Friday, February 27, 2009

Lights, Camera, Action!

This is is a quilt top that I've finished this week. It's going to be a gift for my friend Katy who is a working actress in Hollywood (waving to you Kate!). I thought of her as soon as I saw this fabric collection. The fabric line is called "Lights, Camera, Action!" designed by Gail Kessler for Andover Fabrics. It was quick to make up, and somewhat of a fun challenge. The large center focal block is pieced on the diagonal using the focus fabrics in the two colorways. Matching up the pictures was quite "interesting", but they give good directions and I'm pretty happy with the outcome. The popcorn block rows are pieced, but the other borders are just fussy cut strips from the fabric line. The pattern is a free download from Andover's website and we have the fabric and kits for the quilt in our shop.

I even had some fun with the shop display last night. I found a little mock Oscar statue at the mall and we made up fat quarter popcorn bags ~ I have way too much fun at work :)

Don't know how much work I'll get done today, I've taken the day off to take my son to get his wisdom teeth pulled this morning and I'll be playing nurse this afternoon. We are well stocked in pudding, Ice Cream and video games, so hopefully all will go smoothly!

Enjoy the day!
~ Dawn

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

February Sloanie's Club Meeting

Today we had our "Sloanie's" Club meeting at the shop. We are starting A Walk in the Moonlight from Pat Sloan's Learn to Applique book. The first (really dark) picture is my completed background for it. You'll have to take my word for it that it is really pretty ~ I just couldn't get these colors to photograph well. Several people came to the group that will be making this quilt together. The ladies picked out their fabrics for the backgrounds and got started with some cutting today, so we'll have some other Moonlight Walking show-n-tell next month.

Peggy Newman brought in a Pink Flamingo pillowcase that she made for a friend of hers in Florida ~ even though it wasn't a Pat Sloan fabric or pattern, I just had to get a picture of a Pink Flamingo pillowcase! Thanks for sharing Peggy!

Here is my monthly Sew Along block for "I Believe". This month Pat Sloan's Yahoo Group is making the Bird House Block. Her blog Sew Along link has information about this.

I have my "I Believe" quilt top all finished. It was hanging in the quilt shop, but I took it down after the holidays and hopefully will get it quilted up soon ~ My goal is to have it done by next Christmas. Seeing as how we are just entering Lent, I think that's a reasoable goal :)

~ Dawn

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Just a Little Old Dresser

Looks can be deceiving. This little old dresser was a hand me down to me. It was an unfinished pine piece that my brothers shared when they were little boys. I had gotten it from my mom when I had my first child, stained it and used it for baby clothes. Over the years it did duty in the nurserys of all three of my kids. I guess for those reasons, I love this little thing and just couldn't part with it when my kids all got bigger and needed larger furnature. So I found other uses for it.

It works great for fat quarters and smaller cuts of fabric. The drawers are great when pulling colors for new projects.

The top drawer is a little more shallow and works great for threads and such.

And I even use the outside of it to hang rulers. It keeps them out of the way, but handy. So I've really gotten my "money's worth" out of this little dresser. Let me know how you organize in your sewing room, and how you repurpose things, I'm always looking for ideas!

Enjoy the day!
~ Dawn

Monday, February 23, 2009

Calendar Quilt Finished through Orange Weekend

Another advantage of taking part in a sewing weekend virtual retreat is that you can get caught up on some other little projects. Here is my calendar quilt section for February caught up through the 22nd. Since the strip for Valentine's day I have added a strip for my dad's birthday, strips for the Wizard of Oz quilts I was working on last week, and of course three days of Orange :)

I still need to get working on my Bunny Hill Basket block for this month though. I have the fabrics all picked out and sitting here, I just need to get to appliqueing on it. I think I'll prepare that one for Friday morning when I'll be taking my son to get his wisdom teeth pulled. I'll need something to keep my hands busy while in the waiting room.

By the way, if you need a refresher on embroidery for the stitchery part of these blocks Anne Sutton has added a great tutorial to her Bunny Tales Blog that walks you through. Very well done.

