Friday, December 31, 2010


I sewed and sewed yesterday and managed to complete the inside of the Christmas quilt I posted a picture of yesterday.  I am at a stall now because I hadn't even thought about border fabric.  I didn't know if I was ever going to get the quilt made, so border fabric was far from my mind.  The quilt shop is closed today so I will look online to order fabric.
The partial seams were about to get the best of me.  There was very little of the quilt that did not involve partial seams at some point.  And there were no directions on how to accomplish the putting together part.  This set of patterns is from an old block of the month put out by Oxmoor House and is no longer available. I substituted blocks here and there to suit myself.  It is a relief to have gotten this far on a long project.  For your information, I no longer have the pattern set.  Keep watching E-Bay and maybe a reasonably priced set will come up for sale some day.

I purchased a vintage sewing machine off of E-Bay.  It is a Bell and is very small.  But don't be fooled.  It is not a child's machine.  The attachments are full size and there are a lot of them.  I always think of them as tools of torture because there are so many strange looking ones with the older machines.
The machine stores in a briefcase.  The machine itself supposedly weights nine pounds.  I have not weighed it but it is very light weight.  The foot pedal  is full size.
The case is not in the best of shape.  It is intact but somewhat dried out as far as the felt lining and the vinyl outside.  There are more attachments under the white plastic slide out that are not showing in the picture.
Here is how the machine fits in the case.
And to get an idea of its size, a picture sitting in front of my Bernina.

I first saw one of the machines in November at an antique shop.  Price was $300.  More than I wanted to spend but I thought it was so cute.  I did an online search for information on the machine and learned it was not a toy and billed as the world's smallest sewing machine.  From the mid 1950's.  The article I read led me to believe that $300 was too high of a price.  I saw some of the machines on E-Bay and as low as $48 but that one had no foot pedal.  In fact, I found three with no foot pedal.  Wonder why.  One of the no foot pedal ones is still on E-Bay for $189.  A really good one passed me by at $125.  I should have bid.  I kept watching one that had one tiny picture that would not enlarge and very little info about the machine.  I contacted the seller and asked for a better picture but he said his camera was broken.  He was selling it "As Is" but plugged it in and said "it works" and does have the foot pedal.  I finally took a leap of faith with the seller and purchased it for $80.  It arrived yesterday.  Needed cleaning up and still does a little more.  Every thing but the instruction book is there but I can order a copy of one.  I am sure that I won't be making a quilt using the machine but I do like smaller size machines and have a small collection of them.  From reading online, they do sew but would not handle heavy duty sewing.  The machine hesitates a little when I first press the pedal but I read that is the way they work.

It is after noon now and I have not sewed one stitch today.  Have to get busy.

Happy New Year to all of you.  We will be cooking sauerkraut and pork and making mashed potatoes which is our traditional New Year's meal.  And we will stay home.  We went out on New Year's Eve years ago and decided staying home and safe was the thing to do.


Thursday, December 30, 2010


I have spent the last three days working and working on the Christmas quilt block of the Month by Jeanna Kimball.  The pattern set is from 1995 or so.  I started working on the quilt early in 2009 but other quilt projects kept getting my attention.  I have just let this project drag on too long.  So, I made up my mind I was going to get the top together this week.  I had lots of parts made and felt like it would not take a lot of time to complete.  Wrong!  I have spent a lot of time for three days on the project and still have a few blocks to make.
Here is where I am at on the project.  Sewing the blocks together has been a challenge.  Almost all of the assembly has been a series of partial seams.  I have to study and decide what I can get together with a partial seam to attach something else.  Not the most fun.  The missing areas need a few blocks made to go with what I have done and waiting.  I hope to get close to done today.  I have substituted a few blocks for ones I did not care for.  The holly wreath is going to get buttons sewn on for the holly berries.  I am going to use buttons on the gingerbread man and ladies.  I am doing raw edge machine applique instead of hand applique on this project.  I don't think I would have done this project otherwise.  Two of my friends have been working on the same quilt.  I think one is probably done with hers though I have not been to the Sew 'n Sews group for a while to see her progress.

Back to the sewing machine.


Tuesday, December 28, 2010


I changed things around just a bit.  Decided to hang a quilt over the fireplace.  I wanted the fireplace wall painted a different color.  It is a rust right now.  But now that the quilt is hanging there, I don't feel the same way about the color.
The wall looks more red in this photo.

