. . . . . . Enjoying the journey of quilting

Friday, December 11, 2015

Drum Roll Please!

Presenting Scrappy Kelly!

Scrappy Kelly has found a new home hanging over the back of a chair in our den. In a distance the many colors surrounded by green and cream sashing shine. I love walking down the upstairs hall way seeing all the colorful 2 inch squares pop out.  
The quilting design is sections of squares with a floral motif inside each. Since it wasn't a continuous design it took much longer to free motion quilt it. Next quilt I will be choosing a continuous quilting design! Scrappy Kelly washed nicely and now has that  wonderful crinkly look. The Shout Color Catcher did its job too. The color catchers as you can imagine picked up a lot of green dye.
The backing is made up of the same green fabric used in the sashing and binding.
Thank you for visiting and wishing you a great sewing or quilting day!

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Saturday, September 19, 2015

Quilt Retreat Fun, Accomplishments and More

Hello! So happy you have stopped by. Messages have been sporadic but at least I have been blogging once a month. Summer is past and Fall has arrived, children (not mine) are back in school and the weather has slightly cooled, but not much in Charlotte. Where has the time gone?

Fortunately, my work schedule slowed in September making it possible to go to a much looking forward Quilt Retreat with quilting friends. Some of us only see each once a year, others more often as they live close. We came from Ohio, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and North Carolina. There were 9 of us. Our quilt retreat was held in Mt. Washington, Kentucky where we stayed in a home that was designed for quilt retreats.

Some of us drove and some came by airfare. We are a diverse group, but the one thing we have in common is we love to make quilts. As different as we are in personality so are our quilting styles and preferences. Our show and tell was amazing seeing the display of quilts and other quilty items. Creativity and quilt making experience in this group abounds. We learn so much from each other.

Did I mention that we had fun! Laughter rang out often! I can't remember laughing so much! And of course we sewed, quilted, ate very well (chocolate was plentiful), and visited local quilt shops.

Yes, though we did many other things like talking, eating and shopping I did finish everything that I had intended to complete. The funny side of this is I took what I had planned to finish at last year's quilt retreat to this year's retreat. Nothing exciting, but I am thrilled that I made progress. I was proud of myself keeping to my focus on completing started projects. That being said, I pieced two quilt backs - one was 82" x 82 " and the other was 84" x 78" large bed size quilts.

And!! the bindings to go along with those quilt backs! Yes! I am pleased. Not only did I complete those quilt backs, I completed marking up a quilt for free motion quilting. That took up most of my time. I used 5 EZ International blue washable marking pens and a stencil that I had on hand. Using the stencil will help me not to quilt so densely, a tendency of mine. Less quilting makes a quilt more cuddly, softer and easier to snuggle under.

Today I could pick up quilting the "Kelly Scrappy Quilt" without stopping to mark up the next block.

Quilt back #1 doesn't show all the piecing on the top and bottom. It has  3 inch yellow strips top and bottom. The fabric was leftover from the quilt blocks used in the quilt top. It took many pieces and segments to get the size needed. Lot of math happened in order to make it work. The sun was positioned low that it gave an interesting shadow of the tree on the fabric.

Quilt Back 2

Quilt back #2 is made up of 2 shades of pink. The sun was such that I had a difficult time capturing the light pink. It is a bit darker than what shows in this picture. I had plenty of fabric length so this quilt back went together rather quickly as compared to the other one.

So what is a quilt retreat with out visiting the local quilt shoppes?  I did buy a couple of things. . .  not much as I am trying to limit the number of new projects. But how could I resist? Ellen shared a Mini quilt pattern which was perfect to make with some of the leftover time. As it would be I was too tired to start a block with 64 pieces for a 12" block. Once home, I took the pattern and recreated it on Electric Quilt so I could make it as a paper piece project to work on while watching tv with my husband. I am using Moda Winter's Song Charms and Mini Charms. The red fabric with stars is a pretty Christmas fabric which is not part of the Winter's Song line.

At one of the quilt shoppes we visited I saw this Christmas tree made up. It was love at first sight and I had to have it. It is almost ceiling to floor in length. . .  a big tree. Hopefully, I will get it made up and it will be our Christmas tree in our bonus room. It has miniquilt blocks for decorations, each hanging on a red button. So cute!

The quilt retreat was 5 days including traveling days! My husband and sweet Cassie missed me! The following morning preparing to run errands Miss Cassie saw that I had shoes on my feet and my shoulder bag began continuously and adamantly barking in a very husky tone letting me know she wasn't happy about my leaving. I had to take her with me. Hope you enjoyed reading about my quilt retreat escapades.

Thank you for visiting and wishing you a great sewing or quilting day!

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Saturday, August 15, 2015

And How Does Your Garden Grow While Quilting?

Impatiens have always done well in my shade garden, receiving enough dancing sunlight during the day to bloom. I enjoy watching them grow until they mound and fall out of the basket. Hummingbirds are tantalized by the bright fuchsia pink flowers.

I love this woven like cement basket planter. The moss growing unevenly on it gives the appearance of antiquity and adds character. I found this gem at the local flea market for a song.

Expecting another year of rabbit invasion I raised all planters, but there has been fewer of those pesky rascals this year.

If you look closely at the bottom of this photo this stacked planter has been raised by sitting on 4 stepping stones, another means to safeguard my precious flowers from those darn plant eating rabbits.

My clay pot is chipping away in pieces. I am not sure as to why layers are falling off.


Can you tell the effects of warring with the rabbits last year has had on my garden design?   

This year the struggle has been drought. I have lost an apple tree, a holly bush and 2 large size elm trees due to the extreme hot weather. 

How do you like my blue bottle arrangement?

That is a rosemary branch that is hiding the pedestal planter. All one needs to do is brush beside the rosemary to take in the fresh aroma of the herb.

