Spring 2015 Blog Hop – Starts Today~

Good Sunday Morning!  
Today – on top of being excited about the official start of the 2015 Spring Blog Hop – I’m doing a little hand quilting on this beauty that I started working on a few years back.  The center of this quilt is a cheater cloth print – but I love it!!
And now onto the Blog Hop!!!
Buttermilk Basin
Are you excited or what!
The Spring 2015 Blog Hop is officialy under way!  Please HOP on over to Cheri’s blog at 
 and enjoy her offerings!
 
See you tomorrow as the “HOP” continues…

Day #5 of the Facebook Art Challenge – The final Day!

Day 5 of the Art Challenge. 
Today we have Land Of Lincoln ( the blue, brown and cream quilt ) – a quilt that I designed that first appeared in American Patchwork and Quilting magazine – the October 2010 issue!. 



Next up Shenandoah Valley – the red brown and cream quilt. 



And lastly is Rocky Mountains – the scrappy quilt. 



Today I would like to nominate Debbie Onaha Lofgren of Little Stitches!!! Debbie is a real sweetheart also and she is so creative. Her patterns are gorgeous and you just want to make each one she produces!

Enjoy your day!  I’ll be quilting up a storm today!!!

Day #4 – Facebook Art Challenge

Day 4 of the Art Challenge. 

Today we have Autumn Spice ( the red, black and cream quilt ) – a quilt that I designed that first appeared in American Patchwork and Quilting magazine – the August 2007 issue!. 




Next up “Harvest Medallion” a wall hanging size scrappy quilt and is a wool applique on cotton quilt. 



And last for today “Harvest Blooms Pennyrug” This is a wool pennyrug/mat pattern! 



Today I would like to nominate Carrie Nelson formerly of Miss Rosie’s Quilt Co. and now with the most awesome company – Moda Fabrics United Notions. I remember way back when we both were just beginning our quilting careers. I met this sweet, crazy talented lady in Houston, Texas at International Quilt Market. This gal has so much talent and creativity it’s just amazing!

Today I’m off to quilt with my Aunts and Cousin!  What are you up to?  Happy Quilting!

Day 3 of the Facebook 5 Day Artist Challenge!!

Day 3 of the Art Challenge. 

Today we have Cinnamon & Nutmeg ( the red, brown and tan quilt ) – a quilt that I designed that first appeared in American Patchwork and Quilting magazine – the October 2007 issue!. 



Next up “Seven Sisters” a small scrappy quilt that is in my book “Cozy Quilts” and is a wool applique on cotton quilt. 



And last for today “Bittersweet Blossums” This is a wool pennyrug/mat pattern! 



Today I would like to nominate Evonne Cook of Clothesline Quilts. I had the privilege of finally meeting this uber talented gal when we worked on a group project that debuted in Kansas City, Kansas for International Quilt Market a couple years back. She is one of the sweetest people and her talent and design eye is just amazing!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!  Happy sewing!

Great Way To Start My Day!!!



This morning I’m enjoying a little peaceful quiet stitching time before my day gets all busy and hectic! I’m working on another Patchwork of the Crosses blocks. I really am enjoying hand piecing these blocks. They go together so quickly and choosing the fabrics for each one is so much fun!
Later I’m off to the chiropractor and then this evening we will watch my daughters 8th grade graduation ceremony! Then I will officially have two high school students in my home!
Just wanted to let you all know I have some great eBay auctions going right now! I have a lot of my quilts up for sale, some fabric bundles, and a ton of quilting patterns by other designers that I’m trying to weed out a bit! My eBay ID is sewunique or you can follow the link below to view my goodies!
There is one quilt I have up for auction and a portion of the proceeds will be going to the American Red Cross to help out a little with those disastrous tornadoes in Oklahoma and the surrounding area! I just cannot imagine what those poor people are going through.  Tough times for sure and it’s so sad.
Here’s the quilt:

 Hope you all have a wonderful day and get the chance to sit and sew for a little while!


Hands All Around Quilt

 I’ve been slowly working on this quilt for a few months now – I cannot remember for the life of me if I shared this with you already or not!
This is the Hands All Around quilt block and I’m using a pattern from a binder collection of patterns called: Best Loved Quilt Patterns.  I found this collection of patterns on ebay a few years back.  I love this collection of patterns – lots of oldie but goodie style quilts!~  Here’s a picture of the cover on the binder:

So far I have 3 completed quilt blocks and I’m working on a fourth.  They are a nice large finished size block and I’m using a fabric from the Civil War Ladies fabric line by Judie Rothermel for Marcus Brothers!  It works perfect in the center of these blocks – Don’t you think?

