Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Sweet Land of Liberty blog ending.

*********UPDATED UPDATE***** Seems it's easy enough to switch the admin over for the blog to me, so I emailed the instructions to Beth and hopefully we'll get it done in the next week or so. I don't have any plans to close it down for the foreseeable future and might even just start doing the ABC Quilt Sampler blocks and posting those there too. Thanks ladies*************

**** UPDATE***** We convinced Beth to keep the blog open until the end of the year. Hopefully I can find some way of switching over the authorship to me so she can eliminate it from her list and I can just leave it open for anyone who wishes to read at a later date. I'm looking into that with Blogger. If you know how that works, please share! *******THANKS BETH! ****

Beth has decided to stop authoring the Sweet Land of Liberty BOM-along blog. I was the only one still working and posting, but I figured I'd still plug along posting until I finished, for the gals who were still reading about my progress. But it will be gone in 3 days. Anyone who wishes to keep up with the end of my quilt can find the posts I made to the SLOL blog in a few places on this blog :

Two ways to find them. Either look under the archives for April 2007 or
click the sidebar link under "Cool Stuff to See" labeled Sweet Land of Liberty: Block by block Tutorial.

I was hoping a few of the ladies would have jumped back into doing the blocks, but I'll soldier on and get mine finished. Hopefully real soon.


Wanna strike fear in the very heart of a quilter??? well, it happened to me yesterday. I was booking along..... sewing, pressing, sewing, pressing...I am a pressing fanatic. The hotter the better. I start to press and I pull up my iron and all I see are giant wet marks. Holding up the iron and tipping it got water streaming out of the holes!!

Yep, it died. Right in the middle of sewing! My Sunbeam wonder with the 12 foot cord was dead. 12 feet people, I measured!

So doing what any respectable quilter would do, I put on my shoes and off I went. Nothing at Walmart was suitable, and luckily I went past our Linen's and Things and in there were the Rowena's. I got the best iron EVER!!

I was nervous about not having a teflon finish on the bottom but I shouldn't have been. This baby glides on air...hence the Air Glide name on the plate. It's even hotter than the other one and I'm not even using steam at the moment! Look how the bottom sparkles!
It only has a 7 1/2 foot cord but you can't get everything. I almost got the one above this one but it didn't seem worth and extra $30 bucks and I'm seriously satisfied with this model. if you need a new iron, I'd recommend this little wonder with the aqua blue belly. Just fabulous!

Monday, October 27, 2008

holiday baskets...

First thanks so much for all the nice ideas. I am really liking all the solid red designs that Kathy Schmitz makes too, as well as her solid black ones. I am seriously leaning towards that option with these designs. Best of all if I try something out and don't absolutely love it for the quilt, it can be used for other things like a pillow or something.

Now for the good stuff! I got a couple quilt tops finished this weekend for Christmas!
This is based on a pattern by Cheri Saffiote from 1999, a pretty old one. This is Cheri's Primitive Stick Tree. I seem to be on quite a Cheri Saffiote Payne kick at the moment. Of course once you make tops, you end up with all these tops that need quilting so I think I'll be doing that for the next few weeks.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

I need some opinions please...

I saw these Vintage Snowmen and just fell in love with them. I love how they remind me of 50's designs. They are very small too, only 5x7 in size for the stitchery. Homestead Hearth has them as a BOM and I almost did it that way, but I know I'd want to work faster so I just ordered the pattern and background fabric instead. I just rec'd my pattern order from Colonial Crafts and after reading through all the instructions I can't make up my mind about how to get these done.

I think I am already going to enlarge the design a bit. The whole quilt finishes as is at 28 x 42" and that's pretty small, I want it to be a throw for the back of the rocker. I'm thinking 8 x 10 or so each for the stitchery parts plus sashing, etc.

The pictures of the quilt are so dark and small that it's really hard to see them clearly, but reading the directions I realized they have tons of colors in the design. One for the hat, then another for the brim, and another for the squiggle, etc., etc. Now I don't mind doing colors, you know that, but we are talking about a 5 x 7 stitchery here! I knew they were red and greens, but not so many colors.

Now here's the part I need opinions on, okay? I'm not really into doing so many colors. They call for using DMC floss and I've fallen in love with using #8 perle cotton, so lots of colors is harder to in the perle cotton. I could do them in just a few colors...dark red, olive greens, tan, etc., to match the fabrics OR I was even thinking they might look very nicely done like the ones by Kathy Schmitz. Darlene just did quite a few and I love the dark muslin and black thread design so much. But what would these look like done in that coloration? Better than the red/green combo? I do love the fabric choices though and I will go to my LQS to pick out some lovely colors for the sashing and borders.

