Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Finally a Finish!

Oh finally a finished-finished quilt. Binding and all. It is the Bonnie Hunter mystery quilt called "Orange Crush."  I made mine in Mardi Gras colors.  It is a HUGE quilt  and I had to use a fence as a quilt holder.

I adore this quilt and cannot wait to get it all washed and dried and snuggly.

The backing fabric is a Minick & Simpson fabric by Moda. If you click on the photo, you can see the wonderful long-arm quilting by Awesome Beth.

Gomez has already tested and approved this quilt for napping purposes. 

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Fall Reading and More Treat Bags

Tiny Treat Bags from Quilts and More fall issue
I made four more little treat bags.  These are just too fun and cute.  A few will be staying here and the rest will be mailed to Michigan for my Halloween-loving family.  This is going to be a short post because I am declaring today "binding Saturday" and am sewing miles of binding on my Mardi Gras quilt and maybe two more. 

If you have been reading my blog for awhile, you know that I read mostly nonfiction books.  Lately, I have been reading a number of World War II books.  Here are two that are really interesting and well worth checking out.  The Women Who Wrote the War by Nancy Caldwell Sorel is an excellent book that explores the lives of women reporters and photographers in both the European and Pacific Theaters.  An amazing book about amazing women and the first time women were allowed to report from combat areas.  
The second book is American Nightingale:  The Story of Frances, Slanger, Forgotten Heroine of Normandy by Bob Welch. This is another wonderful book about an amazing woman. Ms. Slanger and her family survived World War I in Lodz, Poland and immigrated to the US in 1920 when Frances was seven.  The book details the struggles the family faced living in the 1920s and 1930s in Boston and how Frances defied her family, went to nursing school, and worked at Boston's City Hospital. Against the wishes of her family, she enrolls in the US Army Nurse Corps and is among the first US nurses to land in Normandy on June 10, 1944.  I triple highly recommend this book. In fact, if I was Steven Spielberg, I'd option this book right away.  It's high time movie studios made some decent movies for women that are not the same ol', tired, retread-story chick flicks.  Hear that Steve?!  Good. Off to bind.   

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Autumnal Equinox, Harvest Moon, and Wrathy Grapes

Happy Autumn everyone!  My favorite season and my favorite time of the year.  Although the weather is STILL not cooperating (still 90F during the day) and I am wearing sandals at the end of September. Even without looking at the calendar, I could tell it was a full moon tonight because of the wacky phone calls today. The full moon closest to the autumnal equinox is called the harvest moon.  Nothing to harvest here because we haven't had any rain in weeks!  I'm beginning to feel like a John Steinbeck character in The Grapes of Wrath; the garden and yard are hard-packed dirt with dead weeds. 
Martha does Halloween the best.

Since October is almost here,  it's time to get out the Halloween coffee cups (my usual beverage vessel--the coffee cup--good for everything including wine, white or red, doesn't matter) and stock up on this year's Halloween themed magazines. 
Make lots of projects with Halloween fabric. This fabric reminds me of myself--running around with cats everywhere.

My sewing friends and I (we really need to figure out a name for our little group) are doing another fabric swap.  This is swap #3.  Have I finished the other 2 projects yet?  That would be a big no....

Here are my bundles all ready for swapping (with Halloween ribbon, natch!).  The little black kitty feet belong to Mr. Gomez.  He's Mr. Halloween 24/7.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

September Thimbles

Yesterday was Silver Thimble Quilt Club. It was packed full and several people were absent at a quilt retreat (Karin, Becky, Cindi, and Brenda). To paraphrase one of my favorite movie quotes "Pat, we're gonna need a bigger boat!" I did manage to snap some photos of show n tell this time. There was not much room for quilt showing this time. I think we need a stage area too.

Here is Jane with her "Minnesota Hot Dish" quilt. I love the colors. Some lucky person is getting this quilt as a present. Wish it was me!

This quilt was made by Awesome Beth (she is behind the quilt and that is Trisha on the right). Beth is a longarm quilter and does amazing quilting. She did an amazing job on my Mardi Gras quilt, I just need a couple of quilt holders so I can photograph it outside.

Here is Trisha's quilt (Beth is on the left) and a detail...
This quilt had gorgeous fabric and is perfectly pieced.

I spent time chatting with Kristie and working on a new Halloween project. Here's a little look-see.