I have been busy working on projects but am not ready to take a picture just yet.  I will be back soon to share with you.


Thursday, December 23, 2010


I want to share pictures of Christmas quilts I display during the holiday season.  I think I have shown almost all of them on my blog in the past but hope you enjoy a second look.

The following wool mat was made by my friend Beverly.  The date on the back is 2004.  The Sew 'N Sews had a Christmas trade that year and she had my name.  I think the pattern was in a quilt magazine but I don't remember any of the information about which one or the designer.

And last is a picture of the Alpine tree with the vintage cookie cutters for decoration.  It is hard to get a good picture in the location it sits because of glare from the window.

Enjoy your holiday season!


Tuesday, December 21, 2010


Just to let you know what I am working on, I am sharing a picture.
No stitching yet on these blocks.  I am just in the preparation stage.  I have six more to prep for the wall hanging.  These will be good for me to stitch on during some down time I will have in January and February.

Enjoy your day!


Saturday, December 18, 2010


I got busy yesterday evening and did the binding on the Wild Turkey quilt so it is now complete.  Not in time for fall or Thanksgiving but done.
My picture is crooked as usual.  My program does not do any adjusting to straighten so I am going to check out Photoshop when I have some time.

Hey, Lori!  I should have mentioned the doll quilt to you sooner.  I wrote Lori an e-mail yesterday telling her that I had made a doll quilt from her last sew-long and had not been able to find the quilt since I put it together.  I had looked more than once and the sewing room had been cleaned a couple times so things had been put away.  I told her that it either went to the thrift store in a donated bag of fabric or was hidden in the folds of a big piece of fabric.  I needed a piece of red fabric yesterday and began pulling some reds off the shelf.  I saw that there was a smaller piece of batting in between some red and black check fabric and pulled it out.  Here was the doll quilt stuck to the piece of batting waiting for machine quilting.  Before I lost it again, I sat right down at the sewing machine and completed the work.  I should have e-mailed Lori a good while back about the lost little quilt.  Maybe I would have found it a lot sooner.
I had to have done something wrong because I ended up with parts getting cut off that shouldn't have.  I think I can see what is wrong now that I look at the picture.  Oh, well.  The quilt is quilted and bound.  It will just be one of those charming quilts that is off kilter.

The mailman brought me two packages yesterday.  The first was from Julie and I was bad.  The little wrapped package inside said "Don't Peek" and I peeked anyhow.  She sent me one of the pincushions she was making back around Thanksgiving time.  Made from nine patches and a button center.  I especially like that she used a plaid in red and green.  A big thank you!  I so appreciate a hand made gift.  It is going into my pincushion collection that I keep in a Longaberger basket.  On display in the family room.
The second package was from Colleen.  She has been my blog buddy right from the very beginning of starting my blog.  We both like prim style and developed a good friendship.  She sent me some plaid squares, a prim style decorative plate and a wonderful little cushion that she made.  Take a look.
She did wool applique and some embroidery on the project.  My favorite season of the year is fall and this definitely has a fall look.  Thank you, Colleen.  I appreciate all you have done for me.

I am playing in the sewing room a bit this morning.  I pulled out one of my Cheri quilt patterns that has a Christmas theme.  I can't complete it before the holiday but it will be fun to work on it.

Come back soon!

Friday, December 17, 2010


I am doing the Whoopee Dance (I don't think that will translate very well for those that have to use translation)!  Mary from Quilt Hollow sent me an early birthday present.  Look at what she sent.
This is the quilt she showed on her blog in a very recent post.  Little did I know that it was coming to me.  It has those stars with the long points.  I find them hard to piece but Mary's are done so well.  I did use the Tri-Recs ruler set the last time I made a couple of the stars and had success.  And, of course, Mary's machine quilting.  The quilt is made with Kansas Troubles fabrics which tend to find their way into my stash quite often.  As a quilter, I very much appreciate the time and workmanship that goes into making a quilt.  Mary knows how much I appreciate this gift.

I finished stitching the twelve wool flower blocks and set them together.

I don't know why I can't take a straight picture.  The blocks were designed by Lisa Bonjean of Primitive Gatherings.  She showed the blocks over the summer on her blog.  I did a quick look and do not find the patterns on the shop website though they may be there and I did not see them.  Lisa used a pieced border of small squares.  I decided to use a plainer border as the blocks were busy looking.  I tried several fabrics before deciding to settle on plainer fabrics.  The dark brown inner border is a wood grain look fabric.  The tan is a crackle print.  All the fabrics I used including the wool came from stash.  I will do minimal quilting on this piece.

