Monday, May 30, 2011

Construction Everywhere

I’ve been working away on the construction truck quilt.
Construction Quilt 002
Construction Quilt 001
I needed a grey background to imitate a road and thought Stonehenge would be perfect.  I couldn’t find any around here, so Sandra & I made a trip to Buffalo this weekend.  I couldn’t find any there either, but I did find a Jinny Byer fabric that I think will work just as well.  The cement truck above isn’t on the background yet – it’s just on my design wall.

We had a great day shopping and got some great deals!  Sandra is really good about checking all the department store websites and getting coupons, shopping passes, etc. and both Macy’s and Lord & Taylor offer an out of state discount to shoppers travelling.  The stuff was so cheap we couldn’t leave it in the store!

On the way home, I took a different route as I wanted to cross at the Peace Bridge as there is usually much less traffic at that crossing.  I really like my GPS – it’s built into my car and it gives me the option of various routes – shortest, fastest, etc.  What it doesn’t have that I really think would be useful is an “avoid ghetto” route!  We drove through some pretty sketchy neighbourhoods and I was really nervous.  I kept thinking this is the kind of place where you hear of drive by shootings and for once in my life I wished I had darkly tinted windows so nobody could see two women alone inside the car!

It got me thinking – I don’t think there are any neighbourhoods in Toronto that I would be afraid to drive through.  Sure, there are some worse than others, but I’ve never been really scared.  Are there areas in your town/city that you would never drive through? 

I didn’t feel like sewing yesterday, so I finally finished a pair of socks I’ve been working on for ages.  My friend Margaret gifted me this wool and they turned out great.  The yarn is Mini Mochie and is really soft.
They aren’t identical but strangely enough, this doesn’t bother me.  The part you see below your pant legs looks the same, so I can live with the tops being different.  This made me think of another question – do you always get your striping yarn socks to match?  I started them both from 2 different balls, but they were wound differently so I just started knitting – life’s too short!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

You Can’t Make A Silk Purse

Out of a sow’s ear – but you can try.  This is one of my oldest UFOs.  I made it probably 5 or more years ago when I first started quilting and I knew nothing about anything!  I’m not sure I know a whole lot more now.

Silk Purse 002  Why did I pick such a blah background – who knows?  Anyway, I quilted it last weekend with my Circle Lord Swirls and it’s as good as it’s going to get.  This template makes anything look good. 

I’m going to donate this one to the relief effort for the victims of the Great Slave Lake fire. 

Silk Purse 004

I had quite a time trying to get a picture of this as a certain little someone loves to walk across my quilts the minute they go on the floor.  Here she is, enjoying what little sunshine we’ve had lately.

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Here’s her brother, my baby, also soaking up the sun on the patio.

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I’ve started a new quilt for a certain little someone I know.  He loves construction equipment and when I saw this pattern in Paducah, I just had to have it – in fact, there were quite I few patterns in her booth that I just had to have!

Here’s the first block – I think this is going to be fun!

Construction Quilt

Sunday, May 22, 2011

A Productive Day

I bought this flannel children’s panel years ago, and finally got it finished.

Flannel Baby Quilt 001

Flannel Baby Quilt 002

I used the Daisies Galore panto on it as there are a lot of daisies in the panel.

This quilted up beautifully and I’m as happy with the back as I am with the front!  I used Superior Thread’s Highlights in the bobbin as it was the closest thread I had in colour to the backing.  There is a King Tut variegated on the top. 

Flannel Baby Quilt 004

This ended up being one expensive baby quilt as I paid a small fortune for the flannel backing.  Flannel isn’t cheap around here and the backing alone cost me almost $50.  This will have to go to a very special baby!

I also finished this table runner.

Tablerunner 001

Mark the calendar – I didn’t do a panto on it, I actually free motion quilted it! 

Tablerunner 004

Although it’s really hard to see, I did a feather wreath in the middle of the 9 patches and tried some pebbling on the black sashing.  It’s a long way from perfect, but it was kind of nice being outside my box for a little while.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

It’s A Beautiful Day in the Neighbourhood

We’re having the nicest day of the year today and Leo has been busy in the garden and I’ve been spending some quality time with Tillie. 

I still have a few Quilt Show pictures to share, so here they are:

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This one is called Feathers & Roses by Lynne McCulloch.  The detail with her thread painting is beautiful.

There were also a collection of quilts from Canada Packers which had been collected from County Fairs over the years. 

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These quilts are just timeless and exquisitely done.

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This gorgeous quilt was hand appliquéd by Kathy Dunnigan.  Her work is nothing short of perfect!

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This heart quilt was done by Grace Maloney and she incorporated a lot of ‘heart’ sayings into it – i.e. – key to my heart, heart to heart, broken heart, half hearted, etc.

Now that I’ve shown you all the Quilt Show pictures, I’m going to have to get busy and finish some things of my own to show you.

I did get this baby quilt finished last week and off to the recipient.  It’s my favourite circus fabric based on Mary’s Strippie Quilt pattern.