Today is more sewing. I made another Groovy Girls Club project using both selvages and a zipper for the first time (this little cutie is a pattern called "Cash n' Carry".
As you can see I am really getting into the Halloween spirit. October, my favorite month, is nearly here! I just love the spiders instead of the usual dots on the selvage in the center.
And the other side
As with all Atkinson Designs, the instructions were fabulous and my first attempt at a zipper went OK. I vowed I wasn't going to start saving selvages because I don't need one more thing to hang on to. Although I do have some neat jars that are currently empty. Maybe I'll just save Halloween fabric selvages...

well, maybe French General too....

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Becky's Giveaway

My good friend Becky is having a giveaway over at quiltingbooklady.blogspot.com. Here's the post if you want to enter.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Who's Cooler than Don Draper?

Morpheus. The sleekest cat in black.

Anyone else addicted to Mad Men?

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Retro Blog Rewind: Inaugural Edition

Does anyone else come up with great blog posts in their mind then proceed to not blog about the events, then realize that too much time has past for the blog post to be timely, and then well, there it goes, missed blog opportunity? I hope so because I do this all the time.

So today's post is a Retro Blog Rewind Post! If I was clever and tech savvy, I would design a cute button for other bloggers to put on their blogs and start a whole trend.

Because I am not tech-savvy, I'll wait for someone else to co-opt my idea.

This inaugural Retro Blog Rewind Post is made under duress.

Seriously, if I don't post these photos, Sarah no-blog is going to come and get me. She is a physical therapist and they have ways of making you do painful things that you don't want to.

Not that blogging is painful; I'm just under pressure. So without further ado, here are photos taken by Sarah no-blog to go along with the previous post about the Party on the Porch at Sweet Home.

Here is Bad Melisa casting a spell on quilters in the surrounding five counties
("you shall come to Sweet Home and buy fabric, books, notions and patterns")
(see look what happened to Carol!!!)
And Cindi and Karin

Sarah no-blog is toting how many bolts???!!?? Don't you love her big bag? She is super sweet, a gifted quilter, and really needs to write her own blog.....

As reported previously, we started a new tradition this year with a post-Party on the Porch side trip to Bruster's Ice Cream
Say "Chocolate Raspberry Truffle Hot Fudge Sundae!!!!!"

The nice ice cream "dealers" at Bruster's took our photo
The End.

I really hope Sarah no-blog liked this post. And now back to our regularly scheduled blog....

Monday, September 13, 2010

Viva French General

A very quick quilt made from a Rural Jardin layer cake (fabric by French General for Moda). The pattern is "Pretty in Pink" in the book called Livin' Large: 11 Quilts Designed for Large-Scale Prints by Heather Mulder Peterson. I decided to leave off the applique and let the fabric speak for itself.
Here is a detail. Love this quilt!!
It makes me want to sing La Marseillaise.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Hints of Autumn

Today would have been a perfect Fall day...if it had been 10 degrees cooler (it was 88F and breezy and sunny, just a bit too warm).

First hint of Autumn is the arrival of Starbucks Anniversary Blend coffee.
My second favorite kind. The aged Sumatran beans gives it a nice depth and a bit of spice. Perfect for Autumn. A perfect with a pumpkin scone (I resisted this autumnal fav.)

While running errands this afternoon, I stopped by my old store and visited with the Sunday crew. I miss my Sunday crew. I miss my free pound of coffee a week also. But I do not miss being zombie-tired from working two jobs. Not at all.

Not much sewing time in today but I did finish another block of Hocuspocusville last night. This is my fourth completed block and a fun one to sew.

I worked a bit on my new project this afternoon until Edgar Poe muscled in on my work space. Because he decided to get in the way, he was used for block storage space (hee hee).

Another hint of Autumn is late afternoon dappled sunshine.
Morpheus enjoys this hint the best.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

After a Trying Week, Some Sewing Time

Good thing this week was a short one because it was a very trying week, and try as I may, I didn't have a chance to blog. I'm glad the week is over. I missed a Labor Day post and I missed posting photos from Sarah no blog (sorry Sarah!).

I did get a lot of sewing accomplished last weekend.

A Groovy Girls project: this super-fabulous bag in my all time favorite fabric line Rouenneries. I can't wait to make more of these bags--easy, fun, and useful! Plus they stand up all by themselves. Edgar Poe and Morph both took turns jumping into the bag and both were much too quick for the camera.
And some tiny treat bags.Both projects courtesy of Bad Melisa.