Stash brings up a thought.  How long does a piece of fabric have to be in your possession before it is considered stash?  I think it is when the fabric is already on the shelf and not planned for any particular project.  Or a leftover from another project.

Thanks for stopping by for a visit.


Monday, December 13, 2010


I spent yesterday stitching down the wool on four basket applique blocks.  You can see all the blocks I prepped here.  I will show you a picture of the ones that I completed the hand stitching on.
I like flowers but am not good at being able to identify more than a few kinds.  I don't know if these represent real flowers or not.  I have eight blocks left to stitch.

I am sure you remember this quilt from the previous post.
Well, it is on its way to the post office.  Being mailed to Mary at Quilt Hollow.  It is her quilt.  She purchased the block of the month kits, I have done the stitching, and she will complete the quilt.    It is part of a trade we agreed to and has worked out well.  She gave me freedom to change any of the blocks I wanted to.  She also gave me additional fabric from the same line to add to some that I had in my stash.  I can make the same quilt for myself or at least part of it but want a little break first.  I will work on other projects.  As I said, it is a trade of time and talent.

I have mentioned the quilt pattern name on previous posts but not on the last one.  Have had several e-mails asking about it.  The pattern name is "Piece and Plenty" and was a block of the month by Moda University.  It was available through some quilt shops probably in 2008 or 2009.  I have not been able to find it anywhere online at this time.  The blocks were designed by a variety of people thus the different styles within the quilt.

I had an e-mail from a new blogger.  She has posted a picture of her quilt made from the same pattern.  Different fabrics.  Please stop by and pay Lia a visit.  Here is a link to her blog.  It is in Dutch.  Her e-mail to me was in English so don't hesitate to leave her a comment if you care to.

Back to my stitching.


Saturday, December 11, 2010


No border yet but the main body of the quilt is together.  So many have said they were anxious to see the the applique baskets and pieces and parts together.  Here is a picture.
My favorite block is the dark brown basket with the little triangle border around it in the top right of the quilt.



I made two candle mats yesterday.  Both were made from kits that were gifts to me.
The first is from a Primitive Gatherings pattern and is made from wool.
The second mat is made with wool felt and the pattern is from Bareroots #166 Folk Hearts & Stars.

Thank you Colleen and Pam H.  I enjoyed stitching both of these and they will be put to good use.


Friday, December 10, 2010


Hurray!  The last basket block is done.  This design was by American Jane.
Now to sew the pieces and parts together for a quilt top.

I made a small snowman table mat yesterday evening.  A fairly quick project.
The pattern is a free one and is available here on Sew Unique Creations' blog.  I used wool I had in my stash for the project.

Back to my stitching.  Have a good day and stop back soon.


Wednesday, December 8, 2010


More basket blocks and pieces and parts to share with you.
This is not the layout for the quilt but just everything close together on the design wall for the photo.  The upper left block is my favorite of these.  I made a change to the block to simplify the basket.  Only because I thought a strip pieced basket looked too busy.  The fabrics  included some to be used in the flower which made the flower sort of blend into the basket.  I substituted the brown from the same fabric line.  Now the flower stands out more.  I love the pieced border around the block.  The second block over is the same layout as the pattern but I changed the basket to a more simple one.  Again, the block had such a busy look that this helped a lot.  The bottom right basket is made just like the pattern.  I am coming to the end of making blocks for the quilt.  One more package to go.  Then I can lay it all out and see if anything needs adjusting.

A while back, I showed you "Grace" which was made from a pattern by Cheri Saffiote-Payne.  The pattern did not give Grace a mouth.  I thought she needed something.  Perhaps a heart button.  I found one button but it was too bright of a red.  I was going to attempt to paint it a darker red.  Then I found this heart button at Hobby Lobby.  A deeper red and long like Grace's face.  Here is what Grace looked like before the addition of the button.
Here is what she looks like now.  The quilting makes it look like she had a mouth to start with but that is just the angle of the photo.  She needed something.

Back to the sewing room.  Have a great day.


Monday, December 6, 2010


Another basket block up on the wall for the basket sampler quilt.  And some star filler blocks.
I did not care for the basket block that was next in line in the pattern set.  It was sort of a fan basket with yo-yo's for the base and the handle.  I chose a Jan Patek design instead and modified it somewhat.  I like the result much better than the original yo-yo basket block.

