Thursday, November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving

Hello quilting friends! It has been another "awhile" since blogging and quilting. Posie quilting is still in progress - making good progress at that!

In preparation for a September quilt retreat with friends online, meeting most for the first time face to face, I purchased another Janome sewing machine for traveling purposes. Now I have it set up in our bonus room where we watch television. After a grueling day at the computer I can relax with hubby and sew a bit.

The one thing that didn't come with this Janome, one that is basically for sewing for the home vs. quilting, was it was missing a 1/4 inch foot. Try sewing without one after years sewing with one! Using tape as a guide definitely wasn't giving the results that I wanted! The 1/4" foot for my other Janome wouldn't sit low enough to pull the fabric through. After some research I learned that I had to use the same shank from the other machine. Once that was figured out I now was getting the nice even seams that I wanted. Yeah!!!

I have a large container of 2 inch squares leftover from another quilt. Now I am sashing them with 1 inch strips, chain stitching them as I go. I don't have to put much thought other than sew along which is good when I am feeling a bit exhausted. When tired it is not to wise to start anything that takes much thought. 



Here is my make shift set up. Maybe I will get a nice table that will be stationary but that will be another time. In the background is hubby's beloved team, Detroit Lions that play and are televised every Thanksgiving.

Well with that note I need to run and check my roast, something special for Thanksgiving day. Our celebration will be this coming Sunday when my stepson will be visiting with turkey and stuffing. Yum!

Happy Thanksgiving to all!!!



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Monday, October 13, 2014

Progress on Posie Quilt




If you read my last post up to this post you will see I have made minimal progress on this Posie quilt due to a situation which I will describe below.

Don't you just love the green and white checkerboard border? It makes me smile!

I took this quilt top to a quilt retreat, my very first one that was in Christiana, PA. I flew from Charlotte to Harrisburg PA and rented a car and drove to Christiana, PA. which is Amish territory. My GPS took me off the main highway where I drove through an area that was strictly Amish farms. What a fascinating area seeing displays, such as colorful laundry hanging on the lines, family members in their garb pulling wagons and working in the fields, apple orchards with apples ready to pick. There were plenty of horses and buggies on the road as well, always being cautious driving around them.

So back to the quilt retreat. I had big intentions of finishing the border and making quilt backs for several UFOs waiting to be completed, but that wasn't what happened. I finished up 3 sides of the border with the last row on the outer strip to still be added. No backings were made.

I had a great time meeting these women face to face, most of them for the first time, having connected with them on an online quilting group for the past 5 years. It was like picking up where we last left off.  We ate, talked, sewed and shopped! Of course we ate chocolate too! There were plenty quilt shoppes to visit which of course I came home with an evermore heavy piece of luggage with purchases, gifts and swap items. One evening we had our own quilt show. I didn't bring any since I flew vs driving and was working hard at not taking too much weighty things with me. But I sure enjoyed seeing the beautiful display of quilts marveling their workmanship.









The Posie quilt top is now sandwiched and partially quilted. The quilting is going slow.I have to take care not to overdo. About two weeks after returning from the quilt retreat,which let me tell you I had great energy running up and down the stairs in the Victorian home where we held our quilt retreat and much walking, I was rushed to the emergency room due to shortness of breath. I drove the the local Urgent Care where the nurses did their best not to panic as my heart rate was hovering in the low 30s and who informed me that I wasn't going to drive.  I ended up having a pacemaker implant. I am way to young for this!! This is a portion I wrote on my facebook page:

As wild as it was I felt like I was floating on angel's wings, and I am so ever thankful! Basically being a very healthy person exercising, eating properly, getting enough rest I ended up having a pacemaker implant due to a third degree heart block. My body must have been overcompensating for a good while because when I was admitted to the hospital I was told I was not allowed to get out bed as they didn't want to pick me off the floor.
I am a bit frustrated that I have to monitor my time while free motion quilting since I an using chest muscles around my heart. I over did a couple of times and paid the price for it in the cost of pain! It will take about 6 - 8 weeks before I can do upper body activities.


At least one row of posies are quilted with 3 more to go an one of the long sashes almost quilted.




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Sunday, August 17, 2014

Posies

Several years ago I won a door prize from my local quilt store QBee Quilts, 2 paks of 5" x 9 1/2"  Studio E rectangle cuts. The Posies are made from the fabric line named Calypso, one that is now outdated and hard to find. I love this fabric and have used the green in several other quilts in the past!

I found a picture of a quilt with similar blocks and have had it on hand for a while, not knowing exactly where I had found it, and who to give credit to for this adorable block, I designed the one pictured here using Electric Quilt software program.

