Wednesday, January 18, 2017

A Memorable Day

Hello Everyone,
Spending the day with friends and meeting new quilters is what I like the most about quilting. On Monday, I spent the day at Carol's beautiful home in the country, with Dolores, her granddaughter Melissa, and their friend Pam.  The goal was to have them work their way through my Spoken For pattern and work out the bugs......they discovered bugs. 
Melissa is new to quilting and take a look at this block.  She was so good at the applique too.  She's a natural, and a pro at fussy cutting.

Carol is making a quilt for Christmas and using an older fabric line.  I love the older, more traditional Christmas fabrics. 

Pan is also making a Christmas quilt with some vintage, Christmas fabric.

We were playing around with sashing and border fabric.  This fabric line is perfect for this quilt.

Dolores made an important discovery for me.  This pattern is going to be perfect using a Layer Cake.  I don't usually buy Layer Cakes.....until now!  She is going to combine the blenders in this fabric line with her extensive Jo Morton stash.  Dolores is the leader of the Jo Morton group that meets at Ladybug's Quilts in Manteca. Her input as an experienced quilter was invaluable.

Carol fixed us a wonderful lunch which we all thoroughly enjoyed in her country kitchen.

I wanted to take up residence and move into Carol's sewing room.  She loves antiques and has many beautiful cabinets to store both her fabrics and her collections.

We discussed the time it takes to dust, as I have the same issues with lots of treasures at my house.

 Such a beautiful, peaceful quilting room with excellent lighting.

Their suggestions will make Spoken For a much better pattern.  They each thought of things I needed to include in the pattern. 

Thank you all so much for your company, fellowship, friendship and your input.  I've said it before and I'll say it again.  Quilters are the best people on earth!



Thursday, January 12, 2017

Sew'n Wild Oaks Class Was In Session

Hello Everyone,
My girls knocked it out of the park again in my Sew'n Wild Oaks class.  Jeanne finished her beautiful border on Walk in the Park, and handed it over to her machine quilter.  She created her twisted lattice border by making a couple hundred Y-squares.  This was spectacular!

She also showed us this quilt which is going to be a gift.  The quarter square triangles make this look very intricate.  Well done!

Kathy made the perfect quilt for a special little boy in her life.  Isn't this sweet!  You have to love the plaid elephants.

Pat finished her embroidered quilt.  An heirloom for sure.

Suzanne finished her flower basket for Madrigal.  Her blocks are finished, so we will be seeing a completed flimsy soon.

Barbara had some leftover scraps from Heritage, so she made a runner for her dresser.  Perfect!

Valery added quite a few blocks to her quilt during class.  The original pattern was made with Civil War reproduction fabrics.  Valery is making her quilt in batiks for a beautiful twist.

Suzanne is almost finished stitching a small Kim Diehl pattern. Love the richness of color.

I'm looking forward to seeing this one completed by Barbara.  So different and unique.

Jeanne finished the borders on her Homemade Holidays table runner. She will be all set for next year.

Cindy is working on Christmas too. 

The blocks are simple and sweet.

Speaking of Pat.

Great attention to detail.

Gail is moving right along on her Once Upon a Vine quilt.  She was determined to get all eight of her blocks finished during class.....and she did!

Kristi is working on her Walk in the Park blocks.  Great color combinations.

Today is my catch-up day.  I've had a busy week with my guild lecture at Delta Quilt Guild on Monday, Sew'n Wild Oaks class on Tuesday, then my presentation at Northern California Quilt Council (NCQC) yesterday.  Today I'll be working in my office, and maybe sneak into my sewing room for a few hours.  I think I should also plan a trip to the grocery store too.  Maybe do some cleaning.....maybe not!


Monday, January 9, 2017

....and so it begins

Hello Everyone,
Well, here she is, the beginning of Prairie Flower.

This is just the beginning of a queen size bed quilt.  The fabrics are called Conestoga Crossing, and you can see them all HERE on the Marcus Fabrics website.

I can see this on the guest bed at the cabin in the fall.....or winter.....or anytime for that  matter.
I move the quilts around all year long.  When I'm not using them for shows, or lectures, they are displayed on the beds and on the walls.  I look at them as another form of insulation during the winter months.

The rest of the week is going to call for Gortex and Goulashes.  What a rainy, windy weekend here in California.  This landmark tree in Calaveras Big Trees State Park called the Pioneer Cabin Tree, is no more.  This park is only three miles from the cabin and we always take company there for a walk through the giant redwoods and always stop for a picture at this tree.  You can see the massive size of this tree in this picture of my daughter and granddaughters,.  I can't imagine what it must have sounded like when it came down during the storm.

So sad. The exact age of this tree is not known, but it could be in the range of 1,200 to 3,000 years old.  This is like losing an old friend who we visited many times during the year.

I'm off to the Delta Quilters Guild tonight for a lecture.  I hope the rain stops long enough for the drive there and during set up. When it rains, it pours.


