Sunday, April 15, 2018

A Stitching Week

After quilt camp last weekend, I had several 'sewing' get together's this week.

On Wednesday, Marilyn and I went to Sewing, Etc, to stitch with the owner, Kelly.  First, I stitched the 'missing' sides onto the blocks from Clue #3, in Kevin's mystery.  This is 2 sets of scrappy blocks, finished.
2 finished sets of blocks

When those were done, I pulled out a jelly roll, that I'd won from Henry Glass fabrics, last March.  Wow, I'd forgotten that it was a full year ago when I won these. 

I'd seen a picture of a quilt, ages ago, and had drawn up the pattern to use with these strips.  No clue where I saw the quilt, or what the pattern name was, sorry.  Usually, I try to save the link to where I see something.  Sometimes I'm given a photo of a quilt, with no info included.  I think that was the case with this one. Here is the baby size pattern. 
graph paper pattern I drew up from a photo

A couple in our church had a baby last week, so, it was time to get this quilt made. I cut the strips out, and stitched them up.
all the strip sets, stitched

By the time these strip sets were stitched, it was time to drive to Ottawa, for the Camp Tuckabatchee quilter's group.  Mary was teaching us how to make a tote bag.  My tote bag didn't get finished Wednesday night, due to a stupid mistake on my part.  I was trying to rush (first mistake) and talking too much (second mistake), so, I stitched the lining to the wrong side of the outside of the bag.  Oh well.  I just put the messed up bag away, and 'frog stitched' (rip it, rip it) later in the week.

Saturday, my large quilt guild, Pride of the Prairie had a sew-in.  The first thing I worked on was finishing the tote bag. 
finished tote bag

lots of room in the tote bag

When the tote bag was done, I pulled out the pieces I'd cut for the baby quilt (the box blocks) and stitched them.
all the box blocks stitched

Well, silly me forgot to bring the sewn strip pieces, so, that project got put up.  I'll have to finish sewing all the parts together this week.

Since I couldn't finish the baby quilt top, I pulled out a bag of blocks that I'd bought at a thrift store last year.  The bag had 79 finished 9 inch flannel blocks, a couple of blocks that just need to be stitched, and some extra scraps of the fabrics.  The whole bag cost me a whopping $4. 

I laid out 77 of the blocks, and started stitching the rows together.
77 blocks laid out

My little quilt guild is trying to make 14 quilts for the boys and girls at the Naperville 360 group homes.  We'd made quilts for all the boys back in 2016, but, when the boys leave the home, they take all of their bedding with them, including the quilts.  We started making quilts for the girls this year, then found out that all the boys who we'd made quilts for have moved out, so, none of the new boys have quilts now.  We need twin size quilts for each bed (with lots of  hang over, since they will be the bedspreads for the boys and the girls). 

These blocks will be for one of these boys.  I got all 11 rows stitched, but, I still need to sew the rows together.  I will still need some flannel for the borders, since this isn't large enough yet.  I have enough extra circle blocks to use in the corners.  I hope I can find matching flannel to go with these blocks.

Not a bad stitching week.  I'm still trying to get back in the groove of things, after being out of town for so many weeks.  I'm trying to catch up on housework, and do some deep cleaning, too.  It all takes time.  At least I'm finally feeling better, after being sick for so long. 

I have another craft day next Saturday.  Hopefully I'll be sewing the binding onto that baby quilt by then. 

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Quilt Camp Weekend

This has been a weird sewing year for me.  I've been gone for 33 out of 42 days.  I was only supposed to be gone for 15 of those days.  First, we extended our trip to Alaska by a week (couldn't miss the birth of our first grandchild).  The only stitching I got done for those 3 weeks was on the airplane, and a tiny bit in Alaska, for my daughter in law. 

Three days after we got back, I was setting up my booth for the Pride of the Prairie Quilt Show.  I only had time to stitch 3 sets of exchange blocks at the quilt show.  The day after the quilt show, I got really sick, and just did nothing for several days. 

Life happens, whether you are sick or well.  A few days after I got sick, I was traveling to Texas for a funeral.  Another 11 days gone from home.  When I finally got home, I saw the doctor.  I've had a sinus infection since January, and it had turned nasty after the quilt show.  Needless to say, feeling like I did, I still didn't get anything done for another week or more. 

Well, this weekend was the Camp Tuckabatchee quilt weekend.  I finally got myself moving, and went to camp on Friday afternoon.  Yipee!  My first stitching in a month.

