Archive for March, 2006

The vote is in

Well the overwhelming majority said they’d just finish off the blue braid with a dark binding so I’m going to go with that. The size is fine for 2 of the organizations I donate to so I don’t need another border to make it bigger. I’ll call the top finished and put it on the shelf to age a bit.

I pulled some blue strings from my bins, added them to the leftover strips from the braid quilts, and started some string blocks. I’ll make 48 and sash them and have another donation quilt. I’ve already made 24 of the blocks so when I get back home I’ll finish them up.

We’re back at Big Canoe for the weekend and spring is starting to come to the North Georgia Mountains. We enjoyed our deck this afternoon before going out to dinner and are now ready to relax for the evening. Tomorrow we’ll take a long *training* hike.

Another border?

Almost done – I think it could use another border of the dark blue to reframe the quilt. Yes? No? If yes, what size? The braids and pieced border finish at 4 inches and the dark blue border is 3 inches.

Chesty’s up on the chair studying the quilt but didn’t express his opinion one way or the other.

See all the blue strips still on the floor? A blue string quilt?


I got disgusted with the braids and decided I was done. Instead of one larger quilt I cut the braids I’d made in half and am making 2 smaller donation quilts. I will never use the foundation by the yard muslin for making braids again.

I need to THINK when I pull out a UFO and not just do what was planned. Some of these have been sitting around a while and there may be changes I need to make or a better way to do something – like the braid!

I put a top and bottom border on the smallest quilt pictured above and am in the process of adding a piano key border. Neither of them will get quilted right away – I’ll let them *age* a little on the shelf.

Challenge Quilts

In rebuilding my computer files I came across this picture of a quilt I made for a family challenge. We’re not very consistent but periodically I do a quilt challenge with my Mom and 3 sisters.

This time around my sister Debbie got to pick the rules which were 1) only 3 fabrics allowed 2) it had to be at least 75×75 and 3) there had to be applique. I usually make scrap quilts so this was a difficult challenge for me. I’d rather work with 2 fabrics or MANY!

The pattern is based on a quilt in the book Bed and Breakfast quilts and I hated the quilt in the book but felt like the pattern would showcase the toile and that it would go together quickly. The idea for applique border came from a magazine.

In the end I really liked the result and rather than exchanging finished quilts as we usually did, I suggested we each keep our own so I could use it for one of my guest beds.

No quilting this weekend

I spent the weekend up in the mountains and didn’t get any piecing or quilting done. It was cold so the evenings were spent curled up in front of the fire and watching movies or playing scrabble and the days were spent hiking. I did work a little on a knitted baby blanket that I keep up at the condo to work on but I’ve still got about half of it to go.

Since signing up for the 3 day Breast Cancer Walk that will be held in Atlanta in October I decided I’d start keeping track of my mileage. I’m already ahead of their suggested training schedule and it shouldn’t be too difficult for me until about 10 – 11 weeks before the event. As an added bonus, the walking and hiking should help with my weight loss goals.

More good news/bad news
The good news is that I finally found my backup DVD’s so I can recover files lost when my hard drive crashed. The bad news is that the last time I backed my files was August so I still lost 6 months worth of files. At least I don’t have to reload all my albums on iTunes! Once I reload my files I’ll back them up on the new external hard drive. Too bad I hadn’t bought that before this last crash.

Organizing and Cleaning my Studio

Once again the mess in my sewing studio has gotten out of control. I cleaned it up completely last October before having a Bee group from my guild meet at my house and since then it’s been piling back up. Now it’s to the point I can’t even stand to be in the room.

I hate spending quilting time cleaning especially when I’ve been out of town. When I come home I want to get right back to work and not *waste* time straightening and cleaning.

Disscusion on the Stashbuster list about how others approach their quilting spaces and some direct feedback to me from a posting I made has been really helpful.

I’ve decided that prior to doing any quilting I’ll clean up one area in the room. Yesterday I cleared out the floor by my desk. I couldn’t even move my chair back without bumping into stacks of books or one of two filing boxes I had sitting in this area. Now I can move my chair or walk through this area without bumping into things.

