Monday, December 31, 2012

A Year Of Quilts

Tonight we say good bye to 2012 and hello to 2013.  Looking back it was a pretty good year; full of ups and downs.  As I looked back over the quilts I had finished I was amazed at all I was able to do. Here are the quilts I finished this year.
From right to left, top to bottom.
15 Minute Play, Pineapple, Creamy Dreamy, Stellar Stars Caught in a Web, Bloomin' Peeks, Friendly Twist, Picnic, Mavrick Star Spangled, Half Square, Dresden, This and That, Garden Party, Sugar and Spice Through the Year, Dream, Star Spangled, Neil's Eagle Quilt, A Notion or Two, Crazy Love

I'm hoping to be at least this productive in the new year.  Enjoy your celebrations tonight.  Stay safe.  And all the best in the new year.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Nook Cover

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas.  That you were able to enjoy time with friends and family making wonderful memories.  At the Bailey home we were enjoying our 'Wonderful Life' thanks in part to our dear family and friends.  I enjoyed getting together with them at parties, church and quick happy visits where gifts were dropped off and exchanged. 
As always I kept busy at my sewing machine making gifts of the heart for my children.  If you are unfamiliar with our gift giving tradition you can read about it here. Over the next few days I will share the gifts from the heart I created for my family.  First DD's gift from the heart was the Nook cover.  Her favorite colors are purple, green and orange so I thought this fabric was perfect. 
A fat quarter, elastic, some chipboard and a math made this little cover possible.

She was thrilled as was I when I saw her face.

Friday, December 21, 2012

HO HO HOT PADS

Christmas is a time for tasty treats.  Yummy smells fill the kitchen and spread throughout the house, drawing a crowd.  Everyone has their favorite Christmas treat; frosted sugar cookies, gingerbread men, hand dipped chocolates, divinity, peanut brittle, the list goes on and on.  Well, since I know the kitchen is such a bustling place this time of year I decided to make Christmas hot pads to share with friends and neighbors. 
I used Julie's Mr. Claus fabric by Moda.  First I fussy cut the Santas.  Then I surrounded them with 1 1/2" strips of red and green in varying log cabin arrangements.  Put the cream Merry Christmas print on the back and quilted them.  The fun candy stripe made a great binding.  And a red ric rac hanger to finish them off.  Now they are ready to lend a hand in holiday baking.


Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Pineapple Finish

Well, it's been awhile.  I've been frantically sewing getting ready for the big day.  I just might make it.  Although one of the quilts that I'm giving may only be a top.  I did however finish this scrappy pineapple.  I'm giving it to my aunt as a thank you for letting me and my friends have a sewing retreat at her cabin.  I hope she likes it. 
I decided to quilt feathers in it.  I was a little worried about that as my first attempt was not a huge success.  I feel this time went much better.
In fact I enjoyed it this time.  I definitely see more feather quilting in the future.

I hope all your Christmas plans are going well.  Only 6 more days.  

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Christmas Treat

My grandma was here last week and I got to spend a delightful day with her.  I've missed my grandma while she has been away the last year.  We used to go to lunch quite regularly and I always enjoyed my time with her.  But my aunt has needed her help this last year as she battles cancer.  So I've had to catch whatever spare moments grandma has when she comes back to catch up on doctor and dentist appointments.  The last time she was here and she gave me this treasure
 She also showed me this quilt.  I feel in love with it the instant I saw it.  Isn't it so sweet?  She told me she couldn't give it to because she thought one of my aunts would want it.  If they didn't then she would ask my mom.  So I was pretty far down on the totem pole.  So imagine my surprise when at this last visit she said she had a something for me and then she brought this out.  She said my face just lit up.  I did a happy dance and gave her a big hug.  
I thought it appropriate to photograph it in the rocking chair she let my dad have when I was pregnant with my first.  She rocked her baby's in it.  My dad said that growing up it was his boat and he would fish off the side of it. It is a tradition with my dad to give a rocking chair to each expectant mother in our family on the Christmas preceding the birth.  I feel so blessed that this was the rocking chair that I received.  Doesn't it look inviting with great grandma's quilt.
Grandma told me it is all hand pieced.  Her mother never used a machine.  Look at how wonderful the quilting is.  I'm so thankful for this Christmas treat!

Friday, November 30, 2012

A Finish 15 Minutes at a Time

This one has been a long time in coming.  Over a year I would say.  I enjoyed the process.  Each block was a lot of fun to make.  I really like Victoria's method of making blocks from made fabric.  
I was really pleased with how the yellow background set of the bright made fabric.
I even had fun quilting it and really like how it turned out.  I took these pictures quickly before we left for my parents home for Thanksgiving.  You can kind of see the quilting in this one but if you go here you get a better idea.  I would take more pictures but I dropped it off at my sister's to give to her mother in law.  She is battling brain cancer and needed a quilting hug.  I hope this cheery quilt will bring a little joy to her as she fights the good fight.