I set up my hand crank as soon as I arrived.  I'm the hostess for 2 different Treadle On block exchanges, and my blocks were not all done.  I really needed to finish stitching those exchange blocks.  I finished the last 2 sets of Spring Basic 4 patch blocks, and also the last 2 sets of Chocolate 9 patch blocks, for the exchanges. 
Spring Basic 4 patch blocks

Spring Basic 4 patch blocks

Chocolate 9 patch blocks

Chocolate 9 patch blocks

All I need to do is sign my blocks.  I can do that later this week. 

On Saturday morning, I set up 'Betty Sue' my purple Featherweight.  Last June, Kevin started a Sapphire Star Mystery Quilt along, and I'd kept up for the first clue, but, things got in the way, and I hadn't worked on those quilts since.  Yes QUILTS.  As usual, I started more than one quilt.  I started THREE quilts.  Two of those quilts are scrappy, as Kevin suggested, but, I also decided that I'd try one quilt as a 'controlled' color quilt.  Just 7 fabrics, one for each 'color' that Kevin had chosen, instead of scrappy. 

Since the Sapphire Star Mystery ended October 1st, I had all the clues printed off.  I'd cut out several clues at the last quilt camp weekend.  I needed to finish cutting all the clues (I'm still short 2 clues for the 'controlled' quilt).  Now to get more stitching done.

Back in September, I'd sewn some of Clue #2 while having a booth at the Lyon's Farm Fall Festival. I'd only gotten half of Clue #2 stitched.  Lots of sewing left to do on that Clue#2 (times 3).

2 sets of scrappy Clue #2 finished

Clue #2 'controlled' is also finished

I cut out the pieces for Clue #3, for the controlled quilt.  They went together nicely.

Clue #3 'controlled' blocks are finished

Then I pulled out the pieces that I'd cut last fall, for the 2 scrappy Clue #3's, and started stitching them together.  Oops!  Somehow I got all the background pieces cut, but, only half of the dark blue side pieces cut out. 

Oops!  Missing half of the side pieces for these 2 sets of Clue #3

I didn't have any of the scrappy fabric with me at quilt camp, so, I'll have to cut out the rest of those missing side pieces this week.  I had thought that I had all the scrappy Clues cut out.  Oh well.  All those fabrics are still in a basket, until I finish all three quilt tops. 

It felt sew good to start sewing again.  I'm meeting up with friends, and going to sew at Sewing, Etc. on Wednesday.  I'm hoping to get more Clues sewn then.  Two of these quilts will be for Quilts of Valor, but, one will be a wedding present, and I need to have it finished before October.  Lots of deadlines coming up, and, with being gone so much, I'm WAY behind. 

Friday, March 30, 2018

Book Review

A Refuge Assured by Jocelyn Green.

A Refuge Assured

This story is based during the French Revolution.  I'll be honest, I really didn't know much about the French Revolution.  This book gives many details of what happened during that time. 

The story is about a lacemaker.  She finds out that her craft will also threaten her life.  The revolutionaries want to stamp out anything that links to the aristocracy, including lacemakers. 

Jocelyn Green's characters are well developed.  She bases her story on truth, and adds fictional characters to the historical facts.  We follow her heroine from the shops in Paris, to Pennsylvania.  Not only does Ms Green detail the French Revolution, but, she also includes the Whisky Rebellion, that was happening in the United States, at that time. 

Her characters are people with flaws, but, also people that you care about.  The characters interact well with each other. 

I really enjoyed this book.  Each time I picked it up, I didn't want to put it down again.  I highly recommend reading this book.

I received this book in exchange for my honest opinion. 

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Pride of the Prairie Quilt Show

This weekend my large quilt guild had it's bi-annual quilt show.  I love this quilt show.  It is one of the reason's that I joined the quilt guild. 

I had a booth showing off and doing demo's on some of my vintage sewing machines.  This is the 4th time I've had a booth.  No, I do not sell anything at the show, but, I do take my cards, and hand them out to people who have questions about machines. 

I took 16 machines this year.  I only take one treadle each time, since they take up so much space in the car.  Speaking of cars, it's been a crazy week.  We arrived home from Alaska late on Tuesday night.  On Wednesday morning, when I got in my car, it wouldn't move.  I thought the transmission was out, but, the parking brake was frozen to the back brake drums.  The car hadn't been moved in 3 weeks, after snow and rain.  Hubby started working on the car on Wednesday night, and, by Friday noon, he finally freed the last wheel.  Until then, I wasn't sure how we'd get all my machines to the show, since it takes 2 cars. 

