Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Tuesday Tip - Tall Stool

Rascal trying out Mom's new stool!  Weee!
Last week my husband and I took a family member to Peoria for a medical appointment.  We had time to shop.  One of the stops was at Gordman's.  I had a few coupons and knew that Rod needed new golf shorts.  So first, we visited the men's section and got him the basic colors in golf shorts to match his collection of shirts.  Then we started to wander through the rest of the store.  Previously, I had looked at these bar stools as a possibility to sit at my longarm.  I tried them all out (wish I had taken a picture at the selection of stools).  This one seemed the most comfortable and was not tippsy.
 Here its as low as it will go.
Here its as high as it will go.  Which of course is too high as my legs won't fit under the bar.
 This was a pretty good deal.  I have been looking for a chair or stool but most were $200.  Although this is just a bar stool, it meets my needs and doesn't take up much space.  The best part of all, it was marked down to $39.99 and I had a coupon for 20% off.   I have used it while picking out stitches which can really be hard on the back.
I also used it while sewing at my domestic machine.  The table is a little high so using the stool while sewing puts me at a better position so I am not lifting my shoulders all the time.  I could also easily pack this to take to a retreat as it doesn't take up much room.  I am one happy shopper with the deal on my stool!
I am going to get outside a little today.  The sun is shining and the birds are singing this morning.  Headed to the barn to meet the horse shoer and then a facial at Merle Norman.  Then back home to finish two quilts on the longarms.
Today I am linking up with Connie at Freemotion by the River.  I hope you aren't getting flooding Connie!
Yours in quilting,

Monday, April 21, 2014

Design Wall

 I have been working on a custom quilting project.  I have had problems with getting these loops on the back.  Its so frustrating because then you have to rip out and do it over.  This is ruler work and I try not to have to start and stop.  May have to post this issue on the Handi Quilter site for help. 
 I have been working on brushing our quarter horse, Hoot, and getting rid of his winter coat.  Can you see all the wads of hair scattered in the area.  I brushed while he grazed.  The birds will be happy to feather their nests with this soft hair.
There is a brush under this mass of hair.
I am a happy to report that all my Block of the Month projects are up-to-date.  I have mostly been working on the custom quilting project because Challenge Night is May 1, and the binding will still need to be added by the customer.  The customer picked up the quilt yesterday so she has about 10 days to add the binding.  I will post the finished picture on May 2nd, after the Challenge night.
 This is the UFO I have been working on.  I have one more row to sew the blocks to each other.  Then I will add the final three rows onto the quilt.
Oops, look what I found in Row 6.  I have one block upside down.  Glad to have found it now rather than when the quilt is all assembled.  This is a Kathleen Tracy pattern.  The signatures are from all the attendees at our guild 2011 Autumn Quiltaway Retreat.
Today I am linking up with Judy at Patchwork Times.
Yours in quilting,

Friday, April 18, 2014

Friday Finishes

Its Good Friday!  Its a religious holiday for many around the world.  But today is also a good Friday for me.  I live in Illinois and the sun is shining and the temperature is rising.  We are expecting about 62 degrees today.  Saturday and Sunday are predicted to be mostly sunny and in the 70's.  Woo Hoo Spring is upon us.  It feels so good to step outside and  soak up some sunshine and vitamin D.

Last night I finished working on all my stars for the Quilt Doodle Designs BOM.  Look Sue-Sue, if you are reading!  I had to take them outside to shine in the sun. 
Last night I worked on joining all the stars while watching the final night of Scandal.
All my block of the month projects are up-to-date.  Makes me do the happy dance.
Yesterday, my husband and I took a family member to Peoria for a medical appointment.  We got to go shopping around the Peoria area.  Rod had never been to Washington, IL, after the tornado to see the damage.  Pictures just don't do it justice.  Seeing it in person makes it more believable and personal.  We drove through the devastated neighborhoods and business area.   Compared to my last trip down to Washington, this was a happier sight.  It was sunny and the streets were lined with trailers, pick-up trucks, skid loaders, lumber, etc.  Finally, you can really see a difference and feel the renewed sense of HOPE.  There is definite progress to be seen.
Rod and I stopped into Peddler's Way Quilt Shop to drop off the two quilts I had finished.  I failed to ask the sales clerk her name.  We posed for Rod to take pictures of the quilts we were leaving for tornado victims.  The country colored jelly roll race quilt was made by Beth Mathew of Sterling, IL and the red and black quilt was made by Libby Smith of Tennessee.  Thank you, ladies for your donations!
 What you can't see or hear is the ladies, behind my husband watching him take the pictures.  The ladies were watching the viewing screen on my cell phone and nodding to me if the pictures were good or not.  It was a comedy.  We finally got the pictures for the blog with a few giggles along the way.  Before leaving the store, we talked to the one owners who lost her home in the tornado.  She shared that the walls of her new home were up and this morning the crane would arrive to put up the roof tresses. Yippee!  Progress is a good thing.
I finished these two baby quilts last week.  They are for a set of twins.