Sunday, January 8, 2017

A Shout Out

Hello Everyone,

Over the past several years of quilting and designing, I've met some of the nicest people that I'm so happy to be able to call friends.
One of those incredibly talented, and just plain nice person is Pam Buda from Heartspun Quilts.  We met at Quilt Market in May of last year. I attended her Schoolhouse session, and won a pincushion that Pam made.  I will always treasure that pincushion.
I was thrilled when Marcus Fabrics sent me a box of Pam's Star Spangled Liberty fabrics.  Here is a snapshot of the fabrics.  The creative juices started flowing when I saw the fabrics.  In a word, BEAUTIFUL!

When we were on a road trip through Northern California last summer, I saw a road sign that said Huckleberry Hill.  I wrote it down in my journal.  The rest is history, and Huckleberry Hill began a slow birth.  I'm in the process of remaking this block.  I can never leave well enough alone......but I'm not over the moon with the flowers in this one. I want to make them smaller and with more of a Pennsylvania Dutch look and feel.  It really needs a red bow at the top of the handle too.

I'm remaking it to have the look and feel more like this block.

I love the Star Spangled Liberty fabrics so much that I want to make another Zinnie's Choice out of the red, white, and blues.

There just aren't enough hours in the day to do what I want to do.  When you run across a designer like Pam, it's easy to make my designs come to life when I begin with her vision.

It's a rainy, windy weekend here in California as the atmospheric river or Pineapple Express slides over the state.  Good quilting weather if you ask me.

We spent a fun-filled day with our daughter and twin granddaughters at Bear Valley last Thursday.  It was a brisk 26 degrees with crystal blue sky.

The cafe in the meadow was our lunch spot.  We ate outside, and when the sun went behind a cloud, your hot dog cooled off rather quickly!

It was the first break that I've taken in weeks.  I think I need to get out more.  I thoroughly enjoyed myself and did not think about my to-do list.  It will eventually become my to-done list......but not this week.



Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Projects for a Snowy Day

Hello Everyone,
The devil is in the details and the bow is done.

Once I finish the applique, I'll sew the basket section to the handle section.

I constructed another house for Kim Diehl's Journey's End BOM.  Details about this program at the shop are HERE.

The neighborhood is going to be so colorful!  I love them.

Now what is this going to be you ask?

It goes with this block and I'm going to keep you in suspense on the new design. I'm so proud of myself.  I forced myself to write the directions during construction. I'm also doing machine applique on the leaves.  The process is much quicker than I thought it would be. The red leaves are finished, the green leaves are next.

Yesterday was a perfect day.  I quilted. I played with Mazey in the snow. Then I fixed a nice pot of chili.  We also shoveled the driveway several times.  The family who shovels together, stays together. Note to self....make sure there is gas in the gas can next time for the snowblower.

Mazey is smiling!
Mazey is just like a 2-year-old when it comes to snow.  Wait a minute, she is a 2-year-old! She whines at the door to go out for most of the day.  Her hair is so fine, and the snow sticks to it like crazy.  When she comes insides, she has little dingleballs of snow hanging off her tummy, and the hairy feathers on her legs. 

Our snow turned to rain during the night and it's still raining.  Insert sad face here.  I don't think we will be snowed in again this trip.  Company is coming for the next two days, so the projects will be packed up.  It's play time.  Wait a minute.....I have been playing!


Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Why the "Y" Square???

Hello Everyone,

Listen my quilters and you shall hear, the tale of the "Y" square, so gather round near.

"I know what you are thinking.....she's lost it.  She's suffering from cabin fever. She's been snowed in for too long. Her elevator doesn't go all the way to the top."
Let me show you the power of this little quilting component. On its own, it's cute but it isn't saying Wowzer!

Now let me hear you say WOWZER!  My friend Jeanne sent me this picture this morning of her version of Kim Diehl's Walk in the Park quilt.  Jeanne didn't want to make the appliqued border, so she made oodles of "Y" squares and created this fabulous border.

She is working on the side borders this week, then it's heading off to the quilter by the end of the month.  What a glorious first finish this quilt is going to be for 2017!

Here's another example of stringing "Y" squares together.  Tiny, baby "Y" squares.  Looks familiar doesn't it?
Here's exhibit #3 from my quilting components sampler quilt which still remains unquilted.

So now that you've gathered round and heard the story, how do you make them?  How do you calculate the size? I'm not going to sign off and leave you hanging.  I'm going to direct you to my video on The Quilt which you can watch for FREE!  All of my Patchwork Math classes are free on TQS.  Click HERE and watch me in person.  Also, the link to my Patchwork Math book is HERE.  I'm teaching Patchwork Math AKA Finessing the Figures at In Between Stitches on Saturday, January 14th.  I'm also teaching it in Turlock at Cloth and Quilts on April 17th. (Just after we've finessed the figures for tax day!)  Only kidding.  My tax accountant is now rolling his eyes out loud at me.

If you ever need help calculating the figures for your "Y" seams.......I'm just an email away.  Or you can email my friend Jeanne!  Well not really, but she figured out the calculations on her own.

A snow shovel is calling my name right now.  The plow just went through and our driveway has a huge berm that needs to be removed so we can leave the cabin should be decide we want to leave. NOT!