Monday, November 24, 2014

Cute Buttons

Do you love buttons?  I can't resist them.  At quilt market I went a little crazy at the button booths.  Look at these absolutely adorable buttons I found at this great booth from Brazil.  I have to look up this vendor and see if he has an outlet here in the US.

My sister-in-law and I both had to buy a set.  At first we were just going to get the Mary and Joseph and baby button, but then we saw the donkey and cow and sheep buttons.   We couldn't pass those up.  Then the angel and star buttons were next and it was all over.  We decided we would embroider a manger scene onto some kind of Christmas background fabric, then sew on the buttons for a totally cute wall hanging.  I have a great gold on cream classic print which will look totally perfect.  

Now. . . where can I find a manger to embroider??????

In case you lost count, I retire in 60 days, 3 hours and 49 minutes.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend.

And my deepest apologies to all of you who have to work on Friday after Thanksgiving.  It is called Black Friday because so many people have to work that day who should be getting a day off instead.  Support the local small businesses in your community.  They support you!  Just my 2 cents.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Happy Sewing Day

Many thanks to the ladies of the Perry Sew Day on Saturday.  What a wonderful group of ladies, spacious and welcoming facility, and positive atmosphere.  What a pleasure it was to spend the day with all of you.  And super thanks to my friend Barb Eikmeier for inviting me and sharing her wonderful talent and positive energy with all of us.  I got a lot done!

I have been watching Lea Day's machine quilting lessons on Craftsy: The Secrets of Free-Motion Quilting and thought it would be a good time to try out what I am learning.  I stretched out my backing and taped it down, smoothed my batting carefully over it, and pinned my Diamond Stars quilt top on top.  Pinned it in place as instructed, and ready to quilt.

It was times like this that I wished I was a better quilter!  How I wish I could do all those pretty designs that look so effortless when the experts do it.  I harken back to all the lessons learned from quilters I admire (Brenda Weien, who does all my big quilts; Diane Anderson, who is just about the best quilter I know; Pam Clarke, who's method for quilting between the dots really inspires me; and Lea Day, who makes free motion quilting look so easy).

But my friend Barb gave me a great suggestions and I decided to quilt in the ditch while I mulled over other fill-in ideas.

Here is what it looks like all quilted in the ditch.

I was thinking of doing some kind of fill in the what spaces.  What should I do in the stars?  Any suggestions?  There will be buttons in the middle of each star so I don't need to do anything super dramatic.  This is a small quilt after all.

Ok, back to making mashed potatoes for our early thanksgiving dinner with the kids later today.  I have a Sweet & Sour Pot Roast on the stove cooking, a chocolate mouse pie in the fridge chilling, hot spiced cider mulling in the crock pot, and potatoes waiting to be scrubbed for garlic smashed potatoes.  The pot roast is an old German recipe from my mom's dad's side of the family.  Made with a big chuck roast, bay leaves, vinegar, ginger snaps, sugar, and raisins, it is just too good for words!

Oh, and I almost forgot!  My new Indian Blanket Pattern and Sea Glass Diamonds Pattern is still on sale on my website for 20% off with the coupon code MGD20% -- but only in November.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Not Enough Time to Quilt

Since I returned from Quilt Market I have not had a minute to do anything quilty. Well, that is not entirely true.  I haven't had time to do anything quilty at home, but I did go to a fabulous retreat in the gorgeous Ozarks of Arkansas for five days in which I completed a few projects.  Actually is seems that is the only way I get things done. . . quilt retreats.  I am blessed to be able to attend a lot of them so it keeps me on track.

Here is what I got done at my last retreat:

I completed the top to Diamond Stars.  Wow, was this pattern fun to make.  And with a jelly roll and a yard of background fabric it was really fast!  I am taking it with me to a sewing day tomorrow where I will quilt it and put on the binding.  Once that is done I can photograph it for the pattern cover.  The pattern is ready and just waiting for a good color picture for the cover.

The cool thing about this pattern:  there are no set-in seams.  It is put together in strips and there are no Y seams, or tricky piecing.  It is super easy to do and amazingly fast.

The entire quilt, center and borders can all be made from 1 jelly roll and a yard of white fabric.  It really is amazing.  It can also be made from two charm packs, with the addition of a little yardage for the thin borders and binding.  A less expensive alternative, but still way cool.

And here is the best news of all.  I will be offering this quilt as a KIT!  I am just waiting for the fabric to arrive from Moda and kits will go on sale!

Here are some more ideas from to find time to quilt.
 Time to Quilt

Hope you find some time to quilt this weekend.  I am taking all day Saturday as a quilting day, and then spending Sunday cooking and eating with my kiddos and g-baby.  Oh, did I forget to mention he is the cutest baby on the planet?  Not that I am biased.  :-)

And guess who made that adorable quilt he is sitting on?  hehe.

Friday, November 7, 2014

November Block Posted

The free Block of the Month for November is up.  We are getting close to the end of this year's BOM and I am looking for ideas for next year's free BOM.

This block is called Feather Flower (Block 11).  Go to the 2014 BOM page to get the free pattern.

I am back from Quilt Market in Houston and trying to get organized and caught up with all the follow up I need to do.  It was a great week of quilt mania, and you will be seeing the results of that craziness in the coming weeks.  Three quilts will be featured in Keepsake Quilting catalog, probably the spring edition.  They are all 30's quilts and will probably be sold as kits as well as patterns.

Here is a small preview of my newest quilt.  I just finished the top and will be quilting it next week.  It is called Diamond Stars and the pattern will be on my website next week.

Here is a peak at my booth at Quilt Market.

The quilts on the left are two of my newest patterns.  I kept the name Indian Blanket for the one with the black background.  But I took the suggestion of one of you for the other quilt.  Thanks to Bonnie B for the suggestion Sea Diamonds.  I changed it just a bit to Sea Glass Diamonds, and I really love the name.  Bonnie will receive a free pattern!

Graphic designer Anne Ashley designed my "book", table covers and morning glory banner.  They really added to the booth.  She is an incredible designer and I really recommend her work.

This is my sister-in-law Mary Jo, who helped me in my booth.  She was an incredible help setting up and running the booth.  And of course, she is a great quilter and a wonderful sister!

My new patterns should be up on my website by next week.  Taking some time for me to get everything unpacked and put away from my big trip to Houston.

More to come. . . . .