Sunday, October 31, 2010

A block and a box

First for the update. There was some confusion about what kind of bat I had an encounter with, which was my fault. It was the furry kind. In trying to get away from it and get the door shut, I ran into the end of a 1x4 on my shoe rack, and cut my leg to the bone. It's finally getting better, and I get the stitches out on Friday. Being laid up all week, I actually got some sewing done. Here is my first Roseville Album block. I had a blast doing this, and while I usually stress out about picking out the fabrics, with this, kind of anything goes. I'm really happy with it, and will be prepping the next block this week. For some reason, the picture doesn't show how bright it really is, so I'll try to take one in the daytime this week.

I had just finished it, and was at loose ends for a new project, when I got a box in the mail from Country Sampler. Circumstances prevented me from attending their Boxwood and Berries retreat the last two years, but I did buy one of the projects. This was a sewing box designed by Maggie Bonanomi, and I dove right in. Here's what I started with.

I cut everything out, and then glued the seam allowances around the outside to the cardboard.

Then I had to whip stitch the edge of the inside fabric to the edge of the outside fabric to join them.

Here's the heart pincushion, stuffed with wool and whipstitched to the fabric for the inside of the lid.

And here's what I ended up with. The cutest little heart shaped sewing box, with a pincusion inside the lid. I thought it was so cute I would make some as gifts, but after two days of hand sewing on it, I decided not. :) I love hand sewing, which was a good thing on this project.

Next weekend Sue Spargo is coming to town. Here are my blocks for the classes, that I showed you in an earlier post, with some threads and fibers I picked up for embellishment. Sue will have lots more things for sale at her trunk show to use, too. Her classes are always so much fun, and I always learn something new, so I'm raring to go!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Limping Along

I had an exciting Saturday night, starting with a bat and ending with an ambulance ride, so I'm not getting around too well at the moment. Hopefully, after things settle down around here, I'll feel well enough to get some sewing done while I'm laid up. :) My friend Marilyn just left after bringing me an emergency supply of Diet Coke and my favorite blueberry fritters, so I'm set for the rest of the week.

I recently joined (oh no, not again!) a block exchange on the Jo Morton Yahoo Group. This is my first exchange, and since I already had the ingredients, I thought it sounded like fun. I bought these stamp basket stamps from Cindy Blackberg years ago in Chicago at Quilt Festival, but never used them. After this exchange, I'm going to get her Spools set and start making those Klosjes blocks I enjoy seeing on everyone's blogs.

I was sure the ink pads would be dried out after 8 years, and was just about to order re-inkers, when I unwrapped them and checked them just to make sure, and they were just like brand new! They were sealed in some pretty thick plastic, and I guess that made the difference. Now to prewash the fabrics, which is a requirement for the exchange, and also to successfully use the ink, but is something I never do.

I went to an antique market a couple of weeks ago with a friend, which was a huge disappointment, but we stopped at an antique mall on the way home and saw some wonderful things. This was called a field cradle. I know nothing about it, but it would really look nice in my living room with my dolls in it. :) A little pricey though.

I found this metal headed doll, though, and couldn't resist, especially since everything in the booth was 20% off to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the mall.

If you read my Dolls and Quilts post, I showed one that a member brought to the meeting, and I was really entranced by it, having never seen one. This one was in very good shape, although the dress was pretty faded and deteriorated, but I can always make a replacement. Lots of undergarments on her, even a bustle pad!

My local fabric store cleaned out the rafters and had a huge sale, with fabrics $2.97 - $3.97 a yard, and had lines going back to 2001. I found a bolt of this Bannister Hall Summerhouse by Xenia Cord, as well as a couple of Broderie Perse by Andover. There were some real finds, like old Kathy Hall, Jo Morton, quite a few Winterthur lines, and 1800's Blended Tradition, and I was out of money after visiting only two of their four stores in town!

Since the Northern Michigan houses were so popular last week, I thought I would show you a few more. Have a great week!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Northern Retreat

I just got back from my annual Fabric of Friendship retreat in Northern Michigan. Every fall thousands of people head north for a "color tour" to see the changing leaves. I missed the best color by a couple of weeks, but I wanted to show you a few pictures of the beautiful state of Michigan. I wouldn't live anywhere else.

The water is impossibly blue with the sunlight on it.

Okay, now back to sewing. I arrived late Friday night, and this is what I brought for a day and a half. It's less than usual. :)

So, you've probably been wondering what I've been working on while I've been blogging about quilt shows and symposiums and such. I've joined the girls over at Glorious Applique. It's a blog about people working on Kim McLean patterns, and after much resisting, I started the Roseville Album quilt. You can order the patterns, and the Kaffe Fassett fabrics Kim uses, at Glorious Color. The Kaffe fabrics are gorgeous, and I may use them in a future quilt, but for now, I'm a repro gal. I got the pattern last weekend, and got right to work. I got a banana box and put any fabrics I thought might work in it.

Then I traced the pattern onto a piece of red dot Pellon for an overlay. Someone on a quilt board suggested using it instead of vinyl, so I thought I'd try it out. I put a piece of white paper under it so you could see the pattern I traced.

Here's my first block laid out, minus the berries, which I'll pick out later. I've been slaving away at it this weekend, so engrossed I totally missed the Market Place we have at the retreat, even though it was in the other end of the room! I'm still not sure how I didn't hear anything going on.

Every time I ran across the Regency Dandy fabrics, I had to shield my eyes. They are so bright they are almost radioactive. After I started this quilt, I knew they would be PERFECT! Funny how a new project makes you see fabrics in a totally different light.

All for now.....Have a great week.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Quilts on the Grand

The West Michigan Quilter's Guild puts on a biennial quilt show called Quilts on the Grand, and it gets better every year. As promised, here are some of the quilts from the show. I tried to take some pictures of the more contemporary ones, too, but I apologize if I'm still leaning more heavily to repros. :)

The first exhibit inside the door was of some quilts from one of Grand Rapid's Sister Cities, Omihachiman, Japan. These were quilts sent by students of the Akage non Ann quilting school, which means "Raggedy Ann Patchwork Class" in English.

The maker of this one said she had a "little trouble" appliqueing the border. :)

I'll start out with the best, as in "Best of Show." This is "My Sarah Johnson Quilt" by Barbara Perrin. This is her version of the Sarah Johnson Quilt in the Shelburne Museum. She purchased the pattern from Froncie Quinn at Hoopla, and she said it took her 1 1/2 years to complete the quilt, but 10 years to find the OOP RJR border fabric!

Edyta Sitar of Laundry Basket Quilts is a local girl, so there were quite a few of her patterns. This one is done entirely of machine embroidery, and is from her Hop to It machine embroidery CD.

This was one of my favorites, Dutch Heritage, by Nancy Roelfsema. The applique is a Jeana Kimball design, and it's made from fabrics she bought in the Netherlands from Den Haan & Wagenmakers. I love their fabric, and just brought their Tree of Life panel for a future project.

Beauty Everlasting, by Sandy DeCarlo. This pattern is by Cindy Blackberg and Mary Sorenson

This is Laura's Medallion, made by Laura Hilliker, with Jo Morton pattern and fabrics.

This is Dutch Basket Medallion, a Mary Sorenson basket design, made with Den Haan and Wagenmaker's fabric. Did I say I love this fabric?!

This was another one of my favorites, Swedish Goat Christmas by Dianne Robb. It's wool and cotton, embellished with buttons and beads. Dianne adapted the design from a tea towel designed by Lotta Glave.

More later.........