I made it to the craft store today for some supplies to decorate my new tree that I showed you in the last post.  Hobby Lobby has some very similar trees and they are called Alpine trees.  I was just calling mine a prim style tree.  All their Christmas trees and decorations are half price right now.

A short post today.  Stop back again soon.


Monday, November 29, 2010


I gave a peek into my UFO closet in yesterday's post.  If you have not seen it, scroll on down to the previous post.  I was asked what quilt top says "Holly" on it. That was about all you could see of it in the picture.   I could not find the photo I have shown before on my blog of this particular quilt.  I said I would post it again.  It has been done for a while and needs quilting.
It is difficult for me to pin a quilt of any size to the design wall, so it is not hanging very straight.  The pattern set I used is by Cheri Saffiote-Payne.  I do not think it is available any longer but you could e-mail and ask her about it if you are interested.  I made a couple changes to the quilt design as I made the blocks.



Sunday, November 28, 2010


A work in progress from a pattern called "Pitcher of Blooms".
The pattern is by Linda Brannock and is in the book "Miss Jump's Memories".  There are three borders to add.  One border is pieced.  I just wanted to share with you what I am working on.

Also, I thought I would give you a little peek of the quilt tops hanging in the UFO closet.  They are waiting for quilting.  I have two tops layered and ready to go that aren't hanging in there.  There are projects in progress in the bins that you see.
My SIL arrived yesterday and will be leaving tomorrow.  Our oldest and dearest friends will be arriving tomorrow afternoon for a week's stay.  I will get some sewing time but not a lot.  But we will be doing other fun things.

Have a good day and come back for another visit soon.


Thursday, November 25, 2010


Happy Thanksgiving to all of you in the USA.  I just want to share with you pictures of two quilts that fit the theme of the day.  Both have been shown on my blog in the past.

The first is "Pumpkins and Turkey Feathers".  A Jan Patek pattern.  You can read about it here.
The second quilt is wall hanging size and was made by an old friend.  I made her one as a gift.  Every time I would see it hanging in her home, I commented that I should have made myself one.  She surprised me one day with one that she made from the same pattern.  A Country Threads pattern was used.
Enjoy your day!


Wednesday, November 24, 2010


I finished the applique on a sunflower wall hanging.  Could be used for a table runner as it is wide in width and narrow in length.
The pattern name is "Celebration" and is from a book called "The Olde Farmhouse".  The book is by Joined at the Hip and can be seen here.  I prepped the applique parts a few weeks ago on one of the nights I had difficulty sleeping.  I started the applique Monday and finished it Tuesday evening.  That was fast.  I had the exact border fabric that was used in the sample quilt.  One of those jacquard fabrics by Jan Patek.  Now the top becomes a UFO waiting to be quilted.  This will make a nice summer piece.

Another block and filler parts completed for the BOM that I am working on.  No applique on this one so it made up very quickly.
I had trouble sleeping one night earlier in the week.  I started to prep a small applique piece.  Part way through, I realized that the pattern instructions said to enlarge 125%.  I was not too happy.  It is a pet peeve of mine that full size applique patterns are not included.  And it does need to be full size, so the prepped parts went in the trash.

I received a stuffed package from Mary of Quilt Hollow this week.  She sent me some plaid fabrics that she was not using.  They will be put to good use in some of my projects.  A wonderful treat delivered by the mailman instead of a bill!  A big thank you to Mary.

I have another prepped applique project I can work on today or whatever suits my fancy.  No plans for the day.  We need to stay away from the grocery stores.  So many people will be out buying food for their Thanksgiving celebration.  We don't want to fight the crowds.

Have a great day!


Monday, November 22, 2010


Look what I did over the weekend.  "Wild Turkey" is a completed top.  And all made from stash.
I cut out the turkey applique parts over a year ago.  It sat in a basket waiting for the backgrounds to be selected and some stitching to be done.  I came close to tossing out those parts more than once.  But I really liked the pattern.  I saw the quilt displayed on Quilts and Pieces blog.  Take a look if you have time.  It reminded me just how much I liked the design.  I decided it was time to take the bull by the horns and do something about those parts and pieces. I enjoyed the process.   Now to see if I can find time to quilt it.  The pattern is by Country Threads and can be found here.

I did a sample applique of "Rachel's Reel" to see if I want to make more for a quilt.  I did it reproduction fabrics which is what I would do for a quilt.
It is a Jo Morton design.  There is a book out with the pattern in it but I found the pattern  here free on the internet.  If you are interested in the book which has more settings for the block, visit Jo's site here.