Enjoy the day!
~ Dawn

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Sunday's OP Accomplishments

Well, I got to sew some more blocks on Saturday before going to work, and I was hoping to have my whole OP quilt top done by this evening since I was off work today. But alas, life didn't go as planned. Here's my excuse/um, I mean story :)

Heather and I had decided that we would run out today after church to spend Books-a-Million gift cards that we both had gotten at Christmas time. I mentioned to her about a local guild show that was going on this weekend and we decided that we'd check it out before going to the book store, after all it would just be a little out of the way. So off we set on our adventure ~ Did we mapquest the location? ~ Do we have a gps gadget?...ah no. I had gone to this quilt show a few years back, and I did have a little card with their location address on it, you'd think I could get us there from that right ~ but, I seem to forget that we live in an area in central MD, halfway between Baltimore and Washington DC that is growing faster than anyone can keep up, so the area was totally unrecognizable to me! After driving around way longer than we should have we (Heather) finally found the building where it had been held, but there was no quilt show. Huh? We double checked the address, and yes we were in the right place, but still no quilt show! Well I was just about ready to call my co-worker Mary who is a member of that guild and see if the location had been changed or what, and Heather looked at the card and noticed that the date of the show is March 22nd not February 22nd ~ oops. (I know Mary, you can laugh now.)
So as not to be discouraged I decided to swing by a quilt shop that is in that area, after all I was in a mood to shop! Well it seems that quilt shop is closed on Sundays :(

So instead of sewing my OP top I spent all afternoon finding a quilt show that wasn't there, and going to a quilt shop that wasn't open! But I did get to the bookstore and bought the April Quilt Magazine along with some others, so it wasn't a total loss.

The picture at the top is how I plan to set my OP quilt, 5 rows of 4 blocks with no setting in between. I have the first row sewn together. Here is a picture of how I plan to border my quilt. I'm going to use 2 inch scraps for the pieced inner border.

...Since this weekend was all about playing with colors, and to prove to some of you that yes I can do bright colors, here is a block that I did in some hot colors. I think this will end up in a quilt of all different bright colored blocks.

I've already decided that I'm going to use this block again to do a graduation quilt for a friend in the school colors. It's a fun block to make and very versatile. If you need the block pattern, or if you have missed the OP weekend and you'd like so see some other wonderful orange creations check out Pat Sloan's blog (the OP button is on my sidebar).

Enjoy the rest of your day!
~ Dawn

Friday, February 20, 2009

Friday's OP Progress

I'm done "OP-ing" for tonight, but here is what I accomplished before I stopped to fix supper. I got nine blocks done. These all have the orange as the "circle fabric and my blues as the center fabric. My sashings are all my greens and the corners are browns. Here's a close up of one of the blocks:

Tomorrow I have to go to work in the afternoon, but in the morning I plan on making some "negative" versions of these blocks using the orange in the center, blue as the circle, browns as the sashings and greens in the corners. I think that will mix things up a bit. Then I'll have to do some thinking on how to set them all. I do like the corners on them, I played with leaving them off of some blocks earlier, but I've decided to go with corners on all the blocks. Other than that, I have no set plan for what I'm doing ~ this quilt is kind of making itself!

~ Dawn

Ready for the OP!

I'm all ready for the OP! I'm off from work today and I told the family that today I'm "OP-ing" - that right there was enough to have them leave me alone -- My son didn't even know what that means, but he said he didn't want any more information :)

So I'm off and running, I'm ready to start cutting up my Orange Pile. I've downloaded the pattern (available on Pat's blog today - see the link on my sidebar):

I've got my buddy fabric piles all ready to go:

Maddie is here helping to search for more stray fabrics that can make their way into this little creation today. She wants to know what this OP thing is all about:

I've got some books on CD from the library:

I've got tea, and am ready to take note of what everyone else is doing out there :

...and I've got chocolate! I think this is the perfect day, what do you think?
More later on what actually gets made from this combination...

Enjoy the day!
~ Dawn

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Jo Morton Evening Club February Show & Tell

Here are some show and tells from tonight's Jo Morton Club. We were missing several people, but still had some wonderful progress to show. Everyone is working hard on their Holiday Inn Projects. The first picture is mine that has the Part 3 borders finished. (I'm trying to stay ahead of everyone, but it's not easy! Everyone is really cooking on it now and I think all have their centers done.

This picture is Karen Watkins' center applique finished. She used some beautiful reds and with the single green, it has that traditional Baltimore Applique feel that I love so much!

