Friday, December 19, 2014

Dumpster Diving

Hello Everyone,
Just checking in to let you know all is well in Sew'n Wild Oaks land.....just busy like you!  Our guest rooms will be in use over Christmas, so I had to get all of the quilts off one of the beds.  When the quilts come back from touring around to quilt shops, I layer them like cord wood on one of the guest beds.  Unless my sister wants to be like the Princess and the Pea.....I had to move the I did.

The title of this post is dumpster diving, and that's where we got this piece of furniture.  It was in a neighbor's side yard out in the elements until we rescued and repurposed it.  Originally when I was thinking about opening a quilt shop, I thought it would be a good store prop.  Well, I did not open a shop, and this piece of furniture somehow made it upstairs into our bedroom. 

This old hanger is from the International Hotel at the Los Angeles Airport.  I don't know how this found its way to our house....but it did.  Rumor has it, according to my aunt, the quilt hanging on the hanger was illegally procured by my paternal grandmother.  She somehow rigged a drawing at her church social!  Not too Christian if you ask me.  I think we are beyond the statute of limitations, so the quilt is staying put right where it is.

I love the carvings in this piece.  I just can't imagine putting a beautiful piece of furniture like this out in our side yard.  I'm always saying, "use what you have."  Look around your houses and put furniture to work to display your quilts.  Get them out of the closets and use them, display them, and enjoy them.

My granddaughter Emily, is headed over to help me prepare for the 17 people coming for dinner tonight.  Our annual visit from Santa is this evening, and Grammy can use some help!  Not to mention it is going to be good, quality time with one of the little kids.  I've made Emily's list and she is going to be checking it twice!  Enjoy your day.


Monday, December 15, 2014

Baubles and Bows Table Runner

Hello Everyone,
I only have time for a quick post this morning to show you the finished table runner.  Click HERE to see my original post about these little ornaments.

I love the plaid flange and matching binding.

I can't say who this if for since we do Secret Santa's in our house for Christmas.

I'm off to work at the shop this morning.  The Folk Art Applique girls will be meeting for their class today.  Give yourself the gift of quilting this year, and sign up for a class at your local quilt shop.  So much laughter bubbles out of the classroom at In Between Stitches.  Sometimes I have to stop what I'm doing, and go back to the classroom and investigate.  I don't want to miss anything!  Especially if it involves a good time.

Enjoy your week preparing for Christmas.  Stay in the moment, focus on what needs to be accomplished and do a little bit each day.  Most importantly, don't forget to sit down and smell the Christmas Tree. (In my case the smell of artificial tree leaves a bit to be desired!) Take time to sit by the tree and enjoy each and every ornament. Many of my ornaments belonged to my parents and my grandmother.  Wouldn't they be pleased as punch knowing their ornaments are decorating my life and the lives of my grandchildren.  Create memories.....sweet memories.


Sunday, December 14, 2014

And the Winners Are.............

Hello Humans,
My name is Mazey.  I'm an 8 month old Golden Retriever and I'm one amazing girl.  I'm also the newest random number generator for my mom's giveaway.  I have no idea what that is, but if it involves food and time with my forever parents, I'm good.  
First of all we went to the store and bought five boxes of my favorite treats.  I am in doggie heaven right now with all of these treats! 

Some of the cookies were too big, some were too small, and some were just right!  I do have Golden Locks you know.

If I had thumbs, I could help my mom write all of the numbers on my treats.  I'm not too sure about eating treats with permanent marking pen on them.  But, for this contest, I'll take one for the team.

Each person who commented or sent a personal email was assigned a number. Then all of my treats were put on the floor in front of the Christmas Tree. 

Then, my dad brought me in the room and told me not to look.  This is just like Christmas!  Don't peak, don't look, don't touch the presents, DO NOT OPEN UNTIL CHRISTMAS!

This one looks tasty.