I won’t get any sewing done today because we’re heading off to the mountains in a hour but I did clean off my cutting table. I’m going to keep at it and by the time I have my Bee group here again in May I won’t have to worry about the mess.

Atlanta 3 Day Breast Cancer Walk

I spent the day running around starting with my Weight Watchers meeting – I just finished week 9 and have lost 15.4 lbs – yeah! It’s slow but steady. To celebrate I went for a hike up Kennesaw Mountain – just 2 and 1/2 miles but the climb is strenuous.

This evening I went to an information meeting for the Atlanta 3 day Breast Cancer Walk. For years I’ve thought this would be a neat thing to do but at first we didn’t live in a city hosting one and I really hadn’t seen information about one since we moved to the Atlanta area. After reading on the website that it is 60 miles in 3 days I was hesitant but decided to go to the information meeting anyway.

After the presentation I decided to go ahead and sign up. I do a lot of walking and hiking now so it’s not like I’ll be starting from scratch but I’ll have to crank up the miles to train for the event that is October 20-22. I was also nervous because this is the weekend before my son’s wedding but it’s not like that is a reason I can’t do it. There’s nothing scheduled for that weekend anyway.

To top off my day – I was in downtown Atlanta at night (coming home from the meeting) and got a flat tire. I never go into town at night so I was pretty upset about being in a strange area with a flat. I called AAA and my husband but it was going to be 40 minutes before Keith could get there and an hour and a half before AAA was going to arrive. Anyway, a man using the pay phone at the gas station I’d pulled into offered to change the tire – I was nervous about accepting but he got the tire changed for me and I was able to call Keith and tell him I’d meet him back near the house for dinner. The drive on I75 at night, in a hard rain, with a fake (spare) tire was pretty scary but I got home safe.

Just goes to show there are Good Samaritans out there – sometimes where you don’t expect to find them.

UFO #8 Finished

I finished up the binding on the Crayon quilt tonight and embroidered my initials and the year on the back. Not my favorite but it’s done. You can see a close-up picture of the quilting in the picture I posted the other day.

I had planned to work some on the braid quilt today but Keith and I went for a 10 mile hike instead. It was a cool drizzly day but it was nice to be outside.

Adam’s Birthday

We just got home from seeing Adam for his birthday. We had dinner at the Ritz Carlton where he’s working now and got to meet his girlfriend too. She was able to join us for dinner and we had a wonderful time.

Here’s a picture of Adam with his quilt. He’d asked me for a quilt from all his old jeans a while ago – maybe as long as a couple years ago. A few months ago he asked when I was going to get around to making it – Since I’d had most of the squares cut I figured I could finish a UFO and give it to him for his birthday.

The appliques are all from the jeans – even the nasty looking snake in the middle of the quilt.

The quilt that DIDN’T get the crayon border

This is the quilt that I intended to use the Crayon border for – I liked how this circle print looked a lot better. My sister quilted this one and it will be donated to the local Ronald McDonald house through my guild.


Chesty had his final post-op checkup Tuesday and can return to all his regular activities. To celebrate he went to the Beauty Parlor yesterday – isn’t he cute?

Bad luck/good luck

The bad luck is that I had a power outage that killed my computer so I went out yesterday and bought a new CPU and have been setting it up with all my programs. More bad news – I’ve lost a significant number of files because although I do back them up periodically its been a few months AND right now I can’t even find the last backup copy. So having learned my lesson (again) I bought a external hard drive to do routine backups of my computer data.

The good news is that I was quilting at the time of the power outage and my longarm is fine – no damage there. This picture is the quilt I was finishing up at the time. Not my favorite but I had this crayon print that was supposed to have been a border on another quilt but I decided it was too busy. I had hoped that the flying geese would calm this down some.