I could do them all in red?? Nope...oh well, if you feel like giving me some input, I'd love to have some. I might have to just buy the colors in DMC and do one of the small blocks to see how I like it. Okay..share away. Thanks ladies!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

cool things....

...have been arriving around here all week! I think the official Christmas gift giving season will be a bit lack luster this year, not because of the economy, but because I've been hauling in packages around here as if Christmas has been put on a perpetual every day event! Or so it would seem to the man who brings in the mail...hubby.

Over the last few days the haul has brought so many cute things. Not overly expensive stuff but lots of it...and in some very cool packages! I saw this cute Japanese craft book on someones blog the other week...sorry I can't remember whose...but I fell in love with this small zipper bag and had to order it!!
It was on ebay so I never dreamed it was actually coming from Japan! Who pays attention? Very cool surprise when it arrived. Below is the small zipper bag I just have to make. Can't read a word of it, but pictures work great! Now I can't wait to find some more of these tiny books!

After waiting patiently I also received my autographed book from Gwen Marston. Wow! This is a fantastic look at solids and makes me realize I must do at least one quilt like this at some point in my quilting career. I have some hand dyed solids but I feel a need for some lovely shott cottons or a whole bunch more of the hand dyes from next February's quilt show are in order.

I also got my pattern order from Country Loft! Thanks to Tammy at Ginger Patches, I got to attend the Country Loft Christmas Open House right along with her by virtue of her fantastic color photographs. I called on the phone and walked the gal through room by room picking out he patterns I wanted. When I got to the stocking pattern I said I thought it was by Joann Mullaly....I was right! Turned out I was talking to Joann Mullaly! Love how you can do the stockings both ways! I also got another Cheri Payne pattern, and one that will use my CW repros for lovely little baskets.

Now I'm off to finish up some dresden centers, some Christmas baskets, make tons of circles with my handy Perfect Circles, and generally sew up a storm! Happy Quilting!

Monday, October 20, 2008

last gasp...

Everything back to the regular routine today...cats asleep, hubby at work.

But yesterday everyone was enjoying the relaxation of a crisp chilly fall Sunday after a whole weeks vacation. We got almost none of the planned activities done, instead spending the whole week lounging about, watching dvd's, sewing and doing whatever we wanted. It was perfect!

Funny Noodle...he demands the top bunk even though he seriously overflows the edges.

The sewing machine is humming with projects, and my hands are stitching as fast as I can go! Christmas projects are all around.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

spooky tree

Just checking in for the week. We haven't done all that much this week but sit and piddle, and its felt kinda good. I had to run my machine back up to the shop because ever since it got worked on in August its sounded like a freight train banging and about ready to explode! After quilting Spooky Tree yesterday I'd had enough, so I called and they said bring it back for them to look at today. It seems oil is all it needed, but I wonder. We'll see as I keep sewing. I was calmer and quieter when I left anyway.

I got Spooky Tree on the wall last night.I was going to tea dye this one but I'll wait and see about it later. It looks fine for the moment. Can you see the spider web? I did it in the lightest gray I had so it looked silvery, but it takes enlarging the picture to see. I had to look for 10 minutes at Cheri's pattern picture to find it in her sample!!

This is the last of the Halloween quilts for this year. I've got more Christmas ones to start on next and all the regular BOM's and things to work on as they come too. The nativity is coming along nicely too. I'm off to cut out some pieces and hit the sofa for a while. See ya next week!

Oh a special thanks to Kathie...she shared almost all these wonderful strips with me for this background! Thanks missy!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

halloweenie decorations...

I might be a tad bit absent this week. Hubby is off for the week and I plan to spend lots of time doing a few things around the house with maybe a few sides trips planned in there for some fun. October is wine month in Virginia and we do love visiting those wineries! Who knows.

Just to leave you with something nice to look at before I go...I just finished and hung up my Halloween poem by Cheri Payne. It's something I found from one of her early classes and made myself with help from Sararules on the ending of the poem and a bit of imagination my my part for the rest. But all the true credit goes to Cheri...it's totally all her design!

Speaking of Cheri patterns that I love, this is the next one up on the wall. It arrived last week in the mail. Just have to add all the little fun parts. Hopefully by tomorrow evening, it will be done too. I'm cutting Halloween decorating a bit close this year.

Friday, October 10, 2008


I've thought about writing this post for a while but didn't take the time to do all the linking and fact finding necessary. Now after reading Libby's comment about liking documentaries better I figured it's about time to do so.

