Friday, April 29, 2022

A Winner and a Finish

First the winner of the free digital pattern, Synergy, from Preeti. And the winner is Nancy who blogs at Wyoming Breezes! Congratulations. Enjoy your Synergy pattern from Sew Preeti Quilts

Yes, I have another finish.  Truth: I finished it last month -- I just didn't get the photo shoot done.  I took it with me when I did the Synergy photo shoot and took a few pictures of it too. So, with not further ado, here is Dogs and 9 Patches.

Here's a bit of the back and the front. 

I bought the backing while at the Mid-Atlantic Quilt Show.  It was on a 4 yard bolt for a reasonable price.  My guess is it was an old fabric but it was perfect for this quilt back and it was new to me. Only draw back is I have nearly 3 yards left. (Bonus for either piecing or another smaller quilt!) 

And this last picture shows the rock that Synergy completely covered.  

Dogs and 9 Patches came from Even More Quilts for Baby: Easy as A B C by Ursula Reikes.  The copyright date is 2000.  Yes, it's old but I love this book.  In this third book of the Quilts for Baby series Ursula shared 20 quilts.  This one is actually called Nine Patch.  Part of the reason I love all 3 of Ursula's books is they are easy to make baby size quilts but if you want bigger quilts it isn't hard to make them bigger.  And, yes I own all three of the books and continue to use them to make quilts. I can't count how many quilts I've made from these three books. 

The quilting design is Puppy Paws from Urban Elements.  As usual, I used So Fine thread.

I probably will send this quilt to Cool Kids Clubhouse in North Carolina as part of Hands 2 Help.  You can read more about this great organization here.  How are you doing on your quilts for Hands 2 Help?  It's about time for me to pick which quilts are going there and get them in the mail. I'm sure they would appreciate it if you sent a few quilts there also. 

Today I am linking up with 

Needle and Thread Thursday   

Beauties Pageant 

Finished or Not Fridays 

I'm looking forward to some quiet surfing time this weekend as I finish another quilt.  I hope you can sneak a peek at some of these Linky parties to see what's new. 

Happy Quilting All! Bonnie 

Sunday, April 24, 2022

Monday Meanderings 4 - 25 - 2022

Do you realize we are almost finished with April?  Next week May will be here and then summer will come floating in.  I bring this up because I still haven't mentioned my March fabric use (or acquisition) numbers.  I figured them out, so here they are. Please take note of that nice "0" in the Fabric In category.  I was very good in March on not buying any fabric.  I might have a good April if I can get a couple more finishes this month.  


Fabric In Month

Fabric In Year

Fabric Out 


Fabric Out Year


In or Out Year



















Mondays are my day for looking at goals from last week and looking ahead to the coming week.  Last week was all successes. 


✅ Finish Secret project - Quilted & bound. Synergy was shared here.

✅ Quilt one of my quilts -  I counted Synergy as mine. 

✅ Border Stop Tossing Mystery - I'm calling it done. See below 

✅ Cut and sew strips for improv top - All ready to sew strips together.

✅ Finish Sherri’s BOM - April block is done. 

Cut fabrics for and attend Debby Kratovil class - Lots of fun, lots still to do! 

Here's Stop Tossing Mystery -- I am very pleased with it. It was suppose to have another border using the background fabric.  I'm not a fan of white outer borders so I've stopped at the inner border. I may eventually add a border but I'm letting it retire to the closet for now. (Unless I can find a backing fabric in my stash which isn't likely.) Thanks to Alycia at Alycia Quilts for running this on Mystery Quilts 4 Military.  I'm not sure where I'll be donating it but it will go to a good cause. 

Here's what I'm hoping to get done next week.  It's a long list but I'm expecting all projects will show forward movement. 


Quilt & Bind 2 Rainbow Scrap Challenges top

Make a couple of dog toys 

Make 3 RSC blocks in pink

Finish improve top

Work on Pyramid class project 

EEK!  That seems like a lot.  My plan is to load the RSC tops one after another on the backing fabric. Hopeful I'll get both bound before the end of the month.  I'd love to USE more fabric than I bring in this month.  

