Monday, October 19, 2009

Charity Quilting

[Note - I started this post about 2 weeks ago and got completely sidetracked by life...]

At our guild meeting mid-October, I received blocks back from members to piece into a quilt we're donating to the school where we met for quite a number of years, up to this fall. The quilt will be donated to the school so that they can use it in their holiday auction in December.

I'd passed out packets in September with instructions and a consistent background fabric. I was pleasantly surprised to see that nearly all of the blocks came back and were usable (I just had two that I couldn't use due to size or being totally warped out of shape), as the meeting had been crazy and I hadn't really been able to document who had returned blocks to me. In the end, I had to sew only one block in addition to the two samples that I'd showed at the September meeting.

Here's the top (my apologies for the crummy photo. Poor Ben was doing his best to stretch out and make the top viewable):

People's notions of red and green certainly vary - there are some oranges and pinks in this quilt, as well as odd greens - but it certainly emphasizes the scrappiness of the quilt. Dropped it off at the machine quilter's yesterday and hope to get it back and bound before heading out on vacation.

If you're interested in the Craft Fair and Silent Auction, more information is available on the Fairview South School's home page.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Ginkgo Leaves Quilt

After doing some household chores yesterday, I decided to start the Ginkgo Leaves quilt that I purchased some fabric for on the Shop Hop earlier this month. The pattern is in the book Batik Gems by Laurie Shifrin. I started around 3 p.m. making fabric selections (I decided to use a few from my stash in addition to those I bought on the shop hop), and even with a bit of a break, by 7 p.m., the quilt was at this stage - totally quilted and ready for binding!

I love how this quilt turned out and can't wait to go sew on the binding now (my apologies for the weird angle on the photo - it's what you get when you hold the camera above your head to shoot something on the floor). I'm sure I'll finish this up tonight - those darned Yankees are still in post-season play and you can't miss Yankees or Red Sox post-season games in this house ... even though I don't really follow any NL teams that made it, I'll root for whomever makes it to the World Series.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Zen Redux

Mom and I never quite have enough time to do everything on our list while she and Dad visit, but we do try to fit in some time for sewing. On Sunday afternoon, we layered and pin basted the tree skirt that she started on her last visit and she got to work quilting it by stitching in the ditch (I think this is her first time quilting a quilt!). Unfortunately, we ran out of time to finish, but she now knows how to make bias binding and should be able to finish the project on her own (Mom - you can always call too with questions!).

While she tackled that, I decided to arrange and sew together the blocks for the Zen quilt I posted about a few weeks back. I'm really loving the completed top and am toying with the idea of adding a border. I'm undecided; it's a nice size as is, but I tend to like borders on quilts. What do you recommend??

Quilt Shop Hop

It just so happened that Mom and Dad's visit from Ohio coincided with the Southeast Wisconsin Fall Shop Hop and I treated Mom to the bus trip last Friday for her birthday. I'd not participated in the bus trip previously and hadn't been to over half of the shops on the tour, so thought it would be a fun opportunity. Aside from a few logistical improvements that might have been made, we had a great time and managed to make our fair share of purchases.

At Material Matters in Cedarburg, I found the Dressed to the Nines pattern by Bloomin' Minds. I doubt I'll have this done for this Halloween (unless I finish the charity quilt for guild miraculously quickly), but there's always next year. I also picked up Karen Montgomery's pattern to take make a table runner with a striped fabric and a 60-degree ruler (it's called Easy Striped Table Runner), and the Prairie Blossoms pattern by Tea for Two (seen here). I'll do it up in some slightly brighter colors than those pictured, but it finishes at a nice size (16"x18"), and I probably have enough scraps at the right size that I might not even have to cut separately for this.

I'd not been before to My Sisters Quilt Shoppe in Sheboygan, but would definitely go back. Mom and I both loved the kits they had for Sherri Falls' pattern book Frosted Memories, which features Holly Taylor's new line of the same name. Mom grabbed the last kit for the Christmas Morning table runner, but I was able to pull yardage for it and also picked up the kit for the Cinnamon Twist topper. Both projects wouldn't take too long to make, but I also have this serious conundrum: read about Australia and New Zealand before our trip there ... or sew. I should do more of the former, so these are probably projects for next year.

At The Sewing Basket in Plymouth, Mom picked up two Nativity panels (we purchased backing fabric later), and I snagged Cottage Creek Quilts' pattern Warm Winter Wishes (shown here), which is more applique than I will usually attempt, but I so love this design (and it's on the small side at 44" square) that I'm willing to give it more of a shot. I really like a number of other patterns by this company, having previously purchased their Joy pattern and fabric to make it.

At Bigsby's, I purchased a collapsible container that Mary and Sandi and others have used at retreat as a catch-all. I know I got something else there too, but it totally escapes me at the moment.

And finally, at Patched Works, I selected some batiks to make the Falling Ginkgo Leaves quilt from Laurie Shifrin's book, Batik Gems; bought some fusible grid for some simple table runners from charm packs, and bought a large yo-yo maker.

We'll see how soon I actually get anything done with any of this... it wouldn't be called a stash otherwise, would it?