Monday, February 27, 2012

Design Wall Monday 2-27-12

Lots to share with you today 

 X blocks top together and bordered.
 Quite a few connecting corners put on this baby quilt.  Thanks Sharon for cutting all of this out for me. She's making one too and we shared fabrics.  Evidently I have oodles of conversation prints! 
The promised picture of my new Bernina... now to think of a great name for her... Any suggestions? 

 The newest block for the FCQ Equilters donation quilt.

Sharon moved the blocks around when she was here... she liked this arrangement better than what I had. But honestly, I was just throwing them up on the wall.  The golden pumpkin color isn't that odd in person... it doesn't stand out quite the way it does here. Four, maybe 5 since I duplicated a block, blocks left to make and then I can put it together. 

Yes, a few of my daffodils are blooming... they look great but they seem to be blooming in spurts -- the weather has been so WEIRD this winter.  

Week of February 20, 2012
Back to working on the FCQ Equilter’s donation quilt 5 blocks needed one done
Finish quilting & bind NY Day Mystery Quilt √just a bit more hand stitching left
Make snowman blocks
Begin cutting for next Scrap Squad
Add rest of borders to green and blue x blocks
Keep plugging away on the baby quilt
Go to Mid-Atlantic Quilt Show

Week of February 27, 2012
the FCQ Equilter’s donation quilt 4 blocks needed
Finish sewing down the binding on NY Day Mystery
Begin next Scrap Squad quilt
Keep up on the Baby Quilt
Find my X Block Ruler
Take another guide class for the new sewing machine
Quilt green & blue X block quilt
Ok, admit it -- vacuum the house... 

My computer is giving me grief this morning so I'm keeping this short.  Don't forget to go to Patchwork Times to see what else is on folk's design walls.  

Happy Quilting All! 

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Something New and Quilt Show Trip

I got an early birthday present last week!  Yee HAW!  I have a new sewing machine with an embroidery unit... (wait, I wasn't going to get into embroidery -- except Pat said, go ahead and get it.)  So I have the 635 -- I'll get a photo of it sometime soon -- the one I took when we were setting up is blurred.  

I've been fighting with Ruthie still... I think the thread may be the issue but I'm not sure.  This afternoon I got the last 18"done.  But I ran out of bobbin with about 2" to go... guess what will be hand quilted at the end?   I am so ready to have this quilt done.  Tomorrow or Monday I'll make and apply the binding.  

I spent yesterday at the Mid-Atlantic Quilt Show with Diana and Jennie.  Great fun but boy we were tired when we left and then there was a huge rain storm on the way home.  Yuck.  Weird weather -- it was in the low 80's!  Less than a week ago we had 4 to 5" of snow.... go figure! 

I was in awe of the quilting on this particular quilt.  It was amazing.  Heck, a lot of the quilts were amazing.  

There must have been as many vendors as there were quilts.  We spent a lot of time checking out all the new gadgets, fabrics and the like.  I thought I was pretty conservative.  I only bought 2 fat quarters, a roll of wool felt and 1 pattern. (well, and a few pieces of jewelry... )  And, I did get some thread for Ruthie.  

I feel like it will take several days to recuperate from walking on cement for that many hours.  Some year I'd like to actually stay overnight there and spend more time with vendors and the quilts. 

Wouldn't Sophia look darling in a little dress like this?  It was on display at the Bernina booth.  I had to have a picture to remember it ... the flowers are embroidered. There is a line of decorative stitches where the green meets the pink.  Too cute.

I got a call on the way home saying my embroidery unit had arrived.  I'll pick it up Wednesday when I go up for my owners class.  YEAH!  Then I have to learn how to use it! 

Jennie was really taken with this quilt and bought the special ruler to make the rhomboid units.  It was a really cool ruler so I think I'm going to borrow it.

There were a lot of X Rulers being shown and patterns.  WHERE is my X ruler?  I have a plan for it and I can't find the darn thing!  

Happy Quilting All! 

Monday, February 20, 2012

Design Wall Monday 2-19-12

It's a bit late but here's what's up on... oops on the tea cart... 

These will become a little Hexagon quilt like one in Kathy Tracy's book.  (Sorry, don't remember which book...) These are my pick up work whenever I feel like working on them.  And, I'm getting much closer to finishing them... I've only got 3 more to do.  That could happen this month (or next month or ...)Go see other design walls at Patchwork Times.