A few of my quilts back from the longarmer!

I’ve been testing out new longarm quilters.  So far I’m pleased with the 2 different people that have quilted these quilts for me and will keep them on my list to send quilts to.  These quilts were all simply quilted in easy patterns – nothing special.  
I keep 2 different lists of longarm quilters – one list has my quilters that have perfected easy all over pattern designs such as a nice smallish/mediumish size stipple.  I look at the thread tension on the front and the back, I look to see if they have left threads hanging all over or if they have clipped them off.  I know what kind of work I do and I try to send my tops out all perfectly pressed, squared and threads clipped.  So I expect a certain degree of professionalism in the people I hire to longarm – make sense? 
Anyhow, I have another list of quilters that are local to me that I love to work with because of their specific talents and turn around time.  I have 2 local longarmers that I trust to do detailed work on my most precious quilts – either personal quilts or ones that I do to create patterns from.
Being a pattern designer can be a bit tricky when it comes to having your quilts quilted.  You cannot have too much of the beautiful quilting stand out to a point where it “hides” your design and all you see is the quilting, yet at the same time you cannot have your quilts quilted in some yucky fashion that it will glare out at you on the pattern covers or from the actual quilts if you see them on display at a trunk show.  Ask me how I know this – I’ve experienced both of these options.  One quilt was quilted so beautifully that is all you saw – that pattern sold terribly and every time I hung the quilt at a show I was asked “who quilted it” and “what quilting pattern was used on this quilt!”  
Then I have a disaster quilt that I quilted “very, very” quickly because I was leaving for a show the next day.  I did a huge stipple – and didn’t realize my tension was horrible on the back.  The first show it hung at, I put the quilt front and center in the booth draped on a pole to hide the back – kind of gathered up at the top and sure enough – it was pulled on and inspected by many customers and I heard some rather negative things that day about “whoever” quilted this doesn’t know what they are doing!  LOL I was beet red with embarrassment for that entire day until after the show, when I promptly took the quilt down and arranged it in the booth so no one could see the back of that wretched thing from that day forth!
I’m almost finished building a new website – nothing special just wanted a fresh new look – and I’d like to include a page on my website of great longarm quilters that you personally have used and trust and have done a great job of quilting your beauties.  I will be listing the people that I trust to do my longarming so that you have access to great longarmers also. So – if you have any suggestions, I would appreciate it!  I have a few more quilt tops laying around here that need finishing!
Here are the three quilts I just received back last week!  Enjoy!

Of course I had to get Bella’s approval on the quality of the quilting and she approved!  I swear sometimes I think I have a cat that dreams of being a model – some of the poses that she does are just hilarious!

This is a bowtie quilt from one of Pam Buda’s Prairie Women Sewing Circle Clubs.  Pam owns Heartspun Quilts and has a great website and blog you can visit!

This is a scrappy tumbler quilt I started awhile back at one of the retreats I went on at Primitive Gatherings Quilt Shop in Menasha, Wi.  That was a fun weekend.  I was able to get most of this quilt pieced that weekend even with one hand all wrapped up after having carpal tunnel surgery!
This one is just a hodge podge of pieces and scraps I sewed together.  I found a bunch of triangles that I had string pieced so I made those into a star shape.  2 large stars are in the center of this quilt and then on the side borders are a bunch of string pieced square blocks I found and wanted used up.  It’s a funky scrappy quilt for sure!

It’s just that kind of day…

Not feeling like working on much of anything but my hexagon quilt.
I woke up this morning with this quilt on my mind – so that’s the route I’m taking today!

Here’s the line up for this spectacular “A Primitive Christmas Blog Hop”  All the links and dates are provided for each of the blogs you will just have to visit to join in on all this fun and excitement!

Dresden Plate Quilt Finish & Another Give Away!

This poor quilt was nearly finished and just sitting in a plastic tub waiting for me to get a little time to give it some attention.  I won all the petals from these dresden plate blocks already pre – cut and partially ready to go in an ebay auction probably 3 – 4 years ago.  I slowly started making the blocks that finish at 14 1/2″ square.  Life got in the way, many quilt shows and new pattern designs, surgeries, other interests came and went.  Finally last week I pulled this project out again determined to get it finished!

I was shocked – all 20 blocks were finished and I had forgotten that I was this far along on this quilt!  Nearly all the sashing strips were sewn and cut to size.  And nearly all the nine patches were sewn and ready to go.  I did a little happy dance and started arranging the pieces on my design wall.  These are the kind of surprises I like!

Then gorgeous weather set in here and my flower and vegetable garden started screaming my name and this quilt got set aside for a few more days.

