Archive for May, 2012

Memorial Day

We had a wonderful holiday weekend and keeping in mind that it’s Memorial Day, I started a QOV. It’s one of my EQ designs that I hadn’t gotten around to making yet. There’s not much to see yet but I got the bulk of it cut out.


from Brenda (in Namibia)

I love it when people share their work with me … Brenda sent me this photo of her strips and strings log cabin and this string quilt. Don’t they look wonderful?

I especially like the thin red border and how she arranged her colors in the log cabin quilt.



Twins game!


We had a beautiful day

I hope yours was too.


So frustrating

I’ve tried to comment on several WordPress blogs that recently started asking for a password. It’s very frustrating to want comment and not be able to. I have a WordPress blog so I have a “password” only it’s not the “password” these blogs want. I wish I knew how to comment!

Framed Rectangles

May’s UFO is done — early even if that makes up for me finishing April’s late. This is one of my quilts and there are instructions on the website. It’s quilted with a pantograph called Jilly by Keryn Emmerson.

I designed it to use my GO dies and it’s quick to cut even if you are using the rotary cutter. It uses bricks cut 3.5 x 6.5, 2.5 inch strips and 2 inch strips. I used a set of fat quarters and just added in some additional fabrics from my stash for variety.

I always think it’s interesting to look back to see when I started a quilt – this one was started in May 2010 and I finished the top that same month so it’s exactly 2 years old.

Anything is fine

That’s what Mom’s been telling me for this quilt of hers. It’s a long story but she had to remove the center of this quilt – I suggested carrying the 9 patches through the center – this is what she chose to do.

Really, what am I supposed to do with these? She said a pantograph was fine but with the high contrast in fabrics and the dogs, I was afraid it would look weird.

Some ribbon meandering and continuous curves were ok for the body and borders. But I had no idea what to do here.


I looked through some books and found something I thought would work in the book Modern Quilting Designs. It’s a little shaky but looks better than a panto would have on this one I think.


Of course it would have been easier and probably have looked better had I quilted it before turning the quilt but I didn’t want to change my thread to white and then back to the turquoise to finish up the side borders. As it was, I was quilting it with the block oriented sideways instead of straight on. Live and learn.

With luck, my phone and Internet will be back up tomorrow morning. Comcast is coming out and I’m having them update my hardware to a “wireless Internet gateway” in their words so I can do away with the old computer that is to slow to use anymore but was the host computer for my network.

No phone, no Internet

Major problems right now so I’m using my cell for email and Internet. I may not be able to resolve the issue until after the holiday weekend so I may only answer comments that have questions but I’ll be reading them all.

Have a wonderful holiday! Mine will be spent at home with Keith – some walking, some biking, some quilting, a Twins game if we can get tickets.

Fall Orange Peel

April’s UFO (and my oldest one) is finally finished. It’s a few weeks late but I knew I’d get it done before May was over.

I don’t know exactly when Mom pieced the top for me but the Mid Atlantic Quilt show was still in Williamsburg at the time. From the time Mom and I started quilting in the Fall of 2000, we always attended the quilt show. I’ve missed a couple years but I don’t think Mom has and now it’s usually a family event with my sister Ann, my Aunt, my cousin Mary, and this year her daughters attended with us too.

It’s been rainy here today with intermittent storms so I haven’t wanted to turn on the longarm. I did get the binding made and stitched to the Framed Rectangles and I’ve read/cuddled with Chesty a bit too. Now it looks like it’s clearing up so I’ll head downstairs and load the next top. It feels really good to be making progress on these UFO’s and on the donation tops I have here.

The light is really bad tonight

There’s no way I’m going to get a photo tonight that shows the pretty pinks and teal in this HeartStrings quilt pieced by Luisa in Italy and assembled by Sheree at our last WI/MN sew-in so I’ll just show you my quilting. Wonky Flowers from the Pajama Quilter DVD. So many of Dawn’s overall designs really suit these HeartStrings quilts and they’re simple enough that I’m able to execute them.