After the photo shoot for Synergy, Pat and I stopped for lunch at The Snack Shop near the Court House in Spotsylvania County. OH MY GOODNESS.  We had the best handmade milkshakes we've had in years.  Oh yea, we also had two very good sandwiches. We'll be back for some milkshakes. It was a beautiful day to eat outside too.  

Pat waiting for our order. It was busy but I tried to avoid the other customers waiting.

That's it for me today.  I'll be linking up with: 

Design Wall Monday
To Do Tuesday
Wednesday Wait Loss 
Mid Week Makers 
I sure hope you spend some time blog hopping to see what people are up to these days.  (I'll be linking up as the links become available.) 

Happy Quilting All! Bonnie 

Synergy - My Way

"I did it my way." Is that old Frank Sinatra song playing in your head now?   I visited the lyrics on Google and realized the words aren't what I thought they'd be. That being said I think part of the second verse says it for me about Synergy. 

I did what I had to do
I saw it through without exemption
I planned each charted course
Each careful step along the byway
And more, much, much more
I did it, I did it my way ...

Yep, that covers my interpretation of Synergy, a wonderful pattern recently released by Preeti of Sew Preeti Quilts. You can check out her post about it at Sew Preeti Quilts. Two weeks and a couple of days ago she asked me to participate in her Synergy release blog hop. I agreed to be part of Preeti's new pattern release.  I was a bit concerned about being able to make a quilt in 17 days but I really surprised myself and had a finished top in 12 days.  So then I asked myself and Preeti whether I should quilt it too.  I decided I certainly could quilt it so here is my version pieced, quilted, and bound.  (This may be the fastest I've ever finished a quilt!) Synergy is 56 x 70". 

I went right to work trying to figure out my colors to make Synergy my way.  I decided to use a color generator, Coolers, to see what I could find. Here's the screen shot from one of their palettes.  Ten colors -- just what was needed for Synergy. 

I did a little stash "shopping" and then a little fabric store shopping and came up with my fabrics. 

My rusts to lights were less rust and leaned more to the peach side. The Blues to turquoise seemed right on to me.  Of the group, 4 came from stash.  Add in my Kona Snow for the background and I was set to cut and sew. 

Here are a few hints I used to help me whiz through the cutting and sewing. 

I numbered my fabrics based on the numbers Preeti used in her very well written pattern.  In fact, I also wrote the number of strips I needed for each color on one set of tags I used. That made the cutting faster so I didn't have to go back to the pattern for each cut. 

Preeti recommended ironing the seams open during the sewing process.
So I did as recommended.
Seams ironed open.

And boy did that make a nice flat top.  I'm my own long armer and I admit I really liked it.  Quilting it was a piece of cake.

Now that I've got my preliminary info out, how about many pictures of Synergy-My Way out in the wild? (So to speak!) 

Most accurate coloring of all my pictures.

We went to Patriots Park in Spotsylvania county for the photo shoot.  It was a beautiful spring day with a slight breeze. 

The above picture and the below picture were taken at the amphitheater.  It was so I could make a blatant plug for the next Spotsylvanian's concert that will be held at this Amphitheater on Saturday, May 14th at 6 pm. There are 5 rows of benches and then a great grassy area you can bring yours chairs and blankets to relax and enjoy the music. (Yep, Pat and I both sing in this community chorus.) Tickets are $10 for adults and kids are free. You can purchase them online from the link on the Spotsy's web page above.

The picture below is one of my favorites.  There was a decorative rock near the parking lot with plants growing on the sides.  I spread out the quilt to take pictures and the wind picked it up just as I started taking pictures. Kismet.  You can see the whole quilt with a little help from the wind. 

Are you chomping at the bit to have your own copy of this fabulous pattern?  Head over to Preeti's Etsy shop to get it. But wait, there's more!  The pattern is 25% off until April 27, 2022. Well worth it, if you ask me. The pattern is 13 pages in color with step-by-step instructions, a coloring page, and great quality graphics. I personally love being able to download and save PDF Patterns.  I wrote notes on mine due to the difference in colors and when I want to make it again I can print a clean version to mark up again. 