 Great grandma made these quilts and I got the fun job of quilting them.  It will be easy to figure who's is who's.  One has polka dots and one has chevrons.  I used lime green Glide thread to quilt them.
I hope you have a blessed Easter weekend.
Today I am linking up with……Confessions of a Fabric AddictLink a Finish FridayFreedom Fridays, and Crazy Mom Quilts.
Yours in quilting,

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Work in Progress Wednesday & Asking Advice on Speakers

This week I have been working on a "Challenge" quilt for one of our guild members.  May is challenge month.  The goal for 2014 is to use your "stash" stock as much as possible and explore the possibility of doing a modern twist on a traditional pattern.  It must have one log cabin block in the quilt.  I am really proud of the lady who made the quilt I am quilting.  The back of the quilt is as neat as the front.  That makes it so much easier on the longarm quilter to have a flat quilt top to work on. 
Since I can't show pictures of my work until after May 1, 2014, I will move onto my next subject.

I am asking my readers and fellow bloggers for advice on speakers.  I am the program chairman for our guild and I am looking for speakers and teachers for workshops for the rest of 2014 and all of 2015. We are located in north central Illinois about 120 miles west of downtown Chicago and right on Interstate 80.  You can leave me comments or contact me at quiltcrazie@msn.com.

I have started working on Tula Pink's 100 Modern Quilt Blocks.  Here is #2.

I had a winter project.  I had pink geranium that was in full bloom last fall and I couldn't just let it die with the frost.  So I moved it inside to see if it could survive the winter with us.
The picture through the front window was difficult to take with the reflection.

Its difficult to get it all in its so big.  There are 13 blooms on the plant right now.  Its our taste of Spring. 
On April 14th we had snow showers.  The snow had melted by about 3pm on April 15th  The grass is greening up.  I just saw the morning weather forecast and warmer weather is coming.  Yippee!
 Its only 32 degrees this morning.
Today I am linking up with Lee at Freshly Pieced.
Yours in quilting,

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Tuesday Tips

I have been working on applique blocks for a Barn Quilt designed by Quilter's Garden

This was the January block laid out on the silicone pressing sheet.  I was arranging the placements before the final pressing on the background fabric.

Here is the March block pressed onto the background fabric.  I had bought quite a few architectural fabrics that look like wood, rock, asphalt, etc. to use in another barn quilt by Lori Holt at Bee In My Bonnet.com.  I am having fun using them in this quilt also.  My husband grew up on a farm and Quilter's Garden took pictures of local barns and are re-creating them in this quilt. 

My Tip for Tuesday is to save your small pieces of Steam of Seam, Heat N Bond or whatever brand you use. 

Here are my applique pieces traced on the small leftovers.  I was able to trace almost the whole block's pieces on just the leftovers.  I only had to get out a new sheet for the front of the barn.  I used Steam A Seam II Lite.  Steam a Seam has to paper sides that protects the glue film sandwiched inside.  Before starting to trace your pattern peel back a corner of the Steam A Seam and see what paper the film is stuck to.  The paper that has the film stuck to it should go face up.  That way when you peel off the paper backing, the film will be stuck to your traced pattern.

When you start to stitch down your applique, I use a small zigzag stitch.  I have a Janome 6600 and I set my 08 zigzag stitch to 2.5 width and .60 length.  I have this measurement written in my owner's manual for easy reference. 

Today I am linking up with Connie at Freemotion by the River and Quilt Story.
Yours in quilting,

Monday, April 14, 2014

Design Wall Monday

I am so excited to be back writing.  Missed you guys so much.  Good news that my taxes are done and in the mail.  WooHoo!!!  I hate doing taxes and this year I expected to have to pay in but got a surprise that we get a small refund.  I have been doing the happy dance ever since I got the call from the tax preparer. 

Yesterday was Palm Sunday.  I hope everyone got to celebrate their way.  I spent the day napping and Harry Potter napped with me.   I didn't get hardly any sleep Saturday night and so with the dreary weather, I spent the day watching TV through my eyelids.  That is so rare for me as I am not a nap taker.  I woke up this morning feeling refreshed.

Here are the two blocks that have been on my Design Wall.  These are the April blocks for Quilter's Garden's BOM.  The quilt is a barn quilt alternating barn blocks with pieced blocks.
This was March's block.  Quilter's Garden offers an incentive to finish your blocks each month.  They hold a drawing during their monthly Garden Club meeting for a $10 gift certificate.  I won the gift certificate in March and used it to purchase Tula Pink's 100 Modern Quilt Blocks.  I bought this book to use up my small scraps. 

Here is block #2 laid out but not sewn.
Have a great Monday!  I am ready to load a quilt on the longarm for a customer.  Enjoy your Holy Week.

Today I am linking up with.....Judy at Patchwork Times.

Yours in quilting,

Friday, April 4, 2014

Friday Finishes

 My first finish for the week was adding a sleeve to full size quilt for the local United Way office.  This quilt has been hanging in their old office by tack pins.  They moved into a new office the first of the year and it will displayed by hanging it on a decorative rod.  This is such a fun quilt that the kids from different agencies created.
Second quilt finish this week was a t-shirt quilt.  This quilt was a learning process for both the quiltermaker and myself.  This is the first t-shirt quilt made by the quiltmaker.  There was no interfacing behind the t-shirts and it would not lay nice on the longarm without stretching and puckering under the hopper foot.  We decided that it would be best if the quiltmaker would take the quilt home and iron on interfacing.  She did a lovely job and it quilted up nicely.  I am looking forward to the next t-shirt quilt.
I have been working on the wedding quilt and having one side of binding left to finish and then the label. 
Tonight my guild will have Lisa Binkley from Wisconsin as our guest speaker and Saturday workshop teacher.  Looking forward to meeting her and hear lecture on embellishing your quilts.

Have a good weekend!

Yours in quilting,