Friday, January 9, 2015

Sewing with Friends

I have a quilt studio.  I love it and many of my friends do as well.  One of the ladies in my church had a stroke.  A friend suggested to several other friends in our Sunday School class that we make the lady a quilt.  So, we pulled a couple layer cakes from my stash and used the Disappearing Hourglass pattern from Missouri Quilt Company.  

Disclaimer:  When I am quilting, I don't dress up (understatement).  I dress very comfortably. Make up and hair styling do not exist.  

My cutting table is awesome.  Connie and Sandra liked it as well...

 We put blocks on the quilt wall and then moved them around. Carole, Shirley and I each took turns flipping blocks.  Although, you have to watch Shirley and step stools.  Remember to close the doors behind the design walls!  (Note to self:  don't let Sandra take pictures of my backside.)

Sandra shows our thoughts on the final layout.  We all loved the color block design. 

Don't look too close because some of the pieces were rotated.  When we got them on the wall, it was evident.  Blocks have been taken apart and restitched.  The flimsy is together and the borders are sewn on.  It will go on the frame this morning. 

The best part of the whole experience is the memory we have as friends.  There was a lot of laughter, some scary moments and lots of good food. This is what the studio was intended to be.  

Friday, December 12, 2014

Disappearing Four Patch

I belong to the Georgia Friendship Guild.  I love this group of ladies.  We have a business meeting the first Wednesday of the month and a workshop on the third Wednesday of the month.  I admire the ladies who have served in the Vice President slot as they are responsible for planning the programs and workshop.  It is a challenge to find interesting topics on a limited budget.  

One of our workshops this past year was a disappearing four patch.  I've seen the pattern many times but have not tried it.  This particular pattern used big blocks... 10 inch.  I used two layer cakes.  (Anyone who is familiar with my stash knows that I have an abundance of layer cakes thanks to Missouri Star Quilt Company's deal of the day.)  

I had a layer cake of beach prints designed by Paul Brent who is an artist from Panama City, FL.  We had several of his prints in our condo at the beach.  I combined it with a white layer cake.  Here's the result...

Isn't this a happy quilt?  I quilted it with a light blue thread.  I was so pleased with the end result.  Joe and I made a trip to the Outer Banks in October.  We spent some time with Joe's friends, Frank and Ann.  I gifted this quilt to them for their hospitality.  They have a home on the Pamlico River in NC and the quilt seemed to fit the decor of the home.  

I see another one of these in my future.  I have many layer cakes just waiting to be stitched, cut, and stitched again.  After all, isn't that what quilters do? 

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Kiwanis Charity Quilt

My husband, Joe, belongs to a local chapter of the Kiwanis International.  His group is The Jonquil City Kiwanis Club.  (Smyrna, GA is the called Jonquil City.)  The motto of Kiwanis International is they are dedicated to improving the world, one child and one community at a time.  

Joe's group works with our local schools to support the children.  At the elementary school level, they read to children and donate books to the library.  In middle school, the sponsor Builder's Club which is an organization that teaches the children how to plan and run projects.  In high school, they support Key Leader which builds the skills our children need to become the next generation of leaders, and give four year scholarships to a graduating senior.  

The club funds their projects by selling Vidalia onions in the spring and pecans in the fall/winter (now).  Both projects are hard work for the members.  It requires many volunteer hours to source product, procure product, and sell product to raise funds.  

To help supplement their fund raising, I made a quilt for them to be raffled.  One hundred percent of the proceeds from sales of the raffle tickets go to Kiwanis.  I purchased the materials to make the quilt and donated them, along with my labor, to the club.  Here's the quilt...

The pattern of the quilt is called a Hunter's Star.  My friend, Nelda, suggested that I made the quilt in blue and gold which are the colors of Kiwanis International.  All the fabrics in this quilt came from one of my favorite local quilt stores, Tiny Stitches.  

The quilt raffle will be held next Tuesday, December 9th.  I am anxious to find out who has the winning ticket!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Baby Quilts -- My Summer Work

It seems that my circle of friends includes a lot of young people who are having babies.  My niece and nephew are at the top of the list.  They welcomed their young son, Silas Alexander, last summer.  My niece's only request was for a colorful quilt.  