1881 Singer 12 treadle

My booth is down the hall, behind this treadle.  I get the hall to myself, so I can spread out as much as I like.  They offered to put me in with the vendors, but, then I'd be limited by space.  I'd prefer the hall. 

more machines
Behind the treadle, I put my folding chairs that I'd decorated in January.  The wheelies were on the folding chairs.  The chairs and the wheelies got lots of attention.  I'm thinking that Menard's will be selling out of the furniture movers this next week.  Oops!  Menard's went up in price.  Oh well, still worth the extra $1. 

I had 2 long tables full of vintage machines. I used some of the antique quilts that I've collected, to display the machines on.
13 machines on these tables
Here are the machines I took.
Approx 1927 Frister & Rossman Model E

1927 Singer 15

early 1900's Gritzner VS (back, left) 1925 Singer 99 (front) 1914 Singer 66K (back, right)

1911-12 Bradbury VS, 1878-1885 Wheeler & Wilson #8

W&W #8 (back, left) 1939 Singer Featherweight (front, left) 1923 Singer 128 (back, center) 1930's Casige (toy, front) 1921 Singer 66 (back, right)

1921 Singer 66 (back, left) 1880 Willcox & Gibbs (front) 1950's Home Mark (electric, back, right)

At the table, at the front is where I sat and stitched.  The table is for a Singer 401/301 short bed machine.  I put one of my 301's in the slot for the machine, then set up another machine to sew on.
1953 Singer 301A, sitting in it's card table

Post WWII Universal Japanese class 15
I stitched all weekend on the aqua 'Universal' hand crank.  I am participating in 2 different block exchanges with my Treadle On group.  Over the weekend I finished 3 sets of blocks for the exchanges.

I finished a set of Chocolate 9 patch blocks (2 sets left to stitch).  I thought the 'mint chocolate' went well with this machine.
Chocolate 9 patch blocks
I also finished 2 sets of 4 patch blocks for the Spring Basic exchange.  I also color coordinated the fabrics to the machine.  Check out the aqua green sewing machine on the red fabric.  The other fabric is pins.
4 patch blocks

4 patch blocks
Half of my blocks are done now.  I never expect to get much sewing done, since it's more fun to answer questions about the machines than to stitch. 

I got to meet a member of Treadle On at the quilt show, and also a few people who read my blog.  Also, I already have 2 emails from people asking for information on machines.  Great!  I love to help people get their machines up and running. 

I know it was a quilt show, and you are expecting to see quilts.  When I finally got to go see the quilts, I forgot to bring my camera.  Sorry.  The only pictures I have are of my entries.

This is the Peter Pan quilt that is hanging in my new granddaughter's room.  I thought I'd show it instead of it's twin, that was at the show. 
Peter Pan quilt
Here is my Family Reunion quilt.  There are 2 of these quilts, too, one for me, and one that was raffled off at the reunion.

me, with the owner of the 2nd Family reunion quilt
Here is the Elephant challenge quilt. (only one of these quilts)
Elephant Walk

I also entered one of the purses that I've made.  It was the first one of this style.  It was from a class with my other quilt guild.  I've since made several of this style.
And my last entry was one of my project bags.  Yes, I've made quite a few of these.  I also made 2 project bags that were donated to the silent auction at the quilt show.  Several people noticed, since I also had 3 of my project bags at my booth, holding my sewing projects.
project bag

It was a fun weekend full of quilts, vintage sewing machines, and new (and old) friends.  I even got some time on Sunday to visit the vendor booths.  Oops!  I came home with more fabric (hey, who can resist those great, discounted prices)? 

I'm taking a break, then I'll start putting machines away in the morning.  I don't think you can walk in my living room at the moment (the floor is covered with machines). 

I'm looking forward to the next quilt show, in 2020.

Monday, March 5, 2018

I'm a Grandma!

Gwendolynn Avery was born Thursday, March 1st.  9lbs 11 oz, 21 inches long.

Gwendolynn was two full weeks late.  We extended our trip by a week, so that we wouldn't miss her birth. 

I had made t-shirts for all of the grandparents to wear at the hospital. 
all the grandparents
Unfortunately, my son didn't tell me that the spelling was wrong.  It is Gwendolynn with two 'N's', not Gwendolyn with only one 'N'.  Oh well, we didn't care.  I'm sure Gwendolynn can't spell yet.

Here I am, holding my precious new grandbaby.

Gwendolynn and her Grandma (me)
Here are her happy parents.
Gwendolynn and her parents

Here she is, with her daddy, after she came home from the hospital.  The gown she is wearing was made by a friend of ours (thanks Crystal).  I took the picture before my son got to take his shower (hence the wild hair).  Sorry Connor.
Gwendolynn and her daddy

Boy are you lucky.  I only showed 4 pictures out of the dozen's I've taken.  You're welcome ;)

I'm seriously 'tech' challenged.  I just learned (on this blog post) how to get photo's from my phone.  My son has spent a couple of hours today, teaching me lots of new techy things.  