Yesterday was a dull grey day and then it started snowing in the early afternoon.  And, right before Downton Abbey started the power went out.  NOOOOooo. Luckily I have an Itty Bitty Book Light so I wasn't without all light.  I could read for an hour or so in bed.

Two black dogs playing in the snow.  They came in soaking wet.  Heck, I was pretty darn wet just stepping out to take the picture.

We woke up to no power but at least the snow had quit. We finally decided to get up and do our regular work out at the Y cause they had power. 

Here's what we saw on the way. 

And, I was able to watch the season's finale of Downton Abbey. Such a lovely show... now I need to find the previous year's DVDs as I didn't start watching it until January or so.
I didn't do so well on last week's goals.  

Week of February 13, 2012
Back to working on the FCQ Equilter’s donation quilt, 5 blocks needed not touched
Finish quilting & bind NY Day Mystery Quilt Still quilting – very slowly…
Make snowman blocks oops…
Begin cutting for next Scrap Squad Quilt double oops
Take computer in for some clean up and check up
Work on the baby quilt Sharon made me start…lol

Week of February 20, 2012
Back to working on the FCQ Equilter’s donation quilt 5 blocks needed
Finish quilting & bind NY Day Mystery Quilt
Make snowman blocks
Begin cutting for next Scrap Squad
Add rest of borders to green and blue x blocks
Keep plugging away on the baby quilt
Go to Mid-Atlantic Quilt Show

Happy Quilting All!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Gem Show

The Gal Pals went to a gem show in northern Virginia on Friday.  We were nearing the end of the day before I started taking pictures.  Why didn't I think about this earlier? 

Rows and rows of beads to do it yourself.

Supplies to string your own beads.
Diana and Jennie deciding on cord to string some beads. 

We watched someone stringing some lovely beads and got a quick lesson.  Now I'm waiting to see Jennie's beads finished as a necklace.  

Honestly, I didn't think I would enjoy the gem show as much as just the fun time the three of us would have.  But I'm all ready for next year's trip and plan to buy some beads to string.  

I bought a couple of items but two of them I carefully put away in a purse... problem is it was Diana's purse. We have the exact same purse except hers is navy and mine is black.  By the time we were half way home it was getting dark and I carefully put away my cell phone and purchases.  Except, it was dark enough that I didn't realize I'd  put everything away in her purse.  When we got home I couldn't find my phone but finally checked her purse and retrieved my phone.  I just didn't think to check for my purchases.  Yep, had to call her to have her check her purse -- she had the pieces.  Sigh.  I'll try to post pictures of my new jewelry after I retrieve it from her! 

No quilting got done but I had a great time!
Happy Quilting All!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Culinary Efforts

Kevin and Aimee brought us home several Thai food products including a red curry paste from their honeymoon in Thailand.  So while Sharon was here I decided we would give it a try. (Sharon spent several years in Thailand.)   We used Chicken Pa Nang recipe from AllRecipes. com.   I had gotten the ingredients I don't normally have around the house like coconut milk and fish sauce.  We read several other curry recipes and proceeded to make our version of Chicken Pa Nang.
Our ingredients

Here we're stirring the mixture.  Sharon made some wonderful sticky Jasmine rice.  Because we didn't know how spicy the curry paste was we didn't get quite enough in.  

Here's the meal plated and served.  Yummy.  

Thanks Kevin and Aimee for bringing us the curry paste. 

Remember, I broke my camera so these photos are coming from my old (but new to me) iPhone.  Not bad for a telephone camera. 

If this isn't enough culinary effort I must share this gorgeous red velvet cake... 

Jennie, my next door neighbor, brought us a happy valentine's day cake. And, it is scrumptious!

Check out the tri colored swirls... pretty neat. She told me how to do it but I doubt I could get any swirls to look like that. 

Could you tell from the pictures above that we had already had some pieces?  It was as delicious as it looks!  

Hope everyone had a happy Valentine's Day.  Pat and I went out to dinner but couldn't get into the little restaurant we had wanted to go to.  I guess we'll try next weekend.  (Of course, we did get out to dinner... Mexican which was yummy!) 

Happy Quilting All! 