Getting my steps in

I’ve been surprised how few steps I get just from running around the house working all day … Lots of stairs but not so many steps. I’ve been trying to take a break when I change tasks and just walking around the short block of townhouses where I live. I walk from my back door to the front and back again. It doesn’t take but a few minutes out of my working time and the steps start to add up.

Plus, out my front door is a pretty park like setting – its kind of nice to get out.

The back isn’t so pretty, just the road and driveways ….


But I do get to look at all the pretty flowers my neighbors put out


There’s a little water feature out front, a steam and a tiny waterfall that I walk by



The trees create a pretty canopy


And after a quick loop, I’m back to my quilting.


Pineapple borders

I had several comments/questions about the pineapple border so I thought I’d answer in a “how to” post. Its basically a border with cornerstones but I wanted to bring that pink out into the purple border. I could have done it like my brick quilt but wanted to stick with the cornerstones.

My pink border was cut 1.5 inches, the purple border was cut 5.5 inches, and my purple corners were 5.5 inch squares framed on two sides by 1.5 inch pink strips.

The advantage to using cornerstones is that I can sew my pink and purple borders together before measuring and pinning them to the quilt.

I put my side borders on first and then the pieced cornerstones were sewn to the top and bottom borders and then sewn to the quilt.

You do want to keep the longer seam on the cornerstone oriented in the same direction – in this case it follows the vertical direction of the side borders in all 4 corners. That little seam seam will help you line up your borders when you attach it to the quilt, I always press in opposite directions and pin.


UFO progress

After piecing a back for the Pineapple, I decided I’d load and quilt May’s UFO – my Framed Rectangles. I knew I wanted “round” quilting on it and had thought about quilting some freehand spirals but I bought one new pantograph at MQS and decided to try it out.


It’s curvaceousness was just what I was looking for. The pantograph is Jilly by Keryn Emmerson.

On my design wall

The pineapple is now a finished top. I know there was a group of you that didn’t think this quilt needed borders and while I love quilts without, this one said from the beginning it wanted one.

The pinks are photographing rather “hot” but as usual working at night has its challenges when it comes to photographing the results.


Killing time

Chesty’s being groomed and I’m hanging out at Barnes & Noble while I wait. They have the summer 2012 issue of Quilty on the shelves that has my quilt in it.
I have one copy sent to me by the magazine but just had to buy one myself.



I had a little panic before leaving for MQS when I went to order batting. Imagine my surprise to find out that the supplier I’d used for the last 10 years was going out of business.

As a quilter who is not “in business” and can’t buy wholesale but uses a TON of batting due to all the donation quilts I finish, finding a good batting at a reasonable price is very important. While I occasionally use a different batting, most of the quilts I finish use Hobbs 80/20 and I buy the 96 inch x 30 yard rolls. I love its loft that shows my quilting stitches and that it’s a mostly cotton batting so that it gets a nice crinkle when I wash and dry the quilts.

After much searching I found a new supplier, Marshall’s Dry Goods. The cost per roll is the same as I was paying but as many of you know, shipping these large rolls of batting adds up fast and they shipped me two rolls for the cost of one. I calculate my total cost is $4.58 per yard which is something I can definitely live with.


The outside plastic had a couple rips but the heavy duty plastic protecting the batting is completely intact. I had some questions so rather than ordering via the website I called them. I’d suggest you do the same if you haven’t ordered batting from them before.

Minneapolis Heart Walk

We’re participating with Keith’s company again this year.


Heading home


Deb and I shared a rode to the airport — there’s free WiFi and I have a good book so I’m content to sit and wait for my flight.


Hanging out with Deb and her friends at MQS … Nice to see a few people I know too!

Her quilt won an honorable mention in the theme category. Tonight they hold the auction and she’s donated a couple little quilts.


Solid Stars and Strings

I love seeing quilts made using my instructions and Sandy in AL shared this photo of her version of my Solid Stars and Strings.