Remember I mentioned I quilted and bound my quilt?  Here's Ruthie, the long arm, working away on Synergy - My Way.  Well, actually, that's her light shining on the left as she stitched. 

And, a final picture of the back showing off the quilting. I picked A Wave in the Sand by My Creative Stitches.  It actually stitched 12 rows at a time stitching both left to right and right to left.  That sure made it go fast.  I used a grey So Fine thread on the front and in the bobbin. 

Preeti has a drawing for a free copy of Synergy or any of her patterns at her Etsy shop.  Leave a comment answering this question by Wednesday:  How many sewing machines do you own?  I'll answer first so you know I am a total machine nut! 6. What? 6. Yes -- 3 working domestic machines, 2 probably not working domestic machines, and 1 wonderful long arm. Oops, and an old serger. Make that 7.   I have a Featherweight (working) and what I call a Heavy Weight Singer (nonworking) that was my mom's purchased used. I'm not sure what to do with it.  Doorstop comes to mind. 

Entries close on Tuesday at midnight EDT. Remember if you are a no comment account to leave your contact information in the post. (Sandi -- that would be you so far. Please let me know your contact info.)  I'll post the winner on my Friday blog post. (Yes, I have another finish to show you on Friday! Are you surprised? I am!) 

Do you want to see the other quilts made as part of this Blog Hop?

1. Mari of Academic Quilter - Thursday, April 21, 2022
2. Alycia of Alycia Quilts - Friday, April 22, 2022
3. Wendy of Pieceful Thoughts - Saturday, April 23, 2022
4. Bonnie of Institches with Bonnie - Sunday, April 24, 2022 You are here!
5. Roseanne of Home Sewn By Us - Monday, April 25, 2022 

I hope you take a look at all of these wonderful versions of Synergy.  This pattern is so adaptable to colors, prints, even changing the background to a print.  Let me know how you like Synergy.  

I'm linking with Oh Scrap!. Enjoy surfing a few blogs.  You never know when you'll see something you just love. 

Happy Quilting All! Bonnie 


Friday, April 22, 2022

Class Time

Wednesday I attended an all day class with Debby Kratovil with Virginia Star Quilt Guild.  The morning class was Pyramids using a 60ยบ ruler with the afternoon session called Fractured Jewels using leftovers from making the Pyramids piece.  I was happy to attend as it had been scheduled in 2020 and was canceled due to Covid.  It was great fun and nice to get together with quilters again.  

I was losing steam during the afternoon. But I was able to get two of these rows of these pyramid pieces sewn by the end of class. (These were just laid out in this picture.) 

I used set of ombre batik strips.  I am tickled with what I've done so far but I haven't been able to spend any more time on them yet.  

Here's Karen's version in progress. It was fun to see all the different fabrics used to make this little wall hanging.  I'm going to see if I have enough fabric to make mine a little bigger.  Or perhaps I have some other batiks I could add in. 

I came home to eat dinner and rest a bit before going back to the regular monthly guild meeting.  Debby was the guest speaker and shared a Power Point of her quilts along with some actual quilts that showed her great patterns and ideas.  Here's a link to her blog to see what else she is doing.  She designs patterns for various fabric manufacturers and her own line of patterns.

The other big accomplishment this week is finishing the secret project including quilting and binding it.  Check back in on Sunday to see what I have been working on. 

On the home front we've found a new home.  No, we aren't moving.  We have a cardinal nest in our holly tree right outside our 3 season room.  Pat sits out there and was able to watch the cardinal make the nest.  The tree is in bloom and there are bees buzzing all around.  We haven't seen much of the cardinal.  But bonus!  There was an egg in there yesterday or so.  I'll try to get a picture of it soon.  The egg is beautifully speckled.  

I'm linking up to the following Linky parties: 

Check out what makers are doing across the web. And, excitement, my improv beginning was featured on this week's Wednesday Wait Loss.  

I hope you can come back Sunday for the reveal of my secret project is.  I can't wait to share it with you. 

Happy Quilting All!  Bonnie 

Sunday, April 17, 2022

Monday Meanderings 4 - 18 - 2022

What a week!  I didn't have much on my Goals list and I still didn't get them all done.  Bummer.  Here's what I did get done...