Monday, February 13, 2012

Design Wall Monday 2-13-12

My quilting buddy Sharon came down for a weekend visit.  Sharon finished some of the quilting on her quilt.  Then we were making little notebooks.  Then I dug out this book by Anita Grossman Solomon.  I've made blocks from the book before -- I especially like to use these directions when I am making blocks to give away as you can cut several blocks at the same time and there is no waste.  I thought Sharon would get a kick out of trying one.  So I grabbed some fabric from my wild purchase at the Nov. guild auction and cut them out.  I showed Sharon how to cut the blocks out to make an X block. 

Oops I made a mistake on this one.  The cuts should be the same width horizontal and vertical. I cut the vertical one on the left too wide.  Yikes.  I didn't have much more of the light green fabric left but I was able to salvage some of these pieces.  And, I had cut 6 blocks at a time so I lost two of them.  Rats.  

Sharon was having such a good time she kept making blocks.  I was getting things ready for her to take to our guild in Md for the quilt show in April. She left Sunday and I kept sewing the blocks together.  I have only 4 more blocks to do. 

Then I plowed through some more fabric and I found some that will be great for a border.  Hum, this could be a great baby quilt even if it isn't really baby colors or prints.  I used 4 different fabrics in blues and greens. The stripe print adds a lot of interest but we didn't figure out to be careful how we placed the stripe until we'd made a few blocks.  I wouldn't recommend a stripe if you want a fast quilt! 

How do you like this for the border? Rats, you can't see it well in this picture but it is a green print with diagonal lighter green lines on it.  Try clicking on it to see it a bit better. 

Sharon also brought down a bunch of fabric to go with a flamingo challenge our Md guild is sponsoring.  She hadn't been able to find any quilt that struck her as doable with the fabric.  I saw something when I was hopping around the internet that she liked. I have a lot of children's prints so we combined fabric and she cut two quilts -- 1 for me and 1 for her. Might as well cut 2 squares for 25 fabrics as one.  We both started ours as leader enders as we sewed the X blocks. 

It's been quite a while since we were able to have a sewing weekend together.  We had a wonderful time.  Friday we went shopping -- two different quilt stores. And, lunch out -- which really hit the spot.  Sat morning we attended my guild, Country Piecemakers.  If you remember Sharon attended our retreat this past fall so folks were happy to say hi again.   We had a wonderful program where members showed their antique quilts and told the stories that went with them.  When the meeting was over we got some serious piecing done.   Sunday morning we got a few more hours in before she had to head home.  We really need to do this quarterly.  

I didn't do so well on my goals this week... but I had a lot of distractions! 
Week of February 6, 2012
Pick next 1800s bom and write directions
Finish quilting & bind NY Day Mystery Quilt√ more rows quilted but not finished
Vacuum the house
Back to working on the FCQ Equilter’s donation quilt 5 blocks needed
Make snowman blocks and FCQ’s bom√ but not the snowman blocks
Think about making blue and yellow pillow shams or cases
Decide on Carolina Christmas – make more blocks or leave as is? Not sure but have decided to put away for a bit….
Pick fabric for next Scrap Squad Quilt
 √√√√√Have a great time with Sharon

Week of February 13, 2012
Back to working on the FCQ Equilter’s donation quilt 5 blocks needed
Finish quilting & bind NY Day Mystery Quilt
Make snowman blocks
Begin cutting for next Scrap Squad Quilt
Take computer in for some clean up and check up
Finish the last x blocks and sew into rows
Work on the baby quilt Sharon made me start…lol

Don't forget to look at design walls across the internet by going to Patchwork Times.

If you are looking for the February 1800s block of the month look here
One more thing to share with you ---
I dropped my camera and I think it is gone, dead, done in, expired... I'll be using my iPhone for photos for a bit.
Happy Quilting All! 

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Block of the Month 1800's Quilt February


February’s block is a simple Sawtooth Star.   Because I’ve seen many versions of this block in early 1800 quilts, I chose one quilt from the International Quilt Study Group’s (IQSG) web site to represent the many Sawtooth Star quilts that were made in the early 1800’s.  You can see the photograph of a wonderful quilt made between 1820 and 1840 by Elisabeth C. Jones.  (Have you labeled all of the quilts you have made?  Because Elisabeth did, we know who made this beautiful two-color quilt.)  Go to

If you would like to see more quilts from the IQSG go to , which is its web page.  If you scroll down you’ll be able to Search The Collections.  You can search on variety of terms.  I used dates of 1820 t0 1850 along with pieced quilts as the technique.  Enjoy browsing through these pioneering quilts.  I will be using several of the blocks I found in this collection in our quilt.

