Wednesday, August 22, 2012

On the Quilt Wall

Today, I spent half the day in The Studio.  It was nice to spend some time in my haven.  I've let it get in a bit of a mess which is not conducive to productivity.  I folded fabric last week in anticipation of my granddaughter's assistance in resorting my stash.  Unfortunately, that didn't happen, so I resorted it myself today.  

My brother asked for a quilt for his stepson a couple months ago.  The stepson just bought a house and brother and sister-in-law wanted a quilt for a housewarming present.  The request also included fabric with daisies and royal blue.  So I found two background fabrics and a variety of coordinating blues.  While this should be a relatively simple quilt, the combination of colors has made it a bit complicated.  

I have frog quilted more on this quilt (rip it, rip it) on this quilt more than anything I've ever sewn in my life.  I was explaining this to my son, Matthew, this afternoon and he asked if I was quilting or playing chess.  

There are two backgrounds and eight blues.  So I have to match the background to the appropriate blue, so the conversation goes something like background 1 to blue 4.  I have to agree that it sounds a bit like chess to me.  

I think it is going to be lovely.  It is a Carpenter's Star pattern. 

I do think I'm going to have to add a second design wall to the studio so I can layout queen size quilts. 

Monday, July 30, 2012

Quilter's Tranquilizers

Yellow - Soothes nerves when you want to buy fabric and the shop is closed. 
Red - Reduces irritation when you cannot find just the right fabric. 
Blue - reduces frustration when your stash is looking little low. 
Brown - relieves panic attacks when there is no place to hide more fabric 
Orange - Minimizes depression when you cannot get enough time to sew. 
Green - cures the urge to clean house when you could be sewing. 
Warning: May contribute to weight gain

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Summer Love

The best thing about summer is what comes out of the garden. Here on Bank Street, we all have gardens and share among each other. Last night we had fried okra from David's garden.
Joe and I don't eat fancy. Along with the fried okra, I fixed a Crockpot of pinto beans, pulled some North Carolina (down East style) bar-b-que out of the freezer, and sliced tomatoes from our garden.
We had a bumper crop of tomatoes this year. It must have been the perfect weather... a little cool in late May/early June, and then hot, hot weather in late June/July. Joe treated his Kiwanis club to their annual tomato sandwich lunch last week. He fed 30 guys and gals our version of Southern caviar... sliced tomatoes on white bread with Hellman's mayo. We had enough tomatoes to can some. I canned seven quarts of tomatoes cut in quarters. They will be good in spaghetti sauce this winter.
I also canned seven quarts of soup mix. My granny, Ethel, used to can soup mix. She was canning and freezing other vegetables so she just put in a little of this and a little of that. I started mine from scratch and this was an all day ordeal. I have a new appreciation for the effort that went into every jar of Granny's soup mix. I am rather proud of how pretty the jars look. We had a little of the mix left over so I made a pot of soup. This is true comfort food.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Baby Amalia's Quilt

Esther is a friend who visits us every two weeks. It just so happens that when she visits, she cleans our house and we pay her. But she is a friend first. She is expecting a baby in a couple months.
So I had to make Baby Amalia a quilt. This is a triple Irish Chain pattern. I made it from one Honey Bun and some yardage. It was fun to make. I quilted some of it on my sewing machine. The center of the solid squares has a Rose of Sharon embroidery design in it.
I washed and dried it this morning so it was nice and crinkly when I gave it to Esther. I hope it brings Baby Amalia sweet dreams.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Whoot! Whoot! x2

I opened the mail box yesterday and there was a manila envelope that looked vaguely familiar.
Is it one of the envelopes I saw Bonnie loading in to Shamu on her Quiltville blog? YES! It is!
My book arrived! Bonnie Hunter just released her her book, String Fling. It has patterns using strings (strips) of quilt fabrics. But... I had to put it aside for the day. Our friend, Alex, tapped on the back door yesterday bearing a half box of green beans along with a basket of tomatoes, okra, peppers, and zucchini. So I snapped and broke beans until my hands were tired. Then I canned...
Aren't they pretty? Nine quarts of green beans and all of them sealed! These sure will be good this winter. I guess I'll have to clear a shelf in The Studio to store them. Alex said he would be back today with another box. String Flings will just have to wait until gardening season is over.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Stella's Quilt