I think I'll select this one first!
Just as soon as I got the cookie in my mouth, my dad took it out!  How rude!  Do I take food right out of his mouth?  Off his plate maybe, but not out of his mouth.
The first winner was #70!  Gill wrote:
 "Congratulations! 1000 posts is an incredible milestone!"
Then I selected another one.
#78 belongs to Susan Contreras and Susan wrote:
"Hi Lynn, When I read your blog, I feel like I'm sitting down with a friend having coffee together and enjoying the latest news about quilting creativity. The blogs uplift me and give me a sense of community with kindred spirits. You are inspiring others on a daily basis. Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year." Susan Contreras

My mom has known Susan for years and she was sooooo excited that I picked Susan's number.

I think I'll sneak up on the next winner.

#52 is Donna from So Sew Crafty  Donna wrote:

 "1000 posts! WOW! I so enjoy reading all you write while sipping my morning coffee. Congratulations. Keep posting.  And, now to Mazey, the most wonderful, beautiful, loveable, adorable, fantastic, brilliant (is that enough suck up?) puppy in the whole wide world, think Donna when you draw the lucky name." 

I always do what I'm told to do Donna.

My work is done here.  This is exhausting! Can I go chase squirrels now?

Many thanks to Marcus Fabrics for donating the fabric for the giveaway.  Thank you Leslie and Melissa from In Between Stitches for donating the Gift Certificate.  Many, many thanks to you, my readers for all of your support. I loved reading all of the comments and tried to answer each of you individually.  Now to the next 1000 posts!!!


P.S. This photo shoot took about an hour to capture.  Mazey showed much more restraint than we thought possible.  We thought she was going to dive headlong into the pile of treats.....but she didn't.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Sew'n Wild Oaks Class is in Session

Hello Everyone,
I'm only a few days late posting the pictures of "my girls".  I've had a lot to talk about this week. At this rate, I'll be at post 2,000 pretty soon!
Let's start the party rolling by showing you my sister's Country Charmer.  WOW, WOW, and double WOW!  Gail did an excellent job selecting her colors for each and every block.  She loves the fabric selection process, and you can tell.  She will be have fun decorating her home with this quilt Christmas after Christmas.

Paula was sewing little doorknobs on her quilt that was designed by Bunny Hill.  Aren't these little cottages adorable!

Patty started working on some ornaments.

She's not sure what she's going to do with them yet, but no matter what, they sure are "vintage" cute!

Isabelle is having a barn raising for her Harvest of Hope.  Her roof is spectacular in the colors she selected.  For those of you who have been wondering, the pumpkin label is included in each pattern.  Isabelle put a nice little green check sashing around her pumpkin label.

Gail is also completing her rows for Winterset.  You'll be seeing this one as a flimsy soon.

Irene is making these little organizers. So nice, and sew precise. 

I love the plaid on the inside.

Now speaking of is Paula's nicely organized tote.  The plastic containers used to hold Crystal Light.  They have now been re-purposed to hold quilting supplies.  This is a fabulous idea thanks to Evelynne for sharing this with us.  All of us have these little containers to help us keep organized.

There were more ladies in the room, and I shared their gorgeous blocks a couple of days ago in my Country Corners block #7 post.
Somehow I'm going to have my drawing for my contest this afternoon.  Thank you all who entered.  There were still so many that didn't leave an email address and are "no-reply" status, so I couldn't put your name in the hat.  Mazey is in charge of the drawing. We'll see how she does in her new role as a canine random number generator.  She is pretty random most of the time!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Update on post #1000

Hello Everyone,
I told you a few days ago that I would post a picture of the Marcus Fabrics when they arrived for my contest posted HERE.  I made this cute little bundle yesterday which contain 14 fat quarters of first quality Marcus Fabrics.  The contest closes at 12pm PST on Saturday, December 13, 2014.