I always though this list of fabulous, interesting, and very educational films would make a great addition to any Home School day of learning. I know after watching these films I have learn much more than I ever would staying in my little corner of the world. These movies/documentaries take you to another place...or far away country where you can learn a bit about how others live and what they see as tradition. It's such a great peek into others lives.

So let the list begin...

The Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill... is fabulous. Set in San Francisco, it follows a man who takes care of a large flock of wild parrots. It can be very sad at the end, so if your kids are not prepared for the natural evolution of "survival of the fittest" in the animal kingdom...you might want to view this one first alone.

The Natural History of the Chicken... it's title is misleading. Somewhat educational, but really interesting. I never knew so much about chickens and how LOUD cock hens are. It has several stories in there about chickens and the people who raise them and love them.

The Story of the Weeping Camel...this has to be my all time favorite! I had no idea what Mongolia was like, or the culture and it's people. This is such an educational experience. How these farmers live and survive, very nicely, in Urts in the vast wilderness is amazing. This is another that will transfix you in the end and make you in awe of the wonder of the world. If you watch none of the others you simply must watch this one.

Kestrel's Eye... follows the daily life and struggles of two European Falcons. This one has barely any sound and no narration, but is so beautiful and follows the mother bird through laying eggs, hatching, and getting her babies off the nest. it really tells the life cycle of these wonderful birds. How they hunt and live in this old church steeple in Sweden I believe. Where they put the tiny camera's I don;t know, but you get the birds eye view of everything. Really educational for kids.

That's the list for now. Hubby had a knack for hunting the weirdest things on Netflix. If you know of any to share, please do. I'm sure he'd love to watch them. If you don't have Netflix it's usually available in a one month trial run. That's how I originally joined and we loved it so much we signed right up. I get my movies in one day and they have certainly lost money on us to date. We hate almost all normal tv, so every night the dvd player springs to action and the latest little red envelope to arrive is slipped inside.

If you do nothing else, get it for free for a month and check these documentaries out. You will not be sorry!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

give away goodies!....

If you've just come back, you must go down a post a see what a boomer head I really am!! I turned my background for the ABC block and did it wrong. Oh well, we adjust and luckily that's one reason I love Cheri's quilts. Extra pieces and strips are all part of the charm. they are all over. No one will ever suspect that added strip on the bottom wasn't meant to be be there.

Now for the real reason I am posting! I got my lovely give-away prize all the way from Germany! I entered Christiane's give-away and WON!! I got the most lovely scraps from her sewing table in fabulous museum civil war patterns and colors! These will go perfectly with all the others I have and make some lovely additions to many quilts! Thanks again Christiane for sending them. I was so excited to see them arrive!! Heck even the stamps all over the packaging was neat to receive!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

fall cleaning...

Do you ever do that? Clean in the fall? I mean serious cleaning..like a good spring clean? Well it's going on here and will continue with the big push next week when hubby has vacation. I went out and got new curtains for the dining room window and for the bedroom. Cats are hard on curtains and what ever possessed me to think those velvet-ish tab ones would hold up to two claw filled cats?? HA! The holes look like stars. Noodle leans back grabs with his claws and uses that to s-t-r-e-t-c-h. Yea, thanks bub. Plus cat hair on (sort of) velvet? Need I say more. I got the dining room ones hung and they look fabulous. The bedroom will wait for a good clean next week.

Got the Plaid Pumpkins all quilted up and on the wall just in time to enjoy for the month...maybe longer as I don't decorate quite as early for Christmas anymore. Years ago when the day after Thanksgiving arrived EVERYTHING would go up! Now it's more like the first week or so, and it's a much slower pace.

So, I also couldn't stand the suspense any longer and had to dive into my ABC Quilt Sampler BOM. Three months sitting and not touched with a needle...too much temptation! I laid out the pieces and got sewing.

**OMG!!*** I just realized I made this block WRONG!! It's supposed to be taller...not wider. Oh well that's the beauty of her quilts. I'll add a 1" strip on the bottom and trim the side pieces or more likely make up the difference in the I and J block that has wider side pieces*** oh lordy, I just made the background and then laid it out as I normally would paying no attention!

I'm taking Libby's path and doing this one in just cottons. I used wool and wool felt in the past two and it's lovely, but hard to sew over more finicky...nothing like cotton plaids.

I'm about halfway finished with the Halloween poem stitchery which needs to be on the wall like...yesterday and I hope to have my version of Spooky Tree done by the weekend. of course sitting on the computer this morning is NOT getting sewing done now is it?

Happy Stitching ladies!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

decorating time....

