Quilting

Yet Another Quilt Finish

Well, last week we were able to finish quilting yet another quilt during our longarm quilting time!  Here is my “mock” grandmother’s flower garden quilt that I made back in December of 2008 using one of Moda’s freebie patterns.  I adjusted the pattern a bit and cut 3″ wide strips from a Blackbird Designs fat quarter bundle and then used my hexagon ruler to cut the shapes.

I love it!

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Sorry for the bad angle on this picture!  The quilt is a queen size plus and I had to lay it on my living room floor and then go up the staircase and shoot the picture at a weird angle!  All because I’m to lazy to dig out the tripod quilt stands and go outside to take a picture!  LOL

Here’s a close up – you can see the quilting better in this picture:

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Last weekend’s show was fun. The kids went with me and ran the booth like champs while I ran around taking quilt pictures and chatting.  I’ll upload those photos later on and post a link here to my webshots like usual!

I think the biggest highlight of this past weekends show for me was getting the chance to sit and chat with 3 very accomplished quilters.  One lady showed my daughter and I how to do some of those beautiful ribbon work type flowers for Baltimore Album quilts.  She showed a great one using rick-rack.  The other 2 ladies were priceless and I could have sat an talked with them for hours.  Both ladies shared endless tips and techniques on hand quilting.  They hand quilt beautifully and could probably do it in their sleep.  I also learned a lesson that I need to remind myself of every once in a while – sometimes the good old fashioned way of doing things is best.  I’m reminded time and time again that some of the tools in the quilting market today are not all they are cracked up to be and we just don’t “need” them.  Going back to what our grandmother’s used is sometimes best and all we need.

One thing that still gets me though – that tiny, faint little line drawn as a marking guideline for hand quilting using a pencil????  I don’t know why I really enjoy studying old antique quilts and love finding the pencil/quilting lines – but why does it irritate me on my own work when I cannot get those lines to erase and be gone!   One of those odd little quirks about myself I guess.  I even got a little scare last week when I washed 6 of my newest little quilt designs and “assumed” the chalk pencil lines would disappear.  When I pulled them out of the wash – they were still there!  I about freaked!  I had to scrub each individual area very gently with soap and a sponge.  What a pain!

Also – if you are interested, the Mountain Mist Blue Ribbon batting is back in stock on the website. This is the batting I use for all my hand quilting projects.  I can get several little quilts out of one of these packages!   Just go here:

Also – after speaking with those 2 wonderful ladies this past weekend, I ordered some Hobb’s Thermore batting.  They swear by it for hand quilting.  It’s a low loft poly batting – which I swore I would never use – but they bent my wrist a little and I decided to try it for my next hand quilting projects.  I’m only stocking the smaller size for now to test it out, but if there is enough interest we can get larger batt sizes.  I’ll be hand quilting some of my newer small quilts using this batting once they are completed.  The quilts those 2 special ladies showed me this weekend sold me on trying out the low loft poly batting.  Any thoughts on this batting? The Thermore batting is listed here:

Also, the remaining bolts of Aster Manor fabric have been marked down to $5.00 a yard.

And yes, we are still sadly waiting on our initial order of Ravenwood fabric.  I’m really bummed it’s not here yet.  Cocoa Express should be here in the next couple of weeks also – I wonder if I’ll get it – or will I get bumped from the order line up again?  I guess time will tell!

Plus, I hope those of you that are local will come out to see us at the quilt show this weekend!  We’ll be in Valparaiso, Indiana vending at the Quilts In Bloom Quilt Show presented by the String-A-Long Quilt Guild.  The show is at the Porter County Expo Center, 215 East Division Road, Valparaiso, Indiana.  It’s conveniently located one mile south of Route 30 on Route 49.  So easy to get to and a nice large parking area!  I remember going to this location as a child for the fair – brings back a lot of memories!

Quilting

My Proud Moment

It’s the little things in life that make me happy. But I finally, after 11 1/2 years of designing patterns had a “big” proud moment this past weekend while visiting the Plainfield Quilt Guild show.

You see, I’ve been to many – many – quilt shows and seen 1,000’s upon 1,000’s of quilts on display.  I’ve even seen our own pattern designs made up and hanging so beautifully on display and really enjoyed it, but felt a little let down each time.  Why?  Well, because even though it had been our quilt design it had never had one of those beautiful name tags hanging on it proudly stating who designed the quilt or where the pattern design originated from.

My wait is over – look –

Sandy – thank you from the bottom of my heart for stating where the pattern came from.  I can’t tell you how much that meant to me.  I stopped  and almost tripped someone by stopping so suddenly when I saw the quilt.  It brought tears to my eyes when I read this label – seriously I had to hold back the tears, because the flood gates had opened.  I stood there and admired Sandy’s talent. Her piecing is beautiful, her fabrics were gorgeous and her quilting – wow – I want her to quilt one of my quilts!  I took pictures and walked on to the next quilt display.

Then I came back to look again….

Yep, the quilt was still there and so was the name tag.  I hadn’t imagined it.

Look…..

I have a confession to make – I kept going back and looking at that quilt.  6 times total and each time I got a little thrill.  Each time someone was there admiring Sandy’s work.  Each time they where delighted by her quilt.  Each time I was so happy that Sandy had purchased our pattern and thought enough of it to proudly state on the name tag on this quilt who designed it.  I’m proud of you to Sandy.