After having designed and made the blocks I found the designer. Wouldn't you know it is a free and available pattern! The shape of the leaves do vary, mine being a bit more complicated to sew than Moda Bakeshop's pattern named Trifle Dish:Posies.


 The size of Moda Bakeshop's block is 4" x 8", mine is 6" x 12."



Now with quilt top sewn together with Posie blocks staggered I wanted to find the perfect blue or green that would enhance the blocks, the favorite colors of a good friend. Lime green seemed to work well with the happy colors of each Poise. Several years ago it was determined that lime green was the new neutral color. It seems to work well with many colors.

The outside border is going to be a checkered one, an idea I captured by looking at Mary Englebreit posters and pictures that have such borders on many of her prints. I created a Pinterest Board that is dedicated to her art work. In the picture below are the beginning pieces of the outside border.




Partying at:

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Friday, August 8, 2014

AQS Quilt Show in Charlotte


...

Here is short slide show of only a few out of hundreds of wonderful, fabulous, beautiful and amazing quilts on display at the AQS Quilt Show 2014 Charlotte, my hometown! AQS was celebrating their 30th year anniversary in the Queen City Uptown region at the Charlotte Convention Center. There were modern quilts, art quilts, traditional quilts, primitive quilts and applique quilts. I stopped taking pictures after awhile since it was a lesson of patience while viewers stood in awe and discussed each quilt in detail while standing in the camera lens view. I thought a booklet with a photograph pictures of every quilt would be provided such as I did at the AQS Quilt Show in Paducah, a few years back, but instead was provided a booklet listing of all the different quilts by title and their descriptions without images. But needless to say it was a great show and an enjoyable Saturday afternoon seeing the collective talent in one setting.


For those interested the Best Quilt of the Show was Melissa Sobotka's Chihuly's Gondola (float boat filled with colorful globes). Here is a great snapshot of it. Amazing to see it up close!


Dresden's Dilemma was wonderfully quilted, another gorgeous quilt!

While there I test drove several longarm machines (Gammill, APQS, Innova, A-1) that sit on racks and a Janome that sets down in a table that had an 18 inch throat. There were other longarm vendors too that I didn't get around to visiting such as Handi Quilter, Babylock and TinLizzie.

And of course what is a quilt show without all the other vendors? All the wonderful new tools, gadgets, rulers, thread, beautiful fabric, quilt kits and quilting room furniture to name only a few. 

Vendors can be an interesting lot. Many don't even have a place called home other than their RV or have such heavy travel schedules and are away from home months at a time. Interesting and different lifestyle so different from mine. I need a place called home! Some are so enthusiastic about their items and I found myself catching their fever! Hmmm, I walked away with 2 rulers and a pattern because I mentioned to a personable and engaging individual that the quilt behind a rack was too beautiful to be hidden. For $60 I purchased the SueNami pattern created by Sue Tucker, her Rapid Fire Hunter's Star, Petite Star ruler and her Wing Clipper ruler. I hope I can find other uses for these rulers. If you are familiar with them and have made other quilts with either ruler please feel free to share.

By days end I definitely spent my wad of money on quilty stuff I absolutely had to have! Now to go and make some quilts!



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Sunday, July 20, 2014

It's Never Too Late!







Today I finished the Star Light Star Bright quilt top! WooHoo! 

Melissa at Happy Quilting designed the pattern. You can find the pattern and her clear and excellent instructions here.
















She designed the quilt/quilt block to make various sizes varying the sizes of the blocks and the number of blocks per row and columns. I chose the 24" block - 3 x 3.

She also charted the fabric needed for each layout as well as several color combinations.












While following the weekly quilt - a long, a total of ten weeks I was motivated each week to keep up with her. Some of the weekly assignments took longer than others.  But then life happened about the 8th week and here it is approximately 3 months later the quilt top is now getting finished.















I am really pleased with how the square points meet block to block. I had to pencil in lines on the sashing so the seams would line up. As always I had to learn the hard way. I had sewn two blocks together and the points didn't even come close to being aligned.











Bloom Project Link Up for July and August - go here.



Joanie’s Trendy Quilts



QOV Block Drive ~ Hosted by Kevin the Quilter 

We have a Star Quilter Among Us!!! - Kevin the Quilter
Check out his video presentation! He led a huge and successful Quilt of Valor campaign with the help of many of the blogosphere quilters! He was interviewed by Fox News! Click on the logo or the name above to see the videos showing the Quilt of Valor presentation! Please join me in applauding his great efforts!