Pati from Marcus Fabrics, was very generous with the amount of fabric she sent to me.  I had enough to make four, fat quarter bundles.  I'll be giving two away for my contest, and I'll save two as door prizes for my guild lectures.  Pati also sent me some wool and Primo Plaids that I'll be saving for another giveaway in the near future.

To sweeten the giveaway pot, Melissa and Leslie from In Between Stitches are adding a $40 Gift Certificate to use at the shop!  There will be a total of three winners.  This is perfect planning, just in time for a Christmas present for YOU!

As I get time, I spend a few stolen minutes in my sewing room making more blocks for Lil' Orphan Scrappy.  I love this block.  The combination of pink and brown really floats my boat.  Speaking of boats, we could have used one yesterday with the amount of rain that we had.  I'm not complaining, the rain was wonderful!

This quilt only contains Marcus Fabrics.  It has been so easy, and so much fun combining older fabrics with new fabrics from many of the Marcus lines.  I love the combination of the subtle colors in combination with the stronger star points.  It would be fun to count the number of different fabrics I've used.  It works.  Don't be afraid to make a scrappy quilt.  Get out those scraps, (I know you have them)  and put them to work in a beautiful quilt.

Every year about this time, I get the urge to organize.  I had my fabrics for this quilt, spread out on a table.

Barbara, one of my Tuesday Ladies, introduced the class to Comic Book Boards to organize our stashes.  These little pieces of white cardboard are wonderful to organize all of my half yards cuts.

That messy table is now organized into this!  I just folded the fabric selvage to selvage, folded in again fold to selvage, then folded it around the cardboard, pinned it, and put it upright in a bin. It takes up much less space. Perfect.  This was a great little job to accomplish while listening to the rain and Christmas music.

I'm tickled that so many of you have entered the contest already.  I'm still answering personal emails and logging all of the names in a spreadsheet.  Mazey is going to have a difficult time picking a winner tomorrow, so you still have time to enter the contest.  Just leave a comment and don't forget to include your email!   I'll post the winner on Sunday.


Thursday, December 11, 2014

Country Corners Month #7

Hello Everyone,
As promised, I'm finally posting the directions for block #7 for Country Corners.  I wanted you to see Barbara's blocks that she made during class over the past few months.  They look beautiful together! The blocks will all be put together with sashing the next time you see them. 

Barbara made three blocks a month from her little packet of fabric.  Each of her variations look so unique.  Same fabric, different placement and different arrangement.

Here is my block.  It is sewn together now, but I didn't have a picture of it.....don't ask me why.

Here are the components that you will need to make for this block.


The directions for construction are available in my Patchwork Math book which is available HERE.

Square in a square in a square – Make (4) Directions on Page #12
Fussy Cut (1) Squares 2-5/8” x 2-5/8” for center
Cut (2) Squares 2-3/8” x 2-3/8” for corners

Trim to 3-1/2” X 3-1/2”

Tall Triangles – Make (4) Directions on Page #15
Cut (4) Squares 3-7/8” x 3-7/8” dark fabric
Cut (4) Rectangles 2-3/8” x 4-1/4” light fabric

Trim to 3-1/2” X 3-1/2”

Four Patches – Make (4) Directions on Page #14
Cut (8) Square 2” x 2”  light fabric
Cut (8) squares 2” x 2” medium or dark fabric

Trim to 3-1/2” X 3-1/2”

Doris is making the blocks from her stash.  Isn't this one a beauty! 

The monster storm is arriving in earnest here in California.  Time to sign off and get Mazey out for a walk before the rain arrives.  Right now it is just incredibly windy and the storm clouds are rolling in. Be cozy today.


Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Pick Four Special Offer

Hello Everyone,

The 12 Days of Christmas continues at In Between Stitches and the special of the day is PICK FOUR by Sue Abrey.  Today, and today only you can hop on the Internet and purchase this book HERE at In Between Stitches for only $17.47 TODAY ONLY.

