Thursday, June 28, 2007

Doll Quilt Tease

I started my Doll Quilt for the Doll Quilt Swap II. This is the first doll quilt I've made and I'm lovin' it. I hope my swap partmer will love it too.

Mmmmmmm . . . I wonder what the completed quilt is going to look like. I know, but no more photos until my partner receives the quilt.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Retreat Photos

Well, I'm finally getting around to putting a photos from my Stashbuster Retreat two weeks ago. Here they are - in no particular order. Victoria is up first in her fantastic Autobiographical Jacket. She made it using a sweatshirt and sewed on fabrics that are special to her.

Here's the whole gang. From left to right in front row: Victoria, Kathy, Mavie and Darlene. In the back row: Cricket, Bev, Rebecca and me. Isnt' the built-in bookcase we're standing in front of great? We all wanted to bring it home with us.

Rebecca brought some show and tell quilts to share. Here's the first one.
Here's her string quilt.
Here's Rebecca hard at work. Behind her you can see some of the 14 quilt tops she made over the weekend.
Cricket and I were getting silly and started taking pictures of each other across the room. Darlene is taking pictures of Bev cutting fabric and Rebecca ironing.
Victoria worked hard on her swap blocks. Sometime on Saturday afternoon she finally finished her first one.
Bev gave us a demo on making Super-Sized 9-Patch blocks.
Cricket finished the awesome vest for herself over the weekend. You can tell she will be Queen of the Jungle in this vest.
Darlene is the Queen of Scrap Searching. She went through everyone's trash can to make sure we didn't throw away any scraps that she would use for quilts.
Darlene finished her Super-Sized 9-Patch quilts. Aren't they great?
Mavie was working on her quilts while Darlene was trimming blocks. Notice the scrap quilt top on the floor? This is one of Darlene's creations.
It's getting dark and I think it's going to start storming. I'm off for now. I still have stories to share. I promise to do it tomorrow night.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Another Weekend Done

I had a great weekend. Yesterday we attended a 50th Wedding Anniversary Mass and luncheon for friends of ours. On the way home we stopped at a new to me quilt shop. Since I'm still off No Buy until the end of July I couldn't leave without buying some fabric. I found this cute sports print fabric and DH picked out the two coordinating fabrics. Not sure what kind of quilt I will make with them. But I'm sure it will a boy quilt.

I spent the evening finishing my E is for Egg block from Bobby Socks. I stitched this one in a deep green rather than red. I like the color. I used the Presencia Finca thread I bought recently. I love the way the thread handles. It stays soft and silky and lies well on the fabric. Next up is F is for Fairy and I'm going to stitch it with purple thread.

Today was the kind of Sunday I enjoy. Since we went to Mass yesterday we didn't have to go this morning. Instead we stayed home for the day. Our laundry is done and put away. We watched the US Soccer team beat the Mexico team for the Gold Cup. We watched the Red Sox beat the San Diego Chargers. And I finished my Wicked Girlie top, even the binding is sewn and pressed, ready to use. I had to order more backing fabric tonight. That will be here later this week. When I pick up my Pink Infinity quilt in two weeks, I'll drop off this quilt to be quilted. I am so in love with this quilt. I can't wait to get it finished.

I still have photos and stories from last week's retreat to share. I'll try to get that done this week. I know some of you are anxious to hear the stories about the quilters and Sister Theresa!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Back From Retreat

Well I think I'm finally getting caught up on life from being away on my retreat. I had so much fun. There were 8 of us who attended, 6 who stayed overnight and 2 who came during the day. We spent a lot of time sewing, giggling, eating chocolate, drinking wine and having an overall good time. I think I only got about 6 hours of sleep each night, if that.

I worked on nearly all of the projects I brought with me. I trimmed all of the HSTs I have made for my Football Depression blocks. I started strip piecing the pieces for my doll quilt. I made 24 9-patches for a scrap quilt. I spent about 4 hours working on redwork.

In the completed top department I put the borders on my Stairstepper Quilt and on my Tea Time Splash quilt.

My surprise project came out great. I used the Wicked Easy quilt pattern and put together this queen size top. I'm calling it Wicked Girly. The photo doesn't do the quilt justice. I need to adjust the settings on my camera. I'm going to use the quilt when DH is travelling. Stay tuned to see the backing fabric.