My friend and shadow enjoys taking in the scenery and watching the critters. Fortunately the critter population doesn't include rabbits. Cassie would attempt to chase after them, but she doesn't move as fast as she once did having gone through meniscus surgery on her leg.

 Every garden needs a bird bath!

 So while my garden grows, and if  time is available, or I am not too tired I quilt. My tendency is to quilt heavily but not on the Scrappy Kelly Quilt. The quilting design is a dogwood flower.

Thank you for visiting and wishing you a great sewing or quilting day!

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Sunday, July 12, 2015

Scrappy Kelly Quilt Off the Wall

Scrappy Kelly is off she wall and now ready to be quilted!! Happy Dance!!

I began piecing Scrappy Kelly last November, and here it is 7 months later finally ready to be quilted.  I didn't even have a plan as how I was going to put these blocks together. All I knew was I needed to do something with all these leftover 2 inch squares.

In March I designed a couple of quilt designs using Electric Quilt. Go here to see the two designs.
My favorite was the on-point version but nixed that idea since I would have to diagonally cut blocks in half for the edges.

These are the leftover 2 inch square pieces. It seems as they are growing rather than lessening. The fabric is some that have been in my stash for many many years.

How many different quilt designs can be made from these 2 inch squares. Any ideas?

Maybe in a couple more years I will give some thought to it as for now I have 5 bed size quilts waiting to be quilted.

Even with chain stitching the squares onto the strips the blocks still took a good bit of time to complete.


 So this is what I have been up to lately quilting wise when finding time. Work life has taken up more of my time in the last year or so, all for great causes. One is administrating a large size grant that assists pregnancy centers in North Carolina. The other client sends out missionaries that took on an orphanage in Ecuador that has generated more work. If you want to more about the orphanage you can visit their website at La Casa deFe. 

 Miss all of my online quilting friends!

Linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced and Oh Scrap! at Quilting is more fun than housework.

Thank you for visiting and wishing you a great sewing or quilting day!

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Friday, June 12, 2015

At Long Last - Another Finished Quilt

Finished just before leaving for the beach.

I am really going to enjoy nestling under this quilt thinking of all the
special people who participated in the block swap. Such great memories and quilting friends!!

January block with swirling snow quilting.

May tulips with meandering quilting.

Calendar quilt is officially completed!! And in time before leaving for Carolina Beach!

What is it about digging your feet in the sand? Heaven!

Gorgeous colors - sky blue, ocean blue with white capped waves.

Sea Gulls who entertained us.

So happy to visit our favorite summer place!

 Happy Beach Bums walking on our last evening. Oh did we need this walk
after a nice Mexican dinner.

 Linking at:

Thank you for visiting and wishing you a great sewing or quilting day!

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Sunday, May 31, 2015

Calendar Quilt in the Garden

Today has been a good day!! Began it with making an omelet for breakfast, going to church and picking up a few items at the store. Jason, my autistic step son, went to church with us this morning. I fixed lunch for us,  and . . .  then it was off to my quilting/office studio quilting away with much determination that the quilting would be completed today! It is with the  help of watching a couple episodes of When Calls the Heart on Netflix! 

I did take a break from quilting to take some snapshots of the Calendar quilt since it is almost finished! Only one more side border is left to quilt as shown in this picture. Actually as I write this post the quilting is done, the batting has been trimmed and is now waiting for the binding. It is amazing how more beautiful the quilt looks in the natural light.

Each block represents a month of the calendar and each one made by a quilting friend who had participated in a block swap.  There were 13 participants, the 13th who led the swap made the topper which is so adorable! 

What makes me most happy is this has been a quilt waiting to be finished for several years - I believe it has been about 4 years.

Each block is quilted with a different design. 

Now to sew the binding on so I can celebrate another UFO completed. Oh, yes a label for the back will also be made listing the names of each who made a block.

Thank you for visiting and wishing you a great sewing or quilting day!

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Saturday, April 11, 2015

It Has Been Slow Going but I Remain Thankful!

Four years ago when I decided to jump off the faith cliff to start my own business I had no idea that it would developed as quickly as it has done. Most weeks are 6 days weeks working at least anywhere between 8 to 12 hours daily.  Lately, I hardly can take a breather to sew a bit. A couple of days per week I can squeeze in 20 minutes or so. I have hired a young woman (wonderful and sweet) to come assist me with some of the tasks when deadlines converge at the same time. What a huge blessing she has been! My husband has pitched in more with cooking the meals or takes me out for dinner. Bless Him!!

I purchased a sewing machine for my step-son's mom hoping she would step up to the plate and repair her son's clothes that he rips up and take it off my overwhelming schedule. Not only that I really believed she would enjoy it as she has spoken of sewing in years past. Being it has a computer doesn't make it whole lot different than the old time sewing machines as they basically operate the same. There are more bells and whistles which does take time to learn. Sewing machines though are basic when it comes to sewing straight lines or repairing clothes.

When I purchased mine I taught myself how to utilize different functions as I went along. I am sure there is more that I can learn about my current sewing machine. Funny, I have a needle down, needle up feature that I didn't know I had for years. Oh my how I love this, especially when free motion quilting or chain stitching!

So as I show you my current progress it isn't much but at least I have been able to squeeze in some sewing.  I had planned on setting it on point but have changed my mind. The reason being that I would be cutting into these blocks that take quite a bit of time to piece together. So without further ado I am going to work on this quilt without feeling guilty of not repairing another torn coat instead! It is Saturday evening and I am tired and in desperate need of quilting therapy.

I am hooking up with Quilting is More Fun Than Housework. She is hosting Oh! Scrap! Check it out to see all the other scrappy quilts.

Thank you for visiting and wishing you a great sewing or quilting day!

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