About 10 days ago I could wait no longer and sent off my email request for my newest Raggedy Old Annie doll to Nicole. Yesterday mailman Joe rang the buzzer and handed me my box. At first hubby asked what I had gotten then took one look at the box size and KNEW what was inside. See the Annie's are the only thing that ever arrives in the shoe box size Priority Box. Who knew priority boxes even came in that size?

So here she is...Witchy Poo! Sitting all pretty on my new black shelf from Hunka~! I was surprised at how big she is...much larger and that black over-skirt is fabulous!

I have her on my old wooden cabinet which has china in it at the moment. It's had other things in it too over the years. I'm not sure what the original use was, but probably china. That's me in the picture about 8 years ago?? dressed as a witch for Halloween. I always dressed up to hand out candy when we lived at Mom's following my Dad's death. I'd still do it if we actually had any kids. Condo's are not a place I'd let my kids go either.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Forgot a few things....

I meant to show these a few days ago and they slipped my mind...I got a fabulous GIANT box the other day with my last swap package from Sharon and her gifty to us all...PLUS my fabulous shelves that Sharon's sweet Hunka Man made for me! I think he made quite a few of these!

I piled up the Annie's and put them on the end of the bar. One goes in another spot and one stays there. Sharon made us all one of those fabulous boxy bags with a zipper. I can't decide if I want to use it for quilting tools or makeup and stuff when traveling. I think it just may do double duty as the carry all for every place I go! It's of course made from the same fabrics we swapped! Thanks Sharon...and special thanks to all the gals in the swap!

Friday, October 3, 2008

rounding the finish line...

I'm still plugging along on the Sweet Land of Liberty BOM. I wish I could just go ahead and finish it already. I'm gonna try calling Homestead hearth to see what the possibility is of them sending me the last few months ahead of time. Couldn't hurt to ask right? I could do them myself, but I'm paying for the fabric and there will be a lot of fabric in the next few packages. Doesn't mean I can't use it other things too. We'll see.

So these are the blocks I got done for the month. Because the blocks couldn't be completed without having them attached, I went ahead and joined them. In order to do that I needed the red and white stripes to be sewn in place. No biggie...that was pretty simple.

That just about finishes the center of the quilt. one small block and one with oak leaves and the center will be done...on to the borders!

I've been saving the ABC Sampler for later but I just got the 3rd month and I can't wait anymore! I started the first block. It will take a while since I have tons of hand projects at the moment, but it will get done soon.

This is the wool I got yesterday. All the colors I needed to finish the Nativity quilt. the picture doesn't show it well but the top light fabric is really a pale peach skin tons that works perfectly for faces, hands and feet. It sure was nice to dive into baskets and see it up close in person!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

so much to show...

Well I had my finished month for Sweet Land of Liberty I was going to show, and what's on the design board: lots of everything...BUT I got the best box today from my favorite store in Missouri!

QUILTERS STATION!! SO they come first!

A box big stuffed to the gills! and they do the best job of wrapping! Tucked in the right lower corner is a bottle of Distress it! All triple wrapped in ziplock baggies!

This is the wool they sent me. It will work well for lots of things. Gray, brown plaid, navy plaid and a nice piece for a dirty Snowman! I'm going tomorrow to get a few more pieces nearby that a reader shared with me and I'm so excited. Wool...nearby...near ME??!!

Tada! A box of 34 luscious plaids. Just in case you thought I was out...hahahaha! never happen in my lifetime.

I asked for 6 creme backgrounds, 6 reds, 6 greens, 4 medium blues and 4 gold and they picked out the BEST stuff. I trust those gals with everything. They don't have bad fabric there! Everything is so yummy! I just call and say what I want and they cut, pack and ship it right to my door! Of course I'd love to live near by, but then I'd be considerably poorer.

So what's on my design wall? Lots of everything..Blocks completed and waiting for me. That's the Nativity quilt background as I add pieces. I need a dark brown wool to cut the manger strips, then I'll have a better idea of where each piece goes. There's lots more to add!

The angel goes in my SLOL BOM quilt...she's waiting. The pumpkins are waiting for quilting. The beige and beige floral is the house for my Four Seasons bom ready to go into the hoop for stitching soon...the floral just gives more space for the hoop to grab. I sew on the strips with a very large seam and remove them later. That's my little swap quilt, and the finished bird from 4 seasons waiting for his piecing parts to be sewn on. The red pile next to the TV is the batting for the pumpkins and the Angel quilt waiting for the sleeve to be sewn down. I have several things from which to choose!

So lots going on around here! I'll show the finished Sweet Land of Liberty block later in another post. Happy Quilting!