Monday, April 29, 2013

Doing Good Stitches

(click on photo to enlarge)

April is National Volunteer Month, so I spent this past Saturday working on some charity HST (half-square triangle) quilts with fellow guild members. Check out my guild's blog (click here) to see more photos. We all had a great time playing with the infinite number of layouts that are possible with HST's.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Many Hands Make Light Work

My guild's charity sewing group met yesterday and we quickly whipped up this fun top that will eventually be a quilt that goes to our current outreach project, quilts for the local foster child program. Just a simple disappearing nine-patch pattern with fun boy-friendly novelty fabrics. The fabrics were cut into six-inch squares, so the top is approximately 48 inches by 64 inches, a great size for an older boy.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Now What?

Some of my regular readers might recognize these twelve blocks from a Modern Block-of-the-Month that I participated in a year or so ago (started in Aug 2011, finished in July 2012). I've had these on my design wall for quite a while now, hoping that something will inspire me to figure out a layout, but so far, nothing has come to me. Truthfully, I haven't really thought about it much because I have way too many other things keeping me occupied, and unfortunately, not all of them are quilting-related.

Anyway,  I'll figure this out someday, but in the meantime, I don't need my design wall for anything else, so they'll just stay up there.

I'm thinking perhaps some solid gray fabric to tie it all together...

Friday, April 19, 2013

Fabric and Wine

A good friend of mine is having a birthday, so I whipped up this wine bottle gift bag and finished it with my hand-dandy easy-peasy method of making the rounded bottom...

This project only used up one-eighth of a yard of fabric from my stash, but every little bit counts!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Small Things

I'm afraid I won't be using up too much of my stash this month -- I've mainly been busy with spring cleaning (yuck) and there are a couple of small quilting projects with deadlines that need my attention. One is due on May 1st and what you see in the photo are the supplies I hope to use. I have a plan, but no guarantee that the plan will work...

Monday, April 15, 2013

Giveaway Winner

OK, today was the day for the drawing for the Jennifer Chiaverini book and Elm Creek Quilts pins. I used the very scientific method of choosing a winner -- the blog post had 22 comments, so I asked my husband to pick a number between 1 and 22 and he chose 12. That's Sallie.

I asked everyone to tell me where they are from and what kinds of quilting charity projects they work on. Here's what Sallie wrote --"I'm from Texas and enjoy making baby quilts for our church quilt ministry that sends them to foreign orphanages or gives them to the local pregnancy help center."

I was thrilled to read about everyone's charity projects -- quilters are an amazing bunch. Thank you all for being such generous, giving people. I wish I had enough copies of the book to give one to all of you -- you all deserve it!

Sallie -- I've emailed you and asked for your mailing address. Congratulations!

Friday, April 12, 2013


I'm a member of the Ithaca Modern Quilt Guild and several months ago we were given a challenge to create a group version of Van Gogh's A Starry Night as a quilt. Those who wanted to participate were given a square from a poster of the painting and then asked to recreate that square in fabric/fiber. This past Sunday, we all met and showed off our squares. What you see above is how they look on the design wall (the 24th will be finished soon), before being trimmed and sewn together.

We were all amazed at how good all of our pieces looked together, even with all sorts of techniques being used -- fabric painting, thread painting, fusing, patchwork, yarn couching, etc.

 Here's what the poster looked like...

Here are closeup shots of some of the individual blocks...(click on the photos to see larger views)...

Now the blocks will be sewn together and quilted with stitching in the ditch. We hope to display the final project sometime later this year at a First Friday Gallery Night in Ithaca in Quilters Corner (the great shop where we hold our meetings).

Great fun!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Fellow Guild Member at AQS Lancaster

A member of my local guild recently won a ribbon at the AQS Lancaster show. The quilt was also on display at my guild's exhibit back in September, so I got to see it in person before it was nationally famous. It's absolutely stunning!

Way to go, Kathy!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Giveaway Reminder

Just a reminder about my current giveaway...details are in my post from last week. I'll pick the winner one week from today.

Friday, April 5, 2013

First April Finish

It feels good to have another UFO completed. I made this top and backing back in August 2011 (I blogged about it here), but put it away until I got around to quilting and binding it this past week. As I mentioned in that blog post, this quilt was made after I made this block you see below...

The red/white/black block was part of a modern block-of-the-month project from the Sew, Mama, Sew blog. When a friend of mine first saw the block on my blog, she thought it was an entire quilt -- so that gave me the idea to make a large quilt based on the same design as the block. 

I changed the measurements a bit to make the quilt a rectangle rather than a square, but it's the same basic idea.

Here's the pieced back, all from my stash...

And a closeup of the quilting...

The colors are not quite right in the photos -- I'm afraid that blue and purple and pink don't play well with my camera and computer, but in real life, the colors look really good.

This quilt used up 3 1/2 yards from my stash and will be going to the local foster child program.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Book Review -- and a Giveaway!

If you're a Jennifer Chiaverini fan, you'll want to comment on this post to win a paperback copy of "The Giving Quilt", along with three Elm Creek pins.

A couple of weeks ago, I was given a copy of the book and asked to review it and then sponsor a giveaway on my blog. Now I don't usually do things like this too often, but I've read most of the Elm Creek Quilts novels and have liked them, so I agreed.

Here's a synopsis from the publisher -- "At Elm Creek Manor, the circle of quilters is hard at work preparing for 'Quiltsgiving'. Held annually the week after Thanksgiving, expert and novice quilters from near and far gather for a special winter session of quilt camp to make pieces for Project Linus. As the week unfolds, the quilters respond to the question, 'Why do you give?' in ways as varied as the life experiences that drew them to Elm Creek Manor. Each of the quilters, including a librarian, a teacher, a college student, and a quilt shop clerk, uses her unique talents to teach, inspire, and give back to her fellow campers."

Since I am very much involved in making charity quilts, including for Project Linus, I enjoyed reading about the 'Quiltsgiving' camp at Elm Creek Quilts and "getting to know" the quilters who attended the camp. Each one has a unique story, but they all have the common thread of wanting to give back to others, even when faced with difficulties in their own lives. It's something that I see in my fellow quilt guild members as well.

You can read more about the book here...and it is now available in paperback.

Now for the I said above, I have a paperback copy of "The Giving Quilt", as well as three Elm Creek pins to giveaway to a lucky reader of my blog. To enter, just leave a comment on this post and tell me where you are from and what kinds of charity projects you enjoy. I'll pick a random winner in the morning of April 15th. One comment per person, please. And please, please, please, make sure there is a way for me to contact you if you are the winner. You may want to read this to make sure that your profile is not set to "no reply".

And if you don't win, you can still purchase the book from your favorite bookstore!

Good luck!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Stashbusting Update

OK, in March I finished these three quilts... That's another 14 1/2 yards out of my stash/scraps in 2013! More than 40 yards in three months!

On the down side, I did buy eleven yards of fabric in March...however, on the plus side, I've already made another three quilt tops with five of those yards, so I'm still ahead!