Sarah at Confessions of a Fabric Addict is raffling 3 of her quilts as a fundraiser to help her daughter and son-in-law raise funds to adopt a deaf Chinese little boy. Want to know more the quilts and raffle go here. Read about Chris's and Nancy's story here. Here is a blurb from their story: "A few months ago we realized we were ready to think about having another child. We decided that now was the time to adopt. And because of our experience with Emmalyn, our hearts were open to a child with special needs. I began checking listings of children in China that were considered to be “special focus.” This means that they are considered to be difficult to place because of their special need or their age. One night I stumbled across a photo of a gorgeous little boy who was listed as deaf. I requested to review his file and within a couple of days (full of prayer!) we knew he was our son!"

I am linking up with:  


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Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Star Light Star Bright Progress and Quilts at Historic Brattonsville

In this photo are 9 - 24 inch blocks completed! The blocks are so large that I had to stand on a stool to arrange them on my makeshift design board, flannel tacked on the wall. Finally, I called my husband for assistance since he is a rather tall guy to help me shift the blocks around so that the brighter fabrics were evenly distributed.

I thought I had this accomplished by focusing on the center star. Once the outer square was added that shape took the focal point causing a need for redistribution of the blocks. 


I will be adding sashing around the blocks. Some who participated in the quilt-a-long chose not to. As you can see in my photo many other designs can be seen when putting the blocks together.  Since I chose Scrumptious the fabric prints are different in size and color intensity varies. I believe accentuating each block will work better with my quilt. I have the first row sashed. I will wait to finish the quilt top to reveal. I am getting excited about it!

Last weekend Mike and I decided to visit historic Brattonsville to take in the activities of the day. They were celebrating Huck's Defeat by reenacting the 1780 Revolutionary War battle that occurred close to Colonel William Bratton's homestead. If you are a history buff you can read more about the plantation home, the Bratton family and the historical facts here.


I will share a couple of antique quilts that I saw while touring the plantation homestead.



The Double Irish Chain quilt is on the master bedroom bed. Don't you love how the chain changes from green to melon color?










Isn't this applique quilt sweet? The spiral like design is delicate and perfect for a little girl's room.

There was one other quilt that I am kicking myself for not taking a picture of it. The Bratton family were several generations of physicians. In the room that displayed the medical tools, bags and etc. was a log cabin quilt displayed on a worn and rickety wicker wheel chair. The logs were rather thin with the typical red centers. I kept thinking that the women of the home were being quite conservative and frugal not to waste any available fabric. Yet at the same time the window treatments in the parlors and master bedroom were made of chintz, elaborate in design with swags, trims and floor to ceiling drapery that must have been purchased overseas.

Overall it was a good day for Mike and I. It was so nice to do something different.


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Friday, July 11, 2014

Getting in the Swing



I can't believe it has been so long since my last post! I really didn't have anything to write about since I haven't done much in the line of sewing or quilting for several months now. Last evening I completed a second large block out of 9 of Star Light Star Bright, a quilt-a-long with Happy Quilting. Now if I can only stay on task with at least finishing up this quilt I will be happy.

It appears as though we will have another year of me assisting with administration of a governmental grant that benefits pregnancy centers in North Carolina. Hopefully, now that the groundwork has been laid it will not be as time consuming and will allow me time to have a more balanced life this upcoming year - which means more time to quilt, sew and blog.

Also, I am in recovery having injured my right rotator cuff having stubbed my toe and running into a door frame. The thing that aggravates it most is moving a mouse around and being on the computer - of course the thing that impacts my livelihood. I can feel some ache while sewing but not as much as pushing that mouse around. I am still waiting for the cortisone injection to kick in and alleviate all of the pain. It has reduced but still needs ice packs, muscle strengthening exercises and taking anti-inflammatory medication.

Other than that life is good and I am looking forward to reconnecting with all my online quilting friends.

We have a cardinal's nest in our Crape Myrtle tree that is up against the house where the nest is visible in our second story window where we can daily watch. So much fun! The momma cardinal notices us and just looks at us with interest. We must not be too scary to look at. She has 2 in the nest.  The dad helps with feeding and works very hard at distracting to defend the nest. So cute to watch. There was a moment when the proud father was standing on the edge of the nest checking out his brood. Lately, I have noticed a parallel having read and personally experience men sharing their food with their wives and children. Now I see it in nature with the male cardinal who naturally participates in the feeding of the female cardinal and peeps. Did you know that the female cardinal chooses her mate by allowing the male to feed her. Once she determines that he is going to assist with feeding she then knows she can rely on the male to assist her in feeding their babies?



Joanie’s Trendy Quilts


So how are you doing with your UFOs and NewFos. 
Hopefully, much better than I am doing?









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Saturday, May 24, 2014

Well I am back and with a finish!


A little shopping in my fabric scraps and stash and voila place mats that brighten up my table. I used fabric swatches from my window treatments to pick similar colors for the place mats. Match pretty good - wouldn't you say?

