Monday, November 28, 2011

Thankful for a DD who is crafty!

It was a hectic, but thoroughly scrumptious Thanksgiving week around here.  I hope everyone ate as much as I did so we can all go on diets together.  Some exhilarating outdoor exercise is called for in the following days.  We are enjoying some exceptionally fine days here in the desert...crisp, cool nights and clear days in the high 70's.  This is why we endure our sizzling summers!
While the turkey was roasting, my DD and I collaborated on a sweet little baby quilt for her girlfriend.  It is an adaptation of a pattern seen in
Jelly Babies
from the staff at That Patchwork Place.
It is pin basted and ready to be quilted by moi.  Of course, the baby shower is this weekend...
like mother, like daughter.
She also whipped up this nifty matching frame.
I love the little yo-yo's in the corners.

I have been busy finishing up my 1880 sampler quilt.
 I believe I only have one more block to do and then I need to design the borders.  
 I will take a break though and be back in the new year with those instructions.

While blog hopping the other day, I jumped into a hilarious post.
Check out Regan's blog post here for a good laugh.
She lists the things that she is thankful she doesn't have and doesn't want...
I liked the reference to the 'boob job'.
I could not come up with a better list than hers, but I do know I am thankful I have a DD who shares my love of crafting and quilting.
Unfortunately, since we are both big procrastinators,
I better get back to some machine quilting!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

A few finishes and you guessed it...

...a new project.
After seeing this 'Fit to be Framed' pattern #6 by Lori Smith carried out in wools at the Houston Festival, I have been beset by it.  I am using cotton backgrounds though, specifically Lisa Bongean's Little Gatherings by Moda..  Wool would be a little too 'imperfect' for my quilter's OCD.  I have also acquired a greater appreciation for Lori's work.  I cannot fathom how she was able to complete these 6" finished blocks using needle turn applique.  Can you see all those tiny, sharp curves in the tree, for example!

I am not enamored with hexies, but truly want to complete my daughter's wedding quilt.  Therefore, I have set a goal of making 2 hexagons per day, first thing in the morning with my very first cuppa of Joe.  Hopefully, this will help me to complete one flower each week.

My finishes...
Autumn Houses is bound.
Sweet Carolina is bound.
Lots to Crow about is stitched and basted, ready for quilting this week.
Two projects were removed from my WIP list while at least 3 were added.
Somehow I seem to be going in the wrong direction.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Just about there!

I am getting down to the last blocks of my 1880 Sampler quilt.
Next block is a 'crumb' block.  
I have never made one, but assume you just sew scraps randomly together.  My plan is to make four different 3" units and assemble them into a block.  Hope it works.  Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Also pieced my first hexie.
Harder than I thought!
This is a large one...about 10 1/2" in diameter.

My project for the day is to make fresh pumpkin puree.  I am coming to the conclusion that it might be more cost effective to purchase canned.  We will see if the taste is dramatically different before the final verdict.
I have baked them in my convection oven, but it still took over an hour and only yields about a cup of puree.
Anyone every cooked them in the microwave?
I have about 100 lbs. of sugar pumpkins from my summer garden and hate to just toss them!

Monday, November 7, 2011

2011 Houston International Quilt Festival

  I am back from the festival, but don't have a lot of photos to share. 
From the grand prize winners, I only selected one quilt to share with you.
Loading Dock
by Mary Buvia
Greenwood, Indiana

The festival this year seemed to be all about art quilts, heavily embellished and masterfully machine quilted.  Although I admire these artisans, my interests lie in the traditional quilts, which there were very few of.
Challenge 2
by Georgina Buschauer
Houston, Texas

This quilt was one of the few traditional quilts that really attracted my eye.  Its design source is Elly Sienkiewicz and won a ribbon for Merit Quilting, Hand.
And her hand quilting was exquisite!

Star Garden
Ardie Skjod
Found in the small exhibit of American Traditional Quilts.
I loved how she fussy cut her fabrics.

I did enjoy the exhibit "Texas Quilts Today...", but could not take photos.
And, I missed the doll quilt and bed exhibit. 
This small exhibit of houses designed by a variety of fabric artists was visually rich...
and very whimsical!
But after a whirlwind walk through the quilts, I headed to the vendors.
It didn't seem as crowded as I had remembered, but I still would start down one aisle only to collide with a mass of determined shoppers and quickly retreat.  The number of choices I was faced with was totally overwhelming for me.  As a result, I came home with very little, which actually makes me happy.
I did brave the Primitive Gatherings booth, but escaped unscathed when I saw the long line at the register.  I picked up and put down several patterns in the Country Threads booth...when will I ever make all the quilts I already have patterns for?

Lori Smith's booth was also very tempting, but all I purchased was some wools from Mary Flanagan Woolens, where she gave me permission to photograph her wool version of one of Lori's patterns.

I also picked up some fabrics and hexie papers to get started on my daughter's wedding quilt.

There was a large number of antique quilt vendors with high quality wares.  I came very close to coming home with one, but my budget just would not let me make the leap.  In Mary Koval's booth of beautiful antique quilts, I had the pleasure of meeting Linda Collins from Quilts in the Barn.  We chatted briefly, but I forgot to get a picture of us together. 

Going to Houston for me this year was more about reconnecting with old friends and meeting a few new ones.  My host and hostess were the best!  I lunched with my old tennis partner, laughed the afternoon away with my friend Lori, caught up with other quilting friends, played Chinese Checkers with Rosie's precious grandson, dined on delectable home cooked meals, and even took in the King Tut exhibit. 

Now that I am home, it will take dynamite to get me to leave for at least 6 months!  I look forward to the upcoming holidays and some simple family times... 
at home!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Lots to Crow About

by Lynda Hall of Primitive Pieces by Lynda.
My version
Something to stitch on the plane ride to Houston!

Fell Off the Wagon

 It was bound to happen. I had stuck to my guns until I saw Laundry Basket Quilts' pattern, Alaska Magic. I told myself,  "It is te...