Time for some stitching.  Another UFO awaits me.


Friday, November 19, 2010


I went a little bit crazy and finished "Quilter's Village" from the Buggy Barn book called "A Little Bit Crazy".  The book is available here.

 I have to say that doing the Crazy style Buggy Barn quilts is not for me.  I am so tempted by the patterns in the books but I gave away all the books that focus on quilts done in this method.  These are patterns where you start with an oversize drawing of the finished block and lay it on a stack of fat quarters.  Cut on the drawn lines.  Then you take the stack of pieces and rotate within the stack before starting to sew.  You end up with the parts of the block done in all the different fabrics.  Such as the background will be light on some blocks and dark on others depending on how the fabrics fall within the stack.  If you haven't done this method, I know this doesn't make much sense.  I think you pretty much have to do it to understand.  I like the quilt because it has houses on it but I think I would have liked it better if I had used more fabrics that read almost solid from a distance.  I did simple quilting on this just to get it done.  The quilt top has been finished and in the UFO closet for quite a while.  Time to just get it done.  Looking at the picture of the quilt from a distance, I like it better than close up.
I have finished the applique on another of the designer basket patterns.  I like this one.  I need to make the pinwheel filler blocks that were in this packet.  The parts are cut and ready to go and should not take long to sew.
I forget which blog I saw the turkey wall hanging on very recently.  I immediately recognized the piece as being one in my UFO closet.  It has probably been there for two years.  I had the turkey parts cut out but not the background blocks.  I pulled it from the closet and, cut the backgrounds, and now I am going to spend a little time on doing a bit of applique on it.  The pattern is from Country Threads.  I think I only have one quilt made that could be considered a Thanksgiving quilt and the holiday is less than a week away.  I may not finish the quilt in time this year but will make a go of it anyhow.
I need to head for my chair, get out the needle and thread and start stitching.

Have a great day!


Saturday, November 13, 2010


I feel like I have been a very good girl of late as the mailman brought me another unexpected envelope.  This time it contained a stitchery pattern I had my eyes on a while back.  Cathi from Shakerwood Quilts knew that it interested me very much and has sent it to me.
The stitchery is prim style which is my favorite.  I need to get busy on this some time soon as I discovered that I don't have nearly as much patriotic stuff as I thought I did.  It will go well with the Uncle Sam wall hanging I have in the works.  A big thank you to Cathi.  If you have not visited one of her blogs, be sure to do so sometime soon.  She has one for hand dyed wools and one for prim style decorating along with her quilting blog.

I lost a photo last week of the next set of blocks for the designer quilt I am working on.  I took another photo this morning so I can share progress with you.
The handles on the paper pieced baskets don't show all that well but that was the fabric that was to be used for them.  I like the narrow trim on the applique basket top and base.  A different look.

I finished two quilts this week.  I have shown both on my blog in the past when they were at the completed top stage.  Now they are machine quilted and the binding done.  I don't have my official quilt holder here to hold the first quilt up for a picture so I draped it on the rocker out on the lanai.  I pieced this last year from fabric I purchased three years ago.  Hey, at least I used the fabric.  Now I have another fall quilt and it is done before fall is officially over.
The pattern is from a Kim Diehl book called "Simple Seasons".  The pattern name is "Duck, Duck, Goose".  I like Kim's books a lot.  I just ordered her new book and it is on the way as we speak.

The second quilt I finished is one I really like.  It is called "Town Square" and is from a book called "Houses" by Fig Tree Designs.
The center fabric is one of the Coverlet reproduction fabrics.  It has houses, birds, and trees on it.  I thought it was a good choice for the quilt center.  The houses are made from different red reproduction fabrics.  A couple of the reds are ones that were not specifically repro fabric but I thought they looked like they could be.  This is not a large quilt and will make a nice one to display.

I have all my blocks made for the sew along that Cheri was having.  I have not done the center strips nor the applique yet.
Cheri named the quilt "Soot and Ashes" so I used reproduction fabrics that reminded me of that.  Cheri is a participant in "Home for the Holidays" and has a prim style little quilt pattern on her blog that you can make.  Poke around a bit and you can see a picture of the finished project on another post.

A beautiful day in Florida.  I am heading to the sewing room and will enjoy the sunshine through the window right by my machine.  Have a good day and take time to sew.