This pattern is called Sunburst from Pat Wys' book Spotlight on Neutrals.  Pat's book, of course, uses neutral colors, but I knew this happy, sunny quilt was the perfect choice for these colorful fabrics.  The background fabric has giraffes on it and I just fell in love.

The next quilt was made for a friend of my son's, Wes and Jamie.  

They named their daughter Novalee, which I just love.  It reminds me of the movie which starred Natalie Portman where she had her baby in a Walmart.  In the movie Novalee overcame her rough beginnings to become a successful young mother.  

Jamie sent me the sweetest thank you note for the quilt.  It means a lot to know that your work is appreciated.  I know Baby Novalee will be as sweet as her mother and this quilt. 

The final quilt was for our housekeeper and friend, Ester.  She had her second baby this past summer.  

Ester has a daughter who is about two years old.  She didn't find out the sex of this baby until she was born so the quilt had to be gender neutral.  This is a larger version of the pink quilt above.  It has eight patch squares where the pink quilt has four patches.  The eight patches have a lot of designs on them which will make this a great "I spy" quilt.  I love the brightness of the blue and the blue quilting just popped. 

As Al Roker says, what's happening in your neck of the woods?

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Row By Row

There's a shop hop type event going on called Row by Row Experience.  If you want to read about it, check out the website  I have been shop hopping around Georgia, Tennessee, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia.  

One of the "features" of the Row by Row shop hop is the ability to collect fabric licenses plates which resemble the state's plate with a quilty saying on it.  Here are some of my collection...

 Aren't they just so stinkin' cute?  I haven't figured out exactly how I will use them on my row-by-row quilt but I know they have a place.  

While at the shop in Martinsville, VA, my very talented, artistic granddaughter, Sarah, spotted some fabric ink.  She selected a variety of colors.  On the way to her Dad's house, we stopped by the mall and picked up a pair of white Vann shoes. Here is her result...

She is just so talented.  She painted the "tie dye" and blended the colors.  Then she overlaid the black ink using a toothpick.  I am so very proud of her.  She helps me pick my quilt fabrics and layout the quilt blocks.  Now that she's living in North Carolina with her Dad, we quilt by cell phone.  Better quilting with technology.    

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Congratulations Jessie

My neighbor's niece graduated from Kennesaw Mountain High School this year.  The neighbor asked if I would make her a quilt from her t-shirts.  I'm not crazy about t-shirt quilts because they seem to lack the creativity that makes quilting such a passion of mine.  However, her shirts were so diverse and gave me a lot to work with.  

She had a combination of school shirts and church shirts.  The white shirts on the sides of the bottom three rows and the shirts on the bottom row were church shirts.  I created a "stair step" of the green shirts in the center.  I paired several fronts and backs side-by-side and top-bottom so they told her story.  I was one shirt short, so I put her graduation picture in the center.  

I used a new panto for the quilting...
It was a big panto... 14" high which I had to downsize a bit for my long arm throat width.  I loved it for the swirls and wasn't disappointed in how it quilted out.  I'll definitely use it again.  

My guild just had a program on t-shirt quilts.  One of our members shared that members of a neighboring guild to which she belongs charge $25 per t-shirt for t-shirt quilts.  So, dear readers, I'm interested in your thoughts on what to charge...

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Charity Quilts

I belong to a couple quilt guilds.  Quilters are passionate contributors to charitable causes.  I have to admit that I have been slack in this area.  I seem to have so many projects coming at me that I cannot even finish my UFOs... let alone make the charity quilts that I should.  

However, my son asked me to make a quilt to benefit his step-nephew who suffers from Autism.  The symbol for Autism is a puzzle and he requested a puzzle quilt to be raffled off.  Here's what I came up with...  (on the back porch)

(on the bed)
My oldest granddaughter, Sarah, helped me with the color layout of the squares.  She is quite the artist and has an eye for color.  Notice the offset rows of black and white mixed with the colors.  There are no accidents in her work... everything has a purpose.  I was pleased with the result and hope the raffle yields a lot of money to benefit Autism research.