So here’s a little reminder to everyone.  When you submit your quilts to shows of any size, please state where the pattern design came from or originated from.  You cannot imagine the feeling the designer will get if they stumble upon it and you just never know who might be viewing those quilts at the quilt show.  The same goes for stating whomever quilted your quilt – Long-arm quilters deserve recognition also!

I can still remember the first time I saw a model of one of our pattern designs hanging in a quilt shop.  I cried.  And still today I’ll see things in random quilt shops and my eyes will tear up.  The most recent time was when I was in The Back Door Quilt Shop in Indiana.  My daughter was with me and caught me tearing up – I got the “Mommmmm” warning and then she said “Mom – isn’t that one of your patterns”  and I said “Yes, isn’t that cool”  Her simple “Yeah, that is” made my day and we walked on. Then she asked “Does this mean your famous”.  It was cute – it was very cute coming from my 12 year old.  I said “No, not at all” and she replied “Yeah right Mom” and rolled her eyes.

I can’t explain the tingling feeling you get when you see something you worked really hard on, then put it out there in pattern form and hope for the best and then one day walk upon it in a quilt shop or at a show.  It’s awesome, it’s exhilarating and it makes you want to work even harder to make sure you have more “sitings” in the future.

Thank you quilt shop owners for purchasing our pattern and making the models and hanging them in your awesome shops and selling our patterns. It really means a lot to me.

Thank you to people like Sandy that bought our pattern, dug into their stashes of fabric and took the time to make the quilt or project.  Then took the time to fill out the form her guild gave her when submitting her finished quilt to their show.

Thank you!  You made me day – week – month and year.  This is one of those moments I will not forget.

I’m off to long-arm quilt today.  Working on a hexagon quilt that I pieced on the machine way back in December of 2008.  It’s all Blackbird Designs fabric and it’s so pretty.  Can’t wait to finish it up so I can show you!

I’m also busy uploading the pictures from this past weekends quilt show. Those will either be ready this evening or tomorrow.  I’ll try to get a link posted for you!
Quilting

A Finished Quilt For The Week

Well, as you know I’m learning to longarm quilt.  I’m getting better – but still have more practice to do.

Here is my second finish – I finally got the binding sewn on this week:

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This quilt is nothing fancy, just a simple scrap quilt I threw together from a lot of odds and ends pieces I had laying around.  I made this quilt top in December of 2008.  That was the time I took the whole month for myself and did nothing but piece scrap quilts and basically made anything I wanted to without worrying about designing new patterns.  I was able to piece 13 quilt tops ranging in size from twin to king that month and was quite impressed with that!  I have 2 more quilts that I finished putting the binding on this week also that I’ll post later on – they are also scrap quilts and turned out really pretty.

Here’s a picture of something else I’ve been working on off and on when I have time.  I try to take a few minutes each day to hand piece of a few of these Texas stars using some of my fabrics from my 70’s, 80’s and early 90’s collection.  Aunt Julie – this picture is for you too – I wanted you to see these!

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Those Texas Stars are a little bright for my normal tastes aren’t they! I love my growing collection of these fabrics. They are so fun to look at!

And then I leave you with this photo today.  I figured while I had the camera out I’d get a picture of one of the little goodies I found last weekend!

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Are those not the prettiest reproduction fabrics!  These are a roll of fat eighths I found – after digging and hunting for something special in a quilt shop.  I purchased a bunch of these bundles for a deal of a price.  Every single one I bought were all fabrics that are not in my collection already and each piece is different – that makes them even more special.  I love looking at these fabrics. I think I was able to rescue 15 of these bundles – each different except for 2 of the bundles – I did find one double, but bought it anyhow because I loved the fabrics.  This fabric purchase made me day – made my whole week actually!

Tomorrow, bright and early I’m off to visit another local quilt guild show.  I’m excited to be going!  Look for another slide show and pictures next week!
Quilting

The Ebay Quilt With The Dresden Plate Quilting

Remember awhile back I promised you that I would share a photo of my quilt that I longarm quilted the dresden plate design on?  Well here it is….

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It’s far from being “perfect” or “professional” but you know what?  I love it! There are plenty of places where I didn’t line the pantograph pattern up right – but that’s ok – I learned something and what do I always tell my kids – It’s ok to make mistakes as long as you learn something from them and go on.  That’s good Mom advice right there, so I better listen to what I preach once in a while!

This quilt really surprised me when I finished sewing the binding on (how do you like that solid dusty pink binding?) and then tossed it in the washer using hot water.  Those fabrics in the quilt top really feel like they have a little polyester in them and I was worried that the quilt would not “pucker” up enough, but low and behold, between the great Quilters Dream Select loft cotton batting the the cotton homespun fabric on the back and the hot water- I got pucker! I sure wish I could find the person on ebay that I bought this quilt top from and show them what I did with it!

I finished quilting another quilt almost 2 weeks ago – I still need to put the binding on it and wash it, then I’ll show that also.  I go longarming again this coming Saturday.  I’m going to try and stay as long as I can. I’m going to focus more on really making that laser follow the lines on the pantograph.  It’s a test for me for sure.  I have 5 quilt tops sitting here that need to be quilted for new pattern designs and if I cannot get my quilting on the longarm “looking good enough” soon – I’ll have to send them out to be quilted.

Now, I have to get back to work – I’m in the middle of writing pattern instructions but just had to stop and chat for a little bit.  Talking to myself gets a little old sometimes – but hey – at least I’m not answering myself yet!  LOL