Then once again, I was in the mood and determined to finish this quilt once and for all today.  And here she is – I hope you enjoy the pictures!  Oh – but wait – I’m not finished yet!!!  I’ve got a little surprise for some lucky person at the bottom of this blog post – yes – it’s another give away!!  Be sure to read and scroll all the way down!

The finished quilt.

A close up of the red polka dot flower centers.

A close up of the tiny pin dot red and white fabric in the sashing and also the white on white fabric!

Another fun shot of the quilt!

The backing fabric – found in my stash!!!!  Helped me clear out 7 yards!
Now – are you ready for a little fun?  I’ve had a lot of great comments on my facebook page about this quilt – so I thought I’d do another fun little giveaway!  I have 23 sets of pre-sewn dresden plate petals left over.  I do not see me making another bright dresden plate quilt like this again in the near future.  Bright quilts are fun to make, but I’m ready to play with my reproduction fabrics again for awhile.
Here’s a picture of the 23 sets of petals – all individually bagged with 20 petals per bag!  I’m also going to include my freezer paper templates for the center of the dresdens!  (That’s what those white circles are in the lower right hand corner of the photo!)
This is a photo of one of the baggies of petals all arranged for you to see!
Here’s a quick picture to show you how the tips of each petal have been stitched already by whomever it was that I won this auction from!  All you have to do is sew the petals together! (I will say – not all the petals are exactly perfect – I did have to make a few adjustments on a couple of them – but nothing major at all!)
So – leave me a comment and tell me what you think of my quilt and I’ll draw the lucky winners name on Friday and send that person all 23 packages of these pre-sewn petals to give you a little jump start in created your own Dresden Plate quilt!
If you are making the same size quilt as shown above.  My dresden squares are 14 1/2″ square finished (cut your background squares to 15″).  The sashing strips are cut 2″ wide and the squares for the nine patches are also cut 2″ square.  Now – there was a lot of waste fabric on those stashing strips when using such a large size block – I think if I even make this pattern again, I might cut the block size down a bit.  When I sewed the 3 strips together for my sashing and then cross cut those pieces to 15″ long – that left me only able to cut two total sashing strips from each set of fabrics!  That left me with a bunch of red/white/red sashing strips left that measured about 11″ to 12″ long.  What a waste!  Anyhow – just thought I’d toss that tip out there for ya!  I wanted a lot of background on my blocks for some pretty quilting – but at the same time, ended up with a lot of waste!  The finished quilt measures 80 1/2″ x 99 1/2″

I’d say 99% of the time that I spend designing new patterns I’m totally “into it” and raring to design the “next big thing”. But part of the reason I decided to stop selling fabric on my website at the beginning of this year and traveling and vending at all the quilt shows was so that I could have more “me” time. I’m sure you can understand that – we all have busy lives and from time to time we just want a few minutes to ourselves to be selfish and just say “enough of the world – its all about me.”

I’ve been really busy devoting almost 100% of my time lately to working on new projects to be introduced next month at quilt market and I’m having a blast doing it. But this afternoon I’m taking a little time for myself and pulled an old project out of its storage bin. Here she is:


This is a small quilt I hand pieced and started hand quilting probably three years ago. I had fun looking at all the bits and pieces of fabric and the pattern templates and all my little notes that were stored with her in her tote – quietly sitting on the shelf waiting to see daylight again. Well, I just feel like a mini break today for a couple hours to rejuvenate myself and this little quilt will get some of my attention today!

As well as this new magazine that just arrived in the mail today:

And I’m going to enjoy looking at these pretty flowers today while I stitch the day away. Thank you to my hubby and my neighbor for the “purty” flowers they surprised me with yesterday!

Then later this evening – ill jump back into market prep and start stitching on this new design:

And I know a friend of mine that is having a few struggles in her life is going to read this today. My dear friend I’m thinking of you today and hope that you will join me today and take time to smell the flowers around you – I know you have a beautiful yard filled with gorgeous flowers right now and a great swing out there too, that you can go sit down in and enjoy a little quiet time for yourself. I know also that you like to do a little hand stitching every now and then. So grab a project dear friend and go stitch for awhile! Life will get better! Remember – everything happens for a reason! Things will get better!

For the rest of my friends in blog land – I hope you have a great day and remember to indulge yourself in something just for yourself every now and then! What is your favorite way to relax?

And don’t forget – we are having a blog give away and will draw the winners name tomorrow! If you missed the blog post talking all about that – here’s the link and don’t forget to comment there to enter for the drawing!

And here is a quick pic I just snapped of Queen Bella taking a little afternoon nap! Isn’t she cute!


Tara
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