Stella lives two doors up from us. She is one of my "adopted" granddaughters. Stella is a horsewoman. She has been riding horses since she was four. The child truly loves horses. I found a CD of horse designs and knew that they were meant for a quilt for Stella. I stitched out a few and shared them with her. She just wanted to look at them and touch them. I let her pick out some that she wanted on her quilt. Stella also has a VERY pink room. To say that pink is her favorite color is an understatement. So, the color of the quilt was a given... it had to be pink. I went to a class at our guild where we learned the Square-in-a-Square technique. This quilt was the perfect venue for me to practice those skills. I found a pattern in the Square-in-a-Square book called Montana Stars. It was perfect for this quilt as it had plain squares alternated with the S-n-S's. I went to Stitch 'n Quilt in Mableton, GA and picked out a stack of pink fabrics to make it scrappy. I even found Georgia Bulldogs in pink. Once the top was made, it became a decision on how to quilt it. To some, it looks like feathers, but I like to think of them as half hearts as this is truly a labor of love. I love the way feathers look on the back of the quilt. It gives the quilt back such great texture. Would I do things differently on the next quilt? Of course. Although I would do some things differently, I would do many things the same. In this quilt, I learned the value of planning the quilting design in advance. This is only the third quilt I have free motion quilted. It's perfect for the recipient!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Long time, no post...

So the other day, a friend said to me, "I keep watching your blog to see what you are working on." The problem is I'm working on half a dozen things and nothing gets done. However, I have found a new gadget that is worth sharing with you and they are the Wonder Clips by Clover. I was sewing the binding on a quilt (yes, it is finished... more to come on that in the next blog) and I thought I would give the Wonder Clips a try... I absolutely love them! The last binding I put on a quilt, I pinned... and I kept sticking myself with the pins. The Wonder Clips don't stick. They are easy to reposition as the binding is being stitched down. I had bought a couple packs of 10 and finally bought a box of 50. I'm so very happy with my little clippies.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Baby Quilts

I love making baby quilts. I actually love it when babies are born. There's nothing like holding a new born baby in your arms. I've been blessed to have this honor with my son and my six grandchildren.

This is Wyatt's quilt. Wyatt is the grandson of a friend of ours, David. David has been anxiously awaiting the arrival of this young fella for a number of weeks. He arrived the week after Christmas.

The fabric is called Meadow Friends. It has bugs, dragonflies, and frogs on it. I thought it would be cute for a boy. The border will be orange and white. Mom (David's daughter) is a Clemson alumni.

The quilt is a tumbler pattern that I cut out using my Accuquilt cutter for the first time. It made short work of the task. I'm going to have to use it for some more quilts. It's the cat's meow.

Would you arrange the blocks any differently?

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Cooper's Quilt

For naming this blog "Geema Sews," I haven't really had many postings about sewing. My New Year's Resolution is to complete quilts this year and post about them. I have eight quilts in progress. They are my 2012 UFO's. I have two retreats scheduled for this year. My goal is to complete them all.

This is Cooper's quilt. Cooper is our neighbor's little boy. His daddy built my sewing studio. Cooper's first name is Joseph, same as my husband. This family has two little girls (Stella and Brooke) and this little boy completes their family.

The quilt is pieced with appliques for the train cars. It is a FabriQuilt so it has chenille strips on each of the appliques. It will give Cooper something fuzzy to touch. I free-hand quilted it with red thread in meandering loops.

In keeping with the theme of the family, the backing is Georgia Bulldogs fabric. We love the Dawgs on Bank Street. It has a fun black and red dotted binding.

In with the UFOs and retreats, I'll have to build in time to make quilts for the older sisters.