I'm also linking up with Sarah for a big WHOOP WHOOP, not just for the finish but for the valiant fight.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Doing the Math

My scraps were multiplying.  So I divided them up.  Subtracted the parts I didn't need.  Let the blocks add up as I combined like terms.
And before I knew it my x and + quilt became a top.  And I had the skills I need to help DD with order of operations in her math class.

If  you would like to make a x and + quilt you can find a jelly roll friendly tut here.  If you need help with order of operations ask DD she gets it now.


Friday, November 23, 2012

pre-cut friendly x and + tutorial

Here are the blocks I got done at my retreat.  Back in September I cut out my quilt with leftover pieces of layer cakes and jelly rolls.  I had a little interest in a tute for pre-cut friendly x and + block.  
Well, I'm finally getting around to it.  Sorry for the delay.
For each block you will need 
12- 2 1/2" squares of background fabric
2- 2 1/2" squares for the plus
1- 2 1/2" x 6 1/2" rectangle for plus
4- 4 1/2" squares

Take one 4 1/2" square and place a 2 1/2" background in one corner.  Draw a line through your 2 1/2" square.
Sew on the line you drew.  Trim seam allowance.
Press open.
Repeat on opposite corner.

Repeat with remaining 4 1/2" squares.

Take the 2- 2 1/2" plus squares and sew a 2 1/2" background square to it.
Sew a 2 1/2" background square to either end of your 2 1/2" x 6 1/2" rectangle of you plus fabric.
Lay out your block.
Sew pieces together and enjoy your block.  Make a pillow or make more blocks and make a beautiful quilt.


Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Turkey Day

Just wanted to wish you a Happy Thanksgiving.
Hope you enjoy your feast and time with those you love.  Thanks for coming to visit, for all the times you have left comments full of kind words, and for all the inspiration you give me through your blogs.  I am truly blessed to have you in my life.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

I'm Back

I had a delightful time with my friends.  We sewed, laughed and enjoyed each other's company all weekend. I was sorry to see it end.  But alas we had to head back to reality.  Let me share with you a few of the highlights.  
Here is my dear friend, Sue, she was busy getting ready for the Holiday season.  She made lots of little bags for her grandchildren.  Each bag had a wallet inside that will contain $2 so they can buy a treat at the play she is taking them to.  Doesn't that sound like fun.  No wonder her grand kids love her so much.
Look at the lovely star Jean made.  It lays perfectly flat.  Some thing I'm sure I would have trouble with.  It is for her granddaughter who will be getting married soon.  My friends are wonderful grandmas. 

This cute guy was made for me by Lorri.  She made one for everyone at the retreat.  Isn't she so generous.  We each put ours on our sewing machines to keep us company when we get back home and our sewing buddies are no longer near by.

We were also visited by a mamma moose and her baby.  Guess they wanted in on the fun.
I got a lot done and will share it soon.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Ready, Set, Go

I met my goal.  The pineapple blocks that have been on my to do list for the last two years are now a top.  I might add one more border and then it will be ready to quilt.  With this goal met I get to reward myself with a little get away with friends.
I've packed my bags and a couple of projects.  This one among them.

I'm really looking forward to making this scrappy x and + quilt.  It's been on my bucket list since I first started seeing them.  I cut it out and had it with me when I went to Quilt Fest but I never got around to it.  Now it's set to be first.
Hope everyone has a great weekend.  I know I will.  
See ya!  Gotta go!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Pineapple

My pineapple blocks are one of those projects that have been on my list for a couple of years.  So I took Mary and Sarah's advice and decided to motivate myself with a reward if I can move them along to a finish.    The first step was to take the blocks out of the ziplock bag they have been living in and place them on my design wall.  I then took my scrap bind and cut me some sashing pieces.  I also found a black piece in the bin to cut as corner post between the sashing.  Then I started sewing the rows together.  I know there are better ways to put rows together.  But somehow I always mess up those methods and I end up with something other than what I planned.  So the best method for me to ensure it goes together the way I planned is to take it off the design wall one block at a time.
As  you can see I have three rows done now and I've started the forth.  Hoping for some sewing time today between SEOP conference with N and DD's opening night for her play.  And my reward you ask.  I'm going to go away with a few friends this weekend to sew.  Well, worth the effort of getting this quilt done.  Don't you think?

Friday, November 9, 2012

Dreamy Finish on a Dreamy Day


                                        
It's a snowy day.  The kids in junior high car pool were complaining.  They were not ready for winter. Obviously since some of them are still wearing shorts.  My cheerful 'how can you not love winter?' was not well received.  But I do love winter!  I think snow is beautiful, cocoa is yummy, and having no weeds to pull and lots of time to quilt is dreamy.
Speaking of dreamy I  have the perfect finish for this snowy day.  My Creamy Dreamy Quilt is finished.  I put in the last of the binding stitches yesterday.  I quilted clouds all over it.

And now it's in my rocking chair waiting for me, a cup of cocoa and a good book.  
Yes, winter is dreamy indeed.

Linking up with Sarah today.  Check out what other dreamy quilts have been created this week.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Time for a New List

Nothing makes you feel better than a finish.  
In this basket are few of my recent finishes.  To ensure that those happy feelings keep coming I make lists.  Cause I'm a list kind of girl.  I like to make checks on my lists so I give myself lots of opportunities
   to do this.