✅Work on a secret project -- 5 seams left until top stage

✅Continue on Improv top -- all blocks sewn together 

✅Make more RSC blocks --  did the last yellow one, on to pink someday

Make April block from Sherri McConnell’s BOM — Half done, I ran out of energy! 

And this week here are my goals.  I've got way more than normal so some things may not see forward movement.


Finish Secret project

Quilt one of my quilts

Border Stop Tossing Mystery

Cut and sew strips for improv top

Finish Sherri’s BOM, 

Cut fabrics for and attend Debby Kratovil class 

I forgot to show the Easy Breezy finished top earlier. I finished it several weeks ago. It's been relegated to the To-Be-Quilted closet.  I'd been making good progress finishing tops but now it seems I''m adding more tops and not finishing as many. Hopefully I'll get at least one finished this week. 

In 2020 Virginia Star Quilters had to cancel a class with Debby Kratovil.  I was tickled when it was rescheduled this year.  Last week I bought some Kona Snow for the background fabric.  I have several pieces of batiks to use as the focus fabric. You can see the class pictures by scrolling down until you see Pyramids and Jewels.  We'll be making two smaller quilts. Hopefully, I can show pictures of it next week. 

I keep forgetting to take pictures as I'm working so I have nothing else to share today.  

I did get some reading done.  I just finished The Paris Wife by  Paula McLain about Ernest Hemingway and his first wife Hadley Richardson. I found it interesting although I kept interspersing other books while I was trying to get it read.  I also started The Lost Family by Libby Copeland. It's a very readable book about genetic genealogy.  I'm about half way finished. I'm happily surprised that it is  keeping my interest. If you are interested in where you come from this book presents a lot of information regarding the field of genetic genealogy. Hopefully, I'll find some time this week to finish it.  

Don't forget to visit the these Linky parties to see what bloggers across the Internet are working on. 

Oh Scrap

Design Wall Monday

To Do Tuesday 

Hopefully I'll come back later to link to the other two parties. 

Happy Quilting All!  Bonnie 

Tuesday, April 12, 2022

To Do Tuesday . . .

Instead of Monday Meanderings, yesterday I had a special request.  With Mari's approval, I requested some quilts be sent to Cool Kids Campaign in North Carolina during the Hands 2 Help challenge.  You can read about it here.  

First up let's look at last week's Goals list: 


Put borders on Stop Tossing — made the border but haven’t cut it to size or applied it

✅Finish borders on Easy Breezy Blocks 

Make more Spider Web blocks (ok just 1 but at least it's progress)

✅Start putting Improv blocks together

Quilt top for Leashes of Valor 

And for this week: 


Work on a secret project

Continue on Improv top

Make more RSC blocks 

Make April block from Sherri McConnell’s BOM

Here's where I am on the Improv blocks.  I made most squares last year. Now I'm sewing them into strips. 

I am using Kelly Young's pattern "Precarious" from her first book, Stash Statement. These are the second group of squares that will need to be sewn together.  Notice those clips on all but the purple stash?  I realized I hadn't made all the squares I needed. I clipped the squares together that had the correct count and left the others unclipped until the correct number of blocks were done.  I'm still debating the grey fabric.  It seems to me I should use what I have on hand since I have more than enough of it. 

Today's blog is short and to the point.  I'm moving right on to Linky parties.  I hope you'll spend some time checking them out. 

That secret project is calling my name.  

Happy Quilting All!  Bonnie 

Sunday, April 10, 2022


Are you participating in Hands2Help 2022?  Are you looking for places to donate that aren't on the other side of the country from you?  I had asked Sarah last year to look into having one or two of the wonderful charities on the East Coast included on her list.  I found 2 and checked them out and passed on the info to Sarah.  Unfortunately, she was unable to run Hands 2 Help this year so no new locations were added. But the wonderful Mari at Academic Quilter took over for Sarah. You can still sign up to participate in Hands2Help by visiting The Academic Quilter. General information is available here

Since I had checked them out, I wanted to let you know about one of them, Cool Kids Campaign in North Carolina.  "Our mission is devoted to improving the quality of life for pediatric oncology patients, survivors and their families by focusing on the academic, social and emotional needs brought on by a cancer diagnosis." They serve pediatric oncology patients in North Carolina and part of South Carolina.  