Nico's Circus Baby Quilt 001

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Back to the Show

My lack of a voice turned into a full blown asthma attack which has necessitated me being back on prednisone.  You all know how much I HATE that drug but it does explain why I’m up, dressed and don’t know what to get up to at 4 A.M.
Now back to the Quilt Show.
This Dear Jane was done by Karen Horn and she is also working on a hand pieced I Spy which is just as intricate. 
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My friend and cohort from Paducah, Margaret, did this beauty.
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We picked out the fabrics on a trip to Mennonite country last summer. 
Here she is with her Pumpkins table topper.  I love this pattern and it’s on my to do list (I think it’s #432).
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Also from Margaret is our Quilt Diva.  She picked up this pattern on a trip to Buffalo last fall and I swear by the time I got my stuff out of the bags, she had her Diva finished!
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Another friend and cohort from Paducah, Diane made this beautiful Block of the Month quilt from Marti Michell’s Anniversary Waltz pattern.
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This jacket was in one of the Vendor’s booths and I really liked it.
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A jacket class is also on my to-do list, but I want to make one that is properly fitted and not just based on an oversized sweatshirt.
Now for some quilts by Bunny Wood.  What can I say about Bunny – just that she is one of the most talented people I know.  Her talents are limitless – she pieces, she machine quilts she does machine embroidery, hand embroidery, thread painting, makes the most beautiful clothes you’ve ever seen and I’m sure she has many other talents that I’m not aware of.  Check out the link to her blog – you won’t be disappointed.
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Bunny's Quilt
I didn’t get the quilter’s name on this – she’s probably in the looney bin by now anyway after finishing this “Oh My Gosh” – isn’t it gorgeous!

Edited to add:  Bunny just let me know that this was done by Robin Petty - thanks Bunny.

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This beautiful wool felted piece was done by Rosemary Makhan.
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I believe Rosemary did this one too, but I could be wrong – doesn’t happen often – just ask Leo :-)
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I have a few more pictures to share, but I’ll save those for another day.

Monday, May 16, 2011

No Voice

I was sick yesterday and today my voice has completely gone.  I can still type, though, so they aren’t going to shut me up that easily!

Saturday Lee & I went to Quilts in the Gardens put on by the Halton Quilter’s Guild.  It’s held in the Royal Botanical Gardens which is a beautiful place to visit if you are ever in the area.

There were many beautiful quilts and I did get pictures!

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Quilts in the Gardens 2011 003

Quilts in the Gardens 2011 004

I didn’t get pictures of all the labels, but the one directly above is called “William Morris Stars” and was pieced & quilted by Robin Petty.

Quilts in the Gardens 2011 010

This was pieced and appliquéd by my friend Barb and believe it or not, this was her FIRST quilt!!!!  It’s called The Queen & Her Court.  She also made this beautiful blue and white quilt.  She doesn’t believe in doing anything easy!

Quilts in the Gardens 2011 009

This next one was one of my favourites – and I stupidly didn’t get the name of the quilt or the quilter!!

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I have lots more pictures, but I’ll post them over the next couple of days.

I managed to get my Mystery Quilt stars figured out – I replaced the star points with a different batik and I’m happy with them now.  They still don’t show up that great in a photo, but in person you can definitely see they are stars.  I also had the opportunity to meet Sherri, the owner of Border Creek Station at the Quilt Show.

Mystery Quilt 4 003

Saturday night was our bowling banquet and Leo & I cleaned up!!  Our team came in 3rd out of 18 teams; Leo won most improved average; I won highest triple with handicap; and our name was pulled for a door prize so we won a 22” flat screen HDTV.  We also won ‘The Twist’ contest – I was dragged up there unwillingly – and won some restaurant gift certificates for that.  All in all, it was a good night – and very lucrative too!

Our magnolia tree is in full bloom and looks beautiful.  I just had to share a couple of pictures!

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Quilts in the Gardens 2011 082

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mystery Quilt

Looking through my Webshots album, I came to the realization that I have finished exactly ONE project this year – my Blooming Nine Patch.  How discouraging is that!

I have been working on a Mystery Quilt from Border Creek Station and have really enjoyed the process.  However, I just finished putting some of the blocks together and was very disappointed to see that one of my fabric choices is all wrong – the stars disappear into the background.

Mystery Quilt 001


Mystery Quilt 003

I toyed with the idea of just leaving them, but knew I’d never be happy, so yesterday I went all over the place trying to find another fabric to replace the brown star points.

I came up with this:

Mystery Quilt 2 002

but I’ve decided this is too ‘white’ and doesn’t really look right.  Back to the drawing board!

Leo’s spring garden is starting to bloom and since I don’t have completed quilts to show you, I’ll share some of his flowers.  We have lots of different daffodils:

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Spring Flowers 006

 Spring Flowers 007

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The magnolia tree is just about ready to bloom:

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The hyacinth smell lovely when you open the front door:

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The tulips are just starting to bloom – this is a pretty colour:

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I had a lovely Mother’s Day lunch at Sandra & Darren’s, followed by a visit to my Mum.  I usually visit her in the morning as she gets more agitated as the day goes on – today was no exception.  Happy Mother’s Day to all who are Mothers, and especially to those who have lost their Mother.