From background fabric cut 4  - 2 ¾” squares.
From background fabric cut 4 - 5 x 2 ¾” rectangles.
From colored fabric cut 8  - 2 – ¾” squares for the points
From colored fabric cut 1 - 5” square for the center
Draw a diagonal line down the center of the 8 colored 2 ¾” squares. Draw a second line just shy of ½” away from the first line.  Place one of these colored blocks on one side of the 5 x 2 ¾” rectangles as shown.  

Sew on the center marked line. Sew the second line. (Be sure when you place these blocks down that the second line is actually in the area that will be cut off.) Cut off the excess fabrics leaving a ¼” seam. Repeat for the other side making a flying goose unit. Press all to the dark.  Set the extra half square triangles aside. (There are lots of ways to make flying geese – choose your favorites if you’d like to do it a different way.) 

Sew into rows as shown. Top and bottom rows press to the background pieces.  Center row press to the middle piece. Sew the rows together.

The second block is now done.

Trim the leftover half square triangles to 1-1/2”. Stash these in a plastic baggie to be used later in the year.

If you have any questions please leave me a comment or send me an email: brsinstitches @  (just take out the spaces.) 

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Coming Soon -- Scrap Squad Quilt

Yes, the newest issue of Quiltmaker is now available on new stands and at your favorite quilting stores.  That means that sometime over the next few weeks I'll be showing off my version of Chain Reaction.   You can read more about the Scrap Squad on Quiltmaker's blog, Quilty Pleasures.  As Jean F. said in a comment 

  "Yay to the Scrap Squad members!! Go forth and be scrapalicious!!!!!!!"

Don't you love that word?  Scrapalicious  and doesn't it look fabulous in red! 
Stay tuned for my first Scrap Squad quilt.  I'm not sure when I will reveal it but it's coming soon to this very blog!

Chain Reaction was designed by Lee Heinrich. You can read her blog Fresh Lemons.  She's got some wonderful tutorials you might want to check out. 

I'm off to the Y, a little shopping, a little vacuuming (bleh!) and then some quilting.  

Happy quilting all! 

Monday, February 6, 2012

Design Wall Monday 2-6-12

First up -- 9 blocks done fom Carolina Christmas....

 But wait, there's more ... I actually have 11 blocks done.  I think I'll make at least one more block for this quilt. 
And, I have a few left over pieces for more blocks.  I know I'll make one more block but whether I make any more than that.... who knows.  I would like to finish this quilt but I would also like to be able to use it on a bed over Christmas. I think I'll make the gold/red block and then decide if I want to add more.  I guess the issue would be whether I want to make 7 more blocks as that is probably what I'd need to do to have a big enough quilt.  I still need to check out border designs.  I don't  have any directions for borders for this quilt. Anyone know if there were there directions for a border? 
Last weeks goals with almost everything checked off.
Week of Jan 30, 2012

Make binding and bind the Scrap Squad quilt
Quilt and bind the NY Day Mystery quilt√ started quilting
Make 3 more of the Mourning Quilt blocks, put it together, quilt it
Quilt Twister quilt √ and bound
Finish clue 5 of Carolina Christmas
Back to working on the FCQ Equilter’s donation quilt 5 blocks needed
Clean 2 more shelves of the refrigerator
Clean the stovetop really well
This weeks goals... not as much sewing as I've got to clean the house. 

Week of February 6, 2012
Pick next 1800s bom and write directions
Finish quilting and bind NY Day Mystery Quilt
Vacuum the house
Back to working on the FCQ Equilter’s donation quilt 5 blocks needed
Make snowman blocks and FCQ’s bom
Think about making blue and yellow pillow shams or cases
Decide on Carolina Christmas – make more blocks or leave as is?
Pick fabric for next Scrap Squad Quilt
Have a great time with Sharon visiting
This week will be busy -- laundry, cleaning, working out and my quilting buddy from Maryland, Sharon, coming for a visit.  We'll be trying to have 2 sewing machines set up in my studio... or I'll finish the quilt on Ruthie, get the binding sewn on and then hand sew the other side down. 
Do you want to see what else people are working on?  Go check out Patchwork Times.
The first day of next month I hope to put up a Mr. Linky for those of you who would like to keep track of your fabric usage every month.  Join me as we try to USE more fabric than we acquire.  Also, stop by next Sunday afternoon to see the latest block of the month for the 1800's quilt.  

Happy quilting all.