We had so much fun. I checked with Sister Theresa and we were able to get the center the weekend of December 18 - 21, 2008. Yup, that's right, 2008. The Center is so popular and will be closing in 2009. We get the distinction of being the last group to stay at the Center. We are so excited.

I'll post some more photos later. I still need to finish unpacking and get back into the real world!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

I'm On My Retreat

I leave for my retreat in a little bit. I'm behind on reading and commenting on blogs and I'm sure will be even more behind when I get home on Sunday.

Have a great weekend! I'll be back on Sunday with photos of my projects.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Getting Ready For My Retreat

I spent this weekend getting ready for my quilting retreat this coming weekend. So far this is what I'm planning on bringing to the retreat.
  1. My Jane Was Nuts blocks - I have a few blocks done and enough blocks cut for 5 other blocks.
  2. The HSTs for my Football Depression quilt. I have about 30 blocks to trim and enough squares cut for another 40 HSTs.
  3. I added borders to the Coffee Panel I bought on my shop hop and made the quilt sandwich. I'm planning on hand quilting around the designs on the panel.
  4. I cut the fabric for my doll quilt.
  5. I cut the borders for my Tea Time Splash quilt and my Stairstepper quilt.
  6. I prepped the next two letters for my Bobby Socks alphabet blocks. I got to start the "E" today. I'm using a deep green on this block. So far I like it.
  7. I tucked in my Focus Fabric Challenge if I decide to make 1.5 inch HSTs using Triangles on a Roll.
  8. I chose the fabric for the travel pocket I'm making from Leanne Beasley's book, "Romancing The Road Trip." Below is the finished stitchery I'm going to use on the cover of the pocket.
  9. I have one surprise project that I'm working on. I'll share the fabric with you, but you'll have to wait to see the finished project. I should be able to get the top done next weekend.
I doubt I'll run out of projects and that's OK with me. I would hate to run out of work at a retreat, wouldn't you?

Last night DH and I tried a new restaurant in town. It's about 50 steps from our front door. It's called Christopher's Third Street Grille. We each had soup before the meal, steaks for dinner (a filet mignon for me, prime rib for DH) and we split a serving of warm chocolate pudding cake for dessert. The food was great, the service was excellent. I know we'll be going back again and again and again. After dinner we went to the movies (50 steps beyond the Grille). We saw Ocean's Thirteen. An evening with DH, steak, chocolate and George Clooney. What more could a girl ask for? Oh yeah, uninterrupted quilt time. Well, I did get that that this weekend too as DH didn't get home from NYC until 3 pm yesterday.

All in all I'd say I had one great weekend. The only way to make it perfect would be for the Red Sox to sweep the Diamondbacks today.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Just a Fun Stitchery

I completed my little fun stitchery with the Presencia thread. I am so in love with this thread. I even ordered more thread from Retta Carol Creations. I ordered two more collections: Crayon Box and Jewel Tones. Her collections come with matching floss. Cool.

Since I'm one who seldom follows the rules I've decided I'm going to make the next few Bobby Socks alphabet blocks in some different colors with my new thread. I can't imagine any grandchild of mine not liking a rainbow of colors. And when this Bobby Socks quilt is done in two years it will be a rainbow of colors.

I'm off to read the newest issue of Quilter's Home magazine. Barnes & Noble finally had it out on the rack and I can't wait to read it.

Monday, June 04, 2007

What Do You Mean There's No Water

I woke up this morning ready to go to work. First, the toilet sounded funny when I flushed it. Then when I went to make coffee and discovered we had no running water. Great! It was 6:15 in the morning and who do you call when you don't have water? I decided to wait to call since the latest I have to be in the shower is 7:30. Finally at 8 am I called Dover Public Works and learned there was a water main break a block behind our building.

So what's a girl supposed to do? How about hang out on the couch and be glad you can work from home on your laptop. So that's what I did. I checked the water every hour with no luck. Finally at 2:30 the water came back on, just before I decided to take a nap - a 2 hour nap it ended up being. The water isn't quite hot enough for a shower yet and the water pressure is still a little low. Hopefully I'll be able to get a shower in before I go to bed.

