt shop) and purchased the additional fabric it would take to make four more. When I started cutting the pieces for the wall hangings, lo and behold, there was enough fabric to make six! This was perfect because, now I would have enough to make one of the hangings for my DM (Dear Mother) and DS (Dear Sister). How lucky could I get? The fabric turned out to be enough because I changed my mind on how I would cut the red stripes. There is a stripe in that red fabric and I had originally thought that stripe should run the length of the stripe. When I discovered that by changing the cutting, I could get six items, it was the literal no brainer-I went for it.
These wall hanging projects even went on a small vacation with me! My husband is a fan of old cars and we attended a Lincoln Zephyr meet in Keosauqua, Iowa. While he helped with the judging on the concourse, I stayed in our motel room and sewed on these projects. Of course, after we returned home, they had to age a while since working took up some of my time-Holiday season was approaching. But the urge to finish before the holidays actually arrived took hold in time and all were successfully finished and in boxes long before any visitors arrived.
I still love this little hanging and I think all the recipients liked them too!
Till next time,