This one is Dawn Burchett's Holiday Inn finished through Part 2. She used a green frame, and blue in the pieced border which pulled wonderfully on her center.

Karen Gladfelter used a darker green frame and a darker blue (Jo's dark blue stars) in her sawtooth border. Just stunning!

Phyllis used a blue frame and green in the sawtooth border, I loved this combination! It's fastinating to see that even though they were all set with the same bird toile corners, they all have a really different look!

At next month's meetings Part three is due to be finished and I'll give out the patterns for the final borders (Part 4)! We're getting there...keep plugging away at it!!

~ Dawn

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

We're Off to See the Wizard!

Keeping with the Wizard of Oz theme, here's what I've been up to this week so far! I finished the top for the color version of the Wizard of Oz "Whirlwind" Quilt today for the quilt shop. It's the first technicolor one that I've done. I had made several for customer orders in the sepia tones (pictured below) and had made one for my daughter Heather ~ who is a huge Wizard of Oz fan! They were so popular before Christmas that I even let them sell the one I had made for Heather.

So while I was putting together the technicolor version, I started piecing a new sepia top for Heather (I told you I would get to it ~ winking at you Heather). Now I just have to get it quilted up. I think I will have to sneak in work on it this weekend while I'm on the OP Virtual Retreat ~ I think it blends well enough with orange to get away with that! "Buy the way", kits for both versions of the Whirlwind Quilt are available in our shop's online store :)

And while I was excavating during my sewing room renovation I found this pillow top that I had stitched and pieced for Heather a while back. This one was made with some vintage style Wizard of Oz fabric that I had found years ago. I even found a pillow form deep in the mines of my closet, so this one will be completed this weekend too. Heather will think it's Christmas or something!

A heart is not judged by how much you love; but by how much you are loved by others. ~ The Wizard of Oz

Enjoy the day!
~ Dawn

Monday, February 16, 2009

Toto, I Don't Think We're in Kan...

Tonight and tomorrow I'll be sewing some Wizard of Oz quilts (one for my daughter Heather who is a huge Oz fan, and another one for the quilt shop where I work). I'll post some pictures soon!

Meanwhile, have you seen the Chips Ahoy Wizard of Oz commercial? I literally laughed out loud! Check it out :)

Getting Ready for the OP!

Are you getting ready for the big Orange Pile Challenge? (Haven't heard about the OP? Check out the OP Challenge link on my sidebar) Pat Sloan posted this weekend about adding some more buddy fabrics for your orange pile. I've picked green as my next buddy fabric to go with my oranges and dusty blues ~ and for some interest, I'll throw in some browns to round out my OP Team.
Here is an up close of some of the fabrics in my color combination. Get those OPs going and pull some buddy fabrics. The great OP Challenge begins on Friday!!

We had a busy weekend, so I didn't get to do much sewing. My daughter, son-in-law and little granddaughter have moved from 7 to 1 1/2 hours away! So we went on Saturday to see their new house, and it's really nice. They have a cute townhouse in a very nice neighborhood that is close to just about any shopping you could imagine. Now I just have to do a search of the quilt shops in the area!

And my other news is that I have had another design accepted for publication, so I've been busy making quilt mock ups and calculating fabric requirements for the fabric company! This one should appear around Christmas time ~ I'll keep you posted!

Enjoy the day!
~ Dawn

Friday, February 13, 2009

Calendar Quilt - January Finished!

Well, I got the chance to work on my Calendar Quilt Challenge! As I mentioned in my post yesterday, I got a surprise visit from my daughter and son-in-law and I "talked them into" leaving my 18 month old granddaughter with me while they went out for a while. So Elsie and I had fun picking strips to update my Calendar quilt. She is quite accomplished at picking fabric strips out of a basket and putting them back in ~ I see a little quilter in the making. Sometimes I just need this kind of surprise diversion to make me slow down and just enjoy ~ even though I got nothing done on my "to do" list, it was a great way to spend the afternoon! :)

I wasn't able to do anything but the planning while Elsie was here, but later I went back and did the stitching of the strips we had layed out together. This next picture is my January section finished with all 31 days. I'm randomly varying the width of my strips, so I'm not sure how long each monthly section will finish. I'll try to keep them all similar though. (I had appliqued the snowflake to represent January and I'm machine embroidering on special days throughout).