They would be thrilled to receive quilts to pass on to their patients. The hospitals they work with serve patients from babies through 18 years of age. (Some hospitals continue to treat patients through the age 21.)  They would love quilts from baby size to twin bed size. Do you have some kids quilts you would like to give to a good cause?  This may be a perfect fit. Or a perfect reason to use some of that cute kid fabric you have in your stash.

Does this sound like a cause you would love to support with quilts?  Please check out their web page at Cool Kids Campaign.  This is the website for both the NC Clubhouse and the Maryland Clubhouse. My guild and other guilds in Maryland do a fantastic job of providing quilts for them so let's send our quilts to NC Cool Kids Clubhouse. 

Do you have some ready to send right now?  Here's the mailing info.  Please let them know you are supporting them through Hands2Help. (And head back to to fill out the form at the end of the H2H to help count how many quilts have been given and to whom.   I'd love to see some that you send so I can share them with my readers too. Please send me a note and a picture it you want to.  Here's the address and contact.

Carrie Johnson 
Cool Kids Clubhouse, 
9601 Holly Point Drive, 
Suite 102, 
Huntersville, NC 28078.

Cool Kids Campaign Logo

Did you notice I said I had checked out two locations?  The other one I had looked at has closed.  Now I'm working with International Women's Democracy Center's Welcome Refugees program to find locations where we could send quilts. I hope to have information on that in the next week or so.  I'll publish the information when I find out who can get quilts to refugees. I know Afghanistan refugees are being settled in the Mid-Atlantic area. 

I hope you will join me in supporting Cool Kids and refugee group once I find the contact information. 

Oops!  I forgot the Linky parties! (I'll get the rest linked tomorrow.) 

Monday Making
Design Wall Monday
To Do Tuesday

My regular Monday Meanderings will be posted Monday, 4/11. 

Happy Quilting All!  Bonnie 

Monday, April 4, 2022

Monday Meanderings 4 - 4 - 2022

Phew!  What a great weekend.  Sharon came up on Thursday for a quilting marathon.  We were able to quilt 2 of her quilts and get a big shopping trip too. Needless to say, I didn't get all of my weekly goals done but more importantly we had a great time.  Here's what did get done: 


Put borders on Stop Tossing - nothing

✅Sew rows together - Easy Breezy Blocks  - Half the borders are - on see photo below 

Make more Shoo Fly blocks for SAHRR  - nada, except consultation

Make a few more Spider Web blocks - Three cut out, but  no sewing done

✅Clean up front of cutting table and Accuquilt area — done but may need to be done again! 

Put labels and hanging sleeves on 4 quilts — all done! 

Not the most productive week but I'm happy I was able to move some projects forward.  And the all-important labels and hanging sleeves were finished.  Sharon took the quilts with her.  These will be delivered to a quilt guild member in Maryland for the Faithful Circle Quilters Show. (It's coming May 19 to 21. For more info click here.) 

Here's what I hope to get done this week.  It should be a quiet week so I expect to move these forward or finish them. 


Put borders on Stop Tossing

Finish borders on Easy Breezy Blocks 

Make more Spider Web blocks

Start putting Improv blocks together (my AP & Q's UFO challenge for April)

Quilt top for Leashes of Valor 

Here's one of Sharon's quilts that was quilted this weekend. It was big!

I believe this pattern is called Dottie A Garden for Harper and is available free on Moda Bakeshop. If you have a spare jelly roll with both light and medium/dark strips this might be the pattern for you. Have you been to the Bakeshop recently? Here's the link to the free patterns.   You might want to spend some time checking out the patterns there. 

Here's how far I got on Easy Breezy.  Almost done with the top -- something I hope to finish this week. Once the side borders are added this will go into the To-Be-Quilted closet. 

I'm linking up with the following parties: 

Oh Scrap

Monday Making 

Design Wall Monday 

To Do Tuesday 

I hope you can spend some time surfing to see what people are up to this week.  I'm planning to take it easy today: read a book and surf quilting blogs.  

Happy Quilting All!  Bonnie