Have you signed up for the Doll Quilt Swap yet? OK, OK, I'll cut you some slack. The guidelines were just posted yesterday so I'll forgive you if you haven't signed up yet. But come on, I'm sure it will be lots of fun. I've already chosen my fabric and my design and can't wait to get started. I'm combining the Doll Quilt Swap with a Focus Fabric Challenge - two projects for the price of one.

Last night I finished my D is for Dog block from Bobby Socks. I am really happy with how my blocks for the BOM are turning out. But I bought a sampler package of Presencia Finca thread a few weeks ago and it's been calling to me to try it. I signed up for a pincushion swap in one of my on-line groups so I traced a pattern onto a piece of muslin and started using the Presencia thread. I love it. It's silky, doesn't fray and I love how it lays on the fabric. I may finish the stitchery tonight. I will post a photo when it's done. For now, here's my D block.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Coming Up For Air and a Shopping Day

The work flow has eased a little in the office. We are still under a non-disclosure agreement so I can't talk about what is happening, but at least the stress level is reduced.

Thanks to those who have been stopping by and visiting my blog. I hope to be back on a more regular posting basis soon.

Yesterday was a shopping day for me. I took DH to the train station at 7:30 and began my shopping trip. First stop was Target. I needed to buy a birthday card and a Father's Day card. While I was there I also bought a new ironing board cover. Mine is ugly and beyond hope.

From there I went to Barnes & Noble in search of the newest Quilter's Home magazine. No luck with the magazine, but I bought The Reagan Diaries and a new magazine, Ty Pennington At Home. I am making no political statements with The Reagan Diaries. I am a history buff and this book shows one man's view of history as he was making it. The Ty Pennington magazine is cool. It appears to be a quarterly magazine. Check it out if you are looking for a new home magazine.

My next stop was my favorite quilt shop. I decided a few weeks ago that if I ever want to finish some of the quilts I started I need to get them quilted and not wait to hand quilt them. Susan, the owner of The Chestnut Quilter, is a great machine quilter with a quick turn around. I took my Pink Finity quilt to her. She said she would have it done in about 10 days. Since her shop is an hour drive away I told her there is no hurry. We are going to be staying near her shop in July and I told her I would pick it up then. She said her husband is occasionally in Dover and if he comes here he will deliver the quilt to me.

Susan seldom has sale fabrics in her shop. Yesterday she had a bin of 50% off bolts. For some reason I couldn't resist these three fabrics. There was 1 7/8 yards of each of the floral prints and I took two yards of the pink. Not sure what I'll do with them, but I'm sure I'll decide soon. I still haven't purchased fabric just because I like it. Every fabric purchase I've made has had a project planned first. Yeah, sometimes the project changes, but at least there is an initial project planned.

From the quilt shop it was time to buy some new summer clothes. My MIL gave me a gift card Talbot's. I'm not a big fan of Talbot's, but what can you do when you're given a gift? Spend it of course. I found two pairs of walking shorts and a sleeveless teal sweater. I also had a $25 off coupon for Coldwater Creek. I'm intrigued with this store because I like the bold colors and design of the clothes without the clothes looking like they belong on a young, nubile body. I bought a pair of jeans that fit me for once and this floral jacket. I wear these colors, but I don't often wear them together and, until now, not as a floral pattern. I bought the jacket hoping to liven up my wardrobe.

Today I had planned on sewing all day. I was up early, started the laundry and was ready to go to work on my swap blocks. Then I remembered I needed to make a gift for a Summer Solstice Swap I'm in. I decided to make a paperback book cover since my swap partner has a summer dream of laying by the pool reading a book I thought this cover would make a great addition to her summer dream. The pattern wasn't too hard to make and I can imagine adapting the size for other books and journals. Just what I need another project.

My swap blocks won't get done today. My almost annual shoulder problem seems to have returned and it hurts to hold and use a rotary cutter today. So after finishing this entry I'm going to force myself to stay off the computer and bring on the ice pack for a while. Tonight is the final Red Sox/Yankees baseball game for this series. The series hasn't taken on the usual fervor since the Red Sox are so far ahead of the Yankees. Oh well, it's still baseball.