Bottom line is that it’s kind of cute and it’s bright so I’m sure some kid will love it. It is donation quilt but I’m not sure where it will go. I still have to bind it but with trying to get my computer up and running again I haven’t worked on it today.

My current project

Since I’ve been home I started working on another UFO. My Mom cut a bunch of strips for me at least 2 years ago for this braid quilt. I no longer intend to do the original quilt I’d planned (that one had applique) but I want to get this one off my list of projects so I’m making the braids and will decide on the finished quilt by the time I’m done.

I’m working on a vertical strippie pattern in EQ5 but I’m just not sure how wide my alternate strips will be and whether I am going to use a light blue or a red fabric as an accent between the braids and strips.

I’ve got two of these braids completed and I think I’ll need 5 for the finished quilt. They’re being pieced on the foundation by the yard muslin and I’m hating it. Next time I’m piecing braids without a foundation.

Hopefully, I’ll load a top on the longarm today so I’ll be working on two UFO’s this week.

What I’m reading

by Carole Radziwill

Sad but I didn’t think it was a great book like the review I’d read said.

by Greg Iles

Good murder mystery – much better than the last one of his I’d read.

by Anita Shreve

Good – I like reading about the relationships in her books.

Some pictures from Boston

My son chastised me for not updating my blog in a couple days so I pulled out the camera to post some pictures from my Boston trip.

My two favorite things about this trip were #1 staying across the harbor from Boston – we had this wonderful view from our hotel window (I’ve included a picture of the view both during the day and at night) and took a water taxi back and forth into the city and #2 walking the Freedom Trail.

T-shirt quilts

There’s been some discussion on T-shirt quilts on the Stashbusters list so I thought I’d post the one I made (my Mom helped with the piecing) for my son Chris for his graduation from college.

I know a lot of people hate these quilts and think they’re ugly but I think they can be special for the recipient. Chris was thrilled with his and although it isn’t anything fancy it was the quilt HE wanted for graduation.

Walking the Freedom Trail

Most of my day today was spent along the Freedom Trail in Boston. I did NOT go in each site along the trail, my main goal was to walk the Trail and back to the water taxi location to return to my hotel. I did however go into the Paul Revere house and I admit into a Borders I came across while walking. I’m sure that won’t surprise those who have been reading my blog and know that reading is a favorite activity for me. I’m feeling a little guilty for making time for the book store while passing up going into some of the sites that make up the Trail but I’d do it again so I guess I’m not too guilty.

After taking a water taxi to Long Wharf I took my first ride on the T. I wanted to visit Trinity Church and go by the Hard Rock Cafe (to pick up a T-shirt for Adam – he collects them) before starting my walk. After picking up the T-shirt, I walked to Boston Commons and began walking.

Tomorrow we head for home.


Pam asked do I keep a suitcase packed near the door – the answer is no but I frequently don’t get completely unpacked before having to pack for another trip. One of the advantages to having a husband who travels and kids who are grown is the ability to tag along on his trips when I want to. Keith will work while we’re here but I’ll spend my days exploring the city. I don’t mind being on my own while he’s working – in fact I really enjoy it.

I brought my small digital camera but can’t transfer the photo’s to the computer so here is one I took with the phone. The skyline appears more distant in the picture than it actually is. I’m looking forward to taking a water taxi across the harbor tomorrow and spending my day wandering around.


We’re off to Boston in the morning. I’m taking along my knitting and the blocks for my Cathedral Windows but finishing the baby afghan I’m working on will be my priority while I’m gone.

I hope it’s not too cold – we’ve had wonderful weather the last week and I’m already in Spring mode.

Baby Stripes

I’ve mentioned before that I like to cut out more than one scrap quilt at a time. This top was a quick one to piece from strips cut when I was cutting for the Baby Cabin. I started piecing some blocks on Thursday and Saturday nights and finished the top up today.

Initially I thought I’d do a string quilt but decided that with all the strips the same width that a Roman Stripe would be a better choice. I cut my muslin squares oversized and foundation pieced the strips to half the block and trimmed to size.

The quilt is 38×45.