We fly home in the morning.  Just in time for me to get my machines ready for my booth at my large quilt guild's quilt show this weekend. 

March 10 & 11, 2018
Richland Grade School
1919 Caton Farm Road
Crest Hill, IL 60403

Monday, February 12, 2018

Odds & Ends

I've been stitching, but, I don't have much to show for it.  Most of my stitching has been hanging sleeves, and labels on the items that will go in my large guild's quilt show in early March. 

If you are in the Chicago area, I invite you to come see my quilts and 15 of my vintage machines at the show.

March 10 & 11, 2018
Richland Grade School
1919 Caton Farm Road
Crest Hill, IL 60403

I did finish one of the play mats I started in January.  This one is for my granddaughter, who is due Feb 15th.  Her nursery is Peter Pan themed, so, I used blue nautical fabric, and a pirates map fabric.
finished play mat

jingly toys hang from the hooks

up close of the bottom of the play mat

I didn't do much quilting, since I wanted it more 'fluffy'.  I also added double poly batting to get it fluffy.  The other play mat just needs to be quilted.  Since it doesn't have an 'owner' yet, I'm not in a rush.

I also made some t-shirts for the grandparents to wear.  Mine is the purple shirt.

Is anyone as tired of snow as I am???  The Chicago area tied 2 previous records for snow.  Nine days of snow (yes, EVERY DAY) with a total of 18 inches.  In the western suburbs (where we are) we actually got even more snow than that.  As Native Texan's (yes, misplaced) we still aren't used to it snowing more than 1-2 times a winter.  

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Rest in Peace Mrs. Betty

Last night I lost a very special friend.  My oldest quilting buddy and mentor, Mrs. Betty.
Mrs. Betty
Mrs. Betty and I worked together at a preschool in Tulsa, many, many years ago.  My youngest son was still in this preschool, when we met.  Mrs. Betty became an honorary grandmother to both my boys.

In September 2001, a lady at my church offered a quilting class.  I signed up, and brought Mrs. Betty along with me.  We learned how to quilt together.  In 2003, I moved to Illinois, and Mrs. Betty continued on with our quilting group, formed from the ladies who took the class together.  They continued to meet for several more years.

Several years ago, Mrs. Betty couldn't see well enough to keep on quilting, but, supported me in my quilting efforts.  Mrs. Betty didn't have a computer, so, a few years ago I started printing off my blog posts, and mailing them to her. 

Over the years, Mrs. Betty would request that I make something for  her, or her daughters.  One of the things she wanted me to make was a quilt in one of her quilting magazines, 'Fat Cats in the City'.

Mrs. Betty with her new quilt

When a quilting blogger buddy taught me how to make purses, Mrs. Betty wanted one.  Hubby was with me when I took this purse to her.
Mrs. Betty and John

Mrs. Betty with her new purse

My youngest son started college at Oklahoma State University (Go Cowboys!).  Betty and her daughters were fans of the University of Oklahoma, instead.  Great rivalry between the 2 schools.   Mrs. Betty asked for some OU purses for her daughters.  If anyone else has asked, I wouldn't have made them, but, I'd do most anything for Mrs. Betty.
first OU purses

Several years ago, I made a Leg Lamp mini quilt for my stepfather.  Melvin loves the movie 'A Christmas Story' and anything that is in it.  I decided to make 2 mini quilts at the same time (bad habit of mine to make 2 of most things), and, when Betty saw the pictures, she claimed the 2nd Leg Lamp quilt. 
Mrs. Betty and her new Leg Lamp quilt

I learned how to make a different purse back in 2016.  After seeing pictures of that purse, Mrs. Betty mailed me more OU fabric, to make some new purses for her daughters.
OU purse #1

OU purse #2

Mrs. Betty also asked me to make a quilt for her soon to be newest great-grandbaby.  She loved all my churn dash quilts that I've made over the years (easy and fun to make).
for Mrs. Betty's newest great-grandbaby

Of course, I've made many other things for her, over the years.  Going thru my pictures, I think I made more things for Mrs. Betty than for anyone else.   She so appreciated the things I made.  When she couldn't quilt any longer, I quilted for her. 

I was luckier than most, in that Betty's daughter called me Sunday night, to let me know that the end was near.  She put the phone next to Betty's ear, and we got to say goodbye to each other. 

This morning, at 2 am, I lost one of the best friends you could ask for.  My family and I were blessed to know this woman.  I know that she is with Jesus now, and I'll see her again one day. 

Goodbye Dear Friend.