I began making these back in March but work took over my life for a couple of months. Last evening I finished up the binding -  lime green that matches the backside of the place mats. More about them here.

So good to have finished a project and finding a bit of time to sew again!






Now I can show them off a bit since I have several groups of visitors, family and business, coming to my home in early June. Well my table is looking good, but now I have to get this house of mine cleaned. As you know quilters prioritize making quilts over house cleaning.

Today I pressure washed my front porch, sidewalk and driveway. If you  had seen me I am sure you would have grinned seeing me covered in red clay dirt splattered all over me. 

Once the visitors are gone and business slows down I will be finishing up my Star Light Star Bright Quilt another unfinished project just waiting for me on my quilting table to be completed. Now it is your turn.


Joanie’s Trendy QuiltsAny May finishes bloomers?

Below is you opportunity to show them off!
























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Sunday, April 20, 2014

Finishes Happen Because We Plan

Since this happens to be Easter Sunday I first want to say Happy Resurrection Sunday!  With that being said I am here to say I am seeing some wonderful April finishes of those who have linked a finish or two or more in April. Congratulations to all who have succeeded!!


One of the many baskets in the quilt 
Basket Quilt by Quilts by Jen

Jen's (Quilts by Jen) blog message, UFO Round up for March, was quite inspiring as she took time to map out a timeline to finish her UFOs. She learned that it would take her 26 weeks to make that happen if she completed at least 2 a week. There is something to be said about planning/strategizing/goal setting in order to have success. Jen's completions are fantastic! Though the basket is not her own design she does design many of her own, truly an artist at heart.











But as we all know life events causes us to prioritize the life event over our quilting projects. So has been the case for me. Accounting and managing in team with the State Director of a NC organization of a governmental block grant has been extremely time consuming for both of us and pretty much keeps us joined at the hip! Working a minimum of 12 hours a day 6-7 days a week has made havoc of my completing quilts on my list. I am thankful that I have learned some goal setting skills so I can work this grant as well as take care of my other client's accounting and administrative needs. In the next 10 days I have 4 major project deadlines. I am looking forward to getting them done and finish some quilts!! Thanks for hanging in with me! I miss all my online quilting friends!

So back to you . . .

Strippy and Framed - Quilting is more fun than Housework


Cynthia I am jealous (mine sits in my basket waiting to be completed) you have completed your Star Light Star Bright quilt and it is absolutely beautiful! The quilting design is the icing on the cake! If you already didn't know Cynthia (Quilting is more fun than Housework) is heading up a scrappy challenge called Scrap-A-Palooza. Each session is about how to best use up your scraps and stash to make some eye candy quilts. Take a look at her this strippy block with white frames. So easy but quite dynamic in appeal!










St. Louis 16 Block by A Dad who dyes fabric and quilts


Paul (A Dad who dyes fabrics and quilts) is banging out his charity quilts - more strippy ones and one of my favorites the St. Louis Sixteen Block. He blogs about having used some not great looking fabric that ends up looking great when made up into the block. He is right! It is incredible how a quilt can come out great using a what may appear as a dud fabric on its own but comes to life when matched with another fabric. There are going to be some happy recipients!!









Summer1.jpg
Summer Bliss in Purple by From My Carolina Home



Carole (From my Carolina Home) is looking forward to summer as she just finished her Summer Bliss in Purple! It is a tessellating design that is sure to please the eye! She fell in love with the quilt design when seeing it on the front cover of a quilting magazine! I can see why! I would love to have this lovely quilt adorning one of my beds and in the same glorious purple colored fabric.











Want to Link up for Bloom Project - Click on the button below.


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Tuesday, April 1, 2014

April 2014 Bloom Project


Joanie’s Trendy Quilts
My first order of business is to apologize for the expired linky tools subscription. It should be up soon. The first month was free but thereafter there is a fee. It is such a nominal one and so worth it though!  If you attempted to link up in March and couldn't link up your late March finishes please link up in April.

I have been quite out of pocket due to long hours working my accounting business. I have a couple more weeks of crazy busyness but I am seeing through the end of it. I actually have made a couple of business trips, a workshop and a conference in March. The conference was in Charleston, SC, a wonderful historic city to visit. Unfortunately, there was no time to search out their local quilt or fabric store.

Since my March was not a normal routine month I didn't complete a project. I was tracking along fine until mid-month. Many of you did complete a finish or two and more.

February and March there were a total of 10 finishes. I understand there were more! 

Congratulations to those who are blooming finishes!

My projects in progress. Read more about them here.

 Now it is your turn! Let us see what is in the works or completed!













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