The next picture is my friend and coworker Mary Nielsen's January Calendar section all finished. Mary did little appliques on hers for significant days. She did little socks on days when she had finished knitting a sock, and a little snowman on a snow day we had ~ How cute is that!

This is the start of my February section. I had to start the month with some Football fabric for the Superbowl of course. I won Pat Sloan's drawing for the Sew Along block this month and she sent me an envelope of Arabella fabric, so I've included that in there! We had a beautiful weather weekend here in Maryland, so I got out and worked in the garden, thus the leafy flower fabric strip. And the rest of the fabric strips are projects that I was working on at the time like our Jo Morton Club project and my Baltimore Album block for the month, so it's a very eclectic grouping! This will be quite an interesting quilt when it's finished!

Thanks to Elsie's visit, I have strips all picked out through the 22nd of February. Why the 22nd you ask? Well I knew I'd be working with orange for Pat's OP Challenge that runs from Feb. 20 - 22 (see the button link on my sidebar for info and join us for that Virtual Retreat weekend). So Elsie helped me pick out some orange strips and and we worked back from there, now I'm all ready to sew more strips on as the days go by. Send me a picture of your Calendar Quilt, and also periodically check out the Calendar Quilt button on my sidebar to see how other very creative ladies are tackling this challenge!

Enjoy the day!
~ Dawn

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Thimbleberries Club Show & Tell

Tonight was our Thimbleberries Club meeting and all of the ladies are keeping up with their blocks so far! We are doing the light colorway, and the January block was the teal and pink. The ones pictured above are Jean McDonalds (I took a picture of hers to show this months block). Mine are in the finished quilt top that I've just gotten done. As soon as I get it up on the wall ~ hopefully we will be hanging quilts in the shop tomorrow, I'll take a picture of the whole thing.

Below is Anne Troy's Christmas version of the blocks (She's making the block each month in another fabric line along with her Thimbleberries 3's Company fabrics, so she'll have two quilts done at the end of the year!).

Sherry Hazelhurst showed us her finished tablerunner from last year's Thimbleberries club done in the "Lodge" fabric line. We always like seeing projects finished and quilted!

Tomorrow I should have a calendar quilt update. I had a surprise visit from my daughter and son-in-law today and I got to babysit my 18 month old granddaughter! It wasn't what I had planned for the day, but it was a great treat and we had a lot of fun. With Elsie here I didn't get to do much in my sewing room except pull fabric strips ~ she is very good at pulling strips out! So we did alot of "planning" together, and I'm ready to sew some strips and get my January finished and my February caught up.

~ Dawn

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Jo Morton Club Day Group Show & Tell

For your viewing pleasure, here are some quilts done by our Jo Little Women Miniatures group that meets the second Wednesday each month at our shop. The first one is my little Folk Art Bird that is in Jo Morton's Yesterday's Charm book (sorry the picture is kind of dark ~ we have kits for this left at the shop). I'll unveil my Holiday Inn with part three done after the Jo Club night group meets next Thursday evening. Now for some of the club members quilts!

This is Rose Mary's Holiday Inn finished through Part 2, the little shirting prints that she used are really nice!

...and Mitzen's Holiday Inn Center. I like how they are both using different setting fabrics for a completely new look:

Kathy Fowler has been busy getting past projects completely quilted and finished. The next three are hers (and hand quilted):

This one is Kathy's version of the Pick Up Sticks from club 7:

And one of Kathy's Mini Nines from Club 6:

Alice has finished her Holiday Inn Center with hand applique. Then she brought in some finished miniature quilts for us to just drool over!

This is Jo's Praire Flowers quilt, but Alice has sized it down:

These next three are lovely miniature quilts that Alice shared with us. They finish about 12 inches for the entire quilt! They just took my breath away, very precise pieceing and all beautifully hand quilted:

This one was accepted to the Houston Quilt Festival and a picture of it was published in Quiltmania magazine ~ How exciting is that! :

...And this little blue basket one has "loose" handles that stick up from each basket.

The Jo Morton Clubs are a treat each month, just to see the beautiful work that the ladies are doing!
~ Dawn