I also finished all the blocks for Double Delight and started sewing rows together. I also did some major cleaning up in the sewing room (long overdue).

Today instead of working on Double Delight, I started a new project (sometimes you just need to start something new...) Here is a Gomez paw with a sneak peek.

Along with the rest of America, I am remembering the events of September 11th today.

Although I am not going to start in on the rant I would like to, I do have to say that I am sick and tired of the lies and fear-mongering and am deeply saddened by the blatant bigotry and racism that has poisoned the summer. In the noble words of a great president: "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself." Franklin Delano Roosevelt, first inaugural address.

On this ninth anniversary, peace everyone. Peace.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Labor Day Weekend Rambles

Warning: Long rambley post....

I have been celebrating my first Labor Day weekend off in eight years. I used to celebrate three-day weekends by being happy to only work one job for three days. This not having to work at all for three days is really great. I did all my errand running, grocery shopping, and housework on Wednesday and Thursday so I could stay home the rest of the weekend.

Let's catch up on the past few days. The new fridge didn't arrive until 6:30PM Wednesday evening. I was the last delivery of the day and I felt really bad for the delivery guys having to deal with my crazy old house--steep granite stairs to the back door, sloping ceiling in the back hall because it is an enclosed rear porch, and galley kitchen with maybe an extra 1/8 of an inch to squeeze in the fridge.

The guys were so nice and professional, I called their supervisor on Thursday to give kudos where kudos were due. Good karma is a good thing.
So here is the new fridge. We have cold and unspoiled food again. I love the fridge except for one thing...
magnets don't stick to stainless steel. Who knew? Not me. So I guess I can't cover the front of this with Mutts comics, postcards, souvenir magnets, and photos of Mackenzie. Oh no! What is an aunt to do?
Cover the side. Here are new photos sent from my mom.

On Thursday, I received the giveaway I won over at Thelma's wonderful blog Cupcakes n' Daisies. Thank you again Thelma!! I can't believe how quickly it arrived all the way from Green Fairy Quilts in Utah. I think there is a fleet of green fairies that zoom all over delivering fabric goodies. If you are as addicted to Moda pre-cuts as I am, go visit the Green Fairy shop.
For the giveaway, I chose a Luna Notte layer cake and Arcadia honeybun.Luna Notte is another winner from Moda. There are some luscious grays in there and I am all about gray fabric.

Saturday was the first meeting of the Groovy Girls club at Sweet Home Quilt Co. I am excited about this new club by Terry Atkinson and even more excited to have another reason to visit Melisa at Sweet Home. The focus of the club is small projects and new techniques.
I was there bright and early (8:30 AM is early for a Saturday) on a gorgeous morning. Melisa had a groovy-themed breakfast table.
Click on the photo for Melisa's cool idea to make flowers from buttons and a table full of projects for neat gift ideas.
During this session, Melisa demo'ed bags and zippers. I've never tried doing zippers but our homework challenge is a bag with zipper so I will tackle this. I love the display of Terry's brightly colored zippers. Wonderful colors you could just look at all day. Melisa lived up to her Bad Melisa nickname so I came home with some patterns to use up some stash.

The rest of the day, I worked on Double Delight (ugh I wish this quilt would hurry up and finish itself!) and watched/listened to marathons of "House" and "Burn Notice". It was so nice out, I turned off the A/C and opened the windows. The cats hung out in the windows and enjoyed the sunshine and fresh air.
Gomez looking sweet
and Gomez and Morpheus artistically posed.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Waiting for a Refrigerator

First of all, hooray for September on the first day of September! We are just a little closer to Fall, my favorite season. I am home today waiting for the new refrigerator to be delivered. Unfortunately, a refrigerator appears to be a necessity in the modern age (especially in Hotlanta). While at home for the day, I decided to get my weekend chores done so I won't have to do them this weekend and spend the long weekend playing with fabric instead.

I'm still working away on Double Delight
Good thing I thought of someone to give this quilt to because it's just a little to pink for me. I like the quilt, just not all the pinky pink. Pink is my absolute least favorite color. In fact I didn't even like pink as a little girl.

I liked purple (Still do!)....

Back in the early 1970s when purple was hard to find....

Among all that avocado green, rusty orange, and mushroomy brown....(I think these colors are coming back though...)

In honor of September, which is one more month closer to October (my favorite month), I decided to prep a new Halloween project from Minick & Simpson's most delightful (and purple-y) Halloween line.
Can't wait to start working on this quilt!