Here is my old list.  It was getting hard to read so...

I made a new one.  Do you ever notice how some of your UFOs just stay on the to do list?  The first six on this list were on the last list and three of those were on the list before that.  Why is that?  How do I motivate myself to move them along?  What works for you?

Monday, November 5, 2012

Surprise

My parents are pretty spontaneous.  Growing up my dad was in land development.   This made it hard to find time in the summer for family vacations.  So if there ever was a lull my dad would call from the office and tell my mom to pack the motor home we were going camping.  Then there was a mad dash to get ready.  And when dad got home we would be off to make some fun memories.  
Now that we are all grown my parents still take these spontaneous trips.  Apparently they were talking Friday after getting home from their weekly garage sale venture.  They needed to come up north, where my brother, youngest sister and I live, to deliver a hutch to my sister.  They wanted to do it before the weather turned bad.  They figured since they were busy the next two weekends and the week following those was Thanksgiving they would leave then.  So they packed up the truck and were on their way.
I got a call from them Saturday telling me they were in town and could they stop by.  Well, of course, it's always good to see the parents.  Then imagine my surprise when they showed up with beauty.  They found it on their garage sale venture.  Mom told the lady selling it she thought her daughter would love it.  My, was she right.  Isn't it AMAZING!?

Here's a close up!

Thanks Mom and Dad!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Blogger's Quilt Festival

After finishing the big stitch quilting on this I was so pleased I could not wait another minute to finish it.  Being the scrap happy quilt that it is I thought a scrappy binding was perfect.  So I pulled out my bin with leftover binding in it and started sewing them together.  Some pieces were long others quite short but they all came together to make the perfect binding.
 I'm very pleased with the results if I do say so myself.
This quilt hold so many memories for me; in the fabric that created to where and how it was made.  I started it at a quilt retreat with dear friends I have known for a long time.  Worked on it in the chemo lab as I made new friends that inspire and uplift me.  And finished it up in the comfort of my home with my family.  
It brings me such joy I want to share it with others.  So it is my pick for Amy's Blogger's Quilt Festival.  Make sure you check it out.  Be prepared to be awed and wowed by all the lovely quilts.


Friday, October 26, 2012

Stellar Stars

It's been two weeks since my last post.  Where have I been you may ask.  Well, my Wednesdays have been spent with some stellar stars.
 Like the twenty something young artist who has put her life on hold to fight a mighty battle.  She is inspiring and brave.  I loved hearing about her hopes and dreams for the future.  May she win her battle and live her dreams. 
 Then there were the two mothers that were juggling treatments, soccer games and music lessons.  Valiant women  setting an example of courage and hope for their children.  Also the grandmother trying to decide her battle plan.  A tough choice between prolonged life and uncomfortable side effects.  I pray they all will have wisdom to know how best to fight there battles.
 Finally the army ranger that kept us laughing with his fun stories and songs.  He knew how to rally the troops and keep us fighting for a better day.  While I listened to their stories I big stitched on my spiderweb quilt.  My goal was to have it done when my treatments where done.  I didn't quite make it but I as I recovered yesterday I put in the final stitches.
And thanks to these stellar stars I have a name for this happy life filled quilt.  I'm calling it Stellar Stars caught in a Web.  In memory of the way these fabulous people who inspired me and brought joy to my life.  

Friday, October 12, 2012

Getting it Quilted

Does anyone else struggle with how to quilt their quilts?  I have problems picking out fabrics, getting things pieced, and I love to bind.  But when it come to stitching those layers together I'm often at a loss.  So they hang on the clothes line till the poor thing is sagging and I can't get to my washing machine cause there are so many quilts hanging in front of it.  Then I'm forced to figure out a quilting design.  
Such was the case this last week.  So I pulled down my 15 minute play quilt.  It's been sitting on the line since January.  I really was at a loss as to how to quilt it.  But finally decided to try echoing.  
I must say I'm very pleased with the results so far.

I've about got the blocks done.  Hoping today to finish them up and if I'm lucky to finish quilting the sashing too.  
What part of the quilting process slows you down?  How do you make it over that hump?  Or you lucky and you breeze through the whole process?

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Look What I Found

Look what I found, not what I was looking for, but a treasure nonetheless.  I was looking for something for my neighbor.  I had put it in a special place so it would be safe.  It's real safe now, cause not even I can find it. Bet you've never done that. But while looking I found this quilt my grandmother made for me when I was little.  It is hand quilted and full of cute pictures.  I remember a basket with tubes of the ink she used to draw and color the pictures.  The edges of this hand quilted quilt are still nice but the middle is falling to pieces.  It is a well loved quilt.
I also found these beautiful knitted afghans my great Aunt Nell knit for Alex and Josh when they were babies.  Aunt Nell was an avid knitter.  My mom, an avid garage saler, would buy every skein of yarn she found to keep Aunt Nell in yarn.  It still was never enough.  

So thankful for treasures found.  Hope that eventually I will find what I was looking for.