Sue came to the United States in 2013 and stayed at my house.  Our bond was instantaneous and we email each other several times a week.  Sue was an absolute delight, and there wasn't a dry eye in the car when we took her to the airport to fly back to England. I know we will see each other again....hopefully soon.

My sister Gail took Sue's class at Quilting in the Garden and here is her beautiful quilt.

Here are snippets from my book review that I wrote in Aug. 2011. Literally a blast from the past.

England gave us the FAB FOUR, and now England has given us PICK FOUR by Sue Abrey.  Let’s all get A Ticket to Ride and hop on the double-decker bus and drive down Pennie Lane and review PICK FOUR by Sue Abrey.

Do You Want to Know a Secret?  Once you get a copy of this book, you are going to want to quilt Eight Days a Week!  First of all, I read the book like a novel.  Sue’s very matter of fact way and essence of being a quilting Paperback Writer, makes you feel that she is right in the room with you, coaching, encouraging and sharing her knowledge, love of quilting along with her sense of humour. (That spelling is for you Sue.)  She figuratively Holds Your Hand through the process of quilt making from beginning to end.

Those of you that follow my blog know my quilting style.  I’m a scrappy quilt maker for a couple of reasons.  I love the complexity of a scrappy quilt.  I love the challenge of combining all different colors, styles and scales of fabric together.  I have hundreds of fat quarters all begging to be selected for the perfect placement in a quilt.  When I first sat down with my cup of coffee and Sue’s book I thought, “I’m in trouble now!”  How can I decide on only four fabrics in a quilt, when I’ve been known to use over four dozen fabrics at one time? 

So here was my challenge…..PICK FOUR fabrics Lynn…..only FOUR and Let It Be. Rein in your thinking. Think outside the box while staying in the box. Remember, the fewer the fabric choices, the more important those choices become. I achieved this by applying Sue’s technique for choosing fabrics which is fun and not the least intimidating. She’s a Woman who understands that it isn’t always easy to select fabrics for a quilt. I followed her technique as I selected the fabrics for the two projects I made from the book. Four interesting fabrics equal one interesting quilt. 

In no time at all, thanks to Sue's clear, concise directions and illustrations, I had a table topper ready for quilting.  (Sue's book has full size quilt designs, for the sake of time, I made smaller versions.)

I didn't want to stop at just one project!  I selected another grouping of four fabrics and started making Lis's Midnight Flower Garden. (I feel a song coming on Dizzy Miss Lizzy, and I know it's a stretch, but you have to work with me people.)  I'm thinking to myself that I'm really getting into this Pick Four!
The book is broken down into four sections.  Sue will take you full circle from fabric selection, quilt making techniques, to choosing a quilting design. Then comes the fun part, the projects, for beginning to advanced quilters.  I’ve Got a Feeling you are going to make more than one of Sue’s wonderful designs.  This is where I had another problem, Because I couldn’t decide which project I wanted to make first!  There are 12 beautifully designed quilts in PICK FOUR. 

Sue is a master at creating a secondary design when the blocks are sewn All Together Now. She also addresses searching out the secondary designs when you start thinking about how to quilt your quilt and gives you so much Help. One section of the book is a detailed set of questions that walk you through making your quilting decisions. Every design in the book includes a section on color alternatives and quilting options. There is none of this Quilt as Desired business!

I learned so much from Sue’s book.  I was intrigued by the way she illustrated how to make a large block, cut it apart, and before you can say, “Bob’s Your Uncle”,  there is a whole new design before your eyes!  She experiments with different layouts and encourages you to do the same.

I will be using PICK FOUR as a resource long past When I’m Sixty-Four


P.S. I'll be posting the directions for the final block of Country Corner tomorrow.....if I have an Internet connection.  A huge storm is headed my way.  In fact it's the largest storm California has seen since 1998!!  We are going to hunker down and ride this one out in front of the fireplace.  We've gone from the worst drought in 1,200 years, to epic amounts of rain. Now about that global warming.......